Local design document (ORC)

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These pages are under heavy construction & only intended for the developers. Notice that most of the info will change.
Please contact us if you want to help us out or join the dev. team.


Welcome to the Local Design Document for the Original Rules Concept and the Awesome Rules Concept. While the General Design Document outlines the overall framework for WTactics and tells us what type of games we can develop within the WTactics community the Local Design Document you are viewing right now is a more detailed continuation of it, niched towards two specifc rules system that are under development: The Original Rules Concept, or as we often say in short, the ORC and the Awesome Rules Concept, or the ARC.

If you're interested in development it would be a benefit if you read the General Design Document, then this Local Design Document and finally the ORC or the ARC.

Snowdrop is the lead developer of the ORC and ngoeminne is lead developer of the ARC. The development process is transparent and done in public. You are always welcome to become a part of the ORC/ARC team or lead your own development of new and different rule system. Either way, please enrich the community with the grace of your presence and feel invited to register in here as well as on the forum to participate in an ongoing discussion or give birth to a new one.


  • We try to follow all the General Design Document to whatever extent possible.
  • Focus on a 2 player game that may be adapte for more players later on.
  • Use the table to put a spatial dimension in the game to add a strategic dimension.
  • Avoid built in and essential randomness beyond what is expected within the scope of traditional CCG:s.
  • Minimize use of player administration & game variables, while balancing that against:
    • Maximizing strategical depth and game flow.
    • With time, let the player build up the game's tier level of what can be played.
    • Playing time average is 40 - 80 min. A >= 10 rounds game is considered to be long lasting, yet perfectly possible.


  • There are five factions as laid out in the background story. Note that these will perhaps have to reduced down into just four if a clear identity can't be found mechanic wise for each and every one, in which case the fifth would be incorporated into the others, broadening them up while keeping their distinct feeling.
  • Factions should be asymmetrical as far as possible.
  • New factions won't ever be introduced: Subtypes should be used instead as subfactions if needed. We want broader factions with depth instead of plenty of narrow and over-specialized ones.


  • Card names in general should be 1) Functional 2) Aesthetically appealing 3) Short, in that order of preferences.
  • Creatures tend to have generic & functional unit names instead of personal ones.
    • Example: Elvish Ballerina, Guardian of the Empire, Elvish Archer etc.
  • Personal creature names are rare and reserved for special or renown high tier creatures.
    • Example: Daia the Priestess, Inquisitor Marco, General Trevoy, Nicolé Tann
  • Naming, including personal creature names, should be set within the theme and lore of the game.


ATK & DEF Stats

  • Creature's default, printed attack/defence is usually an integer between 1 to 10, where 10 is very rare godlike tier of battle damage reserved for max 1% of the total creature pool, and 5 is considered to be very strong.
    • Creatures can have 0 attack (ATK), but not less than 1 defense (DEF) as default value.
  • Numbers can never be negative, and there's no upper limit for how high ATK/DEF can become while being modified in game.
  • Card stats are adjusted in relation to certain attributes, such as species, faction, abilities etc.


  • Each creature card is of the cardtype Creature. This is not written out in clear text. Instead it is indicated by the creature template that differs from all other templates in both colour and layout. In addition it has some two unique containers that are only found on it - the ATK and DEF.
  • A creature can be of several subtypes, also known as creature types.
  • Creature names also double as subtypes. Example: A creature card named "Elvish Archer" entails that it is of the "elvish" subtype as well as the "archer" subtype.
  • A creature always has at least one creature type.
  • There are no special rules associated with specific creature types. All types that need such rules should be converted into abilities instead, along with reminder text.


  • When designing there are two types of abilities: Normal and minor. Minor abilities are the ones that have limited effects, while normal are the rest.
    • Example: "This creature can't be targeted by Enchantments." vs "This creature can't be targeted." The terminology minor and normal abilities won't be made official to the players via the cards. The wording won't be seen in the game and is primarily there to help us as designers to sort abilities into different tiers.
  • Normal abilities that have the prefix "offensive" or "defensive" applied to them but are also considered to be minor. Most abilities can be limited that way by having the word "Offensive" or "Defensive" added in front of their keyworded name, as a prefix, to limit when the ability may be used.
    • Example: Offensive Strike is a minor version of the ability called just Strike. It's minor since it may only be used when the creature is attacking.
  • Creatures usually have between 0 to 2 normal abilities, with the exception that two minor abilities count as one normal.
  • Creatures with more than 2 normal abilities are a rare exception.
  • Negative abilities - inabilities - can be used for balancing reasons to give a creature a drawback.
  • All abilities belong to one of four faction related groups:
    • Primary: These are faction specific abilities that are unique and only available to that specific faction. About 20% to 50% of the abilities available in the game should be of this type.
    • Secondary: Abilities borrowed from a pre-defined "sister faction". About 5% - 10%. Substandard performance.
    • Tertiary: Abilities borrowed from a pre-defined "cousin faction". About 0% - 3%. Even more substandard performance.
    • General: Abilities that any faction could have. 20% - 30%. Example: Flying.


To calculate a creatures cost one has should take the following into account to get a basic idea of what price in resources could be appropriate:

  • +1 resource cost per normal positive ability, +0.5 resource per minor positive.
  • -1 resource cost per normal negative ability, -0.5 resource per minor positive.
  • The following should also be added to the resource cost, rounded to zero decimals correctly: (ATK + DEF)/2. Whenever rounding occurs an additional minor skill will have to be added to make up for the 0.5 extra resource cost.
  • Out of faction characteristics according to modifiers: Between +0 to +5 resource cost.
    • Notice: Out of faction characteristics should be avoided in the game alltogether until we have a large cardpool in order to establish faction identities as clearly as possible from the start. Another reason to avoide such cards is that they are essnetialy bad sibling cards and add nothing to the game.
    • +0 resource cost is only given for an out of faction characteristics if the card has other, non-cost related, serious drawbacks instead. If it has not then the resource cost is used steeply to compensate. We try to avoid using the simple resource solution for this in ordet to create more intersting draw backs in the game.
    • Example: A Gaian card that would kill target creature instantly is out of character for how Gaians work. Such a card would probably cost +3 or +4 more resource than other factions equivalent.