Archive For The “Design” Category

Design x Dragoons: Co-op Wargaming?

Design x Dragoons: Co-op Wargaming?

Each week, our #DesignXDragoons panel will offer their thoughts on a talk about game design, game development, or gameplay.
You’ll see what they have to say, and get a chance to chime in yourself, either in the comments below, or in our forums

This week’s question:

Cooperative games, such as Arkham Horror or Shadows Over Camelot, are becoming more popular with (euro)gamers. Can the cooperative game mechanism work for wargames? Any examples?

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Design x Dragoons: Details, details, details!

Design x Dragoons: Details, details, details!

Each week, our #DesignXDragoons panel will offer their thoughts on a talk about game design, game development, or gameplay.
You’ll see what they have to say, and get a chance to chime in yourself, either in the comments below, or in our forums

This week’s question:

How important are the ‘details’ to you? Do you want/need the historical designations of the units that hit the beach at D-Day, or do you just want to know that there’s a crapload of joes unloading into Normandy? Do you want unit symbols, icons, or portraits? Leader names, or just leader counters?
How many details are too many details? Do your players lose ‘immersion’ if you leave too many out?

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Design x Dragoons: Engineers! (no, not those kind)

Design x Dragoons: Engineers! (no, not those kind)

Each week, our #DesignXDragoons panel will offer their thoughts on a talk about game design, game development, or gameplay.
You’ll see what they have to say, and get a chance to chime in yourself, either in the comments below, or in our forums

This week’s question:

How can you best portray what engineers are truly capable of on the battlefield in a wargame? What do engineers do well that hasn’t been accurately captured on the tabletop? What do they do poorly that’s yet to manifest as an actual penalty in a game?

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Design x Dragoons: The Best Recent “Innovations”

Design x Dragoons: The Best Recent “Innovations”

Each week, our #DesignXDragoons panel will offer their thoughts on a talk about game design, game development, or gameplay.
You’ll see what they have to say, and get a chance to chime in yourself, either in the comments below, or in our forums

This week’s question:

Think about wargame features that you’ve seen appear in games over the past 5-10 years (or as wargamers tend to say: “only just recently”). What’s your favorite “innovations” over that time period? Variable dice mechanics? Integration of role-playing elements? Minis-hexagon mix-and-match? Card-driven action? Look, I get it. There are a lot of “innovations” that aren’t technically “new”. Heck, Warrior Knights had the all-cards-no-dice thing nailed back in the early ’80s. But the Combat Commander model actually made it viable beyond a one-off fantasy game that lacked for tactics. What are some ‘innovations’ that you find interesting, fun, or compelling in today’s games?

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Design x Dragoons: Staffs & Subordinate HQs

Design x Dragoons: Staffs & Subordinate HQs

Each week, our #DesignXDragoons panel will offer their thoughts on a talk about game design, game development, or gameplay.
You’ll see what they have to say, and get a chance to chime in yourself, either in the comments below, or in our forums

This week’s question:

At the operational level and above, your subordinate units have HQs that include a significant number of staff officers. How do/should those staff actions get modeled at subordinate levels? What should we expect to see from them? How do you introduce an appropriate amount of variability in their capabilities without bolting on chrome for its own sake?

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Design x Dragoons: Recon, FRAGOs, Orders, & Objectives

Design x Dragoons: Recon, FRAGOs, Orders, & Objectives

Each week, our #DesignXDragoons panel will offer their thoughts on a talk about game design, game development, or gameplay.  You’ll see what they have to say, and get a chance to chime in yourself, either in the comments below, or in our forums

This week’s question:

So on the real battlefield, you’ve got recon units and scouts and light cavalry that all play different (but similar) security roles in trying to identify enemy threats on the battlefield before you encounter them the hard way, and enable your forces to react appropriately to newly-detected threats.
On paper, you can get away with (a) violating doctrine, (b) chasing around anything that pops up, (c) ignoring the recon missions of these sorts of units and instead using them as highly-mobile, light combat units.
This skews force ratios from the historical battles, changes the information available to the participants, and introduces all sorts of battlefield wackiness.
What might a system look like that has a main body with a fixed objective, whose recon assets have some more flexibility of maneuver, but who cannot deviate from the base orders without ‘knowledge’ of what else is out there. So if the scouts don’t get high enough on the ridgeline to see the cavalry regiment hiding behind the hill, the corps main body never reacts to it.
How do you designate that route of march? The recon objectives? The triggers between the recon units looking for the enemy and the corps HQs reacting to reports of the enemy and issuing the changes in orders to change the movement?
What sayeth you? How do you keep scouting/recon units in their historical/doctrinal role? How do you limit the knowledge of the HQs such that the scouts are once again the “eyes and ears” of the command without resorting to a double-blind game?

(caveat: I have a Napoleonic frame of reference on this discussion, but it’s more broadly applicable with some changes in terminology)

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