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GODDESS
#1
New Character Type:  Goddess. 
New order that can generate a character type for Devout kingdoms only.  A High Priestess in good health can undergo a further ritual subject to conditions.  The High Priestess must be in the capital with a Great Temple with regional reaction of Friendly or Loyal.  The Test for the Divine ritual has a 75% chance of success.  It costs 20k gold.

There can be no more than three goddesses alive and no more than one per kingdom.  They can only be assassinated by fanatics with magic weapons.  They cannot be captured or slept. 

The emergence of a Goddess increases Rulership and Influence by 1.0.  If relocated away from the capital, Maintain Status Quo at +3.  The population of the capital increases 20% when she emerges. 

The Goddess has access to various spells and commands including Summon Lesser Angel, Summon Avenging Angel, Bounty, Curse, Bless, Dome of Invulnerability.

The emergence of a Goddess is a universal result.  If the Goddess is killed, Influence and Rulership are reduced by 2.0 each.
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#2
Pretty neat

Are the spells in addition to normal priestess abilities? Does a goddess get exhausted?
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#3
(07-09-2017, 10:33 PM)JonDoe Wrote: Pretty neat

Are the spells in addition to normal priestess abilities?  Does a goddess get exhausted?

No, the Goddess does not get weary or exhausted. 

I was also thinking there could be a way for a High Priestess at a capital with a Great Temple to imbue the kingdom with the Devout Trait.

The Military Academy might allow a path to the kingdom obtaining Military Tradition.
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#4
I like it, except for only 3 in game, but 1 per kingdom is good
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#5
IMO, this goddess concept is a lousy one and it's just another high priestess to the game. Even worse, allowing a powerful "goddess" to be assassinated, that's just bad design and poor taste. Deities should be invulnerable!

If you want to add deities to the game then do so correctly like other fantasy strategy games. In other words, have 12 or so deities that provide various advantages and disadvantages for the kingdom that worships them.

For example, create a Nature deity which the Druid, Elf, and Ranger may select as their patron that will provide bonuses to recruiting nature-oriented companion troops, bounty/census regional spells, combat bonuses vs certain kingdoms like the Necromancer, among others things like prevents all food spoilage (so no -20% loss of food every turn). However, every deity also has various disadvantages so that the Nature one may have large disadvantages against undead troops or spells like cold darkness or demonic visions. Balance it all out and give players a choice.

You can even have major and minor gods though that may push the total out to around 20 or so deities. Minor gods may not provide as many bonuses or as great but the minors will also carry lesser penalties so some players may prefer them instead. Provide us more of a choice for better strategy options in the game.

I would also bring back the Appeal to the Gods order but make it available for all game types (especially single player). That way, any one who could use a boost when they're in trouble may appeal to their deity for survival bonus of some kind. You can even make each deity have its own specific Appeal award (and corresponding penalty for calling upon their patron though military gods like Ares may be more harsher for being bothered). Another idea is to have minor gods more likely to answer an Appeal since they are not as busy or arrogant as a major god.

If you get stuck and run out of ideas, reference fantasy strategy games for some ideas. There are plenty that have a collection of gods as an important aspect to their game: Thea The Awakening actually forces you to select a deity before starting a game. Age of Mythology and other games have a similar concept as well that a deity provides various bonuses/penalties for worshipping them.

I would make all of this voluntary for the player. If they wish, players may choose a minor/major deity on turn 1. Overall, if you wish to add such an aspect to the game, do so in a well thought out and properly designed effort or don't bother at all.
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#6
(07-10-2017, 07:34 PM)unclemike Wrote: IMO, this goddess concept is a lousy one and it's just another high priestess to the game. Even worse, allowing a powerful "goddess" to be assassinated, that's just bad design and poor taste. Deities should be invulnerable!

If you want to add deities to the game then do so correctly like other fantasy strategy games. In other words, have 12 or so deities that provide various advantages and disadvantages for the kingdom that worships them.

For example, create a Nature deity which the Druid, Elf, and Ranger may select as their patron that will provide bonuses to recruiting nature-oriented companion troops, bounty/census regional spells, combat bonuses vs certain kingdoms like the Necromancer, among others things like prevents all food spoilage (so no -20% loss of food every turn). However, every deity also has various disadvantages so that the Nature one may have large disadvantages against undead troops or spells like cold darkness or demonic visions. Balance it all out and give players a choice.

You can even have major and minor gods though that may push the total out to around 20 or so deities. Minor gods may not provide as many bonuses or as great but the minors will also carry lesser penalties so some players may prefer them instead. Provide us more of a choice for better strategy options in the game.

I would also bring back the Appeal to the Gods order but make it available for all game types (especially single player). That way, any one who could use a boost when they're in trouble may appeal to their deity for survival bonus of some kind. You can even make each deity have its own specific Appeal award (and corresponding penalty for calling upon their patron though military gods like Ares may be more harsher for being bothered). Another idea is to have minor gods more likely to answer an Appeal since they are not as busy or arrogant as a major god.

If you get stuck and run out of ideas, reference fantasy strategy games for some ideas. There are plenty that have a collection of gods as an important aspect to their game: Thea The Awakening actually forces you to select a deity before starting a game. Age of Mythology and other games have a similar concept as well that a deity provides various bonuses/penalties for worshipping them.

I would make all of this voluntary for the player. If they wish, players may choose a minor/major deity on turn 1. Overall, if you wish to add such an aspect to the game, do so in a well thought out and properly designed effort or don't bother at all.

If I ever run out of ideas, feel free to shoot me.  The issue is usually documenting ideas and being practical.  I think players will like this Goddess idea without overwhelming the game, giving the Devout kingdoms a new edge.
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#7
I'd suggest that the penalty for the goddess dying should be much stronger.

A Devout Kingdom who's deity is killed should really suffer.
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#8
Let me try a different approach.

You've done a wonderful job when you introduced kingdom traits and companions to the game. Both concepts made the game more interesting and fun to play.

But what if you only came up with 2 or 3 different traits that all kingdoms shared (to keep things simple). Would that be more exciting? Would that distinguish kingdoms better? No, it would suck actually because you did a half-assed effort and it showed.

You did even a better job with companions. Not only did you allow players to have more choice with different troop types but you also introduced the concept of brigade-level special effects like skeletons that regenerate at the end of turn. Were players overwhelmed due to the number of different companions to choose from? No, we welcomed your effort in fully designing the concept and had fun with it.

Same principle here. You're about to introduce a new concept to the game: deities. Don't do a half-assed effort here but rather fully develop it so it makes the game better. Having about 12 or more deities both major and minor to choose from won't overwhelm players. We only have to make a decision on turn 1 on whether our kingdoms should worship a deity and gain the advantages/penalties associated with it. That's not overwhelming at all.
 
Same regarding pc improvements. Remember when you wanted to introduce temples and I mentioned back then to add a lot more pc improvements. Well, you're about to do just that with Maelstrom and from what I've seen so far, you're about to do a wonderful job by adding a lot more options for the players. Granaries to wizard towers to citadels. Those options will make the game better not worse. Players won't be overwhelmed by fully developing the concept of pc improvements. I said this back when you were designing 3rd Cycle and now you're about to do this for 4th Cycle and it looks good and the players will like it too.

So think about the deity concept some more. Don't do a half-assed effort because it'll show and the game will suffer for it. Implement a well-thought out design with a dozen or more deities and the game will be much better from your effort. Just like you did with kingdom traits and companions (and soon with pc improvements), do the same for deities or it'll suck and ruin the game.
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#9
I have to balance what I might want to include from my own perspective vs. what players want to handle as well as how to attract more players. 

I'm not sure many can name a more nuanced or even more complicated game than Alamaze.  Is that really a desired objective?  We have what, 100 pages of rules, more if you include spell lists and artifact abilities.  I like it.  We have a few dozen players that have played since around 1986.  But we also seem to have more than half our new players with "failure to launch".  They are used to just start clicking and figure it out that way.  That's hard to do with Alamaze although the new interface makes it at least possible. 

Not every idea has to be a sweeping master stroke.  Its not always true that more is better.  I was even skeptical that the Devout trait would be well received by all.  So floating the Goddess idea seems even more perilous.  From a narrow perspective, it is just a nudge for the Devout kingdoms to compete more equally with the mage kingdoms.  And it adds a bit of culture to the Alamaze world.

Yes, Mike now has the PC Improvements documentation of three dozen new buildings that will significantly (or is it substantially?) change Alamaze strategy.  No more abstract and vague #600 order.  Now players will make specific choices hopefully based around a more fully developed strategy and making for a lot more interesting choices on what to do and when.  Also goes to the player request to make games longer, so from maybe an average of 27 turns to likely 35 or more.  

There are changes everywhere in Maelstrom, from the political model to new covert considerations.  Sometimes we lose players by advancing the game.  Several of our best and longest lived players didn't really embrace 3rd Cycle.  They had completely figured out 2nd Cycle, knew their various discovered tricks and old strategies weren't working, but Alamaze became a much better game.  The same will likely be true for Maelstrom, where more planning and a longer perspective will be required.

I wouldn't underplay the significance of the new (Maelstrom) map.  The first truly new map, with more amorphous regions and 12 of them, allowing kingdoms to be anywhere, and with all new strategic considerations given the terrain and the seas, The Maelstrom will be an eye-opener.
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#10
The last couple of posts are, well....a lot of words....will have to get an adult beverage and read thru them. Though, having not read them yet, I am excited about the possible changes so far.
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