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Codex: Card-Time Strategy – Deluxe Set» Forums » Rules

Subject: Can Workers Be Killed? rss

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Alex Krasny
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This is an integral part of the RTS genre and I can't imagine it's not in Codex, but reading countless battle reports, and watching every video I can find, I have never seen anyone kill a worker...

Am I missing something?
 
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Dani Evans
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I don't believe that you can typically target your opponent's workers, though I can't say whether there are specific spells or effects that trash them.

There's definitely at least one Black card that lets you sacrifice your own workers though (Lich's Bargain)
 
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Thomas Brendel
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They can't be attacked, but some cards can affect them. For example, Zarramonde the Obliterator (Demonlogy Tech III) destroys a thing when he arrives from hand, and workers are specifically listed among the possible targets.
 
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Joshua Christensen
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As has been said there are a few cards that can trash workers. Green has Predator Tiger and Tyrannosaurus Rex. Red has the Detonate spell and Marauder. Black's cards have been mentioned.

So there's not a ton of ways to trash workers but this is for the best. If any unit getting through the patrol zone could target workers I'm sure the game would devolve into who could attack the others workers and then be able to protect their own first. Whoever got the first swing at workers would then just have a huge economic edge and would then just be able to snowball that to a vicotry. Having said all that I have seen Lich's Bargain strats work so if there is a big enough advantaged to be gained by making yourself go down on workers that can potentially work.
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Alex Churchill
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I've won a game by sacrificing 5 workers to haste out an Omegacron (Purple Future spec) before. Just like when you sac all your lands to Greater Gargadon in MtG.

But yes, I agree it's surprising at first to find that the RTS "worker harass" strategy hasn't made it into Codex, but it's for the best. Destroying tech buildings (and heroes) plays the equivalent role.
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Cole Wehrle
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ClanNatioy wrote:


So there's not a ton of ways to trash workers but this is for the best. If any unit getting through the patrol zone could target workers I'm sure the game would devolve into who could attack the others workers and then be able to protect their own first. Whoever got the first swing at workers would then just have a huge economic edge and would then just be able to snowball that to a vicotry. Having said all that I have seen Lich's Bargain strats work so if there is a big enough advantaged to be gained by making yourself go down on workers that can potentially work.


During playtesting my wife and I experimented with lots of rules around the attacking of workers. None of these rules worked well enough for us to pitch anything to Sirlin. They just made the game much, much longer. This was too bad, because I think that the fight around collection curves to be at the heart of the RTS. In fact, I would even say that the whole rushdown/tech/economy triangle works at the service of that more central fight.

The one element of codex that I don't like is its handling of economies. It's "mana curve" is so smooth as to almost be a non decision. Thankfully the rest of the design is stellar. I'm afraid in this case the game is much closer to MtG than an RTS.
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Alex Krasny
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Thanks for the info everyone.
 
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Chris McLeod
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I'd argue that in an RTS, from the producing player's stand point, creating workers\miners\whatever, is also a non-decision. It's always the best way to spend 50 minerals.

I could see a deck that uses more worker harass being a neat strategy though.

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Eric Fletcher
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Pretty much anything you do that steals gold or forces the opponent to discard cards can also be considered worker harassment, as it slows down the economy and/or forces the opponent to skip a worker earlier than desired, or leave out some other building/unit from their gameplan, similar to what will happen if your harass forces the workers to run away and miss mining time, without killing any of them.
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Cole Wehrle
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seejay wrote:
I'd argue that in an RTS, from the producing player's stand point, creating workers\miners\whatever, is also a non-decision. It's always the best way to spend 50 minerals.

I could see a deck that uses more worker harass being a neat strategy though.



I agree, thought I'd add the qualifier that the real economic question has to do with when to expand, which makes for the production of more workers and is often a decision which requires thinking about the defense of workers.
 
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Alex Churchill
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seejay wrote:
I'd argue that in an RTS, from the producing player's stand point, creating workers\miners\whatever, is also a non-decision. It's always the best way to spend 50 minerals.
Yeah, that's a good point: in Codex to skip making a worker is an interesting decision for a lot more of the time than in an RTS. Both games start off with the decision being "always" and it generally gets to "never" in both games if you leave it long enough, but Codex has a lot more tension over the decision in the meantime.
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Douglas Buel
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Cole Wehrle wrote:
The one element of codex that I don't like is its handling of economies. It's "mana curve" is so smooth as to almost be a non decision.

Huh

Well, I haven't played it yet, but even if the decision to make a worker is virtually automatic, you still have to decide which card to use to do that, right?
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Cole Wehrle
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Right, but usually you want to slim down the deck anyway, and the demands of the match will make it pretty obvious which cards to pitch.
 
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Alex Churchill
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Cole Wehrle wrote:
Right, but usually you want to slim down the deck anyway, and the demands of the match will make it pretty obvious which cards to pitch.
Gosh. I actually really disagree with this. Maybe after you've played 50 games it becomes obvious, but it's not much earlier than that: there's a *lot* of subtlety to the decision of what to worker and when. Just today I had an occasion when I decided to play Fox Viper when that's normally one of my first workers in white (I really wanted a two-drop creature as well as a hero, and that was what was available).

There are times when you draw only teched cards, which are awesome except that it's rather tough to worker any of them. But it's usually still correct. There are times when it's at least arguably right to worker a teched spell or unit rather than a Tech 0 card in your hand. There are plenty of times when you're faced with the question of whether to make a worker and only discard 1 card and draw 3, or skip a worker so you can discard 2 draw 4. And so on, and so on.
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Cole Wehrle
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I'll grant you that. My wife and I played the game dozens of time, so that experience certainly colors my judgement.

But, my bigger issue was just with the curve itself. You nearly almost always want that worker. It may be interesting to think about which particular card you might want to pitch, but you are almost always pitching something. I've played Starcraft pretty regularly since its released and have gotten pretty high up in the latter. And certainly you are always building workers, but the economic decisions of that game are actually pretty complicated and they revolve around a single question: how fast can I expand? I think this is the essential question of the whole genre and it's a question that Codex doesn't engage with at all. In Codex, the answer is always this: one worker at a time.

Now, all that said, it's still a fabulous game.
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trevor

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Cole Wehrle wrote:
I'll grant you that. My wife and I played the game dozens of time, so that experience certainly colors my judgement.

But, my bigger issue was just with the curve itself. You nearly almost always want that worker. It may be interesting to think about which particular card you might want to pitch, but you are almost always pitching something. I've played Starcraft pretty regularly since its released and have gotten pretty high up in the latter. And certainly you are always building workers, but the economic decisions of that game are actually pretty complicated and they revolve around a single question: how fast can I expand? I think this is the essential question of the whole genre and it's a question that Codex doesn't engage with at all. In Codex, the answer is always this: one worker at a time.

Now, all that said, it's still a fabulous game.


Well yeah, it's not going to be as deep as a computer game because there just isn't enough lines of format.

In terms of expanding, I really relate building your tech buildings as an equvilant to expansion. You don't always just build a tech building whenever you can, it has to be productive and protected. Same as building an expo in SC.

Worker line is important, and there are some cards that harrass this (mostly red cards), but ultimatley, it would just be overly complex I think and prehaps too imbalancing, since workers are so important.

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Cole Wehrle
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bigGameGeek wrote:
Cole Wehrle wrote:
I'll grant you that. My wife and I played the game dozens of time, so that experience certainly colors my judgement.

But, my bigger issue was just with the curve itself. You nearly almost always want that worker. It may be interesting to think about which particular card you might want to pitch, but you are almost always pitching something. I've played Starcraft pretty regularly since its released and have gotten pretty high up in the latter. And certainly you are always building workers, but the economic decisions of that game are actually pretty complicated and they revolve around a single question: how fast can I expand? I think this is the essential question of the whole genre and it's a question that Codex doesn't engage with at all. In Codex, the answer is always this: one worker at a time.

Now, all that said, it's still a fabulous game.


Well yeah, it's not going to be as deep as a computer game because there just isn't enough lines of format.

In terms of expanding, I really relate building your tech buildings as an equvilant to expansion. You don't always just build a tech building whenever you can, it has to be productive and protected. Same as building an expo in SC.

Worker line is important, and there are some cards that harrass this (mostly red cards), but ultimatley, it would just be overly complex I think and prehaps too imbalancing, since workers are so important.



I'd argue that an analogue games might be significantly deeper than digital games (some 18xx are certainly more strategically open than SC).

The decision to build tech or not is one of my favorite dimensions of the design. However, it is also a conflation between the tech and economic corners of the RTS pyramid that removes a lot of the lovely interplay between those to strategic poles.

But, I do agree with you in that the current design couldn't hold that interplay. The game is a masterpiece that wouldn't stand to have anything added or taken away. That's a good thing IMO.

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