Archive for the ‘Games’ Category

Stay Disco, frosty snowpipe

Sunday, June 12th, 2011

Polycount, and bumpmapping the heck out of everything, seems to be the idea of not just good visuals, but of a good game. With the next-gen promise, I had hoped that they would utilize this power for improving on the actual gameplay. What I was longing to see was more believable interaction between the playing character and the world around. Things like physics and animation, that’s what I had desired for them to spend more time with, so that you would get a greater feeling of being there, and not have to suffer the horrors of invisible walls and dodgy collision-detection. I remember when we were kids, and were excited by the idea of procedurally destructible environments, though I doubt we called it that. This was back in the Dreamcast era, but it would be quite a while until I ever saw anything like it in a game.

I eventually came to accept that the focus would lie somewhere else, that the interactivity I wanted would be confined to scripted events. It’s not that modern games fail to impress me, especially when they pull off illusions I cannot see past. Many bring new possibilities and ideas to the table. However, quite a number of new titles are just polished rehashes of tried and true concepts, remakes, sequels or just clones that add nothing more than a specular finish.

*Character customization (with multi-ethnic male and female option. I said AND FEMALE, you bastards!)

*Freedom

  1. of movement : open world,
  2. of exploration : large world,
  3. of action : vast possibilities (destroy things, scale geometry, fiddle with objects)
  4. of socialization : multiple players (splitscreen, online or preferably both)

*A good realism to playability ratio

*Convincing and dynamic animation

And now, finally, it seems that BattleField 3 will bring a lot of these together, what with their impressive animation system, large player count and massive, destructible maps. Well, not to mention the impressive visuals, but like I said; I think focus should be somewhere else for a while. At least as well. The people at Frostbite seems to have been focusing on a lot of realism-enhancing aspects, both sight and sound.

I’ll be monitoring this, closely. Perhaps this is finally a game that is worthy of what I thought Next-gen would mean.

Tabletop Strategy Game

Thursday, October 28th, 2010

Prologue

Every since I was a kid, spending catatonic hours at my local hobby store, gazing dreamingly at endless rows of tin figures and fantastic adventure games, I’ve always wanted to make something like that of my own. Real life models are so visceral, and there is something to looking at them that cannot be properly emulated digitally. I don’t think either is superior, mind you, but in their strengths and flaws they are each other’s opposites.

Anyway, now I’ve taken a bold new step in creating my own tabletop game, and the first in what I hope will be at least a humble line of miniatures have already been conceived and modeled by yours truly. I’m at present not sure they work as intended, though,since it will be a while before I get my own prints. They should be usable anyway, though, and pretty if nothing else.

Miniatures available here.

Here are some rules to get you started:

Preparations

The game can be played on everything from a chess board to a dinner table. Decide on what constitutes one step and how many steps a piece can move on its turn. You need to be able to tell your pieces from your opponent, so either order them in different colors, or be creative with your own. Make sure the challenge level is about equal for both participants; more skilled players can play with fewer pieces to balance the match. Decide on how many pieces to use, and any other special rules, like the exclusion of certain Types or even Classes, though by default they are all allowed. Slide one Class Marker into each of your pieces, making sure your opponent does not see them. They should be positioned to that a tilt of the model reveals the indicator. Attach one Type Token to the top of each base. These choices will be vital in future games, as they must be in accordance with your overall strategy and play-style.

Basic Gameplay

On your turn you may move one of your pieces as far as mandated. Fast Type pieces may move up to double this, however. If after you have moved (or remained) one of your opponent’s pieces is within a certain range, usually adjoining, you may attack it. You may forgo your movement, but not move after your attack. When you attack, you must indicate attacker and target, so as to avoid cheating and confusion, and clearly declare attack type of either “A,” “B,” “C” or “X.” This choice is then compared to the Class visible on the target’s underside by your opponent, who will relay the result. A defeats B, B defeats C and C defeats A. It’s a simple formula, recognizable to anyone who’s played “rock, paper, scissors.” The defeated piece is removed from play. However, the fourth option, “X,” is quite different. “X” defeats all the others, but a Class X piece can not attack. Except for when special Types are involved, a draw means bilateral elimination, except with Class X pieces. As such, X defeats X. You need to use deduction to whittle away your opponents pieces. A keen memory is your greatest weapon.

Types

(D)Defend: When defending, – that is, when attacked by your opponent – this piece is not destroyed in case of a draw. This effect is nullified if the Class is X.

(S)Strong: When attacking, this piece is not destroyed in case of a draw.

(U)Unveil: When attacked or defending, this piece will reveal the Class of the opponent.

(F)Fast: Movement doubled.

(V)Vengeance: When destroyed, this piece may launch a last attack, off-turn. Unless, of course, Class is X.

(R)Ranged: This piece may attack from one step further away. When defeated or in a draw during its attack, a regular piece will not destroy it. Other pieces with increased range, however, will.

(O)Offensive: This piece does not need to declare its attack class; it ALWAYS wins when attacking. As a tradeoff, it always LOSES when defending, though.

(A)Archer: This piece can attack from anywhere, but unlike Ranged pieces, it will still risk being destroyed like normal.

Game Modes

Sever the Head: One piece on each side acts as the “King” (or “Queen,” whichever you prefer). Victory is attained by capturing the opponent’s King.

Last King Standing: Same as above, but with more than two sides.

Dogs of War:  Each piece is valued at one point. If a King is present in the game, it’s valued at two. The winner is the first one to score a predetermined number of points. Could be played with more than two players.

Obliteration: All opposing pieces must be destroyed before victory can be claimed. Can be played with two or more players.

End

Tell me if I forgot something. I’ll add to this as needed.

Emblematic Machination

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

The object of this game is to trump your rivals by either obtaining the highest score, or be the only one still standing (or part of the last alliance). You can decide this beforehand. Up to 9 teams, controlled by the CPU or a human player (you, if you’re so inclined), battle for supremacy over a territory, using cunning, bribery or brute force to rise to power.

Do give me feedback. I will likely update this later, with more contents (weapons, body parts, tile graphics).

Downloads link

Brief game play description:

Expanding your Court and Army

Not much purpose is there to a ruler’s life without underlings to lead. To increase the number of servants under your control there are three things you can do.

*Summon a lowly retainer (25 Power)

*Produce offspring (100 power, requires a Mate in proximity)

*Convert other rulers or their minions

 

Gaining Power

At the start of your turn, you gain a bonus of power equal to the number of territories you control. Should you manage to undo an enemy, you will also receive a bonus based on its rank. Should the need, or desire to do so, arise you can also reave your own servants of energy, even yourself, and turn this into much coveted Power. This is most effective as a last resort to save your own life in a pinch. Be aware that forced immolations are not always appreciated. 

 

Promoting

When you, in your most benevolent generosity, see fit to raise the power of a specific unit, this will also bind them closer to you and increase their steadfastness. Perhaps of greater importance, however, is the fact that at certain tiers, these loyal followers will become powerful enough to be promoted. The further you promote someone, the greater their effectiveness both in combat and courtly affairs.

Please note that Governal retainers cannot be promoted to become Princesses or Princes; such titles are hereditary, and only given to your heirs. These offsprings, on the other hand, will be able to reach levels of power undreamed of by warriors and priests. To produce offspring, you must first find yourself a Mate. A Mate can be of any analogy, but needs to be sufficiently far progressed. Once wed, move next to your Mate to breed. The cost of this is 100 Power. Your firstborn will become your Successor, so in the unfortunate event of your death, they will take your place. Should your Successor die while you are still alive, you must birth another child, and it will become the new Successor.

 

Interaction

There are three basic ways you can interact with your neighbors, and one each class of retainers excel at. Your Martial retainers will most likely be efficient when dealing in brute force, as you choose to Attack when the need arrives. Your Spiritual retainers will, on the other hand, fight poorly, but they are great at spreading caustic lies, or glamourous truths, to sway the minds of adversaries. When you attempt to Convert someone, you seek to steal them away from their current master, and this is not popular. Should you manage to Convert the supreme commander of one entire dynasty, all of their retainers will be yours as well! 

Not that these skills to Attack and Convert will change depending on the Item they carry, so these generalizations do not always hold true. Make sure to examine their proficiencies before you gamble an offense, because should you fail in either of these, you will fall into your own trap.

Because you are a Lord, well versed in the affairs of politics, you gain the ability to Bribe enemies. Should you bribe an enemy retainer, their loyalty will be undermined from this gesture, which is not unlikely to sour relations between you and their leader. Should you instead opt to Bribe this leader instead, relations will be, sometimes drastically, improved. Do this enough, and an Alliance will form, granting you the chance to win together with this dynasty.