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Halp! New name for BATTLECRATES game system.

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Rimmsolin's picture
Joined: 12/13/2013

You can see pictures of the prototype here:

I'm fairly far along having moved to public demos and playtests for my latest game, BATTLECRATES. However the current name has more to do with the packaging that appears like a crate, than it does the action that's taking place. It is intended to be a meta brand name, so individual products would be named: BATTLECRATES: Ninjas vs. Sea Monsters or BATTLECRATES: Sky Pirates vs. Dragons.

In the short testing I've done, it does not seem to be resonating with players and leads to confusion. I'm looking for something more inspirational and clear cut.

"Command a deadly cloud of airship-wielding Sky Pirates. Or take on the growing power of the Crimson Dragons and other factions in the new BATTLECRATES tactical skirmish game system for 2-4 players.

Unique, full color dice-as-units make for fast tracking of status and health. Dynamic board tiles, faction drafting, and variable victory conditions as the game progresses ensures huge replayability all packed in a tiny 4"x4"x4" BATTLECRATES box. Who will win this ultimate battle?"

Just based on the description and pictures, what do you imagine it might be called?


Joined: 04/08/2012
Call it your company name?

If this your first game, why not just call it Sky Fortress like your company.


Rimmsolin's picture
Joined: 12/13/2013
It's possible. I'm more

It's possible. I'm more likely to rename the company after the game if that were the case though. :)

Tbone's picture
Joined: 02/18/2013
Usually the name gives away

Usually the name gives away something about what the game is. From the title I would expect the theme to be somewhere a long the lines of two players with massive crates filled with creatures ready to be unleashed onto the field. This actually wouldn't be a bad theme necessarily but I don't imagine that is where you are coming from.

Are the units limited to the air? If not, Sky Fortress seems a bit odd unless you are battling on a sky fortress.

Are you going for a straight theme name? If so the theme as it stands is...... they fight. Why are they fighting? Why are dragons so opposed to flying pirates? Why are pirates flying? Where does this take place? Is it steam punk? Fantasy? Are their land, sea, and air factions? We got to have a story to make a great name!

Or maybe something playing off of the dice mechanic?
Cube Onslaught, Cube Commander, Six Sided Slaughter, Commander of Cubes, Cubellator (combines cube and the latin word for warrior).

Just some thoughts. Love the look of the game and I was actually wanting to use a mechanic similar to the dice! each side having its own special abilities and such. Its exciting to see.

Rimmsolin's picture
Joined: 12/13/2013
You're right, no the

You're right, no the BATTLECRATES name pushes players' expectations the wrong direction.

I do like the idea of referring to the cube shapes (dice, packaging, square tiles/cards) as long as the action is there too. Ironically the unit dice are not rolled, but spun up/down depending on damage (1-3 hearts) and status (Ready or Exhausted.)

So to give a little more information on gameplay to see if it spurs on any other ideas...

It's for 2-4 players (demo pictures are 1v1 for initial balance testing purposes.) Players receive gold and power resources and one city on the map that can spawn units.

In front of them are 4 unit cards (Light, Heavy, Flying, and Support.) Two unit dice for each card are placed into the available unit pool, ready to be spawned onto the map. Each unit has a passive effect always in effect (i.e. "May move one space after being attacked.") and one ability that can be activated by spending power resources (i.e. "Flame Breath - deal 1 damage to each adjacent unit".

Players also have a Commander card that gives them two powerful abilities (i.e. "Barrage - Perform a 4 ATK on each enemy unit within 2 spaces of the Sky Fortress base.")

On a turn, players may spawn a unit and activate it, or choose a Ready unit on the map and activate it. After activating one unit, a player may take one action: move/attack, boosted move (+1 MOV), or focused attack (+1 ATK), or do nothing. Then that unit is Exhausted (flipped over).

Combat is handled by rolling d6's (critical hit, hit, hit, shield, shield, power+) with the attacker going for hits, and the defender going for shields. Damage spins down the unit dice until its zero or less at which point the unit is returned to the unit pool.

Depending on the scenario, the map may have several control objectives such as monuments (VP), wellsprings (power), and mines (gold) as well as 1X pickups.

Players alternate activating one unit each, until all units are Exhausted and players cannot or choose not to spawn new units. This ends a round, at which point player receive additional gold/power resources, check for victory points, Ready all units, and begin a new round.

Player attempt to get 10 Victory points triggering the end of the game. After equivalent turns are taken, player with the most VP wins. VP is earned by killing enemies, controlling monuments, damaging a player's base, and completing achievements that change throughout the game.

Each player chooses a faction currently that comes with one of each type of unit and a commander. With multiple core sets (2 factions each), players will be able to draft unit cards from their entire collection, mixing and matching abilities to field the perfect team. Each core set also comes with at least 2 scenarios and unique terrain type for each faction (Crimson Dragons = lava, Undead Legions = misty bog, etc.)

All this gets densely packed into cube packaging, about 4"x4"x4". Hence the "crate" in the previous name.

Current factions (working names) planned may include: Crimson Dragons, Sky Pirates, Undead Legions, Black Lotus Ninjas, Dinosaurs 2.0, etc.

Does that spur any other name ideas?

Rimmsolin's picture
Joined: 12/13/2013
I should also note the rough

I should also note the rough story:

"The Ageless--a powerful race long gone--has returned to the galaxy and opened rifts on one hundred major planets. They have summoned each planet's champions to a compete in many battles across many environments. The winner's prize is no less than the the very future of their planet, dominating all others for the next age. No one knows what the Ageless get out of this, but there is no doubt all races will respond."

This will change, but is enough to present why different factions are involved in a conflict in various set ups.

Tbone's picture
Joined: 02/18/2013
Interesting Theme

Ageless Area.
Champions of the Ageless.
Champions of the Ageless Area.
Rifts of the Ageless.
Rift Wars.
Battle for Ageless Fortune.
Battle for the Ageless.
Ageless Battle.
War of the Ageless.
War for the Ageless.
The Ageless War.

Something to do with Ageless because that is the root; the reason this conflict between the players (essentially) is present. Also since its a battle, I think there needs to be a word about conflict there. The word Ageless I think will be your hook because it is a word not used very often and it produces wonder which will make people want to look further and explore the mechanics.

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