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Subject: How to design your own scenario - The Fan made scenario kit rss

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Frank West
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The Fan made scenario kit

When I started designing The City of Kings I wanted to make sure the underlying mechanics allowed for endless stories to be told. I wanted to give players the ability to contribute their own ideas to the game and to create their own stories.

Today I would like to release the first iteration of the "Fan Made Scenarios" kit which I hope you will be able to use to create your own scenarios.

Resources

You can download the scenario template kit here.

How to create a scenario?

Creating a scenario for The City of Kings can be a quick simple process, or a long complex one, depending on how much you want to customise the rules. This guide will start with the basics.

Step 1. The story and objective

The first thing you will need to do is write a story and set an objective.

The story can be anything, but the preference is for something that fits within the theme of the world. You can read the lore on the character sheets, creature templates and a few of the existing scenarios to help come up with ideas. The more you play the game and read the stories, the easier you may find it to add in to the existing stories.

The standard objectives are:

- Fight Something(s).
- Gather some resources.
- Build a building tile.
- Escort an NPC to a location.
- Travel to a location.

For new creators, I recommend choosing one of these, but it is possible to come up with your own objective!

Step 2. Map tiles

The next step is to choose the map tiles you wish to use, there are 16 sets of map tiles and you will need to choose a combination of those sets.

For scenarios I recommend sets which add up to 19 map tiles. You can choose more, but typically this will extend the length of playtime to more than 2 hours.

Full map tile breakdown:

Spoiler (click to reveal)

Set 1 (14 tiles)

This is the core set which adds all the resources, shops, quest hubs and a few creatures. It’s often great to use this a starting point and add tiles to it.

Ageless Realms (10 tiles)

Creature spawn - The Cave of T’Lokk
Creature spawn - The Astrographer’s Tower
Fish resource - Quietsea
Fish resource - Moon Lake
Ore resource - The Granite Halls
Ore resource - Cogshead Works
Quest hub - The Inn of Lost Hope
Shop - The Hyzicki Caravans
Wood resource - Oak Wood
Wood resource - Melian Forest

Azure Rise (4 tiles)

Creature spawn - The Tower of the North Wind
Linen resource - Menash Greenlands
Shop - Crowfeather Market
Stable - Sterncastle Paddock


Set 2 (2 tiles)

Ageless Realms (2 tiles)

Creature spawn - Vestan’s Curse
Quest hub - Olstan’s Way


Set 3 (3 tiles)

This is a creature set, that adds creature map tiles only.

Ageless Realms (1 tile)

Creature spawn - Cripplewood Canyons

Azure Rise (2 tiles)

Creature spawn - Howling Heath
Creature spawn - Darkwood Trees


Set 4 (2 tiles)

Ageless Realms (1 tile)

Quest hub - Freegrove

Azure Rise (1 tile)

Linen Resource - High Meadows


Set 5 (3 tiles)

This set adds basic resources to Azure Rise and can be good for resource heavy scenarios.

Azure Rise (3 tiles)

Fish resource - Undine’s Wash
Ore resource - The Diamond Halls
Wood resource - Wolfswood


Set 6 (5 tiles)

Ageless Realms (2 tiles)

Pit - Pit
Stronghold - Steward Rancor’s Fort

Azure Rise (3 tiles)

Pit - Pit
Quest hub - The Marred Hand
Stronghold - The Herald’s Gate


Set 7 (2 tiles)

Ageless Realms (2 tiles)

Shrine - The House of the Eastern Wind
Stable - Boswitch Grounds


Set 8 (2 tiles)

Ageless Realms (1 tile)

Farm - Ged's Farm

Azure Rise (1 tile)

Quest hub - The Old Clocktower Ruins


Set 9 (1 tile)

Ageless Realms (1 tile)

Buff (attack) - The Telmarren Grove


Set 10 (2 tiles)

This set adds the 2 hardest spawn points and can help up the difficulty of a scenario.

Azure Rise (2 tiles)

Creature spawn - Gibbet Cross
Creature spawn - Ravenswood Town


Set 11 (4 tiles)

This set adds strategic elements to the board, allowing you to up the difficulty of creatures and requiring more positional play for players.

Ageless Realms (3 tiles)

Buff (move) - The Sappers Way
Buff (range) - Giant’s Foot Peak
Stables - Greenacre Stables

Azure Rise (1 tile)

Buff (range) - Dragon's Ridge


Set 12 (1 tile)

Azure Rise (1 tile)

Shrine - The Shrine of The Hidden Sun


Set 13 (2 tiles)

Ageless Realms (1 tile)

Buff (Heal) - The Pools of Aranwyn

Azure Rise (1 tile)

Stronghold - Blackthorn Manor


Set 14 (1 tile)

Ageless Realms (1 tile)

Quest hub - Wayland's Crossroads


Set 15 (2 tiles)

Pits can be used to force players to take longer paths and adds more strategy to combat. When using this set, one of the tiles must start face up, otherwise it is possible for players to get stuck.

Ageless Realms (1 tile)

Pit - Pit

Azure Rise (1 tile)

Pit - Pit


Set 16 (1 tile)

Azure Rise (1 tile)

Named location - Cloud Keep


Step 3. Layout

With the map tiles selected, you will need to design a layout for them.

I recommend keeping it square or rectangular, many of the battles require positional play and having oddly shaped maps can put creatures in very difficult positions.

There is a table in the scenario template you can use to design your map layout.

Face up tiles and positioned items

Once you’ve chosen a layout, you will also need to decide if any map tiles start face up, and whether any extra items are on the board at setup.

You could place temporary structures, tokens or creatures on your map.


Step 4. Starting stats

The toughest part of designing a scenario is choosing some interesting starting stats to make your objective more challenging to complete.

You can pick any numbers you like, but here are some general rules to keep your scenario balanced.

Hope

Typically, 1 hope reflects 45 minutes of play for an average group.

It varies per player count, and based on the complexity of the level, but this is a great guide line.

1 hope: 45 minutes
2 hope: 1.5 hours
3 hope: 2.25 hours
4 hope: 3 hours

Time

Unless your story says otherwise, it’s great to start at midnight so players first turn is Early Morning.

Balancing time per player count is a little trickier and often depends on the complexity of your scenario, but if in doubt, the following works well before playtesting.

Hope: 1
2-player: Midnight
3-player: Midnight
4-player: Early Morning

Hope: 2
2-player: Midnight
3-player: Early Morning
4-player: Late Morning

Hope: 3
2-player: Midnight
3-player: Late Morning
4-player: Afternoon

Hope: 4
2-player: Midnight
3-player: Afternoon
4-player: Evening

Morale

Always start with 3 unless there is reason not to!

XP / Stats / Skills / Creature Stat Bars

This is the hardest part to get right as there are endless possibilities, if you would like to balance your own there here are some rules:

XP – The higher the starting XP, the slower players will level and the harder it will be for them to be more powerful.

Stats / Skills – You typically want players to have slightly more stats and skills than they would have if they got to the starting amount of XP by normal progression.

Creature Stat Bars – The higher the starting stat bar, the more stats and skills players need to start with.

Some standard combinations are:

XP - 0
Stats - 0
Skills - 0
Creature Stat Bar - 1

XP - 3
Stats - 2
Skills - 0
Creature Stat Bar - 3

XP - 5
Stats - 4
Skills - 2
Creature Stat Bar - 5

XP - 8
Stats - 4
Skills - 4
Creature Stat Bar - 6

XP - 10
Stats - 6
Skills - 4
Creature Stat Bar - 7

Remember. The higher these numbers are, the more challenging your scenario will be!

Equipment

If you are starting players at a higher level, then it can be great to give them some starting equipment to set some goals for them to work towards.

Step 5. Starting locations

Finally, you just need to decide where the heroes and workers are going to start in your scenario.

Step 6. Put it all together

You now have everything you need to create a scenario, so why not download the scenario template kit and start filling it in?
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Frank West
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Complete freedom

The first post in this thread is designed to give you the ability to create your own scenarios based off some of the standard rules that exist within the game.

I’d love to encourage you all to think outside of the box and to suggest new types of objectives and ways of combining things within the game to create new challenges.

Also, I give you full freedom to share them and do what you want, personally I’ll be playing as many fan made scenarios as I can (perhaps I’ll even do some on camera?) and maybe one day they’ll end up in an expansion (with your permission of course).

A note on balance

I’ve tried to avoid too many constraints in regard to objectives, I want you to explore and play your own scenarios and to get a feel for what works. Keep in mind how much resource someone can gather in a turn, and how many turns it generally takes to kill a creature. Then balance your objectives around the number of turns (hope) you’re putting in the game.

If in doubt, the best thing to do is playtest!

Best of luck and feel free to ask questions!
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Doug Stewart
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Wow! Awesome!
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Frank West
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zamoose wrote:
Wow! Awesome!


I'm looking forward to seeing what people come up with!
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Im curious to know if there is already a scenario that plays like COD zombies where you see how far you can make it. Creatures keep spawning every day and your goal is to make it through all 30 creatures and then bosses. Or bosses intermixed.
 
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♬ Stephanie ♩♪♩♪♩ ♩♪♩♪♫♪
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Awesome, Frank! Love how you are fostering creativity and encouraging others to create and get their feet wet in game design.
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Frank West
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Dynalange129 wrote:
Im curious to know if there is already a scenario that plays like COD zombies where you see how far you can make it. Creatures keep spawning every day and your goal is to make it through all 30 creatures and then bosses. Or bosses intermixed.


I've certainly played around with ideas for this myself, would love to see other people experiment with some variations!
 
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Frank West
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flaeryn wrote:
Awesome, Frank! Love how you are fostering creativity and encouraging others to create and get their feet wet in game design.


I some hope people get a chance to play around with it - I'm looking forward to playtesting other peoples ideas!
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Really cool idea to give users a guide to create their own scenarios. I can't wait to play this game, hopefully, DPD delivers it today.
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Steve Marano
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Just got the game, Frank, and am planning to try it out this weekend. I was debating between this and Gloomhaven, and it was the ease of setting up and tearing down CofK compared to GH that ultimately led me to choose it. This level of ongoing support from you is really gratifying to see and really adds to its appeal.
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Frank West
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That's really great to hear Steve!

As a note. The file is now online and I've updated the original post with the link!
 
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I'm super excited about this. City of Kings and another amazing game, Mechs vs Minions, are both essentially play grounds dieing for fan made content.
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Valens

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Anyone already tried to make a custom scenario using this approach?
 
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