The following is reproduced from my G+ account, with additional content added at the end.
I Work Hard For The Money
So, I have a job. With my big ol’ college education, I work at a hotel in the audio/visual department. I shouldn’t snark at it, I really like my job, honestly. It’s fun in the weird way that I enjoyed TV Broadcasting in high school and working the Theatre in college — something needs to be done and you have to puzzle together cabling and such to make it happen. My major fears are: they’ll realize/decide I’m more trouble than I’m worth and out the door I go, or I’ll eventually get so good that it won’t be puzzling together sound systems anymore… I’ll just know what I’m doing and it will suddenly be boring.
So, yeah. Can’t just let myself be happy that I’m good at my job, have steady income, roof over my head, and a lovely girlfriend. Gotta be paranoid, man.
Game Dump, Project [Amada]
Haven’t done anything game-related in a week or two, my Monsterhearts game non-withstanding. So, here is some semi-mindless game-dump which hasn’t been vetted in any way. Aw yeah, my unadultered musings.
Battlestar Galactica Board Game has resource sliders. I want to steal them and make a mecha wartime RPG like “08th MS Team” or Steel Battalion. Mech combat is about the goal/worry of depleting fuel, bullets, and armor. Lead an enemy on a chase and watch their fuel vanish — but watch out for the mortar fire that is chipping off your armor. Secure resources and refill your tickers, but there’s only so much to go around… people who restock the least get the most XP.
Mech’s get 5 basic dice called Fitness for Duty dice, that are just all-around quality of the mech. Crappy mechs who haven’t been overhauled recently lose FDD as the game goes on. Bonus dice are in the form of, basically, Aspects that are mech Specifications. (“Deep Stealth Module” mechs get bonus dice for sneaking, “SSM Mounting” gives you gobs of dice for blowing up other mechs) Keeps it loosey-goosey but still has some detail built into it. Activate your Specs by spending the appropriate of Fuel, Bullets, and Armor.
Something-something-something removes FDD. But seriously, something like you can ignore the damage from an Armor hit by giving up an FDD and detailing how critical systems are harmed when the damage blows-through, bypassing the majority of your armor in a lucky shot. Why would you do that? Well, maybe you think being blind is better than being armorless, or you weren’t planning on shooting back anyway, etc. FDD reflect Weapons Control, Comms/Sensors, Life Support, Locomotion, and something else I’m totally blanking on at the moment.
Making bitchin’ maps would be baller for this game, so you could chart your wartime campaign overtime. Smaller maps should be sketched up hastily for conflicts, and divided into quadrants based on terrain — like, draw a dividing line along where a cliff side drops away to a settlement, or draw a dividing line around some thick woods. I figure you can totally set fuel costs in small increments on terrain movement (so players can plan their sieges and such and someone can bang on the table and shout “We don’t have the resources, dammit!”)
As characters, I figure they’ll probably have stuff I guess since that’s what players like apparently. Pfft. But seriously, I’m hand-wobbling on this at the moment (that deep level of thought where you just kind of weigh your hands back and forth a lot, ya know?) I had this whole gritty d100 idea with scary combat and armor and cover being vital and choosing to take battlescars capping the damage you’re taking so players had some control over how lethal things got. But ya know what, no one likes d%s not even Mama d% and besides d% doesn’t even jive with the ideas listed above unless I decided to explode everything up to the 100s level?
And I don’t think anyone wants the unnecessary book-keeping of “Spend 20 Fuel to maneuver through these shitty woods,” “Spend 40 Fuel to pursue the enemy.” That whole extra 0 just gets annoying because you’ll never find any numbers used between 10s.
I know I want characters to have Knacks and Flaws or some nonsense. Your Knack is some niche-protection. What you want them to specialize in during play, basically your character concept. Your Knack makes you the default author of minutia and things relating to it and the narrative as well as some rerolls probably. Your Flaw is obviously something crappy. It also gives you bonus dice. Wait what? Well, because I want the players to cut the game away to scenes of their characters problems, so when they frame that scene, they get bonus dice on their next challenge. Flaws have ranks that fluctuate through play, increasing or decreasing the number of times you can draw on your Flaw bonus per session.
(Honestly that last paragraph just sounds like I’m trying to reinvent Aspects and doing a terrible job of it so that paragraph can probably just go right to hell and rent a room, but actually I’ll probably keep it in a Trash Document to mine later).
So, looks like I’m tinkering with a game that is a bit of resource-management tucked into some dice-rolling. Okay. I’m okay with those play elements. Also, I should stop writing this because those d%s are starting to look mighty pretty right now, and I won’t wish that evil on anyone.
The above was all taken from a post I made on my G+ account the other day, so I figure I’ll dump some additional commentary down here and see where it takes me.
The exact thought process behind wanting to go through with this game idea is to address some of my feelings towards The Aegis Project by John Wick. I like John Wick’s work, but it has this tendency to veer towards non-playability as in his game Cat. Cat is unplayable. It is broken — it calls for mechanics that aren’t explained elsewhere in the document, for example. But John Wick has great ideas, you see, and I love that. However, I cannot play The Aegis Project with the number of errors present in the text, unless I had a print copy to go in and write out my own edits.
So apparently I decided the thing to do was make up my own mech wargame? Not the intelligent, calculated reaction by any means — but I wanted a project to tackle. So, for now, it’s just a fun little distracting project.
What I want to do: provide options for military roles and civilian roles; paint a picture of guerrilla-style conflict or “facts on the ground” play; mess around with a new system and work on my mechanic-building chops; focus on the conflict of Need vs Have.
We’ll see where I go with this!