Progress on Campaign Rules
As I mentioned a couple days ago I’ve been thinking of expanding the campaign rules for Dinosaur Cowboys. I took my first step towards that with a bunch of new additions. The biggest was an early version of a Wounds and Injury system that is used after the battle. Also there are rules for bonuses for an underdog posse against a superior force (such as one campaign player who is doing really well against one who keeps losing). I added rules for night combat, since that might happen in a campaign. Also I fleshed out the overland travel rules for difficult terrain (going through jungles and so on) as well as travelling using a Forced March.
But yeah, the most exciting part (and I think you’ll agree, at least based on requests and expectations people have of skirmish games) is the injury system. I think I was able to avoid the death spiral by making the injuries fairly soft and easy to choose. Here is what the process looks like…
For every entity Taken Out of Action during an encounter do the following:
- Step 1: Roll a D12 to see if the entity is hurt or not. Dinosaurs receive +1 to this roll and Leaders receive +2.
If the result is greater than or equal to 8 the entity is unharmed, otherwise continue to Step 2.
- Step 2: Roll 3D12 on the Taken Out of Action Effect table below.
- Step 3: If the entity has no existing Wounds in the Location specified apply the result immediately as a Wound.
Otherwise they will suffer an Injury instead. The entity can choose to make the rolled result or the existing Wound a permanent Injury.
- Step 4: Unless otherwise specified, any old Wounds are healed.
So basically if you roll under 8 you don’t even get hurt from being Taken Out of Action. But otherwise you get a temporary Wound (basically lasts a battle), and then if you get ANOTHER Wound in the SAME Location then one of them is going to become a permanent Injury. I like this approach.
Here is the table that the instructions mentioned. As you can see I went for some flat out stat reductions, but also some funner ones (like starting the game with an empty gun, or having a random Facing). I’m not sure on the names yet, I don’t know if I want to try to keep some consistency, or go for funny names, or what. I wanted to mention I like the organization of the table where the lower numbers are low on the body, and as the result increases the damage goes up to your head, with the top being pretty brutal.
Obviously there will be a Dinosaur specific injury table as well, which should be interesting.
I’ve decided not to have “positive” injuries, such as “You got tougher from your ordeal! +1 AR” for two reasons. The first is they really don’t work under the Wound/Injury system. Second is characters are taken out often enough that eventually, statistically, you’d probably come out ahead.
Once I get a first pass of the extended campaign rules done I’m going to play on the test hex map and make sure everything meshes well and is balanced.
I’m also waffling around the rulebook structure. On the one hand I like having everything in one place, with all the charts, weapons, sheets, campaign info, etc. in a single PDF. But on the other I think having a 60+ page document makes the rules feel overwhelming to get into. So I might strip out the “core” rules into a smaller, separate document. Or maybe just do a simple quickstart set, with two prebuilt posses and a map of terrain and stuff? I just feel like the rulebook is approaching the level of “everything thrown in!”, especially as the campaign rules climb to 4 or 5 pages.
In other great news I have wrangled in some friends to play Dinosaur Cowboys tonight. Should be able to get one or two games in. Some of the participants are the same folks that took place in my last four player game, and one is a friend who hasn’t tried the game before (but we’ve played other tabletop games).
I’ll try to take a few pictures and post them here later on.