Feb 11, 2015

Naval War - Designing the gunnery mechanic (part 2)

In the last post, I wrote about the thought process on how to create the gunnery mechanic for my game. We will continue by reviewing the result and see if we can bring it in line with the limitations set:

Naval War - Designing the gunnery mechanics (part 1)

One of the hardest things in designing a ruleset in my mind is the mechanics. Designing mechanics is as messy as most of the battles we are portraying and without any guidance the process really can get out of hand.

Of course there are the usual brainstorm sessions first, then the endless writing down of possible mechanics and then trashing them one by one and starting all over again. There are literally hundreds of ways of gaming the process of naval gunnery and for every way to do it there are pro's and cons. It is also very useful to check any benchmarks already used by other sets and check if they contain anything of value to the effect your looking for.

So after checking many different approaches and trashing one idea after another I figured I needed some boundaries set; if you don’t, you might end up with a mechanic that works perfectly well, but completely ruins the game because it does not align with the objectives of the game itself.

So I started out by listing my basic game limits:
-          Medium amount of detailing
-          Fast play
-          Minimum amount of bookkeeping
-          Involvement for both players
-          Mechanics encourage historic play

Then I continued by elaborating on those basic limits by adding relevant context on how these principles will influence the mechanic: