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 MECHATON: Giant Fighty Robots, I do to you now the enormous hurt!
Ianator
Posted: Sep 14 2009, 08:38 PM


Eternity Dev
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Group: Eternity Development Team
Posts: 4
Member No.: 2
Joined: 21-March 09



So hey guys, I thought I'd commemorate the grand opening of the RP Forum with a wargame relevant to the interests of the Eternity Project: stompy robots!

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Mechaton is a simple, rules-lite miniatures wargame, where everything is made of Lego. It's made by the same dude who made Dogs in the Vineyard.

It's a Mech game with a 28 page rulebook that costs $6. Most of those pages are filled with large text. The rest are blueprints for some basic mechs. What I'm saying is, the rules take ltierally less than 5 minutes to learn. You'll need a handful of different colored dice though (the game suggests white, yellow, green, blue, and red. All d6. Then a couple of red and green d8)

You can find the old playtest rules online here, but be warned that the six-dollar has a few rules tweaks and altered mechanics. But the playtest stuff is a great way to see if you'll like the game or not.

What do I need to play this wonderful thing?

Different colored dice, the rules, and lots of Lego. Don't have a bunch of Lego laying around? Fear not! Bricklink is a site that sells individual Lego brick (and they've got ALL of them) for 2 - 8 cents. Your rarer stuff can get a bit more pricey, 1 - 5 dollars, but essentially, you can create a squadron of four mechs, all kitted out with sensors and radios and railguns and forcefields for about 12 bucks, plus shipping.

What you do is you make a team of mechs, and then give them Attachments. Attachments are divided into four catagories - Movement (things like jump jets, extra legs, rocket stabilizers), Spotting / Surveillance (radios, targeting systems, laser signalling arrays), Defense (armored hulls, shields, protective forcefields), and of course, weapons! (in three flavors: hand-to-hand, direct fire, and artillery)

Each mech gets up to four attachments. Just build something that looks neat and mecha-ey, and call it whatever you want, and there you go. Each attachment gives you a dice of a certain color (weapons give you red dice, defense attachments give you blue dice, etc.), and at the start of your turn, you roll 'em all and assign them to your mech's various stats. From there, it's just a simple notion of "Is my attack higher than your defense?" You then roll dice according to how many hits you get. Whenever a mech gets hit, he loses one of his attachments - you take it apart and set it on the battlefield.

Campaign play is beautiful, mixing light roleplay with objective-based gaming. Each player in a campaign creates an army and a homeworld, giving them some backstory and fluff, and then three objectives are created at group consensus. They're what everyone fights over, basically. Each army then vies for control of special Lego terrain features linked to one of those objectives, and the end result of the battle is: points are scored, and the story changes, everyone making it up as they go. In addition, you've got a die called the Doomsday Clock, which ticks down from 11 at the end of every campaign game, and then the loser gets to decide whether or not to tick it down again. When it reaches zero, that's the end of your campaign, complete with a climatic end battle.

If you're looking for the campaign rules, they're currently being playtested, but you can find them -here-.

Aren't Mechs hard to make? I'm not that good with Lego.

The rules give you design schematics just like the instruction booklet that comes with any Lego set. After you get familiar with that, it's just a notion of being creative and figuring out what parts go where to make something really cool. But you're all set to make 5 or 6 different Mechs - not to mention that when you give them various attachments, they'll all be individually cool. You also make Lego terrain and cover, as well as special battlefield features.

So drop down about 20 bucks to grab some Lego from Bricklink and give this game a shot. Then post your armies and stories!

The above has been shamelessly stolen from robotsunshine of the Penny Arcade Forums.

So what do we need to play this via the Intratubes?

First, you obviously need some killy robuts. You could build them out of actual bricks and take a picture, ooor you could go to LEGO Factory and download LEGO Digital Designer, then build your mechs in there (and also order some for realsies).

Second, you need some dices. Invisible Castle will not only generate dice rolls, but will also provide a handy link to prove that you really did roll all 6s for every single mech that turn.

Finally, we need a tabletop that can be easily updated. I've got a basic hex map that will be drawn on and loaded onto Photobucket for each action, but if anyone's got a better idea, I'm open to suggestions!

Aaand that's it! If anyone's got questions or wants to be part of the opening game, feel free to maek poast. The rest of this wonderful OP shall be filled with awesome pictures!

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Good hunting!
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Ianator
Posted: Sep 22 2009, 05:45 AM


Eternity Dev
Group Icon

Group: Eternity Development Team
Posts: 4
Member No.: 2
Joined: 21-March 09



Alright folks, I've found two prospective players and I think I'll be the third. If anyone's reading this and wants to take my place (leaving me free to GM), PM me and I'll set you up.

The first game will be a King of the Hill-style mission: a single objective lies in the center of the map, and whoever controls the objective at Doomsday 0 wins the game. If anyone can provide a hex map with a clearing in the center and moderately rough terrain closer to the edges, it would be most appreciated!

Each player will create four mechs, each with four attachments. For your convenience, I have taken the liberty of creating a "naked" frame and some generic attachments:

user posted image

Chain Spear (Melee Weapon) - Gives a good bit of punch in close comgat.

Gauss Rifle (Melee-Direct Weapon) - Not terribly strong, but easily used in both close- and mid-range combat.

Vulcan Rifle (Direct Weapon) - A common and reliable weapon.

Sniper Cannon (Direct-Artillery Weapon) - Can hit anything not standing right next to you. Specialized rounds compromise damage in favor of range.

Coil Driver (Artillery Weapon) - Capable of rending targets asunder from miles away. Dangerous to use at short range.

Linked Radar (Spotting Unit) - Sends advanced targeting data to teammates, increasing chances of damage against its target. Requires constant updating due to ECM.

Combat Shield (Defense Unit) - A light yet sturdy Ceramite slab used to absorb the momentum from incoming ordinance and reduce damage to one's self.

Booster Unit and Lifter Unit (Movement Units) - A rocket pack helps you move faster. A set of small wings helps you keep moving fast. (If only one Movement Attachment is taken, it will be assumed to be a Booster Unit first, as these mechs cannot reach flight velocity with running alone.)

Simply choose four pieces of equipment (except for Fuel Tank, as that is just for show) for each mech; just keep in mind that each unit may have no more than two of any single attachment and no more than three weapons. If you need a more in-depth primer on what everything does, simply contact me via PM, IM or IRC.

Even after you finish designing your army, don't send it to me just yet; that's going to wait until the play area is finalized. Also keep your color and hardpoint preferences in mind; since I'll be constructing the final game pieces - if you want the rifle and shield to look like the IWSP's Gatling Shield, let me know!

Aaanyway, that's all for now.
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