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Subject: Play Testers Wanted for PnP WW2 Tank Tactics Game rss

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Zack Johnson
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Hello Everyone,

Last week I came up with what I think is a very quick and simple WW2 tank tactics game (still unnamed). It uses a movement style similar to Wings of War. I have it formatted to be printed on cue cards. To print out the whole game you will need 26 cue cards (3"x5") or 4 letter size pages. Also required is at least 1D6.

I have written up the rules, but it's really more a series of examples and they will need to be refined. If anyone is interesting in giving it a go I would love to hear some feedback. Just sent me a geek mail with your e-mail address and I'll e-mail you the PDFs and very preliminary rule book.
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Robert Wesley
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What if you were to also include imagery that fits upon a 'playing card' surface? This is roughly equivalent in overall dimension(s) of any 3x5 sort, so your artwork/symbology/TEXT with what you had, ought to fit quite nicely affixed onto this, as yet another alternative. Then, from printing off an entire SHEET and cutting those apart, you will have a much stiffer 'card' in the end, and costing much less-(also being more durable) as another end result.
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Lizbeth
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sounds interesting I'd be curious as to how it relates/differs from wings of war because my group rather enjoys that game.

Other than that, if it's got simmaler mechanisms, you might want to shrink the tank cards, otherwise you need major space (wings of war uses half size cards for example, it just about plays on a coffee table if you rule you can wrap around the table)
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Samuel Hinz
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piqued my interest
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Zack Johnson
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Quote:
Other than that, if it's got simmaler mechanisms, you might want to shrink the tank cards, otherwise you need major space (wings of war uses half size cards for example, it just about plays on a coffee table if you rule you can wrap around the table)


That is a good point, personally I love playing with big cards on big playing surfaces but I guess not everyone has a big space to play. I'll see about reducing the size to playing card size for now and possibly make it smaller down the road. Thanks for the feedback.
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Zack Johnson
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Here is a sample of a tank unit card. This squad has 3 members. To hit this tank on the front armour you need to roll 5+ on a D6, to hit it on the side 3+ and on the rear 2+. It has a speed of 2 which means it can move to the number 2 dotted line or lower on a movement card (shown below). It has a range of 3 which means it can shoot at targets a max of 3 card lengths away (15"). The red lines indicate it's firing arc. The blue cross indicates the center of the unit.



Here is an example of a movement card. To move you line up the bottom of a movement card with the front of a tank card then move the back of the tank card to a dotted line equal to it's speed value or lower.
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Zack Johnson
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After playing a few rounds last night me and my friend came up with a new rule.

New Rule:

Getting Tank Ace
After combat is resolved and wounds applied the attacking squad of tanks rolls 1D6 for every 6 that was rolled during the attack. If they manage to roll at least one 6 the squad receives the Tank Ace bonus. A squad may only have 1 Tank Ace bonus; it can be represented by a counter or you can just keep track.

Using Tank Ace
If a squad wishes to use their Tank Ace bonus they must declare it before the facedown movement cards are played that round. Both players then place all their face down movement cards EXCEPT for the squad using the Tank Ace ability. The player who used the Tank Ace ability may then choose one enemy tank squad that is within line of sight of the Tank Ace and look at its movement card. The player with the Tank Ace then plays a movement card on the Tank Ace and the round continues as normal.

Thematic Reasoning
A Tank Ace is a skilled veteran at tank combat. His experience in the battlefield lets him predict the movement patters of enemy tank squads.
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Julio César
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I'm not sure about the firing arc. I suggest -with all respect- to rethink about it. Maybe something articulated -the cannon turret- will be better. Just an idea. Keep working and testing. Thanks for sharing!
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Zack Johnson
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tero_ninja wrote:
I'm not sure about the firing arc. I suggest -with all respect- to rethink about it. Maybe something articulated -the cannon turret- will be better. Just an idea. Keep working and testing. Thanks for sharing!


Firstly thanks for the input! At first I was planning on using a rotating turret. After thinking about it for a while I came up with two reasons to use a firing arc instead of a rotating turret.

Firstly because of WWII tanks in general. While most WW2 tanks had turrets capable of rotating 360 degrees they didn't rotate them around a whole lot while driving around at top speed. These tanks were a bumpy ride so they normally kept the turrets pointing relatively forward to make it easier to shoot accurately. Also these turrets did not rotate very fast, on a Sherman for example it took ~15 seconds to make a full rotation. The firing arc will also get wider once I make the playing card size version of the game. Also tanks without a turret have reduced firing arcs; example below:



Secondly I wasn't sure how to keep the turret locked into a position while the tank moves. Again because of the slow rotation speed the turret would only be able to rotate a certain angle every game round. Maybe you have a sugestion for properly tracking the turret movment? I suppose there could be a rule that when rotating the turret the tanks movement speed is recuded or something. Another thing I've been mulling over is that if the tank does not move that round (indicated by not assigned the tank a movement card) the firing arc could be opened up to 360 degrees.

Thanks again for the input, you've given me something to think about.
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Zack Johnson
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I have reformatted the cards to be regular card size (2.5" X 3.5"). All the cards now print on 4 letter size pages.
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Lizbeth
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For the love of god, think about the stop and 360 rule for a second, it would practically break the game if it's anything close to wings of war.

As for Turrets, I see nothing wrong with having a token that shows where it's pointing, and how much it can turn in a movement.
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Filip Gökstorp
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What about dividing the card into different sections depending how fast the turret can turn.

E.g. 4 sections for a fast turning turret, and 6 sections for a slower turning turret.

The turret is turned to one of these regions at one time and can change 1 region per turn or something.
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Zack Johnson
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Saintis wrote:
What about dividing the card into different sections depending how fast the turret can turn.

E.g. 4 sections for a fast turning turret, and 6 sections for a slower turning turret.

The turret is turned to one of these regions at one time and can change 1 region per turn or something.


The problem I see with dividing different tanks into different numbers of sections is having a consistent firing arc, for example if a tank has 4 sections then it's firing arc must be at least 90 degrees so that it can shoot the full 360 degrees.

One simple solution that will allow the use of the current cards is dividing the card into 8 sections (the 4 corners and the 4 marked lines). Tanks can rotate their firing arc one section every game round and the new firing arc becomes one section to the left and one section to the right of the new center. For example in the picture below the purple line indicates the center of the firing arc, the two green lines represent the new firing arc. Now this is shown on a cue card sized card but should work much better on a playing card sized card because the side firing arcs won't be that much larger than the front and rear firing arcs.



I'll try to play test this this week. Thanks for the input so far everyone!
 
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Filip Gökstorp
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Eltranne wrote:
The problem I see with dividing different tanks into different numbers of sections is having a consistent firing arc, for example if a tank has 4 sections then it's firing arc must be at least 90 degrees so that it can shoot the full 360 degrees.

I was thinking that every section had the same firing arc. So if it had 4 section every section is 90 degrees wide, while if it has 6 sections every section is 60 degrees wide.

Also there could be an accuracy penalty if you move and shoot if the turret is not aimed straight forward due to the bumpiness you talked about before.
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Lizbeth
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Or, in the same vein as movement cards you could just have a funnel shaped turret peice to go on top of the unit.

On the turret peice is the centre line (representing where you are firing) then three other lines:

fast movement: closest to the turret line
slow movement
stationary: widest out

during a turn after movement you can adjust your turret up to the marker appropriate (IE, if you move fast you can change it to the fast line maximum) all shots are traced EXACTLY from your turret line.

So this way you have more of a dynamic firing arc that rotates to meet it's target if you get what I mean? Maybe you can give damage bonuses for moving less than needed/aiming forwards etc. etc.
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Zack Johnson
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Elizabeth Robson wrote:
Or, in the same vein as movement cards you could just have a funnel shaped turret peice to go on top of the unit.

On the turret peice is the centre line (representing where you are firing) then three other lines:

fast movement: closest to the turret line
slow movement
stationary: widest out

during a turn after movement you can adjust your turret up to the marker appropriate (IE, if you move fast you can change it to the fast line maximum) all shots are traced EXACTLY from your turret line.

So this way you have more of a dynamic firing arc that rotates to meet it's target if you get what I mean? Maybe you can give damage bonuses for moving less than needed/aiming forwards etc. etc.


This is a very intersting idea indeed, I will try and make something up tonight to play test with this week along with the other turret tracking idea mentioned earlier.

The other thing I like about the turrets is they open the doors to tanks with two guns on then. For example the M3A "Lee" or the British version of it the "Grant".

For example shown below the tank would always have a narrow front fracing firing arc for it's 75mm cannon but it would also be able to rotate it turret with the 37mm cannon. The guns would have different ranges and the tank would be able to fire both guns on a single turn, even against two different targets. Here is a roughly drawn example. Red lines indicate the firing arc of the 75mm and the green lines show the 37mm firing arc with it centered on the purple line.

 
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Lizbeth
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yeah, I'd recomend you genralise range FYI, it'll be a pain having specific measurements, so maybe have low med and long range guns, each with a notch on the range ruler etc. etc. keeps with abstraction.

The other thing I'd love to see modeled is terrain to some degree and that shots diverge as they fly, meaning even if you've got a hit it might go left or right etc. etc.
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Zack Johnson
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Elizabeth Robson wrote:
yeah, I'd recomend you genralise range FYI, it'll be a pain having specific measurements, so maybe have low med and long range guns, each with a notch on the range ruler etc. etc. keeps with abstraction.

The other thing I'd love to see modeled is terrain to some degree and that shots diverge as they fly, meaning even if you've got a hit it might go left or right etc. etc.


There are only 4 ranges (1-4) and the range indicates the number of card lengths. If you wanted to make a ruler you could tape together 4 cards.

As far as terrain goes I've just been using household objects, coffee mugs, pop cans, small boxes...etc.

For diverging shots I propose this new rule:

New Rule:
Critical Miss
Whenever an attacking tank squad rolls a 1 there is a chance they might make a critical miss.

For every 1 rolled during an attack the attacking player must roll the dice a second time to determine if they are a critical miss. To achieve a critical miss you must roll lower than the range you are firing at.

For example a full strength M10 squad fires upon a Tiger I's rear armour at range 3 with the following results; 3,5,1. The attacking player then re-rolls the 1 and scores a 2 (lower than the range he was firing at). One of the M10s attacks is now considered a critical miss, the 3 is a miss and the 5 is a hit.

Resolving a critical miss:
All critical miss attacks are resolved independently. The attacking player rolls a dice to determine how far the shot will diverge. Even numbers cause the shot to diverge to the right, odd numbers cause it to diverge to the left. Rolling higher numbers will cause the shot to diverge less (this is in keeping with the rest of the game where rolling high=good).

The amount of divergence will need to be fine tuned after some play testing but for now let’s assume that a 5-6 = 1 card width, 3-4 = 2 card widths = 1-2 = 3 card widths (note this is card widths and not lengths). A shot that diverges CAN NOT hit the intended target, if even after diverging the shot would still hit the target it is considered to pass over their heads. However a shot that diverges can hit another tank squad (friendly or enemy). Shots that diverge travel their full distance until they impact another squad that is not the intended target.

For example: A Tiger I (max range 4) that is firing at a Sherman at range 2 and has a critical miss would hit a friendly Panzer IV at range 4 that was behind the Sherman (assuming the diverging shot made it line up on the Panzer IV).

Once another tank is impacted by a diverging shot the attacker must roll against whatever armour is hit (front, side of rear) to see if a wound is applied. This second attack roll CAN NOT be a critical miss and CAN NOT yield a tank ace bonus.

I will play test this as well this week. Thanks for all the input! I'm going to make the revised rulebook (Rev 1.1) tonight when I get home. Those of you waiting for me to e-mail you the cards/rules I'll send it as soon as I'm done this latest revision.
 
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Lizbeth
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sounds cool, I some how think it'd be funkier if a bit fiddlier to roll for divergence every range length and diverge smaller amounts, but that's jsut me.
 
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Zack Johnson
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Elizabeth Robson wrote:
sounds cool, I some how think it'd be funkier if a bit fiddlier to roll for divergence every range length and diverge smaller amounts, but that's jsut me.


That actually makes a lot of sense; the amount of divergence should def. be range dependant.

A simply way to have range be a factor in how much a shot diverges is the following formula: Range + 1D3 - 3 = Divergence. Below is a table showing the different results with R indicating divergence to the right, L indicating to the left. I will format this table to fit onto a playing card so that it can be used for quick reference during a game.



Note that the range indicated is the range of the TARGET and not the maximum range of the weapon.
 
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Lizbeth
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yep, that works, how much is the divergence? Maybe it's half a card width, because that'd make it easier.

A very simple method to do it would be to always roll as if going for range four, then only diverge at the last.

IE, if I diverged two and my opponent was at range 2 I'd still hit.
 
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Zack Johnson
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Played a few games last night with the new playing card sized cards, turret rules and critical miss rules.

I think I'm going to need to up the number of tank formations per side to 4 or 5, its either that or we were playing on too big of a table because it took a while before any fighting happened.

We had a few critical misses but nothing spectacular happened as a result, each time the diverged rounds didn't hit anyone, still though it has potential to be a turning point in a game at somepoint.

The turrets were not taken advantage of at all, every time a tank fired the turret was pointing forward or at most one of the front corners. I think this has more to do with keeping your strongest armour pointed at then enemy than anything else. But I supose its always nice to have the turret option, it might be more useful is there are more tank formations under your control because your movement options will be limited. Might need to increase the rotation to 2 sections per turn as well. Also thinking about adding another rule where if a player declairs he is not going to move his tank (before face down movement cards are played) he may rotate the tanks turret up to 4 sections.

Once again each game was very close and down to the wire. The current record for US vs Germany in my games is dead even which leads me to believe my mathimatical formula for balancing the units worked.

I'm thinking the tank formations I'm going to add will be:
Germany - Panzerjager 38 (Mauder III) - A fast moving lightly armoured turretless tank.
Germany - Panther D - Another heavy armoured slighly faster turreted tank
USA - M3A3 Lee - Heavliy armoured and slower tank (for the US) with two guns
USA - M24 Caffee - Lightly Armoured fast tank that packs a bit more of a punch than a Stuart because it has a 75mm gun
 
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Lizbeth
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Sounds good and accurate, turrets weren't always changed extreme amounts anyway. Could possibly change a bit with Russian's involved plunging past the enemy line.

So yeah... dunno, I'm under the weather gulp so my thought process is completely down at the moment.

 
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Zack Johnson
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Elizabeth Robson wrote:
Sounds good and accurate, turrets weren't always changed extreme amounts anyway. Could possibly change a bit with Russian's involved plunging past the enemy line.

So yeah... dunno, I'm under the weather so my thought process is completely down at the moment.


That is too bad that you are ill, hope you feel better soon.

After a bit more play testing I'm going to add the USSR and the UK.

I think I also might add commanders to give a bit more customization. I envision the commanders having a positive and a negative ability. For example if a US player chose General Patton as their commander he might have the following abilities;
Shock and Awe: If you roll a 6 when determining player order on any given round you MAY Blitz any number of your tank formations AND attack
Reckless Advance: If you roll a 1 when determining player order on any given round you MUST Blitz at least one of you tank formations.

Or you could have a Commander Card with a passive ability. Maybe if you choose Patton you could always fire after Blitzing. Maybe as the Germans if you chose Rommel your tanks would get to replace a 45 left with a 45 right and vice versa or something. Or maybe these could only be used once per game and your opponant wouldn't know which commander you chose until you use his ability.

I'd love to hear peoples input on the idea on choosing a Commander in secret before the battle and this giving you an extra ability/bonus!
 
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Lizbeth
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commanders sound interesting, a bit odd choice of refferences for the scale your going for But yeah... sounds a fine concept, but one to add after the foundations are good and solid?
 
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