Return Units

User suggestions to improve the game

Return Units

Postby gadu » Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:45 am

One of my pet peeves are cards that create massive SP differences between players.

Dio, Mystere, & Sky Staff are the best return units because they can create massive SP differences between players on top of field advantage and they've been given the most incredibly extreme easy mode combo support which I feel were the worst thought out ideas ever to grace Alteil.

Expert Sorcerer & Mermaid Aquamancer have never been used as far as I can tell because they suck as units, their return skills cost more SP, and the designers seem to not give a damn about these common cards, so they neglect giving them any support like the rares got.

I think return units should be designed so

1. Their return skills never create more than 1 SP difference between players.

2. They do something useful on the field when the player doesn't have SP to return or just because it's stupid to have a useless unit sitting on the field when your facing down a bunch of deadly units.

I'm hesitant to suggest how cards should work, but here are some observations:

The people who made Aquamancer have no clue wtf they are doing in regards to game design. As long as Aquamancer has the possibility of returning friendly units, no one will ever touch her.

"But she won't return your friendly units if you don't play L4," you say.

Well, since when do L3 rushes have the incentive to put out a unit with stats like hers and then have 3 loose SP to use for skills? Same thing for Expert Sorcerer.

What if these units had good stats and maybe some skills that either benefit their tribe or can be used in some kind of Mid/Big blue build which will actually have some SP to spend? It's important that the units are not functionally useless so that the return skill on the unit isn't the sole reason for playing them; it would just be something extra the units could do given a good opportunity.

Then you won't have OP return that returns anything and everything every single turn, but a solid unit that provides support for a file and occasionaly can return some units to turn the tides of a battle.

Maybe... maybe... more rare cards like Dio or Mystere could be allowed to have their skills create a 2 SP difference between players. For example, if Dio returns:

L1: Dio player is on the losing end
L2: Both players even on SP
L3: Dio player 1 SP ahead
L4: Dio player is now 2 SP ahead, ouch!
L5: Dio player is now 3 SP ahead, so add condtion that opponent gets +1 SP.
L6: And so on...

The purpose of return should be about field control. It's shouldn't be about getting both field control and the equivalent of making the opponent eat up to 9 shades in one turn.

TLDR:

Buff return units, nerf their SP drain capability.

Personally, I think it could be fun if Expert Sorcerer's & Aquamancer's return skills worked like Withdraw Strategy, but with L3 and lower random target or a Cyclone-like skill.

Finally, don't waste any more time in undoing the ultimate cheese combos you created that prevent a player's units from acting and make them immediately get returned as soon as they're played. Shame on you as card designers for dumbing down control files so bad that you can face-roll the mouse to victory.
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Re: Return Units

Postby Icyman2 » Tue Jan 01, 2013 12:00 pm

Sky staff is so rare I have 6 copies. 3 of them seasonal even.
So many fuckups here I don't even want to spend the time to point them out.
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Re: Return Units

Postby Peralisc9001 » Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:43 pm

Not sure why aquamancer isn't used. It's also generating huge advantage. Perhaps because of Dio powercreep. Also mystere got more value with ex mystere oeste.

Aquamancer and sky staff were top return units when they came out.

Expert sorc was strong only back in early sets after tripple return you had the opportunity to BS some more. Perhaps it disappeared for good with the release of skystaff.


Once again I am reminded of how much more balanced and intellectually well conceived MTG is in anything regarding returns.
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Re: Return Units

Postby Scientiafide » Tue Jan 01, 2013 4:42 pm

I used to think these return units were a problem, but then I realized every file type has a way to deal with them except mid-refess. Mid-refess desperately needs more accessible means to deal with these units.
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Re: Return Units

Postby Peralisc9001 » Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:12 pm

Magic bolt and hero strike.

I think Dio is range dependant. Not sure about mystere, but that means sunbeam cage is another way to counter along with fortune.
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Re: Return Units

Postby Scientiafide » Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:20 pm

Grims are just a temporary fix against those types of units. The problem with using a grim with a temporary effect early on is that you're spending more sp than the opponent; that's exactly what the person playing the return unit wants. If you play a grim in such a situation you've already lost. Fortune is pretty much the only counter that works for MId-refess, but she's EX so she's not exactly readily available. There's no answer for Volfied though since he's not range dependent at all.
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Re: Return Units

Postby Romdeau » Wed Jan 02, 2013 10:50 pm

I've seen Dio as a toxic card as a long time and Mystere's interaction with Princess Emana is unhealthy as well. Add bule into this formula and you've got a problem. However, until the data reveals to Logress that they are problems, not sure if we can expect any changes.
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Re: Return Units

Postby gadu » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:44 am

Thanks for the update Rom.

I've fought Nereis grim count files several times. Like I mentioned in the op, it's interesting how she was given stats that don't suck and her sole function is not simply to return (since she can kill quite easily). Even though she has a 1 SP return anything engaged skill, I found fighting against her far less broke than Dio/Mystere files. Maybe it's because that file isn't built around the concept of winning via return lock or because she can't use the skill until around mid-game. I think she's a more balanced unit with a return skill compared to all the others.
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Re: Return Units

Postby Peralisc9001 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:14 am

Top RP is not good enough data?
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Re: Return Units

Postby Pikeru » Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:18 am

Romdeau wrote:I've seen Dio as a toxic card as a long time and Mystere's interaction with Princess Emana is unhealthy as well. Add bule into this formula and you've got a problem. However, until the data reveals to Logress that they are problems, not sure if we can expect any changes.

Shouldn't have to rely on data. Common sense should've prevailed a long time ago. If a card can directly remove a creature from the field with 3 lives that took 2 turns to play and was the only card that could be played that turn with 0 prediction due to the opponent seeing it preemptively, how can that be balanced? Triple-shotting a unit while simultaneously draining sp should be a high cost, high drawback effect and somehow these types of cards are allowed to run rampant and unrestrained. At this point, return and send-to-grave have been around so long, it seems to be more a matter of bias.
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