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Subject: Combat/Capture mechanic help needed rss

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Steven Bond
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Hey all,

I am currently making a card-based cops and robbers game, and I am stuck on something. The point of the game is there are 8 locations (bank, jewelry store, etc.0 that the robbers need to rob to gain LOOT or the cops need to make arrests at. The LOOT or ARRESTS wins you the game. The problem I am having is how it is decided who wins. At the moment i have it where each location requires a number of robber units and an item or 2. It is time based, so the robber has to sit on that location for a few turns to get the loot, which is where the cop can swoop in and get the arrests if they win whatever combat mechanic is in place. If the robber wins, they get away scott free with the LOOT. Also the COPS can patrol a location for a certain number of turns and the robbers can attempt to steal while the cops are there. That player gets much bigger rewards, but has to have a combat sequence with the cops on patrol.

My question is how do i decide who wins. I have considered everything from reach player rolling a die and highest number wins, to the attacking party has to sacrifice more cards, to a bluffing feature. I am just looking for a simple mechanic that is fun, fair and balanced, but creates enough chance that re-playability will not go out the window. I do also have an outline of action cards that will boost or penalize the other players defense or attack, but I am not trying to turn this into a stats game with adding.

Thank you for any info or help. Anything is appreciated.
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James Arias
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Love the theme.

I was having a similar dilemma with my version of the now-cliche build robots and make them fight card game.

This might not be up your alley, but maybe give your Cop & Robber cards stats, have them played facedown, then some event triggers reveal and compare numbers on faceup cards to see who wins.

I've seen other games use card and counter-card instead (I play card type X, you play card type Y that counters X, vs. a straight discard any). Siege and Monkey Burger cards make you roll dice to inflict, but can be cancelled with a counter-card.

Patrolling cops could be faceup to simulate robbers casing, but give the cops some other bonus for losing the surprise factor (call for backup? cop gets to play another card if a heist occurs).

You could also differentiate robber types (wheelman, cat burglar, lockpick, safecracker, etc.) if you wanted different FX like some get bonus to beat cop vs. others get reduced time to steal, bonus based on type of location, getaway w/o loot if lose, etc. Not sure about cops though, guess you could have Beat Cop, Detective, SWAT team (ok maybe overkill), Squad Car, etc. But if you figured that out, you could have some "class vs. class" rules for pairwise winner determination ?

Off-topic, but you could also throw in a "Mafia Casino" location for that Ocean's Eleven vibe

 
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Steven Bond
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thanks.. there are some really good ideas in here, and I am definitely taking Casino as one of the Locations.

I have considered the idea of types of units. I think that it is a good idea, but i ran into the problem of what happens if the stats are the same. Say where there are 5 classes of units and both players played the same class. My only solution to this is the attack would be rebuffed. So for example if wheel-man and detective are on the same level, and detective is patrolling the grocery store, if wheel man attacks, then robbers lose, because cop side is already entrenched, but if robbers play something higher then they win and vice versa.
The only thing is that the entrenched player would play face down so the attacking player would have to strategize as to what card to play to win the location.There are locations that require multiple cops or robbers to patrol or rob, if i assigned a numerical value to each class, would just adding the classes together of all the cards played against each other be enough of a mechanic? Same rules would apply, that the invading party would have to beat the number.
 
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Lance McMillan
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Go for something as simple as possible, you don't want the "combat" system overwhelming the overall cops-and-robbers theme and turning your game into Advanced Squad Leader.

I'd start with something basic, like roll a die for each robber in the gang and/or each cop responding to the scene. Each result of a "6" would mean that your attack "hit" and one of the other side's group is killed/injured. You could possibly modify the result based on whatever weapon the shooter is using (e.g. presuming a normal attack was throwing a punch, striking with a nightstick, or stabbing with a knife, you could then make it so that a cop with a pistol might "hit" on a result of 5 or 6, while a gang-banger armed with an shotgun might "hit" on a 4, 5 or 6). You could even model bullet-proof vests by having allow a "saving throw" where a "hit" could be ignored.

The issue is integrating all this into the game in a meaningful manner. The robbers would need to spend loot to get access to better weapons, so it'd become a "is this investment worth it" decision point. Of course, robbing some locations would entail greater risk (like the cassino, where there'd be private armed security guards permanently on station at all times), so the robbers would have to consider whether constantly robbing the Corner Store or Gas Station (where there would be little likelihood of there being security already on location) with just a knife was a better strategy than "investing" in a couple pistols to hold up the Bank or Jewelry Store (which probably have guards).

 
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Warren Fitzpatrick
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Lancer4321 wrote:
Go for something as simple as possible, you don't want the "combat" system overwhelming the overall cops-and-robbers theme and turning your game into Advanced Squad Leader.

(SNIP)

The issue is integrating all this into the game in a meaningful manner. The robbers would need to spend loot to get access to better weapons, so it'd become a "is this investment worth it" decision point. Of course, robbing some locations would entail greater risk (like the cassino, where there'd be private armed security guards permanently on station at all times), so the robbers would have to consider whether constantly robbing the Corner Store or Gas Station (where there would be little likelihood of there being security already on location) with just a knife was a better strategy than "investing" in a couple pistols to hold up the Bank or Jewelry Store (which probably have guards).



I'm going to piggy back on the above idea, but I need some clarification first - Does dice (aka - luck) impact the game in other avenues? If not, I'd say to avoid using it for combat. What I was understanding is this is more of a "action point" style game. If that's true, then you should keep that and just use it as a part of the combat.

Taking the above idea and expanding some (and assuming my assumption is correct), I'd have guards, police, delta force (whatever) options go up as the robber's skill/weaponry improves. You could have some bluffing in that the police you get are good at their job or keystone kops. You'd play a card of skill and weapon (or whatever fits) and it must beat that level of police (or security or delta).

I won't postulate any further until I get a better handle on the system, but it sounds good so far.

wf
 
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Steven Bond
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A point system is what I have settled on. I took all your guys ideas and threw out the dice component.

There will be a bluffing component and cards will e face down. There will also be 6 levels of cops and robbers. I can basically align it to a Munchkin style of combat with highest number wins, with both player being able to play cards so as weapons, and positive and negative action cards to affect the final number that a player will do combat with. That way it is up to the player to commit resources to the battle if they want, or choose to lost the location if it is not worth as much.

I am extremely new at this and appreciate everyone's feedback. Especially with not having ideas really fleshed out and not having all the rules and stuff set in place. This is a great forum for this kind of thing, and am really happy to have a soundboard to bounce this stuff off. I am also sure I am not the first person to say this.
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James Arias
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So is this going to be comical/satirical (I'm remembering some 1960s Pink Panther episodes about heists gone wrong) or "gritty"? Hopefully more of the former so it's family friendly and not a tabletop GTA .

When do we get to see prototype pics?
 
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Steven Bond
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Definitely on the lighter side...not gritty or realistic in any way.
I have just really started on this and making my first card prototypes now. Obviously something with just text to test play throughs. I will have something up eventually..haha
 
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James Arias
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While this is a card game not a minis game, check out item 231439990554 on ebay. Couldn't resist
 
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