Category Archives: games

Hierarchy: A Magic Variant

Rarity Matters = ‘Hierarchy’

Consider that 60 cards is same amount as four 15-card booster packs. Then consider the rarity of the cards you’ll get from opening those fresh packs.

With four packs, you get 1 mythic, 3 rares, 12 uncommons, and the rest commons. These new rules similarly restricts deck building by following the same ratios for a minimum 60-card deck. A deck can have any amount of commons and Basic Lands.

Additional rule: no more than three (3) copies of any card except Basic Lands.

Each additional 15 cards in your deck beyond 60 cards grants another 1 rare and 3 uncommons. For each additional 60 cards of your deck size, you may include a mythic instead of a rare.

You can trade from higher rarity for same ratio of lower rarity, or vice versa. That means you can omit 1 mythic for 3 more rares or 12 uncommons. Omit 1 rare to add 3 more uncommons. In reverse, you can trade in 3 uncommons for 1 rare or 12 uncommons for 1 mythic. Likewise, trade 3 rares for 1 mythic. Fill vacancies with commons or basics.

A card’s rarity is based on its latest printing in a core, expansion, or draftable set that are legal for that format. This includes supplemental draftable products like conspiracy and masters.

These rules can be applied to official and unofficial formats. So you can have Hierarchy Standard and Hierarchy Modern, etc.

12 Jungian Archetypes

Mind Body Soul
Ego Creator Warrior Jester
Freedom Explorer Lover Rebel
Sage Caregiver Companion
Order Magician Ruler Innocent

The 12 Common Archetypes were conceived by Carl Jung to describe the common personalities and drives in all people.

This table attempts the fit them into my trinity mind/body/soul RPG system. This chart can help better define the roles and personalities of NPCs in the story.

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Sushi Go Party Review

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Sushi Go Party Review
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Final score:
3.5 / 5
Verdict:
Chaotic party game but lacks long term addiction.

Gameplay
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Pros
—-

Easily accomodates up to 8 players.

The game is easy to pickup even for children at 9 years old.

Good variety of cards to promote different styles of gameplay and strategies.

Fun theme with pretty cards.

Cons
—-

There are some annoyances with the game, but ultimately it lacks an addiction factor that makes you want to keep playing.

Too much shuffling.

Poor quality of cards.

Tedious to swap and organize all the variety of cards.

Lack of crescendo from beginning to end.

Difficult to keep progress of who’s going to win.

RPG Combat — Additional Victory Conditions

RPG Combat — Additional Victory Conditions

It seems just about every RPG combat feels the same and one-dimensional. It’s all about damage, damage, damage. That also means support and non-damage abilities and roles are underplayed and unappreciated. You can see this problem in MMOs where high damage classes can level faster and solo better than support classes.

My suggestion is to provide an additional victory condition besides reducing the enemy’s HP to 0. Let’s call this willpower (WP). You can win a battle by reducing all the enemies’ HP and/or WP to 0.

WP is mainly interacted with typically “support” and non-lethal actions. One method to reduce enemy’s WP is with debuffs (e.g. sleep, stun, charm) and to raise (heal) your WP with buffs. When a character’s WP is reduced to 0, it is removed from combat.

HP and WP can coexist to provide two different paths to victory and to balance the play styles. Whether you like to hack and slash, or you prefer to demoralize and paralyze your enemies.

What do you think about non-damage win condition? Can this work? How do hybrid classes fit in all this?

Fundamental Flaw of Civilization 5 & 6

Fundamental Flaw of Civilization 5 & 6

My insight on why Civ 5 & 6 are boring and shallow games as first posted on Civ Fanatics.

Post #1

These arguments about units per tile really miss the real fundamental flaw with Civ 5 and 6: lack of city micromanagement. Once they removed attention from the cities, all you’re left with is unit simulator. That would exacerbate any unit/tile system flaws.

In older games, including 1-4 and Civ Rev, I would give so much care and attention to my cities. Every turn I would fret if they have enough yields and the right amount. Whether I should have extra food or extra production. This seemingly minute dilemma made a huge impact on how much I care about my cities and my civ.

Unfortunately, they essentially removed all city management from 5 and 6. So that I no longer care about my cities, what their output is, what tiles surround them, etc. I used to spend over half the turn in the city screen in older games; now they’re just bothersome reminders. I just don’t feel the connections with my cities anymore. They’ve become sideshows to the tedious shuffling of units. 99.99% of the turn is wasted shuffling units like they’re so fragile and be stepped over.
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Hex vs Magic

Part 1

12/23/2015

Just got a hold of Hex: Shards of Fate. While the core engine is very similar to Magic, the mechanics and card designs and deck archetypes are so much more daring, complex, fun. Count it as my review after a few hours of gameplay.

For the longest time, WotC has been half-assing, half-stepping the creative possibilities of Magic. Partly because of limitations of physical cards (e.g. tracking complexity), and partly dumbed down to cater to the masses and new players. Thus progress and innovations are stunted. (Just look at the bare-bones mechanics in Battle for Zendikar.)

On the other hand, even the Hex starter decks, archetypes, and tutorials are so much more complex, yet grokkable and fun. Given the choice of 8 decks, I chose the weirdest one (none of that human, dwarf, elf generic tropes for me). This deck’s strategy is to put Spider Eggs into your opponent’s deck. When he draws it or puts in his crypt (graveyard) from deck (Hex calls this bury, cf. mill), you get a 1/1 creature unblockable. Fill his deck with so many that you get a bunch of free creatures and overwhelm him.

This and many more ideas are simply not possible with Magic. There are so many taboos and restrictions that forbid Wizards from fresh ideas. Such as putting cards into opponents’ decks, upgrading cards with equipment and gems during deck construction–thus reusing and customizing the same card for different strategies, permanent effects from one-time cards (Hex calls them Actions, equivalent to Instants and Sorceries)–even across zones, multi-layered tracking, etc. I’ve only played a few hours, so probably more that I haven’t seen yet.

Continue reading Hex vs Magic