Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Discussion and questions about the latest version of Chaos Reborn. Not for bugs, but for comments about the game play.
Hapless
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Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by Hapless » Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:38 pm

I'm pretty new to Chaos - I began playing the EA version of Reborn on Steam about a week ago, and hadn't heard of its predecessor until just recently. However, I'm not a stranger to tactical turn-based combat. Divinity OS and Shadowrun: Dragonfall (as well as a smattering of other games on various platforms) are a few games that I've poured quite a bit of time and effort into understanding. I also consider myself an aficionado of chess, despite the fact that I haven't played as much lately.

Those things said, I must certainly be considered a newcomer to this particular community/scene, and as such may not yet be able to offer an opinion that reflects a deep understanding of this game and its combat mechanics.

Regardless, let's get to the point: I think Mega Bolt needs to be rebalanced. In my opinion, it's the only mega spell that's really worth the mana investment, and in the early game it's absolutely worth throwing 5 cards at after picking up a mana sprite. I think that the potential for a 71% chance to win the game on turn 2-3 is overpowered, and that the threat of a 4 hex range kill is a bit unfair to have to play around.

Here's what I'd propose: rebalance the spell to have a greater hit chance on creatures and a lower chance on players. I think something like 90% base creature hit chance/45-50% base player hit chance makes sense. It could also be modified to lose some effectiveness with range: something along the lines of a 70% hit chance at 1-3 hex range, and 45%-55% at its max range. This way there's still risk involved letting a player with one of the 3 Mega Bolt staffs within range, but the spell's most overpowered aspects are somewhat lessened.

I'm just throwing ideas around. Let me know what you guys think.
Last edited by Hapless on Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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SpiteAndMalice
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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by SpiteAndMalice » Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:45 pm

Assuming that it is OP for a minute; a simple way of making it less so would be to drop its range from 4 to 3. Another would be to increase the mana requirement.

But is it Mega Bolt that is OP or the other mega spells which are UP?

Bare in mind too that these mega spell are essentially place holder spells whilst the staff system is developed.... Is it worth trying to balance something which will change anyway?
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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by NoWorries » Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:50 pm

Some good thoughts. Though some additional food for thought is that both Magic and Mega Bolts get their success chance by comparing their attack value to the Defense attribute for the target. Right now, wizards have a very, very low Defense attribute. But this attribute, like other attribute, will be variable and, ultimately, customizable based upon what equipment a wizard wears and what level it is at.

Before the Steam release, the prototype experimented with different types of Robes which affected wizard attributes, including Defense. Wearing any Robe which boosts Defense in any appreciable manner will seriously reduce the efficacy of both Magic and Mega Bolts. Of course, a trade off might be that your wizard's Magic Power might be reduced, which could negatively affect the success chances on a cast Subversion, Magic Attack, or somesuch. But variety is a flavorful spice.

In sum, we are still waiting for the implementation of many features (new spells, new creatures, selectable equipment of varying types, et cetera) which will significantly affect the balance of things. So before re-jiggering core mechanics by differentiating how one spell might affect wizards and creatures differently by using different mechanics for each, we may want to wait until the game is more feature complete.

The game is so fun now, it's really hard to remember that we're only playing an early alpha. Amazing!
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Ped209
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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by Ped209 » Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:08 pm

agree with everything that NoWorries said, at present the variety of equipment/staffs isn't anywhere near what the final game will offer, there will literally be thousands of different combinations.

Having said that, when you look at what is there now:

Goblin Horde, Elf Squad, Shadow Forest, MegaBolt

and their relative costs I think MegaBolt is the most bang for buck in terms of likelihood of getting it out and being able to use it in a deadly situation.

If I had a choice of that or Goblin horde at the same price I would pick megabolt 100 times out of a 100.

In the pre-alpha game there were many more staff types and a greater variety of megaspells, the costs of each and ways of obtaining mana have changed several times in various releases so I expect things will change some more before the final release.
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Hapless
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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by Hapless » Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:29 pm

Good points, guys. It sounds like my assessment was a bit short-sighted. It's apparent that I missed out on a lot, given your experience with the pre-EA development!

I'll just pipe down and reserve further judgement for the release of equippables, I guess :D

NoWorries wrote:The game is so fun now, it's really hard to remember that we're only playing an early alpha. Amazing!


I couldn't agree more. Regardless of any game imbalance at present, I can't get myself to play anything else. I've been looking for a good competitive tactical game for a while now, and CR fits the bill perfectly: the setting, chance elements, and potential for both competitive and casual gameplay are all things that I love about the game at present. I can't wait to see what the RPG campaign will be like!

But yes, the game is very, very polished considering that it's version 0.2x.

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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by NoWorries » Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:35 pm

Hapless wrote:Good points, guys. It sounds like my assessment was a bit short-sighted. It's apparent that I missed out on a lot, given your experience with the pre-EA development!

Seriously, no worries. And please don't censor yourself. If you have a thought/concern/question, then likely there are dozens more like you. The resulting dialogue allows for information to be shared that may be buried deeply in the forums and otherwise inaccessible. Most of us want to help anyone who is interested to become a knowledgeable superfan like many of us are. So please help us by giving us reasons to spam... er... share posts. :)
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Obsilium
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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by Obsilium » Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:59 pm

There are a number of range 4 attacks which wizards *should* avoid. Elf shots, eagles on height 2, blobs under certain conditions. And of course the mega bolt. A few things to keep in mind in the discussion (admittedly coming from an aggressive mega bolt user):

0) The magic bolt and mega bolts are aggressive spells. Trying to force them to be utilized defensively (to kill a wave of creatures coming at you) by weakening their fundamental role leaves a bad feeling in my mouth.

1) Before the Steam release, the mega bolt cost 70 mana. Back then, my feeling was that it wasn't something you based your game play around (as I do now). And in multi player games, getting a return of 33/60 rather than 33/70 can be the difference between getting off a second mega bolt or not, which maintains its economic viability.

2) Playing for mega bolts usually means no mana use in the early game and prematurely casting powerful creatures to harness their mana if failed. A patient player will have tend to have more powerful creatures, should they avoid death by bolt.

3) It is possible to camp sprites at range 5, if you have a bolt to prevent mega bolters from taking them.

4) If a mega bolt fails, you can usually counter bolt if you have one. Setting your army up in such a way that it can't be taken out all in one go is a good strategy if you think you have no hope of avoiding a mega bolt.

5) If a mega bolter is coming close to me, I assume that they have a mega bolt, and plan ahead of time accordingly. Things like casting defensive blobs into the space between the two wizards can be a good choice, or bringing out creatures that can control space.

6) My 1v1 experience tells me that most people don't play for aggressive mega bolts (perhaps caused by me understanding the style enough to counter it, so I don't see it).

Some openings, like turn 1 elves, give the first player an advantage. Finding ways to work around that advantage is one of the crucial steps to become a good defensive player.
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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by Black Leaf » Fri Jan 09, 2015 6:23 pm

Ped209 wrote:and their relative costs I think MegaBolt is the most bang for buck in terms of likelihood of getting it out and being able to use it in a deadly situation.

If I had a choice of that or Goblin horde at the same price I would pick megabolt 100 times out of a 100.


However, the staffs that give you megabolt (zzzap and armoury are arguably some of the least useful when it comes to boosting standard spells with mana. The Chaos staff will allow you to do so with most of your spells, some potentially powerful. If anything, I think the difference between elf squad and goblin horde is more significant.

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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by NoWorries » Fri Jan 09, 2015 6:46 pm

It will be interesting to see how Forgemaster and procedural equipment creation works. I imagine that the best mega spells will come with the smaller or narrowest range of mana boosting and vice versa. I also imagine some staff builds which could sacrifice elements of mana boosting in favor of cheaper mega spells. The potential options are varied and exciting!
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Ped209
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Re: Let's talk about Mega Bolt.

Post by Ped209 » Fri Jan 09, 2015 11:11 pm

Black Leaf wrote:
Ped209 wrote:and their relative costs I think MegaBolt is the most bang for buck in terms of likelihood of getting it out and being able to use it in a deadly situation.

If I had a choice of that or Goblin horde at the same price I would pick megabolt 100 times out of a 100.


However, the staffs that give you megabolt (zzzap and armoury are arguably some of the least useful when it comes to boosting standard spells with mana. The Chaos staff will allow you to do so with most of your spells, some potentially powerful. If anything, I think the difference between elf squad and goblin horde is more significant.


yeah true, (except Neutral staff which also has bolt but a very high need for boosting creatures as no alignment swing help). Magic attacks/weapons don't often need that much boosting with a little bit of a swing.

agree about elf squad and goblin horde, would take elves every time although often find they are more useful for posing a threat than actually doing much killing, they often have pretty low %'s.
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