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JacctheInsomniac

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JacctheInsomniac last won the day on September 23

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  1. JacctheInsomniac

    Free Cities Draft Poll

    Really disappointed we have no one looking at Knuckles. Hoping we get to nab Edge from the Morticians though.
  2. JacctheInsomniac

    Here's why I don't like new Esters

    Eh, different people play the game for different reasons. For me it was because the tactile experience of moving models across the table was wholly unique to my gaming experience. I was just explaining why Empowered Voice had a stronger thematic resonance than Aria. It runs parallel to how it provides more evocative gameplay, but isn't reliant on it.
  3. JacctheInsomniac

    Here's why I don't like new Esters

    The way it appears to me. Aria only ever does one thing. So she's singing, but she will only ever sing the one song. Empowering Voice changes, it's a different song, a different pace that spurs her team on in different ways based on what they need to hear. And It Isn't Over Until, is her moment, where her voice overpowers everything else on the pitch. She can make an ally, or herself the star of the show or she can radiate her voice outwards, inspiring her entire team. Guild Ball isn't really great at capturing flavor through gameplay imo, but Empowering Voice was pretty solid thematic play, whereas Aria is just... sortof another support aura.
  4. JacctheInsomniac

    Here's why I don't like new Esters

    Perhaps she could've used instead, a character play that immediately activated a squaddie's heroic play? Or maybe Empowered Voice could've moved to be her own Heroic that doesn't benefit from Aria so she could retain some semblance of her old playstyle. Like I said, I don't greatly dislike new Ester's but the notion that Empowered Voice provided too many choices leaves me scratching my head.
  5. JacctheInsomniac

    Here's why I don't like new Esters

    Okay, so before I start with my main argument proper I wanna clarify a few things. 1. I'm a Hunter player. I don't play Brewers. I grew quite fond of seeing a friend play Brewers as he was getting into the game, but overall I have no horse in this race. By my estimation I think this is a good and bad thing. I'm not particularly biased for the old Esters I never played, but I'm also not familiar with how the Brewers play aside from knocking someone down and laying into them. 2. I'm not speaking with regards to power. In fact, I actually think new Esters is a little bit stronger although we can't truly know until all the changes are out. I don't hold it against you if you're excited about her. I'm gonna be making the argument that new Ester's is badly designed. In the same way your favorite bag might have a really finicky zipper or a dangly strap that occasionally catches on something. You can still like it and use it, and it might end up being something you don't even notice. 3. I'm discussing old and new Esters in a vacuum and this is deliberate. I feel that the points I make are valid whether or not she's viewed in the context of the rest of the guild or whatever changes could be on their way. In fact, this isn't so much to say, "new Ester's is badly designed," so much as, "old Esters was much better designed," with the primary reason being this little snippet that appeared in her reveal. "Aria is the replacement for Esters’ old Empowered Voice abilities and legendary play. Those mechanics just asked so many questions of players. Which buff to choose, when to use it alongside when the best time is to activate Esters, when to use her legendary play, which abilities to choose then, which models to use them on and when. SO many questions that just made Esters extremely tactically complex to use. All of that has been cut out and replaced with Aria." Personally, I find this paragraph ridiculous. Esters's Empowered Voice asked a lot of questions, but nowhere near too many. In fact, I think it was an almost perfect amount. Damage? Goals? Defense? Do you superbuff one model or spread it around? Does Esters use it for herself to avoid interruption or use it on a squaddie for a higher potential payoff? Do you use it early and risk tipping your hand? Hold her activation to threaten and make your opponent react to you? Or hold onto it and see where the game goes? These types of questions are a goldmine for good gameplay. A small set of tools with a wide range of applications. Risks, tradeoffs, rewards, and counterplay. I know I'm just using game design buzzwords but I can't help but feel like Ester's never got a fair shake. I like the removal of Fire Blast and Blast Earth, I felt they were traps more often than they weren't, and while I think the new playbook is stronger, more was removed from it than was added, and I think that's emblematic of how Esters changed overall. New Ester's Aria, feels... boring. Strong. But Boring. In Game Design there are several kinds of choices, but three bad ones come to mind. Meaningless choices, obvious choices, and wrong/optimal choices. Meaningless Choices aren't bad as much as they are... well meaningless. Also included under this umbrella are illusions of choice. Wrong/Optimal Choices are when a certain choice is objectively better or worse than another. It's the difference between a sword that does 10 damage and a sword that does 5. In a game of information and adaptive strategies, choices will frequently turn out wrong, but the kind of choice I'm referring to can be determined wrong before it's even made. They are honestly pretty rare. Games will avoid them by using non-comparables. Snared versus Gut and String is a good example. Both lower defense and movement, one can be cleared by the opponent, one can't but is cleared at the end of turn. Theoretically if you had the choice between Gut and String or Snare on the same playbook result, you'd find a compelling reason to take either. But if you had a choice between Stagger, or Gut and String on that same result one of those choices is wrong. Finally obvious choices, are the ones to which there is no thought involved in. They're almost non-choices except that maybe you have to remember to make them. My point in bringing this up is to make the argument that Aria presents a choice that is elements of all of the above simultaneously. If in Aria -> Use Heroic. It's called out directly in the article, but new Ester's Aria is functionally just an extra 4mp per turn in the best case scenario, and it's not that that's weak by any means. In fact, I don't have any problem with new Ester's on her own merits. I just maintain that old Esters had a much better gameplay conceit. Perhaps I wouldn't have taken the time to write this if the reason for changing Esters was that she was simply weak, or other changes were coming to Brewers that would make her too powerful as she existed, or even that the designers just didn't like Empowered Voice themselves. But the stated reason is that old Esters was too complex, to which I can respond only with bafflement. I'm not here to say that Steamforged should feel bad about the model they delivered, Game Design is hard. Also if it seems like I'm being unnecessarily defensive I saw people complaining about people complaining about Estesr and once you get to the metamoan phase there's never any telling how discourse will shake out. I'm just here to share my neurotic designer brain musings. I think it's also worth saying that I'm being a stickler because S4 has been so relentlessly hype that I was kinda surprised to see something revealed I genuinely disliked. Could be cause the Hunters have gotten nothing but buffs and lateral changes. I guess I'm having a hard time ending this, can't think of anything else to say than these are my thoughts on new Esters. Hope you enjoyed the read!
  6. JacctheInsomniac

    Traps mechanics changing.

    Really not a fan, I liked each trap marker being different and unique to the players who placed them. Not only does this make my 40mm net marker useless, but it means new hunters will only ever have the same version of traps, and that's really really boring. It looks like an overall buff, but this isn't one I'm excited about. Also does look like they're deliberately cracking down on Jaecar, I'm not exactly opposed I just wish they'd have let me keep my pitfall marker.
  7. JacctheInsomniac

    Hunters Guild Ball Draft Prep

    In theory a solid strategy but I'm probably gonna vote based on flavor anyway regardless of what changes come. Obviously a bit early to say but right now my vote goes for Edge because, let's be real. Aside from the spooks we're the edgiest guild in the Free Cities. also she's cute
  8. JacctheInsomniac

    S4 Skatha

    May I just say... YYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's as if SFG looked at every problem I had with Skatha and were like, "Yea, you're right." Restrictive AOE Placement? Yep. Abysmal Playbook? Yep. Abysmal Movement? Yep. Cold Snap being hilariously bad compared to other condition AOEs? ......we'll meet you halfway. She's still fragile to take down, her AOE can still benefit opponents, but now I can see what she's actually being rewarded with. Her movement tricks are insane and she actually has the movespeed to function without having to blow all of them! This is an exciting time to be a Hunter.
  9. JacctheInsomniac

    Scapel S4

    Purely on paper, I feel like the loss of Slippery and the low dodges on her playbook are going to hurt more than they seem like it at first, while her new Second Wind is much better imo. In fairness, it seems like she has plenty of options to bring new targets to her if she eats a bad counterattack. Now if only I could get my hands on a Scalpel model without dropping 100 on a new box.
  10. JacctheInsomniac

    Theron Origins Dramatic Reading

    So So I decided to do a personal project and took it upon myself to do a dramatic reading of the Theron Origin story so that I could show it to friends when I was gushing about how good these stories are. Still have to record and edit Parts 3 through 5 so any constructive criticism is most valuable now.
  11. JacctheInsomniac

    Gut and string nerfed.

    Jaecar getting nerfed might be good to let some power go into the other players on the team.
  12. JacctheInsomniac

    Indirect S4 Egret spoiler

    I like the buff, but I still hope they look at slightly increasing Egret's damage ceiling rather than making her a more reliable striker. Most striker's are just varying degrees of the same stats, but Egret's flurry really sets her apart and makes her uniquely *hunter*.
  13. JacctheInsomniac

    vCalculus

    She feels like she punishes you for putting conditions out onto the alchemists by not only clearing them for free, but gaining a benefit out of them.
  14. JacctheInsomniac

    Possibly tweeks in S4

    Usually I just summarize to say her input/output ratio is off. She needs too much setup and offers too little payoff, especially when compared to the other guilds' Furious models, but the math always helps.
  15. JacctheInsomniac

    Possibly tweeks in S4

    Honestly, I think ALL guilds deserve substantial buffs, but the Hunter's are starting to feel like a strong team, and it is a bit worrying because as mentioned the only models who've really been addressed are Theron and Hearne while the bulk of the team still sits in this place where you're really not excited to ever take them. It's hard to buff them without then seeing how those buffs would make the guild the top-tier, but then to address that I think we'd need to buff the other guilds, which I'm all for but I haven't played them as much to understand their weaknesses so I just sortof have to adsorb which models aren't really used and suggest they be buffed, which is also a delicate balance because if they perform their role better than other models then you've just upped the power without upping the choices and plenty of other pitfalls. I guess that's more a conversation about balance as a whole rather than Hunters but shrug
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