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"Rulesets with Tables" Topic

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27 Mar 2015 12:41 p.m. PST
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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian15 Dec 2011 10:03 a.m. PST

If a ruleset has lots of tables, will you give it a try?

Connard Sage15 Dec 2011 10:09 a.m. PST

How many is 'lots'?

Caesar15 Dec 2011 10:13 a.m. PST

I've gotten to the point where a lot of tables is a big turn off.

Dynaman878915 Dec 2011 10:19 a.m. PST


Who asked this joker15 Dec 2011 10:22 a.m. PST

I will try a table driven game if a) there are not too many tables or b) there is a GM running the game that is willing to do most of the drudge work for me.

Farstar15 Dec 2011 10:23 a.m. PST

How many is 'lots'?

For me, the answer is "too many necessary tables to fit on a quick reference sheet, too many to pick them out of the text as I flip though the rules, or so many that there is no play between them."

Mr Elmo15 Dec 2011 10:44 a.m. PST

Tables is not the issue. Elmo's rule for a game is that the Quick Reference Sheet cannot be more than 1 double sided page (8.5 x 11)

Add a second QRS and I'm out.

richarDISNEY15 Dec 2011 10:48 a.m. PST

I am not afraid of tables.
As long as the book re-prints them all on some hand outs, so there is little book flippin'…

leidang15 Dec 2011 11:11 a.m. PST

I agree with Mr Elmo…. ONe double sided sheet is the limit.

Caliban Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2011 11:31 a.m. PST

One double-sided sheet in REASONABLY LARGE PRINT. It's amazing how much you can cram into a side or two of A4 if you don't care about legibility…

6sided15 Dec 2011 11:32 a.m. PST

I like Black Powder. It has no tables. Its quick, and you can play it from memory.


Grand Duke Natokina15 Dec 2011 11:41 a.m. PST

We don't have but one table: Combat results.

Omemin15 Dec 2011 11:45 a.m. PST

I have some with quite a few table (worst is 3 double-side sheets), but that's because they are in reasonable size print.

It depends on the rules and what the tables represent. Seekrieg gets a bit difficult, for example.

Basically, I prefer less complex rules, but I also love Tractics ansd Harpoon. Go figure.

Personal logo Ed the Two Hour Wargames guy Sponsoring Member of TMP15 Dec 2011 11:59 a.m. PST

What's a QRS? It's a way to get info you need when playing the game. What you need to play a THW game is usually on one sheet, maybe two sheets. And after three or four turns you hardly even look at them.

But we gather info that you MIGHT use in the game and put it into one easy to access place, other sheets. Things like Non-Player Enemy Movement or PEF Resolution, not stuff you normally use but there if you need it.

Saves the gamer from having to search through the rules.

000 Triple Aught15 Dec 2011 12:39 p.m. PST

Tables don't bother me. Reading through extensive narrative to find an answer does. I think tables just speed things up.

olicana15 Dec 2011 12:47 p.m. PST

QRS with tables are fine. It's the quickest way of totting factors I guess. I'm not keen on cross referencing results on tables though.

Little Big Wars15 Dec 2011 1:25 p.m. PST

I must admit to having a soft spot for events tables, weather tables, loot tables, etc. Necro/Mordheim will always have a special place in my heart.

Sysiphus15 Dec 2011 2:42 p.m. PST

Yes, we did back in 1979!!!

Sundance15 Dec 2011 3:06 p.m. PST

I have no problem with tables, as long as tey can be put on one to three QRS(s).

Steve6415 Dec 2011 4:59 p.m. PST

I quite like having a handful of tables – 1 or 2 complex tables .. but mostly simple tables with consistent mechanics that can be committed to memory.

Alternatively, there is this method :

Count up the number of tables in the ruleset, and cross reference that with the number of pages in the rules.

Now lookup the ruleset playability table – cross referencing both numbers provides a playability factor in the range 1-20.

Now roll a D10, and apply modifiers.

+1 for each example scenario in the rulebook.
+1 for each 5 sets of TOEs in the appendix.
-1 for a 2nd page of the QRS and each extra sheet needed in addition to that.

Add the modified D10 roll to the playability factor to determine the acceptance factor.

Now cross reference the acceptance factor with the average number of figures on a combat base, and lookup the price point table to get the number of D6 needed to make a final decision.

Roll that number of D6 – if the resultant number is greater than or equal to the price of the ruleset, then all is well – the rules can be considered playable.

Old Contemptibles Supporting Member of TMP15 Dec 2011 8:24 p.m. PST

Depends, how many and what kind. Dinning Room, folding, coffee, end or ping pong.

WKeyser16 Dec 2011 2:11 a.m. PST

It depends on the way they are used and what the designer is representing.

But on the whole I much prefer tables to a handful of dice where 5-6 hit, 5-6 save, 5-6 catastrophic hit, 5-6 bail out, 5-6 officer dead, 5-6 officer lives, 5-6 special event, 5-6 hand of god!!!!


Martin Rapier16 Dec 2011 3:49 a.m. PST

I have no fear of tables as long as the information is organised sensibly and the processes involved well designed.

To echo the comment above, the core elements of any game need to fit on a single sheet of A4.

I find long lists of modifiers particularly oppressive, which is why tables were invented…

The G Dog Fezian16 Dec 2011 4:25 a.m. PST

I miss Empire's charge combat process flow chart.


flooglestreet16 Dec 2011 4:36 a.m. PST

Yes and no. I like a game that has 1 double sided QRS for actual play. I also like having lots of tables for setting up a scenario which aren't used in play. Individual Reference cards for each unit are a plus for me.

Ditto Tango 2 316 Dec 2011 8:10 p.m. PST


RudyNelson17 Dec 2011 6:36 a.m. PST

Yes. All of my rules, both simulation and 'fun game', I use quick reference sheets. The simulations may have more than 'fun game' ones do. QRFs have always been useful for new players or at conventions.

Fun games I keep down to one page front and back. even though much of it you do not need charts for after you play the system for a while.

Now most simulation systems may be one page or two pages front and back. My first simulation 'Guard du Corps: A Simulation Study of the napoleonic Wars, 1981) had three pages front oand back.

Current publishing efforts still have charts but they are often in the back of the book rather than seperate cardstock pull outs.

Wartopia18 Dec 2011 6:41 p.m. PST

For our home grown rules we have a key guiding principle: The QRS must be no larger than one side of one 8.5"x11" sheet of paper. That includes general game information and troop/weapon data.

This usually means the top half to two-thirds of the page is general info while the bottom part is data.

By following this approach ruthlessly you avoid having to reference multiple sheets of paper or even flipping the sheet over during a game.

We also use simple stat lines as opposed to matrices for all data so it's easy to remember and execute stuff.

I play games with multiple tables mostly out of curiosity but I don't personally run for big club games and certainly not for conventions. If I can't hand a player one sheet and start playing I'll pass as far as big public games go (but my sons and I try lots of different games for fun).

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