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Author Topic: Need help with beta rules  (Read 3246 times)

Offline kitrok

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Need help with beta rules
« on: February 26, 2012, 11:44:41 AM »
I'm a bit of a n00b when it comes to forums, and even more of a novice when it comes to LAF; so forgive me if I'm doing this wrong.  You know; wrong place, wrong time, wrong topic.   :o

I've been working on a set of small-scale (4-12 models) tabletop gaming rules with Aggro84 that I think work well enough to share with others.  We've got bigger ideas for it, but the rules set has been pared down to a "Basic Rules" document that I've tried to make concise and clear.  So that's why I've posted here; I need some reality checks, and so I'm soliciting for beta-testers.  These are those generous, brave, heartless, incisive, souls that can see the fun through the rules and tell me how to fix things.

The basic rules utilize a game engine known as "Matter. Energy. Space. Time." or "MEST" which is pronounced sort of like "mist" as in "the misty mountains". Honestly, I got this from NASA about thirty years ago but never realized that they used a different arrangement of letters S-T-E-M.  Too late for me.  lol

Anyhow, if MEST can be demonstrated to be solid, it can be used as the foundation of many genres.  Since I happen to like Pulp, I started with that genre first ... well, that genre and a couple of others.  ;)

The key concept is that we use opposed tests using dice-pools but with three different colored dice.  Bonus dice are received via traits and by way of situational modifiers such as attacking from higher ground, or performing an aimed shot.  

Dice generate successes which are added to a fixed attribute value to get what is known as a "Test Score".  This differentiation allows for some interesting dynamics.  The fixed values are essentially guaranteed successes because dice only score successes half the time; which is when their face-values show 4 pips or more.

There are also some traits that leverage the face-value of the dice.  For example, a modern bullet does 4 damage, but and older musket-ball does 2 + 2 dice.  Furthermore, dynamite does 1 + 3 dice but has the Stun trait which generates "Stun damage" for every pair of face-values generated on the dice.

All dice generate a success on a face-value of '4', '5', or '6' but what is known as the Base dice generate two successes on '6' and the Wild dice generate three successes on '6'.  Combat is two separate opposed tests; one for Hit and one for Damage.  Critical hits are simulated by the concept of "cascades" and "carry-overs".  Cascades are the difference in test scores between the Attacker and the Defender players; for every 3 points difference, the Attacker receives a bonus Modifier die for his very next Damage test.  Carry-overs are dice that become available again to be added as bonus dice for the damage test.  Modifier dice carry-over whenever their face-value is '6'.  Wild dice carry-over whenever they score a success; so on a face-value of '4', '5', or '6'.

Lastly, to keep the number of dice rolled to a minimum we have these rules.  Penalty dice are awarded to the opposing player.  Dice of the same color cancel each other out.  And, when performing tests the players will always roll at least two Base dice.  

What we've discovered during our play-tests sessions is that the number of dice each player rolls at any one time is usually about 2 or 3.  With some planning or with some advantageous traits, this number could go as high as 4 or 5 but it's a bit rare.  This is a good thing because what I discovered with dice-pool mechanics in general is that the more dice you roll for an opposed test, the more likely you'll encounter ties.  Well, we also make it so that ties cause the Attacker to win with a single success.  As a result it seems that our dice mechanic is pretty solid.

I'm sure there may be some people that are turned-off by one or more of the following; dice-pools, different dice-types, and opposed tests.  But I'm hoping that even so, I can get some good feed-back.

Right now, the rules are available at my Google Site http://sites.google.com/site/mesttactics/downloads and I blog about my game development at my Noble Pursuits site on Blogger here http://matter-energy-space-time.blogspot.com.  If any of you have already seen these rules from an earlier invite by Aggro84, please know that I've nearly doubled the number of pages by adding extra goodies such as many illustrated examples, play-aides, and the occasional rules clarification. The rules are now Beta 1.1 :D

Please feel free to download a copy and try out the basic rules and tell me what you think.  

Thanks for your time.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2012, 12:00:18 PM by kitrok »

Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2012, 09:21:44 AM »
MEST Basic Rules Beta 1.2 is now available! :o

As an update, I've greatly expanded the illustrated examples and tried my best to organize the information more clearly and consistently.
Download your play-test copy here: http://matter-energy-space-time.blogspot.com/

Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2012, 06:55:49 AM »
MEST Basic Rules Beta 1.3 is now available!

download 1.3 here!

The changes are very small.  I did try lightening the background artwork to allow more contrast to the text.  I'm still working on a solution for a printer-friendly version.

Offline aggro84

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2012, 01:57:55 AM »
Nice!
I'll give them a read.

Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2012, 07:21:52 AM »
1.4 is out here.

There's probably only a few more tweaks necessary; dunno ... maybe by CelestiCon it'll be ready? I hope hope hope. :)

Offline Achilles

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2012, 02:30:53 AM »
Hi Kitrok!

I just discovered MEST and had a look through the rules. They look very solid!

Aggro mentioned in his Post Apoc thread you had some concerns reading  the 'dice successes' might turn some folks off.

Have you considered (for ease of play) creating coloured stickies for the Standard, Modifier and Wild dice that just give the RESULT?

Basically; make misses on white dice blank. Make successes +1 and 6's +2.

Modifiers would be 1-3 Blank, 4-5 +1 and 6's +1C to denote cascades.

Wilds would be 1-3 Blank, 4-5 = +1C, 6's +3C again to denote cascades.

Might help with 'fast play' and make the rules simpler? Just publish a sheet printable on labels to make the dice? You'd only need nine dice per player...

Anyway, excited to give it a try!
« Last Edit: December 23, 2012, 04:31:19 AM by Achilles »

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The more experiments you make, the better.
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Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #6 on: December 24, 2012, 03:56:29 AM »
Quote
I just discovered MEST and had a look through the rules. They look very solid! Aggro mentioned in his Post Apoc thread you had some concerns reading  the 'dice successes' might turn some folks off. Have you considered (for ease of play) creating coloured stickies for the Standard, Modifier and Wild dice that just give the RESULT?

Basically; make misses on white dice blank. Make successes +1 and 6's +2.
Modifiers would be 1-3 Blank, 4-5 +1 and 6's +1C to denote cascades.
Wilds would be 1-3 Blank, 4-5 = +1C, 6's +3C again to denote cascades.

Might help with 'fast play' and make the rules simpler? Just publish a sheet printable on labels to make the dice? You'd only need nine dice per player...

I think this is a good idea.  I'll create the stickers to match the standard blank dice ( see http://www.amazon.com/School-Smart-Blank-Adhesive-Labels/dp/B0043C8WO2).  I'll go a step further and make some print-n-play dice as well.  I'll update my blog and this thread when ready. 

Quote
Aggro mentioned in his Post Apoc thread you had some concerns reading  the 'dice successes' might turn some folks off

It seems that Spartan Games 'Dystopian Legions' also uses multi-colored dice.  What is also very interesting (at least to me) is that their rules contain many of the concepts that we had in the earlier rules for MEST such as scaled modifiers (need 4+ to hit but can be 2+ or 3+, 4+, 5+, or as bad as just '6'), and uses activation cards.  I hope that their system becomes well received because it could have a halo effect for games like mine.


http://www.spartangames.co.uk/resources/downloads

Offline Achilles

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #7 on: December 24, 2012, 04:34:47 AM »
Sounds great! I'm well used to custom dice making  as I've made them for games like Saga, Confrontation, etc. for a variety of uses.

I've written up some forces for Fallout gaming (Brotherhood of Steel and some Raiders) to give the game a try. Will hopefully have some more specific feedback in the new year. :)

Do you have any Modern weapon rules anywhere for squad support weapons?

Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #8 on: December 24, 2012, 06:57:43 AM »
I've shared a PDF (about 164 KB) on my Google Drive that has 0.5" labels for 16MM/19MM blank dice.  I've also added print-and-play dice cubes.  All of these assets are specific to MEST game engine; Modifier, Base, and Wild dice.

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0Bye3wyX639RGa1JlM0VkdkV6clk

Tell me how it goes.  :)

Offline Achilles

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #9 on: December 24, 2012, 04:20:50 PM »
Those are great! Should make 'fast rolling' much easier. :)

Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2013, 07:00:52 AM »
I got inspired to order some indented dice.  As a result, I updated my artwork for the indented dice stickers.

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0Bye3wyX639RGT0g1VXhMMTByaWs


Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2014, 09:38:35 PM »
I've updated the MEST rules to version 2.x [ DRAFT ].  This has been about year or so in the making by adding our various "advanced game" to the basic rules.   :)

http://matter-energy-space-time.blogspot.com/2014/12/mest-20-low-fidelity-version-draft.html


Offline kitrok

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Re: Need help with beta rules
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2018, 03:58:44 PM »

 

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