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Stoobert last won the day on February 9

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  1. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    I think you misunderstood me on a few points but I’ll shrug or say “different strokes” to all but one: I’m not suggesting people track damage and effects on an app nor a paper printout. I think ideally both need to be tracked visibly on the table, using dice or tokens ...and I think that computers being good at counting HP isn’t the point - people can forget to click a button or click it twice just as easily as they can make a mistake on paper or card.
  2. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    Agree with @Wolfgang Jannesen and others on a few points. Summary: - a tool that builds fleets math is useful. We have 2 volunteer efforts already and one or both can be improved. A ledgible paper printout is no less easy to read than cards. - 12-30 ship cards consumes too much needed space in table - it’s difficlt to print MAR definitions and account for varied upgrades on single ship cards - apps are not cool for tracking ship status/damage. Both players must see status/damage on the table to enable them make game decisions - tactical fleet actions (now TAC cards) are good but cards aren’t necessary either: players could simply choose, write down on secret paper, then reveal - when 3.0 comes out, want it easy for people to dust off models, download rules, play, say “this is better!” and then buy newer/more models, play again. I feel strongly that community does not need a barrier that they have to buy new tools/cards/bases, etc to even try 3.0
  3. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    @vorman87 I think this is valuable feedback, and you'll receive no backlash (from me). If anything your opinion (and willingness to share it) illustrates is the diversity of opinion in the forum community about "is FSA 2.0 a good game (or not) and why"? To your story, it's interesting that another poster just the other day stated how much 40k players liked alternating activation, and that was the BEST thing about FSA they could see. How's that for diverse? :-) But the forums are just a tiny fraction of the (most vocal) people exposed to FSA... And oh yes, Battletech! Many many hours have been spent by myself in that chart-fest of a game. I now play Alpha Strike, when I want to dust off my mechs, if that tells you anything. If Warcradle want FSA to be more popular than it is or was (and it never was that popular) they would be greatly served in sending out a real survey/poll of folks who have been exposed to FSA at all levels: from people who've played dozens of times to folks who just tried a demo. The forums are an echo chamber. The poll can start big picture, rather than asking "how do we fix SRS"? ask first: what they like best & least about FSA, how long it takes them to play, how many games of FSA they've played ...and what other games they play. I'll be the first one to volunteer to help. For a game with a dwindling community I don't think we can afford to have sacred cows, we must be humble and try not to let our preconceived notions blind us. I often wonder if I can't see the forest for the trees, myself. Focus groups/demos of "gamers" with no prior exposure to FSA would also be great, I did a lot of these demos and the Warcradle people would learn a lot by doing 2.0 demos as well.
  4. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    I see your point @Charistoph. Weird and unlucky things can happen, bringing a battle to a quick conclusion. The massive HMS Hood exploded suddenly likely when munitions were hit. But I'm undecided if situations like that make a good game. I will recommend again Sid Meier's lecture about emotional reaction to luck in games. It's about finding the perfect mix and balance of luck. Thanks for your comment by the way, I'm trying to get a sense of how people feel about this... So what about this, you can still roll on a chart but: It's only 1-6, each crit effect will always have an effect on the game, meaning we modify the effects themselves. For instance, it's not Shield/Cloak down anymore, because not every ship has those things You don't roll on the next level of crits unless I prior crit has already been applied (no 'serious' unless you have a 'minor'
  5. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    @Charistoph I see what you mean. Two comments: What I'm trying to offer is an idea to remove mostly-meaningless and time-consuming rolling (the OP) and replace it will meaningful choices. How many and often crits happen is debatable. If you like more crit effects then what if: the defender could choose every time CR was met? If it was Boarding, Targeted or Cyber then the attacker chooses. How do you like that? Color coding is a token idea, they could be named: minor, major, catastrophic. Whatever the case, they need to be easily readable on a token. @Toxic_Rat I've not seen a pattern consistent yet on the people. One of the most competitive 40k guys I know didn't mind the crit chart or exploding 6s. Two casual players and friends who I demoed FSA for balked at e6. Any person, in the right context, could think a battleship getting unlucky would be fun. But for organized play, that context is infrequent. I think as a general rule anyone who is in a league/tournament "trying to win" will accept luck as a part of the game, but seek to mitigate luck and develop a winning record with tactical choices. @alextroy and @Wolfgang Jannesen DR=1, CR=2, CRx2=3, CRx3=4, etc. isn't a good track for damage, IMHO. It won't help speed the game if ships die slower when subjected to massive firepower, nor will it get rid of meaningless rolling, which is the OP. I agree with Wolfgang on this point. However, Wolfgang I disagree that a "Reactor Overload" doing an average of 4HP to a Battleship isn't a "KO" ... the ship might still be on the table but it is a lost game -- it's all downhill from there. @alextroy it's an interesting idea that when a ship reaches "Crippled"/"Compromised" or whatever we may call it, that it gains a crit effect and a permanent one. This is similar to @Xystophoroi and his idea a ship can only gain a serious crit once its sustained meaningful damage.
  6. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    The 'ol 2.0 standby: DR = lose 1 HP, CR = lose 2 HP, and 2xCR = lose 4HP, etc. doesn't get many complaints that I can tell, and I see no reason to change that. Critical Hit effects on the other hand have room for improvement. Color coding? Yellow, Red and Black. Yellow being 'small' and red being 'big' as written in the book and colored on the token itself. I would also make Disorder a yellow effect, and change Disorder to per-ship rather than per-squad. I'm going to go out on a limb here. People disagree on how frequent, how fun, and how important crit effects should be, but one thing I don't hear disagreement on is this... ...most of the time, most rolls for crits have no effect on the game. What if: no more rolling for crit effects...ever? The attacker chooses, but only if they did: Boarding, Targeted Strike or Cyberwarfare. But you can't choose a red effect unless the ship already has a yellow already... and you can't choose a black unless the ship already has a red. There are only 3 black effects: Fold Drive Rupture, Reactor Overload, and Captured. If you enjoy crit effects, you can build fleets which specialize in Targeted, Cyber and Boarding and have a great time, if not, you can just blast your opponents apart the old fashioned way.
  7. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    I’d rather see for starters an app that does the fleet math and then optionally prints on plain paper. Format is simple: each full unit (of cruisers, frigates) represented as a squad: one stat block for the ship class(es) and then separate checkboxes for each included ship (HP, Crits, etc). Then after the stats stabilize (errata, rebalance) after several months, professionally printed ship cards sold hopefully profitably by Warcradle, one box per faction. Also could be given away as tournament prize packs.
  8. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    An app is a great idea, nearly everyone has a smartphone these days, those who don't have a friend who does. As long as the app can email a "fleet list" to someone else (or yourself) to print on paper, an app will work. Apps are great for building fleets, but not everyone wants to push buttons on a phone to play a game. Of course, Pymapper has his FleetBuilder for FSA and there's also Battlescribe. Both work fine, but aren't cards per se. I also play Malifaux which uses a card for every model, here's why I don't like cards for FSA: even with 8 or 9 models cards get pretty unwieldy. FSA games have more models than that. FSA has a lot more upgrades/hardpoints, making a card either very dense and/or illegible if it lists all the hardpoints/upgrades or requires multiple cards for different hardpoints. Try to visualize a card for a Terran Battleship and you will see how I mean. If errata'd cards require reprinting, and erratas are likely because of mistakes and game re-balance I acknowledge that cards have an aesthetic appeal to many players, who consider it part of the model and game. Here's the solution I think: the app could print pseudo-cards, which you can even cut/laminate if you choose. Battletech's card app allows modified stats and printing of cards 8 or 6 to a sheet of paper, and even allows uploading of custom images!
  9. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    I tend to agree with alextroy and Pok that crazy dice and super-rare-luck are more of a frustration than a celebration for most players. This goes for shield rolls and double-crits in FSA. All minis games players accept some risk, or else they would switch to play chess exclusively. But the first time a player feels downtrodden by his battleship critted "Reactor Overload" turn 2, it is a crushing experience for both players if they have a heart, not to mention a game-ending event and a waste of setup time. There is no coming back from that in a 800pt game. There are two game design theories about "locus of control" - is the game in my control, or is the game out of my control. Somewhere in the middle is appropriate IMHO, but leaning to "in my control" - where you win (or lose) because of your meaningful choices. You can watch videos where (love or hate Civilization) Sid Meier talks about luck and how to give players the "goldilocks" emotional experience they want ... just the right amount of luck.
  10. Less Dice Rolls, More Game

    Good topic. On defensive fire I agree that Shields could be improved by being a simple removal of hits, while Cyberwarfare and Boarding could target a statistic (like Crew or Crew+AP) rather than a defensive roll-off. However, I really like the feel of rolling PD. It's fun to toss dice and imagine your gunners trying to shoot down evasive bombers or fast incoming torps. I do think we could simplify PD, though, rather than linking in a squad, each ship gets a comparable PD value of its own. Rolls that lead to more rolls I couldn't agree more. Collisions are one. Targeted Strikes and Boarding could be another. Are there more? Less critical hits ...as some others like @Ryjak have pointed out, the vast majority of crits don't actually affect the game, yet it takes time to roll every freaking crit and several games to memorize the chart. There's room for big improvement there. I'm not a fan of stat cards, but changing the way crits work I'm theoretically in favor of. I've playtested if only Targeted Strikes, Boarding and Cyberwarfare generated a crit effect of the attacker's choice from a more limited sub-list of the existing critical hit effects. It was only one game, but I felt like a weight was lifted! Effects become more rare but also more gratifying, and game speeds up dramatically. A friend suggested that Crew Points could be used to do repairs , like assigning damage control teams. I'm not sure how that would be work but I like the feel of it too. Furthermore, I think the duration of crit effects could be re-thought: some last until your next activation, or until the end of turn, or until the attacker's next activation (like Jamming/Cyberwarfare).
  11. What if you didn't halve dice when linking?

    @Charistoph Hah! Oh tell me about it, I once played a 40K Guard army, rolled over 100 dice of lasgun fire. Even after my rerolls my opponent removed just 3 models. Speaking of which, since you mention 40K... While I'm not interested in "getting back into 40k" GW managed to condense the core rules down to only 8 pages! I gave it a test drive and, surprisingly, the game feels just like it always has, just way less annoying to play and faster. While 40k is still deeply flawed IMHO and horrifically expensive, 8th edition is really admirable in this respect: it *is* possible to condense rules to their essence without dumbing it down or losing the flavor of the game. @Bessemer that is interesting and quite a bit easier, I agree. Ending up with slightly less dice and a longer game isn't great but the idea is worth consideration. What do you do, however, if only one of the ships contributing to the attack is impeded? Do you halve the entire pool?
  12. What if you didn't halve dice when linking?

    @Hive fair enough about the hyperbole, I was trying to be humorous about the negative comments I've heard but I perhaps failed, and I'll stop. Halving/linking does create enjoyable math for some and you're not the only one who feels this way. AD + 1/2AD isn't so bad, as you said, but when mixing in AD-reduction for damage, not to mention "halving again" for terrain, etc, it all becomes a negative experience for many noobs and a tedious one for some veterans. I'll admit I didn't pay much attention to "power core" but I'm open to other ideas. I think in general, if the basic mechanics of FSA were less fiddly and/or obtuse, but maintain "the feel" it brings in more players, speeds up the game, and frees up room to grow in other exciting directions. FSA has developed "tactical ruts" and is lagging behind other games in: scenarios, fluff, faction flavor, objectives and other mechanics that provide a richer game experience. @Charistoph thanks, adjusting DR/CR first is something we considered, but here's the twist to that. Combining instead of linking has a direct effect on just one thing: the AD dice pool, and it is a disproportional based on the number of ships and/or weapons you are linking (as the document illustrates). If we to raise DR/CR 'across the board' first, then we would be forced to subsequently raise the AD of ships that can't link (e.g. battleships). So we'd be looking at cruisers with a (rough estimates) DR 6 CR 9 rolling pools of 20-32 dice and a battleships of DR 9 CR 15 rolling 20 dice, and that can work but it' a LOT of dice. Already people are busy fiddling with exploding 6s enough as it is, so we elected to go less dice option, reducing AD and DR instead. @Wolfgang Jannesen I'm not entirely sure what you mean by "scale" in this case but we propose a status called "Compromised", where direct fire AD and PD is halved when your ship reaches 1/2 HP or less. I can't claim credit it came from another player (who has since quit) and at first I was skeptical. But then after playing it a bit I found it to be intuitive and in the document the "damage track" of a squadron is very similar to AD-per_HP model, just faster and less math. A bonus is that I noticed is that in battleship duels victory often goes to whomever crits first - with Compromised the duel is more prolonged and exciting.
  13. What if you didn't halve dice when linking?

    I think single ships do and should continue to matter. A single capital class (T2 or T1) ship should IMHO have at least a 50% chance of damaging an equal-pt ship in 1on1 combat, that’s what the Combinator does. It is equally fun watch a group of cruisers combine fire as it is to watch the last surviving cruisers duke it out 1:1 in the late-game to determine the last cruiser standing, isn’t it? That’s the type of game I’d like to see constructed. Note there are some circumstances in 2.0 where T3 ships have a hard time damaging each other 1on1. A Sorylian Reaper w/AD4 vs Terran Missionary w/DR4/5SH1 or two Elusive Corvettes, Sappers for example. I’d like to see T3 hit hard enough to singly to hurt each other too. @fracas rules that halve and rules that double are equally confusing IMHO. Both may be unnecessary.
  14. What if you didn't halve dice when linking?

    @alextroy has impeccable math, but we may have a (very respectful) disagreement on: is the tradeoff worth it? For me, and the many demos I have run where people complain at at halving dice & low player retention, yes it is worth it. First, the goal of the Combinator is that any ship should retain a reasonable (~50%+) chance of damaging a ship of equal value in apples-to-apples combat (e.g. two 60pt cruisers vs. each other). If that % chance is reduced compared to 2.0, then that is ok IMHO so long we don't make a Taskforce where ships are powerless without their squad. Secondly, I think firing separately in 2.0 slowed the game down, even though sometimes it was a good idea, and I don't see it as a bad thing necessarily that separate-shooting tactic becomes slightly less common and effective. Even the 2.0 rulebook states that linking dice is a good idea under most circumstances, so the intent is there from the beginning. @Wolfgang Jannesen I agree that near the end of the game not only it is frustrating to have a hard time finishing opponents, it can make games less conclusive as to who is winning. That's why 1/2 damage = 1/2 AD does not affect Torpedoes. In general, I think that torpedoes should be slightly more effective, which makes the game fun in early-game and conclusive late-game. @Xystophoroi I think that a AD stat of 8(4) works, but it may be unnecessary and is a little intimidating and confusing for new players IMHO.' Thanks @all for your comments and feedback, by the way, to this idea.
  15. What if you didn't halve dice when linking?

    Sorry @Ryjak I should have been more clear. Instead of using the link/halve mechanic for the linked fire pool... just add Dice up - “combined mechanic. “

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