Melting souls with cuteness since 2007
I know some people here are trying to "copy" RtL Descent rules to work with Doom. I am wondering if it's the "right" approach... Doom doesn't have money, towns, less character "diversity" and a whole bunch "less" than Descent, making it hard to adapt the rules of one to the other. It requires a lot of work to put all that to Doom and in my opinion, will always feel "tacked-on" instead of being integral to the game.
I am wondering if Doom in campaign mode couldn't be more easilly done by using a "random" map generator in the veins of Warhammer Quest or the older Space Hulk 1st edition with the "Genestealer" expansion (with generation "tiles" with some rooms and corridors on each that are drawn and provide a basic map when put together).
Let the game decide how the "dungeons" are made, not a huge big book of "scenarios". This would keep the discovery of new rooms "hidden", which is also a difference between Doom and Descent. Draw a piece for the next part of the dungeon only once you reach it.
The "scenario" could simply be closer to the "standard" game: escape Mars.
Since there is no "money" in Doom, make some weapon storage rooms found in the last level (3rd) of every "dungeon". Impose a limit on the number of guns (eg 2) that can be carried by a character. Ammo limits will insure that players will "switch" from a gun to another depending on their current reserves. If you have a max of 10 ammo box in weight, for example. With different ammo "weights" for each type of ammos when you stumble upon an ammunition depot, will you get 10 "bullet ammo" or 6 bullet and 2 "explosive" (that weight two each) or 2 "energy" and 4 "bullets".
Add-in some "virtual training mods" once every few levels, that would allow for additional marine training, giving them more cards to use and hence, would be a simpler replacement for an "XP" mechanic. It would also remove the "need" for towns.
Add-in some "upgrade" options for individual guns found in weapon storage rooms in the form of an "upgrade card deck". Like an assault rifle with 1 more range because it has a "scope" or a special plasma rifle with less range or damage, but uses it's energy for "knockbacks"... Special "explosive" ammunition that adds to the damage. Armor piercing that removes armor. Provide a weapon like this to the players every few levels. Improve the "strength" of those weapons by putting more than one "upgrade" card per gun/ammo depending on the progress of the marines throughout the campaign. Perhaps a "bronze", "silver" and "gold" deck of weapon/ammo upgrades?
Something along those lines would make equipment better over time. Ammo shortage that Doom has and Descent doesn't would make sure that the boosted bigger energy and explosion guns would not get used all too often to decimate the opposing player.
This could make it so that a campaign can be as long or as short as it's players want it to be, depending on the number of "dungeons" required before getting to the shuttle.
For the invader... i would go for a simpler approach. Add-in some XP to him for every "frag" he gets. Get him some simple upgrades to his invader deck. At the start of the campaign, he draws one card every turn and has "half a deck". He can purchase additional cards with the provided XP. Or purchase additional "card draws" each turn. This would assume that he doesn't get a "frag" when he finishes his deck, but he wouldn't draw anymore for the rest of the current "dungeon". He would become more powerful as the campaign goes by with just the use of his card deck.
Individual levels would be a starting room, 4 random "rooms" and a final, bit tougher, room with the red door in it. This is the length of a "normal" Doom game. the 4 random rooms could be split in two "mini-dungeons" that could include yellow/blue keys, doors, teleporters and other game elements.
Have a fight against a "boss" room every 3 levels. Including a spider-demon "queen" (whose name i forgot), or a bunch of arch-viles, HellKnights or other "upper difficulty" demons.
Have a fight against some big "Cyber-Demons" at the end of the campaign.
The invader would win under certain conditions. Frag "X" number of marines before the campaign is over is the most obvious one. "X" being dependent on the number of "levels" required by the campaign, decided by the players. Another idea would be to get his "full deck" of cards before the end-game.
I dunno, those are just some "random" ideas and do require a bit more thoughts to them. But it seems more "do-able" and easier to "balance" than trying to adapt RtL, though i can appreciate what those people are trying to do. It would also keep all the elements of Doom more or less intact (hidden dungeon, for example... or the fact that Doom also "rewards" running from ennemies instead of killing them all where Descent "penalize" that by not giving treasure and/or XP), require much less "tweakings" to the setting and universe and be of any length deemed necessary by the players.
Bryce K. Nielsen
I think you'll like what we're piecing together with the Doom: Advanced Campaign. While it is using RtL as a model for what to do, that's more of a general guideline than a strict reproduction. Doom's version has evolved to the point that it's much more Doom-like, specifically because we had to address the differences between Doom and Descent (i.e. no money, no stores, etc).
One of the mechanics that we like about RtL is the extended exploration found on the overland map. This is probably the only real shift from Doom's game play, instead of a desparate escape, it's more like the Aliens movie, where the marines need to venture into the installation and discover what's happening, searching for the eventual portal to Hell and venturing in to close it.
Anyways, progress is being made, though taking time