No Goblins Allowed

Trying to design a CCG
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Author:  preadatordetector [ Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:46 pm ]
Post subject:  Trying to design a CCG

Most people here are fans of MtG, and know what Hearthstone is.

I'm trying to design my own collectable card game.
I like MtG's mana system and color pie idea, but I think it's pretty unpolished, and pockmarked with flaws.
Likewise, Hearthstone's mana system is bland, but solid.
Both of them have specific effects that I like, such as Secrets in Hearthstone, and flash/instants in MtG. There's very few permanent varieties that I dislike from both games.

However, I'm designing the game using a morale based system, instead of life. Gameplay-wise, there's no significant changes. But unfortunately due to the nature of a morale-based system I am having a hard time justifying Hearthstone equipment-style effects and MtG Planeswalker-style effects.

I'm wondering if there's a solution to this problem while retaining the styling of player health/morale.

Author:  UselessCommon [ Sun Jun 11, 2017 3:12 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

This game is either going to be super-weird and super-surreal or absolutely uncool.

Is combat going to be mobile (ccg usual style) or positional ? Maybe there wouldn't be any combat ?

How would you make the "combat" and "damage" system both interesting, and fitting to that weird flavor ?
What would factions look like ? Both flavorvise and mechanically ?
What would setting look like ?
Would you use normal resource model
cards --(lands)> tempo --(tempo advantage)> damage
or something else ?

Author:  preadatordetector [ Wed Jun 14, 2017 1:11 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

If I could do it cleanly, maybe I'd make a 2.0 version where you fight top-down in a sort of Bloons Tower Defense style.

It's most likely going to be played like the usual style though.
The factions are designed bottom-up. I want all factions to be able to make their own exclusive decks (even colorless, but they are advantaged through superior "land" cards, with one of the basics tapping for :2: without downside being present thanks to a pervasive hybrid presence making colorless pretty ****) but also combine together to become even more powerful.

The resource model would be normal, but most cards would be much more restrictive in what kind of resources they would accept. For example, a typical 4 CMC card would look like .

For all intensive purposes, I'd like to think of the combat to be almost the same as MtG, and there's very few differences in the skeleton aside from what player "life" is flavored as, instead being morale.

Author:  UselessCommon [ Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:05 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

This "morale" thing isn't really going to work.
Sure, sometimes battles are won through pushing opponent to surrender, but sometimes even the last remaining foot soldier is 100% ready to fight when he is finally killed. And, I assure you, cards like Pyroclasm or Murder or just such a mundane MTG thing as repeatable chumpblocking would be much worse for morale then being attacked by a big creature. Also, isn't it just weird to choose between "I block with my creature, it DIES, but I LOSE NO MORALE", and "I lose no troops or resources, but, I guess, a creature just punched my "morale" into it's face". How can a creature directly attack morale ?

Evasion is also really weird: I go unseen, infiltrate opponent's base, and... lower their morale, while unnoticed ! I suppose they got really angry that someone just got into their base and haven't been noticed. And if that someone was, like 10/10, they get SO demoralized because there's no way they could've missed it ?

What I'm trying to say: If you want mtg-like combat, replacing HP with morale is a hurricane of flavor fails.
*whispers* it isn't like MTG-style combat is a very good thing *whispers*

Also, get rid of lands. They are the worst part of MTG, so if you won't replace them with something, you might as well be playing MTG.

Author:  preadatordetector [ Wed Jun 14, 2017 3:04 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

1: Morale of the home front, not the army.
2: "Board wipe destroys morale" *could* be a card. There's Blood Artist you know.
3: It *would* be cool to have unblocked creatures be able to damage other permanents actually. Thanks for the idea.
4: Evasion = sabotage.
5: Big creature rampaging through and not caring about bullets = obvious morale loss.
6: Maybe MtG-style combat isn't great, but I do like the amount of different card types there are and generally being able to set up some defenses, compared to Hearthstone's trading which I generally dislike.
7: Lands are going to be replaced with a few things that cost some resources and/or be played on your draw step. Kind of like Miracle but easier to trigger.

Well coming from this, I definitely know what colorless would look like. Bursts of morale loss when deaths are rampant for example. It's not like anyone played direct life loss in most decks unless it did something insane in MtG anyway. Also, things that, when dead, cause you to lose morale might end up being a bit common. Lifegain therefore would be pretty strong and restricted to a few colors.

Also, there's some kind of vengeance-style hatred that makes it easier to accumulate support for corrupt wars, when things like terrorism and war crimes are a thing. For example, gas prices. That could be an element of gameplay.

Author:  UselessCommon [ Wed Jun 14, 2017 4:59 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

This isn't what I meant when I said "get rid of lands". It solves no problems with them.
The most elegant and functional way to get rid of lands I know is:

There are no specific "land" cards, but all cards (except maybe some drawback ability.) can be played as "lands" for their respective colors. This way:
1) You are never mana-flooded or mana-screwed, which are pathetic and meaningless ways to lose anyway.
2) You still can be color-screwed, if you run lots of colors. (Which is meaningful, because decks generally shouldn't run all colors.)
3) We have one fewer card type to worry about.
4) Almost no dull "manabase optimization" in deckbuilding.
5) However, it opens up unique design space for "reanimating" lands, for interacting with them (destroy target "noncreature" "land"), and removal in form of converting permanents into lands. Makes ramp easier to realize (put the top card of your deck into play like "land".
6) Lategame is more intese.
7) Cards you don't want in matchup or during current boardstate can still be utilized. Basically, there are much more options in playing our your hand.

So, naturally, I think this is the first mechanic to consider when making "mtg, but better".

Author:  preadatordetector [ Wed Jun 14, 2017 12:55 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

This thread isn't about the resource system. Don't make it about the resource system.

I still have the morale system to worry about. I want players to be able to trade morale for damage in ways similar to Hearthstone's weapons (i.e. Rogue's hero power) and to have MtG's Planeswalker style options, but I don't know how to re-flavor them correctly.

Author:  UselessCommon [ Wed Jun 14, 2017 4:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

It's a bad idea with a lot of bad implications.

Focusing on "things wrong with MTG" could help you a lot.
Focusing on designing some cool "combat" of ideas, mental projections and phantoms that fight in a psychic battle of demoralization is also good.
But preserving mechanics while changing flavor isn't a great thought.

Author:  preadatordetector [ Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:10 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

I simply want a resource system that would punish players for not packing the proper materials needed and over-diversifying into every field they can find. You should be punished for running infrastructure that your units didn't require. For example, if you have this guerrilla unit that won't fight for you if you don't have infrastructure to stop **** on their home, you shouldn't just turn them face down and BOOM - you get what they wanted. Although that would be a cool mechanic once in a while, I'd rather use an energy system with more importance in gameplay.

I also would think that a form of "land destruction" instead putting said cards on top of its controller's library is something I want to add to this game. It's not a pathetic nor meaningless way to lose because that this gimmick is entirely in the players' control, but it still makes for a powerful card.

Maybe for the mulligan step, players could switch out any number of cards in their hand. For each card switched out this way, they search their library with 3 cards (that can legally do this, and most non-"miracle" cards wouldn't let this happen) reveal them, then pick one at random, where that one card isn't known to the opponents.

And yes, maybe I could apply more angles to the morale system (like a psychic morale battle) but I do want some way to have tools that enable players to trade morale for direct creature damage in some way.

Author:  UselessCommon [ Thu Jun 15, 2017 3:12 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

I have read this comment three times and I still haven't understood what are you trying to say...
Perhaps you should list all things you want to add/change/leave untouched/remove ? (I'm talking about mechanical part here, of course.)

Author:  preadatordetector [ Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG



Author:  UselessCommon [ Sun Jun 18, 2017 10:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

"Who is the player? The player is the state, not Superman."

"How do you get resources? You get resources from infrastructure built in your state."

"Cost of "destroy creatures" is double that of MtG."
-Great, though I'd say it should be more like +1 (or even +2 mana) compared to mtg, not double.

"Toughness should matter as much as power in constructed and limited formats."
-Very good. I'd advice to give all creatures Trample, because that's what intuitively should happen.

"I **** hate flying. Get rid of it and any other parasitic mechanics."
-Good, but you'd really need to make an ability (or on/off property) with the name "Flying".

"Any mechanics that require the opponent to run the same crap shouldn't exist."
-Agreed, but there's only one in MTG currently...

"Want cards that seem like Hearthstone equipment. Doesn't seem likely anymore."
-Don't fit with flavor...

"Yu-Gi-Oh style global effects, but also could be done through legendary enchantments."
-Okay ?

"Legendary is an ability, not a type or supertype. Didn't like Wall creatures."
-No difference here

"The idea that creatures can directly damage infrastructure is a great idea that I'd like to use."
-Okay... Be vary of death spirals though...

Propaganda and psychic battles seems like a good idea too.
-How ?

“Uses both secrets (Hearthstone, semi-MtG) and instants (MtG). In this tag because morph.
Want ally cards that seem like another player.
Land destruction."

"Mana flood/drought aside from mulligan step."

"MtG-style equipment, enchantments, and auras."
-Makes no sense in context of global war.

-Okay, but what flavor ?

"Graveyard recursion.
Morale recovery.
Evasion, blocking."

"Having morale be reduced when things die should be limited."
- Makes sense

Too much like MTG. Needs at least 2 big changes to really be a different game.

Author:  TPmanW [ Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:44 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

My own brainstorming based on what's been said:

A player's board is divided into two rows: the Homefront and frontline/battlefront.
Lose when you run out of homefront cards. Or maybe if you take one attack without any homefront cards.
Start game with your homefront filled with random* face down cards. They still count as "HP" (Or more like Pokemon's prizes or Kaijudo's shields), but don't actually do anything while they're face down.
Playing an actual resource card lets you draw the face down card. (Maybe some cards get you a bonus when flipped or whatever)
There's a limited number of homefront slots. Perhaps they are labelled and certain infrastructure only works/ works better in certain slots. 5 slots A-E. Perhaps higher lettered/#'d slots are more expensive to build on or are just better.
Should the frontline also have a slot limit?**
Cards (without haste) can't be played directly to the battlefront. They start in the homefront and must be deployed to the front before they can attack. Perhaps they can retreat as well for defense. Most things can't target them directly there. Perhaps units on the frontlines can be attacked by enemy units YUgioh style.
Things can't be deployed onto tapped homefront cards?
Running out of frontline cards moves homefront cards to the frontline?

When an enemy unit gets an attack through on you they can destroy one of your (tapped?) infastructure cards.
Your infastrutcture may have a defense value that enemy units have to overcome to destroy them.
By default, infrastructure taps for 2 of a resource- that gives more room for tuning the power level of infrastructure cards. You can have not quite double power lands that tap for 3, and "dual lands" etb untapped but give you a choice of two resources.

Tokens are the basic fighting units? Amny decks just produce lots of them instead of more powerful unit cards?

Some homefront card ideas:
  • Barracks - taps for manpower, needed for most battlefront units, especially cheap ones.
  • Factory - taps for material, used on home and battlefront cards- especially sturdy ones.
  • Bank - taps for $, the most generic/flexible resource. Replaces another resource? 2brid mana eal?
  • Academy - taps for research, never spent on units directly, just other infrastructure.
  • Runway - any unit placed on this slot can advance immediately to the front.
  • Lab - pay to draw cards.
  • Market - trade one resource for another.
  • Fortifications - Play on top of another card to take a hit from it.
  • Minefield - damages units that destroy it.
  • Super ___ - Needs a basic ___ to be played. Replaces that ____. Is better than ____.

*Or maybe you draw a ton of cards at the start and put down whichever ones you want? Heck, maybe you draw one card at a time and decide whether you want them in your hand or facedown in your homefront. That's a lot of decision making right away and might overwhelm players. That's especially true if players get to draw the facedown cards later- basically brainstorming.
**I guess if you have multiple units in one battlefront slot that wouldn't limit army size. I like big armies. The big upside is that what you play in homefront slot A could have a direct effect on what you have in battlefront slot A.

Author:  preadatordetector [ Sun Jun 25, 2017 12:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Trying to design a CCG

Interesting... And awesome. I like that idea.

I would like lifegain in some form and this might be what I'm looking for.

Although, that would make indestructible cards generally overpowered, and Darksteel Citadel can't be printed, like ever.
It would also force all board wipe to be exclusively damage based, as "destroy all creatures" can cause serious problems.

This idea however makes an option for flying: flying creatures can only be blocked by homefront creatures. It's not parasitic, which is perfect.
Meanwhile, unblockable could be outright unblockable, being able to hit anything on the field.

Therefore, a morale system should be implemented, so that there's a workaround to the indestructible problem.

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