Shield Bashers

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Shield Bashers
Chris Johnson
In Shield Bashers, spaceships battle through interaction of hidden shields.
:Players Players: 2 - 6
:Time Length: unknown
:Complexity Complexity: Medium
Trios per color: 5
Number of colors: White, Grey, Black and a Treehouse
Pyramid trios:
Monochr. stashes: White, Grey, Black and a Treehouse
Five-color sets:
- - - - - - Other equipment - - - - - -
Chessboard or http://www.ee0r.com/tri-chess/ Tri-Chess set
Setup time: 5 minutes
Playing time:
Strategy depth: Medium
Random chance: None
Game mechanics:
Theme: Space
BGG Link:
Status: complete? (v1.0), Year released: 2987


It's the distant future. Or, as the distant future calls it, "now". Space flight is a reality. Peace is not. Ships battle daily for control of resources that twenty-first century humans only dreamt about. Energy weapons as potrayed in popular Sci-Fi simply don't work. But shields, that's another matter. Shield technology is the linchpin of every modern battleship.

Every battleship worth considering has three levels of shields; Primary, Secondary and Tertiary. Primary shields hide details of the vessel from attackers, and determine how secondary shields interact during an attack. Secondary shields do the damage, depending on how the primary shields prepared the victim. Tertiary shields can save your arse one time, for when you pick on the wrong ship to attack.

Status

Under development


This game is currently under development, in the Initial Design stage. Feedback is strongly encouraged! Feel free to give comments on game design or structure on the talk page.

What you need

Each player needs:

  • A nest of White pieces.
  • A nest of Black pieces.
  • A nest of Grey pieces.
  • A nest of coloured pieces. A different colour from anyone else, obviously.

For a four-player game that's best achieved with a white stash, a black stash, a grey stash and a Treehouse set.

Setup

http://www.krisjohn.net/setup.jpg

  • The four-player game is setup as pictured above. The Cruiser should always be in the corner. The Frigate and Destroyer should be beside it as pictured. Which side they're on is up to the player.
  • The two-player game can use either the whole board, for a slower game, or half the board, for a faster game. In either case, the two sets of ships should be at opposite corners.
  • For three, five or six players use Elliott C. Evans' Tri-Chess board

Each player then creates their fleet. Example:

http://www.krisjohn.net/examplefleet.jpg

Expanded view of constructed ships. Pieces below the primary shield would not normally be visible.

  • The top pyramid of each pile is always the coloured one. It indicates the owner of the ship and its class; 1-pip means Frigate, 2-pip means Destroyer, 3-pip means Cruiser. Each class of ship moves differently, see "Movement" below.
  • The second pyramid of each pile is always a 3-pip pyramid. It's the primary shield. It determines how the secondary shield interacts with an attacking ship. See "Combat" below. Also, because it's opaque it hides the rest of the ship's shields. That information is only revealed during combat -- at other times you have to remember, or guess, the details of an attacking ship. (Any player may check their own ships at any time, and other players can try and sneak a peek at that time.)
  • The third pyramid of each pile is always a 2-pip pyramid. It's the secondary shield. It's the one that does damage, or fails, depending on how the primary shield has prepared the defender.
  • The bottom pyramid of each pile is always a 1-pip pyramid. It's the tertiary shield. Its colour doesn't matter. When a ship takes its first point of damage, remove the tertiary shield from the stack. If a ship with no tertiary shield is damaged, it is destroyed -- remove it from the board.

Movement

http://www.krisjohn.net/movement.jpg

All ships can only move one square at a time.

  • The Frigate can only move "straight" (see picture)
  • The Destoyer moves on the diagonal
  • The Crusier can move straight and diagonal

You can not move into a square occupied by one of your own ships.

Attempting to move into a square occupied by one of your opponents triggers combat. If the defending ship is destroyed in that battle, you remove it from the board and your ship completes its movement into that square.

Combat

You can perform one attack each round on any of your opponents pieces in the eight squares around the ship you moved in the movement phase. Combat involves the primary and secondard shields.

Attacker's primary shieldDefender's primary shieldSecondary Shields
WhiteBlack or GreyAttacker's secondary shield must be the same as or lighter than defender's:
  • Lighter: Win
  • The same: Win
  • Darker: Lose
WhiteWhiteAttacker's secondary shield must be darker than defender's:
  • Lighter: Lose
  • The same: Lose
  • Darker: Win
BlackWhite or GreyAttacker's secondary shield must be the same as or darker than defender's:
  • Lighter: Lose
  • The same: Win
  • Darker: Win
BlackBlackAttacker's secondary shield must be lighter than defender's:
  • Lighter: Win
  • The same: Lose
  • Darker: Lose
GreyWhite, Black or GreyAttacker's secondary shield must be the same as defender's:
  • Lighter: Lose
  • The same: Win
  • Darker: Lose

If you lose you take one damage. If you have your tertiary shield, it is removed. If you've already lost your tertiary shield the ship is destroyed (remove it from the board).

Note: You can not attack one of your own ships.

Combat Examples

All attacks in the example below are Red (left) attacking Blue (right). Note that the Blue destroyer (2-pips) has lost its tertiary shield in a previous battle. If it takes another hit it is destroyed.

In the examples below the ships are expanded so that you can see the secondary and tertiary shields. This is only for illustration.


http://www.krisjohn.net/wb.jpghttp://www.krisjohn.net/wg.jpghttp://www.krisjohn.net/ww.jpg
White primary shield against Black primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be lighter or equal
Black is not lighter than grey: Lose
Result: Red loses tertiary shield.
White primary shield against Grey primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be lighter or equal
Black is equal to Black: Win
Result: Blue destroyed.
White primary shield against White primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be darker
Black is darker than White: Win
Result: Blue loses tertiary shield.
http://www.krisjohn.net/bb.jpghttp://www.krisjohn.net/bg.jpghttp://www.krisjohn.net/bw.jpg
Black primary shield against Black primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be lighter
Grey is not lighter than grey: Lose
Result: Red loses tertiary shield
Black primary shield against Grey primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be darker or equal
Grey is not darker than Black: Lose
Result: Red loses tertiary shield
Black primary shield against White primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be darker or equal
Grey is darker than White: Win
Result: Blue loses tertiary shield.
http://www.krisjohn.net/gb.jpghttp://www.krisjohn.net/gg.jpghttp://www.krisjohn.net/gw.jpg
Grey primary shield against Black primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be the same
White does not match grey: Lose
Result: Red loses tertiary shield.
Grey primary shield against Grey primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be the same
White does not match Black: Lose
Result: Red loses tertiary shield
Grey primary shield against White primary shield
Secondary shield needs to be the same
White matches White: Win
Result: Blue loses tertiary shield.

Repair and shield modification

If you return a ship to one of the three squares of your starting area you can repair damage and swap shields instead of a combat phase. You can only use pieces that you have available, meaning you can only swap in a new shield if you've already lost a ship. Other players are under no obligation to not look while you're doing this, but they can't interrogate your parts stash to determine what you changed.

Play

Determine who goes first in a friendly fashion. "Roll to see who goes first" springs to mind, if you have a die. A few rounds of Jan Ken Pon would probably work too.

Proceed clockwise around the table, with each player making one move and resolving combat if necessary.

A "turn" is a single player's move and combat, if any.

A "round" is X turns where X is the number of players still in the game.

Winning

You win if you're the last player with any ships on the board.

If there are only two ships left and there's a standoff because the more maneuverable ship can't win the battle, or for any other reason, a final battle can be forced by either player after five rounds without combat. The player declaring the final battle is the attacker. It's sudden-death, tertiary shields will not save the ship.

If there are only two ships left and play goes six rounds without combat, anyone who participated in the game can declare a draw.

Official Page

http://www.krisjohn.net/shieldbashers.html