Ninja All-Stars: League Play
Growing up playing games many of our favorites had rules for allowing you to build a team or a character and play with them through multiple sessions. At the end of each session your team or character would earn rewards, or suffer drawbacks, based on how well they had performed during the session. These changes would make your characters different over time with each one changing and growing from game to game opening up new combinations and tactics. This kept me engaged in those games as they told a type of story and built deeper and more complex strategies into the game over time.
We agreed that this type of gameplay should be a big part of Ninja All-Stars.
Ninja All-Stars includes four prebuilt shrine teams, each with their own unique rules. Shrine teams are great for one off games. Choose a team, play a game, determine who wins and then put the game away. However, the game really shines when you play it over many games with your team changing and growing as a league is played.
One of the players in the league must be picked as the Ninja Master. Ideally this should be the most experienced or organized player in the group. The master has the responsibility of making sure that the league runs smoothly and organizing any tournaments or playoffs that are necessary. The master may also keep track of how well each team is doing, and can even write a league newsletter featuring challenge reports, league tables, facts, stats, and anything else they can think of to enhance the experience.
A league is made up of a group of players, each with their own team of ninjas. These players play games against each other over the time period that the league will run. Each player must build a team to use in the league. Each team is written down on a scroll to keep track of the ninjas on the team and track their experience. See our article on Building a Team.
After each game in a league is played, players total the experience each of their ninja earned in the game. Once a ninja has earned enough experience they can earn rolls on the advancement table. The advancement table allows players to increase their attributes and gain new abilities!
Depending on the result of the match, each team earns koban, which they can use to recruit new ninjas!
As the team grows, its rating is changed to reflect their new level of skill and expertise. Team’s ratings are used to compare two teams when they play a game. If one team has a much higher rating than the other then the underdog will get some advantages that should help even the playing field for them. Making the game more interesting and fun for both players.
One of the big differences between Ninja All-Stars and many of the other games that have rules for ongoing play, is that ninjas in Ninja All-Stars cannot be killed or lost from your team. This is in line with the fun, fast, and light hearted tone of Ninja All-Stars. See our article on Building a Team.