Sunday, February 24, 2008

Hitting more than one opponent

Instead of a specific Edge like Sweep a mechanic that takes extra damage that is wasted on one enemy automatically to the next one seems cool with exploding dice.
Sure you can install this as an edge too. That way it really makes sense to hit an enemy in the 50ies region...

The same can work with trick mechanics.

Another question is what to do with real high hit results. Instead of not using them, they could be seen as straight damage. This raises the question if a second damage throw is really necessary.
For sure it creates a bell curve in the damage. You have to hit twice really well to do huge ammount of damage (or at least the second time).

As we see this mechanic is only somewhat implemented anyways. A logical conclusion would be to get rid of the damage roll.

Initative and damage by strength and weapon type

Savage Worlds does really well by speeding things up.
But there is a way to stay as fast and take Quickness/ Agility into account without giving it such a huge advantage as in Savage Worlds: high Agility characters just receive some extra cards up front before the battle and play them instead of the dealt one whenever they want.
The only question is balance: does Agility become to strong this way?

But then you could bind melee to strength and make damage independent from Strength.

The latter is a question of genre simulation: is it really like this that a hit by Bud Spencer does more damage then one by Terence Hill? The only thing we know for sure after thinking about it for a mere second is that Bud Spencer for sure could stand a hit by Terence Hill, but this is more a Toughness thing then having anything to do with Hill's strength.
One the other hand: a hit by Godzilla should definitely hurt bud Spencer.
Maybe just have size impact damage instead of strength?

Question of the day: Does a sword more damage than a knife? And does a chainsaw do more damage again?
Actually this seems to be much more dependent on the scene than on the weapon. But here the big immersion/narativsm gap has to be worked on.

Why even try to attack the big opponent early on in the game, when you know that he will only be defeated (easily) in the last act anyways? Genre awareness can destroy immersion or even the genre story. Because the writer is not the character, while the player should be the character.

Tactics or drama? Edges or screentime?

So if you want to combine a screentime mechanic like from Primetime Adventures and Spirit of the Century (the aspects) and a more tactics oriented system like Savage Worlds, obviously there are problems.
The question you have to ask yourself is: when do you feel good about an Edge and why? Actually especially more backgroundish Edges like followers or Fame often don't work as well as you hope (and dream about) during character creation or advancement. Here a screentime mechanic opens new possibilites as the player himself (for the cost of a bennie) can decide, when this stuff comes into play and still not controll the whole game.
The more straight mechnic Edges (like Combat), give a +2 most of the time in Savage Worlds anyways. This can also be easily done by Aspects, but here the screentime modification could create some problems.
Generally only something that creates an action should cost bennies (and therefore be an Aspect). Passive aspects (better defense and so on) could be tied straight to the Main Attributes (and skills) and be active all the time.
Another solution would be to make all active action PC action, while the NPC always provide only the difficulty. So NPCs never roll attack, but PCs instead roll actively their defense. In my opinion more active oponents are cooler though.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Extra features from the past

All stats not mentioned on the character sheets are average.
If in the game you never used a weapon yet, you can expect to be an average fighter. Or you can get extra points for defining yourself as bad gunmen and be extraordinary by buying points.

The only question is how to stop players from getting lots of points by defining themselves as weak in lots of unnecessary areas. The answer: Only skills from the skill list can be defined as weak.

If you define a skill as being high, you should explain the background for your training. (Actually SotC offers a possibility like this.)

A new system

This blog is supposed to do 2 things.

1st) Move some basic setting ideas in write ups that could be published in a PDF file and .

2nd) Create an RPG rule set that combines my favorites Savage Worlds, Spirit of the Century and Primetime Adventures.

Additionally the system should offer random character creation with a few life path steps for aspects and the option to choose the latest steps during the first adventure. Skills could also be chosen during the life path phases.

Something like: 2 childhood aspects, 2 youth/crisis aspects, 2 first adventure aspects.

There should be a screen time gauge and fan mail, to empower players on deciding whose players action they like. Aspects and fan mail should be unified with a bennie mechanic.