February 25, 2018, 07:06:23 PM

Author Topic: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?  (Read 1088 times)

Sailor Vulcan

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #30 on: January 18, 2018, 10:56:44 AM »
How does Altar of Ifernia make the game repellent to new players?

Because this how a thread here looks like (in my eyes this is the definition of a catastrophe!):
Lost Grimoire volume 1 brings us this beauty from the school of darkness:

Quote
Altar of Infernia
Quick; 0-1; Zone
7 mana; Conjuration - Artifact; Lvl 2 Dark
2 Armor; 6 Health
Zone Exclusive; Epic

All creatures lose, and cannot gain, Melee +X traits. This does not affect Melee -X traits.

Sounds straightforward, right?

...

Or is it?

It turns out, when you look more closely (e.g. see the Codex), Mage Wars deals with adding attack dice in a variety of ways. Sometimes, the cards themselves or the rules and Codex as written state that a creature or creature type or damage type or mage gains "Melee +X", but other times it might say to "roll extra dice" instead. Depending on the wording, it may or may not be affected by Altar of Infernia. In general, you need to see if the trait keyword "Melee +X" is used in the effect of the ability or spell or condition marker, etc.

Here is a list of spells and abilities that are affected by Altar of Infernia, followed by a list that are not affected. Please feel free to post spells and abilities I've missed that you think are interesting.


Alter of Infernia affects:
- buffs that directly add Melee +X (typical examples include Bear Strength, Wolf Fury, Giant Size, Gauntlets of Strength, Paladin's Valor, Blessed Focus, Knight's Courage, Power Strike, Call of the Wild, etc)
- Growth markers (give Melee +1 for each Growth marker; thus Kralathor, The Devourer, Ravenous Ghoul, Shaggoth-Zora won't benefit as much with Infernia in play; each Growth marker still gives Innate Life +3 though)
- Rage +X (similar to Growth; thus Mountain Gorilla is affected)
- Ehren, Enduring Paladin
- Valshalla, Lightning Angel
- Steelclaw Matriarch
- Redclaw, Alpha Male doesn't buff other canines (aside from Armor +1)
- Wychwood Hounds don't buff each other (aside from Armor +1)
- Knight of the Red Helm usually gets Melee +2 when attacking strongest creature
- Azurean Genie (a "wish" can still be used for Healing 2 or Stagger)
- Hand of Bim-Shalla (similar to the Genie)
- Sacrificial Altar (although a creature still gets the Piercing bonus and there is mana refunded)
- Animal Kinship + canine(s)
- Staff of Beasts won't give a melee bonus to a friendly animal (but can still be used for healing)
- "Battle Skill" Mage ability (e.g. Straywood Beastmaster, Arraxian Crown Warlock, Bloodwave Warlord)
- Straywood Beastmaster's "Pet" (no general Melee +1 nor additional Melee +1 when in-zone)
- Bloodwave Warlord's "Veterans" AND command order "On Guard!" (although doesn't affect "Release Volley!" = Ranged +1, or "To Battle!" = Charge +1)
- Malakai Priest's "Holy Avenger" (no Melee +2 for you!)
- Johktari Beastmaster's "Wounded Prey" (no Melee +1 against that creature)
- "Siren's Call" ability wouldn't give a friendly creature Melee +2
- Paladin's "Vengeful Aura" doesn't give Melee +1, but still gives Piercing +2 so might still be worthwhile against heavily armored (but not Resilient) targets
- Aquatic creatures in Shallow Sea don't get Melee +1 (but non-aquatic non-flying still rolls 1 less die as normal...)
- Gate to Hell wouldn't give  Melee +1 buffs to demons
- Bloodfire Helmet wouldn't give  Melee +1 buffs to demons
- Demonic Link wouldn't give  Melee +1 buff to the demon
- Drakas, Imp Overlord wouldn't give  Melee +1 buffs to demons
- Similarly, Unholy Blood Ritual is a bad idea with Altar of Infernia in play!
- Kharne, Horned Demon normally gets Melee +X where X is the number of enemy creatures in its zone. Well, not with this Altar in play!
- Wildfire Imp wouldn't get Melee +2 for attacking an object with a Burn marker
- Wreck of the Viridian Lace would still grant Ranged +1 but not Melee +1 to pirates
- Temple of Meraveran becomes quite useless in Infernia!
- Shoalsdeep Tidecaller drops his Melee +2 bonus in Infernia, but still gets +4 to the effect die in initiative rounds
- Temple High Guard counterstrikes first but doesn't get Melee +2 when Guarding
- Metatron doesn't get bonuses for Temples in play
- Eligor Larington doesn't get a Melee +2 bonus (but does still gain Piercing +1) when counterstriking
- Alandell, the Blue Knight isn't worth putting mana into unless you REALLY need that Daze effect to trigger
- Acolyte of the Bog Queen can't give Melee +1 to zombies (but still reconstructs Skeletons and does Cleric stuff)
- Sentinel of V'Tar wouldn't get Melee +1 when guarding, but would still get all the other bonuses
- Standard Bearer wouldn't give Melee +1 but would still grant Armor +1 to other friendly creatures
- Dawnbreaker Ring would only grant Ranged +1
- Lightning Ring would only grant Ranged +1 (...)
- Deathshroud Staff wouldn't buff undead creatures with Melee +1
- Flank Attack would only grant Piercing +2

But has no effect on:
- Ranged +X (obviously)
- Piercing +X (making it a good alternative against armoured foes when Altar of Infernia is in play)
- Charge +X (!)
- Bloodthirsty +X (!!) <- think zombies, sharks, some demons, Goran, Werewolf Pet, etc
- most melee weapon Equipment's melee attacks (e.g. Arena melee weapons usually roll 4 dice + effects/traits/abilities, rather than having a Melee +X trait, so this is a way to mitigate against Infernia; and Academy melee weapons still roll one more die for Arena-level Mages as usual despite Infernia)
- Arraxian Crown Warlock's "Blood Reaper" (since it gains Bloodthirsty +2, not Melee +2)
- Necromancer's "Eternal Servant" (Piercing +1)
- Adramelech Warlock's "Smoldering Curses" ability (since enemy creatures gain Flame +1)
- Similarly, Malakai's Basilica works as normal (since it gives an enemy creature Light +1)
- Interestingly, unlike the "Wounded Prey" ability, Marked for Death doesn't have anything to do with Melee +X, but rather specifies that enemy creatures each roll one more die when attacking
- Gloranna, Avenging Angel rolls an extra die for each Holy creature in its controller's discard pile (up to a cap)... which isn't technically getting Melee +X!
- Lightning Raptor still charges up as normal (changes the number of dice of the attack directly, not Melee +X)
- Afflicted Demon works as normal; e.g. the Weak tokens are both a bane and a boon as usual
- Ballad of Courage (Charge +2, Fast and can't be Hindered)
- Smite (rolls "2 additional attack dice," not Melee +2)
- Zombie Frenzy is unaffected... as are pretty much all other zombie-related bonuses (aside from Deathshroud Staff)

** I didn't mention it above, but "+X vs. ___" traits will still work as normal (e.g. Tarok, the Skyhunter's "+2 vs. Flying", Samandriel, Angel of Light's "+1 vs Nonliving or Dark", Joseph Trublood's "+2 vs Nonliving and Dark", Kralathor, The Devourer's "+2 vs Undead", Titanodon's and Mountain Ram's "+2 vs Corporeal Conjurations", etc)
There's a very simple solution to this that doesn't require any errata or massive overhauls. Just start using block formats for local tournaments. Considering that the  wizard and his tower didn't get errata until after forged in fire came out, there is an enormous space of largely unexplored metagames using just the first five arena sets. Since most experienced players played the unbalanced wizard-dominated version of these metagames, they won't be as familiar with the many possible strategies that would have been viable back them if the wizard were balanced. Additionally, many of us were less skilled back then, and it would be interesting to see what new exciting strategies experienced players would come up with.

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« Last Edit: January 18, 2018, 11:19:58 AM by Sailor Vulcan »
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bigfatchef

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #31 on: January 18, 2018, 06:09:48 PM »
Puddn you find the words better than I do and talk from my heart.
+1 die, gain one die and roll one additional die should always be the same.

Beldin I am not talking about what the card does. My point is really, that m mage wars is unnecessary overcomplicated. Don't get me wrong here. I love the flavor of all the different traits. It's the tons of exceptions  (now to find sometimes in many extra lines with extra rules for Academy) that makes the mess.
As I mention it already, Academy prevents core mechanics to be added to new cards where they thematically should be. So the theme starts feeling wrong also.

Sailor I don't get your point? What exactly do you mean with block format and how does a set of unwritten competition rules make the game more attractive for new players?

Sailor Vulcan

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #32 on: January 18, 2018, 07:05:21 PM »
Puddn you find the words better than I do and talk from my heart.
+1 die, gain one die and roll one additional die should always be the same.

Beldin I am not talking about what the card does. My point is really, that m mage wars is unnecessary overcomplicated. Don't get me wrong here. I love the flavor of all the different traits. It's the tons of exceptions  (now to find sometimes in many extra lines with extra rules for Academy) that makes the mess.
As I mention it already, Academy prevents core mechanics to be added to new cards where they thematically should be. So the theme starts feeling wrong also.

Sailor I don't get your point? What exactly do you mean with block format and how does a set of unwritten competition rules make the game more attractive for new players?
Some examples of possible block formats:

Core only
Core + FvW
Core + DvN
Core + Academy core + Academy Warlock and Priestess
Core + PvS
Core + FvW + CoK

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #33 on: January 18, 2018, 07:49:15 PM »
I do enjoy the game, but as a new player it can be a bit overwhelming at times.  The concept is great and I want to keep playing it.  What I find challenging is when I play a mage I haven't before, and suddenly all of these different tokens I've never seen come in to play.  Suddenly there are Valor tokens, and Load tokens for the ballista, and now I'm grappled  and pinned or something... it's kind a crazy. 

Everyone I have played with has been very helpful in getting me through the rules.  I never enjoyed the randomness of games like MTG (granted I only really played it in like 1996) but rule simplification could go a really long way.

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #34 on: January 18, 2018, 08:03:31 PM »
It is really not that complicated, though I would like to have a central document for the combined rules, as things are a bit spread out.  The key thing to remember is that Mage Wars is a board game that uses cards, not a card game that uses boards, and it is nothing compared to the complexity of a tabletop game like GURPS, Pathfinder, or Shadowrun.  That being said, I think that is one of the reasons why a Mage Wars video game would be a good idea, as the video game could keep track of the complexity of the game.

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #35 on: January 19, 2018, 03:19:39 AM »
Mage wars is  the big game ,    with a small enterprise, Arcane wonders .

after read this post ,  il aggree with some people :

- This game must have more promotion because after the begin the last year , we haven't very great news for mage wars ( academie can be add some news card , but it s not magewars arena ) , after two years i will hope have good new from my favorite game !!!

- Arcane wonders is a small  enterprise and he can' t working on mage wars extension or his promotion , and in same time working on their other game.
then when if we are not a  project manager  exclusive on mage wars we attempted to have only few news . but i am sure mage wars will had a great futur .



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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #36 on: January 19, 2018, 09:39:51 AM »
- Arcane wonders is a small  enterprise and he can' t working on mage wars extension or his promotion , and in same time working on their other game.

 :)
AW should stop all other games (including academy) and concentrate on Arena!
We would play a lot, they wouldn't eat a lot, and the best game ever would be!

Sailor Vulcan

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #37 on: January 19, 2018, 10:43:43 AM »
For those of you who were wondering
 what I meant by block formats and how that would help make the game more approachable for new players, here is a better explanation: http://forum.arcanewonders.com/index.php?topic=18588.0

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #38 on: January 19, 2018, 12:44:09 PM »
I disagree with block formats.  One of the great features of Arena is that it is universal and, as long as I do not have any Promos, I can play in any tournament from Helsinki to Tokyo.  Introducing black formats would fragment the already small population of Mage Wars players and would needless complicate tournaments.

Sailor Vulcan

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #39 on: January 19, 2018, 01:52:17 PM »


I disagree with block formats.  One of the great features of Arena is that it is universal and, as long as I do not have any Promos, I can play in any tournament from Helsinki to Tokyo.  Introducing black formats would fragment the already small population of Mage Wars players and would needless complicate tournaments.

I have yet to see any evidence that the mage wars community has fragmented. Pretty much everyone still plays standard vanilla Arena as far as I can tell. It's just that now some people play other formats *in addition to that*. And if we want to make Arena approachable to newer players, realistically speaking, we probably can't do it without block formats.

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #40 on: January 19, 2018, 05:32:09 PM »


I disagree with block formats.  One of the great features of Arena is that it is universal and, as long as I do not have any Promos, I can play in any tournament from Helsinki to Tokyo.  Introducing black formats would fragment the already small population of Mage Wars players and would needless complicate tournaments.

I have yet to see any evidence that the mage wars community has fragmented. Pretty much everyone still plays standard vanilla Arena as far as I can tell. It's just that now some people play other formats *in addition to that*. And if we want to make Arena approachable to newer players, realistically speaking, we probably can't do it without block formats.

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I don't agree. The only block format - as you call it - that has a good reason to be played is “core only“. That is great for beginners and works fine. From the first expansion you add I see no reason why you should allow some and others not. Maybe saying “no promos“ and “no academy“ is kinda comprehensible.

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #41 on: January 19, 2018, 06:02:17 PM »
Beginning players get overwhelmed by all the many many many different conditions and cards and rules. I'm not sure why you think that core only is the only block worth playing for new players.

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #42 on: January 20, 2018, 12:48:24 AM »
Begining players have also a lot of cards to buy if they want to play with all the boxes!

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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #43 on: January 20, 2018, 01:25:03 AM »
And if we want to make Arena approachable to newer players, realistically speaking, we probably can't do it without block formats.

I disagree with this piece here. Block formats are just more things for people to memorize. If a relatively small cardpool causes them trouble, then knowing different formats and navigating which cards are legal in what tournament won't help either. Instead of using tournaments to grow the community, they should start by playing casually.

Teaching most new players in a casual environment makes sense most of the time. There are times you'll find a newer person ready to jump into the deepend, but you can restrict away to your hearts desire as you are teaching people. No need for any officially supported format. All you need is someone willing to teach the new person in incremental steps. Once they have the basic game down, let them expand the cardpool they want to use at their own pace. The core set alone is enough to still play games that aren't lopsided against the entire card pool, especially in the process of learning the fundamentals of the game. I'd also suggest keeping some of the weirder interactions to a minimum for the first few games, but at some point they'll have to learn the interesting interactions if there is any interest in a tournament setting.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2018, 02:56:14 AM by SharkBait »
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Re: How big can we realistically grow the playerbase?
« Reply #44 on: January 21, 2018, 11:12:42 AM »
And if we want to make Arena approachable to newer players, realistically speaking, we probably can't do it without block formats.

I disagree with this piece here. Block formats are just more things for people to memorize. If a relatively small cardpool causes them trouble, then knowing different formats and navigating which cards are legal in what tournament won't help either. Instead of using tournaments to grow the community, they should start by playing casually.

Teaching most new players in a casual environment makes sense most of the time. There are times you'll find a newer person ready to jump into the deepend, but you can restrict away to your hearts desire as you are teaching people. No need for any officially supported format. All you need is someone willing to teach the new person in incremental steps. Once they have the basic game down, let them expand the cardpool they want to use at their own pace. The core set alone is enough to still play games that aren't lopsided against the entire card pool, especially in the process of learning the fundamentals of the game. I'd also suggest keeping some of the weirder interactions to a minimum for the first few games, but at some point they'll have to learn the interesting interactions if there is any interest in a tournament setting.
That only works if there is someone to teach them. What about players who pick up the game offline without there already being a local mage wars community in their area? If anything I would recommend block formats for local tournaments for relatively new mage wars communities. Also, the particular blocks i recommended would likely be the easiest for transferring from Academy to Arena.

And even if there is someone to teach, there's still an in between state where a player is new enough to not be a total beginner but not experienced enough to jump to playing with all of the expansions. These people could benefit from tournament play without full card pools because that way they can improve their skills in tandem with their knowledge of the cards and rules increasing. This means less information overload for people who start out in academy.

Newer players won't have to figure out and memorize which cards are legal in which card pools. They can just pick one to try, and then when they feel ready they can move on to a different one with more sets.

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« Last Edit: January 21, 2018, 11:15:17 AM by Sailor Vulcan »
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