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  #7369  
Old August 11th, 2021, 08:11 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

And a designer is wise to remember the flip side as well. Just because one person - even an insider - likes your design, it doesn’t mean others will as well.

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  #7370  
Old August 12th, 2021, 05:29 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Hello again SoV, it's been a while. I'd like to nominate my Feral Swog to SoV!


The mini for this figure is Smilodon (Sabertooth Tiger) - Kingmaker #30 Pathfinder Battles

Size comparison photos to Swog Rider:

Spoiler Alert!

  • Balance-Feral Swog has same stat line as Nerak. While not providing a defensive buff like Nerak, it does provide a cheaper bonding option for both Spiders and Arrow Gruts with a Special Attack.
  • Playability- All three abilities are relatively straightforward. A Special Attack that grants a defense drop if it starts unengaged, so it's not exploitable with Disengage. Beast Training allows it to bond with Arrow Gruts, and is written so other units could be designed with it, and also prevents dual bonding armies with Spiders and Arrows.
  • Creativity- A Swog with simple powers but all mesh together well. As mentioned before gives Spiders and Arrows a cheap bonding hero with a Special Attack, so they don't feel a compelled to attempt to squeeze in another squad of either just because of point limitations.
  • Theme- Feral Swogs hail from Grut, where they are a few generations removed from the tamed Swogs the Gruts ride into battle. The Feral Swogs have grown large in the wild, feasting on an abundance of prey. Aquilla summons them to fight with ferocity and as ambush tactics. However, and Orcs who happen to capture them can whip them back into submission, even if they can't tame them enough for the Swog Riders. Thanks to @Dad_Scaper for updating the theming.
  • Accessibility-Despite being Uncommon Heroes, I don't see most players needing more than 2 in a list.
    Miniature Market currently has 20+ for $4 each.
    Ebay claims only 9 listings, but the top results shows 282 sold, with "over 10" still with the seller. The second listing shows 52 sold with "over 10" still avaliable.
    Other listings have multiple sold together.
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  #7371  
Old August 12th, 2021, 10:01 PM
Dragonfly2099 Dragonfly2099 is offline
 
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dad_Scaper View Post
I have no interest in the D&D demon issue. The demon (and demon worshipping) faction in Heroscape is young and has a very particular look. There is no discernible reason here to reinvent that aesthetic already, for a mini that doesn’t look like a demon from *anywhere*.

It’s easy and unimpressive to design without restraint or regard for what’s come before. Like Robert Frost said about writing poetry without rhyme or meter, it’s like “playing tennis without a net.” Go ahead and do it, but don’t ask me to participate in a round of applause.
Hello, all. I’m a new poster here. However, I’ve been playing this game longer than Marcus has been leading soldiers.

I’ve often thought about posting some of my customs here for consideration to the SoV. However, I’m unsure of the parameters of the design. I’m looking for some sort of clarification so as not to waste my time or yours.

I added this quote from Dad_Scaper as it illustrates what I’m talking about very well.

In reading this and other posts I’ve observed the following:

A unit gets disqualified because it doesn’t “look” like what the designer says it is. Yet we have SW Battle Droids posing as Zettians, SW Endor commandos operating as Marideans, and a mini with Sergeant stripes on his sleeves and helmet calling himself a Captain.

I’ve seen designs get dropped because the mini wasn’t painted. However, there’s at least 2 designs that are straight up re-paints.

I’ve read comments and criticisms like “this fill-in-blank unit doesn’t add anything new to the game, fill a niche etc. It’s like you found a cool mini and slapped on a power.” But when I look at some of what has made it through and gotten the stamp of SoV, this line of logic falls short too. Without even trying too hard, I could name a half a dozen units that are basically the same as an existing unit. Recycled powers on a different mini. I’m not going to mention them by name because I know the designers worked hard on them and they deserve to be SoV units. As I said, I’m just looking for clarification.

The comment about it being easy and unimpressive to design without restraint or regard for what’s come before also confuses me. By this logic all Star Wars minis, for example, are fair game. Multiple easily recognizable figures have been used from that line. However, I am 100% certain that if I wanted to use a Darth Vader mini, it would be shut down immediately.

Looking back over 10+ years of customs the only consistency I can see is the lack of consistency. Please don’t get me wrong, I enjoy many of these customs and use them frequently. I am simply trying to discern what your looking for before I post anything here.

Thanks in advance for any feedback.

Dragonfly
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  #7372  
Old August 12th, 2021, 10:23 PM
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P_J_Keller P_J_Keller is offline
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Cant speak to the SoV evaluation process other than I really enjoy the results, but I will point out that there is a huge difference between the use of SW Battle Droids and Endor Commandos compared to use of Darth Vader.
DV is pretty much universally recognizable, where someone like me who has seen return of the Jedi didn't even recognize the Endor Commandos.
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  #7373  
Old August 12th, 2021, 10:52 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

I've posted in here so much, though I am not an SoV judge, that I am toying with just starting a thread to answer the question. Many thanks to @Dragonfly2099 for emerging from lurker status to ask important questions, but I don't think it quite makes sense for me, here in this thread, to attempt to answer them, when it's so far afield of this thread's purpose. If anyone is curious for my response, please just let me know privately, and if there's interest I'll post something somewhere else.

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Last edited by Dad_Scaper; August 12th, 2021 at 11:06 PM. Reason: pj keller above, and vegie below, have both offered effective responses, imho. we're just different people, doing our best.
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  #7374  
Old August 12th, 2021, 10:53 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by MegaSilver View Post
Hello again SoV, it's been a while. I'd like to nominate my Feral Swog to SoV!

I like the Feral Swog a lot. It's a very fun and Scape-y design, to put the Swog in Aquilla. Beast Training breaks new ground, but I think it's in a very Heroscape way too.

Figures with wide bonding are always tricky though. Just for illustration, you have a very solid figure like Mogrimm Forgehammer who has bonding with Dwarves and Romans. Interestingly, he's a top option for Dwarves, but outclassed to third or fourth choice by the Romans, who'd much rather have Marcus and Me-Burq-Sa. There's just a lot of subtleties to get right. In your testing, have you found Feral Swog stronger with Arrow Gruts or Spiders? Also, as written now, he would bond with Deathchasers as well, as a Large Wild Hero. Is that intentional?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonfly2099 View Post
Looking back over 10+ years of customs the only consistency I can see is the lack of consistency. Please don’t get me wrong, I enjoy many of these customs and use them frequently. I am simply trying to discern what your looking for before I post anything here.

Thanks in advance for any feedback.

Dragonfly
The reality is that VC is a 10 year old project, made by a wide variety of people over the years, each with differing opinions, sometimes the opinions of a single person changing over time. As someone who grew up with the Star Wars prequels, I probably would have been against using Super Battle Droids as Soulborg sculpts, but I was 14 years old when the Zettian Infantry were inducted into the Soldiers of Valhalla. On the flip side, the demon monk didn't bother me, but I'm not into D&D in the way Scytale is. As quozl has said lately, having a strong vision and presenting it well is key to success in the SoV, moreso than any specific rules on canon. Thanks for the frank feedback and I hope to see some of your customs submitted.
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  #7375  
Old August 12th, 2021, 11:13 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Oh yeah, I suppose my custom is still deadlocked. I'll retract that because I am pliable to updating at least the race. I will resubmit probably at the end of my long weekend. It is a small issue to be divisive over.

Glad to see some people that don't normally post in the thread.
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  #7376  
Old August 13th, 2021, 10:46 AM
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Scytale Scytale is offline
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonfly2099 View Post
Looking back over 10+ years of customs the only consistency I can see is the lack of consistency. Please donít get me wrong, I enjoy many of these customs and use them frequently. I am simply trying to discern what your looking for before I post anything here.
I won't pretend there's been consistency, but I'll try to make some sense of things. (BTW, please don't blame SoV for everything. We are a rather small part of VC, actually. At least some of your examples are C3V, which has much higher output. Your complaint seems to be at VC as a whole.)

Figure allowance comes down to recognizability. Darth Vader? Heck no, even people who have never seen Star Wars before know who he is. On a Heroscape map, everyone will see Darth Vader, regardless of what the unit is supposed to be. This extends to less broadly-recognizable figures. Stormtroopers, for example, are easily recognizable and thus would not be a good fit. The Zettian Infantry battle droids are a very borderline case; I would have downvoted them myself, citing not only the movies but TV series and games, but the VC members at the time passed them. On the other hand, the M-43's B-11's are made of pretty generic human figures. Yes, they are Endor commandos, but they could have come from a dozen other sci-fi properties and no one would know the difference.

D&D is a special case because D&D was brought directly into Heroscape canon. I am well-known as a stickler for this. Units shouldn't come from Toril or Eberron unless they are D&D-based (which is very broad fantasy and doesn't have to be clearly D&D, like Phantom Knights). More importantly, clearly D&D things like beholders and displacer beasts should be beholders and displacer beasts, given their recognizability to D&D players. Other things, like D&D dragons, have specific looks and rules in D&D canon that should be followed if making D&D dragons or even just using D&D dragon figures.

As far as painting, unpainted are straight-up not ok. Repaints, however, do have a small place in classic 'Scape with the special releases. Samuel Brown, if nothing else, provides an example of an official repaint. In keeping with the original, at rare times we will also use repaints. This isn't something done frequently, and doing something like repainting one unique hero and calling it an unrelated unique hero probably won't fly. Significant changes (like repainting a common hero into a unique hero like Louis "Mad Dog" Malone) or lore reasons (Tyrian) are a key factor. The key advantage to repaints is that people don't have to repaint them, they can just mark a non-repainted one in some way. Whereas unpainted ones are, well, just unpainted without paint.

Thinking that a unit needs new powers to add something new to the game is a mistake many creators make. Whether powers are new or recycled is meaningless. Actually, I believe it is generally better to reuse powers because it makes it easier for players to understand a unit. The text on a card is not important; what's important is how the unit plays on the battlefield. Let's look at the two most similar units in the game, Blade Gruts vs Heavy Gruts. The release of the Heavies was quite a disappointment at the time because they are exactly like Blade Gruts except with different stats. But despite that they play differently on the battlefield; Blades are more of a mobile swarm while Heavies rely on smaller numbers in tight formations around their Champions. To be fair, though, I highly doubt VC would pass Heavy Gruts because of their similarity to Blades, but, as you noted, we have made units that appear to be similar to others.

What will VC pass and what will VC reject? I so wish I could write up an answer people could simply reference. It's not even a static target. Not only does VC change its membership over time, but overused types of units get higher scrutiny (for example, right now SoV is less likely to pass a medium fantasy hero, and C3V isn't doing any). There are plenty of designs that I'm not a fan of, some of which I voted against. And that's true of pretty much any VC member. This is especially true when boundaries are pushed, whether that's mechanically or thematically. Some VC members will champion these things while others will vehemently oppose them. More than anything, though, there are lots and lots of middle-of-the-road cases where units have good points and questionable points, and each individual member weighs the two when voting.

What sorts of units will pass SoV? First and foremost, the best of the best. I don't know how many hundreds of customs have been posted on this site, but we have passed less than three dozen of them. (Obviously, not all have been submitted, so who knows how many other worthy ones exist.) A truly exceptional custom will shine and will have a great chance of passing, even if it's pushing boundaries.

If you are considering submitting units here, I highly recommend posting first in your own customs thread. You may or may not draw any attention, but it's the right place to start to get feedback. When you are feeling confident about a unit, post it in the Pre-SoV Workshop. That thread was made specifically to give feedback to designers before leaping in the gauntlet here.

Last edited by Scytale; August 13th, 2021 at 01:17 PM. Reason: fixed M-43 typo
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  #7377  
Old August 13th, 2021, 11:04 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scytale View Post
On the other hand, the M-43's are made of pretty generic human figures. Yes, they are Endor commandos, but they could have come from a dozen other sci-fi properties and no one would know the difference.
I'm pretty sure the Mariedians he or she was referring to were the B-11, not the M-43. Your point still stands, though.
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  #7378  
Old August 13th, 2021, 11:56 AM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

@vegietarian18 Honestly I had forgotten to consider them with Deathchasers, even though I play DC occasionally. MBS and Nerak pop in my head first as units to take with DCs at the lower end costs, however Feral Swogs give DCs access to a SA so it should be something considered.
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  #7379  
Old August 13th, 2021, 12:08 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

If Deathchasers weren't at all considered then to review Feral Swog for now. Unintentional synergy, especially bonding, is very hard for the SoV to test. I don't think he would be a problem for Deathchasers, since as you mention they already have MBS and Nerak as very solid options at the exact same price point, but he casts a very wide synergy web at the moment and I'd like to see a little more time spent reigning that in, or testing the various interactions if you want to keep the Chaser synergy. I played Hybrid Arrows/Deathchasers as my army for the Online Con Championship so that's why I personally have concern, these hybrid builds do need to be tested. I hope to see a renomination soon, but I think it needs a little more time in the oven.
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  #7380  
Old August 13th, 2021, 12:11 PM
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Re: Soldiers of Valhalla - nominations and discussion

Quote:
Originally Posted by MegaSilver View Post
@vegietarian18 Honestly I had forgotten to consider them with Deathchasers, even though I play DC occasionally. MBS and Nerak pop in my head first as units to take with DCs at the lower end costs, however Feral Swogs give DCs access to a SA so it should be something considered.
I don't see how the wild swog would be busted with DC's and not with arrows or spiders so if your submission stands I vote to review.


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