March 31, 2013

Climax! GGG's Final Form!?

So this one is huge, and that's because I've had more time than usual to devote to the game over the course of two months and change. I've examined nearly every ability in the game and adjusted, tweaked, or rewritten all that needed a touch up, optimizing them their intended role, and even added some new ones. There might be another update a few months from now on to tinker with some numbers here and there - because no one is perfect. But I'm confident I've found the sweet spot for most of the mechanics added from 1.4 until now, and I've got just enough of them that I can finally call these core rules complete.

Of course, I will probably end up making a supplement with things like variant chassis types, support for different settings, systems for madness and insanity, and so on. But it'll be, you know, in the future. And supplementary.

Enough talk! Here's 1.7 On to the changelog, which is going to come in abridged version today because there's just been waaaay too many small changes everywhere to list everything. Honestly you should doublecheck all the rules that matter to you, or take your time looking at all the changes from the start. On the plus side, there's not going to be any more changes for a loooong time.

General Changes:
-Added a Table of Contents and Index.
-Some more layout improvements.
-More sidebars with advice and optional rules, plus expanding many of the existing ones.
-I think I'm finally done fixing technical errors like typos and cropped images and whatnot. No, I can't believe it either.

Character Creation:
-Added New Traits, some old Traits adjusted in terms of price or power level.
-New category of traits: Anomalies.
-Tweaked the Equipment rules, added more Equipment to the list, powered up most existing equipment as well.
-Powers that require you to make a choice can now be taken multiple times. Rebalanced several Powers and renamed some of them as well.

Mecha Construction:
-Made small adjustments to the starting Attributes of some Chassis types. Renamed Personal and Titanic Chassis classes to Eagle and Shield, the former for readability issues and the latter because the sheer irony of their name has long overstayed its welcome.
-You can now only have a total of 2 Archetypes, so the one you start with plus buying one if you want. Added two new Archetypes, tweaked others, and rewrote Superior Alloy to Invincible Frame.
-Rewrote or buffed all Evasive Systems and Defensive Barriers.
-Slightly nerfed Reload, rewrote Overcharger.
-Most Special Modes were rebalanced and some even renamed to better represent their function.
-Rebalanced or tweaked most Sub Units. Slightly buffed Component Unit.
-Clarified how Alternate Forms, Sub Units, and Combinations work together - which is to say, they don't.
-Tweaked the Custom Weapon Tables to encourage more diversification. Added a new drawback for Melee Weapons. Renamed several abilities to make more sense or be easier to distinguish from each other namewise.
-Rebalanced several premade Weapons. Added four new such Weapons.

Playing the Game:
-Improved the rules for stacking Advantages and Disadvantages. Added guidelines for handling Advantages and Disadvantages against multiple targets.
-Added more ways to use Resources.
-Blasts now interact with more rules, and now get around things like cover.
-Several clarifications concerning Tension and Duels.
-Tweaked the Aim and Delay Actions, buffed Maneuver and Disrupt, renamed Disrupt to Suppress.
-Streamlined and improved Base and Defensive Terrains.

Running the Show:
-Bosses can now have two Boss Archetypes starting at Arc 3 and 3 Boss Archetypes starting at arc 5
-Tweaked several Powers, Archetypes and Weapons.
-Grunts can now use Specific Weapons and get a static bonus to Systems as they progress.
-Nerfed the Squadron feature, and tweaked the Cryptid feature.

The World:
-Added several Example Non-Combatants, Allies, and Enemies.

So let's talk a bit about the big picture. Blasts, movement and positioning are more important than they used to. Apart from ignoring cover, Blasts and other area of effect weapons can now ignore half of the Evasive Systems out there, defensive Aid Another abilities, and certain Boss Archetypes among other things. As a result most abilities with area of effect abilities got their costs increased or were weakened a little, and both the Over-Booster and Telescopic Sights (now Artillery Mode) got a small cost reduction. Ballistics, whose in-built advantage require the decision to forego movement entirely, got a small buff. Missiles, which are all about being on the move constantly, got a small nerf.

Then there's the news on the Evasion/Armor front. Simply put, starting high Evasion is too hard to counter and a lot more frustrating to deal with than high Armor - with high Armor at least you might be dealing Damage in small bits here and there, but Evasion completely nulls way too many attacks, and for far too long given that Accuracy is also more expensive than Penetration. I did not want to have to do this, but a starting Evasion of 13 is too much so just to be safe it is going two points down, but to compensate for it the Personal Eagle Chassis is getting another point of Armor.

There's also a lot more clarifications on how specific rules interact with each other, and whole paragraphs being rewritten not to change rules but to make them easier to grasp, and ensuring the rules are tighter. Between that and the various new sidebars with advice on how to use various game mechanics play should be a lot smoother.

What next? Probably small things here and there like editable pdf sheets, separate chapters printable in black and white, and whatever other stuff I can come up with that'll come in handy. Concerning bigger projects, I'll say something when I have a clear idea in mind, but this is definitely not the last you'll see of GGG.


  1. First off: Scopedog blowing apart Boss Borot? Excellent choice of art there.

    Expansion pack feels a bit too expensive at x+10, but otherwise functions well enough.

    I'm not entirely sure I get the overcharger though. Is this ranged? Does it require the same choice as the barrier [say, both ballistic], or is the point of this to gain a second element the defensive system is good against?

    1. The old Expansion Pack was priced based on the idea that you would not want to use it as a shield ever. But you -can- sacrifice it, and when you're being hit for 20+, it becomes the equivalent of 2-3 points of Threshold/a fifth Layer depending on the circumstances.

      The Overcharger is like most Support Upgrades limited to a Range of 1, and you make all necessary choices at the time of purchasing it - you can't change them on the fly. You don't need to have the chosen Active Defense though, you can have an Overcharger set to Gravagne Fields without having the Gravagne Field yourself.

      Thanks for asking, if I make a 1.71 I will likely clarify that and any other things that come up as confusing!

  2. Replies
    1. I actually like the eagle frame's new numbers, actually.

      The extra armor helps deal with things that would bypass or overwhelm your evasion anyways.

      Not that starting with custom blueprints and an evasion module won't mean you're already at 15. I'd actually recommend pairing it, at least, early on, with a Friction Field instead of Learning Computer if you go this way, so as to help against beams or micromissile-advantage users.

  3. Can this game in its current form handle Transformers / Big O ?

    1. If you mean sentient Mecha that move on their own, then technically yes. The system works best when you have a pilot and a giant robot as separate entities, technically there aren't any rules -for- such a thing but there also aren't rules -against- it. It should be fine, really.

      If you just want transformable robots or big, godlike ones, then that's a definite yes.

  4. Fluff and mechanics are quite distinct, so you can flavor your equipment as you wish.

    Transformation is possible; Chassis seems to stay the same now, but you get to exchange a certain value of equipment, which I can only assume also includes features since they're free.

    The best use of Transformation, actually, is a general point-saving one; a mild [5UP worth] form of system-mastery reward. See, you can swap forms freely once per turn at the beginning of said turn. Anyone with One-Shot weapons or Techniques they'll want to swap out of or into at some point can load these in one transformation, with their general-use loadout in a different one. For 15UP you get 20UP worth of weaponry/equipment. It doesn't even have to be in the same location either; you could have bombardment in the legs and Extreme Terrain adaptability as a one-shot, which in your other form are replaced by your Flyer with hull-mounted long-rifle.

    As for Big-O, that's a little tougher: Ye must be Not Guilty.

  5. One of the little things that may come in handy, are NPC sheets. Having several custom Grunts/rivals/bosses on one sheet of paper is a lot of help.


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