Recommend
 
 Thumb up
 Hide
7 Posts

Spirit Island» Forums » Variants

Subject: Spirit - Quicksilver Dreams Of Form rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Ben Wray
United States
Connecticut
flag msg tools
Eric: I agree to the terms for creating Spirit Island game elements set forth in the FAQ. https://querki.net/u/darker/spirit-island-faq/#!Creating-you...

So I was thinking about a Spirit that would be dynamic and versatile in play, with no built-in elemental affiliations, and special rules that encourage you to change out your powers rather than find a good one or two and hitting it as often as possible. Some preliminary thoughts:

Special Rules (SHIFTING FORM):
Whenever you forget a power from play or your discard:
If it is one of your starting powers, add one presence at range 1 from existing presence.
If it is a minor power, gain the elements of that card until the end of turn.
If it is a major power, gain half the energy cost of the card (round down)

Presence tracks: Moderately but not overwhelmingly good energy gain, moderately slow advancement of cards per play, with a few "any element" spots scattered in.

Growth: (Gain a power, reclaim cards) (Gain a power, gain a minor power) (Gain a power, add presence range one) (Add presence range 2, gain 3 energy)

Starting Powers

Marvelous Iridescent Display (3 energy, slow, every element) During time passes, instead of discarding any major powers you played this turn, forget them. For each power forgotten this way, gain the top card of the major power deck (without forgetting a power for gaining that card).

Explore New Potential (1 energy, fast, ??? elements) Gain a minor power. This card gains the elements of the power gained.

The Heart Cannot Be Claimed (2 energy, fast, range 0 from a sacred site, ??? elements) Push all your presence. For each presence that is pushed to a wetlands, gain water or moon. Desert, fire or air. Jungle, animal or plant. Mountain, earth or sun. You may not gain more than one of any given element this way.

Playfully Warped Reflection (3 energy, fast, ??? elements) Target spirit repeats a power card of cost 1 or less. If you target another spirit, this card gains every element the repeated power does not have.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jason Kratz
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
At first glance, this spirit feels very underpowered, if interesting. For innate powers, I assume that they would require a large number of different elements? If also note that as written, this spirit cannot affect invaders without picking up additional powers. Also, if it is not focusing in any area, it will be difficult to hit element thresholds. Even if you are playing the cards this spirit starts with, you need to have card play for these and the other cards that are being used unless your innates help hit thresholds.

Marvelous Display - awful expensive for what it is, and without amazing energy generation, it really isn't useful since major powers are so expensive. I guess you do get half the energy back, when you forget a major, but then you have no guarantee that what you get will ever be useful. Yes it's sort of a reclaim, which is nice, but not for the cost. Maybe if you got all the energy back for cards forgotten this way?

Heart - 2 energy for maybe 2-3 elements and nothing else is way too expensive. This encourages you to put a bunch of presence in the same spot, which is inefficient, then you split them up and can't use this again effectively. Instead you might have it push towns or explorers plus the element generation.

Some thoughts for innates:
Target a spirit
Several combinations of 3 different elements - reduce the threshold of a power card by one (would be cumulative)

That's all the input I have for now, I'll do some more thinking.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ted Vessenes
United States
Somerville
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
Stryker1979 wrote:
At first glance, this spirit feels very underpowered, if interesting.


Don't ever worry about power level during initial development. I guarantee it's possible to arrange the unique power cards and growth options for a spirit to be either under- or over-powered. Instead, focus on making the spirit provide a fun minigame for the player.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ben Wray
United States
Connecticut
flag msg tools
Thanks for the feedback! And some of the powers are probably overpriced, yeah. So, a few more thoughts...

To go a bit behind the curtains, I realized that my core basic strategy for most spirits was, when gaining a minor power, always look for elements that match my innate thresholds almost overwhelmingly over what the powers actually do, and then going for majors whose thresholds I can reach while using the powers that I already have. And look at the effect as a distant second kind of felt.... a bit unsatisfying? So I kind of wanted a Spirit with absolutely no built-in element preferences who could easily meet the threshold of most major powers (still with a bit of work from starting powers and unlocked any-element spots on the presence tracks), and with benefits from forgetting powers, more of a focus on "what do I need now or next turn?" or "how do I best use this power I just randomly?" rather than "what do I need for the rest of the game?" or "Eh, all these suck for me right now, I'll just forget it from hand."

So it's very intentional that Quicksilver Dreams of Form has only "meta" starting powers and can't deal with invaders with them, to encourage digging for quick minor powers to solve your early problems.

So, some rejiggering that reflects my current thoughts (playtesting will have to wait because my actual game is in a locker at my FLGS)

Change the benefit from forgetting a minor power from your discard or play to "gain the top card of the minor power deck".

Change Marvelous Iridescent Display to (2 energy, slow, every element) Gain a major power.

Change Explore New Potential to 0 energy.

Change The Heart Cannot Be Claimed to: Mercurial Heart (0 energy), remove the sacred site requirement and the "you cannot gain more than one of any given element this way" restriction.

(I was thinking of it as a weak "avoid losing presence to a ravage you have no other answers to" defense, and a way to shift your presence into a better position, perhaps for a terrain-centric power you just gained, but those are both probably weak enough benefits that the card play enough is enough cost and it's safe to let you gain a lot of a single element if you've specifically built up to do so.)

Tentative Presence Tracks:
Energy 2 - 3 - 4 - (any element) - 5 - 6
Cards per Turn 1 - 2 - (any element) - 3 - 3 - (any two different elements) - 4

Setup: 1 presence in each of any two adjacent lands on your board.

And, an actual innate power:

ADAPT AND REACT: (fast or slow, yourself only) Play a card (fast only during the fast power phase, slow only during the slow power phase) from your hand by paying its energy cost.

(So it gives you a chance to play cards that you get from other cards, or using energy that other players give you, as well as play a card after the event and invader phase to deal with any unexpected issues that might arise from that.)

Potential Issues: You might end up with an excessive amount of minor powers? I was considering an alternative to Mercurial Heart that let you forget any number of minor powers from your hand for 1 energy, gaining all their elements this turn.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ted Vessenes
United States
Somerville
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
The reason for elemental focus is that giving players a totally blank slate is really, REALLY challenging for them. It's hard to figure out what major powers to draft, for example, and it can be hard to make any of them work if you only have 1 of each element.

I think it's fine to have a spirit that starts with no particular elemental affinity, but you definitely want the player's selections throughout the game to focus them over time. Like if you take one moon/plant/earth card, you should have more incentive to take moon/plant/earth elements on future cards than other elements. This means players still get some kind of direction. It's just that this direction is created by their few initial (possibly random) choices.

Also, every spirit needs *some* way to interact with invaders. Having zero invader interaction kind of sidelines the main antagonists of the game, which undercuts the basic story arc. Even Serpent, which is mostly a support spirit, has an innate and a starting card that interact with invaders.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ben Wray
United States
Connecticut
flag msg tools
tedv wrote:
Also, every spirit needs *some* way to interact with invaders. Having zero invader interaction kind of sidelines the main antagonists of the game, which undercuts the basic story arc. Even Serpent, which is mostly a support spirit, has an innate and a starting card that interact with invaders.


Well... at least in this particular example, the answer to that is "gain lots of powers". I mean, turn one, you could easily gain two minor powers through growth, play Explore New Potential to gain another minor power, and then use Adapt and React to play any of the three powers that you just gained (with a cost of two or less) to start fixing things on your board, with the other two still ready for next turn.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Marc Hartstein
United States
North Plainfield
New Jersey
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
As I read your description, I'm seeing the concept of this spirit as almost pure tactical "what can I do with what I have right now, because I will change by next turn?"

What I'm noticing: you want people to be encouraged to forget powers, and I agree, but other than the one unique and incentive to draft major powers, there's just not all that much forgetting in the game, and potentially turning Memories Fade into Dust as a good thing feels weird.

I suggest you go all-in on the forgetting mechanic. Replace Shifting Form with "Whenever you discard a power other than one of your unique powers, instead forget it and draw the top card of its respective power deck into your discard pile."

Then take the cool ideas of your existing Shifting Form and move them onto uniques or innates, so some turns you can get a sweet buff out of the forgetting you'll be doing anyway (and Memories Fade doesn't hurt so much), but you want to time when to activate it.

Gift of Constancy might present particularly interesting choices...
2 
 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.