Whodunnit? [31 Mar 2014] v9, p10 - Gameplay / Poll

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How do you feel about this map?

Love it! When can I play it?
11
85%
Needs more work. (please elaborate)
0
No votes
Not interested, too complicated, etc.
2
15%
 
Total votes : 13

Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby degaston on Tue Jul 05, 2011 2:54 am

carlpgoodrich wrote:I think MrBenn was referring to the fact that the hallways and the Motive take up a lot of space. The hallways could be MUCH skinnier, and by moving the motive somewhere else, you could add a whole extra room.

Okay, if I take 12 pixels from each hallway (so that 2-digit army numbers just barely fit), that adds 8 pixels to the width and height of each room. In the Media room, for example, that would give about 2 extra pixels between each of the blue chairs. Personally, I think that's not a big enough difference to make up for the more "claustrophobic" feeling the narrow hallways give me, but if that's what people want, I could go with it. Here's the two scenarios from the latest crime scene update, with a few new army "circles" added to the narrow hallways for a gauge:

wide/old hallways:
Click image to enlarge.
image

narrow/new hallways:
Click image to enlarge.
image


I know the original game has 9 rooms, but it seemed to me that eight is enough. Does it really need another room? If so, why? And where else do you suggest I put the Motive?
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby degaston on Tue Jul 05, 2011 3:55 am

MrBenn wrote:Part of the "more territories" thing, was that in the game there are a lot of little squares to move around between the rooms. While you have got elements of things in each room, you could add more territories to "move around" in. While you do need to be collecting items within each room, I think adding more spaces in the corridors (that could start with single neutrals) would help to make it feel more like the game.

Though I agree that having more spaces in the hallways would make it feel more like the board game, I'd like to know how you think the game-play would be enhanced by doing that? As I said earlier in the thread, I'm not trying to re-create the board game - I'm just using it as a starting point/theme that I hoped a lot of people would be familiar with and interested in. My goal was to have the game-play be less rigid than a "classic" style map, but not as wide-open as something like Oasis or Hive. I think that between the secret passages and the auto-decay hallways I may have achieved that, so I'm not sure how adding more hallway spaces would make the game better.

MrBenn wrote:I was not criticising the graphics in any way - I am actually a fan of the style ;-)

Thanks, I was trying to create something that hadn't been seen here before.

MrBenn wrote:My comment about "wasted space" is that the map feels quite spread out... As carl suggested, making the motive smaller would enable you to fit in some more spaces' I'd also like to see a bit less regularity (ie if you can move away from a 3x3 grid for the house, then I would strongly encourage that) - you could add a closet, maybe even a second (small) bedroom?

Yes, visually, it's very "regular", but that doesn't make the game-play symmetric like Chinese Checkers or Conquer 4. I prefer to consider it a "clean, simple" look that hopefully won't be too intimidating so that people will be willing to put in a little effort to understand the rules. If there's a problem with the game-play, then, of course, it needs to be changed. But I'd like to have a good reason for adding more spaces other than just because it's possible to cram a few more in.

MrBenn wrote:--I' haven;t had a detailed look over the gameplay but will pop back with some thoughts at some point soon... I'll have to re-read things, but the objective/victory condition needs to be made a lot clearer - and we also need to start thinking about the ease with which it can be accomplished etc.

I'd be happy to hear any thoughts you have on it. As for the objective, I think it's very difficult to just "imagine" how a map like this will play, and what the right bonus structure is, etc. This is why I made that comment in the design brief thread. I tried printing it out to play it myself, but that's just too slow. I think I'll have to try making a solitaire map player because I don't know how else to determine what will work best.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby koontz1973 on Tue Jul 05, 2011 4:47 am

Some thoughts for you to think about considering what you and MrBenn have said.
Adding more territs to the hallways would make it harder for people to move from room to room but it would also increase the importance to the secret passageways. Place one more between the ones you already have doubles the number.

Getting away from the 3/3/3 grid would be nice. How about making the kitchen and dining room one big room. You could take the foyer out completely and use all of the space of the hallways that surround it. Still have it as the foyer, but integrate it to the hall ways. This alone would remove the regularity.

Removing the motive from the centre of the room and adding a completely new room would be great as having it sitting there in the middle is a huge waste of what could be 1 big or 2 small rooms. (a second bedroom, or a guest room/nursery)

You could place the motive anywhere on the map. How about a rethink of the police station. By making the rooms there smaller, you could have 2 new rooms. On the map where it says interrogation rooms, opposite it is dead space. Use that space with any newly created space to have the motive on one side and the morgue on the other. Drawing a dead body on a trolley should not be hard for you to do with your skill.

In the legend you mention the hallways lose one officer per round. Why? How many crime scenes lose officers that way.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby degaston on Tue Jul 05, 2011 2:36 pm

koontz1973 wrote:Some thoughts for you to think about considering what you and MrBenn have said.
Adding more territs to the hallways would make it harder for people to move from room to room but it would also increase the importance to the secret passageways. Place one more between the ones you already have doubles the number.

My problem with this is that I don't think either one of those effects would make the map better. What I like to see in a map is a good mix of balance and tension. One in which an early bonus will not tip the game too far in one player's direction, and where cooperation will allow two or more weaker players to hold back a stronger player. Where both threats and rewards may come from many different directions, so it's difficult to know which way to attack, or where to defend.

The secret passages are obviously important, and must be defended if you don't hold the opposite end. So I don't see the need to make them even more important by making the hallways more difficult to get through. I would actually prefer that the secret passages were a little more difficult to get through (about equal to the hallways), but I don't know how to do that without making the map even more confusing.

Likewise, I don't think the hallways need to be more difficult to get through. I don't want the play in the crime scene to stagnate once the rooms are held - I want there to be the possibility of an attack coming from just about anywhere. Though I don't want the crime scene to be one of those "Oh, I didn't know I could be attacked from there!" maps with a lot of non-linear attacks. (That's what the Police station is for) :)

koontz1973 wrote:In the legend you mention the hallways lose one officer per round. Why? How many crime scenes lose officers that way.

The reason for the decay is so that there will be some cost associated with blocking the hallways. Again, I'm trying to keep the game active in the crime scene. I would like to change the legend to something like "Officers found loitering in hallways will be reassigned to other duties at the rate of 1 per round", but I haven't found a way to fit it in yet. This would be one more item in the legend that would require a knowledge of all the game features in order to understand it, but then I wouldn't say that this is a map for beginners anyway.

koontz1973 wrote:Getting away from the 3/3/3 grid would be nice. How about making the kitchen and dining room one big room. You could take the foyer out completely and use all of the space of the hallways that surround it. Still have it as the foyer, but integrate it to the hall ways. This alone would remove the regularity.

Removing the motive from the centre of the room and adding a completely new room would be great as having it sitting there in the middle is a huge waste of what could be 1 big or 2 small rooms. (a second bedroom, or a guest room/nursery)

You could place the motive anywhere on the map. How about a rethink of the police station. By making the rooms there smaller, you could have 2 new rooms. On the map where it says interrogation rooms, opposite it is dead space. Use that space with any newly created space to have the motive on one side and the morgue on the other. Drawing a dead body on a trolley should not be hard for you to do with your skill.

Is having some "wasted" space really that bad? I think the problem with a lot of maps out there is that they need more "dead" space. It'shardtounderstandsomethingwheneverybitofavailablespaceisused. I'm not saying I can't add or join or reconfigure rooms in any way necessary, but there's always "Madness" if you want a more realistic floor plan. There have been several comments about how one aspect or another doesn't match the board game, but I thought at least the general layout of the crime scene could have a similar style. (without getting too close because of copyright issues) The Motive is an important part of the game and I thought it should have a prominent position - where the solution cards would be in the board game. I don't mind changing things, but with each suggestion it would be nice to know the reasons why you think it will make the game better.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby koontz1973 on Tue Jul 05, 2011 3:08 pm

degaston wrote:but with each suggestion it would be nice to know the reasons why you think it will make the game better.


My suggestions were not meant to try and make the map / game play better, but to give you some ideas to think about.

The reason why more areas in the hallways - it would make it even harder to defend, with the 1 neutral, it is pretty easy to go flying from room to room as it is. In a flat spoils game, by round 3, if I have a ten cash, I go rampage from any room and attack any other room, you only have 7 spaces at most between rooms. With esc games, it is less of a problem but still, the first to cash gets a huge advantage in being able to shot half way across the map. More territs makes this harder to do.

Getting away from the 3/3/3 grid is nothing to do with game play. But by moving, integrating rooms, you are giving players some flexibility. The reason I mentioned the foyer and dining room/kitchen is because these rooms are the easiest to do. The would go together very well. Most maps have one bonus area that is harder to get but rewards players with a better bonus than any where else. The foyer can stay the foyer, but just remove the walls.

Adding the extra room in the middle, game play wise, having another room to space clues around in cannot harm, only make it better for the more open play you are seeking. The motive is important, only if the players make it so. Most games on this map are likely to be played as singles and not teams, so most players will not bother going for the motive/weapon and suspect as it is going up against 26+ neutral armies. Why waste the troops when for that amount, I can kill and opponent.

Decay in hallways is OK, I just wanted to ask if a second killer was on the loose. :D

By placing the motive in the police station, your detectives have it all in one place to arrest a suspect. I just threw in the dead body for fun, but when thinking about it, it could add as an incentive (given a large enough bonus) to move around the police station.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby degaston on Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:25 pm

koontz1973 wrote:My suggestions were not meant to try and make the map / game play better, but to give you some ideas to think about.

Thanks for the response, that was helpful. It's a little difficult to know what to do sometimes because the foundry guidelines say "All sound advice must be followed unless a logical rebuttal by the cartographer or another member of the community is provided." I can't say that these ideas are unsound, or that I have a logical rebuttal for them, but a lot of them seem to come down to a matter of personal preference. I will try to seriously consider them and see what I can work in to the next version.

koontz1973 wrote:The reason why more areas in the hallways - it would make it even harder to defend...

Did you mean to say "easier to defend" or "harder to attack"? That seems to be what you are describing. I'm not sure how much of a rampage someone can go on early in a game with 13 troops. If you're the first to cash, then that means that others are likely to be cashing soon after you and they may take back everything you just grabbed. I could always put 2's in the hallways to slow down an early expansion, but I'm not sure that this is really a problem... which is my problem. I would like to try out these different possibilities to see how one option plays compared to another. But changes like rearranging or adding rooms mean essentially doing the map over from scratch. Not that I can't do that, but I don't want to do it over and over again if I can help it. It seems pointless to continue to update the graphics on a map when I don't really know if I'm happy with the game-play. So I think that the only way I'm going to be satisfied with this is if I'm able to create a map testing program. I guess I'll work on that for a while and see what I can come up with. I'd still be happy to hear any comments in the mean-time.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby koontz1973 on Wed Jul 06, 2011 1:11 pm

degaston wrote:
koontz1973 wrote:My suggestions were not meant to try and make the map / game play better, but to give you some ideas to think about.

Thanks for the response, that was helpful. It's a little difficult to know what to do sometimes because the foundry guidelines say "All sound advice must be followed unless a logical rebuttal by the cartographer or another member of the community is provided." I can't say that these ideas are unsound, or that I have a logical rebuttal for them, but a lot of them seem to come down to a matter of personal preference. I will try to seriously consider them and see what I can work in to the next version.

koontz1973 wrote:The reason why more areas in the hallways - it would make it even harder to defend...

Did you mean to say "easier to defend" or "harder to attack"? That seems to be what you are describing. I'm not sure how much of a rampage someone can go on early in a game with 13 troops. If you're the first to cash, then that means that others are likely to be cashing soon after you and they may take back everything you just grabbed. I could always put 2's in the hallways to slow down an early expansion, but I'm not sure that this is really a problem... which is my problem. I would like to try out these different possibilities to see how one option plays compared to another. But changes like rearranging or adding rooms mean essentially doing the map over from scratch. Not that I can't do that, but I don't want to do it over and over again if I can help it. It seems pointless to continue to update the graphics on a map when I don't really know if I'm happy with the game-play. So I think that the only way I'm going to be satisfied with this is if I'm able to create a map testing program. I guess I'll work on that for a while and see what I can come up with. I'd still be happy to hear any comments in the mean-time.

Print the map out and play a few games with friends and family. This is a good way to test it with proper dice.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby koontz1973 on Wed Jul 06, 2011 1:21 pm

When I said harder to defend, it was badly worded. My point was that if anyone can run around the board that quickly, it cannot be good for play. Especially on a map of this size. Even with the smallest map (Doodle Earth) with a ten cash, all of the territs hold players troops or a 3 neutral. You cannot get from one side of the map to the other. Increasing the neutrals to 2 may slow this down but it also might slow down the game too much. A fine balance has to be struck and how much you are willing to compromise is up to you.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby degaston on Wed Jul 06, 2011 3:19 pm

koontz1973 wrote:Print the map out and play a few games with friends and family. This is a good way to test it with proper dice.


I tried playing by myself like this, (I don't have a group of people interested in playing) but I didn't even finish one game. It was just too slow even with a dice rolling app, also I was running out of troops, having to share colors, etc. - it was not an ideal situation. Even if it takes more total time, I think I would rather try to make a program.

koontz1973 wrote:When I said harder to defend, it was badly worded. My point was that if anyone can run around the board that quickly, it cannot be good for play. Especially on a map of this size.

[citation required] :) What about maps like "Operation Drug War" or "City Mogul" (among others) that allow jumps all over the map? Not saying I want that kind of a free-for-all, but my feeling is that players will probably want to secure one room before they go attacking another. But with the structure as it is, they are not forced to go after their closest neighbor. They can choose to go after the strongest player, or the weakest, or whomever. I don't really see that as being a big problem, and I'm not sure what map size has to do with it.

koontz1973 wrote:Even with the smallest map (Doodle Earth) with a ten cash, all of the territs hold players troops or a 3 neutral. You cannot get from one side of the map to the other. Increasing the neutrals to 2 may slow this down but it also might slow down the game too much. A fine balance has to be struck and how much you are willing to compromise is up to you.


In Doodle Earth, if you're on Europe or Sarah Desert or Egypt, then you're either touching or only one territory away from every continent, so with a 10 cash, you can probably break any bonus. But like I said, I don't think I'm going to know the right balance point just from talking about it.
Last edited by degaston on Wed Jul 06, 2011 6:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby MrBenn on Wed Jul 06, 2011 4:47 pm

degaston wrote:
koontz1973 wrote:The reason why more areas in the hallways - it would make it even harder to defend...

Did you mean to say "easier to defend" or "harder to attack"? That seems to be what you are describing. I'm not sure how much of a rampage someone can go on early in a game with 13 troops. If you're the first to cash, then that means that others are likely to be cashing soon after you and they may take back everything you just grabbed. I could always put 2's in the hallways to slow down an early expansion, but I'm not sure that this is really a problem... which is my problem. I would like to try out these different possibilities to see how one option plays compared to another. But changes like rearranging or adding rooms mean essentially doing the map over from scratch. Not that I can't do that, but I don't want to do it over and over again if I can help it. It seems pointless to continue to update the graphics on a map when I don't really know if I'm happy with the game-play. So I think that the only way I'm going to be satisfied with this is if I'm able to create a map testing program. I guess I'll work on that for a while and see what I can come up with. I'd still be happy to hear any comments in the mean-time.

Which is why we recommend working out the gameplay before producing a polished map image... You've shown that you have a good eye for the graphical detail, so put that to one side for now, until the gameplay is sorted out. Instead of the fancy graphics, work on a slightly more basic schematic until the rest is sorted.

In other news:
Image
Image
PB: 2661 | He's blue... If he were green he would die | No mod would be stupid enough to do that
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) [05 Jul 2011] Version 1.7

Postby koontz1973 on Wed Jul 06, 2011 11:58 pm

Congrats on the draft stamp. =D>
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) - Version 1.7

Postby carlpgoodrich on Thu Jul 07, 2011 8:48 am

degaston wrote:And where else do you suggest I put the Motive?


You could always put the Motive in the legend next to where it says "-> THE MOTIVE". Other maps have used this strategy and it seems to work pretty well.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) [05 Jul 2011] Version 1.7

Postby AndyDufresne on Thu Jul 07, 2011 9:38 am

I like the idea of breaking up the 3-3-3 grid.

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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) [05 Jul 2011] Version 1.7

Postby degaston on Thu Jul 07, 2011 1:13 pm

MrBenn wrote:Instead of the fancy graphics, work on a slightly more basic schematic until the rest is sorted.

That works for me.

koontz1973 wrote:Congrats on the draft stamp. =D>

Thanks! :)

carlpgoodrich wrote:
degaston wrote:And where else do you suggest I put the Motive?

You could always put the Motive in the legend next to where it says "-> THE MOTIVE". Other maps have used this strategy and it seems to work pretty well.

I think it would be kind of out of place to stick it into the legend as it is right now. Plus, I have a strong preference for maps that I can play with the legend scrolled off the top of the screen. I rarely need it once I know the map well enough, but if it's at the bottom, or there are territories at the top, then I have to have the whole map on the screen or else scroll around. :x

I'll consider moving it to the police station side if I can.

AndyDufresne wrote:I like the idea of breaking up the 3-3-3 grid.

I might get away from the regular 3x3 structure, but I really don't want to go to a traditional/realistic floor plan. The hallways are a pretty unique feature of this map and I'd like to see how they play. Plus, I think a traditional floor plan would be much too restrictive and would not allow the kind of open play I'm looking for.
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Re: Murder 1 (Clue variation) [05 Jul 2011] Version 1.7

Postby AndyDufresne on Fri Jul 08, 2011 9:12 am

I'm not suggesting a complete realistic or traditional floorplan, just something other than 3x3x3 since it kind of looks unappealing.


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