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Bufkin

What do we actually mean with game balance?

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4 minutes ago, Lucky Snake Eyes said:

It always sucks to buy a unit only to learn they are basically unplayable due too their rules making them the least viable option in your army. I have belakor but have to take him as an ally if I want to use him in my slaves or slaanesh, so I just proxy him as a normal daemon prince to help justify the purchase.

This is the one area I am sympathetic to why internal balance is important and I agree GW has a way to go in improving unit performance against the mean to reduce these 'feel bad' moments when it comes to monetary investment. 

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, SwampHeart said:

Interesting so I assume this game also includes possible realm rules where shooting units may be rendered non-viable or magic spells that may drastically increase the efficacy of a melee unit but have no noted benefit for a ranged unit as well? Or is it perhaps that FoG and most other historical games operate with a much lower amount of variability in game play? 

You know those rules are written by the game designers, right? I'm not the professional game designer, but the point is:

I have seen games where trap units are largely avoided. This means they can exist. If this game isn't like that then perhaps that's exactly the problem. It's a cop out to say "welp, we're ****** now I guess. Everyone hug your trap units before you put them on the shelf never to be used again, mmkay?"

 

EDIT:
Oh, I didn't mean to continue the argument, guess we're done.

Edited by Unit1126PLL
Other post edit.

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On 4/17/2019 at 10:36 AM, Unit1126PLL said:

I'm not actually sure that's stated anywhere (but it is a fair assumption) - in that case, the "avatar" or "piece" of Nagash is basically the same as a Greater Daemon, a "piece" of the Chaos God in question who is but a fraction of their deity, and instead of dying their ability to manifest outside the Realm of Chaos is disrupted and they can no longer instantiate themselves anymore for now.

So that meets the scoping problem I was talking about. If, indeed, Nagash's model and warscroll merely represent a tiny fraction of his manifest power (in the same way a Greater Daemon is a tiny fraction of the power of their own God) then the problem is fixed: the game's stayed rather well scoped, so we're not going to see Sigmar vs. Khorne on the tabletop - at best, we'll see the Celestant-Prime vs. Skarbrand or something.

yet why is a fragment of Nagash so much better than a fragment of the chaos gods? Most greater Daemons are within the 260-328 range so far as I'm aware.

Morathi is 480, Eidolon is between 400-440, Celestant Prime is 340, Alarielle is 600, Gordrakk is 580, The Mortrachs are 320 to 420, Rotigus/Great Unclean one are 340, Keeper of Secrets is 260, Kairos Fateweaver/Lord of Change is 380, Archaon is 660, and Bloodthirsters are 280-320. 

So the next most expensive and allegedly most powerful this is a solid 140 points less, then 200, and then everything else is anywhere from 260-380. What's up with that wild range of powerful named and really big stuff? 

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Posted (edited)

One major difference is that even though they are fragments of the chaos gods they are not the gods incarnate. Instead the demons and greater demons are independent entities and while do follow their progenitors they are not tied down to stricktly obeying their will. See Skarbrand and his attempt at kicking Khorne’s backside a few eras ago. And the splintering of Slaanesh’a factions with their god MIA. 

They cannot physically enter the realms,  would destroy the realms completely and just subsume it all into the Chaos realms. And the gods have other better things to do then manifest a piece of themselves that the mortal realms could handle. Put too much of yourself split apart and the other three might think about attacking while you are weakened. So they leave it to the greater demons and Archaon to fight it out for them. 

Nagash on the other hand is much more proactive and even if it is only a piece of him present it is still him and his power present on the field vs the demons simply running on their own power and only minor help from the chaos gods in form of prayers, magic and summoning. Nagash has also in canon went Mano a mano against a Bloodthirster and won. And that was before he become the only god of death in Shyish.

Edited by King Taloren

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Rock, Paper, Scissors is balanced but there are clear winners and losers. 

Is it okay for AoS to be like that? Should there be something like sword, tank, arrow? sword beats arrow, arrow beats tank, tank beats sword? With different armies occupying those archetypes? nurgle is tank, certain lists are ranged (Legions of Azgorh), khorne is sword? 

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IMO yes that would be acceptable and is definitely  almost always part of a  wargame of this complexity but it's also  certainly more complicated then just three options per se.   

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8 minutes ago, Ravinsild said:

Rock, Paper, Scissors is balanced but there are clear winners and losers. 

Is it okay for AoS to be like that? Should there be something like sword, tank, arrow? sword beats arrow, arrow beats tank, tank beats sword? With different armies occupying those archetypes? nurgle is tank, certain lists are ranged (Legions of Azgorh), khorne is sword? 

I think it’s more akin to Rock Paper Scissors Spock.

Though the analogy works better as card deck building. You have Aggro, Control, Midrange and Combo styles of armies. 

Each army is good against different ones and occasionally can win against the ones they are particularly weak against with careful planning and strategy.

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, gjnoronh said:

IMO yes that would be acceptable and is definitely  almost always part of a  wargame of this complexity but it's also  certainly more complicated then just three options per se.   

Follow up question: Should this be within internal balance? For instance in Warcraft 3 any army could beat any army, but each unit had an armor and a weapon type and that's where the counters came in. Footmen countered ranged attackers like night elf archers, but died to heavier melee and spells easily, etc.. an orc grunt could 1v1 a human footman any day. 

Or should it be army wide? That would mean when you met your counter that game's result was decided. Is this properly anti-fun or bad? Or should it be lists over army? Should a LIST within the CONTEXT of an army be an Arrow, Tank or Sword (or whatever) and should THAT counter another LIST archetype, but you could, within your own army, build a totally different list with a different style or archetype. 

Like Stormcast can build tanky shield walls, melee focused attackers, or ranged armies all in 1 army, but not all in the same list. You basically need to focus on a playstyle. 

Also should it be as hard counter as R/P/S? Paper ALWAYS loses to Scissors. Should your ranged stormcast list ALWAYS lose to a tanky list that can endure (like how undead just always regenerate and have feel no pain etc..) or should there be a way to win even if it's only 30%? What's an acceptable chance of loss for balance if you happen to meet your counter, assuming in army or list wide? 

Edited by Ravinsild

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4 minutes ago, Ravinsild said:

Or should it be army wide? That would mean when you met your counter that game's result was decided. Is this properly anti-fun or bad? Or should it be lists over army? Should a LIST within the CONTEXT of an army be an Arrow, Tank or Sword (or whatever) and should THAT counter another LIST archetype, but you could, within your own army, build a totally different list with a different style or archetype. 

Balance should 100% come down to interactions between lists. IMO you should be able to build a lists around each unit or unit archetype in an army, this provides variety without resorting to the idea of "just throw whatever on the table". 

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2 minutes ago, Lucky Snake Eyes said:

Balance should 100% come down to interactions between lists. IMO you should be able to build a lists around each unit or unit archetype in an army, this provides variety without resorting to the idea of "just throw whatever on the table". 

What about armies without a lot of tools? Khorne has literally 0 magic, and incredibly limited range support. We basically just have melee. I believe the inverse is true of KO, they have no magic (I think idk) and almost no melee. I'm not sure death has any ranged either, like at all, aside from single shot attacks from certain units. 

 

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It should be a hard fight but it doesn’t mean that it’s an instant loss or victory for either side. It also depends on factors outside of choosing Rock Paper Scissors. Dice rolls the movement and generalship of the armies. If there is a way to stop the enemy from shooting it can swing things in favor of the other army.

Balance should mean an army has access to a variety of tools to help offset weaknesses of other units with their own counters and strengths. Though as an army while there would also be counters and strengths as well. 

 A good example is Idoneth Deepkin vs Shooting armies. Idoneth have the best anti shooting rule outside of not shooting at all. But some units in the army will die quickly if they are in range to be shot without support so there is a small counter right there internally.

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, Ravinsild said:

What about armies without a lot of tools? Khorne has literally 0 magic, and incredibly limited range support. We basically just have melee. I believe the inverse is true of KO, they have no magic (I think idk) and almost no melee. I'm not sure death has any ranged either, like at all, aside from single shot attacks from certain units. 

 

Khorne now has Judgements that work like endless spells with better benefits for Khorne’s players and all slaughter priests can deny spells and dispell endless spells as if they were wizards so that weakness isn’t a factor like it was previously.

Also Khorne are almost as fast as Daughters of Khaine with a Bloodstoker and a few other combos. They don’t really need much for ranged support.

Edited by King Taloren

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Just now, King Taloren said:

Khorne now has Judgements and all slaughter priest can deny spells and dispell endless spells as if they were wizards so that weakness isn’t a factor like it was previously.

That's sort of true. Khorne still doesn't benefit from the large lists of effects and abilities (buffs, debuffs, straight damage, etc..) that spell lores provide as well as the additional tools provided by realm spell lists. I saw one spell from Aqshy that lets units get +1 to charge and +1 to wound rolls that made me cry tears of rage. I want that 👀 Not to mention how nice a lot of undead magic is, including Arkhan's special spell and Nagash himself. We do have nice mortal wounds through prayers and judgements and blessings, but I still think magic can be more versatile and more effective at longer range. 

Also the platforms using it tend to be sturdier. From what I understand (nobody in my local meta plays death believe it or not...) Nagash, Arkhan and Morathi can be hard to kill. However Slaughterpriests have bad saves, no saves after saves and only 5 wounds :/ They can be magic sniped and shot at pretty easily in 1 whole turn. Not sure if Nagash and company have the same vulnerability. 

I think you're right though: it isn't AS BAD as previously, but I still believe there is some disparity. 

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1 minute ago, Ravinsild said:

What about armies without a lot of tools? Khorne has literally 0 magic, and incredibly limited range support. We basically just have melee. I believe the inverse is true of KO, they have no magic (I think idk) and almost no melee. I'm not sure death has any ranged either, like at all, aside from single shot attacks from certain units. 

 

Khorne may not have magic but they play a twist on the magic mechanic by having several methods of magic denial. Each army has their quirks to make them unique because if everyone had the same types of mechanics things would feel boring and homogeneous. Khorne is very punchy but makes up for lack of ranged with a more in depth prayer mechanic than most armies have. As for KO well they're just kinda trash and have been left behind but in theory they'd be able to take better advantage of being the only army with actual transports and have a sort of mobility theme that could complement doing speed builds as a list option as opposed to say a gunline list that would theoretically make up another popular build. Not every army needs to have the same mechanics or even treat core mechanics the same way, so long as they have something else that both makes up for that deviation and that other armies can build to play around that deviation.

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2 minutes ago, Ravinsild said:

Also the platforms using it tend to be sturdier. From what I understand (nobody in my local meta plays death believe it or not...) Nagash, Arkhan and Morathi can be hard to kill. However Slaughterpriests have bad saves, no saves after saves and only 5 wounds :/ They can be magic sniped and shot at pretty easily in 1 whole turn. Not sure if Nagash and company have the same vulnerability. 

Arkhan and nagash are both significantly more expensive to offset their relatively better survivability compared to slaughterpriests, plus they're characters so you can't run multiples of them. Also a warshrine will solve your no after save issue giving a 6+ after save within 9", an additional priest and a unique prayer for reroll failed hits in a khorne list all for 160pts

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Posted (edited)

Bronze rune is also your friend against magic heavy lists. Force all wizards to reroll all successful castings within range. Then you still have your deny to use afterward. On other hand the spell caster can’t stop blood boil at all so all those spammable D6 mortals against him if he is close enough to magic snipe your priests.

Morathi would be the only one that could snipe out of range of both and if she is doing that she might not be doing her job at buffing her units.

Edited by King Taloren

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Maybe I should not have with "without a lot" but perhaps "a more narrow focus"? Or lacking a wider variety of tools, which many armies seem to have. Many have solid range, solid magic, solid melee, and solid tanky choices. I know of this crazy Thricefold Befoulment list by Nurgle that's incredibly magically damaging as well as having the innate tankiness of nurgle and does nurgle things very nurgly well. I don't know if Nurgle has ranged or very much offensive firepower in melee though :shrug: or if they can build a great list that ISN'T that list, and if they can't, and another list CAN hardcounter it (idk what does but just saying), then what do Nurgle people do? 

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1 minute ago, Ravinsild said:

Maybe I should not have with "without a lot" but perhaps "a more narrow focus"? Or lacking a wider variety of tools, which many armies seem to have. Many have solid range, solid magic, solid melee, and solid tanky choices. I know of this crazy Thricefold Befoulment list by Nurgle that's incredibly magically damaging as well as having the innate tankiness of nurgle and does nurgle things very nurgly well. I don't know if Nurgle has ranged or very much offensive firepower in melee though :shrug: or if they can build a great list that ISN'T that list, and if they can't, and another list CAN hardcounter it (idk what does but just saying), then what do Nurgle people do? 

Nurgle has like 2 units with ranged weapons and the units with them are melee focused anyways, slaanesh also only has 1 ranged unit. Tzeench is the only one you can kinda find ranged weapons for but their range is trash. Keep in mind all the chaos armies have other things that offset the need for range, nurgle is tanky, khorne has prayers for days, slaanesh is fast and debuffs and tzeench has a lot of magic and battleline that split into more ****** when they die

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1 minute ago, Lucky Snake Eyes said:

Nurgle has like 2 units with ranged weapons and the units with them are melee focused anyways, slaanesh also only has 1 ranged unit. Tzeench is the only one you can kinda find ranged weapons for but their range is trash. Keep in mind all the chaos armies have other things that offset the need for range, nurgle is tanky, khorne has prayers for days, slaanesh is fast and debuffs and tzeench has a lot of magic and battleline that split into more ****** when they die

And then there's Skaven who are also chaos 👀 And I find their shooting capabilities very good. I'm also looking forward to buying Legions of Azgorh, who seem to be the opposite of Khorne with great shooting and pretty good magic but only mediocre melee from what I can tell based on the Warscrolls. 

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So, just to jump back into the thread:

It's okay for armies to lean in certain directions. For example, I'd consider it largely unfluffy to see as many ranged attacks in a Khorne army as an Ironweld Arsenal army.

That Said...

An army should not be without options completely, and those options should be competitive with similar options from other armies. Khorne is actually a fairly good example of this with the Skullcannon.

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I agree with that. I do notice a large range of representation in the "meta" or Tournaments. I believe Khorne is pretty consistently mid to low tier, Slaanesh is for whatever reason never played, Nurgle does consistently well, and Tzeentch used to dominate super hard but has fallen into midrange to low range I think? Skaven I heard were trash but have been climbing into the high places lately. Slaves to Darkness...idk. I've never heard of them in a tournament or seen anyone really talk about them. They have some sweet models though. I think beasts of chaos are pretty strong and rank well, not 100% sure. Legions of Azgorh seem like high mid tier to low high tier. 

So even with Chaos we have a large range of armies with totally different tool sets that win or at least place well more consistently. So what is balance? All of the armies have an equal chance at #1 with skill being the deciding factor? Is it ok Khorne and Slaanesh are lower tier and nurgle is higher tier? That's balance from a whole faction from the bottom rungs to the top you have a bell curve there or whatever. Some low, some middle, some high, and consistently so within that particular faction with a few big wins for Khorne and the like, and probably some really sad showings of nurgle lists that went 0-5 at some point too. 

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4 minutes ago, Ravinsild said:

I agree with that. I do notice a large range of representation in the "meta" or Tournaments. I believe Khorne is pretty consistently mid to low tier, Slaanesh is for whatever reason never played, Nurgle does consistently well, and Tzeentch used to dominate super hard but has fallen into midrange to low range I think? Skaven I heard were trash but have been climbing into the high places lately. Slaves to Darkness...idk. I've never heard of them in a tournament or seen anyone really talk about them. They have some sweet models though. I think beasts of chaos are pretty strong and rank well, not 100% sure. Legions of Azgorh seem like high mid tier to low high tier. 

So even with Chaos we have a large range of armies with totally different tool sets that win or at least place well more consistently. So what is balance? All of the armies have an equal chance at #1 with skill being the deciding factor? Is it ok Khorne and Slaanesh are lower tier and nurgle is higher tier? That's balance from a whole faction from the bottom rungs to the top you have a bell curve there or whatever. Some low, some middle, some high, and consistently so within that particular faction with a few big wins for Khorne and the like, and probably some really sad showings of nurgle lists that went 0-5 at some point too. 

To be fair the khorne book hasn't been out for long yet and slaanesh and slaves/darkoath don't have books yet so time will tell.

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5 minutes ago, Lucky Snake Eyes said:

To be fair the khorne book hasn't been out for long yet and slaanesh and slaves/darkoath don't have books yet so time will tell.

Yeah that's true when everyone gets a sweet new book and there's been a few tournaments on equal footing I guess we'll see more. Although that kind of goes for everyone right? Like Seraphon don't have a book and they did alright recently. Also Dispossessed don't have a book but I've never heard of them doing great... etc yadda yadda. 

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Just now, Ravinsild said:

Yeah that's true when everyone gets a sweet new book and there's been a few tournaments on equal footing I guess we'll see more. Although that kind of goes for everyone right? Like Seraphon don't have a book and they did alright recently. Also Dispossessed don't have a book but I've never heard of them doing great... etc yadda yadda. 

well seraphon do have a book, just no a 2.0 book. And a lot of the stuff from their 1.0 book is from the time when GW was leaning more towards narrative and apocalypse style games with 2500-4000pt battalions and crazy rules like neferatta turning heroes into vampires.

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18 minutes ago, Ravinsild said:

I agree with that. I do notice a large range of representation in the "meta" or Tournaments. I believe Khorne is pretty consistently mid to low tier, Slaanesh is for whatever reason never played, Nurgle does consistently well, and Tzeentch used to dominate super hard but has fallen into midrange to low range I think? Skaven I heard were trash but have been climbing into the high places lately. Slaves to Darkness...idk. I've never heard of them in a tournament or seen anyone really talk about them. They have some sweet models though. I think beasts of chaos are pretty strong and rank well, not 100% sure. Legions of Azgorh seem like high mid tier to low high tier. 

So even with Chaos we have a large range of armies with totally different tool sets that win or at least place well more consistently. So what is balance? All of the armies have an equal chance at #1 with skill being the deciding factor? Is it ok Khorne and Slaanesh are lower tier and nurgle is higher tier? That's balance from a whole faction from the bottom rungs to the top you have a bell curve there or whatever. Some low, some middle, some high, and consistently so within that particular faction with a few big wins for Khorne and the like, and probably some really sad showings of nurgle lists that went 0-5 at some point too. 

I would consider "subfactions" within a larger faction to still be separate armies. Basically, if my army has an "allegiance", then it should count as an army. So for example Slaanesh within Chaos is an army, but Ironweld Arsenal within Order are not, because they have no allegiance (though I do want them to get one).

Ideally, this means that you'd do a separate bell-curve for each army, rather than each Grand Alliance. You'd still have some variance in tiers (i.e. "Slaanesh Chariots is a lower tier than Keeper of Secrets spam on the bellcurve") but those should be as narrow as possible, and the lower tier ones should only be lower tier by a smidge - in my example, it would be the difference of a few percentage points in winrate ideally, perhaps even within the margin of error.

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