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mbdeyes

S4 Farmer Preview

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So here's the link to the S4 Farmers' cards:
http://www.guildball.fr/2018/10/05/farmers-season-4/

Unlike the other Media outlets, this blog doesn't include input from the developers on how they were trying to focus the team. The pictures of the cards are also small and a little harder to read. 

So, being a brand new Farmer player, and being used to playing Fish, I have to ask more experienced players:

  • What was the aim of the changes made by the developers?
  • What is the intended playstyle for the Farmers?
  • How will this change your playstyle?
  • As a new Farmer, what combos should I look for? Where is the synergy, and how should I expect to win games (2-2? or even more take downs, for instance?)

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2 hours ago, mbdeyes said:

So here's the link to the S4 Farmers' cards:
http://www.guildball.fr/2018/10/05/farmers-season-4/

Unlike the other Media outlets, this blog doesn't include input from the developers on how they were trying to focus the team. The pictures of the cards are also small and a little harder to read. 

So, being a brand new Farmer player, and being used to playing Fish, I have to ask more experienced players:

  • What was the aim of the changes made by the developers?
  • What is the intended playstyle for the Farmers?
  • How will this change your playstyle?
  • As a new Farmer, what combos should I look for? Where is the synergy, and how should I expect to win games (2-2? or even more take downs, for instance?)

So my thoughts:

  • What was the aim of the changes made by the developers? Definitely to streamline Harvest interactions, that is clear.  I think they also did a good job giving some love to the models that needed it.
  • What is the intended playstyle for the Farmers? Not sure what you mean here vs. win conditions?  I think we are solidly 2-2 now, maybe 4-1 with the right team, I wouldn't be pushing for 3-0 or 0-6 though.
  • How will this change your playstyle? Remains to be seen, I think the biggest success story is not a single model, but that everything is pretty viable now.
  • As a new Farmer, what combos should I look for? Where is the synergy, and how should I expect to win games (2-2? or even more take downs, for instance?) Answered win condition above, I think we will see a lot more Bushel goals this season, but Jackstraw really enables himself now, so Bushel to Jackstraw pass is pretty solid, especially under Grange, Jackstraw can get where he needs to a little easier with influence to spare now.  Windle's improvements are *big*, after Big Breakfast Windle now walks 6" without help, then hits 4 times against most models (for 1 influence!).  That said, I think one of the major changes is the Farmers are able to spread a bit more and not tied into specific model combo mechanics as much as they were in S3.  While there are some great things you can do, like Harrow enabling Thresher to charge 10", I don't know that there is really a "crazy combo" like you see in other teams.  Everyone is pretty good, and works well with almost everyone for the most part.

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I haven't played Farmers for a long time, so maybe I don't see the changes so well, but I'm underwhelmed. A lot of things that made Farmers interesting and fun seem to have gone (Honest Labour, Big Breakfast and Stop Slacking! key ones), and they seem to have been pushed into being generic big hitters. No set up boosts, just 'walk to enemy, hit enemy for damage'. No tricks like Tooled Up or Assists. Cabbage Punt seems very situational and finicky on the positioning... but maybe that's just my lack of experience with the team post-errata. A podcast contribution from SFG explaining their reasoning and how they intend the new Farmers to be played would be very welcome (I don't listen to podcasts, but that one I would make an effort to try). At least vHonour seems to have got something to make her vaguely playable...

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At first glance, I'm a little underwhelmed with the Captains. Grange lost his damage buff, 1 influence, passive crowd out and gained.... a couple dodges? With SF saying power levels slightly increase across the board, I'm seeing more nerfs than buffs at first glance.

Thresher got some buffs, it's now easier to do Scything March and Don't fear. But losing the +2 tac on his legenfary hurts a lot.

I do like the slightly changed Bushel and heavily changed Windle. Every Planter (except Jackstraw) now uses the same consistent planting rule, which is very nice. It seems like team building will be more open than in season 3, with less must haves.

I had expected a little more damage output, but that might be better than it looks at first glance. Yes, Tooled Up is more or less integrated into Playbooks now, but all other buffs to TAC or Damage are gone, so it feels like the guild actually got a bit weaker. I hope that's just a knee-jerk reaction on my part ;)

All in all, seems like they shook up the guild a lot!

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Today i tested the new Farmer cards vs Mason. It was............ so disappointing.

The new Hammer with 6 inf rape with Chissel and my team can't do nothing with it. Who was that genius to take out the "+2 TAC" from trasher legendary???
Tooled Up no more for us but what about another guilds? Like Masons, in legendary turn oChissel with TAC 6 do 5 DMG for 2 hit... ridiculous.

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On 10/6/2018 at 6:21 AM, Luebbi said:

Tooled Up is more or less integrated into Playbooks now

It has but all the playbooks have been made worse to compensate. Unless your name is windle, fallow or Milstone (and hers is not momentus) your not hitting 3 damage till the 4th column. Side note average Tac in the guild is 5 ... you do the maths 

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Wow. OK.
This is disappointing. I thought it was just me and my inexperienced eyes that wasn't seeing the positives.
I guess the overpowered Thresher from a year ago had too much of an impression on people, they figured they had to really take the Farmers down as a whole.
In the name of simplicity, they also seemed to have taken some flavour away from the team.  
I expect my other team will suffer in kind. They already said they were taking health away from the Fishermen across the board.

Again, it would have been nice to get the dev's view on some of these things rather than just a preview of the cards.

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I haven't done any play testing yet, but I'm kind of excited about the changes.  I feel that, yes, the two captains we slightly nerfed (maybe. their playbooks seem kinda buffed to me), but the squadies and mascots were buffed, overall.  There's a lot more mobility on the team now, and you're way less dependent on staying within a certain distance from your teammates.

I also feel we have more goal scoring tech and ball protection tech now, with Bushel getting close control and Jackstraw being able do to more with crop dusting costing 1 less influence.  Not to mention Harrow getting Marked Target, vHonour's Legendary and Buckwheat being able to have 3 influence now.  All of these help contribute to a surprisingly effective footballing strategy (I think).

Yes, we don't have a damage increasing ability.  Yes, we don't have a TAC increasing ability.  However, we have very solid, reliable damage across the board on our players, and we don't have to sacrifice tempo now to have it.

I am very excited to get some Farmers on the pitch!

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I totally glossed over the fact that Crop Dusting is only 1 INF now - very happy with that.

I'm happy with losing Tooled Up in exchange for mostly better damage results. The lack of Tac bonuses is not as fun though and I will miss them. It certainly appears as if we've been giving a bit more mobility to compensate though.

Honour still seems a bit meh - still not feeling it here. She's probably useful against the likes of Alchemists along with Peck and Millstone. She seems a bit too similar to the latter there though - would have been nice to have something a bit unique in the team.

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1 hour ago, AspiringPacifist said:

I haven't done any play testing yet, but I'm kind of excited about the changes.  I feel that, yes, the two captains we slightly nerfed (maybe. their playbooks seem kinda buffed to me), but the squadies and mascots were buffed, overall.  There's a lot more mobility on the team now, and you're way less dependent on staying within a certain distance from your teammates.

I also feel we have more goal scoring tech and ball protection tech now, with Bushel getting close control and Jackstraw being able do to more with crop dusting costing 1 less influence.  Not to mention Harrow getting Marked Target, vHonour's Legendary and Buckwheat being able to have 3 influence now.  All of these help contribute to a surprisingly effective footballing strategy (I think).

Yes, we don't have a damage increasing ability.  Yes, we don't have a TAC increasing ability.  However, we have very solid, reliable damage across the board on our players, and we don't have to sacrifice tempo now to have it.

I am very excited to get some Farmers on the pitch!

This matches a lot with how I feel about the team, I think this moved us into a really positive 2-2 spot.

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If anyone wants a comparative output overview, I put this together, it isn't perfect, but it should allow you to see the change in damage S3 Farmers vs. S4.  This is just straight damage playbook results, it does not consider Character Plays or non-damage results.  It also does not break down momentous vs. non-momentous.  This is just raw playbook output damage.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/16l4UTiaxwnJojek2zIilTF7PnLYI8oTByKKWGEbm1as/edit?usp=sharing

 

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I honestly feel like I’m going to love not having a tooled up model on the team.  You almost always felt like you HAD to bring Harrow because of tooled up, but now it’s so much more about what type of utility you need for the given team you’re playing against.  Additionally, not having to apply tooled up can often net you a tempo advantage.

I also find it pretty amazing how we now have Harrow, vHonour, Millstone and Ploughman who all provide different styles of movement buffs (buffs and debuffs in Ploughman’s case). Plus they all come with their own brand of additional support.

It seems to me that Farmers may end up being a very flexible team in S4.

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Who makes the new 12 then (or really, who gets dropped on their own)?

For me it's probably going to be Buckwheat (again) - he's good but Peck is just too good, and the other players each have their place. It's a tough choice though and as I said earlier I'm not totally sold on Honour yet. Will need to get some games in first. I think Ploughman will make most of the 6s though - he's really good as a battery and/or helping out.

 

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17 minutes ago, Calum Todd said:

as I said earlier I'm not totally sold on Honour yet.

 

I can see Honour using her Legendary to setup a sweet goal run for Bushel, or Buckwheat, or whoever, frankly.  That extra advance can get a goal on the board pretty quick!

If Bushel starts with the ball and Honour uses her Legendary on her, Bushel has a 30” threat range with “I’m Open” and a couple of dodges.  That’s nuts, and honestly doesn’t require all that much set up.

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16 hours ago, AspiringPacifist said:

I can see Honour using her Legendary to setup a sweet goal run for Bushel, or Buckwheat, or whoever, frankly.  That extra advance can get a goal on the board pretty quick!

If Bushel starts with the ball and Honour uses her Legendary on her, Bushel has a 30” threat range with “I’m Open” and a couple of dodges.  That’s nuts, and honestly doesn’t require all that much set up.

I mean Honour can do it her self after turn 1. With her legendary and a sprint she has a 18" goal threat, that's nothing to sneeze at, especially from some one with a busted leg.

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To me, 30” threat, or even 26” threat if only taking 1 of the dodges, is way more significant than 18” threat.  Bushel can basically come from the corner of the edge of a deployment zone and score.  That’s pretty bonkers to me. J

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I can agree that her 24” threat is very nice, but just knowing you can turn it up to 30”, with the assistance of one other squaddie, is pretty sweet to me.

It’s just surprising to me that SFG have increased the Farmer’s mobility so much.  I can see a 2-2 strategy possibly being viable with the right roster, which is something I never thought the Farmers would have.

I thought they would be in the 0-6 and 1-4 boat for S4, but now I’m thinking they may have a range of models to play 0-6, 1-4, or 2-2.

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I played the Season 4 Farmers today. I was trying to remain optimistic, but after playing them today, I am now convinced that we have only received a nerf as far as melee goes. I was playing against engineers and just could not do the damage I once could. I was even excited that now at least I wouldn't have the scenario of doing no damage at all due to tough hide (since everyone has 2 on one now, except Buckwheat). But, that did not make up for the lack of tack, damage bonuses, and influence my team now has. Wraps are now really hard to get. I only got one during the whole game, and that was with Tater on a charge. I was not rolling poorly either. I have found that none of my damage dealing players can reliablely do more than 12 damage (with MAX influence). With some setup, since now I have very little setup ability, I can do maybe 16 reliably. Maybe. Then you have to remember that this is much less if you are fighting a tough hide model (especially since Farmers are all about low damage on a lot of attacks). Pin Vice did 27 damage to Grange in one go (with setup of course). She definitely could have rolled better than she did. I have no words for this. Grange was always my favorite captain. He can't perform anywhere near what he used to, and I did notice striking was easier now, but since I still have very little ability to stop the engineers from scoring, it did not improve my circumstances. The engineers seem to have the potential to have better movement, better damage at once, and better goal scoring. I'm not sure I want to play the Farmers anymore. And since they are the only guild I own, this puts me in a predicament. With my current melee ability, I can not even fathom how I am supposed to go against the Butchers, Brewers, Masons, or Union. It seems like they were so worried about "including tooled up in the playbook," that they actually managed to make the Farmer's damage worse. 

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I just received my box of Season 4 cards.

More than a little disappointed to see that Grace and Benediction can no longer play for the Farmers.  I bought the pair of them recently and haven't even painted them yet.  (Having said that, listening to the pod cast that introduced that pair, I can see why those sadistic zealots don't fit with our crew.)

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On 10/13/2018 at 11:13 PM, TwitchyPotato said:

I played the Season 4 Farmers today. I was trying to remain optimistic, but after playing them today, I am now convinced that we have only received a nerf as far as melee goes. I was playing against engineers and just could not do the damage I once could. I was even excited that now at least I wouldn't have the scenario of doing no damage at all due to tough hide (since everyone has 2 on one now, except Buckwheat). But, that did not make up for the lack of tack, damage bonuses, and influence my team now has. Wraps are now really hard to get. I only got one during the whole game, and that was with Tater on a charge. I was not rolling poorly either. I have found that none of my damage dealing players can reliablely do more than 12 damage (with MAX influence). With some setup, since now I have very little setup ability, I can do maybe 16 reliably. Maybe. Then you have to remember that this is much less if you are fighting a tough hide model (especially since Farmers are all about low damage on a lot of attacks). Pin Vice did 27 damage to Grange in one go (with setup of course). She definitely could have rolled better than she did. I have no words for this. Grange was always my favorite captain. He can't perform anywhere near what he used to, and I did notice striking was easier now, but since I still have very little ability to stop the engineers from scoring, it did not improve my circumstances. The engineers seem to have the potential to have better movement, better damage at once, and better goal scoring. I'm not sure I want to play the Farmers anymore. And since they are the only guild I own, this puts me in a predicament. With my current melee ability, I can not even fathom how I am supposed to go against the Butchers, Brewers, Masons, or Union. It seems like they were so worried about "including tooled up in the playbook," that they actually managed to make the Farmer's damage worse. 

I understand what you're saying.  Although the average unbuffed damage of each Farmer has increased, and in that respect (I believe) is better than one team member getting tooled up, you are still missing out on previous tac buffs we had, not to mention the additional damage Honest Labour gave you.  Also, I think it's odd how you now have to pay for 3" melee range on Thresher with one of his 5 influence instead of retaining all 5 influence and consuming a harvest marker for the 3".

So yes, we lost tac buffs.  Yes, we lost an additional damage buff in Honest Labour.  Yet, I'm still optimistic for S4 Farmers.  I think that because we have native 2 damage on the 1st column of our playbooks and we don't have to spend an activation applying Tooled Up, we have an advantage in tempo vs a lot of teams.  We do have setup activations available to us, but there's no longer the additional activation needed for Tooled Up.

Fallow has 2 Mom dmg on 1, and 3 Mom dmg on 3.  Windle has 2 Mom dmg on 1, 3 Mom dmg on 2, and 4 Mom dmg on 4.  That's good damage on pretty dang obtainable results, even without tac buffs or crowd outs.  Tater has the 2 dmg on 1 plus sweeping charge.  That's good.

We still have great control of a scrum, as well.  Yes, Grange lost a great ability in Honest Labour, but I have a feeling Help 'Em Out can be pretty OP in an all out scrum.  You have the ability reduce the odds of multiple opponents to be able to hit you effectively with Help 'Em Out.  While Honest Labour could be pretty easily countered by pushing Grange or knocking him down, it's a lot harder to push or knock down 2 or 3 people that have Help 'Em Out on them.  In addition, we still have Get Stuck In, Between a Rock and Protective Instinct on Fallow.  We have 2 sources of Cocksure now, Rapid Growth on Harrow, Battering Ram and Take One for the Team on Millstone, New Ploughman with his momentous pushes and rough terrain aura, Counter charge, lots of knock downs, Empathy and Snackbreak on Windle.  I mean, that's a lot of scrum control.

Plus, we also received movement buffs on multiple models, even more condition control, and footballing buffs!

I'm not going to argue that we are one of the strongest teams in S4, because I don't know that.  What I will say, however, is that I think Farmers are stronger as an overall guild than they were in the last half of S3.  No, they aren't the same team as in S3, and I think that's a good thing.  I have a feeling there is some undetected power in S4 Farmers that will come to light as the season progresses and people begin to understand how they ought to be played.

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17 hours ago, AspiringPacifist said:

I have a feeling there is some undetected power in S4 Farmers that will come to light as the season progresses and people begin to understand how they ought to be played.

That's why I started this thread. I wanted some input from someone who's got a bit more experience than I.

I really hope you're right that there is some 'undetected power', but honestly, some of the other S4 guilds have some pretty obvious new power, so flying under the radar right now doesn't do much for me in the short term. 

Next question.... what's your normal S4 lineup look like so far? Should we always be trying to take Tater and Windle? Can we really fit all the utility we will need in only 6 players?
What do you think?

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Only played one game with S4 Farmers (So I'm clearly an expert now!)

Ran with Grange, Peck, Jackstraw, Ploughman, Tater and Windle (Receiving)

Opponent was using Blacksmiths. Ferrite (Captain), V-Cinder, Furnace, Cast, Hearth and Alloy

I won't go into the full game details, but here's some notes.

Grange - Hasn't changed too much, but I did miss having Lend a Hand as trait instead of play. Usual knock everyone down tactics and help with passes (snap passes are great!)

Peck - Maybe even better now with the Heroic change? Dodge was nice, but all conditions removed is amazing.

Jackstraw - More INF efficient now despite losing 1INF. Can actually do the Cropping/Double Teleport/Kick action now 😁

Ploughman - Best battery in the game? Can give 2 INF to others, then generate 2 more (Harvest) for free! Helps make Jack even more mobile.

Tater - The increased playbook damage is fantastic, and means he doesn't need to wait for a Tooled Up to do his thing. Loss of healing is meh, but he generally died before I could use it in most games.

Windle - was already in my 10 in S3, and got better really. His damage ceiling is lower I guess (Honest Labour etc.) but he's so reliable at doing 12 damage on his own - and isn't exactly slow anymore!

I don't think there's a Dream Team of 6 players you will always take though, which is a good thing. Tater is a very good choice for the charge and counter charge, but the other reapers are either tougher, better in combat, harder to hit or better at football.

My next game I'll be trying out Thresher, Peck, Millstone, V-Honour, Jackstraw and either Fallow or Bushel. This will be the "speed team", going for goals/take outs and getting in the opponents face asap.

 

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I played a couple of games with Farmers today, and they weren't too bad at all.

Against Blacksmiths, I went Thresher, Peck, Windle, Tater, Ploughman and Jackstraw, against Hunters I swapped Windle for Millstone (in hindsight a mistake probably, as he was playing Skatha, but I wasn't sure how many conditions I was going to face). The 2 planters produce 4 Harvest Markers between them for 1 INF, and Ploughman's 2nd can be placed within 4" rather than 2", which is awesome. All 2" melee is also great. Jackstraw scored a T1 goal (receiving) both games. Ploughman set up a kill on Anvil by activating all the Reapers abilities with his 2 HM then charging Anvil in cover and pushing out and toward the Reapers. He got battered in return, but then the Reapers came in, Thresher blooding Farris and Anvil, Tater charging to kill Farris and badly damage Anvil, then Windle finishing him off (although I did need a Bonus Time or two). Game ended when Alloy scored him a goal, and the kick out ended 3" from Tater, who could just about sprint back to retrieve then move forward enough to get in kick range for a 2nd goal (Tater has scored more goals for me than all the rest put together).

Skatha is a beast, and bounced through my team to score T1. :2: so low made it easy to finish her off, but :3:'s are high enough that it was hard to kill the bear without pumping a lot of INF into her. I made a massive mistake by rushing to kill the bear in T3, forgetting to heal and move Jackstraw, who got killed by Minx (such a powerful player), putting him on 8 and, in control of the ball, threatening a goal with Skatha when she returned to play. I got baited into counter-charging Chaska (should have stayed near the goal threatening a counter on goal run, but forgot Skatha and thought big damage and MP would set me up for T4 - managed to stuff the dice roll and miss with everything...). I'd be tempted to play Windle into Skatha Hunters next time, as the Snack Break will keep him alive, and Empathy really dissuades a beat down from some players. That 2" melee and damage threat could be good.

Really liked the simplicity of the 3 Reaper team but Grange has gone too simple (boring), and I think SFG might have made Ploughman and Jackstraw too good - they both seem like auto-includes to me, and with Grange being dull, Thresher is going to be a very common captain I think...

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I’ve not had much luck with Jack until today, but I kept running him because I could tell he had a lot to offer. I was just using him wrong, and I’m feeling much more confident after he hit his first goal for me (and kept following it up). I feel like he’s becoming an mvp. I’ve been forcing myself to change up my lists to explore the gameplay a little more, though.

Bushel and Windle have been pretty amazing so far too. I ended a game by scoring with her twice in my first and second activation of turn two. She is probably the player I have the most difficulty benching. Windle pulls through for me, and he’s so reliable that even my garbage rolls get somewhere. I can count on him for a cheap pile of momentum and that really helps me control the flow of the game.

The only player I’ve not used yet is Fallow, and every time I try to reach for her I just shake my head and wonder why I was even considering it. Am I missing something?

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