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Author Topic: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?  (Read 6185 times)

Offline Jan

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Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« on: September 18, 2014, 11:39:12 AM »
Hello,

i am on the hunt for the best SciFi SKirmish Rules i can use for my 40k miniatures. I bought them just for this purpose. I tried Pulp Alley, but this seems not to be the best rule set for me. However this is another topic (i know there is ITEN, WarEngine, NoLimits etc).

Now i red the free Starter Rules of Jugde Dredd.
http://www.warlordgames.com/free-downloads-judge-dredd-get-you-started-ebook-and-roster-sheet/
Though it is a very common rule set (not that innovative), i like it after the first readthrough. It is very solid and easy.

I like especially:
  • Action Point System! In my opinion the best way to play, like in Fistful of Lead or EDEN. You got 2 (or more) APs and can spent them as you want. No fix sequences like move and shoot etc.
  • Close Combat with pushing the looser away and decide to follow him or not! It is a small detail, but adds a lot of good things (push him away from the objective or down a building). And it seems realistic.
  • Psi Powers! Fits many SciFi themes, like 40k. :D
  • It has different values for armor! Important for me to distinguish a Imperial Soldier, a Fire Warrior and a Space Marine.
  • Different Weapon Stats! I dont need much of them, but a few are nice.
  • "Construction kit" for Miniature-Profiles! But i don't know how far they go.

The Downside for me (but without tested it!) is the activation system, cause you activate all your guys. No alternate activation. In my opinion this cancels many opportunitys for hard decisions. The upside of it is, that it's fast and you don't have to use a marker for "already activated models".
BTW: The best Activation/Initiative System is the Fistful of Lead one for me.



I would realy be happy if you (tough Dredd) guys could answer my following questions:

1)
Is it possible (and easy) to change the activation system (alternate one)? Are there mechanics wich would cause problems?

2)
How far goes the construktion kit for profiles? Can i built up the whole retinue or just heroes? Can i make just Space Marines on one side and Eldar guys on the other?

3)
Are there gadgets like jumppacks or teleportation, air deployment or infiltration, other real SciFi stuff?

4)
How good is the point system working (Balance)? I think this is one of the hardest things to do as a game designer. Is it ok?
I compared a Juve (10 Pts.) and a Punk (20 Pts.) from the pdf and it seems: To deploy (for example) 6 Juves is clearly better than 3 Punks, but it should be a hard decision. (Keep in mind: I did not play the game!)
Are there only 5 pts. or 10 pts. steps?


I appreciate your answers very much!
English lesson completed...  ;D

Jan
« Last Edit: September 18, 2014, 06:44:03 PM by Jan »
X-Wing | Oak & Iron | Old West & Sci-Fi Skirmish (WiP)

Offline Hat Guy

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2014, 12:21:37 AM »
I was thinking about trying exactly this later on in the year. I'll follow your progress with interest and get back to you with what I come up with.

Offline maxxon

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2014, 07:00:40 AM »
Personally I think the problem with the JD rules is that they it's an old school level-based system.

It works with low level troops, but once you start adding high level heroes with lots of hit points it starts to get ridiculous.

You can get around that by capping levels at, say, 5.

It also creates odd step effects. I think the most common weapons cause 2 points of damage, meaning level 1-2 are one-shotted while level 3 takes two hits to take out having effectively double endurance.

I prefer a system where people stand a chance to die (even if only a small one) when shot at.
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Offline Major_Gilbear

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2014, 08:30:46 AM »
We use GW figs in our games. Old mate has the chaos culties from the box set he uses as a mutie raider gang. You could just replace judges with arbites without changing the rules one iota. (with a slight tweak you could make them space marines, they are hard enough.)

If you just want a gritty and at times screamingly funny sci fi skirmish game that you use GW figs in but dont have to be cannon to its background then it will work fine as long as you keep it in perspective.

Great idea for a "better" version of RT, I like it!

Personally I think the problem with the JD rules is that they it's an old school level-based system.

It works with low level troops, but once you start adding high level heroes with lots of hit points it starts to get ridiculous.

Lots of campaign-type games have this issue. You either increase the cost of fielding the improved models (in which case, you are often better off with more models rather than a few over-experienced models), or a bad game/late starter effectively drops out of the campaign and can't catch up.

It's also a feature of games which are designed around a mid-level balance of humans but still try to cram in extremes.

Deadzone suffers from both of these aspects too, and the predecessor to both (Necromunda) was also bad for the same.

Offline Major_Gilbear

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2014, 10:41:47 AM »
The big problem with gang skirmish campaign systems is the assumption that the gangs cash is only used to buy new guys and guns.

Most game designers not being slippy crims can be forgiven for making this error. The entire point of crime is not to spend all the profit on operational costs and organised crime like gangs is all about kicking the cash up the chain of command.

An excellent and astute observation.

I think Necromunda sort of addresses this with the Income Table, but it was crude and unbalanced.

@ Jan:

Have you thought about using an earlier edition of the 40k rules (like 2nd edition for example)?

The earlier editions were based around smaller model counts, and you wouldn't really have to do any conversions.


Offline Jan

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2014, 09:26:38 PM »
Hello,

thanks for the replys.

in my case i want open, easy rules for 3 - 12 miniatures to play with "non-tabletoppers".
I'am making my own set of rules. It is easy, if you are a little bit creative and if you read many rule sets and pick up the things you like from all of them and put them together.

The real difficult thing is to built up a balanced point system. I would say it is impossible, but some games (Infinity) manage it, to come real close.
It would be cool to have a balanced, fluffy game between (for example) 3 Space Marines and 10 Dark Eldar Guys. It would be cool if the Eldar guys could include a harpy, some wyches, some firstborns and a Lord, all handeld by the rules in an easy way (wyche = better CC skill; harpy = Jumppack; firstborn = better firepower). I don't need every detail. The space marines would be much harder to kill, because of their strong armour and maybe 1 or 2 special skills, wich make them tough guys.

The Dredd System is one that includes many mechanics i like in a game beside the activation system, so i thought: "Why don't use this system? Would save time for me." Overwatch rules are cool, but do not replace an alternate activation system which can use the overwatch rules, too.
So my question was: Are there any rule mechanics, which result in conflicts, if i add an alternating activation system?

The campaign system got flaws. Ok.
Not a big problem for me. Let's come to the other questions.

I do not see a lot of work in making profiles for my 40k models, if the point and profile creation system of dredd is good. In my imagination i could use already existing profiles and just change names (Street Judge = Space Marine; Punk = Imperial Guard etc.) OR i could adjust profiles with the profile creation system to differentiate a wyche and a normal normal DE Guard (for example).
So I want to know, how good the profile creation system is and how good the balance is? And with good i hope you know what i mean. This starts if you compare a juve and a punk (same gang!) and ends if you compare 3 Judges and 10 Punks on the other side.

Scurv, you wrote that the points balance is off anyway in JDMG. If this is true i dont have to waste any more time with this rule set an could go on with my "own" rules, because i have to do the point calculation by myself anyway. Nonetheless i will steal the CC mechanics from dredd. :D

Greetings,
Jan  :)

« Last Edit: September 19, 2014, 10:46:55 PM by Jan »

Offline Major_Gilbear

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2014, 10:04:05 PM »
Well, you can always try In The Emperor's Name (or "ITEN" for short). It's free and probably does just what you're looking for.  :)

Offline Jan

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2014, 10:16:01 PM »
Thank you. As you can read in the first post i already know it, but the play style oft a game like dredd is my favorite. Sure, it could be modyfied to my taste but this topic is all about the dredd system. :)

Offline Major_Gilbear

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2014, 10:44:39 PM »
Whoops, sorry (that's why I shouldn't stay up late...  ;D).

Offline Jan

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #9 on: September 20, 2014, 06:50:57 AM »
Thanks.

I see your point with the activation system.
The thing is, that i just LOVE the system used by Fisful of Lead. It is with cards, so a bit of unsteadiness is in there. And you dont know the cards your opponent has. But the spice is, that some cards give advantages to the guy who is activated with that card, so there are tough choices like "The first guy i should move is A, but the card gives a heal, so i should activate B with it. But B dont realy need an activation now. Arrhg." Etc.

Yeah, as i said, it is realy hard to get a balanced point system going. You have to see it loose. I am far from an power gamer, but it is nice to have a decision there: "Should i take one type A guy or 2 type B guys? I cant realy say what is better."

Ok, i will see if i try the rules like they are or modify them a bit, or just use some mechanics with my "own" little system. It's always nice to become acquainted with new rules and never a waste to see how they work.

Greetings,
Jan


Offline CptJake

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2014, 01:43:23 PM »


Yeah, as i said, it is realy hard to get a balanced point system going. You have to see it loose. I am far from an power gamer, but it is nice to have a decision there: "Should i take one type A guy or 2 type B guys? I cant realy say what is better."




You always do have the decision, but it ends up being based on the scenario instead of points.   As Scurv points out, different troops/troop types all have a purpose.   Once you set up the scenario (terrain/victory conditions/objectives) the decision to take one type A or two type B guys may be easier, because in the conditions of that particular game session, one or the other may likely make more sense to use.   If not, your play style (or that of your opponent) may be the factor that you use to decide.

I guess I always liken it to Real Life.  I have resources available (men, gear, etc...) and need to figure out the best mix to ensure mission accomplishment.  Each mission may dictate a different mix.  "Leave the AT4s behind, we won't be facing enemy vehicles and will be in terrain too tight to use them anyway".   "Bring the breach kits, we know we will need to make dynamic entry into the objective building".  "It will just be a recce, leave the M240 back at the ORP where it can cover our exfil if needed".  
Every time a bad person dies, a Paratrooper gets his wings.

Offline Jan

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2014, 05:17:43 PM »
True, true. Bad news are, when you always would choose the type "A" guys. In this case the pointsystem is crap. To find this out, i asked. There are (or were) that bad systems out there.

In conclusion i think my questions were answered. The work would be to create balanced profiles fitting the 4 to 5 fractions i want to play with friends. I would encourage you guys to use this set, if you want to play fast sci fi. The rules sounds great. Not that innovative or new arranged like pulp alley, but solid old school stuff for fast rounds, getting everyone startend very fast so you can concentrate in good scenarios. My taste it is.
AND there is still a free Version out there with little less content to use or try out.

Could be done in my case, but this is the same thing to do with my own private set of rules, which are not thaaaat different. So dont count on me, but i will read the free Version now, for sure (and not that starter pdf).

Greets,
Jan
« Last Edit: September 21, 2014, 05:19:22 PM by Jan »

Offline Major_Gilbear

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2014, 05:30:10 PM »
Another ruleset that occurred to me that might work for you is the AE:Bounty game.

It's pretty stripped-back, but has lots of races, weapons and equipment available to make it all feel "sci-fi", including things like powered armour, jump packs, and energy swords.

It also has lots of scenarios, is quick to learn (very easy in fact), and is pretty balanced on the whole (although, it is possible to build a couple of cheesy combos, but you get that in nearly every game system).

The main downsides (for me) are:

1) Green troops. In AE:B, troops have four levels of veterancy, with green being the lowest. Each level accords you one more action point than the last - so green troops get 1AP, regular troops get 2AP, and so on up to 4AP for the most experienced troops. The problem is that with only 1AP, green troops are nearly useless in our experience. You might think that's appropriate, but in practice we found it made taking them a waste of time. My advice would be to give them a couple of exclusive actions that allow them to do some 2AP actions (to represent the fact that they may have had *some* training), and that does at least mean that they can manoeuvre and shoot reasonably, whilst still struggling in other areas. This feels more appropriate and useful to me, and is very minor house rule.

2) No points system. That doesn't mean that there are no "points" to build a force with as such, it just means that it's handled differently. Instead you have a template crew for a faction, and you can "trade" aspects of that template up or down to suit (with some limits imposed per faction). For example, you can "trade" a veteran troop for two regular troops, and then "trade" one of those regular troops for two green troops or for the opportunity to buy an upgrade (like a jump pack, or an energy shield, etc) . It's actually a very good system in terms of balance, but I personally find it far more confusing that just adding up points - if you can find an online force calculator that you use/download, that would certainly make things easier.

The other thing that I liked about AE:B is that there are other things things to spend "points" on, like once-per game advantages (called "dirty tricks" in the rules). This might be something like deploying one model somewhere outside your deployment zone, or causing an enemy's weapon to malfunction at just the wrong moment, etc. It's a neat idea that helps to add more narrative to the game as well.

I think that AE:Bounty would not only allow you to represent small 40k skirmishes quite well, but it would also allow you to play other styles of game too (for example, it's great for representing games set in the the Star Wars universe, or in Deadzone, or in Firefly, etc). It basically has something to represent 98% of what's out there for space opera/space fantasy/lower-tech sci-fi settings.

Offline n815e

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2014, 08:43:42 PM »
SuperSystem has been used for 40K skirmish.  Its creation system is very comprehensive.

Here is someone ho has done it, although you can find others around.
http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?244321-SuperSystem-excellent-basis-for-40k-Skirmish

Offline hummus

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Re: Jugde Dredd Rules for 40k (SciFi) Skirmish?
« Reply #14 on: September 21, 2014, 09:47:48 PM »
Thanks.

I see your point with the activation system.
The thing is, that i just LOVE the system used by Fisful of Lead. It is with cards, so a bit of unsteadiness is in there. And you dont know the cards your opponent has. But the spice is, that some cards give advantages to the guy who is activated with that card, so there are tough choices like "The first guy i should move is A, but the card gives a heal, so i should activate B with it. But B dont realy need an activation now. Arrhg." Etc.

Yeah, as i said, it is realy hard to get a balanced point system going. You have to see it loose. I am far from an power gamer, but it is nice to have a decision there: "Should i take one type A guy or 2 type B guys? I cant realy say what is better."

Ok, i will see if i try the rules like they are or modify them a bit, or just use some mechanics with my "own" little system. It's always nice to become acquainted with new rules and never a waste to see how they work.

Greetings,
Jan



Why dont you just mod ffol? There are a couple of
Scifi mods in the yahoo group.
Its something I have been thinking about

 

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