You might know that I am a big fan of randomized content in my RPGs. I use things like magic cards for inspiration when I need to quickly come up with an adventure and random tables to aid my improvisation during the game.
I wrote this idea for a game for November Game design challenge hosted on Board Game Designer Forum. While I was far from winning the challenge, I quite liked the idea and might work on it more in the future. Until then, I am leaving it here. IF you have any ideas on how to improve this game, leave it here.
A sword and sorcery empire survival card game.
- Empire cards - represent special achievements/technology/buildings of each empire. Sword&Sorcery theme. Each has resource icons and special abilities that let you manipulate your dice. Can be activated via dice and/or tapping.
- Fate cards - Natural and Magical disasters, old ones awakening, colonists conquering the lands etc. (akin to mythos cards from Arkham/Eldrich Horror). Fate cards have a target number needed to discard it. if the sum of all the dice on the card is equal or greater than TR the card leaves play.
- Dice (d6s in different colors - 5 per player) - representing “manpower” of each empire.
Game starts by establishing each player’s empire through drafting. Starting player draws X( number of players) empire cards. Chooses one and passes the remaining to the left. This follows until one player receives one card. He draws up to X cards, chooses one and passes it to the left. This continues until each player has empire 10 cards in front of them. This represents their empire.
The aim of the game is to be the last empire standing (still having cards in front of you). Play begins by placing a fate card(s) in the middle of the table. Each player rolls their dice and places them one at a time to:
- Your empire card to activate special ability - what card/ability you can use depends on the value of the die you are using. (exploit)
- Enemy empire card to try to claim a part of their empire (exterminate and expand)
- if there is an enemy die on your card, you can protect yourself from losing it by playing a die of equal or higher value.
- Play a die on fate card to try to prevent from bad things happening.
After playing one die play proceeds clockwise until all players played all their dice. After that all actions are resolved in order:
- Fate cards are discarded if TR is beaten.
- Remaining Fate Cards activate
- Territory is claimed (if one player has higher total than current owner).
- New Fate Card(s) is played and new turn starts.
Gameplay and theme comes from special rules on empire/fate cards (think MTG level of variety).
Once you are out of empire cards you are eliminated.
Empire cards have icons represent 4X resources (food, industry, culture etc.)
Fate cards affect players based on the amount of certain resource in their empire (least, most, more/less than X) and often affect more than one player at a time.
Fate cards force players to discard empire cards with certain resources.
If you play your die on a Fate card, it stays there until the card is discarded (you roll less die on next turn).
Players will want to collaborate to defeat Fate Cards faster.
Players can negotiate / make treaties. Those are not binding.Difficulty can be affected by playing more Fate Cards each turn and/or including/excluding certain cards.