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MarkM

Vengence 2017 - Stats

113 posts in this topic

I ran a one-way ANOVA test comparing the teams played to number of wins. What this does is it tries to determine if any teams have means that are different from others. That may seem obvious, but we're talking "different" in a statistical sense, so the mean we get is actually a range in which we're 95% positive the actual mean falls. If those ranges overlap the mean of all of the data - in this case, 3.48 (It would be 3.5 but for some drops) - then none are statistically different enough to draw conclusions.

To put it in proper terms;

H0: The teams do not have differing means.
H1: The teams do have differing means.

Here's the output I got from Minitab;

vengeance_ANOVA.JPG

First off, note the P-value (the number under "P"). That represents our confidence that our hypothesis (H1) is correct. That's compared to an alpha, which in cases like this would probably be 0.05 = meaning we're confident our model explains at least 95% or more of the data. If our P is less than our A, we reject the null hypothesis (H0). P=0.005 < A=0.05, so we're strongly confident that there is a difference.

Masons's mean-asterisk is pretty much right on the nose, and you can see only two teams do not intersect with that - Hunters and Alchemists (Engineers and Fish are close, though). That means there are three groups of Teams - Alchemists, Hunters, and Everyone Else. Alchemists are definitely above the mean, Hunters below.

As before I want to stress the limits of my statistical analysis. First off, I played fast and loose - if I was writing a formal analysis I would have gone through a bunch of steps to ensure the data was properly distributed and so on. Here I just skipped straight to the meat. Second, I fear that the sample size is too small to really be drawing conclusions - especially in the case of, say, Masons. I think I'd need four or five times as much data to be sure it wasn't anomalous. Finally, this still doesn't account for player skill; the model is just trying to see if number of wins might be a function of team selection assuming all other variables are equal. I could maybe derive an individual player skill factor similar to what I did upthread and run a two-way anova, see if say skill+team could predict wins, or wins+skill could predict team...

EDIT: As it turns out, since my "player skill rating" is derived from wins; essentially they're too similar to run a two-way ANOVA. You'd need something like a proper SR and we don't have one of those.

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16 hours ago, S_A_T_S said:

Michael Coomber chose Butchers at the last minute cos he wanted to try something different and have fun - he normally plays Fish - and played James Long in the final, possibly playing on the top table for both the last rounds (I can't remember where he was round 6). Does this mean Butchers are forgiving too? Maybe they need a nerf (Fillet does).

Also, as has been said, the winner and wooden spoon 100% and 0% will skew the results somewhat. Why not look at the actual top 15? I was 3rd highest placed Alchemist at 13th (James Long 1st, Steve Easton 6th) - Engineers were 3rd, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th & 12th. 6 Engineers in top 15 to 4 Alchemists. Look at just the top 10, with 2 Alchs and 4 Engineers - 100% more Engineers in the top 10. Even better, look at the number of Fishermen - the stats at the top of the thread say Alchemists had highest win ratio, Fish 2nd (57.1%) and Engineers 3rd (56.5%). How does that explain why there was only 1 single Fish player in the top 15, compared to 6 Engineers.

What are people trying to prove with the win ratios? That playing Alchs and Fish make it easier to win/be placed higher in events? Bollocks. Just play a team you enjoy and have fun.

*Sigh* I wasn't trying to highlight any player as weak or strong or comment on finishing positions. All I think I was trying to say is that after yet another tournament, Hunters seem to be lagging behind and Alchemists seem to be ahead of the curve. I'm not saying anything else. Of course it's much more complicated than this - player skill etc. I was just making a comment on the surprising stats that Tiebreak kicked out - I mean 32% vs the mean seemed sad for Hunters. And it can get frustrating when top players say 'yeah, but it's just player skill - they're fine', when that's not what comes out in the stats. I know I have a long way to go with learning Hunters, but I also want to know that the road is pretty close to the same condition as everyone else - not some country track vs the M1.

And I did play Hunters and I did enjoy myself. I just think that some small (not major) thing is missing for them - but I couldn't put my finger on it (Seenah being 0/2) and I am definitely not saying Hunters are duff etc etc. I love Hunters - they have been my favourite team since release. I love their background, the models, the players. But I don't think it's wrong of me to say I wish they had a slight uplift because they seem to always be at the bottom in these stat things. 

So in conclusion - I think people mistakenly thought I was attacking certain Guilds - I wasn't. I am not saying any team had an easy ride. I am just saying that maybe, like Engineers, Hunters need something. Maybe Heralds is what they needed. But if it isn't I'd rather not have to wait another 1.5 years for that to be found out because we keep having these conversations about Hunters.

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1 hour ago, EpicChris said:

*Sigh* I wasn't trying to highlight any player as weak or strong or comment on finishing positions. All I think I was trying to say is that after yet another tournament, Hunters seem to be lagging behind and Alchemists seem to be ahead of the curve. I'm not saying anything else. Of course it's much more complicated than this - player skill etc. I was just making a comment on the surprising stats that Tiebreak kicked out - I mean 32% vs the mean seemed sad for Hunters. And it can get frustrating when top players say 'yeah, but it's just player skill - they're fine', when that's not what comes out in the stats. I know I have a long way to go with learning Hunters, but I also want to know that the road is pretty close to the same condition as everyone else - not some country track vs the M1.

And I did play Hunters and I did enjoy myself. I just think that some small (not major) thing is missing for them - but I couldn't put my finger on it (Seenah being 0/2) and I am definitely not saying Hunters are duff etc etc. I love Hunters - they have been my favourite team since release. I love their background, the models, the players. But I don't think it's wrong of me to say I wish they had a slight uplift because they seem to always be at the bottom in these stat things. 

So in conclusion - I think people mistakenly thought I was attacking certain Guilds - I wasn't. I am not saying any team had an easy ride. I am just saying that maybe, like Engineers, Hunters need something. Maybe Heralds is what they needed. But if it isn't I'd rather not have to wait another 1.5 years for that to be found out because we keep having these conversations about Hunters.

I agree with most of what you say here, I also feel like Hunters could do with a boost or a more defined 'style' - they certainly need something. My point about Coomber was intended as a counter to what you had said about Steve Easton's experience, and how it may show that the Alchemists are "forgiving" - I was trying to show that others had very similar experiences to Steve's with different teams, not just the Alchemists. I certainly didn't intend my post to be seen as having a go at you, and I'm sorry if it did.

Using statistics to bash/complain about teams (in general/this thread, not you personally) seems ironic considering I heard or was involved in a few discussions over the Vengeance weekend, including with Mat and Rich, where we talked about how over analysis and obsession with 'optimal choices' and reliance on stats and perceived 'correct' opinions based on them is exactly what people dislike in other tourney games like 40k, WarmaHordes and Infinity, and how the lack (or at least significant lesser amount) of that in Guild Ball is one of the major appeals of the game. As we see in politics, stats will be presented based on the concious or unconscious bias of the person presenting them, hence the phrase "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."

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7 minutes ago, S_A_T_S said:

Using statistics to bash/complain about teams (in general/this thread, not you personally) seems ironic considering I heard or was involved in a few discussions over the Vengeance weekend, including with Mat and Rich, where we talked about how over analysis and obsession with 'optimal choices' and reliance on stats and perceived 'correct' opinions based on them is exactly what people dislike in other tourney games like 40k, WarmaHordes and Infinity, and how the lack (or at least significant lesser amount) of that in Guild Ball is one of the major appeals of the game. As we see in politics, stats will be presented based on the concious or unconscious bias of the person presenting them, hence the phrase "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."

Seems to me like these conversations are representative of the conscious or unconscious bias of the person participating in them, ie. you ;)

Finding 'optimal' choices is part of what makes an imperfect balance interesting for many people. When the meta settles (which invariably happens), some choices will be optimal over others at fulfilling a desired purpose in the majority of situations. The system thus has to be shaken up a bit to make things interesting again, moving slowly and ever closer towards that impossible goal of 'perfect balance'.
An OPD change is one example of such a change. Rules errata, balance errata, new releases, or even new players and new ideas on how things should be played are different ways to change a meta.

That aside, I think the takeaway message with all this is that one would have a much easier time demonstrating that Alchs are above the curve and Hunters are significantly below it using all data available (not just stats, but also player experience, card reviews/analysis, theoryball, etc. etc. - the mountain of evidence), rather than the opposite. Not that it's not possible to make such an argument, but it would be achieved through tricks, omission or obfuscation of some sort (like in politics). Data is inherently meaningless, but that doesn't mean it can be interpreted into any information whatsoever.

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29 minutes ago, S_A_T_S said:

Using statistics to bash/complain about teams (in general/this thread, not you personally) seems ironic considering I heard or was involved in a few discussions over the Vengeance weekend, including with Mat and Rich, where we talked about how over analysis and obsession with 'optimal choices' and reliance on stats and perceived 'correct' opinions based on them is exactly what people dislike in other tourney games like 40k, WarmaHordes and Infinity, and how the lack (or at least significant lesser amount) of that in Guild Ball is one of the major appeals of the game. As we see in politics, stats will be presented based on the concious or unconscious bias of the person presenting them, hence the phrase "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."

People might dislike it, but its kind of a crap in one hand and wish in the other kind of situation.  You can want statistics to not matter all you want, but at the end of the day if there's an imbalance that gives a competitive advantage, wishing it didn't matter doesn't change who's on top of the podium.  

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1 hour ago, S_A_T_S said:

Using statistics to bash/complain about teams (in general/this thread, not you personally) seems ironic considering I heard or was involved in a few discussions over the Vengeance weekend, including with Mat and Rich, where we talked about how over analysis and obsession with 'optimal choices' and reliance on stats and perceived 'correct' opinions based on them is exactly what people dislike in other tourney games like 40k, WarmaHordes and Infinity, and how the lack (or at least significant lesser amount) of that in Guild Ball is one of the major appeals of the game.

I think the irony evaporates if you consider why there is a lack of that in GuildBall, and why it's present in other games -- namely that in those games making a suboptimal choice means you'll lose with high confidence, i.e. the spread of strength in choices is high.

 

The spread in GB isn't so high -- a skilled player can win most matches against a less-skilled player even with the "less optimal" guild choices.  These stats indicate (albeit fairly weakly) that that is becoming less the case and that the spread is becoming worrisome.

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5 minutes ago, MilitaryCoo said:

The spread in GB isn't so high -- a skilled player can win most matches against a less-skilled player even with the "less optimal" guild choices.  These stats indicate (albeit fairly weakly) that that is becoming less the case and that the spread is becoming worrisome.

I wouldn't say "becoming", but rather "has been so far in S3"; "becoming" sorta implies things are getting worse, and I don't agree with that. The OPD probably brought down Fish a peg, and we'll just have to wait and see what sort of tweaks SFG drops in the next few months for Alchs and Hunters.

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To some extent that's true, but its also worth mentioning that in Guild Ball there's also generally less choice to optimize.  To some extent I refer to the selection pool itself, but the system of everything being 1 "point" also limits how things are valued.  Players are generally worth taking or not; you never have situations where say; Boiler, Brisket and Shank are really good, but add up to 101 points so you have to drop Boiler and Shank for Tenderizer and Meathook to get a player combination that fits in the points limit.  In a lot of games an option could be good, but awkwardly pointed in such a way that the only combination that maths out is with other models that are not worth their points or models that leave you playing under the limit; effectively making that model overcosted in either scenario even if its undercosted in a vacuum.

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28 minutes ago, LunarSol said:

To some extent that's true, but its also worth mentioning that in Guild Ball there's also generally less choice to optimize.  To some extent I refer to the selection pool itself, but the system of everything being 1 "point" also limits how things are valued.  Players are generally worth taking or not; you never have situations where say; Boiler, Brisket and Shank are really good, but add up to 101 points so you have to drop Boiler and Shank for Tenderizer and Meathook to get a player combination that fits in the points limit.  In a lot of games an option could be good, but awkwardly pointed in such a way that the only combination that maths out is with other models that are not worth their points or models that leave you playing under the limit; effectively making that model overcosted in either scenario even if its undercosted in a vacuum.

The "no points cost but opportunity cost" is actually something I really like about GB. There is a wealth of meta game potential as a game grows, I feel.

The closest comparison would be with MOBA and ARTS games like LoL and DotA. Of course, guild/team restrictions make a straight comparison difficult.

I don't follow LoL actively but my understanding is that the balance between heroes at the top competitive level is pretty terrible (something like 40% of all champions get picked/banned in world championships) with a massive skew towards a small pool of heroes. Compared to DotA for example, where at the last International there was something like 95% of heroes picked/banned, still with a noticeable smaller pool of 'meta' heroes but not quite to the same level as LoL. 

Nevertheless, I think the point I want to make is that it is possible to have the 'opportunity cost only' points system be close to balanced, diverse and interesting from a metagame perspective. However, not only does that take a really long time, but it's not an absolute end point. It's a destination that involves continuously moving closer and closer to that dream equilibrium, but never getting there.

 

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I just want to say that I think in the main the S3 balance changes were very very good. They addressed stuff that was getting out of hand. I like the balance in S3. I think SFG have done a great job and deserve our thanks for being on the case. So most Guilds are about equal. 

Hunters & Alchemists though might (and I understand the stats might be inflated etc) be outside this Goldilocks zone. Hunters have just had an infusion so I suspect SFG will be watching them for the rest of the year to see if they are 'fixed' so I don't expect much before SteamCon. Alchemists - well they've had 6 months of data so I suspect they'll wait and see what the OPD changes do so again nothing for several months, maybe SteamCon. 

And I also know there is the dreaded 'Working As Intended' decision they may make. But I hope they decide one way or the other before Farmers as that will further muddy the water. 

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2 hours ago, MilitaryCoo said:

I think the irony evaporates if you consider why there is a lack of that in GuildBall, and why it's present in other games -- namely that in those games making a suboptimal choice means you'll lose with high confidence, i.e. the spread of strength in choices is high.

 

The spread in GB isn't so high -- a skilled player can win most matches against a less-skilled player even with the "less optimal" guild choices.  These stats indicate (albeit fairly weakly) that that is becoming less the case and that the spread is becoming worrisome.

I think that the only change here is one of perception. Past data and experience indicates that Guild Ball always has been a somewhat stratified game with definite top tier teams and definite bottom tier teams, it's just that these periods were only visible in hindsight or at the final conclusion of their 'reign'. (E.g., season 1 Union and season 2 Morticians.) The difference now is that it's become more visible and more accepted that it is the case, not that the game is actually becoming more stratified. In fact I would definitely argue that the game has become consistently less stratified with each balance change, but that doesn't change the fact that it is still stratified and it's getting more and more obvious as the community gets better at the game.

It's still less stratified of a game than its competitors in the genre, that's for sure, but we're slowly coming to realize that the chest-thumping "it doesn't matter what guild you play, honest!" sentiment is not entirely true.

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1 hour ago, Khift said:

I think that the only change here is one of perception. Past data and experience indicates that Guild Ball always has been a somewhat stratified game with definite top tier teams and definite bottom tier teams, it's just that these periods were only visible in hindsight or at the final conclusion of their 'reign'. (E.g., season 1 Union and season 2 Morticians.) The difference now is that it's become more visible and more accepted that it is the case, not that the game is actually becoming more stratified. In fact I would definitely argue that the game has become consistently less stratified with each balance change, but that doesn't change the fact that it is still stratified and it's getting more and more obvious as the community gets better at the game.

It's still less stratified of a game than its competitors in the genre, that's for sure, but we're slowly coming to realize that the chest-thumping "it doesn't matter what guild you play, honest!" sentiment is not entirely true.

I think you are right in that analysis of how quickly it has become stratified. I think that might be a direct result of the fact that guildball is gaining popularity each year, and with more sample games and think tanks going on then it is easier to identify. Along this line, I don't think sticking to a once a year balance up at steamcon is an acceptable solution because there is a lot more data, discussion, and realization of balance going on. Especially now that they are really beginning to ramp up their comptetive tournament scene with so many qualifiers and such. 

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More players and guilds naturally create imbalance. Its just more variables to juggle and less holes in a team

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12 hours ago, Siberys said:

I ran a one-way ANOVA test comparing the teams played to number of wins. What this does is it tries to determine if any teams have means that are different from others. That may seem obvious, but we're talking "different" in a statistical sense, so the mean we get is actually a range in which we're 95% positive the actual mean falls. If those ranges overlap the mean of all of the data - in this case, 3.48 (It would be 3.5 but for some drops) - then none are statistically different enough to draw conclusions.

To put it in proper terms;

H0: The teams do not have differing means.
H1: The teams do have differing means.

Here's the output I got from Minitab;

vengeance_ANOVA.JPG

First off, note the P-value (the number under "P"). That represents our confidence that our hypothesis (H1) is correct. That's compared to an alpha, which in cases like this would probably be 0.05 = meaning we're confident our model explains at least 95% or more of the data. If our P is less than our A, we reject the null hypothesis (H0). P=0.005 < A=0.05, so we're strongly confident that there is a difference.

Masons's mean-asterisk is pretty much right on the nose, and you can see only two teams do not intersect with that - Hunters and Alchemists (Engineers and Fish are close, though). That means there are three groups of Teams - Alchemists, Hunters, and Everyone Else. Alchemists are definitely above the mean, Hunters below.

As before I want to stress the limits of my statistical analysis. First off, I played fast and loose - if I was writing a formal analysis I would have gone through a bunch of steps to ensure the data was properly distributed and so on. Here I just skipped straight to the meat. Second, I fear that the sample size is too small to really be drawing conclusions - especially in the case of, say, Masons. I think I'd need four or five times as much data to be sure it wasn't anomalous. Finally, this still doesn't account for player skill; the model is just trying to see if number of wins might be a function of team selection assuming all other variables are equal. I could maybe derive an individual player skill factor similar to what I did upthread and run a two-way anova, see if say skill+team could predict wins, or wins+skill could predict team...

EDIT: As it turns out, since my "player skill rating" is derived from wins; essentially they're too similar to run a two-way ANOVA. You'd need something like a proper SR and we don't have one of those.

Wow, it kind of answers my question as to why using hunters against fish and alchs feels like loosing by default.

LOL, hate you math

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One thing I had not thought about the whole "no points cost" element of the game. It certainly does make the choices more definite, as it stands there is 0 reason not to take Vitriol for example, as when compared to a player like Mercury, etc she has just much more to bring for no other cost.

From whoever I speak to Alchemists are perceived as the top team, with fish, engineers and union in the could happily take a 128 player tournament win bracket. The rest seems to be just good, with Hunters still perceived in the lower tier.

I personally think we will see a change to Midas (The heroic giving armor, as well as his crazy good toolkit he brings may just be too much) to maybe reduce to from his current "I don't care if I have to pick my captain first because it's Midas"

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23 hours ago, Frostmane said:

Completely arbitrary but interesting point: Jordan has lost two competitive S3 games: one AS Hunters and one TO Alchemists. Take from that what you will.

Who was he playing against?

 

On 14/05/2017 at 11:28 PM, Napoleon said:

Tac 5 midas here we come

Would that have much effect? How many attacks does Midas do in your games? For me, he either wants :<: on 1, :><: on 2, or I'll charge if I want the :>>::<<:, which TAC 5 will have only a small effect on. Sprint/Charge for MP, Supershot, Shoot (probably chuck in the Heroic for safety) - all he wants. The occasional Lure of Gold I tend to use if I don't have the ball/can't score, or need to save someone (when Midas doesn't have the ball/can't score).

 

11 hours ago, RTOAHB said:

One thing I had not thought about the whole "no points cost" element of the game. It certainly does make the choices more definite, as it stands there is 0 reason not to take Vitriol for example, as when compared to a player like Mercury, etc she has just much more to bring for no other cost.

From whoever I speak to Alchemists are perceived as the top team, with fish, engineers and union in the could happily take a 128 player tournament win bracket. The rest seems to be just good, with Hunters still perceived in the lower tier.

I personally think we will see a change to Midas (The heroic giving armor, as well as his crazy good toolkit he brings may just be too much) to maybe reduce to from his current "I don't care if I have to pick my captain first because it's Midas"

In S1 Alchemists were seen as a tough team to play as (might have changed as we got closer to S2). Kat and Mercury were not great at all, and most lists ended up with Midas, Flask, Vitriol, Decimate, Mist and Hemlocke (sometimes not even Vitriol) - essentially, as they said, Midas was a second Union captain. It got much better in S2 when we got Smoke and Union got nerfed, but Midas was still a super-solo captain. S3's revamp, in my opinion, made Midas much less super-solo and into far more of a team player, with less ability to kill or dominate the board. I don't think S3 Midas is any more of a problem than Fillet or Corsair, but I will say that the one model that really helps out a team of Alchemists and works really well with all of them, generating MP, doling out AoE's and manipulating the board, is Harry.

Midas and Vitriol can score well, but getting that 3rd goal is damned hard, so we need kills. vKat can do that, but he needs set up to do it in one activation or he is easy fodder. oKat can do it, but he is easy to control and needs certain conditions (burning, within 1", 5+ hits) to do it. Vitriol can, to some extent, but not as well or reliably or as Momentously, as those 2. Harry can do it, and he sets up oKat, vKat and Vitriol, and manipulates the board with fire, :>>: and :KD:. If I had to play with Mercury instead of Harry, I would have such a harder time. Decimate would have to come back in and she doesn't have anywhere near the control Harry does. Alchemists might be good, but it's Harry that is lifting them higher - he does everything they want, and fills in some gaps, in a single model. If you are that convinced Alchemists are broken (which I don't agree with personally), I'd say the place to start is Harry.

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2 minutes ago, S_A_T_S said:

Would that have much effect? How many attacks does Midas do in your games? For me, he either wants :<: on 1, :><: on 2, or I'll charge if I want the :>>::<<:, which TAC 5 will have only a small effect on. Sprint/Charge for MP, Supershot, Shoot (probably chuck in the Heroic for safety) - all he wants. The occasional Lure of Gold I tend to use if I don't have the ball/can't score, or need to save someone (when Midas doesn't have the ball/can't score).

You would be surprised how often you fail to get 2 net results with TAC 5. You actually have a coin-flip's chance to get that against 4+/1 (50%), 54% against 5+/0 and 46% against 3+/2. Outside help can of course make it more likely again, but dropping Midas down to TAC 5 would mean that he can no longer take that push-dodge for granted and that would be a pretty sizable downgrade at least in my opinion.

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25 minutes ago, S_A_T_S said:

Who was he playing against?

Players who I would not expect Jordan to lose to very frequently. My point is that they certainly gained advantage because of the Alchemists and Hunters team choices (positive for them, negative for him, respectively).

Also this is a dice game and I'm mildly trolling.

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I don't get the whole Jordan Nach thing, trying to look at balance from one player seems odd.

Anyhow, the age old balance of player skill / teams being good seems to be thrown in a lot here. At what point does a team become too good that a skilled player does too well with it, or at what point does a skilled player become so skilled he can do well with any team.

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8 minutes ago, RTOAHB said:

I don't get the whole Jordan Nach thing, trying to look at balance from one player seems odd.

Must be pretty weird for him too :D 

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I think Alchemists definitely seem to be doing well, although they're clearly not unstoppable.

Hunters I think people should give a little longer to. While the results at Vengeance weren't great, it's a pretty small sample size - if you look at the scores since The Heralds were released on BO (currently missing the Vengeance results) you can see that over this small sample, they're showing a dramatic improvement to a 50% win rate.

That improvement may not bear out (pun intended) but currently, it looks like they're actually running quite close to what you'd probably expect / want a team to run at over the last month. More results are needed to see if that's just people not knowing what they do or lots of people trying the new shiny or whatever, but it needs a bit of a bedding in period...

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I agree we need to see the impact of the Heralds - it would be foolish to make a knee jerk now. However I think a some of that success is people adjusting to Skatha and her threat extension and goal stuff. People will adapt. That might bring Hunters up - but I still believe the old issues about Theron (low DMG playbook), Seenah (0/2 but not justifying it) and Zarola etc still deserve some attention. I mean look what was done to Engineers.

Alchemists - Midas, Vitriol and Kat1 (maybe Kat2) and Harry need looking at - all above the curve I think. People tend to focus on Midas, but it's his whole team that is crazy good. But that's just my opinion.

Either way, I'm sure SFG are processing the data and after UK Nationals we should have some interesting comparison data to Vengeance.

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18 hours ago, S_A_T_S said:

Alchemists might be good, but it's Harry that is lifting them higher - he does everything they want, and fills in some gaps, in a single model. If you are that convinced Alchemists are broken (which I don't agree with personally), I'd say the place to start is Harry.

This is actually a good point that's easy to overlook.  In game I'm constantly surprised at how good Harry is and after game I'm always surprised how many benefits he brings I forgot to use.  Midas and Vitriol definitely have a similar problem though and vKat adds on it with a good heaping of that classic "cost is irrelevant if it wins you the game" problem.  Funny enough, I've been contemplating how similar VP ends up working out to the way life does in Magic.  vKat certainly feeds into those comparisons.

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