11 February, 2012

Hell on Eight Wheels: Ten – Play Examples


Using the rules established so far, covering movement and basic blocking, it’s time to have a look at the way game play would work. This should give us some clues about where the gameplay might fall apart.

We’ll go through these examples with two teams: the East Side Eagles and the West Side Warriors. To make things easy, the East Side Eagles have names from the first five letters of the alphabet: Annie Phylactic (A), Belle E. Dancer (B), Candy Caine (C), Dina Might (D), and Ebola Effie (E). The West Side Warriors have names from the last five letters of the alphabet: Veronica Venus (V), White Russian (W), Xena Phobe (X), Yvonne Bett (Y), and Zsa Zsa the Gore (Z).

Annie Phylactic [Soul: 10, Speed: 9, Strategy: 10, Strength: 5]
Belle E. Dancer [Soul: 8, Speed: 6, Strategy: 7, Strength: 7]
Candy Caine [Soul: 6, Speed: 8, Strategy: 6, Strength: 8]
Dina Might [Soul: 6, Speed: 7, Strategy: 6, Strength: 9]
Ebola Effie [Soul: 7, Speed: 10, Strategy: 8, Strength: 7]

Veronica Venus [Soul: 9, Speed: 9, Strategy: 8, Strength: 6] Tactician (+1 Hand Size when Pivot)
White Russian [Soul: 7, Speed: 5, Strategy: 7, Strength: 9]
Xena Phobe [Soul: 6, Speed: 8, Strategy: 7, Strength: 9]
Yvonne Bett [Soul: 7, Speed: 9, Strategy: 5, Strength: 8]
Zsa Zsa the Gore [Soul: 6, Speed: J(11), Strategy: 8, Strength: 6]

The game sequence follows a basic pattern.
The Bout
Two players each gather a team of up to 20 players (minimum 12) and up to 5 supporting crew (minimum 1). They have 50 points to purchase their team in the minor leagues, 75 points for major league games and 100 points for the championships.
A Bout consists of two halves (typically 45 minutes to an hour long). Each half consists of a number of jams. These jams take 2 minutes in the real world, but may take 5 minutes during boardgame play.
Points are scored in each jam. The team with the highest number of points at the end of the bout is deemed the winner.

The Jam
Set Up Teams – From their available rosters, each team allocates 3 blockers a pivot and a jammer. Skaters are revealed simultaneously and are placed on their respective board starting points. Each player is given a hand of cards equal twice their number of skaters on the track (this is typically 10 cards, but in some cases, a team may be fielding less than 5 skaters). Some skaters may grant the ability to give their player extra cards while they are on the track. Players allocate a single face-down card to each skater; these cards will be the movement cards for the skaters.

Jacquie is playing the East City Eagles; she has a hand of 10 cards (2, 4, 5, 6, 6, 7, 8, 10, J, K). Jacquie plays her starting cards on her five skaters.

A             B             C             D             E
6           7           6          5           8

Leah is playing the West City Warriors; she has a hand of 11 cards (A, 3, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 9, 10, 10, Q). She plays her starting cards on her five skaters.

V             W            X             Y              Z
4           3           7           8          9

Both players refill their hands from the deck. Jacquie picks up A, 3, 4, 5, 8♠ [Jacquie’s Starting Hand: A, 2, 3, 4, 4♣, 5, 8, 10, J, K♣]; while Leah picks up 2, 5, 6, 7, J♠ [Leah’s Starting Hand: A, 2, 3,5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 10, J, Q♥].



Begin Jam – Play proceeds with the front-most figures on the board. With figures moving counter-clockwise and turn order moving clockwise. All skaters begin the jam stationary, to begin movement, a player must place a thrust token on them. The player also places a second card on their skater (this could come from their hand or from the deck). With a single thrust token, a skater moves a distance equal to their movement card.

At the first activation sequence, Annie Phylactic (A) and Veronica Venus (V) are both at their respective starting points, and thus either could move first. Cards are flipped for both skaters, and since Annie [6] has been allocated a higher card than Veronica [4], she moves first. A single thrust token is placed on her.

Movement consists of two cards, one for speed and one for strategy. Jacquie plays a 5 from her hand. Annie is moved forward six track segments (“1” thrust token x “6” card rank equals 6 segments of movement). With her card rank of “5” allocated to strategy, she moves toward the inside of the track where she potentially gains an advantage of extra movement. The first bonus movement segment she crosses requires a movement card of Q or higher, no benefit there. The next bonus movement segments she crosses requires a 10 then an 8, still no bonus. Jacquie places a new speed card on Annie (2) and refreshes her hand to its full size with an Aand a Q. [Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, A♣, 3, 4, 4♣, 8, 10, J♦, Q, K]



Leah places a thrust token on Veronica Venus then draws a random card for her skater; she draws a 10♦. Too high, and that means Veronica is confused by the options available. Leah has to play a card higher than this for Veronica to remain coherent on the track. Luckily Leah has a Qin her hand, so she plays this to avoid the worst. Veronica is moved forward four track segments (“1” thrust token x “4” card rank equals 4 segments of movement). Despite having a card with a rank of 10 allocated to strategy, is limited to the eight points of her strategy attribute, she moves to the inside edge of the track in the hope that she’ll be able to take advantage of the bonus movement segments in future movement actions. Leah applies a temporary “Confused” card on Veronica, which will lower her Strategy stat by 2 when she’s next activated. Leah places a new speed card on Veronica (6) and refreshes her hand with an A and a 6. [Leah’s hand after this action: A♥, A, 2, 3, 5♦, 6, 7, 9, 10, 10, J♠]



Movement passes to the next skaters.

Belle E. Dancer and White Russian are at equal segments, cards are flipped again. Belle has the higher card [7 vs. 3 ] and Jacquie moves her first.

Jacquie places a thrust token then plays a 3 on Belle, because she doesn’t need to be too strategic at this stage. Belle moves forward seven segments (“1” thrust token x “7” card rank equals 7 segments of movement); she also moves toward the inside of the track to gain a possible speed advantage from the inner bonus movement segments. On her second last move, Belle crosses onto a segment with a yellow “4”, this is higher than her strategy card, so she has to spend a lateral movement to avoid flinging out to the outer edge of the track; she won’t be getting any closer to the centre of the track this turn. Jacquie places a new speed card on Belle (4♦) and refreshes her hand with a 4and a Q. [Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, A♣, 4, 4♣, 8, 10, J♦, Q♣, Q, K]



Leah places a thrust token then plays a 2on White (there isn’t much point placing anything higher on her since she is already close to the centre of the track, and there aren’t any nearby skaters to avoid at this time. White moves forward three segments (“1” thrust token x “3” card rank equals 3 segments of movement). She moves to the inside ring. Leah places a new speed card on White (6) then refreshes her hand with a 7 and a 9. [Leah’s hand after this action: A♥, A, 3, 5♦, 7, 7♣, 9♦, 9, 10, 10, J]



Movement passes to the next skaters.

Candy Caine and Xena Phobe flip their cards. Xena has the higher card and Leah moves her first.

Leah places a thrust token then plays a 5on Xena. Xena moves forward seven segments (“1” thrust token x “7” card rank equals 7 segments of movement), she passes close to White Russian; but since they are team mates there is no conflict here, and since they are both moving blockers, there is little point in a “whip”. She doesn’t move to the inside of the track because it’s getting pretty crowded up there, besides, a fast jammer might come around the outer parts of the track. Leah places a new speed card on Xena (7) then refreshes her hand with a 3and a K. [Leah’s hand after this action: A♥, A, 3, 3, 7, 9♦, 9, 10, 10, J♠, K]



Jacquie places a thrust token then plays a 4on Candy Caine. Candy moves forward six segments (“1” thrust token x “6” card rank equals 6 segments of movement). Since she passed into White’s outer threat zone, Candy could have come into to conflict with her, but Leah decides not to initiate this conflict. Jacquie places a new speed card on Candy (8) then refreshes her hand with a 2and a Q. [Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, A♣, 2♦, 4♣, 10, J♦, Q♣, Q♠, Q, K]



Movement passes to the last pair of blocking skaters.

Dina Might and Yyonne Bett flip their cards. Yvonne has the higher card and Leah moves her first.

Leah places a thrust token then plays a 3 on Yvonne Bett. Yvonne moves forward 8 segments (“1” thrust token x “8” card rank equals 6 segments of movement). She passes within Candy Caine’s outer threat zone, prompting a conflict.

Yvonne has a lower strategy score than Candy and is in the outer threat zone. This means that Jacquie will play one card for Candy (10) and Leah will play two cards for Yvonne (10♥,J♠). Candy played a spade for her block, but since Yvonne has also played a spade for her evasion, it has been successfully dodged.

Yvonne finishes off her remaining movement, and Leah plays a new speed card on her (7) before replenishing her hand with a 2♣, a 5♣, an 8♥, and a J. Since Jacquie used cards in the conflict, she also draws a card to replenish her hand, 6. [Leah’s hand after this action: A♥, A, 2, 3♥, 5♣, 8, 9♦, 9, 10, J♠, K][Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, A♣, 2♦, 4♣, 6♣, J♦, Q♣, Q♠, Q, K]



Jacquie places a thrust token then plays a 2 on Dina Might. Dina moves forward 5 segments (“1” thrust token x “5” card rank equals 5 segments of movement). Dina stays near the centre of the track to make things awkward for any jammers that might want to pass, and since she doesn’t move into anyone’s threat zones she ends her turn. Jacquie plays a new speed card on Dina (6) then replenishes her hand with a 7 and an 8. [Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, A♣, 4♣, 7♥, 8♣, J♦, Q♣, Q♠, Q, K]



Finally the Jammers. 

Ebola Effie and Zsa Zsa the Gore flip their cards. Zsa Zsa is only just ahead, but this is still enough for her to go first.

Leah places a thrust token then plays the 5 she just picked up on Zsa Zsa. She uses her strategic moves to reach the outside of the track where there aren’t many skaters at the moment. After moving forward 9 segments (“1” thrust token x “9” card rank equals 9 segments of movement), Zsa Zsa has already reached the back of the pack. Leah plays a new speed card on Zsa Zsa (10) then draws a 5 and a 6 to replenish her hand. [Leah’s hand after this action: A♥, A, 2, 3♥, 5♠, 6♣, 8, 9♦, 9, J♠, K]



Jacquie places a thrust token then plays her 4on Ebola Effie. Moving forward 8 segments (“1” thrust token x “8” card rank equals 8 segments of movement) and using her 4 strategic moves, she edges just inside her team mate Dina Might. Jacquie plays a new speed card on Ebola (8) then draws a 3 and a 5to replenish her hand. [Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, A♣, 3♦, 5♦, 7♥, J♦, Q♣, Q♠, Q, K]



Everyone has now moved and the activation marker swings all the way around the track until it reaches the front running skaters. The next sequence of movements begins… 

Second Movement.

Annie Phylactic and Belle E. Dancer are evenly in the lead, so they flip cards to see who moves first.
Since Belle has the higher Rank, she moves first.

Jacquie takes the opportunity to add an extra thrust token before flipping Belle’s speed card (4) and applying her strategy card (4). Belle moves forward 8 segments (“2” thrust tokens x “4” card rank), strategically moving in to a bonus movement segment with a “4” on it. Since her speed card is at least as high as this, she moves forward a segment automatically before continuing her remaining four movements. Jacquie replaces Belle’s speed card with a (5), and then draws a 4 and a 9 to replenish her hand. [Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, 3♦, 4♣, 7♥, 9♥, J♦, Q♣, Q♠, Q, K]



Jacquie decides to add an extra thrust token to Annie Phylactic because the speed card she applied was pretty low.  She then flips the speed card (2), applies a strategy card (A) and then moves. Annie moves forward 4 segments (“2” thrust tokens x “2” card rank equals 4 segments of movement). Things are bad for her this turn, because her strategy card is low. The first time she reaches a yellow number, it is higher than her strategy card and she has to spend a lateral movement staying on course near the centre of the track. After two more forward movements, she reaches another yellow numbered segment and is unable to hold her course. She is forced to move outward with her last forward movement. Jacquie plays a new speed card on Annie (7) then draws a 5 and a 3 to replenish her hand. [Jacquie’s hand after this action: A, 3♦, 3♠, 5♥, 9♥, J♦, Q♣, Q♠, Q, K]

Xena Phobe and Yvonne Bett compare speed cards to see who moves next. Both of their card ranks are 7, so speed attributes are compared. Yvonne moves first.

Leah has already revealed the speed card, and plays a strategy card (5).She leaves a single thrust token on Yvonne because the speed of 7 is fast enough at the moment. Yvonne moves forward and uses one of her lateral moves to shift closer to the centre of the track. After another move she has reached a bonus segment with a red number of “7”, since her speed card is at least this high she gains a free forward movement. Upon reaching a yellow 10, Yvonne must spend a lateral movement point to remain on course (she still has a few to spare), then another forward movement brings her to another bonus segment (this time with a red “5” on it), Yvonne gains another bonus forward movement trait, this time she applies one of her strategic lateral movements to the forward burst (to avoid a potential conflict with Annie Phylactic), and continues the rest of her movement. Leah replaces the speed card on Yvonne (6) and draws two cards to replenish her hand (4and 6).  [Leah’s hand after this action: A♥, A, 2, 3♥, 4♠, 6, 8, 9♦, 9, J♠, K]



Xena moves next. Leah plays a strategy card (3) on her, and also decides not to add any further thrust tokens. Within three segments Xena reaches a bonus speed sector that she can take advantage of. With her burst of speed (and a lateral movement), she moves forward and with another movement she has deftly avoided Annie Phylactic’s threat zone. The movement is completed, Leah places a new speed card (9), and draws two new cards to replenish her hand (4 and 10).[Leah’s hand after this action: A♥, A, 2, 4♠, 4♣, 6, 8,9, 10, J♠, K]



To be continued...

But first I'll be looking for a bit of feedback...does it make sense so far? Is there anything that just seems confusing? Does it seem intuitive enough for someone who doesn't play games that often? Does it have a "roller derby" vibe?

My next post will explain some of the issues I've got with it and how I'll be simplifying things a bit.



Post a Comment