Monday, July 8, 2013

Design Changes

I know no one has actually played the game yet, so this is more of a personal chronicle -- but here are changes I've made/am making this week:

Removed Presence
Rationale: Presence was a way to “vary honor” a bit more. Presence was the combined resource cost of all your units on the field. The idea was that honor largely stayed stagnant, and a lot was riding on it. So I wanted more ways to shake up honor gain. In reality, it’s just one more thing to worry about and doesn’t add anything to the game. So it’s out.

Buildings renamed to barricades
Rationale: Buildings never made sense, in a story-sense. Barricades will be a bit more “ethereal” in nature, possibly made of Ure, and are thought of as being a blockade to passing through the lateral to the other existence

Barricades lose the goodstuff/badstuff
Barricades no longer are upgraded for resources, instead they are “upped” if they remain untouched for a turn
Barricades now have 3 levels, level up automatically if they are fully “upped”, leveling up increases stats
There is no longer a 10 card ‘barricade’ deck, instead the 3 are pre-picked by the defender and once destroyed will regenerate to LV1 in a turn (or two)
Rationale: A functional change in barricades. They used to have one level, and once they were invested in enough they’d be scored by the defender. If their health reached zero before they were fully upgraded, the attacker would score them. Goodstuff happened when the defender scored them, badstuff happened when the attacker scored them. The idea was that the defender needed to balance the good vs bad in their deck based on playstyle etc. In reality it’s a balancing pain, it got mixed reviews, and it was increasing the complication of the game. The defender could also only invest 1R in them per turn, and often it was a “given” which the right upgrade would be (and you could forget to do it), which breaks one of my design goals. In this new system, it happens automatically. It’s less user input, less complicated, and easier to understand and evaluate. It’s also less cards to produce which is a plus.

Players start with same resources
Rationale: Defender used to get more to upgrade barricades with, but that function is no longer needed.

Reconditioned Win Conditions:
-Either player may win by getting “full” honor
-Attacker may win by advancing X units into the defender’s base.
-Defender may win by holding off the attacker for Y turns.
Rationale: Honor is much more important now, and will still serve its old functions (card effects etc). Attacker advances a unit by attacking a destroyed barricade, at which point the attacker is discarded and the player scores (and the barricade is immediately restored to lv1). The defender win con I don’t like much, but it’s a start. Old wins were by scoring X points by “securing” barricades or destroying them.

Advantage moved to separate step, immediately after play phase but before eval phase
Rationale: It was easy to forget to choose an advantage target, when it’s usually very important. This also doesn’t ruin the ability to play asynchronous games, as the official “lock in” is after you chose advantage.

Hopefully this works towards making the game more concise, more emphasis on the important/fun choices, and a better reflection of story choices!


Removed "passives"
The passives used to trigger based on the current advantage player's morale, at high morale they'd have really interesting effects. Just removing to now to make the game more concise, with the intention of bringing back in a different form in the future.

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