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Shooting mechanics inspiration

4 replies [Last post]
Joined: 09/21/2017

I'm working on a project which requires a shooting/ranged mechanic the likes of something lightweight working with squares on the board, simple LOS much like Imperial assault or other games by Fantasy Flight Games.
I'm not that experienced a gamer and have been looking at GURPS tactical shooting which is too complicated, and not wanting to imitate IA completely I'm looking for other systems/mechanics that might work for a light weight implementation. Any ideas on where to take a look would be appreciated. I know how to use google, but my searched either discover something really complicated like GURPS or something alongside hexbased tabletops for army style fighting.

questccg's picture
Joined: 04/16/2011
I don't want to seem rude...

But I was wondering, why don't you create your OWN "Tactical" Shooting mechanic? I mean it's probably easier to create your own with you choosing and deciding what stats you want your units to have and then figure out how you want combat to be decided.

Things like randomness, do I want dice or not. If I want dice, do I require custom dice instead of standard d6s? Or should I look at Polys for even more variability, etc.

I'm sure a few designers might be able to give you help designing your own mechanics to suit whatever it is you want to accomplish.

@Tyler (TBone) was working on an RTS TableTop Game, he might have some insight to share (and he's active on the forum currently)... @Ramon (X3M) was also working on a simplified wargame with miniatures too. He might have some insight too! @FrankM always has good ideas and can work towards tightening the mechanic ...

I'm sure you'll find someone who can better help tailor your own system/mechanics.


X3M's picture
Joined: 10/28/2013

Still working on it too. I rather call it "well organised" then simplified.

Regarding your project. There are 2 roads you can walk.

1. You look around and ask for which games use "ranged" combat. Then you google on those games "names". And you try to get your hands on the rules. Not for copying (unless it really suits your game, which is ok), but for getting inspiration for what you would like to see.
2. You don't look around. But you try things out for yourself. What do YOU want, for mechanics? You do what YOU want, for mechanics. And then you put it to the test to explain what YOU want. By explaining the mechanics you have in mind on, for example, this forum.


As pointers. You mentioned that you use a squared field. This choice used to be weird amongst wargamers. But I and many others have discovered the wonders of 2/3.
How does this go? Simple counting is what you want, no rulers or anything. And it happens that with squares, you can go for octagon figures. While with hexagons, well, hexagons.
Octagon >> Hexagon.
(Then there is still the dodecagon, but that is advanced)

Simply use a score of 2 for each adjacent square. And diagonally, it is 3. Actually, it is based on 1 and the square root of 2. Which is 1.41, but simplified to 1.5.

Here you see some detailed information about different ways to count:

Trying to find the other website. But I don't have the time for that, if you are interested. I will look for it later.

Please keep us informed.
And good luck with your project.

Joined: 01/27/2017

I think that Rugdal was asking for pointers to a couple games that you suggested Googling.

Rugdal, you can look at the "grid movement" mechanic page on BoardGameGeek then select the "Fighting" category to narrow it down to "only" 520 games. Unfortunately I haven't played a grid-based fighting boardgame since the original Bloodbowl, so I can't really narrow that list down further for you.

But X3M's suggestion about approximating sqrt(2) as 1.5 is a good one. I recall that the Civilization videogames did that before moving to hexes.

When devising your own mechanics, try to keep an eye on how they affect design decisions as well. For example, do walls occupy a grid or exist on the border between grids? Your fighter pawns can't realistically stand on a wall if it's a paper-thin standee between grids, but maybe that's fine because even a little 3D movement would overcomplicate your concept.

X3M's picture
Joined: 10/28/2013
Well. There arent much games

Well. There arent much games that i know of that use squared grid AND shooting mechanics. There are 0 comming to my mind.

However, we could look for any game with shooting mechanics (ranged too) that can serve as inspiration.

As strange as it sounds.
ASL or Advanced Squad Leader inspired me with its terrain.

A&A or Axis and Allies has some movement mechanics that can be considered ranged attacks.

Warhammer uses "simple" obstruction mechanics.

Command and Colours.

Important to know is that when you google. Take a look under images. If there are games out there that explain ranged combat. They NEED an image for that.

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