Iron Tower Studio Colony Ship Game Design Update #5

It's time for another brief glimpse into Iron Tower's forthcoming colony ship CRPG, as Vince has taken to their official forums to offer up a fifth design update that shares feedback on just how quickly game design costs can add up, the thought they're putting into the game's name (The Sunless World is currently winning), their plans to go with four different attack roll "ranges", and more. Great stuff:

So, logically, combat with guns should have higher THC in general, higher mobility, no dodging bullets, no damage modifiers, which means that fast attacks, normal attacks, and aimed attacks will do exactly the same damage, which means the player would want to use the fastest attack unless there's a strong penalty, but we've just decided to keep THC relatively high.

The obvious conclusion is that we need grazing, cover, and a wide range of attack types:

  • Let's start with grazing. I wanted to implement it in AoD but we were out of time and the fast attacks were basically grazing attacks, doing a lot less damage. The ranged combat is perfect for it.

    Let's say you have 80% THC (to-hit chance). You roll the dice and as luck would have it, you're 1 point short but the binary miss-hit system doesn't reward your near excellence and treats it as you weren't even close. So, we'll change that and go with 4 roll 'ranges': miss, graze, hit, critical hit.

    This will give us some flexibility with damage ranges and allow you to trade damage for THC.

  • Cover is another way to lower your THC without raising eyebrows and explain why the combatants take 4-5 turns to kill each other. We don't want to place cover objects everywhere, so we'll go with energy shields you can place in front of your character (i.e. you throw a 'gadget', it generates an energy shield in front of you (not around you) which absorbs X amount of damage and makes it harder to hit you while you're hiding behind it).

    Naturally, once you decide to go with gadgets, why stop with one? Why not have gadgets modifying every available battlefield stat?

    • Depletable energy shield (absorbs x damage)
    • Reality distortion field (THC penalty against you)
    • Optical illusion a-la Total Recall (chance that enemies will target the illusion)
    • Cloaking field aka Stealth Boy
    • Stasis field (holds enemy, no damage can be dealt)
    • Brainwave Disruptor (don't leave your home without Psychic Nullifier)

    As mentioned previously, expect 10-12 gadgets with 3-4 upgrade levels. Earlier I was toying with the idea of energy armor but the energy shield idea is better as it ties you down, creating tactical opportunities for your enemies. Then you'll have upgradable synthetic armor offering different degree of protection against melee, projectile, and energy attacks.