First up, a big thank you to everyone who took part in testing these DB teams. I’ve really enjoyed the comments and feedback from your games. While I’ve not replied to every comment individually, I have read them all. I hope you enjoyed the process too 🙂
I’ve sent in the following versions for layout.
Hacking v2 – no change with the Hacking rules. Seb’s firewall idea is interesting, but not without its own issues. I think it would quickly become a must have purchase, and as it’s a negative, would just drain cash from a league to no game effect, and some frustration. Whilst it does have its fans (me included), Reputation is something that most people don’t seem to like in its current form. It’s probably better looked at as something to consider for a second edition when we can integrate it much more. That’s years away, so it may resurface as an experimental rule in the meantime.
Tsudochan v2 – no change needed here.
Mechanites v2 – The drastic cuts seem to have worked quite well. All the comments since this version have been very positive. They remain powerful, but now have some serious limitations and a higher cost as a counterbalance. I daresay they’ll shake out with some nasty combos when people have a few months to tinker. Much improved though.
Plague v4 – a couple of people have questioned whether doubling the extras cost is too harsh. I think it’s hard to be certain in league teams as there are so many moving parts. Time will tell if this needs refining. For the moment, in one-off games I think it works fine, with the bonus that it’s very easy to remember/calculate and accommodates any future team bonuses that are added (and no, I’m not planning any – you just know how these things go). The change to v4 is just to clarify that these double costs add that whole cost to the team’s rank.
Ada-Lorana v4 – given the time constraints and the amount of work to do, I was wielding the editorial axe rather liberally with these team updates. Although I think I got most of this right, I went a bit too far for most people with the Ada Lorana. As v2 was considered too good and v3 too bland, this final version is somewhere between the two. I’ve added some additional clarification to Insubstantial, and restored the strength modifier for Solid.
Koris v3 – the discussion here has all be around the confusion check table. Was an extra dice roll going to slow the game, did armour need to be included, and so on? I’ve gone for a hybrid, with Koris (who are familiar with the whole portal weirdness and don’t care) rolling a fixed value. They’re the ones that will use it most and this means you can just roll quickly. To retain the character, tension, story, and uncertainty of someone else using the Koris portals, other races have to roll to see which stat they use. I think this gives us the best of both worlds 🙂
Crystallans v2 – this one generated a bit of discussion. Some thought that the change in Harmonics was bad, others good. Interestingly, it seems from the comments that all of the people who liked it had played games with the new rules, and most of those who didn’t had not: perhaps the difference between how things look on paper and how they play. I agree with the dissenters that bonus speed is less dramatic than bonus strength – however, I think that’s part of the reason why this change is good. If you give someone their best bonus first, then they won’t work to get the rest. In the end I’ve left the team as it was.
By all means carry on using these and commenting below with your thoughts. I can’t guarantee that we will be able to make any further changes, but you never know. The smaller and sooner the change, the more likely it will be possible.
Playtesting these latest teams been an interesting process, and I think it’s been largely successful. Certainly I think we’ll all benefit from better balanced teams.
If you’re interested in more of this sort of thing then you might want to click on subscribe (top right). I’ve got some more DB stuff I want to test out at some point. I’ll not be doing it immediately as I’ve got other games to look at as well, and need to share the love 🙂
I was considering trying to have a formal schedule, with something for DB, MA, DZ, etc every other month, or whatever. Not sure I can stick to that, and a rigid structure tends to force you into doing crap just to fill a slot. So I won’t do that. However, I am planning a bunch more of these interactive playtests for various games I work on. To keep everyone amused I’ll interleave the systems so it’s not all just one topic, and there’s other stuff I want to post too. Like I said, if you’re interested you might like to subscribe to make sure you don’t miss out.
Anyway, on to the next thing now!