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Game Name: Allied Bomber Run

Designer: Scott A


Players: 1

Overview:
Allied player will select 3 tokens from a choice of 2 Fighters and 4 Bombers, then make a bombing run across a 3x5 grid of enemy airspace. Along the way, the Allied air units will encounter anti-aircraft fire and German interceptor fighters before reaching their primary targets.


Allied player selects 3 squadrons of aircraft, 1-2 B-17s, 1-2 B-24, and 0-2 fighter escorts. Axis side has 2 Interceptor squadrons and 2 Anti-Aircraft guns mixed in with 5 "clear" air tiles, all shuffled and placed face down in a 3x3 grid.

Suggested Play Time: ~5 minutes

Components:
- (2) B-17 squadron tokens
- (2) B-24 squadron tokens
- (2) P-47 escort tokens
- (1) "Hero" token (can be used once per game to re-roll a die)

- (2) Fw-190 Fighter squadrons
- (2) anti-aircraft tokens
- (5) Clear airspace tokens
- (3) Target tokens with varying Victory Points

- (2) D6 dice


Picture(s) - Proof of Concept:


Files (Rules & Components):
Complete Rules:
https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B4GOwLLS7SEbOFFzNmY1...


Condensed Rules:




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Scott Allen Czysz
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Re: [WIP] B-17 Bomber Run - Concept Phase (possible 2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
More thinking and scribbling...

For the Allies, instead of one kind of bomber (B-17) and two kinds of escorts (P-51 and P-47), I'm thinking two kinds of bombers (B-17 and maybe B-24). Since the game is about bombing, it probably make sense to give the Allied player a choice of strong attacking bombers (B-24) or strong defense bombers (B-17).

Attacking and defending modifiers for each unit will range from 1 to 3. These will signify how many dice each player will roll to resolve the attack.

More to come.
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Nate
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Re: [WIP] B-17 Bomber Run - Concept Phase (possible 2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
Looks like you're off to another good start Scott. Have you thought about trying to include both of your designs in 1 mint tin? Basically, you could have a variety of units, scenarios, and maps under 1 game. Just a quick thought.
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Re: [WIP] B-17 Bomber Run - Concept Phase (possible 2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
Thanks for the thought, but the two games are different scale, different era, and different battle mechanics. So, although they are both " dudes on a map", most everything else is different.

I want to explore both game approaches separately.

 
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run (formerly "B-17 Bomber Run") - Concept Phase (possible 2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
Made slight edits to the original post, including a name change to "Allied Bomber Run" since there will now be two choices of bombers for the Allies, not just the B-17.

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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
(draft rules removed, see original post for latest rules).
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
(draft rules removed, see original post for latest rules).
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
First draft playing pieces:



Top left number is Air-to-Air Attack Strength (number of dice to roll to attack).

Bottom left number is Bomb Atatck Strength.

Top right is defense Hit Points.

Bottom right is victory points for enemy (if unit is destroyed) / victory points for player (if unit is returned to base).



Working to finish up the rules, hopefully in time for contest deadline.
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
Initial playtests showed that the Axis player has a fairly dull task. So, I'm rethinking this game some, and I'm thinking of it as a solitaire game. Think the old Minesweeper PC game. And, to simplify it, no board, just 12 square tokens for Axis (3 are targets), and 6 square tokens for Allies (human player), or which the player chooses 3 to play in the game.

Axis has 3 different targets with Victory Point values of 2, 4, and 7. Shuffle these 3 pieces and place face down.

In front of these, shuffle the remaining 9 Axis pieces (5 are blank, 2 are Anti-Aircraft guns, 2 are FW-190 interceptors), place face down in a 3x3 grid.

The player plays the Allied side and can pick 3 pieces from the available (2 each):
P-47 escort fighters
B-17 bombers, weak bombing, but stronger defense
B-24 bombers, strong bombing, but weak at defense

Place chosen 3 pieces on the other end of the 3x3 grid, opposite the targets.

Allied player needs to move through the Axis 3x3 grid and get at least 10 victory points, or, score more than the Axis side.

Attacks will be resolved with 1 or 2 D6 dice.

This gives the player choices (which units to use), and some tension working through the face down grid of enemy pieces. I think it will work out well. Clock is ticking on the mint tin contest deadline, but I should be able to finish it.

Still working out the details, stay tuned.
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Luke Phillips
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
Personally I find games with a grid of face down tiles decidedly meh. Because there's no information to help you choose which tiles to flip it just becomes an exercise of "flip tile -> get hurt/get bonus" too random.

You mention minesweeper, but this is different the flipped tiles let you deduce whats under the tiles around it making an interesting game.
 
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
lukerazor wrote:
Personally I find games with a grid of face down tiles decidedly meh. Because there's no information to help you choose which tiles to flip it just becomes an exercise of "flip tile -> get hurt/get bonus" too random.

You mention minesweeper, but this is different the flipped tiles let you deduce whats under the tiles around it making an interesting game.

Thanks for the feedback. I'm just a rookie at this game design stuff, so you may be absolutely right. I'll know more after I play test it today or tomorrow.

I'm not sure how to get a happy medium between "tiles up" knowing everything and "tiles down" knowing nothing. With only 9 tiles face down, the player WILL know that 5 are clear, 2 are fighters, and 2 are anti-aircraft guns, so, as some tiles are flipped, there will be SOME deduction.

Thanks again.
 
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
After a few playtests, I think the "tiles down" ("fog of war") solitaire game is workable.

Game set-up:





And mid-game:




Limiting number of moves in the game is key, otherwise the fighter can just fly around and attempt to clear the entire 3x3 grid.

Still refining the game and writing rules, but I am happy with this [WIP] game.


I updated the original and other posts with my latest thoughts.
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
Revision of playing pieces:



Top left is # of dice to roll (air attack strength)

Top right is Victory Points if destoyed

Bottom left is # of dice to roll when bombing ground targets (ground attack strength)



Just making it a little simpler.
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - Concept Phase (2015 Mint Tin design Contest Entry)
In the tin:

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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - 2015 Mint Tin Design Contest Entry
Rules Comments
- The unit description would be a lot clearer if you labelled the unit token just above it (and moved the token image down to beside the description of its parts)

- Do you place the 3 allied units however you like?

- A set up diagram would be REALLY helpful. I had to read through it twice, cut some slips of paper, and play around a few times to figure out how to set the game up. Looking at the image just before the rules in the thread, it was obvious what the description meant.

- Gameplay is a bit confusing. Is a turn just flipping a tile over? Any tile? Can allied pieces move horizontally or only straight forward? Is it 5 spaces TOTAL, or for each allied unit? If total, why not just say "After you flip 5 tiles game over"?

- The combat rules seem unnecessarily complex. Why, when you attack, do 4,5,6 results count as a hit but when you are attacked 4,5,6 counts as evading? It's just a weird mental flip to go through in a solitaire game, where the attacking mechanic isn't symmetric between you and the game and so you have to actively remind yourself "Oh yes, NOW if there isn't a 4,5,6 I get hit" "Oh yes, NOW if there IS a 4,5 or 6 I hit it".

I realize you are trying to keep it to 1 page, but my advice is to write complete rules first, then try to trim them down. Diagrams are very helpful, and without them players may play wrong, or get confused about what they are supposed to be doing. A set up diagram, and an example turn with a diagram would go a long way to making these rules better. As they are, I expect players to have to read and reread multiple times to play (it may take more time to understand the rules than to actually play the first game!). With some diagrams I can see someone getting to the game the first time through the rules. For a quick solitaire game, you don't want to make players struggle to interpret rules.
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - 2015 Mint Tin Design Contest Entry
Thanks. I've taken your feedback and revised the final rules that are linked in the original post.

Candi wrote:
Rules Comments
- The unit description would be a lot clearer if you labelled the unit token just above it (and moved the token image down to beside the description of its parts)




Candi wrote:
- Do you place the 3 allied units however you like?

Yes, the player can arrange the 3 Allied units in any order they wish.



Candi wrote:
- A set up diagram would be REALLY helpful. I had to read through it twice, cut some slips of paper, and play around a few times to figure out how to set the game up. Looking at the image just before the rules in the thread, it was obvious what the description meant.

- Gameplay is a bit confusing. Is a turn just flipping a tile over? Any tile? Can allied pieces move horizontally or only straight forward? Is it 5 spaces TOTAL, or for each allied unit? If total, why not just say "After you flip 5 tiles game over"?

A turn is moving each of the 3 Allied units 1 square. This is typically accomplished by turning over the tile in front of each of the 3 Allied units, then either moving into that space (if "clear"), or fighting into that space. Allied units CAN move horizontally, either to avoid Anti-Aircraft Guns, or to get to a higher value Axis target. But, since it takes 4 moves to get to the targets at the end of the board, for the bombers to get to those targets in their 5 allotted moves, each bomber can only move horizontally at most once per game.


In this game, let's assume the first row was all "Clear" pieces, so all Allied pieces moved 1 space to the right. This photo is in the middle of the 2nd turn. The B-24 on the bottom got another "Clear" tile, so moved into its space. The top two pieces will have to fight their way through the A-A Gun and the FW-190.

So, the B-17 can either:
1) Fly over the A-A Gun, get attacked and hope it misses (50% chance of success),
2) Fly over and bomb the A-A Gun (50% chance of success). But, since the B-17 only has 1 bomb load, it then cannot bomb the red ground target. Or,
3) Wait for the P-47 to attack and hopefully destroy the FW-190 (75% chance of success), then move horizontally one space (after the P-47 moves forward 1 space).

I'd probably have the P-47 attack the FW-190 first, and if it is successful, then move the B-17 sideways instead of over the A-A Gun.



Candi wrote:
- The combat rules seem unnecessarily complex. Why, when you attack, do 4,5,6 results count as a hit but when you are attacked 4,5,6 counts as evading? It's just a weird mental flip to go through in a solitaire game, where the attacking mechanic isn't symmetric between you and the game and so you have to actively remind yourself "Oh yes, NOW if there isn't a 4,5,6 I get hit" "Oh yes, NOW if there IS a 4,5 or 6 I hit it".

The intent was that for the player, rolling a 4, 5, or 6 = Success. So, if the Allied player is attacking something, rolling a 4, 5, or 6 would destroy the enemy. When being attacked by the Axis, or as you say by the game, a 4, 5, or 6 = Success, meaning the Allied unit is NOT destroyed. If I clarify that, is that enough, or is it still awkward?



Candi wrote:
I realize you are trying to keep it to 1 page, but my advice is to write complete rules first, then try to trim them down. Diagrams are very helpful, and without them players may play wrong, or get confused about what they are supposed to be doing. A set up diagram, and an example turn with a diagram would go a long way to making these rules better. As they are, I expect players to have to read and reread multiple times to play (it may take more time to understand the rules than to actually play the first game!). With some diagrams I can see someone getting to the game the first time through the rules. For a quick solitaire game, you don't want to make players struggle to interpret rules.

Thanks for all the feedback, just what I needed.
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Re: [WIP] Allied Bomber Run - 2015 Mint Tin Design Contest Entry
Improved rules available here:
https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B4GOwLLS7SEbOFFzNmY1...

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