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Darth Sanguis

Commander cost.

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I've been thinking about this for a couple of days now and I was wondering what some of you may think on this issue. 

At this point in the game, should commanders have cost?


I know that seems like a dumb question, but for the life of me I can't seem to justify why they should. I suppose the argument could be made that having costs makes sure commanders with less powerful effects are still used, but at the same time, I've seen players use low cost commanders to great success. The only other notion that makes sense is they add value to the flagship, making it THAT much more valuable to sink in game. 

It seems to me that commander costs are more restrictive than anything else at this point. They can't really be considered part of the balancing, right? Everyone HAS to have one, and at worst it creates a 18 point disparity between fleets. I've seen players take more than that just to ensure a low bid. I'm not crazy by thinking this, right?  I mean, most fleets I play against are built around the commander's effect anyways. If no one had to pay for the commander's effect, it would give players just a little more room to perfect that fleet, yet wouldn't really give them enough to make it OP.

With so many options to play I don't really feel like eliminating commander costs would even stop people from using the "cheap" commanders. (Both Ozzel and Dodonna can be absolutely brutal in fleets that are built for them. after all).


I'm interested in what you think. If the commander costs were eliminated and a rule for scoring was added to grant say 30 or 40 points to the MoV for the destruction of an enemy flagship, would it let players make more robust fleets, or would it cripple the game? Maybe no effect?

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We seem to be on the same page a lot Sanguis, but not this time. It would take some serious re-balance to go this direction, in my opinion. The expensive commanders are expensive for a reason, they add more to the fleet. Now I'm not saying that they are costed correctly now, but making them all equal cost would mean you see even less of them on the table. 

Just seems like a ninja way to get slightly larger fleets on the table without adding more squadron points (which I kind of like, just don't think this is the right way).

That being said, the old WarmaHordes way of doing things would be fine. You must take a commander, each commander allows so many EXTRA points. Still lets you balance them with points, just goes the other way.

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If you re-valued Dodonna & Ozzel as zero points, then Motti as 4, Vader as 16, Tarkin as 18 etc. you still keep the points balance but then you are back at the same place as we are now, apart from requiring more FAQs and reprinted cards. In addition it hampers the designers for all the (MANY THOUSANDS of) future wave releases from designing a commander with worse abilities than Dodonna unless you wish to introduce negative point costs into fleet design.

 

 

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Just now, IronNerd said:

The expensive commanders are expensive for a reason, they add more to the fleet.

Okay, I see what you're saying, but it's not like all high cost commanders benefit all fleet types equally.

Sure, they add more, but if the fleet isn't built to use their effect, what they add doesn't really matter. 


 

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Just now, Darth Sanguis said:

Okay, I see what you're saying, but it's not like all high cost commanders benefit all fleet types equally.

Sure, they add more, but if the fleet isn't built to use their effect, what they add doesn't really matter. 


 

That's not an argument for removing their cost, though...  

That's an argument for removing Commanders in total.

 

Because the fundamental assumption of the design space of commanders IS you're designing your fleet around them...  To do not, is like not spending points when you don't need a Bid...

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7 minutes ago, Darth Sanguis said:

Sure, they add more, but if the fleet isn't built to use their effect, what they add doesn't really matter. 

Absolutely agree. Problem is most people build fleets to use their power as best as possible. I know Assault Frigates aren't as great as they once were, but here was my kneejerk reaction fleet:

4 x AFmk2B - Gunnery Teams

2 x GR75 - Comms Net

4 x A-Wing

Not incredible, but it took me about 20 seconds to think up. Add a free Ackbar and this list is pretty gross, he costs half a frigate!

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4 minutes ago, Drasnighta said:

That's not an argument for removing their cost, though...  

That's an argument for removing Commanders in total.

 

Because the fundamental assumption of the design space of commanders IS you're designing your fleet around them...  To do not, is like not spending points when you don't need a Bid...

I guess I don't understand how this line of reasoning works.

Having a commander should definitely be part of the game, but being restricted by their costs when their costs aren't really the deciding factor in what fleet is built seems a little... extra? Unnecessary?  I don't know, I guess it just doesn't make much sense to me.

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Just now, Darth Sanguis said:

Having a commander should definitely be part of the game, but being restricted by their costs when their costs aren't really the deciding factor in what fleet is built seems a little... extra? Unnecessary?  I don't know, I guess it just doesn't make much sense to me.

Why should this be any more true with respect to commanders than to ships?  Ships are mandatory just like commanders, and better ones cost more than worse ones (notionally, at least).  Should ships be free too?

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1 minute ago, Ardaedhel said:

Why should this be any more true with respect to commanders than to ships?  Ships are mandatory just like commanders, and better ones cost more than worse ones (notionally, at least).  Should ships be free too?

I mean, I guess I see the point but the situations here aren't really equal. The game IS the ships. Admirals are just an upgrade when it really comes down to it. 

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9 minutes ago, IronNerd said:

Absolutely agree. Problem is most people build fleets to use their power as best as possible. I know Assault Frigates aren't as great as they once were, but here was my kneejerk reaction fleet:

4 x AFmk2B - Gunnery Teams

2 x GR75 - Comms Net

4 x A-Wing

Not incredible, but it took me about 20 seconds to think up. Add a free Ackbar and this list is pretty gross, he costs half a frigate!

True enough, but consider that every fleet will  be getting this boost. A triple cymoon could have spinals and X17s on all 3 with vader and still have room for 2 gunnery teams and a strat advisor. 

I mean I could spitball lists that get power bumps from this all day. Does it effect game balance if everyone is getting more for less?

 

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Just now, Darth Sanguis said:

I mean, I guess I see the point but the situations here aren't really equal. The game IS the ships. Admirals are just an upgrade when it really comes down to it. 

Okay, sooo... upgrades should be free?

I just don't follow the logic that, because they're mandatory and all fall within a +/-100% cost variance status quo, they should just be free.

12 minutes ago, Darth Sanguis said:

their costs aren't really the deciding factor in what fleet is built

They absolutely are, though.  I mean, it's obviously not the only factor, but I've definitely taken Dodonna to buy back those 10 points on more than one occasion.

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26 minutes ago, Darth Sanguis said:

it's not like all high cost commanders benefit all fleet types equally.

What does this have to do with it?  Gunnery Teams is almost mandatory on an ISDC but just as nearly useless on an MC30T.  The assumption is that you're listbuilding to optimize the value you get from the points you spent.  It's like the very most rudimentary fundamentals of the listbuilding part of the game.

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Just now, Ardaedhel said:

Also, sorry if I'm coming off as aggressive.  Super **** morning at work and I'm here for the escapism, lol.  No hard feelings.

No worries It's just hard to get to 3+ quotes at a time lol
 

3 minutes ago, Ardaedhel said:

I've definitely taken Dodonna to buy back those 10 points on more than one occasion.

This is kinda what I mean though. This doesn't feel like an unnecessary restriction to you?  If you could have made all those fleets with the point heavy commander you wanted, would it have negatively effected the game? 

I guess I just think that the game is in a diverse enough state, with enough options that buying back points with commanders seems a little... extra? 

I mean, certainly, if it effected balance in such a way that lists started getting OP, scrap the idea, but personally, I rather have a few extra points to build lists around ideas without having to chuck out a commander to make it fit. 

 

9 minutes ago, Ardaedhel said:

Okay, sooo... upgrades should be free?

That's tough to say yes and no to. Not all upgrades, I feel like mandatory upgrades, should be. Or maybe even scrap that whole idea. change the way we fleet build where commanders aren't upgrades  to attach to a ship but cards that we pick like we do objective cards. Maybe this is where their value could be re balanced (if need be).  Like Lupine said:

 

1 hour ago, Darth Lupine said:

I'd make them free, and add a blanket 20 VP for destroying the flagship. 

 Except the value of the VP would change based on the commander. 

Consider it like an incentive program instead of a tax.

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@Darth Sanguis I think the problem with free commanders, or should I say free at cost of list building. Is that you have to balance them to a t. Yes will the enable different stategies, they would all have to have all the same realitive affect on the strategy itself... Wich would mean either massively pumping up some, or massively nerfing others. Even let's say, zeroing out so that the lowest cost we're free and it went up from there, still probably wouldn't do the trick. Maybe if you set the zero point at midrange commanders, it would increase the advantages of both. So, the low end commanders would give you, more fleet building choices by effective ly giving a cheap as free upgrades or ship discount or how ever you want to look at it. At the commanders with impressive crunchy abilities are paid for in the extra points. No idea if that would work, but it would allow for baseline fleetwide abilities without absolutely re writing their affects .  Dunno, it's probably just as crazy as anything else.

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Should commanders have been free?  It's a debateable concept, but I'd say yes, they should have been.

FFG had two ways to go about this.  Balanced commanders that are all free or the same cost, or commanders with a large variety of abilities that are balanced via cost.  Perfectly balanced commanders would have been nearly impossible, especially as the game evolved.  You would likely see far fewer commanders than you do now.  FFG looked at the options, decided that balancing all commanders to be equal would limit the variety of powers they could use along with the ability to balance future commanders to the older ones.  They went the points route.

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[ flagship ] Executor I-class Star Dreadnought (381 points)
-  Custom Commander  ( 0  points) 
-  Emperor Palpatine  ( 3  points) 
-  Damage Control Officer  ( 5  points) 
-  Gunnery Team  ( 7  points) 
-  Leading Shots  ( 4  points) 
= 400 total ship cost

 

This might be the biggest reason. 

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7 minutes ago, Captain Ordo N-11 said:

[ flagship ] Executor I-class Star Dreadnought (381 points)
-  Custom Commander  ( 0  points) 
-  Emperor Palpatine  ( 3  points) 
-  Damage Control Officer  ( 5  points) 
-  Gunnery Team  ( 7  points) 
-  Leading Shots  ( 4  points) 
= 400 total ship cost

 

This might be the biggest reason. 

This is true. The SSD certainly would change the dynamic 

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18 minutes ago, Admiral Calkins said:

While I personally find this proposal ridiculous, I really appreciate @Darth Sanguis for introducing a topic that gets us talking that is not a 2.0 or "FFG still hasn't released an article" thread

hqdefault.jpg


I've been trying to do my part. Nk-7s, this, I've got a few more brewing. I realize I'm a particularly loud part of the problem sometimes lol

 

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