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witnessoftruth
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Joined: 12/15/2016

I have the concept for a game in my mind and several pages of notes scribbled out in front of me, but I admit to being stuck on what I consider a vital mechanic.

To set this up, the game I have in mind is something of a industry type game where players each manage their own factories. Basically I want a game where raw materials are produced into a marketable product and the products are then sold for a tangible profit. More profits equal more victory points as well as more ways to spend that money to manipulate outcomes.

In my mind I see each round consisting of purchasing raw materials for the factories to work with, allocating labor for the production, managing distribution, and realizing a profit.

The mechanic I am struggling with is a fair way to allow for price fluctuation.I would like the raw material costs to vary from round to round, as well as the final sale price of the products. This is all in a very infantile stage of design and I am not even sure it will work, but I would like to try it.

Any ideas and input is appreciated, even if that input is to try something else entirely. Thank you all in advance!

-Dave

Martin-r-m
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My thoughts

In this early phase I would suggest that you plan where the players will encounter them selfes. A game is no simulation. How can you create an environment for the game play ?
Maybe this question will open new doors ?

The second question is about luck involved. Should the players be able to plan moves over many rounds or do you want them to react ? This is vital for gameplay and I can't see where's you are going.

Martin

witnessoftruth
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Joined: 12/15/2016
Thank you

Thank you for the comment Martin.

Martin-r-m wrote:
In this early phase I would suggest that you plan where the players will encounter them selfes. A game is no simulation. How can you create an environment for the game play ?
Maybe this question will open new doors ?

What you said here is about what I was thinking too, how do I get the environment I am looking for translated into the game mechanics. I am looking for the players to be able to plan ahead several turns, but with the addition of cards add in some unpredictability like market crashes and sabotage.

Again I appreciate your comments.

polyobsessive
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Power Grid

Hi Dave,

Have you played Power Grid? It has a very simple but effective mechanism for prices in a fluctuating fuel market, based on supply and demand.

In essence, for each fuel type there is a track with increasing prices for the fuels, and to buy a unit of fuel you pay the price of the token in the cheapest slot, so the more get bought, the more expensive they become. When more fuel becomes available the tokens fill up slots, bringing the price down again.

It may not be what you want or need, but maybe it might provide inspiration.

- Rob

witnessoftruth
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Joined: 12/15/2016
Thank you for the idea

Thanks Rob.

Quote:
Have you played Power Grid? It has a very simple but effective mechanism for prices in a fluctuating fuel market, based on supply and demand.

I have not played it, but researching the mechanics of it now. Thanks for the suggestion.

witnessoftruth
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Joined: 12/15/2016
Power Grid suggestion

After some research into Power Grid I think it has some of what I am looking for, but lacks the fluctuation aspect I want.

It does have variable resource prices, but I am looking for maybe more random fluctuation.

If the game runs on being able to make the most profit from the items you produce it makes sense that you want to get the raw materials at as favorable of a price as possible. I am not sure if I can come up with a reasonable manner of making this happen or not, though thanks to Rob's tip I am closer than I was before.

Thanks for all the suggestions so far, still looking for input though.

Evil ColSanders
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I think Power Grid is your

I think Power Grid is your best bet still. I made a 6 sided die which had trade offers on each side 2@ 1:1, 2@2:1, and 2@1:2. You could create the same die and roll it for every product/material, or make a bunch of dice to just roll and act as its own marker for the product/material.

Just don't do it every round. All it will do is cause people to horde until the best possible trade every time since they can "just wait" since the rolls are so frequent.

Another way is to write out EVERY possible combination of trades you can make, minus the extremes like all 2 for 1s, such as:

Item A= 1:2
Item B= 1:1
Item C= 1:1
Item B= 2:1
etc...

Write each combination on a card. Now, at the beginning of the 2nd-3rd round, you draw a card from the shuffled pile and voila. Instant price flux.

witnessoftruth
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Joined: 12/15/2016
Thanks for the insights Evil

Thanks for the insights Evil ColSanders.

Evil ColSanders wrote:

Just don't do it every round. All it will do is cause people to horde until the best possible trade every time since they can "just wait" since the rolls are so frequent.

Another way is to write out EVERY possible combination of trades you can make, minus the extremes like all 2 for 1s, such as:

Item A= 1:2
Item B= 1:1
Item C= 1:1
Item B= 2:1
etc...

Write each combination on a card. Now, at the beginning of the 2nd-3rd round, you draw a card from the shuffled pile and voila. Instant price flux.

Excellent point about the resource hoarding, I hadn't thought of that. I also like the card option for dealing with price flux too, better than what I was doing currently.

Dravvin
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Joined: 03/29/2016
Have you played Dungeon Petz?

Have you played Dungeon Petz? Probably not quite what you had in mind but lots of interesting mechanics and allows planning ahead.

witnessoftruth
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Joined: 12/15/2016
Great ideas

Thanks for the suggestion, never heard of it before but I agree there are a lot of interesting mechanics at work here. I really like the idea of resources having a "shelf life" and may have to consider working that in.

Daggaz
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Joined: 12/19/2016
Fluctuation is another word

Fluctuation is another word for modulating a signal with random noise. Dice are probably the easiest way in a game to generate random noise. In this case, the noise is a price modifier that you add to the base price. Using a d6 as an example:

1 = -2
2 = -1
3 = 0
4 = 0
5 = +1
6 = +2

So your item costs X normally, you roll the d6 and get a 5, it now costs X+1, or roll a 3 it still costs X (no change is the most likely result in this distribution), or roll a 1 and you get it extra cheap at X-2.

You could use larger dice or multiple dice to get a more nuanced fluctuation distribution, but one thing you will want to avoid is requiring a Look-up Table. Keep it as simple as possible so the players dont need to hit the rule book and the game moves quickly and smoothly over this part, especially if they do it repetitively.

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