RMMV Deck/Card Combat System Feedback

Discussion in 'Ideas and Prototypes' started by Skidoosh, Oct 25, 2018.

  1. Skidoosh

    Skidoosh Warper Member

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    Hello!

    So this is my first time using RPG Maker and first time making an actual game with it. I have done tutorials and made simple maps to get a general gist of the system, so as far as making a side view battler/dungeon crawl game I'm good.

    My question is if this combat system I have in mind is even feasible, or if I'm on the right track, or if I should change it up.

    So the gist is, in this card game your character plays as an "Avatar" which is a barebones representation of them, both players have the same HP and stats at the beginning. The deck that you build deals out cards. say 4 or 5, which define what you can do that turn. This can be something as simple as attacking or using a spell and then at the end of the turn you draw another card. The depth in the game comes from some of the cards can be gear, like a sword, or shield, that changes your characters stats like increasing attack damage or defense. You can also get cards that are special attacks like "Double Slash" that may require the sword card to be in effect to use.

    The idea is that your character doesn't have a "class" but rather the deck you build defines what your character is. A lot of spells and spell enhancing equipment would make you more "wizard" and more weapons and abilities more "warrior" and of course you could blend the deck to have a little of both to make some "spellsword" hybrid. This would add a lot of flexibility and fun customization with a deck building system and you could have different decks built for different styles of play.

    With this premise the match should start off with you and your opponent being mundane. But, as you get your cards you build out your character, both getting stronger as the match progresses, towards the climactic finish you are both pretty powerful and strategic use of abilities will be the key to winning.

    I wanted to steer away from the old "summoning monsters" card game and focus on something different. I feel as though this system could be a lot of fun, but of course everything runs perfect in your own head.

    Anyways would love to get some outside thoughts on this, also if anyone could point me in the right direction to even make a card system a thing.

    Cheers!
     
    #1
  2. Soryuju

    Soryuju Combat Balance Enthusiast Veteran

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    So as a disclaimer, I’ve never designed a card-based battle system myself, but here are some questions I thought of as I read through:

    - Are you going to have a resource system of any sort involved? If not, is there any reason for a player not to just use their strongest cards as soon as they draw them?

    - Since you’re not including monsters and haven’t mentioned other obstacles to slow down players, it sounds like both players will have the ability to continually attack each other. What mechanics will prevent each game from turning into a simple damage race?

    - Does each player have limited equipment “slots?” If I draw three Swords and a Spellbook in my opening hand, can I equip all of them? If not, what happens to the older equipment?

    - Am I correct in assuming that equipping gear consumes your action for the turn?

    - How many cards are in a deck? What happens if you deck out? Do you automatically lose, or get to reshuffle your discard pile, or something else?

    - Are you going to include any utility spells? I mean things like cards which provide deck searches/extra draws, force opponents to discard, etc.

    - If you hope for players to run hybrid decks, how will you incentivize these playstyles? The general success of hybrid decks varies significantly across different card games, and reading through your mechanics here, I’m not sure I see how your system is friendly to “Spellsword” playstyles. Since you’ve made a point to distinguish physical and magical attacks/equipment, I’m assuming the two run off of different attacking stats (or otherwise basically everything would be a Spellsword). The general goal seems to be to use equipment to raise your attack power as high as you feasibly can and then use the corresponding ability cards to beat down your opponent. But if this is the case, when is it a smart move to build a deck which splits its offensive boosts? You’ll have more dead draws and almost always fall behind the damage output of an opponent who chooses to specialize instead.

    Since I don’t have a full picture of what you’re planning, this may be a useless suggestion, but maybe you could have different phases for playing spells and using physical skills each turn. Physical attackers could run utility/healing spells to use during their spell phase and focus on dealing damage in the physical phase, and vice-versa for mages. Maybe this extra phase could also be used for equipping gear, which would speed up the pace of battles compared to spending your only action on raising stats. Spellsword playstyles would be more viable in this sort of system because they’d be able to use relatively powerful attacks in both phases instead of in just one and enjoy a mix of physical/magical utility, but their individual attacks would be weaker, and spending actions to equip gear or use utility actions would reverse their offensive advantage.

    Anyways, that’s a lot for now. I hope this provided some useful food for thought!
     
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  3. Skidoosh

    Skidoosh Warper Member

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    First of all, thank you so much for the reply! I'll try to answer each of your questions:

    "-Are you going to have a resource system of any sort involved? If not, is there any reason for a player not to just use their strongest cards as soon as they draw them?"

    Q1: I was contemplating a resource system, something like either "stamina" or "mana" to prevent situations like playing their entire hand or like you said just the strongest card every time. Haven't fleshed it out yet whether it would be something like Magic's tapped lands, Hearthstones crystals, or something unique.

    "-Since you’re not including monsters and haven’t mentioned other obstacles to slow down players, it sounds like both players will have the ability to continually attack each other. What mechanics will prevent each game from turning into a simple damage race?"

    Q2: Good question, the idea of the game however is that the two player's will basically keep attacking each other each round, but the use of abilities to either negate damage, heal themselves, or some other variation to keep the match going. I imagine it as a PvP match between two players that just been dissected into a card game format. For example there could be action cards played like "Guard" or "Evade" which could negate the next attack, and those could be countered with something like a "Feint" card or a spell with an effect that states it cant be avoided.

    "-Does each player have limited equipment “slots?” If I draw three Swords and a Spellbook in my opening hand, can I equip all of them? If not, what happens to the older equipment?"

    Q3: Another good one, either they can equip everything and the effects just stack or the armor can have abilities of effects tied to them that when something new is equipped it activates the ability before returning to the discard pile. Definitely something to think about.

    "-Am I correct in assuming that equipping gear consumes your action for the turn?"

    Q4: Correct, right now in this drawing board format I am thinking that equipping would be an action for the turn. Unless I can come up with something better.

    "-How many cards are in a deck? What happens if you deck out? Do you automatically lose, or get to reshuffle your discard pile, or something else?"

    Q5: Deck size I'm not sure of yet, but conventionally the sweet spot in card games appear to be 30-60. Since the game's premise is that your character is using these abilities they are not permanently gone so there would be a discard pile that once you run out of cards you would reshuffle. There also would be cards with effects to go into the discard pile and retrieve lost cards. Say if your opponent used an ability to disarm your weapon to be discarded, you could retrieve it using another card.

    "-Are you going to include any utility spells? I mean things like cards which provide deck searches/extra draws, force opponents to discard, etc."

    Q6: Absolutely, those cards in my opinion are what can make games most interesting and truely set two decks apart.

    "- If you hope for players to run hybrid decks, how will you incentivize these playstyles? The general success of hybrid decks varies significantly across different card games, and reading through your mechanics here, I’m not sure I see how your system is friendly to “Spellsword” playstyles. Since you’ve made a point to distinguish physical and magical attacks/equipment, I’m assuming the two run off of different attacking stats (or otherwise basically everything would be a Spellsword). The general goal seems to be to use equipment to raise your attack power as high as you feasibly can and then use the corresponding ability cards to beat down your opponent. But if this is the case, when is it a smart move to build a deck which splits its offensive boosts? You’ll have more dead draws and almost always fall behind the damage output of an opponent who chooses to specialize instead."

    Q7: Another good thought. This is just an idea but I was considering a system of say a warrior equipping armor would raise physical defense but do nothing for magic defence, unless the armor specifically does. This would maybe in the situation with a spellsword, give the spellsword opportunities for extra damage by using magic to bypass the opponent warrior's armor, while still having her own physical protection against his physical attacks. In this situation the pure warrior deck would have to find a way to either overpower his opponent or negate the magic abilities somehow.

    "Since I don’t have a full picture of what you’re planning, this may be a useless suggestion, but maybe you could have different phases for playing spells and using physical skills each turn. Physical attackers could run utility/healing spells to use during their spell phase and focus on dealing damage in the physical phase, and vice-versa for mages. Maybe this extra phase could also be used for equipping gear, which would speed up the pace of battles compared to spending your only action on raising stats. Spellsword playstyles would be more viable in this sort of system because they’d be able to use relatively powerful attacks in both phases instead of in just one and enjoy a mix of physical/magical utility, but their individual attacks would be weaker, and spending actions to equip gear or use utility actions would reverse their offensive advantage."

    Q8: I love the idea and definitely going to consider that style of play. This is exactly the advice i'm looking for so thank you for the suggestion!

    Awesome information and excellent feedback, I appreciate it!
     
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