27/02/2017 at 16:47 #58563
I’m working on something new to follow on from Horizon Wars. Actually, I’m working on a few things, but this is the one that seems to have attracted the most interest and excitement.
Zero Dark is a sci-fi skirmish game. “What? Another one??” Yeah, I hear that. For a very long time I stalled on writing a skirmish game because there were a lot of good ones already out there (especially Infinity, which I love). But Zero Dark is different. First, it’s different because it’s generic. Like Horizon Wars, you don’t need new minis – you can play with the ones you already have, plus you get an excuse to buy others you’ve always liked but never had a gaming reason to buy. But there are other generic SF skirmish games out there, so why Zero Dark? Well, the best thing about Zero Dark is that it offers a range of ways to play. You can play old-fashioned player-versus-player (PvP), but Zero Dark offers enough customization options that you can also play team-versus-team (TvT) really easily. Thanks to an innovative AI system, you can also play both Solo and Co-op modes of the game.
When the game is finished, there will be campaign systems for both PvP/TvT and solo/co-op modes, too, that will allow you to level-up your characters and gain new skills and equipment through the upgrades system. There will also be a series of adventures: DLC, essentially, for the solo and co-op modes that put your team of characters through a series of tactical challenges that follow a distinct narrative that unlocks as you succeed in each mission.
The game is currently in alpha testing, rolling out the rules gradually as I finish them in draft and put them on the table. You can follow along at the Precinct Omega Beta Testing forum:
To give you a taste for the core mechanics, I’m creating a range of illustrative videos. Here are the first two:
EDIT – DELETED THIS ONE. REPLACEMENT INCOMING.
If you’ve never seen a game go through public development and think you might have something to contribute, why not follow along?
27/02/2017 at 17:21 #58565
- This topic was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by Robey Jenkins.
Mr. AverageParticipant27/02/2017 at 17:49 #58566
Sort of… It shares the same DNA, as you’ll gather from the videos. Positive tests are lifted straight from Horizon Wars and the three forms of basic movement are very much the same. It also has the MFAD stats, although they are slightly different in meaning and use and armour is a separate stat (AV).
As to whether they’re compatible, well… they’re not designed to be. But if you play HW at 15mm you could use the same minis in each, I guess.
R.27/02/2017 at 18:05 #58567
Anything that can be played solo gets two big thumbs up from me. The amount of travelling I do with days sometimes of having nothing to do is really welcome to allow me to get my fix. Skirmish gaming means it might also be possible to carry with me.
good luck within this project. If it is anything like HW then it will be awesome.
Tally-Ho!28/02/2017 at 13:52 #58598
I hear you, Ian. My vision is that you can play it in 15mm on a 2’x2′ mat, with simple terrain, so everything you need to play, plus the latest DLC campaign “adventure” can be packed into a small carry case. Easy to throw down on a kitchen table, at the club, in the FLGS or even in a hotel room on the move.
I might be running a playtest with my RPG group this evening: first outing for the co-op mode!
R.28/02/2017 at 14:21 #58602
Robey, 2×2 area with potentially everything in a small case…. Just take my money now! 🙂
Tally-Ho!28/02/2017 at 19:36 #5862628/02/2017 at 19:38 #58627
Angel BarracksModerator28/02/2017 at 19:51 #58628
I am beyond excited by a solo-friendly skirmish game. I can’t get enough of them. I wil probably be playing in 6mm though, the one true scale.
Both about the solo and definatly ’bout god’s own scale
If you like 6mm scifi check out http://planetares6.blogspot.be/?m=001/03/2017 at 12:46 #58658
I was, of course, aware that there would be a cadre of frothing loonies who would want to play in 6mm. It’s totally possible, of course, but it will be hard to assess whether terrain is jump-able and under what conditions when you get down below 15mm (it’s hard enough at 15mm), and I don’t know what unit of measurement you’d like to use for movement and shooting etc at that scale.
Personally, when it comes to skirmish gaming, I’ve always preferred 54mm, but the number of miniatures available at that scale is quite limited.01/03/2017 at 12:49 #58659
I have always found using centimetres rather than inches works pretty well for converting to 6mm.01/03/2017 at 13:55 #58662
Yep, same here, go with centimeters and as for assessing whether terrain is jump-able a laser pointer comes in handy (it is sci fi after all… …and that goes for the laser pointer too 😉 )
If you like 6mm scifi check out http://planetares6.blogspot.be/?m=001/03/2017 at 22:34 #5869122/05/2017 at 19:44 #62546A new battle report for Zero Dark, with photos and some mechanical explanation along the way:29/05/2017 at 20:12 #63439I was really hoping to have the final alpha test version finished and ready to share this weekend gone. Unfortunately a major family crisis has slowed progress down, somewhat. However, I’ve put up a stop-gap update because a number of important changes and additions have been developed and as I’ve got a contingent of new alpha-testers joining, I thought they deserved the latest gen.Important changes
Well, first of all I’ve split “characters” into “heroes” and “allies”. I nearly went with “extras”, but that was too close to 7TV (which is great, btw!) for comfort and not completely accurate, either. Heroes are your principle actors. They are the ones you customize and build. Allies, meanwhile, have fixed stats and abilities. At the moment, there’s a fairly narrow range of options for allies, but I see it being built on to add theme to campaigns and special missions. We have remotes and emjays (embedded journalists) with rules, plus dogs. I’m in two minds about retaining dogs. They don’t really fit with my bespoke setting, but they feature a lot in my sources of inspiration. Suggestions for more allies are welcomed.I’m really pleased with the emjays. They are allies and you have to activate them like any character, but they can’t complete objectives. Why on Earth would you include them at all? Well, they work as a buff unit. If the active character makes a test within an emjay’s LOS, the character gets a re-roll – this is supposed to represent the character trying harder because he or she is being filmed, plus the tendency of the emjay to film whatever’s most interesting/important at any given moment. There will be more rules that involve emjays in campaign rules and missions involving civpop.I’ve also fine-tuned the Control Deck (formerly known as the AI deck, but I binned that to avoid confusion with AI characters!). No iteration of the Control Deck hasn’t worked, but they haven’t all worked how I wanted them to. The latest version has the Red Force moving around somewhat, but not too much, whilst equipping them with support tokens to make them more threatening, but not with too many!Get the latest rules here:06/06/2017 at 20:10 #64178
A new battle report is up, with more photos and a lot of mechanical explanation as we go:10/06/2017 at 10:07 #64409If anyone is interested in miniatures options for Zero Dark, check out my Pinterest collection accordingly:10/06/2017 at 15:16 #6444313/06/2017 at 22:39 #64703
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