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Making it less about luck

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questccg
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Okay, so I'll try to make my message as brief and concise as possible.

I am working on a second version of a game in which players dual against each other (sort of Yu-Gi-Oh!).

The difference is that the cards are played FACE DOWN, hidden from the opponent.

There are a couple of bonus systems using RPS (Rock-Paper-Scissors) which again are random because you don't know your opponent's card. There are odds (obviously): the first is 5-10-5 (unbalanced), the other 5-5-3-3-4 (unbalanced). One is RPS 3, the other is RPS 5.

My question is: "How do I make the game less about luck and more about strategy???"

I'll explain the game play a little more in the next post (to divide the two parts...)

questccg
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Example of game play

questccg wrote:
I'll explain the game play a little more in the next post (to divide the two parts...)

So the "minion" cards (or unit cards) are played FACE DOWN. A player can then SUMMON a certain quantity of that unit (to a maximum allowed by his skills or the card itself).

Example: I have a Black dragon that allows a maximum of 3 to be summoned. I can bluff and summon 5 instead of 3...

The opponent is then faced with a decision as to what card he plays to battle my dragon. The problem is there is not much information about my card and what I should play...

See I don't know it's a Dragon. OR for that matter, I don't know much else other than the player has decided to summon 5 minions.

How can I add more strategy to the game???

questccg
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Almost the same odds of winning

questccg wrote:
See I don't know it's a Dragon. OR for that matter, I don't know much else other than the player has decided to summon 5 minions.

If I consider that he has summoned 5 minions, I could assume that he has a minion with a Strength (STR) of 5 meaning 5 x 5 = 25 Attack (ATK). But in truth, he has a Black dragon with a Strength (STR) of 8 meaning 8 x 3 = 24 Attack (ATK). The 3 is the maximum amount he may summon...

As you can see, what I have done is made each card equally likely (or almost) of winning. The scores (at the highest) can be either 24 or 25 ATK. So if you have a Knight with Strength (STR) of 3, well you can summon 8 of them (for a total of 24 ATK also...)

questccg
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Trump suit

questccg wrote:
As you can see, what I have done is made each card equally likely (or almost) of winning. The scores (at the highest) can be either 24 or 25 ATK.

I am in a "major" rethink about the game. But I would still appreciate any ideas (about reducing luck and relying more on strategy).

Ilta pointed out that with a "trump" suit, it could get players thinking about what card they want to play. I am still thinking about this. I may have a variant of this (in mind)...

Cogentesque
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Well it's definately a tricky

Well it's definately a tricky question. In order to keep (roughly) in the boundaries of the game that you have already mentioned, you would probably need to put a few more rules in. If you change too much more, you would risk having to change the idea so much that it may well be easier just making a differet idea alltogther!

From the sounds of it, you have already put a lot of thought into the idea but I am still unaware of how the players "bluff" their cards.
If for example I want to use dragons (maximum of 3): if I "bluff". does that mean I will put 5 cards down and discard the non-dragons? I think this needs a bit more explanation to have any bearing.

Otherwise to make the scissors paper element a little more "trackable" to make the player have a bit of a better idea in following the play and trying to make decisions other than random chance you could experiment with ruling the players so that they are only alowed to play one of two certain types of card (scissors or paper, paper or stone) in a given round eg: "In this round you can only play scissors or stones) which give your opponent a 50% chance to forsee the outcome as opposed to 30%.

Another idea would be perhaps grouping the creatures roughly: Dragons = red / knights = white and then painting the backs of the cards the respective colour so when the player played his "secret hand" (which would contain mostly red cards) the opponent would know roughly what group the minions were in even though they wouldnt know the exact cards.

A further idea would be allowing a certain player (or both) a limited number of "additions" once the match-play had finished. eg Once we have flipped our cards and I have seen my opponent play 3 Scissors, I unfortunately countered with 3 paper (and thus losing) I would then have a limited chance to add one or two cards that I did not play with onto my stack as a defence-bonus. This would limit my lossess and would also add another strategy element in my phase whether I risk putting all of my rocks down to attack when I have a feeling I will need them to defend with next turn.

seo
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The first idea that comes to

The first idea that comes to my mind would be having several back designs in the deck, to give some information about the odds on what the front might be.

For a very simple example, let's say you have three back designs: A, B and C. Cards with back A are 50% Rocks, 25% Paper and 25% Scissors; cards with back B are 25% Rocks, 50% Paper and 25% Scissors; and cards with back C are 25% Rocks, 25% Paper and 50% Scissors.

When I play a face down card, you can see the back. If I play an A, there's twice the chances of it being a Rock than either Paper or Scissors, but you don't have certainty.

If you don't want to have the hints on the backs (because that would reveal information for all the cards players hold in-hand), you can still have the info on the front, near one edge, and make the players play face up but covering the rest of the card with their hand or something.

questccg
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Trump suit

Cogentesque wrote:
From the sounds of it, you have already put a lot of thought into the idea but I am still unaware of how the players "bluff" their cards. If for example I want to use dragons (maximum of 3): if I "bluff", does that mean I will put 5 cards down and discard the non-dragons?

Firstly you ONLY have ONE CARD. So if it is a Black dragon, then you are going to summon ONLY Black dragons. Because the Strength of a Black dragon is HIGH (8 out of 9), you may only summon 3 of them. But to "hide" the fact you have a Black dragon, you can "bluff" and summon more than 3, let's say 5. So basically it amounts to playing TWO ADDITIONAL CHIPS (bet 5). This sort of "bluff" makes it hard to know the card I have... The BETTING is the size (quantity) of your army that you are summoning.

Quote:
A further idea would be allowing a certain player (or both) a limited number of "additions" once the match-play had finished. I would then have a limited chance to add one or two cards that I did not play with onto my stack as a defence-bonus.

Yes you can play "Instant ability" cards which can alter the end result of a battle. BUT this does not change the fact that initially you had no information prior to the cards being revealled.

SO FAR, I believe Ilta's idea of having a "Trump" suit seems to be the MOST interesting idea. Basically what this means is ANOTHER card is played which shows the TRUMP suit for that round. So say the suit is "Fire", fire beats all other cards except "Water".

From here players really only have TWO (2) choices: either they play "Fire" or "Water". The other suits are TOO RISKY because of the TRUMP suit. The possibilities are Fire-Fire, Fire-Water (1), Water-Fire (1) or Water-Water. The odds of having a win are 50% (2 out of 4).

questccg
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Trump-like variant

questccg wrote:
SO FAR, I believe Ilta's idea of having a "Trump" suit seems to be the MOST interesting idea. Basically what this means is ANOTHER card is played which shows the TRUMP suit for that round. So say the suit is "Fire", fire beats all other cards except "Water".

There could be variations to the actual implementation of the "Trump" suit. Rather than having "Fire" beat all other cards, it could be TWO (instead of ONE) of the other suits. This would make it an ACTUAL RPS 5 but only for the suit that MATCHES the "trump" card.

So "Fire" would beat "Earth" AND "Light". Obviously "Water" still beats "Fire". If it is implemented in this way, the strategy is a little more "diverse". First a player could decide to play "Death" to beat "Water" AND not have the concern of being "trump"-ed. However the opposing player can anticipate that by playing "Light" (Dangerous because of "Fire" beating BOTH "Earth" AND "Light").

BUT in using the "trump" card, it adds a little more strategy for both players to consider rather than just a blind bonus...

By providing an extra piece of information, players now need to consider the information and make an educated guess in which way their opponent will use said information.

questccg
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Any other suggestions

questccg wrote:
SO FAR, I believe Ilta's idea of having a "Trump" suit seems to be the MOST interesting idea.

Does anyone else have any suggestions as to how to reduce the element of chance (or luck) in exchange for something that is MORE strategic???

dtigertron
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ok, this is a little different, however

Alright this game uses a hidden component that is not exactly bluffing, however people don't know how many 'combat cards' and how many other cards like 'special abilities'. Now this game uses 5 for every 'combat', and the strategy is no one knows which 'battle' you are going for. Maybe you could just have the part where every one puts down same amount of cards, and it could be mix of 'creatures' and 'spells'. I know the game in the video is about a silly theme, but check out the mechanics and see if you could use some of them.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YYMOWd768qA&feature=feedu

questccg
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MtG flavor

dtigertron wrote:
Maybe you could just have the part where every one puts down same amount of cards, and it could be mix of 'creatures' and 'spells'.

Well my game allows you to "choose" which battle you fight. And oddly enough, there are three (3) possibilities. But rather than hidding the fact, you know because of the position of the card. There are three (3) positions: left, middle and right.

Where it differs is that you only play ONE card (one minion). So it is a dual between two cards, however there may be other players in battle. This depends on the number of players (which is undefined). So you could have four (4) player battling for the same "Stronghold".

Your Instant cards can be played according to the rules of the card (during a particular phase, on your turn, etc.)

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