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  #37  
Old May 16th, 2019, 01:12 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

I'm sorry if this isn't the place for a non-pod member to chime in; if so please feel free to ignore this and I'll happily go back to observing

After following the discussion here, I thought I'd throw out an alternate idea for Brainjack that carries over some of the "digitize" theme while also opening up some unique gameplay considerations. I realize that this power may be too complicated or unusual for the purpose of this set, but figured it couldn't hurt to share and maybe provide inspiration for Jace's powerset. It would also be kind of a fun homage to Finn from the original master set. I also want to give credit to Ixe for helping me polish this power when I first created it for use on an evil viking spirit hero I made.


Brainjack

Instead of attacking, you may choose any Unique Hero within four clear sight spaces of Jace and place Jace on that figure's Army Card. Brainjack adds 1 to the normal attack number on that card. After taking a turn with Jace, or after revealing an order marker on Jace's card, if Jace is on an Army Card, you may take temporary control of that Hero and immediately take a turn with that Hero. At the end of that turn, control of the Hero reverts to its previous owner and roll the 20-sided die. All order markers that were on that Hero's Army Card will stay on the Army Card. If you roll a 1-10 place Jace adjacent to the brainjacked hero. If you roll an 11 or higher, you may instead choose for Jace to remain on that Army Card. If the brainjacked Hero is destroyed while Jace is on that figure's Army Card, you may place Jace onto any space that figure last occupied.
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  #38  
Old May 16th, 2019, 01:27 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

You are more than welcome to post here! But please, go vote on the Public Vote Thread for the next units to start designing! https://www.heroscapers.com/communit...ad.php?t=55805

Now, onto the suggestion! I like that idea. Although it might be too complex for the set, it is excellent!

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  #39  
Old May 16th, 2019, 01:28 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

....interesting. I like that a lot actually. Hmm. My first instinct is that it’s too complicated for a master set, but I wonder if it can’t be slimmed down a little bit.
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  #40  
Old May 16th, 2019, 04:10 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumpkin_King View Post
Very much disagree on a wound being the trigger for either of them. Itís a hill Iíll fight on but not die on. I think a wound on either one doesnít fit the theme right (to me) and putting s wound requirement on Brainjack just feels mechanically wonky on top of it. Iíd much prefer a somewhat-changed Enslave and Stimulant that triggers on something else: like I said earlier, a certain number of wounds on himself, etc.

What I COULD see now that I think about it is choosing to activate Stimulant and then rolling a d20/attack die somewhat like Stinger Drain, with a low but still high enough chance to wound yourself that itís woeth considering.
Having a boost trigger when he's close to death (or with a certain number of wounds on him) doesn't feel right to me, since that more evokes heroes making a last stand or berserkers overcome with rage. I could see an argument being made for him getting a boost when closer to full health, but I don't really like that idea too much.

I would see Stinger Drain as needlessly complicating the power here. It still teeters on the same theme, but just adds a D20 roll to make it not guaranteed, which I'm not a big fan of. I'd much rather see a new power in the vein of Overextend Attack that just guarantees a result for one wound.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Stupendous View Post
Brainjack

Instead of attacking, you may choose any Unique Hero within four clear sight spaces of Jace and place Jace on that figure's Army Card. Brainjack adds 1 to the normal attack number on that card. After taking a turn with Jace, or after revealing an order marker on Jace's card, if Jace is on an Army Card, you may take temporary control of that Hero and immediately take a turn with that Hero. At the end of that turn, control of the Hero reverts to its previous owner and roll the 20-sided die. All order markers that were on that Hero's Army Card will stay on the Army Card. If you roll a 1-10 place Jace adjacent to the brainjacked hero. If you roll an 11 or higher, you may instead choose for Jace to remain on that Army Card. If the brainjacked Hero is destroyed while Jace is on that figure's Army Card, you may place Jace onto any space that figure last occupied.
This is certainly an interesting concept. If we wanted to go this direction, I would suggest ditching everything else and making it the only power for the design, since it is quite complicated. Even if it's trimmed down by removing the die roll or the like at the end, I still think that adding extra powers on top of this would be making the unit too complex.

Personally, this power doesn't quite hit the Brainjack theme for me. It's an interesting method of mind control, but like All Your Pie said earlier of digitization, it kind of feels a little too sci-fi to have someone turn themself into data particles and enter someone else's brain. I'd prefer for him to be kept on the board and just hack into other brains like previous Brainjack suggestions as a result.
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  #41  
Old May 16th, 2019, 07:14 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

Yeah, now that I think about it, that version of Brainjack Is a little bit much for a master set. I really like it though, and I would love to see it used elsewhere, even if it’s just in someone’s personal customs.

Actually, my preferred version of a stinger drain ability would be that he always has the option to take the boost, but if he does, he rolls to see if he gets damaged.
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  #42  
Old May 16th, 2019, 07:51 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

I could see a version of the boost with only a chance to damage him as workable. The chance for that and the power of the boost can always be fiddled with.

Is that a concession you would be able to make in addition to making Brainjack (or maybe we should call it mindjack, for more universal theme? Life Drain is not Blood Drain after all) give you a chance to roll off of a wound? In my mind, the tactical interest of a risky attack boost is very much tied up with that. I haven't found any other versions of Brainjack compelling--requiring adjacency feels odd for hacking and cyberstuff, having it inflict a free wound would bump the roll up even higher, and Captain Stupendous's suggestion is intriguing but perhaps a bit too complicated (it reads like a C3G power, which is not a bad thing, but won't fit smoothly into a master set that might be someone's introduction to the game).

So, are we interested in workshopping a version of Neural Stimulant with a chance to wound and Brainjack requiring a wound to activate, or are there some things we need to work out here before moving in that direction?
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  #43  
Old May 16th, 2019, 08:42 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

Thanks for the kind words everyone regarding my version of Brainjack. I knew it would be riding the line in terms of complexity, but thought if it was the only power on the card the overall complexity might not be that much greater than a unit like the Hive or Sonlen. That being said, I really like the other options being discussed, especially Neural Hack and some form of Mindjack. I think that some form of Neural Stimulant boost is promising too, but for me at least just isn't suggested by the sculpt or theme as strongly.

In case anyone is interested in the original custom my version of Brainjack came from, you can find the original post here.
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  #44  
Old May 16th, 2019, 09:13 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

Quote:
Originally Posted by All Your Pie View Post
Is that a concession you would be able to make in addition to making Brainjack (or maybe we should call it mindjack, for more universal theme? Life Drain is not Blood Drain after all) give you a chance to roll off of a wound? In my mind, the tactical interest of a risky attack boost is very much tied up with that. I haven't found any other versions of Brainjack compelling--requiring adjacency feels odd for hacking and cyberstuff, having it inflict a free wound would bump the roll up even higher, and Captain Stupendous's suggestion is intriguing but perhaps a bit too complicated (it reads like a C3G power, which is not a bad thing, but won't fit smoothly into a master set that might be someone's introduction to the game).

So, are we interested in workshopping a version of Neural Stimulant with a chance to wound and Brainjack requiring a wound to activate, or are there some things we need to work out here before moving in that direction?
Yes, very willing to make that concession on Neural Stim. I'm not quite as sold on requiring a wound to activate Mindjack (I like that name better, works to invoke Mindshackle) but I'm also don't feel as strongly on that as I did with NS. Absolutely willing to workshop that direction.
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  #45  
Old May 16th, 2019, 09:47 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

The woundomancer gets my .

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  #46  
Old May 16th, 2019, 10:16 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

Alright, here's my attempt to put a draft together with some options for where we can tweak things.

Jydel (don't know where we came up with this but it seems fitting and memorable)
Vydar

Life 5(4? lower life could make the risk/reward of neural stimulant more delicate)
Move 5
Range 4(could be raised depending on how Neural Stimulant shakes out)
Attack 3
Defense 4(3? worth noting that 5 life 4 defense is actually pretty sturdy, assuming we end up with a mid-range hero with decent attack potential)
Points: ??? (Not really worth discussing until we have a clearer idea of where our numbers end up)

Left box stats--could be whatever, with the note that I prefer Neuromancer in the class and not the name.

Neural Stimulant (could be re-named to avoid drug mention as noted by Astroking)
When attacking with Jydel, you may add 3(2? 1?) to his attack value (and 2? to his range value). If you do, roll the 20-sided die. If you roll a 7? or lower, place a wound marker on this army card.
(Wild alternate to a D20 roll--If Jydel does not inflict a wound when using Neural Stimulant, place a wound marker on this card.)

(Alternatively, change the timing to "before moving" in order to incorporate a movement boost.)

Mindjack 13 (changed from Brainjack, either name could work)
After taking a turn with Jydel, if he inflicted one or more wounds on a Unique Hero with his normal attack this turn, you may roll the 20-sided die. If you roll a 13? or higher, take temporary control of the figure he attacked and immediately take a turn with them. After the turn, control of the figure returns to the player that controlled it before the Mindjack.

(Here, the main aspect to tweak is the required roll. Such tweaks are also fairly dependent on where Neural Stimulant ends up, so I recommend ironing that out first.)

For my part, I don't entirely agree that an attack of 6 at range is completely untenable, but the more forgiving Neural Stimulant is, the more dangerous a possibility it is (and the more it risks making the choice involved tactically pointless--3 dice is such a huge extra amount to throw at a hero that you would almost always take the risk, possibly even when Jydel is almost dead). A boost of +2 attack brings the total to a more reasonable 5--still more than any normal ranged attack in classicscape, but restricted by possible self-damage and an unimpressive range of 4 (boostable by Laglor, but for significant investment). A clean +2 attack boost is probably what I favor more.

Movement and range boosts were both also proposed. These are both interesting in that they adjust Jydel's threat range, meaning your opponent might have to gamble on whether or not you're willing to risk self-damage. I think it's agreed that the kind of boosts these would give would be along the lines of +1 move/range, +1 attack or +2 move/range, +1 attack. My main concern here is that on many turns in the game, the attack boost will be the only one that matters, while on other turns, the move/range boost will be the only way to get value out of Jydel at all. I worry that this may not encourage interesting decision-making, particularly with the offensive boost being relatively slight.

The thing I like about this core interaction is that boosting your chance to deal damage also boosts your chance to mindjack. Do you safely throw three dice for the longshot, or do you risk damage to take a much better--but still not guaranteed--chance? In my mind, anything that distances us from that core choice weakens the design. I may be off track, though, so I'm curious to hear what everyone thinks now that we've established a clear direction.
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  #47  
Old May 17th, 2019, 11:40 AM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

I agree that the interplay between boosting Attack to increase odds of triggering Mind Jack is good (I thought I liked the sound of Brainjack better, but Mind Jack [two words, even] ties it to Mind Shackle and Mind Exchange). Other things to consider include keeping the Attack boost of NS (maybe a renaming along the lines of "rewiring"?) low since MJ also requires a d20 roll, or alternatively removing the d20 from MJ and relying on a higher Attack boost to get the wound in the first place.

I kind of like 7 and 13 as they add up to 20, not that there's any scientific reason to do that. Not to mention playtesting will ultimately determine that anyway.

Another possibility might be giving him some kind of melee attack bonus and only triggering MJ on adjacent figures, but I'm not sure if the theme is there for a melee boost, though I think it might make more sense for MJ.

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  #48  
Old May 17th, 2019, 05:44 PM
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Re: [Pod 0] UNIT NAME (Jace, Investigator) - Design

I think that Brainjack sounds better than Mind Jack, but the latter does at least tie into Mind Exchange which it borrows heavily from. I could live with either as a name.

I could see Neural Stimulant being exclusive for melee, but Mind Jack would feel weird with a similar restriction in my opinion.

I still do not find the prospect of a D20 roll for Neural Stimulant to be appealing nor thematic. I've already talked about why a bit throughout the thread, but I think that it feels weaker mechanically, too. We already have a D20 roll for Mind Jack, so adding another D20 roll to boost the odds of getting to that D20 roll feels messy and overdone to me. There's an appealing simplicity to just deciding whether you want to take a wound to boost your chances or not, and I think that adding more chance to that does not make that feeling--which I saw to be the core of the design--stronger or more engaging.

Quote:
Originally Posted by All Your Pie
I think it's agreed that the kind of boosts these would give would be along the lines of +1 move/range, +1 attack or +2 move/range, +1 attack. My main concern here is that on many turns in the game, the attack boost will be the only one that matters, while on other turns, the move/range boost will be the only way to get value out of Jydel at all. I worry that this may not encourage interesting decision-making, particularly with the offensive boost being relatively slight.
This is a good point; in many instances, a move/range boost is just necessary to get any value out of him at all. I'd also prefer a straightforward attack boost in that case (perhaps +2, with a base attack of 3 as you suggested), although that is assuming that it is guaranteed to take the wound rather than having a chance of getting no penalty.

For alternative names for Neural Stimulant, here are a few quick suggestions:
Neural Enhancement
Neural Hack
Neural Cipher
Mental Break
Reprogram

Of course, any mix of these could work. Neural Stimulant is a relatively harmless name on its own, but when coupled with the mechanics I think that it might inspire too much drug imagery for something that Hasbro was originally publishing.

I'm coming around to the name Jydel. Unless anyone else has any other suggestions, I'd be fine with using that name going forward.
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