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Old December 27th, 2014, 03:44 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

Cage Match by Dignan

Overall design : This, ladies and gentlemen, is what I love in maps, an original gameplay design backed by a strong aestetic (fortress invaded by swamp and Marro, love it). Almost all the parts of the map have major qualities, but also major downsides, which leads to a good amount of different strategies.

Balance & Playability
In some games, the maps turns out well, and is played the way it was made to be played. These games were a complete blast to play, action all over the map, never ending battle for the glyphs, 180 strategy turns because some glyph is taken by your opponent, some risky plays who turn out very good because it surprised etc…
But in some other games none of that happened because the glyphs were irrevelant and there were no reason for each player to leave the level 3 platform.
The first problem is that this level 3 platform is too easy to hold because if your opponent place his figures correctly, the only ways to attack him are :
1- The swamp of death
2- Two poor little hexs road where the opponent has height advantage on you
That is the main problem of the map, it’s too easy to block the level 3 platform access from your opponent. So melee is screwed because even with both thorian and Astrid, the army which stay on the platform will have the edge. It even leads to melee vs melee games where no one wants to attack (yeah go grab this Astrid and enjoy your +1 attack while I have +1 attak and +1 defense due to height), something which happen very rarely in Heroscape usually.
Note that this problem happen only when one army has little to no range, if both armies have a decent amount of ranged figures, then taking the 4 level hills on the sides is interesting, and it leads to cool games.
But there is another big problem on this map : Thorian doesn’t apply to special attacks. So the screen + special attackers armies will have the advantage in pretty much any machup, and all they do is to stay on the platform.
Melee have close to no chance, 100% guaranteed height disavantage and Astrid quite impossible to grab.
Against range as long as some screen figures, usually very good at grabbing glyphs, touch Thorian, then it’s very hard for the range, because all the choices are bad. Either you let them the glyph and you fight like you were a melee army (see upward, but in worse) or you try to contest the glyphs, throw your figures in the swamp of death, against excellent glyphs grabbers, waste all your attacks on the screen figures, and even if you claim Thorian back the special attacker can just destroy all your stuff down there.
If special attackers where all in the bottom of the rankings that would be good, but that’s far to be the case as the meta is dominated by special attackers with the tons of defensive powers we had since D&D.

Conclusion :
Cage match has a very interesting design and can offer the best game of your life. But it leads too often to boring or not interesting games and don’t have a good balance.
A machup which is usually hard but I will destroy this f***ing [insert OP figure name here], great challenge can become I don’t want to play this on Cage Match which is not good at all.
I vote NO to induct Cage Match in the WoS, but I’d love to see it reviewed, with an easier access to the platform for melee and a custom Thorian which also works on special attacks.

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