Game Development Continued…

One of the nice things about being plugged into the BattleShop and DriveThruRPG systems is that I get emails every time a purchase/download is made. I’ve been very pleasantly surprised by the volume of downloads for free The Channel Campaign PDF. I’ve also noticed people starting to post comments and questions on the forums, which is great; will be diving in there in a few days to start providing some feedback.

In the meantime on our end, while it took longer than I thought it would, we’ve finally got a new round of playtesting underway to fully determine whether or not we’ve found a permanent fix for the “small ships a little too hard too kill, big ships a little too easy.”

The basic concept was not to go in and make huge changes. After all, small ships fighting against each other felt good and large ships also are solid. It’s simply the combination of them that ultimately may be lacking. So simply modifying Breach Numbers and/or Weapons Dice could not only be messy, but could ultimately really mess up the rest of the game balance. Doesn’t mean ‘some’ such tweaking may not happen, but going a different route means minimizes how much of that may need to occur latter.

Instead, we’ve settled on tying a new mechanic directly to the “Type” of ship. In other words, currently on any Ship Card, the upper right-hand corner ‘box’ contains no real rules. Yes, it states the Type of ship and the in-universe name that applies to that Type (i.e. Light Cruiser, BattleShip and so on), but it’s not really direct game related. We’re now looking at adding some details there that will have direct game application.

In a nutshell, what we’re playtesting is small guns on big ships have an easier time hitting smaller ships, while small guns over-all have less effect against big ships.

Ultimately we won’t know for a month or so if this really does the job. However, I’m really liking the mechanic.

  • It doesn’t mess with any pre-existing Weapon Dice/Breach Numbers.
  • It’s still completely visual based and so can easily be reviewed as part of the process of adding up all your dice to make your Breach Roll.
  • By divorcing it from the specific stats of a weapon and typing it to the Ship Type, it means that we can also tweak it here and there for a given named-ship, making it even easier to provide variance between ships.
  • It actually fits rather well with the “real-world” guns vs. armor of the time period.

I’ll provide some more updates on that in a few weeks to let you know how it’s going.

In the meantime, keep enjoying The Channel Campaign and keep those comments flowing!

See ya next duty shift!

Randall

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