Night didn’t go as planned

Excuse typos and grammatical slips. It’s currently 12:47 a.m. as I write this and I had big plans for the tonight. Began watching a few of my play through playtests and was beginning to get things documented. But watch out now! Sleep just came up and sucker punched me. It’s not often I succumb to the late night creep sleep, but this weekend was a doozy.

I started thinking about a solo Roll ‘n Write game. Trying to be to fancy with it I quickly realized I should be building a fundamentals game. Get core mechanics to work, then affix them together to build something pretty cool. So I did just that:

  • Navigation – Work out a navigation style/mode for the game. Travelling is a combination of movement point earned and burned, one D4 use to identify obstacles or restrictions, another D4 for steps and navigating terrain.
  • Inventory – A swappable list of items in the game. These items are randomly generated through a shortlist reference guide. The combination of the two D4s also contribute to identifying object or skills.
  • Actions – Engagement, if necessary, is set up as a two-phase turn. A player can perform an action and then add a second action or movement.
  • Mapping – Since I wanted to have fog of war concept, because line of sight and or visual distance is a thing, players draw their map as they venture. Like a lot of MMOs or dungeon crawling games, players uncover their surrounding by exploring.

The last one is key for me. Not that the all aren’t important, but mapping in real-time is something i’ve been wanting to explore for other game ideas I’ve had. Mapping and recording is a fantastic feature. This can be done prior to the game (simulating procedural generation) or reveal in real-time. Two exciting ideas I want to explore. Can be used in solo or multi-player games. I think it has a lot of potential. Especially for the tabletop and light sim games out there. It’s probably been done, but I don’t want to know yet until I can bang out and break a few ideas of my own.

Next thing I know it, it’s now and none of that awesome stuff I just outlined above happened. In the yard, in the garage, with the family. Evenings do go fast when you’re busy.

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Design Theory
Carla Kopp

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