Saturday, February 21, 2015

Playtesting at the Club: The Dogs and The Dust

I haven't said much about it here yet (out of fear of hexing myself) but for the past six months or so, I have been tinkering away at a set of scifi skirmish rules called The Dogs and the Dust. The project originally started because I wanted a game with the simplicity of Song of Blades and Heroes but with the feel of Necromunda. It has since absorbed a lot of other elements: the shock system from Nuclear Rennaisance; a simplified version of the attack/shoot/magic dice and Dreadskull systems from Skulldred; a radically altered version of the command dice system from Chain of Command.

It's still very early days, but nevertheless the guys at CSW sportingly agreed to help in some preliminary play tests. What follows are some pictures from the game.  

Above: the beginning of a game-long standoff between Pat's commander and Josh's motile brain-in-a-jar.
Like SoBH and Skulldred, TD&TD is meant to be completely customisable. As a result, this three way game saw everything from walking lobotomies and storm troopers to mechanized walkers.

Pat's scout gets the drop on some storm troopers with poison flechettes.
I was testing a way of randomly generating objectives. There were d6 objectives (we rolled 4) that players took turns placing before deployment. Players could deploy characters anywhere within 12" of an edge and 6" from any opponent. After deployment, each objective was individually determined to be worth d6 victory points, and then each one was scattered either 3", 6", 12", or stayed put. As a result, the action was all over the map from the very first turn.

Government and Corporate troops play laser tag among tire sculptures.
There was a lot of absurdity as we encountered some...ah...soft spots in the rules. It was also a lot slower than I expected, running about two hours for a three player game (which is probably twice what a game of SoBH runs), so it definitely needs streamlining. But by the same token, the guys picked up the basics really quickly and seemed to enjoy themselves. A huge learning experience, all told. Still a lot of work to do going forward...

A complex showdown under the Noonan day sun.
...but hopefully some day soon, I'll have a beta test version to share...

No comments :

Post a Comment