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Metagame in a multiplayer non-persistent game

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I'm currently working on a multiplayer non-persistent turn-based strategy game where a player goes through the process of playing multiple games that are each entirely independent. (For the sake of simplicity, let's say its a 4X game).


I'm trying to build a metagame here, where the player earns some form of currency from each individual match (based on how well he did) to spend in some way shape or form that does not lead to: grinding automatically makes you stronger.


Don't get me wrong, I think that players that win should be able to spend their currency in things that matter, and increase their likelihood to win, but only if they carefully think about what they're spending it on.

In other words, if this were a F2P and the players could purchase that currency, I don't want it to be a Pay2Win.


In the F2P MMOFPS Planetside 2, the in-game currency allows you to purchase what they call 'side-grades' (aka not upgrades) which are essentially guns that are as good on paper as the basic gun you've earned, but which stats are tweaked in such a way that you may prefer handling them than others because they complement your playstyle (high rate of fire with low damage or slow deadly rifle?).


Another system I've seen used in a 4X game was to have each player have a maximum of X abilities points and equip abilities each worth y to z points. Thus, at first, players would start with their default outfit of abilities that totals X ability points, but they could then start to swap in/out some of these abilities as they unlock more, trying to customize their abilities (as they would their deck in a CCG for example) until it matches and complements their playstyle efficiently.

As per the above, this system encourages exploration (unlocking a new ability just to play with it a bit and see if its worth using).


Are there any system you could think of that would work to implement such a metagame system?

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