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Subject: Overlords - Opinions Wanted rss

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Tyler Gardner
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Title: Overlords (for now)
Number of Players: 2-4
Genre: Deck Building, Tactics

Card Types:
Overlord (possibly a different term)
Minion
Tactic
Relic
Location (possibly a different term)

Subtypes:
Constant (this term can be on any number of the above Card Types. It means that instead of the card going straight to the discard pile at the end of my turn, it instead remains face up in play until it is discarded through a card effect, either my own or an opponent’s)

"Legions":
I actually forgot to include this in the description of the game and I just recently realized Heroes of Graxia uses this term, so I'm not sure if I should use it. Originally, I had planned for Minions to come from one of three Legions (I don't have names for these at the moment, but we can call them Red, White, and Blue for now).

The general idea of the game is that players will act as an Overlord (or some other kind of term), trying to conquer the realm of *insert name here*. In order to do so, you will have to influence Minions to join your cause (forming your "army"), utilize powerful Tactics, and control magical Relics. The game ends once the Location deck is empty (signifying all of *insert name here* has been conquered). To determine the winner, players will total point values from each card he or she has obtained throughout the game (each card type provides victory points). The player with the highest number wins.

There are three currencies players will use during the game; Power, Intellect, and Influence.

Minions - purchased with Influence
Tactics - purchased with Intellect
Locations - conquered using Power
Relics – purchased with one or more of the above

Location Deck: This deck is (obviously) filled with Locations for players to Conquer. Once a Location is conquered, that player takes it from the top of the Location deck and reveals another Location for players to claim. Players keep their Conquered Locations on their side of the play area. Locations will provide an effect when they're revealed from the deck, Conquered, and controlled by a player (not all at one time on a card). Locations have a Power cost players have to get to in order to Conquer one. The “health” of a Location cannot be whittled down over time. Instead, if a Location costs 8 Power to Conquer, in order for anyone to take it, they must have a total of 8 Power in their hand. If a player has 7 Power, for example, they cannot reduce the cost of the Location from 8 to 1 for the next player; it’s an “all or nothing” approach.

Main Deck: This is filled with Minions, Tactics, and Relics. I’m guessing around 8 cards will be flipped face up (to form a Main Row) from this deck for players to buy from. When a card is purchased from this deck, it goes straight to players discard pile (unless otherwise stated by a card effect) and a new card is flipped immediately to take its place in the Main Row.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Starting the Game:
Each player is given 10 identical starting cards. Each starting card provides 1 Intellect, 1 Influence, and 0 Power (this is subject to change). Instead of requiring players to buy cards to remove these starting cards from their deck, each starting card has an ability that allows you to permanently eliminate one of them from your hand once per turn. This allows players to purely focus on purchasing the best cards instead of having to buy cards to remove the starting pieces from their deck.

Note: Most Minions you purchase will provide Power along with additional currencies. The starting Minions weren’t assigned a Power value.

Players are then assigned (randomly, drafted, or some additional way) an Overlord character card they will use the remainder of the game. Each Overlord has a useful ability players are able to activate at some point in the game (once or more frequently). However, the ability of the Overlord should not specifically funnel players into a certain card type.

Everyone shuffles his or her own deck and draws five cards to begin the game.

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Taking a Turn:
During your turn you may play all card types as many times as you want (a hand of five Minions, five Tactics, a combination of each type, etc.) To play a Minion, if that Minion provides one of three currencies (Power, Intellect, and Influence), you will need to specify which currency that Minion provides this turn. For example: I begin the game with my five starting cards in hand. Each card has 0 Power, so that currency is not an option. Instead, I only have Intellect and Influence to choose from. I may decide to use all of my cards for 5 of one currency or decide to do some kind of split.

At the end of your turn, every card you played, along with what is remaining in your hand, is put into the discard pile (unless you have a card in play that says Constant). Then a new hand of 5 cards is drawn from your deck (unless a card effect modifies this amount). Play then passes to the next player.

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Ending the Game:
After all of the Locations have been Conquered, players total up the number of Victory Points (this term will definitely change) in their deck (this includes Locations). The player with the most points wins the game.
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Tyler Gardner
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Anyone?
 
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Brian Compter
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So are there a certain number of face up locations and buyable cards for players to purchase from each turn?
 
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Craig C
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How are the cards purchased? Taking turns snagging them off the top of the deck, or by auction?

Given the identical starting hands, auction would probably be better.
 
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Tyler Gardner
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The location deck would reveal one Location for players to conquer. Once that is taken, another one would flip. This process would repeat until the entire deck of Locations is empty.

The main deck (the one that players are most actively buying from) would reveal roughly five to eight cards (the number I haven't determined) to choose from. Once a card is purchased, another one from the top of the main deck would take its place.
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Matthew P
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Are the minions laid out in front of you as permanents or are the revealed each time you are capturing a location?

The idea you have is a great and interesting starting place, but I think some of the reason you aren't getting a ton of feedback is due to lack of details. We see the basic concept and say, "Yeah, deck builders are cool." or "I like the feel of being an Overlord with minions." but we are unable to say much more.
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Tyler Gardner
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The Main deck consists of Minions, Relics, and Tactics. It all gets shuffled together and five to eight cards are laid out to purchase. When you purchase a card from this deck, the purchased card goes straight to your discard pile and is eventually shuffled back into your deck.

I'm usually a little more prepared with my ideas. I apologize for leaving out so many details.
 
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Tyler Gardner
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I've never heard of Rune Age. How similar is it to this game concept?
 
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Tyler Gardner
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Rune Age is pretty similar. I'm not sure if this game idea would be different enough to stand out. Does anyone have ideas how to modify the traditional deck building play style?
 
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Jordan Booth
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This sounds nearly spot on Ascension with an extra resource (locations=constructs).
This is a good thing. Ascension excels because of its simplicity and it sounds like you are building on the weakness with banishing that is certainly a draw for fans of DBGs.

Like Katzebar said, it's hard to know on paper, so start playtesting ASAP and see how that extra resource feels.

Also there are already a few games names Overlords, I don't know how much you care...
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Benj Davis
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Are Banish, Destroy and Remove separate things, or are you just making sure your meaning's clear?
The latter is fine, but I'm intrigued by the possibilities of the former...

It does indeed, so far, sound quite a lot like Rune Age, but with an Ascension-style lineup, instead of fixed stacks. That's not a criticism, I like the sound of it.
 
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Benj Davis
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Also, I'd suggest a setting that doesn't sound like Eros.
 
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Bevan Clatworthy
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An interesting idea, the only part that puts me off is the idea of 3 resources/currencies. Ascension uses two and is a great game, but you do sometimes have turns where you're stuck buying/defeating only the basic cards in the late game; with three resources this is going to be even more difficult to manage.

Do you have a game plan to prevent high numbers of 'building up' turns in the late game?
 
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Bill Paterno
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I went into this thread thinking you were talking about my game, Overlords.

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1077688/overlords-fantasy-th...

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Benj Davis
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BlueCatGames wrote:
An interesting idea, the only part that puts me off is the idea of 3 resources/currencies. Ascension uses two and is a great game, but you do sometimes have turns where you're stuck buying/defeating only the basic cards in the late game; with three resources this is going to be even more difficult to manage.


Notably, he did mention that the basic starting cards can be used for both Influence and Intellect (although whether that's both simultaneously (like Resident Evil's Ammo cards) or if you have to designate which it's being used for when you play it, I don't know).

Quote:
Do you have a game plan to prevent high numbers of 'building up' turns in the late game?


That could partly be defused by the ability to destroy your basic cards and keep your deck flowing.
The more I think about it, the more dubious I am about the starting cards all being identical. It seems like it would make the opening turns varied only by what comes out of the main because you'll always be able to buy something that's 5 of either resource (assuming a 5-card hand), or buy a 4-cost thing and destroy the 5th card, so you're spinning into the possibility of drawing new cards in your second turn.
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Tyler Gardner
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Born-of-Ashes wrote:
This sounds nearly spot on Ascension with an extra resource (locations=constructs).
This is a good thing. Ascension excels because of its simplicity and it sounds like you are building on the weakness with banishing that is certainly a draw for fans of DBGs.

Like Katzebar said, it's hard to know on paper, so start playtesting ASAP and see how that extra resource feels.

Also there are already a few games names Overlords, I don't know how much you care...


I've played a TON of Ascension and really enjoy the game. I wanted to create something that was nearly just as simple, but could still differentiate itself from what Ascension is wanting to do.

I also wasn't aware there were so many games with "Overlord" in their title.
 
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Tyler Gardner
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Jlerpy wrote:
Are Banish, Destroy and Remove separate things, or are you just making sure your meaning's clear?
The latter is fine, but I'm intrigued by the possibilities of the former...

It does indeed, so far, sound quite a lot like Rune Age, but with an Ascension-style lineup, instead of fixed stacks. That's not a criticism, I like the sound of it.


Yes, the terminology was being used to make sure my meaning was clear.

Thanks for the kind words.

Edit: The name of the realm, Erros, isn't set in stone.
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Tyler Gardner
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BlueCatGames wrote:
An interesting idea, the only part that puts me off is the idea of 3 resources/currencies. Ascension uses two and is a great game, but you do sometimes have turns where you're stuck buying/defeating only the basic cards in the late game; with three resources this is going to be even more difficult to manage.

Do you have a game plan to prevent high numbers of 'building up' turns in the late game?


I agree that it may be more difficult this way (to properly manage three currencies), but there was a certain level of complexity I wanted to achieve with this game.

I'm not entirely sure if I understand what you are saying with your last question. What do you mean by "building up" turns?
 
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Tyler Gardner
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billpa wrote:
I went into this thread thinking you were talking about my game, Overlords.

http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1077688/overlords-fantasy-th...



Bill, I checked out your game. It's pretty interesting. I like it.

I'm pretty sure at this point I have to come up with a different game title. There are too many games with Overlord in their name.
 
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Tyler Gardner
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Jlerpy wrote:
Notably, he did mention that the basic starting cards can be used for both Influence and Intellect (although whether that's both simultaneously (like Resident Evil's Ammo cards) or if you have to designate which it's being used for when you play it, I don't know).

That could partly be defused by the ability to destroy your basic cards and keep your deck flowing.
The more I think about it, the more dubious I am about the starting cards all being identical. It seems like it would make the opening turns varied only by what comes out of the main because you'll always be able to buy something that's 5 of either resource (assuming a 5-card hand), or buy a 4-cost thing and destroy the 5th card, so you're spinning into the possibility of drawing new cards in your second turn.


Players would have to designate which currency they were wanting to use with their Minions (unless a card effect provided all currencies at once).

Do you think it would be better if players weren't given a starting deck with 10 identical cards?
 
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Tyler Gardner
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All right. The original post has been modified with a (hopefully) much more detailed approach to explaining the game. Please let me know if there is still confusion.
 
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Benj Davis
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Tsgardn wrote:
Players would have to designate which currency they were wanting to use with their Minions (unless a card effect provided all currencies at once).


That's probably for the best, although there could be interesting space (as there sort of is in Resident Evil, although I'm not sure it's been explored that well) in the ability to use the basics for both, but newer cards only providing one (but more of it).

Quote:
Do you think it would be better if players weren't given a starting deck with 10 identical cards?


To be fair, it's not been tried, but none of the other deckbuilders have a starting deck of identical cards. The fewest that I've seen used is 2: Punches and Weaknesses for DC (where the Weaknesses are just speedbumps), Coppers and Estates for Dominion (where the Estates are a speedbump, but one where you may need to make cost:benefit decisions about whether they're worth ditching in a deck-thinning strategy, as they're worth points), Apprentices and Militia for Ascension (where neither type's a speedbump, but as they do different things, they work for different strategies and having only one Militia turn up in each of your opening hands is a pain). In all three of those cases, the mix of cards gives a variety to the first couple of hands, but it's still a narrow variety (3/4 vs 2/5 Coppers in Dominion, for example).

Having ten identical cards means you have zero variance in your opening hands and all variety has to come from the available cards.
Which is less bad than if you were using sets of piles like in Dominion, but still means that if there's an ideal opening buy, it will always be an ideal opening buy. Having a little range means sometimes you have to make do with being only able to buy a 2-cost thing in your first turn, but get to grab a 5-cost thing in the second.

Now, the more I think about it, the less essential that shake-up feels for a game with a random lineup, as you already have the lineup to vary whether you can afford good stuff, but it does seem like it would either hugely devalue cheap cards (already a big issue in a genre where thin decks so often dominate) or mean chunky inflation.
 
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Benj Davis
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So, these basic cards: you play them and choose one of 1 Influence, 1 Intelligence or it destroys itself? Or is it the option to destroy another card?
 
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Tyler Gardner
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Jlerpy wrote:
Tsgardn wrote:
Players would have to designate which currency they were wanting to use with their Minions (unless a card effect provided all currencies at once).


That's probably for the best, although there could be interesting space (as there sort of is in Resident Evil, although I'm not sure it's been explored that well) in the ability to use the basics for both, but newer cards only providing one (but more of it).

Quote:
Do you think it would be better if players weren't given a starting deck with 10 identical cards?


To be fair, it's not been tried, but none of the other deckbuilders have a starting deck of identical cards. The fewest that I've seen used is 2: Punches and Weaknesses for DC (where the Weaknesses are just speedbumps), Coppers and Estates for Dominion (where the Estates are a speedbump, but one where you may need to make cost:benefit decisions about whether they're worth ditching in a deck-thinning strategy, as they're worth points), Apprentices and Militia for Ascension (where neither type's a speedbump, but as they do different things, they work for different strategies and having only one Militia turn up in each of your opening hands is a pain). In all three of those cases, the mix of cards gives a variety to the first couple of hands, but it's still a narrow variety (3/4 vs 2/5 Coppers in Dominion, for example).

Having ten identical cards means you have zero variance in your opening hands and all variety has to come from the available cards.
Which is less bad than if you were using sets of piles like in Dominion, but still means that if there's an ideal opening buy, it will always be an ideal opening buy. Having a little range means sometimes you have to make do with being only able to buy a 2-cost thing in your first turn, but get to grab a 5-cost thing in the second.

Now, the more I think about it, the less essential that shake-up feels for a game with a random lineup, as you already have the lineup to vary whether you can afford good stuff, but it does seem like it would either hugely devalue cheap cards (already a big issue in a genre where thin decks so often dominate) or mean chunky inflation.


I completely understand what you're saying regarding cheaper cards being devalued. The easiest solution is to begin the costs at 3 or 4, right? Knowing that each player has access to 5 Influence or 5 Intellect, the bar for "better" cards could begin at 6 or 7 to compensate for the identical starting decks. Then again, this is probably what you mean by chunky inflation. I'm not sure how to approach this aside from the solution I just mentioned.
 
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Tyler Gardner
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Jlerpy wrote:
So, these basic cards: you play them and choose one of 1 Influence, 1 Intelligence or it destroys itself? Or is it the option to destroy another card?


The option is to gain 1 Intellect, 1 Influence, or to destroy itself. But only one can be destroyed during your turn.
 
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