Saturday, June 25, 2011

Weapon of the gods and combat testing

Haven't been posting as much due to house sitting. Something about having access to cable and more food than I could buy in a month has made me as lazy as the cats I'm here to watch. Either way on with the blog.

So I've been playing game designer again and trying to come up with a more complicated than usual combat system. So as it usual goes with my designs I wanted to see what else was out there and did some digging through a few rule books and dug up a gem called Weapon of the Gods. A self proclaimed wuxia role-playing game with special effect martial arts which include a technique that will break apart your armor and cause you to lose limbs if you're unlucky. For how campy most martial arts films are this is taking itself decently serious, lots of 'historical' fluff in there and a lot of techniques. The system is a dice pool that uses matching, no successes or cumlative adding though. It takes the interesting approach of using d10s and having the number you pick be the 1s (a zero in 10s case) and the amount of dice matched being the 10s. So rolling 6,3,3,0 lets you have the choice of 10 (set of one 10 die), 16 (set of one 6 die), or 23 (set of two 3 dice). So the craziness is a little toned down from things like frameworks matching dice pool system for the number it can generate. Beyond this intersting take on dice pools is what is called the river.

The river is a very crunchy and somewhat narrative idea where you can save dice for latter. In our pool we rolled before we had a set of pair of 3s. After we roll we go through the "phases of the river" first phase is to wash out what we have in the river, also known ans plainly discarding the dice we have saved there. Each scene starts with no dice in the river so you can't keep your 9s sticking around to save you when needed. To get dice into the river after you "wash" them you can float in anything from a set of 2 or more dice. You can just put one in or both in. With the pool above we could float in the two 3s as insurance for later, though this would have to be a legitimate roll not something the game defines as a 'style' roll which will come up in a minute. After this you enter the "flowing" phase where you can move dice out of the river and into your dice pool so that you may use them to generate the dice pools results. So for example later when we roll nothing but 1 sets we could flow in the two 3s and have at least 23, or we could be waiting for 3s to be rolled and roll a much higher possible number.

Now I mentioned style above, style is generally skill checks for mundane things, or pointless things that you will succeed at regardless of your skill at it. Getting the attention of a friend across a room with a few people, climbing up the ladder, other silly things you want to roll dice just to see how awesome you are. So for giggles you order noodles at restaurant and stay you want a style roll for it, GM rolls his eyes and asks for the attribute and possible skill in question and you pull out something around 30s just to say you made the cook weep with your love of the noodles. Silly idea but style checks apply to something else, damage. Damage in this game is determined by how much you pass the targets defense. For every 5 over you roll you get another die in the damage pool.  From there it's standard pool reading though you can flow in from your river some 9s to put a serious hurt on.

Now there are other interesting things that I could talk about concerning such wonderful euphemisms such as yin-yang warrior but for now onto my little project.

The actually straight up manipulation of the dice pool got me thinking a bit for at least the basis of what I'm thinking of playing with. Every rpg system I can think of besides Baten kaitos(which used a card based dice pool like system) just has you select an action and just watch the results. So after reading through the weapon of the gods system I wondering if assigning what you roll could add an interesting element to
this. I don't know how valid it is but that's why I want to try. To follow my computer science roots thinking I'm following the KISS rule (keep it simple stupid) and just going to have you able to assign dice to your initiative, action, and defense pool. From there your chosen actions play out as normal, so far I'm seriously lacking in them but I have to see if the current system pans out.

And as a bonus my first image, it didn't feel right at the start so here it is. I'm programing in python cause I haven't been bothered enough to get oracle or C family compilers on here.

Got most of the tools finalized and am starting to play with actual combat mechanics. Learned more things in python recently, list comprehension as I'm showing off a bit can't believe I wasn't taught that in college. All console based, my philosophy is if I do it right I can just use another shell to output it correctly in a GUI anyways.

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