VS LAB Alpha Discussions

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  • The number 1 spells are often better on average than 2-4, what makes the 1-4 good is you avoid those match ups when you get unlucky and roll lash again daemons for example.

    I agree lets wait and see if its becomes super popular. Personally I think cowl should be more expensive and Holy Tri should be cheaper. Given this change and Cowl being more expensive I'm not sure if people would mind this combo so much.

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

  • sigh, these sorts of rule hick up/oversites seem to keep cropping up with VS LAB.

    If the issue is that triumvirate is allowing access to adept spells with the Crown then it could be fixed with a line/ altered textcsaying it only works for occultism, thaum & witchcraft.

    I'm not sure this is an earth shattering issue however as I'm fairly certain you already had access to this in previous versions of the LAB and no 1 really seemed incline to take it. The only thing that has changed is that cowl can now make non wizards the final part of a triumvirate instead of needing 3 full swarm priests. It was already possible to get 2 adepts, an apprentice and give you senator this Wizard Helm but that didn't seem to ever happen.

    Also randomized lore makes it a gimmick anyway, even if you weren't picking this over say: crown of authority+cowl.
  • New

    Guys i would like to share with you some units that i never considered to put into my army list here below; Since alpha published i tried to test and consider every unit.

    Doomspark Device : I miss the old version of dreadmill. I never liked it. It is not usefull when i consider game mechanics. Old dreadmill was perfect and it didn't need any changes. Why it has changed i really don't understand.

    Dreadmill chariots : This unit is not necessary as well. It doesn't work. I will never take it. That's for sure because of the reason i explained here above.

    Shadowfur Stalkers : Because of LD issue of the Army they don't seem usefull as well. (I am not %100 sure about that but i wanted to write anyway)

    Grenadiers : They are great but they should be cheaper but they might be limited to 0-2 or 0-1 units per army.

    Besides abovementioned facts, i think VS army is shining. I really liked it and enjoyed it...Thx for all efforts..:)
    Etc 9th age Turkish Team Captain (2017)
  • New

    Every army has at least 1 unit that every other army hates and often several but that doesn't mean they should all get deleted.

    Army books shouldn't be designed around what players from other armies would like/prefer.

    The old dreadmill was perhaps very good and had already gone through massive repeat nerfs but that doesn't make the new Doomspark device even a sound design though I think the LAB team are at least going in the right direction.

    Incidentally the new ID rocket mortar would give the old dreadmill more than a run for its money on monster hunting(for cheaper) if people didn't keep taking the Titan mortar instead; its 4 accurate S6 D3 wnd shots against 3 S5 D3 end shots.
  • New

    fireballmj wrote:

    Every army has at least 1 unit that every other army hates and often several but that doesn't mean they should all get deleted.

    Army books shouldn't be designed around what players from other armies would like/prefer.

    The old dreadmill was perhaps very good and had already gone through massive repeat nerfs but that doesn't make the new Doomspark device even a sound design though I think the LAB team are at least going in the right direction.

    Incidentally the new ID rocket mortar would give the old dreadmill more than a run for its money on monster hunting(for cheaper) if people didn't keep taking the Titan mortar instead; its 4 accurate S6 D3 wnd shots against 3 S5 D3 end shots.

    This just goes to show that the dreadmill was largely overpriced, especially when not engaging them in cc. This also shows that cost of units don't particularly matter, as long as lists have enough tools for you to play your game.
  • New

    Bogi wrote:

    This just goes to show that the dreadmill was largely overpriced, especially when not engaging them in cc. This also shows that cost of units don't particularly matter, as long as lists have enough tools for you to play your game.
    I am afraid this leads also to lack of variation in the lists. Balancing is done not between armies but between 2-3 lists. In theory you have unlimitted number of options. In practice it is 2-3 builds that really count, all the other being terrible when compared to those. Overlapping of unit roles is considered a design error. Multiple role units are suboptimal as they need to be overpriced. It all leads to situation when we could have predefined lists in the army books instead of points with a limited number of adjustments you can take.
  • New

    JimMorr wrote:

    Bogi wrote:

    This just goes to show that the dreadmill was largely overpriced, especially when not engaging them in cc. This also shows that cost of units don't particularly matter, as long as lists have enough tools for you to play your game.
    I am afraid this leads also to lack of variation in the lists. Balancing is done not between armies but between 2-3 lists. In theory you have unlimitted number of options. In practice it is 2-3 builds that really count, all the other being terrible when compared to those. Overlapping of unit roles is considered a design error. Multiple role units are suboptimal as they need to be overpriced. It all leads to situation when we could have predefined lists in the army books instead of points with a limited number of adjustments you can take.
    You are not playing the game, at least not on tournaments, are you? I have never before witnessed a much list variety as in 9th and it is getting even better with time.
    My gallery: Adam painting stuff (HE, VC, OK and lots of terrain)
    My battle reports: Adam Battle reports
  • New

    Adam wrote:

    JimMorr wrote:

    Bogi wrote:

    This just goes to show that the dreadmill was largely overpriced, especially when not engaging them in cc. This also shows that cost of units don't particularly matter, as long as lists have enough tools for you to play your game.
    I am afraid this leads also to lack of variation in the lists. Balancing is done not between armies but between 2-3 lists. In theory you have unlimitted number of options. In practice it is 2-3 builds that really count, all the other being terrible when compared to those. Overlapping of unit roles is considered a design error. Multiple role units are suboptimal as they need to be overpriced. It all leads to situation when we could have predefined lists in the army books instead of points with a limited number of adjustments you can take.
    You are not playing the game, at least not on tournaments, are you? I have never before witnessed a much list variety as in 9th and it is getting even better with time.


    I don't understand how this is related to what I have said... Still I do feel variety is not that great...
    OK variety in 8th wash horrible because of imbalance, lack of variety in 9th comes from the approach to balance and the "viable playstyle" approach...

    It does sort of feel like we are picking lists and having less freedom to then choose units, trying to hit synergies as much as possible. I can be specific with examples for VS, or even VC for the you Adam.

    Still I often take unconventional lists...
  • New

    Peacemaker wrote:

    Any word on some fluff releases? some teasers at least?

    I wasn't really into the GeeDubs fluff so I'm primed and ready for T9A fluff.
    We are pushing when and where we can. I want it out as much as you do. I’m glad that I’m “design” and not “world building” as that just looks so intricate. So time consuming.
    B. "MF’ing" Jones - CGL Member

    D.L.- ADT - TT

    Campaign Design-Broken Isles

    Adv. Magic & Giants Design

    PlaytestTeam-Mid Atlantic USA

    Vermin Swarms LAB TT

  • New

    w

    skipschnit wrote:

    Peacemaker wrote:

    Any word on some fluff releases? some teasers at least?

    I wasn't really into the GeeDubs fluff so I'm primed and ready for T9A fluff.
    We are pushing when and where we can. I want it out as much as you do. I’m glad that I’m “design” and not “world building” as that just looks so intricate. So time consuming.
    what about spoilers?
    Give us the first page!

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

  • New

    Peacemaker wrote:

    w

    skipschnit wrote:

    Peacemaker wrote:

    Any word on some fluff releases? some teasers at least?

    I wasn't really into the GeeDubs fluff so I'm primed and ready for T9A fluff.
    We are pushing when and where we can. I want it out as much as you do. I’m glad that I’m “design” and not “world building” as that just looks so intricate. So time consuming.
    what about spoilers?Give us the first page!
    "this page has been left intentionally blank"

    :P
    "It is by will alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the juice of Sapho that thoughts acquire speed, the lips acquire stains, the stains become a warning. It is by will alone I set my mind in motion."
  • New

    Actually I think you'll find that most lists are built on the boarder between what is needed as a minimum and what is then added for flavour.

    There is an innate factor in T9A (which o don't agree with but love with because let's face it I love the game), that is that when units are used allot their price goes up. The design between this is to encourage players to use other units, however in reality this doesn't happen much. What happens is that players still take the things they need (i.e. method of handling large units, high strength attacks and armour piercing weapons) and they pay the higher points because they really need them.

    The end result is that an army becomes more unstable/ less reliable because they then have less grunts to hold the line, less low powered firepower to back up their troops and less scoring units.

    What a design needs to implement into a book is multiple ways to provide those necessary tools but in different forms. I.e. a monster that provides a good amount of high strength attacks and a ranged device to do the same. However the trick comes in balancing those two tools to be as good as each other for around the same price. But we end up back in the problem that when players generally take one of those tools over the other the prices change and therefore a scew is put into the book again encouragement to the alternative tool and therefore a change in all the other units that players take to complement that tool

    Thus we come to the problem in designing a book from scratch, you can't design it to please everyone but you must ensure there are plenty of ways in which players can take the variety of tools. So really, (and I don't want to come across as unappreciative of methods and the work done, because I really am) during this phase process should not be used to alter what players take, it should all be done with design changes. Let prices be altered after the book is complete as a last phase.

    The reason I say that is because price does[/i] effect what players take and this will scew your understanding of what people like and don't. Perhaps after each version release before you do the next do a survey that includes all the entries in the book (exactly a copy of the balance survey just released) but have two responses for each, the first being whether they like the design and the other the opinion on where the price is.

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

  • New

    I feel like list variation at competitive events varies greatly between armies.

    Some books/armies have several broad strategies or styles they can seriously pursue and even some unit choices within those where-as other armies you just expect to see the same 2-3 units at least being built around.

    VC are in a relatively weak position right now but have decent list options because of bloodlines amongst other things. HbE I think you kind of expect bolt throwers, phoenix's, Queens guard, sea guard in some combination.
  • New

    I'm unsure on where to post my feedback/thoughts so I'll just do it here.

    I've faced 2x VS players (both good players) in the past couple of months, and discussed the book lots with people.
    Approximate lists:
    Display Spoiler

    (previous version)
    Senator-general, toga
    Prefect-stygian overseer, pistol, map
    Priest-platform, adept, Caelysian, thaumaturgy, swarm master
    Priest-witchcraft, adept, crown, Caelysian
    Priest-errahman
    Doom blade-shield, agility potion
    59 legionaries-spears, full command
    46 legionaries-spears, full command, bell of the deep roads
    30 slaves-musician, tunnelling tools
    30 legionaries-shields, standard, champ, legion banner
    25 legionaries-full command, aether icon
    36 plague disciples-musician, champion, great weapons
    Legionary drill team
    Earthbreaker
    Earthbreaker
    4 weapon teams-canisters
    4 weapon teams-canisters


    Display Spoiler

    (current version, approximated)
    Doom blade-shield, agility potion
    Priest, Triumvirate, Adept, Witchcraft
    Priest, Triumvirate, Adept, Witchcraft, Bell
    Priest, Triumvirate, Adept, Thaumaturgy
    BSB rat, Toga
    50 Legionaries with Spears, rending
    50 Legionaries with Spears, rending
    50 Legionaries with Shields, Legionbanner
    40 Plague Disciples
    15 Fetthis Brutes
    3 Experimental Weapons Teams, Canister Launchers
    3 Experimental Weapons Teams, Canister Launchers
    3 Experimental Weapons Teams, Canister Launchers


    The army overall seems like a good book rework, designs are generally quite good and interesting.
    The army is a bit more CC / swarm them oriented, less pew pew-oriented like it previously was. Seeing all those ranked bodies is heartwarming.
    Their vulnerability to fear and generally low eliteness, yet being combat powerhouses, is really cool.
    So, for the most part, I like the book.

    Some things stick out as very strong:
    - Fetthis Brutes. Too elite. With magic, they are too strong and beat too much stuff up. Lose that res5 IMO, then add Fortitude or make a tad cheaper.
    - Cannister Launchers. 24" range with 5" move is too much range. Even at 18" (+5 for move), their damage output is on the high end of balance. Also, ignoring cover penalties is cheeky power creep.
    - Life is Cheap. I don't mind it being as strong as it is, because it's a great way to make crummy VS guys strong frontline fighters and makes the army swarmy. Ie, an army strength. You gotta beat them at a strategic level, not in a frontal assault. Maybe make the champions lose the 1/2 combat res part of the rule even outside of challenges.
    - The doomblade is a bit obnoxious with Potion of Swiftness. It creates a game of cat+mouse (hey!). I think access to this and the self-inflicted lightning attacks could go away together, make him less of an 'all comers' choice.


    Some things stick out as bad or weird designs:
    - Earthbreakers being 1+ armour vs the front (shooting) isn't very Vermin-Swarmy. Make them less elite, and more about delivering rat units around the board.
    - The tunneling stuff is a bit stupid, really. Deploying a unit on the board, and then immediately tunneling it, is bad gameplay mechanics due to how the deployment phase works.
    - Ability to combine Wizards Hood with Cowl of the Apostate is a combo which I think may have been overlooked.
    - 5-wide infantry units end up being really huge and awkward to align when charging into things. So, VS battlelines get congested REALLY easily and the units look a bit stupid when 5-wide IMO. More incentives to be wider would be good.


    A note on the hereditary:
    - The hereditary spell is awful, neither of my opponents took it and it just seems like an excuse for players to legitimately use their Rat Swarm bases. Additionally, its too clunky for T9A design and is simply 'not fun'.
    IMO it should be something like this:
    18" range, augment, permanent, 9+
    Can only target friendly units engaged in close combat.
    In the 2nd round of combat onwards, for as long as the unit has more ranks than enemies in the same combat, the Vermin Swarm unit gains +1 to wound and Fearless.
    Effects last until the combat ends.


    Cheers + GL with the next update(s).
  • New

    2Cats1Tuna wrote:

    I'm unsure on where to post my feedback/thoughts so I'll just do it here.

    I've faced 2x VS players (both good players) in the past couple of months, and discussed the book lots with people.
    Approximate lists:
    Display Spoiler

    (previous version)
    Senator-general, toga
    Prefect-stygian overseer, pistol, map
    Priest-platform, adept, Caelysian, thaumaturgy, swarm master
    Priest-witchcraft, adept, crown, Caelysian
    Priest-errahman
    Doom blade-shield, agility potion
    59 legionaries-spears, full command
    46 legionaries-spears, full command, bell of the deep roads
    30 slaves-musician, tunnelling tools
    30 legionaries-shields, standard, champ, legion banner
    25 legionaries-full command, aether icon
    36 plague disciples-musician, champion, great weapons
    Legionary drill team
    Earthbreaker
    Earthbreaker
    4 weapon teams-canisters
    4 weapon teams-canisters


    Display Spoiler

    (current version, approximated)
    Doom blade-shield, agility potion
    Priest, Triumvirate, Adept, Witchcraft
    Priest, Triumvirate, Adept, Witchcraft, Bell
    Priest, Triumvirate, Adept, Thaumaturgy
    BSB rat, Toga
    50 Legionaries with Spears, rending
    50 Legionaries with Spears, rending
    50 Legionaries with Shields, Legionbanner
    40 Plague Disciples
    15 Fetthis Brutes
    3 Experimental Weapons Teams, Canister Launchers
    3 Experimental Weapons Teams, Canister Launchers
    3 Experimental Weapons Teams, Canister Launchers


    The army overall seems like a good book rework, designs are generally quite good and interesting.
    The army is a bit more CC / swarm them oriented, less pew pew-oriented like it previously was. Seeing all those ranked bodies is heartwarming.
    Their vulnerability to fear and generally low eliteness, yet being combat powerhouses, is really cool.
    So, for the most part, I like the book.

    Some things stick out as very strong:
    - Fetthis Brutes. Too elite. With magic, they are too strong and beat too much stuff up. Lose that res5 IMO, then add Fortitude or make a tad cheaper.
    - Cannister Launchers. 24" range with 5" move is too much range. Even at 18" (+5 for move), their damage output is on the high end of balance. Also, ignoring cover penalties is cheeky power creep.
    - Life is Cheap. I don't mind it being as strong as it is, because it's a great way to make crummy VS guys strong frontline fighters and makes the army swarmy. Ie, an army strength. You gotta beat them at a strategic level, not in a frontal assault. Maybe make the champions lose the 1/2 combat res part of the rule even outside of challenges.
    - The doomblade is a bit obnoxious with Potion of Swiftness. It creates a game of cat+mouse (hey!). I think access to this and the self-inflicted lightning attacks could go away together, make him less of an 'all comers' choice.


    Some things stick out as bad or weird designs:
    - Earthbreakers being 1+ armour vs the front (shooting) isn't very Vermin-Swarmy. Make them less elite, and more about delivering rat units around the board.
    - The tunneling stuff is a bit stupid, really. Deploying a unit on the board, and then immediately tunneling it, is bad gameplay mechanics due to how the deployment phase works.
    - Ability to combine Wizards Hood with Cowl of the Apostate is a combo which I think may have been overlooked.
    - 5-wide infantry units end up being really huge and awkward to align when charging into things. So, VS battlelines get congested REALLY easily and the units look a bit stupid when 5-wide IMO. More incentives to be wider would be good.


    A note on the hereditary:
    - The hereditary spell is awful, neither of my opponents took it and it just seems like an excuse for players to legitimately use their Rat Swarm bases. Additionally, its too clunky for T9A design and is simply 'not fun'.
    IMO it should be something like this:
    18" range, augment, permanent, 9+
    Can only target friendly units engaged in close combat.
    In the 2nd round of combat onwards, for as long as the unit has more ranks than enemies in the same combat, the Vermin Swarm unit gains +1 to wound and Fearless.
    Effects last until the combat ends.


    Cheers + GL with the next update(s).
    Let us know what list(s) that you were using when you faced the latest version. Post up a report here:
    Vermin Swarm Alpha #4 Game Results Needed
    B. "MF’ing" Jones - CGL Member

    D.L.- ADT - TT

    Campaign Design-Broken Isles

    Adv. Magic & Giants Design

    PlaytestTeam-Mid Atlantic USA

    Vermin Swarms LAB TT

  • New

    Twisted Magpie wrote:

    There is an innate factor in T9A (which o don't agree with but love with because let's face it I love the game), that is that when units are used allot their price goes up. The design between this is to encourage players to use other units, however in reality this doesn't happen much. What happens is that players still take the things they need (i.e. method of handling large units, high strength attacks and armour piercing weapons) and they pay the higher points because they really need them.
    I feel like you've missed a couple of key parts of the balancing process as it is a little more nuanced than prices go up if a unit is used more often. I won't bore everyone with a dissertation on the overlay of internal and external balance on the TA team's points change recommendations. Instead i'll link to a handy announcement which has graphs and stuff: the-ninth-age.com/community/ne…orting-the-balance-patch/ :)
    "It is by will alone I set my mind in motion. It is by the juice of Sapho that thoughts acquire speed, the lips acquire stains, the stains become a warning. It is by will alone I set my mind in motion."
  • New

    Thank you @Fleshbeast. But that isn't the point I was trying to make. I'm sorry if I want clear enough. I'll try to make my point clearer...

    The survey you've just linked is price only, asking for everyone's opinion on a units value for what it does. And this will give you some clearer picture of how people view unit yes.

    However in an alpha design you are not only setting prices for units, you are also designing how they work. You are going to find that people's opinions on what units to take are going to based on a balance between price and design.

    For example, it doesn't matter how cheap a unit is, if it's not doing what players need in their army list then they won't take it. I'm the extreme opposite, if a unit is too expensive it will not be taken regardless of how good it is.

    What you will find then by analysing the lists people make is that you will only see the end product, not the thinking that players have made to get to that product.

    If there was a survey that allowed us to provide an opinion on both price and design you would be in a position to evaluate which designs people like and which they don't. As well as the price points people are happy with and the price points they feel are too wrong.

    If like to be clear, I'm only suggesting this as a process for Alpha designs. It is a given assumption that a completed books design is good, therefore it is only price that is relevant for option poles.
  • New

    Yes, there is a difference between two conditions:

    a) Element works as intended, but the price is too high or too low
    b) Element does not work as intended, whatever the price

    But b is debatable, based on personal opinion, which might differ between individuals and especially between team member and community member.
    While the price is something that is based on how an average army (average over many many lists) should look like and how it looks in reality.