Dungeons and Dragons Rogue
Design Diaries Table Top

Board Game Design Diary – Skills, Weapons, and More

I already have talked about skills a little bit about how they aren’t something that you’ll level up and get a new one of. However, skills will increase with your level so that a skill at level 1 will be as good at level 20, at level 30, or higher and you won’t be too quick to throw away an old skill. So let’s talk about them more and about other things your characters will have.

The Premise

The Characters

The Bosses

The Guilds

The Levels

The Boards

Cards vs Dice

Character Leveling

Skills, Weapons and More


Skills will be quicker to run through because I have talked about them some before in the Character Leveling part like I said. But there are some important things to note about skills.

First, skills are going to be tied to a base stat, so strength, agility, vitality, allure, and guile. When a player buys a skill, gets one in battle or as a reward for a quest, they’ll be picking which stats pile they want to draw from. Now, it might seem obvious that you’d go with your highest or best stat for a skill, but it’ll depend on the keywords that you are looking for some as well. This is to make it so that you won’t always want a strength stat if you are strength fighter. I’m also thinking that it’ll make sense to limit how many skills you can have a type based off of your stat level. So if you are getting multiple skills early, maybe for every five points you can hold a skill, so if you only have 10 in agility, you won’t be able to use a third strength skill.

So, how would skills scale? That’s something I’m still working on. But for combat, it’s going to be some sort of bonus based off of the level of the character. It might be a plus based off of the level, like half your level rounded down sort of thing so it scales up every other level. Or it might allow you to add in additional modifier card draws, increasing the chance of comboing and the amount of damage that they are putting out. So say there’s a level cap at 50, same number as levels and bosses in the game. It might be no added bonus for the first ten levels in terms of scaling, but then every ten after that you add in a modifier card, or every 10 you get something new plus the one before it. Hopefully it is something that wouldn’t become overwhelming, so I want it to be laid out in a very understandable way on the skill card.

The other question would be around why you’d want a skill that comes from allure or guile. Those doesn’t seem like they are as combat focused stats. And while it might not be a skill that adds a fixed amount of additional damage or something like that, both allure and guile can be used to distract and confuse the enemy. And I want it to be that those skills do things like that, it might give a bonus pull from a modifier deck to another player, or it could be that you can place a status effect onto a boss by using a non-traditional combat skill. Those skills are also going to be helpful outside of combat. A skill in cooking could distract an enemy, think of it as pulling some tasty treat for the bad out of your inventory. Or it could be that you use it for recruiting members for your guild and you’ll get more because you have better in game food. I want all skills, even if it just gives some static non-changing bonus, to have uses in and outside of combat, some will just be better in one area than another.


Weapons are going to be a bit more simple, they are going to give you a base damage value, if you add in a stat, and if you add in a modifier pull. Yes, there will be math in the game, but I want to keep it pretty simple. I don’t want it to be a situation where half damage means that you have to add everything up, divide it by two, round down because they resisted damage and then because you were attacking from the back while someone else attacked from the front you get to multiple by 1.5 to get your actual damage. Nope, I want your weapon to do X damage + X stat + X modifier – X resistance – X defense. It’s all basic math, addition and subtraction, nothing fancier than that. Weapons will not scale up, however, that doesn’t meant hat you won’t maybe stumble across a weapon early on that you’ll use all game. The weapons won’t have nearly as much variety in how wide a range of base damage they do, the skills are going to be more important.


I want to keep Armor simple as well. I’m not going to do an armor class like a Dungeons and Dragons would do to see if something hits. If the boss monster or a monster in a field swings at you they are doing X amount of damage + X modifier – X defense – X resistance. And your armor is going to give you defense. Now if you have a shield the “X defense” can be broken down into X armor + X shield for your total defense.


These are going to be the small items like a health potion or something that will give you resistance to a damage type. It could also just be a trinket or a bauble or a quest item, but those will go in your limited inventory space.


Augments are something that I have hinted at before but not really talked about much. I didn’t have a term for them until now. I wanted to create combinations for skills. So by that I mean that if you have a skill that is called “Parry Stab Stab” you’d be able to attach and augment to it that would go with it all the time once it’s attached that would turn it into “Fire Parry Stab Stab”. So your weapon would be on fire and deal fire damage for that attack. But you could augment “Arrows of Death” with fire as well. Or “Smoldering Gaze” with fire. And it’d always do something so you can really make whatever skill you want to be augmented in whatever way you want.

With that said, skills aren’t the only thing that can be augmented. A weapon would be given the status of fire, and now it is always going to deal fire damage in addition to it’s other damage. The downside is that once you’ve given it fire, you can’t take it off. And there’ll be some augments or skills that go on the player as well, versus as on the weapon. An example of this I’m going to rip straight from Sword Art Online. The main character Kirito unlocks an unique skill called Dual Wielding, aka, he can fight with two weapons. Something like that would be a specific quest given augment that could go on a player versus going on a weapon or something like that. It would be an always on ability. Something like that is going to be on certain types of quests, which it might not be obvious that it is on a quest when you start it, it might ask you to draw an augment until you find a character one and add it to the quest or make it an optional item on the quest, like, you can gain access to this if you beat the quest or complete it with this much overkill on the final check.


Final thing to talk about is currency, basically, you’ll get money and you can spend it. The guild, by sending out members to do stuff on the levels will also get your money and spend money for you. So it won’t be like you have no flow of income, but most of your money is going to come from beating quests, fighting monsters, and beating the boss.

What do you think of augments. I think everything else is actually pretty straight forward, with skills being a bit out there, but fairly easy to grasp, but augments are something different. Does that customization sound interesting?

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