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Subject: DYSTOPIAN: the manhunt [2013 Solitaire PnP contest ] WIP thread [contest ready] rss

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Michele Esmanech
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GREAT, time for another solitaire contest!

I have had a really tough year, and had many ideas that couldn't actually make it into a real playable game, even though I have tried many, and most failed.


you can read my blog, especially the last posts, to learn about a few ideas and designs I have been tinkering about.
One design I have been thinking A LOT lately, and that I have playtested quite some time, with a lot of variations between play tests), is a murder-mystery game, set in a fantasy universe.
Actually, to be frank, it's a half sic-fi murder mystery game and a half fantasy game that I decided to combine to make one full game.

So, here's the story behind In the name of the King:

The story takes place in Hemmaneth, a fantasy reign populated by lots of creatures, some good, most evil.
Capitol of Hemmaneth is Claustrum, the city in which the King's palace is located.
The King, Shirenum the Third, is a revolutionary king, with many radical ideas, and, while being a good man, with some clever politicians among his lines, there are some who dislike him, and who don't like the way his ideas are affecting the other cities of the reign.
Last night, someone tried to murder King Shirenum, who barely and luckily escaped the attack. The murderer, though, managed to leave a note saying that the king's life was still in danger, and that he should not feel safe, as he should expect an attack soon.

You, the player, are one of the King's guards, and have been assigned the tough task to find the king's conspirator, before the next attack is performed.

You will have to search the reign for clues, in order to find who the conspirator is and, when you have enough clues, seize him.


Your task will bring benefits, as some people might follow you (making you stronger), but also not everyone you'll encounter will be pleased to meet you (especially the mean and filthy creatures that populate Hemmaneth, like orcs, goblins, trolls, golems, and so on).





The story takes place in Dystopia, a megapolis in a not so distant future, filled with corruption, dangers and crime.
You are one of the four agents of Sector 9, a special investigation team, of the Dystopia Police Department (DPD).
A murder has been committed, and you'll have to investigate the different many locations of Dystopia interrogating the people you encounter and looking for leads and hints on the investigation.
You'll also need to analyze the info you gain, which will give you clues that will ultimately unveil who the criminal is.
Once you know who the criminal is, you'll need to seize him/her/it.

You'll have to manage your resources quickly, and fast, because every time you linger without having cought the the criminal, he will make it harder for you to catch him/her/it.

The game will feature the following mechanics:
- tile laying
- network Building
- dice rolling
- dice management (I know, it's not an 'official mechanic', but it gives the idea that dice are NOT FOR COMBAT)
- area movement
- variable player powers
- solitaire play
- coop play (yes, the game will be playable from 1 to 4 players - and, in the future, it will feature a VS mode)

The most innovative mechanic I put into this game is the way you'll elaborate the clues you have gained, by placing the clues (represented as tiles) in a specific grid, that will for a network that will lead you to one of the suspects.

I have been working on the images for this game for quite some time, even before it was actually a game, and will post them ASAP.

Stay tuned


P.S. I apologize for the cheesyness of the above description: it's late and cannot come up with anything more than this.

I'll work something better in the following days.
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread
COMPONENTS

108 2" x 2,5"Cards (8x A4 pages):
1) ENCOUNTER CARDS 1/ 5, 2/ 5, 3/ 5 , 4/ 5, 5/ 5

OR, you can download this file: Encounters: LOW INK

2) ENHANCEMENT CARDS and EQUIPMENT CARDS
Enhancement and equipment

3) SUSPECT CARDS + CHARACTER STANDEEs: standees and suspects

4) MAP BOARD (8x A4 or 4x A3 or 1xA1):DYSTOPIA

5) AGENT SHEETs: 4 agent sheets
SUSPECT BOARD: Suspect board

6) TOKEN SHEET (1 A4): Tokens sheet
a) EVIDENCE TOKENS
b) LEAD TOKENS
c) CRIME SCENE TOKEN

7) CARD BACKS: card backs

8) RULES:
DYSTOPIAN: RULES

You'll need to provide yourself 12 six sided dice: 4 white, 4 red, 4 blue.



DISCLAIMER: most of the components posted above are still in the playtest phase. If you decide to download them, beware that they might change during the playtest process.
If you can wait until tomorrow, I'l post some printerfriendly files.
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
RESERVED for FAQ
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Nate K
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Sweet!

What is "network building?"
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
kurthl33t wrote:
Sweet!

What is "network building?"

Network and Route Building

When finding clues, you'll need to analyze them. When analyzed, you'll be able to draw a tile and place it on the "suspect" board, connecting the center of the conspiracy to one of the suspects.

Think of it as a similar but evolved mechanic to the conspiracy puzzle in Android
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
I will post some rule ideas in the near future, but, for now, have a look at the gameboard:



I am still struggling with the size, as it won't fit in a A4 paper, but more like an A1, which is too much for a PnP game.

Though, this is the direction the game is heading.

The "modularity" is given by the LOCATION TILES, which will be placed randomly on most regions/areas, which will show the type of feature (city, market, barracks, mine, castle, village and so on) will be present in such area/region.

On each the region will be placed also ECNOUNTER tokens, which will be the encounters (enemies, NPCs and hunches) you'll find there.
Hunches will have to be analyzed, to be turned into clues which will make you draw from the clue token pool, and place such clue on a CLUE board which will bring you closer to knowing who the conspirator is.
Enemies will have to be fought
NPCs will be friends that will help you or will be recruitable.

The player will choose, at the beginning, one of the 4 available characters, each with specific abilities and proficiencies, and will enhance the character's available actions (increasing not only the number of available selectable actions but also the power of the actions) and units (in the form of extra dice that will be rolled each turn).

How do you win? by getting enough clues to know who the conspirator is and where he's hiding, and seizing him (by winning an attack against him), before the conspiracy plan is executed.

How do you lose?
1) if you run out of clue tokens (by emptying the clue pool, without having reached one of the suspects on the Clue board;
OR
2) if you cannot seize the conspirator before the conspiracy is executed.

In ITNOTK you won't actually "die", but for every wound you'll gain, you'll replace one normal d6 with a special red die that will have on 3 sides a WOUND mark that cannot be allocated to any action, making you lose time.

I hope to post the first draft of the rules ASAP
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Nate K
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
WOW, that map is gorgeous!
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Rules are almost done, and play testing with draft rule ideas is underway...

Though I am still uncertain about the theme... The theme reminds me a lot of Baldur's Gate (maybe because I'm playing it on my ipad), but the system I flexible and can easily be adapted to another theme (sci-fi or contemporary).

So, before I delve more into the graphics of the game, which theme would you like best seen in a game with the above stated characteristics: sci-fi (ghost in the shell and Blade runner style), fantasy (baldurs gate) or contemporary (Shadow Agent style)?

Please, have your say!
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Ikim wrote:
Rules are almost done, and play testing with draft rule ideas is underway...

Though I am still uncertain about the theme... The theme reminds me a lot of Baldur's Gate (maybe because I'm playing it on my ipad), but the system I flexible and can easily be adapted to another theme (sci-fi or contemporary).

So, before I delve more into the graphics of the game, which theme would you like best seen in a game with the above stated characteristics: sci-fi (ghost in the shell and Blade runner style), fantasy (baldurs gate) or contemporary (Shadow Agent style)?

Please, have your say!

I'd rather sci-fi. I watched Oblivion and would be nice to play something in that kind of theme


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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Which one appeals to you the most, Michele?

Personally, I thought the fantasy theme was just fine. I've never played Baldur's Gate, though.
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Ghislain LEVEQUE
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
rajatz wrote:



Is it me or the guy has no shadow at all ?? !
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
courtjus wrote:
rajatz wrote:



Is it me or the guy has no shadow at all ?? !

OMG, you're perfectly right modestwhistle

kurthl33t wrote:
Which one appeals to you the most, Michele?

Personally, I thought the fantasy theme was just fine. I've never played Baldur's Gate, though.

Both themes appeal to me the same. In fact, ITNOTK (or what ever its name will be in the final draft) is a mixture of fantasy game with a SCI-Fi game.

I will concentrate on the rules, now, and will take care of the graphics in September. Thankfully, I have lots of spare drawings and concepts, both for Sci-fi themes and fantasy themes.

@: rajatz: BTW: what ever theme I will pick, I know you're going to retheme it anyway... whistleninjapD
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
courtjus wrote:
rajatz wrote:



Is it me or the guy has no shadow at all ?? !

Of course the vampire Lestat de Lioncourt doesn't cast shadows. angry

The lighting from the overcast sky looks pretty diffuse may be that is the cause. Direct lighting will cause definite shadows but in this case the general spread of light possibly masks it.
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
wrrlykam wrote:
Of course the vampire Lestat de Lioncourt doesn't cast shadows. angry

The lighting from the overcast sky looks pretty diffuse may be that is the cause. Direct lighting will cause definite shadows but in this case the general spread of light possibly masks it.

Hum.... or the CGI guys forgot it while applying the actor's image on the background...
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Ikim wrote:

[...]

I will concentrate on the rules, now, and will take care of the graphics in September. Thankfully, I have lots of spare drawings and concepts, both for Sci-fi themes and fantasy themes.

@: rajatz: BTW: what ever theme I will pick, I know you're going to retheme it anyway... whistleninja


haha I'm very excited to play this as a sci game, maybe if you choice other theme you'll be probably right.

btw I'm translated rules from LOTR Adventure Game and 'll post in files section tomorrow. My friend and I are working on cards
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Ok, after some thought, I decided to take a step back and go for the sci-fi theme (the game originally scifi in the first place) so the conversion isn't going to be hard at all.

The only thing that changed is the modularity of the map: somehow I cannot come up with a way to make it modular.


I Will post pics of the board ASAP (but if you saw my blog, you can have a glimpse of the background image)



I will change the game description according to the new story behind the game, and will think about the name (even though I like my original DYSTOPIAN)

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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Today I will build, by hand, the game and play test a few mechanics.

Things I am doing and will be doing alongside playtstng:

1- finish drawing the investigators (2 done, 2 to go)
2- finish drawing the suspects (1 done, 8 to go)
3- finish drawing the encounters (2 done, 52 to go)

I will post pics of the characters and the drawings today (hopefully)
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Your map looks really great. Excellent work.
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
LiberD wrote:
Your map looks really great. Excellent work.

Thanks but its not entirely MY work. Though I won't use it, for the game.


As for the name of the game, it will be: DYSTOPIAN: MANHUNT

I will change the thread description and the contest entry also.

Sorry for the slow updates, but I have limited connectivity here (no wifi and I am working with my 3-4G connection)

I have begun drawing the various characters which populate the game, which is quite an endeavor (30+ characters since some encounters will be doubled and will use the same image)


The theme is the following: you are agents of the SECTOR 9 investigation team, and are investigating a crime.
You will have to search town for hints that will eventually lead you to who committed the crime.
When you save found the criminal, you have seize him/her/it, before he/she/it escapes
But be careful: not everyone/everything is willing to collaborate with you, so you will need to power up your character with enhancements, equipment, backup, trying to balance the pace with which you look for clues with your character enhancement.

But let me talk about how the game will work:

Each turn the player(s) (the game will be a fully coop game, for 1-4 players) will roll 4 d6 each and allocate each die to a resource listed on each character sheet.

The resources are:
1) power of attorney: to enter locations
2) interaction: to interact with locations, like searching the encounters in a given location for hints, or to gain backup help (in the form of extra dice)
3) combat: to defend/attack bad encounters that have been revealed
4) analyze: works in the lab to turn hints into clues

Every turn, you will have to manage your resources wisely and fast, since at the end of every turn, the players will discard 1 clue token per player (meaning that the murderer is trying to escape by getting rid of clues that might lead to him/her/it

Each character will have a different character sheet, as each one will focus on a specific resource.
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: In the name of the king [2013 Solitaire contest ] WIP thread [idea phase]
Here are some droids and agent concepts I drew in the past two days:



still WIP



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Michele Esmanech
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Re: DYSTOPIAN: the manhunt [2013 Solitaire PnP contest ] WIP thread [playtest and graphic design phase]

A droid encounter



Scared already?!
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Re: DYSTOPIAN: the manhunt [2013 Solitaire PnP contest ] WIP thread [playtest and graphic design phase]
Ikim wrote:

A droid encounter



Scared already?!

These aren't the droids you're looking for.
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Re: DYSTOPIAN: the manhunt [2013 Solitaire PnP contest ] WIP thread [playtest and graphic design phase]
wrrlykam wrote:
Ikim wrote:

A droid encounter



Scared already?!

These aren't the droids you're looking for.

In Soviet Russia, the droids look for YOU.
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Michele Esmanech
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Re: DYSTOPIAN: the manhunt [2013 Solitaire PnP contest ] WIP thread [playtest and graphic design phase]
Yet another encounter... Not a friendly one either:


And a finished human:

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Re: DYSTOPIAN: the manhunt [2013 Solitaire PnP contest ] WIP thread [playtest and graphic design phase]
taking a break from the graphic design process, I just had a brilliant idea regarding gameplay: there won't be GOOD and BAD encounters, but ALL encounters are going to be GOOD AND BAD, depending on how you interact with them (even though, some will be always good, and others will always be bad).

In practice, what do you do when you enter a location (spending Power of attorney resources) and interact with the local NPC and encounters? you flip an encounter card, and try to interact with him (talking to him/her/it): you roll a d6 and add the result to your interaction resource you want to spend: if the result is equal to or higher than the iteraction value on the NPC's card, you gain a hint or a benefit: if lower, the NPC is not happy, and bad things can happen (like it attacking you)
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