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Old July 11th, 2021, 01:07 PM
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[AotV] "Weird" Terrain Rules Discussion

The reverse side of the Shadows Over Innistrad cardboard terrain mats include darkened terrain that we can use for scenario-specific rules. Given that all of the other cardboard mats predominantly feature sand and the only 3D hexes are "Sandstone," these tiles represent a primary opportunity for making more interesting maps.


The original Arena of the Planeswalkers game called these even darker spaces (the flat ones with additional texturing in the picture above), which are in fixed positions on each board, "Weird Terrain." I'm not overly fond of this name myself, but I'd prefer for whatever we use to be representative of the actual rules used.

It's worth noting that the initial plan seems to be that these spaces will be home to some alternate dimension within the story of Arena of the Valkyrie, probably where Ozuul emerges from in the climax of our Master Set's story.

Thus far, discussion across the project has leaned towards having these spaces use special rules defined by each scenario. We could also consider a global rule similar to traditional HeroScape terrain, but it's worth noting that we're aiming to have 5+ scenario maps using just our core set of three boxes. That target is much easier to hit if we let the scenarios tweak the rules a bit as needed.

To open up the floor, what ideas do people have for rules for these "Weird" spaces? I think that brainstorming some options for interesting rules could be a big help in giving the scenarios an initial shape.
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Old July 15th, 2021, 01:46 PM
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Re: [AotV] "Weird" Terrain Rules Discussion

My initial thoughts on rules for these was something that harmed all figures other than Ozuul and the shrimp, but that would likely be too much of a broad negative effect.

Some kind of warping reality could be interesting, perhaps when a figure starts it's turn there a D20 is rolled and the roll could determine the effect from a list, which would include negative or positive effects.

Or maybe gravity is reduced here and anytime a figure is hit, it's knocked back a space from the attacker with no LEAs.
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Old July 15th, 2021, 02:28 PM
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Re: [AotV] "Weird" Terrain Rules Discussion

On other thing of note is the black (non weirded) spaces on the mats we can make count as "Shadow". I would also like a standard rules for weird spaces and just like tundra maps, make both the Shadow and Weird spaces be optional. Here are some suggestions from my Herosape and Magic:AotP Cryptolith Map Contest

Quote:
  • Weirded Spaces are "Fog" and also count as two spaces when moving onto (same rule as slippery ice) in addition to shadow rules.
  • Small, Medium, and Large figures on at least one Weirded Space roll an additional defense die against attacks from non-adjacent figures (same as Jungle Terrain).
  • Just like a shadow tile except it works for all sizes. In addition, if you start your turn on a weirded space, you may take a wound in order to move an additional 4 spaces.
  • Give +1 Defense when attacked by a non-adjacent figure or -1 Defense when attacked by an adjacent figure.
I would like something different than current terrain, even if it takes element of others. I am cool with a negative terrain affect or even a mixed negative/positive, as well as assist melee units in some way as all the terrain is on the bottom layer. Some suggestions for positive/negative combos that help melee more than range:
  • Figures on [fog] have no visible hit zones and must be adjacent to opponents' figures to attack those figures with a normal attack.
  • Figures on [vines] increase their defense by 1 but must reduce their attack by 1.
  • Figures starting their move on [vines] increase their move by 2. Figures on [vines] must reduce their range by 2.
The only thing to note is that with all 3 of these suggestions, figures with special attacks can bypass negative affects when on terrain, but not while off the terrain, which again helps melee more than range, which I think is good.
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Old August 3rd, 2021, 12:29 AM
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Re: [AotV] "Weird" Terrain Rules Discussion

Some kind of reduced gravity could be a fun nod to Ozuul, albeit I'm also a bit hesitant about a movement-based terrain when we already have quite a few movement-based unit powers.

If we specify a "global optional rule," then I'd prefer for it to be simple and easy to remember like snow, swamp water, jungle pieces, etc. I'm also not a huge fan of overlapping scenario-defined rules with optional global rules since it could get a bit messy, but I might be alone on that.

Thematically, I think that the darker spaces closely resemble bramble branches and thorns. I'll try to get a closer picture of the board at some point.

Something that comes to mind with the flatness of the board is defining the bramble spaces as being at level 2 rather than level 1 (so they give height advantage, take 2 move to move "up" onto, etc.). This could also be paired with a negative power like being forced to roll the D20 after ending your turn on a bramble space and receiving a wound on an X or lower. Just a thought; I think that this could get a bit confusing when layered with the 3D sandstone hexes as well.
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Old August 3rd, 2021, 10:07 AM
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Re: [AotV] "Weird" Terrain Rules Discussion

@Astroking112 - I think maybe we could make the black non weirded-spaces (and possible weirded spaces) be lower level like water on the mats are, making the other spaces have height on them, but I would not want to make anything level 2, as with water being level 0 already this would mean 3 different levels would be on the mats.

I think my suggestion below is the most simple suggestion that thematically works as vines and does not have movement bonus:
Quote:
Figures on [vines] increase their defense dice by 1 and must reduce their attack dice by 1.
Again this helps melee a lot more than range, and special attackers on the spaces are not hampered, but special attacking figures on the space it is. I also think the black non weirded spaces could be optionally shadow- so if both rules are in play then both black and weirded spaces add extra defense, and vines just hurt attack - with them being on bottom level maps would be designed around this, and similar to Tundra maps map-makers can set if one or both rules are in play. I am open to other suggestions on weirded spaces, but I agree they should be simple and thematic to vines/brambles.

Also we can make some figures on our set have powers on this terrain (such as optionally ignoring rules), and Ozuul and the shrimpies would be good candidates.

Last edited by lefton4ya; August 3rd, 2021 at 10:48 AM.
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