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"Code Zero, skirmish game on Kickstarter" Topic

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Shinlocke19 Mar 2017 11:36 p.m. PST

Code Zero is a 32mm miniatures game which simulates skirmishes and combat set within a sci-fi universe. Players take control of a small squad of troops, broken up into fireteams, competing with each other to achieve one or several objectives to complete their mission. These combat situations take place within a theater of war, on the borders along the core worlds of various factions. This area is often referred to as Code Zero.

Code Zero is designed to create a cinematic feel of gameplay, while reflecting the dynamic ebb and flow of the battle that can happen within any given engagement. The game systems utilizes an action/reaction system that allows both players to interact in a method to keep everyone entrenched with the battle and interacting with each other. By allowing a limited amount of activations between turns, it reflects a great amount of realism and flexibility, providing players with a wide variety of tactical and strategic options that they can employ during the game.

We will be approaching our Kickstarter a bit different than the traditional method.

A traditional Kickstarter sets a goal to create a full game. That goal is usually short of what is actually needed, with stretch goals/add-ons generating the funds for the remainder. This can often cause the core game to run into late delivery issues, creating multiple waves of shipping, or in rare cases, may even result in not delivering at all. By the time the backer receives the product, it has been so long that excitement has worn off or they have even forgotten about it.

The goal of this Kickstarter is to fund the creation of the Anazi Dynasty miniatures, one of the factions involved in the Code Zero game. We would like nothing more than for this kickstarter to be hugely successful, allowing us to fully fund the game and miniatures all at once, but decided on taking this different approach for many reasons.

Our plan by creating miniatures for each faction, one faction at a time, allows us to ensure we provide our best in a timely manner. This will let us run a smaller campaign, putting the full focus into each faction as we expand the game bit by bit. That means we can fund at a smaller amount which allows us to put the product into our backer's hands quicker. Instead of waiting two years for something, you'll have product within a fraction of the time.

Meanwhile we can start small and build the miniatures line while we release the Code Zero game rules in beta format to our backers. Although we are confident we can test and implement it in the traditional time, that often leads to rules being rushed out too soon. This results in sub-par rules, something that needs to be heavily revised within a few months of release. Our method will give backers a unique opportunity to help shape, adjust, and improve the game as we continue to build the product line. We really do value your feedback, and although we might not be able to implement every suggestion or idea, we will definitely listen and make adjustments where needed.

Although we have chosen the faction to produce first, backers will be able to help determine the next faction moving forward as well as what it could unlock. But don't worry, that does not mean we will be launching multiple campaigns at once! The plan is to fund, deliver, and then move on to the next campaign. That will allow us prove ourselves to you, the backers, as well as continuing to foster the growing trust we develop with you, our community. It also means we can learn, adjusting to any mistakes or issues encountered on the way. The slow and steady pace will allow us to better grow Code Zero with our community.

The initial scout fireteams for the Anazi Dynasty are unique in that most of their pieces are interchangeable. The differences in design between A and B is the head sculpt, where one has a facemask/exposed hair while the other is in a shemagh and their weapons. The legs poses are the same between the two fireteams but combined with the different torso, arms, weapon configurations you can create a dynamic group of miniatures. We also will have weapon/arm packs if you wanted to have a specific weapon makeup to create one for long range or short range. Originally we wanted to bring a group set, then have users be able to create their own versions. Unfortunately in resin this isn't economical in terms of pricing unlike if this was a plastic kit so the decision was made to make them separate configurations. We may revisit more customization in the future.

This is an example of using a different arm, weapon configuration within one of the fireteams.

The other fireteam is from the Federated Commonwealth, although not part of the Anazi Dynasty we needed to have an opposing unit because it is no fun simply fighting the same units. There are 4 individual models within this fireteam, which will be bigger than the Anazi as they are in powerarmor. These are the 2nd generation powersuits which are smaller but self-contained suits. They were decommissioned by the United Republic when they developed their newer current gen suits which were larger and bulkier. The Federated Commonwealth purchased the demilitarized units originally equipping them for mining asteroids and resources from less hospitable environments.

Insomniac20 Mar 2017 4:07 a.m. PST

If you make enough miniatures for a squad of the big green guy on the right, I'd be interested… but he'd need textured skin. I like the concept :)

Shinlocke20 Mar 2017 12:18 p.m. PST

He does have textured skin, although we haven't flushed out the type of scales he has.

Who doesn't love free stuff? To celebrate the launch of our Kickstarter we are giving 1 customized fireteam of Anazi Dynasty light infantry scouts (5 miniatures). You get to choose which 5 miniature out of a selection of 10 different configurations that you want. The winner would be one of the first people to get them into their hands and they don't even have to back the Kickstarter.

To participate you just visit our Facebook post and follow the instructions for it which are:

1| Like The Post.
2| Make a Comment using the hashtag #CodeZeroGame answering the following question: "What color scheme would you use to paint them?"
3| Share The Post.

On April 19th, a winner will be chosen randomly from those that followed the instructions above, and announced in the thread. The winner will then be contact directly.

Kickstarter Link

tnjrp21 Mar 2017 1:04 a.m. PST

Not much enthusiasm for this yet and to be frank, I feel they are kinda bland lot. I do like lieutenant dog/fox/whateverthingy -- OK I'm going to go with "dog" -- but unfortunately it's a stretch goal that's fairly far off yet. Even more unfortunately, it's not very cost efficient to order a whole squad of the same sort of critturs that apparently comes in at the same stretch goal as the special character to Finland. So I'll have to give the single model option a pass too.

Shinlocke21 Mar 2017 5:59 p.m. PST

I am not sure I agree that they are bland but I am biased, so that is a fair perspective. ^_^

Dog would be a close guess. The initial design was based on a anubis/jackal type warrior. They are a jackal mutation hence they picked up the name JK9. They are medium armored infantry, mostly serve as the peace keeper and main lines. Similar to the Blinc, who wear horned helmets and/or contacts, the JK9 have a jackal skull helmet. This disguises if the person is actually true human or a mutate.


Ready, Steady, Go!

Thank you everyone for backing my campaign.

We appreciate everyone who jumped in early and hope you stay with us for the whole journey. We have spent a lot of time and resources working on this game, to get it to a point to where we can start production on the miniatures line. We want to breath life to this universe that we have created, which we can not do without your help. For that we are deeply grateful.

We really want the backers to actually be a real part of this process and feel like they have had an impact on the campaign. There are various discussions about Kickstarter being a pre-order system and if backers are investors, which we am not going to get into here. But it is important to us that backers, which help make these opportunities happen, aren't simply just a source of blood. We are not vampires… although one us might be one. ^_^ We are not a big company or corporation, but instead a simple family and friends who are gamers first. We want to create games and miniatures that other gamers and families will enjoy.

In the Works

Miniatures Promotion

If you would like set of free miniatures, be sure to visit our Facebook page here for details.

Painted Miniatures

We previously sent out miniatures to a couple painters to get a more professional paint scheme done on the miniatures we have produced. Awaken Realms has 15 of the miniatures to paint up for us. They will hopefully be completed before the campaign ends, but they may not be depending on the queue. Locally in Portland we sent off a set to Nick Wirt, known as spiralingcadaver who like us is a DakkaDakka local. That will provide us with some great examples to truly show what you can do with them. Although we love to paint miniatures, we aren't professional painters and can't really do these justice.


We will also adding an additional add-on soon that are some MDF and Acrylic movement rulers, teardrop and scatter templates. We are just finalizing the design, so we can get updated costs. That should be completed in a couple days. We are also looking into some tokens and lasercut scatter terrain or a building or two. We hope to have more information on that sometime next week.

EU/UK Friendlier Shipping

I know that international shipping options for a small Kickstarter like this are not always the best. We are looking at multiple methods to bring this down but also so VAT and customs aren't an issue for backers. There are some options like ShipNaked and even Amazon that are being looked into. The main issue is they tend to have a chunky setup charge for accounts and for the volume we are doing, are not necessarily the best option. We have also reached out to Scale75 to see if there are some other options, like shipping with them, since the miniatures will be cast by them across the pond already.

Let Us Know

Let us know what you would like to hear more of; Do you want more background and information for the various factions? Would you be interested in us talking about the game design and rules? Maybe you would rather hear about the miniature production and casting?

With everything in the background we are also doing some reworking on one of the alien species. The original concept art for the Char'iza was a good start. They were originally humanoid in size. With some changes to faction adjustments and power armor, we are increasing their size to make them larger. Some of the changes are because of alterations in the history/lore which explains the different generations of power armor. The original concept was reptilian in nature but very generic so we want to improve on that initial design.

What version or combinations do you like best?

Please be sure to share this Kickstarter with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Thank you again! You guys are all awesome!

Shinlocke23 Mar 2017 7:30 p.m. PST

Capital Planet: New Sydney
Colonization: Majority of colonists originated from Australia and islands along the Pacific Rim.
Government: Constitutional Monarchy

The Federated Commonwealth is one of the smaller empires, only having six planets that makeup their Core Worlds. They were originally part of different mining corporations and resource management firms belonging to the United Republic. During the first galactic war, forced to survive on their own to defend against pirates and other militia groups, they banded together. They became a Federation forming under a Commonwealth and declared independence.

The fringe worlds, not technically part of the Federated Commonwealth, commonly referred to Zero or Code Zero worlds were dangerous. Many of the planets were deep within systems with chaotic asteroids and gravitational fluxes, making them unsafe conditions for those not familiar with them. It was one reason they were a favorite place for smugglers.

The Federated Commonwealth lacked the large strength to expand and protect all the mining colonies, so they settled for protecting their Core. That doesn't mean they left them defenseless but it did mean there wasn't a large fleet presence patrolling.

Hard workers, miners, mechanics, and even mercenaries they were mostly made up of what would be considered blue collared workers. It was probably one of the reasons the United Republic didn't really put up a fight, since they were essentially second class citizens to them anyways.

Corer Power Armor

Core Suits are heavy infantry power armor suits, much smaller than the 1st Generation units which were basically small tanks with legs. When the United Republic created their newest 2nd Generation units they mothballed the Core Suits. The power armor was perfect for mining, able to withstand harsh conditions of space and planetary weather. They were self contained, perfect in case of collapse and even suitable for mining in the ocean. With the contract over with, they picked up the demilitarized versions and modified them to run their drilling equipment.

Although the contract wasn't considered a civilian contract and not military, there wasn't a huge difference between the civilian and military version. After upgrading the operating system, it was easy for them to make them perfect for peacekeeping and military operations, giving them a fighting chance again. After all a good portion of the citizens of the Federated Commonwealth spent their time maintaining them back when they worked for the United Republic. They weren't as big or as strong as the 2nd Generation units, but they were versatile for many environments making them great for operations on Code Zero worlds.

Lion in the Stars24 Mar 2017 8:26 p.m. PST

In terms of rules mechanics, how is this game different from Infinity?

Because honestly, it sounds like you're trying to work in the same conceptual space of a squad per side with action/reactions.

Shinlocke26 Mar 2017 1:36 a.m. PST

I can see from the initial look that most gamers will compare action/reaction to Infinity as it is for the most part the largely recognized version utilizing it, although it wasn't who originated it. It would probably be easier to state the similarities than the differences. LOL! Forgive me if I get some things wrong in reference to Infinity, since I do play Infinity but I don't play it enough regularly. I mostly love to paint, collect the miniatures, art and stories.

Initiative and Deployment

Infinity: The winner of the roll determines to keep initiative or keep deployment. Initiative is used to establish turn order which maintains throughout the game, mostly IGO-UGO with a action/reaction system. When they deploy all but one of their units. The other player places all but one of their units. Then they place the final unit.

Code Zero: It is similar in fashion but player turn order can change through multiple methods in the game. Turn order is not IGO-UGO but more like Player A activates/moves 1-2 units, then Player B activates 1-2 units with a action/reaction system. Similarly Deployment is alternating deployment. Player A deploys 1-2 units within their deployment zone, then Player B deploys 1-2 units. They alternate until all units have been deployed.

Game Sequence

Infinity: The game is played in a series of Rounds, each Round divided into two Player Turns. The Active Player does their whole turn, while the other player is the Reactive Player. The next turn the Reactive Player becomes the Active Player and vice versa and does their whole turn. It is essentially IGO-UGO, with reaction fire/dodge for the most part.

Code Zero: The game is divided into 8 turns with each turn consisting of three phases: Start Phase, Player Phase, End Phase. Start Phase, start of turn stuff happens. During the Player Phase both player alternate between the Active Player and Reactive Player roles. End Phase, end of turn stuff happens.

Game Turn
Start Phase
Player Phase
-- Round A: Player 1 Active Player, Player 2 Reactive Player
-- Round B: Player 2 Active Player, Player 1 Reactive Player
-- Round C: Player 1 Active Player, Player 2 Reactive Player
-- Round D: Player 2 Active Player, Player 1 Reactive Player (and so forth until no more AP to spend)
End Phase

Units and Activation Points

Infinity: Individual single model units generate orders. Orders are used to activate and assign actions to their units. 10 models/units = 10 orders. Infinity does not have fireteam/squad makeup, the closest they have is link teams. One order activates one unit, which lets it do stuff and they can activate as many times as they have orders. The player would activate all their units, generally using up all their orders during their active turn while the reactive player gets ARO. They alternate but at the heart it is a primarily IGO-UGO system.

Code Zero: Activation Points which are the equivalent of Orders to a degree, they are generated based on the unit type. Single model heroes generate 1AP, while fireteams (3-5 models) generate 3AP. 10 models could be 2 heroes and 2 fireteams (4 models each). The 2 heroes generate 2AP and the 2 fireteams generate 6AP for a total of 8AP. AP is the currency used to activate a unit to allow them to move, shoot, etc.

To explain how really AP works it is probably better to ask if you have ever played the card game, Magic the Gathering or World of Warcraft TCG? If you have then I don't have to explain the triggers or how action/response go on the stack/chain and resolve (first in, last out) sort of thing. If you haven't played MtG then this may make more sense when I do the game turn play through with pictures.

Action/Reaction System

Infinity: The Active Player spends orders to activate units to do things. The Reactive Player gets to respond with an ARO when the Active Player moves one of their units within line of sight of the Reactive Player's unit. The only interaction a Reactive Player gets with a Active Player is generally through an ARO.

Code Zero: Instead of a IGO-UGO with action/reaction, we built the system with a action/response system based at certain trigger points. There are two opportunities for a Reactive Player to respond usually. The Active Player spends an AP and chooses a unit to activate, this can be a single hero or a whole fireteam. After they declare their action it creates a Trigger Point, this is the first opportunity that the Reactive Player can choose to respond. It is basically a "Steal Initiative" option, where the response can be to spend an AP and activate one of their own units, which would resolve their actions first. The Active Player could also choose to respond and spend an additional AP to activate a second unit creating

Units can only be activated twice in a turn. You place the AP token next to the unit when you activate it the first time with the green side up. The second time it is activated, the AP token is flipped over to red side. Any additional activations will give it "Fatigue" status which reduces their abilities. A player can also only activate up to two units in a round, if they choose to activate an additional unit, that unit will gain "Fatigue" status.

The second opportunity that a Reactive Player can respond is when the second Trigger Point is created similar to an Infinity ARO, if a Active Player unit moves within line of sight of the Reactive Player unit then the Reactive Player can choose to respond.

It sounds a bit wordy and complex at first but really game play is smooth in a MtG type of fashion. Since everything can resolve differently based on the order of events, the game comes out a very different experience than Infinity. The main focus of the game becomes more like a chess match, where one player's actions can have more of an impact or interaction with the other player. It gives the game a good ebb and flow, with the back and forth giving more of a focus on maneuvering. Instead of waiting for a player to move all their units, players can intercept and cause interesting choke points due to the system as well. It also allows you to create a feint or flanking maneuver that is harder to recreate in small objective based battles.

I think that hits most of the relevant points. Let me know if you would like more information or have other questions. Thank you.

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