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King_Kull
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 28 Feb 2018, 09:10

DICE MECHANICS
SUCCESS
I don’t know if I like the D8 as the base die. The chance of success is lower than with a D6. Don‘t know if it’s your intention to make the game harder. IMO a 6 is hard enough.

FAILURE
But a 1 and 2 is a Critical Failure. Seems to harsh to me. If a 7 and 8 would be a success than it would be more balanced. So you will get more often a critical failure than a success.
Ok, he who can read has an advantage ;) If the highest roll is a 1 or 2. That’s different and ignore my blathering.

SKILLS
The numbers before the description of the skill levels are wrong.

So far I like what I see but I don’t like the D8.
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9littlebees
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 28 Feb 2018, 11:00

King_Kull wrote:
I don’t know if I like the D8 as the base die. The chance of success is lower than with a D6. Don‘t know if it’s your intention to make the game harder. IMO a 6 is hard enough.

I totally understand. However, with Trauma being handled with pools and attributes not degrading, I found starting PCs way too powerful in my earlier playtest (with D6s). I know that changing Trauma to be handled similarly to MYZ / FBL Editor mitigate this, but there are some conscious design decisions that led me to making it as it stands:

  • I want to push the envelope of what the Year Zero engine (YZE) is capable of. An alt setting with just the names changed isn't enough of a creative challenge for me, and I am really excited to see how far this engine can be flexed.
  • The MYZ / FBL Trauma mechanic is not universally loved. My 2 groups are split, and I'm sure this will carry over outside of my own gaming tables.
  • One of my major motivations is to make a "WFRP-Lite" game using the YZE. Hence I am trying to emulate some of the mechanics here.
  • Dice pool sizes will be getting tweaked (esp bonus dice from weapons) to ensure that stunts and weapon crits aren't exceedingly rare. This is probably the hardest thing to balance.

There are a few things I could do to really shake things up. For example, I could use a "Skill Die" simular to Savage Worlds. Basically, each level in a skill would provide a single die upgrade. So at Skill Level 1, you get a D8, at Level 2 you get a D10, and at Level 3 you get a D12. Artifact Dice multi-successes would also apply, so a 10-11 would be 2 successes, and a 12 would be 3. Attributes and gear would still use a D8.

This method would keep the game unforgiving for unskilled characters, but would allow those with skill to be much more effective.

Anyway, not sure if that convinces you of my aims, but I have been putting a LOT of thought into this.
I'm an English game designer working on Nordsaga, a career-focused dark Viking game, powered by the Year Zero engine: https://9littlebees.com
 
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9littlebees
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 28 Feb 2018, 11:02

Also, thanks for the heads up on the Skill numbering. I copied it from my playtest doc and forgot to check how Wordpress deals with a list that is meant to start with 0. Looks like it can't.
I'm an English game designer working on Nordsaga, a career-focused dark Viking game, powered by the Year Zero engine: https://9littlebees.com
 
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King_Kull
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 28 Feb 2018, 14:43

Chapeaux, 9littlebees! This is a great work. I know understand your design for the D8 but I wouldn’t use it. The D6 is used in Coriolis and there is the derived attribute for HPs and if I recall it correctly the attributes aren’t degrading. I like more successes for my players - I can throw them a complication if I like anytime ;)
But this is just me and I haven’t tried your hack. So my comments aren’t counting much :)
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9littlebees
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 28 Feb 2018, 15:07

King_Kull wrote:
Chapeaux, 9littlebees! This is a great work. I know understand your design for the D8 but I wouldn’t use it. The D6 is used in Coriolis and there is the derived attribute for HPs and if I recall it correctly the attributes aren’t degrading. I like more successes for my players - I can throw them a complication if I like anytime ;)
But this is just me and I haven’t tried your hack. So my comments aren’t counting much :)

The issue that Nordsaga has with Coriolis is that it is too easy to get successes in Coriolis with starting characters.

In Nordsaga, players are mundane, normal folks who play the game to learn how they ascend to greatness (or perish in the attempt). Games that have more traditional classes tend to have more competent characters from the beginning.

So it's important that characters should feel weak when they start (except in the one or two areas they know about). As they gain in adventuring experience, the difference should feel very noticeable, although things still shouldn't be too easy.

"Mid-level" characters in Coriolis (who have spent around 30 XP) are very powerful, and can succeed at most tasks.
I'm an English game designer working on Nordsaga, a career-focused dark Viking game, powered by the Year Zero engine: https://9littlebees.com
 
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9littlebees
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 28 Feb 2018, 16:28

Having said all that, I've been getting push back about the D8 from a few places, so I am taking some time to see about whether I can get the D6 to work in a way that ticks all my design boxes...

Besides, who has pools of D8s in their dice collections anyway (other than me)? It would force people who play at live tables to buy dice just to play the game, which isn't really ideal.
I'm an English game designer working on Nordsaga, a career-focused dark Viking game, powered by the Year Zero engine: https://9littlebees.com
 
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King_Kull
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 28 Feb 2018, 16:58

9littlebees wrote:
Besides, who has pools of D8s in their dice collections anyway (other than me)?


ROFL
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9littlebees
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Wed 07 Mar 2018, 23:50

Just a quick update to say that I've seen the proverbial writing on the wall and am going with pools of D6, not D8.

However, the dice pools in the official YZ games are still too high for the feeling of grim fantasy I am going for, which leads to several problems and the following solutions...

1. To keep dice pools down, I am slightly reducing the number of Attribute points available to starting characters. I am also capping Skills at Rank 3 (Apprentice, Journeyman, Master), with the third rank in a Skill only accessible after much training during an "Adventuring" Career. This reduction in stats will put a greater emphasis on seeking out tactical advantages and having decent gear.

2. This reduced attribute pool now makes the decreasing-attribute Misery system too deadly, so I need to think of solutions...

3. Current solution is to port in Coriolis's Trauma system, but set HP / MP at the race/kin level, rather than combining stats. Humans would start with 4 of each, other races would split 9 trauma points between Wounds and Stress (a Jotnar would have 6 Wounds and 3 Stress, for example). Each Critical Injury and Mental Disorder would cause a global - 1D to all Attributes, and they would be harder to heal. Weapons will also have a critical stat, to be able to inflict Criticals on healthy opponents. Downside to this system is that pushing outside of combat has less risk, since Wounds and Stress slowly replenish after a rest, and don't immediately reduce Attributes. I've got some ideas to balance this, though.

Anyway, this is so core to the game that I can't afford to keep tinkering. I'm drawing the line in the sand now and will power on with getting it ready for playtesting.

Still interested in your thoughts!
I'm an English game designer working on Nordsaga, a career-focused dark Viking game, powered by the Year Zero engine: https://9littlebees.com
 
Byrax
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Sun 22 Apr 2018, 22:15

Have you looked at Svavelvinter’s system? It is the precursor of MYZ and very good (although I like MYZ system better, due to it being more ˋlogicˋ and refined).

For hacks, I prefer them to stay as close as possible to the source rules.
 
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9littlebees
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Re: [HACK] Nordsaga

Mon 23 Apr 2018, 19:15

Byrax wrote:
Have you looked at Svavelvinter’s system? It is the precursor of MYZ and very good (although I like MYZ system better, due to it being more ˋlogicˋ and refined).

For hacks, I prefer them to stay as close as possible to the source rules.

I don't speak Swedish, so I haven't looked at it. Fair enough about your preference, but you can't deny that each iteration of the Year Zero Engine is fairly majorly changed to suit the genre and theme. I'm looking at doing the same here. Same core mechanics, just tweaked for the setting and theme. For example, survival is not a major theme in my game, so some of the mechanics relating to that in FBL will be adapted to suit Nordsaga.
I'm an English game designer working on Nordsaga, a career-focused dark Viking game, powered by the Year Zero engine: https://9littlebees.com
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