In the first game I ran for my crew, there was a head on collision between two cars each in 3rd gear. After the collision resolved, one of the players gave me a funny look and said: “We just drive through each other with a couple more hazard tokens?”
Mike, could you comment on the design decisions or iterations that drove the collision system?
Specifically I’m wondering why collisions don’t have an effect on a vehicles vector (speed and heading).
That is an excellent topic for a blog post, and so I shall take that bait.
I designed and discarded a whole host of systems for managing collisions, and I’d love to talk a bit more in depth about why we ended up with this one.
No shit: I literally read an academic paper on the modelling of collisions in video game physics engines during this process O_o
I’m looking forward to reading it!
An extra/new question on collisions.
If I have a Ram (or Explosive Ram) weapon which can add dice to collisions I assume it just adds to the opponent and not the vehicle with the weapon. Is that correct?
It does not say so and as written it would do as much extra damage to my own vehicle as the opponent on a collision, which is of limited value. It then just saves the hazard tokens and adds extra potential damage.
Note, the collision example does not state that the damage is marked to both vehicles which is different than the rules, which states that damage is. So I assume that’s a mistake/typo and the rules are correct not the example.
It took me a little while to understand your question, but now I see where your misunderstanding is coming from:
On p21: “When resolving the smash attacks in a collision, hits are applied after all the attack dice and evade dice has been rolled. Damage from smash attacks in a collision is simultaneously applied to both participants.”
The intention of this line is that both participants get to roll their smash attacks even if the damage from the first player to roll their dice would wreck the other vehicle.
It does not mean that the damage from EACH smash attack is applied to BOTH vehicles.
The reason is that a smash attack causes HITS to the TARGET. HITS are the things that cause DAMAGE. The attacking vehicle wasn’t the target of it’s own smash attack and therefore suffers no hits from it, and thus no damage.
Put another way, the rule says “DAMAGE from smash attacks in a collision is simultaneously applied to both participants” not “HITS from smash attacks in a collision is simultaneously applied to both participants”.
Hope that helps! An entry in the FAQ probably wouldn’t hurt!
Ah I get it. So if both cars in a collision do a smash attack then they roll damage on each other and then the damage is done at the same time…
Yes sorry for the confusion. That phase on page 21 confused me as I though it was on both parties for some reason.
Looking at the odds and my group, I don’t see many people evading unless a distinct difference in size of vehicles. A a few chances to roll 6 vs. a chance to damage the opponent will likely have people decide on more carnage. 🙂
Don’t underestimate the tactical flexibility of the evade, particularly in death races. One hazard time can make all the difference.
Remember the active player declares first, so a game of chicken can ensue!
I always liked the original Car Wars rules for collisions. Not feasible for actual models, but you picked up both counters and dropped them from a height of 6″ above the crash point. Simulates the random bounces and deformations 😉
Hey Mike, just read the post.
Really nice iteration there.
Gaslands is the first automotive combat game I’ve played where the collision system doesn’t feel like it takes so long to calculate that you lose the impact (pun not intended) of the original action in the process.
I do games design too and it was really nice to read an article where you basically said “We tried lots of complicated ways to make this cool, but in the end the absolute simplest mechanic was the coolest one”.
Too easy to get bogged down in trying to make rules for something that should be snappy and fun.
Also read the post on play testing, which was really great. I’ve added The Mom Test to my reading list 🙂
I agree! I’ve been running Car Wars PBEM for YEARS and collisions ALWAYS slow the game as far as my bookkeeping and such. Such a pain!
Hoping to bring Gaslands to a PBEM soon… After I’ve finally gotten it to table and worked out the rules and such. 🙂 (we have had to cancel three games so far, due to real life issues popping up… hoping for this afternoon finally!)
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