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Subject: Some questions/ideas rss

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Hi there! I like your game, great job! But I had some problems playing it the first time. After reading all the posts in the forum, here are my remaining questions/clarification ideas:

1) Is "fire combat" = ranged combat? The rules say, that you can only throw a grenade in melee combat, but not in fire combat... Which is kind of odd, as I don't want to throw a grenade at my enemy while staying right next to him...
Maybe "range" would be better than "fire"?

2) You should write something like "After the Event Phase, you make an Enemy Check if you did not move on this turn."
OR
you could divide a turn in the Operations Phase into
"a) Advance Turn Marker
b1) Node Resolution Phase, Event Phase, Enemy Check
b2) Movement Phase
c) End Turn"
with either b1 or b2 being taken each turn.

3) You could add the additional enemy sheet to the basic enemy sheet with only one enemy. So both enemies can be printed using only one piece of paper.

4) If you're playing with dice instead of chips, you can throw a d20 with every(!!) d6, simulating the "0" and "+" chip as follows:
If the d20 shows a "1" or "20", the d6 does not count. A "1" simulates a drawn "0" and a "20" simulates a drawn "+". (Remember that you have to roll both dice again after a "+".)
If you don't want to "put the chips back" every roll, you can reroll every fourth digit already rolled and reroll every "1" or "20" after the first time (as every digit is only 3x and "0" and "+" only 1x in the pot).

znord
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Allen Wiles
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Some really good suggestions! My thoughts:

1> I agree about the grenades for 'fire' makes more sense - at least in real life. I understand the mechanic, tho. Once in melee, it is hard to get away from melee. If you only use grenades during 'fire', then you have to use them quickly - and perhaps not at all if you 'roll high' for the initial set.

Suggestion: Allow fire *(and)* melee grenades. Fire (ranged) grenades work as normal, but melee use adds 1/2 damage (rounded down) to your units.

2> That's a good observation. I find that the 'hard fight' rule eliminates that ambiguity since you have to check for baddies in the unexplored room *first*. However, for rooms that are 4+/C, this can be frightening devil

3> Hmmm... good suggestion, but I believe he did that *except* for the dark god followers and dark roots. Those can definitely be combined.

4> I'm not big about using a d20 and having to 'remember' rolls. I use playing cards instead of chits and I prefer going through the entire deck regardless of events, then reshuffling as needed. I have also done this by 'doubling' the deck size to 40 cards. That has had mixed results, but allows for more interesting outcomes. The best chit/card strategy may be to reshuffle all chits/cards at the beginning of every turn right after you 'advance' the turn counter.

One last Item:

Flame-Thrower 30 pts
=====================
Melee=2-3
Advance=5
** - Melee attacks Don't penetrate armor.
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Gottardo Zancani
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1> "Melee" stands for "short range", while "Fire" is "long range combat": while in short range you normally use weapons with high rate of fire and only when pressed in close combat you use knives, chain swords (and claws if any). This is the reasom why grenades can only be used in Melee range: i'm working on a "grenader launcher" weapon that should be able to use grenades also on "fire" range.

2> The rules are quite ambiguous on the operations sequence: i'm reworking the rules to make things more clear.

3> i will think about it.

4> Dice/Cards are possible candidates to replace the counter mechanism: i will post some of the proposed variants in the site.

About the Flame-Thrower unit: is a good addition even if 2-3 in Melee it's probably too powerful - can you please explain the note "Melee attacks Don't penetrate armor" ?

Zak
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Hey Allen!

The idea of using cards is neat! It didn't even cross my mind...

One last idea for "when to put back your chips":

Whether you are playing with cards, chips or dice: On the first "roll" you have a possibility of 3/20 for "1" to "6" each, 1/20 for "0" and 1/20 for "+". If you put your card/chip/die back after every "roll", these possibilities stay the same for every "roll". So most of the time, you'll get "1" through "6" and sometimes "0" or even "+".
Your chances stay the same every "roll".
(If you play this way, you don't have to remember your previous rolled d6s and d20s.)

If you put your cards/chips/dice back after every turn/phase/...: The more chips you use before putting them back, the less random your next "roll" gets. That can be used for tactical considerations or cheating (whether you see it as part of the game or not). If most of the high chips are already in play, the possibility of "rolling" a low number is far higher than "rolling" a high number - so you might think about pushing your luck twice and play it save.
As I already mentioned: This can be seen as part of the game and can influence your tactics or it can be seen as "cheating". My persional opinion is, that it's not thaaaaat realistic - but it's a tactical game, so it could be a tactical game mechanic.
 
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Hm, I think it means that armor is not applicable against flame throwers. If you come in contact with fire, you take damage. Wearing a kevlar vest won't help you.

You could introduce resistances against fire... and frost (I saw a very frost map but I haven't played it yet - so maybe you already did)... and ...
 
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Christopher
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my quick reaction:

point 1: I don't know... open to comments from designer

point 2: I even think that there are more points in the rules where the exact sequence of what happens and what your possibilities are could be better written out.

point 3: that's because the Dark God Followers was a later addendum. Maybe it's a good idea to regroup those two PDFs indeed...

point 4: I'm with Allen here: no die and remembering. Cards can work the same as chits, or can work as Allen suggests: until the deck is gone through. Another idea could be to use the deck principle used in Fields of Fire: make a deck of 40 cards (double deck) and add one "reshuffle deck" card. shuffle the 40 cards, and then place the "reshuffle deck" card somewhere in the middle of the deck. Repeat when you encounter the reshuffle card.

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Michael "Tie-Dyed-Eyes"
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zak965 wrote:
4> Dice/Cards are possible candidates to replace the counter mechanism: i will post some of the proposed variants in the site.


I used a method recommended by FNH1 on the Print & Play Podcast. It may be an old trick that everybody knows, but I'd never tried it before. It worked GREAT with the random number chits.

I went to the local hardware store and looked in the flooring section for Adhesive Backed Floor tiles. They come in 30cm (12 in) squares, and I found some for less than a buck each. It's like a square foot of linoleum with a crack & peel sticky back. I exposed the adhesive, stuck my chit page to the back side, and cut them out with scissors. The chits now have some heft to them, and I can shuffle them by just "mixing" them up with my hand in the bowl. They draw quite nicely, and are really handle pretty well. After dealing these tiles out in combat, I think trying to use dice would be cumbersome.

For 88 cents, it might be worth the effort. Here's a link to the item at Lowes:

http://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay?partNumber=176464-61-A31...


Here in this close-up, you can kind of see the thickness of the Unit Cards, and the Success Level markers (extreme left edge of photo)

Michael;

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Here is a list of what I am using for my copy of Space Infantry:

- I divided the resources box in 4 parts and took 8 coins to mark my resources (since you can only have up to 8 resources at a time). And I added a short description to G, M, I and S.

- I use the treasure markers from Pirates of the Spanish Main as random number chips. They are made of firm plastic, all have the same back and come with the number 1-6 and numerous special items (to use as "0" and "+"). And they have a convenient size for this purpose.

- I use d4's on nodes to keep track of successes needed to enter the nodes.

- I use a flipable chip for the combat range (with 'F' on the one and 'M' on the other side).

- I use red glass stones to symbolize hitpoints (not wounds).

- I use green glass stones to symbolize previously visited nodes.

- I use a Hello Kitty to mark the position of my team .

Oh, and I glued 2 missions together and 2 enemy sheets - so the paper gets sturdier and I have less sheets flying around .

 
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Michael "Tie-Dyed-Eyes"
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znord wrote:
Here is a list of what I am using for my copy of Space Infantry:

- I divided the resources box in 4 parts and took 8 coins to mark my resources (since you can only have up to 8 resources at a time). And I added a short description to G, M, I and S.

- I use the treasure markers from Pirates of the Spanish Main as random number chips. They are made of firm plastic, all have the same back and come with the number 1-6 and numerous special items (to use as "0" and "+"). And they have a convenient size for this purpose.

- I use d4's on nodes to keep track of successes needed to enter the nodes.

- I use a flipable chip for the combat range (with 'F' on the one and 'M' on the other side).

- I use red glass stones to symbolize hitpoints (not wounds).

- I use green glass stones to symbolize previously visited nodes.

- I use a Hello Kitty to mark the position of my team .

Oh, and I glued 2 missions together and 2 enemy sheets - so the paper gets sturdier and I have less sheets flying around .


Great tips! I'm going to adopt the glass beads for visited nodesa and Enemy wounds. I've been using inverted red/green wound markers, but I always run out of something and have to go flipping tiles looking for what I need. Another color bead would work for marking objectives, like the Radios in Mission 005. And the back to back missions is nice too, it might keep mine from curling.

RTD
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Quote:
Another color bead would work for marking objectives


I place the bead in the upper left corner, once the node is unlocked. After I have done whatever there is to do at the node (collect resources, reach mission objectives, ...), I place the bead in the lower left corner.
That would decrease the number of beads you need .
 
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Spiff Spaceagent
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Hi
Great work on the game Zak !
I have played it three times now - it took three attempts for me to acomplish the first mission, And I basically got wiped out on my second attempt. This has given me some ideas to clarify some of the rules and some new rules.

Resources
I have just realised that you are only allowed to have a maximum of 8 resources (damn - so I actually cheated on my last game where I finally completed the mission). I would suggest you write this more clearly in section 6.3 " Resource Caches represents locations where you can "refill" your resources up to the maximum of 8 resources (ammunition.."

9.3 Using Dices
I prefer using dices because I find the chits difficult to use since I only have them printed on normal paper and not card-stock. I like that you wrote how to use dice - but maybe you could add that you can also roll for the '+' chit, in almost the same was as you roll for a '0':
If you roll a natural 6, then roll again - on a 5 or 6 you have the + and must roll the die twice and add the values.

Retreat! (7. End Mission)
This is my suggestion to a new rule to end the mission. In my second attempt at Mission 001 I got beat up right from the start - I think it was the very first encounter (Against Flesh Eaters where I rolled high for the composition of the enemy and then my team scored very few hits where the flesh eaters rolled several 6'es and one '+'). So after only 6 or 7 turns I had used all my medkits (started with 3), one soldier and one specialist was already dead and the rest of my soldiers had a wound cry. And I had only explored 3 or 4 nodes !
So there was just no way I could complete the mission - I tried but my entire team was wiped out very quickly cry
Since the game has a bit of a Role-playing-game feature in the Experience Points you want to keep your men allive so they can improve and not just send them out on a suicide mission. Maybe you could add a rule, that you can choose to abort the mission before reaching turn 30 and the surviving units get 1 EP. This could either mean that you simply stop the game immediately, or the team has to make their way back to start using the normal rules.
Of course you don’t want players to simply start a game and then retreat and get 1 EP lots of times (not exactly cheating but certainly misusing the rules ), so maybe there could be a rule that you are only allowed to retreat after at least 2 enemy encounters and a certain number of wounds or maybe that at least one of you team must have been killed.

So that was my suggestions - I'll probably come up with more. Cant wait to get going on mission 2 - get to use the Rhino !
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Quote:
Of course you don’t want players to simply start a game and then retreat and get 1 EP lots of times

If your team retreated (with no prerequisite for being able to retreat), the mission failed and your team can not go there again (since the mission failed). So you would get 1 XP but if you had actually finished the mission, you would have gotten considerably higher XP values. That might work...
 
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Spiff Spaceagent
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But if you retreat - maybe your team can go back and have another go at the same misssion. The rules dont really say anything about that do they?
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The "don't go back once retreated" was an idea for your "retreat and get 1 XP" mechanic to prevent the abuse you mentioned .

I have only played the first mission 3 times so I don't even know if there is a story line that leads you through missions 1-8 or if you have to get XP to stand a chance in later missions. Due to the modular nature of the game, it's fairly possible that you can use any combination of missions you want... But I don't know (yet).

For roleplay purposes it would make sense to limit access to each mission (for the same team). This could be done by one of the following ways:

- You can only go on mission N one time. If you die - you're dead. If you have to retreat - reach the start node, run away and the mission was a failure. You might get at least some XP (possibly proportionally to what you have accomplished - so each mission could state "n XP for each accomplished objective"), but you failed to succeed and you can not go back there.

- You only have a limited time to finish a mission. If you die or if your decimated team reaches the start node you can restock your team (to n points, costing m turns). This could also be mission-dependent. If a bomb is going to explode in 4h (=30 turns), it is going to explode in 4h. If you just want to clear a base - well, just do it 1 hour later .

Other ways that let you retreat, get XP, go back there but prevent you from doing so over and over again seem inconvenient...


Campaign Mode

While writing this I got a campaign mode idea:

The whole game has a campaign mode. With all the above ideas this could look something like this:

Start at mission node 001.
If you succeed, you can go to mission node 002 or 003.
If you fail or have to retreat, you must go to mission node 004.
...

For each mission the enemy sheet to use, rules concerning XP for semi-finished missions and possibly retreat conditions are preset.

This way you would get a campaign map consisting of mission nodes and conditional paths between them. You can advance in the campaign in different ways and the story keeps pushing forward.

If you don't want to play the campaign mode, you can use each mission independently and with a random enemy sheet - so the modularity is still there...


edit: had to fix some writing issues... like a german word in an english sentence
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Michael "Tie-Dyed-Eyes"
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I really like the sound of your Campaign Kit. When are you going to write it up for us?
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