Animal Jousting Design

Posted by (twitter: @SimianLogic)
April 18th, 2015 1:03 am





Once I had a rough concept (combine a mount + rider + weapon and let them joust), I started working out the specific mechanics of how you combine them. To the Spreadsheet! Below is my weapon model, but I’ve now designed out basic stats for all 3 categories of cards (including some cards that cross over).


  • can earn 1-3 dice for speed
  • can earn 1-3 dice for health/durability/stability
  • have a size (small/medium/large)


  • have a size (small/medium/large) — a character can ride a BIGGER mount, but not a SMALLER mount
  • have a weapon type they’re weak to (-3 dice)
  • have a weapon type they’re strong against (+3 dice)
  • have intelligence, which determines which weapons they can use


  • have an intelligence requirement (smarter than required is OK)
  • have a damage type (distraction / food / poking)
  • have 1-5 damage dice

Here’s the current weapon model:




The core of combat is simple! Given 3 cards, you add up the dice and check your weakness vs your opponent. Roll as many dice as you end up with and compare your scores! Mathematically certain combinations should almost always beat others (Paper/Rock/Scissors), but it should also be possible to construct combinations that have a better chance of beating a specific enemy.

I’m still working on card designs. After starting out portrait, I quickly switched to landscape so that you could stack 3 to form one tall/fat “card.”

First drafts for cards.

First drafts for cards.

Here the design has progressed and I’m working on making the symbols line up visually.

Final card look with stacking symbols.

Final-ish card look with stacking symbols.


I may call it a night now that I have a design on paper/spreadsheet! I can get cracking on art/programming in the morning…. but then again, I’ve also got a stack of card blanks lying around and it might be pretty fun to prototype this with the physical cards first (though much harder to re-tune the numbers).

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