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Old April 30th, 2017, 03:21 AM
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Lord Dragonix Lord Dragonix is offline
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Ultimate Alliance Style Battle System with limited AI

Since this part of the forum seems a little dead... I thought I would share a variant play system I came up with a few years back that lets you play out scenarios in a manner similar to the Ultimate Alliance & X-Men Legends series of video games.

I have a PDF version of these rules, but unless the site rules changed since I joined, I don't think I'm allowed to share it in the downloads section. So, I'll just share the ruleset in text form below:


Basic Setup: Army Cards are divided amongst two or three groups before each game begins. The Player Army consists of the Army Cards shared by the human players. The Enemy Army consists of the allied Army Cards which collectively work against the Player Army and are controlled by a "dungeon master" or by the rudimentary AI system described below. The third army, which is optional, depending on the scenario being played, is the Civilian or NPC Army. This army consists of Army Cards, controlled by the "dungeon master" or the AI system, which are usually friendly to the Player Army but not the Enemy Army. In most scenarios the Enemy Army will attempt to destroy the NPC Army as well as the Player Army.

Player Setup: Up to four players may work together in the Player Army. The Player Army always consists of at most 4 active Army Cards. Divide those Army Cards evenly among all players, giving one player two cards when playing with three players.

While each player only takes turns with their own Army Card(s), every Army Card in the Player Army is considered to be controlled by single player. Thus, your figure may use a "Bonding" special power to allow another player's figure(s) to take a turn.

Each player receives a full set of Order Markers and may take turns with those Order Markers as they normally would. (You may wish to allow the Enemy Army to use more Order Markers to compensate for a high number of players.)

Player Roster: While the active Player Army consists of at most four Army Cards, the Player Army's Roster may consist of an unlimited number of Army Cards. These cards are brought into play by using Extraction Points or scenario rules. Army Cards currently in the roster cannot be healed, receive wounds, or be affected by any other effects.

Extraction Points: If the battlefield has any Extraction Points on it, then only Player Army figures may move onto those spaces. If any effect would attempt to move another army's figure onto those spaces, it must stop its movement on the immediately preceding space.

At the end of any player's turn, a player may exchange their figure on an Extraction Point for another Army Card in their roster. The figure on the Extraction Point leaves the battlefield and returns to the Player Army Roster and the exchanged figure enters onto the same Extraction Point. Figures do not take leaving engagement attacks when leaving the battlefield in this way and the new figure is not affected by effects that occur when entering engagement or adjacency. If the new figure cannot fit on the Extraction Point then those figures cannot be exchanged. Order Markers on the Army Card of the figure leaving the battlefield are placed on the Army Card of the figure entering the battlefield. All other markers stay on the figures' respective Army Cards.

You may only exchange out Squad Army Cards or Common Hero Army Cards when all of the figures you control sharing that Army Card (or cards if using more than one Common Army Card) are within 3 clear sight spaces of the figure on the Extraction Point. All of those figures which are on the battlefield are removed. If you are exchanging for Squad Army Cards or Common Army Cards, you may bring to the battlefield all figures you control which share those Army Cards. However, the first figure to be exchanged must be placed on the Extraction Point and all other figures must be placed on empty spaces so that they are within 3 clear sight spaces of the figure on the Extraction Point.

You do not need to bring all figures you control which share the given Army Cards to the battlefield, and you can bring those figures onto the battlefield by using another extraction while at least one figure sharing that Army Card is on the Extraction Point. When bringing figures to the battlefield in this way, you do not need to exchange out any figures you control.

At most one extraction may occur per round for the whole Player Army regardless of the number of players.

Replacing Destroyed Figures: If the battlefield has any Extraction Points on it, then it is possible to bring new figures onto the battlefield after all of the figures on an Army Card the Player Army controls is destroyed.

At the end of each round after every other effect has taken place, if a figure controlled by a player is on an Extraction Point, then all players may bring new Army Cards to the battlefield. Any figures brought to the battlefield must be placed adjacent to a player figure on an Extraction Point. Players may each only bring as many new Army Cards to the battlefield as they need to control their full allotment of Army Cards as decided at the beginning of the game.

Experience Points: As the Player Army destroys Army Cards in the Enemy Army it earns experience in points equal to the destroyed Army Card's Point cost. (Each time a squad figure is destroyed it earns the Player Army a fraction of its Army Card's Point cost rounded up to the nearest 5 points. When each figure in a two figure squad is destroyed the players earn half of that squad's points. For three figures it is one third, for four figures it is one fourth, etc.) Each time a player figure destroys a destructible object, they also gain 10 experience points.

Every time the players earn 100 points of cumulative experience, reduce their cumulative experience by 100 and immediately roll the 20-sided die. Use the following chart to determine the effects of the die roll:
Experience Rewards
1-5 Nothing
6-8 1 Healing Point
9-14 100 Bits
15-16 1 Healing Point and 100 Bits
17 2 Healing Points
18 300 Bits
19 Team Energy
20 3 Healing Points, 500 Bits, and Team Energy

Healing Points must immediately be spent to remove 1 Wound Marker per Healing Point from any player's active Unique Hero Army Card. The last player to earn experience may determine which Army Card receives the healing. If no active Army Cards have any Wound Markers, then the player may choose an Army Card currently on the roster.

Bits are the currency used during scenario specific opportunities or between maps during a campaign to heal hero figures with wounds, revive destroyed figures, unlock new Army Cards, purchase Treasure Glyphs, or other effects.

Team Energy, when earned, allows the player that last earned experience to select a player who may then use their "X" Order Marker as an additional turn at the end of the current round. Each player may only use one such Order Marker regardless of how many times Team Energy is earned. If the player already used and/or revealed their "X" Order Marker for some other effect or special power, then they may not take a turn with that Order Marker in addition to this previous use. If multiple players are taking extra turns, then the original turn order decided by the Initiative roll still applies.

Bit Store: Using Bits as currency, players may, between maps during a campaign or when determined by the current scenario, purchase certain effects.

Army Cards can be added to the Bit Store by the campaign scenario. Any Army Card in the Bit Store may be immediately added to the Player Army Roster by spending Bits equal to that Army Card's Point cost.

Previously destroyed Unique Hero figures may be revived by paying half that figure's Point cost rounded up to the nearest 5 Points. Remove all wounds and other markers on that figure's Army Card when reviving. Destroyed Unique Squad figures may be revived by paying half the squad's Point cost. This will revive all previously destroyed figures in that squad. Common figures may not be revived and must be re-added to the roster by unlocking them.

If a Unique Hero is wounded but has not been destroyed, you may pay 100 points or the Unique Hero's Point cost, whichever is lesser, to remove all Wound Markers on that Unique Hero's Army Card. All other markers remain when healed in this way.

Scenarios may also add equipable Treasure Glyphs to the store, which may be purchased and then placed on any Unique Hero's Army Card on the Player Army Roster.

Enemy Order Marker Placement: At the start of each game each Enemy Army Army Card is placed into a priority order list for receiving Order Markers and is also given a number representing how many of the remaining Order Markers that Army Card should receive. Place one shuffled set of unrevealed Order Markers randomly on these Army Cards according to this priority list. If more than one set of Order Markers is being used for the Enemy Army, place one set at a time and do not place Order Markers from more that one set on a single Army Card. If any Order Markers remain after placing according to priority, place all remaining Order Markers on the last card to receive Order Markers.

Enemy AI: At the beginning of each game, each Enemy Army Card is given one from several AI types. This determines how the “dungeon master” or the allied players should direct the figure(s) movement and attacks when that Army Card takes a turn. If there is a “dungeon master” directing the Enemy Army, they should be afforded some leeway when taking turns so as to allow some unexpected behavior among the Enemy Army for additional challenge.

AI Types

Melee: These figures move towards the nearest Player Army figure they can move adjacent to, and should do so in the fewest number of spaces. They will move to engage as many figures as possible and will then seek height advantage. They will not break engagements unless they cannot attack all adjacent player figures. When attacking they prefer lowest defense, lowest remaining life, highest attack, highest points, then randomly choose their targets.

Ranged Rush: These figures behave just like Melee figures but will attack the nearest Player Army figure from Range if possible.

Ranged Skirting: These figures will avoid making engagements but will not leave them unless they cannot attack all adjacent player figures. They will move as close as necessary in order to attack a player figure but will not move any closer. They will move at most one additional space closer if it will give them height advantage. When attacking, among all figures in clear sight that are within range, they prefer figures with the most range, the most move, the least defense, the lowest remaining life, and then randomly choose their targets.

Coward: These figures will always flee engagements even if they might be destroyed by doing so. They will move as far away from all player figures as possible. When attacking they prefer the nearest figures, then they behave the same as Ranged Skirting figures.

Civilian Killer: These figures will ignore player figures, leaving engagements if necessary, as they prefer to move in towards Civilian Army figures. These figures will also be given one of the other previous AI types to describe their behavior towards NPC Army figures. When attacking they prefer to attack Civilian type figures and will then attack any normal type of figure in the NPC Army.

Enemy Special Powers: Enemy figures’ special powers are, at the beginning of each game given one of three labels: always, never, or x-20. Any special power that was not given a label is automatically assumed to always be used. Always and never are self-explanatory, but special powers with x-20 must have the 20-sided die rolled whenever they might be used. If you roll x-20, then they activate. Otherwise, that special power is not used. Special powers which don’t have the option of not being used cannot receive the labels never or x-20.

Enemies VS Destructible Objects: Enemy figures will only attack destructible objects or use Throw Object or Throw Civilian Special Attacks if doing so would allow them to roll more attack dice via the destructible object's Explosion or by the Special Attack against a greater than or equal number of opposing figures than they would otherwise be able to. If they would also potentially wound other enemy figures, that does not preclude them from performing said action.

Stupid Enemies: Before each game the players should agree on how stupid the Enemy Army should be. Should they always move in straight lines, even if they would unnecessarily enter water or slippery ice spaces? Will they go around castle battlements and ruins or attempt to go over? Will they attack figures that receive automatic shields or those with Counter Attack instead of those without? While it may be obvious that "smart" enemies are more challenging, sometimes it may be more fun to manipulate the "stupid" enemy figures' tactical deficiencies. Tricking the rats into self dunking in molten lava ala lemmings style can be very rewarding.
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Old October 20th, 2017, 07:58 AM
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Re: Ultimate Alliance Style Battle System with limited AI

Hi, I think you have some neat ideas here.

I loved the X-Men Legends games! I think the RPG format would work really well using custom Marvel figures.

My Customs: Metroid / Starcraft / Classic
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