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TOPIC: Game Design ?: Card Drafting

Game Design ?: Card Drafting 08 May 2018 16:59 #272904

Guys and Gals,

I have a game idea that’s been bouncing around in my head for long time, like 12 years, and has lived as Beyond the Fall and other games.

The basics:
Adventuring/Looting (scavenging)
Base building
Victory points are one way to win, but total annihilation is as well.
Dice combat, exploding dice

My question is that there’s a large deck of possible base expansion cards and I’m vexed on what is more fun:

1. At the beginning each player can draft cards into their personal deck which will be drawn 3 at a time to a personal tableaux of buying options

OR

2. Cards are in a common tableaux, and are drawn directly to their base by purchasing from that tableaux

OR

3. Cards are drafted at the beginning Into personal decks, and then either “deckbuilt” into their hand (as buying options) or put in a personal tableaux of buying options 3 at a spell.

I’m really not sure which option would be more fun. I know the personal tableaux would be more strategic in 2 ways, and the common tableaux creates a “race” to get what you want before it’s refreshed or the specific card is bought by someone else.

Thoughts?
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 08 May 2018 18:10 #272907

I like option 1. I think drafting is fun, and it gets cards into separate areas that each player can think about on his own.

Option 2 is the fastest up-front since drafting is gone, but then you have a larger selection of cards and people could take forever deciding.
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 08 May 2018 18:41 #272908

2 is Dominion so forget that

I really like option 1
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 09 May 2018 18:42 #273001

Black Barney wrote:
I really like option 1

+1
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 09 May 2018 20:06 #273010

What about an auction type thing based around the scavenged loot? I know that creates the a race event, but I think that is what I like about it. And perhaps it creates a new avenue for resource use.

Just drawing cards into my hand for future use would not appeal to me.

Sorry, I know I voted for option 4.
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 09 May 2018 21:38 #273012

No auctions as it would be inverse to the setting
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 03:30 #273013

I hate option 2 in any game.

I'm not a big card player but like games that have minimal drafting (option 1) like City of Remnants and Mage Knight.
Also, maybe instead of drafting/auction in option 2 you can just have Reward cards gained during the game, hidden or open (if you don't already have this).

PS If you get any of it printed for play testing I'd be up for it as if it's pretty adventurey/fighting I should be able to convince my small group to try, may even be able to get my euro group to try it as they don't mind fighty card drafting games (Blood Rage etc..).
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 07:08 #273022

At the risk of sounding glib, you won't know until you try them. Just throw in some basic cards, give it a whirl, and see how it feels. Theory-crafting will only get you so far.
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 09:49 #273036

I’ve been doing this so long that I know you’re right, but I don’t want to spend a bunch of time going down one rabbit hole just to determine that it’s not fun.

My main question is what people prefer: Drafting up front, which gives more control and allows for more strategy at a cost of “slow setup”, or an open tableaux.
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 11:40 #273051

Drafting up front implies the game had better seem pretty good (and to be honest short these days), because the first few games are just going to be stumbling through. It has to make you want to come back.

I fucking hate playing "first we draft!" games as a new player, because there's generally no frame of reference. That's fine when everyone's learning, but it's pretty shitty when it's an "emergent rules" sort of system and you're the dude who's playing basically blind. "are these cards good? I'll find out an hour later" is a situation I never want to be in.

Tableaux isn't a lot better from the experience sense, but at least the stuff is visible over time and you can discuss it as it comes out, versus wanting your draft picks to be secret.
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 11:41 #273052

to be fair, many games are like that Not Sure. Twilight Struggle is a total minefield until you learn ALL the cards. But that's a fun learning process at the same time. The unknown...
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 12:02 #273059

Of course, deck knowledge is important. Being aware that certain cards even exist is part of learning to play a lot of games well.

But when a game starts with "choose the best out of these 5-7 cards you've never seen and live with your choices all game", much less "repeat that twenty times", it better fucking not take as long as Twilight Struggle to find out if you've fucked up. Because on your first X games, you did.

To wit, Magic drafts are popular for seasoned players. Nobody in their right mind would try to teach the game to a n00b that way. That's what pre-constructed decks are for. Drafting in general is for people who already understand a game to tailor it to their tastes, it's a terrible mechanic for new players. You're better off just dealing cards until people are experienced enough to want to play with a draft.

With thousands of games out there, if the game requires a blind buy-in in effort by sandbagging me with an upfront draft, it needs to pay off so that I want to come back and try it again. There's a lot of competition out there.
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 12:21 #273065

SuperflyTNT wrote:
Guys and Gals,

I have a game idea that’s been bouncing around in my head for long time, like 12 years, and has lived as Beyond the Fall and other games.

The basics:
Adventuring/Looting (scavenging)
Base building
Victory points are one way to win, but total annihilation is as well.
Dice combat, exploding dice

My question is that there’s a large deck of possible base expansion cards and I’m vexed on what is more fun:

1. At the beginning each player can draft cards into their personal deck which will be drawn 3 at a time to a personal tableaux of buying options

OR

2. Cards are in a common tableaux, and are drawn directly to their base by purchasing from that tableaux

OR

3. Cards are drafted at the beginning Into personal decks, and then either “deckbuilt” into their hand (as buying options) or put in a personal tableaux of buying options 3 at a spell.

I’m really not sure which option would be more fun. I know the personal tableaux would be more strategic in 2 ways, and the common tableaux creates a “race” to get what you want before it’s refreshed or the specific card is bought by someone else.

Thoughts?

It sounds too much like Thunderstone, which is a game that I hate for the terrible mismatch between theme and mechanics. Thunderstone doesn't feel like a game about adventuring and gaining loot, it feels like a game about deckbuilding that happens to have card art that would be suitable for an adventure game.

Maybe method 1 or 3 would be okay if this is just a setup thing and not an ongoing process throughout the game. Alternatively, method 2 might be fun way to deal with loot if this is a semi co-op game. But in terms of theme, I feel that combat (and dealing with traps) should be the core of a game about adventuring and looting, and card drafting throughout the game seems like a distraction from that theme.
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 12:42 #273072

This isn’t anything like Thunderstone.

Let me elaborate.

This is a game that runs through 2-4 tribes trying to gain dominance 200 years after WW3 over 12 years (rounds). Game lasts 30-40 minutes.

The gameplay is basically that you can do ONE thing on your action phase turn: attack an enemy, build a base, explore (scavenge), trade, or produce.

Attack: raid another base to destroy a base unit or steal shit OR attack a city and remove all influence from it, replacing it with 1 influence of your color.
Build: Pay X to add a card to your base OR upgrade an existing card (cards are double sided)
Trade: Swap an item with a city’s resource
Explore: Pull a card from a deck, pass a check, and potentially gain fabulous prizes, troops, cars, trucks, unique weapons, et al)

You start with a HQ that doubles as a warehouse, which can store any 3-4 things (troop, oil, concrete, fuel, ammo, gold, grain).

You can expand your base with cards:
- Derrick (produces oil)
- Quarry (produces concrete)
- Field (produces grain)
- Armory (produces ammo)
- Warehouse (expands storage)
- Barracks (produces troops)
- Depot (produces cars which allows 2 items to be traded, plus allows more troops to raid)
Trading post (allows 2:1 trading with the resource pile, as opposed to an enemy) during produce phase)

And so much more.,,

Each card has X VP Value,

Win conditions: Kill all enemy bases OR after 12 rounds whomever has most VP wins OR control 4/7 cities.

There are city cards which you can influence via trading with them. If you have the majority of influence (>3) you “own” the city. During “produce” phase if you own a city it gives you a resource. Each city has different trade values and things they produce.



SO, now you know the game. What I want to know is:

- Should I have the base buildings deck be drafted up front, where you have your own deck and end up with three bases available each round to buy (three face up with an “on deck” card showing on the deck so next round you know what one card will be?

- Should there be a common pool of 3 cards which everyone can choose to buy on their turn, with an on deck card?

- Random dealt to players?
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Game Design ?: Card Drafting 10 May 2018 12:44 #273074

random!
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