Last time, I talked about how the Dungeon in my work in progress will work. Today, it’s a matter of talking about the Encounter part of the dungeon.
After all, what good is an adventure without a little danger?
Each dungeon card will define how many monsters of what relative power will appear, but the Encounter decks will determine just what types of things your plucky band of rogues will face down.
The encounter decks will be arranged by ‘level’ which is mostly just a convenient way to keep you from facing the boss in the first room or a couple of goblins with rusty daggers in the last.
These decks would be assembled before the game with specific creatures to help the ‘theme’ of the dungeon. This allows the game to be expanded if it works well, but also presents an easy ‘boxed game’ for the people who don’t want to expand it. But those goals matter less to the immediate design, what makes an encounter card?
I’ve got two ideas I plan to test: monsters and traps.
Monsters are the thing that make combat. They’ll need all the statistics the raiders will have. Right now, I know I need a damage stat, a life stat, I want to make armor important, initiative, and range. Only four stats, and one of them isn’t going to be very important except to keep the game flowing.
Damage is pretty simple: It’s how much pain a monster can dish out. Without traditional attack rolls, this number is fairly predictable, making each combat more like a competitive puzzle
Life is another simple one: If you take damage equal to your life, you’re dead. Or the monster is.
Armor is where things get a little tricky. Because there aren’t attack rolls, armor can only affect one thing, which is damage. As a direct ‘debuff’ to damage, it’s essentially multiple points of life over time. This means low level monsters aren’t likely to be able to have it, since it puts them outside of the capabilities of early game heroes.
Initiative is only there to keep turns moving, and mix up how things attack. I don’t plan on including a lot of initiative manipulation cards in the players tools, so the printed value is it.
The final value, range, allows weapons to differentiate more than just damage and their associated ability, and allows an extra element to combat, namely abstract positioning.
Traps, on the other hand, will be more passive threats, things like spinning blades, needle traps, collapsing walls, that only affect a combatant if they are unlucky. This will use the dice mechanics ‘whiff’ effects to apply attacks and other effects to combatants.
Next time, I’ll cover the rough copy of the combat rules so you can see how these statistics interact.