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  #1  
Old August 4th, 2021, 04:55 PM
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Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting


Version 2: 8/27/21
Version 3: 12/8/21 (attack increased to 5. Points decreased to 150)

-double spaced figure

-figure photo
Spoiler Alert!


-text version of card
Spoiler Alert!


-Combinations and Synergies-

Synergy Benefits Received

Last edited by kevindola; December 8th, 2021 at 03:28 PM.
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  #2  
Old August 4th, 2021, 11:17 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

More to test!!!! When you move figures, what about leaving engagement?

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  #3  
Old August 4th, 2021, 11:41 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

They take those LEAs if applicable.

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  #4  
Old August 5th, 2021, 12:50 AM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

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Originally Posted by superfrog View Post
They take those LEAs if applicable.
What about Engagement Strikes or Braced Spears? My assumption is yes.

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Old August 5th, 2021, 03:27 AM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

Yes.

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  #6  
Old August 5th, 2021, 04:23 AM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

Are you not afraid this figure may totally restrict the creation of new type of hex/destructible object in the future with this card? I am asking that, because there is a limitation for molten lava, to avoid this power to be too strong, so if a new hex type with a potential of disruption like molten lava, this cards will directly become too strong, no?
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Old August 5th, 2021, 03:26 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeldarck View Post
Are you not afraid this figure may totally restrict the creation of new type of hex/destructible object in the future with this card? I am asking that, because there is a limitation for molten lava, to avoid this power to be too strong, so if a new hex type with a potential of disruption like molten lava, this cards will directly become too strong, no?

Considering it's really unlikely that another type of terrain will be released due to well a few things, unless a heroscape 2.0 comes out from wotc or another company, there's not much risk of it.

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Old August 5th, 2021, 08:47 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

I do not like the molten lava exception. The probability that the dragon is in a game and the board has molten lava is very small. I would rather see a same height restriction (like other figures). If the board has lava, you need to be careful with your placement. Other figures can dunk in lava. I feel that it is just a forced exception.

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Old August 7th, 2021, 03:39 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

Map: Hunted by Flash 19

Glyphs: Dagmar and Ulaniva

Vydar_XLIII's Army:
Altais of the Deep
3x Greenscale Warriors
Nakita Agents

Vydar's Girlfriend's Army:
Amberhive Queen
4x Amberhive Protectors
Byrikon the Hiveless
B-11 Resistance Corps

Battle Report:
Byrikon's Hive-Mind Marker went on the Queen.

Round 1, GF won initiative. She got a +2 from an OM on By but it wasn't relevant. OM1 she developed 6 Bees, keeping them mostly spread out so I couldn't Vortex Breath more than one. My OM1 was on the GSW. Altais moved left out of the start zone and killed a bee with her breath weapon and then I moved up 3 Greens. Her OM2 developed 6 more Bees. My OM2 developed the Nakitas, I wanted to see if I could VB some figures into Engagement Strikes later in the game. GF's OM3 bonded with the Queen, she placed her between the 4-hex tree and the jungle bush just outside the right half of her start zone. The bees took one normal attack (miss) and took Dagmar. Due to the placement of the Queen, on my OM3, Altais was able to advance and VB her and draw in 3 bees. The Queen took a wound and all 3 bees died. I got one more kill with a greenscale and I took Ulaniva. OMXs were on Byrikon and Nakitas.

Me: no damage, Ulaniva.
GF: 1 wound on Queen, 5 dead Bees, Dagmar.

Round 2, GF won initiative again, this time with a +12 from Dagmar and 2 OMs on By. Her OM1 was on him and he took his Rapid Response turn to run up and put a 4v3 attack on Altais, in which she took 1 wound. My turn 1 was on the Nakitas. I don't think GF expected this because of how open she left Byrikon. 3 attacks of 4 were able to exterminate the new bug. GF's OM2 was back on the Bees. The Queen came up to engage a Nakita since she could survive the wound she got from the Engagement Strike. She failed to kill the Nakita, but the bees that followed up landed 3 of the 4 Sacrificial Stings, killing 1 agent and 2 lizards. Here is where we noticed something...



Even if the Protectors got adjacent to Altais, the wall prevented clear LOS to the Queen and thus prevented Sacrificial Stings. Lets put a pin in that, I'll bring it up again later in the Amberhive Queen's thread. This revelation changed both of our game plans. Instead of pouring more Greenscales into that side of the board to screen, I focused on tying down the Queen so she couldn't get into a better position. Instead of trying to SacSting Altais, GF focused more on the Nakitas and the GSW, hoping to dwindle them enough so the B-11 could slay the dragon.

Anyways, my OM2 had Altais VB the Queen again. This prompted my first ruling question. If there is a figure already adjacent to the figure targeted with Vortex Breath prior to their targeting, can I move that figure around to a different position adjacent to the targeted figure? See the above picture, can the bee on the stone 1-hex be moved back one hex and be forced to take an LEA from the redhead Nakita? My understanding of how the card reads would say that this is allowable. I'm not sure if this is intended behavior or not so I disallowed it anyways. (See * in summary section below.) It didn't end up mattering in this instance because the bee 2 levels down on the left of the photo was pulled into two engagement strikes, dying, and the bee in question on the rock 1-hex died to the breath attack. On GF's OM3, the Queen killed the adjacent Nakita and the bees had 1 of 3 SacStings hit, killing the last Nakita and missing on 2 Greenscales. My OM3 whiffed the Vortex roll and had the lizards that were missed last turn retaliate, killing both of those bees. OMXs were on Byrikon and Nakitas.

Me: 1 wound on Altais, 2 dead Greenscales, 3 dead Nakitas, Ulaniva.
GF: 2 wounds on Queen, 13 dead Protectors, Dagmar.

Gf won round 3 initiative too, this time needing the Dagmar boost to beat my nat-20. With only 3 bees left, she switched to the B-11. Her OM1 consists of her spreading them all 3 spaces apart and getting 3 of them Jungle cover. On my OM1 the Greenscales and Altais advanced and she breathed a vortex on one of the corpsmen, killing him. On our OM2s we exchange a GSW for the bee sitting on Dagmar. On our OM3s, we trade 1 GSW for 1 B-11, 1 Bee, and 1 wound on Queeny.

Me: 1 wound on Altais, 4 dead Greenscales, 3 dead Nakitas, Ulaniva.
GF: 3 wounds on Queen, 15 dead Protectors, 2 dead B-11.

Still contending with initiative boosts, I win Round 4 initiative. With the B-11 boosted to 4-4s I get aggressive with Altais on OM1. I have her fly in for a Ulaniva-boosted normal attack. I get 3/5 skulls and the B-11 gets 3-4 shields. The Greenscales finish off the Queen. GF's OM1 on the B-11 gets 2 wounds on Altais and kills 1 GSW. My OM2 finishes the last 2 B-11 with a melee attack from Altais and one from a GSW. My OM3 kills the last bee that was hiding behind the ruin (that I didn't realize was still there).

Figures Remaining:
Altais with 3/6 Life remaining
4 Greenscale Warriors

I'll cross post the summaries of the other units into their playtesting threads and link back to this post for the battle report.

Altais of the Deep Summary:
Number of times Vortex Breath was used as a single target ranged attack: 3
Number of times Vortex Breath was used as a multi-target ranged attack: 3
Number of times Altais used her normal attack: 4
Number of times Vortex Breath forced a Leaving Engagement Attack: 0*
Number of times Vortex Breath triggered an Engagement Strike from the Nakita Agents: 1

I truly enjoyed playing with Altais. She is/would be the most consistent form of forced movement in heroscape so far and as a guy who loves to play that kind of character in D&D, I'm here for it. That being said, I have some comments and concerns. Please keep in mind that I have a sample size of 1 game and that these are initial impressions. If continued gameplay evidences fail to support these positions, I will promptly let you all know.

Firstly, I initially thought that forcing LEAs and Engagement Strikes with Vortex Breath would be more exploitable. In this game it wasn't. That likely has to do with the bees dying on their own turns so much, or with my ruling question (see above). It is also interestingly balanced by having to target your own screen in the AOE if you attack a figure already engaged with your screen. You don't want to attack the figure 2 spaces away from you if you have a greenscale screen between you two. You're almost forced to attack farther behind the screen at 1 figure and let the Greenscales do the fighting in close quarters. Because of the way Altais targets with her special, I see success with her tied not to the skill of using her well but tied to the (un)familiarity your opponent has going against her. Vortex Breath can be simultaneously the most dangerous and the most restricted of the breath weapons we've seen so far. Dangerous because it can force LEAs and lava field damage, and restricted in how easy it is for an opponent to deny good, multi-target attacks. (Makes me think Greenscales isn't an optimal build for her, which in it of itself is incredibly interesting.)

Secondly, her stats seem to be in line with what they should be. 6L/3D puts her right in line with the other 'small' dragons. Depending on how often a good Vortex Breath can be denied by the opponent, I can see Altais making plenty of normal, melee attacks. I think an argument can be made to bump her attack to 5 to match Moltenclaw's stats, but I'm not overly concerned about it.

Thirdly, I think 170 points, when compared directly to Moltenclaw, Mimring, and Othkurik, seems high. All of these had 4 attack Specials and Molty and Mimsy both out-range Altais. Molty's SA is almost undeniable once the opposing army has crashed into your screen and even when it is Molty has a higher normal attack and a higher attack special that can still single target with less threat of torching you own guys. I didn't find the forced movement or potential to force LEAs to make up for these stats.

Lastly, a theoryscape'd concern not related to my playtest game. Please skip if you'd like.

Spoiler Alert!

Amberhive Queen Summary:
Number of rounds Surge 4 was applicable: 2 (Round 3 it would have tied the roll if GF did not have Dagmar. Round 4 it was irrelevant.)
Number of defense rolls boosted by Evasive 2: 3
Number of Sacrificial Sting attacks allowed by being an Insect Hero within 4 spaces of an Amberhive Protector: 7
Number of Insect Strategic Bonding turns taken: 3

See below with the Amberhive Protectors.

Amberhive Protectors Summary:
Number of Hero turns taken due to Insect Strategic Bonding: 3
Sacrificial Sting Attacks: 7
Deaths due to successful Sacrificial Stings: 4

Ahh the bees. I've been meaning to put the Amberhive on my table for a while now, but they were honestly kind of disappointing. Everything died so quickly. and only 4 were due to Sacrifices. Their low defense basically made it so if they missed the SA they died next turn anyways. The Queen doesn't feel like a queen the only reason she is there is to enable the bees SA and now that she isn't the only reasonable choice for an insect hero her usefulness goes down. I don't know if a Range 3 Insect Defense Aura that gives 1 extra defense die to insects could be on the table but something like that would be, I think, a way to fix the bees dying so quickly and make the queen more of a leader.

Also, to address the weird battlefield condition pictured above, where the wall prevented clear LOS to the Queen and thus prevented Sacrificial Stings. The bees are SMALL 2, leading frequently to LOS and engagement issues. Might I suggest removing the 'clear sight' clause from Sacrificial Sting SA. This change would be thematic in that IRL bees communicate with their queen via pheromones and so sight isn't necessarily necessary. This would also have the side benefit of being able to keep the Queen better protected, behind a ruin or something. (Perhaps it doesn't change the Protector's SA, but the Queen has a power that removes the 'clear sight' restriction. That way there is another benefit to choosing the Queen oven another Insect Hero.)

Byrikon the Hiveless Summary:
Number of Rounds that Hive-Mind Integration gave an initiative bonus: 2 (+2 in Round 1 and +4 in Round 2)
Extra turns taken from Rapid Response: 1
Number of Insect Strategic Bonding turns taken: 0
Number of Sacrificial Sting attacks allowed by being an Insect Hero within 4 spaces of an Amberhive Protector: 0

Ranged bonding is powerful. Byrikon feels like 1/2 Guilty McCreech, 1/2 Alastair MacDirk. I like him, the theme is tight. Having another insect hero for the bees is nice and somewhat fixes the issue of the Amberhive Queen dying too quickly. All that being said, he died too quickly from a misplay in this game for me to have any well formed opinion on him. I can potentially see issues such as the bees not really functioning as a screen (since they sacrifice themselves) well enough to protect Byrikon in this build. But I don't know. 5 range also feels short.

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  #10  
Old August 10th, 2021, 02:51 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vydar_XLIII View Post
If there is a figure already adjacent to the figure targeted with Vortex Breath prior to their targeting, can I move that figure around to a different position adjacent to the targeted figure? See the above picture, can the bee on the stone 1-hex be moved back one hex and be forced to take an LEA from the redhead Nakita? My understanding of how the card reads would say that this is allowable. I'm not sure if this is intended behavior or not so I disallowed it anyways.
See ruling question above.

"I disagree. You're kind of right, yes, but Vydar and I are entirely right." -superfrog

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  #11  
Old August 19th, 2021, 12:30 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

I've played Altais a couple of times now, and overall really enjoyed it. The breath weapon is somewhat limited (see below), but it's also really fun to play. I didn't do a good job of tracking stats and details of the matchups, but I would like to echo some of the points made previously. I think the breath weapon is one of the easiest to avoid if your opponent knows what they are doing. It is also severely limited by the fact that you are often forced to target your own figures (greenscales usually) or choose a less optimal target that is further away. Combined with the weaker normal attack, I don't think 170pt is justified for the current design. I would personally much rather see Altais at 160pt. It would be really sad if such a cool figure ended up collecting dust on the shelf next to poor Brimstone.
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Old August 27th, 2021, 07:27 PM
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Re: Altais of the Deep Public Playtesting

**Updated card**

-Reduced range
-Changed placement restriction
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