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Author Topic: Combat Resources [R2L]  (Read 1537 times)
abjourne
Member

Posts: 27


« on: April 04, 2011, 08:34:13 PM »

Combat Resources [Rise to Legends]

While developing a fantasy rpg I devised a damage resource model I’d like some feedback on.

The game uses a point mechanic to perform actions. Swing a sword cost 3 points, cast a spell cost 2 points, move cost 1 point per “x” distance. The damage model integrates these points as loss.
For example, a character is hit by a weapon for 8 points of damage that damage comes from the character’s points.

There are several types of points & their damage value & in-game function? Dynamics vary.

There are Action Points which are used to pay for physical actions, movement, attacking, using objects, ect. Action Points are worth 1 point of damage each but if not lost to injury are recovered each “round” from being spent to perform actions.

There are Will Points which are used to pay for spells, resisting spells & performing special attacks. Will Points are worth 2 points of damage each but if not lost to injury are recovered each “round” from being spent to perform relevant actions.

There are Health Points which are used to pay for physical damage, wounds, illness, poison, ect. Health Points are worth 3 points of damage each but are only recovered by medical attention, healing magic, bandages & splints, ect.

There are Armor Points which are used to absorb physical damage. Armor Points are worth 4 points of damage each but are only recovered by repairing.

There are Shield Points which are used to absorb physical damage. Shield Points are worth 5 points of damage each but are only recovered by repairing.

The model produces an interesting dynamic where players are forced to weigh the big value of non- replenishable damage absorption versus small value replenishable & useful resources.
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Ar Kayon
Member

Posts: 438


« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2011, 01:36:29 PM »

You have 5 resources per character to keep track of.  If you have a 4-on-4 combatant scenario, then the game master has to keep track of a minimum of 40 variables.  In my opinion, this subsystem may drag down the pace of combat.
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Chris_Chinn
Member

Posts: 280


« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2011, 05:45:52 PM »

Hi Abjourne,

What would you like help on?

A useful question I have is who decides where the damage goes?  Does the receiving player decide how to allocate damage, or the damaging player? (and if the latter, why would they reduce armor instead of something else?)  Are there any penalties to losing Health Points, or does it only matter when you lose the last one?

Chris
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abjourne
Member

Posts: 27


« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2011, 07:38:54 PM »

There are three reasons why I’m bringing this mechanic here;

I’m having a problem with an extension of this mechanic.

I’m toying with extending the dynamic into other gameplay elements.

I want to know what other designers think of the concept.

But first I’ll answer Chris & Ar’s questions/coments.

This is a player’s options mechanic, the player decides what resources he wants to use to pay for damage.  Non players adhere to a rigid cost profile & it’s far more simplistic.

The benefit of paying for damage with armor/ shields is that they are worth more, an action point only pays for one point of damage, however armor pays for four points of damage. The down side of this dynamic is, after the battle, characters recover all spent action points used to pay for damage, but recover no armor points.

The players use tokens (poker chips) to keep track of all their resources unless they use them to “pay” for damage, then they are handed over to the GM until the end of the battle (at the very least).

Non-player resources are managed by a simple record of three categories where each point is represented by circles or squares. For example:

Brigand:

Armor/Health:
OO
Will:
OOO
Action:
OOOOO

Non-players are managed by the GM.

My problem is Health. There are penalties for using health to pay for damage. This is the rule;

Wound Effects:

Player Characters: The player selects the number of health points lost & refers to the appropriate effects along with a hit location roll.

Single health hits equal a flesh wound, causing:
*Bleeding from blades: 1 point bleeding damage for three rounds (or an additional Health point) unless dressed /bandaged /healed.
*Bruising from hafted: really big bruises.
*Puncturing from piercing: -1 step to all activities using the extremity. Will /Head, Action /body, attack & defense /arms, movement /legs

Double health hits equals a serious wound, causing:
*Bleeding from blades: 2 bleeding damage for three rounds (or two additional Health points) unless dressed/bandaged/healed down to one hit. Additionally, -1 step to all activities using the extremity. Will /Head, Action /body, attack & defense /arms, movement /legs.
*Stunning from hafted: renders the wounded area incapacitated for the next round. Defenseless /head, action/body,
attack & defense/arms, movement/legs
Impalement from piercing: incapacitation of the wounded area. Additionally, 1 bleeding damage for three rounds (or an additional Health point) unless dressed /bandaged /healed down to one hit.

Triple health hits equals a critical wound, causing:
*Severing wound from blades: Incapacitation & 3 point bleeding damage for three rounds (or three additional Health points) unless dressed /bandaged /healed down to one hit.
*Crushing Incapacitation from hafted: Remains “in effect” until healed down to one hit.
*Critical impalement from piercing: Incapacitation & 2 bleeding damage for three rounds (or two additional Health points) unless dressed/bandaged/healed down to one hit.

Done.

The upside to this rule-set is that it does create tension (player). The downside is it’s cumbersome (or ” feels”  that way).
I want the tension, But I feel it needs paring down. I’m open to suggestions.

I’m also toying with the Idea of implementing similar mechanics towards task/conflict resolution and/or social interactions (in game). I’d like for some Ideas to bounce around the concepts without explaining what I’m currently using so as to not bias input.

Lastly, I want to hear opinions of the mechanics/dynamics.
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Chris_Chinn
Member

Posts: 280


« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2011, 09:41:37 AM »

Hi abjourne,

It does feel pretty hefty in terms of effort, but some people like that.  You'll need to figure out what works best for you.

That said, maybe it would be simpler to have each level of Health loss have a simple across-the-boards effect, and the weapons themselves give a modifier to it?  (sort of how like Magic the Gathering's cards work to modify each other).

One concept you may want to pay attention to, is the idea of "siloing".  In games with a lot of resources, like a lot of point-build games, it becomes really easy to end up with weird things happening because too many of the resources are easily inter-mixable.   Putting caps and limits, or not allowing them to be traded is called "siloing", because they each get their own "silo".

In this case, let me give a possible example:

I build a warrior. 

Looking at all the problems that happen when you lose Health, that looks like the last thing I ever want to take damage, and that if it does, I'm probably dead no matter what.  So I'll put the minimum points/build into Health.

Instead, I'll put a ton of points into Action.  It'll make me fast, give me the opportunity to dish out tons of attacks, and if I get hit and lose some, they come back really quick.

(If you look at people talking about hardcore tactical D&D, they often talk about action economy.  Letting people access a lot more actions than another often leads to bad places in design.)

Is this how warriors should work?  Is there a cap on how many I can have in Action points?  Is there any reason I would take Armor instead of Action points given that Action lets me do stuff AND protects me from getting Health hits whereas Armor ONLY protects me from Health hits AND doesn't regenerate?

Things to consider.

Chris
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Gwynplaine
Member

Posts: 7


« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2011, 04:42:58 AM »

Hi there

Couple of ideas come to me looking at this system;

Do you need to have entirely different pools for Action/ Will, and Armour/ Shield? 

Perhaps if there was just a pool of ‘returnable each round’ and ‘none-returnable’ points.  Then if you wanted to differentiate them, have some kind of passive skill/ power/ talent that provided a relevant bonus & penalty.  Perhaps for Shield:- using a shield reduces all ‘armour’ damage by X points but increases ‘action’ costs by Y points, or for a ‘magic user’ :- spell actions are reduced by X but non-spell attacks increased by X.

Secondly, and this can be a bit awkward depending upon what you have planned, but if mainly it will be PC’s fighting NPC’s, perhaps have the NPC mechanics streamlined somehow.  Cheat them a bit, so that instead of having to worry about each NPC’s exact points each turn, they could either share a pool or not ‘really’ have points and just have like 2 actions a turn and 1 special, then 1st time they take a hit above a certain threshold (rather than summing their total damage taken) they lose an action, and so on.  The main purpose of this is to help the GM not have to track so much (in my experience the less ‘summation’ work the GM has to deal with, the more they can focus on making fun/ descriptive encounters).

Of course this whole second idea doesn’t work if you are primarily planning on PC vs. PC encounters, but in which case it would be the players keeping track of details for their characters so again the GM’s work is less.
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