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Subject: Abstracting Ninja Encounters off board rss

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Eric Pietrocupo
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Long story short: I had an abstract idea recently to roll and pair dice together to perform various actions. But I quickly realized that I did not really need to do this as a detailed system of classic skill rolls could actually do the job.

Now the real problem is how to deal with the various threat on the board most specifically the mobile threat (Guards), because I could possibly easily design an obstacle course where you do various skill roll during your path, but when you add people to the map, it is very complicated to keep track of alertness, guard status, AI script, etc.

So I thought that it's the opposing forces that needs to be abstracted, not the player. So my idea is that each area of the board can have at most 2 types of cubes (Guards and innocents). I could look similar to something like that (last year's prototype):

http://bgd.lariennalibrary.com/uploads/Mainsite/GameIdea/Gam...

Now when you enter a square(area) you flip a number of cards equal to the number of guards and innocent people. Now you must take your actions in this square according to those people currently present. You could kill them, trick them, sneak on them, etc. Then when you are done and move to another square, the enemy characters do their last resolution, like finding dead bodies, and then the cards are discarded. A new set of card is drawn for the new square. So when the actions in a square is over, the game forgets what happened in that square, and then move to the next square. If something bad happened during that encounter, alert levels could raise, new guards could spawn or move on the board, etc.

So it follows the philosophy of detail the game on demand instead of detailing the whole board. It somewhat makes more sense because the area is likely to get crowded by much more than a few guards like seen in many video games.
 
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larienna wrote:
Now when you enter a square(area) you flip a number of cards equal to the number of guards and innocent people.


What do the cards do?
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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Oh! sorry if it was not clear, they are your encounters. You fight againt them like an RPG.

But after additional though and discussion, it's Ok to add detailed resolution, but could be very annoying if there is a lot of possible encounters.

Right now I a thinking more or trying to create an obstacle course, where people are simply additional obstacle. I designed a new map system that could allow moving between squares and on the edges of squares, but still it does not seem easy to simply build an obstacle course out of that.
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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By thinking about it, I might give new value to this idea. I got some ideas for map design from "burgle bros" where each location can simply be a tile surrounded by linear block to represents walls and rivers.

In there end, that means there could be less locations to visit (at most a dozen), making the use of encounter cards valuable. Each map location could have a series of icons indicating living and non-living obstacle that must be dealt with when at that location.

The core of the game would not be the navigation on the map, which is now much more abstract, but rather how to handle the obstacle in a location. Those obstacle would be represented by a series of cards. Not sure yet if those cards could be placed in a certain pattern to mimic positioning.

I was thinking to have exterior and interior obstacle, you don't always need to go inside every location but you could need to pass through a location.
 
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larienna wrote:
But after additional though and discussion, it's Ok to add detailed resolution, but could be very annoying if there is a lot of possible encounters.

Right now I a thinking more or trying to create an obstacle course, where people are simply additional obstacle.


Seems it depends on your resolution system. If players like it having many encounters wouldn't be necessarily bad.

Since you seem to be not using dice so how does resolution work in your game? You might want to take a look in 7th Continent. That game has a clever way of handling resolution with cards.
 
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Eric Pietrocupo
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So for example, you enter a area tile called the temple. You flip cards, and you have:

2 guards, 1 dog and 1 maiden.

If depending on the actions you make, guards ad dogs could make your task more difficult. So you might want to kill or distract those cards in order to act further like moving to another tile or moving inside the temple.

I could add terrain cards, like bushes, barrels, as maybe cards that could supply additional interactions. Only the localization of those elements would be missing. The only geographical positioning is where are walls and rivers, and what is located in the tile.

For the resolution, originally I wanted to use dice, but there would have much more depth. I though of possibly using one or a combination of those ideas:

1- Besides the roll, you have a boon die that can give additional bonus or complications to the results of your roll.

2- have a degree of success. Failing by 1 point will give different outcome than failing by 3 points.

3- Spend time to increase the degree of success (or give bonus points)

4- Certain or all rolls could be automatic if the appropriate time is spent to cover the difference.

So yes their could be dice, but there could be various way to manipulate the results by spending resources, and I want more depth on the outcome of a success or failure to introduce more complication and make it a more living game.

If I stick to the idea above, I could in theory focus on only playing the resolution on a single tile and once the system works, deal with navigation between tiles.

Not sure if another game could be a good source of inspiration for that since it's a pretty abstract concept, it could be hard to find. I am looking at my closet and could not found much game where you have to deal with a series of encounter cards. So far I found:

Munchkin: Then again, you mostly fight one monster at a time.

Star Trek Dice game: Has that multiple events occurring on the ship, but in that game, those events follows your ship.

Arkham Horror: Has that idea of fighting a stack of monsters. In that case, it's only fighting. My Eldritch Express system is similar, but don't quite fit for a ninja theme, because the enemy should not see you.

But I want to have something more than, here is a list of enemies to fight. There needs to be anyways to resolve the encounter like neutralizing, distracting, using the environment, etc.


If you have any suggestions let me know.
 
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