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Design Diary | Mech Battle V2 02/08/2022

It's been a while since I last wrote one of these. To be more consistent, I think I need to break down the process to be a little simpler and put less effort into these. They should be word dumps with simple screenshots. The whole point is for reflection and self-assessment, not thought-provoking journalistic insights on the board game industry, eh?

So, things have changed since the last iteration. After playing both Snap Ship Tactics and War Chest on TTS, I think the biggest realization was that I was compromising on the initial image of the board game that I had. This needed to be fixed, even though we've gone down a deep hole of edits and compromises in terms of the board design. In a sweep, we're back to the drawing board, and this quick re-prototype feels like an entirely different game. Half worried that it's the wrong direction. But any direction is better than no direction.

The biggest change was going back to customizable parts. However, instead of drafting or starting with nothing, each Mech would start with basic parts and 1 simple unique ability.

There was also the decision to halve movement and halve HP. What I originally thought was flexibility and a large spatially complex map ended up just being meaningless hexes and steps. By decreasing the hex space and decreasing movement speeds, single spaces end up having more weight, which is important. In chess, the pawn moves a single step, and that makes or breaks your position and formation. Each hex space is not as important as that, but it's closer.

Another reversion was the action system. Now, each item has an action slot. However, action discs are moved around. This creates a small puzzle where you cannot use the same action twice. I am considering if there should be more restrictions, like:

"Action Discs must be taken from a Mech you are not activating."

This would simulate overheating and prevent simply moving and attacking.

The map is another thing, too. War Chest brought up the consideration of area control. Infinite spawning mechs with an objective to control 3 of 4 outposts (blue). The red are supply drops.

In general, I feel a little more lost and confused. But somehow happier with this decision. I worry that I'm mucking around without simply finishing. Somehow, I worry that I'm psychologically preventing myself to finish, that I'm uncomfortable with this space.

To be continued.



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