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BattleCON: Devastation of Indines» Forums » Variants

Subject: New Special Action Idea - Upgrade rss

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Aaron White
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Hi all,

So we have been having a good discussion in the BattleCON league about the Special Action card. One of the primary points being that Pulse plus Cancel are much more prominent than finishers, mainly due to finishers being situation specific and having a life total restriction.

I was trying to think of a way that we could have finishers that functioned more as one shot super moves, but there is no way you could balance the current arrangement of finishers in this fashion. Then for whatever reason the idea hit me - what if we had super bases to pair with our styles? Making a custom base for every character is a lot of work, but a simple use of this system is the Upgrade special action.

When the Upgrade style is paired with a base, that base is then upgraded to an EX base of its equivalent. (Drive to Blitz, Burst to Riposte, Grasp to Grip etc). This attack pair wins priority ties. Furthermore, if you use the Upgrade special action when you are at 7 or less life, the base is upgraded to Almighty instead. (Strike to Breaker, Shot to Cannon etc).

The only thing with using Upgrade is technically there is no style applied to the base - it is just the base effects by themselves. I have no real idea if that is an issue, or if the player needs to apply a style somehow.

So, comments? Thoughts? Feedback? I just thought an idea like this should not be kept to myself.

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Marco Santos
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Personally, this wouldn't help too much because it would be Dangerous.

"Upgrading" a base late into the game (if you stick to need 7 HP or below to use it), you wouldn't have enough beats to make use of it.

On the other hand, if you allow its free use, you'd upgrade on beat 1, leaving Cancel/Pulse out of the picture.
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Aaron White
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I suppose that is the idea, use it early for EX or late for Almighty.

I guess you are right as well - Cancel and Pulse are so good, when would you use Upgrade over them.
 
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Marco Santos
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Rook96 wrote:
I suppose that is the idea, use it early for EX or late for Almighty.

I guess you are right as well - Cancel and Pulse are so good, when would you use Upgrade over them.


Yeah. When you're at 7 HP, you won't be needing an extra Base, you'll be needing a way to either Win the beat (Cancel) or Stall (Pulse).

However, I'd like to go over some theory regarding the use of Special Actions. Well, it's not theory so much as it is just thinking about it.

The fact that Cancel and Pulse end up being more used than Finishers is actually GOOD for Finishers. Why is that?

This comes from the meta-game that you play in BattleCON. Since you're more likely to play Cancel/Pulse, opponents would play attack pairs suited to counter/mitigate their losses when they fight Cancel/Pulse.

Often times, the attack they'd play would EASILY get beaten by your Finisher.

Now, let's say that they try to play a SUPERIOR attack to BEAT your Finisher instead. This leaves them open to Cancel/Pulse. Which, in my opinion is GREAT!

Personally, Finishers are good the way they are even if they don't get used often because their benefits stem so much from outside sources rather than the attacks themselves. One key example would be Khadath's Dimensional Exile Finisher.

The mere fact that he has access to this move leaves opponents weary of getting stuck in his Gate Trap as he could potentially KO you anytime. This leads to opponents who would usually IGNORE his Gate Trap (such as people who don't rely on Priority) to start AVOIDING it.

It does all of this WITHOUT HAVING TO BE PLAYED!

Personally, the existence of Finishers is what makes Cancel/Pulse so strong in the first place. Sure, they don't get used as much but hitting with it turns games around. They're risky like that. It's in their nature.

Sure, Cancels and Pulses are safer options BUT they can't easily turn a 17-7 game into a 5-7 game. Finishers CAN do that and that's their use.

They pressure opponents into always considering them, even if you don't play them. Another case is Cadenza's Rocket Press that hits EVERYTHING THAT IS NOT RANGE 1. This forces people to stick close to Cadenza to dodge it. But, then again, that's what Cadenza WANTS.
 
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Nerds call me
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I'd rather see less Special Actions than more, honestly. At this point, with how people feel about counter-pulsing, I would rather just leave Cancels and Pulses out of the mix altogether. We would see more Finisher that way, but Rangers would suffer from not having Pulses available.
 
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Mitko Simidchiev
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And that's why I have come to appreciate Strikers very much. They take the place of your Special Action but you can use them repeatedly. You can also upgrade them into a Special Action if you need that Pulse/Cancel but then you are trading the reusable bonuses of the Striker for the option of Pulsing/Canceling once. I find them to be a very solid alternative to the straight up Special Actions because of this. They make you think very hard whether that Pulse would be worth the cost.
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Aaron White
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alexmitko wrote:
And that's why I have come to appreciate Strikers very much. They take the place of your Special Action but you can use them repeatedly. You can also upgrade them into a Special Action if you need that Pulse/Cancel but then you are trading the reusable bonuses of the Striker for the option of Pulsing/Canceling once. I find them to be a very solid alternative to the straight up Special Actions because of this. They make you think very hard whether that Pulse would be worth the cost.


What a great point. I am going over the Strikers again and will look at using them in my next game.

dorktron2000 wrote:
I'd rather see less Special Actions than more, honestly. At this point, with how people feel about counter-pulsing, I would rather just leave Cancels and Pulses out of the mix altogether. We would see more Finisher that way, but Rangers would suffer from not having Pulses available.


I have the same feeling, but what really makes it hard for me to justify those feelings is that all the characters finishers are not created equal. Some characters have hard to land or situation specific finishers, so it would be unfair to deny these characters an alternative special action. That is where the above idea came from - a special action that all characters can use.


 
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Marco Santos
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Each character has an Overdrive Finisher that contributes their over-all game-plan. Finishers are often there to compensate for a character's innate weakness (working with the 2 finishers each character has). If that is not the case, it works well with their original game-plan.

Aside from my listed examples, we have Cherri's Soul Gaze Finisher. This COMPENSATES for the fact that she has no naturally fast/damaging move. As most Cherri's deal damage via UA life-loss, they have a problem "ending" the game. The Finisher is there to remedy that.

Another example would be Ryukyuk's Fully Automatic Finisher. Sure, it might seem really situational but it works with his original game-plan of keeping away and pelting opponent with shots.

As CONVERSES to these, Cherri's The Watchers Finisher allows her to gain her Insight Token back EVERY beat. This works with her original game-plan.

On the other hand, we have Ryukyuk's Grenade Launcher Finisher. This allows him to attack an opponent even if he doesn't have ammo. It also lets him push opponents back, COMPENSATING for his weaknesses.

All Finishers have their uses and are DESIGNED to either COMPENSATE for a character's weakness or FURTHER that character's original game-plan.

For even more examples, we have Eligor's Sweet Revenge (which works with his game-plan as he can retaliate for TONS of damage) and Sheet Lightning (which lets him cover his lack of Range).

For even more examples, we have Arec's Dominate Person (which works with his game-plan as it lets him ultimately cause the opponent to card-lock and not use any useful effects) and Uncanny Oblivion (which compensates for his lack of high Priority moves).

Finishers don't get used often and Cancel/Pulse do. Does this mean that FInishers are bad by design? No.

It just means that the players value the safety and assurance of Cancel/Pulse that Finishers don't usually have. Other people weigh values differently.

Also, like I said, Cancel/Pulse getting a LOT of use will make you "forget" about Finishers, which increases the chances of you getting smacked by it.

However, if your answer to that is "well, I can always counter the finisher," then the Finisher has done its job because it has gotten you to CHANGE the way you fight the character. At the very least, it places extra pressure on you as you are afraid of getting hit with it.

As for Strikers being better, I don't think so personally. Again, personally, Striker/Character combinations are not as balanced as Spacial Action/Character combinations. Most players pick Strikers that will either help your game-plan or compensate for their character's weaknesses.

That sounds familiar. Actually, that's what Finishers do except that you can't spam it many times over a match.

It's the meta-game that we exist in that makes Cancels/Pulses used so often. If people started deviating from it, we'd see a change in the spread of Special Action usage. However, it's currently deemed "statistically better" to Cancel and Pulse.

I won't deny that. However, risk is always a factor in this game. Finishers don't get used a lot, but when they hit, they win games.

Cancels and Pulses get used a lot, but it's hardly a mega-comeback/instant victory for you.

It's a trade-off.

However, that's just my personal opinion.

Maybe Finishers are giving you hidden advantages that you never see. Like I said, the benefits of many Finishers come from simply having ACCESS to the attack rather than actually PLAYING it.
 
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Aaron White
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This is starting to sound an awful lot like the Unyielding discussion for Rexan. Having it there causes your opponent to not hoard their Curse Tokens, but you never actually use it. Are Finishers going this same direction - better to have it and not use it, than have it and use it?

The threat of doing things does not sound like as much fun as actually doing things. ^_^
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Rook96 wrote:
This is starting to sound an awful lot like the Unyielding discussion for Rexan. Having it there causes your opponent to not hoard their Curse Tokens, but you never actually use it. Are Finishers going this same direction - better to have it and not use it, than have it and use it?

The threat of doing things does not sound like as much fun as actually doing things. ^_^


Pretty sure Brad put this in the Devastation rulebook:

"The threat of power is power."

Or something like that.

Don't spend your Special Action or your best attack pair all the time. Just having it in your hand is scary enough.
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Marco Santos
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Rook96 wrote:
This is starting to sound an awful lot like the Unyielding discussion for Rexan. Having it there causes your opponent to not hoard their Curse Tokens, but you never actually use it. Are Finishers going this same direction - better to have it and not use it, than have it and use it?

The threat of doing things does not sound like as much fun as actually doing things. ^_^


But we're not talking about fun. We're talking about power. It might not be fun for you, but other people (me included) enjoy the "threat of power" as Dorktron quotes Brad on.

Unyeilding is a different thing all together because Rexan has other styles that discourage hoarding already. Even his UA discourages it.

There are no "side-grades" to Overdrive Finishers on most characters.

That's the Key difference. Quite an important one, IMO.

Also, you're ignoring my main argument. The main argument is that ODF's are either big attacks that further your game-plan or compensate for your character's weaknesses.

I'm not saying that the threat of power is the only strength they have. They can still be used and played.

All I'm saying is that people might not be giving value to the ODF's because they think power should always warrant usage or usage should always warrant power. (That is, if it's good, people SHOULD be playing the attack).

As Brad designed the game, that is obviously not the case. In a similar manner that Seth's true Power isn't in actually guessing the right base but, rather, using your abilities to threaten opponent options.

Just because Seth doesn't guess the enemy base right all the time/consistently, doesn't mean that his UA is useless/crappy. It just has outside Power that is not present in actually activating the UA. In fact, his UA's bonuses are stats that Kallistar can get consistently at the cost of 1 HP per beat or Hepzibah at the cost of 2 HP per beat.

The same goes for Finishers. If you connect with it, it can turn games around. But while you're at 7 HP or less, opponents need to worry about an extra attack in your hand. A powerful one at that.

If threat of power isn't something that many people experience, I think I can compare it to this:

Imagine fighting Cadenza. You know how you hate it when he has Clockwork Shot in his hand and you always try to bait it or Dash it because it hurts so hard?

Now, imagine your opponent always having Clockwork Shot in his hand once he hits 7 HP.

That's pretty much what the threat of power is, to me.

TL;DR:
Spoiler (click to reveal)
1) ODF's have their uses as actual attacks.
2) ODF's have power aside from being played.
3) Threat of Power is fun for some people.
4) Marco's a stick in the mud.
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Aaron White
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Sorry Mnmkami, did not ignore your main point, just had nothing to add to it.

I agree with the threat of power, and I do not believe it is no fun. But doing cool things is more fun than not doing cool things.

My opinion has no bearing on other peoples fun.

But your rant was fun to read.
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Marco Santos
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Rook96 wrote:
Sorry Mnmkami, did not ignore your main point, just had nothing to add to it.

I agree with the threat of power, and I do not believe it is no fun. But doing cool things is more fun than not doing cool things.

My opinion has no bearing on other peoples fun.

But your rant was fun to read.


We all have our own definitions of fun. And sorry if I came off as ranting. It was more of an analysis on the advantages. I'll freely admit that most of this was just me thinking over it. Honestly, I never use ODF's myself. But the more I look at it, the more advantages it actually had.

Also, the Upgrade idea has a small "issue." Would it mean that we have an entirely different SA that only does 1 thing? If that's the case, then, there's no issue.

Otherwise, the issue comes from only being able to upgrade Drive/Strike. XD
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Aaron White
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mnmkami wrote:
Rook96 wrote:
Sorry Mnmkami, did not ignore your main point, just had nothing to add to it.

I agree with the threat of power, and I do not believe it is no fun. But doing cool things is more fun than not doing cool things.

My opinion has no bearing on other peoples fun.

But your rant was fun to read.


We all have our own definitions of fun. And sorry if I came off as ranting. It was more of an analysis on the advantages. I'll freely admit that most of this was just me thinking over it. Honestly, I never use ODF's myself. But the more I look at it, the more advantages it actually had.

Also, the Upgrade idea has a small "issue." Would it mean that we have an entirely different SA that only does 1 thing? If that's the case, then, there's no issue.

Otherwise, the issue comes from only being able to upgrade Drive/Strike. XD


Sorry, rant was the wrong word to use - I really DO enjoy your posts.

Having it by itself (no Pulse or Cancel) really is a good idea. Will have to try it some time.

Thanks for discussing.
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Marco Santos
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Getting Slide is going to be such a troll. XD
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Aaron White
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mnmkami wrote:
Getting Slide is going to be such a troll. XD


My thoughts were Clockwork Crush! surprise
 
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Upgrading Bases sounds like a pretty cool idea for a UA at least

Speaking of upgrading though, if you guys haven't tried out the custom armory duels available in Extended Edition, I highly encourage giving them a look

They're not balanced, they're not fair, but they're super fun!
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Marco Santos
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Kyokai wrote:
Upgrading Bases sounds like a pretty cool idea for a UA at least


We're on it.
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