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JediPartisan

Balance

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     So I’ve been debating whether I should write this cause there will be many that will want to argue and will be intractable in their steadfastness of their belief, and there will be others that just want to argue and will say nasty or inflammatory things, but I just want to get it off my chest and have someone agree, even if there is only one person out there. Keep in mind there is more to being civil and polite than just not swearing at someone, adjectives matter. If you want to troll, or say nasty things, please keep step’n, you’re not needed here.

 

    I believe the Rebel and Imperial factions are not balanced. For the most part I can’t argue with the statistical numbers of the older units. On paper the Imperials and Rebels compliment each other, one being slightly better on attack, and the other being slightly better on defence, but there are some things not covered in a numerical analysis (because they can’t be). So let me go into specifics.

    Everything looks complimentary between the two factions in order of release until you hit the special forces where the Imperials start to do better than the rebels. The Scout Troopers are hands down better than the Commandos. Two black dice each are unstoppable, but this is where Imperial players say, “Yeah, but Scouts are garbage.” And I say, “Why?” They then say, “The black dice are only range two and they have white defence dice”. I have to point out that ALL rebels (with the exception of Luke and Sabine) have white defense dice, and so do the Commandos and what’s more, Fleets and all Commanders with the exception of Chewie and Jyn have range 2 attacks, but we’ll get back to ranges later. The funniest thing is that Scouts and Commandos are the same point cost (a mistake in my opinion), but maybe this is all moot because people usually play strike team snipers, so let’s just look at them. Both Strike Teams cost the same points and are equal in defense, but their chance to hit is not equal. The Scout’s snipers are 12.5% more likely to roll a hit and that’s just direct math. This means that on average those Imperial snipers will do more damage throughout the game.

    From here I guess we should circle back to range. Most Imperial units attack at range 3 and use white dice. White attack dice have a poor showing and I won’t argue that, but when you add in a DLT, a cheap and very effective red die weapon that has a range 4 attack, the rebels are left behind again. If the imperial player decides to stay at range 4, the rebel player can’t close that range without losing 1-2 minis from each unit, it means the Imperial player can play defensively forcing the Rebel player to come to them and just picking off one or two minis per attack each round. When Key Positions was broken people took insane buys to be Blue player so they can play a defensive game. Why should one side having better range options be any less important? There isn’t just the DLT that has range superiority, though the Stormtrooper DLT is rather ubiquitous (being on a corps unit), there is also the AT-ST, Bossk, the Occupier Tank, and the Deathtroopers. It is true Rebels have their Laser Cannon, The Pathfinders and the AT-RT. To that I can only say, the Laser Cannon is at best area control, which is not a small thing, but should be understood it cannot compete with a unit that can actually move and having white defense dice and not being able to move into better cover, means it’s not going to live long if focused on. The Pathfinders are a good unit, but at a cost of over 100 points, it’s not worth paying them just to get a small measure of range 4 attacks. That brings us to the AT-RT and its Laser Cannon, which is rather expensive as well at 85 points for 3 total attack dice especially considering the prevalence of Impact in Imperial units. Let’s face it AT-RTs don’t get played because they just don’t last long. When the new units, Bossk and the Occupier are added into the mix, Rebels don’t stand much of a chance. Bossk’s ability to throw 1 red and 4 white at range 4 is unmatched when coupled with regen. If Rebels do attempt to make a run in to get to range 3 on Bossk, Bossk can just jump back into cover the next round and heal for the next couple, just to pop up again at range 4. I won’t even get into the Tank because even with its +1 to Impact against its sides, you still need to get past its 50% defense dice (red) and 8 health (only one less health than Chewie and Chewie has white defense dice, no surge and no armour). Even without these new units the ubiquitous DLT Stormtroopers already have enough on Rebels.

    Then there is suppression. The Imperials have more options to deliver suppression hands down without the equal in Rebel ability to remove suppression. Don’t get me wrong, Rebels do have some options to remove suppression, but you have to play specific units to get those options and none are equal in ability to remove as Imperials are to give. Rebel units need a dodge and cover just to stay on par with the imperial red defense die. So when your rebel unit has to rely on two actions to get the dodge or be able to move into cover, because you’ll be easily obliterated without cover or a dodge, it becomes yet another unfair advantage. So the added abilities of Imperials to give extra suppression takes away from rebels ability to defend themselves.

    Another area Imperials have an advantage is the ability to gain extra victory points. Both Bossk and Boba have the ability to get extra victory points, an ability that the Rebels cannot match. This is when Imperial players usually point toward Pathfinders and Jyn and say that Imperial’s do not have their ability to be placed anywhere on the table. Fair point, but that ability only grants a leg up on gaining an existing victory point. The Bounty keyword gives a whole new victory point and one that only the Imperial player can gain. Also the Pathfinders are an expensive unit and precludes the ability to take 3 cheap strike teams (Sniper strike teams) reducing your overall unit count which Rebels sorely need. Which brings us to yet another ability that Rebels don’t have, the ability to take more than three special forces units, Imperials have two such sources Krennic and the Emperor, both with Entourage.

    New weapons are coming in the new units that are being leaked and in almost all those units the Imperials either have a better quality of dice or just more of them. Look at the Tank compared to the Landspeeder. The speeder starts with a very low price, but is unplayable at two white attack dice and even when you spend enough points to get the extra weapons, your dice pool does not have the quality of dice the tank has and they both come in at about the same price point after being fully kitted out. To that I have to ask, why are the extra weapons for the tank at most 18 points, where the Rebel weapons are 34 or 36? Even the Shoretroopers are getting better dice on the imperial side (compared to usual). This isn’t as bad, considering the price of the Shoretroopers, but if they come out with one unit after another with attack dice that have been typical for Rebel’s (as they have been) it’s skewing the statistical balance everyone likes to point to, to show overall balance.

    Lastly I would like to talk about passive and active abilities, something that should not be ignored, but also cannot be added into an equation. The Rebel’s Nimble ability is passive. This means that even if the Rebel player is able to get a dodge token on a unit that could be attacked, it doesn’t mean that, that unit will be attacked, that decision is up to the attacker and the attacker could just decide to attack a totally different unit, so the Rebel player may get no benefit from that ability at all. The Imperial ability of Precise is an active ability, as it is up to the player when and if that ability gets used, making it far more affective.

 

    Now I know that there are very very good Rebel players out there and that some very good Imperial players have been beaten by Rebels, but by and large, a Rebel player needs to be a higher level player to succeed at an average level with the above mentioned issues stacked against them. I have no delusions, I am an average, to slightly below average player, but the games I could/would win with Imperials do not equal out with Rebels. And yes I am aware that Rebels need to be played differently and I do try, but every faction should have the same chances of winning or it will be a negative play experience. And to those who say, “Well then just don’t play Rebels”, that’s a cop out and the argument of someone who has no rebuttal.

    Personally I think the problem above could all be corrected by changing points. The Imperial stuff should for the most part cost more, or the Rebels should be slightly cheaper. Also most of the things I’ve mentioned above are small issues only giving the Imperials an almost imperceptible edge, like the Strike Team snipers and their 12.5% extra chance to hit. It’s not much at all, but each little thing adds up with other little things, making one side weaker than the other overall.

    This imbalance is an issue for both sides too, not just for the Rebels. As someone who also plays Imperials, I don’t want to beat a rebel player, then wonder if it’s because I have more advantages than they do. Now, I’ve probably missed something in my analysis and I’m sure someone will blow up at me, somehow taking offence at what I’ve written. You don’t have to take me down a peg or put me in my place to explain what I’ve missed, though maybe I shouldn’t have posted on the internet if I didn’t want someone to assault me by written word. But where else could I raise this topic of concern, but in the very community that plays the game. My intention is not to offend anyone but to try to show that there is a problem so that it can be fixed. I do think Legion is a great game and it’s worth the investment, but right now it’s starting to show signs of a serious problem. I could be wrong about almost everything I’ve said, but I’m sure at least some of what I’m saying is valid and I hope you’re willing to listen.

 

You may commence your attack run.

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With so many variables in play (terrain, different player skill etc.) and also the future releases may re-balance the overall power levels it might be a bit hasty to start changing point costs.

This is also really an issue for competitive play, which is not something the vast majority of the legion community need to worry about. Those who just want to set up a table, throw down some terrain, and play a more fun narrative game won't be overly concerned about a small imbalance in the power level of the factions.

 

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2 minutes ago, Empire On Ice said:

This is also really an issue for competitive play, which is not something the vast majority of the legion community need to worry about. Those who just want to set up a table, throw down some terrain, and play a more fun narrative game won't be overly concerned about a small imbalance in the power level of the factions.

 

So when you play Monopoly, do you start with $500 less than the other players? Or when you play checkers, do you let your opponent start with a couple of pieces already crowned?

Competitive or non-competitive makes no difference, both game styles would be affected equally and provide a negative play experience. 

Also, I guess the checkers analogy was a bad one. No one plays checkers.🤣🤪😳

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Just now, JediPartisan said:

So when you play Monopoly, do you start with $500 less than the other players? Or when you play checkers, do you let your opponent start with a couple of pieces already crowned?

Competitive or non-competitive makes no difference, both game styles would be affected equally and provide a negative play experience. 

Also, I guess the checkers analogy was a bad one. No one plays checkers.🤣🤪😳

There are plenty of asymmetrical games on the market that are great fun to play, so I don't think that this is a deal breaker :)

And we have yet to see how the upcoming releases will shift the balance.

If you are finding this to be a real problem then just agree with your opponent that Rebels can have 850 points vs Imperials 800, or play Rebel vs Rebel games.

If FFG want to review the game at the end of the current cycle of releases, and issue a revised card pack with new points, then that is something I would consider buying. But as they cannot even provide a printer friendly version of the rulebook I see little evidence that FFG will start making smart decisions 😛

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39 minutes ago, JediPartisan said:

The Scout’s snipers are 12.5% more likely to roll a hit and that’s just direct math. This means that on average those Imperial snipers will do more damage throughout the game.

They are not. You seem to forget that Commandoes do surge to hit. I.e. rebel b/w dice have the same chance to roll hits as the imperials (50%)

 

42 minutes ago, JediPartisan said:

add in a DLT, a cheap and very effective red die weapon that has a range 4 attack, the rebels are left behind again.

No one argues that DLT's are strong. But have you tried Z-6's?

 

43 minutes ago, JediPartisan said:

the rebel player can’t close that range without losing 1-2 minis from each unit, it means the Imperial player can play defensively forcing the Rebel player to come to them and just picking off one or two minis per attack each round.

If that would be the case, the game would be horribly one-sided, and it is not. In this statement you disregard cover, dodges, defense die, blanks or DLT's (albeit rare) and the general higher activation count of Rebel lists. 

49 minutes ago, JediPartisan said:

Rebel units need a dodge and cover just to stay on par with the imperial red defense die.

And Imperials (as far as core units go) need aim to stay on par with Rebels offense.


Note that I'm not arguing that Imperials don't have better long range options or suppressive weapons, or bounty, or entourage, or pulling the strings. They do. What I'm arguing is that you're mistaking one faction's cool toys as an imbalance in the game.

There are things Rebels have that the imperials don't. For example, Imperials lack (generally) the mobility of Rebels, and are also quite weaker in melee (i'm thinking Luke and Wookies, with Sabine and Jyn also contributing).

It is, in my opinion, to early to say if imperial range4 lists dominate to the point of imbalance in the game. They are strong, no doubt, but something has to be good, and will be as long as others find good counter to it. I'm thinking fast, melee oriented Rebels might do the trick. Or Han/Leia list heavy on anti-suppresion tech. 

To reassume, I think you give more meaning to some elements of the game over others to support your thesis. You're entitled to do so, of course, as that's what's opinions are. In mine, there is no imbalance between the faction, as it is easily possible for both to engage in games that are close and won of player's skill and luck as opposed to his or her choice of faction.

 

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Did you take the 1/4 covers on the table, and not with a 40k "way of building table" in your assumption ?

No because IMO, a lot of the "tournaments table" are completely unbalance and indeed favorise the Empire.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Shanturin said:

They are not. You seem to forget that Commandoes do surge to hit. I.e. rebel b/w dice have the same chance to roll hits as the imperials (50%)

This. OP argues about Balance but his math is just plain wrong. He simplifies game rules and mechanics and compares stats that aren't directly comparable.

Competitive Tournament lists are pretty much evened out between imperial and rebel players.

I agree that imperials are a bit easier to play than rebels, but they aren't imbalanced by far.

Also he forgets a big advantage of rebel players over imperial players: Activations.

Edited by Staelwulf

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The game is probably balanced fine- it’s tournament tables that aren’t because they are designed similarly to other more symmetrical war games and there isn’t really that same symmetry between the factions.

I think a symmetric warfare game would be empire versus empire or maybe empire versus republic. The rebellion just needs a different play style to function, and they d have activation advantage when they’re not fielding a t47.

2 hours ago, Sharkbelly said:

I heard a prophecy that there will one day come a model, born of no father, which will finally bring balance to the game. 

You were the chosen one!!

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(I play rebels, and recently won a state tournament with triple AT-RT.)

I agree that as a whole, rebels are slightly behind the imperials. But some of their units have abilities that can really be focused on to counter the direct effectiveness of imperials.

The problem I have with rebels vs imps, is that the rebel's play style is not pushed ENOUGH towards a more maneuverable playstyle. Rebels mostly, just feel like slightly gimped imperials. 

Nimble + no surge to hit, as it stands, just isn't as good as storms. You nailed that. But there are a lot of other elements in the works.

3 Units that really embody the moveable close range style of the rebels are:

Wookies - get around terrain easily, solid short range shooting and melee
Pathfinders - infiltrate (get into a good spot and this can be a gold mine)
Land Speeder - pretty quick, small target profile, and able to move in and out of full cover

I think the designers need to make more units like these. Ones that really push the uniqueness of playing rebels.

I think rebels really need some better options in corps and support, because we love to max out our elites.

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27 minutes ago, lologrelol said:

3 Units that really embody the moveable close range style of the rebels are:

Wookies - get around terrain easily, solid short range shooting and melee
Pathfinders - infiltrate (get into a good spot and this can be a gold mine)
Land Speeder - pretty quick, small target profile, and able to move in and out of full cover

I think the designers need to make more units like these. Ones that really push the uniqueness of playing rebels.

I concur. I would add Luke, Sabine and Jyn to this list. Leia emphasizes this as well with Take Cover rule and No Time For Sorrows card. Also, just let us play those sweet, sweet ice lizards ;) 

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The only difference I have noticed between rebels and Empire is that the Empire is the simpler faction to play.   They are straight forward move towards things, shoot them.   Rebels require more finesse to play.   They require a lot if thought and planning.   This is not to say that there is no thought required for Imperial forces, but they are a bit more forgiving.   

Another thing to realize is that the rebels need to sacrifice units to move in to position often times.   Sacrificing a unit so two more can get in position is how they need to operate.   You have to be willing to lose units.   

Also, remember this game has more to it than just decimating your opponent.   Hide, wait for the opportunity to get victory points. Imperial players often want to just decimate their opponents (Tarkin Tabletop Doctrine) so as rebels, make them come to you!   Let the empire waste actions getting to you.  Stay out of sight.   Don't be afraid to spend a round NOT attacking if it puts you in a better position for later.  

Rebels won't win in a prolonged firefight, so play differently!    

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, lologrelol said:

3 Units that really embody the moveable close range style of the rebels are:

Wookies - get around terrain easily, solid short range shooting and melee
Pathfinders - infiltrate (get into a good spot and this can be a gold mine)
Land Speeder - pretty quick, small target profile, and able to move in and out of full cover

I think the designers need to make more units like these. Ones that really push the uniqueness of playing rebels.

I think rebels really need some better options in corps and support, because we love to max out our elites.

Tauntauns are going to really blow this open.  I'm trying to see a reason to keep my chicken walkers, when the tautauns do almost everything better

I think the designers think of the game as a whole, not as what is released at a certain point because they are ahead.  I remember when the game was released, I kept thinking there was some imbalance, but realized that as they release more content, the gap narrowed and narrowed. 

Edited by buckero0

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I was going to detail my issues with the OP, but it got to long, and most of you have listed the issues.  So, in short:

-Rebel Commandos aren't any worse than Scout troopers.  I blank out on snipers all the time, and that's one reason why I really don't like to play them.  

-Imperial units are typically easier to use that Rebel, that's guaranteed.  That doesn't mean they better, however.

-AT-RTs are beasts, and while they do die relatively early, that's as much to do with them being the largest threat as it does with any issues with their design.  I'd argue that the AT-RT is the best vehicle of the initial waves, and likely the best, for its points, in the game.  I'm not at all impressed with the Occupier.  Every time I've used one, it dies pretty quickly.  Red die sound great, but that means it only rolls as well as your average stormtrooper (after armor, sure, but the massively long side arc allows a lot of extra hits through)

-The Z-6 is arguably better than the DLT-19.  It's far more variable, but if you're a gambler, the Z-6 can have huge payoffs.  The ability to have one mini throw as many die as a full Stormtrooper squad shouldn't be underestimated.

-The continued Occupier/Landspeeder debate is annoying.  It's a tank vs a hot rod.  The tank should be beefier, stronger, and with better guns.  The Landspeeder should have agility (which it does) and versatility (which it does).  The vehicles are symbolic of the two factions; one is janky and unorthodox, depending on skill and luck.  The other is an organized military force, with solid units but little in the way of special flare.  I do hope that the Rebellion gets an actual tank eventually (plenty of good options in the EU and even in some of Disney's stuff) but this comparison is one of apples and coffee cups.

-At the RPQ game I went to this weekend, Rebels were by far my toughest opponents.  Han, Chewie, and Leia are hard to beat.  Leia and sniper spam are a far better combo than any comparable Imperial counter.  Rebel pierce lists are brutal because they nullify one of the Empire's big advantages, red defense die.  Anecdotal, but since that's what most of our arguments are based on, it fits  

Now, the real question I have is how much experience the OP has playing the Imperials?  A lot of these issues sound like ones you have based on playing against Imperials, and not playing as them.  If all you see is them beating you, you're going to think they're a lot stronger than they are.  If you play a few games as Imperials against a good Rebel player, your appreciation for Rebels tends to go up.  And, if you have played Imperials, and like them better.... why not just play Imperials if they suit your play style? 

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5 minutes ago, buckero0 said:

Tauntauns are going to really blow this open.  I'm trying to see a reason to keep my chicken walkers, when the tautauns do almost everything better

I'm not concerned about this at all. RTs still have better defense and are almost always cheaper than Tauntauns. Tauntauns may have the surge, 2 extra HP, and get a free dodge post movement but with their tall profile making cover more difficult to find, lack of recyclable dodge, the inability to get cover from suppression, and the possibility of routing against a force that is starting to focus on making you do exactly that doesn't really help them defensively. Their attack is good, but only as long as you have both of them. Lose 1 and the RT will be putting out more damage unless it has a flamethrower, in which case the RT was probably doing more to begin with. The only thing they have is mobility, but they're the rebel version of the bikes so that's to be expected.

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Posted (edited)

I've really noticed that just about any of the comparisons I've seen that are discussing balance don't take costs into account. They are almost always structured as "this Imperial unit vs. this rebel unit"

You are absolutely going to see a difference if you look at it this way. But the rebels will be able to put an extra unit or two of their version on the table. 

Rebel units are rarely meant to be better toe to toe with an imperial unit. 

 

Edited by crx3800

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Posted (edited)

I definitely feel like the rebels are underpowered compared to the imps. Locally, 3/4 of our players are imperial and the rebel players do not win. Most times it's a complete landslide. They take the dodges. They bunker down in cover...  but canceling 2-3 dice in a pool of 6-7 hits before rolling no blocks just isn't enough. (and it's not like our terrain layout is sparse.)

LFRL23n.jpg
(this isn't the game outlined below, just a reference of our terrain).

White defense dice are just a nightmare. The rebels get evaporated so quickly, even when they run Armor support or use snipers to cover. The white defenses make them so vulnerable that they can't effectively control objectives. 

My last 3 games against our main rebel player were savagely one sided, and they shouldn't have been. This last one he had a complete advantage over me. He had his mounted gun in perfect position to cover all 5 objective points. He had first deployment with an infiltrate unit. One side of the mat had LoS completely blocked to the objective from my side. He even had more activations than me. The objective was recover the supplies...
recoverTheSupplies_card%2528rough%2529.p

All he had to do was activate that infiltrate unit, claim the token and run for the safety of the left side of the mat where the terrain would make it impossible  to flank him. HE EVEN GOT FIRST ACTIVATION. He snagged the objective, moved max speed towards safety and was immediately gunned down by my squad of Death troopers that got a range 4 shot off on the poor mooks the very next activation.

With the objective in the open he had to commit basically all his corps units to recapturing it. Even ran his two armor units up the right flank. By round 4 he was down to his commander and a single commando sniper. He called it there as the imps had control of a 4/5 objective pieces and were heavily dug in. 

His loss came down to how easy it was to kill his troops. Honestly, few units survived more than 2 attacks. 


I know it's only anecdotal, but from my perspective, it certainly seems like the rebels aren't worth their weight in plastic. 

Edited by Darth Sanguis

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That's insane what you are saying, I run a very specific an particular rebels list, with neither luke nor leia nor rebs, and i have more than 80% winrate with it, against a wide range of armies (both rebs and imps, both fun and competitive) on over 40 games.

I really wish to know if :

a) I'm one of the best, if not THE best rebels player in the world (I mean, reading what I read)
b) I only play with "bad" players.

I oftenly finish my game with 70% of my army destroyed, but I don't care, I won.

And Recover Supply is one of my main source of victory, as no one just can win against my stratagy it seems.

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3 minutes ago, RaevenKS said:

That's insane what you are saying, I run a very specific an particular rebels list, with neither luke nor leia nor rebs, and i have more than 80% winrate with it, against a wide range of armies (both rebs and imps, both fun and competitive) on over 40 games.

I really wish to know if :

a) I'm one of the best, if not THE best rebels player in the world (I mean, reading what I read)
b) I only play with "bad" players.

I oftenly finish my game with 70% of my army destroyed, but I don't care, I won.

And Recover Supply is one of my main source of victory, as no one just can win against my stratagy it seems.

Stop jacking off on the forums bud.

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14 minutes ago, R3dReVenge said:

Stop jacking off on the forums bud.

I don't, I am really serious. My experience over tournaments or regular games with rebs on various kind of table, what I think about them, about how they play and how i win with them, opposed to what I read, and how I understand people feels about them is a huge interrogation to me, especially because I do not play the "meta best rebels list".

Of course, my last post could have been wrote with less irony or bitterness, but it is still a real source of interrogation.

Because I played both, I find Imps less good at the game. And the best Imp list (meaning = the one with which I have less difficulties to win) is a Vader lead list with "only" 9 activations.

I am not here to say what was already said : Yes, unit vs unit, rebs are worse than imperial. But once you are mechanicaly oiled and you force your opponent to play how you want them to play it's good.
 

For me, Rebels are a bit stronger overall than Imps. I played twice against Deathtroopers also. And yes, Deathtrooper are really strong.

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15 minutes ago, RaevenKS said:

That's insane what you are saying, I run a very specific an particular rebels list, with neither luke nor leia nor rebs, and i have more than 80% winrate with it, against a wide range of armies (both rebs and imps, both fun and competitive) on over 40 games.

I really wish to know if :

a) I'm one of the best, if not THE best rebels player in the world (I mean, reading what I read)
b) I only play with "bad" players.

I oftenly finish my game with 70% of my army destroyed, but I don't care, I won.

And Recover Supply is one of my main source of victory, as no one just can win against my stratagy it seems.

It's impossible to know. You could just have an advantage locally, it does happen, or you could be really good. I can't really say anything about how well you do. All I can do is observe the local phenomena. 

He's not a dumb person, and when he plays imps he seems to do well enough. (I have above an 80% win rate myself. I've only lost 2 of the 20-25 games I've played. One of those losses was to this player.)  

The observation I've made is the white defense dice under perform. Full stop.  It's basically like not having a defense roll.  

(Lately it's been so bad that he's been leaning heavy into e-stims and med droids to keep pieces on the board, but with the cost he loses in activations more than he saves in game.)

 

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8 hours ago, JediPartisan said:

So when you play Monopoly, do you start with $500 less than the other players? Or when you play checkers, do you let your opponent start with a couple of pieces already crowned?

Competitive or non-competitive makes no difference, both game styles would be affected equally and provide a negative play experience. 

Also, I guess the checkers analogy was a bad one. No one plays checkers.🤣🤪😳

I agree fully weather competitive or not it should be balanced and I say that biggest in balance from the beginning is dlt's and the entourage rule.   I always held the best thing for the game would be to get rid of impact on the dlt's and to be able to take an entourage it must be a second unit of that type i.e. you cant take 3 sniper team and a death trooper you must take at least 2 death troopers that would balance game out more but that just my thoughts. 

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