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Head...Spinning....

 
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willpell
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 5:35 am GMT    Post subject: Head...Spinning.... Reply with quote

I just tonight played my first non-solitaire game of DD since I quit back in the first days of the SFR buyout. I had assumed that I'd remember the game poorly enough that I could integrate into the changed rules without too much trouble, but that proved not to be the case. The changes are just crazy!

Here are some examples of the things that are baffling me; I'm not really looking for advice, just sort of ranting, although if other folks would like to share stories of their own, mnemonic tricks, or whatever, feel free.

Feralization - What? Why can Feral promote now? The whole point of this ability is that new Feral babies are being born; where does promotion (which involves the "death" of a previous unit" come in? This seems really silly to me.

Death Doubling - So now, instead of burying some dead, you just need some dead to exist? WTF? Admittedly, burying is fairly potent - my newbie opponent felt she had lost the game mostly because I was Ash-to-Ashing her casualties - but still, this feels weird, getting to use the same batch of corpses to work your death mojo again and again. It also means that death magic is practically never un-doubleable, since it's rare that neither player will have at least a few casualties. By comparison, terrain magic is usually doubleable at home, but you can get in trouble if you're stuck at an enemy home or frontier.

Spell Lists Scrambled - I'm sad that Animate Dead was changed to allow the reanimation of non-common units; the restriction that Goblins, Undead and Swamp Stalkers could never raise high-end units made for an interesting twist in the otherwise-straightforward choices of army assembly. Did you build your army out of all-commons to guarantee they could always revive, or use nothing but rares so you could shrug off small damage amounts? Granted, the Undead stepped damage power kind of pulled in the opposite direction, wanting you to kill your large units since they would be replaced with small units - but it still just meant you'd fight that much harder to capture a City terrain. Now that Reanimate Dead is exactly the same as Breath and Spark of Lives, throw in the Treefolk's Leaving spell, and every army in the game can raise its casualties without restriction; you might as well just make them all a single colorless spell if you're going to be that way about it.

Mutate No More - Okay, you didn't entirely remove mutation, and I can't say as I blame you for reducing its potency; the combination of exceeding your opponent's health size AND getting to kill his units from as soon as the game's second turn was admittedly a triple threat (because you know, 1+1 is...er, um, 1x1...ehhh...oh shut up). Even so, I bought Swamp Stalkers Vs. Amazons for my first SFR starter specifically because, in addition to never having enough Amazons due to the crappy M&A pack, I figured I could use extra Stalkers for my mutation pools, which it turns out no longer exist, so they're just like any other race and I have a slightly disproportionate number of them (there are worse problems to have, them being my overall favorite single race, but still). I like the idea of mutation, and would like to perhaps see a future product revisit the idea, perhaps as two separate powers (one race might get to bring a "promotion pool" or something equivalent to Feralization, while another might get to attack opponent's reserve armies with something resembling the original Mutation, but with no new units brought in this way).

Dragonkin Can't Breathe - WHAT? Why do they all have identical breaths now? I hate how generic the game is in several places already (notably magic items, which unless they produce magic have no decent reason for being colored); similarly, the color of dragonkin is all but arbitrary, except for their different colored breaths. Which no longer exist! WTF?

Man, you take one tiny little seven-year vacation, and everything just gets WEIRD....
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chuckpint
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 06, 2008 7:18 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just up front, every change made to the game when we rewrote the rules was done with one major thought in mind: game balance. Which means that we wanted the game to be more than just Goblins and Swamp Stalkers common armies composed of cavalry and mages, with a few Speed Slippers thrown in. I do not exaggerate. A variation of that army was the top 3 or 4 armies every year for 4 years straight in the World Championships at GenCon. So we wanted people to be able to bring any race, size, or types of dice, and have a fighting chance to win. I'm happy to say we have made that happen. For the last 3 years, I've been amazed at the different types of armies that have ended up in the World Championships.

Feralization: this was changed for one simple reason; to allow the racial ability to work if you brought an army that was not all commons.

Death Doubling: The single most imbalancing rule in the old game. Not only did you get to generate more magic to kill off your opponent, but you also got to bury your opponent's dice, which at the time meant they were out of the game. To make up for that, we also made two other changes. First, the Deadlands spell. Pretty cheap spell for what it does. Second, Undead which only cast black, can double from all the dead in the game. In multi-player games that can be a big boost.

Animate Dead was just another spell that made people want to bring all-common armies. We also had a goal of making sure you could bring any races. So we had to make sure every race had access to at least one resurrection spell. There was no reason to make it colorless, we did not want it to be doubled with gold for sure. Why? Because it's the most common terrain color. If we ever make the "missing" terrains, then we may have to think about that again.

Mutate: Allowing one race to bring in more health than other races was also too imbalancing. Number three on the list (Charge was number two if you are keeping score). So the promotional pool had to go.

Dragonkin: The old rules targeted units. We did away with most unit-targeting effects, and instead made them health-based. So now it's 3-health of units. Same for the Champion, only it's 4-health. As to why the secondary effects were taken away, I simply do not know. I was not involved in the rules changes when that change was made. Perhaps Cliff knows.
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First Place at the first ever Daemon Diceâ„¢ sealed starter tournament.
Battlefest tied for first GenCon 2012
Single Race Champion GenCon 2008-2009, Sealed Box Champion GenCon 2007,2009,
My collection is 21,500 Dragon Diceâ„¢, 20,000 Daemon Diceâ„¢, and others (too many to count).
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cliffwiggs
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2008 11:49 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

chuckpint wrote:
Perhaps Cliff knows.


Sadly I do not. That would've happened back when I was trying to poke holes in the rule and not guiding their balance.

I don't even remember playing those SAI's are unit targeting, if that gives you an idea. it would've been just before I moved from Intermediate to World level competition.
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Autpost
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2008 6:32 pm GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Dragonkin: The old rules targeted units. We did away with most unit-targeting effects, and instead made them health-based. So now it's 3-health of units. Same for the Champion, only it's 4-health.
To be sure: The DKC breath is still targeted (& affects 4 health) whereas the rare DK breath is not (& affects 3 health).

Arrow The DKC breath is more powerful than the breath of a real dragon.
Sure, the dragon affects one more health, but units may roll for saves (color-dependent) => defending army can choose shield-bearers or DKs which nearly always save. SBs will unbalance the breath-effects(?). Some colors have also an army penalty, but I would rather be able to choose a Troll or a Fireshadow (or a bodyguard) & no chance to save.

When I first read that kins have breaths with no color effects I was disappointed too. If someone can work in elemental effects it would be more interesting.
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willpell
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 17, 2008 10:17 pm GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

Autpost wrote:
When I first read that kins have breaths with no color effects I was disappointed too. If someone can work in elemental effects it would be more interesting.


I did it! See this thread:

http://www.sfr-inc.com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=2011&highlight=

It's not official yet, but Chuck said that it could become so, though he hasn't clarified what needs to happen.
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Designer of Hybrid Dragon Breaths, the Enchant Element spell, new colored Dragonkin Breaths, and various homebrew races and dragons. If you want to know where to find them...good luck, I don't remember anymore.
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chuckpint
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 5:33 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sure I have. It has to be consistent with the current rules. It would help if it was fairly simple. It also has to affect health-worth of units and not simply numbers of units.

Then I'll consider it.....

Shocked
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You can never have too many dice.
First Place at the first ever Daemon Diceâ„¢ sealed starter tournament.
Battlefest tied for first GenCon 2012
Single Race Champion GenCon 2008-2009, Sealed Box Champion GenCon 2007,2009,
My collection is 21,500 Dragon Diceâ„¢, 20,000 Daemon Diceâ„¢, and others (too many to count).
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cliffwiggs
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 8:41 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

chuckpint wrote:

Then I'll consider it.....


and his car needs washing and a nice dinner wouldn't hurt either.
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chuckpint
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 8:45 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually, someone to just come over and help me get all my dice organized would be real nice..... Embarassed Rolling Eyes Mr. Green
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You can never have too many dice.
First Place at the first ever Daemon Diceâ„¢ sealed starter tournament.
Battlefest tied for first GenCon 2012
Single Race Champion GenCon 2008-2009, Sealed Box Champion GenCon 2007,2009,
My collection is 21,500 Dragon Diceâ„¢, 20,000 Daemon Diceâ„¢, and others (too many to count).
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cliffwiggs
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 8:49 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

chuckpint wrote:
Actually, someone to just come over and help me get all my dice organized would be real nice..... Embarassed Rolling Eyes Mr. Green


I'm sure its a bit cold out around you right now.... I went outside w/o a jacket on and it was fairly nice... wierd weather for late december.

my dice are all so nice and organized that I never get them out to play cause I'd disrupt the patterns.
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piMaster
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 9:53 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

chuckpint wrote:
Actually, someone to just come over and help me get all my dice organized would be real nice..... Embarassed Rolling Eyes Mr. Green

Gee, I'd help, but you might find a few missing.... Laughing
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cliffwiggs
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 10:07 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

piMaster wrote:

Gee, I'd help, but you might find a few missing.... Laughing


Speaking of that... I bet I know where a complete set (including two TSR fairies) is sitting in a dusty back room that hasn't been touched in almost three years...

good thing we are honest cause they would never even know it was gone...
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willpell
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 19, 2008 12:03 am GMT    Post subject: Reply with quote

chuckpint wrote:
Actually, someone to just come over and help me get all my dice organized would be real nice..... Embarassed Rolling Eyes Mr. Green


Okay, lemme just throw on my coat and walk the roughly 500 miles between our two locations, I'll get right on that. Razz

PS - WHY such a mad-on for unit-targeting effects? You've never messed with Lightning Strike; I'd think having some effects that devastate commons and others that devastate rares or monsters would mean greater variety.
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