Below is a big huge brainstorm of some new ideas or features for Dinosaur Cowboys. You can thank another playtest, plus I’ve started carrying a pad of paper to scribble my wild ideas down on, so I forget less. At least it gives me something to do besides try to make artwork for the v0.9 rulebook. Anyways I’m a big fan of variant rules because sometimes a cool feature doesn’t quite make it into the core rules, but I still LIKE that cool feature, so I aim to make those available as “official” house rules. The TODO below that list is mostly Traits to add, but a few neat ideas in there too (like maybe doing away with Level entirely and just going by IP/Dollars).
Possible Variant Rules
– Armor reduces damage instead of modifying RMC/MMC
– Use MMC for ranged weapons in melee, but still apply the In Melee penalty
– Dinosaur adds their Armor to any riders (makes getting across the field easier)
– Fumbles (unmodified rolls of 1) count as -1 Hit
– Variable Run speed (D6″) instead of 1/2 Movement
– 1 Improvement Point can be bought for $10
– Do not remove an entity at 0 HP, just place them face down (called Unconscious or Downed). They can be revived by someone using healing (Medpack, Whiskey Drop, IRP, etc.) on them.
– Alternative Leadership effects: grant additional Action Phase to one entity in 12″?
– Can buy and set traps (marked down with X-Y coordinates in inches) like spiked pits, etc.
– Some kind of “quick draw” with Six-Shooters that lets you roll off / duel an opponent within short range? Maybe autokill the loser?
– Gatling Gun that has D6 or D12 Attacks instead of a set number
– Additional +1 Miss Chance against targets that Ran
– Fire rules for Molotov cocktails (maybe a X” wide patch that lasts until the end of the turn?), get same attack if target enters or is pushed into it
– Dinosaur equipment upgrades (armor plates, extra saddle, etc.)
– Weapon upgrades (laser sight, etc.) that grant additional benefits to the gun? Arguably covered as +XA or +YD weapons, maybe just need +ZSR (short range) or those kind of extra mods? Maybe make a way to purchase these upgrades (percent of base price? [might make upgrading cheap guns too desirable], or just flat price per plus?)
– Non-Dinosaur beasts (Sabertooth cats, etc.)
– Develop “The Saloon: Dinosaur Cowboys Posse Builder” webapp, including export to PDF form
– Weather effects (sandstorm, acid rain, etc.) and hazardous terrain (lava, quicksand, etc.)
Add RMC default for Dinosaurs due to Roar attack (Beast type), since it’s ranged (Removed Roar attack so Dinosaurs stay pure melee)
– * Clarify Dismounting for multiple people on a single Dinosaur
– * Clarify no move at all on a failed Charge (that comes up short, as in you don’t still move the X” inches you rolled)
– * Maybe make Charge a 2″ or 3″ minimum, so basically can try to charge targets in 3-6″
– * Note about Fleeing off the board. Instead give the Fleeing person a Movement Phase, but Stunned in that Action Phase
– * Maybe note that more terrain and more powerful posses increase play time (on the 30-60 minutes game req at the start)
– * Change Kill system to be based on victory (like +5 XP on win), or maybe get Improvement points on a per-win or per-kill basis instead of per-level? Then Levels could be entirely removed and you just play Posses with matching IP/Dollars.
– * Trait “Climber” Passive trait that treats vertical climbs (cliffs, hills, etc.) as normal non-Difficult terrain?
Trait “Sacrifice” Active trait that adds +damage but takes HP from self?
– * Trait “Rejuvenating Strike” Active trait that gives +HP if target is killed
– * Trait “Underdog Strike” Active trait that gives +damage if target has more HP than attacker
Trait “Fresh Strike” Active trait that gives +damage if target is unhurt
– * Trait “Retreat” that gives +Movement to nearby ally
– * Trait “Clear Me” that removes harmful effects (Stopped, etc.)
– * Trait “Frightful Strike” that gives -Bravery penalty if a test is required from your attack
– * Trait “Burst Move” gives +Move but makes self Stopped or Slowed next turn
– * Trait “Cleave” hits adjacent melee target as well as main target
– * Trait “Stoneroot” make self Stopped but give +X Armor
– * Trait “Final Thrust” that does +damage if target is already half HP, otherwise it does less damage
Trait “Grapple” makes self Slowed and target Stopped
– * Trait “Hamstring” apply Slow to target
– * Trait “Protector” transfer some HP to nearby ally (maybe 1:2 ratio?)
Trait “Riposte” means next enemy melee attack causes them to take damage
– * Trait “Bull’s Strike” that Stops target and does extra damage if they’ve moved?
– * Make some Dinosaur fighting feats, like +X vs Dinosaur
– * Do traits specific to some weapons? Or maybe just to weapon categories? Like “Thrower” that increase Grenades range, etc.
– * Make some Traits that only work when mounted? Like further Lasso range, maybe higher move (“Spur Mount”), etc.?
– * Make some Traits apply weapon special effects, like “Stopped” for a “Knockdown Shot” or the like
– * Create a “Slowed” weapon special ability that forces target to move half (and can’t run) for their next Activation, could be a Bola or Whip attack
– * Make a note of falling damage (being pushed off a cliff, etc.). Flat 1 HP per 1″
– * Make Knockback as X” Knockback, where X is how far, similar to Explosion. So Shove would be 2″ Knockback and Shudder Lance would be 1D6″ Knockback and so on
– * Explain Minimum range somewhere (for example 4-14″ range on Lever Action rifle)
– * Different Lassos (more damage, further range, pull closer, etc.)
– * Dinosaurs have a Stampede / Trample attack? Further Charge range or damage maybe? Just a bunch of different special attacks similar to Brawl for humans, like Knockback, Trip, etc. Maybe Berserk which hurts self after attack but does more damage?
– * Variable Charge speed, maybe Move+D6″ in a straight line? Could add a fun element of uncertainty to Charging. Need to make sure there is a chance of reaching the enemy, otherwise a person could just Charge forward and gain additional free Movement.
– * Add Stopped, Stunned, and Slowed as tokens,
maybe centralize their rules? (centralized enough as weapon special effects)
Maybe make an “X” attack that means you roll to hit with 1D12 but it does no damage, perfect for Trip or Shove (instead of 1A-0D). (Want to maintain the same mechanism throughout)
Clarify Dinosaur sizes in one spot, and what effect each size has (passenger count, travelling, etc.) (Kind of clear already)