Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

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Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby DanTheTimid » Tue Jul 15, 2008 11:47 am

Aside from hearing tons of people complain about this card and seeing it in nearly every top deck I run into (and most that don't telling me they'd run them if they had them) I've personally witnessed its power first hand more then enough times that I think I have a good handle on the power of this card. My initial impressions so far have agreed with the complaining masses, this card is just a little too ridiculous. Now let me come out and say immediately, this card is beat able, I've beaten it many times in a number of different ways, but just because a card can be beaten doesn't mean its not too strong.

Here's a break down of the card when played as a soul card:

Killing Machine / LeBeau
LP: 1/1
Soul Skill: Increase one friendly unit's DF by [the number of cards in your Cemetery x 5.]

Cons
- Only 1 LP. Based on another thread the Japanese actually consider 1LP a Pro because it allows you to better control when the effect goes off. Most of the time I beg to differ and this is one of those cases, but its true being LP doesn't weaken the card much.
- It only works if you have at least 1 friendly unit. This is a flaw I've personally exploited, but exploiting it is often much easier said then done. To do it you've got to clear your opponents entire field and then iczer attack to forcibly activate the soul skill while there are no legal targets. That means you've got to be already dominating the game, in an even match this is almost impossible to exploit. Even then you've got to guess right on where the card(s) is(are), hit spots 3 and 4 but they got another copy in their fifth spot and you might still be just as screwed.
- Only is truly amazing if you've got alot of cards in your Cemetery. Well this means your probably not going to activate this card early in the game and maybe in the future if we get ways to remove cards in the cemetery from the game we will have another counter for this but currently this is an easily controllable con just by placing the Killing Machines in slots 3-5 of your soul cards.
- Useless against cards that ignore defense. Said cards are pretty limited in the first set and many are slow or one time uses that do small amounts of damage, if the effect is placed on anything of significant hp or featuring regenerative properties for many opponents they may as well immediately give up.

Pros
- Boost is permanent. One way or another your opponent has to deal with your boosted unit, its boost is not going away.
- Size of boost is at worst great, best ridiculous. Seriously, with only 1/3 of your card file gone (10 cards) its already a 50 defense boost, there aren't many cards in set 1 that can even scratch that. Get a little over half your deck (16) and you've got 80 defense, there are VERY few cards in the first set that get over that.
- Many of the starters have very limited options against it. If your running Refess for instance you have 1 card in your whole deck that ignores defense, light spearwoman, and her effect costs sp, hits a random target, has really low AGI, and only does 45 damage. If they find a way to keep killing her before she even gets a move (and rest assured they will target her) there's absolutely nothing you can do but hope to stall out and get a draw.
- This effect can single handedly win you the game. I kind of implied that a few times before but its true, if your opponent has no options to get rid of the boosted unit left, you could have been completely outplayed all game and proceed to make a come back thanks entirely to this effect.
- If you can get it on a re generator with any significant amount of sp even your opponent having ways to ignore defense a few times won't help them. The ideal example is zombie lord, 50 hp, every time he would be killed he loses 2 sp instead. Oh, and for 1 sp he can do 100 damage to a random enemy in range so he has the power to single handedly clear out your field while your coming to grips with the fact that you'll never be able to get past his defense enough times to take him down.

To me the big issue is that pretty much all of its con's can be easily avoided, yet its pro's include the ability to single handedly win the game for you. I don't think a single soul skill should have that much power atleast not with out some equally dangerous negative effect to compensate which this card simply does not have. Maybe my opinion of the card will change as more expansions are released and every clan starts having alot of easy to acquire ways of dealing with units regardless of defense but in this first set and especially given the cards we have access to, this effect currently seems too strong.

Thats my opinion, I'd appreciate to hear others opinions on it, and why you feel the way you do.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby Aether » Tue Jul 15, 2008 1:01 pm

There is one thread going on about this card in regards to Gowen facing it here.

There was one Refess card posted called Dispel that may help you out.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby Grain » Tue Jul 15, 2008 4:00 pm

I got my Dispel from the lottery, I only have one.

If my oponent is using double Lebeau soul skills, I have to hope they have more than two card on the field so I can activate both soul skills and play Dispel afterwards.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby reydien » Tue Jul 15, 2008 6:40 pm

Also a note, Dispel is currently bugged where it will set all the enemy units' DF to zero, this is going to be fixed soon. If your opponent splits the two LeBeau Soul Skills, you'd need 2 Dispels to get both, which is a noticeable hit to one's card file.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby Grain » Tue Jul 15, 2008 6:53 pm

reydien wrote:Also a note, Dispel is currently bugged where it will set all the enemy units' DF to zero, this is going to be fixed soon. If your opponent splits the two LeBeau Soul Skills, you'd need 2 Dispels to get both, which is a noticeable hit to one's card file.


Thank goodness! I was worried.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby Cyanide » Tue Jul 15, 2008 7:29 pm

My master sorcerers disagree that it is too powerful, as does my return card.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby GunCastor » Tue Jul 15, 2008 9:24 pm

I have no problem with the Return Grimoire but I have to agree, this card's soul ability is way too good for the reasons listed above. There has been times when I was demonating the game but then this thing shows up and suddenly my opponent is invincible. I would accept it if they beat me strategically but one card does not denote a strategy.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby Grain » Tue Jul 15, 2008 9:49 pm

GunCastor wrote: I would accept it if they beat me strategically but one card does not denote a strategy.


Are you upset because you think it's not a strategy, or, are you upset because it's such a simple strategy, yet can out strategize your long thought out strategic plans that you spent hours strategizing?
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby Aether » Tue Jul 15, 2008 10:11 pm

Grain wrote:
GunCastor wrote: I would accept it if they beat me strategically but one card does not denote a strategy.


Are you upset because you think it's not a strategy, or, are you upset because it's such a simple strategy, yet can out strategize your long thought out strategic plans that you spent hours strategizing?

I think he is upset because using this one card to win the game is rather cheap, a simple strategy or not.
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Re: Is Killing Machine's SS too strong?

Postby DanTheTimid » Tue Jul 15, 2008 11:04 pm

This brings up an age old fallacy of balance I've seen used to justify poor balance in FAR too many card games. The logic is that as long as there are ways to beat a card, a card is not too strong. Heres an example:

There exists a card game which features 1,000 different cards. Among them there is a card X that any deck can use, free to play, whose effect is "if your opponent plays card Y negate it". There is also a card Y which is free to play and states "when you play this card, you win the game".

By the broken logic I referred to above card Y is balanced because after all, even though it could win you the game just for playing it, if your opponent has card X in hand it will be negated and any deck can run X so every deck has an answer to card Y.

I hope in these terms you can see the silliness of such a flawed justification. Sure card Y can be stopped, but in order to stop it every deck you ever make has to include card X. Even then their may be ways for your opponent to prevent you from using card X and since playing card Y is so easy he can focus all of the rest of his deck on just making sure X doesn't counter his Y.

While this example might be a little over the top it is very similar to this situation. Killing Machine's soul skill can and often does represent an automatic win effect. Sure there are a small handful of ways every clan has to get around it, but this card is so over the top good that your actually forced to run these cards (if you even have access to them) just to deal with it, dramatically limiting your options when creating your card file.

Just because there are cards that deal with Killing Machine, and there certainly are, it doesn't change the fact that the effect is excessively powerful compared to most other soul skills with out any true drawback to compensate. It doesn't change the fact that your literally forced to build ever deck with beating Killing Machine in mind or find yourself losing to a single card. The soul skill is, in my personal opinion, not good for the long term health of this game.
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