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Subject: The physics of racing rss

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Tobias Sölvefjord
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Im trying to formulate a rule set for a F-Zero/Wipeout type of racing game and would love some input.

I know that it's a daunting task since very few racing games capture the tension of a real race. The main thing in my opinion would be to create a framework that is simple and fast yet strategic.
My idea is a table top based game that uses moving templates similar to Wings of War. This would allow for creative track building and more dynamic movement.

The game would involve 12 different crafts of three different classes. The top speed and acceleration would correlate between the classes to allow different types of play as well as limit the performance of the classes in different areas. The players would also have to pick a character to pilot his craft, which in turn have different sets of skills. Some skills of characters and features of the crafts are based on a definitive number of points the player may spend to increase their chances to achive certain tasks so the strategic element boils down to a sort of resource management.

My current vision of the craft's stats are;

Speed -- Top speed of the craft
Thrust -- Maximum number of gears the craft can accelerate or decelerate
Handling -- Points that lower turning trials
Shield -- Indicates how much damage the craft can withstand.
Energy -- The energy reserve of the craft. You would be able to spend these points on Thrust, Shield and different equipment.

The Pilots would have the stats;

Piloting -- Pool of definite points available to spend on craft manouveres to mitigate luck factors.
Reflexes -- Value used to determine sticky situations such as collisions.
Gunnery -- Skill used to fire at opponents.
Stamina -- A definite number that indicate how much acceleration and impact the character can endure.

Before every round, Players would distribute the energy of their crafts secretly and then alternate moving with the player in front moving first and so on.


The different moving options would look something like this;

Xylas Cormin is piloting a craft with a Speed of 4. His current speed is 2 and he decides to put the pedal to the metal. His craft has a Thrust of 2 which allows him to reach top speed and as Xylas has a Stamina of two this is no problem. His craft has a Energy value of 3 so he spends two on Thrust and spends the last energy point to temporarily boost his Shield by one for this turn.
He must use his now four available speed points moving and decides to use the first three to move forward.



For his last movement point he decides to turn. He is still moving in a Speed of 4, his craft has a Handling value of 1 and he spends 2 piloting points so he needs to roll a turning check for Speed(4)+ turning(2)-Handling(1) & Piloting(2) =3< on a T8. He could also choose to change the heading of his craft but as it would increase the turning rate by 2 per step, he choose not to.



Now it could be that Xylas would want to continue going straight but need to mitigate his course due to an obstacle. In this example he turns a bold 4 turn AND choose to change heading. He then choose to spend all of his remaining Piloting resources of 5 ;
Speed(4)+ turning(8 (4+4)) -Handling(1) & Piloting(5) = only a lucky roll of 6< on a T10 can help Xylas performing this difficult manoeuvre.




I'm not aming to fully flesh this idea out here but to give you a general idea of it's foundation. My fear is that I'm going down a road of possible fiddlyness so I would love to hear what I should rethink or wether I should drop it altogether.


Cheers
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James Hutchings
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My recommendation: time limits on moves.
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Tobias Sölvefjord
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So it's that complicated?
 
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James Hutchings
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No, I mean if you want the feel of racing, you need quick moves. Having it be 'too complicated' for people to work out an ideal move might give the right feel.
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Derry Salewski
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could it be kind of robo-rally ish? like you pre program. Maybe craft have a rating for how well they recover from plans being interrupted.
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Herc du Preez
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I think it depends on your target audience.
Some like getting complicated.
Addition is just too hard others.
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Tobias Sölvefjord
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scifiantihero wrote:
could it be kind of robo-rally ish? like you pre program. Maybe craft have a rating for how well they recover from plans being interrupted.


I like this idea. If maneuvers cost a certain ammount of points to perform and if you were to subtract the current velocity from a total you had to "buy" them from, this would somewhat simulate a higher speed.
 
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Jonathan Tullsen
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I don't think doing the programming idea would work as well for this game. I like the idea of timed moves.
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Clive Lovett
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I would look at current racing games that use gear changes and movement mechanics...like Bolide, Rush'n'Crush and Formula D.
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Mitchell
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Have you see Techno Witches?
 
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Nate K
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So how will the "board" look? Will you release full maps for players to use, or individual obstacles to fly around/under/through that the players set up as they see fit?
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Tobias Sölvefjord
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Butterbob wrote:
Have you see Techno Witches?


Never heard of it. Looks quite interesting though and I just might pick it up. Thanks for the heads up!

Clive65 wrote:
I would look at current racing games that use gear changes and movement mechanics...like Bolide, Rush'n'Crush and Formula D.


Well, I already own and play Rush'n'Crush and Formula D. Thing is that while I think both of them do a good job of simulating a race in their own way, I was going for a crazy-fast experience and without the board so that movement would feel more versatile.

kurthl33t wrote:
So how will the "board" look? Will you release full maps for players to use, or individual obstacles to fly around/under/through that the players set up as they see fit?


Let's not get ahead of ourselves here. :) I am very temted to build an array of different obstacles to allow creative lap creation, almost like the trench in the deathstar. My current prototype is 2D though, and I would like to get alot more comfortable with the movement system before I commit to such a project.
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