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  #5881  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:19 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dad_Scaper View Post
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.

But nobody asked me, and this is not a workshop.
For justification on his normal attack of 4, you can see several smaller machine guns in addition to to the missile launchers on the miniature. Rather than adding more bells and whistles to the design, I just represented them with a longer-ranged normal attack.

My original draft for this design actually had a normal attack of 3, but feedback prompted me to bump it up to 4 so that it became more of a decision to use his normal or special attack, since each had benefits beyond the change in range. I'm a little surprised that you say the design would be more interesting/fun without that change, since M.A.R.S. would be encouraged to use his SA every chance that he gets.

The attack of 5 at range 1 is an interesting prospect. One of the main reasons that I chose 8 range (beyond the machine guns, of course) was how slow he is, so that even though the SA takes some time to set-up, the player doesn't feel like they're wasting a turn to do so. I wouldn't want to bump up his life, though (at least not without decreasing his defense) to avoid making him too durable with that SA.

Even though this isn't a workshop, I do appreciate your thoughts. They give me some insight into parts of the design that may be a source of contention for people.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
AE can do their grenade drop 1 time, MARS can do it every turn. Really big difference there.
The Airborne Elite can also do it from height at any place they choose and get 4 targets instead of 2. There are definitely differences between the two, but I think that they're still somewhat comparable. Each has some clear benefits and trade-offs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scytale View Post
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.
I wholeheartedly agree with that sentiment. If it wasn't for VC, I would definitely design M.A.R.S. very differently to avoid overshadowing DW9k.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
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.
I've got a bridge to sell you...
This is hardly a professional way of responding to Leaf_It's argument. He's made a very valid comparison between the Zettian Deathwings and M.A.R.S., and while I do think that M.A.R.S. is the stronger unit, this honestly seems rude and dismissive to me.

It's perfectly fine if you don't like the unit, but that doesn't mean that everyone who does is wrong or somehow gullible.
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  #5882  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:26 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astroking112 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
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.
I've got a bridge to sell you...
This is hardly a professional way of responding to Leaf_It's argument. He's made a very valid comparison between the Zettian Deathwings and M.A.R.S., and while I do think that M.A.R.S. is the stronger unit, this honestly seems rude and dismissive to me.

It's perfectly fine if you don't like the unit, but that doesn't mean that everyone who does is wrong or somehow gullible.
Trust me, expect people to be dismissive of disagreement here, it's kind of what happens. If I were you I'd forget about trying to fit a square peg into a round hole with SoV and just let your awesome unit be an awesome unit. Not everything has to be to the tastes of a clique.


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  #5883  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:29 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Astroking112 View Post
This is hardly a professional way of responding to Leaf_It's argument. He's made a very valid comparison between the Zettian Deathwings and M.A.R.S., and while I do think that M.A.R.S. is the stronger unit, this honestly seems rude and dismissive to me.

It's perfectly fine if you don't like the unit, but that doesn't mean that everyone who does is wrong or somehow gullible.
Easy Tiger, I have a good relationship with Leaf_it, we have collaborated in the past, and feel like we are on a level I can say something like that without it really offending him. I've already had Necro "BS" one of my posts, Didn't see me getting all bent out of shape...

Part of the SOV process is putting yourself out there, and you will take criticism.

Regardless, I didn't want to go down refuting everyone of his counterpoints, so a simple response accomplished that. Add to that, using words like "Measly" when describing the very potent MARS special attack, he kind of brings that upon himself

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  #5884  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:38 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astroking112 View Post
This is hardly a professional way of responding to Leaf_It's argument. He's made a very valid comparison between the Zettian Deathwings and M.A.R.S., and while I do think that M.A.R.S. is the stronger unit, this honestly seems rude and dismissive to me.

It's perfectly fine if you don't like the unit, but that doesn't mean that everyone who does is wrong or somehow gullible.
Easy Tiger, I have a good relationship with Leaf_it, we have collaborated in the past, and feel like we are on a level I can say something like that without it really offending him. I've already had Necro "BS" one of my posts, Didn't see me getting all bent out of shape...

Part of the SOV process is putting yourself out there, and you will take criticism.

Regardless, I didn't want to go down refuting everyone of his counterpoints, so a simple response accomplished that. Add to that, using words like "Measly" when describing the very potent MARS special attack, he kind of brings that upon himself
Just to add a bit of context to this, I used Measly due to the difference of 5 attack when compared to 3.


I sent this in a message just now to Kinseth, but I feel it would be appropriate to share it here as well. I recently played a couple games against a Deathwing army, as a test a potential army I was thinking of bringing to a local tournament. Their Detonation special was used at a very opportune initiative switch to devastating effect, because of some above average rolls. They were only hitting 3 figures at a time because I positioned for it, but 6 figures hit between 2 of them with rolls of 3 and 4 skulls, wrecked my 3 defense Protectors of Ullar. That was 50 points taking out 220 points of protectors. The Deathwings special attack of 5 can be nasty in the right situation.
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  #5885  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:40 PM
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I'd rather have 5 deathwings than one MARSbot.

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  #5886  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:47 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazy Orang View Post
Trust me, expect people to be dismissive of disagreement here, it's kind of what happens. If I were you I'd forget about trying to fit a square peg into a round hole with SoV and just let your awesome unit be an awesome unit. Not everything has to be to the tastes of a clique.
It can definitely be frustrating at times to work with a larger group (especially one that hasn't yet playtested the subject ), but I'm definitely not ready to give up on SoV yet. I enjoy the challenge of designing units and have nothing but the utmost respect for what they've accomplished.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinseth View Post
Easy Tiger, I have a good relationship with Leaf_it, we have collaborated in the past, and feel like we are on a level I can say something like that without it really offending him. I've already had Necro "BS" one of my posts, Didn't see me getting all bent out of shape...

Part of the SOV process is putting yourself out there, and you will take criticism.

Regardless, I didn't want to go down refuting everyone of his counterpoints, so a simple response accomplished that. Add to that, using words like "Measly" when describing the very potent MARS special attack, he kind of brings that upon himself
I see; I didn't know the relationship between you two and without context, it looked like you were directly insulting him. Necro's "BS" was more directed at your statement and was replied to in a similar manner, so the subtext came across clearer to me there than it did here. I welcome criticism, but I won't stand for personal attacks. My apologies for misinterpreting the situation.
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  #5887  
Old October 1st, 2018, 03:52 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I feel like the biggest concern that I'm seeing is that M.A.R.S. is a good counter to armies that need to pod up. I feel like the most powerful matchup for M.A.R.S. is going to be an Arrow Grut Army. Until He goes down, those kinds of armies are going to need to drastically change how they're played. But this isn't new to Heroscape. Even Classic Scape had even harder counters than this. Look at the Omnicron Repulsors. They counter every soulborg based army so hard it's ridiculous. They aren't bad against non-soulborgs either. In the Tournament I mentioned previously, the army I ended up taking was an Omegacron/Omnicron army. My opponent rushed up ninjas of the Northernwind, and took out Omegacron by the end of the first round. I had lost 3 of the 6 snipers I brought as well, and so from there on, I used only the 4 squads of Repulsors I had with them to take the win, just because of good positioning, and their Targeting Beacon.
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  #5888  
Old October 1st, 2018, 04:16 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I'm going to have to disagree with @Lazy Orang about the square peg/round hole. I think the main concern here is over power level. There's some theme execution questions here as well, but I think most people are simply concerned that MARS is overpowered.

I will admit that the SoV has a certain "type" of unit that passes more easily than others. MARS seems like it's part of that "type" to me. (And I fully admit that there are good customs that wouldn't pass the SoV that shouldn't be changed to fit SoV ideals. Not all good customs are VC customs, and that's okay.)

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  #5889  
Old October 1st, 2018, 04:34 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

My concern is partly power level and partly that he just doesn't look that fun to play, though there are aspects of this design (mostly the Special Attack) that I like very much. The choices for ranged attack look pretty simplistic: when you want an explosion, use the exploding one. Otherwise, the big punch of the normal attack is always a good option. The potential of hitting your own allies is not so serious, when you always have the option of shelling your enemy with 4 (or 5, from height) attack dice against a single target.

I'd like this design much more if it was harder to get away from the possibility of hitting your own guys. Lower the normal attack to 2, as I said, or make it melee. That's why I was thinking of those options.

As is, I confess I do not care for MARS. He's close to really good, but he could use another round of refining. My , for what they're worth.

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  #5890  
Old October 1st, 2018, 04:59 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I'll admit that this isn't usually my neck of the woods, but based on the controversy over this unit, I figure I'll throw my thoughts in the mix.

1. 5 Defense, 3 life is pretty squishy. Anyone who has run Hounds knows how often they can whiff, and with a 3 life figure, one whiff could equal 2 or 3 of his life gone.

2. 4 move is HORRIBLE for a ranged unit. This all but removes the ability for him to kite, even with an 8-range normal.

3. In no way should he be compared to the level of DW9K in Official Scape only. I don't think it's wrong to design units that are actually competitively relevant.

4. DW9K's play in VC-inclusive Scape does not see a drop, specifically because he will only see play alongside ZI anyways.

5. His special is pretty good, but not as good as the 2x4 at 4 that KA and Q10 have. One attack roll that has to explode two figures will really only affect bad players who clump their figures. Heavies will just laugh and forego their adjacency bonuses which they really don't need.

6. His secondary ability is niche and it doesn't really impact his level one way or another.

So where does this leave him? He's a mid-high B+ figure, at very best possibly a low-mid A-. Useful, but certainly not the best way to fill in your army. If you're running Raelin to get him to 7 defense, you're probably better of just choosing a different figure than him anyways. KA and Q10 are both better on their own as they have the critical 4th Life alongside better specials. At the end of the day, he's only really good against Arrow Gruts, and that assumes that their army is just AGs and Swogs. If it is, they're already in a world of trouble against literally every competitive army.

My two cents.

EDIT: Final thoughts:
M.A.R.S. is a good figure, but I struggle to find what army really breaks him. Not being able to kite really hurts (it's a huge reason why Krav and MWs are so powerful) and 125 points for a figure who relies on defense dice to survive (which are very unreliable) is definitely a scary prospect. Add in making only one 3 or 4-die attack roll (also unreliable) that has its damage potential mitigated through smart positional tactics and this figure will seem like a moderately risky OM and points investment. I think he's a strong figure, but good range armies and melee armies both have the tools to deal with him. Once in a while, you may have a game where he dominates. Once in a while, he'll do next to nothing as you lose an OM off a few cheap hits you weren't expecting after he whiffs his 3-die special. I'd imagine that more often than not, he earns around his points (I don't see him having the solo potential that a Kaemon has), but not much more.

Last edited by OEAO; October 1st, 2018 at 05:23 PM.
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Old October 1st, 2018, 05:01 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Thanks, OEAO. I'd definitely put your competitive sense in the upper echelons of this site. Feel free to stop by anytime.

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  #5892  
Old October 1st, 2018, 05:24 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I was actually just about to retract my submission of M.A.R.S. and make some minor tweaks to appease concerns, when I refreshed the page and saw even more comments.

OEAO's analysis lines up very well with what I have experienced so far. I'd put him at B+, and worst-case scenario is that he is a weaker A-. Kaemon Awa and Q10 are both stronger options due to having more defensive potential (whether Countstrike or an extra life), more move to gain better board control, and a more consistently useful Special Attack.

M.A.R.S. does have the potential to affect more figures, but he is rarely able to target more than 3 or 4. Even then, you are getting one attack of 3 against all of these figures, whereas Kaemon/Q10 get two attacks of 4, which will produce a much more consistent and reliable result. He also cannot target the same figure more than once per turn, unlike his two closest comparisons, giving him much less utility.

If the judges still feel that M.A.R.S. is too powerful for his points, then I will take him back and make some nerfs so that he is no longer performs as a B+ figure, but I stand by my assertion that he is surprisingly balanced already.
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