Dat Territory Acquisition Prototype…

Posted: January 22, 2012 in INFR 2330
Tags: , ,

After working away and meeting up late into the night, the “Race to the Finish” style board game for Game Design and Production was completed as a polished prototype. An attempt was made to make it look pretty, trying to mask what it really was; the lid of a pizza box.

Me and my group members Sascha Maurer and Jason Poirier played a quick round of the game dubbed “Race from the Aces” after they explained the rules of the game to me. Took 15-25minutes to complete the game, with Sascha quickly dominating the round. But realizing the game was pretty much complete and spitting out a few new ideas for the game board for a later version, we cracked down to business on ideas and planning for the “Territory Acquisition Prototype.”

What our initial ideas were:

The Board:

The original drawing for the board was kind of a squiggly cloud looking board with squares/drawn areas on it. But it was decided to keep the board simple and base it on a square grid. Now what size should we use? We first wanted a 20×20 grid, but realized this meant there would be a total of 400 squares. That’s a lot of territory to try and conquer am I right? So that’s a no go. We reduced the large number of squares into a 12×12 grid, meaning there would be a total of 144 squares. Not a problem. This worked perfectly with the game system/ideas we thought of for the game.

Thus we agreed upon a 12×12 grid board, with certain sections as different terrain, which includes water, volcano/magma, grasslands, air, forests etc. (Final elements still TBA). We pretty much want to base the elements/terrain sections of the board on the 5 basic elements for the tribes in the game (more details later).

Here are some example boards to give a rough idea of what it may or may not look like, refinements will obviously be made:

Board will look differently depending on incorporated elements on each tile plus it will be in a 12×12 grid dimension.

In the final stages, if time/budget permitting, the board can be made “pretty” by making it somewhat 3D/textured with a 12×12 grid overlay upon the terrain.

The Players: Setup:

This territorial game will be for 2-4 players as requested.

Each player will control a certain tribe at the beginning of the game. Depending on what 4 elements we choose to incorporate into the board game, this will then lead to further perks and benefits depending on your tribe. The selection on the type of tribe a player is is still to be declared. Possible ways to choose are:

  • Have element cards face down, shuffled/rearrange them on a tabletop and have players select a card. Players roll a die and selection order will be highest number to lowest number on the roll
  • Whatever element of the square you start off on will be your tribes element (more details on where you start on the board later)
  • Players simply choose what element they want to be

After certain elements are chosen, players can then also choose a certain “Hero” card. Heroes are certain types of characters that will be given to players, each with a unique buff and is the commanding/lead character of the player’s army. The Heroes we have thought to include are the following, each with unique abilities/buffs for one’s army:

  • Warrior (Offensive buffs)
  • Healer (Defensive buffs)
  • Leader/General (Reinforcement buffs)
  • Assassin/Thief (Offense/Defense buffs)
  • More to be thought of/added; TBA

The selection process will be similar to one of the element selection ideas. Hero cards will be placed face down on a tabletop and shuffled thoroughly so selection will be random. Order of selection process will be dependent on dice rolls. Highest roller picks first, descending to lowest roller picking last.

Gameplay: How do I work this thing?

To setup the base/camp/starting positions, using 12 sided die, players will roll them to get values. One die will represent the grids X-Axis, then other die represents the Y-Axis, thus providing us with an X,Y coordinate. This coordinate will be the starting tile position the player will be on. In the event of the same coordinate as another player, the player will simply roll again. If a player is right beside another player, you must take that position. The game goes on! It’s part of the challenge depending how lucky/unlucky you may be.

A twelve sided die.

A twenty sided die. Remember this is bad, as we are not playing on a 20×20 board with 400 tiles!

Next we will talk about the game mechanics. After setting up camp on whatever tile you may have gotten, players will start off with 5-10 soldiers (TBA) on the tile. The player to make their first person will be the one who rolled the lowest number from the selection process. So pretty much you will go in ascending order based on the dice values you rolled, lowest to highest. Opposite of the selection order.

Players must follow the phase pattern that structure every turn.

  1. Reinforcement – At the beginning of every turn (excluding the first round of turns), every tile occupied by that player will receive 1 additional soldier up to a maximum of 5-10 (TBA)
  2. Movement – Player is allowed to transfer troops to different tiles that are adjacent to the tile the soldier is originally on. This means if a tile of 5 soldiers, a player can only transfer soldiers to another tile touching that tile in a turn. This can be repeated for any tiles you want that you already occupied in the previous round. I.E you cannot transfer soldiers to an unoccupied tile, then transfer those troops to another unoccupied tile.
  3. Battle – Players can choose to attack tiles that are occupied by other players. Battle system will be discussed further down

The battle system of the game will either incorporate cards or dice. This will essentially be a player playing war with another player. Player 1 (challenger) will draw a card or roll a die. Player 2 will draw a card or roll a die. Whoever has the highest value (Ace to King or 1-12 lowest to highest) wins, and loser deducts 1 soldier from the soldier count of their tile. This will continue until one of the tiles reaches zero. If the challenger wins, the player can choose to move troops into that tile immediately, but only using the tile that just fought. If troops are unavailable, the tile will remain unoccupied.

This brings up another point. You must have at least 1 soldier on a tile to occupy it and gain reinforcements.

When occupying a tile, there will be chips available to place on tiles. Players must place 2 chips on a tile to indicate a) the tribe and b) the soldier count. Tribe colors will be dependent on the element they belong to and soldier count will range from 1-5 or 1-10 (TBA). The chip placement will look like the following:

This will continue until players are all defeated, or whoever owns the most territory after a certain number of turns (ex. 30) wins the game. The choice of how to win has not been declared yet.

Important Tip!: Depending on your tribes element, the tile you occupy can give you a buff (TBA) So water tribe on a water tile can give you the advantage you need!

Well that’s cool, anything else?

Yes! Actually there are many other features that were discussed, but not 100% decided upon how to implement it into the game, or organize it into the game mechanics. This includes “Event Cards”, “Item Cards” etc. This will add buffs are other neat things that will help players get an advantage in the game and acquire more territory faster. The type of cards have not been created/discussed entirely yet but we hope to add more features to the mechanics of the game.

We must establish and develop/iron out the core features of the game, gameplay, and game mechanics.

That is our territorial acquisition prototype for now. Let’s just call it “That Territorial Acquisition Game With Tribes And Elements” (TTAGWTAE) Sounds cool huh?

Pronounced: tag-wuh-tay

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