FEEDBACK: Community Input for Balance Patch (HBE)

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  • marlab wrote:

    IMO there is little to no reason to take the generic prince or commander, as all the honours are by default a buff.

    Why not incorporate the now under (never) used Fleet officer honour into generic prince and commander? Have them loose it if taking an honour.
    Ofc there needs to be adjustments, but the idea is sound.
    Also remove the sloop as a mount, but add the increased accuracy as an upgrade to existing sloop, just like phoenix has its upgrade.
    This kind of thing is outside of the scope -- this is why the instructions in the post were very specific. This isn't a book rewrite or a design modification, otherwise the process is more longer/more time intensive.

    Kind regards,

    Axiem
  • Flame Wardens: Suggest the following

    Flame Wardens starting points: 320 -> (new) 300 point
    Flame Wardens additional points per model: 27 -> 25

    In my experience I have seen a few minimal units of Flame Wardens, and they still get cheaper. Flame Wardens in general are far rarer than Swordmasters and Lion Guard and should recieve a greater discount per model.



    Great Eagle Mount for Commander and High Prince: Suggest the following

    Great Eagle Mount's starting points: 50/40-> (new) 25/20 points

    Not sure I have actually seen a non-mage on Great Eagle. For those who want to play flying characters it provides an option which is is not R5+ and can actually be countered by also none-artillery ranged weapons.


    Great Eagle:

    Great Eagle additional points per model: 30-> (new) 25 points

    It must be done.
  • @here

    A question for consideration:

    Something like the Ancient Dragon is harder to make a compelling case for, since it appeared both in the OCHO lists and other tournaments, compared to other choices which had a 0.0% representation.

    Would you prefer to see:
    • Small changes on "underpowered" but still represented choices (like Ancient Dragon: say -10-15 points, representing a small % change);
    or
    • Larger point reductions on "unplayable" choices (say Royal Huntsman on foot -20 points, representing a large % change);


    I propose this because for those wishing to get a 30-40 point or more drop on Ancient Dragon, I can say it is very likely it will not happen and we will have wasted our input.


    Kind regards,

    Axiem
  • Axiem wrote:

    @here

    A question for consideration:

    Something like the Ancient Dragon is harder to make a compelling case for, since it appeared both in the OCHO lists and other tournaments, compared to other choices which had a 0.0% representation.

    Would you prefer to see:
    • Small changes on "underpowered" but still represented choices (like Ancient Dragon: say -10-15 points, representing a small % change);
    or
    • Larger point reductions on "unplayable" choices (say Royal Huntsman on foot -20 points, representing a large % change);


    I propose this because for those wishing to get a 30-40 point or more drop on Ancient Dragon, I can say it is very likely it will not happen and we will have wasted our input.


    Kind regards,

    Axiem
    To me the logical step would be greater change to unplayable. Underpowered is playable, unplayable is not. It also probably means someone out there sitting with a nice miniature that has't seen play gets to use their precious toy without giving up too much power, and that's worth something.
  • Larger drop on completely unplayed, so long as the drop might reasonably be thought to work. Also less likely to impact on external balance.

    Things I don't see much and would like to see (points) buffed

    1. Archers
    2. Flame wardens
    3. Grey watchers
    4. Sky sloops

    I'm not touching the honours - I suspect the under used ones are strongly structural, and would need a bigger drop than would likely be approved.

    Until recently I'd have also said phoenixes, but they seem to have had a mini resurgence.

    I'll leave points suggestions to better minds than mine.
    Join us on Ulthuan.net
  • @Axiem
    Comments on the suggestions in original post:
    Display Spoiler

    Axiem wrote:

    Royal Huntsman, Foot options for Prince, Commander: Suggest the following:


    Royal Huntsman: 40 points -> (new) 20 points

    Lion Chariot: 115 points -> (new) 135 points
    There is very little that could go wrong with this change. I think its good.

    Axiem wrote:

    High Warden of the Flame options for Prince, Commander: Suggest the following:


    High Warden of the Flame: 90 points -> (new) 70 points

    NOTE: The justification against this change previously was that the sum of the rules are worth more than 70 points. However, please note that with the “without a Shield” clause, Destiny’s Call is now a better option in nearly all cases, if for no other reason than because it is cheaper and does not block any on-foot characters.
    With Flaming Attacks, and Fearless, and cannot use shield, I would argue that destiny's call will be take 100% of the time over this. The honor is close to as hopeless as the Fleet Officer or Grey Watcher Honor. Only thing I can think of using this for is a front-line BSB, but a fully kitted HWotF BSB costs 370 points with this change... no thanks...

    Axiem wrote:

    Citizen Archers: Suggest the following:


    Citizen Archer’s starting points: 165 points -> 155 points

    Citizen Archer’s additional points per model: 16 points -> (new) 14 points

    NOTE: The primary reason Archers are not taken is not because the other options are inherently undercosted, it is because Archers are inherently overcosted.
    This is a safe change. I agree with it.

    Axiem wrote:

    Flame Wardens: Suggest the following:


    Flame Warden’s starting points: 320 -> (new) 290 points

    (Optional): Flame Warden's additional points per model: 27 -> 27 (revert initial balance proposal of 26 ppm)
    Display Spoiler


    This unit seems very little to no representation and is never taken as a min-value unit. Moreover, compared to Lion Guard and Swordmasters, this unit does not synergize as well with Paths of Magic HBE have access to, nor does it inherently work well with our characters. We would rather see other unit sizes viable (such as with Temple Guard) than them only taken in rare occurrences.

    Appeared in one (5.0%) of OCHO lists (and regularly rare/nonexistant in similar tournaments).

    Change is likely to encourage other unit sizes to be considered, and the potential reversion of the point drop to 26 ppm will keep the unit externally balanced and costing similarly at max unit size.
    Flame Wardens have a special rule where they can actually use their aegis BEFORE hereditary token spending? That is the easiest way to bring this unit back.

    Axiem wrote:

    Protection of Dorac: Suggest the following:


    Protection of Dorac: Models on foot only -> (new) Can not be taken by construct or models with towering presence
    Protection of Dorac on Horse/Eagle characters is a very welcome and interesting change. Hero's Heart Cav prince with 1+/4++ and 7 S5 attacks on the charge is juicy.

    Axiem wrote:

    Amethyst Crystal: Suggest the following:


    Amethyst Crystal: 60 points -> 40 points:
    Safe change probably, they only point of this item would be for it to stack with the lackluster Crystal Ball, so might even be worth considering to reduce the crystal ball price too?

    Axiem wrote:

    Sky Sloops and Sloop mounts: given the historical challenges with this, this may be too big of a hornet's nest at this point;
    If Sky Sloop units and Skysloop mounts shared the same 0-2 restrictions (similar tot the way Gargantula's are restricted in the OnG book), then the Sloop can properly be fixed with price.

    Axiem wrote:

    Min size Sea Guard: see the spoiler below:
    Sea Guard really didn't need a price increase in my opinion... I think about half the price increases this unit received could be shifted over to the Queen's Companion Honor. Something like SG = 270+23 while QCompanion/Moonlight Arrows = 60/25.


    My Suggestions would be:

    1. Horse Mounts (Queen's Cavalier/Prince/Commander) from 45/45/30 -> 30/30/30
    • Horse characters see very little play. One reason is their prohibitive price (and this has actually increased after update).
    • Main reason to take a horse character is when you don't have Ancient Allies allowance for a Griffon Mount, but that only becomes relevant in double Fire Phoenix case. Its hard to fit a horse character in Dragon builds since QCav Princes are around 530-550 points.
    • This discount does not increase Cavalry Commander spam, since they are same price.
    2. Order of the Fiery Heart (Young Dragon) from 300 -> 250 points.
    • The only hope for this mount is probably for this entry on an OotFH adept... doubt any Prince will take a Young Dragon over a Griffon or Dragon (pretty much has the worst of both worlds thing going for it).
    • Why would I pick this mount (4A S5 AP2, D3 stomp) when I could just take the mage on foot (same casting prowess) and a griffon commander instead (8A S6 AP3/4 Lightning Reflexes). OotFH Adept costs 575 points (Mage, Young Dragon, Wizard Adept, Pyromancy, Shield, Dragonforged Armour, Order of the Fiery Heart) while a OotFH Mage on foot (240) + Griffon Commander (370) cost only a fraction more (+35 points). The OotFH adept on foot is also more free to just take Book of Arcane Mastery. The only thing the OotFH has going for it is being able to position itself properly for Quicksilver Lash or Silver Spike (or hiding chaff with pyro). This is decent, but a Griffon Commander more than enough combat power.
    3. Knights of Ryma additional models 45 -> 40 points.
    • Big Ryma units are still non-existent.
    • Additional Models already kinda reflect the price of the model as if it didn't have 2A on the charge (since it won't make use of it in the back rank). To paint in broad strokes I imagine the base ryma price (68 ppm) can roughly be divided into thirds: one third is the mobile chassi's + defense and the other two thirds are the 2 S6 attacks on the charge... so in vacuum 45 points makes sense but the special section is very tight and competitive for points.
    • Why would I take a big unit of 12 Ryma's with FC + Magic Standard (700-750 points) over a unit of 5-6 with M+C (350-405 points). Those extra 300-350 non-core points are precious and can be used for a lot of extra stuff? Hence -5 points per extra model is a very innocent buff, but might be enough to where we start seeing a few.
    The change in font size of this post is purely accidental: my phone is stupid, and I am too stupid to fix it.

    The post was edited 2 times, last by jaith1 ().

  • I would prefer a smaller drop of underpowered entries over a larger drop of unplayed ones.

    A 15 point drop of AD could have an impact on some semi-competitive builds (though unlikely if only 15 seeing as it was not popular, and it just went up 35 points effectively), a 20 point drop of Royal huntsman on foot is never going to unfluence listbuilding at a semi-competitive level, and as such will be wasted.
  • Tubz wrote:

    I would prefer a smaller drop of underpowered entries over a larger drop of unplayed ones.

    A 15 point drop of AD could have an impact on some semi-competitive builds (though unlikely if only 15 seeing as it was not popular, and it just went up 35 points effectively), a 20 point drop of Royal huntsman on foot is never going to unfluence listbuilding at a semi-competitive level, and as such will be wasted.
    Here's the challenge.

    For better or worse, HBE are seen as top-tier. Ancient Dragon is an entry that appeared in a "top-tier" Army in tournament lists before/after the latest patch. Therefore, it's exceedingly difficult to get any change here. If we did, and the change request wasn't simply ignored, we'd be looking at maybe 5-10 points, or nerfing something else to compensate to get to the 15-20 that you'd be looking for, which would leave people with the same sense: that the change request was wasted.

    This, on top of this particular round of changes being aimed at decreasing single-model gaming.

    If what you proposed was the option, I don't think it would be an issue -- however, my sense is that those aren't seen as equivalent options.

    Kind regards,

    Axiem

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Axiem ().

  • I don't see the challenge. Option A is a small chance to have an influence on something that will be played, option B is no chance to have an influence on something that will be played.

    I'd take the off chance, over something that is guaranteed to have no effect, unless the "larger points drop on unplayed entries" could be something like shaving 70 points off HWoTF.

    Xoxo,

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Tubz ().

  • Alright guys --

    We've been working on it a lot in the background, and can finally share -- we have only a few days left for final feedback / last minute tweaks, but we've tried to do our best to incorporate your feedback and also address some of the underlying issues we've been discussing for a long while now.

    Thankfully, a few members of the RT have been willing to work with us and we've put forward a compelling case for fixing a few pieces. In particular, we were able to show (with the Data linked below) that some options were both: a) not taken before/after the patch; b) were unaffected, or were negatively affected by the patch, when that wasn't the intent.

    Data Analysis & Pitch:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    New Years Revolution Data:
    docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d…t#gid=1657885426&range=B1

    OCHO Data:
    docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d…mLRrg/edit#gid=0&range=B1

    Note on Methodology:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    • Assumed that OCHO is a fair representation of similar tournaments held with current patch (Author’s note: we feel this is the case, with the exception of Royal Huntsman, Lion Chariot-Princes/Commanders which seems underrepresented at OCHO versus other tournaments);
    • Analysis counts IF a unit/size is present, not how many; for example, a list that contains 2x 24 Swordmasters will only be counted a single time in the “20+ Swordmasters” entry; this analysis is meant to see how often choices are taken by multiple players;
    • Author’s consider entries seen between 4-8 times as “Playable” (i.e. represented in between 20%-40% of HBE Lists, and between 3.5%-7.1% of all OCHO lists), entries above this range as “Overrepresented” (warranting consideration of point increase or adjustment), and entries below this to be "Underrepresented" (warranting consideration of point decrease or adjustment);
    • Analysis has been done at the level of each individual option, per model: for instance, a High Prince has 24 different configurations he can be taken in. This kind of in-depth analysis can be difficult to compare with top-level analysis from other armies and when breaking down all entry types/combinations this way we will be comparing in terms of percentages, to hopefully allow for better analysis;
    • There are 171 entries analyzed in this way: 60 character options, 70 unit options, and 41 magic item options (HBE items only).

    Details:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Using OCHO as a fair and reasonable representation of tournament play styles with current patch, and based on the tournament analysis and Methodologies applied (see below), the following is to be considered:
    • 75% of Character Selection entries are considered "not represented";
    • 44%+ of Unit Selection entries are considered "not represented";
    • 56%+ of Magic Item entries are considered "not represented";
    • 24%+ of Unit Select entries are considered "rarely represented";
    • 25%+ of Magic Item entries are considered "rarely represented".


    Change Requests:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We've been given permission to share this with you for last minute-feedback (see the following two posts and instructions below) to try and clarify/clean up anything we've missed. About 100+ hours have gone into this already, but it's entirely possible we've missed something!

    As a result, the RT has agreed to file a narrow (but still multi-affecting) scope of "Internal balance between on-foot non-wizard honours" as a single change request, if we agreed to some rebalancing efforts around Queen's Companion, Caenrig Tower, and Spear/Sliver of the Blazing Dawn. This rebalancing would not count towards our cap of change requests (as it is a point increase to offset the decreases elsewhere). The results can be seen below:

    CHANGE REQUEST 1:

    Internal balance between on-foot non-wizard honours. We believe (even post changes) there is no meaningful diversity between options, which has remained a problem for the army. Notably:
    • HBE have access to six on-foot Prince/Commander honour options:
    • 2 of these choices are well represented (overrepresented); Master of the Caenrig Tower, Queen's Companion;
    • Sliver of the Blazing Dawn is overrepresented, basically the only viable on-foot Prince option currently (see change request 2);
    • The other 4 (including Vanilla) make zero (not below average, zero - 0.0%) representation in OCHO (pre patch) and New Years Revolution (post-patch), or nearly any tournament in the last 12-18 months or more.
    We suggest the following, in conjunction, to address this:
    • Base prince: Move 10 points from base (pre patch) cost to common mount options. I.e.
      • Base Prince points from 240 point -> (new) 230 points; (reverting the 5 point increase and reducing by a further 10);
      • Prince common mount options +10 more points: Griffon (new: 215 points), Dragon (new: 440 points), and (potentially) Elven Horse (new: 55 points);
    [*]Move 20 points from Master of the Canrieg and Queen's Companion to other honours. Compensate mounts where appropriate. For example:
    • Master of the Canrieg Tower +20 more points base (new: 200 points, further raising Commander costs as well)
    • Queen's Companion +20 more points base (new: 70 points; OR Moonlight Arrows +20 points;
    • High Warden of the Flame -20 points (new: 70 points)
    • Fleet Officer -20 points (new: 20 points)
    • Queen's Cavalier -20 points (new: 20 points); Queen's Cavalier Mounts increase by +10 points
    • Royal Huntsman -20 points (new: 20 points); Lion Chariot increase by +20 points (new: 135 points).


    CHANGE REQUEST 2 (not counting towards cap of 3):

    These change requests are to be accompanied by the following disclaimer to limit/prevent cherry-picking:
    • "If, for whatever reason, RT is inclined to select only the point increases or change the magnitude of the balancing (i.e. increasing by 20 points, but decreasing by significantly less than 20 points) we respectfully ask that you do not implement this change as it will not achieve the results the ACS or the community are looking for, and are likely to cause only further division within the player base."
    • We have been told that the likelihood of something substantially similar to the above passing is "high" even if there might be some tweaking here and there (for instance: this could create different pricing for Griffons vs. Fleet Commander Griffons, which RT will balance on their own);
    This change, is the most important one:
    • Base Prince is 15 points cheaper than post-patch version;
    • It addresses the concerns of unused options and provides options for 4 new on-foot alternatives;
    • It indirectly reverses the nerf (via Prince point increase) to Ancient Dragon, Chariot, and other non-common mount options;
    • It net-increases Queen's Companion & Master of the Caenrig Tower by a relatively small amount, without breaking Magic-Item allowance combinations further (from post-patch);
    CHANGE REQUEST 3
    • Flame Wardens: Suggest the following:
      • Flame Warden’s starting points: 320 -> (new) 290 points
      • (Optional): Flame Warden's additional points per model: 27 -> 27 (revert initial balance proposal of 26 ppm)
    • This unit seems very little to no representation and is never taken as a min-value unit. Moreover, compared to [lexicon]Lion Guard[/lexicon] and Swordmasters, this unit does not synergize as well with [lexicon]Paths of Magic[/lexicon] HBE have access to, the Hereditary, and does it inherently work well with our characters. We would rather see other unit sizes viable (such as with [lexicon]Temple Guard[/lexicon]) than them only taken in rare occurrences.
    • Appeared in one (5.0%) of OCHO lists (and regularly rare/nonexistant in similar tournaments); appeared in three (20.0%) of lists (in very "soft" lists); least affected of the three elite options from recent changes;
    • Change is likely to encourage other unit sizes to be considered, and the potential reversion of the point drop to 26 ppm will keep the unit externally balanced and costing similarly at max unit size.

    CHANGE REQUEST 4
    • Amethyst Crystal: Suggest the following:
      • Amethyst Crystal: 60 points -> 40 points:
    • This choice could be both thematic to HBE as an army but is currently viewed just a worse [lexicon]Crystal Ball[/lexicon], which is only 35 points.
    • Appeared in zero (0.0%) of OCHO lists (and similar tournaments); appeared in zero (0.0%) of New Years Revolution lists; one of the most underplayed items currently in the game.
    • Change is unlikely to have any impact on external balance (as it is very similar to a common Special Item) but should promote alternative (defensive) [lexicon]magic[/lexicon] phases for some players based on meta/matchups.


    The last two changes are being put forward as a result of the community's feedback and a desire fix some of the ongoing internal balance of under-used or not represented entries.

    Others that were considered for this were:
    • OotFH, Wizard Adept on Dragon: we have raised concerns regarding no longer being able to cast Molten Copper into combat, and this may (or may not) be addressed separately; however, in a patch designs to reduce prevalence of single-models, changes here are likely to be small;
    • Ancient Dragon: in a patch designs to reduce prevalence of single-models, changes here are likely to be small and not to address the communities concerns; we are hopefully that the above (i.e. particularly the reversal of the Prince base points) will at least have a small affect;
    • Archers: post-patch lists saw an uptick in their representation from zero, making the case for them harder (and thus any changes, smaller);
    • Sky Sloops: RT is particularly worried about decreasing points here, and will likely not approve any (or only very small) point decreases;
    • Protection of Dorac: this (and other similar restricted items) is being discussed internally; it is unlikely to be modified in this round of changes, but has been flagged (along with other similar items with the same kind of restrictions) as something to be evaluated in the future;


    Feedback Request:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Our ask is two fold:
    • Please take a moment to evaluate the changes proposed above (think about it, try building lists, etc.) and then provide feedback below;
    • Please respond to the one (and only one) of the following posts that best-captures your stance on these changes with a "Like";
    We know this may not address everything you were hoping for, but we've put significant effort into trying to synthesize hundreds of datapoints/feedback into three (four) change requests in a way that is: a) likely to be accepted; b) addresses underlying issues and internal balance; c) creates meaningful, interesting alternatives.

    Now you get to be the judge of how we've done.

    The following two posts capture a basic "thumbs up" and "thumbs down" approach to collecting feedback. There isn't much time remaining for complicated changes from this point, but we can still make modifications or could potentially withhold putting forward a change request if there is major concern by the community.

    PLEASE RESPOND TO ONE (AND ONLY ONE) OF THE FOLLOWING POSTS WITH A "LIKE", AND WHICHEVER "BEST CAPTURES" YOUR FEELING ON THIS CHANGE. We are collecting feedback this way so that: a) we can see exactly who/what kind of players are skewing towards Accepting/Rejecting these changes; b) ensure that we are capturing feedback from the HBE community (and not other communities); c) encouraging an open and transparent process.

    In the comments following, feel free to suggest alternatives, suggestions for improvements, or raise concerns directly (or via PM if you'd prefer) and we'll do our best to include them in our submission.

    Thank you all!

    Kind regards,

    Axiem

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Axiem ().

  • PLEASE RESPOND TO ONE (AND ONLY ONE) OF THE POSTS WITH A "LIKE", AND WHICHEVER "BEST CAPTURES" YOUR FEELING ON THIS CHANGE.


    Feedback Option A
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    • I am generally supportive of these change requests, and while it might not capture everything I would like to see addressed, I think the inclusion of these changes would be positive for the HBE and/or for the game in general;

    The post was edited 3 times, last by Axiem ().

  • PLEASE RESPOND TO ONE (AND ONLY ONE) OF THE POSTS WITH A "LIKE", AND WHICHEVER "BEST CAPTURES" YOUR FEELING ON THIS CHANGE.


    Feedback Option B
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    • I am generally NOT supportive of these change requests, and do not suggest that one (or more) of these be put forward as it will either be negative for HBE and/or for the game in general;
    • Please specify below your suggestions (or feel free to PM a HBE ACS directly);

    The post was edited 3 times, last by Axiem ().

  • First off, I am very happy with all the effort put into this balancing patch. As a community member I really have a feeling of "being heard" and that the input given on this forum is seriously looked at.

    That said, I am mostly happy (A) with the changes.

    One thing I would really want to stress is -not- to increase mount prices for the Elven Horse. This is a great opportunity to make cavalry commanders and princes viable. (With the drop in base cost and the other changes)

    Keep up the great work!

    Cheers, Fith