Is Codex balanced?

Discussion in 'Codex' started by Momi, Jun 15, 2016.

  1. keybounce

    keybounce Active Member

    You would win that bet.

    So far, I have played a bunch of Bashing vs Finesse starter games. Never really played for optimum; a lot of times not putting in a worker each turn, for example. I got some bad habits, and bad game understanding/assumptions. The whole "there are only 2 T1's", and while Finesse is happy to get all 4, Bashing only needs two against Finesse. There's only one hero on each side, so there's no mismatch of spell choices -- so spells are a good thing to plan on / make use of. Etc. Heck, floating was common as finesse.

    Then, came PbF and 3v3 games. Things played a little differently. Quite a bit differently.

    Not workering every turn quickly showed up as a major problem. So, the whole "cannot afford a card" concept went out the window. Rarely, unable to afford the gold was serious enough, but only if it was "dead if you don't play this". Floating too much was a problem, but not floating at all was a different problem.

    And, I was asking for advice and help. Constantly. In my first tourney, I took 6 mono colors, a finesse-based deck, and a bashing-based deck. I asked for advice on all of them from the Skype group -- because, as you pointed out, I don't know what I'm doing. I'm too new at this -- when I first had a chance to see the cards outside of the summary posts on Kickstarter, Zane's ability had already been changed from "Bomb a patrol slot", but Midori's midband had not yet been changed.

    But I'm asking. I'm trying things. I'm learning what doesn't work -- I'm a long way from learning what does work.

    I'm asking people who know more than me. I'm getting advice from different people. And when I get consistent advice from multiple people, I learn to take that as "Probably true" -- especially when some of the people I'm talking to have been using playtest cards for a while, and at least one (maybe two, not sure) are now tired of the game because they've played it so much.

    Bashing v Finesse does not give any real concept of how the game goes. The whole idea that your codex gives you 6 T1 choices, and 3 sets of T2's to choose from, that plays so very differently from how the one hero vs one hero game plays it isn't even close.

    But when ... I think it was three different people on the skype group, when I was asking for advice on how to play mono green, telling me that growth and the blooming's were the way to go, and I still did not see it -- they had to explain that all of the +1/+1 tokens got used TWICE in a given turn, because you could attack, transfer, attack again -- the whole multiple sets of attacks is so different from the mindset I developed while playing M:tG. Not to mention that if I could get two blooming's out, the available tokens doubled, and they could all shift and be used twice.

    And yes, I asked about the combat numbers on Feral, which actually looked like the better choice. Two people were very clear that going that route was "playing to not lose", while the growth option was the only "playing to win" option.

    I've tried the Circle of Life strategy with green. It left me with lots of unusable cards and a bloated deck that took too long to cycle my cards back. That it wasn't increasing my board count (just making things on-board bigger) was also a drawback.
    I've tried the Promise of Payment strategy with Purple. It killed my card count, and made my future turns and their lack of sufficient gold harrowing.

    As I play, I'm learning that keeping the deck tight, and the card cycle fast, is critical. Zane's Detonate looks better and better as I learn more and more about this. Upgrade cards, because they are so hard to send to the discard, are very nice for keeping the deck thin; that they don't give units on the board is like a balancing mechanic. Getting a unit into play every turn seems to be a really good rule of thumb, and not putting a unit into play consistently seems to be a bad, bad play -- exceptions being either the turn after you put lots of units in, and had survivors (drop down to 0 or 1 card, then rebuild your hand next turn), or max-banding a hero (or both the same turn :-).

    Getting big units down? Even when you think a unit is "big", there's something else, at least until the ridiculously big. A "big" unit like a 6/6 might look good, until you realize that it dies to a maxband hero on the other side. Units with high offense typically have low defense, and visa verse -- units wind up trading. Most anti-air units with three attack will kill most fliers. Etc. If no one is "ahead", then T3 generally pushes the win.

    And getting "ahead" usually winds up taking a combo, a way to push multiple units, a way to combine multiple bonuses.

    Feral has good sized units at a price -- decent ones at 4, great ones at 6-9. Good luck being able to play more than 1 a turn. Other people can spam 4 tokens per turn and buff all of them -- which seemed weak to me until the Skype people pointed out that you can play that spell every turn. Other people can maxband and buff two, sometimes three heroes (Hello Vandy).

    Late game wins by simple units attacking and doing some damage to your base each turn? Or late game wins by sheer overwhelm? The overwhelm / lots of damage (more than 10 in a turn) method has been the clincher in all of my forum games. Actual base health turns out to be meaningless.

    I'm learning what doesn't work, more than I am learning what does work.

    Bloating the deck doesn't work, and I'm constantly getting the advice to keep it thin, even workering more than you need to.
    Going down on cards doesn't work unless you get enough board that you don't need to play a card next turn.
    Units surviving more than one turn turns out to be a good indication that you're well ahead of your opponent -- conversely, if you can't keep up the attack and trades, you're probably in serious trouble.

    Based on that, what do I see in Green?

    Weak units that generate gold, but can't win trades and are a loss of board control, and being wiped.
    Heroes that require you to go way down on cards for their ability (Cala), or give you deck bloat, and don't bring the card out fast enough to be significant (Cala's tigers).
    Spells that give you a short term boost (Circle of life -- trade T1 cards for T2 cards before the T2 building) at the cost of a big lategame bloat
    And growth, with the "5 attacks, and then your units are killer" / "get a movable +1/+1 every time a unit comes out" pair.

    You have made it clear that as far as you are concerned, there is no more design, balancing, or development on Codex, that what we have is what we have. That's fine.

    But as players, I'm noticing, and finding a lot of people on the skype group who agree, that by the 2nd or third turn, someone has already lost even if they don't know it.

    How to deal with hero wipe out? I asked, out of frustration with it happening -- and a good forum discussion came out of that. Basically, there are a few problem heroes that can make this sort of thing happen, and when they come out you have a "must respond this way" response. And the game can continue.

    How to tell if you are doing a really bad play? It turns out that you can count the "gold on board" of the two positions, and if your play would result in you having less gold on board than your opponent, it's probably a bad play -- a bad trade, a bad use of a spell, etc. So you avoid that, and the game can continue.


    But what doesn't get addressed is "Ok, how do you recover / get back in the game"? From any sort of problem setup, trying to recover tends to be a "get worse and worse behind" situation. Far too often an early bad move is unrecoverable.

    And you would have this as an acceptable state -- that Codex is for people who don't make mistakes.

    You've said that Codex is balanced on a knife's edge, that the +1g / +1card of the patrol zone is a huge effect. And it is. Compared to the choice of "Do I put something in SQL, so the opponent either can't attack, or has to use a bigger attacker", vs "Do I put it in elite so that, even though it will die, I take something with me", the choice of better combat vs better resources is real. But that also means that a slightly less than idea play is a big, big error.

    Consider, as a "comeback" mechanic, something that could be added as a "map" card. Anyone making a tech building, that isn't the first to make that, gets it for free. So if you are the second to make a T2/T3 building, there's no charge. Too powerful? Probably. What about a discount of the tech number -- T1 gets a 1 discount, T2 gets a 2 discount, etc? That's probably in the right ballpark -- it means that someone who is behind has a chance to catch up. It's not huge, but it's something -- it keeps the game a little closer. Someone who makes an early mistake is no longer dead without a chance to recover.

    I'm learning what doesn't work.

    And right now, falling behind doesn't work. The patrol zone for "gaining resources" to try to catch up doesn't work if your opponent goes the same "gain resources to keep the same lead" on you.

    If the players are balanced, the patrol zone bonuses keep things on the edge. These last few games (in the LLL tournament) showed me how harsh 1 gold can be, often more important than one card. Because I'm getting better, and actually reaching the point where I'm not automatically wiped out at the T2 stage against good opponents.

    But if I'm behind? Catch up doesn't work when the other person can maintain the same lead.

    So falling behind on board is bad.
    Single good units vs lots of buffed units seems to go for "lots of buffed units" unless your opponent has some way to hurt lots of small units (black, Discord, ... I think that's it). Heck, today I got the lesson of "Safe attacking negates the tower for all those 1/1's." -- one simple T0, cost 1, hard to remove upgrade that thins the deck is better than a 3 cost, easy to kill building that reduces the available choices.


    This thread asked the question, is Codex balanced. It is, clearly. Two experts who are able to choose a good set of specs, and know what they are doing, will do just fine. But that's no different than a puzzle fighting game with two balanced drop patterns.

    Can you expand that from 2 balanced drops to 8 or 9? Sure. You did just that.

    Is (random(6)) mono-color codex balanced against (random(6)) mono-color? Debatable.

    Is (random(6)) mono-color balanced against expert's choice of specs? Debatable.

    Can that second one be adjusted/balanced? Sure -- play with the multi-color penalty. That's as simple as a map card, or if there's a huge consensus among the players, a rule change. Heck, we've seen "go" move the player 1 penalty from 3.5, to 5.5, now to 7.5 points.

    Can that first one -- imbalance between two different mono-colors -- be balanced with a simple rules adjustment if it is not balanced? Not that I can tell. The best solution I can see, and I don't know if it's a good solution, is to make it cheaper to be late building tech buildings. But now that the question is asked, and made clear, other people who do know the game well can debate it.

    Is there a problem with the mono-colors? That's a different question.
    It does not get answered by saying, "There's no problems with green, look at all these abilities".
    It gets answered by playing, and seeing what does not work.

    If it turns out that there is one mono-color that is weaker than the others? Well, Bashing is weaker than the other specs -- can that be solved by giving Troq a startband ability that has no effect in 1v1 games?

    If it turns out that there is one mono-color that is stronger than the others?

    How likely is it that there is an absolute "A is better than B ... than F"? Zero. More likely, there is a strange mesh of better than some, worse than others -- and that's the sort of thing that a general "boost to the weaker" rule would help.


    We've had people comment in this thread that "So-and-so played rich earth T1, and won", etc. We've had others ask if you can really analyze things with math in this game. Well, rich earth is apparently one of those where you can, and people who know the game better than I do have done so. It's considered a weak opening play by people who know the game. That someone can win with it does not mean it's a good play if the opponent doesn't do a good job.

    Sometimes, you have to use math to analyze things.
  2. garcia1000

    garcia1000 World Champion Moderator (old) Staff Member

    TECHNICALLY we don't require posts to have a point and we can have long stream of consciousness posts. But please think of the readers :oops:
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  3. neigutten neigutten Well-Known Member

    @keybounce I think you have a mindset that Codex should be something different than what it is. Or that 1v1 and 3v3 should not be as different as they are. I have struggeled with similar thoughts about the game, and that how the game can be over so quickly without anyone taking damage to their bases when other card games always have the potential of turning as long as you even have 1 hp left.

    But then I thought about it more like what it was trying to be, instead of what I imagined it to be - a real time strategy game. When was the last time in a competetive RTS competition you saw someone win with destroying all their units and bases? Often you see someone concede if they loose an important battle, or if there was a timing push that they wherent ready for. If Terran hasn't walled off their base within the space of a literal 10 second window (or might even be less), they will lose the game to specific strategies.

    One of the main things with this game, and why I find it so anoying that people don't want to register their match results, is that the meta is soooo loose. This is of course because there aren't currently enough people playing the game. In Starcraft, you already know about things like Zergling Rush, or 4-gate protos, or 2-rax marines. These are things you play around and learn how to deal with. But they where metadefining tactics that did not have solutions for them until later on, after they where used by enough players. Codex is in a very real sense not even out yet, and you are making complaints about the game saying that "these things are problems". And while you might be correct, that is not the end of the discussion. We might not yet know the solution to it, because not enough players are playing it, but that does not mean that there isn't one.
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  4. WillY

    WillY Active Member

    Keybounce, at this point you (and many others, myself included) are a beginner at Codex, and you have admitted as much. Yet you continue to make claims on perceived issues in this game all while admitting how much more you still have to learn about it. Some more experienced Codex players have stated numerous times that it's much too early to make those analyses - we have barely begun to experiment with tournaments and new deck formats, and the sole data collection survey haven't yielded much result. You are experienced in analytic crafting, as you have said, but I feel you may have overdone the theorycrafting at present and reached certain conclusions a bit hastily, not to mention the 'thought process' nature of your posts make what you mean a bit hard to discern. In the above post, you had concurred with Sirlin's statement and said that Codex was balanced, then on the same breath labeled several specs and strategies unviable and offered a solution on comeback mechanisms, which branches into another topic entirely. I don't feel it's constructive to outright label two specs as virtually unplayable based on limited playing experience and word of mouth. Those statements serve to provide an impression to newcomers like the OP of this thread that Codex is inherently flawed in some major way and often generates disencouraging and confusing replies. After the torrent of threads made in the past month or so all discussing some purported deep-seated balance issues (with, perhaps, the exception of the BTN thread and select others) I think the discussion has reached a stasis where all that can be talked about has been explored and without more experience and a larger community we cannot make further conclusions about which. Is Codex perfectly balanced? No. There will be some decks made that's better than others, some that's worse, perhaps significantly so. The same stands true with every other game in the same category. Yet I think the point that has been made is that relatively, Codex performs much more favorably on the balance sliding scale than many other deckbuilders, and that is good enough. Sirlin had to constantly compare the game to others such as MtG to put the issue in perspective this way.

    In response to what you said about your playing experience using some of the cards, through what limited experience I have, I feel that circle of life isn't meant to be used repeatedly and serves for a good, out-of-the-blue tempo swing early game where the deck bloating would've mattered less afterwards. And even then I'm still thinking of long term uses for it like a combo with Second Chances. Feral with its big units, as you said, work against certain strategies and not others, but with good spec pairings it should still stand as a favorable spec choice. I've won several games Feral Striking into Gigadons against decks without reliable removal, and the idea of having it's big units copied by Quince then given resist by Cala is nice. Balance, on the other hand, has been claimed as a top spec in other places, and I feel it's main strength is versatility from Faerie Dragon to Wandering Mimic which can be a beast if you had just one nullcraft on board. I've won other games bringing in two big units on board suddenly with Promise of Payment, also using it as a one-time tempo swing card since the game ended pretty son after that. Perhaps it's just the focus.

    Knowing the degree of its balance, how long the game's been developed compared to the amount of time the final product has been played, and how statements about balance quality might impact the opinion of future players of the game, I think we should hesitate before making these claims. Just my two cents.
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  5. enomus

    enomus Banned

    Just to clarify. Just because someone is a beginner or is not good at a game, doesn't mean that their opinions cannot be valid.

    You wouldn't want a game that is only good at top levels of play, because that means that the game is not good for anyone else. Everyone at top level once played the game while being good, or some people never will reach top level. You a game that's good for players of low, medium and high skill levels.

    I am not saying that this isCodex's case. What I am saying is that of there are perceived issues with a game, you can't simply dismiss them by saying "you're not good enough at the game".
    GGBergen.nei likes this.
  6. Technik4

    Technik4 Active Member

    So if I played Chess against a grandmaster and felt like the game was not balanced, would my balance concern be valid?

    I think if people of relative skill play, Codex will be fine. Sometimes there will be blowouts because someone did or didn't get what they needed when they needed it, or someone might just manage to make a really good counter-tech play. All of those cases are fine, it would be boring if it was a game of pure skill. I'm much more concerned finding someone to play Codex with than to whether the balance is good enough. Sirlin is very good at balancing.
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  7. jasonwocky

    jasonwocky Active Member

    Maybe, but the game does NOT have to be good when beginners play vastly more experienced players. Again, think of a decent RTS where a newbie has a shot at beating a ranked just isn't going to happen.
  8. Sirlin

    Sirlin Steward of the Realm Staff Member

    Reminder that saying mono-green is 'not viable' or that 2rds of it can't be picked, or that it doesn't have much synergy are all things completely unrelated to low level play. They are strong claims about the highest level of play and nature of the game. This comment about low level play needing to be fun or whatever is a non-sequitur to the issue in this thread. It's just not related. Though it would be a lot better if the framing of all these claims had been about low level play only.
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  9. EricF

    EricF Well-Known Member

    Well, Demonology + Bashing is a fine combo, and one of the best uses for Troq.

    As for other combos that take advantage of Bashing, I'd say:

    Bashing + Law + Truth
    Bashing + Balance + {Feral / Growth}
    Bashing + Necro + Disease
    Bashing + Anarchy + Blood

    are the 5 that make sense to me. Maybe there are others, but once you are playing the multi-color penalty you can do better than Bashing by grabbing something like Present, Fire, Peace, or Balance depending on what you were looking for with Bashing.
  10. garcia1000

    garcia1000 World Champion Moderator (old) Staff Member

    Is it bad to make strong claims that X or Y is too weak or too strong, if you're bad at the game? Any views on that.
  11. jasonwocky

    jasonwocky Active Member

    I think it's pretty suspect when it comes to making those claims for how the game functions at the high levels of play.
  12. lettucemode

    lettucemode Patreon Supporter

    @Marto is one of the players who has been doing it. He has a post around here somewhere where he spoke favorably about it. So the problem I see with this argument is that it is saying by extension that marto doesn't know what he's doing, when he's one of the best players here.
    Keybounce has said that he is relying on the opinions of people who know the game better than him. I'm pretty sure he is referring to the people in the Codex Skype chat. That discussion is dominated by people who aren't currently playing the game, or have no interest in playing the game without some modification to the official ruleset. I think it's natural for there to be disagreement between the opinions of such a group and those who are actively playing the game as is.

    (I understand this post may be taking the conversation in an undesired direction - please remove it if so)
  13. garcia1000

    garcia1000 World Champion Moderator (old) Staff Member

    Good discussion I think we can split it off into a new thread about "how discuss balance claims?" Any mods can do that?
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  14. keybounce

    keybounce Active Member

    I'm sorry, I thought I did have a point.

    A TL;DR summary of that top-of-page post:
    1. 1v1 games don't play like 3v3 games, and teach wrong things about the game. A single game of 1v1 to learn the game mechanics is fine; more than that is probably going to teach the wrong lessons for playing 3v3.
    2. I'm trying to learn how to play by asking people that have played much, much more than me; people that have been playtesting / playing for many months.
    3. The advice I was given about green (growth for T2)
    4. My experience trying the other strategies of green (the apparent flexibility, at the cost of cards and bloated deck)
    5. What I have learned about end-game (it's not about the numbers on your units, it's about the board domination)
    6. My observations of what green can do, and how it fits into what I've learned.
    7. The problem of "game is over on turn 2/3 even if you don't realize it"
    -- Side note: Someone else asked about RTS games where terrans get zerg rushed, etc. Yes. You learn that as terrans, you must build a bunker, and approximately when to start building it. (Nothing worse than having 4-6 zerglings show up when the bunker is almost built). Yes, in almost every Starcraft game I've played, one person winds up dominating the battle, and then the other person pretty much can't recover (I think I've had one game where we both sent an attack force at the other base at the same time by different routes, and missed, and were both attacking each other's base.)
    But game over at 20-25 minutes is not the same as game over in 3-5 minutes.
    8. Two examples of dealing with the early game problem. I asked about hero blow out, and the forum discussion was that there's a few problem heroes, and a solution. On skype, the "track gold value to see if a trade is worth it" idea was mentioned, as part of the "how to tell when you're behind and it's game over already" discussion.
    9. The question of recovering from being behind. Sirlin's apparent stance of "Be good or be beaten".
    10. A look at the patrol zone as a balance mechanic. Sirlin has stated that the game is balanced exceedingly finely. Putting a unit that you expect to survive into SQL vs elite -- the wrong choice gets it blown out. Putting a unit that is not expected to survive into Tech vs SCV -- knowing which of the two you need. Knowing when to play the extra card (for example, a spell and a unit, or two units) to get a unit to put into tech (which at first seems like a waste, but maybe you need to hold off the enemy line just a little bit).
    11. A look at comeback, and a bolded line: The patrol zone does not help you come back! It keeps the game tightly balanced when it is balanced, but fails as a way to help you recover.
    12. A clear break.
    13. The question of Balance. For some definition of Balanced, Codex works -- at least as well as the first version of puzzle fighter.
    14. The question of balance for monocolor vs monocolor, and monocolor vs multi-color. There is a rule for multi-color, that can be adjusted if the current 1g penalty is not enough. There is no easy way to adjust monocolor balance. I mentioned one idea that came up on Skype chat.
    15. Another break.
    16. Responding to Rich Earth comments, and the necessity of math in some cases.

    Want a TL;DL of that?

    Here's what I have observed. Here's what I have learned from talking to others that have observed more than me. Here's what I see and am concerned about. Here's how Sirlin's stated balancing act works, and how it fails. Here's the big problem -- you have no way to comeback from an early game mistake, and you don't realize that you had an early game mistake until late.

    In Starcraft, if you get zerg rushed and don't have a bunker? You learn immediately. Zerg rush the protoss? You learn immediately. Etc. (NB: Why would you zerg rush protoss? Well, "random" was the most popular spec choice when I was playing, so you didn't know what your opponent would do, or what your opponent could do. So you had to build a bunker if you wound up as terran; you had to build an early expansion if you were zerg; etc.)

    Well, I've never been in a competitive game. But I will admit to "never give up" -- get some workers to escape and set up an emergency base (turned out to be kinda critical for Zerg for me -- the need for a second hatchery was just too strong, and trying to build a second one at the same base just wound up getting me walled by tanks.)

    But if it's hopeless? Sure, send all my remaining units into the fray. I'm not the type that would run a worker to the far corner and hope it was not found.

    Chess against a better opponent? Give up a queen, rook, or three pawns.
    Go against a better opponent? Handicap stones and points.
    Starcraft against a better opponent? "I won't do anything for three minutes".

    Codex against a better opponent? ___________
  15. EricF

    EricF Well-Known Member

    Limit their options - for example, play with 3 specs, and give the stronger player only 2 (or 1!) You can also give the better player 1 or 2 heroes without their spell/unit support, for difficulty points between 3 and 2 or 2 and 1 full spec.

    Separately or together with that, you could prohibit the stronger player from building a Tech III (or Tech II???) building.
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  16. CarpeGuitarrem

    CarpeGuitarrem Well-Known Member

    I'm not an expert at Starcraft by any means, but IME if you're establishing an emergency base, you've already lost, because now you have to rebuild from the ground up while your opponent gets to continue to build their economic engine. You'd need some sort of back-pocket trick that would cripple your opponent's economy, and I don't think those exist. Really, building an emergency base in response to being soundly beaten is just dragging out the game, as far as I know.

    (The exception would be in a 2v2 or similar game, where you can have your ally protect you so that the both of you can mount an offensive against one opponent and hopefully level the playing-field.)

    Now, Codex does have the typical comeback mechanisms that all CCGs have: high-tempo plays that let you swing the board position towards your favor. There's some times you get totally blown out by something with no comeback potential (this is similar to how an Aggro Shaman/Face Hunter who draws perfectly is able to blow you out by Turn 4 in Hearthstone, through no fault of your own play, with no comeback possible, but you arguably get the chance to do a lot more to prevent it in Codex), but generally you can use a high-tempo spell, a unit with a powerful Arrive effect, or well-positioned patrollers to try and make your clever play.

    I don't think that Sirlin is unilaterally against comeback mechanisms, either. Check that article, and it might help clear things up about his own opinions on the matter. He makes a great point there, that if there's no slippery-slope mechanism whatsoever, then early-game decisions feel meaningless because they didn't impact the lategame.
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  17. MooseKnuckles

    MooseKnuckles Active Member

    I feel like I'm feeding the trolls here, but you have like 30 TLDR posts on these forums like this that make sweeping claims when you have no idea what you're talking about.

    It's totally fine to be a new or inexperienced player and have opinions. You just need to realize that these opinions are limited to your experience. "Blue as player 2 feels really hard to win as for a new player" is something that's totally reasonable to say. Making sweeping generalizations about player 1 advantage, what specs are viable, and one's ability to come back from an early mistake in this game (to name a few) are pretty dumb when you're still at the point on the learning curve where you take a turn 1 like this: Bonus points here for complaining about Vandy ahead of time, when I won't play her or anything in demonology all game. Like I said, there's nothing wrong with being inexperienced, but this is a pretty clear demonstration that you don't understand how the game works yet.
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  18. Leontes

    Leontes IYL2 Yomi Bowl Champion Staff Member

    It's also okay to ask for help in certain matchups. That thread would have been called something like "Having trouble getting mono-Green to click! Experts help!" and then talk about how to use Balance/Feral in an overall gameplan.

    Instead, the thread is titled "Is Codex balanced?" Like... seriously?
  19. sharpobject

    sharpobject Well-Known Member

    This thread is by Momi and is actually asking that question though
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  20. Leontes

    Leontes IYL2 Yomi Bowl Champion Staff Member

    You are right.

    The thread derailed so hard I forgot who even started it or what it was about :(
  21. Inkstud

    Inkstud Patreon Supporter

    When your TL;DR of your TL;DR still needs a TL;DR something has gone pretty off the rails
  22. neigutten neigutten Well-Known Member

    I have spent countless hours (3 figured number of hours) watching top level commentary of Starcraft pro matches, and anyone will tell you that yes, the game can very much be over in 3-5 minutes without their opponent knowing it. That is mainly how 4 gate worked in early SC2, you had to find out where the pylon was going to be placed if you scouted it in time, or else you would be dead. The same with 2 Rax rush. You can even trace games back to an instance where the Zergling Queen missed an inject on a hatchery, making the production cycle 5 minutes later be off so that the Roaches wherent finished within the timing push from Terran/Protos (and remember, build time on roaches are 19 seconds, so it is a very small window!).

    If you want your opponent to have a handicap while playing, so that you can learn some stuff, there are plenty of stuff to do. EricF listed some of them. You could also say something like "handlimit 4 cards" or "everything costs 1 gold more". But really, that doesn't make you learn anything other than bad habits that will be exploited when playing against better opponents.

    I would love to play mono green against you if you want to, tho I have only played it once a few months ago. Pbp?

    Edit: Also, there seems to be 2 players in the new Tournament CASS that is playing Mono Green, so you could probably steal some tech there! :D
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2016
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  23. Xom

    Xom Patreon Supporter

    timer is best handicap
    jamie_ca, Polari and EricF like this.
  24. EricF

    EricF Well-Known Member

    All of my suggestions maintain the integrity of the early portion of the game, so you aren't learning bad habits. The benefit comes in making it harder for the handicap player to convert an early advantage into a win, so there is greater comeback potential.
    Alextfish and GGBergen.nei like this.
  25. Shax

    Shax Well-Known Member

    There have been a few really hype matches where both players are scraping by and an emergency base is what clinches it.

    Really fucking rare though.
    CarpeGuitarrem likes this.
  26. enomus

    enomus Banned

    What when did I say that
  27. neigutten neigutten Well-Known Member

    I think you are misquoting, I didn't reference you at all (at least not knowingly!) ^^
  28. enomus

    enomus Banned

    Your post starts by quoting me ("enomus said") and then some strange text
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  29. neigutten neigutten Well-Known Member

    Oh wow, I was just assuming it was Keybounce since it was a wall of text and wrote my post as a responce to him. Sorry about that. I guess you where compiling what he had said, which made me think it was him. So think of it as me trying to say that to him instead of you. #letmecheckwhoactuallypostsnexttime
  30. garcia1000

    garcia1000 World Champion Moderator (old) Staff Member

    keybounce, I read that summary and most of your complaints arise from playing suboptimally. So if you worked on that, most of your complaints would disappear. In the meantime, can u not please.
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  31. zem

    zem Super Moderator Staff Member

    I think you actually quoted keybounce but the quote got attributed to enomous for mystery reasons
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  32. Archon Shiva

    Archon Shiva Well-Known Member

    How to complain bout balance:
    1. Find the thing that is too good;
    2. Use it to crush everyone;
    3. Challenge everyone else and crush them as well;
    4. Complain it is too good.
    Trust me, anyone doing it this way will have their complaint treated with respect. That's basically what happened with BTN. Not "A is too weak because I can't beat B with it" (response: you suck), but "A is too good because I suck and I can still beat nearly everything with it" (response: you don't exactly suck, but you've got a point)

    Things that are too bad really aren't as much of a problem, but you could go "I challenge anyone to beat my XYZ deck using mono-green."

    You can never prove something is too good by losing. You can detect it by losing, but to prove it is too good you have to use it to win. Otherwise you're just a scrub complaining about throws.
    Ryker, chucklyfun, Shax and 7 others like this.
  33. enomus

    enomus Banned

    My post wasn't about the mono-green question specifically, nor was it about any particular element in the game which could be considered unbalanced. Rather it was a response to the attitude I've seen in a lot of posts (not only in this thread).

    The new player's assessment of unbalance in Chess would not be correct. But if you saw this post and you had to defend the game, would you reply with "git gud scrub"? Or would you use actual arguments?

    I would agree that this is a much bigger concern, but alas that's a topic for another thread. However this does bring me to deluks' post which was the best post in this thread.


    Anyway, it is impossible to give a definitive answer to the OP's post right now. We need much more time, with a number of players way bigger than what we currently have, to be able to tell for sure. The skill level of the players would need to increase by a lot too, because right now we all suck. I'm far from the first person to say this, but some people seem to think that this point is enough to end the discussion of balance.

    I think that none of the above should stop us from speculating. Not only does it do no harm, it is actually quite useful. Though if you believe that only certified pro players are qualified enough to even talk about this stuff, then this thread should have no posts because no one is qualified and everyone needs to git gud.

    So the other option is we cease all discussions on how good or bad any of the cards, specs or decks or whatever are, post :nauticaldog: memes instead, and then we come back to this discussion 1-2 years from now. Does this sound exciting?
  34. lettucemode

    lettucemode Patreon Supporter

    I think that players of all skill levels should be allowed to speculate on the power level of stuff in the game. @enomus you are absolutely right about that.

    I also think that what happened in this thread was not the speculation that we agree is good to have. Claims were made, and when challenged they were doubled down on. Do you agree with that?

    Having said that. It has been feeling just a little bit like the Blizzard forums in here. So I want to apologize for my part in that. I like this game too much to be driving new players away from it.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2016
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  35. Domon

    Domon Patreon Supporter

    balance T2 is an absolutely viable path to winning. speaking of balance, circle of life is more than amazing for bringing about other specs' t2 units. an what about plays like tiny basilisk buffed by fairie dragon?
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2016
  36. Shax

    Shax Well-Known Member

    you are hitler
    Kraetyz likes this.
  37. -Y-

    -Y- Well-Known Member

    Pirate Hitler?
  38. enomus

    enomus Banned

    Everyone but Hitler knows enomus is the best

    I know enomus is the best

    Therefore I am not Hitler

    +obligatory mention of godwin's law
    Kraetyz and mysticjuicer like this.
  39. Shax

    Shax Well-Known Member

    that's exactly what the real Hitler would say.
  40. CarpeGuitarrem

    CarpeGuitarrem Well-Known Member

    But it was me, Dio!
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  41. Kraetyz

    Kraetyz Banned

    Uh huh

    variance imo
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  42. CarpeGuitarrem

    CarpeGuitarrem Well-Known Member

    "variance" is a word that means "understanding the mind of your opponent" tho
    ntillerman and Kraetyz like this.
  43. keybounce

    keybounce Active Member

    Sorry, this is kinda a key point that got missed.

    Is codex "balanced"? For what definition of "balanced"? We've seen a successful fighting game where there were only 2 competitive A-ranked fighters.
  44. CarpeGuitarrem

    CarpeGuitarrem Well-Known Member

    Perfect balance isn't totally possible, but Sirlin absolutely advocates games with options that are competitively-balanced.

    What does "competitive" mean? It means that someone who aims to become an expert in an option (here, referring to any given monocolor) can take that option and actually do well in competition with it. This doesn't mean that all options are totally min-maxed optimal. (Like, if there's ten characters and eight of them are A-to-B-ranked and the other two are A+ ranked, that's still competitively-balanced.)

    It's also important to keep in mind that a spec on its own does not equal a faction; specs are designed as specific tools to be used with other specs, generally in the form of combining the Tech Is and spells from multiple specs with the Tech II and Tech III of one of the specs. So on a base level, Spec X is going to do a very bad job of being Spec Y, because they're different specs. What's better to evaluate is whether Spec X is useful enough to deal with Spec Y when those are the respective gameplans of each side, also taking into account what each side's other two Specs are, since those specs also have response tools (in the form of spells and Tech Is) and smaller threats.
    Alextfish likes this.
  45. Archon Shiva

    Archon Shiva Well-Known Member

    I like to use future as an example - it's by far the worst spec of Purple, but it has Assimilate, which owns a lot of things Past and Present can't easily deal with.

    A bit like MvC has terrible characters with great assists (the series, not MvC itself, because it's assist characters aren't playable)
    CarpeGuitarrem likes this.

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