These bad boys were too powerful by a large margin. Consequently, I’ve made numerous changes to both their stat line and abilities, as well as adding clarifications on all the questions raised. Lots of excellent points in the previous thread.
The aim here was to both tone them down a bit, and make them slightly more reliant on their portal ability to move around.
The portal rules have been simplified very slightly and brought a little more in line with the rest of the DB rules.
If you can get these chaps on the table over the next couple of days I’d love to hear what you find.
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I approve of the reduced movement and all of the rewording of portal, however they are now Corporation but with Portals, and Gotcha! in exchange for swapping a Striker for a Jack, -1 Movement, -1 dice and -1 card. I’m not sure that’s a great trade, though the portals need a fair bit of testing.
Possibly give their striker a skill as he now seems rather overpriced?
Maybe even a new skill that simulated 3+ skill to some extent? Could give them bonus dice to pick up and catch due to their extra arms/webs?
Sorry, failing to use appropriate rules terminology. I mean give him a new ability.
I kind of agree this might make them too average… but until I do some playtesting I’ll hold off on too much comments.. I guess the Portals are still pretty powerful and especially with them blocking LOS are going to open up some interesting options for guarding Strike Zones and blocking pass attempts. So, I think I’m good with the changes for now. Wasn’t expecting both a reduction in Move and a reduction in Skill but i see the rational.
The whole intention was to make them more average, as all teams should be on a par (and so all average). As they were the most out of line, their changes have to be the most dramatic.
Yes, they are like humans with the listed changes, but those small differences do mount up.
The Striker is paying more than the others for being able to use the portals because his use of them is so powerful. More so that either of the other two because his use can more easily win games. If you’ve set up your portals nicely with your Jacks, then the move and strike ability of the Striker becomes devastating. He can literally score from anywhere, and a defensive line is hard to mount against portals.
Nice edits! Thanks for addressing the comments Jake.
I suppose that when it says that the ball bounces off the portal and it blocks lines of sight (inactive portals), then it’s like a tall obstacle of DBX, right? 🙂
I was thinking of it as more like the edge of the pitch: it’s just a block to everything. But in DBX terms a tall obstacle does that too 😉
Sounds great. I’m excited that you ideally want all teams to be even. It makes me very enthusiastic to see v2 of the Crystallans.
I think you shold consider something other than making their stat line 4’s across the board. Personally with skill 3 bring full of jacks I don’t think it is as bad as every one says. They can only move 1 hex to throw. They were not hard to injure.
I think that if you limited the portal range to 2x the movement (like a sprint that ignores other players) only allowed one portal use per player per rush. Or you could also make using the portal cost an action. Then having skill 3 isn’t as big of a deal. At the very least the Striker should maintain skill 3.
Otherwise all you got is another Corp team with a movement trick.
You could also make using a portal follow other in game rules like throwing. Jacks may move 1 space and striker can run.
Or limit portal usage to those with the portal ability or rather than having them open if empty hex is next to it have someone with the portal ability (koris jacks) next to it to open it.
This “movement trick” makes a vast difference in how they can be played and gives the Jacks a potential of getting anywhere on the pitch with their 1 hex move, if played and placed carefully. Far more mobile and dangerous than normal Jacks.
As always, there is a question about what gamer skill level you pitch a team’s balance point at, and as always it’s a somewhat arbitrary decision. Here I have assumed that the Coach will be competent with the portals and be using them effectively. This being the case, you cannot compare the Koris players to other teams on the basis of stats alone. It’s a whole package.
Nice! I like the changes. I do have one thought though. What if there were a “Doubled” part to the confusion test. I know the Korvis get two extra dice for the role and this seems OP but this gives ANY coach the chance by adding coaching dice to also get a “Doubled” result.
An early version of this had a “lost join the warp” double. This is mentioned below. I took it out as it was either too easy (removing half a team – and that just didn’t work for leagues – or too rare, which is pointless having.
I also think that the upside to a normal success is so good that it doesn’t need a good double. If you’re playing properly and you’re going through portals happily then you’re probably going to strike anyway.
If someone gets pushed by a slam through the portal and pass the test, can they reappear right where they were? Do they get any negatives to that?
I feel they should get a -1 to a confusion test since they are pretty much getting concussed at that point.
An interesting thought (but one that could not be fairly implemented) is having a chance to be “lost in time and space” while using the portals.
Both results for the confusion table say “another portal”, so no, you can’t come out of the same one you went into.
There is an argument for modifiers under a number of circumstances, though the same could be said of every other test. With DB I’ve deliberately ignored a lot of the detail as it slows things down (1 or 2 modifiers I can remember, 5 or 6 and I have to look up the list every time I roll). Tests only have a modifier if it really stands out as something that adds to (usually) the positioning play of the game. If you’ve managed to Slam someone through the portal then you’re already being rewarded by the game for your good play and luck with the dice, so we don’t need to multiply that.
A couple of people have suggested players getting lost in portals. However, I smell too much potential for exploit here, so I’d rather avoid it.
I’m just going to channel my inner rules lawyer for a second: If you use a home-made pitch then there may not be any ‘black’ hexes, meaning RAW you cant place a portal. Same applies for other custom pitches etc. Best to use the wording from the main rule book, i.e. the same as a ref for positioning.
Good point, which is why I used as close to that wording as possible 🙂
Check your main rulebook (page 49).
I really like how the new teams are comming along 🙂
Please no baseline Skill 3+ ! D-:
Having teams with generic stat lines is no problem when they have special abilities like portal spinning to set them apart. “Generic with a twist” is not bad at all, and tend to be more balanced (and fun) than “Completely different”-teams.
My one issue is: do we really need a test to determine which test we need to test? It feels unnecessarily burdensome in what is meant to be a fast-paced sports game, especially as it’s the non-Koris player (ie the player least likely to be familiar with it) that has to roll (only makes a difference for Koris if it’s the Striker).
If it was a 3-dice (2) test against a fixed value that would be much smoother (4+ = 56.3% chance of success, 5+ = 33.3% chance of success including explosions, so it would depend on how close you want non-Spinner chance of success to be to the Spinner chance of success – which is 83.9% and 59.4% respectively, or 72.9% and 54.0% if the Spinner bonus was only +1 dice).
Do we need a D6 roll to determine which stat to use? Well, yes and no. Obviously, fewer steps makes for shorter rules and quicker games. The logical/farcical extension of this is roll a D6: on a 1-3 I win, on a 4-6 you do. Any game could be reduced to that, but we don’t.
You could define game design as the process of deciding what to leave out because you inevitably leave out more than you include, whatever your topic. So, in this case it’s really a case of whether retaining this rule adds enough to warrant its existence.
I suspect that you may be right and that this may be a darling that needs murdering. I do like it, and think it adds a little character. As a single dice roll is hardly arduous, I’m tempted to keep it. However, as you point out, the other player will always have to look this up and that will slow things down. Assuming he’s using the portals, of course. I’m not sure how common that would be.
On the other hand, as you say, fixing it at, say, 4+ would make things a touch faster.
What does anyone else think?
I’m more in favour of fixing it to a specific stat than to a specific roll, as that leaves some variation. Skill and Speed seem the best fit to me.
An interesting alternative. Can’t help thinking that it may end up penalising some teams rather harshly, so we may be storing up more of a long term problem than if we just stick to a defined number.
Why should FF get penalized going through the portals while the rebs have people who go through quite well?
It’s a single unopposed roll that isn’t going to add more then a minute total time to the game by the end. As its one of the only ways to make things “fair” for the opponents, I feel it should be left alone
The only part of the roll for stat that I see is that Strength and Armor are both at a lower likelihood than Skill or Speed. Drop the Armor, make it [1-2: Strength; 3-4: Skill; 5-6: Speed] and all teams have an even shot.
The Confusion table is good like this.
Strenght 3+ Guard have only 16.5% to go with the good stats and will not slam everywhere.
Strikers have only 16.5% too, to go with a poor stats. Don’t forget that koris Strikers have only move of 4… So they can go through portals, but not safely.
In my opinion, don’t change it.
Like Rob Uccello, I can’t help but think 1-2: Strength, 3-4: Speed, 5-6: Skill would be an improvement. The D6 result breakdown is part of what makes it feel complicated to me, I think. I realize that the current format is not difficult, per se. But an even distribution of Strength, Speed and Skill is easier and more importantly, intuitive. An uneven breakdown with Armor thrown in like we have now just feels unnecessarily complicated and prone to being looked up.
I like the different value test, and as they’re all 3 dice tests, just roll a 4th (or 6th if the Koris player) of a different colour at the same time. The odd-coloured is which value, the rest as per usual. Gonna add a couple of seconds at most to each portal roll.
I think Rob is on the right lines though with just the 3 values.
I do have to 2nd or 3rd the chart for Confusion being 1-2 Strength, 3-4 Speed, 5-6 Skill (right, speed comes before skill on stat lines?)… the armor one might make more sense in DBX as there are more variable armors (3+ to 6+), while in DBO it’s either 4+ or 5+… and how you armor protects you from confusion (I guess concussions?) I don’t know =p
It depends on how you think the portals cause confusion. If it was all in your mind then you might think your armour would save you from the monsters 🙂
Really nice, I look forward to trying them out.
Clarification of the portal is great and resolves a lot of issues raised. I don’t see the movement 4 being an issue since you can feasibly sprint to the 4 point zone, deploy a portal on the edge of the strike zone and then either using the striker or a jack pick up the ball and score. That portal won’t be moving so will always be a massive threat. I do like the limit on the amount of portals in play, will be interesting when 2 Koris teams go at it or an ultimate game gets going containing 2 or more.
Those saying that the 1d test to determine what test takes place will slow the game down need to stop rolling their dice for miles on end lol. Yes at the start people will have to check charts, but like the rest of this game once it’s learnt, it’s learnt. Those worried about slow down can write the chart out on their roster so it’s always to hand, aiding themselves and their opponent. The lone striker will be a target simply because he will be so dangerous once portals open but I feel that the jacks in this team (much like the z’zor) will be the stars, scoring just as efficiently when portals are placed correctly.
I would like to say thank you Jake for allowing us to test your ideas. It is appreciated that you are willing to listen to us prattle on at you.
I play tested them on Tuesday. They were a lot of fun to play! The portal ability adds a new dimension to the placement on the pitch (for both sides). Once I got the hang of it, I did not feel hampered too much by my Movement 4 either–something I normally despise! The tactics with the Koris are very fluid and allow for a lot creative manuvering. I like where they are at right now, at least from what I have played so far.
As far as the Armor on the Confusion check goes, I can see it either way. It was nice rolling for the Guards and Jacks and not having to worry about the stat, but it added an element of tension to roling for the Striker. I could go either way on that.
Now the Koris are out, have played a few games with them. The Portal ability is spot on. Really like how it works.
Unfortunately, I’ve yet to see this team actually win.
Movement 4 is really limiting for this team. Yes, this is partly mitigated by the portals but the way the team runs, all the portals are really doing is reducing the number of actions taken to move around the board. A decent Move stat is actually more effective long term.
The number actions required to move your jacks into position and then create the portals, it becomes a trade off rather than giving you any real advantage.
On top of this, they have a huge disadvantage only having a single Striker. If that Striker ends his turn in the opponent’s part of the pitch (which of course will happen if he attempts to score, i.e. his job), he is a target you will struggle to protect.
Ultimately, the Koris are not a competitive team as they stand. They are fun to play and I love the models but they just don’t cut it in tournament play. Perhaps in league play where you can invest in a second striker they will shine more but I cannot help feeling that the balancing issues really mean that the portal ability doesn’t add anything.
I like the Koris and I think the portal power is spot on.
I’m not sure how I would balance them out because I appreciate that the portal power is good. Having to rely on your Jacks to score (because let’s face it, your opponent is going to destroy your single striker) really hampers them.
Perhaps Safe Pair of Hands on the Jacks and Striker would be thematic and give them more of a chance. Or a new power “Firm Footed” (four legs) which gives +1d on Dash attempts for all the characters would give them increased Move at the risk of bad luck.
I ‘m not agree. 🙂
I have played 10 league games with, and this team is competitive as soon as you have understood where portal must be put. I’m now able to move the ball faster than any other team and put a significative pressure on the scoring board to avoid bashing.
The only weakness is the single striker. Koris coach must buy another one as soon as possible.
In our main league we have banned Convicts, Rebs, Mutants an Hobgobs so it’s rather balance than Mantic environment, but it doesn’t reflect the actual metagaming of Dreadball. Against these 4 teams (+ Asterians), you are right, Koris will struggle.