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  #61  
Old December 22nd, 2014, 08:03 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

Drats, can't give more rep to Foudzing...
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  #62  
Old December 27th, 2014, 01:44 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

Hmmm, time to poke @dok about updating the 2nd OP regarding Mayberry....


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  #63  
Old December 27th, 2014, 03:08 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

Done. Also, we're still waiting on a topdown before the clock starts on the Borogoves, FWIW.
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  #64  
Old December 27th, 2014, 03:16 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

I know. Sadly I can't make it myself -- have a new Mac, and am having trouble getting VirtualScape to work on it. Perhaps I'll beg awesomeunleashed again in a while.
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  #65  
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, 180į 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 ę hard but I will destroy this f***ing [insert OP figure name here], great challenge Ľ can become ę I don’t want to play this Ľ 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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  #66  
Old December 27th, 2014, 04:13 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

Cage Match by Dignan

When I first considered this map for judging, I was extremely skeptical. The Thorian glyph jumped out to me in particular. In the end, though, I was pleasantly surprised. I agree with most of what caps said in his nomination post. The map has a pretty interesting and often fun dynamic.

Thorian was clearly carefully chosen for this map. Without it, ranged squads would be extremely dominant due to the easily defended high ground each side gets. With it, thereís an interesting dynamic in games between range (or ranged normals, anyway) and melee, or range and range. Obviously Thorian is ignored in all-melee contests, but Astrid keeps the middle in play. When games on this map work well, they work very well - Iíve had a couple really good games on this one.

The biggest issue with the map is the two single-spaced dips in the road to level 2 - and, to a lesser extent, the two double-spaced dips on the other side. What these dips do is create a very clear ďyours and mineĒ quality to the sections of level 3 road in the ring. Because of the many blockers and obstacles on the map, it can be extremely difficult to outflank an army that hunkers down on its high area. (The single-spaced swamp water dip on the sides next to the glyph exacerbates this issue by making outflanking still more difficult.) This problem is much worse for double-spaced figures, who canít even use the road to engage an opponent on that key map position. Instead double spacers have to drop down to an extremely vulnerable level 0 spot, and will often be hit from height on 3 sides the next turn.

I had one particularly distressing game on this map where both me and my opponent played melee armies and we basically had a starting contest across the single-spaced gap until I made a run for it, attacking up around an initiative switch. Most games were not that bad, but overall I saw a pattern where, despite the desirable glyphs and the road ring that would seem to suggest ease of movement, the map would often clog up with one side attacking up at the choke point in the road.

And while I think Thorian makes a lot of sense on this map in many games, the difference between having a ranged special attack and not having one can be as critical on Cage Match as it is when playing against Deathreavers or Mezzodemons. Armies with a Major or Dragon or Kaemon can be at an enormous advantage on this map. Thatís not really an indictment of the map, per se, as much as itís an indictment of the Thorian glyph; itís a very matchup-dependent glyph in addition to being very powerful, which is a tough combo to work with.

In the end, when I think about judging a map like this, I think about its place in a tournament map pool. My biggest concern is how much this map alters matchups. At a few tournaments Iíve been to, including a few Gencons, there has been one map in the pool that had kind of a notorious reputation among the players for throwing games one way or the other. Having some maps be more melee friendly or range friendly, or unique friendly versus common friendly, is perfectly fine, but in the end this map just seems a bit too extreme in the way it alters things.

Itís possible that Iíd be willing to approve this map if it were either just the Thorian swing or just the dips in the road that I was worried about. But collectively, itís too many red flags for me. Itís a map that Iíll certainly keep in my back pocket for playing games where Iím not worried about those particular issues, but itís not a map I can give a wholehearted thumbs-up for general tournament use. No to induct.
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  #67  
Old December 31st, 2014, 11:11 AM
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Re: WARGROUNDS of SCAPE (WoS) - discussion thread





I've enjoyed my games on Mayberry. In no particular order, here are my thoughts on the map.

(1) Aesthetics. I like them. The monochrome palette of asphalt, concrete, and road is accented by the rich green of the RttFF trees, which I quite like. It's not as striking as, say, a lava-snow-shadow-dungeon map combo, but it sure is better than anything made with RotV, whose dominant browns I've always found to be ugly. Here the grass tiles are limited to the SoZ, a nice touch.

(2) Left-versus-right symmetry. The left and right sides look (and indeed are) quite similar to each other, which gives the map a rather static look. It's difficult, of course, to construct a map whose two sides look quite different yet which are still balanced (i.e., don't clearly give incentive to always go left over right or the reverse). But the best maps, I feel, do this. Mayberry suffers here. The effect is worsened by the central road, which runs perfectly straight from left to right across the center of the map; and the layout of the Warehouse ruins, which similarly are oriented orthogonally to the players, and parallel to the central road. The incorporation of some diagonal features would help lend a sense of visual dynamism and motion that Mayberry currently lacks.

(3) Glyphs. Mayberry plays best, I think, with glyphs which are relatively powerful but not exceedingly so. Weak ones such as Dagmar don't provide quite enough incentive to bother with the flanks, while strong ones such as Astrid and its ilk leave the center of the map a ghost town. Wannok and Valda, I think, are the sweet spot when it comes to glyphs, or even double Wannok. Our games using these combos have seen most of the map used, which is a strong point in its favor.

(4) Roads and game play. Kevindola is right to point out that those level-2 road spaces do act as 'speed-bumps', making the road less useful for units near the SZs trying to rush enemies encamped on the central hills. But I also understand why those humps in the road are there: to act as bridges between the central asphalt hill and the concrete hills on the sides, making it easier for units to move laterally between them. This is a tough design choice, and I can see arguments either way; but I think the map as it is works. What this design does is encourage units to move first along the roads on the edges out to the flanks, using the cover offered by the big trees to provide protection, if necessary, from ranged camped on the central hills. With the flanks (and glyphs) secured, more options open up for assaulting the middle.

(5) Q9/Raelin/Rats. As Foudzing noted, this Triumvirate of Cheese doesn't break the map. Q9 in particular will find his little robotic CPU mind cursing the layout of trees, as they effectively screen the side hills from the center (even if, as Kevindola noted, they don't do as much to help frontal assaults on the hills). And there are no particularly obvious Raelin perches. All good things.

I vote YES to induct mad_wookiee's Mayberry into the Wargrounds of Scape.

Last edited by Typhon2222; December 31st, 2014 at 07:05 PM.
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  #68  
Old January 1st, 2015, 01:46 AM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

A few shots of WYRMWALK by @Panopticon , built using a bit of my spray-painted terrain.

No better way to spend a New Year's Eve than by testing a great map.






Last edited by Typhon2222; February 13th, 2015 at 12:32 PM.
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  #69  
Old January 3rd, 2015, 09:07 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

In eights days (January 11), the review period will end for two maps nominated for WoS — mad_wookiee's Mayberry and tannergx's Remains of Clionesia — and the votes cast so far will determine whether they're to be inducted or not.

It looks as if Remains of Clionesia will likely be inducted, given how the votes have swung so far.

Will Mayberry make it? Things aren't decided yet! So far it has two yeas, out of three votes cast, yielding 67% approval. It needs 75% to make it in. Tense!


The timer on Panopticon's Wyrmwalk won't buzz until February 7, but so far it's doing very well, with 100% approval.
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  #70  
Old January 5th, 2015, 05:47 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

Remains of Cionesia by tannergx

Remains of Cionesia feels very intimidating when you first sit down to place figures. A wide startzone, glyphs set far apart, LoS blockers galore. I think even the most skilled player is challenged by this map.

The first thing that stands out is the Line of Sight blockers the map offers. Range should feel intimidated by this map, but it is not impossible... not by a long shot. The access to height near the start zone offers some time for Range to get setup and defend. The ultimate height is vulnerable to the road spaces for melee to have access too. While Melee I think fair better on this map, there is enough room for ranged units to operate that it is fairly balanced.

I like the wide starzones, it encourages you to use the whole board, and there are many access points to the "Remains" aka "Hill" in the middle. Battles on this map often feature many different angles of attack. Multiple lanes of battle. What plagues many maps is the the feeling of forced action. Keeping the glyphs to the edge while giving decent advantage to the middle allows for many options when devising a plan. Another Boon, is how quickly you can shift around the map and counter what your opponent is doing.

The ruins in the middle can make it difficult for armies to setup with supreme position. This effect usually keeps the battle fluid and ever changing.

The overall feeling of this map is "Challenge". How are you going to devise your plan of attack, how can you counter what your opponent is doing? Do you sacrifice the glyphs to hold the middle? I believe that Melee has an advantage to this map, but a small advantage. Pods can have the most difficult time due to needed to be bunched and LoS blockers. A welcome sight in tournament play. I vote YES to induct Remains of Cionesia

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  #71  
Old January 5th, 2015, 08:24 PM
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Re: WARGROUNDS of SCAPE (WoS) - discussion thread




And thus begins my review of Mayberry.

Initial Thoughts
Right away I liked this map. I like the terrain it uses, aesthetics, and footprint.

Glyphs
Glyphs are located in good spots and I really like the overall layout of the side areas.

Observations
This map features a lot of play on both of the side areas, but also ranged support can up in the middle high ground. In some games, ranged pods can be really tough to deal with as they take very few OM's to set up. The isolated 2 height spots near the start zone road are prime spots for snipers to set up.

Final Thoughts
While I really do like this map, the road valley running through the center of the map is too much for me. Decisions on this map are far too easy and most games become a bit too much of a dice-fest, with too few tactical options available. The perches right outside the start zones, while only 2-height, are still quite effective at waxing approaching figures and pretty easy to protect with even a minor meat-shield. I really expected to be voting yes on this one, but unfortunately it's going to be a 'No'to induct Mayberry.

Despite the 'no' vote, it is not a map I would necessarily be upset to see in future tournaments. It is a good map. As I said earlier, I like the map. Just not enough to induct.
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  #72  
Old January 5th, 2015, 09:26 PM
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Re: Wargrounds of Scape (WoS) - discussion thread

With 5 yes votes, Remains of Clionesia doesn't need to wait to find out what Bengi thinks.

Congratulations (and thank you!) to @tannergx for creating the first map inducted into the Wargrounds of Scape!
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