A Vision for the Future of Wargaming: Damage

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  • A Vision for the Future of Wargaming: Damage

    I've made a few rather negative posts about the atrophy of the statline, the broken and outdated core mechanics such as the to wound table and the problems that are caused by having too many special rules.

    This criticism is only relevant if there is some hope of an alternative solution that removes complexity from the game while adding depth:

    a positive and radical vision for the future.


    =========================================================================================================================

    The future of Damage


    Stat values: all normally range from 1 to 12, plus the infinity symbol for offensive stats
    • of an offensive stat (like Off or Str) always succeeds on a roll of a 1+
    New Dice rolls on a D6
    • 1.5+ means you change half of the 1s (rounding down) into 2s, then the 2s and above succeed. So 111 -> 11 2
    • 6.5+ means you change half of the 6s (rounding down) into 5s, then the 6s succeed. So 666 -> 5 66
    • 1+ means that all values succeed
    • N means that all values fail, you do not need to roll.
    The 1.5+ and 6.5+ rolls allow us to get probabilities of 1/12 and 11/12 on a D6 system in a very simple way, without rerolling.

    New Hit and Wound tables

    to hit and to wound are simplified and presented in a single table with easy to remember breakpoints of +1, +3, +5, +7 and -2, -4, -6, -8



    New scales for Strength and Toughness




    Bursting and Shrinking symbols to replace damage special rules

    The following symbols are used:

    Bursting symbols

    • - means that successful rolls of '6' generate an extra dice (for a total of two) for the next stage of the damage roll.
    • - means that each successful roll of '6' generates two extra dice (for a total of three) for the next stage of the damage roll.
    • etc ...
    • - means that successful rolls of '5' generate an extra dice (for a total of two) for the next stage of the damage roll.
    • - means that each successful roll of '5' generates two extra dice (for a total of three) for the next stage of the damage roll.
    • etc ...
    • means a bursting one - this means that failed save rolls of '1' generate an extra unsaved wound (for a total of two)
    • etc ...
    • means a bursting 5 or 6 - each successful roll of 5 or of 6 generates an extra dice (for a total of two) for the next stage
    • etc ...
    The bursting symbols can be attached to offensive stats: Off, Str, Ap and Ent

    Shrinking symbols
    • a single shrinking symbol - it reduces the number of extra dice on bursting rolls by one, to a minimum of 0
    • two shrinking symbols - it reduces the number of extra dice on bursting rolls by two, to a minimum of 0
    • etc ...
    The idea of the bursting and shrinking symbols is that they give a lot more flexibility to stats, and they have the ability to subsume almost all of the damage mechanics in the game.

    The post was edited 19 times, last by Warboss_R'ok ().

  • Conditional bonuses

    Attacks and attack bonuses often need to be conditional, for example, they need to depend on:
    • Time:
      • Modification applies when charging
      • Modification applies in the first turn
    • Type of enemy
      • Modification applies when fighting smaller troops
    • Amount of troops
      • If steadfast
    • Context: melee attack or ranged attack
      • Ranged



    The most common time dependence is devastating charge, but there are also bonuses that occur if you do not charge (spears, mark of sloth), and bonuses that only occur on the second and subsequent rounds. Then there are bonuses versus large, bonuses versus standard, bonuses versus cavalry.

    These can be indicated in grey underneath the bonus they affect:



    This model has +1 attacks, agi and strength and -1 Res on the charge, it has a bursting hit mechanic against models of smaller size, and it has resistance to bursting hits itself.

    The post was edited 5 times, last by Warboss_R'ok ().

  • Combinatorics

    With the current profiles, there are two Res values for rank and file creatures (3 and 4), and Def values range between 2 and 5, with arm between 1 and 4.

    The number of possible defensive combinations in the profile is then roughly

    2x4x4 = 32

    With the new to-wound table, and the new symbol, this is increased to

    12x12x12 = 1728

    But that doesn't take into account conditions (in grey), which is hard to calculate but probably takes us well over 1,000,000 different profiles

    The post was edited 6 times, last by Warboss_R'ok ().

  • Some example profiles:

    Goblin Spearmen with infantry shield:



    Explanation: A spear grants the strength and +2 AP and +2 Agi when receiving a charge. Arm 2 comes from light armour and an infantry shield. The (1|1) in supporting attacks means that two supporting ranks get to fight, with 1 extra attack each.

    Common orc with infantry shield:



    Explanation: The basic orc has Res 5 and Def 2. The infantry shield grants +1 Arm and, when used without a spear or other special weapon, +2 Def. The orc gets Str +1 when steadfast and +1 Agi when charging.


    Basic human with paired weapons and heavy armour:




    Sword Master:




    Meaning of burst in each stat:

    • Off - multi-pronged attack, difficult to parry
    • Off - stomp, chariot impact, impossible to parry
    • Str - piercing damage, difficult to survive due to resilience
    • Str - poison damage, extremely difficult to survive due to resilience
    • AP - concussive damage, bypasses armour


    Meaning of in each stat:

    • Def - ability to dodge a melee attack completely
    • Res - tough constitution, multiple redundant organs, resistant to piercing and poison
    • Arm - shock absorbent armour, resistant to concussive attacks


    Some example weapon effects:

    • Spear: .................................. Att + (1), Def -2, Str +, : AP +2 , Agi +2,
    • Great Mace/Great Hammer:......... two-hands, Agi 0 , AP +1
    • Greatsword:............................ two-hands, Agi 0 , Str +1
    • Elven Greatsword: .................... two-hands, Str +1
    • Great Axe/Great Cleaver:............ two-hands, Agi 0, Str +2, AP +2
    • Halberd: ................................ two-hands, Str + , AP +1
    • Paired Weapons ....................... two-hands, Off +, Att +1
    • Mace or war hammer: ................ Def -2, AP +
    • Axe or cleaver: ........................ Def -2, Str + 1, AP +1
    • Shortsword, cudgel, club, dagger: . (no effect)
    • Infantry Shield: ........................ Def +2, Arm +1
    • Buckler: ................................. Def +2
    • Cavalry Shield: ......................... Arm +1



    @DJWoodelf @Adam @WhammeWhamme @Squirrelloid @Sir_Joker I'd be interested in your feedback on this if you have time!

    The post was edited 36 times, last by Warboss_R'ok ().

  • So all combat modifiers become rolling 6's?

    If so what would be a likely use of shields? Shrinking on defense?

    What does Ap 0 *Bursting 1* mean? Is it that you roll an armor save with no modifiers and for each one you roll you suffer multi-wounds 2?

    Given these things would you still have re-rolls as modifiers, would you also still have things like +1 STR or -1 DS. If so what are you replacing with this new system?

    How would this work with fear/psychology modifiers? Dis *Bursting* what does that look like?

    If you have bursting on 5's but due to stat differences need to roll 6's to succeed what happens on a roll of 5?
    Same with 6.5, Does that mean only 50% of your 6's burst?

    You say you want to remove special attacks so for something like chariots what would be the solution. How would impact hits be represented. I can clearly see how stomp or grind would be represented.

    What is the advantage of restricting the values of the stats to the values you mentioned? Does that just make units more homogeneous?

    And lastly for this change to actually be implemented, can you show that this is an easier to remember, or requires less dice rolls, or some other reason why this change would be worthwhile considering the huge change fatigue being suffered by the community?
    #freekillerinstinct
  • duxbuse wrote:

    So all combat modifiers become rolling 6's?
    It could be rolling a 5 or 6, or it could be +1 or +2, or it could be rerolling failures

    duxbuse wrote:

    If so what would be a likely use of shields? Shrinking on defense?
    I think it's best that a shield grants +2 Def straight up. "Ignore parry" is then Off , and stomps/grinds are Off .

    Def represents the ability of particularly agile models to avoid collision entirely, rather than to parry it. It would be seen on certain elves, for example.

    The post was edited 3 times, last by Warboss_R'ok ().

  • duxbuse wrote:

    What does Ap 0 *Bursting 1* mean? Is it that you roll an armor save with no modifiers and for each one you roll you suffer multi-wounds 2?
    Yes, exactly!

    duxbuse wrote:

    Given these things would you still have re-rolls as modifiers, would you also still have things like +1 STR or -1 DS.
    Yes, rerolls are still possible as spell effects, and you can still have a modifier like +1 or -1 or +2 etc.

    duxbuse wrote:

    If you have bursting on 5's but due to stat differences need to roll 6's to succeed what happens on a roll of 5?
    only rolls that would go through to the next stage can burst, I should have been clear about this.

    duxbuse wrote:

    You say you want to remove special attacks so for something like chariots what would be the solution
    You mean impact hits? Well, for a chariot you might have two model parts, and the impact hits would be represented as Att 4 Off 4 *5/6* *5/6* Agi 10

    duxbuse wrote:

    How would this work with fear/psychology modifiers? Dis *Bursting* what does that look like?
    Psychology and movement are not things that I've decided on, I'm focusing on damage here.

    duxbuse wrote:

    If you have bursting on 5's but due to stat differences need to roll 6's to succeed what happens on a roll of 5?
    Same with 6.5, Does that mean only 50% of your 6's burst?
    Modification of dice for half rolls is considered to be part of the roll so the unmodified halves are never seen by the rest of the game. That means that when you have 6.5 to hit with bursting, only 1/12 of the dice will be sixes so only 1/12 of then will burst.


    duxbuse wrote:

    What is the advantage of restricting the values of the stats to the values you mentioned? Does that just make units more homogeneous?
    I don't understand this? I'm asking for more stat values, not less???

    duxbuse wrote:

    And lastly for this change to actually be implemented, can you show that this is an easier to remember, or requires less dice rolls, or some other reason why this change would be worthwhile considering the huge change fatigue being suffered by the community?
    Yes, the advantage is that you can tear up about 30 pages of special rules and special rules interactions and just write stuff on the profile.

    No more messing around with "does this spell affect this special attack or not?" or "Can I use this attack to bypass a challenge?", because all damage and all modification to damage is within the same system

    It also allows for a huge variety of not seen before designs with minimal complexity cost, because you just put the symbols in the appropriate place.

    For example,

    • there are now *degrees* of poison
    • there are degrees of immunity to poison
    • there's something like a hollow point bullet / expanding arrow blades effect with Str bursting fives
    • we get a dodge mechanism (counter to impact hits and stomps) for free
    • you can have concussion attacks from a blunt weapon that are particularly good against high armour, which fixes a longstanding problem where 6+ armour saves were seen as useless because everyone has AP
  • yoye wrote:

    it jsut feels too complicated compared to the system we are all used to, which base has not change in over 30 years...
    It seems complicated, but is it really that difficult compared to the existing rules?

    Maybe as an exercise, try to write out all the existing rules covering damage, including all the army book specialities, and you'll see just how complex the existing system is.
  • I think that it is great, first of all moving special rules to statline is great because you see all the stuff you need in your army list, so you do not need to check what exactly does stuff do.

    Moreover it opens up creating really interesting combinations (so is great for fluffy players because units would be far more customizable by designers and not limited by a moderate scope of special rules)

    And finally stats scale better so you can increase differentiation between units there.

    All in all amazing proposal.
    My gallery: Adam painting stuff (HbE, VC and lots of terrain)
    My battle reports: Adam Battle reports
    Sea Guard homebrew: Sea Guard
  • @Warboss_R'ok
    well what shall I say.

    The good:
    totally agree to your tendency of future vision....mostly also in detail....like
    a) reduce complicated special rules and instead add mor stat modifier.
    b) why does the list of BRB weapons get reduced more and more while at the same time every army gets more and more equipment. I dont want to learn 16 army books. Instead a compendium of weapons would make it much more useful. Several armies making use of the same weapons
    c) add wider spread of statlines

    The bad:
    I doubt your vision will ever make it into the rules. So you better create a homebrew set while your work rather cries for a completely different ruleset.

    The ugly:
    Why do I say this? I was RTS for 2 years but the sub forum that could have been a great source for improvement processes in the end was nothing else than a parallel universe.....I pile of wasted time.
    So my advice: dont waste too much time for great immersive ideas that will die as ideas.


    Nevertheless: awesome work. :thumbup:

    Quick Starter Team

    Playtester


  • DJWoodelf wrote:

    Nevertheless: awesome work.
    Thanks!

    DJWoodelf wrote:

    the sub forum that could have been a great source for improvement processes in the end was nothing else than a parallel universe.....I pile of wasted time.
    That is very sad. I remember trying to sort through all the suggestions there, there was a LOT of stuff.

    I think one problem is that it's quite hard to define what counts as an improvement in a complex game with multiple different objectives, and because of that it's hard to generate a consensus that "yes it would be better if we did X", even if X would be a massive improvement.

    Another thing is that people find it hard to do a mental cost-benefit analysis of a change, so they resort to rough-and-ready heuristics like:
    • "if something new was proposed, it's too complex"
    • "if something is being taken away, it's oversimplification".
    This results in extremely inefficient situations where rules with very low value per unit complexity are kept, but rules with very high value per complexity are rejected.
  • Dunno if I understood all. What does the 5 into star mean? Or is it suposed to be a 6?

    Neverthrless, it looks strange, but for sure it would do after 66% of my life used to the current way of doing things. The best part, tons of diferent weapons.

    Maybe it iscompletly out of question, but wouldn't it be even easier with a D8 or D10 sistem? After 500€ in army, 20€ in dices is affordable, I think.
  • Manxol wrote:

    What does the 5 into star mean?
    means that each successful roll of 5 generates another dice for the next stage.

    So,
    • if you have Off 3 against Def 3, then you need a 4+ to hit, BUT you get two hits for each roll of 5.
    • if you have Str 3 against Res 3, then you need a 4+ to wound, BUT you get two wounds for each roll of 5.
    does that make sense?
  • Manxol wrote:

    Maybe it iscompletly out of question, but wouldn't it be even easier with a D8 or D10 sistem?
    I don't think so.

    using the 6.5+ and 1.5+ rolls you can get an 8.3% probability and a 91.7% probability.

    Having more probability resolution in the middle of the range is actually unnecessary, but it would impose an additional burden of rolling and selecting from more complex dice. I think it would be a lot harder to remove the 6s and below from a big D10 roll than removing the 4s and below from a big D6 roll.

    Maybe it would be good to transition to D12s though, with sides 0, 1, 2, 2, 3, 3, 4, 4, 5, 5, 6, 7. But it would still be a lot harder to read them in large batches, which is huge advantage for D6s.

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Warboss_R'ok ().