DB Plague… Sort Of

Brewed in a vat for your gaming pleasure.

Edit: new version here.

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31 Responses to DB Plague… Sort Of

  1. I’ve gotta echo what I’ve said in the Mechanite thread:

    These teams need a downside to the flexibility. I could start this team as a Trontek build, one of the best teams in the game, and whenever I ranked someone up in league, I could “grind them down” and reincarnate them even better as a reduced TV or with an additional Skill

    Trontek Rank 2 Guard with 3+ Str: 15mc
    Mutant Rank 1 Guard with 3+ Str and Threatening 15mc
    Mutant Rank 1 Guard with 3+ Str: 13mc

    So I’m able to manipulate how quickly the MC value of my team raises, easily resetting players if I don’t like their ranked up skill as well and putting together a new guy, WHILE having all the strengths of the initial, solid, Trontek team.

    Is there a reason for the blatant Power Creep?

    • theearthdragon says:

      And I’m serious as to whether there is a reason for the all these new teams to trump the old. Is there something that’s gonna change, like Ranked up players only raise your mc by 2 in league play? If something like that is gonna happen, that makes some of this undertstandable. Still need to have a downside to this sort of flexibility though (like not able to ever have cards. You trade in a trick for a trick, just like the zee trade in their CD for their own thing).

    • Josh says:

      unless I’m missing something, you are spending 13 to 15 mc on your first guard.. so you are not going to be able to have as many models, card, or dice as the Trontek starting team… so that’s the trade off… do you want fewer models (with tailored upgrades) or fewer extras or do you want to take a chance on the XP chart after a game or two.. or in this case, Melt them down and start over =p… that in and of itself isn’t a Power Creep .. you are paying for the cost.. if you could get that same Plague Guard for 10 mc then yeah, that would seem unfair with no penalty. If you feel like the costs aren’t correct, make a recommendation (I believe it’s called constructive criticism?) or build a whole team and see how the game goes.

      And I touched on this on the Mantic Forums in the Crystallan Discussion… but I’m pretty sure it is next to impossible to NOT develop a slight power creep …. nobody wants to pick up the Kovossian Mutants and have them play ‘just like the Trontek 29ers’… that would be silly.. you could just go get the Trontek models, hack some limbs and heads off, glue on some extra Plague bits from Deadzone, and just play ’em as a mutant human team… so there is going to have to be some draw (other than imagery) that sets these guys apart from existing teams… in this case that’s the flexible builds and recycling your players.

      My question is now more about the set up of the model building charts… is this the way we can expect the Mechanites V2.0 to look like.. where you separate out the upgrades so you can control their costs more closely if needed? Would make sense and might actually be easier for people to work out their models build & cost than the way the Mechanites were written earlier. Nice job as far as I’m concerned… looking forward to getting some Kovossians on the table!

      • theearthdragon says:

        You are missing the fact I’m talking about ranking people in league and being able to more effectively control growth/TV with these with as much effectiveness but no real downside other then understanding the system.

        There is no point in playing Trontek in a league because these guys can do what they do but better. I’d just use my Trontek figures, but play this rule set, and do what I described in my first post.

        I guess I’m the only one who sees it. But I won’t be the only one who figures it out, so all I can say is prepare to lose to these guys and Mechanites in league if no further clarification is made.

        • Josh says:

          I do see your point about League’s vs One-offs… the Mechanites seemed to have issues (confusion, need for clarification, ?) with regards to League Growth.. these guys seem to have a build that is based around League growth (ie one of their main abilities is useless in One-off games)… do you think that Kovossian Coaches will Recycle their good players who gain XP & useful Upgrades… seems like that would be counterproductive to keep recycling guys … I do like the “flavor” of recyclings ones that get crumby upgrade combinations … but I see how that could be abused depending on your League Set up… so change cost to Recycle Guys? Limit # that can be Recycled at a time?

        • When you understand TV and how it impacts growth, yes, you are going to constantly be recycling guys if you are trying to get the best bang for your buck and not give your opponents loads of cash before their games for free agents and such.

  2. John McLeish says:

    I think this upgrade system will work better than with the mechanites as it is a bit more controlled. I would further clarify that you can only take 1 arm upgrade on a player though, assuming that is the intent.

  3. 4rmless says:

    Quick thoughts:

    Jacks seem totally useless on this team, I see no reason to take them, they do nothing better than either other role. I get that they are a part of the game and that one day there will be a fix for the role’s failings, but please at least make them have some niche reason for existing in each team. Here I can just opt out of using them, and will.

    14 points for a Guard with Threatening and Gotcha! is exciting. Maybe too exciting, but lets test before deciding.

    I love the ability to start with Keepers.

    16 points for a Skill 3+ Striker with Dirty Tricks is obscene. Massive temptation to just take 5 of them and 2 cards, foolishly good at making a 2nd or 3rd turn landslide.

    All the internal upgrades apart from Enhanced Twitch Response (Stretch) and Augmented Focus (3+ Skill) could probably cost 1 less. Otherwise I think they’re unlikely to get used.

    Finally, and most importantly, I think it might be important to make it mandatory to give each player at least 1 upgrade, otherwise the team can, as mentioned above, just be a better Trontek with massive league flexibility. Also really not in keeping with the fluff.

    • Josh says:

      I do think the Jack discussion is true with any team where Jacks are a choice, not a requirement… A Jack with 360 Vision, Move 6, and Duck & Weave is 15 MC.. a Striker with Alert (slight cheaper version of 360 Vision) and Move 6 (has built in +1 to Dodging as a Striker instead of Duck & Weave) is only 14 MC… and the Striker can Run & Throw a Strike, is +1 to Pick up the Ball or Catch it, +1 to Throw a Strike.. yeah.. only armor 5+ and can’t slam, but if that Jack was 13 pts, might be worth taking (as an example)…

      it does seem like the Jack Builds don’t have any Str or “toughness” based upgrades other than Quick Recovery… which in a Plague Team I find odd.. I expected more Pile Driver… Threatening… 3+ Str option… maybe even some Poisonous or Illegal Upgrades… then again, having Jacks that are “flexible” is the idea … so a 10 mc Jack that can Jump or Stretch or has 360 vision may be good enough to keep along side your Guards & Strikers as a back up plan when things get unpredictable..

  4. mastertugunegb says:

    I find it amusing that these players get abilities from their other-race parts that the race they got it from don’t even have. I get that these are ‘plaguified’ veermyn tails rather than the normal veermyn tails that don’t have Tail. Same with the Judwan head getting Alert. Not saying it’s a bad thing, just something that I noticed that put a smile on my face.

    • Josh says:

      What about changing the “label”.. so Judwan head being 3+ skill and Augmented Focus being Alert… oh.. then you can build a Move 6, Skill 3+ Striker with Long Arms… hmmph… yeah.. by keeping 3+ skill matched up with the other internal upgrade it limits abuse…. just not as “fluffy” I guess =p ..

  5. Don Squires says:

    I like that this team has a more streamlined and focused way to build the players. Less options than the Mechanites, and that’s a good thing.
    Here’s the thing though. I can build 6 strikers with dirty tricks and 1 pretty beefy guard. Then proceed to have your entire team thrown out of the game via dirty tricks. Then I still have a decent team to play the game against whatever is left! Sorry, but the dirty tricks option has got to go!

    • Josh says:

      Do you think it’s meant to be Taking a Dive?
      or do you think Errata to Dirty Tricks to be once per Rush is in order…
      cuz yeah, the builds I’ve seen so far are all based on 4-6 Strikers with Dirty Tricks and then 2 Guards with Keeper/Teraton Arm Upgrades and they seem a bit OP when stacked like that!!!

    • theearthdragon says:

      I’ll agree the more streamlined approach let’s you keep a better grip on power combos that get a little silly. I still feel both these teams should be left in the cold. Like no cards for Mechanites and no coaches for Mutant (their staff is too busy sewing on parts and chopping up “mistakes”.

      • Josh says:

        Or go opposite direction and let them “sew up” a new Coach each game… lol… recyclable Coach.. recyclable Cheerleaders!!!! this is getting messy…

  6. skarfang says:

    4 strikers with asterian heads and augmented focus = 64mc
    2 guards with teraton arms = 36mc.
    100mc spent but you have a team that can effectively remove 4 opposing players plus 3 strikers can live in the opposing half whilst the keepers punt the ball at them. No dice or cards but at skill 3+ the strikers should score and with strength 3+ the guards should hurt what needs hurting.

    Am I the only 1 that thinks this a powerful combo? There’s probably more mind but the dirty player upgrade needs to go. The new team of crystallans will never stand a chance against these guys.

    • theearthdragon says:

      To answer bluntly, no you aren’t the only one thinking these are too powerful. Mutants, Mechanites, Koris, and Ada-Lorena seem to have been design to a power standard, while Tsudochan and Crystallans are more in line with the old standard. It’s a little odd.

  7. bob smith says:

    I disagree with the above re dirty tricks it feels in keeping with the fluff but it needs to be far more expensive to prevent the highlighted abuse.

    I also agree with one of the above comments that a similar table build option should be included in mechanites v2

  8. Lamanzer says:

    Same Build… 6 dirty Strikers, 1 Huge Guard.

    All seasons have given more and more powerfull teams. 😦
    Ok it’ an Alpha season 5 but it’s worrying to have such escalation.

    • theearthdragon says:

      And the “power creep” was understandable in some ways. Judwan were complained to be to weak at first glance by some with a lack of smash, so understandable oversite (and it was addressed). Season 3 saw a staunch decline in “extras” given to teams, it just wasn’t enough to counter the improvement. Season 4 was things like “We know FF don’t work right, let’s make a new team of dwarves that does.” It made you feel like they were trying to experiment where the old struggling teams should be brought up to.

      But 4 of the 6 teams shown appear to be setting a new standard, establishing a power tier above Trontek that I’m not sure who’s even gonna be able to get up there with them. Maybe Nameless and Rebs? Hard to say as we lost the database so there is nothing prove how the Season 4 teams shaped things, but by all accounts I don’t think any but maybe the Hobs were bottom tier, and I think Sphyr and Rebs were performing at the top.

  9. The Enforcer says:

    This team is simply better than humans. I can make an exact copy of the human team (that means: 3 Strikers, 3 Jacks and 2 Guards with the exact same stats and costs, one coaching dice and 2 cards for 100mc) and on top of that, I have the ability to sell players that I don’t need for 7mc (something that you can’t do with a human team).
    It’s just like Brokks with Forge Fathers, so it needs some changes or nobody would play humans like nobody would play Forge Fathers.

    • Simplest solution I can think of is to some how hinder the development of the team…

      Preventing any in-league player development at all might be a little rough, that would have to be tested, but perhaps the cost for leveling-up could be doubled?

      Or perhaps as a detriment, plague players who roll a duplicate skill/ability on the tables forfeit the advancement instead of choosing from the table?

      • 4rmless says:

        Simplest I can think of is to make it mandatory for each player to take at least one mutation.

        That deals with the issue theearthdragon and enforcer are talking about. Though the sell for 7 is still potent in beardy leagues.

        It doesn’t stop the dirty tricks spam.

        Possibly prevent any 2 players from choosing the same set of mutations? That promotes use of more of the parts and prevents excessive min-maxing. Also stops them from being so similar to mechanites in terms of team generation.

        • theearthdragon says:

          Some good suggestions. I really do feel one of the bigger issues for both is the free reign on cards, dice, and coaches as well. You disallow some of these in exchange for the flexibility of the players (more flexible players, less flexibility on how you grow the team) and that is some hefty headway in the right direction.

      • Greg Kourik says:

        You could scale to cost of mutations up. Either by player or by team.
        by player: each mutation beyond 1 costs and extra 1mc (the extra cost of getting such diverse mutations to work together)
        by team: each use of a mutation increases the future cost of that mutation by +1mc
        (first use of enhanced muscle density=3, second =4, third=5…. representing the depletion of valuable resources)

        Also, in league play give the mutants a chance to destabilize and melt into a pile of goo when advancing.

  10. John McLeish says:

    Probably not a great team but…
    6 blank strikers (60 points), 1 card (10 points) and 5 coaching dice (30 points). Or swap a dice for a defensive coach.

    You can basically just ensure you always score (or pass etc) with plenty of dice to choose from. I mean, technically you could take 2 players and a bunch of dice, coaches etc and spend anything else you get on new players…

    Spend say 23 on a keeper, 21 on a striker and then what, 2 cards, 5 coaching dice and an offensive coach? In a league you are well set up for your second match (just not your first…)

    • 4rmless says:

      With only 2 players you may struggle to make use of all your actions each turn, also the strikers aren’t going to be very durable. Against any team with guards, you’re at risk of just losing the striker.

      This idea has merit, but in mechanites, not mutants.

      • theearthdragon says:

        He did say add an offensive coach, which allows 3 tokens per player. It’s an interesting starting point to say the least, the bigger task in leagues is to keep improving your team while mitigating TV growth, which gets out of hand fast when ranking up players. That amount of extras might actually come back to haunt you when you go to fill out the roster BUT you would have that amount of extras, so you actually be able to handle the impeding John Doe/Buzzcut duo coming after you.

  11. Dan R says:

    I played a game with these guys last night. I used a Guard with Threatening and a Strength upgrade, a Guard with Alert and Gotcha!, 2 Strikers with a Skill upgrade, and 2 Jacks with Stretch. I also bought a card, a coaching dice, and an offensive coach, and I had 2mc left unspent.

    The game was played against a standard Trontek team, and they were at home. I deployed my two Jacks in front of the front strike hexes, to stop 2 pointers, and my Gotcha! guard in the centre of the rear strike zone, blocking the 4pt hex and able to move to face the other ones if someone came too close. My Threatening Guard, and two Strikers were deployed centrally, at least 6 hexes away from the enemy, ready to break forth into the opponent’s half come my turn.

    As it happened, I didn’t use the Jacks at all, and had this been a league match, I would likely have boiled them down afterwards and picked up something more useful. Trontek’s first strike attempt was for 3pts, but it missed thanks to Gotcha and the Striker was promptly dealt with; no further attempts were made in the rear zone.

    The coach came in very handy, letting my Threatening Guard smash multiple heads a turn (and smash heads he did with his two particular upgrades) or allowing one of the strikers to get the ball from an obscure location and back to the scoring zone. I felt like having a coach was a bit much, although I liked the flavour that he was the scientist responsible for the mutants.

    The only set-back for the Mutants was the loss mid-game of one of the Strikers, but it wasn’t too keenly felt as I just started using the other identical one. The team did feel a bit vulnerable as I hadn’t taken any defensive upgrades; I was especially concerned about my Guards being hit in the rear, as either being off the table for any amount of turns would have been a major spanner in the works. In this game though, Trontek couldn’t create the leverage to remove them for even a turn (as I was hitting his Guards before they could hit me), but I would have been very worried against Teratons, Brokkrs, or Crystallans – the mutants would have been decimated.

    Scoring-wise, my opponent was only able to make 1pt strikes, but was making them every turn. I however was scoring regular 3-4 points combo-ing a striker with the Threatening Guard. I won a landslide victory on turn 12, having missed a potentially game ending 4 point shot 2 turns prior with my 3+ Skill… It does happen.

    Overall, the game felt like we were playing a virgin Trontek team against a veteran Trontek team, a tean that had won all the right upgrades on their experience rolls. In fact, we estimated that the team value of the mutants if they were a Trontek team would be around 120, which is pretty unfair.

    The game was never in doubt – the Mutants totally dominated, and they were not even the toughest list that can be built at present. I felt like that I wasn’t paying a price for having the flexibility that I had in making the team, and I would suggest increasing the basic bodies for Strikers and Guards by 1 or 2 megacredits. I also feel that the cost of the upgrades needs to be looked at as there are some I would never buy and some I would buy every time, unless they cost a bit more.

    Perhaps instead of the uber-customisation of present, which seems a bit excessive, perhaps a basic stat line for a fixed cost, and a list of advantages and their linked disadvantage; if you take Gotcha!, it comes with a speed of 5+ due to the stickiness of the tentacles. In league play, instead of rolling on the upgrade tables, you could pick a new mutation, and receive its upside and down.

    Mutant Jacks also seem to lack a reason for being; their upgrades at present just make them better generic jacks, but I would rather take a Striker or Guard, or at least a Jack that will support those roles.

  12. Don Squires says:

    My match Plague vs. Trontek. My Plague team as follows.
    6 Strikers all with Dirty Tricks. 1 also has skill 3.
    1 Guard w/Threatning, Grizzled, Str. 3.
    My theory with this was use Dirty tricks to get as many players sent off as I could. Then use the Guard to beat players up, while scoring with my many strikers.

    The guard was crazy good. That is a killer combo. I set the tone early by having my guard knock a player off the pitch and then scored a 2 point strike early. As a note I left my skill 3 striker in reserve to call upon when needed. Trontek proved their resiliency by keeping pace in the scoring game, never letting it get out of hand. The next few turns I set out to get some players ejected. I got a guard set off for 3 turns and a jack for 1. I failed a few more rolls. My moment game when the vigilent ref card got turned and I got a striker ejected from the game! All in all, after 6 dirty tricks attempts, only 3 succeeded, and only 1 player was eliminated from the game. I still took advantage of the numbers game and kept the pressure on by scoring. My guard was an ever looming presence on the pitch and had the Trontek players nervous. A 3 point strike in rush 13 set me up nicely and the game ended when the trontek striker carrying the ball failed a dash and fell over, losing the ball and the game! Plague wins 3 – 0!

    I was really worried about this potentially broken combo. Turns out, it is good, but not broken. Much like the mechs, there needs to be a 6 player minimum put in for these guys. I think their tables are more streamlined than the mechs, and I like it. Again, this is but one combo for this team, and there might be something more abusive that I haven’t thought of. They are potent, and even after using up all my dirty tricks, I still had a very capable team with no shortage of decent strikers, and 1 very powerful guard. I would suggest perhaps a slight points increase at least on the guards and strikers. Perhaps taking them from 10 to 11.

  13. Zorblag says:

    So I’ve been thinking about this team and how to handle toning it down while keeping most of the options intact. One approach I’ve come up with would be to change the starting stats of the players.

    If all the players didn’t start as the default Trontek statline, but instead 5+/5+/5+, and some of the parts you could swap on raised a stat to 4+ instead of 3+ or the skills they give now, it would give us teams where you had to choose what you really needed to make the team viable/good rather than great/unstoppable.

    There are some variations on that which might balance better (strength starts at 4+ instead of the 5+, or move starts at 4 and can be upgraded to either 5 or 6 depending on how much you spend, or the initial costs need to be dropped to 9, 7 and 9 for the positions, or etc…) and you’d almost certainly want to play around with the cost for the parts to get the balance just right.

    An additional idea I had that might make sense for league play would be to introduce something like the following skill for the team:

    Unstable: If a plague-mutant player receives 3 or more upgrades during creation they automatically gain the unstable trait. These players have parts grafted from so many different species and individuals that their bodies inevitably degrade over time. Unstable players who live through a game must roll on the Recovery table after each match as though they were being restored by BrenMed’s Creyorevision. If an unstable player was killed during the match they must roll on the Recovery table if a normal Revive is paid for, and they cannot use BrenMed’s discount revivals.

    The idea there is that if you put together a super powerful player at the start they will eventually need to go back to the vats. On the other hand, players who develop skills via xp won’t start to degrade and can be developed as long as the owner wants, just like they would on any other team. It’s possible that the recovery roll table is too harsh, and a new, slightly more benign table should be developed (or that if they have a 5+ trait degrade it just has no effect and doesn’t kill them,) but it’s something I thought I’d throw out there.

    What these ideas don’t do is address the customization potential of the team with cards and coaching dice, but that might need to be kept to offset particularly terrible starting players.

    -Zorblag R`Lyeh

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