For instance, some of our aliens are particularly large and strong, so a question that came up was how one would flip a car. Turns out, we had no rules set for that!
We have started our second round of alpha testing!
Several months ago, we had our first set of core rules finished and went on our first round of testing. We were very confident we had a great system and after about a month, we realized…
We didn’t! That is to say, some of our mechanics didn’t work together as nicely as we expected, some of our rules were unclear, and several parts of our gameplay clearly needed more thought.
To give some examples of that, it helps to understand that ‘The Coalition’ is a game in which we want you to be able to play almost anything you like. An assassin or a hacker, but also an accountant or a shop owner. So far, we’ve been testing the former mostly, and it leads to interesting feedback. For instance, some of our aliens are particularly large and strong, so a question that came up was how one would flip a car. Turns out, we had no rules set for that! We also had small problems with our character sheet, trying to fit way too many game elements onto one page, making it hard to read.
This time, we were able to start with all game types (combat, hacking and social) simultaneously. This brought some interesting insights. While the testers said all systems worked well on their own, some shaving needs to happen to make them work in unison. Our social system takes too long in comparison to hacking and combat, for instance.
The social system in itself was tricky to design. As we’ve mentioned before, we’re trying to create a system in which everyone can play a slick-talking master debater. We created several different debating actions which a character can use in a discussion, with several effects. The testers have reacted very positively to the system itself, as it help inexperienced roleplayers to create social characters and also gives more seasoned players tools to create a more varied game experience.
We also gained a very interesting insight in P&P games. In the first sessions, the players spent about an hour making a plan to complete their assignment. This took about an hour every time, so we tried to give the players a worked-out plan which they needed to fulfill. This didn’t work as we thought it would, a lot of players had trouble to find their role in the session, they weren’t sure what to do with their characters. And while we had saved about 45 minutes by giving the players a plan, the session itself was less efficient as the other sessions. So apparently, this planning is essential for (at least our) P&P game.
Other than that, it was very awesome to see the game work just a little bit smoother than the last testing round, and seeing people playing it (and sometimes even enjoying it!).
And of course, we want to thank our alpha testers for helping us create ‘The Coalition’ by showing a bunch of pictures of our sessions!
An intense discussion on game rules between Rens, Maarten, and our own Pieter and Cesco
Maarten’s clearly engaged. Rens? Not so much.
Everyone is giggling at dark, dark humor.
A battlemap with beercaps as people!
The dark humor got worse.
This isn’t why the dark humor got worse, this is Cesco pretending to be a stoner alien.
“Guys, let’s be super serial now, okay?”
And so we were. Super serious.
Our solution to vehicles! Cut them out of the grid and move them around.
A valid point just got raised, as Cesco is lost for an answer.
Pieter undoubtedly schooling us on physics.
By the end, we had killed Rens. It was unfortunate.