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Thread: Is BM OP

  1. #81
    I think the stat advantage that BM has over SS and SA is as important as the ability that changes the game. So I think you cant really just fix one of those two things. They have advantage regarding armor break over SS and strength over SA but not only that. Their minimum WP is 5 which makes it that way that in rank 2 you are able to max all skills (WP is not counted). In comparison SS has 7 min WP which makes that you need rank 3 to max out all skills even when SS has one lower skill point (WP not counted) than BM. SA has limit of 6 WP but they have one lower skill point so you can max out at rank 2. That is without the thought that BMs ability completely change the way individuals play the game.

  2. #82
    Junior Member Slimpy's Avatar
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    @ Raven - You say a high armour shieldbanger is tough to take down and I agree, but that is the point of armour. Given the unit usually has to sacrifice either str or WP to get it I don't think its a fair compromise. They're also one of the slowest units limiting their mobility somewhat.

    I just dislike the speed with which the high armoured guys drop once the arrows start flying, yet the guy next to him with the same armour is just fine - it seems silly. It also allows archers to get 100% accuracy against the same units - then add (usually) 3 wp.

    I don't think my proposal is perfect (and in fact may make archers OP in another way), but though I would add it to the discussion.

    This all sounds rather negative which isn't my intention. I actually love the game and personally don't find BM to be that OP, but I also never tend to use shieldbangers any more, who probably suffer the most from it.

    Three thrasher builds on the other hand...OP!!! :P

  3. #83
    Developer raven2134's Avatar
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    I think the point I was getting at was, if you couldn't drop a SB fast, then they would be OP. SBs now have the most stat points of any unit in the game, this means they can put points into wp and exertion to grant them more mobility. The fact it comes from wp/exertion just means this extended mobility is limited, as compared to other units with more move range.

    Yes, though I agree, let's put the ideas on the table for discussion.

  4. #84
    Superbacker netnazgul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slimpy View Post
    @ Raven - You say a high armour shieldbanger is tough to take down and I agree, but that is the point of armour. Given the unit usually has to sacrifice either str or WP to get it I don't think its a fair compromise. They're also one of the slowest units limiting their mobility somewhat.

    I just dislike the speed with which the high armoured guys drop once the arrows start flying, yet the guy next to him with the same armour is just fine - it seems silly. It also allows archers to get 100% accuracy against the same units - then add (usually) 3 wp.

    I don't think my proposal is perfect (and in fact may make archers OP in another way), but though I would add it to the discussion.

    This all sounds rather negative which isn't my intention. I actually love the game and personally don't find BM to be that OP, but I also never tend to use shieldbangers any more, who probably suffer the most from it.

    Three thrasher builds on the other hand...OP!!! :P
    And now imagine 15/15 strongarm facing you, but puncture works the way you said. He will massacre your archers (any number of them) before they start piercing his strength.

    Also about the armor - I'd suggest that with higher armor character doesn't have MORE armor, but THICKER armor. So by breaking that 10(15) varl has in fact less armor, than 10(10) raider, enough for archer to find a weaker spot.
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  5. #85
    Senior Member roder's Avatar
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    Well the success of archers is partly due to shieldbangers as popular units that enemies use.

    I don't often lose to double shieldbanger formations with my BMBMSS lineup, but have much more difficulty with double warrior formations. in terms of anti-archer units that become more successful as archers become more popular, RMs are good but suffer from enemy just walking back and making you waste WP. BBs are very good on paper, but do not perform well as anti-archer at least at p1 and are often statted like a RM, but with option of runthrough

    If we're putting all the options on the table, maybe the solution isn't nerfing the archers, but buffing anti-archer units. I don't think we should be making overhauls to any combat mechanics though. Some people consider BM as OP, others think she's just really good - which means that you need a minute change instead of a big one (like -1/+1 to max-min values)
    Last edited by roder; 07-17-2013 at 04:15 AM.

  6. #86
    Junior Member Slimpy's Avatar
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    My final (possibly) thoughts on the matter. Why not allow the BM the ability to move 1,2,3 (rank 1,2,3 respectively) squares and still gain puncture? Probably not very nerfy but makes the ability useful whilst still making it require thought. It also maintains the increased "range" (to some extent) that the BM used to have albeit in a different form. The BM remains as vulnerable as other archers when making the shot.

    The ability would otherwise have no effect on damage or range, though it might end up being OP against adjacent attackers.

    She might still need a break nerf though, but that's more to make SA seem worthwhile imo.

    Discuss!

    p.s. Again this suggestion might be in the previous 5 pages...If so I apologize for my unintentional idea theft!
    Last edited by Slimpy; 07-22-2013 at 04:56 PM.

  7. #87
    Senior Member roder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slimpy View Post
    My final (possibly) thoughts on the matter. Why not allow the BM the ability to move 1,2,3 (rank 1,2,3 respectively) squares and still gain puncture?
    that's actually a cool idea. But I would actually consider that a buff rather than a nerf.

  8. #88
    Community Moderator Guğmundr's Avatar
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    That is a really cool idea. I think it might possibly work as a nerf, since you would have the same puncture range that BM's already have, but you would have to (potentially) get into harms's way to take the shot.

    I also think it would work quite well lore-wise: Puncture is supposed to represent the archer taking a moment to steady their aim before taking the shot (thus making the shot more accurate), but it would make sense that a master archer would be able to accurately shoot on the fly, without taking the time to carefully aim.
    Án brynju, mağur er varnarlaus. Án styrks, er hann ekkert.

  9. #89
    Skald Aleonymous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slimpy View Post
    My final (possibly) thoughts on the matter. Why not allow the BM the ability to move 1,2,3 (rank 1,2,3 respectively) squares and still gain puncture?
    This seems like a "big" change from what BoP currently is, but interesting. It ties relatively well with puncture and is kind-of a nerf since (a) the max-range is reduced from 7/8/9 to 6/7/8 tiles, and (b) if the enemy blocks the BM's way to her intended target, she just cant shoot him! However, it seems a little tricky to implement, but not too tough either: the game has to keep track of how many tiles you moved, and, if you moved tiles equal-to-or-less-than you rank, you can select how much WP to use if you want puncture or not. Perhaps this new "Eagle-Eye" promoted class will have something like this...

    Since the thread has taken this twist, I might as well post here a similar archer-ability I suggested at the chat yesterday: BoP, instead of just increased range, gives you the option on +range and/or +STR to your effective attack (not +damage!). So, at rank
    1. -- You get [6-range] OR [+1STR to normal-range]
    2. -- You get [7-range] OR [+6-range at +1STR] OR [+2STR to normal-range]
    3. -- You get [8-range] OR [+7-range at +2STR] OR [+6-range at +2STR] OR [+3STR to normal-range]

    This stays completely in-line with Puncture, and it can be implemented as follows: When you select the ability, the purple-tile-grid lights-out, up to the max-range allowed by your rank. Then, you select a target and a minimum of XWP is loaded on the Bird, where X=Range-5. At rank-1, it the target is at 5- range, the +1STR bonus is displayed on the damage-number. At ranks-2 & -3, if the target is closer than your max-range, you are displayed the number of extra WP you can load to boost you effective STR for the attack, before it displays the damage-number.

    Finally, note that this ain't too much of a buff since: (a) the overall range is reduced and (b) for a target within normal-range, its kinda equivalent to loading +WP to a regular attack -- not for extra-damage (if below 100% chance) but boosting Puncture instead.

  10. #90
    Developer raven2134's Avatar
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    I think Aleo your suggestion is harder/more complicated to implement/play than Slimpy's. It's great how you broke it down, but Slimpy's idea is simpler in that you just need the ability to display a move range (1 tile, 2 tiles, 3 tiles), and then keep puncture (damage is "constant"). Meta wise, this means you choose to stay put (if target is in range) and use puncture +wp or move (to reposition) and keep puncture, or just plain move and break with + willpower. I would want to play this kind of BM and see how it would work, since it is an overall range nerf, but the reposition makes a huge difference. It's very possible the effect could actually be a net buff, since a BM can keep moving in the end game while keeping puncture.

  11. #91
    Skald Aleonymous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by raven2134 View Post
    It's very possible the effect could actually be a net buff, since a BM can keep moving in the end game while keeping puncture.
    Indeed Imagine that armor-broken and maimed SB coming in melee-range to hit the BM (and negate her puncture)... If she got 1WP she just takes one step back and sends him to Valhalla, or wherever Varls go...

  12. #92
    Junior Member pix's Avatar
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    Definitely a buff and not a nerf. This would make it even easier for 3-archer teams to take out raiders that have broken the line. It also messes with the inherent tradeoff for archers in danger: should I sacrifice puncture and move to safety, or risk the danger to do more damage?

  13. #93
    I think the suggestion on having puncture when moving would be a good idea for the Eagle Eye not the Bowmaster.

  14. #94
    Junior Member Slimpy's Avatar
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    What's the eagle eye? Is that a new archer specialisation?

  15. #95
    Skald Aleonymous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slimpy View Post
    What's the eagle eye? Is that a new archer specialisation?
    She is supposed to be the fourth "mystery" promoted class for archers. We don't have any idea on her ability, but her looks are probably here (2nd from the right). She got a green hue on her, to match the green Thrashers and Warhawks, at last!

    EDIT -- Devs said: "...the Eagle Eye (who used to do what the bowmaster does) is now called the Sharpshooter and does something completely different (and awesome)." in this thread.
    Last edited by Aleonymous; 07-23-2013 at 07:02 AM.

  16. #96
    My main problem with the bowmaster is not her power per se (though that is also a little too much at times, especially against less mobile teams), but more how she dumbs down the tactical aspect of the game.
    This is because the Siege Archer and Skytriker both have far more complex (and in my opinion more fun) abilities. The Bowmaster doesn't really bring a lot of complexity to the game, and that's not a problem in itself, but if she's also better than the other 2 archers without being more difficult to use well, then yes, i think we may consider the Bowmaster to be a little OP.

  17. #97
    Developer raven2134's Avatar
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    That's a very interesting point. We do need to consider how EASY something also is to use when considering balance. I mean a lot of OP mechanics that have popped up over the course of the game's history have also been because those mechanics could be so easily executed (SA+WL forge ahead for example). We could be seeing the same thing here, in terms of the BM's design. Compared to the SS and SA right now, the BM is just so easy to use. The old SA ability used to be fine because it wasn't very easy to use despite doing a TON of damage, which changed once the WL got introduced. The current iteration of the SA made her ability very easy to use, but really reduced its effectiveness.

    Honestly, for the SA I'm not sure I like where her ability is...it's interesting and does comparable damage for the WP cost, but it's just so much less effective than a concentrated strike vs a single target. The RNG nature of her coals really nerfs her board control potential...

    Perhaps the coals effect can be tweaked. Like burned units take 1 str damage (per turn) if they walk over (or remain on) the tile, and they also take an additional 1 str/armor damage on their next turn as a burn effect). Perhaps higher ranks could just increase the burn duration instead of the abilities raw damage. I think this would make SAs very interesting and really give incentive to use the ability, but also keep it's effect manageable.

  18. #98
    Backer Slimsy Platypus's Avatar
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    I think the main issue with Bowmasters in their current state is they have the most damaging active ability and are also the best armor breakers (i.e. AB of 2). Because they do the most damage with their active ability and also are tied for the best breakers, the opportunity cost of not using a bowmaster is pretty one sided. What I mean (for example) is that if you bring a siege archer to a battle but never use Slag and Burn, your team would have simply been more effective if that slot was a bowmaster. Prior to bowmasters being released and tweaked to their current state, there was a great balance between choosing Skystrikers or Siege Archers when forming our teams; and I think the reason that choice was fun was the disparity in stats and relative power of their active abilities. The ability for the bowmaster to be able to have the highest ARM break, highest STR, and also the most damaging active ability seems (for me at least), to detract from the compelling nature of choosing which archer to bring.

    To get into the nitty gritty (and also maintain my ability to make a massive wall of text) I'll go through my thought process of choosing archers:

    • Skystriker vs. Bowmaster Having the potential to use Rain of Arrows for board control does provide some interesting decisions when forming your team. But the bottom line is that you can stat your Bowmaster with the same 8 STR as a Skystriker but with 1 addition ARM break. Which basically means that if you never effectively used Rain of Arrows in the match, you would have been better by just using the Bowmaster in her place.
    • Siege Archer vs. Bowmaster The siege archer's active isn't bad, but often times prior to engaging you just want to armor break the first encroaching unit for 5 rather than Slag and Burn. If you use their first turns to break armor, then you might as well have used a Bowmaster that can have 8 STR rather than 7.

    When it comes to balancing I think the first thing we want to ask ourselves is whether the other two archers are too weak or the bowmaster is too strong. I think it's pretty safe to say that most people would agree that bowmasters are slightly too strong. So when it comes to balancing what's the best option? Change the nature of the active ability? Adjust stats? Perhaps now that rank 2 and 3 of Bird of Prey are available it might be more appropriate to drop the range of rank 1/2/3 back down to 6/7/8 (those are the right numbers right?). Perhaps reducing bowmaster's ARM break to a maximum of 1 would make it so that loading your team up with them provides a hair more risk of not being able to break armor in the end game. There are a ton of options out there and I'm not really sold that changing the nature of the Bird of Prey is the right option.

    I mean Bird of Prey is fun, it just feels too strong, especially when you have 2 or 3 pointing arrows at you. Slag and Burn is also pretty fun. It's just not fun to bring a siege archer to a game where it was never really smart to use Slag and Burn then feel like you were at a disadvantage for her not being a Bowmaster. And as far as the Skystriker goes it's definitely fun to use Rain of Arrows So when it comes to balancing I think it's better to maintain the active fantasy that was originally intended (my bowmaster is a sniper!) and as long as it's fun and fair, balance with the stats rather than the nature of the ability.

    This certainly is an interesting thread!

  19. #99
    Skald Aleonymous's Avatar
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    I believe the safest way to balance the archers, is to try to set a reference class, and balance the other classes with respect to that. However, with the archer actives being so diverse, this is not a very easy task. I will briefly comment on the present archer classes and any changes I would make to them:

    • Skystriker: Perhaps the most interesting ability of the whole game. The zone-control and mind-play of the opponent are just awesome. I wouldn't change anything about her, or just reduce her max ARM to 9 -- this white archer seems fragile!

    • Siege Archer: One of the most fun abilities. As raven & Slimsy remarked, it's not so well balanced at rank-1 and with a single SA in your theam. But, if you bring multiple high-ranked SAs, then you can truly sow the battlefield with fire leaving your melee opponents with hardly any good moves. I would increase her max ARM or max STR for 1 point, to make her HP-max equal to the other two archers'. Her ability has undergone so many changes (nerfs) that is best left to "cool down" a bit.

    • Bowmaster: With Puncture the most powerful passive skill at the moment (no arguing about that!), I would say that the Bowmaster is the most powerful archer too. The ways to go with her where two: more range or more puncture. The latter being too much, Stoic went for the former. So, a range boost of +2/3/4 was given ro ranks 1/2/3, perhaps too much. I mean, even a +1 range would be OK, making the BM inaccessible to the 4-tile range of raiders & warriors. I would decrease one point of one of the two attributes: (a) AB -- so that the SA emerges as the best ranged-breaker as Slimsy highlighted, (b) BoP range -- so that the skill is toned down.


    PS -- With the Sharpshooter class coming (?), we'll have even more balancing to consider. Her Thread the Needle ability does a normal archer STR-attack on all units (enemy and ally?) in a straight line of 5-tile range from the ShSh with a 100% chance, while adding a 1AB damage afterwards... It will surely require tweaking for Factions, because it's like an in-line Tempest with a pinch of Sundering-Impact! Check it out in this PAX demo video, here and here.
    Last edited by Aleonymous; 10-15-2013 at 04:26 PM.

  20. #100
    Superbacker LoliSauce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aleonymous View Post
    PS -- With the Sharpshooter class coming (?), we'll have even more balancing to consider. Her Thread the Needle ability does a normal archer STR-attack on all units (enemy and ally?) in a straight line of 5-tile range from the ShSh with a 100% chance, while adding a 1AB damage afterwards... It will surely require tweaking for Factions, because it's like an in-line Tempest with a pinch of Sundering-Impact! Check it out in this PAX demo video, here and here.
    After rewatching the video, I don't think that she gets puncture bonus for the skill. Couple that with her much lower str stat compared to a Warhawk using Tempest, and it's not nearly as big of a threat. It might not end up being too much to have the extra 1ab on top of the normal str damage.

    Anyway, after having finally read through the entirety of this thread, I can definitely agree with the Bowmaster's stats simply being better overall. The main reason I really choose Bowmaster over Skystriker is because of the extra point in break. As a result, I don't have to burn as much willpower to break well, and I end up retaining the ability to break well and utilize her skill well even into the very last turns of a match. Reducing her break to 1 would force her to be less useful as a breaker or consume willpower more quickly. This small change has a relatively large effect, and ends up narrowing her overall usefulness to something more in-line with the other archers.

    Honestly, this is the ONLY change proposed so far that I feel wouldn't overly impact her purpose in battle, or end up increasing the divide between her and the other archers even more.

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