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Moto Subodei

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Everything posted by Moto Subodei

  1. The devil is in the detail as they say. I have to say, that I think unaligned personalities worked quite well, and there were some situations and players (Greg Wong for example) who would play efficient out of clan personalities. The gold and HR penalty worked fine both thematically and mechanically to me. My current deck at the moment runs a few out of clan guys and they work great. I know the system will quite likely be vastly different to the current, which is fine, but I felt the balance of in clan and out of clan was more or less in an ok spot. It wasn't so easy that you would go straight to the out of clan guy before your clan cards and it wasn't so restrictive that it became impossible. Personally I'd like to see a similar balance transferred to the new system. If it is easier than it is in the current system, I would have a fear that you'd end up with a small subset of personalities that are just the best personalities to play, and a lot of in clan personalities being ignored for that. At the end of the day, you want as many cards as possible to hit the environment and see play. A core subset of easily accessible personalities, irregardless of clan affiliation I think would marginalise quite a few cards. All that said, for all we know there won't even be clans or strongholds. All depends on how it is built from the ground up, but I'd like to see a similar level or risk/reward. EDIT: Look at shiho as an example. At 6 gold he was a bargain even still out of clan, and because of that he found his way into a lot of decks, in particular because of standing fast being in the environment.
  2. Only if you assume bad design and poor playtesting, or that killing single clan decks is a design goal. I haven't suggest that, only that other options should be equally appealing from a balance standpoint. Not really down to this necessarily, If you could mix and match as you please, the game would become pretty homogenous as the meta of the environment gets established. There would likely be a couple of decks that would be competitive, with a mix of all the best personalities from the different clans. I never said as you please. There are various mechanical ways to allow alliances and multifaction decks without going all the way to, "as you please." In fact, I would qualify being allowed to do it, "as you please," would qualify as bad design. What exactly is your suggestion then? Not being confrontational, genuinely curious
  3. Only if you assume bad design and poor playtesting, or that killing single clan decks is a design goal. I haven't suggest that, only that other options should be equally appealing from a balance standpoint. Not really down to this necessarily, If you could mix and match as you please, the game would become pretty homogenous as the meta of the environment gets established. There would likely be a couple of decks that would be competitive, with a mix of all the best personalities from the different clans. The function of the clans is more than just thematic or for the sake of player loyalty, but it also performs a duty of balancing and being able to independently support one clan/deck type directly, without having to consider or affect other clans. If there were no penalty to playing out of clan, the clan with the best stronghold would inevitably win because that would be the only variable factor. If you want to be able to play all out of clan AND have common strongholds, then you end up losing clan identity in the card game.
  4. There are two entirely different things there. Whether the Taint is contagious or voluntary is an separate question, from whether the Taint festers like a cancer inside someone however they were "infested". Unless I'm entirely misreading the RPG books, voluntarily Tainted characters are still at risk of madness and mutation and eventual loss of self -- especially if they actually use those "neat" powers. As for how low-level Taint is revealed... aren't there several groups that are searching for the Tainted? yes you are at risk to it...but it is a voluntary risk, but massive mutations don't really kick in for a while. At first you get ranks of things like reflexes, traits like night visions, then you graduate eventually to dark stuff like wings, blackened claws and massive boils . The fact that this can happen too even when it is voluntary is moot because you ahd to choose to go that path in the first place. That means you have designed or decided that the guy you are making is just a one dimensional baddie. Instead of a guy who takes a risk in dabbling in certain jigokery! I am not sure how it works since the deal was made, and the 4th ed rule book for the RPG still seems to have the older contagious version of the taint. There is ambiguity in that if you accept the taint, does it then spread uncontrollably, or do you only get more taint when you use the super powers it gives you. That hasn't really been explained. There are groups that can test for taint, there are even spells for it, and even Unicorn Deathpriests can do it. The thing is though, it is pretty dishonorable to just go around randomly checking people for taint because it would be a great insult to do so. There would need to be a suspicion first, and obvious symptoms of the taint don't kick in for quite some time. It would be some pretty next level meta gaming in an RPG to test someone who is rank 1ish for taint, unless they gave you obvious reasons to check.
  5. Not a criticism - but why? What do you see that's better about it that way? Each character -- from eto mortician to Clan Champion -- resists or succumbs only through their own choices, not through silly random chances. If the Taint were purely a physical disease, without spiritual implications or consequences, then it would be one thing... but it's not. It being choice based removes all the aspects of tragedy and sacrifice from it though. It also makes people with the taint very 1-dimensional baddies. It has been the part of the spider clan I could never really make sense of. How can you willingly embrace taint/jigoku and remain a samurai within the empire. IMO, from a lore perspective, it was one of the biggest mistakes made and is a main culprit of the stagnation of the storyline. Jigoku is (more or less) the Rokugani equivalent of hell -- pure evil, rejection of all that is proper, and eternal punishment for those who give in to its temptations. I don't see any noble tragedy or sacrifice in potential condemnation to "hell" being spread like a contagion. For the Crab Clan there was a very noble sacrifice. They would protect the empire at the wall from the shadowlands, but would quite likely become tainted themselves in performing their duty. That was quite noble. The damned are another great example. Finding out they are tainted, and instead of committing seppukku would just venture into the shadowlands to live out their last days knocking snot out of Onis and Zombies. The contagion spread provides a feel of the inexorable advance of Jigoku, and the struggle at keeping it at bay. Now that it isn't contagious anymore, it removes all that. The free power up thing from a lore perspective is true to a point. Before when you got the taint it continually spread. So maybe at first you become a little bit stronger, quicker and more preceptive. This is great at first and it feels free. There is a cost however, in that the spread continues, the tainted character becomes more and more powerful, but begins to suffer other symptoms like metal illness and disfigurement. This meant that the taint had a real cost. You got so much power, but at a cost. When it is voluntary, it seems like you take just a little bit, and keep it around there as long as you want. Being able to control the taint removes a lot of the risk factor as you have a choice about exactly how far you delve into it. That to me, is just boring. At low levels of taint, how are people to know you are tainted? You can't tell thet from the outside. Then you are able to keep it at that level. So really, at low levels there is very little drawback to it. The descent into madness and the involuntary loss of free will until you eventually become a slave to jigoku was the entire shtick of the taint. It was always the temptation of power that drew people to it, the power was there, but it came at a massive cost - that you would eventually become a mindless servant of Jigoku. That cost has been pretty much removed.
  6. I have been thinking about this myself, trying to figure out/predict how it is going to be packaged at the start. There are obviously many ways to do it, but the more I think about it, the more I thinking printing support for 9 clans in the first starter box just wouldn't really be feasible. I am preparing myself for 3 "starter" boxes, even though I would obviously have reservations about that too. The thing with the card pool size is true, but there is also another element that the LCG has over the CCG model, and that is the CCG was forced t print a lot of redundant cards for draft, and to support 9 clans in every expansion. The lcg model could just release clan packs ontop of their core set. While the pool will be smaller, I do think the themes and card allocation will be much more efficient.
  7. Not a criticism - but why? What do you see that's better about it that way? Each character -- from eto mortician to Clan Champion -- resists or succumbs only through their own choices, not through silly random chances. If the Taint were purely a physical disease, without spiritual implications or consequences, then it would be one thing... but it's not. It being choice based removes all the aspects of tragedy and sacrifice from it though. It also makes people with the taint very 1-dimensional baddies. It has been the part of the spider clan I could never really make sense of. How can you willingly embrace taint/jigoku and remain a samurai within the empire. IMO, from a lore perspective, it was one of the biggest mistakes made and is a main culprit of the stagnation of the storyline.
  8. Isn't that kind of why they might keep two decks though? It is one of the distinguishing features of the game.
  9. My comment wasn't a criticism of the LCG format, which I love. It was a criticism of the argument that, "You have to be patient," with the LCG format. If you can't make a fun play experience in 200+ cards, I'm not going to continue with your game. Also, if by "legacy format," you're expressing that the new game should be designed with supporting the notion of keeping old CCG cards compatible for play formats that include the old card, my vote is 100% no. Trying to walk the line like that will cripple design. A fresh start is needed. If, purely by accident, old cards wind up being compatible? Sure, whatever, just don't sit across the table from me with them. But I rather doubt that will happen if a really hard look is taken at the design. Twas a slip of the tounge, i meant LCG, my brain keeps making me say legacy instead of lcg
  10. People say this, but to me, it's a failure of design if an LCG isn't fun out of the core box. Will it get better as the card pool grows? Sure. But you can't put out a product that isn't much fun on the excuse of it being "just the core box," or people aren't going to stick around for more. And note that, "not being fun," is different from, "not having a wide variety of decks." (Though obviously, even a core set should shoot for as many effective options as they're able to squeeze in. Opening up multifaction decks goes a long way in this area.) It wouldn't be a failure of the LCG format though, but down to the fact that FFG wouldn't of had any lead up time. There is also one thing that you are overlooking and that is that there are a huge amount of redundant cards in the CCG model that an LCG model does not have. It is defintiely a case of quality over quantity. I actually think the LCG format will suit L5R very well. Designers for l5r had a really difficult time trying to accommodate every clan in a 140ish card set every 4-6 months. I think this was one of the main issues behind some themes feeling somewhat underdeveloped. When you look at an L5R expansion sets so many of the card slots are taken up by things that the LCG format wouldn't need to accomodate. Most clans would be wanting personality support for existing themes(3ish),for an upcomming theme(2) and also some generic or storyline support (1-2). Straight away, because you have 9 clans, it's straight away 54 cards you absolutely have to put into each set. Then because of draft, you needed a straighten card, anti favor card, anti sendhome card, move back to battle card etc etc. This means you end up with a huge amount of redundant cards in the format. An LCG would not need to behave in such a way because clan cards can be abstracted out to small expansion packs (like they have for netrunner), there wouldn't be a need to support draft and it would also be very easy to imemdiately and directly support new themes, which is gain something an CCG model has great trouble doing. If ffg do rebuild L5R from the ground up, to the point where old cards won't be compatible, then yes, at the start it may feel restrictive, but that is something I am sure they have thought about. For all we know, the core set might contain support for 3 clans, and then the rest of the clans be released either at the same time, or close after. This wouldn't be a problem that would need to be faced again though, as they would of had time to set up for the next "edition" further down the road. The CCG format really isn't the only way to do things and it does come with it's own host of problems. LCG is ofc not perfect (no system is), but it also has advantages.
  11. Umm..how do your characters become aware that they have the taint? Low ranks of taint are only noticable by those who are trained to notice it. It is up to the GM how long it takes for the taint to spread as it is entirely open to interpretation. It wouldnt be inconceivable for a character to start on 0.1 and finish the game at 0.9. There are plenty scenarios where a tainted character can continue on a game with taint. 1) their daimyo refuses them seppukku. 2) they look for a cure. 3)They are utterly oblivious about having it. 4)Serve at the wall. 5)They have a duty or mission to fulfill. When I came back to the game at start of ivory after a few years, the taint being removed was bizarre to me. I feel like the threat of the taint played a large role in the storyline of rokugan lost a lot of it's teeth.
  12. I would love if they went back to just after the foundation of the clans by the Kami. There is a lot of history in the game that has "happened" but has not been fleshed out or explored. That said. The setting FFG have to play with is so rich that they could start from anywhere really and make a very interesting storyline.
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