• What if... Hidden information in Dice Masters

    Our recent discussions in the podcast regarding quadrant theory and role assignment are just as important in this game as they are for any other CCGs. However, some of the nuance is missing. Not only do we know all of the dice that are available, we know every global, every possible ability that can be used, and everything else. It makes a level of bluffing and deception in this game impossible because we simply know too much.

    That's the nature of the beast in a deckbuilding game, when players pick from a common pool of cards. But except for the basic actions, we don't have cards in common.

    So, just for fun, what if we could find ways to hide a little more from one another...?

    Hidden information can be fun. It creates a new means of forcing a decision. If I'm playing Magic: The Gathering and my opponent is blue and leaves two islands and some other land untapped going into my turn, I have to worry about a counterspell, because that's exactly what one costs - but he may not even have a counterspell in his hand! We have none of that dimension in this game. If someone saves a mask, we know what it's for because we know what's on the board. Always.

    <h3>A New Way to Dice Masters?</h3>Here's one thought that came to mind. What if your character cards were placed face-down? You could still see the dice that were on top of it, but not necessarily the iteration of the card that is there. The card wouldn't be flipped until the controller wanted to purchase a die from that card or play a global ability on the card.

    Some things would be a dead giveaway. A facedown card with a single Mr. Fantastic or Professor X die on it is going to be pretty obvious. But then there's the fact that the global isn't available until the active player chooses. That could add an interesting dimension to the game. A facedown card with a couple of Black Widows on it could cause an opponent to act one way... until it is revealed that it is, in fact, "Natural" and not "Tsarina" sitting there.

    Sometimes the different characters that are present will enable you to deduce what the team must be. But that could still present it's share of surprises, too!

    <h3>On the one hand...</h3>There are a few pros. This gives the players a chance to bluff a little more because we don't always know for certain which globals are available right away. We could bring the "wrong" version of a card just to bluff the type of deck we're playing or to pretend that a global is present that we either never use or is never actually there.

    <h3>But on the other hand...</h3>We still have a lot of information. It isn't perfect and a smart player will likely be able to figure out a lot of the board anyway. Denying a global until you break the ice and use it first could be abused.

    Perhaps we can develop the game to where we can have a card just for the global, but not include the die - the blank card itself could count toward the die limit. Then someone truly could make a surprise play with a spare energy.
    This article was originally published in blog: What if... Hidden information in Dice Masters started by Dave