Recommend
 
 Thumb up
 Hide
17 Posts

BoardGameGeek» Forums » Board Game Design » Board Game Design

Subject: Escalating Probability rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I don't know what else to call that, if there is a real name for the mechanic let me know.

I am working on a press your luck game. I want a mechanic similar to the way the OMEN/HAUNTING trigger in Betrayal at the house on the Hill works. If you are unfamiliar with that game, basically you exploring a house occasionally running across OMEN cards. at the end of every players turn, they must roll to check for a HAUNT. If the total number of pips is less than the number of OMEN cards revealed, the haunt begins.

So, what would you call that mechanic, what other games use something similar?


If it helps trigger ideas, my game idea is basically about creating solar systems by adding planets to the orbit of a sun and having to check for the stability of that SUN. The press you luck aspect being do I add more planets to the orbit and risk my star exploding meaning I get no points, or do I stop now and accept the points I have.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
B C Z
United States
Reston
Virginia
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Your game sounds like a 'press your luck' mechanic.

Can't Stop comes to mind.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
George P.E., PMP, DM
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Hourglass Realm D&D 5e Play by Forum (PbF) Campaign DM (we'd love to have you join us!)
badge
U.S.S. Tautog (SSN 639) doing an emergency blow with me on it (see profile for details)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I see the term 'escalation score' (ES) or intensity score come up in a wide variety of discussions from games (and here and here) to medical to emergency management.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Nathaniel Grisham

Indiana
msg tools
mb
I'm not sure if the mechanic needs a name, as long as you know what it is/how it works. Or, you could choose a name and see if it sticks.

3ddevine wrote:

If it helps trigger ideas, my game idea is basically about creating solar systems by adding planets to the orbit of a sun and having to check for the stability of that SUN. The press you luck aspect being do I add more planets to the orbit and risk my star exploding meaning I get no points, or do I stop now and accept the points I have.


Not to be nit-picky, but if you are going for accuracy, something should be said. I think the actual physics would have the planets affect each other, but leave the star itself relatively intact. So, instead of your star collapsing/exploding, you might have your poorly-placed planets flinging each other out of the solar system.

Someone more physics-oriented would have a better idea here. Also, you could check out the Crash Course: Astronomy videos on YouTube. I don't remember off-hand which videos you would want.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
byronczimmer wrote:
Your game sounds like a 'press your luck' mechanic.

Can't Stop comes to mind.


Very true, my game is basically press your luck...I think I just liked the way that Betrayal ramps it up at a dramatic pace.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
B C Z
United States
Reston
Virginia
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
So something like:

Each time you add a planet, roll 2d6. If you roll under the *current* number of planets, everything collapses.

1 planet is free.
2 planets is low chance of a problem.

It keeps going up. You'd have to check the math to see where the optimum number of planets is and what the cumulative fail chance is.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Grishhammer wrote:
3ddevine wrote:

If it helps trigger ideas, my game idea is basically about creating solar systems by adding planets to the orbit of a sun and having to check for the stability of that SUN. The press you luck aspect being do I add more planets to the orbit and risk my star exploding meaning I get no points, or do I stop now and accept the points I have.


Not to be nit-picky, but if you are going for accuracy, something should be said. I think the actual physics would have the planets affect each other, but leave the star itself relatively intact. So, instead of your star collapsing/exploding, you might have your poorly-placed planets flinging each other out of the solar system.

Someone more physics-oriented would have a better idea here. Also, you could check out the Crash Course: Astronomy videos on YouTube. I don't remember off-hand which videos you would want.


Interesting you bring that up, because that better describes what you do in the game anyways. You are absolutely correct, the star isn't really the risky thing, its the planets. I think I abstracted my concept too much. Ill delve a little deeper into my general idea, I phrased that poorly.

The game is essentially a solo game (possibly co-op). The idea being that there are 5 decks of cards that are a random assortment of planets that award points in various ways, in general planets will score better if placed into the ideal solar system. Each deck of cards represents a solar system. Players start with one solar system and slowly build it to earn points with a risk/reward press your luck mechanic. The idea being you take actions then must check for stability of your system. If its stable you may continue, if unstable it breaks down and you fail to earn the points you have been building towards. As an action, you can choose to "end" your system and essentially explode your star, you keep your points, but then send the planets in its orbit into the other solar system decks. You then move on to the next system until you have no decks left. The inspiration is the "Heat death of the Universe" idea https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_death_of_the_universe.

In a nut shell, you make a solar system, destroy it at the right time in order to increase the points for your next system until the inevitable end of the universe.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
byronczimmer wrote:
So something like:

Each time you add a planet, roll 2d6. If you roll under the *current* number of planets, everything collapses.

1 planet is free.
2 planets is low chance of a problem.

It keeps going up. You'd have to check the math to see where the optimum number of planets is and what the cumulative fail chance is.


YES, something like that is what I need to work with, thanks. You are correct, the challenge will be finding the "sweet spot" of planets to die roll.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
GeorgeMo wrote:
I see the term 'escalation score' (ES) or intensity score come up in a wide variety of discussions from games (and here and here) to medical to emergency management.


Thank you! Some interesting ideas there. The one about "paying" to fix a failed roll only to increase the chances of failing again is fascinating.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Russ Williams
Poland
Wrocław
Dolny Śląsk
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
FWIW there are various wargames which have a similar mechanism for randomly/unpredictably ending the game: after a certain number of guaranted rounds, later rounds are defined to include an end-of-round die roll to determine whether that was the final round (and the game is over) or the game continues with the next round. The probability increases each turn, e.g. 1/6 probability of ending after the Nth round, 2/6 probability of ending after the (N+1)th round, 3/6 probability after the (N+2)th round, etc, until finally the game is guaranteed to terminate if it hasn't already.

E.g. Ancient Battles Deluxe, Combat Commander: Europe, and various others I'm not remembering immediately.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
B C Z
United States
Reston
Virginia
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
3ddevine wrote:
byronczimmer wrote:
So something like:

Each time you add a planet, roll 2d6. If you roll under the *current* number of planets, everything collapses.

1 planet is free.
2 planets is low chance of a problem.

It keeps going up. You'd have to check the math to see where the optimum number of planets is and what the cumulative fail chance is.


YES, something like that is what I need to work with, thanks. You are correct, the challenge will be finding the "sweet spot" of planets to die roll.


Personally, I'm not a big dice fan.

Other systems:

Draw a card with each planet that describes it's 'gravitational effect'. These are cumulative and vary, but average towards a desired number. Look at Bomb Squad Academy for a recent implementation using that method.

2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Martin G
United Kingdom
Bristol
flag msg tools
badge
Don't fall in love with me yet, we only recently met
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
russ wrote:
FWIW there are various wargames which have a similar mechanism for randomly/unpredictably ending the game: after a certain number of guaranted rounds, later rounds are defined to include an end-of-round die roll to determine whether that was the final round (and the game is over) or the game continues with the next round. The probability increases each turn, e.g. 1/6 probability of ending after the Nth round, 2/6 probability of ending after the (N+1)th round, 3/6 probability after the (N+2)th round, etc, until finally the game is guaranteed to terminate if it hasn't already.

E.g. Ancient Battles Deluxe, Combat Commander: Europe, and various others I'm not remembering immediately.


And outside of wargames, I'm the Boss! does this too.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Joe H
msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
You could simply do it with cubes in a bag. Suppose you wanted to start with a 50/50 chance you have an equal number of black and white cubes. Every time you play a planet add a black cube. Now the probability of the star exploding increases.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I think that may be my solution right there actually.

Since every solar system consists of a deck of cards you need to build from. Lets say 12 cards in a deck. When ever I add a planet to my system, I have to shuffle in an "explosion" card into my solar system deck. Once 3 explosions have been drawn (or some other trigger), it explodes. Something along those lines, need to work out the balance and proper themeing for it.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
byronczimmer wrote:

Personally, I'm not a big dice fan.

Other systems:

Draw a card with each planet that describes it's 'gravitational effect'. These are cumulative and vary, but average towards a desired number. Look at Bomb Squad Academy for a recent implementation using that method.



That is a pretty neat mechanic with Bomb Squad, and I like the "gravitational effect" being whats in jeopardy...that almost makes me feel like you need to place planets in a certain order so they don't throw each other out of whack. That could be a neat puzzle if simplified well enough.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bastiaan Reinink
Netherlands
Utrecht
flag msg tools
Avatar
mb
The way you describe this, luck would play a very big role. That is not bad in a game per se, but I feel that it would not make for a good solitaire game; if it's just luck I could roll a die once and be done with it.

What I think you need for a solitaire game is a "show of skill" (which will mostly be strategizing?) And where "assessing probabilities correctly" definitely is a skill, it doesn't seem like one that is interesting to test without other players.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Devine
United States
Reno
NV
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
BastiaanSquared wrote:
The way you describe this, luck would play a very big role. That is not bad in a game per se, but I feel that it would not make for a good solitaire game; if it's just luck I could roll a die once and be done with it.

What I think you need for a solitaire game is a "show of skill" (which will mostly be strategizing?) And where "assessing probabilities correctly" definitely is a skill, it doesn't seem like one that is interesting to test without other players.


That is a valid point, I defiantly need to make the press your luck aspect more of a backseat mechanic to something more engaging for solo play. It could be that I need to rethink and make it a multiplayer game instead.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.