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Author Topic: House Rules to retain realism (and some clarifications)  (Read 9758 times)

DeckBuilder

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House Rules to retain realism (and some clarifications)
« on: September 16, 2013, 04:09:20 PM »
Mage Wars is incredibly intuitive. Its best selling point is it is religiously "fantasy realistic". Whenever we have a rules issue, we usually just rule it like a GM would in a RPG. Because that is plainly the spirit of the game. So we make House Rules. Some of them are below.

"Immunity does not prevent you being targeted and benefiting from attacks that heal or remove conditions."

This first occurred when an Asryan Cleric healed Samandriel. It also occurred when dousing a burning Tanglevine with a Geyser. But a sleeping Lord of Fire still won't be woken by a Ring of Fire. Clear Mind, a promo card psychic purify (to be released with Siren probably) won't be able to remove the lightning Stun from your Psychic Immune Iron Golem. All of this makes sense.

"Enchantments are perpetually targeting the object it is attached to."

No, you cannot reveal or Shift or Transfuse a Poison enchantment onto a Poison Immune creature. So the future Plagued promo card can't be Transfused onto an Iron Golem or Malaconda (he's already got it twice). This rule is not explicit but needs to be.

"Your mage may ignore the effects of any equipment worn."

This occurred when a player wearing Eagleclaw Boots (and no other boots in his book) wanted to Force Push himself out of melee. "But of course I can choose when to use the claws and when to retract them!". "Look, the rules specifically let me use my fists and not my Lash as you are wearing Dragonscale so why not ignore my boots?" And so logic prevailed.

"You can guard a conjuration against a flyer."

Read as Written in the rules, this is not allowed. Only because the rules use "creature" when it should use "object". But when conjurations can be as small as a Flower or a Crystal, this made no thematic sense. So like every other player, we instead applied Read as Intended. But surmising intention is often subjective...

"Text effects that do not cite Line of Sight do not need it"

So Enchantment Transfusion does not need LoS but Shift Enchantment does. Teleport Trap does not need LoS but Teleport does. We decided on this because we all remembered D&D teleport traps which transported the victim(s) from one part of the dungeon to another. But did we rule right? We went with what we felt was right.

"Cards are read as printed. During Reset, only 1 of your conjurations may revert to Ready, chosen in Initiative order."

This is a House Rule I only apply when playing against the Priestess book I often give to any new player (as new players generally turtle). It means they don't need to remind themselves about the 2 changed Temples. But with Ballista coming, it may not be such a shabby idea, permanently solving the stacking ready marker free actions issue.


Feel free to criticise the above rulings. I'm sure we've applied other House Rules on the fly. And I'm sure "I'm not the only one" (Lennon). Some cards do not fully make sense currently but will in future. It took Etherian Lifetree to understand why Tanglevine is Living (as it can't be healed). Apart from highlighting the Living FAQ needs updating, I posted this thread to ask everyone to share your own House Rules. Because some House Rules may actually be good ideas that Arcane Wonders will use, to make the game even better.


So c'mon. who else has House Rules they are willing to share?
« Last Edit: September 26, 2013, 05:07:04 AM by DeckBuilder »
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sIKE

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2013, 05:10:32 PM »
"Immunity does not prevent you being targeted and benefiting from attacks that heal or remove conditions."
From the v2 Codex:
Immunity
This object is immune to all attacks, damage, conditions, and effects of the specified damage type, including critical damage and direct damage.
Cannot be targeted or affected by spells of the specified type.

House rules are house rules though.....
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DeckBuilder

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2013, 05:33:03 PM »
Yes, of course you are right, but it doesn't make sense with benign attacks, does it?

My Asryan Cleric can heal anyone (even enemies) except for my Angel of Light?
There have been plenty of "I can't water my plants" comments in other threads.

If you want to quote rules verbatim, read what it says about flyers attacking guarded conjurations. So do you follow what's written there?

What is the game's strength? Not its mechanics. We've seen parts of them before, in Summoner Wars and 4th Edition D&D and Magic and Chess and other games, although the sum is most definitely greater than its parts. Yes, its "choose your spell" mechanic is a stroke of genius (also its biggest barrier to entry as the choice overwhelms new players, especially if they hadn't built the book). But the reason why it is so much FUN is because you can envisage yourself right there, in the arena, like in a good RPG skirmish. It's a guilty pleasure, appealing to the child in all of us. And for it to retain that charm, the game must retain its "fantasy realism".

Hey, I'm a huge fan of Mage Wars (although I don't delude myself of its weaknesses). To not constructively criticise where deserved is to do the game a big disservice. At the risk of being flamed, nothing is perfect.

In Magic, protection from your own colour is a double-edged sword. You can't target it with your benign spells. But you also can't damage it via own global effects (Protection from Red and Inferno, Protection from Black and Pestilence etc). Good builds leverage that immunity. However Magic is not "fantasy realistic". It is primarily a game of leveraging mechanics. Whilst Mage Wars is more like a simulation.

Magic is more of a Eurogame. It's a cerebral challenge. Mage Wars is shameless Ameritrash (and better off for it, carving its own niche). It is about the experience and having FUN. Nobody wins when role-playing. Yes, winning in Mage Wars is just a bonus. Awesome game.

That is why, for this game, even an anal retentive rules stickler like me has become a big fan of "playing the game in the spirit of how it's supposed to be played".

Why destroy the immersive illusion when the rules unintentionally create an anomaly? Just House Rule it! Because you can be sure that Arcane Wonders don't want to destroy the illusion either.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2013, 05:46:40 PM by DeckBuilder »
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sIKE

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2013, 06:06:11 PM »
I have no issues to make rulings where things are grey and for the sake of play. However, I do like to try to stay close to the rules as possible, so if I ever do tourney play, I will be trapped into my "rules" think....
« Last Edit: September 16, 2013, 07:07:13 PM by sIKE »
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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2013, 06:50:58 PM »
Mage Wars is incredibly intuitive. Its best selling point is it is religiously "fantasy realistic". Whenever we have a rules issue, we usually just rule it like a GM would in a RPG. Because that is plainly the spirit of the game. So we make House Rules. Some of them are below.

A man after my own heart. I completely agree.

"Enchantments are perpetually targeting the object it is attached to."

No, you cannot reveal or Shift or Transfuse a Poison enchantment onto a Poison Immune creature. So the future Plagued promo card can't be Transfused onto an Iron Golem or Malaconda (he's already got it twice). This rule is not explicit but needs to be.

I didn't realize this was a thing that you could legally do now.

"You can guard a conjuration against a flyer."

Read as Written in the rules, this is not allowed. Only because the rules use "creature" when it should use "object". But when conjurations can be as small as a Flower or a Crystal, this made no thematic sense. So like every other player, we instead applied Read as Intended. But surmising intention is often subjective...

This is a bit of a tossup for me. Thematically it makes sense that you should be able to defend a small conjuration, but
it also thematically makes sense that you should not be able to defend a particularly larger conjuration in this situation. Not sure how a blue goblin defends a wizard's tower from a flying creature for instance.

"Cards are read as printed. During Reset, only 1 of your conjurations may revert to Ready, chosen in Initiative order."

This is a House Rule I only apply when playing against the Priestess book I often give to any new player (as new players generally turtle). It means they don't need to remind themselves about the 2 changed Temples. But with Ballista coming, it may not be such a shabby idea, permanently solving the stacking ready marker free actions issue.

This one is such a tough one. There doesn't seem to be a really good solution. Even your idea here doesn't prevent action stacking it just slows it down, and I don't think it effects the biggest strength of Ballista at all: The initial surprise double-shot.

The one house rule I use that you haven't mentioned is that Warlord only pays triple for Arcane Creatures and Spells level 2 and higher. The reason for it is completely different then your stated purpose, it's just to make the Warlord more viable.

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2013, 07:23:01 PM »
The one house rule I use that you haven't mentioned is that Warlord only pays triple for Arcane Creatures and Spells level 2 and higher. The reason for it is completely different then your stated purpose, it's just to make the Warlord more viable.

Yes, I like it. Teleport still costs 6 but it alleviates his spell points disadvantage, shaving points from spells like Dispel, Nullify, Harmonize, Transfusion, Elemental Cloak, Mage Staff (with Horn) etc. It certainly makes him more playable. Any House Rule which encourages him being played more, that promotes variety rather than the usual tier 1 builds, is surely a good thing for the game?

However, to ensure commands are used instead of persistent enchantments, I think I would have designed him "Triple Cost for non-War enchantments" instead of Triple Arcane as it mirrors Forcemaster in format. It's such a shame because he is such an interesting mage that plays like a miniatures wargame general, and with some really interesting unique toys.

I wouldn't be surprised if Arcane Wonders have inserted a strong Warlord or War Mage Only card in this coming expansion to make him competitive. I was shocked at the radical rewording of Temple of Light (which my House Rule tries to undo). I doubt they will adjust cards like that in future, changing the meta instead to subtly and indirectly balance. Hence my bet is a Warlord exclusive present in this next set.

Great idea on Warlord. Anyone else going to confess their House Rules? C'mon, confession is good for the soul...
« Last Edit: September 16, 2013, 07:49:50 PM by DeckBuilder »
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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2013, 07:49:14 PM »
"Enchantments are perpetually targeting the object it is attached to."

"No, you cannot reveal or Shift or Transfuse a Poison enchantment onto a Poison Immune creature. So the future Plagued promo card can't be Transfused onto an Iron Golem or Malaconda (he's already got it twice). This rule is not explicit but needs to be."

I am sure you cant do that- Shift enchantment/ enchantment transfusion, both say that you have to move the enchantments on a legal target. Which, a poison immune creature is not a legal target for a poison enchantment.
The same way you cant "Steal equipment" a warlock only spell when you are a Forcemaster-or Mind Control a Wizard only creature


And very nice rules! A Judge is always a good idea- and if your not a rules lawyer, then having a judge that acts like a DM is a great idea for any game!

The LoS on teleport threw me off SO bad when I first started playing! It doesn't bother me.....but I liked that you said something about it since I would think I could do it EVERY game for like the first 10 games.

"That is why, for this game, even an anal retentive rules stickler like me has become a big fan of "playing the game in the spirit of how it's supposed to be played".

This is really cool- I like that. and really- unless you are training for tournaments- it is often better to just have fun. (Not in my group though......no fun there....just rules....cold hard rules. :) )
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Kharhaz

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2013, 09:32:24 PM »

The same way you cant "Steal equipment" a warlock only spell when you are a Forcemaster-or Mind Control a Wizard only creature


You can cast "steal equipment" on a mage only specific item. It's just that it is destroyed if you can not equip it. But I get the spirit of what you are going for......

See what I did there ;)

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2013, 02:40:50 AM »
This thread clarified that the Flyers guarding ambiguity was a misprint and should probably have been object to capture the statement in the rules:

Use Guard:
Guarding allows you to protect important creatures or conjurations.

(emphasis mine)

http://forum.arcanewonders.com/index.php?topic=12738.msg18464#msg18464

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2013, 05:51:00 AM »

The same way you cant "Steal equipment" a warlock only spell when you are a Forcemaster-or Mind Control a Wizard only creature


You can cast "steal equipment" on a mage only specific item. It's just that it is destroyed if you can not equip it. But I get the spirit of what you are going for......

See what I did there ;)

I see what you did there!  :P good point- You win this round Karhaz!!
Where does my greatest enemy lie?
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takes the form of a mountain as well as a flower,
it cannot be outrun by the greatest of power.
Where does my greatest enemy lie?
Within Shad0w.

Alex319

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2013, 07:36:48 PM »
To clarify: Even under the rules as written, Samandriel can still be Healed by the Asyran Cleric. This is because Samandriel has LIGHT immunity, and the Asyran Cleric's heal ability is not a Light attack and does not do Light damage. (The "hand with light coming out of it" icon just says it is a healing ability, it is not the symbol for the Light damage type. The symbol for the Light damage type is an orb of light with no hand, as appears on the card "Pillar of Light".)

sIKE

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2013, 07:58:05 PM »
To clarify: Even under the rules as written, Samandriel can still be Healed by the Asyran Cleric. This is because Samandriel has LIGHT immunity, and the Asyran Cleric's heal ability is not a Light attack and does not do Light damage. (The "hand with light coming out of it" icon just says it is a healing ability, it is not the symbol for the Light damage type. The symbol for the Light damage type is an orb of light with no hand, as appears on the card "Pillar of Light".)

So yeah:
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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2013, 02:52:15 AM »
Good spot, Sirs! How could we miss that? Doh!

But this leads to another more disturbing "we've been playing it all wrong!" issue. So the Codex on Heal (where the hand emitting light symbol appears) says "Living creature or conjuration". So does the Removing Damage rules section. But the Asyran Cleric and all the Heal spells say "Living creature". Is this another oversight like guarding a conjuration from flyers when "conjuration" has been omitted? We've always wondered whether Tanglevine's Living trait had any relevance.

If so, do we have a new House Rule here to prevent an errata on so many cards? "Living conjurations are treated like Living creatures"

This would mean Idol of Pestilence would hurt them (makes sense). But then why does Deathlock specifically cite "Living creatures and conjurations"? Also this would mean giving Rhino Hide and Bull Endurance benefits to plants which is stretching Fantasy Realism.

No, maybe the solution House Rule should be...

"Living conjurations are considered Living creatures for mechanics that inflict or heal damage"

This would allow plants to interact with Asryan cleric, Heal spells and Idol of Pestilence, all interactions which follow our House Rules guiding principle: retaining Fantasy Realism is of paramount importance where balance does not unduly suffer.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2013, 03:16:25 AM by DeckBuilder »
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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2013, 06:05:46 AM »
seems like you got bitten by something with the "house-ruling-disease-syndrome".

Nothing you have mentioned so far neither requires, need, would benefit or could use house ruling.

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Re: House Rules to retain realism
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2013, 06:46:57 AM »
Really? So where we see rules ambiguity, contradictions and breaks with fantasy tropes, you see absolutely none?

So why does Codex Heal (with that hand symbol) mention living conjurations yet there is actually no way to heal them? (Goblin Builder is not healing and is limited to Corporeal, so yes he can mend Tanglevine with his tools).

We have no dousing of burning plants with Geyser or extingush with Surge Wave.

We have, in the rulebook, no ability to guard conjurations against flyers, something that some people find intuitive (see above) yet it was house ruled by us as different and this seems to be the norm.

We lack clarity about complex cards like Enchantment Transfusion (not just LoS between you, donor and destination but also if it targets, can it then be Nullified?) that requires a GM-like decision during play.

We have anti-intuitive issues like voluntary Force Push when wearing Eagleclaw Boots - allowed? You're Unmovable. Yet you are allowed to attack (holding a Lash and a Wand) without the Lash but you can never ignore the Boots effect that you can never take off? A bit harsh!

What is the solution for ready marker action stacking? The reason for Hand of Bim-Shalla becoming Unique, an issue which will never go away with other cards like Ballista where we will eventually be able to stack Uniques every turn. Instead of inelegantly changing individual card text, maybe the solution is to amend the rules to try to permanently solve it? I'm not saying our House Rule is the solution but it does try to address the problem in a more generic fashion. Anyway, I only House Rule that when playing Priestess with newbies as I don't want them put off by the inelegant Errata.

Even the recently spoiled Graveyard is ambiguous.

I applaud your support of the game but there is no point in pretending these grey areas don't exist. People are actually helping the game by pointing these out so a regularly updated Living FAQ can resolve them.

All Unique Card-Interaction Games have this (you should see the FAQ for Magic and A Game of Thrones LCG). It is not a criticism of the game. It is a resource that players need for greater clarity.

In fact, dissecting the game like this is good for it. The most active fan base (we forum regulars are the minority evangelists) can help the game - for free! For example, the discussion on why promo Altar of the Iron Guard is Legendary and the issues this causes.

It's great that you can see the rules in black and white with no grey areas. Our local meta however don't see some minor areas of rules and card interactions as clearly as you.

« Last Edit: September 18, 2013, 07:32:48 AM by DeckBuilder »
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