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Lemminkäinen

Will GB die because of the Minor Guilds

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8 minutes ago, Mootaz said:

The problem (from SFG standpoint) with providing the overlapping players as singles or a separate pack is that it makes it less likely for these players to branch into the corresponding major guild. Not only because they don't have to buy the main guild box(es), but also if they buy them as singles, they will be reluctant to buy the major boxes as they "already paid for some of the content".

Which means it's not a very intuitive system as it is. :)

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I think the Minor Guilds not only add breadth to the game but give Steamforged the opportunity to get better control of the Major Guilds depth. 

By eliminating the Union options from the Guilds it makes future design space for things like new Captains better since they will only have access to players specific to their Guild and not Union players that are multi-faction.

As always these are just the opinions of a grumpy old gamer - your mileage may vary.

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1 hour ago, Mootaz said:

The problem (from SFG standpoint) with providing the overlapping players as singles or a separate pack is that it makes it less likely for these players to branch into the corresponding major guild. Not only because they don't have to buy the main guild box(es), but also if they buy them as singles, they will be reluctant to buy the major boxes as they "already paid for some of the content".

Agreed. I'm hoping that they eventually package the major guild resculpts for sale. Even if it was a webstore only vault thing. I think people would at least be interested in picking up the extra sculpts even if they had the the full major guild. Only way I see them getting around this problem. 

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On 4/6/2018 at 12:28 AM, tehlon said:

I do think it may be important to further define what you consider "rules bloat". Are we talking core rules or every drop of ink? I think you'll find the core rules of Guild Ball have changed surprisingly little since it's inception. Sure you have things like plot cards, the OPD, card erratas.  In fact, the core rules have changed so little I can specifically tell you the 4 things which changed from season 2 to season 3 in a short sentence. They changed Mascot VPs, added Tap-in, added home-crowd, and altered Icy-Sponge levels. It's now been almost a year and a half since those changes, so I think it is safe to say Guild Ball has a very established and static set of Core rules. It does sound like we will see a reasonable revision in season 4, but I'd venture to guess they make updates on the fringes again.

This leads me to consider you define every additional card to contribute to "rules bloat". I do think it is worth repeating open source / freedom of information cards really help with this. I know I'll see a rare model sometimes and be like "Hey, how exactly does Locus's pull in thing work again?". I don't think there is anything wrong with that, and it's certainly a plus that SF really seems to love and promote 3rd party card apps. I think that is a big plus for the game over a codex and hopefully trims down the feeling of "bloat". If a new model comes out, welp, update your GB app of choice. You don't need to torrent a PDF or buy a text book. Another item I mentioned earlier, which I think is worth repeating is players in this game tend to follow some sort of template. I doubt anyone with 6-12 games under their belt is going to see a new card and just have literally no idea what the model accomplishes on the pitch.

The core rules aren't bloated as you note - their evolution has been very gradual.

But I do consider additional cards as new rules and getting a large number of them to be bloat. Now, "a large number" is naturally extremely subjective but the Minor guilds will add about 50% to the number of profiles in GB which I hope makes "a large number" under most denominations, wouldn't you agree?

I posit that in order to be competitive in GB you need to have a pretty good understanding of an opposing line-up and that basically means that you need to be familiar with most of their players. If there's more than two models that you have never faced before, you're at a distinct disadvantage, I think.

And just facing a model once isn't really enough to get you familiar with them since the synergies in GB are very deep and skill is such an important factor to gameplay. Most models can do many things and be utilized in several different ways (and I'm not talking trivial stuff like "this beater models also has a 3/6 Kick stat" but more involved things that usually have to do with Character plays and such) and you need to keep yourself familiar with all of this stuff (if you meet a Guild every two years, you won't get very familiar with them).

And I do believe that that's what ultimately killed Malifaux around here. There was just too much stuff to keep up with and keep in active memory. It became too much of a burden and too much like a second job keeping up to date. And if you didn't keep up to date and someone else did, then you lost as the skill disparity grew ever more pronounced.

And I feel that Minor Guilds represent a far greater leap in complexity than anything that has ever happened in Malifaux and on top of that I consider GB in general more skill-intensive and more cerebrally taxing than Malifaux. YMMV.

3 hours ago, EpicChris said:

How is this topic still running?!?

Do you think that it shouldn't be running?

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On ‎4‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 7:55 AM, Lemminkäinen said:

Will this make GB completely impenetrable to newbies?

 

On ‎4‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 2:19 PM, Lemminkäinen said:

We had lots of people playing a dozen games or so then just fade away.

 

2 hours ago, Lemminkäinen said:

I posit that in order to be competitive in GB

 

I think this conversation has sufficiently evolved to warrant a recap. We're talking about different groups of people as we progress.

New shoppers - people looking to spend money and get into the game. I don't think minor guilds are going to stop these folks from perusing guild ball at all. New flashy things, more pre-assembled plastics, more choices. Net Positive.

Rookie players - A dozen or less games under their belt. Still exploring and learning play styles. These folks might find the game a bit more intimidating when they realize the breadth of models available. That said, this is the honeymoon period and learning new things is cool. I don't think minors should have a huge impact here. Guild ball is not a "Gotcha" game by design. I don't think minor guilds are all the sudden going to make new players feel they can't get better. Net Neutral.

Competitive Hopefuls - I do think there is a plateau in Guild Ball and I do think the release of minor guild's may make that plateau a little bit steeper. However, minor guilds are merely a small part of that equation. Understanding Patterns and recognizing board states is going to be far more important that knowing a specific rule on a specific card. Sure, the first time Zarola hit me with a UPM I was a bit salty, but I never forget she has it now. Did I rage quit the game because of it? No. Is it too much to keep up with? No. Folks looking to break in to the competitive scene need to realize the only thing that is going to prepare you for higher level opponents is practice. This is true with everything in life. If a player expects to get good fast they need to re-evaluate their expectations. Potential Net Negative, but more to do with individual attitudes.

Top Table caliber players - These folks have already put in the work to learn the deep strategy. A player will look at a new card and have a solid feel for how that model will perform on the pitch before ever rolling dice. They've likely played the same teams so many times minor guilds are going to be a very refreshing change in pace. Net positive.

 

In Summary, I think it is worth taking a look at your local scene and understanding where folks are. Especially for pundits such as myself. The most important thing a community leader can do are build hype, set expectations, and help folks work through their frustrations. Minors are coming and they are going to be awesome. It's up to us how we deliver that information to our player base.

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@tehlon Very well said.

 

As a top level player im excited for the new minor teams, for me they add additional depth and help fill holes in the major teams in the most part, allow more individuality in picking and playing a team in how you want to as you have 2 more options to choose from. I do forsee a shift in the meta and this is going to make the WTC super exciting and how teams predict and counter this in their practice and team composition. 

 

I would also agree that just by looking at a card i can generally understand the impact and synergies and have a plan on how to play them well or against them which i can translate to the pitch.

 

Ultimately your opponent has upto 10 players, when playing i look at their roster and anyone that im unsure of i refresh myself with their card and then this allows me to counter pick etc and play the game.

 

Competative gaming doesnt come down to memorizing a card but as you correctly say, understanding the board state and making informed decisions from that to pressure your opponent in regards to board position/clock/vp. Yes Guildball punishes bad decisions/positioning errors....why shouldn't it. I feel that guildball is a very well balanced and highly competative game that rewards skill and decision making, in a way similar to chess but with more rng and cool toys.

 

I personally don't feel the extra couple of models is going to cause the game to implode and i disagree on rules bloat. As has been said card rules follow a similar pattern and this makes them easy to understand in the most part and allows players familiar with the game to have an understanding of what a model might be capable of doing.

 

In regards to new players....i think additional teams with different themes and playstyles might then appeal to people if the existing ones dont. 

 

As you say, its how we portray this information and welcome people into the community. For me the more players the better

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Growth will always happen in a game until it is laid off. It is simply in any companys and SFGs interest to promote sales, and in mini games that means new models. 

Sure the major guild crossover models should be from one box, but we are not even there yet. I give SFG the benefit of doubt at this time. They might have a solution planned. 

I like the minor guild mechanic as a 2-for-1 solution, giving the major guild new toys, getting major guilds off the union chain, and the creation of a new guild with a new take on things. All in one solution. 

As for the pace, I believe the increased pace is largely due to the size of the commitment that minors reflect, and so that they can get union cut off from the majors as soon as possible (that is the most fair to everyone too). ~2 minors a year would lead us to about 4 years (about as long as since the companys start up!) or so into the future before all the minors were out. 

Even though the growth means more to get into for new players, I don't think that is the major issue whether a player enjoys the game or stays in the game.

All the tournaments I've played in there have always been a very friendly and laid back atmosphere, even at something like Vengeance, Nationals or the WTC. I find people in general are very helpful and understanding if they are up against someone new (or someone new to your guild). 

Sure if your goal is to be the very best, like in every game, you need to do your homework. But most people just want a fun and social hobby, with a bit of competition thrown in there for spice. 

 

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My solution idea for the crossover models is simple;

Put all four crossovers for a given major/minor guild pair into a box and sell them as a set as alternate sculpts.

This gives the person who already owns either the major *or* the minor guild players some value in the pack - two new players and two alternate sculpts for players they already have. Oh, and if they decide they want the full other guild down the road? They're still not getting any duplicates.

I think everything would be much smoother if they bit the bullet and had four SKUs for each major/minor guild pair - two major guild boxes, a minor guild box, and a crossover player box.

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12 hours ago, RedSam said:

My solution idea for the crossover models is simple;

Put all four crossovers for a given major/minor guild pair into a box and sell them as a set as alternate sculpts.

This gives the person who already owns either the major *or* the minor guild players some value in the pack - two new players and two alternate sculpts for players they already have. Oh, and if they decide they want the full other guild down the road? They're still not getting any duplicates.

I think everything would be much smoother if they bit the bullet and had four SKUs for each major/minor guild pair - two major guild boxes, a minor guild box, and a crossover player box.

And they already have two of the alt sculpts if they continue with the alts in the release events.

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I don't think Minor guilds will cause the death of Guildball, though I appreciate the question was a hyperbolic clickbait one. Minor guilds obviously make learning the game harder but the way I look at is - 

Casuals won't mind as they're much more a beer and pretzel sort of gamer, sit down for 3 hours take it slow and just roll some dice. In fact playing against new jank and taking the time to unlock all the new things Minor Guilds might actually keep casuals in the game for longer.

Competitive people will just keep pushing through, it'll shake up the meta which is nice for competitive players and they will just continue doing what they do.

Everyone I speak to speaks of how the current balance in Guildball is the best it's been for a while, Vengeance sold out in < a minute and there's pretty much a event every weekend in both the north and south of the U.K. From what I can see my self, Guildball is strong right now. 

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I come from malifaux as my main game. I think it is fair to say it is a game of extreme depth.

I started it at the end of m2e wave 2. In wave 4 i think i reached capacity in terms of having a reasonable handle on what tools to consider, expect, and deal with. Now in wave 5 it has probably crossed the threshold for me, and am winding down toward a more casual approach.

guild ball is absolutely nowhere near the level of complexity of malifaux. Its comparative simplicity (note: this is not to say it is easy!) Is one of its most refreshing qualities for me. And clock, oh man I love clock.

Thus using malifaux as a benchmark (of my own capacities, others may vary), guild ball has a lot of life left in it.

I am sceptical that width gives more longevity to a game than depth, but best of luck to sfg with it.

 

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I'm probably not the best measure of this, but as a casual player who's faced the whole new-player-stomping thing at least twice (because my playing phases come and go) the extra stuff does make me think that I'm definitely going to face more gotcha moments (because I won't see certain combos, or forget to ask and check for total threat range, gluttonous mass, etc when I face new models).

But with the Rats coming out, I'm thinking of taking them out for a quick game just to shake off the Mortician habits I've developed and hopefully come back to them with fresh eyes. So they will provide me a bit of bad, and a pile of good. It's all in the people you play though - my local pundit is a great opponent, so I can enjoy doing something that will probably mean getting badly thrashed for a game or two again :D

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