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  #2401  
Old September 10th, 2012, 10:57 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by Dad_Scaper View Post
But perhaps you like some of them regardless.
Of course, and I don't know if you paid attention, but I gave you my congratulations after the release of each custom which is good to me.

Sorry if I look scornful, this really isn't the objective.

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  #2402  
Old September 10th, 2012, 11:08 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Perhaps it was the language barrier. I am very mindful of the tremendous work and important responsibility of the volunteers and perhaps I was too harsh.

For myself, I really loved Tyrian, and some others outside the project did as well. But as with the official figures, there will be differences in taste. Luckily you do not have to buy packs.

I wonder if you have a different complaint, which would be that the SoV is not working fast enough to give you a satisfactory menu of units to choose from.

There I would agree with you, but I do not know what to suggest for them to be faster. It's just a slow process.

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  #2403  
Old September 10th, 2012, 11:36 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by Dad_Scaper View Post
I wonder if you have a different complaint, which would be that the SoV is not working fast enough to give you a satisfactory menu of units to choose from.

There I would agree with you, but I do not know what to suggest for them to be faster. It's just a slow process.
Well, I'm okay with the speed of SoV, and all the french community is okay with. No need to be faster. The menu is quite good too, ZI is great, Zombie Hulk is great, and with Priscus we can finally make another gladiators build.

I'm only complaining about some parts of the system: to me the judges must give advices and ideas, and must have the ability to change the cost a little more than just say Yes or No.
As they tested the custom a lots of times they should know what changes must be good for the custom.
I mean, for example here everyone thinks that Crug'Xrath will be better between 100 and 120 pts, so why not?

I know this will give a bit more work for the judge, but it could be great.

P.S: Personnally I don't like Thyrian for the simple reason that no one have it. Indeed, who on the world sacrified an expensive Protector of Ullar for him?
SoV/C3V figures have to be available and a protector of Ullar is far to be available. Moreover the card is not awesome.


Last edited by Foudzing; September 10th, 2012 at 11:51 AM.
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  #2404  
Old September 10th, 2012, 11:51 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

The only reason Tyrian was nominated was that the figure itself came from Thorum's Journal. Since he was established in canon but never had a figure, they decided that he should be accepted. If he wasn't already named, they probably wouldn't have accepted him.

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  #2405  
Old September 10th, 2012, 12:03 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Huh. I would never sacrifice a Protector. I just proxy, and I'd allow a proxy PoU at a tournament, too.

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  #2406  
Old September 10th, 2012, 12:15 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foudzing View Post
I'm only complaining about some parts of the system: to me the judges must give advices and ideas, and must have the ability to change the cost a little more than just say Yes or No.
As they tested the custom a lots of times they should know what changes must be good for the custom.
I mean, for example here everyone thinks that Crug'Xrath will be better between 100 and 120 pts, so why not?

I know this will give a bit more work for the judge, but it could be great.
Fwiw, if customs-submitters wanted to work with the judges on tweaking the card that way, I think it could be a good idea. C3V already gives the wording a once-over for editing and creates a new card, why couldn't the judges say "everything about this unit is great, but it should be a little cheaper/more-expensive, if you adjust the point value to X amount it will be a little more playable/fair and we will give it an in that form."

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  #2407  
Old September 10th, 2012, 12:38 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I'm not sure I even understand the idea of sacrificing a Protector. It's just a repaint, right? Repaints are and have always been 100% legal at Heroscape tournaments even if you don't actually bother repainting the figure.

I've seen people play Sam Brown many times, and played him myself once, and I've never actually seen anyone play a painted one. People just mark the figure somehow (sticker on the base, or rubber band around the figure) and that's that. I've also seen killercactus use two squads of EOVs as proxies for Venoc Vipers in the Gencon Main event. Again, nobody complained, or even thought to complain. The hitzones are the same, so what's the problem?

If you play Tyrian without PoU, then you can use a regular old green PoU with no confusion.

If you repaint Tyrian, and then decide you want play all your PoUs, you can play Tyrian as if he wasn't repainted. Again, no confusion.

If you want to play Tyrian and PoU in the same army without repainting a PoU, just mark the base or use a rubber band so that it's clear which one is Tyrian. Again, no confusion.
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  #2408  
Old September 10th, 2012, 12:43 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I understand Dok, but this doesn't solve the problem:
If you want to play Thyrian and you haven't got any PoU, then you've to buy at least one squad and there are very expensive and not that available especially for us in France.

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  #2409  
Old September 10th, 2012, 12:53 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Foudzing View Post
If you want to play Thyrian and you haven't got any PoU, then you've to buy at least one squad and there are very expensive and not that available especially for us in France.
OK, sure, that's true, but you said "sacrifice an expensive Protector", which is nonsensical in this context. If you had said, as you say here, that it's simply a matter of not having any Protectors to use for Tyrian, then I wouldn't have taken issue with your comments.

For what it's worth, I appreciate the feedback you've given here on Cxurg. I think it's a useful discussion to have. I don't think the judges were necessarily wrong to vote the way they did, but discussing the price of the figure in the context of 1v1 tournaments is an interesting and useful discussion to have.

Also, FWIW, there's been a couple comments here about the Mindflayer being a weak niche figure. While it's not a powerhouse by any stretch, I think Filthy the Clown has shown that it can be a fairly effective cleanup figure. He included it in one of his championship-winning 4x400 armies, and then made the finals of the lightweight event using it (and he wouldn't have won his game against me to make the finals without it).
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  #2410  
Old September 10th, 2012, 12:57 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by dok View Post
Also, FWIW, there's been a couple comments here about the Mindflayer being a weak niche figure. While it's not a powerhouse by any stretch, I think Filthy the Clown has shown that it can be a fairly effective cleanup figure. He included it in one of his championship-winning 4x400 armies, and then made the finals of the lightweight event using it (and he wouldn't have won his game against me to make the finals without it).
Enslave is nice, but I think the real strength of the Mind-Flayer comes in the ability of Psionic Blast to remove OMs. A hit (or two) from a Mind-Flayer early in the round can really mess with your opponent's plans.

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  #2411  
Old September 11th, 2012, 10:41 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Threforian Raptor by Fi_Skirata

Dinosaurs are awesome. Every kid knows that. And raptors have been one of the most awesome dinosaurs since the movie Jurassic Park. Dinosaurs have also had a long history in Heroscape, with Grimnak's "Chompy" eating up squaddies since the Rise of the Valkyrie master set. The Threforian Raptor brings a different twist, a dinosaur without an orc rider that fights for Aquilla.

Balance

Cavalry-class units such as the Templar Cavalry and the Grok Riders come at a premium price in Heroscape, a price many Scapers feel is unjustified (myself included). Still, they set the bar for fast, double-based common units. Templar Cavalry are 40 points apiece, Grok Riders are about 43, Deathstalkers are about 33, and Marrden Hounds are 30. Given those prices the Raptor's 35 point cost seems reasonable. However, all of these units have something the Threforian Raptor does not: multiple figure activations. All of these can move and attack with three figures per turn, making order markers on them far more efficient than on a Raptor. The Threforian does have the potential to move up a couple additional Raptors during the opponent's turn (even more when dealing with multi-turns like bonding or in multiplayer games), though that requires a Raptor to survive a normal attack and then roll a 9+ on a d20. The Templar and the Groks have easier-to-use and larger attack boosts as well (Galloping Charge and Mark of the Warlord), and the Marrden Hounds have great multi-attack potential with the Marro Plague. Threforian Raptors can work together to get an attack boost, but it requires multiple Raptors adjacent to a target, which is not all that easy since they only get one activation per turn.

Other common heroes provide a useful comparison point as well. The Swog Rider is a poor comparison because it exists mainly for its Arrow Grut boosts. The Dumutef Guard is the only other double-spaced common hero, who has a little less movement but is better in both attack (4) and defense (4), provides a boost to other units, and bonds, all for 10 points less. The Drow Chainfighter, another 25pter, is also 4/4, has some survivability with Hide in Darkness, and has the useful Chain Grab. The Sahuagin Raider has weaker stats (6/1/2/3) than the Threforian, but has potential for nasty attack. None of these are a particularly good comparison, though, as their powers do not require them to have multiple copies.

Somewhat better to compare with are the other pseudo-squads, the elementals and the wyrmlings. The elementals are similarly priced but are difficult to compare with their broad range of abilities. The wyrmlings are a pretty good comparison; similar cost and stats, a bit slower but they have flying to compensate. They also require multiples to get the most of them. The wymlings have a number of advantages over the Threforian Raptors, including flying, ranged special attacks (some of which hit multiple targets), and multiple turns per order marker.

Looking at all these comparisons, the Threforian Raptor provides relatively low value for 35pts. But how does it play? See below.

Theme


As I said before, dinosaurs are awesome. The powers are wonderfully thematic; Pack Assault and Call For Help fit the mental image I have of a pack of raptors. Hunter might have been a more fitting class, but Scout fits well and gives them access to Scout boosts.

The figure used looks nice. It doesn't fit on a small double base especially well, depending on where you place it (the natural place for the feet, the concave point, is almost too small for the feet to fit on). But it fits well enough. With good enough placement the tail does not cause serious space-blocking issues.

Creativity

I'm not a fan of using the same scuplt to create a squad; I definitely prefer this approach of making a the figure a common hero that synergizes with other copies of itself. Neither Pack Assault nor Call For Help are especially innovative, but I see that as a good thing. They don't push the language or the boundaries of the rules, have some familiarity, yet are used to create something new with lots of flavor.

Accessibility


The figure used is still in print.

Playability

Comparing a unit side-by-side with similar units and theoryscaping how it plays are all well and good, but the real question is how well it plays when the plastic hits the board. Unfortunately for the Threforian Raptor, not well.

The Raptor's powers, Pack Assault and Call For Help, demand that multiple copies be used to get the most out of the unit (at least three for Call For Help). It just begs for a horde build. Unfortunately, in large numbers the Raptors don't do much. What really holds them back is the single activation per order marker; a single movement and a single attack of three just doesn't cut it. Their speed is nice, especially combined with the Venoc Warlord, but they still need to get into melee, and once there, it's one mediocre attack against a single enemy figure.

Call For Help seems like it could be a real boost for the Raptors, but unfortunately it does not have the effectiveness one might expect. Even if all of your Raptors are in attack position, you are still limited to only attacking with one of them. Against any opponent with multiple attacks, especially ranged attacks, moving additional Raptors into position just gives your opponent more targets. Staying out of range seems wise given their speed, but Pack Assault is very difficult to get to work without taking the most advantage of Call For Help. Of course, this is all reliant on 1) the opponent does not have a special attack, 2) the Raptor survives the normal attack (not so easy with 3 defense), and 3) rolling a 9+ on the d20 -- unreliable at best.

Pack Assault is a nice boost, but not a great one; many melee units are able to get a fourth attack dice in various ways and still have multiple attacks. And again, it requires multiple Raptors being near the front lines where they are easily counterattacked. In my games Pack Assault did not happen often until my opponent was assaulting me near my starting zone. Brave Arrow can give the Threforians a boost, but he doesn't tend to survive long on the front lines. Khosumet isn't their savior either.

I never found a horde of Threforian Raptors to be successful against any army. Even against Templar Cavalry, which is a good matchup for the Threforians since they are not affected by Dismiss the Rabble or Righteous Smite, the number of activations made all the difference. The Raptors do sometimes perform better in all-hero environments depending on the opponent's army, but even then most heroes can handle the Threforians without much difficulty.

Threforian Raptors can also be used in quick strike or cleanup roles in smaller numbers. A single Raptor as filler is ok because of its speed, but is essentially powerless (literally speaking). Two or three of them together make a neat quick strike unit, especially in a Scout army, but again they underperform due to a low value per order marker. I think I would always prefer a wyrmling or a set of Venoc Vipers for 5pts more. Cleanup might be their best use, but again I can think of lots of other units that work better at their price point.

Summary

Threforian Raptors are simply ineffective. With their speed and bonus movements from Call For Help they are quick-strike units, but with only one attack of 3 (or 4, if things go well enough) they aren't able to do sufficient damage. With their somewhat low defense they do not live long once they get into combat, which keeps them from serving a defending or screening role. Unfortunately this is not an issue that can be addressed simply by lowering their cost; the problem is the value in an order marker on a Raptor is too low. I like the concept and theme, but the usefulness just isn't there.

I vote to induct the Threforian Raptor into the SoV.
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  #2412  
Old September 11th, 2012, 12:14 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

to review Polyphemus. I like the attempt at mitigating his 6A/6D combo in his powers, but it's not enough IMO at 150 points.

to review Gargoyles of Mitonsoul. I'm not against reusing old Sculpts (like when I vote for Tyrian), but it has to be the right circumstances. At the time the Protectors were more available, and many Scapers already had them since it was a more recent release. In this case though the Minions of Utgar are not all that easy to come by, and I'm not sure how I feel about the re-use of a common squad.

to review Jarek Guy. I like the mini, but I don't think he fits as a Mariedian.

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