Saturday, 12 April 2014

Titanomachia: Terrain and Objectives

It's been a while but I'm returning to the drawing board to finish the first play-test version of the Titanomachia board game while I wait for the prototype components to show up in the mail. While I have a good idea of what I want out of objectives and terrain (some terrain is objectives, but not all objectives are terrain), I'm still noodling the way that players will purchases these in addition to their Titans. It helps that they're all, mostly, game elements. This comes from the notion that while a Titan is a single thing, it can be composed of multiple elements, and part of the game comes from coordinating multiple elements. Whether it's a System, or an Objectives, or a Terrain feature it's represented on the board by a token (or, in the case of the prototype a lego plate). Thankfully the board is finite, and for my purposes is effectively 8x8 segments. This means that the players should have 32 terrain elements in addition to whatever else.

Now it's interesting that CaulynDarr put me onto the MERCs kickstarter which used a concept I've been exploring in my board, which is segmenting the board by segments that can contain multiple elements, rather than a 1:1 ratio of elements to squares/circles/hexes/whatever, or like in Monsterpocalypse elements that cover multiple segments. So the terrain does not necessarily fill the squares that they're in, but can take up space, and partial space at that so that Titans can occupy terrain spaces without necessarily colliding with the terrain. 

Which brings me to an interesting point in that without terrain to provide both hard cover and soft cover, both intervening terrain to hide behind, and to provide interference to Sensor Systems, the game is something of a wash since the random element is restricted to the players. So having open space is something of a benefit to Titans with more guns and more shields, and less of a benefit to Titans with fewer of those systems. However, since terrain is essentially a static thing, what the player can do is enhance terrain. Presumably giving each player 16 'open ground' terrain pieces and 16 'building' terrain pieces would mean that by shedding extraneous systems from a Titan a player can upgrade their terrain pieces to reduce impediments to their own movement, and increase impediments to all of the incoming fire that will be hurling their way.

A Warhound Titan, for example, is composed of a 9 systems, a Crew, a Sensor, a Shield Generator, two Weapons, two Munitions for those weapons, and two Propulsion systems. A Warlord Titan would have 15 systems, a Crew, a Sensor, three Shield Generators, four Weapons, four Munitions, and two Propulsion systems. That difference in 6 systems should be quantifiable.

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