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Epic Battle (PnP)

Cards and Sliders

This update is about seeing how the components will work together in a published game.

The only cardstock I had onhand is considerably thinner than real poker cards (90 g/m2 vs. 320 g/m2), so these sliders from The Game Crafter aren't very snug... but they are enough to know what does and does not work on the face of the card.

The colors of the slider-clips (or paperclips if you're improvising for the PnP) give an indication of which player controls that character. You don't want to rely on the players' memory when there might be a dozen cards piled up during a fight.

The sliders also work on what I had used for the previous prototype: plain paper in card sleeves.

Cards show the same info as before, but re-arranged a bit. There's also now a health tracker along one edge, and a slider on the other edge can designate the power selected this turn. I still don't have art assets, so the quote is a little bigger on these prototype cards than I expect them to be in the final product.

The rules have been tweaked to mention the sliders, so here's a Dropbox link to the PnP.



Anything NEW with this design???

Just wondering @FrankM any new developments or other avenues you are interested in exploring further?! I know you talked about ART... Like I said in my own experiments I used "MidJourney" (MJ) something that my ex-boss shared with me, knowing about my projects and that I was wanting a "different" style for "Monster Keep" (MK)... I've gone with the pseudo-realistic characters and am happy with the outcome of my research.

I think if you want to use your own ART as inspiration for the AI... It probably would be best to TRY MJ out for free first with one piece of ART. And then you can pay for anonymous usage in a PERSONAL channel (With the MJ BOT).

I don't have much other experience with OTHER AI ART... Just got MJ from a friend!


To clarify a bit my previous comment

What I meant by giving it a TRY... Is because on DISCORD you MUST use public channels available for ART generation if you use the FREE TRIAL. Why? Because that's how they have the TRIAL "setup". So everyone can see you images and Version their own copies of the art you are trying to make...

That's why I said with MJ TRY one piece of art (like I said, you can search through the documentation on how to USE your OWN art as inspiration or source content) in one the public channels...

If you like the output produced... You can pay to get the BOT as a CONTACT and use your PRIVATE CHAT with the BOT to generate images that are PRIVATE to you only... Well they will be shared with your Contact Account on MJ... But not available to everyone else in the Discord channels.

This is because you are using proprietary ART ... And you don't want anyone to get access to that ART. I'm not talking about paranoia ... But it happened to me in one of my Imagine Prompts: I had the results and I did not like any of them... But another MJ User upscaled one of my results... And same for him, we sort of exchanged images because I like a version that he did not want to use...

So your ART is visible and public. Unless you pay and then you can use your own PRIVATE Chat channel with the MJ BOT.

Just sharing some relevant information with you concerning MJ!


Reminds me of Tableau Public

Must be a new fad in free trials because this is pretty much exactly how the free trial works in Tableau. Any data visualization you build shows up in their gallery, so you wouldn't want to use any proprietary corporate data.

I had a bunch of work stuff ambush me at once, but will give this a try.


So you may want to choose ONE (1) piece of ART and use it as INPUT of MJ and specify a "--seed #" to ensure that every time you generate an series of four (4) images, they will be IDENTICAL given the "Prompt" AND "Seed".

Otherwise IF you don't specify a SEED, you'll never be able to regenerate anything similar... But remember that when you "Upscale" (to higher resolution) that seed is UNKNOWN. I really dislike this, because the results you get will always VARY a bit... Even if you specified the ORIGNAL seed.

Anyhow let me know how thing go. The Aspect Ration can be handled with "--ar 16:9" for example (after the "Seed").


Note #1: Also if you WANT square images then don't specify the aspect ratio. When you Upscale an image, you'll get a resolution of 1024 x 1024 pixels ... which is HIGH ENOUGH for most CARD applications.

Note #2: If you want a PORTRAIT ratio, you can specify 3:2. That's the default camera ratio for portrait picture taking. I'm just saying in the event that your images are NOT SQUARE but more like a portrait, you'd want to correct the Aspect Ration to 3:2...

Sequence of Play is too LONG

Ok ... This may be my take on the matter ... But I feel like 17 Points for a Sequence of Play is much TOO LONG. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with your game. I'm just thinking maybe if it could be broken up into more PHASES with each one explaining 2 or 3 Points each.


Starting your turn:

Start your turn by drawing one card from the your Deck. In addition, you may play one (1) condition card face-up in between players. Note: that if your new condition card counters an existing condition card, remove both cards from play and put them into the discard pile.

Playing characters: ...

Attacking your opponent: ...

Interrupting normal play: ...

Damage Resolution: ...

Interrupting after Combat: ...

Housekeeping at the end of your turn: ...

IDK if this is 100% complete. But you get the idea I presume. Instead of ONE (1) GIANT LIST of 17 Points, break it up into simpler sections with a section heading and then a few points related to each section. It will make the Sequence of Play less daunting and EASIER to comprehend each point.

Again you may NOT like this idea... Again feel free to use/adapt/ignore the suggestion of making sections more clear... It's your game, I'm just trying to give you better feedback and see if you can make the explanations simpler to follow and easier to understand.


Have you seen the Sequence of Play for the IRS's "1040" game? ;)

questccg wrote:
Ok ... This may be my take on the matter ... But I feel like 17 Points for a Sequence of Play is much TOO LONG. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with your game. I'm just thinking maybe if it could be broken up into more PHASES with each one explaining 2 or 3 Points each.

This is really helpful. I work in academia, so there's no need to sugar-coat negative feedback on my account :) Awesome value-add in offering a solution!

What I was picturing in my head was laying out the rulebook as if it was a comicbook, and the Sequence of Play would end up as six or eight panels. Hopefully they'd all fall on a single page or two facing pages (depending on the size of the booklet). Thinking through how to group them logically would make that work much better.

My plan for next steps was to mock up card and rule artwork using an AI tool, then have my son draw up the real pictures since I've seen him make pretty good cartoony drawings. We'll see if they're production-worthy, but will definitely liven up the prototype. I was going to use Stable Diffusion since it's the cheapest once one has exhausted their free trial, but I've heard that Stable Diffusion has a serious problem posing limbs. We'll see how it goes.

Those are some pretty good ideas!

No worries... It's not like I cannot read. But rules that are TOO LONG or how should I say "uncategorized" bother me. I think the BEST example to cite how a series of complex rules get divided into sections is Magic: the Gathering. Or Richard Garfield's baby.

Yes there are a lot of variations to the rules. But it is broken down into different SECTIONS each dealing with ONE (1) "aspect" of the game. I know there are a bunch of, etc. Sub-sections but they categorize everything such that at FIRST you get only 4.1 and 4.2 and then if you want more details you can go to another page with sub-sections 4.1.1, 4.1.2 and 4.2.1, etc.

The idea is to make it feel likes like a BLOCK of rules... To something more like a REFERENCE which is divided into all the relevant parts.

I wasn't being critical ... I'm not that kind of person. But when I look at things ... From experience, I know what people prefer or how to simplify things such that they look more presentable and easier to comprehend. But even my own rulebooks have gotten criticism. So what the heck do I know?! We tried to break things down into smaller sections ... But still people wanted more clarification. While the rulebooks were available for about 3 years and nobody commented that there needed to be additional clarifications... So we thought that everyone had a chance to download and read them...

Anyhow... Just offering suggestions. You don't need to use all of them. Feel free to figure out what works best for you. Like I said, I'm not at all offended if you don't like what I share... It's fine by me... My job is to share what MIGHT improve it and then you can see with your own inspiration what works best and is a good fit for you.

Often when other Designers post rulebooks, I read them and then my mind gets a bunch of ideas based on MY experience (game-related but from my own personal perspective). I often just submit ideas because that's what most of us designers lack... I mean you've been working non-stop on a design for several days and then... It's like WTF do I need to do next?! Meaning that like for my "Monster Keep" (MK), I just couldn't piece together the Combat Mechanism. I had all kinds of stats to work with. But I couldn't get them to work together.

And then voila, I googled D&D (Dungeon and Dragons) and I started to read-up about the Dice-based Combat. And ALL I NEEDED was the "To-Hit" component and then several of my earlier thoughts for combat mechanisms just fell into place.

So it's like some fresh ideas just lead to more thought and things to consider.

I personally prefer more "verbose" steps, like my whole "ATTACKING or DEFENDING" points (#9 and #10). Or my sample "Starting Your Turn" ... It sometimes more readable to be a block paragraph than making too many bullets.

Anyways... You understood what I meant with the Categories. Best!

I took a quick look at the NEW rulebook

Today I'm out of mental energies ... Had to play Chromino Hahaha! We played three (3) games at my Cousin's place. I will read as of Page #3 ... I read the first couple pages and the setup and sequence of play... I'm too tired today to read the "Optional" rules.

TW is not going anywhere, anytime soon. Further delays probably by the GOV.UK ... Dealing with the UK & EU is a real hassle. We've been waiting for SIX (6) FREAKEN MONTHS ALREADY!

Cheers and keep up the good work. What I read in the "core" pages seemed COOL TBH.

A few notes already:

-Interruptions: I would call it "Instant Action"

-Conditions: I would call it "News Flash!"

Cheers @FrankM.

Note #1: These were just some NAMING ideas that made more sense in the Super Hero/Super Villain terminology. Again you can ignore if you don't like the naming suggestions.

Confusion with item #14 and #15

Point #14 says: "If the current player’s hand has six ..." and Point #15 says: "If the focal player ends the turn ..."

Is current player = focal player???

Or are these TWO (2) DIFFERENT players?!

Not being nit-picky... Just looking for a bit of clarification!


Focal vs current

Good catch! The “focal” player is indeed a missed-replacement error from an older version of the rules.

I also like the naming suggestions, though I’m going back and forth with them. I intend for the Conditions to build up into Locations in a future expansion. The Interruptions are generally things that happen *to* the characters; unlike MtG etc the player doesn’t have a physical presence in the game.

Edit: The file's been fixed. There were three focals left in there.

Hmm... I am confused with Point #9 and #10

They are ALMOST identical... Could this be a COPY & PASTE Error??? Just have a 2nd look... I'll read the "Optional Rules" tomorrow. Tonight, I'll wrap up the setup and sequence of play. I figured why not invest the last bit of mental thought on someone else's design.


Maybe too similar

These are two distinct steps. First the ATTACKING character declares their power, then the ATTACKED character does. Maybe the wording should be varied a bit so it doesn’t look like a copy.

Edit: I changed the wording of Step 10 a bit so that it doesn't look like a clone of Step 9. Definitely don't want the players to doubt what they're reading. Thanks again for taking a look!

Okay... Well I'm still not sure about Point #10

FrankM wrote:
#10: Players declare the power used by any Characters that have not already declared, by moving the left slider to the damage associated with the selected power.

Your EXPLANATION seemed more CLEAR. Maybe just re-word this as something like:

questccg wrote:
#10: The Defending Player may declare the power used by any Characters that have not been declared already, ...

And then have Point #9 also more clear with something like:

questccg wrote:
#9: The Attacking Player may declare the power used by his Characters (the ones overlapping their match-up cards) if they have not been declared already, ...

Just to give a difference between the TWO. When I READ your rulebook to ME anyhow ... It wasn't clear which was ATTACKING and which was DEFENDING. By just re-wording it a LITTLE BIT (as per your comment), it makes it CLEAR one point is for the ATTACKING player (#9) and one is for the DEFENDING player (#10)...

Something like that. Again if you don't like my suggestions, that is fine. But if you do... Feel free to use/adapt/customize to your liking.


Comicbook panels

I’m hoping this reads much clearer when I re-arrange it into “panels” so that wide-effect powers, attacking powers, and defending powers are visually distinguished.

Thanks for your insights :)

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