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Subject: Spaceship Dogfighting Games rss

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Cole Medeiros
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I'm working on a game where players are pilots dogfighting in spacecraft (think X-Wings vs. TIE Fighter battles, tight, intense, fast, maneuvering and shooting). I have a few questions for you guys:

1. What are some of the best games out there in this genre? Either WW2 Dogfighting or spaceships?

2. Are there any that don't have a spacial element, ie. some kind of board where you're tracking movement/range/position etc. If so, how do they handle this?

3. Would you be interested in a co-op game where you and your friends are pilots flying together on missions in a space war, fighting against small enemy fighters and completing your missions together as best you can? Would it be more fun to 'compete' to get the most kills or to purely work together to keep all pilots alive through the mission?

Thanks for feedback!
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Dallas Tucker
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In answer to #2, Ace of Aces kickstarter.

I have not really played any of these kinds of games, so I cannot answer #1.

For #3, it would really depend on how the game plays with regards to a preference to co-op or head to head.
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Mike Watne
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Sadly, I don't have any recommendations for you.

In response to your last question, however: I'd certainly be interested. This sounds like it could be quite a bit of fun, and I've yet to play a decent dogfight-style game.

As for the co-op, I see a few possible options:

1) Have a full co-op game, wherein all players work towards a common objective and win or lose as a collective.

This style presents further options. For example, do all players lose as soon as one pilot is shot down (as in most co-ops), or do you introduce player elimination and allow the survivors to press on? Adding player elimination, while thematically more realistic, presents some challenges, especially if it is a long game. Nobody likes to be the first dead man sitting on the bench. One way to work around this is to allow the player to begin again as a rookie pilot joining the scenario.

2) Have a "semi co-op" system, wherein all players work to accomplish a common objective, but score points individually based on performance. In this style, one player "wins" or all players lose (if the objective fails).

This style is all the rage these days, promoting some teamwork while also pushing for devious competition and clever point-gaining "sacrifices". Both systems could work very well with the proper integration of the theme and mechanisms.

3) Do a full co-op game that includes rules for direct PvP skirmish fights as a game variant. That way, players can fully unleash the competitive edge, if that is something they desire, while preserving the full co-op teamwork style of a squad mission.

Personally, I'd most like to see this sort of system.

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Rich Shipley
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The Down in Flames series is a dogfighting card game that could translate to a space battle pretty well. It has already been done as a Dragon fighting game.
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Brook Gentlestream
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MrJade wrote:
1. What are some of the best games out there in this genre? Either WW2 Dogfighting or spaceships?

Silent Death
Battlespace
Full Thrust
Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game
Gunship: First Strike!
Dog Fight: Starship Edition
Galactic Expanse: Starship Battles
Mag·Blast (Third Edition)
Star Fleet Battles

MrJade wrote:
2. Are there any that don't have a spacial element, ie. some kind of board where you're tracking movement/range/position etc. If so, how do they handle this?

In my own game that I'm designing, I use cards and assign them to attack or defend other cards, similiar to many collectable card games. I keep track of their location by assigning them to area of the board, denoted by other cards.
In Gunship, you have a giant gunship and fighter positioning is based on relative position to the gunship. Magblast does the same thing.
In Galactic Expanse, you have a "front line" and a "back line" of ships and that's basically just a measure of distance and tactical engagement.


MrJade wrote:
3. Would you be interested in a co-op game where you and your friends are pilots flying together on missions in a space war, fighting against small enemy fighters and completing your missions together as best you can? Would it be more fun to 'compete' to get the most kills or to purely work together to keep all pilots alive through the mission?

It would be fun, but I could also see it getting kind of old. To keep it fresh, I would hope that you would have different kinds of encounters, enemies, and player ships. But yeah, I could see this playing out similiar to Space Hulk: Death Angel – The Card Game. Sounds fun.
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Walt L
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You should also check out Axis and Allies Angels 20. It's a very simple mechanic that provides for quick game play (which I assume is what you want), but because of the nature of the game there is still lot's of strategy involved.
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Cat Lord
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Fasa's Crimson Skies / Aerotech 2 come to mind. I also designed my own game as a mecha base, but my original foundations included Air Combat Maneuvers (actually reading material devoted to ACM).

As you will see as you run through everything that's listed in the above posts as well as mine, the more you want to have available to the players, the more complex the system will get. A long time ago I had to drop elevation rules just to keep my ruleset as simple as I desired, the ways I desired. Another rule I shaved off involved having two or three movement points, and each movement was linked to a maneuver that would dictate where the unit ended and with what facing, and for how much of a toll on the pilot. A prior edition of my rules used a complex "dice step" system that created a lot of fairness to the rules but required a lot of desk checking for simple actions.

I realize I took a turn towards the vain in that I talked about my own progress, but it seemed like something to consider. Aerotech, for example, makes you keep track of various systems as well as elevation and velocity and is the most comprehensive but difficult to play without software game available to my knowledge.

BOTTOM LINE
Figure out what you want the mechanics to center around - how do you want the standard game to progress, and win/lose by doing?
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Néstor Romeral Andrés
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Crosshairs

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