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Squad/Scenario Design Contest: Level 0 Options
FlyingArrow
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 10:44:47 AM
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Kezzamachine's idea of 'levels' is a great idea. Essentially, slotting the SWM pieces by complexity so that new players can ease into the game without feeling overwhelmed. People tossed out some ideas for what they think should be included as part of Level 1 - the simplest level. However, I'd like to see something simpler than anything suggested so far. Let's call it "Level 0".

(See this discussion if you haven't already:
http://www.bloomilk.com/Forums/default.aspx?g=posts&t=12690 )

Level 0 is purely for teaching the most basic rules of the game. It's a teaching game, so it should end quickly. At the same time, it should be fun enough that the player can't wait to play a 'real' game.

So here is your challenge: Create 2 squads and choose a map for them to play on at Level 0.

The squads should be balanced against one another and contain VERY simple figures. The map should be simple (i.e. no beveled corners) and play quickly. The idea at this level is to introduce rounds, phases, turns, basic movement, terrain, targeting, combine fire, attacking, attacks of opportunity, Force points, rerolling, Move Faster, the simplest (!!) of Force Powers and Special Abilities, and the simplest of commander effects. (Probably nothing more than Cunning, Opportunist, and +4/+10 boosts. Even Accurate Shot or Grenades is probably too much at this Level - save it for Level 1.) The two squads should be able to consistently face off against one another and reach a resolution on the given map in 15 minutes or less... INCLUDING rules explanations to a new player.

Squads need to be 100 points or less. To meet the requirement of a VERY fast skirmish, 50 points might actually be more appropriate. Using iconic figures is encouraged, since the idea is that this is for a new player, and they will more likely prefer to know who the characters are. At the same time, using otherwise useless pieces is also encouraged so that anyone who is teaching the game has no qualms about leaving these pieces together in a 'teaching' box without having to raid the box for normal games.


ACTUAL INTANGIBLE PRIZE: I will physically set aside the winner's idea and use it whenever I teach the game in the future.

===

EDIT: For ease of reference, I'll put the winners here. I'd like to have a Sith/OR, Rep/Sep, and Reb/Imperial 50vs50 skirmish.
SignerJ
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 10:50:26 AM
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I'm completely interested in helping out. First, though, I'd like to take a moment to point out that this would be perfect to include in that community booklet that was discussed a while ago, but then forgotten by many.
kitfisto10
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 10:51:17 AM
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I don't have any specific ideas but I have seen other BM members discuss how it is easier to teach new players if you use characters they recognize. My suggestion would be to do something like Imperial vs. Rebel with a simple Vader (is there a simple Vader?), Stormtroopers, and a few other Imperial figures available and then have Rebel Troopers with two or three unique Rebel figures (like a simple Luke and Leia).
FlyingArrow
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 10:56:52 AM
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kitfisto10 wrote:
I don't have any specific ideas but I have seen other BM members discuss how it is easier to teach new players if you use characters they recognize. My suggestion would be to do something like Imperial vs. Rebel with a simple Vader (is there a simple Vader?), Stormtroopers, and a few other Imperial figures available and then have Rebel Troopers with two or three unique Rebel figures (like a simple Luke and Leia).


The Vsets should put out a "Vader" card and a "Luke" card. Crappy, simple low-cost (but still overcosted) versions that match up with the crappy "Luke" and "Vader" that came in the Decipher CCG box set. Almost no abilities. Then you can use them in this teaching scenario. ThumbsUp (Seriously doubt that would ever happen, though.)

A squad of purely Stormtroopers and Rebel Troopers might work well for this. One possible problem is that there may be too many activations to consistently finish in 15 minutes. Maybe lower the size even further... 30 points per side? 6 characters per side? Another possible problem is that it might not register very high on the 'fun' scale. Obviously, for a quick, simple game it's not going to be as fun as the full game, but that might be too straightforward even for Level 0. Sounds like something I'd want to try, though.
SignerJ
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 11:21:23 AM
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How're these?:

--Republic--
14 Jedi Guardian
36 Clone Trooper (x4)

--CIS--
16 Dark Side Acolyte
10 Super Battle Droid
24 Battle Droid (x6)

As for the map... How about Nelvaanin Snow Fields or Caves of Illum?

They're each fairly balanced. While the Separatists may have superior activations, Battle Droids are really cruddy. The requirement of combining fire for the Separatist play to hit balances out the greater activations. The Jedi Guardian has an actual Force power, while the DSA has Double Attack. The Clones have good Damage, but it's mostly wasted except against the DSA or the SBA. Both squads are a nice mix of ranged and melee characters, and they're only 50 points each, which means that the game will go rather fast.
FlyingArrow
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 11:47:18 AM
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SignerJ wrote:

--Republic--
14 Jedi Guardian
36 Clone Trooper (x4)

--CIS--
16 Dark Side Acolyte
10 Super Battle Droid
24 Battle Droid (x6)



Best so far! BigGrin Looks good, although the Jedi Guardian is actually 11 points. I might suggest:

--Republic--
15 Elite Clone Trooper Commander (VERY simple CE)
11 Jedi Guardian
18 Clone Trooper (x2)
6 Duros Mercenary

That adds in a simple CE. The Duros adds no complexity whatsoever since he has no SAs. (A Mercenary who predates Mercenary...)
crazybirdman
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 5:42:44 PM
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when we teach new people, we try to stick with characters they know, and use small squads. We try to have one force user, one commander, and not too many special abilities, since they have to keep track of theirs and their opponents
FlyingArrow
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 6:17:19 PM
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crazybirdman wrote:
when we teach new people, we try to stick with characters they know, and use small squads. We try to have one force user, one commander, and not too many special abilities, since they have to keep track of theirs and their opponents


Do you have any specific squads to recommend?
saber1
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 7:06:01 PM
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Here are a couple I tossed together. I don't know maps well so I have no recommendation.

--Imperial Level Zero--
39 Anakin Skywalker, Sith Apprentice
15 Dengar
14 Stormtrooper Officer
11 Elite Stormtrooper
21 Snowtrooper x3
(100pts. 7 activations)

--Rebel Level Zero--
21 Luke Skywalker, Young Jedi
21 Rebel Captain
20 Princess Leia
13 Rebel Officer
13 Rebel Trooper on Tauntaun
7 Elite Rebel Trooper
5 Rebel Trooper
(100pts. 7 activations)

Ironically, they accidentally have exactly the same HPs and average Attack rating.
FlyingArrow
Posted: Monday, June 3, 2013 7:14:30 PM
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I think those are too complicated for Level 0. I'd like the new player to be able to learn all the SAs/CEs and play the game in 15 minutes, and I have a hard time seeing that happen with that many SAs and FPs.

Probably pretty good for Level 1, though.
saber1
Posted: Tuesday, June 4, 2013 10:08:29 AM
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The trick is finding characters new players will recognize that are Level 0 simple. "Mains" are inherently powerful/complicated.
FlyingArrow
Posted: Tuesday, June 4, 2013 11:12:15 AM
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saber1 wrote:
The trick is finding characters new players will recognize that are Level 0 simple. "Mains" are inherently powerful/complicated.


True. Non-uniques may be the best bet.
FlyingArrow
Posted: Wednesday, June 5, 2013 11:11:51 AM
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A Sith vs OR option...

--OR "Level 1" Training Squad--
18 Old Republic Commander
16 Jedi Consular
16 Old Republic Soldier x2

(50pts. 4 activations)
http://www.bloomilk.com/Squad/130339/or--level-1--training-squad

--Sith "Level 1" Training Squad--
29 Dark Jedi Master
13 Elite Sith Trooper
8 Sith Trooper

(50pts. 3 activations)
http://www.bloomilk.com/Squad/130340/sith--level-1--training-squad


Would either of these have a huge advantage over the other?
SignerJ
Posted: Wednesday, June 5, 2013 1:51:20 PM
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FlyingArrow wrote:
A Sith vs OR option...

--OR "Level 1" Training Squad--
18 Old Republic Commander
16 Jedi Consular
16 Old Republic Soldier x2

(50pts. 4 activations)
http://www.bloomilk.com/Squad/130339/or--level-1--training-squad

--Sith "Level 1" Training Squad--
29 Dark Jedi Master
13 Elite Sith Trooper
8 Sith Trooper

(50pts. 3 activations)
http://www.bloomilk.com/Squad/130340/sith--level-1--training-squad


Would either of these have a huge advantage over the other?


The Sith would have a huge advantage over the other. Not to mention, the Dark Jedi Master is a movement breaker, and thus shouldn't be included in Level 0.
FlyingArrow
Posted: Wednesday, June 5, 2013 1:59:03 PM
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Good point....
crazybirdman
Posted: Thursday, June 6, 2013 7:12:52 AM
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47 Darth Vader
20 Admiral Piett
14 imperial Officer
5 Stormtrooper x3
4 Gran Raider

i like this one, a couple commander effects, a simple force user, and some core special abilities. Nothing too complicated. Also remember the minis and teams don't have to be 'good', just able to teach the basics.
crazybirdman
Posted: Thursday, June 6, 2013 7:20:40 AM
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SignerJ wrote:

Not to mention, the Dark Jedi Master is a movement breaker, and thus shouldn't be included in Level 0.


Have the minis/special abilities/force powers/commander effects that are appropriate for what levels been listed? Are the levels based on skill, or understanding of the game? So would level 0 be 1-3 games played? or 1-3 games won? How many levels are there? (are we sticking with 5?)
FlyingArrow
Posted: Thursday, June 6, 2013 7:49:59 AM
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crazybirdman wrote:
SignerJ wrote:

Not to mention, the Dark Jedi Master is a movement breaker, and thus shouldn't be included in Level 0.


Have the minis/special abilities/force powers/commander effects that are appropriate for what levels been listed? Are the levels based on skill, or understanding of the game? So would level 0 be 1-3 games played? or 1-3 games won? How many levels are there? (are we sticking with 5?)


See the original thread. The discussion is ongoing:
http://www.bloomilk.com/Forums/default.aspx?g=posts&t=12690

In this thread, the idea is very small, very simple, balanced squads that can be both learned and played to completion in 15 minutes.

I think Vader wouldn't make the cut. None of his abilities are too complicated, but he has too many hit points and offers too many options for a new player to see the game end in 15 minutes.
SignerJ
Posted: Thursday, June 6, 2013 8:43:46 AM
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For Level 0, I keep thinking of cheap, low-cost figures that have an overall low rating on Bloomilk. Ranged characters should have a low Attack so as to encourage combining fire, and neither side should be able to out-activate the other (within reason). Auto-damage should be minimized to nothing above 20, and speed should be limited to Speed 6, without movement breakers. Nothing should have more attacks than two a turn. Non-targeting abilities should probably be limited to adjacent. No Diplomat, etc.

How were the two squads I designed?
Katarn07
Posted: Thursday, June 6, 2013 8:53:31 AM
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I'd love to see some Rebel/Imperial/Fringe squads. I'm introducing the game to new people soon. My current play group and I started with Booster Drafts but we're fed up with that method. Players get some really unfair advantages and we'd like to make balanced squads with specific factions.
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