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Clank!: A Deck-Building Adventure» Forums » General

Subject: Endgame Balance rss

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Bryle Cuff
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I've played Clank! four times now. The game excels in many ways but the Endgame isn't one of them. I have not yet played on red sky side of the board. I've heard multiple reports that both boards have the same flow to movement anyway.

When a player decides to leave the castle, this strategy is telegraphed a mile away. Players in the deep can easily see it coming and surface for the eventual dungeon exit. Even when players are far down in the deep and the endgame triggers, they still often make it out of the castle.

This wouldn't be as much of a problem if the player who exited the dungeon didn't have his turn reduced to a bag draw. All the other players use their four remaining turns to generate points and then eventually leave the dungeon. The other players can easily generate more than 20 points in those turns AND they still have a shot at the mastery token (20 points).

Even if they passed out above ground, they still had four turns to generate points while those who left did not. This lack of danger dulls Clank system and the push your luck elements in the game.

The endgame balance is broken! I've thought about awarding points to players who have left the castle and subsequently drawn their cubes from the bag. If anyone has any solutions I'd love to hear them.
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Bryle wrote:
I've heard multiple reports that both boards have the same flow to movement anyway.


You have been receiving false reports! I don't share your opinions about the endgame, but given your concerns, I'd definitely give the other side a try: it's a lot trickier to move around!
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Michael Denman
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I don't know if this would be enough of a "fix", but it kind of annoys me that I escape from the dungeon just barely, only to see all of my cubes drawn out of the bag afterwards, saving those who are still inside. So maybe if you draw out cubes for an escaped player, you re-draw those cubes?
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squash wrote:
Bryle wrote:
I've heard multiple reports that both boards have the same flow to movement anyway.


You have been receiving false reports! I don't share your opinions about the endgame, but given your concerns, I'd definitely give the other side a try: it's a lot trickier to move around!

I'm glad you said this as I JUST bought it and fear all the complaints about the endgame are true... :(
 
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trevor

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Well I've only played twice but didn't realy get a sense of imbalance. One game the guy who got out first won, the second was the second guy. To me timing of when you leave is crutial, grabbing a relic and running can be foolish if you aren't watching the other players.

Again ,only 2 games isn't really a good sample size
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King Maple

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Wow.

No.

I am sorry to say this, but it's a classic thinking that comes from little experience.

The trick isn't in this game to get out of the castle. The end game is an entirely a push your luck type of venture. The trick is to escape the dungeon when you know that it is about to become very difficult to survive the dragon.

If you just rush out first and give 4 turns to everybody while the dragon is barely active? It's your own fault that you lose. But if you time it right, you will win. I have. Multiple times.

I would like to ask.. What is it that you are doing so you have enough time to give FOUR MORE TURNS to everyone else? Why didn't you take those four turns yourself to gain more points!?
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Chris
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As Kristo said, there is nothing wrong with the game balance. If you leave too soon you will lose - as it should be. The whole point of the game is that you are greedy adventurers trying to get the most loot you possibly can before barely escaping with your lives.
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Richard Smeltzer
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Slashdoctor wrote:
I am sorry to say this, but it's a classic thinking that comes from little experience.

There's been a few threads along these lines and they do strike me as being cases of "My strategy didn't work. The game must be broken!"
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Max
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Bryle wrote:
When a player decides to leave the castle, this strategy is telegraphed a mile away. Players in the deep can easily see it coming and surface for the eventual dungeon exit.


This is the core of your complaint and it is simply not true. I mean, it's possible to play like this, but you will probably lose. If you think other players have advantage in the depths, mid-game, what you really need to do is to wait for a big "boots" turn, usually teleporting one or two times, and putting on the clock when they don't expect you to.

If they had a lot of advantage they will probably win if they manage to survive, but you now have a fighting chance.
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Bagpuss42 wrote:
"My strategy didn't work. The game must be broken!"


You are hyperbolizing and skewing my words. I never said the game was broken. I questioned the end game balance. I rated the game a 8.75/10 for God's sake. Secondly, where did I mention I played this strategy? These were strategies other people at the table played. My only horse in the race is that I want the game to be even better.

Slashdoctor wrote:
"The trick is to escape the dungeon when you know that it is about to become very difficult to survive the dragon"


I agree that is one aspect of the strategy. The rule book also outlines the strategy of leaving early to burn people in the deep. I and everyone I've played with thus far have found that this just doesn't happen.

You guys are failing to realize that I really want to like this game more. If you have solutions suggest them and be nice about it. I'm just relaying my experience with the game.

Clearly this game is causing us to feel this way and that counts for something. It's a fault of the game if I have to tell people not to play a specific strategy because it doesn't work or is under powered. The issue I am currently having feels like a bigger deal because everything in this game is so interconnected. Claiming our experience is invalid because we played a specific way is pretty silly.

For further proof that other people are having issues with the endgame, please listen to [geekurl=http://fourcornersoftheboard.libsyn.com/clank-episode-048]THISTHIS[/geekurl] podcast.
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Max
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If the first time you play Clank someone does that, losing and cutting short the game, it's a learning experience. If they keep doing it, knowing most times it doesn't work, it's on them.

No game works as intended when players keep doing irrational things...
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mazmaz wrote:
If they keep doing it, knowing most times it doesn't work, it's on them.

No game works as intended when players keep doing irrational things...


I don't think it's irrational at all. The mechanics clearly nudge players towards these types of strategies. The game was clearly designed intending to push your luck in the way I outlined earlier. Additionally, there have been other similar critiques of the endgame. Isn't it strange that all of these people are irrational in the same way?

Slashdoctor wrote:
"Why didn't you take those four turns yourself to gain more points!?"


Sometimes players will generate a better engine than others. The idea behind some of the push your luck in this game is to screw those people people by catching them in the deep. The problem is that the consequence is not potent enough to hurt those people. Not only that, but it often backfires and hinders the player leaving the dungeon. I've found most people I've played with intuitively want to play this way.

If I tell people not avoid this often intuitive strategy altogether, the result is a more shallow game. That's not a solution.

squash wrote:
"You have been receiving false reports! I don't share your opinions about the endgame, but given your concerns, I'd definitely give the other side a try: it's a lot trickier to move around!"


Thank you! I will give it a try and report back. I think if movement was more difficult, it could definitely all fix my concerns.
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David desJardins
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Bryle wrote:
Isn't it strange that all of these people are irrational in the same way?


No, that's definitely not strange. Human psychology has some patterns and so it's not surprising that many people make similar mistakes.

If they are winning this way then it's a problem with the game. But if a bunch of people all do the same thing, that causes them to lose, that's a problem with them.
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mfl134
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Bryle wrote:

I agree that is one aspect of the strategy. The rule book also outlines the strategy of leaving early to burn people in the deep. I and everyone I've played with thus far have found that this just doesn't happen.


You need to be able get out really quickly and unexpectedly for this to work. If you amass enough movements and have a way to ignore stopping in the caverns, you can actually get out really quick, giving others maybe 1 turn notice before you get out. This can be really bad for others if they still haven't obtained an artifact, as they can't just leave.

But it is definitely situational.
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Bryle Cuff
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DaviddesJ wrote:
"Human psychology has some patterns and so it's not surprising that many people make similar mistakes."


Your ignoring the whole point and pulling a quote out of context. The mechanics are clearly built to support and encourage this strategy. It shouldn't be a mistake to play this way when it was a way it was intended to be played.

DaviddesJ wrote:
If they are winning this way then it's a problem with the game. But if a bunch of people all do the same thing, that causes them to lose, that's a problem with them.


So if mechanics and systems are overpowered it's bad, but if they are under powered it's fine? Either way, that sounds unbalanced to me.
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David desJardins
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Bryle wrote:
The mechanics are clearly built to support and encourage this strategy. It shouldn't be a mistake to play this way when it was a way it was intended to be played.


That doesn't make any sense. The way the game is intended to be played must be the way that works the best. If you're doing something that doesn't work, then that proves it isn't how the game was intended to be played.

If you hit the ball with the handle of your tennis racket, and it never goes over the net, the conclusion is that you're doing it wrong, not that the net has to be lower.
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Bryle Cuff
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DaviddesJ wrote:
The way the game is intended to be played must be the way that works the best. If you're doing something that doesn't work, then that proves it isn't how the game was intended to be played.


You are telling me that attempting to trap people in the deep or severely hurt their points by making them pass out above ground is not how the game was intended to be played? I think you are misunderstanding my point and can kindly answer any confusions you may have.

DaviddesJ wrote:
If you hit the ball with the handle of your tennis racket, and it never goes over the net, the conclusion is that you're doing it wrong, not that the net has to be lower.


I don't think this is an apt comparison. It's not that Tennis was never intended to be played with the handle, it's that it was never designed to be.

I think a better comparison would be between the different techniques to hit the ball. A Smash vs. Slice vs. Backhand, etc. Depending on the situation each type of shot has a place and is balanced. I'd argue that pushing your luck and trapping someone in the deep is too situational and as a result unbalanced.
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Bryle wrote:
The mechanics clearly nudge players towards these types of strategies. The game was clearly designed intending to push your luck in the way I outlined earlier.


False, again. If anything, it's designed to push your luck exactly in the other way: to go deeper to take more valuable artifacts before going up. It's clearly the best strategy... provided you don't get eaten by the dragon in the dungeon.

If someone thinks "huh, you can screw the risky players playing a quick exit strategy!", he might be onto something, yes. But if he badly botches this strategy by doing it when or how he shouldn't, he lost himself the game, don't blame the mechanics.

This "issue" is nothing you can't prevent with some extra experience, anyway.
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Bryle wrote:

You are telling me that attempting to trap people in the deep or severely hurt their points by making them pass out above ground is not how the game was intended to be played?


Yes, exactly.
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David desJardins
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Bryle wrote:
You are telling me that attempting to trap people in the deep or severely hurt their points by making them pass out above ground is not how the game was intended to be played?


Attempting that at the right time, yes. Attempting that at the wrong time so it doesn't work, no.
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mazmaz wrote:
Bryle wrote:

You are telling me that attempting to trap people in the deep or severely hurt their points by making them pass out above ground is not how the game was intended to be played?


Yes, exactly.


I don't know what game you are playing. Try reading the rule book buddy...

_____

It was a mistake posting here. All these fanboys are so quick to defend their precious game and invalidate our group's experiences with the game just because it does't jibe with theirs. You all act like you know! None of you could possibly know. You weren't there and can't disprove anything I'm saying without knowing the intricacies of our particular games. That's besides the point anyway! Perhaps you guys should stop making assumptions about how my groups and I played, and just accept how we felt about it.

Thanks to those near the beginning of the thread who were legitimately helpful.
 
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Bryle wrote:

The endgame balance is broken!


I don't care how you felt, but this sentence is false. I have only played acouple of times more than you and we've seen players winning by getting out early, by adding tomes and getting out in the last turn before insta-death and by just barely escaping the dungeon after obtaining the most valuable artifacts...
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Bryle Cuff
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So because your group has experienced something different from the groups I've played with, my experience with the game is false? That's so hilariously hypocritical it's incredible you're oblivious to it.

I could turn your logic right back around on you and discredit your viewpoint because my groups have experienced different outcomes.

Also, here is the definition of an opinion.

"A belief or conclusion held with confidence but not substantiated by positive knowledge or proof"

Since you've yet to notice, we've both been making claims based purely on circumstantial evidence. You, nor I, have hard proof that the endgame is balanced. We're dealing with opinions here and you're well within your right to believe this game is 100% balanced. I'm also allowed to believe that the endgame balance is not. Quell your ego for a moment and accept that not everyone thinks and feels just like you and that's okay.
 
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Bryle wrote:
The endgame balance is broken! I've thought about awarding points to players who have left the castle and subsequently drawn their cubes from the bag. If anyone has any solutions I'd love to hear them.


The problem he's pointing out is that these statements don't read as opinion as you say. They read as a conclusion before you've allowed for the discussion from other people's experiences.

Of course, in polite discussion, we can read it as an opinion and people are free to call out their opinion that your opinion is not shared based on, unfortunately, some assumptions about how any group is playing the game.

Let's just all calm down here for a second.

Every group may have different expectations. Every group may play differently based on those expectations. For my money, if I see a strategy doesn't work, I may reconsider that strategy. I don't think the rules advise any one particular strategy besides some flavor text designed to add to the thievery theme of the game. Grab an item and get out quick? That's the short version. It's not that simple.

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Jason Gardner
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I've had wins with strategies of 1) going for multiple artifacts despite someone nearing the exit and 2) grabbing a single artifact and hauling but with lots of movement. We've had people die by dragon within one space of the exit, and losing the game by not getting that extra 20 pts. If you want to tweak, I like the suggestion of removing the escaped player's cubes from the draw bag.

My reign of Clank! domination over my family is about to come to an end, as my daughter, Sarah the Soulcrusher, is visiting this weekend. That girl takes no prisoners.
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