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  #5869  
Old October 1st, 2018, 11:56 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I'd word it something like... (And limit it to just one attack.)

Choose a figure or empty space within X spaces of MARS, no clear line of sight is needed. Any figures adjacent to the chosen figure or adjacent to the chosen empty space are affected by MISSILE BARRAGE SPECIAL ATTACK. Roll 3 attack dice once for all affected figures. MARS can be affected by his MISSILE BARRAGE SPECIAL ATTACK.

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  #5870  
Old October 1st, 2018, 12:30 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by Zetsubo View Post
The only other thematic improvement I could think of is being able to target hexes instead of figures. Since missle launchers aren't known to be very precise, it's easier to imagine M.A.R.S. aiming for a particular stretch of land rather than individual units. Having the ability read something like:
Quote:
Choose two spaces within six spaces of M.A.R.S. and within two spaces of each other. All figures occupying the chosen hexes or adjacent to the chosen hexes are affected by this SA.
I'm not sure if there is a precedent of targeting hexes for something like this so it could just be wishful hoping on my part
It's not really possible, because that's not how adjacency works in Heroscape. A unit can't be adjacent to a space because adjacency is only defined for figures. For good reason; if a figure is standing next to a castle wall, is it adjacent to the space on top of the wall?


After much consideration, I going to vote Nay to review M.A.R.S. There are certainly things I like about the unit; certainly the theme comes through strongly, and I'm happy to see a design for another unit of that set of figures. It's a tough call, but there are just too many things about the design that don't sit well with me.

I don't really agree with the power level questions people have brought up. If units were costed based on how well they could do in their best match-up, Sudema would cost at least as much as the most costly Unique Hero. There are lots of things that go into unit pricing, but primarily based on the unit's capabilities, not on specific opponents.

  1. I'm a bit uneasy about a sort of "blastiness creep." It seems like each iteration of explosion attacks ups the ante more than the previous. Does it really need to be bigger and flashier? That said, the double-explosion is a good fit for the mini.
  2. I'm not a fan of Raised Chassis. It feels like just quaintness for the sake of quaintness. It's a little too design-for-the-mini for my tastes, and it doesn't seem like it would make much of a difference, if any, in games. It's not like M.A.R.S. is trying to tie down units itself; rather very much the opposite. If a unit gets close enough to engage M.A.R.S., it's probably intentional. There is a little value in walking through it for better attack positioning, but that's not a big enough benefit to make it impactful for this design. In the end it feels like it doesn't add anything to the design, aside from a small amount of flavor that is not important to the overall theme of the unit.
  3. I can't help but see this as an improved Deathwalker 9000. VC has done a lot for the Deathwalkers, so yes, Utgar Soulborg syngery does matter. But as someone from back before then, when Deathwalkers were just Deathwalkers, I don't see why I would take Deathwalker 9000 over M.A.R.S. superfrog makes a point about the defense difference, but overall I'd say they are reasonably similar defensively, and double explosions is just twice as good (though the range is slightly less). If M.A.R.S. has a weak normal attack I'd feel differently, but that's just as good as DW9k's.

Last edited by Scytale; October 1st, 2018 at 04:13 PM.
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  #5871  
Old October 1st, 2018, 12:31 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by capsocrates View Post
I like MARS quite a bit. I was wary of the acronym at first but after reading the explanation I like it.
Is this a vote?
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  #5872  
Old October 1st, 2018, 01:19 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

It is now.

to review MARS.

Your custom probably has too much Defense.
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Last edited by capsocrates; October 1st, 2018 at 01:20 PM. Reason: I do hate the dots in the name. I'm never going to write it like that
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  #5873  
Old October 1st, 2018, 02:09 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaf_It View Post
Astroking112 has playtested M.A.R.S. more than anyone else, and it sounds like he has not found him to be as potent as you suspect him to be. How much weight does this hold? Deathwalker 8000 has the potential to destroy everything within range, just like Laglor, and while you're right, we should take it into consideration, I feel like you're over reacting. As we all know, Deathwalker 8000 isn't A+ tier, and he's a great example of how you can't look at the best possible situation in the game, and say with certainty that it is overpowered. I have heard of games where 8000 has wiped the board, and he could certainly do that in any game he is used in, but he just doesn't. The Zettian Deathwings are a surprisingly good comparison to M.A.R.S.. They have more versatility, mobility, attack power, and for less than half the price... If they aren't OP, what makes you so sure that M.A.R.S. will be?

Incidentally, the Airborne Elite can hit 28 different figures, they can hit the same figure up to 4 times, they don't require line of sight, and they are only 50 points. Of course that's an attack of 2, rather than 3, and they have to re-roll for each set of 7 potential targets, and they can only do it once per game... I've played games where the Airborne kill 16 figures on a round 1 turn 1 drop. M.A.R.S. is slow enough that getting to a startzone early enough for anything like this to happen (unless the map is bad, and very small) is going to be pretty low. Should we be aware of that low chance? Yes. Should that have significant impact on his price? Maybe a slight impact, but no more.

Or at least, this is how I'm seeing it. I'm not a judge though, so...
Airborne Elite cost 110, and there is MUCH more risk involved for their Special attack on the startzone of an opposing army. Getting the drop, Exposing the AE and then having to win Init. A One-Shot special where their max attack dice is 2(vs 3).

DW8000/Laglor - Sure could they wipe a board? The Odds of rolling enough attack dice or valkyrie dice are waaay waaay lower. DW8000 also carries that 1 life chance of dying quickly on any hit.

I think this figures potency is far above these two listed. Having the ability to choose two different figures and all their surrounding hexes with a six range(He can cover most competitive heroscape boards from being in the middle.).
Airborne Elite are actually a good comparison for M.A.R.S. They can get 4 explosion Special Attacks in one turn (granted, with only 2 attack, but they can potentially hit 36 figures assuming they hit all double-spaced figures surrounded by units), and from my experiences in HeroScape, it's generally better to be able to roll dice again. M.A.R.S. would be stronger if he could roll again after a whiff on one set of figures, which is one of the reasons why I worded Missile Barrage the way that I did.

The Airborne Elite also share M.A.R.S.' move and range, leaving them in very similar playstyles, but they sacrifice 1 attack for being able to make 4 in one turn. They also have a plethora of synergies and The Drop, which almost entirely negates their largest weakness, for 15 points cheaper than M.A.R.S. In most cases, I've found that M.A.R.S. wasn't the best use of 125 points, somewhat because of comparisons like this.

I think that M.A.R.S. also has many similarities with DW8k and Laglor. Yes, theoretically all three could wipe a board, but as you said with the latter two, it is very unlikely. I would say that he produces a slightly more consistent result than those two figures, but Laglor gets his more of his value from his range-boost and DW8k is hardly the pinnacle of balance.

In most competitive HeroScape boards, he still gains no benefit from being able to target behind him. I can see the concern for the potential threat-range there, but also keep in mind that he only has 4 move and no movement synergies or anything to help him. It will take several turns of pushing him forward to get him near the center of the board, during which time you are not positioning the entire rest of your army. If he can even make it to the middle of the board or to the high-ground before dying, then it's very likely near the end of the game and you made some severe sacrifices with the rest of your positioning.

Also on the theme of hitting two different targets, we've seen it countless times in video games and all sorts of animations before. HeroScape isn't really a physics simulation and has taken plenty of inspiration from game tropes and other things, so I don't see any kind of thematic problem with a missile launcher locking on to multiple targets before releasing a volley.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dad_Scaper View Post
He seems pretty sweet, compared to Major Q10. I'm surprised that testing has him at only 125, but it seems like I often come into this thread thinking units might be underpriced. What do I know.
Q10 gains 1 life and 1 move (partly offset by being a double-spaced figure) and has a more competitive Special Attack. I was going to point this out for Kaemon Awa as well, but I've found that two attacks of 4 is competitively much better than one attack of 3 that affects 2-4 figures. Where M.A.R.S. shines is against swarms, of course, when that 2-4 can sometimes climb over 5.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wriggz View Post
Which is is funny, as most sov units seem below the power curve. That said 125 might be too low but testing will tell us. the question is if 2 explosion attacks are a stone too far. I know sofar aura attacks of 2 spaces have been controled (Viceroy and brimstone) so classic scape do limit number of targets (statistics also limits 8000 and langor anz vipers)

I want to do more math before voting.
I definitely think he is on the higher end of an SoV submission (I'd rank him at a B+, personally, because he cannot consistently produce the results of Kaemon Awa, Q10, or the Airborne Elite).

Viceron the Blood Knight and Brimstone can both hit up to 18 figures, assuming they are completely swarmed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by superfrog View Post
To me, much of the cost of DW9K is tied up in his 9 defense. If you're going up against him with attacks of 2 and 3, you're going to have a bad time. You want a counterdraft (a "can opener") with multiple attacks of 4 or a single attack of 5.

MARS looks way easier to crack, with only 3L/5D. The offensive output potential is crazy high, but it's somewhat mitigated by only 4 move and 6 range on the special. But I do worry that he outclasses DW9K in some ways.
I agree with this sentiment. There are definitely similarities between him and Deathwalker 9000, but I wouldn't say that he completely outclasses him. In addition to the much higher defense, Deathwalker 9000 has 5 move instead of 4, which makes a significant difference in terms of positioning power and flexibility.

Since this is VC, all of the Deathwalkers also have synergy with the Zettian Infantry, because they generally underperformed in classic. Because M.A.R.S. is designed as a standalone unit, I think that he will naturally look a little bit stronger in comparison, but I've tried to avoid completely outclassing anything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by superfrog View Post
I think Heirloom is a decent comparison: He's got a smart explosion (R5/A3) and arguably better survivability (4L/2D/auto-shield), for only 90 points. You're paying 35 points for the extra explosion (and the extra range on the normal attack, I know).

When I play with or against explosions, I rarely see more than 3 figures attacked at once. This seems like it might lend itself to 4 or maybe 5 figures in one turn, but I don't think that's all too crazy given all the setup.

Also, I edited the submission post to include the full-resolution version of the card from the gallery. Hope that's okay.

(If you can't tell, I'm pretty torn here. Still thinking).
The only time that I see an explosion affect the full number of figures is when I run Zelrig and am able to bomb a starting zone on Order Marker 1. Your estimate lines up remarkably well with my tests: by making smart plays and surprising my opponent with M.A.R.S. activations, I could get 3-5 figures caught in the blast, but getting more than that is very unrealistic. Given his 4 move, setting up these blasts also takes significantly more time and effort than it might seem, making the few good rolls that he might get in a game feel earned.

And thanks for fixing the image! I must've been doing the links wrong, so I'll take a look at that and reverse-engineer the result.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scytale View Post
After much consideration, I going to vote Nay to review M.A.R.S. There are certainly things I like about the unit; certainly the theme comes through strongly, and I'm happy to see a design for another unit of that set of figures. It's a tough call, but there are just too many things about the design that don't sit well with me.

I don't really agree with the power level questions people have brought up. If units were costed based on how well they could do in their best match-up, Sudema would cost at least as much as the most costly Unique Hero. There are lots of things that go into unit pricing, but primarily based on the unit's capabilities, not on specific opponents.

  1. I'm a bit uneasy about a sort of "blastiness creep." It seems like each iteration of explosion attacks ups the ante more than the previous. Does it really need to be bigger and flashier? That said, the double-explosion is a good fit for the mini.
  2. I'm not a fan of Raised Chassis. It feels like just quaintness for the sake of quaintness. It's a little too design-for-the-mini for my tastes, and it doesn't seem like it would make much of a difference, if any, in games. It's not like M.A.R.S. is trying to tie down units itself; rather very much the opposite. If a unit gets close enough to engage M.A.R.S., it's probably intentional. There is a little value in walking through it for better attack positioning, but that's not a big enough benefit to make it impactful for this design. In the end it feels like it doesn't add anything to the design, aside from a small amount of flavor that is not important to the overall theme of the unit.
  3. I can't help but see this as an improved Deathwalker 9000. VC has done a lot for the Deathwalkers, so yes, Utgar Soulborg syngery does matter. But as someone from back before then, when Deathwalkers were just Deathwalkers, I don't see why I would take Deathwalker 9000 over M.A.R.S. superfrog makes a point about the defense difference, but overall I'd say they are reasonably similar defensively, and explosions is just twice as good (though the range is slightly less). If M.A.R.S. has a weak normal attack I'd feel differently, but that's just as good as DW9k's.
Thanks for giving me some more stuff to consider here. The double-explosion attack is definitely integral to the design, so I can't really change that, but you raise some good points about Raised Chassis. I saw it being more like A Coward's Reward, in that it has a minimal effect on gameplay but adds more theme to the figure, but you're right that even small figures will likely never take advantage of it.

I generally wouldn't take DW9k at all without VC, and M.A.R.S. is designed with VC in mind. I'm afraid to balance him solely with classic-only DW9k in mind, because that's using a C figure as a reference point. I of course want M.A.R.S. to be more usable than that, which is why I've aimed for B/B+ in designing him and been more realistic about what he can usually accomplish.
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  #5874  
Old October 1st, 2018, 02:19 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by Scytale View Post
If M.A.R.S. has a weak normal attack I'd feel differently, but that's just as good as DW9k's.
I feel like a weaker normal attack would both (1) make the unit more interesting and fun to play, and (2) add to the theme. After all, what's the thematic justification for a Range 8 attack of 4 dice, when his big rockets are presented as exploding attacks of 3? Does he have some other rocket that both does more damage and explodes less?

It is one of the bigger normal attacks in the game, and I don't see on the card why it is so, when the rockets themselves are presented by the Special Attack. Major Q10, by comparison, has an explanation right on the card for what's happening with his different attacks.

For myself, I would have suggested a normal attack of 2 with a range of 8, to hint at a smaller, more precise projectile, or (my preference) an attack of 5, with a range of 1, to demonstrate just how dangerous he is when he stomps on you with his long legs. If the latter, I would bump his life to 5 and see how he plays.

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Last edited by Dad_Scaper; October 1st, 2018 at 02:48 PM.
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  #5875  
Old October 1st, 2018, 02:20 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

AE can do their grenade drop 1 time, MARS can do it every turn. Really big difference there.

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  #5876  
Old October 1st, 2018, 02:23 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by Astroking112 View Post
I wouldn't take DW9k at all without VC, and M.A.R.S. is designed with VC in mind. I'm afraid to balance him solely with classic-only DW9k in mind, because that's using a C figure as a reference point. I of course want M.A.R.S. to be more usable than that, which is why I've aimed for B/B+ in designing him and been more realistic about what he can usually accomplish.
That's fair, and I'm probably being unfair. If the Zettian Infantry didn't exist, I'd hardvote M.A.R.S. down because it's just plain better than DW9k. VC units do shift that balance, so I'm can't make that same call, but is it true that the two of the overlap to a large extent.
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  #5877  
Old October 1st, 2018, 02:30 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

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Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
Airborne Elite cost 110, and there is MUCH more risk involved for their Special attack on the startzone of an opposing army. Getting the drop, Exposing the AE and then having to win Init. A One-Shot special where their max attack dice is 2(vs 3).

DW8000/Laglor - Sure could they wipe a board? The Odds of rolling enough attack dice or valkyrie dice are waaay waaay lower. DW8000 also carries that 1 life chance of dying quickly on any hit.

I think this figures potency is far above these two listed. Having the ability to choose two different figures and all their surrounding hexes with a six range(He can cover most competitive heroscape boards from being in the middle.).

Thematically it also doesn't make sense to me either. The idea of missiles pounding an area means that the Cyborg has to lock in its target and the missiles come out fast and furious. Accuracy isn't thought about, it is pure decimation. The idea that the missiles hit one target, then swivel and hit another target accurately... A huge reach IMO.

I think there are some solid ideas here, I would ditch the idea of hitting two different figures and reduce it to one and focus on a way to make his Hex Busting attack unique from other attacks that also target figures and surrounding figures.
My bad on the price of the Airborne. It was 4am, I was tired, and didn't proof read it very well.

Since we're comparing the Deathwalkers, M.A.R.S. does have a similar risk of getting one shot. The running joke is that it only takes 1 skull to kill the Deathwalkers. For the same reason that only 1 skull can break the 8 or 9 defense, it will only take 2 skulls to break the lower defense of 5 that M.A.R.S. has. Honestly, I would feel more confident killing M.A.R.S. than DW9, DW8 or DW7.

I would agree that the potency of M.A.R.S. is higher than DW8, or Laglor, but DW8, and DW9 are C- tier in Classic scape, and only rise to B in C3V/SoV rankings because of all the synergy that was added to help them. The same situation is true for Laglor. If the goal as I understand it, is to aim for B tier, than without any synergy M.A.R.S. should be a straight upgrade to DW8, and DW9. Isn't the C3V, and SoV's goal to make everything sit at around B tier? Why are we trying to tie something down to C tier?

It has been brought up by others already, but missiles are actually very accurate. I'm not sure where you came to believe that missiles wouldn't be. Almost every video game in existence that has any kind of missile launcher, has a guided missile launcher as well, or even instead of a non-guided launcher. In just the militaries of today, we have very sophisticated targeting technology to guide missiles to their targets with extremely high accuracy. A robot from the future is going to be even more sophisticated, and accurate. Also, as it was brought up by others, Missiles don't have kick like bullets. They are self-propelled once ignited, and igniting them is as easy as a spark.

--------

I'm a little irritated that no one has taken much of a look at my Deathwing comparison. Seriously, think about it. 2 explosion special attacks, in 2 different places. The Deathwings have flying to compensate for not being a ranged special attack, there's 2 of them so you can get even farther away from each than M.A.R.S. can, and they roll 5 attack dice, over the measly 3 that M.A.R.S. gets. They even get the same 5 defense at range that M.A.R.S. has. You might loose 50 points for the 2 of them that exploded, but for the same price as M.A.R.S. you'll get 3 more, and they are much more versatile with their Hyper Speed Burst run 'n gun potential. There's 2 of them to match the 2 lives that M.A.R.S. has. Looking at it, M.A.R.S. is just the slower, non-flying hero version of the Deathwings. If they aren't broken, I really don't think M.A.R.S. will be either.
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  #5878  
Old October 1st, 2018, 02:40 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaf_It View Post
I'm a little irritated that no one has taken much of a look at my Deathwing comparison. Seriously, think about it. 2 explosion special attacks, in 2 different places. The Deathwings have flying to compensate for not being a ranged special attack, there's 2 of them so you can get even farther away from each than M.A.R.S. can, and they roll 5 attack dice, over the measly(your mind powers won't work on me!) 3 that M.A.R.S. gets. They even get the same 5 defense at range that M.A.R.S. has. You might loose 50 points for the 2 of them that exploded, but for the same price as M.A.R.S. you'll get 3 more, and they are much more versatile with their Hyper Speed Burst run 'n gun potential. There's 2 of them to match the 2 lives that M.A.R.S. has. Looking at it, M.A.R.S. is just the slower, non-flying hero version of the Deathwings. If they aren't broken, I really don't think M.A.R.S. will be either.
Deathwings
  • Range of 4 on normal attack, which is an attack of 2. (Range 8, Attack 4 for MARS) Granted they get 2 normal attacks, most would take the Range 8, 4 attack every day of the week and twice on sunday.
  • They have to get in close, they are giving up board control to pull off their Special attack.
  • Only figures adjacent to them are affected, smaller potential figures to affect, much smaller.
  • You sacrifice 50 points per 2 explosions
  • 3 defense vs 5 defense(With pulling even vs Ranged)
  • MARS has 3 life

These are all much much worse than MARS, completely different class of figures.

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  #5879  
Old October 1st, 2018, 02:54 PM
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Leaf_It Leaf_It is offline
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
Deathwings
  • Range of 4 on normal attack, which is an attack of 2. (Range 8, Attack 4 for MARS) Granted they get 2 normal attacks, most would take the Range 8, 4 attack every day of the week and twice on sunday.
  • They have to get in close, they are giving up board control to pull off their Special attack.
  • Only figures adjacent to them are affected, smaller potential figures to affect, much smaller.
  • You sacrifice 50 points per 2 explosions
  • 3 defense vs 5 defense

These are all much much worse than MARS, completely different class of figures.

• The total move of 7 compensates for the lack of range. A total of 4 attack dice are rolled, or since they have flying, and they can take height pretty easily, for a total of 6 attack dice, over the potential of 5 if you can ever get M.A.R.S. onto height. I do concede that 4 attack is better than 2 attacks of 2.
• They do have to get in close, but they have a lot more firepower when they do, and they have the mobility to pull it off.
• It's true, the maximum potential of 12 compared the potential of 18, looks weaker on paper, but the Deathwings can fill the gaps than a good player will make to try and counter the explosion. with M.A.R.S. you just need 1 space between everything to turn the special into a single target double attack. The Deathwings can fill those gaps of 1 space with themselves.
• You sacrifice 50 points, and for the 125 that M.A.R.S. brings you'll have another 3 Deathwings to use with your 5 Special attack dice.
• 3 defense against melee, Evasive makes it 5 against range, matching M.A.R.S., and if you are close enough for melee to reach you, you're either on height, or blowing yourself up anyway, so it wouldn't matter.


I think that M.A.R.S. is better than a squad of Deathwings. But I think He's about on par with 2 and a half squads of Deathwings.
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  #5880  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:00 PM
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Kinseth Kinseth is offline
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaf_It View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
Deathwings
  • Range of 4 on normal attack, which is an attack of 2. (Range 8, Attack 4 for MARS) Granted they get 2 normal attacks, most would take the Range 8, 4 attack every day of the week and twice on sunday.
  • They have to get in close, they are giving up board control to pull off their Special attack.
  • Only figures adjacent to them are affected, smaller potential figures to affect, much smaller.
  • You sacrifice 50 points per 2 explosions
  • 3 defense vs 5 defense

These are all much much worse than MARS, completely different class of figures.

The total move of 7 compensates for the lack of range. A total of 4 attack dice are rolled, or since they have flying, and they can take height pretty easily, for a total of 6 attack dice, over the potential of 5 if you can ever get M.A.R.S. onto height. I do concede that 4 attack is better than 2 attacks of 2.
They do have to get in close, but they have a lot more firepower when they do, and they have the mobility to pull it off.
It's true, the maximum potential of 12 compared the potential of 18, looks weaker on paper, but the Deathwings can fill the gaps than a good player will make to try and counter the explosion. with M.A.R.S. you just need 1 space between everything to turn the special into a single target double attack. The Deathwings can fill those gaps of 1 space with themselves.
You sacrifice 50 points, and for the 125 that M.A.R.S. brings you'll have another 3 Deathwings to use with your 5 Special attack dice.
3 defense against melee, Evasive makes it 5 against range, matching M.A.R.S., and if you are close enough for melee to reach you, you're either on height, or blowing yourself up anyway, so it wouldn't matter.


I think that M.A.R.S. is better than a squad of Deathwings. But I think He's about on par with 2 and a half squads of Deathwings.
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