Monday, 8 November 2010

Something For Everyone

I've been fiddling about with a set of skirmish rules.

As I mentioned before my original plan was to make a game set in the NorthWest Frontier, but my current thinking is to set them in the Napoleonic wars.

Now I don't want to get into a whole anti-GW rant, but one of the things I am seeking to do is to make a game that has a) more interaction, and b) is not predictable - in the sense of math-hammer.

Which I guess takes me back to to my anti-Landraider rant yesterday.... don't worry I have calmed down.

Because as a someone who started playing wargames with 6th edition ancients I find it strange that the GW rules - which are based on the ruleset - should play so differently. Ok, in truth a game of 6th edition ancients very rarely reached a conclusion because of the time it took to work out morale tests. But what it had, as a strength, was that both players were involved in the game at all times.

Something else that is odd about comparing the two systems, is that 6th edition was also a game in which list building and points played a great part in the meta-game. Yet the distortions in the power levels didn't have the effect that it does in GW games.

My current thinking with regard to the rules I am formulating is to pick up on the current vogue for having cards in the game. As this mitigates the impotence of the non-active player. I also like the mechanicsm in a system like Piquet in which the turn structure is not so fixed, and that it is perfectly possible one side to steal the iniative, have three turns in a row and the other player can do nothing more than act defensively - thus forcing payers to make plans based on not being able to do what they want, whenever they want.

The other change I am thinking of is alternative ways of winning. I rather like the idea of a game in which both players can win, or indeed both lose, and that winning and losing is not dependent on killing the other side.

I mention this because of a game I played ages ago in which I was leading some Spanish cavalry. I was told before the that my task was to deliver a letter to someone in a village on the other side of the table. In typical knightly fashion, I entered the table, saw a flock of sheep and rode straight through them. This enraged the peasant in a nearby village, which in turn led to me fighting them and then some other peasants who turned up to help them. The letter never got delivered - indeed I seem to recall that the recipient was murdered by an angry mob as a spy.

But it was a great game.

And very much in my mind as I think about what sort of game I want to develop.


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