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  #4909  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 01:34 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Complex? It's crag of steel for attack.

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  #4910  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 01:43 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Which is a lot of rigamarole for what is basically going to be "+2 Attack and Move, -2 Defense if there's an order marker on this card" most of the time. But personally I think Seige and Evar's "X" powers are the dumbest things ever put into the game, so I might be a little bias. Which is why I'm voting even though the card doesn't appeal to me at all, it's not supposed to be something I like personally.


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  #4911  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 01:54 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundwarp SG-1 View Post
Which is a lot of rigamarole for what is basically going to be "+2 Attack and Move, -2 Defense if there's an order marker on this card" most of the time. But personally I think Seige and Evar's "X" powers are the dumbest things ever put into the game, so I might be a little bias. Which is why I'm voting even though the card doesn't appeal to me at all, it's not supposed to be something I like personally.
Oh, come on! There are way worse things than Evar's X order marker power. Like his spray tan, for example. That is significantly more dumb.
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  #4912  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 02:55 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Evar's "X" power is pretty dumb since you'll basically use it every time with no drawbacks, but I'll argue for Siege's version since I could see you opting for the increased Move/Attack value some of the time.

~TAF, who thinks Siege is definitely one of the cooler D&D heroes
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  #4913  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 10:36 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I don't personally love "X" powers but I acknowledge that they do have function and carry a cost. First, when the power involves a defensive bonus or penalty, when you turn it on becomes important. Using Rampage OM 1 with the X becomes a lot more dangerous than using other units and turning him on OM 3. Siege's dynamic can be reversed with crag of steel.

Second, just because the X order marker doesn't give a turn does not mean that it is without cost to use it. On one level units like this obviously don't play well with other units that use the X order marker or just other units that want any order marker on them (i.e. Mogrimm). More subtly all of these units remove the bluffing aspect of the X order marker. The opponent has more complete information on what units will be activated and can use that to their advantage. It then serves as a balancing downside for powers that would be identical if they were always on.
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  #4914  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 12:05 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheAverageFan View Post
Evar's "X" power is pretty dumb since you'll basically use it every time with no drawbacks, but I'll argue for Siege's version since I could see you opting for the increased Move/Attack value some of the time.

~TAF, who thinks Siege is definitely one of the cooler D&D heroes
Evar's X power can seem dumb, but similar to Haduc, you can exploit a switch in initiative to attack him when he is relatively unprotected, especially if Evar had 3-4 wounds on him and was packing a 7 defense normally, by keeping it an X power, you give him an exploitable weakness.

Seige's power makes total sense, if you need a lockdown unit, you can make him nearly indestructible, but you lose movement and offense, making it perfectly reasonable to not have it always on.

I actually like Rampage quite a bit (although I think he's a bit on the cheap side IMO) 4 attack is plenty to get through most squads without having to sacrifice your pretty solid defense (when you add Warforged Resolve) but if you come across a particularly nasty group of enemies (Minions of Utgar for example) he still has the life to hold out a couple of attacks, while shredding them with a massive double attack. Now if only the Warforged had some synergy.
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  #4915  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 12:09 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I think I see Soundwarps point, as to it is always better to have him "Rage". Trading 2 Def for 2 attack and 2 move is a win-win all day.

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  #4916  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 02:31 PM
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I think when I was initially discussing it with W099 I mentioned a wounding mechanic for using Rage. However, this is not a workshop thread but it's not like the Rage mechanic isn't unsalvageable.

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  #4917  
Old July 2nd, 2015, 05:10 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
I think I see Soundwarps point, as to it is always better to have him "Rage". Trading 2 Def for 2 attack and 2 move is a win-win all day.
Idunno... 2 Defense + Warforged Resolve has always been fairly durable (I believe its defensive potential is near-equivalent to 5 dice), so that plus 7 Life makes him pretty tanky when Rage is inactive.

Of course, it is hard to pass up 6 Attack + Probable Double Attack.

~TAF, done with theoretics for the sake of the thread.
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  #4918  
Old July 6th, 2015, 05:29 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Hmm. Tentative to Rampage.
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  #4919  
Old July 6th, 2015, 05:33 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Rampage has received 4 Yea votes to review (Scytale, capsocrates, Soundwarp SG-1, and Son of Arathorn) and moves forward in the process.
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  #4920  
Old July 14th, 2015, 12:02 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Viceron the Dark Knight by Ixe

Balance
When it comes to reviewing units in the Soldiers of Valhalla format, Balance and Playability can become muddled and mixed- as superfrog puts it in his own review of Viceron,
Quote:
Originally Posted by superfrog
playability makes sure that a unit is engaging to play and powerful enough for its point cost. Balance ensures that a unit doesnít do the same job as another unit for a cheaper cost, or is strictly better than another unit for the same or similar cost.
With that description of the Balance section in mind, letís have a look at Viceron the Dark Knight. There isnít a whole lot one can compare Viceron to- Eltahale can work for a comparison point, but itís far from perfect, in my opinion, and leads to more quibbling than a true comparison. He seems to contain elements of units like Cyprien Esenwein (Life Drain vs. Sanguine Sword) and Jotun (Bloodstorm Ritual vs. Wild Swing), but neither of these gives us a good idea of where a unit of his caliber should stand in comparison to other units. Suffice to say that he doesnít step on anyoneís toes, because he brings a new set of tools to the table, without much in the way of synergy (preventing him from usurping a bonding option say, in the way that Sir Gilbert usurps Finn the Viking Champion.

When I first considered Viceronís Balance in comparison to other units, his low Life of 4 coupled with a self-wounding power worried me a lot. I doubt that heís worth his point total of 150, since at best he can heal a single wound per turn (unlike, say, Cyprien), and he needs to take a wound to clear an area of Squad figures that could gang up on him (unlike, say, Jotun).


Theme
Viceronís power names neatly tie him to an overarching theme of blood and magic, a well-worn fantasy trope that has gone unexplored in HeroScape (at least explicitly so- see the Esenwein clan for less-explicit examples). I love the power name Bloodstorm Ritual- there, I said it. Viceron receives my unabashed adoration in this regard.

Moving on, his status as a Merciless Knight works, though I would have liked to see him have a Relentless personality to bring him in line with Utgarís other evil Knights (Phantom Knights not withstanding). Fitting in with the Knights of Blackgaard and Sir Hawthorne would have been points in his favor, and frankly, he could use the slight synergy. But Viceron with a Relentless personality would be a different beast entirely (giving the KoB a new rat-clearing option and necessitating an entirely new panel of testing).

Like Scytale, I canít help thinking that the title of ďBlood KnightĒ versus ďDark KnightĒ would have fit him better. So his theme is good, but not excellent.



Creativity
On paper, the combination of a self-healing power with a self-wounding power seems like a good way to bring tension to gameplay while granting Viceron potency on the battlefield. Itís a good idea in theory- but Iíll touch on how that idea translates to gameplay later.

I have no complaints about his Creativity- I see the seeds of a good unit scattered through Viceron as a whole, but all the Creativity in the world doesnít account for much without a good showing inÖ



Playability
You typically want to bring Viceron out quickly in hopes of making a good dent in the early development of the game- positioning him on road or behind a line of sight blocker in the first or second round of the game is a good way to ensure heís within reach of any Squads your opponent is trying to marshal for the initial assault. Doing so ensures that you can call on him to charge in and set off Bloodstorm Ritual and so disrupt your opponent when the time is right. Itís a good feeling when heís able to get the jump on a clump of Squad figures and set off his special attack with a good showing of skulls- unfortunately, thatís a rare occurence.

On the battlefield, Viceronís powers fall flat for me- restricting Viceronís healing to a single normal attack per turn is frustrating when paired with his measly 4 Life. It really keeps the player from wanting to use Bloodstorm Ritual Special Attack, since even a single wound on Viceron puts him in great danger from enemy Squad figures, and so puts 150 points of your army only a couple good attack rolls (or poor defense rolls) away from death. This is where the comparison to Cyprien Esenwein shows Viceronís flaw- Viceron can only heal a single wound per turn with poor offensive output, whereas Cyprien can heal two at full offensive output. I could accept the tradeoff of less mobility for greater offensive output if that offensive output rewarded Viceron with a good chance of survival, but it doesnít. Even if he does get the chance to set off Bloodstorm Ritual, you have to hope you roll enough skulls to override the defense of the majority of Squad figures in reach, because if you donít, heíll get jumped instead of the other way around.

He fares better against squads with a weakness to Special Attacks (such as Deathreavers and Warriors of Ashra), or those that have poor defense dice (like Venoc Vipers or Ashigaru Yari), but the meta-game simply does not cater to Viceron. Tough melee squads like the Knights of Weston and Minions of Utgar are able to withstand the 2 skulls you can tend to rely on, and then move in to dish out enough attacks to reliably slip by his 5 attack dice, or throw enough attack dice in a few tries to break him.

Donít even think about taking Viceron up against ranged squads unless you have the delivery system of Brunak and Ornak in play- he'll be picked apart. Even then, Viceron wonít last forever, and such a delivery system is a huge investment of points [Ornak (100) + Brunak (110) + Viceron (150) = 360 points of risky business] that does not reliably pay off. The meanest ranged Squads can kite and pepper him with attacks until he whiffs, and from there, it's all over.



Summary
Too chancy and too weak against Squads to keep up with his contemporaries, Viceron the Dark Knight does not live up to his price of 150 points- the Theme and Creativity are there, but the power is lacking. Iíd love to see him back here with serious revision, but until that happens-

I vote to induct Viceron the Dark Knight into the Soldiers of Valhalla.
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