Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Game--No Dice

Now that I’ve given off a burst of indignant rage for the week, it’s probably time to cool things off with a surge of pure boredom. Might as well talk about my plans for The Game, then. :)

One of the chief problems I have facing me as I try and hammer this system together is how I used to resolve combat and other such things. Rather than rolling dice, for the most part I just matched up what I thought the enemy was doing against what the player was planning on. While it worked well for me, I don’t think other people would enjoy a system like that since it requires a lot of planning and effort that a casual GM wouldn’t want to deal with.

At the same time, I don’t feel like putting things into a full on dice system. I don’t like the idea of having to use specialized dice or complex math systems just to figure out what happens next, especially when it comes to combat. The last thing I want is for the cinematic feel to be broken up by somebody having to roll like thirty dice.

What I’m thinking of doing is allowing the resolution of the various encounters play out a bit more with quick comparisons between skill levels. For example, if a player encounters someone who is far less skilled at hand to hand fighting, the enemy will telegraph the attacks and blocks they will make. The player can then figure out a way around them, say by feinting or dodging, or use more specialized techniques to counter them. If the levels are more equal, then the guesses are less sure, while if the player is at a disadvantage, there’s little chance that they will be able to figure it out. That way there is some math, but it won’t involve dice rolls to determine everything.

I think I will remain stubborn about not using hit points, though. That aspect of some games always seemed like it broke the realism too much to use. I’ll stick with a realistic damage system, where if you get stabbed in the arm, you can’t use the arm, etc. It tended to give players more pause about just throwing themselves into the enemy if they knew a chopped off arm wasn’t just going to come back with a little sleep. Besides, other games like Dwarf Fortress seem to use it effectively without too much loss.

So those are my thoughts on that. Feel free to contribute your suggestions if you want. I’ll just keep tinkering with this as I go in the meantime. See you round!

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