bythenumbers
 member, 33 posts
Wed 8 Nov 2017
at 21:14
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
I finally built up the Cortex Plus-powered mecha racing league game (of my dreams), but it doesn't seem to be attracting players. Is there something wrong with the setting, the system, or the approach in general?

I suppose I'm looking for feedback, as I got a fair bit of positive input the last time I posted here. Are there some games/settings/systems that just get ignored? Perhaps problems with people running large-scale, "continuous" player-driven "league/arena" type games in PbP?
Knight_Vassal
 member, 374 posts
Wed 8 Nov 2017
at 21:52
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
 Well a few questions to either ponder or answer.

  1) Is it just racing or is there a plot here?

  2) If no plot is there at least some sort of hard action? I.e. Combat between the mecha

  3) The concept seems really niche oriented. While I love mecha a racing league isn't something I would normally go for unless it had something more to it. Sitting at the top of the board is nice and all, but where is it going once I do that. What happens to me or the other players?

  4)I am not personally familiar with Cortex-Plus, but I have seen plenty of games using it so it might be the concept. If you changed it slightly it might attract more players.
bythenumbers
 member, 34 posts
Wed 8 Nov 2017
at 22:05
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
In reply to Knight_Vassal (msg # 2):

1. Racing is the focus, though depending on how interested players are in steering things, I can supply plot-type events, as well. I'm thinking ongoing tournament ladders, even stratified leagues, like European Football.

2. It's meant to be combat racing, so Indy 500 demolition derby.

3. The question might then be, at the top of the leaderboard, how far might you go to stay there? Perhaps parlay your success into sponsorships, getting better equipment (in this game, they'd be temporary advantages, earned between races), or recruiting better teammates? Heavy is the head that wears the crown, and Damocles will tell you that being #1 paints a pretty big target on one's back.

I'm also expecting players to create the things that they want to see in the world. Whether it's a criminally-sponsored cheater team, or various kinds of sponsors, or weaponry. There's plenty of room for all of that to appear and evolve over time.

4. I'm open to modifying things for the players, certainly. I'm just using Cortex Plus because it's easy to hack and still keep balanced. For example, I only have the broadest guidelines for players to build their mechs, and that alone is enough to keep them balanced, even if I permitted large differences in build costs.
Knight_Vassal
 member, 375 posts
Wed 8 Nov 2017
at 22:38
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
In reply to bythenumbers (msg # 3):

 The leagues and ladders is almost a given. The questions were meant to help you see why it isn't "working". That being said I will be back in a minute or two.
GreyGriffin
 member, 175 posts
 Portal Expat
 Game System Polyglot
Wed 8 Nov 2017
at 22:49
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
I've seen the game and it really interests me, but chaeracter generation looks a bit blocky and intimidating, and I haven't allocated the time to dissect it.

An RTJ thread with your less-intimidating RTJ requirements (as seen in the RTJ thread) might soften the perceived cost-of-entry.
Knight_Vassal
 member, 376 posts
Wed 8 Nov 2017
at 23:01
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
Ok back ran off to read the stuff I could in your game and the players wanted ad. I see it is fairly well setup. The ad is clear. It seems somewhat interesting.

  How familiar are you with Zoids, Hot Wheels: Extreme Racing, or some of the Gundams?

  I am using Zoids for this because I was most familiar with it.

   Zoids had two series. The first was pretty standard mecha fare. The second was more battle league which is why I bring it up. Yeah salvage leads to better gear both from acquiring and purchasing. But the best gear came from building it from the scraps.
White Cat
 member, 39 posts
Thu 9 Nov 2017
at 03:23
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
For my part, while I like both Cortex and mecha, I choke on the PVP aspect. That's just not something I'm looking for in my gaming.
bythenumbers
 member, 35 posts
Thu 9 Nov 2017
at 03:37
IC and Advice: Mecha Racing Stumbles outta the gate
Knight_Vassal, I am aware of all those series, and watched most of the Zoids seasons, though including Zoids is more in reference to the Zoids themselves, rather than the format of the show's contests. So humanoid or traditional mecha can compete alongside animal or other vehicle shapes. Heck, if someone wants to run Cubix, I'm pretty sure we can work something out.

Also, if players want a brawl, regular gladiatorial-style combat can certainly be arranged. I just wanted to focus on the initiative-based racing as the "prime" element, since it's the biggest part of the system hack.

I appreciate your comment that the game's well built/organized, that's high praise.



GreyGriffin, I've clarified my wording in both the character section of the rules thread and the RTJ to further separate character ideas from mechanics/system concerns. It should be clearer now that there is no system knowledge required for an RTJ, and character-build decisions for the first character will be made with gentle help/guidance and info from the GM, to ensure the character the player wants is what the system will model faithfully.



White Cat, while I understand your concerns in a broad sense, I'd like to dig a little deeper into why you don't like PvP. I'd like to think the system prevents most of the rules-lawyering and powergaming problems that can arise for myself as the referee, and since there's nothing permanent on the line (PCs can't kill other PCs without the "victim" allowing it), most of the problems with PvP are eliminated. So if you have specific qualms with the format, by all means, say so, as I'd like to make sure they're addressed if at all possible.

I can always run NPC teams, if that's needed, but I found that the system, if carefully balanced and monitored, would likely play much the same if I replaced the NPC "antagonists" with (friendly) rival PCs, which opens things up to a much larger game, with multiple "teams" of PCs that antagonize each other (in friendly competition). More PCs, generating opposition for themselves, means I can focus more on keeping the game running and open to even more players long-term. But I understand if you're not big on competing against other players.




Thanks for the feedback so far, looking forward to hearing more!!!