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Jorgen_CAB
15-04-2009, 13:14
After I have now played some battles, mostly in the range of 750-1500p I have come to a few conclusions. Be them right or wrong... but it would be interesting to talk about them.

Epic heroes seem to be about 25-50p too cheap in general. Or maybe it is shamans and captains that are too expensive. When you look around the different lists it is usually smarter to take cheap epic heroes (legendary formations). There are a lot of them under 100p and with 25% allies available it is so tempting to do so.

When we speak of spell casters, the evil side has many level 2 casters that also has additional skills and cost the same as a standard shaman. This seems strange and rather based on selling more expensive models than making the game balanced in my opinion.

Banners are way too expensive for the benefit they give you, believe me I have tried both approaches several times now. If you buy cheap epic heroes (legendary formations) you usually get an abundance of might points and can use them to alter the roll when it is really important.
I only find banners worth the investment on expensive cavalry and those formations that get special powers during their charge. Banners should have a specific cost based on what type of formation they are in.
When you throw in an army banner they become slightly more useful, but only on units that will be close to that model.
In my opinion a banner should cost between 20-35p depending on the unit. Or why not just have them cost the same as one company, that would be a nice average for them.
The same goes for drummer or horn blowers. They should cost around half of one company.

Then there are allot of legendary formations that are extremely cheap when you compare them to regular comparable units which makes them a no brainier. (once again a way to sell more expensive models)

All in all, Epic heroes and Legendary formations needs to be slightly more expensive to make regular units more useful.

I do not play in a gamy way, but it hurts whenever I pay for a banner that I know will just put me at a disadvantage because I like having them in my units.
Now, I simply put the banner in the second rank of my command companies and tell my opponents that any command models in the second rank are regular models, but then at least I can have the banners there looking cool.

I also don't like to take allot of allied heroes and legendary formations without a reason, so I don't... but I know those that like to win more than to have fun usually do and that is booooring!!!

So, are there anyone else that feels this is a problem for them, am I alone in this?

Also...

They said somewhere that each might point is worth around 25p... now try that rule on epic heroes and then also factor in their epic actions and special abilities and they become dirt cheap.

One good example is Gothmog, he has +1 fight, +1 resilience, +1 courage and +2 might points more than a captain, that would be about 115p if you go by the standard that each stat increase is worth 5p. As seem to be the average for units.
Then he also has the Overlord and Master of Battle skills, two extremely useful skills. On top of this he also has Epic Strike and Defense.
When you factor all of this in he should cast more then measly 110p

In my opinion a captain should cost say 30p and a shaman 75p, then they would be more useful.

rakath
15-04-2009, 13:56
Yeah, the point cost makes no sense.
Even comparing heroes themselves. Lurtz is 175pt and Dain is 200pt. For a meager 25pt you get a lot more useful abilities and better stats.

There's so many great, cheap Epic Heroes that you can choose over the standard Command Group, that you really don't need them ever. Especially with Allies - just pick and choose the best ones.

And Duel is another very unbalanced rule.
I've now heard from several sources about Duels, where a powerful character has butchered an enemy formation completely. No matter who charges who and where. Flank, rear, spirit grasp, they just don't matter if there's an unbalanced Duel coming.
If you got an inferior character, you're basically guaranteed a complete destruction, if you get into CC with a decent hero. No room for real tactics there - you're just screwed.

I've been thinking about ways to counter those über-duel-heroes.
Of course, by taking an overpowered hero yourself, and making sure they meet. And hope for the best.
Or trying to sap away the heros Might by spells he'd have to resist (sunder shields '6'). No more might - no more duels.
Possibly trying to avoid the überhero alltogether (very difficult with the fast movement phase in WotR). Feeding it formations without leaders of any kind. Pushing it backwards with bow fire.

I bet GW (or the community) is going to limit the amount of Epic Heroes / Legendary Formations allowed for tournaments. Then you'd have to take those stock heroes and banners.

Jorgen_CAB
15-04-2009, 14:48
Yes, it sometimes bothers me that having a captain in a unit can be very much against you because they are so bad in duels. I really think that the duel rules should not provide so much damage in the units.

One tactic that you can use is to have some small cavalry units at the back of your main battle line with a banner and an army banner. When you do you can call an heroic charge and charge such a unit (with the uber hero) in the flank.

You also need to remember that you take turn to use Might. If you have a captain in one large infantry unit and think you can win a fight by charging there are several thing that you can do.

If your opponent are confident in his duel ability to whack your captain there are a few tricks up your sleeve that you can use. Go second and make sure he will get into charge range of your main combat unit with a measly captain. First do as I told above, move a cavalry unit from the back of you lines into his flank and call a heroic charge (he might just don't realize what you are about to do) so you charge him first, now he is pinned, then you charge with the captain and call a heroic fight. Hopefully you win and thus he can't duel your hero anymore, the cavalry charge in again, the heroes formation stay out.
Thal is one way to deal with such a character, it will not work everytime, but it certainly will ruin your opponents day if he is bested by a mere captain and his two company support cavalry... ;-)

Mad Makz
15-04-2009, 15:42
The points value are obviously based around games of a large to very large scale. Shamans are overly priced because you can have multiples of them, whereas you can only have one of each epic hero in a force which means they appear to have been comparatively undercosted. However the break even point where this becomes of real benefit (especially once you take into consideration 25% allies) is probably in the region of or above 3000 points.

This leads to a few 'must have' or 'first pick' characters - this does not make the internal balance bad, just that those characters get picked first by most people unless they have some particular downside/aspect that's hard to figure directly into their points.

Banners equally are costed for scale. Smaller games are not going to last long enough for a banner in every unit to be very useful, they are expensive commodities best replaced by troops. But in larger games which will last more turns and will have more opportunity for characters to spend might Banners will become more valuable

I'm not sure what point break exactly forces will hit internal balance, but I would suspect it would a lot higher than most people would initially game at.

Jorgen_CAB
15-04-2009, 15:51
I think that you have point there, but I also think that you need to go even above 3000p for shamans to become useful entries in your list. And the size of your battlefield on that scale must be huge...

I hate to play on a field where armies can easily line up from one end to another with no apparent flanks. Most mobile armies would not fight under such conditions, neither would I if I was a general... :)
Anyway, I think that restricting the number of legendary formation and epic heroes to say 25% (as a house rule in friendly games) in total in armies of lower points (say 2000 and below) would make the armies more regular troops friendly as well if you don't have the room to play such large battles.

dtjunkie19
15-04-2009, 16:31
I wouldn't really call this game balance exactly. More like unit balance. Because every list in the game has some units that are over/undercosted for their effectiveness (epic heroes, legendary formations, command groups, etc). Yes banner bearers aren't worth it most of the time, which is a pity, however since every army has them, it is still balanced game wise.

As for duels being so deadly, yes it does suck if you take a force of mainly captains and few epic heroes. However since everyone can take equal amounts of epic heroes, and each list has some high fight or epic striking hero (and even if they don't, there are allies...remember the ability to ally is factored into game balance) So it does force you to take a decent amount of epic heroes (or Dragon knights! :D) which perhaps isn't the way it should be. Though I like it just because since heroes dont fight outside of duels, there should be one area where they shine and can turn the tide of a battle.

Now my idea is that if a formation contains a captain and epic hero, the epic hero can answer any challenges made against the captain if so chosen. That would prevent players from taking advantage of the duel rules as much. It would also mean they wouldnt have to completely change the duel chart or any other rules. And it makes sense, why would Aragorn stand around while the witch king challenges then repeatedly butchers some poor gondor captain and proceeds to hack his way through half of aragorn's formation?

Marauder
15-04-2009, 18:42
I wouldn't really call this game balance exactly. More like unit balance. Because every list in the game has some units that are over/undercosted for their effectiveness (epic heroes, legendary formations, command groups, etc). Yes banner bearers aren't worth it most of the time, which is a pity, however since every army has them, it is still balanced game wise.


Yes, I agree, this isn't really a discussion on game balance - as that commonly refers to balance between the respective armies.

I'm not so bothered by the cost of epic heroes. They cost quite a bit more than the formations they are in... I do think that the cost of the unit upgrades could be reviewed though. The shaman's especially seem quite overpriced - especially for Mordor where they have 10 epic heroes (8 wraiths, Mouth of Sauron and the epic orc shaman) that are all a better deal than the shamans. I'm not sure any of this is game breaking though, as its all optional.

Legendary units do have a drawback in that the number of companies you can field in each is typically lower than what you can bring in your regular common formations. Also, you still need common formations if you want to bring rare formations. I don't think the price for them is really much of a factor. Are you sure you are calculating their points correctly? Don't forget that you still have to pay the "per company" points for the first company.

fubukii
15-04-2009, 19:08
worried about duels? ALot of characters have epic strike, making them Fs10.

There are also spells to sap might, or reduce his fight skill/courage

Jorgen_CAB
15-04-2009, 19:33
Well, game balance was perhaps a bad choice of words...

Yes I count the legendary formations correctly. The indicated cost plus the cost for each company including the first one.

As an example take Haldirs Elves. They are regular Galadhrim Archers and the companies cost the same with the same values. For 95 points you get Haldir who has +1 Might and one special ability that is quite good in en elves archer unit. In addition to this you get a banner and a Hornblower and this is 5p cheaper than if you bought the same unit with a regular captain, banner and Hornblower.
This unit is a nobrainer in an elves army or in any Good army for that matter. I saw this when I looked at the elves because I wanted to include a company or two in my Gondor army for some variety, this is crazy... you are more or less forced to take this unit, you would be stupid not to... :confused:

I buy the argument about big battles where you only can have one of each, but battles need to get pretty big before you fill all the good slots with lots of Epic Heroes and Legendary formations, which you can take any number of by the way. I would like to see rules that says... 25% (or 30%) maximum points to spend on Epic heroes and Legendary formations (not including the costs of the companies), that would produce more balanced army lists in my opinion.

I also think that it would be nice to have banners and musicians as option even in small formations and small games, because I like to have them in the game. I don't want to cripple myself just because I like a themed army and like a certain look.
A banner could cost a different amount if the formations where 1-3 or 4-6 or 7-9 companies in a formation and different for different units. They certainly have a lower value in a cheaper company, just for those that don't play 5000+ size battles where almost every unit are max size anyway.

rakath
15-04-2009, 19:43
Yeah, and if one of those F10 heroes challenge your sad little Captain, it's bye-bye time for the whole formation.

That was pretty much the point here, I think. Duel can be way too overpowered.

Spells are a great way to hinder those überduelists, though. Resisting spells costs Might (and some spells you absolutely have to resist, even if it costs all of your might. Like 'Shatter Shields' when 6 is rolled.)

And there's lots of spells to stop units from moving (Transfix, Immobilise, Call Winds, Entangle) or otherwise ruin duelists' day (Black Breath, Black Dart, Pall of Night)
Seems that Spells of Darkness have the best counter-duel spells in game.

Marauder
15-04-2009, 21:53
As an example take Haldirs Elves. They are regular Galadhrim Archers and the companies cost the same with the same values. For 95 points you get Haldir who has +1 Might and one special ability that is quite good in en elves archer unit. In addition to this you get a banner and a Hornblower and this is 5p cheaper than if you bought the same unit with a regular captain, banner and Hornblower.
This unit is a nobrainer in an elves army or in any Good army for that matter. I saw this when I looked at the elves because I wanted to include a company or two in my Gondor army for some variety, this is crazy... you are more or less forced to take this unit, you would be stupid not to... :confused:


That is a good deal, if you were looking to buy a banner and hornblower for your shooting unit. I personally think buying those two upgrades for a shooty unit is a big waste of points. I'd rather just bring another company (same price). Haldir's might is quite nice, as is his ability, but having to bring the other upgrades is a waste.



I buy the argument about big battles where you only can have one of each, but battles need to get pretty big before you fill all the good slots with lots of Epic Heroes and Legendary formations, which you can take any number of by the way. I would like to see rules that says... 25% (or 30%) maximum points to spend on Epic heroes and Legendary formations (not including the costs of the companies), that would produce more balanced army lists in my opinion.

I also think that it would be nice to have banners and musicians as option even in small formations and small games, because I like to have them in the game. I don't want to cripple myself just because I like a themed army and like a certain look.
A banner could cost a different amount if the formations where 1-3 or 4-6 or 7-9 companies in a formation and different for different units. They certainly have a lower value in a cheaper company, just for those that don't play 5000+ size battles where almost every unit are max size anyway.

One of the nice things about this game is that composition is really light and easy. I wouldn't be a fan of putting a percent limit on legendary/epic purchases. I really don't see any overwhelming evidence that there is a problem with them. The only thing that people seem to be agreeing on is that the formation upgrades are too expensive and generally not worth it. If these were more appropriately priced I imagine your concerns on the legendary/epic choices would be lessened.

unheilig
15-04-2009, 22:26
well... we can just agree to not compose armies like jerkfaces, can't we?

Damien 1427
15-04-2009, 22:42
well... we can just agree to not compose armies like jerkfaces, can't we?

Indeed. If we could have gentlemen's agreements, we wouldn't need this. But I am tempted to go along with a 25% limit on Epics and Legendaries.

FuzzyOrb
15-04-2009, 23:01
Note that Warseer does not resemble the gaming community as a whole:D.
In fact, i think that i would have no problem with playing like 80% of warseer members, no matter how flawed the rules were. That is also true for most of my friends.
However, all of you know "that guy" from your FLGS that can turn it into a NSFLGS (not so friendly local game store) in mere seconds once they start doing "tricky moves" during midgame that are on thin ice rules-wise.
This is why i value these discussions.
Keep up the good work!:)

Sarah S
15-04-2009, 23:05
Indeed. If we could have gentlemen's agreements, we wouldn't need this. But I am tempted to go along with a 25% limit on Epics and Legendaries.

Why? What problems do they cause in the game?

Nu Fenix
15-04-2009, 23:35
If the designers wanted to restrict the amount we could spend on Epic Heroes and Legendary Formations, they would have made a rule for that.

If my opponent wants to buy 1 Common Formation, and then the rest of Epics and Legends, so be it. They will have a smaller army for me to deal with, and Legenads aren't always better then their Common or Rare version.

Reinholt
16-04-2009, 03:00
For my part, I'm not terribly worried for a few reasons:

1 - As several people before me have stated, everyone can do this. I would be very concerned if some armies had beastly heroes and others got screwed, and there were no ally rules; as it stands, I see no objection here that absolutely rails one army in particular.

2 - I concur the legendary formations and epic heroes are often very good buys, but not always. Likewise, it is somewhat contingent on you wanting upgrades in the unit (in fact, archers might be best taken with no upgrades at all in many cases, so for them, the legendary unit is vastly more expensive in the Haldir's case).

3 - Shamans / Stormcallers / etc are horrifyingly overpriced, I agree.

4 - Banners and unit upgrades are too expensive as well; they need to be indexed to the units better. Why are orc banners as expensive as banners for the knights of dol amroth?

5 - However, all of that is balance within lists, not external balance. I'd be for improving upon the army lists over time (this is the first edition), but there's not an army vs. army issue as it stands, because of both allies and the flexibility in building them.

I think this is good - if you want to play friendly games with few epic heroes, just agree to it beforehand with your friends. Keep in mind, especially with epic heroes, taking too many also makes your force tiny and vulnerable to simply being swamped. Sure, Aragorn can challenge an orc captain and rail him in a duel, but that's not going to save a unit he's in that just got charged by 14 companies of Orcs in three units from three sides... which is about equivalent to Aragorn's point cost.

takaetun
16-04-2009, 03:05
3 - Shamans / Stormcallers / etc are horrifyingly overpriced, I agree.


This I will object to, the rest I agree with.

For 100pts, you're basically getting a free spell a turn. I don't care about the might, I don't care about the courage, but I will gladly pay 100pts for a free Black Breath or Shatter Shields a turn. I believe that several low level casters scattered throughout a force vastly, vastly outweigh the potential benefits of a single Mastery level 5, or, god forbid, the Nine Abroad.

It does depend on the army list and, yes, in this case, Elven Stormcallers are overpriced, because most of the Wilderness spells are situational, which suggests that you have higher level casters who can move from situation to situation as needs demand. On the other hand, several Good casters, such as Elrond and Galdriel, aren't bad in a fight either, so it balances out quite nicely - as long as you're an elf.

arobe
16-04-2009, 07:15
For my part, I'm not terribly worried for a few reasons:

4 - Banners and unit upgrades are too expensive as well; they need to be indexed to the units better. Why are orc banners as expensive as banners for the knights of dol amroth?

.


I'd say the orcs will need the banners alot more in the game than the knights due to reroll panic tests.

I think the 35 points for banner is well priced in games terms consider then banner might be used twice during the game to reroll a charge and reroll a 1 for panic.

without the banner i'd have to use two points of might 50 points worth of might.

and you have a character without might to dispel or help in duels.

It's tricky to figure out the shamans/storm caller being priced as they are but I believe this would of been costed in design and play testing.

75 points would be too effective, 150 too much?

Just my thoughts

Damien 1427
16-04-2009, 07:49
Why? What problems do they cause in the game?

Oh, they don't. It's just personal preference. In things like this, I prefer to have plenty of core troops out and around before I pour money into the fancy things. Mostly because, as has been stated, epic heroes are rather expensive, and as has been shown time and time again, even the mightiest of heroes can be brought down by swarming them with cannon-fodder.

Reinholt
16-04-2009, 14:42
This I will object to, the rest I agree with.

For 100pts, you're basically getting a free spell a turn. I don't care about the might, I don't care about the courage, but I will gladly pay 100pts for a free Black Breath or Shatter Shields a turn. I believe that several low level casters scattered throughout a force vastly, vastly outweigh the potential benefits of a single Mastery level 5, or, god forbid, the Nine Abroad.

It does depend on the army list and, yes, in this case, Elven Stormcallers are overpriced, because most of the Wilderness spells are situational, which suggests that you have higher level casters who can move from situation to situation as needs demand. On the other hand, several Good casters, such as Elrond and Galdriel, aren't bad in a fight either, so it balances out quite nicely - as long as you're an elf.

I don't disagree about Mastery 5 or the 9 abroad, but...

Let's say I play Mordor. Rather than paying 100 points five times for shamans, I would be absolutely jacked up out of my mind insane not to pay 125 points four times and have Khamul, The Knight of Umbar, the Dark Marshal, and the Tainted (as a few quick examples with pretty vicious rules) running around in my force instead.

I'm not evaluating them in a vacuum, and that's the problem. Even for the elves, you have Cirdan who is better for less points than a Stormcaller!

Jorgen_CAB
16-04-2009, 15:03
I don't disagree about Mastery 5 or the 9 abroad, but...

Let's say I play Mordor. Rather than paying 100 points five times for shamans, I would be absolutely jacked up out of my mind insane not to pay 125 points four times and have Khamul, The Knight of Umbar, the Dark Marshal, and the Tainted (as a few quick examples with pretty vicious rules) running around in my force instead.

I'm not evaluating them in a vacuum, and that's the problem. Even for the elves, you have Cirdan who is better for less points than a Stormcaller!

In my opinion it is the Ringwraiths who are too cheap, I think they should cost 150p not 125p when you consider their powers in general. Then the Shaman might get picked once in a while. Kardush and the other level two caster could be 125 point, that would be relatively fair I say... and I actually play Mordor, so I believe that I'm not that biased at least.

malisteen
16-04-2009, 16:37
This is the first edition of a new game. I'm not surprised that some of the core rules (dueling) and several of the points costs are somewhat out of wack. Maybe some of the legendaries and epics should cost more. Not all of them, but certainly some of them. Maybe some of the individual unit upgrades should cost less, and should certainly be priced according to their units.

All in all, I think it's a decent game for a first run, and hopefully it does well enough to justify army books (to fix individual points costs) and a second edition (to fix more fundamental game rules, like dueling). In the mean time, I'd rather work by case-by-case "don't be a douche" agreements, rather then some hard and fast '25%' rule, which hits some armies far harder then others, and guts as many fun, fluffy options as it does cheesy ones.

Marauder
16-04-2009, 16:44
In my opinion it is the Ringwraiths who are too cheap, I think they should cost 150p not 125p when you consider their powers in general. Then the Shaman might get picked once in a while. Kardush and the other level two caster could be 125 point, that would be relatively fair I say... and I actually play Mordor, so I believe that I'm not that biased at least.

That's a fair assessment. Although I'd say that the witchking for 200pts is still about right.

I think possibly there are a few very good deals in the epic heroes. Hopefully overtime these will be updated. Check out Thranduil. He's quite the bargain for 125pts and definitely better than Arwen for the same cost (and she's still a deal for 125pts).