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Petition for the restriction of Tin Link


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#1 AegonTargaryen

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 04:15 AM

Francisco G. made a very reasonable suggestion on Agotcards: Restrict or ban Tin Link.

A lot of people seem to agree that TMP is still very powerful and a lot of people are still upset about it.

While I am not in the latter group, restricting or banning this one link might really change the power level of TMP and the entire environment. One of the problems of TMP is that the agenda does not only provide card advantage, but also easy answers to a many problems, attachment removal being among those answers.

If Tin Link would be banned or restricted, Maesters no longer would have an automatic built in answer for attachments in general and also to Winter/Summer decks in particular (with Copper Link). Frozen Solid, Condemned, maybe even Milk of the Poppy (it does not remove the trait, but a Maester Murenmure or a Conclave without game text are still somewhat nerfed) would all become better answers to the Maester menace.

Not only would the removal of Tin Link help to battle Maesters with attachments, it would also help other decks who rely on attachments to become more reliable (e.g. Lannister PbtT decks with Widow's Wail, Devious Intentions and Enslaved).

At the same time, with attachments becoming more playable once more, Targ might be forced to run more attachment discard again, as attachments still nerf some of the best burn cards, such as Hatchling's Feast and Flame Kissed. This would make Targaryen deck construction a little bit more difficult, which many people also seem to see as necessary. 

Discuss !



#2 Twn2dn

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 06:25 AM

 

/signed

Tin Link is an awful card that significantly distorts the environment. It allows any house to use an effect that is typically beyond that house's focus (for example, gives GJ access to repeatable attachment removal). This is particularly troubling given the versatility and convenience of the link when played with TMP. The effect is easily the strongest attachment removal in the game, and made only slightly less strong by the ubiquity of other maester decks, since Tin Link can't target other chain attachments.

I think I am not jumping too far when I conclude that the existence of Tin Link has artificially propped up TMP decks and, in so doing, contributed to the popularity of TMP decks over the past year or so at the expense of more diverse builds.

The restriction of Tin Link would no doubt increase the variety of the competitive landscape, and might even make the Tin Link more useful as an effect, rather than it's current value as a deterrent. For example, if such a restriction resulted in an increase in the use of attachments by players more generally, running the Tin Link may become an attractive choice in certain, maester-heavy decks. But if it does not, then the "soft ban" on Tin Link would still increase variety in the game.

I believe that by pretty much any measure, Tin Link deserves restriction.



#3 tarkin84

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 07:54 AM

Signed again! I agree with everything that has been said.



#4 WWDrakey

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 08:12 AM

And… gladly signed.

Making the inherently weakest cardtype in the game even more vulnerable isn't good for the game.

Now if we only got some protection/help for duplicates as well…



#5 RyanSD

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 08:30 AM

Signed Signed Signed.Count me as 3.



#6 johnn0411

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 09:06 AM

Signed. I would love to see more decks

#7 Francisco G.

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 01:24 PM

Signed. (especially because i love banner bearer!!!)



#8 RobotMartini

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 02:01 AM

Is there a reason not to ban it? Hard to imagine a non-TMP deck ever running it



#9 Danigral

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 05:23 AM

RobotMartini said:

Is there a reason not to ban it? Hard to imagine a non-TMP deck ever running it

+1. Although a restriction would essentially be a soft-ban since it's primarily there on TMP for utility (against seasons and negative attachments. Pretty much the only attachments run these days seem to be instant effect like Flame-Kissed, or locaiton hate like Frozen Solid.

Running it in the main deck would dramatically decrease its influence over the meta enough so that players probably wouldn't play it. That's fine by me.

/signed



#10 Stag Lord

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 08:49 AM

Signed

The ubiquity of Maester decks and the half hearted attempts by R&D to address them is the single biggest factor in my lack of interest in competitive play over the past year or so.

 

The draw link is a problem too.



#11 orion_kurnous

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 09:19 AM

Since ever, i believe the true problem of the links are their "only one per phase", i would rewrite all with "only one per round".

 

In the case of tin link, i believe this link shouldn´t affect to uniques attachments.



#12 potatoechip99

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 09:47 AM

Signed!

The ease and frequency that attachemnts can currently be removed greatly reduces their overall value especially when any maester build will most certainly include the Tin Link.  Restricting this card would help bring attachments back as a valid card type to include in competitive decks and increase the flavor, variety and enjoyment of the game.



#13 JCWamma

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:30 AM

Restricting it is too harsh, since the number of decks that will run it over The Maester's Path will be miniscule so in practice it's a ban. Why not just errata it, for example hitting only non-unique attachments like suggested above, or changing it so it can only discard attachments of printed cost 1 or less, or removing the Chain trait so it can't start on the agenda? Or making it unable to gain any new traits so it can't hit the Ravens (although why you'd want to give two builds much more old and tired than Maester builds more support I don't know)? It just seems like soft-banning it is unnecessary when Maester decks are already declining in popularity. But it'd seem I'm in the minority, so meh.



#14 AegonTargaryen

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Posted 04 December 2012 - 06:56 PM

JCWamma said:

 

Restricting it is too harsh, since the number of decks that will run it over The Maester's Path will be miniscule so in practice it's a ban. Why not just errata it, for example hitting only non-unique attachments like suggested above, or changing it so it can only discard attachments of printed cost 1 or less, or removing the Chain trait so it can't start on the agenda? Or making it unable to gain any new traits so it can't hit the Ravens (although why you'd want to give two builds much more old and tired than Maester builds more support I don't know)? It just seems like soft-banning it is unnecessary when Maester decks are already declining in popularity. But it'd seem I'm in the minority, so meh.

 

 

We want to give attachments a chance, don't we ? This includes non-unique attachments. Why should every house have such an easy access to attachment hate, nerfing an entire card type, at the same time preventing some decks from becoming competitive ?

If Maesters want attachment hate, they still have access to Ill Tidings, but at least they have to put this card into their draw deck, draw it first and then protect it against intrigue challenges. Ill Tidings also can only be used once and also be cancelled by Paper Shield, so all in all, it is a totally reasonable card.

Compare this to Tin Link, which is accessable through the Maesters Path almost at all times, can be used repeatedly, can be recovered by another link and is very hard to cancel. I really don't understand why a card like this even exists.  It's not that attachments were running rampart or anything before Maesters were introduced. So yes, it should be completely nerfed.

Also, putting it on the restricted list is a more elegant solution, as errata should be avoided whenever possible. It is easy to point new players to a restricted list, but having to memorize a long list of errata'd cards is just a pain.



#15 flipperlord

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:20 AM

Twn2dn said:

 

 

/signed

Tin Link is an awful card that significantly distorts the environment. It allows any house to use an effect that is typically beyond that house's focus (for example, gives GJ access to repeatable attachment removal). This is particularly troubling given the versatility and convenience of the link when played with TMP. The effect is easily the strongest attachment removal in the game, and made only slightly less strong by the ubiquity of other maester decks, since Tin Link can't target other chain attachments.

I think I am not jumping too far when I conclude that the existence of Tin Link has artificially propped up TMP decks and, in so doing, contributed to the popularity of TMP decks over the past year or so at the expense of more diverse builds.

The restriction of Tin Link would no doubt increase the variety of the competitive landscape, and might even make the Tin Link more useful as an effect, rather than it's current value as a deterrent. For example, if such a restriction resulted in an increase in the use of attachments by players more generally, running the Tin Link may become an attractive choice in certain, maester-heavy decks. But if it does not, then the "soft ban" on Tin Link would still increase variety in the game.

I believe that by pretty much any measure, Tin Link deserves restriction.

 

 

You said that well… I share this opinion.  I feel that Tin Link should be restricted first to see what happens, before an outright ban occurs. 

/signed :)



#16 Traitor

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 04:37 AM

So, if something is warping the game as much as I gather this must be, how could it be good for it to stick around?



#17 mdc273

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 06:23 AM

The argument for it sticking around has to do more with theory than anything. That Tin Link creates an environment where attachments are assumed to be almost useless would create a new theoretical consideration for designers. This may induce them to create new attachments that are unbalanced in an environment without Tin Link.

There's no real evidence whether or not restricting/banning Tin Link will have a positive effect on the game. It just currently has a very visible and incredibly powerful effect on one card type. Ironically, that card type has been so underpowered for so long that you could effectively scrap attachments and Tin Link altogether and I doubt anyone would notice with the exception of Targ for a few recursive burn cards.

Is there anything to truly be gained by banning Tin Link at this point? I would say only if FFG actually wants attachments in the game. One consideration for why there has been no change to it could be that FFG doesn't like attachments, but that's just me hypothesizing. Banning/restricting Tin Link at this point in time could dramatically destabilize the environment and create imbalance in the houses.

Being the governing body of a game can suck, haha.



#18 Bomb

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 06:57 AM

mdc273 said:

The argument for it sticking around has to do more with theory than anything. That Tin Link creates an environment where attachments are assumed to be almost useless would create a new theoretical consideration for designers. This may induce them to create new attachments that are unbalanced in an environment without Tin Link.

There's no real evidence whether or not restricting/banning Tin Link will have a positive effect on the game. It just currently has a very visible and incredibly powerful effect on one card type. Ironically, that card type has been so underpowered for so long that you could effectively scrap attachments and Tin Link altogether and I doubt anyone would notice with the exception of Targ for a few recursive burn cards.

Is there anything to truly be gained by banning Tin Link at this point? I would say only if FFG actually wants attachments in the game. One consideration for why there has been no change to it could be that FFG doesn't like attachments, but that's just me hypothesizing. Banning/restricting Tin Link at this point in time could dramatically destabilize the environment and create imbalance in the houses.

Being the governing body of a game can suck, haha.

Without Tin Link, attachments are still going to be carefully analyzed as being good for a deck because they are still fragile.  When a card leaves play, so do all the attachments attached to that card, so attachment hate can be lumped into the category of hate for the card type they are attached to as well.  There still exists other attachment handling options out there as well, but Tin Link provides the easiest and most efficient way to deal with them.  Without Tin Link, at least attachment hate will need to take the place of a card slot in your deck that needs to be drawn just like any other card type hate there is. 

I can't really think of attachments that they may create that would be unbalanced if Tin Link were at least restricted.  If really strong attachments are used, then the player base should evolve and add some of the existing attachment hate that actually takes some card/plot slot sacrifice, cost, or effort to get going.  Evolution is the concept of an LCG.  The player base would find certain cards to be a common use and thus be prepared to face them in their deck building.  With Tin Link, it generally makes any deck with more than 1 or 2 attachment types of cost 2 gold or more(1 gold if the attachment has a crappy card effect) a terribly inefficient deck that has wasted slots on cards that you can't use in a high percentage of games.

 

I think if the chain attachments had more effort in their trigger, they'd be more acceptable.  For example, the following chains trigger off the character kneeling(and a summary of their ability) -

Bronze Link - Return top attachment to hand.
Pale Steel Link - Put into play attachment or character 1 cost or less.
Tin Link - Discard 1 non-Chain attachment from play.
Steel Link - Choose and stand 1 location.
Iron Link - Choose 1 character. Until the end of the phase, that character gets +2 STR and gains a icon.
Black Iron Link - Choose 1 character.  Gains or loses INT icons.

 

Some of these(emphasis on SOME because not all of these are retarded like Tin Link and some should be generally easy to trigger during the challenges phase otherwise they'd be useless) could have their trigger changed to "When attached character stands." and it would then require some deck building effort or for some decks, the standing phase, to trigger the affect.  Instead of paying the cost of other effects, initiating challenges, and basically triggering off of Lannister kneel effects, you can then use the chains effect if you can find a way to stand the character.  If you can find a way to stand the attached Maester, then go for it.  However, at least it will take that next step to trigger the chain.  If this happened with the Tin Link and maybe the Bronze Link, then maybe it could be more viable… the problem still remains that the triggers would still likely be once per round, but at least you can get through a challenges phase without feeling like any attachment you have in play will simply be discarded before it can be used.

 

I am more a wishful thinker than anything in this game.  I bet if I designed the game, it would be awful.

 

 



#19 playgroundpsychotic

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 07:13 AM

mdc273 said:

One consideration for why there has been no change to it could be that FFG doesn't like attachments, but that's just me hypothesizing.

A Poisoned Spear and The House of Black and White were CP's that revolve around attachments so I would say they still like them. No similar CP has been announced for A Song of the Sea but that doesn't mean that there will be no new attachments.

FFG has been taking the slow approach to stripping away the Maester's power. They may decide to do nothing simply because Reach of the Kraken and A Turn of the Tide feature cards that are anti-agenda.

I'm not sure removing Tin Link is the best idea but I don't have a problem with its removal either. Maybe just ban/restrict it for the next regional season just to see what happens.

 

 



#20 Twn2dn

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 09:15 AM

This is a good conversation…glad it was started.

If we look back to pre-Maesters cycle, many people were pushing for a few neutral attachment-removal options. Before Ill Tidings, there was virtually nothing outside of a couple houses. Certain attachments, such as Devious Intentions and Taste for Blood, were pretty hard to deal with at times. Support of Harlaw could be pretty annoying too, for example when it was attached to a Wintertime Marauders.

FFG overcompensated when it printed the Tin Link. Honestly, at the time it was probably not really anticipated to be as strong as it turned out to be…my guess is that this was true of The Maester's Path more generally as well. But given the popularity of TMP, the tin link was an easy addition.

Even then, Tin Link didn't really have the potent impact it has had on the game until Martell Maesters become a popular build. This took at least a few months. Prior to the 2012 regionals season, the vast majority of maester decks I encountered ran 3-6 links. (When you're limited to 4 chains, it's tough for Tin Link to make the cut.) Especially after the errata to TMP that made it impossible to attach the Apprentice Collar to a non-maester. Frankly, maester decks weren't looking overly powerful, and given the popularity of Ghaston Grey, playing a lot of superfluous chains seemed like a liability.

Fast forward to this year's regionals seasons, when Martell Maesters emerged in various rush and more tempo/control forms. Suddenly it's OK to run 8+ chains on the agenda, and Tin Link is everywhere.

The bottom line is that attachments used to be played, and used to be played with some degree of impunity. Granted, they are always a bit riskier given they leave play when the character (or location) leaves play. But when you're looking at a card like Devious Intentions or something of similar power level, the payoff is frequently worth some additional risk. That calculation has changed significantly as maester decks became more common. Importantly, more options for non-event cards have allowed decks to fill the vacuum/hole with more events. 

If the Tin Link is banned, I'm extremely confident we'll see more attachments in the environment. It may not be as many as before, given there are a variety of event cards that at times make attachments redundant, but a small uptick would still be a major increase from the status quo.






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