Originally written 23 March 2009.For Samantha, I have a lot of different possible ways to implement combat. I've been debating the different systems now for a while as mentioned in a previous post - casting points and mana pool. What seems to be evolving right now is a combination of the two, but with some modifications.
The first is that Susie liked the idea of keeping the casting points, but not in the same way that I had originally considered it. One idea now is that a player would have CP and whatever they didn't use in a single round would carry over to the next round. An example would be if you have 10 CP per turn and cast something that costs 6, the next turn you'll have 14. If you only use 5 of that, you'd carry over 9 to the next turn and so on. OR, it could only carry over what you don't spend up to 10 CP (in the example above only 5 would carry over to the third round). That's a lot more convoluted, though. It's certainly possible that if you're not casting a lot that you could really leave yourself open to some major damage (which would still deduct from your MP), but you might have a LOT of CP to cast some pretty major spells. I need to ruminate on it further to decide what to do.
I'm still pretty enamored of the idea of your MP being both your energy reserve and your health. I think it really adds something to the game. So I don't think that will change. As for how much MP someone has and how much the coven's MP comes into play remain to be seen. The CP concept just limits the number of things that can be done in a turn (as opposed to just arbitrarily limiting it to 1 or something). It also figures into the Affinities concept.
In the game there are going to be 5 different affinities - Fire, Water, Earth, Air, and Void. Each of them is represented by an arm or segment of a pentacle/pentagrams. Upon each arm is a gemstone holder. As players advance in levels, they can choose to improve their affinity with a particular element. For each gemstone (and the levels get progressively further apart), the casting point cost of a spell is reduced (to a minimum of 1). An example of this would be the following. Say a spell normally costs 5 CP to cast. If you have 3 gemstones of affinity in the spell's element, the cost would be reduced to 2 CP. If you gained two more gemstones of affinity, the cost would be 1 and stay there indefinitely.
One final thing about combat is that players can use items during combat. It will cost some number of CP to use an item, but some of the artifacts are things like mana gems that will restore some or all of your MP. That could be a huge boost in a long battle. Plus, those are likely to be for sale in groups of 10 or something through the App Store.
I'm still working through some of the logistics of the whole CP/MP thing, but I think I'm starting to come to some decisions on the systems and will be able to document the whole thing in the not-too-distant future. At least, that's what I hope. :)