Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane Special Rant

For the last few rambling bits on game design I've posted, I've basically been justifying decisions I'd already made regarding design. For this next bit, I'm going to work on something I haven't touched yet - integrating pilots and mecha. And I'm going to keep a kind of stream of consciousness log as I do it. It should be interesting.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Sanity and Guns

Sanity systems have featured in a lot of games. The easiest example is of course Call of Cthulhu, where you're much more likely to go completely insane than actually die of anything. In Call of Cthulhu, beasies and terrible things can strip away your sanity points. It essentially treats sanity as hit points for the mind, save that it's much harder to recover from.

Friday, October 19, 2012

RPG Design Ramble #2

So, as I mentioned on the last installment of "Lawfulnice Rambles On Forever", we've mostly got character creation finished (at least the outline - details like a list of skills, statting out the abilities and so forth are still to come). But that's only a small part of the game - we've still got to figure out combat.

Combat is generally one of the most important systems in a game, if not the most important. Even when combat isn't the focus of the game, whenever you end up with guns drawn on each other, it's instantly a matter of life and death. A lot of games get flak for having huge, detailed combat rules but almost nothing for social situations. But it's the life-and-death nature of combat that makes it needed, trying to put numbers to everything. Munchkins, minmaxers, they try to get every edge in combat, and having solid answers to "what happens if I hide behind cover" and "what happens if I run on ice" speeds things up in a tense situation and heads off a lot of arguments.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Game Design Rambling Part 1

I don't think I've ever written about how I design a game, except in general terms. I don't know of many RPG projects in general that really have running documentation from start to finish. There are a lot of decisions and personal biases that come into play when making an RPG, and even ones in development that include a detailed changelog (like Pokemon Tabletop Adventures) rarely take time to explain why every decision is made. And there are a lot of decisions to make!