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AugustNights
2014-01-27, 04:07 PM
Gambling Skill Games


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You only have to know three things, kid; the rules, the stakes, and when to fold.


Chimera Cup
Chimera cup is one of the most popular forms of card-based gambling, its popularity surging as humans spread across the nations. Based loosely on an older Dwarven Pub game, humans are credited with adapting the game to a simpler version that is easier to understand. Chimera cup is so pervasive, that many humans know of no other game but chimera cup.
Chimera cup is a card game that involves a partially shared hand. Each player is given two cards of their own, and then 3 "Heads" are dealt onto the table; the Goat, the Lion, and the Dragon respectively. Once all three heads are revealed, players raise, see, or fold, until all bets are agreed on. Hands are then compared and the highest hand is victorious, taking the pot.

Step 1: Buy In
DM decides the Ante for 1 hour's worth of games, players may then buy in if they wish to play. All antes are accumulated into the pot.

Step 2: Cheating Round.
Any players who wish to take an unfair advantage may either roll Sleight of Hand opposed to all other players' Spot checks. Alternatively, they may roll Bluff opposed to all other players' Sense Motive checks.
If the cheating player is successful, they gain a +5 bonus to their Gambling Check. For every 5 points over their opponents opposed check that their cheating check is, they gain an additional +5 bonus on their gambling check.
If the cheating player is unsuccessful, other players are aware of their cheating, and will likely respond accordingly.

Step 3: Playing the Game.
All players make a Gambling Check, either rolling their Profession (Gambler) skill, or Bluff at a -5 penalty. Players are then distributed a Hand based on their Gambling Check. At minimum, a player receives 1 card in their Hand.
If their Gambling Check is 10 or higher, they gain 2 cards in their Hand.
For every 5 points over 10, the player gains an additional card in their Hand.

Step 4: Goat, Lion, Dragon.
3 cards are laid out, face up on the table, these are referred to as the "Heads," and are named in order Goat, Lion, and Dragon.

Step 5: Discard.
Players discard all but 2 cards from their Hand (if a player only has 1-2 cards in their hand they need not discard anything).

Step 6: Raise, See, or Fold.
Starting with the DM/NPCs, players Raise, See, or Fold, as appropriate.

Step 7: Reveal
All players reveal their hands, the highest poker hand wins the pot.
Gambling establishments may take a small cut of the pot (10-25% recommended).

Back Alley 9s
Back Alley 9s is a card game that derived it's name from where it is most often played, having picked up popularity through several thieves guilds and similar shady organizations. It's swift-of play and nonstandard counting measures have made it the ideal game for miscreants to play when waiting for a drop or if there's a need to make a quick escape. Back Alley 9s is more or less a game of chance, with little skill or strategy involved, since each player's moves are forced by the cards the player is dealt. Winning odds in back alley 9s almost always favor the house.
Back Alley 9s is a card game that involves a partially revealed hand. Each player is given a face down card, and then a "Fence" is dealt face up infront o the player. The player calculates their total between their fence and face down card, and players raise, see, or fold, until all bets are agreed on.
Hands are then revealed and compared, the hand with a sum that is the closest to 9 in the first digit place is victorious, taking the pot.

Step 1: Buy In
DM decides the Ante for 1 hour's worth of games, players may then buy in if they wish to play. All antes are accumulated into the pot.

Step 2: Cheating Round.
Any players who wish to take an unfair advantage may either roll Sleight of Hand opposed to all other players' Spot checks. Alternatively, they may roll Bluff opposed to all other players' Sense Motive checks.
If the cheating player is successful, they gain a +5 bonus to their Gambling Check. For every 5 points over their opponents opposed check that their cheating check is, they gain an additional +5 bonus on their gambling check.
If the cheating player is unsuccessful, other players are aware of their cheating, and will likely respond accordingly.

Step 3: Playing the Game.
All players make a Gambling Check, either rolling their Profession (Gambler) skill, or Spot at a -5 penalty. Players are then distributed a Hand based on their Gambling Check. At minimum, a player receives 1 card in their Hand.
If their Gambling Check is 10 or higher, they gain 2 cards in their Hand.
For every 5 points over 10, the player gains an additional card in their Hand.

Step 4: Fence.
Each player is given a card that is Face up, this card is called the "fence."

Step 5: Discard.
Players discard all but 1 card from their Hand (if a player only has 1 card in their hand they need not discard anything). The Fence does not count as the player's Hand.

Step 6: Raise, See, or Fold.
Starting with the DM/NPCs, players Raise, See, or Fold, as appropriate.

Step 7: Reveal
All players reveal their Hands. The value of their Hand card is added to the value of their Fence card; 10 is the same as 0, 11 is the same as 1, and so on. Aces are valued at 1, Face cards are vauled at 0.The total that is closest to 9 in the 1's digit place wins the pot.
Gambling establishments may take a small cut of the pot (10-25% recommended).


Krahd
Krahd is a long-form but simple card game, often played by bored militants between shifts at guard duty. It was popularized by various hob-goblin mercenary groups, the name is goblin for the word "skirmish." The deck is divided evenly among the players, giving each a down stack known as "soldiers". Players then raise, see or fold, and continue to play. In unison, each player reveals the top card of their deck this is a "fight" and the player with the higher card takes both the cards played and moves them to the bottom of their soldiers.
If the two or more cards played are of equal value, then there is a "skirmish". The players play the next three cards of their soldiers face down, then another card face-up. The owner of the higher face-up card wins the skirmish and adds all played cards on the table to the bottom of their soldiers. If the face-up cards are again equal then the skirmish repeats until one player's face-up card is higher than their opponent's.
When a player runs out of cards that player immediately loses. When one player is left in the game, that player wins, and takes the pot.

Step 1: Buy In
DM decides the Ante for 1 hour's worth of games, players may then buy in if they wish to play. All antes are accumulated into the pot.

Step 2: Cheating Round.
Any players who wish to take an unfair advantage may either roll Sleight of Hand opposed to all other players' Spot checks. Alternatively, they may roll Bluff opposed to all other players' Sense Motive checks.
If the cheating player is successful, they gain a +5 bonus to their Gambling Check. For every 5 points over their opponents opposed check that their cheating check is, they gain an additional +5 bonus on their gambling check.
If the cheating player is unsuccessful, other players are aware of their cheating, and will likely respond accordingly.

Step 3: Playing the Game.
All players make a Gambling Check, either rolling their Profession (Gambler) skill, or Intimidate at a -5 penalty. Players are then distributed a Hand based on their Gambling Check. At minimum, a player receives 1 card in their Hand.
If their Gambling Check is 10 or higher, they gain 2 cards in their Hand.
For every 5 points over 10, the player gains an additional card in their Hand.

Step 4: Soldiers.
Each player is given six cards called the "Soldiers."

Step 5: Preparations.
Each player shuffles their Soldiers, and places their hand, face down on top of their soldiers. They may place their hand in any order they so choose.

Step 6: Raise, See, or Fold.
Starting with the DM/NPCs, players Raise, See, or Fold, as appropriate.

Step 7: Reveal
All players proceed to compare cards, one card at a time. Highest card takes all other cards, and is added to the bottom of their Soldiers. Ties are resolved by placing 3 soldiers face up on the field, followed by a tie-breaker. Players that loose all of their Soldiers are out of the game. Last player standing wins the pot.
Gambling establishments may take a small cut of the pot (10-25% recommended).


Lucktheif
Lucktheif, or "Gnomish Go-Cheat" is an incredibly complicated game often played by more eccentric folks who enjoy complexity for complexity's sake. It's alternative name is derived from how often the games break down into arguments over the rules and how someone is "clearly cheating". From an outsider's perspective it may appear as a bunch of random made up rules that are arbitrarily enforced, and all that is really going on is a clever ruse to reduce someone's wealth. However, those that play are often well-versed in the rules present at their table, and more often than not have agreed not to speak of them outside of the game.
The process of gaining a hand is done during a period of the game called "Courte" in which players award other players cards for their polite behavior with one another. (It is not too uncommon to award a player in thanks for another award).
Once courte is concluded (when anyone "Takes Offense," courte is concluded), players then decide to raise, see, or fold. Hands are then displayed and the complex rules take effect. Usually one player wins, and takes the pot. But occasionally there are situations in which the rules do not describe, this often breaks the game down into arguments.

Step 1: Buy In
DM decides the Ante for 1 hour's worth of games, players may then buy in if they wish to play. All antes are accumulated into the pot.

Step 2: Cheating Round.
Any players who wish to take an unfair advantage may either roll Sleight of Hand opposed to all other players' Spot checks. Alternatively, they may roll Bluff opposed to all other players' Sense Motive checks.
If the cheating player is successful, they gain a +5 bonus to their Gambling Check. For every 5 points over their opponents opposed check that their cheating check is, they gain an additional +5 bonus on their gambling check.
If the cheating player is unsuccessful, other players are aware of their cheating, and will likely respond accordingly.

Step 3: Playing the Game.
All players make a Gambling Check, either rolling their Profession (Gambler) skill, or Diplomacy at a -5 penalty. Players are then distributed a Hand based on their Gambling Check. At minimum, a player receives 1 card in their Hand.
If their Gambling Check is 10 or higher, they gain 2 cards in their Hand.
For every 5 points over 10, the player gains an additional card in their Hand.

Step 4: Charms.
Each player is given 1d4+1 cards to add to to their own hand, these are called "Charms."

Step 5: Raise, See, or Fold.
Starting with the DM/NPCs, players Raise, See, or Fold, as appropriate.

Step 6: Jokers.
Players with Jokers are allowed to alter the Complex Victory Table.
A player with 1 Joker may add a new rule to the bottom of the Complex Victory Table.
A player with 2 Jokers may remove a rule, or re-order a rule from the Complex Victory Table.

Step 7: Reveal
All players reveal their Hands and consult the Complex Victory Table.
The rules on the table follow a specific priority, rules at the top of the table take effect before the rules a the bottom of the table, however a rule remains in effect until the game is over. (Take into account rule 1, then rule 2, then rule 3, and so on.)
Gambling establishments may take a small cut of the pot (10-25% recommended).

Complex Victory Table

Rule #ConditionSpecification

1
Black Ace in HandPlayer wins if they have least cards in Hand


2
Red Queen in HandPlayer wins if they have most cards in Hand

3
2 Black Aces & 2 Black EightsPlayer may trade for anyone else's hand

4
5-card FlushAll cards change color, restart complex victory table, ignore this step, and player gains 2 Points

5
CardsPlayer with the most points wins

6
JokerLose 1 point for every joker in hand

7
Two of a KindGain (X-1) Points, where X is the number of cards in hand (Stacks)

8
Number of cards in hand equal to the number of playersGain that many points

9
Cards all same ColorTake any one card of your choice from another player's hand

10
3 Face Cards in HandBuy everyone at the table a drink, and gain 7 points

11
One Card in handDraw 3 cards from deck

12
Cards all different suitsEveryone else draws 1 card from deck

13
No Clear WinnerSomeone clearly cheated, and game must be solved through some other means as dictated by player with most face cards in hand


Notes

Feedback regarding formatting, rules-language, existing game structure, and new game ideas, and game-theory regarding chance & skill dynamic would be greatly appreciated.

I based this system loosely off of a Dead-lands poker mini-game I found. The elements that I am particularly found of are that there is a mini-game for gambling, and that skill is rewarded while chance remains a large aspect of most of these games.

Chimera is intended to be relatively simple and easily imported into any game. I imagine Chimera to be a very common game that most all cultures recognize.

Back Ally 9s is intended to be a possibly quicker version of a game, based on baccarat. In setting I see Back Ally 9s to be a game that is practiced by shady cultures (thieve's guilds and the like), for its swiftness, and confusing number scheme (if one isn't used to ignoring any decimal place beside the 1s).

Krahd is quite obviously based on War, and I envision it to be played by more militant cultures, though it is quite the long-form game.

Luckthief is intended to be complex and confusing. I imagine it to be the sort of game eccentric cultures play that many folks simply do not understand. In setting, I imagine the "Complex Rule Table" to be a secret only known by the group that regularly plays, not unlike the cruel game of Mao, but that may not be appropriate for all tables.

commander panda
2014-01-28, 12:33 AM
i'd provide a clear description of what each game is, fluff wise. i might have missed where you did that, though. i'm tired.

AugustNights
2014-01-28, 06:09 PM
Fair enough. Brief blurbs have been added. Fluff, is of course mutable.

Jallorn
2014-01-28, 07:03 PM
I can see what all of those are except the last. What game is that based on?

AugustNights
2014-01-28, 07:58 PM
Luckthief is loosely based on Mao and a few other insider-knowledge games. It became a common game that various NPCs would play in bars that had unintelligible rules and the like in a few of my campaigns.

Any one have any suggestions for other games? Or any thoughts on how Skill Rank and Chance play together to determine victory?

Kamai
2014-01-29, 12:27 PM
This is a pretty neat idea. However, as far as in-world, I don't understand how in Chimera Cup and Krahd, a person sees "Hey, I have less cards than Bob" and not say "What's going on here?". Chimera cup really should just say that everyone gets at least 2 cards, and Khrad should either discard to 6, or say that you can draw from any part of the deck X times, with the second being more abusable, but fitting stronger with the intimidate theme.

Luckthief, in my opinion, could use as part of it's cheating mechanic a way of messing with the other players. Sure, you could use bluff to get yourself more cards (or even less, if you want). What if instead, though, you could use Gather Information (getting information on a specific person's style) to make them not focus on "Courte" or to stop the round too early, or to use Diplomacy to keep that person chatting too long and having them get more cards. Shoot, I could imagine a high DC Intimidate check or Gambling check to add/remove a rule.

I do also admit that I'm amused that most games of Luckthief should end with no clear winner, and that in the end, the points really don't matter.

Other ideas: I could imagine cultures with no or limited writing (or card making material) having a variant of Yahtzee instead of Chimera Cup. I would imagine the "dice" having images, and scoring points based off of lots of matches or setting specific scenes (Three hunters kill wolf).

AugustNights
2014-01-29, 02:33 PM
The difference in cards dealt isn't meant to be an in-world thing, much like rolling a d20. Each skill-game is a representation of an hour's worth of play, with better gamblers (or cheaters) having an advantage over others (expressed by the dealing of more cards for the skill-game). Bob the ranger wouldn't notice Henriki's player having more cards, but they might notice that Henriki the Wizard is an expert card-sharp.
I'd like to keep the set-up to Luckthief to be simple, with the complex rule table being the main source of thematic confusion to the game. I'd like players to understand how and why a game is complex, and not get bogged down with which skill they should use when playing a single game. I'm not certain the probability of no players drawing a matched pair, with the average hand-total being 4, but I don't think it's very good. I'll add a few more complex victory table entries that make it less likely that the game should break down.
Dice games it something I've been toying with.

Kamai
2014-01-29, 05:40 PM
Ok, with the cards in-game not matching what's going on out of game, it makes sense, and I retract that. The reason Luckthief breaks down is that all of your direct win rules are early, with the latest being at 5. At 5, however, you've had 1 opportunity to get points (Rule 4, on a flush). Are the added/removed rules supposed to fix that?

AugustNights
2014-01-29, 09:56 PM
Ah, it's not clear that rules remain in effect.
Rule 1 doesn't go away when Rule 2 is introduced, and rule 5 doesn't go away when rule 10 goes into effect.
So most most points wins, which really translates to "First person with points wins," until someone re-orders rule 5 to below most scoring rules.

ddude987
2014-01-30, 08:48 PM
This is so awesome! Favorited bookmarked etc... I wanted to include some gambling, or perhaps similar, in my dnd campaign in a certain town or two and these rules are awesome. I was worried some players at my table would not know how to play texs' holdem, not to mention texas doesn't exist in my campaign