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The_Con-Sept

The game of Atom or "Adam"

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Before I begin, this game is something that was once available in a now dysfunctional, unrecoverable, and above all unplayable game in its current state of affairs. Not legal by the way.

 

I wanted to recreate this game because I miss it so much. And I feel that this game had so much potential behind it. I thought this game would be a go to game for most of the players of the now dead PlayStation Home. As it turns out the game was not that big of a deal. But enough history. There is only one video of the gameplay shown located here:

This is all that the game had. And because I suffered from a poor internet connection, most of the time I would DC from a match. It ticked me off because if you lose the match, the winner gets to pick ONE of your cards as a reward. (You can begin to see where people who play the game for free would either stay away from this game, or find a way to make other players disconnect from it to steal everyone's cards.)

 

Now I did end up finding out who helped to create this game and he does have a webpage.

http://www.davidbrewin.com/hexalon-village/

I have tried contacting this person to ask a few simple questions. Such as: Are you ever going to release this game on a different platform? Did this game die with PS Home? And above all I tried to tell him that I wanted to create a similar game. I even asked if he even uses that email anymore. I tried to get a response but so far: NOTHING. Console.WriteLine("Why do I even bother?");

Well After getting 0 responses from all 6 attempts... I had to do some research. . . And as such it lead me to another dead end, or at least a Wikipedia page that has 0 more information on this game. It does not even link it to PS Home which is funny in of its own right.

 

SO. That is the history of this game. THE WHY at least. Why I want to create this game.

 

And I have already laid out plans as to what I want to do with this simple idea. I have the complete text file here up to what I believe is the most written out idea of how this game should work. But of course I fear that someone else might try to steal it and or create it before I do. So setting that fear aside for a moment I wanted to discuss with people how they would go about playing this game. With the above shown I came up with a different way of playing the game. You still have six sides, but the first version I wanted to do the following:

In the same respect as this game puts it, attacking and winning over another tile makes that tile switch its affinity to your side, or team I should say. And the tiles can be endlessly flipped back and forth like OTHELLO: 

 

Each side of these hexagonal tiles have a die, or dice assigned to them. Mainly being polyhedral dice. For the sake of simplicity I wanted to play the game more chance like. Where as each time you placed one of these Hexagonal "TILES," we will call them, it would initiate a roll for each side. And those numbers are set at the time the tile is placed. Each side has different combinations of dice on them so it could make the numbers on that side high, or low. But you always have a guarantee that none of them would =0.

My first thoughts on this was "Randomly generating numbers on each side of a tile as they drop can be frustrating. Especially if you want players to strategize where they place their tiles on the board. Leaving it up entirely on chance when placing the tiles to set it in stone would just make players angry when they get a roll they don't like, especially if they have the ability to go from 1-20 and it lands on a 1.

The second version of the same idea went like this: You place the tile in the field, but the adjacent tiles face would initiate that side, or face, of the tile to roll and set a number. While still leaving it up to chance. Where you could have someone try to strategize where they want to place their tile with a certain face going up against another face that has a die of only 1-6, but your side has 1-12 against his. However you are leaving your 1-4 side out in the open so to speak. But then the same argument comes up... Leaving it up entirely to chance would only get players mad. Because if they once again roll a 1 with a 1-12 die, they would rage quit the game. I can already hear the complaints from it stemming from the first version.

Well then I thought... what if the player can "tombstone" the tiles before play?

Ah... Setting a value of each tile would allow players to devise strategies of their own in a deck of around 18 tiles. I didn't want to do too many tiles for this game because I did not want players to go on an endless quest to defeat their opponents. I thought that having too many tiles would result in matches lasting for hours, when they should only take roughly 30 minutes.

but I still wanted to add in that element of chance. So I wanted the players to only have access to 3 tiles. And up to 5 to hold. Which of course is so arbitrary as people are used to holding at least 5-7 cards in other games. And shuffling their decks of tiles. But I wanted to have the ability to clinch a match early if the player is unable to place any tiles for three rounds. We could call those turnovers instead of strikes, or strokes, or what ever sports calls a missed turn.

So then I began to think up of ways to make this game fun to play, but also a strategic one. While also adding in mystery, and chance to the game. It evolved over the past 3 months now and I believe I have a winning combination, I just need to have people's opinion on this matter. not a technical or mechanical, but just overall opinion on this idea.

So the final version of it is this: Each player has Tiles that range from a base of X1 to X12 (At the beginning) This base multiplies the sides by that number. When they "tombstone" their cards, they can pay points to "re-roll" them, They get more points by sacrificing tiles they no longer want or need. That way they can attempt to power up a high card like a base 12 to get the high numbers they really want. That is all of the chance part. Then they create their decks of tiles using what they have available and go up against other players.

 

Each has 18 tiles in their decks and they place them on the board. Attacking tiles attempt to flip over any adjacent, and any chained tiles behind them going in the same direction so long as they have enough remaining after the initial capture to flip them. Otherwise it ends early. You also have the ability to destroy tiles on the field to open them up and place another one of yours in its place, or elsewhere on the map. You go until everyone placed every tile on the board, or the three strikes your out rule applies. However many tiles are in favor of one player or another at that time declares the winner. And just like the original hex, the winner gets to chose a tile of the opposing player to keep.

 

That is the idea I cam e up with. Of course I can see people getting mad over losing a tile, but this would be for ranked mode. Gotta give them a good reason to bring their a-game to ranked. Of course I could always do a legacy ranked mode where you do not lose your cards, but you can only have 14 tiles in a deck. Shorter game. What do you guys think of this idea? of course this game would have players purchasing more tiles if they run out, or getting free packs every month. Even playing during certain festivals people still have a chance at getting free tiles.

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4 hours ago, The_Con-Sept said:

What do you guys think of this idea?

That it is too bloated. I got half way into reading this and gave up.

Maybe a simpler summary of the game would allow us to help you more. Think of the way you would introduce the game to a new player and we are the new players.

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So you want me to be more vague?

I am already as vague as a shadowy character hidden in the background of a title screen for a new game. Considering the text file explaining in full detail, up to this very moment what I want to do with this game, has over 9,405 words. And I have not even finished explaining past the part I have already gotten to!

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This does not seem like a deck-building game to me, better to let the game randomly generate a new tile whenever a player plays one of the available (3) tiles then let the other player play from those (same 2 + 1 new) available tiles.

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17 hours ago, The_Con-Sept said:

So you want me to be more vague?

No, the exact opposite, I want you to explain better with less words. :)

 

It is bad design to force plyers to sit through a 15 min tutorial. It is also the worst known way to explain something.

Think of reading a text book from start to end, how much would you remember? Now think of the same text book, but now you read a topic and do the given exercises, then move to the next topic.

 

Explaining the game to us is your first step in developing this game.

Edited by Scouting Ninja

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It does not seem like one at first. But what I want to do with the tiles is add values to them just like how it was shown in the video.

 

You see the idea is to use Hexagons with numbers on each of its 6 faces, but each face has a different polyhedral die or dice (2 or 3). The idea is the same setup as any other deck building game: Trying to find the best tiles. However these cards are not, in and of themselves, a standardized tile. This is where the traditional trading card game and my game become different.

 

The chance is in the process of tomb-stoning (engraving) the tiles.

 

For example you have 1 tile in front of you with a base of 6. This base number multiplies all of the outcomes of each face by 6. This means this card can not possibly have any sides lower than the number 6 for any side seeing how each polyhedral die starts at a value of 1. But each face has a die, or dice. You could have:

-1 of the faces with just a 1-6 die,

-another face has a 1-4 die,

-the next face has two 1-6 dice,

-

-the next two faces both have a 1-8 die,

-and the final face has a 1-12 die.

However where these die's end up on each face is left up to chance. Which means they can be in several different configurations. the 1-4 dice might be at the top, the bottom, the upper or lower left, or the upper or lower right side. Assuming that each tile is to be played where the bottom and top face are perfectly horizontal.

Which means you have to place your tiles strategically so that you flip over the other tiles, at least as many as you can, with the numbers on each of the faces controlling the outcome.

but this process of tomb-stoning (engraving) the tiles requires points that you generate from sacrificing tiles you no longer need. You also win tiles from other players, but only 1 tile at a time in ranked mode. So you have to be a good player if you want to keep all of your tiles. (Honestly this idea is in the original hex game. And bottle caps, or pogs, also had a mechanic similar to this.)

When you finally unpack a set of 15 tiles from a tile pack, just like opening a pack of any TCG you get 15 cards at random values, you can get up to a base 12 from any pack at a certain chance value. This is where the simplicity gets a little complex. Because you know you have a base of up to 12, but you have yet to tombstone (engrave) them. at this time you roll the dies on each side until you can not re roll, or wish not to re roll any more. They become tomb-stoned tiles (engraved.) You could have the same tile above have all the dies land on a value in the top 75% for each side and have quite a tile to place into the battlefield. But you have to chance it each and every time.

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Treat your design as a description of a huge possibility space (you are more defining a whole new sub-genre of games at this point, not a specific implementation).

Treat each mechanic/feature/numeric value/constraint (or lack of constraint), as a possibility space of its own. Distribution of complexity across a game has a huge impact on everything, so perhaps a 2D table with complexity on one axis and potential implementations on the other, could be used to map out a bunch of extremes. That creative process, and analyzing those, and finding connections (synergies, potential flaws) across different aspects of the game, would build a good understanding of your "sub-genre". Importantly, this is really easy to do (compared to actual implementation), and will help with design of future games.

Once you have such an understanding, you have flexibility to navigate the possibility space of what your game could end up as, in search for a local maximum, while avoiding bad gameplay.

Necessarily, your initial design will not work as is, so this sort of navigation is necessary. To actually do it, you will need iteration/playtesting over multiple variants (again, mapping things out).

At some point these decisions will start collapsing to complete games (once you figure out which variants of which mechanics work well together over time). You could end up with more than one game, too.

So my suggestion is relax/expand your design into a possibility space to ensure at least some of the games within that possibility space are good (and then its just a question of finding them through experimentation) - not so risky anymore.

And also figure out how you are going to do the testing/prototyping in a way that allows for evaluating many of those variations and possible configurations, experimentally (not just honing in on a single result, but really branching out there).

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34 minutes ago, Waterlimon said:

Snipped but read. -TCS

I understand. But at this point I am still trying to figure out what will work. I have already tried to talk about it with some of my co-workers, but explaining this to them leaves them confused. My 9,000 word text document expresses ON PAPER in full detail what I want to do with this game. but before I go any further I am left asking my own critical questions on how I want this game to be played. of course there is a problem of hosting pictures on the web now where I can't simply just upload the photos I got to help explain things. Instead I have to rely on text. (Photobucket has me blocked on my own profile so I can't host any more images.)

So I am wondering if there are players out there who can sort of make the connection I am trying to show using those two videos to help them identify what I want to do, but explaining how my game is going to handle things differently. Right now it is all numbers based. no "elemental" attacks. It is just a basic form of this game right now. But I am wondering what I should do gameplay wise to keep players interested in it for at least as LONG as 30 minutes, but far less time per battle with their decks. I didn't want to do 64 tiles with each side having a different numerical value to do battle with because I fear players would feel more fetigued playing it than actually enjoying it. So lowering the tile cdount to 18 sounds, at least on paper, like it wouldn't have people too bored playing it. But at the same time still giving players a chance to fix a mistake they have made on the board. but also adding that pressure of only being able to hold on to 3 to 5 tiles at a time instead of 7.

 

I have already thought about spinning the tiles before you place them and decided that the tiles should not be able to twist or turn. You must have a tile that has the values you need in your deck in order to attack certain other tiles. It also adds a tremendous amount of value to each tile.

 

In my own mind playing this game in my own head I can already see different styles of gameplay where players would try to build decks that attack only in a few different directions, and have their weakest spots on the faces adjacent to them to keep other players from simply attacking that point. Then you would have players with a different attack style that goes up or down for example the could really ruin your day if you are not careful. Having a well rounded deck might not be the best option.

 

When it comes to attacking (placing a players tile into the field) it has the ability to not only flip over the tiles in the adjacent space, but the ability to chain flip the tiles behind it if the number on that face is high enough to attack the next tile in the series.

 

in the first video shown in the opening post above near the 4:03 marker the commentator places his tile into the field. The side that is attacking is 3. it is able to flip over the tile because its face on that side has a vlue of 1. But it also flipped over the next tile, whose face value on that side was 2. but it also flipped over the final tile that had a value of 3 on that face. He made a chain capture.

In my game, seeing how the numeric values will be much higher, and can possibly reach into the hundreds, I wanted it to be more math based where as the numeric values of the defending tiles face in the same direction subtract from the attacking face's numeric value.

So using that same time stamp in that video above imagin that tile he is placing, on that side has a value of.... 87. And the three tiles that get flipped over in that video have a numeric value on its defending faces at: 12, 44, and 52. So the attacking face hits the 12 face and the remaining attacking power is now at 65. The next tile to defend is at 44 but it still gets flipped over. now the attacking face value for the third would not happen as the attacking power has now been reduced to 21. so 21 going against 52 it does not get flipped. It stops there.

 

Also sorry Scouting Ninja... I can only write walls of text.

Edited by The_Con-Sept

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8 hours ago, The_Con-Sept said:

My 9,000 word text document expresses ON PAPER in full detail what I want to do with this game

You must find a MUCH shorter and clearer way to explain yourself - or, accept you will have to do this entirely alone.

Regarding your initial question - you don't need 90% of the rambling pre-amble that leads up to your actual question. Summarise your situation, giving only enough information to make your question clear, then ask it. Remove the stuff that is irrelevant. For example, nobody cares about your old poor internet connection, who made the original game, how many times you contacted him. It is not relevant. You don't need more pictures to explain, you need less text.

Regarding your 9,000 word text document - nobody is going to read it. You need to find a way to describe the core of the game much more succinctly than that. Note that the Wikipedia page for Othello manages to describe all the essential game rules in 5 sentences. You should be able to do the same.

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14 hours ago, The_Con-Sept said:

You see the idea is to use Hexagons...

Much better explained, in this text. Still bloated but much better.

Your game sounds like a great idea for a mobile game, the depth will be a huge bonus.

I think you should make your version with your own IP. Change the theme and bring the game to new players.

 

14 hours ago, The_Con-Sept said:

Also sorry Scouting Ninja... I can only write walls of text.

I get this, I do the same but with images. For me I pick the best looking images to show others, you need to find a thing that works for you

At the moment it is a bit much and people will get bored reading.

 

@Kylotan makes a very good point on unneeded info, for example:

Quote

I decided to place a bright yellow light behind in the hallway, where a player will see it, so that way I can draw the player's attention to the right path.

VS

A bright, light is placed in the hallway, to focus a player's attention on the right path.

 

If you need to share images, you can use Imgur and you can also upload here directly.

Edited by Scouting Ninja

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