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Author Topic: ERRATA - Temple of Light  (Read 33742 times)

Koz

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #15 on: July 20, 2013, 08:48:44 AM »
Thinking about this overnight, it seems to me now that the initial cost of the Temple of Light is overcosted now that you have to pay for each attack.  They should have dropped the cost of the Temple itself to compensate.  If you start doing some math and calculate out how much mana each shot is REALLY costing (factoring in the cost of the Temple itself), I'm not sure it's worth it.  I'll have to play with it first obviously, but it seems too expensive.   

DeckBuilder

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #16 on: July 21, 2013, 05:26:54 AM »
As someone who advocated making ToL Epic as the sole fix (to Temple attrition) in another thread, this change, in combination with HoB Unique (and the Gencon damage tie-breaker) seems a nerf too far.

A decision was made not to have a super-flexible arena-wide FOCUSED aggression/healing/defence vs. swarm by making HoB Unique. And I respect the decision, making the game more positional hence tactical instead of having arena-wide benefits.

This HoB decision SEVERELY limited the former power of ToL. As an interim, I'm surprised the designers did not stop there and see how this changed the meta. To add this (user-defined) activation cost to ToL makes it seem over-costed. Worse, the errata is just so inelegant. I think the "clunkiness" of this errata is what irks me most. For a game I absolutely love, and so intuitive to play. they may have marred it with this errata (the other 2 seem perfectly reasonable).

I suspect this change was preemptive, to allow for more (cheap) Temple releases in the future. If we are to get 3 new Temples of 5-6 cost, then again we have a cheaply-powered guarded Laser Lighthouse issue. If this was the reason, they should release this weaker version (superseding the original) with those new cheap temples. If future releases is the reason to nerf ToL so much (in conjunction with HoB), then it was premature. In the meantime, who would want to play the nerfed Priestess now?

I think I'm sad because all I'm seeing are moves away from control into aggro (like the Gencon tie-breaker which is even more inelegant). ToL/archers/guards was a nice zonal control concept that was different to others. There are so few "pure control" strategies. Yes, there is skill in playing aggro well but I contend there is even more skill in playing control well because it is less reliant on dice and more reliant on correctly-timed effects you impose. Control here is the correctly timed and targeted denial of mobility, aggression, mana and spells as well as removal of threats (enchantments, equipment, creatures temporarily). As someone who regularly plays control at Magic Nationals, I may be biased. But there has to be balance between these 2 polarities (there is no Combo because of pick, the other axis is Versatility vs. Focus). What the designers seem to be doing here is to move competitive play away from the more cerebral chess-like control game. Perhaps because they want to make it a Con Tournament game and control is just not that game. Which is a shame, to hobble this great game so as to make it fit within 60-90 minutes, reducing its appeal to those who like its chess qualities.

The Gencon tiebreaker decision, along with these 2 nerfs, has made Priestess uncompetitive in tournaments and it pushes players down the Route 1 "roll better dice than your opponent" aggro vs. aggro approach. Even a Wizard can't play pure control, where he trades his life resource to gain control as he will lose on tie-breaker no matter how much board control he has. He instead keeps an eye on the timer then nearing time, he spams-out his ranged damage spells (mana-to-damage efficient but not persistent) to try to catch-up on tie-breaker in what is simply a mathematical formula that tries to optimise persistent benefits vs. one-off benefits. There is simply no time for finesse.

In Magic, if you play Control competitively, you know that if you lose the first game, the best you can hope for probably is a draw. Likewise, you know that it is perfectly ok to win the match by winning the first game and not having time to complete another. There are a lot of 1-1 draws in competitive Magic tournaments. The ranking for them is decided by other tie-breakers which, over time, has been fine-tuned to be regarded as a paradigm for win-lose-draw result Swiss tournaments. This ensured balance between Aggro and Control in tournament results. There is great skill in winning a large Magic tournament with Aggro. The main skill in a game like this is adapting your play to beat your opponent's strategy. The skill required is equal to the higher skill level deck in a match-up. An Aggro player needs great skill to beat a high-skill Control deck piloted by a good player. It takes great skill to win a tournament irrespective of the sophistication of your strategies. It's just a shame that the tournament rules (and the Temples errata) promote Aggro so much.

It's not limited to Mage Wars. In Netrunner, Criminal and Weyland dominate in tournaments because they can win matches 7-0 hence win the bonus tournament prestige points. In Game of Thrones, a recent agenda and Plot opened the floodgates to Aggro wins. I'm saddened at the similar "reward Aggro" direction Mage Wars is going (maybe to make it more commercially accessible to younger age groups). This ToL errata (arguably unnecessary in the context of the HoB errata) makes one "staple" Core set control mage not tournament-competitive (in the context of the new tie-breaker) by further eroding (zonal) control in the game.

I have read the thread where a designer explains this. I just think that, in addition to HoB Unique and time-out tie-breaker announcements, to also add the ToL nerf in the current card pool just seems... excessive.

I really hope I am wrong on this.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2013, 07:26:28 AM by DeckBuilder »
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Laddinfance

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #17 on: July 21, 2013, 10:43:54 AM »
Thank you for your feedback Deckbuilder.  In our playtesting, Temple of Light was not getting used by control, but rather by aggressive books.  We're watching our tournaments very closely, and monitoring their results.  We want to ensure the most diversity of spellbooks we can, unfortunately that is a process that can only go one step at a time.  We will continue to refine and improve our events and organized play.  We hope that you, and other players, will continue to bring us your concerns.  We want to bring you the best game possible.

ringkichard

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2013, 10:52:36 AM »
I really hope I am wrong on this.

I have good news for you! :p

In all seriousness, these nerfs seem aimed at agro, not control. Yes, Temple of Light was played in Priestess control, but it was also played in Priest agro and Hand Solo Forcemaster, and that really nasty Hand + Blue Gremlin Wizard book could probably have run it along side its Wizard's Tower. Temple of Light became an agro card, not a control card as intended, which is why it got nerfed.

Whatever the outcome of upcoming tournaments (and I share your concern about the tiebreakers) these nerfs help the control plan, not hinder it.

Priestess lost the temple plan, temporarily. This may or may not knock Priestess out of tournaments, but other control books like positional Wizards and Damage Over Time curse builds and attrition Beastmaster and Warlord were going to be driven out of the environment by these agro temples. I think you'd have been disappointed  in the agro meta without these nerfs.
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baronzaltor

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #19 on: July 21, 2013, 10:58:59 AM »
I believe part of the decision of Temple of Light's change was to help free up design space in the future.

If there was no future expansion sets coming out, making hand of bim shalla unique would have kneecapped ToL well enough.   But if it was left in its normal function, the design team would be unable to make any future Temples that are low level and low cost because they could ultimately be able to cast out in batches to overcharge ToL. 

So, while it stunts it right now it does mean future temples can be cheap and low level without having costs inflated to avoid them being misused as temple batteries.

Granted, thats all speculation on my part.

Fentum

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #20 on: July 21, 2013, 04:07:35 PM »

This is all good. Future low level temples can work as intended.

The Blue Gremlin plus Hand build was just too crazy. Currently, Hand is wild aggro, not control. Now it is utility, which is nice.

DeckBuilder

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #21 on: July 21, 2013, 06:05:40 PM »
In our playtesting, Temple of Light was not getting used by control, but rather by aggressive books.

In all seriousness, these nerfs seem aimed at agro, not control. Yes, Temple of Light was played in Priestess control, but it was also played in Priest agro and Hand Solo Forcemaster, and that really nasty Hand + Blue Gremlin Wizard book could probably have run it along side its Wizard's Tower. Temple of Light became an agro card, not a control card as intended, which is why it got nerfed.

Whatever the outcome of upcoming tournaments (and I share your concern about the tiebreakers) these nerfs help the control plan, not hinder it.

Priestess lost the temple plan, temporarily. This may or may not knock Priestess out of tournaments, but other control books like positional Wizards and Damage Over Time curse builds and attrition Beastmaster and Warlord were going to be driven out of the environment by these agro temples.

Oh dear. Time to eat humble pie...

I hadn't even considered ToL being played outside faction. As a result, I viewed HoB as aggro and ToL as control due to its stationary ranged nature (needing investment in actions/mana for temple support, a "set-up" common in many control builds). Of course ToL also helped Aggro Priestess but I viewed it as a Priestess cutting edge benefit.

HoB (often in multiples) in almost every book is testament to its need to be errata'd. There will still be 1 in almost all books. Is this ubiquity a problem? I don't think so. When Skullclamps became almost ubiquitous in Magic decks (playable in any deck as an artifact), it was banned. That was because the luck of drawing it and your opponent not drawing it was often a deciding a factor in games. That luck factor is elegantly removed in Mage Wars. Now the question is on tactical timing; when (tempo cost) and where (zone exclusive, fragile) do you cast it? There is great tactical nuance in its play. And the card itself is designed to add an extra decision node to potentially every creature action. Do I over-commit melee to ensure I destroy a target? Or heal my vulnerable wounded asset? Or armour a restrained asset about to be swarmed? Oh my god, so many options, AP setting in... my brain's gonna explode!

I find it hard to believe Aggro spellbooks outside Priestess are running ToL. More fool me for never considering it (I'm the main innovator in my local meta). The 14 investment with 1 HoB seems steep tempo loss to gain a stationary tent pole (to use a Heroclix term) that can be worked around (we all pack measures against it). Obviously it works great in Aggro-Priestess where each 5 mana cumulatively pumps both her Lighthouse and her Staff. But it seems ToL is being used by other mages. To such effect that it warrants this (inelegant) nerf. I really should try to find these net decks and catch-up with the world meta instead of being embarrassingly blind-sided like this...

With all due respect (oh look at me, stuffed full of humble pie), the argument by the above play-tester (heavily hinting, sorry "speculation") and in the explanation thread that ToL was nerfed so as to pave the way for future cheap Temples does not hold water. As I argued above, that would be a premature nerfing which only creates a vacuum where once there was a pretty High Elf religious fanatic. If that was the reason (as many seem to feel the HoB nerf was sufficient on ToL), the new ToL could have been released with the new Temples (I assume the Priest does not have any. designed some time ago).

But if ToL is being used by too many Aggro builds (outside of Priestess Aggro, her in-house benefit), making mid-range builds unplayable, then this was indeed the correct decision. Although the elegance of this ToL errata is reminiscent of a hippopotamus attempting ballet....

So apologies for sounding off at the ToL errata. My thinking was clouded by the dismay I felt upon reading the (unbelievably inelegant and misguided) GenCon tie-breaker announcement preceding it. It all seemed like a vendetta against the Priestess! I dread to think how players who invested heavily (both in cost for copies and practice time resource) reacted to this announcement so close to the tournament. I read there was a delay before announcing the rationale behind it. Hmmm....

It is a shame the Priestess has been so heavily nerfed as a result, selflessly making the ultimate sacrifice for the good of the game. I expect she will evolve with the new aggressive Priest cards to become playable again in an aggro-heal strategy (similar to the Warlock Poison/Regen aggro-control build).

Thanks to the OP for being so restrained in your reply. I remain unhappy with the new tie-breaker (please take this constructively, not as moaning fault-finding) but this is the wrong place to discuss it. I will start a new post (my first) trying to leverage the wisdom of your fan base in helping designers come up with a better tournament tie-breaker (almost any tie-breaker would be better than the current one so it shouldn't be too hard...).
« Last Edit: July 21, 2013, 06:25:39 PM by DeckBuilder »
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Laddinfance

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #22 on: July 21, 2013, 06:20:51 PM »
I am very interested in seeing what options you come up with.  We are working on several things to improve our tournaments, but due to the nature of Gen Con scheduling, we could not implement them in time.  Thank you for sticking with us, and helping us improve the game for everyone.

ringkichard

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #23 on: July 21, 2013, 07:36:01 PM »
Also, hey Deckbuilder! Welcome to the forums!
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Tacullu64

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #24 on: July 21, 2013, 08:16:14 PM »
@deckbuilder

I think it is a little premature for you to be partaking of humble pie. While I disagreed with you when you were advocating for the nerfing of HoB, I find much to agree with in your first post.

In your second post you mention mages other than the priestess using HoB and ToL, and while I'm sure it does happen they hardly seem ubiquitous. I'm going to copy a post of mine from earlier today on BGG to save myself some typing.



"Shelfwear wrote:
Hand of BS had always irked me because it was the only non-utility card (e.g. dissolve, dispel, decoy etc) that appeared in every spellbook regardless of strategy, theme or primary magic school. That's usually a sign that a card is a no-brainer and just too good to miss.


I have heard this said before. In my experience it is just not true. It must be a local group think phenomenon. It might be the case where you live and maybe some other places too, but I don't see it. If you look up the book that won Bashcon you won't see HoB. The same goes for the Dice Tower Con winner. If one were to believe all the hype about the HoB, you would have to wonder how those two books even won a game let alone a tournament without it.

The only spellbook I have with HoB in it is my priestess build. I could definatly see it being useful for the Forcemaster too. Wizard is my favorite mage. I could create a wizard build with HoB, but why? If I did it would just be to do something different. It definitely would not be my go to wizard build.

Quick list of non-utility spells I do put in almost every book.

Bear strength
Elemental cloak
Teleport
Agony
Poisened blood
Battle fury


I'm not trying to pick on you, like I said I've seen this comment before. I guess the recent errata finally made me want to respond."


I'm not sure where the notion that these cards are used everywhere comes from. If anyone has some evidence of this I'm willing to be convinced. If all they wanted to do was limit these cards to the priestess all they would have to do is make them holy mage or priestess only cards. I suspect the errata will only increase the number of spellbooks with HoB. Since they are no longer used in quantity, why not put one in every book if they are still so good? The maximum cost in spell points is 3 for the warlock. That is a small price to pay to match the priestess on one of her best cards. The other possibility is that they were only good in quantity and won't be used by anyone.

I am also with you on the making of HoB unique in order to allow for future low cost temples being a little bit shaky. There are only 12 zones available on the board. How many temples are we supposed to play in a game. It is unnecessary to limit HoB to make room for more temples.

I agree with you on the tie breaker too. I never liked it but thought it would be ok if games rarely went to time. I hope they can come up with a better one. The current tie breaker favors the mages who are more efficient damage dealers such as the warlock.

On a side note, it was a good month for warlocks.

1.  They got Drain Soul in Conquest of Kumanjaro. It totally removes the penalty associated with making a demon your bloodreaper. ( I like the spell, but its interaction with the bloodreaper ability seems a little too good)

2.  The nerfing of HoB allows them to match the priestess in playing them since they won't be played in quantity.

3.  The continuation of tie breaker rules that gives them an advantage.





« Last Edit: July 23, 2013, 08:35:56 PM by Tacullu64 »

zot

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #25 on: August 09, 2013, 03:53:09 AM »
    I played a full compliment of hob, and 2 tol in my forcemaster tournement build. It could deal some sick damage pretty quickly. I easilly rolled opponents at origins, as in finished game in less than 30 minutes. I had 2 bad matchups, and one was the tournement winner which was a similar hob/tol priestess build that my friend hellkite ran, and piousfleas warlock. I badly misplayed against piousflea and he played extremely well after being near dead very early. Still kicking myself for that one. Good job pious. That loss dropped me to fourth place. Anyway, the change to hob has definitely made it go from aggro to utility which can easilly go in many decks. And now since hob is unique, the tol will go back to showing up only in holy builds. 
   I really like my fm build, and did want to see how it played against a wider audience at gencon. Some other time, maybe as a casual matchup...

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #26 on: February 03, 2014, 12:57:30 PM »
I know nobody posted here since a long time, but with all the non-living running around, is ToL still useless to (un)death (bad pun is bad).

3 dice with 41.67% chance to eiher daze or stun for 1 mana is pretty good. (I know its not exactly 1 mana due to initial cost, but after 5 attacks it come down to be less than 3 mana per attack and at 9 attacks it is exactly 2 mana).

I think it is pretty good to disturb non-living. Even against living, the chance of daze/stun is good for 2-3 mana and no action (that is the best part imo).

Imirite or imirong?

baronzaltor

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #27 on: February 03, 2014, 01:14:18 PM »
Even after the change, I've never considered it useless.

Ive always run it in most holy builds even since it changed.

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #28 on: February 03, 2014, 03:15:19 PM »
*jumps up to the podium again, pounds fist*

It's crap.  Not Gate to Hell crap, but still pretty bad.  The main reason why: it's not 1-3 mana for a decent Stun/Daze chance, it's a 9 mana investment + 1-2 (most people don't go 3) mana per shot for a locked-in-position mediocre Stun/Daze chance (see Pillar of Light for comparisons).  So far as I can determine, Baron is the only experienced player actually including a Temple of Light in their book.  And apparently AW's unofficial stance on the nerf is "ToL will get better when other temples are released."  I'm skeptical, but willing to wait and see. ; )

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Re: ERRATA - Temple of Light
« Reply #29 on: February 03, 2014, 03:36:13 PM »
*jumps up to the podium again, pounds fist*

It's crap.  Not Gate to Hell crap, but still pretty bad.  The main reason why: it's not 1-3 mana for a decent Stun/Daze chance, it's a 9 mana investment + 1-2 (most people don't go 3) mana per shot for a locked-in-position mediocre Stun/Daze chance (see Pillar of Light for comparisons).  So far as I can determine, Baron is the only experienced player actually including a Temple of Light in their book.  And apparently AW's unofficial stance on the nerf is "ToL will get better when other temples are released."  I'm skeptical, but willing to wait and see. ; )

Well, a 2 mana attack with ToL has 16% stun chance and 33%;chance daze. Pillar of light has 16% stun chance and 58% chance daze.

But Pillard of Light require everytime an action from your mage and take one of your two spell for the round.

Being immobile is not that bad, it still cover 10/12 zone if you cast it in center.