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King of Tokyo» Forums » Variants

Subject: Dice Choice & VP (123) Merging rss

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Sam E-R
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When I first played KoT, I loved it, but two problems with it have stood out to me from even the first games:
1) Dying is harsh but appropriate. However, the general feeling I've noticed isn't that the penalty for dying is unfair, but that it's often possible to die without having been able to make any decisions to stop it.
2) For a game that's all about getting into and smashing up Tokyo, it's far too easy to stay out of Tokyo and win by rolling VPs.

My solution (though the details are still under construction) is the following:
Instead of having 6 identical dice 123♥!≡ (1 2 3 heart energy claw)
We have two different types of dice:
Destructive dice: $$≡≡♥!
Development dice: ♥♥!!$≡

The $ (which would be a star symbol) replaces the different victory point options, and acts like a 1. With the following dice pool mechanism, this balances out a little, making it easier to get some VPs from the dice, but less dramatically valuable.

Before a player's first roll on a turn, they must select which 6 dice they will use, but they are limited to a maximum of 4 of a particular type. Once they have decided, these dice are used for all the rerolls.

This gives a player greater control over their likely outcome, without taking away the element of chance, and makes being in Tokyo a stronger source of VPs.

Cards:
Certain cards that trigger off of dice results of 1 2 and 3 would no longer make sense. They would have to be altered on a case-by-case basis, sometimes referencing the dice type.

For example:
Freeze Time normally triggers off of 111. Instead, it would trigger off of "scoring off-colour VPS ($$$)" or "scoring VPs from dice with at least ($$)".
Complete Destruction would probably be something along the lines of "if your final roll includes ($≡♥!) score 5$ (or whatever amount) in addition to the normal effects".

Other cards would need their values adjusted, or effects considered.

With extra heads, perhaps the player chooses 7 dice with a max of 5 from one pool, or maybe they have the same pool limit unless they have 2 extra heads, or maybe the extra head dice are just d4s with ($≡♥!).

Alternatives:
Mixing up the symbols (currently attack pairs with VPs, heal pairs with energy) - if other pairings would make the game more exciting (or possibly if there were 4 dice types, each results paired with two, but this would likely get too complicated).

Also, to decrease the difference between the on- and off-colour dice, perhaps using a d10 would work, with 3 of each on-colour result and 2 of each off. This still provides the necessary element of choice, but without increasing the ability to roll what you want by quite as much.

Note:
At the moment this is just an idea. Suggestions, adjustments, comments, et cetera, are all very welcome.
 
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Mike P
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How are you dying without making a decision to stop it? Just leave Tokyo ASAP if you don't want to be there.
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Chris Copac
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I agree with Michael. As soon as you take a hit, you immediately have the choice to give up the city to your attacker.
 
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Interesting idea and I'm sure it would be a fun variant. I think the game is fairly well balanced though. For one, you have to remember that it's really a party/diplomacy game more than anything. Your success will almost always hinge on how bad others want to hurt/help you (this is what makes the game so fun to me btw). You say that camping outside Tokyo is a key to victory, but if most are doing that, there's a very good chance the person in Tokyo will run away with it given all the free VPs he'll be getting.
 
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Sam E-R
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fanaka66 wrote:
How are you dying without making a decision to stop it? Just leave Tokyo ASAP if you don't want to be there.


Sorry, wrote a lot and it got lost.

The decision isn't necessarily while in Tokyo - the situation I've seen is where a player has spent several consecutive turns rolling for health above all else, and dies either because they're forced into Tokyo from a single claw or just because they're not getting enough hearts. Yes, it's part of the game, but it

The dice pool isn't designed only to fix that issue, but also to try a variant where you get a little more of what you want, which makes it just a little bit more strategic. Simpler solutions for just the first point could be something like: "before you roll your dice when you are not in Tokyo, you can announce that you are recovering." Recovering could either turn VP results into healing (111 heals 1, 222 heals 2, 1111 heals 2, etc) but not trigger effects that trigger from heart dice, or instead it could allow you to heal (again, not triggering heart effects) from claws, but they deal no damage, and if you get any it counts as an attack.

AstroLad wrote:
Interesting idea and I'm sure it would be a fun variant. I think the game is fairly well balanced though. For one, you have to remember that it's really a party/diplomacy game more than anything. Your success will almost always hinge on how bad others want to hurt/help you (this is what makes the game so fun to me btw). You say that camping outside Tokyo is a key to victory, but if most are doing that, there's a very good chance the person in Tokyo will run away with it given all the free VPs he'll be getting.


That's true, but only if everyone is camping. I'm not saying that there aren't counters, or that it's always the best way to win, but just that there isn't usually all that much incentive to stay in Tokyo. It's more "eh, might as well stay, I'll survive" or "I don't want to be in here because I'll die" or "I'm fine, but you're not, so I yield". That last one is probably the biggest issue - several turns in Tokyo should provide something valuable enough to actually make the decision between staying or having another monster die something to think abuot. There's very little "YES YES SMASH TOKYO HAHAHAHAHA I WILL DESTROY TOKYO OR DIE TRYING", simply because Tokyo isn't hugely valuable. Other variants alter Tokyo to give energy, or other things, to make it a bloodier battle, and maybe that's the right thing to do. This change attempts to accomplish it by making Tokyo the primary source of VPs, rather than a pleasant bonus.
 
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Sam E-R
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Also, as a point, I agree that it's a light game, and that the other players often choose whether you live or die. However, I still expect everyone to play to win, so the only times you'd not want a monster to die is if either someone else will spend some of their turn making the kill, or if they had some ability that could counter someone else who was likely to win. So, in the vast majority of cases, if a monster is near death I would expect the other players to kill them, and I wouldn't blame them at all. That's why I would want for there to be some slightly stronger alternatives that would be worth not killing someone for.
 
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