balance issues 2 factions on 1 (equal points each side)
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Thread: balance issues 2 factions on 1 (equal points each side)

  1. #1

    Default balance issues 2 factions on 1 (equal points each side)

    I’ve got a 50 pt Lannister army on one side battling two 25 pt factions (Free Folk and Watch) on another. Obviously mileage will vary based on all sorts of things (scenario, forces, commanders, etc.). That granted, expert thoughts on balance issues? Is a two tactic deck vs one situation balanced enough if point totals are otherwise comparable here? Should Lannisters get a few extra points? If so, how many?

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by PaulusBorgia View Post
    I’ve got a 50 pt Lannister army on one side battling two 25 pt factions (Free Folk and Watch) on another. Obviously mileage will vary based on all sorts of things (scenario, forces, commanders, etc.). That granted, expert thoughts on balance issues? Is a two tactic deck vs one situation balanced enough if point totals are otherwise comparable here? Should Lannisters get a few extra points? If so, how many?
    Balance will go the way of the Flayed Men if you start mixing faction units and cross applying tactic decks. Look what happened to that unit after it started appearing in NW and Targ forces...


    Suggestion: Have the 2-force army identify who is going to be the commander for that side. That army (and only that one) is allowed to get a commander and use tactic cards. The other army is basically playing the role of mercenary and stand in as "pseudo-neutrals", whatever the narrative you use for it to happen.

    Tactic cards and attachment orders cannot target a unit from another faction and are not considered "friendly" for the purposes of tactic card abilities. So no vows on free folks, and no Regroup and Reform on NW units. In the same manner, Rattleshirts upgrade cards won't go on NW units (!). However, some ability combos are possible provided they don't affect the other faction (e.g. Raiders would gain the +1 to hit if they are targeting an enemy unit which is engaged with a NW one). For example, "there's too many" and 'distraction tactics" would work, or "take the black" (even if it's a FF that destroyed it, provided a NW one is within short range).

    That should be a sufficient drawback to prevent absurd shenanigans.

  3. #3

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    Many thanks for these thoughtful ideas. Open to others too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oakwolf View Post
    Balance will go the way of the Flayed Men if you start mixing faction units and cross applying tactic decks. Look what happened to that unit after it started appearing in NW and Targ forces...


    Suggestion: Have the 2-force army identify who is going to be the commander for that side. That army (and only that one) is allowed to get a commander and use tactic cards. The other army is basically playing the role of mercenary and stand in as "pseudo-neutrals", whatever the narrative you use for it to happen.

    Tactic cards and attachment orders cannot target a unit from another faction and are not considered "friendly" for the purposes of tactic card abilities. So no vows on free folks, and no Regroup and Reform on NW units. In the same manner, Rattleshirts upgrade cards won't go on NW units (!). However, some ability combos are possible provided they don't affect the other faction (e.g. Raiders would gain the +1 to hit if they are targeting an enemy unit which is engaged with a NW one). For example, "there's too many" and 'distraction tactics" would work, or "take the black" (even if it's a FF that destroyed it, provided a NW one is within short range).

    That should be a sufficient drawback to prevent absurd shenanigans.

  4. #4

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    In the rulebook for team play, each player gets one copy of each of their tactics cards in their deck. Maybe you can implement that part in your 2v1 game?

  5. #5

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    The biggest thing is to make sure you’re balancing out the activations. Either give the combo team one activation where they choose who goes, or have them alternate after each time the Lannister’s go.

    The blended tactics deck is a good idea that may keep the shenanigans down while still allowing each part of the team to have things unique to it.
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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlxRaven View Post
    The biggest thing is to make sure you’re balancing out the activations. Either give the combo team one activation where they choose who goes, or have them alternate after each time the Lannister’s go.

    The blended tactics deck is a good idea that may keep the shenanigans down while still allowing each part of the team to have things unique to it.
    Blending a tactic deck is asking for trouble, imho. Not saying it is not fun, or that it should not be done for fear of the end of the world, but if balance is what is being discussed.

    a) there should be only 1 general, that's what the game is balanced at. The 0 cost of general is deceptive, they are much more valuable than that, but have been all balanced equally down to 0 because there's always 1, and only 1 per side...and are technically all providing similar value to a force.

    b) tactic cards, orders and attachments (including influence) shouldn't affect "out of faction" units, otherwise you'll get ridiculous effects that were not intended, and could throw the testing that CMON did out of the window. That's the only drawback i've found that will effectively cull the min-max potential of mix-matching 2 factions together.

  7. #7

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    True, but I was going off what almond mentioned being in the rule book.

    While I have played team matches, they have always had even sides, so we just build 4 small armies, and pair up.

    I have thought about doing a lopsided matchup, but my thought was to just boost the points available to the single person and let the other two play as “separate” armies. No blending, etc. haven’t had a chance to try it let tho to see how it would work, or drill down what the bonus points should be.

    I would expect, at least in the setup I want to try, that the increase would need to be significant tho. I wanted to have the single player in the middle, with an opponent on either side. So I’d be offsetting the more frequent activations plus poor starting position.
    House - Ravenhurst
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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlxRaven View Post
    True, but I was going off what almond mentioned being in the rule book.

    While I have played team matches, they have always had even sides, so we just build 4 small armies, and pair up.

    I have thought about doing a lopsided matchup, but my thought was to just boost the points available to the single person and let the other two play as “separate” armies. No blending, etc. haven’t had a chance to try it let tho to see how it would work, or drill down what the bonus points should be.

    I would expect, at least in the setup I want to try, that the increase would need to be significant tho. I wanted to have the single player in the middle, with an opponent on either side. So I’d be offsetting the more frequent activations plus poor starting position.
    What you did works (4 armies).That's also something possible: have the single player build 2 armies (of his faction) with 2 generals, and so that would balance it out better. It works on 2v2 and 1v1, 1v2 less so.

    Something to keep in mind is the number of tactic cards playable per turn, if you have 2 commanders, that's a pool of 6 cards (or more), giving a lot more opportunities than with a single commander

  9. #9

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    The non-house-ruling options:

    - Play 1v1v1 Free-for-all if you want to play 3-player game.
    (If the slightly off-set starting positions bother, you can slightly house-rule the starting positions e.g. to be in shape of hexagon to ensure each player is equal distance from each).

    - Get 4th player to play 2v2.

    Problem solved.
    The Tactics Card benefit in 2v1 is big, and hard to balance without vigorous play-testing.

  10. #10

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    I have now played couple of 2v1 games and made some notifications.

    Problems:
    - 2 Commanders vs 1 Commander
    - Combined hand size of 6 vs hand size of 3
    - Combined deck size

    Solutions:
    - Solo player gets 3 extra army points for attachments to balance second commander
    - Solo player's hand size +1, opposing team both players hand size -1
    - Team players only use one copy of each card, so total number of cards is the same in both teams.

    And btw. 30p 1v1v1 is always an opinion.

  11. #11

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    I'd add 4 points to the solo player, as a relative value to the other free commander that the team of 2 gets. They're at least worth more than any other unit attachment, and also can give additional VPs on the ground. Most NCUs are worth 4 points, and the commanders are not the weakest ones.

  12. #12

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    To decrease disbalance Lannister should use two tactic decks and divivde army on two armies 25 pts each
    Or if impossible to get two decks - use one deck drawing for different armies and ressuffle after it depleted.

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