Thursday, 28 July 2011

Adeptus Titanicus: Slightly Less Random Ideas

Okay, so I think I've figured out the shape of Adeptus Titanicus. Basically games like Warhammer 40,000 naturally advantage hitting first, meaning that without other structures in place, the game quickly becomes limited in interest. And by structures, I meant game mechanics, rather than obstructions or miniature terrain, although those are important too.

But let's go back a bit. I love the Silhouette game system. I think it's frickin' ingenious. So props to the guys at DP9 even if they won't hire me to serve coffee (among other things). Part of what I think is ingenious about it is the way they make the skill of the crew a curve; they use the roll xD6 and select one mechanic, providing the additional advantage of additional 6s providing flat bonuses, and having the selection mechanic as a function of pilot skill: green-rated pilots will choose the worst result before adding/subtracting modifiers, veteran-rated or better pilots will choose the best. This system not only provides diminishing returns for increases in pilot skill, but it rewards daring: although the odds may not be on your side, at least everyone is playing the same game.

So my thought was that while the crew skill at attempting any action with the Titan could be defined as a roll of y+/- on xD6 choosing z, this could also be modified depending on the number of crew allocated to the task, and the duration over which the task is extended. The notion, representationally speaking, is meant to show how more magi working to repair a Titan are marginally more likely to succeed.

So instead of each additional crew adding +1, each additional crew would add +1D6 to the pool for success. Likewise the number of consecutive turns spent acquiring a target lock would contribute additional D6s to the accuracy of fire, and so on. This would balance out those first shots (panicked, unco-ordinated, etc) with ambush tactics, requiring players to balance out the question of concentrating resources for marginal gains or spreading them out for more but riskier combinations.

Likewise, mechanically speaking, the Titans themselves would be structured collections of resources with things like acceleration and deceleration treated across turns or rounds, and maintaining target locks, managing traction, and generally having a lag between actions. Basically then the game becomes a matter of executing actions planned last turn, planning actions for next turn, and all the incidentally behaviour that happens between the allocation and planning, and the execution.

So, considering the following breakdown of a Titan, system-wise:

Power: Each Titan has a plasma reactor which generates their power, as well as batteries for storing power, and capacitators for powering systems.

Shield Generators: Shield generators need to be powered and maintained, to provide directionality and coherence (here taking terms from Abnett's fiction) of a Titan's Void Shields.

Motive Systems: Basically the Titan's legs, but also traction control, suspensors/inertial dampers, stabilizers, and whatever else goes into getting an installation to walk.

Weapons: Capacitators to power weapons, and auto-loaders for ammunition, as well as magazines, close-combat weapons, and so on.

C3: Aka Command, Control, and Communications. The auspex, the Manifold, fire-control, sensors, and so on. This is basically a low-power matter of how well the Titan can direct its actions considering the environment. The crew is a part of this system, so also life-support, servitors, and so on.

So right now the notion is to have two sorts of action, the preparatory kind and the executive kind, with the executive depending on the perparatory kind of action for success.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Looking forward to hearing from you!