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Author Topic: Johktari Weapon  (Read 15865 times)

wtcannonjr

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #30 on: August 26, 2014, 05:42:35 AM »
How about giving her +1 zone in addition to the Ranged +1 trait for any non-specific ranged attacks?

This only requires a change to her ability card and makes her bow more of a threat for the full action she must use.
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Ganpot

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #31 on: August 26, 2014, 08:01:33 AM »
I would rather use effect die. If creature moved and used its ranged attack, there is greater possibility for it to miss, similar to daze effect. Maybe it will be some kind of skill of a creature we will met in future :)
I personally dislike using the effect die, since it makes the effects more random.  I prefer a certain degree of predictability.   ;)

How about giving her +1 zone in addition to the Ranged +1 trait for any non-specific ranged attacks?

This only requires a change to her ability card and makes her bow more of a threat for the full action she must use.
I'm not sure how much that would really help her, to be honest.  Her fast trait would still be useless (I'm not sure if you were saying to replace fast with +1 zone or simply add it on top).  From the way she's designed, I think the devs wanted her to be a mobile archer: kiting stuff around the board and picking them off one by one.  Unfortunately, +1 range wouldn't aid that, since she would still have to stop for a full turn every time she wanted to attack or summon a creature.  That would make her more suited towards being a ranged turret, but I would actually prefer a mobile approach (since it would be more unique). 

Also, if the devs are going to errata her card, I'd like them to fix up her main ability as well.  In my opinion, it is tied with the Bloodwave Warlord's Veteran markers for weakest ability (and at least the Warlord gets battle orders).  It is too situational, and barely impacts the game in almost all circumstances.  The ability is also weird, since it tries to promote swarm tactics and melee fighting when the Straywood Beastmaster is better at both of those things. 

jacksmack

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #32 on: August 26, 2014, 09:03:11 AM »
I dont see the 2 abilities (fast and ranged+1) synergize with each other.
Just like i dont see curse weaving synergizing with blood reaper. Or arcane zap with voltaric shield. Or Priestess cleanse with ability to gain life when casting holy incantations/enchantments, etc etc.


Ganpot

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2014, 09:24:56 AM »
I dont see the 2 abilities (fast and ranged+1) synergize with each other.
Just like i dont see curse weaving synergizing with blood reaper. Or arcane zap with voltaric shield. Or Priestess cleanse with ability to gain life when casting holy incantations/enchantments, etc etc.


Assuming that response is sarcastic, I have some questions for you.  What does the Johktari Beastmaster do better than the Straywood one?  Especially if the Straywood Beastmaster has a Cheetah Speed and Hawkeye in his spellbook.  What does the Johktari Beastmaster uniquely bring to the game? Every other mage has an ability which twists established game rules and provides a different playing experience.  Instead, the Johktari Beastmaster basically gets a free Marked for Death (except worse).  Oh joy. 

sdougla2

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #34 on: August 26, 2014, 08:00:24 PM »
The Johktari Beastmaster has more incentive to run a bow than other mages, and can use her early mobility advantage to pressure her opponent quickly without falling behind on actions. I find that she does have a different style than the Straywood Beastmaster, and is more reliant on the Lair. The Straywood Beastmaster can certainly use the Lair, but you can also opt for a Battle Forge or no Spawnpoint. Overall I tend to think that the Johktari Beastmaster struggles without the Lair because she either wants to use her full action to make ranged attacks with a bow or to regain range 2 while casting something. The Johktari Beastmaster is better at kiting than the Straywood.

Now, for any strategy that involves running at the enemy mage, and trying to stay in melee, I would much prefer the Straywood Beastmaster. Even if I was just going to use my mage in a support role, I would rather use the Straywood Beastmaster for Pet, Quick Summoning, and a higher base life total.
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Ganpot

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #35 on: August 26, 2014, 08:38:42 PM »
Overall I tend to think that the Johktari Beastmaster struggles without the Lair because she either wants to use her full action to make ranged attacks with a bow or to regain range 2 while casting something. The Johktari Beastmaster is better at kiting than the Straywood.
I agree with the first sentence, but I don't find her better at kiting than the Straywood version (at least not when using a bow, like she was designed for).  Having the fast trait doesn't benefit archers whatsoever, and she still lacks elusive (which means if anything catches up to her she's not going to get away easily).  The fact that she can't move if she ever wants to attack means she can only outrun slow creatures. 

My problems with the Johktari Beastmaster are twofold:
1. Her abilities do not possess synergy: fast and ranged +1 are mutually exclusive, and Wounded Prey doesn't boost ranged attacks. 
2. Current two-handed weapons are really weak.  Bows have the same problem as the war sledge: they take up two equipment slots, but don't offer any benefits over a single-handed weapon and a wand. 

sdougla2

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #36 on: August 26, 2014, 11:54:43 PM »
You can't use both her Ranged +1 and Fast at the same time, but you can build your strategy so that you will get to benefit from one or the other turn to turn depending on what your opponent is doing. If your opponent fights your creatures, you can remain at range 2 and attack with your bow repeatedly. If they chase you, you can use Mongoose Agility, Tanglevine, and Teleport to stay away from your opponent while your animals maul them, and use other ranged options to harass them. Acid Ball, Surging Wave, Hurl Boulder, and curses come to mind.

While the Johktari Beastmaster doesn't start with Elusive, having innate Fast makes Mongoose Agility a much stronger card for her than for a Straywood Beastmaster doing essentially the same thing.

I wish Wounded Prey at least worked on Nonliving creatures, but it's a free attack boost for your animals in some circumstances. While it's not spectacular, getting bonuses for free is always nice. Pet may be a better ability overall, but it costs you mana to use it.

While the Straywood Beastmaster can try to kite,  Enfeeble is much more crippling if you don't play Cheetah Speed, you're more vulnerable to Destroy Magic, Purge Magic, Dispel, and Arcane Corruption if you rely on Cheetah Speed, it requires more setup (this is the real reason I don't think it works as well), and you're not able to punish your opponent for fighting your creatures as well. Plus you're wasting Battle Skill and Pet.

And bows do have an offsetting advantage over one handed weapons. They let you kill things without getting killed back, and let you exert force on a larger section of the board. Without spending additional mana. Wands cost you mana repeatedly to use. I don't particularly relish getting in a slugging match with Iron Golems, and a bow allows me to pressure my opponent without doing that. Whether that's enough of an advantage is up for debate, but you shouldn't discount it.

Besides, you should consider playing Hawkeye on the Johktari Beastmaster anyway, so you're still ahead on damage with a bow playing Johktari over Straywood.

I'd like to see more different options for how to play the Johktari Beastmaster, and more weapon options, but I don't see the Straywood Beastmaster performing as well as the Johktari Beastmaster as the mage in my Blood Wolves build.
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jacksmack

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #37 on: August 27, 2014, 03:56:38 AM »
Assuming that response is sarcastic, I have some questions for you.  What does the Johktari Beastmaster do better than the Straywood one?  Especially if the Straywood Beastmaster has a Cheetah Speed and Hawkeye in his spellbook.  What does the Johktari Beastmaster uniquely bring to the game? Every other mage has an ability which twists established game rules and provides a different playing experience.  Instead, the Johktari Beastmaster basically gets a free Marked for Death (except worse).  Oh joy.

Why would my response be sarcastic?

Ganpot

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #38 on: August 27, 2014, 10:53:42 AM »
Sorry in advance for the long response. 

Why would my response be sarcastic?
Sorry if I misread your response; I wasn't entirely certain if it was sarcastic, or if you really didn't see any synergy between those examples.  Granted, I probably should have mentioned that I wasn't referring to direct interactions with the abilities, but how they help the Mage type as a whole. 

Curseweaving helps the Warlock avoid running out of curses (since they are his bread and butter), and Bloodreaper allows the Warlock to heal every turn, so long as he is being aggressive (and his pet stays alive).  Both abilities allow the Warlock to stay in the game for a moderate amount of time while his curses wear down the enemy mage. 

Arcane Zap and the Voltaric Shield both allow the Wizard to avoid damage at the expense of mana.  Arcane Zap gives him a default range advantage (making him less likely to be attacked), and Voltaric Shield lets him absorb one small hit every round (assuming that you've activated it).  These help give the Wizard enough time to disable enemy creatures, starve the opponent of mana, or set up a base. 

The Priestess' cleanse and life-gain abilities create an advantage for her the longer the game goes on.  Cleansing a single condition (such as rot) is enough to save even the biggest creature's life, given enough time.  The life-gain, when combined with the holy school's numerous healing options, allows the priestess to become the hardest mage to kill (again, given enough time). 

You can't use both her Ranged +1 and Fast at the same time, but you can build your strategy so that you will get to benefit from one or the other turn to turn depending on what your opponent is doing. If your opponent fights your creatures, you can remain at range 2 and attack with your bow repeatedly. If they chase you, you can use Mongoose Agility, Tanglevine, and Teleport to stay away from your opponent while your animals maul them, and use other ranged options to harass them. Acid Ball, Surging Wave, Hurl Boulder, and curses come to mind.

While the Johktari Beastmaster doesn't start with Elusive, having innate Fast makes Mongoose Agility a much stronger card for her than for a Straywood Beastmaster doing essentially the same thing.

While the Straywood Beastmaster can try to kite,  Enfeeble is much more crippling if you don't play Cheetah Speed, you're more vulnerable to Destroy Magic, Purge Magic, Dispel, and Arcane Corruption if you rely on Cheetah Speed, it requires more setup (this is the real reason I don't think it works as well), and you're not able to punish your opponent for fighting your creatures as well.
The thing is, any mage (or regular creature) can move 2 spaces by default.  The only benefit of being fast (other than being more resistant to enfeeble, as you mentioned) is that you can attack after moving those 2 spaces.  Since (as we've established) no bow will allow you to attack after moving at all, the only 2 ways the Johktari can possibly take advantage of both her fast and ranged +1 traits in the same game are to keep switching weapons (which wastes mana and actions), or to deliberately move into an enemy's zone at the end of her turn and use her basic melee attack (which is counter-productive in almost every situation). 

In addition, although I'm sure this varies by playing community, none of the opponents I have ever faced have focused on my creatures instead of my mage.  There might be occasional threats that they divert their attention towards temporarily (Shaggoth-Zora, Iron Golem, Hydra, etc.), but they will still almost always keep pressure on my mage as well. 

Let's say that the enemy does decide to chase you with 2 fairly threatening, melee only, non-slow creatures.  For the sake of simplicity, let's also say that neither player can play any movement spells (teleport, tanglevine, etc.).  How can the Beastmaster respond (with the bow, not out-of-school attack spells)?  She can run away without firing her bow until the 2 creatures inevitably corner her.  She can stand still, fire her bow once, and then stand her ground (which won't allow her to use her bow anymore) while allowing the enemy creatures to take full-action attacks against her.  Or she can fire her bow once, and then futilely attempt to outrun the creatures while not being able to attack them, while she in turn suffers quick-attacks from them every turn. 

It might seem like I'm being overly harsh against the Johktari Beastmaster, but she simply isn't well put-together.  She absolutely needs elusive in order to function properly, and even that won't allow her to make good use of her bow.  No other mage needs a single card as badly as she does.  A Forcemaster can function just fine without her Forcefield, and a Warlock doesn't necessarily need Lash of Hellfire or Sectarus to win. 

And bows do have an offsetting advantage over one handed weapons. They let you kill things without getting killed back, and let you exert force on a larger section of the board. Without spending additional mana. Wands cost you mana repeatedly to use. I don't particularly relish getting in a slugging match with Iron Golems, and a bow allows me to pressure my opponent without doing that. Whether that's enough of an advantage is up for debate, but you shouldn't discount it.

Besides, you should consider playing Hawkeye on the Johktari Beastmaster anyway, so you're still ahead on damage with a bow playing Johktari over Straywood.
I might have been a bit hasty in saying that bows don't have any advantages.  What I should have said was that they most definitely are not worth it in the vast majority of circumstances.  They are simply too limited.  Wands are infinitely more flexible, can target things within the same zone as you (usually), and allow for both positioning and an attack on the same turn.  Attack spells usually also deal more damage or have better effects than bows.  From personal experience, wands are my biggest dissolve targets.  But I have never, not even once, bothered to dissolve a bow. 

Hawkeye will give the Johktari Beastmaster an advantage over the Straywood one.  However, for reasons that have yet to be explained to me, Hawkeye only gives +1 die while Bear Strength gives +2 (for 2 more mana).  So once again, melee weapons beat out bows. 

sdougla2

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #39 on: August 27, 2014, 05:03:59 PM »
Why would the Johktari be running away from those 2 creatures in isolation? The whole point is that her animals would be attacking things and providing hindering while she positioned against the enemy threats. That's a large part of why she's so dependent on the Lair. Elusive helps with that, but you can still drastically limit how many attacks your enemy gets against you with proper positioning and action sequencing even without it.

I've seen both board dominance plays (focusing on your opponent's creatures) and assassination plays (focusing down the enemy mage while ignoring their creatures as much as possible). Both can work, and which you should do depends on the board state, your overall strategy, and the matchup.

Hawkeye only gives Ranged +1 because otherwise it would be really strong with spammed attack spells, as you can get the bonus easily twice per round (particularly with the Wizard's extremely cheap Arcane Zap), and it's much harder to defend against ranged attacks, as most guards won't help. You can get the benefit of Bear Strength multiple times per round, but you need to use Defend or Retaliate, and your opponent needs to attack that creature. It's more situational to get the bonus multiple times in a round and requires setup. Plus if you're in range to hit your opponent with a melee attack, they'll be able to attack you with something, which is not necessarily true with a ranged attack.

You don't need a weapon to make a melee attack. Often it's more efficient to use Bear Strength to boost a melee attack than a weapon anyway. On the other hand, you can't make a ranged attack without a ranged weapon or attack spell.

I agree that the Johktari Beastmaster could be better supported, and I'd like to see more flexible options for her, but she's still very playable.
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Ganpot

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #40 on: August 27, 2014, 09:50:35 PM »
Hawkeye only gives Ranged +1 because otherwise it would be really strong with spammed attack spells, as you can get the bonus easily twice per round (particularly with the Wizard's extremely cheap Arcane Zap), and it's much harder to defend against ranged attacks, as most guards won't help.
That makes sense, but unfortunately it does leave regular (non-magical) ranged attacks a tad behind.  Hopefully more cards come out that boost ranged attacks.  The only ones I can think of at the moment are Hawkeye and Sniper Shot. 

Why would the Johktari be running away from those 2 creatures in isolation? The whole point is that her animals would be attacking things and providing hindering while she positioned against the enemy threats. That's a large part of why she's so dependent on the Lair. Elusive helps with that, but you can still drastically limit how many attacks your enemy gets against you with proper positioning and action sequencing even without it.

I agree that the Johktari Beastmaster could be better supported, and I'd like to see more flexible options for her, but she's still very playable.
Let's forget the scenario for a moment.  I just want you to answer one question:  What advantage does the innate fast trait give to the Johktari Beastmaster when she is being played as was intended by the developers (with her bow equipped)?  Besides the niche application of being unaffected by Enfeeble (a card which most Mages aren't going to run). 

Additionally, what would you personally change in regards to the Johktari Beastmaster and/or the Hunting Bow, if anything? 

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #41 on: August 29, 2014, 03:46:10 PM »
I like the idea of every other round the ranged weapon being readied. Alternatively they could have it cost mana to actually shoot the weapon making it no different then an attack spell in that regard. Thematically a crossbow is a hard sell for me though. Perhaps a spear thrower, blow gun, or sling? Maybe a spear thrower, blow gun AND a sling? One for the higher damage, one for the weaken or cripple effect, one for the slam condition. I think all of the examples should have a range of 1 however. Give creatures a chance to hinder her by double moving.

As is the Johktari does not appeal to me even slightly. She is the only mage I have not built a book for. I almost did  when I first got her and got as far as reading the two bow equipment cards. Saw it was a full action to shoot and discarded the concept. Have never looked back which makes me sad.
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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #42 on: August 29, 2014, 04:54:17 PM »

Let's forget the scenario for a moment.  I just want you to answer one question:  What advantage does the innate fast trait give to the Johktari Beastmaster when she is being played as was intended by the developers (with her bow equipped)?  Besides the niche application of being unaffected by Enfeeble (a card which most Mages aren't going to run). 

Wounded Prey is an unpreventable ability that gives her a very competitive edge in melee with zero support from any other melee ++. It's got its share of red tape but it stacks with marked for death, bear strength, and all the other applicable sources of melee ++.

With built in fast she can make more effective melee strikes to a large part of the arena at any given time.

Archery Skill puts her bow attacks at 5 which gives her a solid foundation to built multiple strategies.

The beastmaster is intended to be played multiple ways, one of which is the hunting bow. It is not required but adds to her different styles of play.

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #43 on: August 29, 2014, 11:22:04 PM »
The beastmaster is intended to be played multiple ways, one of which is the hunting bow. It is not required but adds to her different styles of play.

I would argue that the Beastmaster is at a disadvantage due to her lack of a niche.  The concept of a flexible all-rounder runs into problems in every game that tries to include it.  This reminds me of when I tried playing as a Ranger in Guild Wars 2 (right after release).  Everyone shunned that class and refused to group with one (they still might; I don't play anymore).  The problem was that a Ranger was simply never the best class for any job, and groups (understandably) wanted to min-max. 

The same thing happens right now in Mage Wars.  If players want to play as a melee Mage, they will be more effective with a Mage that specializes purely in that (such as a Forcemaster).  If they want a ranged Mage, there are also better options. 

It would be one thing if the game actively supported switching roles mid-match.  But most of the time, it's just not a good idea.  Maybe if the Beastmaster had an ability that let her change weapons for free at the beginning of her action phase, things would be different.  But I don't see that happening. 

DaveW

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Re: Johktari Weapon
« Reply #44 on: September 14, 2014, 08:40:31 PM »
What does the Johktari Beastmaster do better than the Straywood one?  Especially if the Straywood Beastmaster has a Cheetah Speed and Hawkeye in his spellbook.  What does the Johktari Beastmaster uniquely bring to the game?

1) She does not have to cast Cheetah Speed or Hawkeye on herself (presuming that she wants either of these abilities). This saves her mana and time (quick actions), and eliminates the possibility of having these abilities a) removed via dispels, or b) causing the payment of upkeep when she is in range of a monolith.

2) She does not lose spell book points for including these two spells when not to be cast on other Creatures.

3) She is the better suited to using bows than any other Mage. Having a bow equipped gives her the option of a "free" ranged attack with a +1 attack die (not counting the cost of the bow, which might be argued as being minimal compared with the costs of making multiple ranged spell attacks instead), if she chooses not to use her action marker to move.
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