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Subject: I would love a combat app for Runebound rss

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L VonMeister
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I've played the game a few times solo and the combat is one thing I just don't really enjoy (solo).
It would be awesome to have an app just for the combat where you could make decisions against AI monsters. I've emailed FFG about it - I know it's a longshot but thought I'd try anyway.
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Keith
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I totally agree. While the token system is fine for multiple players, this solo player finds it fiddly and awkward. An app would be a welcome addition.
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Julia
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For these things: start a petition, both here and on FFG board. Once you got enough people signing the petition, mail the links to the customer service at FFG. If the demand is high enough, then, maybe, they could consider it.
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Chris J Davis
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I would not be at all surprised if the first (hypothetical) co-op scenario for Runebound came with a co-op combat app.
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I would sign a petition for this for sure! I don't mind the combat but my group despises it and feels it slows the game down drastically. Needless to say, it's not a popular pick for my group.
 
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Donny Behne
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Well, we have Descent Road to Legend and, just announced, Mansions of Madness Second Edition is fully app driven. Maybe it's only a matter of time.
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Dave S
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Don't have the game yet, but I often make this type of app for myself so that I can solo games. Is there any concern with IP violations if a fan made app were distributed? (for free I expect). Any additional info about what you would expect in such an app? Would it need to know context of the scenario? Or just information about that individual combat?
 
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Scott Cantor
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murteas wrote:
Any additional info about what you would expect in such an app? Would it need to know context of the scenario? Or just information about that individual combat?


I don't think it's practical to build without real AI, unless you're just talking about a token flipper (which to be honest I'd pay for, I hate them).

But no, it wouldn't need to know anything about context, apart from tracking tokens for players if you were going to do virtual flipping of both sides and not just the monsters. There's no impact on combat from any prior scenario events.
 
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David desJardins
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More Mellotron wrote:
But no, it wouldn't need to know anything about context, apart from tracking tokens for players if you were going to do virtual flipping of both sides and not just the monsters. There's no impact on combat from any prior scenario events.


The global situation matters for your objectives. E.g., are you trying to do damage to your opponent, or are you trying to maximize your chance of winning the battle?
 
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Scott Cantor
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DaviddesJ wrote:

The global situation matters for your objectives. E.g., are you trying to do damage to your opponent, or are you trying to maximize your chance of winning the battle?


That affects my planning, yes, but if you want it to affect the monster's choices, I think that's beyond the reach of an app. That's clearly in the realm of needing a human opponnent to me.

If I misunderstood, ok, but I assumed the point here was an app to run the monster's side, at most.

-- Scott
 
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David desJardins
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More Mellotron wrote:
That affects my planning, yes, but if you want it to affect the monster's choices, I think that's beyond the reach of an app. That's clearly in the realm of needing a human opponnent to me.


Any app that makes decisions for the enemy is implicitly making some kinds of assumptions about whether winning the battle is more important or inflicting damage is more important or something in between. You can't avoid addressing this question, to some extent, in formulating its strategy.
 
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Scott Cantor
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DaviddesJ wrote:

Any app that makes decisions for the enemy is implicitly making some kinds of assumptions about whether winning the battle is more important or inflicting damage is more important or something in between. You can't avoid addressing this question, to some extent, in formulating its strategy.


And I'm saying that's nearly impossible to model, so I don't think the person asking had that in mind. I think he was asking whether there are rule changes or token differences that involve the game state.
 
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Andrew Pulcino
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I think the token combat in Runebound can actually be modeled fairly well with an AI. It is for the most part isolated from the rest of the game and almost completely deterministic.

The challenging part of writing an AI is capturing all of the hero and monster options, like surge abilities. There are a lot of them, and if you want the AI to behave intelligently, then it needs to be aware of those options and how they affect the game state.

I've actually started coding an AI based on the minimax algorithm. Given its currently limited scope (ie: it's not complete), it makes fairly optimal choices based on a heuristical scoring of each possible move. That scoring method could be modified based on monster type, the hero being faced and their equipment, current act, etc. For example, Orcs could use a very aggressive scoring function, where they try to maximize damage, while a fey sort of creature may try for options that screw with the player more...

While not quite the same as a human opponent who can make choices that may lose the combat, but better hinder the player, I think the AI would be smart enough to offer a fine solo or co-op challenge.

Disclaimer: I don't have the game yet, but it's in an on hold order with CSI. Once I get it, I can get a better idea of the number of options the AI would need to be aware of in order to present a challenge.
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J
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flash42 wrote:
I think the token combat in Runebound can actually be modeled fairly well with an AI. It is for the most part isolated from the rest of the game and almost completely deterministic.

The challenging part of writing an AI is capturing all of the hero and monster options, like surge abilities. There are a lot of them, and if you want the AI to behave intelligently, then it needs to be aware of those options and how they affect the game state.

I've actually started coding an AI based on the minimax algorithm. Given its currently limited scope (ie: it's not complete), it makes fairly optimal choices based on a heuristical scoring of each possible move. That scoring method could be modified based on monster type, the hero being faced and their equipment, current act, etc. For example, Orcs could use a very aggressive scoring function, where they try to maximize damage, while a fey sort of creature may try for options that screw with the player more...

While not quite the same as a human opponent who can make choices that may lose the combat, but better hinder the player, I think the AI would be smart enough to offer a fine solo or co-op challenge.

Disclaimer: I don't have the game yet, but it's in an on hold order with CSI. Once I get it, I can get a better idea of the number of options the AI would need to be aware of in order to present a challenge.


The combat would have to happen entirely in the program though. Tossing your tokens and then entering the results individually into the app every time would be a pain.

I don't think you need to vary the monster AI by type though. Dealing as much damage as possible to the player is always the highest priority. In a case where you know you're going to get killed the next time the turn passes to the player, you just deal all your damage to hinder the player's progress after combat.

Whenever you're controlling a monster that has a special ability to annoy the player in some other way (sabercat's terrify, thief's thieve) you'd certainly have to consider relative power in some way. Usually it is a good idea to use these special abilities (especially thieve, since the thief dies pretty quick), unless you're in a position to kill the player.
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David desJardins
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z_liquid wrote:
I don't think you need to vary the monster AI by type though. Dealing as much damage as possible to the player is always the highest priority.


I disagree. Maximizing the chance to win the battle is usually a higher priority than dealing more damage. Often the hero is going to rest anyway and the number of wounds will be irrelevant.
 
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Elyse S.
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I would love that. I kind of hate the tokens and having an app would be great.
 
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Greg
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I think the tokens are pretty sweet. They set this game apart from the rest for me. I love - love - how most of the equipment you buy also gives you another disk to cast.

As far as resolving the combat disks with an app, I think it would be very hard to do this and it might be more cumbersome to punch in the details on the app than it is to quickly make some decisions for the monster.

The AI that I use for the monsters are:

1. Will I die this turn? If so, do the most damage possible.
2. Can I cast any exert abilities that are beneficial?
3. If not, do the most damage possible.

Also on agility tokens, I don't recast anything, instead it can be used to flip any token on either side (I do this to speed combat up).
 
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Dan Harrow
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Phate999 wrote:
Also on agility tokens, I don't recast anything, instead it can be used to flip any token on either side (I do this to speed combat up).

That does make them quite a bit stronger than intended when used on your opponent, however.
 
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Greg
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XeyneGaming wrote:
Phate999 wrote:
Also on agility tokens, I don't recast anything, instead it can be used to flip any token on either side (I do this to speed combat up).

That does make them quite a bit stronger than intended when used on your opponent, however.

I guess so. It's takes the 50% chance away. I but it also speeds things up a bit because you don't have to re-process decisions after recasting.
 
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L VonMeister
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The tokens are pretty sweet - I like them just fine for multiplayer games.
An app for this wouldn't be that complex for a team of developers. Choose your character for the game, update any combat tokens as you acquire them, then select the monster you're fighting and click "fight."

Cast your tokens in the app and start choosing them against what the monster does. At least that's how I imagine it.
 
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Matt Brown
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I was just talking with my gaming group about how easy it would be to add a solo option to Runebound via a companion app. We know FFG is growing more and more fond of these apps, and this is a perfect example of where such an app would be both useful and welcomed. All the app would need to do is handle the token casting (both for the player and the monsters) and control the monster "AI" with respect to how it selects and reacts to the cast tokens.
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Greg
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Yes but due to the natural back and forth of combat, you would end up not even needing physical disks at all. The entire combat sequence would need to be run on the app or else it would be a herky jerky mess. At that point, you might as well design and app for the entire game, making it all digital. I quite like the combat as is even in solo.
 
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L VonMeister
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Phate999 wrote:
The entire combat sequence would need to be run on the app

That's the idea. I see no reason to digitize the entire game.
Soloing combat just isn't a fun experience.
 
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Greg
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VonMeister wrote:
Phate999 wrote:
The entire combat sequence would need to be run on the app

That's the idea. I see no reason to digitize the entire game.
Soloing combat just isn't a fun experience.

You would not need any physical disks, they would be obsolete. It's a bit like using a calculator verses by hand. I can see why someone might like this, but it would ruin the experience for me I think. I think the solo experience is quite fun. You can see my recent attempt in the sessions forum.
 
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L VonMeister
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I'm glad you enjoy soloing with them. I don't. That's the point of the thread. I don't like making decisions for the monsters trying to kill me.

The tokens would not be obsolete if an app was created. That's just silly.
If the existence of an app meant cardboard components were instantly obsolete, then there Elder Sign would have died a long time ago.
Again, I like using them with other players - seems like more than a few people like the tokens just fine (like myself) but would prefer something different when soloing.
 
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