Thursday, 12 July 2012

Extinction Concept: Profile and Dice Mechanics

X-COM: Enemy Unknown

Dice Mechanics
Most wargames resort to the tried and trusted d6 to deal with random chance, and I have to admit that I am not a fan of the d6. For wargames I much prefer the use of a d10 (Void and Urban War) or even a d20 (Infinity and Dark Age). I actually want to try something different. Malifaux used cards, and it suited the western-ish feel of the game to have a 'poker hand'. For Extinction I want to use a step system of dice.

A models attributes, will dicate the type of die to be rolled in the test and various modifiers will raise or lower the step. So each player will need to have a d4, d6, d8, d10, and a d12 to hand. By way of an example lest say that Joe Average has a shoot stuff skill of d8, and is firing on a target behind cover. His skill would step down from d8 to a d6 to make the roll, and drop another step for long range, down to a d4.

As a general rule of thumb I am not a fan of having to roll fistfuls of dice. Nor have to make large numbers of rolls to get a result. The 40K principle that you roll to hit, roll to wound, roll armour saves, is one that irritates me. In Corvus Belli's Infinity this has improved a little to a roll to hit, and a roll to save. I think that 2 dice rolls works okay, but I'm keen to test a system that can do everything on a single roll. I'll have to see how things develop.

X-COM: Enemy Unknown

All wargames require a profile of abilities to define what a model can and cannot likely achieve. For most this form round the central concepts of movement, shooting skill, fighting skill, strength, toughness, wounds, and some time of moral or leadership capability.

For the purposes of Extinction I'm need to cover these bases, but I also want to take a slightly different take on things. Movement is no longer necessary and will be replaced by Action Points.

Action (Act): This is the number of action points the character has to spend on its various actions during the turn. Any reserved actions will remain in play until they are spent or until the character is activated again.

As with many games I need to represent the models ability to hit stuff, I toyed with using one attribute to define both fighting and shooting but in the end decided that they need to be separate.

Fight (Fgt): This is die type that the character uses to fight in close combat.

Shoot (Sht): This is the die type that the character uses to shoot or throw grenades at things.

Psychic (Psi): This is the die type that characters with psychic potential use. Most human characters don't even rate on this scale and have a '-', indicating no psychic capability.

Physique (Phy): This describes how physically capable and tough a character is, used to resist the effects of weapons and fatigue.

Willpower (Wil): This describes how mentally strong the resilient the character is, used to resist psychology (fear, terror) and the effects of alien psychic powers.

Moral (Mrl): This is not a numerical attribute but a description of miniatures moral, and under what circumstances they suffered from psychological effects.

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