Hey Gang,

The 709 coming in with another adventure into his mind. Okay Gaming concepts or concepts, mechanics, and ways of interacting within a game that appeal to me. I am really falling in a deep committed love with Alternating activation within a turn. In other words chess style activation where you move a piece and then I move a piece.

This concept is most prevalent in Malifaux where the game works by alternating model activations with in the turn. This continual interaction between players as opposed to I move everything, I shoot everything, I assault everything, your turn mechanic of other more traditional games. Or even the I move this piece, shoot this piece, and do all actions with this piece before I move my next piece but before you get a chance to go. Integrated turns is the common mechanic speak with in the industry.

This integration of turns makes for a highly dynamic battlefield where a turn of the events on the right may be instantly offset by a failure on the left. As opposed to seeing an entire battle develop one turn at a time. Integrated turns means the battle develops over the course of the turn. This leads to a highly cinematic experience of bringing the drama to a small area and seeing how those characters are affected by it.

No concept is more loathed or is the basis of the so called net-listing than the Alpha strike. The concept that has been talked about in numerous places of I set up my models roll for initiative and pick my models up. In a turn based game, which permits one side to fully activate before the other has a chance to means deployment is of premium importance and that if a ranged force has excellent luck your game may be over before it truly begins.

Again this alpha striking is not unheard of in an integrated turn system. It is however harder to pull off. The integration of the turn means you may be able through some mechanic or rule to activate additional models at once, however, I will have the rest of models to go after those are done meaning your strike could potentially leave you vulnerable to counter attack.

On the subject of Initiative I am a huge fan of initiative being a dynamic process. That is not being fixed from the start of the game to the end of the game. In history initiative has changed hands rapidly and fluidedly. In some games for example such as chess which sports an integrated turn system, it has a fixed initiative order always, Light pieces followed by dark pieces. chess would be a very different game, if you could potentially have white or black move twice in a row.

This is a part of Malifaux design that elevates the game in my eyes and opinion of it. The ability to not have initiative turn one, but to regain it in turn 2 dynamically effects strategy and activation orders. It forces you to continually plan and even decide if I have to spend resources to be able to make the first move this turn. That makes for a level of strategic depth, that adds to fun of this game for myself.

So I said all that to say this. The concepts of intergrated turns and dynamic initiative for me really make a game exciting and engaging. My brother just recently started playing Malifaux its the first mini's game he's really been excited for. And a lot of what he states appeals to him in this game was the fact that he's always doing something. He only has to wait for me to move a model and do its stuff. before he can react to it. It keeps him focused on the game and keeps him wanting to play. The other thing is not having a set move order or even a who goes first order every turn, really appeals to him. Again he can decide what needs to happen and if its better to not move a unit, but do something else with it he can do that without worrying what phase of the game he's in.

All in all these two concepts I would like to see in other games.