Saturday, 7 January 2012

Game Design

Overall Design

There will be two separate parts to the game  - the battle rules and the campaign rules.

The Rules

A couple of years ago I bought Battlelore. It's an enjoyable fantasy battle game. Although not designed for solitaire play, the card-based system for ordering units makes in very suitable for solo gaming. I blasted through all the scenarios included in the base game, and in the expansions that I purchased.

Although I like Battlelore a great deal, I still have some problems with it.

1)   I feel that the quality and value for money of the expansions has taken a nose dive since Days on Wonder sold the rights to the game to Fantasy Flight Games.

2)   There are several aspects to the combat system that I don't like. Don't get me wrong  - I think the combat system works reasonably well and is balanced in the original game. But I still don't like it much.

3)   There needs to be a decent scenario generator. The deployment cards in the Call to Arms expansion are a failure in this respect.

4)   There is no campaign game.

5)   The basic Battlelore game does not have heroes or other characters on the board. They are off-board, as part of a "Lore Council" that allows the player to play "Lore Cards". Again, this works pretty well in the original game but still isn't the way I'd like things done - I want my heroes in the thick of things, kicking ass and occasionally getting killed. The Heroes expansion should have fixed this, but after reading the rules and reviews I decided not to purchase it as I didn't like the way Heroes were being handled.

However, there are quite a few things that I do like about it.

1)   Battlelore's card driven command system is a good basis for a solo game.

2)   The Lore cards. These give special abilities and lend the game a strong fantasy flavour.

3)   Hex board. No measuring to see if a unit is in range or can make a flank attack, where a difference of a couple of millimetres can be crucial.

I decided to base Arcadia on a modified form of Battlelore. The first thing I decided to tackle was the combat system.

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