Smiling Tom
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First of all, this is the first time I post in this section, or in this forum for what matters, so I am not entirely sure I follow protocol properly. Please, don't hesitate to point me in the right direction.


Fallen Empire – A High Fantasy Miniature Game

Concept
We wanted to try a dice-less miniature game and for that purpose we decided to set it up on the High Fantasy, grand battle scale, because we considered it more fitting and it's a genre without the abundance of rule sets you find on skirmish these days. We are veteran DBM(x) players so those familiar with the system will feel familiar with some of the elements.

At the same time, we felt than the PIP system was a bit off for a grand scale type of game. After all, generals in such battles had very limited control on their troops, specially those further away. To reflect that, we have devised an initiative and movement system that adds the randomness and chaos expected in such type of battle, but without taking all the control out of the player's hands.

To top it off, we wanted to set it up on a non-traditional environment. So far we have developed only 3 basic armies and the plan is to develop 3 more in a particular universe set, but if we manage to get it further we think it's perfectly possible to set up army lists and decks for the more traditional high fantasy worlds (and available miniatures).

The plan for this rules is to be a PNP project, and even open sourced. We have no skills nor knowledge regarding how to craft miniatures, and our pursuit is to bring some of the most recent board game mechanics to the miniature world.

Scale
The game is designed for 15mm or 6mm miniatures, with the objective to offer a rule set and environment for large scale epic fantasy battles. Due to that, we suggest using bases with 40mm front and variable depth depending on the type of unit (from 15mm for close formation infantry to 80mm for dragons and similar monsters).

Regarding movement and range, a movement Base is considered a 40mm width and 30mm depth and a Ranged combat base is 40mm width and 60mm depth.

Armies
Each army has assigned a basic tactical deck of 36 cards, and 6 to 9 basic unit cards for the Initiative deck. Each unit card implies number of bases of the same unit, ranging from 1 (leaders and monstrous units, mostly) to 16 (peasant hordes, zombies)

Each army tactical deck has a fixed amount of cards for each value, but it depends on the specific army how many of each they have. For instance, the irregular Tribal army have cards in a range of 1 to 6 value, but they aren't evenly distributed and have more cards in the 3-4 value than in any other pair. On the other hand, the regular Imperial army has a range of 2 to 5, and the Cultist army has a range of 1 to 6 but the cards of each value are even: they have 6 cards for each value.

Most units have one or more tactical cards attached to them. This means that in order to add such unit to your army, you have to be able to replace a number of cards in your deck with the same value and quantity as the ones indicated in the Unit card. This means that if you want to add the Archmage to your Imperial deck, you will need to replace 3 5-value cards with the Archmage cards. If you have no spare neutral cards to replace, that means the unit can not fit your army unless you remove a unit whose tactical cards are 5 value too to make room for it.

The combat system is done but we have barely done 3 play tests, and decided to stop until we have written down properly movement rules, we are having issues particularly with changing formations. Most of these armies are highly irregular so going with the classic system simply don't fit in. That said, will add the combat mechanics later this week once I've managed to put it in a somewhat remotely understandable format.
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James Arias
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Re: [WIP] Fireballs and cold Steel - An army level HF miniature game
Subscribed, will be interesting to see what you come up with.
 
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Smiling Tom
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Re: [WIP] Fireballs and cold Steel - An army level HF miniature game
Some basic terms

Groups
+ A Group is a number of bases that will begin the turn together.
+ The group can be or not assembled with bases of the same Unit.
+ The group can break as a result of movement or as combat result.
+ A group can move in the initiative impulse of any of the units who have bases in it, but note that you can only move ONE group per Initiative impulse card.
+ A group moves as the slowest and heaviest unit it contains.
+ A group made of exclusively the same unit bases are better at using Maneuvrers (see movement).

Unit stats

As this game implies that the players will have the unit cards on the table, this means we can create quite specific unit stats and abilities, so will be easy to see and remember during action and combat resolution. At this step we are using stats roughly designed, won't bother with the game balance just yet and having overpowered and underpowered units can actually help detect general mechanic issues. But Considering how the stats are done, I am confident it will be very easy to parametrize the armies and units. Already have the guidelines in place for that but will leave it for a later stage.

Units have 5 different stats, belong to an army and have some other traits. Unit card also shows the depth of its base, how many bases are added to the army and the name and value of the attached cards to the tactical deck.

Movement: Quantity of bases they move on good going.
Shock: Value used on melee combat
Support: Value used on ranged combat and to support adjacent friendly units if they are not engaged directly
Range: Distance they can use their Support value both for ranged combat and to help friendly units
Armor type: Can be Light, Medium or Heavy. It yields bonus or penalties to combat depending on different factors like terrain and what armor type their opponent has. Heavy units are more deadly on good going vs. lighter units, lighter units are more nimble moving and more deadly on rough going against heavier units.

Damage Steps

Damage steps - Consequences
1: Shaken unit. -1 to Shock and 1/2 Support value (round up).
2: Demoralized unit. -3 to Shock, unit yields no Support.
3: Unit is destroyed.

Damage is always applied to the whole column (stack of aligned bases facing the same direction) and marked with counters. Can use small coins, colored cubes, etc. and you just need to mark 2 different steps. We used some 15mm discs with 1 on a side written in black and 2 on its back written in red.

In the event that you split a column, all the split columns get a token to mark their damage level.

If due to movement you join different columns with different damage levels, the worst damage level sticks.
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Smiling Tom
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Re: [WIP] Fireballs and cold Steel - An army level HF miniature game
The board

In order to randomize the terrain, made a set of 25 terrain tokens. 10 for normal terrain, 5 with guaranteed forest, 5 with guaranteed hills and 5 with objectives. A random objective card is chosen at the beginning of the game and players take tokens in turns until they have managed to assemble a 2x3 grid. The chosen token must fit the terrain (rivers must be connected and so do roads). In the event that the token chosen can't be attached, the other player chooses one of the terrain features to remove or add to the new tile in order to complete the map.

Once the terrain is set, the player who chose last decides which of the long sides will be it's deploying area.

Deployment
Each player writes down their deployment in secret, setting up the groups. A group is any amount of bases that will start together the battle. Groups can be split and reassembled over the course of the game through the movement and options. Worth noting that a big group with a dynamic assortment of units will have more flexibility when it comes to decide when they move, but at the cost of army mobility. More on this later.

Then both players state the quantity of bases for their LARGEST group. The player with the largest group will start deploying it's largest group. From then on, the players take turns to deploy a group at a time until both players have fielded all their units.

The Turn

Sequence:
1. Shuffle initiative deck
2. Movement phase
2.1. Draw a Unit card from the Initiative deck
2.2. The player whose card is from can do an action with that unit
2.3. Repeat until all the cards from the Initiative deck have been drawn
3. Combat Phase
3.1. Ranged combat
Beginning with the player who moved last, chose a Combat to resolve
3.1.1. The one that initiated the combat places (or not) a tactical card face down
3.1.2. The defending player places (or not) a tactical card face down
3.1.3. Both cards are revealed and resolved (if the text is relevant)
3.1.4. The player who has the initiative (initially the one that chose the Combat, afterwards the one that won last confrontation) chose a confrontation (1 base+supports+Card Value vs 1 base+supports+Card Value) to resolve.
3.1.5. Calculate values for both attacker and defender and check the results
3.1.6. Apply the results
3.1.7. Repeat with the other player choosing confrontation to resolve
3.2. Melee combat
3.2.1. Proceed as with the Ranged combat
4. Remove unit cards from the Initiative deck from all the units that are no longer on the table
5. Check for victory conditions. If it had been achieved, game ends.
6. Players draw back tactical cards to their maximum hand size. If the tactical deck has been depleted, they can not get more cards.
7. Reshuffle the initiative deck and start over.

Initiative
At the beginning of the game, a deck is assembled with the unit cards of both players.

At the start of the turn, the deck is shuffled and then proceed to draw a card at a time. The player whose army the Unit belongs to can take an action.

Actions
There are some different sort of actions a player can take when a unit card is drawn. The basic actions are:
+ Move 1 (ONE) group with bases that belong to that Unit.
+ Rally the troops. Expend a tactical card to recover the Value of that card steps of damage from columns with bases of that Unit.
+ Play a card action.

Also, keep in mind that
* Some Tactical cards are labelled as actions.
* Some actions require a particular Unit or type of Unit to play it.
* Other cards might have a different effect when played on particular units.
* All actions are self-explanatory and overrule the basic game rules when in conflict.
* Some Units have their own Action described in their Unit card. This action requires you to discard a Tactical card to use the Value.


Keep in mind that bases can never move more than once per turn. So if you have a group composed by spearmen and priests and you moved the group when the Spearmen card was drawn, you can not move it again when the Priests card is drawn. However, the Priests can still play a non-move action.

After the Action is taken, the player can discard a Tactical card to move individually V (value) bases of that unit type. This is the only way a base can flank or engage from the back an enemy unit.

After the Action and any other tactical moves have been resolved, draw a new card from the Initiative deck and repeat to do so until all cards from that deck have been drawn.
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Smiling Tom
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Re: [WIP] Fireballs and cold Steel - An army level HF miniature game
Created set of cards for play testing.

Army cards

Tactical deck for The Cult army

Tactical deck for the Imperial army
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