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Kazthefirst
03-14-2013, 06:28 PM
Backbiters have had their Strength max reduced to 10 in the latest update.

They just went from "unit that has a niche because you can threaten and harm people's high Strength and moderate Armor guys and maybe kill low-armor archers" to "not a threat to anyone and clearly-worst raider unit now, even behind the rather silly Raidmaster."

I guess it's all Thrashers now and for all time?

Shiri
03-14-2013, 07:02 PM
I understand the general thrust behind the strength nerf, although I think it'll seriously damage their ability to be "archer killers" as intended.

But why buff their max willpower to 13? Is anyone likely to try that build ever?

EDIT: Ok, I haven't tested yet so it's possible this will go away entirely when I get the chance to play with it, but I am more puzzled about this as I think about it. Stoic was saying in chat that backbiters should be hit and run, not tanks, and that's why they were considering lowering max armour to 11 from 12. I can understand not take that route, but now their hit and run is dramatically nerfed in effectiveness ESPECIALLY if they take stray strength damage from stuff like coals, heavy impact, bloody flail, overhits, etc., whereas their tankiness is still intact and in fact seems like a more reliable direction to take them now?

piotras
03-14-2013, 07:15 PM
I was expecting changes that involve his max armour or armour-break dependence of his skill, but I haven't played yet to see how it affects the game so I can't judge the decision yet.

Stoic mentioned that the intention behind BB was to be armour breakers and right now with no investment to break they can potentially run through 4 units dealing 8 armour break AND also attack - so there is a niche.

Why nerf BBs? Well, if spected the very lame way of 12/12 + shieldwall stacking they are tough as hell AND could armour break before their attack with no investment to armour break itself.

If the current raiders aren't what you're looking for (like me) than there's another one coming and spearmen will be joining our ranks so lots of room for melee tactics.

van
03-14-2013, 07:39 PM
rather silly Raidmaster.

How dare you! <3 Raidmasters, best unit in the game.

It will all get more balanced once higher ranks will be added for every unit. The potential of running through several units (with wp cost 3) justifies the will power buff.

Shiri
03-14-2013, 07:40 PM
How dare you! <3 Raidmasters, best unit in the game.

It will all get more balanced once higher ranks will be added for every unit. The potential of running through several units (with wp cost 3) justifies the will power buff.

It's a MAX willpower buff though, not a MIN willpower buff. They still start with 4 like before. Actually getting to that cap leaves you with stats of 5/8/13/2/1 (well, you don't have to put the exertion I guess, but something like that.) Bizarre.

van
03-14-2013, 07:45 PM
Ah, you're right Shiri, just took a quick peek at them. I thought the nerf was affecting min not max wp. Quite bizzare indeed.

piotras
03-14-2013, 07:49 PM
well, the game needs to be balanced somehow, if you subtract from one place you need to balance somewhere else and WP seems to be the dump-stat for balance-issues

franknarf
03-14-2013, 08:19 PM
Well, any nerf will do in a storm, I say. I still like the BBs even now that their ability is less about ganking archers on their first hit. I've got two BBs and no third raider right now.

pix
03-14-2013, 08:43 PM
They did need a nerf... personally I thought their imbalance was in their skill, which is far too good for 1 WP. This indirectly nerfs the skill though, since they don't maim so often when using it.

Kazthefirst
03-14-2013, 08:48 PM
I was expecting changes that involve his max armour or armour-break dependence of his skill, but I haven't played yet to see how it affects the game so I can't judge the decision yet.

Stoic mentioned that the intention behind BB was to be armour breakers and right now with no investment to break they can potentially run through 4 units dealing 8 armour break AND also attack - so there is a niche.

Why nerf BBs? Well, if spected the very lame way of 12/12 + shieldwall stacking they are tough as hell AND could armour break before their attack with no investment to armour break itself.

If the current raiders aren't what you're looking for (like me) than there's another one coming and spearmen will be joining our ranks so lots of room for melee tactics.

Running through four units is not something that will happen even if you could afford the three Willpower. With only six units, the chances of four being lined up, none of them being giants, your Will at three or higher, and your Backbiters in range is a black swan event.

Even running through two units was not something that happened every match.

I guess they'll be a placeholder unit until new units show up. I seriously don't respect the plans for upgraded Trashers enough to get the kills on them and Raidermasters are still silly (spend Willpower to not do things in the hopes of being in a good position after everyone has moved.....lame).

eAZy
03-14-2013, 09:31 PM
Running through four units is not something that will happen even if you could afford the three Willpower. With only six units, the chances of four being lined up, none of them being giants, your Will at three or higher, and your Backbiters in range is a black swan event.

Even running through two units was not something that happened every match.

I guess they'll be a placeholder unit until new units show up. I seriously don't respect the plans for upgraded Trashers enough to get the kills on them and Raidermasters are still silly (spend Willpower to not do things in the hopes of being in a good position after everyone has moved.....lame).

There are so many things wrong with every statement you make that I don't know where to begin. Please stop and think before posting again.

d2r
03-14-2013, 09:40 PM
Running through four units is not something that will happen even if you could afford the three Willpower. With only six units, the chances of four being lined up, none of them being giants, your Will at three or higher, and your Backbiters in range is a black swan event.

Even running through two units was not something that happened every match.

I guess they'll be a placeholder unit until new units show up. I seriously don't respect the plans for upgraded Trashers enough to get the kills on them and Raidermasters are still silly (spend Willpower to not do things in the hopes of being in a good position after everyone has moved.....lame).

In fairness, the Raidmaster's ability is often pretty good at restricting the movement of the Varls if you can use him properly.

franknarf
03-14-2013, 10:04 PM
Yeah, I don't see how the RM's ability could be useful. Then again, I said that about the latest iteration of Slag 'n' Burn, too.

Tatski
03-14-2013, 10:22 PM
I've always thought of the Raidmaster as a disruptive unit. For me his main purpose is to block enemy movement. A well played RM can be pretty annoying!
BBs nerf was alright.. 12 power plus his run through is pretty scary on higher ranks..

Kazthefirst
03-15-2013, 12:13 AM
There are so many things wrong with every statement you make that I don't know where to begin. Please stop and think before posting again.

Claiming there is something wrong with my position without actually backing it up makes me think that you don't have valid opinions that should be respected.

Join the conversation! It's why forums were invented! :P

Tatski
03-15-2013, 01:05 AM
Claiming there is something wrong with my position without actually backing it up makes me think that you don't have valid opinions that should be respected.

Join the conversation! It's why forums were invented! :P

While I never comment at eAZy's tone. I kinda agree. I think the BBs nerf is justifiable. The BB with 12 str and 4 tile runthrough can be devastating... It just gives the BB more mobility... On BBs turn he can walk on blue tiles plus 5 Tiles if you can runthrough the 4th tile. I think the 3 WP is worth it even if only one unit is caught and the more units caught with runthrough the better! Yes it maybe a little costly at 3 wp but you can still cover more ground than normal movement with 3 exertion.. The BB has potential to reach any unit on his turn.. I think its the main reason why they nerf his str...

RobertTheScott
03-15-2013, 01:41 AM
Raidmasters are arguably my favorite unit, but they need to work in pairs. (Come to think of it, I should rename mine accordingly.)

Get two RM's side-by-side with activated skills, and their either (1) invincible or (2) cost so much WP for an opponent to attack them that I actually want them to be attacked. Then one tears an archer's armor to shreds, and the other does the same with limbs. (Or they wear down a varl together, &c.)

piotras
03-15-2013, 06:50 AM
Running through four units is not something that will happen even if you could afford the three Willpower. With only six units, the chances of four being lined up, none of them being giants, your Will at three or higher, and your Backbiters in range is a black swan event.

Even running through two units was not something that happened every match.

And now running through 2 or 3 units will not only be a common situation, but similarly to SRM, your every plan of formation will have to be done with the BBs special in mind - no more hiding with your archers just behind the Varls or careless stacking that shieldwall with your raiders. BB will start working as intended - the best armour breakers among the Raiders and archer harrasers rather than instant killers. Sure, he won't be better at taking large chunks of armour from a single unit, but he will be the most cost-efficient armour breaker.

I know it's sad that BB isn't a one-shot archer killer or self-sufficient anymore, you'll just have to make him work in concert with other units, you know, that lame and smartass thing... tictacs? No wait.. tactics!

Yellow
03-15-2013, 07:41 AM
i quote myself:


Duno what's the hugge deal people is making about the BBs, at 10 strength 10 defence they are fine, i've been using 1-2 in all my builds since i started playing, and never once used a 12 strength one, so far it worked as fine as they should...

They are far from useless as people seems to be claiming... if u where used to have only 12 strength BBs then i can see why u complain as it would be like taking away ur AK-47 and giving u a sword in stead, but hey we are in a viking game, the AK-47 don't belongs here...

In other words, stop talking no-sence and whining becouse they got nerfted, they still do their job as any other raider unit... and those who said raidmasters are useless clearly have no clue of what they talking about..

HeadOpener
03-15-2013, 09:38 AM
Just on the RM thing, my favourite raider by far personally.
I use them to zone control and block whilst also being able to break when required.
Most folks ignore them or maim them which is fine by me as they are not there for damage.
Because everyone's play style is different not everyone appreciates Rms position in the game but I love them!
Personally I would not use a BB or thrasher that often at all, my general build does not include either currently. However a 4 sq run through with 2 break per hit and then the normal damage would be seriously op compared to other current rank 3 abilities without this health adjustment.

MadMage
03-15-2013, 09:41 AM
I had to register just to gripe on this; you've take a clearly offensive unit and made it... useless. Why not nerf the ability directly? This is a Blizzard-style super nerf, not the minor tweak the class needed.

What I want is my two Backbiters refunded down to Raiders and my 80 renoun returned so I can go with Thrashers - because that's exactly what this game needs, more Thrashers after an update intended to kill Thrasher heavy builds. Good work!

[EDIT]: The OP's point is a pretty good one - the Backbiter threatened units that min-maxed armor for strength. I guess I'll just toss down a Warhawk, 3 Thrashers and a couple of archers since that seems to be about the viable build now.

Yellow
03-15-2013, 09:50 AM
I had to register just to gripe on this; you've take a clearly offensive unit and made it... useless. Why not nerf the ability directly? This is a Blizzard-style super nerf, not the minor tweak the class needed.

What I want is my two Backbiters refunded down to Raiders and my 80 renoun returned so I can go with Thrashers - because that's exactly what this game needs, more Thrashers after an update intended to kill Thrasher heavy builds. Good work!

Seriosly dude, i dont want to be a jackass but if u register on the forums only for talking no-sence, well, next time dont waste ur time, neither waste ours....

Backbiters are still a viable unit, i never used any with 12 strength before, not even once, and i allways found them rather quite usefull even woith 10 Strength + 10 Armour... SO they are far from USELESS as u claim them to be now.... Learn to play in stead of whining about units geting nerfted ....

PS: This kind of comments really irritate me....

raven2134
03-15-2013, 09:51 AM
I think the nerf to strength, rather than armor made quite a bit of sense, in hindsight. If we look at the mobility the higher ranks of the ability will give, BBs will function like pre-nerf Warleader+SA (SnB) combo did. There are too few ways of defending versus backbiters or countering the tactic, making it OP. Dropping armor would not have an effect on using BBs to hit critical units or impair a strategy, because out of enemy range from which the BBs can then leap into action, the lower armor wouldn't decrease the BB's offensive potential.

Also, while the max armor break on the run through (hitting 4 units is 8 break) is not realistic, it still does mean that the ability is cost effective for movement (unique to BB) rather than damage which is common for other units. Having this increased range also means that running through 2 units is much easier to achieve, while also creating disincentive for the opponent to lock shields.

Third, looking at the 12/12 build, either stat can actually be seen to be the issue. You could lower the armor to make the BB more vulnerable. But this is also less effective because of stacking shieldwall. Lowering str to 10 has an immediate effect, since this decreases the BB's offensive power (again) immediately. Making it less critical for the BB to be more vulnerable.

Now...I'm not sure myself why the BB stat points went into willpower. Probably because it's part of the framework Stoic follows for their balancing. (So Max stats across a class are even). Dropping max str to 10 from 12 doesn't affect minimum's on the BB which may be fine, and we can redistribute the points to other stats. I suppose this made the most sense rather than put the max points into armor(already at 12), or exertion(that maxes at 3). So willpower was it.

piotras
03-15-2013, 09:51 AM
Don't remember Stoic saying that BB was mean to be a 'clearly offensive unit', quite the opposite actually.

franknarf
03-15-2013, 10:19 AM
@raven: Yeah, that makes sense. I guess it is a better choice than the max armor nerf I'd heard bandied about.

Arnie
03-15-2013, 10:35 AM
+to ravens post.

When looking at the BB higher ranks we either had to nerf their movement or nerf their strength. It's going to be next to impossible to guard an archer from them at rank 3 and he was a 1 shot killer for them in many cases, so it was simply too much. We wanted to keep their mobility in place because that's what makes them cool, unique. In beta the way that they were originally designed they had lower str and their Runthrough only did 1 break.
We will be constantly balancing units throughout but mostly when they're rank 2 and 3 abilities are about to come online.
MadMage: The new build for the Backbiter is going to keep them one nasty unit who can move with impunity.

MadMage
03-15-2013, 11:25 AM
MadMage: The new build for the Backbiter is going to keep them one nasty unit who can move with impunity.
Extra movement just means more chances to get yourself into trouble. Being able to get through the lines to the archers isn't really useful if the unit cannot cripple the archer with that single shot because he isn't going to BE there for another turn (at least not with a threatening amount of strength left). You're better off flanking with Thrashers who remain a threat even when maimed or just 'tanking' through with Raidmasters.

You nixxed offensive power, the threat of the BB's ability and his survivability in one fell swoop.

trisenk
03-15-2013, 11:46 AM
Being able to get through the lines to the archers isn't really useful if the unit cannot cripple the archer with that single shot because he isn't going to BE there for another turn (at least not with a threatening amount of strength left).

Most archers are set up with 7-8arm/7-8str. Armor get's reduced to 5-6 after RT, so 10str BB attacks for 4-5, reducing archer's strength to 2-4. How is it not crippling?



You nixxed offensive power, the threat of the BB's ability and his survivability in one fell swoop.
They didn't. He just stopped being jack of all trades, master of all. And that's a good thing.

Wordplay
03-15-2013, 12:36 PM
10 10 is definitely still a threat, in fact I'd say it was about the sweet spot.

If I understand the advancements to the backbiter correctly, then they'll be able to hit your archers on the first turn more often than not - even if people adopt deployment and build strategies to punish this. Immediately, you're reacting to your opponent, rather than dictating the flow of the battle. They'll be difficult to counter at 10 10 - they would have been murderous at even at 8 12. They're difficult enough to counter at rank 1.

Now if any unit on the board becomes vulnerable, they'll be able to do something about it.

In conclusion, still a very powerful unit, and the nerf was necessary.

Impaler
03-15-2013, 03:10 PM
I worked hard for 4 BB and I want a refund for all my wasted effort and time.

Dysp
03-15-2013, 03:14 PM
I wanted to see what the range looked like on a r3 BB (presuming they get a 4-tile Run Through), so over lunch I made a range diagram with rank 1 no exertion, rank 1 3 exertion, rank 3 no exertion, and rank 3 3 exertion total range quadrants. Hopefully I didn't overlook any glaring mistakes, because I started out accidentally with 5 movement range. :p

http://i.imgur.com/TOxhhYC.jpg
If you wanted true maximum range, you could get a Strongarm to boot the BB across the map. A high WP BB could go almost anywhere on the map in one turn, possibly dealing significant armor damage and decent strength damage.

erom
03-15-2013, 04:24 PM
Honest I think they might have already been too generous with refunds, they are setting up an expectation for reparations that is only going to get silly-er. I mean seriously, things get balanced in video games. Wow doesn't give you gold when they nerf your class.

Yellow
03-15-2013, 05:03 PM
Honest I think they might have already been too generous with refunds, they are setting up an expectation for reparations that is only going to get silly-er. I mean seriously, things get balanced in video games. Wow doesn't give you gold when they nerf your class.

Definnetly more than generous!!!

Why tf is people asking for refunds? AND whining about BB being "USELESS"? really? seriosly people, suck it up!!! if u decided to spam the crap out of 1 unit thats ur problem, and if u consider BB to be useless right now, go back to play tutorial cos thats clearly where ur skill level is....

I feel like comments in here, are already long past the "silly" category, they already evolved to the next level: "plain brainless"...

Shiri
03-15-2013, 05:08 PM
Honest I think they might have already been too generous with refunds, they are setting up an expectation for reparations that is only going to get silly-er. I mean seriously, things get balanced in video games. Wow doesn't give you gold when they nerf your class.
The refunds weren't because of nerfs, they were because of people having bought more raiders of a given type than are now actually possible to use, resulting in completely useless units in the roster that cost good renown and training to get. It was a good move by Stoic I think.

hreinnbeno
03-15-2013, 07:06 PM
Extra movement just means more chances to get yourself into trouble. Being able to get through the lines to the archers isn't really useful if the unit cannot cripple the archer with that single shot because he isn't going to BE there for another turn (at least not with a threatening amount of strength left). You're better off flanking with Thrashers who remain a threat even when maimed or just 'tanking' through with Raidmasters.

You nixxed offensive power, the threat of the BB's ability and his survivability in one fell swoop.

10 strength backbiters on a 7 armor, 7 strength archer, which many archer possess if you want to have archers with willpower, you take 5 strength with the ability. They are killed with one fellswoop by a 12 strength backbiter. That wouldnt be a problem for rank 1 backbiter, where you can protect the archers. But rank 2 or 3 there is no way you can protect them which means that every archer will have to be very buff and the flexibility for archers would go way down.

Gramalian
03-15-2013, 08:25 PM
Just played a game and while im not great or even close to good I just ran over a guy thanks in no small part to my biters high mobility crippling an archer and letting me chian kill it with a warriors AOE damage splash thingy.

Not to mention it taking armor off multiple units for 1 ap on top of dealing solid damage. I dont see this nerf being a bad thing, it just pulled in its potential power and kept the interesting parts of its design.

Kazthefirst
03-16-2013, 04:05 AM
I understand that the upgraded BB has a larger range, but isn't that offset by the fact that the Rank 3 version of his ability is going to burn a lot more Willpower and put him very far from support?

If you just spent three Willpower for extra movement and three for Run Through, then isn't killing one low-armor archer and maybe damaging some other units pretty small for burning what is probably all of your Willpower (6!)? Considering how many people use Armor 9 or 10 Archers, the Strength 12 BB was only rarely killing an archer.

Vexbane
03-16-2013, 05:17 AM
I think the nerf was spot on. I was skeptical at first, but BB are still very dangerous. I do not think they are the "best" raider anymore, but they are now on par with the rest instead of an auto include. I have seen a lot of 12 armor BB and they are still scary and not easy to bring down.

I think the renown refund was a good idea and spot on.

Tatski
03-16-2013, 05:20 AM
I understand that the upgraded BB has a larger range, but isn't that offset by the fact that the Rank 3 version of his ability is going to burn a lot more Willpower and put him very far from support?

If you just spent three Willpower for extra movement and three for Run Through, then isn't killing one low-armor archer and maybe damaging some other units pretty small for burning what is probably all of your Willpower (6!)? Considering how many people use Armor 9 or 10 Archers, the Strength 12 BB was only rarely killing an archer.
Mobility has great tactical value same as RMs stonewall. Knowing that a 12 str BB can cover a lot of ground makes him very dangerous specially at higher ranks... The nerf allows people to use him carefully.. Prior to the nerf BBs can easily 1 one shot or critically maim an archer (an archer with 9 or 10 armor is uncommon I only encounter that on SA's). This is a huge advantage because maiming a BB usually requires more than 1 turn. They'll be waisting turns just to get your backbiter while your troops are advancing...

Wordplay
03-16-2013, 05:30 AM
@Kazthefirst:
If you just spent three Willpower for extra movement and three for Run Through, then isn't killing one low-armor archer and maybe damaging some other units pretty small for burning what is probably all of your Willpower (6!)? Considering how many people use Armor 9 or 10 Archers, the Strength 12 BB was only rarely killing an archer.

No, not if it happens as you describe it. If you're trading a unit for another unit, before that unit does damage or gets to spend any willpower, and managing to do even some damage or break to another unit, then you'll always come out ahead (on that part of the battle at least). This goes double if you're taking out an archer. Archers only get better as the match goes on - they're weakest at the start, average in the mid-game, and strongest in the late game. Sure they may have lower stats, but that's still a unit your opponent spent a slot to fill - a slot that they could have filled with a raider (assuming each build runs at least 1 Varl).

In any case, this is the least subtle use - with skill you'll expect to do better than this. Consider, even in this scenario, to kill the backbiter will cost your opponent probably 2 turns at least, and probably some willpower. So you'll also throw their opener into disarray, and generate some turn advantage.

Now, if you're not killing the archers before the backbiter goes down, then yes, that's an inferior trade, not worth it.

@All: More frightening, consider this scenario, you have 4 units with broken armour in the mid-game. Rank 3 backbiter can likely move to hit any of them, and it will be very difficult to protect them all (although rank 3 Skystriker will have a plausible, but no certain chance). This gives you opportunities to generate turn advantage, by crippling units just before they take their turn. You also have to bear in mind the backbiter's force in potential until the willpower is spent (and again when the horn starts filling).

If someone is using a combo strategy, you can use the backbiter to take out the crucial piece. A good example: high break teams that use a bowmaster to make their kills in the endgame.

KRD
03-16-2013, 08:07 AM
Did anyone seriously think a single rank 1 backbiter, even specced at 12/12 and low exertion, was impossible (or even difficult) to handle? If your answer is no, do you not agree that lowering their max strength by two makes them weaker in every way when they're the only backbiter on a team? Would you not also agree then that after this nerf, they are further away from being balanced (when compared to other raiders) than they were before, at rank 1 at least?

If their rank 3 run through was what caused concerns, that's what should have been looked at. The range of the ability could have been reduced by one square at all ranks. The armor break component of it could have been made dependent on their armor break stat, like it was with the siege archer's slag and burn. On top of that, to tackle shield wall stacking in those pesky 4x (now 3x) builds, the backbiter's max armor could have been lowered by one or two points, all this without really compromising their usefulness as the kamikaze maimers (never really killers, not against skilled players) of low armor units*. Which is what they make sense to be, as opposed to the ridiculous burst armor breaking tanks with a dagger that they will evolve into now. Derp.

Just because this nerf seems to have roughly brought the unit in line doesn't mean that it was handled the right way, by addressing the things that really made backbiters too powerful or at least too easy to play.

* By far not only archer slayers, backbiters were also pretty much the only line of defence (metaphorically speaking, maai and all that) to dual high strength warriors that I ever found to be effective.

piotras
03-16-2013, 08:39 AM
12/12 + shieldwall + 2 armour break made them much easier to play and boringly overused by types hoping for easy wins, thus some sort of nerf had to be in place but I was also hoping for making their run through be dependent on the their actual break stat (-1), which wouldn't allow for making them the jack of all trades (at least at rank 1). All these changes would make more sense to me if warriors would have so high strength in the first place. (http://stoicstudio.com/forum/showthread.php?1324-Warrior-Varls-damage-output-suggestion)

Micahh
03-16-2013, 02:04 PM
The nerf was just about spot on.

A 10 strength BB does an effective 12 str hit for 1 willpower, which is one less than you'd get from one of the other raider types (12 str + 1 WP), but you also get 2 points of broken armor, so you're trading 2 armor for 1 health, not a bad trade. The post-nerf BBs hitting power is pretty much right where it should be. You also don't have to pay the design points for the 2 points of strength, allowing you to max out their armor and still have a couple of points to play with at rank one.

Once that's accounted for you have to examine the BBs special in comparison with the other raider types, and I think you'll find that it's doing exactly what it should be, which is granting mobility. The occasional chance for a bonus armor break on a second run-through rewards good setup and positioning as it should. Clearly the RM has a different niche entirely, and the thrasher is a good low-health unit (though 2 armor break and a swing really isn't that far off from the thrasher's 3 randoms and a swing.)

Does this possibly mean that 3x BB builds aren't that viable anymore? Maybe, but that's how it should be. The BB is supposed to be a specialty anti-squishy unit, not an all-purpose killer. Would you complain that you got crushed by your opponent's tanks when you bought an army of antiaircraft guns in a war game?

Kazthefirst
03-16-2013, 08:31 PM
The nerf was just about spot on.

A 10 strength BB does an effective 12 str hit for 1 willpower, which is one less than you'd get from one of the other raider types (12 str + 1 WP), but you also get 2 points of broken armor, so you're trading 2 armor for 1 health, not a bad trade.

You are forgetting that he's trading his entire ability to get that two armor break and one less Strength damage, and also is dealing with a lesser chance of doing any damage at all against Armor 12+ enemies.

In comparison, the Thrasher ability lets him use a minimal Armor Break stat for more overall points and then ignore armor to do small damage to Armor and Strength. The Raidermaster ability lets him have super armor and allows him to act as a shield in the way of other units.

The BB's ability now lets him engage in dangerous movement and burn Willpower to get a worse attack than if he didn't use the ability at all. The Backbiter now has a non-ability that will sometimes result in a glorious death when the enemy moves out of attack range of your other units in order to kill the lone BB. If he's lucky, he might do slightly more total Armor Break damage in the battle than if he hadn't use his ability at all and just saved his Willpower for Armor Breaking.

Right now, the uses of Run Through against two units that would be tactically advantageous occur in maybe one out of three games. Situations where you are going to be able to Run Through more units and justify the use of Willpower on the ability are going to be even less.


Once that's accounted for you have to examine the BBs special in comparison with the other raider types, and I think you'll find that it's doing exactly what it should be, which is granting mobility. The occasional chance for a bonus armor break on a second run-through rewards good setup and positioning as it should.

Extra mobility is both costly and dangerous, so I'm not entirely sure why you are talking about it as if it's entirely positive. Burning Willpower on movement is Willlpower you don't have for armor break and Strength damage, and moving too far from your other units works against your Shield Wall power for you and others and makes it impossible for other units to back you up.


Does this possibly mean that 3x BB builds aren't that viable anymore?

It's clear that any build with BBs is no longer viable. Thrashers are now the clear superior in every way, and Raidmasters are second with their niche tactical use.

piotras
03-16-2013, 08:55 PM
Right now, the uses of Run Through against two units that would be tactically advantageous occur in maybe one out of three games. Situations where you are going to be able to Run Through more units and justify the use of Willpower on the ability are going to be even less.

Could you post a link to the statistical data you used to make this claim?

BBs at higher ranks are the most mobile units in the whole game capable of most cost-effective armour break. I'm sorry you got used to you 12 strength BBs, just get over it and learn to play a proper tactical game not dependant on high strength mobile units. Saying that no builds with BBs are no longer viable is just ridiculous. Could you share with us what was your previous build that made 12 strength BBs so crucial?

Yellow
03-16-2013, 09:32 PM
It's clear that any build with BBs is no longer viable. Thrashers are now the clear superior in every way, and Raidmasters are second with their niche tactical use.

oh my... the level of "no-sence" is strong in this one....

Kazthefirst
03-17-2013, 12:51 AM
Could you post a link to the statistical data you used to make this claim?

BBs at higher ranks are the most mobile units in the whole game capable of most cost-effective armour break. I'm sorry you got used to you 12 strength BBs, just get over it and learn to play a proper tactical game not dependant on high strength mobile units. Saying that no builds with BBs are no longer viable is just ridiculous. Could you share with us what was your previous build that made 12 strength BBs so crucial?

First, you need to defend how spending all of your Willpower for one turn of mobility is an asset. It seems like a heavy and often fatal trade-off to me. Heck, even running with the base six Willpower to make it possible is going to hurt your stats unless you want to hope that the horn is refilled enough by the time you need it.

Second, Run Through is only the most efficient Armor Break under ideal conditions with the maximum units affected for the Willpower expended. If you affect one less unit than the max possible for the Willpower expended because enough didn't line up or one was a Warrior, it's a total Armor break of equal or less than adding the same amount of Willpower to your base 3 Armor Break.

Third, spreading out Armor break is far less tactically useful than focusing it. Spending three Willpower to do a six point Armor Break to a high Strength Warrior so that your next unit can damage it down to a manageable Strength is far more tactically useful than spreading out two points of Armor Break to four units each even in the unlikely situation where four units lined themselves up for you. You'd be lucky to find four units in the last half the battle. You'd even be lucky to get a situation where two points of Armor break even matters considering that most people tend to just maim enemies to very low Strength to keep the turn order filled with near-useless units.

franknarf
03-17-2013, 01:39 AM
Two of the play styles that were effective before (tanking 12/12 and flanking ./12) no longer work, and I have yet to find another use for BBs...but I wouldn't go as far as saying that.


It's clear that any build with BBs is no longer viable.

I thought the tanky style was overpowered but really enjoyed the flanking, which could be used to intimidate warriors and archers alike. It's a shame that's gone (as 10 strength is no threat to warriors and raiders and little threat to archers). Anyway, I think Stoic made a good call, but it seems like the BB's identity is gone.

You make a good point about mobility not always being good. I didn't really think about it until I tried them out and found myself skipping a run through just to stay out of a warrior's range. Frequently this just means I'll hold back or waste one or two wp (maybe one for walking; one for a standard attack)...and wish I had brought a different unit.

Gramalian
03-17-2013, 02:29 AM
The thing to me thats important is that biters serve their designed function. Which I think is most clearly stated in game where it talks about them hunting archers or other wounded/weak units. I'm almost 100% I didnt dream that up but if Im wrong Im sorry. Before, Biters were able to go toe to toe with nearly everyone and were great armor breakers( I would honestly like to see them worse at this myself, but better vs low armor as if their ability didnt break/only broke and their stab was based on def lvls like pierce is)and damage dealers and tanks...

Anway Im running a 10/10 biter with 3 extersion and 4 will power, 2 armor break. Just one of them seems to do me just fine and while im by far not good/great at this game if I can get it to work you good players should be able too. Being able to add 3 to my movement then pop a run for my last WP is huge. Its not always the best idea of course but the option is nice. I think its a good thing yo have to pick when to extend and when not too.

I run a very heavy extersion/will power build with 2 8/12 thrashers and they and the biter just work like missiles punching right through an area going for weak units. My warleader/SS/ and sheildbreaker seem to do ok with what they are there for too. Maybe its just biters are not as generally good now, and to me thats a good thing. They still function very well in their niche. If anything Id like to see WH and WM nerfed down a bit and see how things stand.

edit: and a 10/10 IS a threat to even full armor/hp archers imo. Its 5 damage to a unit that has 7 hp most of the time. Thats a HUGE drop in effectiveness and if they were damaged/armor broke just by 2 points they can out right kill them. Non archers like wise suffer the same fate when damaged. They just dont smash into full armor and full hp melee units as well as they use too. But again, their text seems to say they are not suppose to. IMO, there are too many ways to one shot something in this game. 8/12 thrashers, 17hp WM, 16 hp warhawks, and Im sure there are more I dont know. A unit that is built to take out weakened units is nice.

Micahh
03-17-2013, 03:00 AM
BBs are the most mobile unit in the game to start out with, the fact that you can blow heaps of WP to make them moreso is mostly besides the point, you will only do so if you botched your positioning or if you see a great opportunity to exploit. And while armor break across multiple units is generally worse than a focused break I'm actually often happy to have the combo str/armor damage on the BBs main target.

Also, mobility IS always good in capable hands, the fact that it allows a greater variety of bad plays is kind of beside the point.

Saying a 10 str BB is no threat to a warrior is often wrong, as it heavily depends on the warrior's stat distribution. A 9/17/3/1/1 warmaster actually comes out of a one on one fight with a 12/10/4/2/1 BB at 1 armor, 6 str and 0 WP if the BB gets the first hit in and spends all his WP on run-through attacks. (This is assuming the warrior doesn't miss his 90, 80 and 70% attacks, any misses mean one less strength and an even worse chance for the next swing.) Change it to a 9/16/3/2/1 warmaster and the BB will actually win barring some crazy good luck on the warrior's part. I believe an 8/17/3/2/1 WM takes an autoloss to the BB in a duel. The warriors do way better with a higher armor stat, but people generally favor strength builds since that's the warrior's niche.

Kazthefirst
03-17-2013, 03:37 AM
edit: and a 10/10 IS a threat to even full armor/hp archers imo. Its 5 damage to a unit that has 7 hp most of the time. Thats a HUGE drop in effectiveness and if they were damaged/armor broke just by 2 points they can out right kill them. Non archers like wise suffer the same fate when damaged. They just dont smash into full armor and full hp melee units as well as they use too. But again, their text seems to say they are not suppose to. IMO, there are too many ways to one shot something in this game. 8/12 thrashers, 17hp WM, 16 hp warhawks, and Im sure there are more I dont know. A unit that is built to take out weakened units is nice.

First, full armor on archers is 9 or 10. This means that the current ten Strength BB can do exactly 2-3 damage to a full armor archer who has not taken any armor break if they use Run Through and 4-5 if they blow three Willpower and have the stat for that. That's not archer-killer territory by a long shot.

It's like archer-pesterer. Maybe archer-botherer. Archer-annoyer.

Second, is there a need for a "kills weakened units" role? Keeping weakened units on the enemy team helps fill their turns with weakened units. Even if there was, isn't the Warhawk or Thrasher better at it? Heck, aren't weakened units the ones that are easy to kill by literally everyone?

Kazthefirst
03-17-2013, 04:17 AM
Also, mobility IS always good in capable hands, the fact that it allows a greater variety of bad plays is kind of beside the point.



It isn't beside the point.

The Backbiter was nerfed because the devs think that the Backbiter's mobility was a big deal. It can be a big deal if the RIGHT opportunity comes up, but the fact that the vast majority of opportunities that come up are BAD choices doesn't seem to be something that they considered. Run Through is designed to put you on the other side of the enemy and far way from your other troops, and that kind of highly-dangerous mobility needs to be factored in.

Second, I don't think anyone fears the Warriors running around with Armor of 9 and Strength 17. You can drop their Strength to a reasonable level with just about any two units before they ever get a chance to do anything. It's the 11/15 ones like Warhawks who are next to raiders and boosted to Armor 13 who scare the crap out of me because they'll actually get a chance to attack with a large Strength score (maybe even hitting two units) unless I devote three units. When they can rank to 3, that's going to be a lot more common of a problem.

Micahh
03-17-2013, 04:22 AM
...And then the 5 strength archer does what, exactly to the backbiter? If some other unit doesn't come deal with the backbiter the archer is either dead or totally crippled next turn after doing some armor damage. And if that unit isn't a warrior it'll probably actually take the archer's turn plus a second unit to neutralize the biter. (And when I say "neutralize" I mean getting his stats to where the "lightly injured" archer is, around 7/5)

Kazthefirst
03-17-2013, 04:50 AM
...And then the 5 strength archer does what, exactly to the backbiter? If some other unit doesn't come deal with the backbiter the archer is either dead or totally crippled next turn after doing some armor damage. And if that unit isn't a warrior it'll probably actually take the archer's turn plus a second unit to neutralize the biter. (And when I say "neutralize" I mean getting his stats to where the "lightly injured" archer is, around 7/5)

Yeh, that second unit will come over and smack you because people keep archers on the other side of their own units to keep them protected and often also keep them with other archers. The BB's mobility just took him into the wrong side of archer territory (the other side of the archer), so the unit that protects the archer can disengage from the main melee to kill the BB with the archer and/or the other archer can kill him with Puncture.

The fact that the BB probably just spent all of his Willpower on movement means that he can't get back to his own units before he gets double-teamed and rendered harmless and his total damage for the whole battle was a few points of damage to the archer.

Running across the battlefield to engage an archer sounds a lot better in people's head than the actual situation would play out in a match.

Yellow
03-17-2013, 05:15 AM
oh for god's sake stop talking no-sence about BBs... i could not have made it to rank 11 on "most wins" if the 10/10 BBs where as useless as u people claim they are, unless am a demi-god who can win 100+ games with 2 complete useless units on my team....
Seriosly people, its insulting and anoying the amount of crap and whining i see on this thread......

PS: cant this thread just get closed?

franknarf
03-17-2013, 07:41 AM
if I can get it to work you good players should be able [to] too.

Yeah, that's not true, of course. Some builds that are viable at lower ranks don't hold up as well against good players. Then again, I see Tirean still running two BBs on his stream right now...

@Micahh: Yes, sacrificing a BB in the early or mid game just to take an archer to 7/5 is not worth it. And the BB will be killed or maimed with certainty if he does that. Saving him for the late game (where run through really does pay off, as long as he still has good strength), warrior-style, also doesn't seem worth it, based on my experience running two BBs against two-RM and two-TS teams.

@Yellow: Please do continue to ridicule me by saying "no-sence" and citing your number of wins ;)

Tirean
03-17-2013, 09:10 AM
http://www.twitch.tv/tirean/b/378853480 my test with 2 BB came up against a huge obstacle of double RM!!

Not 100% sure how I feel about running 2 BB together now.. however I think running 1 is perfectly fine just for the fact that runthrough is still really good.

raven2134
03-17-2013, 09:31 AM
A 12/10 BB that lies in wait for the midgame and uses the mobility to control territory is pretty nice. I've seen it in play and it works quite well.

KRD
03-17-2013, 09:41 AM
Doesn't work that great when you're already lying in wait with a warrior... or two... :rolleyes:

Gramalian
03-17-2013, 11:27 AM
Yeah, that's not true, of course. Some builds that are viable at lower ranks don't hold up as well against good players. Then again, I see Tirean still running two BBs on his stream right now...

@Micahh: Yes, sacrificing a BB in the early or mid game just to take an archer to 7/5 is not worth it. And the BB will be killed or maimed with certainty if he does that. Saving him for the late game (where run through really does pay off, as long as he still has good strength), warrior-style, also doesn't seem worth it, based on my experience running two BBs against two-RM and two-TS teams.

@Yellow: Please do continue to ridicule me by saying "no-sence" and citing your number of wins ;)

It is most assuredly true. It doesn't have to be my build, but the unit as a whole should retain viability so long as its niche remains useful/needed regardless of rank. Higher ranks would drop off mostly do to ease of use issues but even a sub par unit( not saying it is) in the hands of a good player should be viable if harder to use.

A unit, who has the largest movement range, does armor and Hp damage with its ability and has similar stats to other raiders should be viable. If its not, then you have to ask if its an issue with its design, or if other builds are overly easy to use such as the warriors WM/WH classes taking the finisher niche from him or making insta killing or ignoring armor break to easy to do.

Especially as more lower stat units enter the game( the mage units especially) their range+ability should increase in value. 10/10 or 12/10 or whatever build it ends up being that has the most viability at higher ranks should find itself a nice niche once some of the other classes are lowered in general effectiveness or raw power along with more classes entering where they might match up better.

Gramalian
03-17-2013, 11:33 AM
First, full armor on archers is 9 or 10. This means that the current ten Strength BB can do exactly 2-3 damage to a full armor archer who has not taken any armor break if they use Run Through and 4-5 if they blow three Willpower and have the stat for that. That's not archer-killer territory by a long shot.

It's like archer-pesterer. Maybe archer-botherer. Archer-annoyer.

Second, is there a need for a "kills weakened units" role? Keeping weakened units on the enemy team helps fill their turns with weakened units. Even if there was, isn't the Warhawk or Thrasher better at it? Heck, aren't weakened units the ones that are easy to kill by literally everyone?

How do you get 9 or 10? You talking about rank 3 or post shield all buffs? From my experience Ive seen 6-8 being the common builds with hp being 7+. Again, the stated flavor text of the unit is that he hunts archers and weakened units. That doesnt mean he should be able to blitz them regardless of their set up/positioning. If they have positioned to make it harder to fully cripple thats a good placement on their part. Its up to you to beat it and not a simple point and click, relying on your units to win the game for you. Which honestly is what it sounds like you want.

IF they are shield walling it up and stick the archers right up with the raiders use a warrior class to punish the clump first or instead of expecting the niter to one shot the back line be happy you just got a double break.

Jade Dragon
03-17-2013, 12:22 PM
Alright. I'm going to argue in favor of the nerf.

1. Yes, archers can get nine or ten armor. But that requires sacrificing exertion 3, armor break 2, or lowering strength, because willpower has a high minimum on archers. My archers sit at 8/7 and 7/8. Both have the maximum strength for their advanced class. a str 10 backbiter would take either of them down to 3 str, in one turn, for the cost of one willpower.

2. It's not a question of "do I deal extra strength damage, or armor damage?" it's a question of "do I spend a point of willpower dealing one extra damage, or do I change position and spend a point of willpower to deal two armor damage and then attack the target's now-lowered armor value?". If this isn't extra damage, it's extra accuracy, at which point you might've wanted to just spend that willpower on an extra point of armor damage.

3. I recently added a Backbiter to my team. Since I don't play double Raidmasters, so I found this guy far more useful than the one he replaced. I also get roughly the same amount of mileage in one willpower as my Thrasher does in three, so I can afford to take points from Willpower and Exertion and pour them into armor, which makes him even tougher. Nerf doesn't matter, he's not a killing unit, he's a wounding unit. A guy who takes out some armor while still reducing the threat level of an enemy.

So, all in all, the backbiter is still strong. I don't even have anything to compare him to, because I never ran backbiter before the nerf, but it's not "welp, everybody use Thrashers".

Yellow
03-17-2013, 07:38 PM
@Yellow: Please do continue to ridicule me by saying "no-sence" and citing your number of wins ;)

to whom ever fits the shoe..

Kazthefirst
03-17-2013, 10:36 PM
How do you get 9 or 10? You talking about rank 3 or post shield all buffs? From my experience Ive seen 6-8 being the common builds with hp being 7+.

A Rank 3 Bowmaster can have max Armor (9), max Strength (8), max Exertion (3), and max Armor Break (2). The other two can have two less points than max on all of those things at Rank 1, but could max at Rank 3.

If the devs are going to nerf BBs based on the Rank 3 BB power that hasn't dropped yet, they need to do so with the assumption that Rank 3 archers are going to exist.


Again, the stated flavor text of the unit is that he hunts archers and weakened units. That doesnt mean he should be able to blitz them regardless of their set up/positioning. If they have positioned to make it harder to fully cripple thats a good placement on their part. Its up to you to beat it and not a simple point and click, relying on your units to win the game for you. Which honestly is what it sounds like you want.

Yes, I want the unit to be able to do the thing that it's designed to do at least as well as other units. That's balance.

The BB used to be able to function in it's role better than units designed for other roles, but now the Thrasher is a better Archer-killer by a wide margin, and the Warhawk is a better killer of weak units. Frankly, the Warhawk was always a better killer of weak units.