Card: the Drawing

Synopsis

I'm making this game for the simple reason that I want to see if you can turn the normal functioning of an RPG on its head. Fundamentally, an RPG needs some sort of randomness in its event resolution to be interesting, and conventionally that manifests as you being able to try anything, but also having a risk of failing anything(in broad terms). But I always found that simply failing tends to be unfun and dispiriting for the players, because as a GM it's hard to make a failure not just a "you wasted your time and/or combat round."

So instead, this is a game where your action will always succeed, but instead your array of options is limited and semi-randomized.

Dare you enter this magical realm?

Basic Rules

Each player character has three basic stats and a deck of abilities.

Strength: Is a modifier to some abilities.
Stamina: Modifies your maximum health points and how quickly you gain Adrenaline.
Intelligence: Modifies how many cards you can have in your hand at once.
Wisdom: Determines how many times you can have a given card in your deck.
Speed: Determines how many cards a player can play in a round.

Character archetypes determine your starting stats, all characters start with 20 Health, +5 for each point of Stamina. Some archetypes may also have a card that automatically enters play when they join a battle(for instance, if you're guy literally made of wood, you may have a permanent enchantment that makes you take double damage from FIRE-tagged cards, if they deal damage).

Each card has two functions. Out of combat, they tend to have broad applications, like being able to hurl massive objects or use telekinesis. In combat, the card has an Initiative rating(determining which card will go first in case the order affects things), a type(determining when it can be played and whether it will persist or simply go to the player's discard pile once "spent") and text describing what it does.

Once a round starts, each player draws a card if their hand isn't full, then they play a number of cards up to a maximum of their Speed rating face-down. When everyone has played the cards they want, the played cards are turned face-up. At this point, every player's first card takes effect(in order from lowest initiative score to highest). Then all of the second cards resolve, after that all the third cards, and so on. Once all cards have taken effect, the next round begins. If a player empties their entire deck into their discard pile, the pile is reshuffled and becomes their deck again.

The Gamemaster

While each player only control a single character and deck, the Gamemaster controls the entirety of the party's opposition. Sometimes this means more than one opponent. In most cases, these opponents will be "minions," minions have a shared deck and the number of minions defines the Speed of the mob. As the number of minions decrease, so does the mob's shared Speed stat.

Some enemies, in particular bosses or other memorable encounters, may have their own individual decks and be statted like player characters.

In some cases, the GM may also play Environment cards at the start of a battle which are unremovable cards that simulate, for instance, fighting in cramped conditions or in adverse weather.

Archetypes

Archetypes determine what cards you have access to, as well as your starting statistics.

Titan

Strength: 4
Stamina: 3
Intelligence: 5
Wisdom: 2
Speed: 2

Shadow

Strength: 2
Stamina: 2
Intelligence: 5
Wisdom: 2
Speed: 3

Sorcerer

Strength: 1
Stamina: 3
Intelligence: 5
Wisdom: 3
Speed: 2

Detailed Rules of Combat Play

Combat gameplay goes through four phases: The Drawing phase, the Planning phase, the Playing phase and the Cleanup phase.

In the Drawing phase, each player draws one card by default. In the first Drawing phase, players draw cards up to their maximum hand size rather than just one. During the Drawing phase, players gain Adrenaline points equal to their Stamina, and may spend 2 Adrenaline to draw another card, or 6 Adrenaline and 3 Health to reshuffle their deck(adding their entire current hand and discard pile to the deck) and drawing cards up to their maximum hand size. If a player no longer has any cards in their deck to draw, they lose 3 Health and their Discard pile is reshuffled to form a new Draw pile.

In the Planning phase, players pick cards from their hand, up to as many as their Speed rating, and place them face down, in the order they intend for the cards to be played. Once all players have finished planning, the phase ends. During this phase, players may also choose to remove Condition cards that they have previously played.

In the Playing phase, each player starts by unflipping their first card. Each card then takes effect(costing adrenaline, doing damage, etc. as appropriate), cards take effect in the order from lowest Initiative rating to highest(in case of a tie, look through the players' discard piles, comparing initiative values until the tie is broken by the lower init value going first. Alternately, roll a d6 to decide it). Once all the first cards have taken effect, the second cards are unflipped, and take effect like the first. Then the third, fourth, etc. as applicable. At any time before or after a card has resolved, any player may play an Interrupt card in his hand. If the Interrupt reduces the player to less than the necessary amount of Adrenaline for one of his face-down cards to take effect, the face-down card does not take effect when unflipped.

In the Cleanup phase, all players take their played cards(both Planned and Interrupts) and put them into their Discard pile if they don't remain on the field as Equipment or an Effect.

Any player, minion or villain reduced to 0 or less Health is unable to play cards(and will probably be considered to be dead or subdued once combat resolves.).

Players can have any number of cards in their decks, but a given card can only be repeated in the deck a number of times equal to the player's Wisdom score. Players can adjust their deck at any time outside of Combat.

Card Listing

The post-/ part of every card is its out-of-combat effect. Formatting is as follows:

Card Name(Adrenaline Cost/Initiative): [Tags], non-tag effects.

Any effects that specify "halving," round up the result afterwards.

Card Tags

[Blast#]: # is a number detailing how many targets the [Blast] effect can target at once. If the user is targeted by a [Close] attack in the same round, but before the [Blast] card takes effect, one of the targets must be the user of the [Close] attack, and the caster himself is added as an additional, free, target.
[Close]: No effect by itself, but some cards and tags may affect only those with the [Close] tag.
[Condition]: Is not discarded after being played, rather, it remains on the field and has a constant effect until the caster chooses to dismiss it or another card effect removes it.
[Distant]: The next [Close] attack against you does only half damage.
[Injury]: No effect by itself, but indicates that it is affected by certain other cards.
[Interrupt]: Cannot be played as part of the normal card order, but can be played at any time before a card resolves or after it's resolved, if the user can pay its adrenaline cost.
[Ritual#]: This card takes up multiple card steps before it takes effect, equal to #. For example, a Ritual2 card played as the first would have no effect in the first round, but then take effect in the second.
[Stun]: The target's next card is automatically moved to be last in the init order for that round.

Universal

These cards are available to everyone, and everyone can add them to their deck from game start.

Punch(0/5): [Close] Does 2+Strength damage./Brute Force: An application of mindless violence to break an object or force an obstacle.
Retreat(0/5): [Distant] Does nothing./Flee: Run away from your problem, may or may not make it worse.
Thrown Rock(0/5): Does Strength damage./Flee: Run away from your problem, may or may not make it worse.
Take Cover(0/5): [Condition] Halves damage from the next [Distant] attack targeted at the user, and is then discarded./Flee: Run away from your problem, may or may not make it worse.

Titan

Broad Swing(0/6): [Close] Does 4+Strength damage to every opponent which has played a [Close]-tagged card this round./Brute Force: An application of mindless violence to break an object or force an obstacle.
Careless Assault(0/2): [Condition][Close] While this Condition lasts, the user doubles his Adrenaline gain, doubles damage taken and may deal 2+Strength damage to a target at the start of every Playing Phase./Brute Force: An application of mindless violence to break an object or force an obstacle.
Counter Strike(2/0): [Close][Interrupt] Can only be played as an interrupt any time the user is targeted by an effect tagged with [Close]. Does 4+Strength damage./Achilles Heel: Discover a physical weak point(to a creature or something inanimate), then either strike at it, or threaten to.
Desperate Blow(0/4): [Close] Does damage equal to half the user's lost Health./Achilles Heel: Discover a physical weak point(to a creature or something inanimate), then either strike at it, or threaten to.
Furious Charge(2/2): Does 4+Strength damage./Achilles Heel: Discover a physical weak point(to a creature or something inanimate), then either strike at it, or threaten to.
Hamstring(2/3): [Close][Condition][Injury] Does 2+Strength damage and removes the [Distant] tag from all target's played cards./Achilles Heel: Discover a physical weak point(to a creature or something inanimate), then either strike at it, or threaten to.
Patch Up(0/10): Removes one [Condition] with the [Injury] tag from another character./Endurance: Grin and bear it, ignoring some discomfort or pain, great or small.
Polearm(0/8): [Condition] Affects the caster, removing the [Close] tag from all of his cards while it remains in play, and increasing initiative of all cards by 1 for the same duration./Improvised Tool: Grab one or more items around you and, if you can explain why it should work, lash them together into an improvised tool to resolve your situation.
Shields Up(0/1): [Condition] Affects the caster, halving damage from all [Distant] attacks until his next played card that deals damage./Endurance: Grin and bear it, ignoring some discomfort or pain, great or small.
Staggering Blow(2/3): [Close][Stun] Does 4+Strength damage./Brute Force: An application of mindless violence to break an object or force an obstacle.
Swing Blade(0/4): [Close] Does 4+Strength damage./Brute Force: An application of mindless violence to break an object or force an obstacle.

Shadow

Sorcerer

GM/Minion

Environment

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