PBBG Game - Energy or Time based?


Hey people,

So, I have a question, what do you prefer?

Energy based games - where the energy is slowly refilled over time.

Time based games - where you have to wait a certain amount of time before making an action (or wait some time after you made the action).

I see pros and cons for both of them… in this case we’re talking about a PBBG Mafia style game.
I prefer energy cause you see less timers everywhere.
But the timers are more precise and give you an exact time when you can come back and do another action.

What do you think? What type of game would you prefer playing :smiley: ?


I prefer time based games; I tend to get impatient when I have to wait for energy to refill. I’d rather be able to play on a schedule, knowing ahead of time about a consistent delay I can plan against.


I prefer energy as well or as I call it in the space strategy game i’m developing: turns.

I simply give players 220 turns every 10 minutes. Which means they get 31680 turns per day but the Maximum turns they can have is 35000 (this is so that if they plan a big action like battles they wanna save up some extra turns to be able to have a slight planning advantage, while at the same time forces them to play everyday and is more fair than having someone be offline for a month and then have millions of turns to spend).

The biggest advantage I see with turns/energy system that refills over time is that Players don’t have to wake up at 4 am like in Travian just so they can start building another building when their previous one finishes. But instead they can log in once or just couple times per day and spend the turns they accumulated.

Of course this probably works different across different genres but personally I hate timers. Let me spend my turns in one go and then leave me to plan what my next action in the game will be and talk to other players about what we’re going to be doing next (if you’re like in a faction).

EDIT: To reply to FoohonPie: you can simply plan when you’ll have enough energy regenerated to do something you plan to do and get online then.

Hi btw! my first post on this forum :smiley:


Welcome! Feel free to post in #general:introduce-yourself if you’d like. :slight_smile: I’m interested in hearing more about your game.

I definitely see the value in the system you describe. Over on Imperial Conflict we have players expressing a very similar dissatisfaction with having to wake up at odd hours or otherwise constantly be on. They’re proposing a solution that is kind of a hybrid model between energy/time, in that it is still time based but with very long turns combined with very short build times:

I’m pretty intrigued by this, might be the best of both worlds. :thinking:


Care to explain more about these ticks being 4 hours long? Oh so like every timer would be minimum 4 hours long at least?

When I explain to players what turns are I basically tell them they are like time. For most of everything you do in the game like moving around shooting mining you use certain amount of turns(time) and as in the real world you only get so much time per day.

Might as well call the energy/turns time xD but that would not be very roleplay-ish xD Plus I try to keep inline with an old browser game I played which is now dead: Chosen space


Yeah, the 4 hour thing would mean your resources, builds, and fleet travel only get updated once every 4 hours.

For us, actions themselves don’t take any energy or turns; you have unlimited actions but you run into an effective limit as you run out of resources or wait for your buildings to finish, fleets to move, etc.

A hour tick then would dramatically slow down our game, as you’d only be allowed 6 turns within a single day. However, that’s exactly what some players want: a game where they can only log on a few times a day but still be competitive. The faster build times would help counter-balance things so that the general pacing of the universe remains the same, it’s just the pacing of player action that changes.

It would definitely be a departure from what we know, but I’ve got to admit I might try it. I’m too busy atm to play my own game otherwise, so I’m curious to see how such a change would play out.