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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 75 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: [Sticky-Note] Possible Dice Mechanic  (Read 635 times)
SAW
Member

Posts: 35


« on: April 03, 2010, 07:53:47 AM »

Ok, so, I was originally going to give a bit of an explanation as to how this idea even came about, especially since in another post I was aiming for a Luckless, Resource-based system, but that'd just be more of a text-wall than is probably necessary.

So, without further ado, here's the dice mechanic I'm thinking of for my currently named Sticky-Note System.

The Mechanic

Each character has a pool of dice that represents their side in a conflict.

On a given turn, the Attacker coverts some of his traits into a pool of action points we'll call Offensive Potential. He then "Pushes" any number of those points forward.

In response, the Defender has to choose a number of dice s/he wants to roll to block. Now, while it would seem obvious to simply throw as many dice at your defense as you can--however, there's a catch.

As a conflict progresses, there is a counter going up, called Tension. As Tension rises, the "Breaking Point" increases. This means that when the Defender rolls his dice, any dice that fall below that breaking point are considered (unsurprisingly) "Broken". A broken die is removed from the Defender's pool.

If, after removing Broken dice, the Defender's roll is not greater than the Push put forward by the Attacker, the Defender has the option to expend Traits or Potential to make up the difference, sacrifice additional dice, or take Lingering Damage.

If the Defender's roll is double the Attacker's Push, then it is considered a Counter, and the Defender may then Push back with the attacker's own Push Value without expending any of his Offensive Potential.

So, there are definite benefits to "going big", but there are also big risks that you're taking--but they're all at least partially in control of the players, and there's always an option to make a sacrifice in order to counter-act the roll of the dice.

---

Any comments or suggestions?
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noahtrammell
Member

Posts: 56


« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2010, 08:21:19 AM »

 So, basically, any Broken dice count as damage to the defender until the end of the conflict?  I really like the idea of Tension.  Will it be rising at a constant rate during all conflicts, or will different conflicts have different rates?  It seems like this could be a useful mechanic for speeding up conflicts.  One thing I've found to be missing from a lot of RPG's is that idea of a "Knockout Blow" that the entire conflict is moving up to.
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SAW
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2010, 08:29:38 AM »

Basically, it goes back and forth, with the players alternating as Attacker/Defender. A player can Give on a conflict before they run out of dice, or they can duke it out til the end--but running out of dice is going to result in getting hurt a bit more.

As for Tension, the idea I currently have is that it rises as the Attacker attacks, along with some other things.

1) If the Attacker Pushes for an amount equal to the current Tension level, then it goes up.
2) The first time each character draws a weapon.
3) You can spend Potential directly to raise the Tension.
4) Advancing the "Intent" of your actions will raise Tension. (So going from Talking to Grabbing/Pushing to Hurting to Attempting to Kill)

Also, the Tension partially carries over from scene to scene and conflict to conflict. So, if you push a first encounter into a full blown gun fight, then the rest of the people in the next room are going to know what's going on and be ready for it. On the other hand, if you keep it low-key and talk your way through things, then the entire chain of events can remain easier until you decide its time to go medieval. Tongue
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SAW
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2010, 08:15:58 AM »

WILLPOWER

Willpower is the term that describes your defensive dice pool. Essentially what it represents is your determination to keep going--so long as you have the willpower, you can continue a fight despite injury and all that.

Willpower is initially a pool of d6's. However, as you invest yourself further in the conflict and shift your Intent, your Willpower die-size increases.

Persuasion (d6) => Force (d8) => Wound (d10) => Kill (d12)

This gives you a choice to escalate the situation or risk getting blown out as Tension increases.

TENSION & BREAKING POINT

For every 5 points of Tension, the Breaking Point of a character's Willpower increases. So, from 1-4 Tension, rolling a 1 will Break a die. From 5-9, rolling a 1 or 2 will break a die.

With this progression, once you reach 10+ Tension, if you are still trying to just talk something out you've got a very high chance of breaking dice in your attempts to defend yourself, giving a possible motivation to advance to Force or even Wound to give yourself some better odds on your rolls. Increasing your die size also gives you a greater potential defense roll, requiring you spend less points or roll less dice to meet your opponents pushes.

That is at the cost of how far you're willing to go, of course. And escalation breeds escalation. As you advance your Intent and increase your die size, your opponent has to Push harder, which again increases Tension, until either one side gives or is broken.
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horomancer
Member

Posts: 54


« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2010, 08:42:16 AM »

This sounds very much like Dogs in the Vineyard. In their system they had a limit to how many dice you could push forward from your pull at a time, and the defender had yield or push back with as many dice as it took to equal or beat the attackers push. When a defender didn't have enough dice to counter, they either had to give up or escalate the situation for more dice.
In your system, what's to keep the attacker from putting everything they got upfront? It seems that the only one at risk is the defender and making them roll as many dice as possible to get broken dice would be a good tactic.
I can see the risk/gain of using several dice for defense with your Tension and Counter rules, but what's to stop the attack from going hogwild?
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SAW
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2010, 08:55:45 AM »

This sounds very much like Dogs in the Vineyard. In their system they had a limit to how many dice you could push forward from your pull at a time, and the defender had yield or push back with as many dice as it took to equal or beat the attackers push. When a defender didn't have enough dice to counter, they either had to give up or escalate the situation for more dice.
In your system, what's to keep the attacker from putting everything they got upfront? It seems that the only one at risk is the defender and making them roll as many dice as possible to get broken dice would be a good tactic.
I can see the risk/gain of using several dice for defense with your Tension and Counter rules, but what's to stop the attack from going hogwild?

It is definitely inspired by Dogs in the Vineyard, absolutely.

As for the Attack with everything all out strategy, it isn't actually a very sound one for a few reasons.

1) Your starting Offensive Potential (Attack points) is basically Willpower x 3 or so. So, whereas you could push forward 15, your opponent would be rolling 5 dice, for a potential of up to 30.

2) When Tension is low, the chances of breaking a die isn't massive. So if you push forward your entire attack pool in one go and your opponent only breaks a single die, you're now incredibly handicapped, having boosted Tension and giving your opponent the opportunity to increase the Breaking Point against you.

3) Tension really makes pushing hard a tough call. If you push hard, you're going to up the Tension. However, if you can't up the Tension enough to increase the breaking point on the same attack, then you're really doing damage to yourself. For example, if the tension is at 3 and your attack would raise it to 4... your opponent only has to deal with a Breaking Point of 1, but then when he attacks you, if he can push it up to 5, you'll have to deal with a Breaking Point of 2.

Not that you can't push all your attack in on the first go--its just a huge gamble, and the system is meant to facilitate that option, but I don't think it is anywhere close to a reliable move.
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dindenver
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« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2010, 07:53:03 AM »

SAW,
  Yeah, this is a pretty nifty mechanic. Have you considered having Attack and Defense dice coming from the same pool? I think a mechanic like that might facilitate the "Use theri own strength against them" character type.
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Dave M
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SAW
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2010, 11:07:18 AM »

SAW,
  Yeah, this is a pretty nifty mechanic. Have you considered having Attack and Defense dice coming from the same pool? I think a mechanic like that might facilitate the "Use theri own strength against them" character type.


Attacks aren't actually done with dice, just the defense--Attack is just a straight number, sort of like a bet on how your opponent is going to roll. However, if the attack overpowers the defense, then the defender can divert points from his attack pool to make up the difference. Is that sort of what you mean?

---

BRACING

When you Step Up your Intent, not only does the die size of your Willpower increase, but you also regain your full Willpower dice.

So, if you were in a Conflict and were down to a single die, you have a choice--Give up, Get Broken (lose your last die), or Brace yourself.

The advantage is, obviously, that you get to stay in the fight. The draw back, of course, is that the fight just got a little more out of hand.

You can Brace even when you're defending--your next Attack simply has to be of the appropriate Intent. It essentially represents you changing your mindset.

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SAW
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2010, 05:17:45 PM »

Hm.

MOMENTUM

As Tension increases, adrenaline starts to pump and the characters get a modifier to all of their spent Potential.

For every 10 Tension, the multiplier increases by 1.

So, at 0-9 Tension, all Potential spent is worth 1. At 10-19, there is a 2x multiplier. 20-29 is a 3x multiplier and so on and so forth.

---

And then there's this little exchange I did by myself just to see how it would come out with the rules I've got so far.

Jake [15op 5/5(d6)wp]
Matt [15op 5/5(d6)wp]
Tension: 1 (BP: 1) (M: 1)

Jake demands Matt's lunch money.
=> Jake PUSHES for 5 to PERSUADE Matt.
==> Tension Rises to 4.
[Jake: 10op 5/5(d6)wp]
[Tension: 4 (BP: 1) (M: 1)]

Matt rolls 2 dice. [6,3] = 9.
=> Matt refuses.

Matt asks Jake to leave him alone.
=> Matt PUSHES for 5 to PERSUADE Jake.
==> Tension Rises to 5.
===> Breaking Point rises to 2.
[Matt: 10op 5/5(d6)wp]
[Tension: 5 (BP: 2) (M: 1)]

Jake rolls 2 dice. [*1*,4] = 4.
=> Jake breaks 1 die.
=> Jake loses 1op.
=> Jake laughs.

Jake regains 4op.
[Jake 13op 4/5(d6)wp]

Jake threatens Matt.
=> Jake PUSHES for 8 to PERSUADE Matt.
==> Tension rises to 7.
[Jake 5op 4/5(d6)wp]
[Tension: 7 (BP: 2) (M: 1)]

Matt rolls 3 dice. [*2*,5,4] = 9.
=> Matt breaks a die.
=> Matt says he's not afraid.

Matt regains 4op.
[Matt 14op 4/5(d6)wp]

Matt turns to walk away.
=> Matt PUSHES for 14 to PERSUADE Jake.
==> Tension rises to 9.
[Matt 0op 4/5(d6)wp]
[Tension: 9 (BP: 2) (M: 1)

Jake rolls 4 dice. [6,*1*,3,*2*] = 9.
=> Jake breaks 2 dice.
=> Jake loses 5op.
=> Jake is a little shaken by Matt turning his back on him.

Jake regains 2op.
[Jake 2op 2/5(d6)wp]

Jake STEPS IT UP to FORCE.
=> Jake gains 15op.
=> Jake changes his willpower dice out for 5d8.
=> Tension increases to 10.
==> Breaking Point increases to 3.
==> Momentum increases to 2.
[Jake  17op 5/5(d8)wp]
[Tension: 10 (BP: 3) (M: 2)]

Jake tries to grab Matt and spin him around.
=> Jake PUSHES for 20 to FORCE Matt.
==> Tension increases to 12.
[Jake 7op 5/5(d8)wp]
[Tension: 12 (BP: 3) (M:2)]

Matt STEPS IT UP to FORCE.
=> Matt gains 15op.
=> Matt changes his willpower dice out for 5d8.
[Matt 15op 5/5(d8)wp]

Matt rolls 4 dice. [*1*,*3*,*2*,6] = 6.
=> Matt breaks 3 dice.

Matt GIVES.
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