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Hot Fixing the elves


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#1 Style75

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 02:29 PM

I've been playing "Oath and Anvil" for a while now and have figured out plenty of ways to win with the elves, but each of them always feels like just a little more work than the winning strategies of the other factions. Sadly, I've come to the conclusion that the expansion did not give this faction the balance fix that was required.

So…. I've been thinking about ways to fix the elves through easy game play changes, in particular giving them a slight leg up through two simple changes:

1. Elves always go first: We've noticed in all of our Rune Age games (core set and expansion) that the first player has a definite advantage over the other players. It's small, but it's there. A very easy way to give the elves a slight power boost is to say that elves always go first. If you're looking for some sort of story rationale for this, you could say that their mastery of influence gave them advanced warning of impending hostilities so they were first out of the gate.

2. Starting gold bonus: The elves replace one of their starting 1-gold cards with a 2-gold card. Again, this is a minor tweak but when combined with always going first the power boost will really add up over the course of the game.

So what do you think? Would this help the elves in their search for balance or is this messing with the game too much?



#2 Tromdial

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:29 PM

 How do you feel about dwarves? I personally feel they are weaker than elves.



#3 Budgernaut

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 05:04 AM

 I feel that card-draw is one of the most important abilities in this game. To me, this is the reason the Latari Elves are so week. The Uthuk Y'llan have a 2-cost card drawing ability in the Flesh Ripper. The Daqan Lords and Waiqar the Undying have card-draw (of sorts) in both their 1-cost and 3-cost units. The Latari Elves, however, must obtain their 5-cost unit in order to get their card-draw going. Additionally, the Uthuk Y'llan and Daqan Lords don't seem to get as much out of their 5-cost units as the Latari Elves do. This makes me wonder if giving everyone more starting gold would level the playing field without giving anyone an unfair advantage. I think it has potential, but the Dark Knight will probably be a bit broken since he would be so easy to purchase. Still, in a 3-player game, I'd be willing to try trading some 1-gold for 2-gold in all players' decks and see where it goes, as long as nobody plays Waiqar.


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#4 Tromdial

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 05:13 PM

 I don't know how I feel about changing gold standards, and especially limiting playable races, to accommodate a particular race.

To discuss card draw potential, one way of trying to play elves is buy early on the Storm Sorceresses and either do one of two things when they hit your hand: use them to attack a stronghold or city, OR activate them for their influence, gaining early on high influence cards that no one else has garnered yet AND destroying her from your deck at the same time, further accelerating the deck to get what you just bought as a high price card one card earlier (again, now with the sorceress missing from the deck).

I am sure there is more strategy to using the elves that others haven't seen yet but I recommend maybe trying that tactic for a little while and see if that helps before modifying the entire game.



#5 Budgernaut

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 03:41 PM

Tromdial said:

To discuss card draw potential, one way of trying to play elves is buy early on the Storm Sorceresses and either do one of two things when they hit your hand: use them to attack a stronghold or city, OR activate them for their influence, gaining early on high influence cards that no one else has garnered yet AND destroying her from your deck at the same time, further accelerating the deck to get what you just bought as a high price card one card earlier (again, now with the sorceress missing from the deck).

I agree. That's exactly how I play elves. I'm just saying, it still takes a while to get the Pegasus Rider.


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#6 Tromdial

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 04:42 PM

 I'm crossing my fingers that elves and dwarves will get a boost in the next expansion and undead will not get any more rediculously overpowered as they are now.



#7 Zerosaber321

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 12:00 PM

To me it's not the fact they don't have card draw, It's the fact that there 1 cost unit just doesn't do anything early. while the reanimates and footman can draw or get another unit. The orc's one cost can become a 2 strength. The beserkers  can combo with the flesh ripper and the drawfs can find more gold to get you that big unit early and the elfin archer is just a 1 strength unit, can't get any bigger or draw another unit. I think the easiest way to hot fix them is say change the elfin archers effect to say (and this is just an idea) Resolution: this unit gains plus 1 strength is you have an untaped  stronghold or maybe Resolution: spend 1 influence to make this unit get plus one strength 



#8 Tromdial

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Posted 21 November 2012 - 05:53 PM

Zerosaber321 said:

To me it's not the fact they don't have card draw, It's the fact that there 1 cost unit just doesn't do anything early. while the reanimates and footman can draw or get another unit. The orc's one cost can become a 2 strength. The beserkers  can combo with the flesh ripper and the drawfs can find more gold to get you that big unit early and the elfin archer is just a 1 strength unit, can't get any bigger or draw another unit. I think the easiest way to hot fix them is say change the elfin archers effect to say (and this is just an idea) Resolution: this unit gains plus 1 strength is you have an untaped  stronghold or maybe Resolution: spend 1 influence to make this unit get plus one strength 

That's a good point on why the elves are so inefficient at the beginning of the game. Though I play with what FFG publishes, your suggestion to how it should have been done is not bad. Likewise, though the elves could be useful mid to late game for their ability (which I have seen), they still clutter the deck because they only have 1 strength. I'd say that card may be the real reason elves feel so weak is because the archer card slows them down by a turn or two compared to the other decks. Good eye, Zero.



#9 Budgernaut

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Posted 23 November 2012 - 03:19 PM

Yea, that is a food point about the Deepwood Archer. It's funny because those units are quite awesome in Runewars (the board game, not the scenario).


"There is a fine line between neutral and amoral. In fact, there may be no line there at all."

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#10 rvillaver

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 04:28 PM

Will there ever be an official errata or fix for the elves? 

I see so much potential with this game, but dividing into factions always has a tendency to have a balance struggle. In our playtests too, we often scratch our heads in dismay on how broken other races are just because the elves can never be at par.

I hope that FFG will spend a bit more time in hearing the community who's striving to make this deck building game top tier in the genre. As of now all the "bugs" are creating a negative buzz in the social world for quickly adapting the game.



#11 Knapik

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 08:52 PM

If one hasn't played the game too many times, I can understand why one would think the Elves were in need of a fix. They don't play like the other factions and have the worst early game. However, they have the best mid-to-late game (and the best late game by a large margin) and I feel like they are the best faction in the game for that reason. 

The trick to playing the Elves is to get Forest Guardian as quickly as possible, as it is the best unit in the game (if the best isn't Beastmaster). It's unkillable, it makes two very good units (Darnathi Warrior and Pegasus Rider) unbelievable, and it shuts down the ever-frustrating Stasis Rune (amongst other cards). The Elves don't need to go first - they need to go LAST to get Forest Guardian for free off of Reinforcements. :)

A cause for limits in the development of the deck will be if there are few (or no) cards that help you trash cards. If you're playing the Elves, you should be trashing cheap gold early and often, and replacing it with gold that will help you get to better units quickly.  At the beginning you should use the bump from Storm Sorceress to offset the inability to get cities at the beginning of the game to get cards to trash out the junk and gold to buy the good units. When you get down to a deck of around 8 cards and something like: 2 x Forest Guardian, 3 x Darnathi Warrior, 2 x 3 Gold, 1 x Pegasus Rider… you're going to have a very hard time losing.



#12 Zerosaber321

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 01:58 PM

I saddly have to disagree. The saddly part comes from myself believeing exactly what you discribed. there early game sucks but I considered them to have the best late game. However game after game they started to go down hill because we all figured out how to play against them. either A rush them early when they can do nothing or the most popular option just watch them. At some point your going to spend most if not all of your infulence or a 3-gold or or perhaps something even more expensive and thats when you will not be able to efficitly defend yourself. The forest guardian helps a lot but it can't always be there. so In just my own experience there really easy to beat in a pvp senerio, expecially if they don't get an early helping dragon rune.



#13 Knapik

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 12:16 AM

Zerosaber321 said:

I saddly have to disagree. The saddly part comes from myself believeing exactly what you discribed. there early game sucks but I considered them to have the best late game. However game after game they started to go down hill because we all figured out how to play against them. either A rush them early when they can do nothing or the most popular option just watch them. At some point your going to spend most if not all of your infulence or a 3-gold or or perhaps something even more expensive and thats when you will not be able to efficitly defend yourself. The forest guardian helps a lot but it can't always be there. so In just my own experience there really easy to beat in a pvp senerio, expecially if they don't get an early helping dragon rune.

Sure, if everyone decides to rush the Elves early because they are they Elves, they will go down. If one person gets picked on, they will go down regardless of the faction they are using. I would encourage your playgroup to avoid this method of playing as it leads to an unbalance and a less enjoyable experience. Attack when it makes sense to attack.

What you're saying is that because the Elves are so strong, they get picked on early; and I agree they are that strong and therefore responded in kind. As far as your option B - "Watching for them to spend all of their influence", Forest Guardian negates the cost of using Leonin Rider and Darnathi Warrior and proper use of Deepwood Archer will allow you to free up influence. Also, a good Elves player wouldn't exhaust all of their influence while holding cards that use influence.

If you build your deck right and play correctly, the Forest Guardian can absolutely always be there.

After 100+ games, the consensus in our group is that the Elves are the best faction in the game, followed by the Uthuk and Orcs. Perhaps not coincidentally, I believe the best three units are Forest Guardian (Elves), Beastmaster (Orcs), and Chaos Lord (Uthuk).

 



#14 Tromdial

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 07:12 PM

I did watch tonight my friend survive 7 rounds against an undead overlord alone. I had to pick up my jaw every time he broke the undead's combos by using the Darnathi [?] Warriors: 1 influence destroy guys defense, and Forest Guardians to boot. He couldn't accelerate any further than that but that's because the Overlord is just stupid powerful. I was impressed with the otherwise pvp potential.



#15 Zerosaber321

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:40 PM

Don't get me wrong I'm not talking about 3 people ganging up on the elves. In a normal 4 person game it often ends up spliting into 2 1v1's. And what I ment to say is since the elves starting is slower than pretty much everyone else they end up being very open to everyone else within say 5 or 6 turns. I know they have amazing PVP potential but it takes to long to get there under normal circumstances. If they hit one of the more powerful dragonrune cards then sure they may get there or if perhaps that have a bit of luck and hit the hands they need to hit but realisticly (at least in my own experience) it ends up not getting quite there in comparison to some of the others.



#16 Zerosaber321

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 02:45 PM

I know the forest gaurdian is there to (in my opinion) make the deck work. Without that ability they would just run out of influence way to fast but realisticly It can't be there everytime. Plus without a wealth and industry or (insert really good dragon rune card here) they have to go though normal means of getting rid of there 1-gold cards and such which also take up more room in the deck. I like the elves and I see and have seen the damage they can do but in my over all experience they just take a couple turns too long to get to that unbeatable point



#17 Freeman

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:17 AM

Knapik said:

 

The trick to playing the Elves is to get Forest Guardian as quickly as possible, as it is the best unit in the game (if the best isn't Beastmaster). It's unkillable, it makes two very good units (Darnathi Warrior and Pegasus Rider) unbelievable, and it shuts down the ever-frustrating Stasis Rune (amongst other cards). The Elves don't need to go first - they need to go LAST to get Forest Guardian for free off of Reinforcements. :)

 

 

If you, as the Elves, don't play your Forest Guardian as your first creature, you're not playing correctly.

And if your opponent plays Stasis Rune as his first card in the combat, he's obviously a beginner.

Conclusion: shutting down the Stasis Rune with a Forest Guardian will only happen if either one of you (or both) is an unexperienced player.

 

 



#18 Freeman

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:19 AM

Freeman said:

Knapik said:

 

The trick to playing the Elves is to get Forest Guardian as quickly as possible, as it is the best unit in the game (if the best isn't Beastmaster). It's unkillable, it makes two very good units (Darnathi Warrior and Pegasus Rider) unbelievable, and it shuts down the ever-frustrating Stasis Rune (amongst other cards). The Elves don't need to go first - they need to go LAST to get Forest Guardian for free off of Reinforcements. :)

 

 

If you, as the Elves, don't play your Forest Guardian as your first creature, you're not playing correctly.

And if your opponent plays Stasis Rune as his first card on the combat, he's obviously a beginner.

Conclusion: shutting down the Stasis Rune with a Forest Guardian will only happen if either one of your (or both) is an unexperienced player.

 

 

 

Except, of course, on the rare cases where your opponent holds just one Stasis Rune, or one Stasis Rune and one unit, and you have two Forest Guardians. Not like an advantage for you that will happen often.



#19 Freeman

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 08:24 AM

Edit: repeated message.



#20 Budgernaut

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Posted 22 January 2013 - 07:13 AM

Freeman said:

Freeman said:

 

Knapik said:

 

The trick to playing the Elves is to get Forest Guardian as quickly as possible, as it is the best unit in the game (if the best isn't Beastmaster). It's unkillable, it makes two very good units (Darnathi Warrior and Pegasus Rider) unbelievable, and it shuts down the ever-frustrating Stasis Rune (amongst other cards). The Elves don't need to go first - they need to go LAST to get Forest Guardian for free off of Reinforcements. :)

 

 

If you, as the Elves, don't play your Forest Guardian as your first creature, you're not playing correctly.

And if your opponent plays Stasis Rune as his first card on the combat, he's obviously a beginner.

Conclusion: shutting down the Stasis Rune with a Forest Guardian will only happen if either one of your (or both) is an unexperienced player.

 

 

 

 

 

Except, of course, on the rare cases where your opponent holds just one Stasis Rune, or one Stasis Rune and one unit, and you have two Forest Guardians. Not like an advantage for you that will happen often.

I think Knapik was suggesting that the Elves need to be the last player, not play Forest Guardian last. By being last player, they can get the most out of the Reinforcements event card and hopefully get the Forest Guardian.


"There is a fine line between neutral and amoral. In fact, there may be no line there at all."

--Count Dooku





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