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Subject: WIP: Villainous (was Criminal Behaviour) rss

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Jesters Ghost
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Okay, so, here's my first stab at a game, coupled with my first post here after just reading for quite a while

Broken up into three shared docs on google, for ease of printing:

Rules - https://docs.google.com/document/d/19fphMs6mbHXf6KcTaF818mkE...

Card, Fronts -
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DBtJEV449rs1Nr8VreEKWdYR...

Card, Backs -
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1N-VvE6tzQlnBsC5il288uWV0...

Hope that works for everyone. It should be public from those links.

There are some tokens referred to in the rules, but for now I'm sure you can rustle up some of your own from somewhere You'll also notice there is absolutely no graphic design anywhere yet - I'm just in the process of kicking that off.

I've been play-testing it for a while with my local gaming group, and I'm fairly happy with mechanics and such, I'm just tweaking proportions of the various cards at this point, which is why I'm opening up to a wider audience.

Basic theme of the game is to take over the world as criminal mastermind. To do this you perform various "Jobs" - from robbing banks, through kidnapping to replacing the president with a robot. The first to gain enough control wins.

Constructive feedback is /highly/ encouraged. If it's just not fun, please tell me why. If you ended up with two much influence, or Jobs you couldn't or didn't want, or whatever, again, let me know. That's what I need to tweak the numbers and rewards of the various Job types.

The goal for this, as it will be for all my games (I have two more in the early stages already), is to keep the rules as creative commons licensed downloads, but offer pre-printed versions for sale. Who through is also another ongoing research project.

Anyway, thanks for taking the time to read this, and thanks to everyone who's made this site such a useful place for all us budding game designers
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Robert Beachler
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Re: WIP: Criminal Behaviour (suggestions for better names?)
I agree that the name Criminal Behaviour doesn't necessarily make me think of a game where you "take over the world as criminal mastermind". World Domination or Criminal Masterminds seems more apt.
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Cat Lord
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Re: WIP: Criminal Behaviour (suggestions for better names?)
"Dastardly Villain" as a title? I'll try to give the rules a read and try to find anything that stands out to me.
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Nick Hayes
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Re: WIP: Criminal Behaviour (suggestions for better names?)
Villainous Behaviour?
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Jesters Ghost
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Re: WIP: Criminal Behaviour (suggestions for better names?)
The original name was "Villainy", but it turns out there's already a game called that (now defunct, so I might get away with it, but still). So then I thought of "World Domination", but that, too, was already taken.

I like Black Canyon's suggestion of "Villainous" - that's pretty much what I wanted originally. Thanks all.


So yeah, anything about the rules isn't clear, let me know. And if you do get a chance to play, that'd be /fantastic/
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Andreas Pelikan
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JestersGhost wrote:
So yeah, anything about the rules isn't clear, let me know.


I like the brevity, but sometimes I'd wish for a bit more details. Eg. it's not said whether turns are alternate or all players act simultaneously.

Quote:
Players may also buy Job cards from the draw pile for two influence, or sell an unwanted Job card for one influence, placing it in the discard pile.

It took me quite a long time to realize that 'sell an unwanted Job card' means I discard a Job card and receive 1 Influence from the supply. The 'unwanted' gave me the wrong impression that I'd have to pay to get rid of it, which would make no sense. Sell is unambiguous, yet I was stumped.

Quote:
To assign an Agent to a Job in progress, place the Agent face up with their influence fee on top next to the face down Job card. More than one Agent can be assigned to a Job at a time.

Here at first I thought you'd have to orient the Agent card such that the influence fee is on top (facing upward). But it means you have to pay the price of the card in Influence tokens by putting those tokens on the card.

Quote:
If the influence on an in-progress Job reaches the cost of that Job, turn that Job card face up. Once all players have turned over their completed Jobs, compare assigned Agents. If two (or more!) players are using the same Agent on a Job completing in the same turn, then they must bid influence.

I see an issue here: the other players don't know whether a Job has enough influence on it. If somebody else completes a Job with the same Agent, I might want to not yet reveal it and wait for the next round. (Why enter into a costly out-bidding if for one influence I'm pretty sure to use it next round, for only 1 additional Influence). Likewise, in which order are bidding duels executed? It might make a huge difference if my opponent first pays loads of Influence in another duel before competing with me.
Quote:
Whoever is willing (or able) to pay the most for the Agent’s services keeps them. The other players must attempt the Job without that Agents help. The Agent’s influence fee is lost and returned to the pool.

Do all bidders pay their bid, or only the highest bidder? What in the case of a tie? Do they pay to the supply, or to the opponent?

I see an empty page between This would make the Revolution Job rating 6. and Once the final rating is calculated, roll two dice.. Presumably a placeholder or a misplaced page break. Or is there some Google Docs magic that non-registered users can't see?

Quote:
If the total of the two dice is both under the rating of the Job and above your current infamy, then the Job succeeds. If the dice total is equal to or higher than the rating, the Job fails. Turn it back face down, returning any influence on it to the pool, as if the Job was just started. Assigned Agents may stay assigned.

Here you present the conditions for success and failure, then explain what do do upon failure, before presenting the condition for rumble and consequences, and finally consequences of success. Either give a full listing of conditions (failure, success, rumble), and the consequences later, or explain the consequences for each case directly after the condition.

Quote:
If the dice total is equal to or lower than your infamy value, then the Job is rumbled. Discard the Job (as in phase 3), then discard one of the Agent cards assigned to the Job, as they’ve been arrested.
Are the influence on the discarded Agent also discarded? And do I keep all influence on the other Agents? (If the answer to the latter question is no, then it would be a lot easier to pay the Agent's fee to the supply when assigning them, and then sliding them under the Job, keeping only name and skills visible).

Quote:
If you dislike your dice roll, you may discard a Favour token to call in that favour, and re-roll the dice.

There are some English dialects using dice in singular (instead of die). Re-roll both dice is clearer, if that's what's intended.

Quote:
If two players both reach at least five control tokens at the same time, the one with the higher total wins. If both players have the same total, either declare a tie, or keep playing until a clear winner emerges.

Higher total being the higher total number of control tokens?

Using other tokens as tie-breaker might be worth a consideration.

Quote:
Hack Interpol / Bribe Politician / Corrupt Police

Lose one Control token, no other side effect. Why would I ever want to play them? Am I missing something?
Oh, it's lose one Infamy. Those ASCII icons aren't very telling. Doesn't matter where only matching is required (skills), but for the tokens some dingbats would be much more user-friendly.

--

Does the Brokerage phase make the game fun? The rest sounds pretty much multi-player solitaire (OK, there's fans of MPS abound, just I'm not one).
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Jesters Ghost
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Puschl wrote:
I like the brevity, but sometimes I'd wish for a bit more details. Eg. it's not said whether turns are alternate or all players act simultaneously.


Added that detail, thanks. I know I tend to err on the side of too little information - I dislike being patronised, so I'd prefer to assume people understand me than not

I'm also really bad at pre-guessing what other people won't understand, hence my request for more eyes. So, thank you for taking the time to do this. It's been very helpful.

Puschl wrote:
It took me quite a long time to realize that 'sell an unwanted Job card' means I discard a Job card and receive 1 Influence from the supply. The 'unwanted' gave me the wrong impression that I'd have to pay to get rid of it, which would make no sense. Sell is unambiguous, yet I was stumped.


Fixed.

Puschl wrote:
Here at first I thought you'd have to orient the Agent card such that the influence fee is on top (facing upward). But it means you have to pay the price of the card in Influence tokens by putting those tokens on the card.


Indeed. I've changed that as per your suggestion below of just paying the fee straight off. The fee on top was a holdover from an earlier version where it contributed to a Job's completion, and I'd never changed it.

Puschl wrote:
I see an issue here: the other players don't know whether a Job has enough influence on it. If somebody else completes a Job with the same Agent, I might want to not yet reveal it and wait for the next round. (Why enter into a costly out-bidding if for one influence I'm pretty sure to use it next round, for only 1 additional Influence).


I've changed it to say /must/ turn over the Job card, with a penalty for not doing so.

Puschl wrote:
Likewise, in which order are bidding duels executed? It might make a huge difference if my opponent first pays loads of Influence in another duel before competing with me. Do all bidders pay their bid, or only the highest bidder? What in the case of a tie? Do they pay to the supply, or to the opponent?


Clarified the bidding rules.

Puschl wrote:
I see an empty page between This would make the Revolution Job rating 6. and Once the final rating is calculated, roll two dice.. Presumably a placeholder or a misplaced page break. Or is there some Google Docs magic that non-registered users can't see?


Yeah, a page break I'd added that moved due to me altering text elsewhere. Fixed.

Puschl wrote:
Here you present the conditions for success and failure, then explain what do do upon failure, before presenting the condition for rumble and consequences, and finally consequences of success. Either give a full listing of conditions (failure, success, rumble), and the consequences later, or explain the consequences for each case directly after the condition.


Thanks again. Re-organised to be clearer.

Puschl wrote:
Are the influence on the discarded Agent also discarded? And do I keep all influence on the other Agents? (If the answer to the latter question is no, then it would be a lot easier to pay the Agent's fee to the supply when assigning them, and then sliding them under the Job, keeping only name and skills visible).


As mentioned above, I've changed this to be as you suggested. That's the trouble with testing with the same bunch of people - they all kinda get used to the rules, so stuff like this doesn't come up

Puschl wrote:
There are some English dialects using dice in singular (instead of die). Re-roll both dice is clearer, if that's what's intended.


Done.

Puschl wrote:
Higher total being the higher total number of control tokens?


Yes

Puschl wrote:
Using other tokens as tie-breaker might be worth a consideration.


Added Agent cards and influence as tie-breakers.

Puschl wrote:
Oh, it's lose one Infamy. Those ASCII icons aren't very telling. Doesn't matter where only matching is required (skills), but for the tokens some dingbats would be much more user-friendly.


Yeah, I know - they're just place-holders while I get proper graphics done. I'm not particularly artistic, so that was the easiest for now.

Puschl wrote:
Does the Brokerage phase make the game fun? The rest sounds pretty much multi-player solitaire (OK, there's fans of MPS abound, just I'm not one).


Between the Brokerage, the bidding for Agents and the interference missions (tip-offs and hostile takeovers), there manages to be enough interaction I've found. I wouldn't be adverse to more, but I'm not sure where to add it. It may be that I need more interference missions, which is one of the things I need a good number of plays to figure out.

Actually, I may add an option for co-operative missions - ie. you both contribute Agents, and you agree between yourselves how to split the rewards and penalties. That would add a bit more interaction.

Again, thanks a tonne for taking the time to read and comment!
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