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Line of sight IA brainstorm


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#1 BentoSan

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 11:50 AM

I think this deserves its own thread (its been talked about a little bit in a couple other threads up to this point).

 

Imperial Assault (hence forth referred to as IA) is FFG's recap of Descent for the Star Wars universe:

 

Instead of drawing a single line from one corner of the attacker to a single corner of the defender as is currently the rule in Descent. In IA you follow this same rule, however:

 

You then draw a second line from the same corner of the attacker to an adjacent corner of the defender. The second line cannot intersect the point of contact of the first line, nor can it be blocked by a figure, wall or obstacle. This makes it possible to shoot around corner but not be shot at, as if your hiding behind the wall and leaning around.

 

I personally think this system is so much better than the first system that there is no comparison. I have never liked the current system as is virtually impossible to find any cover.

 

Obviously my wording is probably not rulebook perfect, but it gets the point across. The devil is in the details though which need to be fleshed out. In what situations does the wording put this way then not make sense for certain attacks ?

 

One such situation i thought about was so:

 

Y X *

X H *

*  *  *

 

* being a blank space, H being the attacking hero, X being a monster, Y being the defending monster. According to these line of sight rules Y could not attack H, nor H could attack Y despite being point blank range. Does not seem right to me (though i could change my mind after play-testing it). So a additional rule could be that if attacking an adjacent figure then only a single line needs line of sight.

 

I can think of loads of different situations that need to be thought through, better wording to be structured and more thought put into this. However i feel this is enough to get the ball rolling on discussion for the moment.

 

With that said ill leave some examples of current line of sight rules to help the discussion along: pic1657088_md.png

 

And no line of sight discussion would ever be a LOS discussion without the example of the zombie blocking line of sight to itself:

 

pic1392129_t.png


Edited by BentoSan, 18 August 2014 - 11:51 AM.


#2 Zaltyre

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 11:58 AM

Adjacency granting automatic LOS would solve some of those issues, but not reach issues (unless for reach you just needed LOS to a space adjacent to the target.) 

 

In this new system, the only one of the numbered examples that would have LOS is 9 (A to D, but interestingly not to B!) The zombie is obviously still out of LOS.

 

I'm currently trying to think of a situation (other than the one you came up with) that would seem to have LOS, but by these rules wouldn't.



#3 Alarmed

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 12:25 PM

Those LOS rules look a lot  like the previous generation of Star Wars miniature games that were not by FFG.

 

The LOS rules in those games were only applied to ranged attacks. Reach made squares up to "Reach X" adjacent to your character.

 

I've been tempted for a while to ask my OL to use a house rule of LOS based on those.


Edited by Alarmed, 18 August 2014 - 12:26 PM.


#4 Zaltyre

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 12:32 PM

Those LOS rules look a lot  like the previous generation of Star Wars miniature games that were not by FFG.

 

The LOS rules in those games were only applied to ranged attacks. Reach made squares up to "Reach X" adjacent to your character.

 

I've been tempted for a while to ask my OL to use a house rule of LOS based on those.

Right, but say you had

XX
MXH
XX
 

where the hero has reach, he wants to attack monster M, and the X's are blocked spaces (let's call them other monsters so you can count through them.) Can he do it? I would think not.


Edited by Zaltyre, 18 August 2014 - 12:32 PM.


#5 amoshias

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 12:33 PM

They're different, more restrictive and complex rules, which will have different problems. Looking at the nine examples you list, the only ones which seems to change are 7-9, and the rules generate less line of sight. In #7, A will be able to see B but B will not be able to see A. In #8, nobody has LOS, and in #9 A can see D but not B, and neither can see A.

 

You're trading off a new rule - "Cover" - for a bunch of complexity. You make like it better - that's a perfectly reasonable opinion - but please don't fool yourself into thinking it won't have just as many ridiculous corner cases and just as many problems. For me - and this is my choice - I tend to value the simplicity of the current system fairly highly. Line of sight is easy in Descent. In virtually all cases, you don't even need to consider whether it actually exists, and that makes games go faster. Trading off extra time and more line of sight issues - which means more moving and less attacking - for... what? More realism? In your game about space wizards? Dunno, not something that seems valuable to me.

 

And I've never gotten why people have a problem with the zombie example. I mean, yeah, it sounds funny - "blocking line of sight to itself" - but it's actually the rocks doing the blocking. (And again, the example works just as badly in IA.)


Edited by amoshias, 18 August 2014 - 12:43 PM.


#6 Carbini

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 12:52 PM

And no line of sight discussion would ever be a LOS discussion without the example of the zombie blocking line of sight to itself:

 

pic1392129_t.png

Hahaha. Board Games everyone! I love that one.

Yea I see what they are trying to do (if I understand the wording right) and it's pretty cool do try to integrate a sense of cover, especially in a game where guns (blasters) are more common and the theme of firefights is heavier.

With rules like this sometimes you have to just take the edge cases for the sake of the simplicity. "Heavy gamers" can get into a powwow and agree that that zombie can be seen or can not be seen, but going by straight rules to keep the game going for newer or more relaxed gamer: yea, no shot.

It's a cool addition, but doesn't look like it's out to "fix" anything, just add an element. I've been through about 5-6 campaigns for Descent 2nd, plus a few single mission campaigns that burned out, and those edge cases are pretty infrequent. I feel it's worth the simplicity.



#7 Zaltyre

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 06:25 AM

 

It's a cool addition, but doesn't look like it's out to "fix" anything, just add an element. I've been through about 5-6 campaigns for Descent 2nd, plus a few single mission campaigns that burned out, and those edge cases are pretty infrequent. I feel it's worth the simplicity.

 

I agree. They don't happen that often (although when they do, it ALWAYS happens to be case #9.) Actually, the zombie's not the one that got my group upset. It's that this apparently has line of sight.

 

 EtAQ6ZA.jpg


Edited by Zaltyre, 19 August 2014 - 06:27 AM.


#8 any2cards

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 07:45 AM

 

 

It's a cool addition, but doesn't look like it's out to "fix" anything, just add an element. I've been through about 5-6 campaigns for Descent 2nd, plus a few single mission campaigns that burned out, and those edge cases are pretty infrequent. I feel it's worth the simplicity.

 

I agree. They don't happen that often (although when they do, it ALWAYS happens to be case #9.) Actually, the zombie's not the one that got my group upset. It's that this apparently has line of sight.

 

 EtAQ6ZA.jpg

 

 

Obviously, by RAW, it does have LOS.  But by common sense, you would think not.  But, since I am a supreme archer, and since I see M's big toe sticking out, I will shoot it ...  :P



#9 Zaltyre

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 08:40 AM

 

 

Obviously, by RAW, it does have LOS.  But by common sense, you would think not.  But, since I am a supreme archer, and since I see M's big toe sticking out, I will shoot it ...  :P

 

 

Indeed- it's just that the first time I declared an attack from a goblin archer to a hero that way (it was the map tile with the row of diagonal blocked spaces, so it was between rubble) they threw a fit until they grudgingly accepted that RAW, it does work.

 

Regarding the actual topic of this thread, though, would this be a good intuition/simplicity compromise?

 

1. For melee attacks, you need corner to corner LOS and/or adjacency, as per regular Descent.

2. For ranged attacks, you need two "lines of sight" from your corner to two adjacent corners of the target space, as per Imperial Assault. 

 

I think that would cover most of our bases, and isn't all that complex. The only real problems I see are that it would put ranged attackers at a disadvantage when they're up close. However, thematically, I don't really mind that.

 

(for example, our case below would be a valid melee attack, but not ranged. You could explain it that it's "too cramped" to get off a good shot.)

 

HX

XM


Edited by Zaltyre, 19 August 2014 - 08:47 AM.


#10 Whitewing

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 08:56 AM

 

 

 

Obviously, by RAW, it does have LOS.  But by common sense, you would think not.  But, since I am a supreme archer, and since I see M's big toe sticking out, I will shoot it ...  :P

 

 

Indeed- it's just that the first time I declared an attack from a goblin archer to a hero that way (it was the map tile with the row of diagonal blocked spaces, so it was between rubble) they threw a fit until they grudgingly accepted that RAW, it does work.

 

Regarding the actual topic of this thread, though, would this be a good intuition/simplicity compromise?

 

1. For melee attacks, you need corner to corner LOS and/or adjacency, as per regular Descent.

2. For ranged attacks, you need two "lines of sight" from your corner to two adjacent corners of the target space, as per Imperial Assault. 

 

I think that would cover most of our bases, and isn't all that complex. The only real problems I see are that it would put ranged attackers at a disadvantage when they're up close. However, thematically, I don't really mind that.

 

(for example, our case below would be a valid melee attack, but not ranged. You could explain it that it's "too cramped" to get off a good shot.)

 

HX

XM

 

 

Melee attacks with reach still need to be covered by this.



#11 Zaltyre

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 10:39 AM

 

 

 

 

Obviously, by RAW, it does have LOS.  But by common sense, you would think not.  But, since I am a supreme archer, and since I see M's big toe sticking out, I will shoot it ...  :P

 

 

Indeed- it's just that the first time I declared an attack from a goblin archer to a hero that way (it was the map tile with the row of diagonal blocked spaces, so it was between rubble) they threw a fit until they grudgingly accepted that RAW, it does work.

 

Regarding the actual topic of this thread, though, would this be a good intuition/simplicity compromise?

 

1. For melee attacks, you need corner to corner LOS and/or adjacency, as per regular Descent.

2. For ranged attacks, you need two "lines of sight" from your corner to two adjacent corners of the target space, as per Imperial Assault. 

 

I think that would cover most of our bases, and isn't all that complex. The only real problems I see are that it would put ranged attackers at a disadvantage when they're up close. However, thematically, I don't really mind that.

 

(for example, our case below would be a valid melee attack, but not ranged. You could explain it that it's "too cramped" to get off a good shot.)

 

HX

XM

 

 

Melee attacks with reach still need to be covered by this.

 

Yes, they'd fall under part 1 for melee attacks, otherwise "Reach" attacks become very hard to perform except in wide open spaces.



#12 BentoSan

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 11:21 AM

I think it would be fair to say that melee attacks draw only one line when ranged attacks draw two.

 

Ranged classes feel very powerful in this game, due to their LOS being able to see so much,  yet the tradeoffs do not feel strong enough for my liking compared to the melee classes who can sometimes struggle to get in as many attacks as their ranged counterparts. I would happily run a game only using ranged classes, however i would not like to run a game using only melee classes - that strikes me personally as a unbalanced situation despite the melee weapons known for hitting a bit harder.

 

An added layer of complexity with the game as far as positioning with line of sight goes would resinate with me as i would really like to see cover playing a more important role in the game. I know it goes against what others may think and they are perfectly entitled to their opinion but i believe it would help immerse me into the game more if cover actually did something. I also enjoy min/maxing so the appeal of gaming the system to get cover is also enticing to me even if it adds an extra layer of complexity to the game.

 

As have been pointed out, drawing 2 lines does not necessarily add a lot of situations where cover can happen, but i believe anything is an improvement on the current system. I just got the POD in the mail today so i may experiment with these LOS rules a little in some solo games.



#13 Zaltyre

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 06:05 AM

An added layer of complexity with the game as far as positioning with line of sight goes would resinate with me as i would really like to see cover playing a more important role in the game. I know it goes against what others may think and they are perfectly entitled to their opinion but i believe it would help immerse me into the game more if cover actually did something. I also enjoy min/maxing so the appeal of gaming the system to get cover is also enticing to me even if it adds an extra layer of complexity to the game.

Just found a problem with my suggestion- what do we do with scenarios like this?

DJ04-card-class-46.png



#14 BentoSan

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 08:14 AM

Measure line of sight to each monster using 2 lines per each monster, except for adjacent monsters.


Edited by BentoSan, 22 August 2014 - 08:14 AM.


#15 Zaltyre

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 08:59 AM

Measure line of sight to each monster using 2 lines per each monster, except for adjacent monsters.

And same for disciple's radiant light?

 

Here's where it gets confusing, because for adjacent ranged attacks, we were still requiring 2 lines, but for reach melee, just one. The complication definitely arises when you need to figure out when just 1 line does it, and when 2. Could it have something to do with the context of attacking vs abilities?



#16 BentoSan

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 07:00 PM

All melee attacks draw 1 line.

 

All ranged attacks and abilities draw 1 line to adjacent figures, 2 lines to all non-adjacent figures.


Edited by BentoSan, 22 August 2014 - 07:00 PM.

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#17 Zaltyre

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Posted 22 August 2014 - 08:25 PM

All melee attacks draw 1 line.

 

All ranged attacks and abilities draw 1 line to adjacent figures, 2 lines to all non-adjacent figures.

Good thought. I've really got to test this out.






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