Using the original Flayed Men in the context of a Bolton Army - Page 2
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Thread: Using the original Flayed Men in the context of a Bolton Army

  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by King_Kraken View Post
    I think the neutral faction is having a bit of an identity crisis right now. When it was just the Westeros-based factions, the Boltons being the only Neutrals felt fine (even if Flayed Men in particular were problematic for being just about better than every faction's equivalently priced and performing unit). Now, though, with the addition of Bloody Mummers and Stormcrows they're at risk of losing their identity as their own faction and are starting to have to worry about every Neutral unit added having a domino effect that ripples outward.

    While I personally am in favor of utterly removing the Neutral faction as a playable faction and limiting the access of the other Neutral units to specific factions (e.g. Stormcrows only with Targaryens, Bloody Mummers only with Lannisters, etc.), I don't think that's strictly fair to people who have invested in all-Neutral forces and would suddenly make a lot of players' existing Neutral units potentially worthless since they're not allowed in the faction anymore.

    I've been bouncing a couple ideas around in my head on how to tackle the issue of limiting the prevalence of Neutrals and making sure they still have their own flavor, and largely it revolves around giving Boltons their own faction since the aggressive, morale test-based playstyle and feel is pretty unique to Boltons and wouldn't step on any other faction's toes.

    For other Neutral units, I think something as simple as adding a mechanic similar to some of the other honor guard style units/the Loyalty mechanic would probably help even things out a bit and stop a proliferation of Neutral units everywhere in all sorts of situations. For example, you could only take Stormcrows with Daario in your army and doing so precluded you from taking Bloody Mummers. Neutral heroes could probably stay as-is, especially the NCUs since that can represent any number of things.

    Regardless, though, whatever ends up happening with Neutrals I hope Mummers are the last Neutral release we see. It'll be hard to balance so many units for the Neutral faction as a whole and the ripple effect of the Neutral roster being larger than most existing faction rosters. Plus, the more Neutrals that come out to make up for existing faction weaknesses the less those factions have an identity of their own so all in all I prefer that Neutrals be limited and start to either break off into separate sort of subfactions or become part of parent factions.
    Anyone could have seen a Neutral faction becoming a problem once you add more and more units from different lands. It would become the faction that is most versatile in selection and the more theme broken. Freys and Boltons with War Elephants.

    Once they release version 2 after a few more years that Greyjoys has been released, CMON should scrap the Neutral faction and make Freys and Boltons as minor factions, and continue with a themed loyalty/ally structure. GW's Middle Earth SBG has hit their allied matrix structure on the head.

  2. #22

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    Okay the best idea i have seen is a penalize for taking mercs in non neutral. It's a strange balancing act to be sure. I am not a fan of a merc/ neutral army and even less happy for everyone ( okay almost everyone) can take all mercs.
    Having said all this flayed men in boltons or not were broken version 1 too strong to be allowed to be taken in non Bolton armies in 2 and are not a horrible unit now. 8 attacks all the time and panic is so much better now and more predictable. On a charge you are almost guaranteed to panic the enemy unit so assuming not disorganized you get 7 hits and on a 4 plus armor save unit 3 to 4 dead and with panic 3 more dead so 6 models. Lannister knights charge same 7 hits and they will kill 5 the bad comes after the charge. Flayed men keep killing stuff and will get that shattered unit killed. Lannister knights will just sit there and be expensive guardsmen without a guard captain.
    Boltons were the great evil in the story, should just be northman with different leaders and were absolutely created to allow lannister and stark armies to have some flexibility in the early days. The merc army exists to stop the winging about why can't we play a merc army. I say make the FM 7 points or take them to edition 2 and make them bolton or neutral only.

  3. #23

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    I believe that making Boltons mercenaries - is a bad idea.
    They should be Starks with alternative card that allows Lannisters to take them (as Jaquen Hagar).

  4. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Valenae View Post
    I believe that making Boltons mercenaries - is a bad idea.
    They should be Starks with alternative card that allows Lannisters to take them (as Jaquen Hagar).
    In a way i agree with you, they are starks bannermen after all. Stormcrows should be Targaryen only for all i know. But we need to find a solution with what we have now. The main issue right now is that Bolton units are being balanced for use by all faction, which is killing their theme and uniqueness...not to mention that the objective that "no neutral unit should be a better option than in-faction units for something that faction focuses on" means we'll end up with vanilla mercs.

    Vanilla mercs is fine...but not for Boltons, who are one of the major villains of the lore.

    The best solution imho is as follow:


    a) Keep the current model availability with the current stat card for the neutral units. Rename all bolton units with more generic names such "Cutthroats into "wildmen", Black Guards into "Palace Guards", Flayed Men into "Landless Knights" and Bolton Bastard Girls as "War Dog Handlers".

    b) Then produce a Bolton Tactic deck, and unit cards as it's own mini-faction...balanced for its own theme.


    That means no one loose anything. If you bought Bolton units as mercenaries, you'll still get to use the models as such, but if you really want to play House Bolton, then you can and what is on the table will represent that, not a stale collection of rules made for all factions to pick.

  5. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Oakwolf View Post
    In a way i agree with you, they are starks bannermen after all. Stormcrows should be Targaryen only for all i know. But we need to find a solution with what we have now. The main issue right now is that Bolton units are being balanced for use by all faction, which is killing their theme and uniqueness...not to mention that the objective that "no neutral unit should be a better option than in-faction units for something that faction focuses on" means we'll end up with vanilla mercs.

    Vanilla mercs is fine...but not for Boltons, who are one of the major villains of the lore.

    The best solution imho is as follow:


    a) Keep the current model availability with the current stat card for the neutral units. Rename all bolton units with more generic names such "Cutthroats into "wildmen", Black Guards into "Palace Guards", Flayed Men into "Landless Knights" and Bolton Bastard Girls as "War Dog Handlers".

    b) Then produce a Bolton Tactic deck, and unit cards as it's own mini-faction...balanced for its own theme.


    That means no one loose anything. If you bought Bolton units as mercenaries, you'll still get to use the models as such, but if you really want to play House Bolton, then you can and what is on the table will represent that, not a stale collection of rules made for all factions to pick.
    I think that is a really good idea. I'd be totally fine with Boltons getting unique faction cards when they are not being used as mercs.

  6. #26

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    How about this for an idea? Ramsey was a cavalry commander in the books. As a cavalry attachment he gives critical blows and +1 to defense save, either as a Commander or for 3 points.

  7. #27

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    From my perspective, it looks like a bunch of WAAC players upset the meta is now more balanced.

  8. #28

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    WAAC? Care to explain?

  9. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by sacrilege83 View Post
    WAAC? Care to explain?
    Win At All Costs.

  10. #30

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    Couldn't be furthest from the case where i am concerned. If i wanted to win at all costs, my wife (which is the most frequent player i play with) wouldn't have as much fun as we do. We play thematic games so you won't see "Flayed Men" riding around Dothraki here.

  11. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hecaton View Post
    Win At All Costs.
    Way to judge a whole group of people, so bravo to you. But last I played my original two flayed men, my opponents found a way around them and they didn't win me every game. This is about building an army in a time consuming expensive hobby then having the rug pulled out underneath you. But I suppose you feel that the pre v1.5 themed Bolton army, THE TOPIC OF THIS THREAD, was the cream of the crop meta blasting Night's Watch players everywhere. So thank you for your two cents perspective.

  12. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by sacrilege83 View Post
    Way to judge a whole group of people, so bravo to you. But last I played my original two flayed men, my opponents found a way around them and they didn't win me every game. This is about building an army in a time consuming expensive hobby then having the rug pulled out underneath you. But I suppose you feel that the pre v1.5 themed Bolton army, THE TOPIC OF THIS THREAD, was the cream of the crop meta blasting Night's Watch players everywhere. So thank you for your two cents perspective.
    Well pre 1.5.1 Boltons won LVO, didn't they?

  13. #33

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    I guess LVO is suppose to mean Las Vegas. I hope one tournament doesn't set the meta for you, because all the talk I heard and polls I read pre v1.5 says that the Night's Watch were the slight meta over Lannisters and generally a Neutral army was frowned upon not being great for the reasons that it took the Blackguard a long time to come out and the Girls and Cutthroats detonated upom impact. Leaving the Flayed Men as the only go to unit for Neutral faction players.

  14. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by sacrilege83 View Post
    I guess LVO is suppose to mean Las Vegas. I hope one tournament doesn't set the meta for you, because all the talk I heard and polls I read pre v1.5 says that the Night's Watch were the slight meta over Lannisters and generally a Neutral army was frowned upon not being great for the reasons that it took the Blackguard a long time to come out and the Girls and Cutthroats detonated upom impact. Leaving the Flayed Men as the only go to unit for Neutral faction players.
    What other major tournaments have Neutrals performed poorly at?

  15. #35

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    I do not play competitively, but i do remember the polls by On the Table which put the Neutrals at the square bottom of the pile, along with Free Folk for some time. I've played enough games vs Starks and Lannisters with Boltons to know that Flayed men were not OP in that context. They were very hard to kill, but the rest of the army could not hold objectives very well, and sticking a 10pts cavalry on a point was a waste of value for sure. Now Flayed Men in the Night's watch was far different, and Lannisters had Cercei to boost Bolton units to a better level than as Neutrals themselves and -that- is what made CMON change them. They stated themselves that they were not OP, just that they didn't want to give those abilities across the faction. It is my speculative belief that Blackguards were declawed due to Lannister interactions, just like Flayed Men were due to Night's Watch and possibly Targaryen stuff.

    I am not against change, and all for balance, but i think that the root of the problem is how the Neutral faction units are designed (i.e. allied into all factions) to be balanced across the whole range...leading to them being stale over time to prevent any "spike" in potency.
    Last edited by Oakwolf; 02-19-2020 at 07:05 AM.

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Oakwolf View Post
    I do not play competitively, but i do remember the polls by On the Table which put the Neutrals at the square bottom of the pile, along with Free Folk for some time.
    A poll is not a particularly effective way of getting objective data. Most people are going to fall into the "my faction is underpowered, factions mine has an advantage against are balanced, factions that have a fair fight with mine are overpowered, and factions which are more powerful than mine are outright BROKEN" framework.

  17. #37

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    neutral army make sense within the lore though. The boltons being their own faction or the tyrells or even greyjoy don't really make sense within the lore. And sell swords having their own factions is even worse of an idea. I totally understand the concept of how its mudding the waters of the game though you are 100% right that they are in an awkward place rn, but imo so is the whole entire game. We are in between far too many important releases that are needed to fully flesh out the game and as a result the experience can feel really awkward and "unbalanced" depending on whats on the table. We know this is gong to be fixed with the huge list of upcoming releases so its not that big of a deal, just annoying currently. There are only a handful of real players in the game of thrones who stand a chance of actually "winning" and most of the noble houses just back who they think will win, those houses change their loyalty all of the time and that plays into the setting. Theres a great scene in the tv show, i dont remember if its in the book, where joffery talks about how giving every lord their own army is a bad idea for whoever is in control and that really does reflect in the conflicts of the world, Ironically joffery is right about a lot of things and probably would have maybe made a decent enough king if ned would have tried to work with him and council him from the start. So much could have been avoided in challenging his claim, he wanted to kill the dragons when they were young, the high sparrow would have never risen to power, the war of the five kings, ect. It seems to me like having factions that ally with other factions is more than just a gameplay element its a part of the IP and the formula. If anything I would want more neutral houses.

  18. #38

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    Game Design > Fluff
    Generally speaking neutral assets in games tend to provide universal access at the cost of efficiency. No neutral unit should be clearly better for the cost than the best of a similar unit based solely in one faction that is known for that skill. In other words, Flayed men should either be more expensive and/or be worse than the best Cavalry unit within the faction with the best cavalry.
    I have harnessed the shadows that stride from world to world to sow death and madness...

  19. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tokhuah View Post
    Game Design > Fluff
    Generally speaking neutral assets in games tend to provide universal access at the cost of efficiency. No neutral unit should be clearly better for the cost than the best of a similar unit based solely in one faction that is known for that skill. In other words, Flayed men should either be more expensive and/or be worse than the best Cavalry unit within the faction with the best cavalry.
    I think we can agree on that, but in a Neutral-only faction they should have something to make up for that. If the Neutral Tactics Deck was OP to make up for intentionally throttled units, that would be good.

  20. #40

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    There is always the option of units with text something like this: "If none of the units in your army have a house affiliation then pile on this cool ability." This will allow a neutral unit to be better, but only outside the influence of other houses.
    I have harnessed the shadows that stride from world to world to sow death and madness...

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