8.22.2020

Decker Role Playing Game (DRPG): Hybrid of TCG and Tabletop RPG and Eurogame (board games)

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Interestingly according to wikipedia a "Tabletop RPG" actually doesn't need a table!  Apparently the most important parts of the genre is "spoken word" and Dungeon masters.  Never mind the contradiction that the word "tabletop" doesn't evoke the notion of a spoken word game or necessity of a dungeon master.  I will let them have the designation of tabletop though since they popularized the term and decided to define it in a strange way.

So I need to come up with a term for what my RPG is.  I will call it a "Decker RPG".  This arises from the uses of decks of cards to play.  Decker RPG's require quite a few things, among them a map (gameboard), a player inventory, a spellbook, character sheets (preferably dry-erase), a rulebook/rulesheet, and deck(s) of cards.  These cards include anything or everything from spells, to equipment, to food, to monsters, and more.  Decker RPG's can also be multiplayer, or a MMDRPG (massive multiplayer decker role playing game).  They can also be automated or partially automated using programs to determine probabilities and/or other systems.  Many DRPG's will seamlessly scale for more players, up to as many as a map can sustain.

DRPG's do not need a Dungeon Master.  A DRPG is designed to have everything needed for a self guided role playing progression experience.  This is facilitated by a game board that can be open world or guided.  Rules set out when encounters happen by using dice rolls.  The encounters themselves are also guided by rules and chance; which rules are designed by the game designer (can be modified as well by the player).  No external intelligence like a DM is needed to evoke or guide encounters or narrative as the game itself was designed to do this.  That said a DM could be used to play the NPC's and/or roll dice and/or keep track of data in the game if desired but this is not required and can be done by the player themselves since the rules guide the npc's stats and skills, and chance dictates what they do.

DRPG's are designed off of computer games in that they offer a complete experience to one or more players including one or more of the following: quests, narrative (which can be included in quests), progression, items, spells, skills, and monster spawning and/or anything else.  Monster spawning can be regulated with timers for guided games or preferably "breadcrumbs" for open world games.
Breadcrumbs are indicators that a character has traveled to a spot on the game board previously.  In an example, a player would have 10 numbered breadcrumbs.  Every time a player moves to a spot on the map they leave a breadcrumb.  When the player has left 10 breadcrumbs they recycle, the next spot they move they take the first breadcrumb they left at the beginning and move it to the spot they just left, and so on, so the breadcrumbs fill the last 10 spots the player was. 

Certain mechanics can be used with these breadcrumbs, such as no monster encounter can happen when traveling onto a spot that contains a breadcrumb.  Breadcrumbs can be color coded to a player in the case of multiplayer.  Breadcrumbs need not be left if occupying a spot that had a breadcrumb left previously, possibly including if there is a breadcrumb left by another player.  Timers can be used in place of or in addition to breadcrumbs.  Preferably timers would be used for guided game boards where the player rarely if ever journeys to the same spots, and breadcrumbs for open world games.  Timers can also be used in open world games especially for special spawns like bosses that would not respawn as fast as other monsters.  These are preferable ways to create "spawn mechanics" in a open world DRPG.

Decks of cards would include monsters of different types and difficulties, items including gear that can be purchased or found or crafted, food and drink,  spells and/or skills, etc.

A spellbook and player inventory would have spots to "stick" or place cards.  Preferably cards would stick somehow to these sheets/boards so they can act as a visual indicator.  There can also be a place to store excess cards that are carried by the player but are not currently in use; ie: non-memorized spells, unusable items like crafting ingredients, or items that overlap currently occupied gear slots, like extra breastplates when you are already wearing a breastplate.  A "weight" mechanic or a strict carry limit can be used to prevent the player from hoarding items.

Monsters would be created for each encounter using rules.  For example we can say that every moster is the same level as the player.  This makes sense because in a computer game the player would journey to areas of monsters that are the same level they are.  Our game does this for us automatically, but if the game is large enough they can copy computer RPG's and have set area's with set levels of monsters.  But preferably every monster is the same level as the player, or approximately the same level including random variation.  Dice roll (which means any way to randomly select) and/or location on the map determines which monster type you face.  Rules dictate for each type of monster what thier stats will be at thier given level.  Say a rule says that for a black bear it gains 2 ability and 1 wisdom per level.  So if you are level 10 and fight a black bear, the bear will also be level 10 and have 20 ability and 10 wisdom.  You play the turns of the enemy and also play the turns of your own character in rolling dice and/or recording hits, and/or whatever else.
That is pretty much it for now.




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