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  #1  
Old February 17th, 2009, 10:37 AM
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A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitations)

Did you ever feel really, really stupid when something readily appearent finally crystalized in your brain? I'm living in that moment right now. All the comments about the 24 Hex limit suddenly coalesced with all the comments about how to limit squadscape in my skull.

I've seen several ideas about capping commons at 2x or 3x. Or thoughts about raising the point totals to 600+ without lifting the 24 hex restriction. What I don't think I've ever seen is any recommendation reducing the starting zone to, say, twelve.

Suddenly, without increasing the amount of time needed to play or artificially limiting commons you've nonetheless magically put a VERY hard cap on big squad armies. You've also helped the viability of three member squads. Toying around with the exact number would be interesting, but it seems that by far and away the easiest way to modify the squad to hero ratio is to further reduce the size of the starting zones.

Obvious? Sure. Still, I couldn't help but share my blinding flash of sudden comprehension on a Tuesday morning... especially since I've never seen this particular idea bandied about before.

~Aldin, with speedy insight like a glacier

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  #2  
Old February 17th, 2009, 10:59 AM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

I had never done this because the rule books always stated the standard twenty four hex start zones. We never play house rules either though squad heavy games seem to win out leaving many uniques behind. I would like to implement a twelve hex starting zone and do not see a reason to restrict them to smaller maps aside from people who use stalling tactics.
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  #3  
Old February 17th, 2009, 11:02 AM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Wow Aldin, I thought I disliked squadscape, but that's hardcore. Jexik's not gonna like this...
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  #4  
Old February 17th, 2009, 11:09 AM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Okay, but here's another thing to consider: what about those ROTV maps like Table of the Giants with 4 players? Then each player is essentially restricted to 12 hexes, so there is a precedent for this kind of thing. One reason I remember this is that it came up in one of our earlier games when a friend of mine wanted to have a large squad army because she felt that having more units would help her win. I hadn't thought to tell her more pointedly about the hex limitation beforehand.

I'm still mad that they drafted the Nagrubs that game so I couldn't use them with Tor-Kul-Na...

~ Ivellius, defendingly

(Sorry, Aldin, I couldn't help myself.)
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  #5  
Old February 17th, 2009, 11:25 AM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aldin View Post
Did you ever feel really, really stupid when something readily appearent finally crystalized in your brain?
Nope, it's just you.

While the idea could be toyed with, it negates the simplicity of using a 24-hexer to quickly designate starting zones (though with split zones all the rage lately, it's not so bad). I wouldn't lower it too much, though, and completely take a number of combinations out of the game. And double-based squads have it hard enough as it is...

~NB, wishing Aldin a speedy next 6 feet

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  #6  
Old February 17th, 2009, 11:48 AM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aldin View Post
Did you ever feel really, really stupid when something readily appearent finally crystalized in your brain? I'm living in that moment right now. All the comments about the 24 Hex limit suddenly coalesced with all the comments about how to limit squadscape in my skull.

I've seen several ideas about capping commons at 2x or 3x. Or thoughts about raising the point totals to 600+ without lifting the 24 hex restriction. What I don't think I've ever seen is any recommendation reducing the starting zone to, say, twelve.

Suddenly, without increasing the amount of time needed to play or artificially limiting commons you've nonetheless magically put a VERY hard cap on big squad armies. You've also helped the viability of three member squads. Toying around with the exact number would be interesting, but it seems that by far and away the easiest way to modify the squad to hero ratio is to further reduce the size of the starting zones.

Obvious? Sure. Still, I couldn't help but share my blinding flash of sudden comprehension on a Tuesday morning... especially since I've never seen this particular idea bandied about before.

~Aldin, with speedy insight like a glacier
Hate to do this Aldin but.... Duh!!


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  #7  
Old February 17th, 2009, 11:48 AM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Quote:
Originally Posted by J4Jandar View Post
I had never done this because the rule books always stated the standard twenty four hex start zones.
See? This is exactly the concept I think a lot of folks have. I was just looking at both sets of rules and this isn't even CLOSE to true. There are TWO RotV scenarios where both sides have 24 hex starting zones. There are ZERO SotM scenarios where both sides have 24 hex starting zones. Interestingly, many of the scenarios have MORE than 24 hexes available. However, I think the scenarios were designed with the figure limitations of the sets themselves in mind.

Twenty-four hexes is our tourney standard because it works. I'm not looking to change that with this post. I do hope that players like myself who cringe evey time they see 4x4th or 4xRats might fool around with lower hex limits in an attempt to discover how it helps or limits play. I would love any feedback I could get from players who wanted to give this a shot.

Also, one other positive of a smaller start zone is that it "increases" the size of the "playable" map. Many maps are a bit claustrophobic and this could ease that a bit by adding 12-24 intervening hexes to any given map (assuming starting hex limits of 12-18 ).

Another way of looking at this is Jexikish, SD. If you think in terms of points per hex then what happens is that you go from just over 20pph (or just a bit over what the 4th cost) to somewhere between 28-42pph (well over the price of most common squads). This forces the acquisition of some uniques. Raelin would probably be the most often picked, reducing the range to 25-39pph - still more than most of the common ranged squads.

Necro has a point that this further hurts double-spaced commons. In fact, twelve is almost certainly too low (I picked it for the shock value). Eighteen would allow 2xpretty much anything which is as many double-based squads as I've ever seen in a more serious game anyway.

~Aldin, happy to have anyone copy the way he uses his sig

ETA Thankee, GB!

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  #8  
Old February 17th, 2009, 11:55 AM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

I know that this isn't intended to be a debate about what number is "right", but I think that a modest change would have a pretty sizable impact. Something like 20 spaces could force someone to drop a full 4 man squad.
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  #9  
Old February 17th, 2009, 12:01 PM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Brilliant flash of insight, Aldin. It makes sense to me, and I concur. I'll have to give it a go.


~rym, who agrees it makes sense and readily concurs and will give it a go.

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  #10  
Old February 17th, 2009, 12:05 PM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Sounds great to me... who's going to be the first to run a 20 starting space tourney?

~Nadom, hoping somebody will actually do it.
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Old February 17th, 2009, 12:10 PM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

The Battle Above Cursed Lands scenario that we played at Temple Con a couple weeks ago pretty much forced an all hero army or the very high priced flying squads (like the IE and Sentinels), which very much reduced squad scape (we played 450 points).

My army consisted of five unique heroes and I don't remember any other army having more than x2 in squads.

It was fun to play, but I've always prefered more figures on the battlefield.

~nyys, always frustrated that Legionnaires x8 (and Marcus) fit into a 500 point army, but can never be played with the 24 hex start zone limit.

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  #12  
Old February 17th, 2009, 01:20 PM
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Re: A Blinding Flash of the Obvious! (Starting Hex Limitatio

Quote:
Originally Posted by nyys View Post

~nyys, always frustrated that Legionnaires x8 (and Marcus) fit into a 500 point army, but can never be played with the 24 hex start zone limit.
I've got a similar gripe. The 24-hex limit already screws some really good swarm armies. I'm talking orcs, and Marro drones, specifically. I always wondered why more people don't play Marro Drones as they seem very competitive to me. Then, someone pointed out to me that the 24-hex limit pretty much screws them. That's kinda sad that an otherwise competitive unit is forced to the sidelines due to hex restrictions.

Squadscape vs. Heroscape aside, swarms (true swarms, ie. you outnumber your opponent with lots of cheap/weak figures) are impossible with the current 24-hex starting zone. Limiting it further would make these even less viable (which, I suppose is your point, Aldin, but still...).

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