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Author Topic: Bringing all mages on par!  (Read 277146 times)

sIKE

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #135 on: February 28, 2014, 08:40:11 PM »
There is only one, and he is not the Highlander....
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sdougla2

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #136 on: February 28, 2014, 09:34:04 PM »
As I see things, there are a number of problems with the current state of the game. I like a number of solutions that I have seen proposed in this thread.

-Adding card(s) that prevent teleportation would put Teleport more on par with push effects, make it less mandatory, and weaken Slow creatures overall.

-A totem that gives an Armor boost to all animals would strengthen swarm play. One of the three Straywood Beastmaster builds I'm working on is based on Deckbuilder's swarm build, and while Lifetree and Fortified Position help make the swarm more resilient, a totem would help a great deal without restricting my positioning the way that Fortified Position does. It would also be helpful if there was a non-arcane method for fighting mana denial.

-An extremely cheap wall would be a nice addition to the game, and allow more tactical plays with blocking line of sight. Many of the current walls are just too expensive to justify playing for a momentary tactical advantage (particularly if you want to extend them), and are hard to get rid of if they become a liability.

-I like the idea of giving war a command that makes a creature take a move action. That would allow the Warlord to compete for position control, which he is currently terrible at.

-The war school needs enchantments and conjurations that support his creatures, and we need alternatives to Dispel. Personally, I think holy should get a Dispel equivalent.

-The Priest needs a level 2 holy creature. A holy Timber Wolf would greatly improve the Priest's opening options. He needs more in school support, and the holy school needs to be fleshed out in general, but this would be a good first step in supporting the Priest. It still seems odd to me that we got Guardian Angel but no creature that the Priest could use as a cheap, efficient Holy Avenger.

-The Warlock doesn't feel like he has enough options for different builds. There are some variations on Warlock plays, but all of them involve fast pressure with 1-2 big creatures (although some of them transition into curses at that point), there is only 1 worthwhile option for Blood Reaper, and many of the Warlock's abilities are shut down against Nonliving. Hopefully this will be addressed in Forged in Flame.

-As for the Wizard, I think weakening Teleport and giving non-arcane solutions to enchantments will be a nice start.

-The war, holy, and mind schools need to be fleshed out in general, and given more utility.
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Zuberi

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #137 on: February 28, 2014, 10:33:50 PM »
Quote from: sdougla2
-As for the Wizard, I think weakening Teleport and giving non-arcane solutions to enchantments will be a nice start.

-The war, holy, and mind schools need to be fleshed out in general, and given more utility.

This could all be accomplished with the Paladin vs Siren expansion, actually. I don't know if it's been officially announced anywhere, but there is a lot of speculation that the Paladin will be a combination of War and Holy, while the Siren will include a Mind component. They could thus be used for fleshing out those schools, and there's no reason why Teleport's power and the monopoly that certain cards have on functionality couldn't be addressed by it as well.

I know a lot of people are hoping for a quick solution. What I am hoping for though is:
1) Forged in Fire provides a good boost to the War school, brings the old Warlord up to tier 3, and puts both new mages on tier 2.
2) Paladin vs Siren brings all of the tier 3 mages up to tier 2, breaks the monopoly that certain cards have, weakens teleport, and fleshes out the Mind, Holy, and War schools. The two new mages are already tier 2 again. It is possible that this could push some mages up to tier 1 with the Wizard. However, at this point I wouldn't be surprised if the Wizard was still alone at tier 1. Still, all the other mages should be equal in power and the gap between them and the Wizard should be considerably smaller.
3) A new expansion finally breaks the reign of the Wizard by pushing several (not all) mages up to tier 1.

This does mean we're looking at probably another year under the thumb of the Wizard. It might take another two expansions after that to bring all of the mages up to tier 1, which means possibly 2 years from now before we achieve the equality desired for everyone. Is this too long? Opinions are going to differ on that.

I doubt Forged in Fire includes any radical solutions given the hints seen by Playtesters and Administrators. So any plan to speed up this process wouldn't see implementation until at least Paladin vs Siren. If they threw the Novice spells into that expansion, we would see most mages jump up a tier. They could combine that with still fleshing out three of the schools of magic, helping to bring more mages up a tier. We would actually end up with most mages being tier 1 within maybe 8 months from now, rather than just a few within a year from now. We could probably bring the rest of them up there within just a single expansion after that. We've thus shaved 2 expansions off the necessary time table to reach equality and saved ourselves around 10 months of time.

The cost of that 10 months? Less varied spellbooks and an unpredictable weakening of enchantments and equipment. I'm not going to say that this breaks the game. Less variance isn't a deathblow, and an unpredictable result is just that, unpredictable. The game might actually be better and more fun with a nerf to equipment and enchantments. Plus they might be able to counteract it somehow.

So, 8 months before we start seeing other tier 1 mages by introducing a major change that could significantly alter the game? Or one year before we see competition for the wizard by using gradual changes within the current framework? I vote for the latter. I don't think we will lose too many players by waiting an extra 4 or 5 months and I fear radical change.

Aylin

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #138 on: February 28, 2014, 11:32:19 PM »

Yes, the design decisions have been baffling. Not just the Jokhtari / Necromancer example.
With Druid and Resilience making Fire already very strong, what shall we release next...?
Of course, we need MOAR FIRE!

Being serious though, I hope the extra Fire won't be as bad as the JBM/Necro BS.

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However, let's not be too negative about it.
I don't think they've made irrepairable mistakes.
Just that correcting them could be very messy.

I don't think the mistakes are irreparable either, I just have serious doubts that they'll get fixed in a timely manner. I'm already drifting away from the game, in large part due the lack of balance (the other major reason isn't relevant to this thread, though I suspect everyone already knows). As it stands right now the game is dying in my play group, so I probably won't spend the money to buy FiF or Siren v. Paladin after that unless they address the problem (though you did mention FiF doesn't quite in another post). By the time the problem is solved, I might not even be playing anymore. I really don't want that to happen since I've enjoyed playing Mage Wars a lot. I suppose you could summarize by calling it "helpless frustration".

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Really valuable and valid points, Aylin. Welcome back. I've missed your acerbity.
Who needs Acid Ball when you're spitting it naturally? :)

The main problem is when I accidentally melt through my car's windshield with it.

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Now let's be positive, folks.

Ok, obviously I'm a fan of Novice but I actually think a rule change is the most elegant solution.
So here is an off-the-wall idea. See what you think, folks.

BASE SPELLS NEW RULE

(The rules in this section are "Pro" rules, played in tournaments, as they beg the question: why 3 Teleports in Core?)

All Mages gain the following 12 "base spells" for free (on top of their 120 spell ponts)
2x Dispel
2x Dissolve
2x Teleport
2x Seeking Dispel
2x Nullify
2x Block

No Mage may have more than 80 cards that fit in their spellbook (this includes the 2 Mage cards)
That means you have 120 points to spend on maximum 66 cards (adhering to a max. 6/4 rule too)

RATIONALE

I think every book devised by an experienced player automatically lists 2+ of Dispel, Dissove and Teleport.
So if it is such a "hygiene" purchase, not in the least bit customisable, why not give it to everyone for free?
It's this spell points tax that helps Wizards so much (especially Water Wizards) who buy essentials cheap.
By giving 10 levels of Arcane for free (I'm a shareware fan), you immediately devalue the Wizard's Training!

What about the other 3 spells, you say?
The bluffing game of hidden enchants is frankly enchanting
However, we are stuck with mandatory reveal.
Quite often, non-Wizards can't afford Nullify or Seeking Dispel
So the "could it be a Nullify?" bluffing game is lost as chances are it's not
But now every mage has a couple of them!
It hugely spices up a game when you look at all hidden enchantments suspiciously!
Even when playing against the guileless Warlord.
Of course you also need to arm players with the means to remove hidden enchants.
Blocks added purely because their possibility tactically restricts attack sequencing.
You also need another triggered enchantment to bluff if your build doesn't use them.
And because nobody except Forcemaster plays it surely? Now they are a possibility.
Anything that adds exciting uncertainty to the game is benefiting the game greatly.

But this would devalue equipment and enchantments, you say?
Devaluing equipment is a good thing, they are far too good hence Forges everywhere.
As for enchantments, you can always get one use from any persistent enchantment.
You'll have to time it so it's not hit by the opponent's base 2 Seeking Dispels though...

What other benefits does this spell points inflation that helps non-Wizards far more grant?
I don't know about you but I find culling my book to 120 far more painful with non-Wizards.
Now you can attempt the ambitious spellpoints intensive ideas, increasing game diversity!

I really hate that at least 6 spells (usually 10 = 4 Dispels, 4 Dissolves. 2 Teleports) are pre-chosen in all books.
This is just a tax that benefits the Wizard - so let's remove the tax and the Wizard simply loses his advantage.
It also has the beneficial effect of spicing up the game's uncertainty and allowing for points-costly build ideas.
Whilst solutions so far have been about the coefficients (cost multipliers), I'm suggesting a constant bonus to all.
It seems to me this nerfs a Wizard's advantage, remove these spell point taxes and also helps increase diversity.

Have I finally cracked? :)

I could get behind this change. Immediate, doesn't require editing spells (I still think the Wizard's Training should be nerfed somewhat, though that only changes a single card), and it has a significant positive impact.

I agree on Dispel, Dissolve, and Teleport. I'm not sure on the others though, but I also like the knowledge advantage given by enchantments. I certainly wouldn't mind getting them for free (I prefer a tactical game where these would be very helpful), I'm just not sure they're needed for free.

@Zuberi (quotes taken from several different posts out of order, too tired to go through and quote each one properly)

Quote
This does mean we're looking at probably another year under the thumb of the Wizard. It might take another two expansions after that to bring all of the mages up to tier 1, which means possibly 2 years from now before we achieve the equality desired for everyone. Is this too long? Opinions are going to differ on that.

Eight months to two years is certainly too long for me, as it is for many of the players I know in real life. And even then there isn't a guarantee that it'd go as predicted. Many of the problems aren't realised until after the set is released, so waiting an extra 4-8 months for that new problem to be fixed on top of the original problem is just too much.


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Thus, the problem is that the Arcane school of magic is more self reliant and versatile than any other school, and conversely the War school is less so than the other schools. We need to bring the actual schools of magic into balance if we wish to balance the mages. Every mage should be able to rely on their training just as much as any of their brethren.

Quote
Long Term: Release enough new cards to where every school of magic is equally as strong as Arcane and none of them have a monopoly on game functions.
Pros: Increases variation and doesn't strongly sway the overall balance within the game. Gradually stabilizes all of the schools of magic.
Cons: Takes a really long time.

Short Term: Release Novice versions of spells. This would effectively make these spells in school for everyone.
Pros: Quickly and effectively helps to stabilize the various schools by giving a boost to all mages who were not previously trained in these spells School of magic.
Cons: Reduces variation by solidifying the necessity of these spells and makes such spells much more common causing a backlash of game balance. Also, some schools of magic will still need tweaking (War) to bring them up to par.

In an ideal world I would prefer the long term solution. However, we're already in a situation where many players are incredibly frustrated by the lack of balance that many (like me) will likely leave soon unless something's done about in the short term.Waiting for an unknown length of time for some unknown solution that may or may not work as intended isn't something that I personally care to wait around a year for.

And even when/if the other schools are at the same level as Arcane is, I still think the Wizard should have a restricted school. Nature and/or War seems thematic enough for that. The reason would be to make the weaknesses of the Arcane school actually mean something if it is no longer trivial to take the solution from another school in every scenario.


@Laddinfance

Please, no matter which way AW decides to go to fix this issue, please let us know what's going on (at least in general terms). Even if the solution you choose would take 1 year to implement, letting us know the approximate timetable would help a lot I think.



Non-response:
Possible answer to Teleport: Dimensional Anchor as a trait.
"This creature is immune to spells with the Teleport subtype"
Could go on various pieces of non-arcane[/u] equipment or enchantments, OR be used as an arena-wide effect like Idol of Pestilence.
Something that powerful would likely require some Upkeep, say Upkeep +X where X= the # of Anchor tokens on the card (add one Anchor to the card, then pay). Ideally I'd love to see it as an enchantment, but that's mostly because I like to counter spells with enchantments.

I'm pretty sure both Teleport and Teleport Trap have the Teleport subtype. Divine Intervention only has the Protection subtype. I suppose nothing can stop the will of Asyra?

-Aylin

EDIT: Fixed a typo
« Last Edit: March 01, 2014, 10:56:29 AM by Aylin »

baronzaltor

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #139 on: February 28, 2014, 11:59:49 PM »

Non-response:
Possible answer to Teleport: Dimensional Anchor as a trait.
"This creature is immune to spells with the Teleport subtype"
Could go on various pieces of non-arcane[/u] equipment or enchantments, OR be used as an arena-wide effect like Idol of Pestilence.
Something that powerful would likely require some Upkeep, say Upkeep +X where X= the # of Anchor tokens on the card (add one Anchor to the card, then pay). Ideally I'd love to see it as an enchantment, but that's mostly because I like to counter spells with enchantments.

I'm pretty sure both Teleport and Teleport Trap have the Teleport subtype. Divine Intervention only has the Protection subtype. I suppose nothing can stop the will of Asyra?

-Aylin

Actually, since Teleport is a subtype, there doesn't even have to be a new trait.. just a spell that says "Creature gains Teleportat Immunity".   No new codex entry or anything… current Immunity rules would already cover it.  It would also protect a creature from Banish as it also has that subtype.

Divine Intervention would still effect a creature with Teleport Immunity, but that is also an Epic 12 mana spell restricted to one school so I think it can slide. 

If it HAD to be covered, it'd be a pretty minor and easy to swallow errata to add the "teleport" subtype to DI just to make Teleport Immunity airtight. 

Zuberi

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #140 on: March 01, 2014, 12:14:29 AM »
I agree it is quite a long time. I anticipate we will lose some players and many more will make house rules in the mean time (banning the Wizard in your casual games seems simple enough). I do not think we will see any other tier 1 mages until at least Paladin vs Siren though, no matter what we come up with. I am just guessing that it will require 8 months from now for that expansion to come out, but it seems like a reasonable estimate given their history last year.

So, the question isn't how many people are willing to wait until Paladin vs Siren. There seems no way around that. The question is, how many people will be willing to wait one addition expansion thereafter? A gradual solution like I propose will hopefully put all the mages on tier 2 by PvS, and greatly narrow the gap between them and the Wizard, but there will probably remain a gap. It would take another expansion to cross the line. A more radical approach though could bump them up to tier 1 by PvS with the possibility of drastically altering the game we love.

Waiting an extra expansion could cause us to lose more players than have already left. However, the drastic changes caused by a more radical solution to this problem could also cause players to leave. I'm not going to say I'm in love with either solution. I think the long term answer is the best choice out of bad options.

I agree 100% that Arcane Wonders should keep communication open and let us know what to expect. That will keep morale up.

I think you're on the right path with the Dimensional Anchor trait to help with teleport, but I don't think it needs to be tied to any subtype. Tie it directly to the effect. For example:

Quote from: Codex
Unmovable (Object Trait) Object cannot be Pushed. All conjurations are Unmovable.

Unmovable is not tied to spells with the Push subtype. It is tied to the Push effect itself. Any trait that affects teleport should work the same way. The cool thing is, if you have an enchantment that confers this benefit to a creature, preventing that creature from being teleported, you could actually put it on a Blue Gremlin or Gray Wraith to cancel out their teleport capabilities. It would also ensure that it works against Divine Intervention as well as Teleport and Teleport Trap.

Thus:

Dimensional Anchor (Object Trait): Object can not be teleported.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2014, 12:16:52 AM by Zuberi »

Aylin

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #141 on: March 01, 2014, 12:26:28 AM »
Tying it to the effect was what I originally had in mind, though I don't think it should hose Divine Intervention. That would be pretty brutal. Would "Immune to Non-epic Teleport Effects" be clear enough? I probably should have gone with that instead



The reason I don't think it should stop DI is because it is Epic and is thematically the Will of Asyra coming down and doing something on the battlefield. It would seem really odd to me that it could be stopped so easily. Also I think one of the signature Holy cards being canceled in such a way would be devastating in a match, making them worse by comparison.

Zuberi

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #142 on: March 01, 2014, 01:02:50 AM »
Divine Intervention was not made with an Anchored trait existing, and introducing such a trait could hurt DI an undue amount. However, thinking ahead, do we want to make all epic teleports immune to this Anchored trait? Currently any epic push effects that get released would still be stopped by unmovable UNLESS they state otherwise.

I think first and foremost it should be play tested as affecting Divine Intervention just like every other teleport effect. If the play testing shows that DI is getting nerfed too hard, then Arcane Wonders can either make an exception for it in the rule or make an errata for it. I don't really like the errata option, but it does exist. There's no reason to make an exception for it at all though until after play testing.

I don't personally think it will kill Divine Intervention. Especially not with people currently saying DI is overpowered. I don't think DI is overpowered, but I do think it could survive being knocked down a peg. Only actual game play will tell though.

Lay on Hands is also epic and can be countered by the Finite Life trait. I've had somebody reveal Poisoned Blood  during the cast before. I was not happy. Not to mention both epic spells can be Nullified. Lay on Hands was designed with these in mind though.

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #143 on: March 01, 2014, 06:45:23 AM »
Quote
Eight months to two years is certainly too long for me, as it is for many of the players I know in real life. And even then there isn't a guarantee that it'd go as predicted. Many of the problems aren't realised until after the set is released, so waiting an extra 4-8 months ll go well. for that problem to be fixed on top of the original problem is just too much.


I agree with this. If we're faced with two solutions, one of which is fast and requires few changes (even if one is an errata), one of which is slow and requires many changes, and both of which will have an uncertain effect on game balance, I think the first solution is the obvious winner.

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #144 on: March 01, 2014, 09:07:01 AM »

I kind of think we need to shift away from the Magic the Gathering mind set where people tend to think of the different types of magic by what they are capable of. Instead, maybe we should think about the different schools by their weaknesses. Each school should be MOSTLY self sufficient but with a few glaring weaknesses that force them to delve out of school. When they do venture out of school there should be multiple viable options to choose from so that nobody has to take specific cards or ever delve into their weak school.


I would echo the idea of a different mind set although if your experience is based on the competitive MtG tournament world it may be difficult to see board game / miniature metas that attract some of us to Mage Wars.

When I read all the ideas here the common point in agreement is that the 'competitive tournament/online meta' is threatened by having unequal mages. this is not a show stopper in the board game tournament world that I am familiar with. For example, a competitive tournament environment can be maintained by designing tournaments in such a way to reflect the different strength and weaknesses of specific matchups. i.e. Designed matchups or scenarios are used for two sides to compete against and this information is known going into the tournament.

This is very different than the CCG tournament meta which is driven by the idea of players competing with a specific 'deck' of their design throughout a tournament. I don't hold with this assumption and I actually enjoy the different strength and weaknesses of each mage. As others have mentioned here, the schools will continue to evolve and existing mages will have new options for their toolkit as new mages are added to the game. This is something I look forward to and expect to change over time. I don't see an actual need to have all the mages on par. Most conflicts will have an underdog and certainly this is the case in the board game world of conflict simulations. The trick is to create competitive tournaments or player options using unique Mage Wars elements rather than adopt a CCG mind set that requires 'decks' be on par to make a competitive tournament. 

After all, the fact that a Wizard is the most flexible mage in a world of magical spells/battles doesn't seem unrealistic to me. While it may not be seen as competitive to some, it certainly seems intuitive.   :)
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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #145 on: March 01, 2014, 10:13:41 AM »


I kind of think we need to shift away from the Magic the Gathering mind set where people tend to think of the different types of magic by what they are capable of. Instead, maybe we should think about the different schools by their weaknesses. Each school should be MOSTLY self sufficient but with a few glaring weaknesses that force them to delve out of school. When they do venture out of school there should be multiple viable options to choose from so that nobody has to take specific cards or ever delve into their weak school.


I would echo the idea of a different mind set although if your experience is based on the competitive MtG tournament world it may be difficult to see board game / miniature metas that attract some of us to Mage Wars.

When I read all the ideas here the common point in agreement is that the 'competitive tournament/online meta' is threatened by having unequal mages. this is not a show stopper in the board game tournament world that I am familiar with. For example, a competitive tournament environment can be maintained by designing tournaments in such a way to reflect the different strength and weaknesses of specific matchups. i.e. Designed matchups or scenarios are used for two sides to compete against and this information is known going into the tournament.

This is very different than the CCG tournament meta which is driven by the idea of players competing with a specific 'deck' of their design throughout a tournament. I don't hold with this assumption and I actually enjoy the different strength and weaknesses of each mage. As others have mentioned here, the schools will continue to evolve and existing mages will have new options for their toolkit as new mages are added to the game. This is something I look forward to and expect to change over time. I don't see an actual need to have all the mages on par. Most conflicts will have an underdog and certainly this is the case in the board game world of conflict simulations. The trick is to create competitive tournaments or player options using unique Mage Wars elements rather than adopt a CCG mind set that requires 'decks' be on par to make a competitive tournament. 

After all, the fact that a Wizard is the most flexible mage in a world of magical spells/battles doesn't seem unrealistic to me. While it may not be seen as competitive to some, it certainly seems intuitive.   :)

The problem with that is that it would require either that people bring multiple spellbooks to every tournament they go to (one in each tier) in order to prevent unfair matchups, or limit customization for tournaments, like say, the following spells gain unique/epic/legendary/forbidden for this event.

That might actually be a good idea. If we have multiple tournament metas then a mage that's weak in one meta might be stronger in another.
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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #146 on: March 01, 2014, 10:48:59 AM »
I think tournament scenarios could work to disrupt things a bit and add variety.

The labyrinth - organizers provide 12 walls of stone at the beginning of the match. Before rolling initiative players take turns placing the walls until all are placed. No fair walking in parts of the arena.

King of the hill - one of the two center squares of the arena (randomly determine which) lies on a magical leyline. Any mage in this zone during the upkeep phase generates 3 extra mana.

Etc

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #147 on: March 01, 2014, 02:52:41 PM »
I think tournament scenarios could work to disrupt things a bit and add variety.

The labyrinth - organizers provide 12 walls of stone at the beginning of the match. Before rolling initiative players take turns placing the walls until all are placed. No fair walking in parts of the arena.

King of the hill - one of the two center squares of the arena (randomly determine which) lies on a magical leyline. Any mage in this zone during the upkeep phase generates 3 extra mana.

Etc

another tournament format option -

Iron Man - AW or organizers create tournament specific books for X mages. Each player plays X heats selecting a different mage each time. At the end of a round of X heats each player will have played each mage once and tournament points could be scored in each game to rank the players for advancement into the next round or award tournament victory. So the result is ranking players across different mage types rather than as a specific mage.
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Zuberi

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #148 on: March 01, 2014, 03:06:06 PM »
Quote from: webcatcher
If we're faced with two solutions, one of which is fast and requires few changes (even if one is an errata), one of which is slow and requires many changes, and both of which will have an uncertain effect on game balance

That is not an unfair assessment. However, I think attaching actual numbers to it paints a better picture than the connotation laden words of fast and slow.

Option 1: a few very major changes to the game implemented in a single expansion.
Option 2: several minor changes to the game which requires two expansions to see results.

Both will require additional tweaking with more expansions afterwards, but the game will hopefully never stop growing and evolving anyways.

@wtcannonjr
I am not very familiar with the games of which you speak, but I find the idea intriguing. I don't think we should stop trying to balance the different schools of magic, but being able to balance the tournament environment with the current card pool by using specific tournament rules does sound like a good way to calm people down until parity has been reached.

I think that tournaments should continue to allow players to bring their own spell books though. Customization is a big draw of the game, and taking that away would be a cure worse than the disease I think. I know this makes your suggestion more difficult as then you can't really judge who has the upper hand before the match begins. Just because I'm running a Wizard doesn't mean I've built him very well. Still, perhaps an inherent handicap for Wizard players at tournaments would be acceptable.

I personally think taking away between 10 and 20 spell points from the Wizard would be a good solution for both casual and tournament play until the card pool has been balanced. Perhaps doing the opposite for the Warlord, but Forged in Fire is fast approaching and will hopefully eliminate the need to assist Warlords.

Sailor Vulcan

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Re: Bringing all mages on par!
« Reply #149 on: March 01, 2014, 03:14:36 PM »
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Iron Man - AW or organizers create tournament specific books for X mages. Each player plays X heats selecting a different mage each time. At the end of a round of X heats each player will have played each mage once and tournament points could be scored in each game to rank the players for advancement into the next round or award tournament victory. So the result is ranking players across different mage types rather than as a specific mage.

Why not just have people bring their own spellbooks and then rotate them? So then you can try using your opponents' spellbooks too? And I just thought of a really good tournament format that would incorporate that and I need to post it ASAP.
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