I am currently designing a card game (still nameless at the moment). This page has the latest version of the design, and the decisions made.
Last update: 2004.01.26
General game properties
- There will be a potentially unlimited number of cards. (People can make their own cards, etc.)
- There will be Goal cards.
- All other cards will be creatures. (Creatures card will have special abilities.)
- There will be a Core Set of NUM_CORE cards.
- The game will use several types of counters.
NUM_CORE is not certain yet at this point. I estimate it will be around 30-40.
Requirements for play
- The Core Set
- Other cards of the players' choice (see below)
- Damage counters
- Mana counters (you can also keep track of this on paper)
- +1/-1 counters? (not sure yet)
Counters can be anything you want... beads, stones, bottle caps, etc.
Setting up the game
- All the cards in the Core Set need to be used. (Goal cards depend on them.)
- Each player adds M cards of their own choice. (A suggested value for M is 15, but it doesn't really matter. I'm not fanatic at this. :-) All these cards (including the Core Set) are shuffled together and will from the draw pile.
- Each player picks G Goal cards. (How this is done, is not certain yet. Players can pick the cards at random, or choose them knowingly, or choose them for others, or a combination of the above...)
- At the beginning of the game, each player draws HAND_SIZE cards from the draw pile.
HAND_SIZE will probably be 6, maybe 7.
- Players decide who goes first, one way or another (e.g. by tossing a coin or rolling a die).
- A turn has three phases: the upkeep phase, the draw phase and the action phase.
During this phase, the player adds X mana to his mana pool. (X will be a number like 2 or 3. Some game effects might change this value.)
- At the beginning of their turn, a player draws NUM_DRAW cards. He chooses and keeps one of these, and puts the other ones back at the bottom of the draw pile, in any order, without revealing them.
- A player must skip his draw phase if, at the beginning of his turn, he has HAND_SIZE or more cards in hand.
NUM_DRAW will probably be 2 or 3.
During the action phase, a player can do one action. An action can be any of the following:
- bring a creature into play (cost?)
- creature battle
- play a creature's effect/power (what to call this?)
Playing a creature
To bring a creature into play, you must pay its cost first. Its cost is the same as its power, and is paid from the mana pool. If the mana in your pool is less than the creature's power, you obviously cannot play it.
So, to play a creature with power 3:
- remove 3 mana counters from your pool
- play the creature
- You select one of your creatures (the attacker).
- Then you select one of your opponent's creatures (the defender).
- Each creatures deals X damage to the other, where X is its power. Add X damage counters to the receiving creature.
- If a creature has as many damage counters as its power, or more, then it is immediately discarded.
[todo: take any battle effects into account]
For example, if creature A (with power 8) attacks creature B (with power 3), then the following happens:
- A deals 8 damage to B
- B deals 3 damage to A
- B would get 8 damage counters, but since it's obvious that it's taking more than it can handle (8 >= 3), we discard it
- A gets 3 damage counters. It's power is 8, so it lives.
Now, if creature C, with power 6 and no damage counters, decides to attack A (which has 3 damage counters), then:
- C deals 6 damage to A
- A deals 8 damage to C
- C is discarded (8 >= 6)
- A gets 6 more damage counters. It now has 9 of these, which is more than its power (8). A is discarded as well.
Note that the number of damage counters on a creature does not affect the damage it deals!
Winning conditions / End of game
- A "guard" mechanic (Michael Chermside)
- Flying. A bit like Magic, but different: a flyer can attack a non-flyer, but a non-flyer cannot attack a flyer?