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Weather table examples wanted

5 replies [Last post]
Joska Paszli
Joined: 05/25/2012

Dear reader

I am creating a japanese warfare based wargame and want to add a weather mechanism so some unit type will be handicapped by the weather during the game..

I use event cards so when a certain weathertype and even season is decided at start of the game an event card can be drawn to have the weather changed a bit....

but are there any good, pretty realistic but simple weather mechanics i should take notice of?

Greetings Joska

Tedthebug's picture
Joined: 01/17/2016
Fog of war?

A fog of war for snow/rain/fog/mist could cover a large range of seasonal weather affecting how far things can move/see/attack

Joined: 08/21/2015
wind direction + fire?

Not a direct answer to your question, but:
There was an old turn-based computer game called Romance of the Three Kingdoms set in ancient china. During battles you could start fires which spread according to wind direction. If your game has a grided board, you could use fire tiles and an six or eight-sided teetotum (dice-like spinning top) for wind direction (depending on whether you use a hex or square grid). You could expand this further for other weather types - so if it is raining, then fire won't spread, but on hot dry days, the fire spreads faster. You could replace the teetotum with dice or a four, six or eight-card "wind deck" (maybe look at the wind tiles in mahjong for inspiration)

Also if it were raining, movement across certain types of terrain (eg. swamp or river crossing) might incur a penalty of some kind for most units. Ditto frost or snow (there were several accounts of famous knights and at least one king in medieval Europe who died as a result of slipping on ice while fighting or on the way to a battle).
Perhaps rivers and lakes could freeze over in winter, allowing quicker crossings while the "rivers freeze" card is in play, with a random risk of damage to heavier units.

If there is a naval element to the game, wind should affect the movement of ships (my teetotum idea was originally used in a pirate-themed game, where ships moved slower upwind and faster downwind).

Fog (and smoke, if you include fires) would be nice to include, but I'm not sure how one could do this simply. Maybe ranged units like archers would be penalised in their attack, or there would be a small random chance of attacks hurting nearby friendly units "by accident", or you could just make the outcome of combat more random than normal to simulate the confusion caused by a lack of visibility.

Joined: 03/02/2014
Jelly Bean Farmers!

In my own game, Jelly Bean Farmers, weather is a key feature in the game. It is more significant and possibly less realistic than you are looking for, but this might be a mechanic you can use, anyway. Feel free.

I have a weather deck for which each card has a description and an effect. Examples:
Severe Drought: -3 growth (unless you have sprinklers)
Minor Drought: -1 growth (unless you have sprinklers)
Locusts: -2 growth (unless you have netting)
Sunny Days and rainy nights: +3 growth
Balmy weather: +1 growth
Hurricane: -1 growth, destroys netting

In the game, each year has a spring and a summer planting season. At the beginning of each Spring planting season, one card is turned up for the All-year weather pattern, and another is turned up for the Spring weather. The result is the sum of the two cards. Sometimes they will cancel each other out, but sometimes they will add to each other and create a really great or really disastrous season. (Welcome to Farming!)

At the beginning of the Summer planting season, the Spring weather card is discarded and a Summer one turned up. However, the Year-long card stays in place (and is added to the summer one for the summer weather result). This gives the players a little knowledge about what the summer season will be like, because they know one of the two cards that will be used.

By adding the effects of two cards together, there are many more combinations than if I just had a single weather card applied to each season, which helps keep the game from seeming repetitive.

(This probably wouldn't apply to you, but there are also a few action cards -- Farmer's Almanac and Old man with a bum knee -- that allow players to peek ahead on the weather deck.)

Joined: 12/25/2012
RE: Weather Mechanics

I like some of the ideas already mentioned. It's simple, and not particularly interesting, to simply make weather provide numerical bonuses or penalties, such as rain provides a -1 penalty to attack rolls.

However, the weather effects that modify the board state will create more interesting decisions for players, forcing to them to rethink new strategies. For example, rivers freezing over in winter effectively change the game board by allowing movement in a direction previously not allowed (or severely hindered). Vegetation during the spring and summer months might allow gathering of food and herbs, which can be used for ointments. Maybe during the fall, it's difficult for heroes to be stealthy due to all the foliage on the ground.

Anyways, there are some great opportunities to make weather more interesting than simple, numerical penalties.

Good luck!

Joska Paszli
Joined: 05/25/2012

O sorry i forgot to mention its a wargame, weather based on a day.... when my own mechanic is finished i will post it here

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