Warning you are about to be hit by a wall of text!
I like the basic concept of this map very much. Especially as a boardgamegeek member and avid player of many board games it strikes me at the core. I am also a big fan of applying the CC game mechanics to other styles of games to create a completely unique gameplay experience.
Now let me see if I can offer some advice on the gameplay and possibly layout and graphics of this map.
Total territories 91 which breaks down as follows.
- 1 Tower
- 2 Dragons
- 2 Bridges
- 12 Allies
- 22 Characters
- 52 open hexes (i didn't count these I just subtracted the above counts)
Starting Positions: I assume you plan to random drop the 52 open hexes with player starts. These look prety good if this is your intention.
- 2 Player game (52/3) each player starts with 17 remaining 18 neutral.
- 3 Player game (52/3) each player starts with 17 remaining 1 neutral.
- 4 Player game (52/4) each player starts with 13.
- 5 Player game (52/5) each player starts with 10 remaining 2 neutral.
- 6 Player game (52/6) each player starts with 8 remaining 4 neutral.
- 7 Player game (52/7) each player starts with 7 remaining 3 neutral.
- 8 Player game (52/8) each player starts with 6 remaining 4 neutral.
- 9 Player game (52/9) each player starts with 5 remaining 7 neutral.
- 10 Player game (52/10) each player starts with 5 remaining 2 neutral.
- 11 Player game (52/11) each player starts with 4 remaining 8 neutral.
- 12 Player game (52/12) each player starts with 4 remaining 4 neutral.
I wouldn't drop on anything else though. That way you can set the starts on Allies and the Dragons to 5 or 7 to gate entry. The bridges should probably be set to 1 or 2 to make it easy to cross as those are great choke points but shouldn't slow early expansion. Win Condition:
Hold 7 allies of the available 12 allies to win the game, or eliminate your opponents of course. This seems prety good but you should probably move the river or allies so that you need at least 1 from the area that is on the right side of the river. That way the bridges become a strategic point for victory. Bonuses:
As far as I can tell their is an autodeploy at the tower of 2. Every 2 "Characters" provide a +1 bonus. And I am guessing that you are using the standard +1/3 (minimum 3) of standard CC map gameplay. This means a minimum 3 deploy-able troops per turn and if you hols 1/2 of the map you would be getting 13 troops. You may want to grant a bonus for every 2 allies of say +3 so for that extra bonus and to make it just a touch faster. Especially if you start allies with 5 or 7 neutral. Hex Grid:
I know you want to represent two sides at war with the territories labeled HA and A but to be honest you should use a uniform system for your hexes at least for now. Label each column with a letter then as you go down the hexes from top to bottom give it a number. A1, A2, A3, next column B1, B2, B3. You can add text to the XML to differentiate it further so "Ally12" could be "A1" on the map and "A1 - Ally" in the XML.
You should also do you best to fit all the active hexes on the map, try not to cut any off. Make the whole grid slightly narrower and shorter and show the entire hex for HA1, HA2, HA3, HA10, A16, A23,A24 (mislabeled A214),A25. It will make it much cleaner.Tower:
Autodeploy 2. Bombards up to 2 hexes away. --- The tower is in a great location as it is centrally located and has nothing blocking line of sight to any of the 18 hexes that it can bombard. It can bombard 5 of the maps 22 characters. Consider marking each hex that can be bombarded with a small symbol to denote it can be bombarded and note that in the key. Characters:
I get what you are going for here but I am not sure that I get the sense that characters mean much from the way they are represented. Perhaps you could give them short names instead of labeling their hexes as I suggested above. Short 5 letter names like Garl, Halan, Burl etc would make it seem a bit more epic. You should consider separating the characters by at least 1 space each so that nobody can grab one from another.
Allies: I like the concept of allies that are needed to gain access to the tower as well as grant you the win if you can persuade enough of them to join your cause. Consider havimg them grant an additional bonus as I detailed above. The basic mechanics of a game engine like CC are the 4X concept; eXplore, eXpand, eXploit, eXterminate and any time your gameplay utilizes one of those things it becomes attractive to the players. Key Wording:
Their is a bit of confusing wording on the map. You note that Dragons can attack the tower then follow it with a requirement of holding 4 allies to attack the tower. So it appears as if the tower may not be assaulted unless you hold 4 allies even by Dragons. Dragons:
I like the Dragon concept but I think you should allow dragons to bombard each other as well as assault the tower. This way it feels like waging a war for the skies. Also make them unique, name them like Smaug is named in LotR or give them colors, for instance make one Red and the other Green so they have a personality.
Iconography: Make sure you are using icons that are either open source or from a free font pack or an image that you have purchased the rights to via something like 123rf etc. Remember that some free fonts or royalty free images state that they cannot be used for profit with ought consent or additional purchased rights and because CC changes for premium memberships that could make you liable for their use.
I would recommend taking all of your key text and putting it in your original post so that you have a central resource and people don't have to read the map to get the idea of whats is going on and it will help you later to develop the key on the map. This way you won't feel limited by the space available on the map and can instead focus on gameplay first. See my link for Conquer 500 or Krazy Kingdoms below to get an idea of how to detail your original post, or possibly how to overdo it a bit Overall great job on bringing your idea this far. I hope you will find this informative and interesting and hopefully some of what I suggested will help you get this map into the drafting room and beyond. Good luck with your map I look forward to watching it's development.
[b]On Sabatacle ... Sorry [b]