Doomtown Weird West Edition: More Than Just a High Noon Duel
In our initial announcement, we discussed all the extra offerings coming to the Doomtown game in this Kickstarter. The idea for this stemmed from a GAMA seminar attended by the PBE team in 2020, immediately prior to the COVID-19 pandemic that resulted in a plan to go full steam ahead on the development of a new era. Game Designer Justin Gary discussed his Ascension Series in a presentation titled, ‘How to Make Games Last.’ With 10 years in, Mr. Gary talked about the playerbase of that game and offered a reloaded product that made players who bought the original game feel like they were getting something new, while also enhancing an experience for new players; a paradox issue of needing the game to be the same, but different.
We started thinking about what this would mean for Doomtown for our core audience. This includes listening to our current player base, while attracting new ones. You’ll find examples of this in our updated economy, revised printing of cards, and Kung Fu rules, but in this article we want to focus on the new offerings of ways to enjoy Doomtown.
Town Square Variants
For some time we’ve discussed the idea of an internal ‘clock,’ something that was lacking in Doomtown as a finite counter for the game in case players are stalling out in the ability to move towards a win condition. Rather than force players into using this, an optional Town Square marker is being added with a Fear Level countdown. If the game drags on without control points added, the Fear Level goes up until a point in which a final turn will occur. You’ll also find a new card, the New Town Hall, as well as the return of the Epidemic Lab and Allie Hensmen, as well as other cards that can help move the game forward.
In addition to this variant card, we also wanted an optional mulligan rule, particularly for Greenhorn (new) players that may start with a clogged hand. While the Fear Level card will represent Gomorra, we also wanted cards to represent the other two towns we’ve moved the game towards in the story: Tombstone and Deadwood. We plan to do the same with future expansions, with plans to explore other major cities in the Deadlands world.
Representing the domain of Death, the Tombstone marker will allow for deadlier shootouts. Representing the domain of War, the Deadwood marker will allow for additional control points to drop as players vie for control over Deeds. These markers are fully compatible with all modes of Doomtown to help you customize your play experience.
This concept was first explored and tested at multiple convention events as we sought feedback at GenCon and Origins. The focus on these storyline scenarios are to play through the fictions as a new way to use your Doomtown cards while also bringing back a Classic card type reimagined, ‘Events.’ In these games, rather than typical Doomtown win conditions, there will be a set number of turns with a new random Event resolving. The options in the Weird West Edition playset will be to play out the ‘Showstopper’ scenario with one player representing the evil Ivor Hawley, while the ‘Showdown at the Clanton Ranch’ will feature law dogs and an ally against Stone and the Outlaws. With your 2 Base Sets/full playset, you’ll be able to host each scenario at once with 6 players.
We have a variety of variants posted on the PBE website, but have never utilized these in official events. We are moving to a new variant that will be supported for regular organized play and allows for all players to continue playing without any elimination clause. This format introduces Victory Points that are accumulated each time you would eliminate any other player under regular rules, with multiple points granted if you would have defeated multiple opponents. This allows for a time efficient game that keeps all players actively involved. In addition, casualty assignments have been reworked to encourage active participation amongst all players in shootouts, as well as for the collection of bounty. The lowball winner will also not win the entire massive pot, as this has shown to be a huge economic boost. Cards will be designed in a way to encourage and support the multiplayer format.
Solo Mode & Co-Op Mode
Solo Mode will allow you to play against a deck run by an Automaton. The Automaton is designed to create a play experience that is close to what you would get when facing a real opponent. There will also be a scoring system, allowing you to compare your results to those attained by other players. The initial Automaton archetype will be calibrated towards using straight-forward shooter decks. Future expansions will add Automatons that specialize in other deck types.
You can also use the Automaton to run the single player in a 2v1 scenario, allowing for a Co-Op Doomtown experience.
Seamus debuts in Doomtown: Weird West Edition launching This Tuesday