Monday, 13 April 2015

#OVERRIDE Keeping Fluid

Greetings friends!

So over the weekend, me and my collaborator have been working on v0.1.6 of OVERRIDE. What we are currently working on is the next Gangs for the game.

So 0.1.5 saw the splitting of humans into UEF, HMC and Raiders plus the introduction of the Red Claw Kratel however there were 2 groups we had yet to see which was what we were looking at for 0.1.6.

I am of course talking about the Hydan and Reborn.

So it started with the Hydan, or more importantly; Wraiths. This was actually quite easy - the fluff was pretty much tied down and from that came a theme with special rules that tied in very well to the game and mirrored the existing Gangs well.

Then we moved onto the Reborn, and more importantly; Unity.

Yeah, there were problems here and I honestly have no problems admitting that.

It's not that Unity sucked ass, far from it! As a result of tooing and froing we have come up with some pretty awesome units that should be fun to play. BUT! They are massively left field.

I'm not going to go into detail about exactly what is different in these guys as we will hopefully see them in what is currently WiP'd as Wave 2, but they are very very different to the other Gang template and despite being awesome, they just didn't fit in with the rest.

So I made a suggestion:

"Let's put a pin in them now and bring in another gang to replace them"

This felt like a bold move, in particular because at this point I had never axed an entire race before, and I was being asked to create a replacement pretty much on the spot.

I could have gotten precious over the whole thing, saying that the fluff and story is my baby and my dream and that we were not going to axe or pin anything out of gameplay or balance reasons. And a couple of years ago I may have done exactly that. But I didn't. Instead I set about putting those cool but cumbersome cyborgs to the back of the pile and creating something new for the world.

So I looked at what we had:
Humans - Three groups spread over 2 Factions. I could give the Reavers another Human group, but that just seemed... Boring!

Kratel - 1 Group in 1 Faction. There was room for expansion there. After all in the fluff the Kratel Empire does belong to the Accord, maybe do that and have the Praetorians. Hmmm but how to make them different from the Red Claw, and that would give the Accord 4 groups to the Reaver's 2.

Hydan - 1 Group in 1 Faction. Like the Kratel there was room to show another side of these guys, and after all; isn't 0.1.6 showcasing the Hydan? Plus the Wraiths are Accord, so if we put in an anti-wraith Gang that makes it 3 all again to both factions!

Hydan it is!

Now what's an evil Hydan like?

Wait... Why evil? Does that mean the Wraiths are good?

No, not good or evil just different. One man's terrorist is another's freedom fighter - that sort of gumpf.

So back to the fluff. What do we have?

Well we have the regions.
- Frozen North (not really a good place for a gang to call home).
- Nova Casa - a good setting, jungle utopia and all that, but a Reaver group operating literally in the UEF's backyard? Unlikely
- Midlands - Could work... But it's currently a little bland.
- Badlands - It is already a little overpopulated. Put it in the maybe pile.
- Dead Zone - It's called the Dead Zone. DEAD zone. It's for a reason...

Then it hit me. The Block!

I love the Block! It's where pretty much anything can and does happen!

We already have the Wraiths operating out of there in order to spy on the Red Claw and instigate covert ops against Freeport. Plus we have the Red Claw acting as smugglers and inhabiting the less pleasant lower levels of the hive complex.

In the fluff The Block is described as a den of villainy, where no Faction owns and so those with the guts to do what is necessary to take control can do so. In the bottom reaches it's the Red Claw with their control of the toxic levels and air purification controls. Higher up it's the Human corporations such as Core-Gen as featured in my short story back in December last year. What about the mid-regions? The ones where the Kratel don't have such a strong control and anyone with any wealth just doesn't give a shit about?

This is when it all started to fall into place! Enter: The Trydan!

A Gang in the truest sense of the word. The Trydan comprise of Hydan members who reject the law of The Bastion and live instead in the Block. They operate not as noble creatures of higher intelligence and superior technology as we see with the Wraiths but as cruel beings who utilise these strengths to prey on the weak.

Masters of manipulation and threat they control their levels of the Block via money laundering, assassinations and protection rackets. To many they are evil, but to others they are the only way to survive.
- When the Humans arrived at Honos with their Hydan allies, many of these Hydan wanted to remain with the Humans after their time on Earth and the relationships established within this time, however many humans still saw the Hydan as alien freaks and the mixed race offspring of the two as abominations. In this environment it is not hard to imagine why someone would choose to join a group like the Trydan to escape persecution.

So here we had it! Unity was out (temporarily) and Trydan were in!

Where the Wraiths were masters of martial arts and elegance, the Trydan were masters of subtlety and dirty deeds.

There's always the issue of why would they join the Reavers, but that makes sense when you look at the other 2 Groups; the Red Claw and Raiders. Neither are particularly wealthy and would struggle to compete with the Accord in this field. In comparison the Trydan are very wealthy and would have no problems being the Reaver's benefactor, especially as that would give them leverage over the Faction on a scale they would never be able to achieve on the mid levels of the Block.

And so here we are. I'm now very happy with what we have at the moment. It feels natural, organic and most of all fluid.

Until next time; stay safe and be excellent to each other!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

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