Sunday, October 19, 2008

Rex Does Kongai: Gangsters Four

Have to be brief tonight because I'm in the middle of a rather busy time. It's mid-term season and I figure to be hellishly distracted from the important cause of setting out a fictitious expansion for a game I don't even play any more.

Still, we're not doing that far behind schedule, all things considered. With only two weeks left in the month, I'll have to be quick if I want to get all the cards out there and polished, but we're nearly halfway there. At the end of this post the Gangsters should be in about the same place as the Rock Stars, ready to be put into the Compendium and set aside while I mull further changes. Still a bit left unfinished, but I probably won't have the time to set down and get to their flavor for a while yet.

If I can knock out the Psychos this week, that gives me until the end of the next to hammer out the Necros. Might have to pick up the pace but it should be within striking distance.

Anyhow, for tonight, since I actually want to get to bed, I'm going to put aside the lengthy discourses and, instead keep things simple with just my raw notes. If you're still paying attention, you'll probably be able to follow along and if not, well, that's what the comments are for.

Anyhow, on with the cards.


GANGSTER 1. SCAREFACE
Name: Sammy "Sunshine" Gilette, the Wartime Consigliere
HP: 75
RES: 5/1/1
Innate: Vicious Attacker. Has a 50% chance to Scar opponents for the next 10 turns on attack. (Scar: Your maximum health is lowered by 10. When you take damage over time it is increased by 50%.)
Bar (v3): #1 dmg to 7x4 from 14x2. #3 Speed up 5 from 3. DOT up 12for4 from 12for3. #4 Now prevents interrupts. +Crit dropped.

  1. Switchblade Strikes. 25en, 4spd, 7x4(P). 95h, 25p. Bleeds 4for2. Close.
  2. Machine Gun Burst. 30en, 7spd, 8x4(P). 90h, 100p. Ignores resistance. Far.
  3. Molotov Cocktail. 55en, 5spd, 12(P). 90h, 100p. Burns 12for4. Both.
  4. Frenzied Rage. 35en, 3spd, P. 100p. For next 4 turns, multi-hit attacks gain +1 multiplier (AxB -> AxB+1) and all skills cannot be interrupted. Both.
-#4. Now contains some interrupt protection to go along with the resistance ignoring.
-#1. Changed #1 so doesn't it doesn't work as nicely with #4. Before, when it was 14x2, it was giving a +14 damage bonus. Now it'll only give out +7. That makes it worse than #2 MGB but it has that Bleed proc to fall back on. And it IS cheaper.
-#3. Raised the speed and DOT so it's more worth that 55energy. It's now a 60 damage blast that only hits for 24 on the first turn. Might want to compress this a bit, raising the damage and lowering the duration. But with the changed innate it gets scary in a hurry.
-Innate. Changed so that so that the Scar effect matters even more. Now increases DOT damage - adding duration was alright and might even be worth revisiting later but didn't really matter for the DOT values from Sammy's bar. Turns his skills into an 18for4/72 and a 6for2/12 (3, on average).
-Protection: Gets a scrapper's bar. Above average health and resistances heavily tilted towards the physical. Good protection but not the best, will it be enough to get the job done? (Per turn kills: 2 – 43/39/39, 3 – 30/26/26, 4 – 24/21/21)


GANGSTER 2. OX
Name: Johnny "The Ox" Vaccinaro, the Goon
HP: 85
RES: 9/0/3
Innate: Dinosaur Brain. When killed does not die until end of turn.
Bar (v3): #2, cost lowered 25 from 30. #4, now raises movement costs. Tightened up values.
  1. Knuckle Punch. Moderate damage (24). Lower's target's speed by 1 for next next 6. Low cost (25), low speed (3). Close. Phys. 95H/75p.
  2. Gut Punch. High damage (50). If target killed, you are healed (25). Moderate cost (40), low speed (1). Close. Phys. 95H/100p.
  3. Bull Rush. Moderate damage (28). Hits fleeing. Moderate cost (35), moderate speed (4). Close. Phys. 90H/75p.
  4. Leg Breaker. Low damage (12). Debuff. Target has lowered resists (-5 All) and raised movement costs (+5en) for next several turns (5). Low cost (20), low speed (3). Both. Phys. 100H/100p.
Bar (v3.2): #1 proc lowered 50 from 75, speed debuff raised 4 from 1, duration lowered 3 from 6. #2, hit raised to 100 from 95. #3 cost lowered 30 from 35. #4 dmg raise 15 from 12.
  1. Knuckle Punch. 25en, 3spd, 24(P). 95h, 50p. Lower's speed by 4 for 3. Close.
  2. Gut Punch. 40en, 1spd, 50(P). 100h, 100p. If this attack is a killing blow, you gain 25HP. Close.
  3. Bum Rush. 30en, 4spd, 28(P). 90h, 75p. Chance to hit fleeing. Close.
  4. Leg Breaker. 20en, 3spd, 15(P). 100h, 100p. For next 5 turns, opponent's resistance is lowered by 5 and their movement costs raised by 5. Both.
-#1. Concerned it's going to be the weak sister on this bar. So, I've lowered the cost to make it a cheap alternative. Also, raised the proc's effect so that it makes more of an impact. Still probably going to be a third option since, when Close, Ox can nuke or hits fleeing or use this, so, why bother?
-#2. Single-ranged character only have half their energy bar to work with so I've lowered the cost here. 40 energy means its still going to be hard to work in - you only get one miss in the movement game before you're screwed out of it - but I'm not comfortable lowering it any more and leaving it dealing that much damage. And I'm not lowering the damage since I want a skill that threatens a kill on a crit.
-#3. Lowered the cost here, too, so that it works better with #2. Now if you step into range you can string both of them together, giving you 78 raw damage, one hit of which can hit fleeing and the other of which will boost your health. It's now more in line with Rising Dragon. A bit more damage but a bit less speed and certainty.
-#4. Upped the damage a bit. At 15, that's now 65 raw damage in combination with #2 and that should be a two-hit on low-health characters. Also, it now raises movement costs, becoming a procced Stoneheel, to help OX out in the movement game.
-Protection: Heavy. High health and a massive allotment of resist. We've got 12 total points here and that's breaking with tradition – it should be alright, though, as higher resistance points get slightly discounted. We've also got a big weakpoint with Light. (Per turn kills: 2 – 52/43/46, 3 – 38/29/32, 4 – 31/22/25)


GANGSTER 3. FINGERS
Name: Vinnie "Fingers" Mazerotti, the Made Man
HP: 70
RES: 4/3/1
Innate: Inside Job. Attacks ignore resistance.
Bar (v3): #1 changed to Sucker Punch, now high crit. #2 hit raised 95 from 90. #3 energy drain lowered 30 from 40. #4 cost raised 40 from 20.
  1. Sucker Punch. 35en, 7spd, 24(P). 90h. High crit (25). Close.
  2. Hand Gun. 35en, 8spd, 26(P). 95h. Far.
  3. Pick Pocket. 10en, 5spd, 10(D). 80h, 75p. Steals 30 energy from target. Cannot be used twice in a row. Both.
  4. Killer Shades. 40en, 3spd, D. 100p. For next 3 turns, your hit rate is set to 100% and cannot be lowered. Your attacks cannot be dodged or reflected. Both.
-#1 & 2. I've reworked these skills so they now average almost exactly the same damage while looking somewhat different. #1 is now a high crit with a larger chance to miss. While #2 has a better hit rate and slightly higher priority. But since they each ignore resistance they should both deal around 25 damage, on average (Numbers crunched: #1 24*0.65 + 36*0.25 = 15.6+9 = 24.6. // #2 26*0.92 + 39*0.03 = 23.92+1.17=25.1. A difference of 0.5 damage, on average. Close enough.)
-#3. I've lowered the energy drain here ever so slightly. It now drains 30 energy from an opponent's bar, giving Fingers +40 with end of turn regeneration and the cost of the skill (Fingers at 50 spends 10 energy to use, dropping to 40. He procs, gaining 30 energy and going to 70. The turn ends and he gains another 20, setting him to 90.). And the target a net loss of 10. That's enough to be painful, an opponent loses energy on the play and it's enough for Fingers to be able to set the range which is, I think, the level we want it at. With the effective proc rate of 60% (80 to hit and 75 to proc), it steals, on average, only 18 energy a turn, meaning it's almost as good as resting while delivering a slight bit of damage - that's not lowered by resistance. With Skill #4 up, it's still only the equivalent of +22.5. Still, to limit trouble, we're going to slap a cooldown on it, so that it can't be used twice in a row. That drops the per turn gain even further although we might want to go down even further and have it only wipe out regeneration, on demand (In other words, stealing 20en).
-#4. Cost goes up here and we've settled on the upper range of the proposed duration. Not being able to miss and providing protection against interrupts and reflects is big but the real reason for the increase is Skill #3. Fingers promises to be a character who won't have a lot of energy problems and this might help to drain some away.
-Protection: The goal here is equivalence with Gangster #1 while looking like he's weaker. So, we'll give him slightly less health and slightly more resistance and we'll give him the protection against at least one class of magic that Scareface lacks. (Per turn kills: 2 – 39/38/36, 3 – 28/27/25, 4 – 22/21/19)


GANGSTER 4. SULLY
Name: Salvidor "Sully" Sullivan, the Button Man
HP: 80
RES: 2/2/6
Innate: Walking Wounded. Any damage over time effects on foe discharge when they switch out while Sully is on the field.
Bar (v3): #4 DOT effect added. Values firmed up.
  1. Parting Shot. 30en, 7spd, 25(P). 90h, 100p. Hits fleeing. Far.
  2. Gut Shot. 55en, 8spd, 20(P). 100h, 90p. Deals 40(D) after next 2 turns. Far.
  3. Piano Wire. 10en, 8spd, P. 100h, 95p. For the next 10 turns, target is Strangled. (Strangled. You take 2 damage a turn. This ends the next time you attack. When this effect ends for any reason, the range is set to Far.). Close.
  4. Contract Hit. 40en, 3spd, D. 100h, 100p. For the next 10 turns, target is Marked for Death. (Marked for Death. You take 3 damage a turn. Attacks made against you ignore resistance. When you die, your killer gains 25HP.). Both.
-#1 This is weaker than Rising Dragon, overall. It's lower speed and has a worse hit rate. But, I think, the rest of the bar here is slightly stronger so it's probably alright.
-#2 Went with the mini-ToD version instead of the delayed Bleeding variant. They're both about the same but this way, that huge delayed hit is affected by armor. Also, I should say that I think Sully's innate would cause the delayed effect to go off, as well. Still feels off, though.
-#3 Set to a pretty low cost, considering the effect. But, now, it helps Sully in the range game in two different ways. Either his opponent will set it by attacking. Or he'll be able to climb up the energy ladder while still attacking with this skill and, then, change it himself.
-#4 Added a DOT effect. Now every skill except #1 while fuel his innate's effect and Skill #1 interacts with it in a different way. This does make Skill #4 a horrendously complicated skill with 3 separate effects but I'm alright with it, for now.
-Protection: Sully's a Trapper, a character that works slow so he's going to need some solid padding so we'll give him that with a good baseline of resists, a large pool of points, and high health. One should be higher than the rest, and I think fighting in with the slightly nasty, evil theme here, that should be Dark – it's also the most common resist so it's slightly less valuable and I won't feel bad pushing it too. (Per turn kills: 2 – 42/42/46, 3 – 29/29/33, 4 – 22/22/26)


GANGSTER 5. BOBBY
Name: Bobby "Shortstuff" Radiccio, the Snitch
HP: 60
RES: 4/1/5
Innate: Petty Theft. When his opponent buffs, gains that buff as well.
Bar (v3): #2 cost lowered 35 from 40, dmg changed 6x5 from 28. #3 changed to Dark from Phys. #4 changed to Phys from Dark. Values firmed up.
  1. Pistol Whip. 35en, 4spd, 18(P). 95h, 100p. Target loses 15 energy. Close.
  2. Wild Shots. 35en, 7spd, 6x5(P). 90h, 100p. Ignores resistance. Far.
  3. Mugging. 65en, 3spd, 32(D). 100h, 90p. Target's speed and resistance are lowered by 2 and yours are raised by 2 for the next 6 turns. Both.
  4. Kneecap. 30en, 5spd, 12(P). 100h, 90p. Target's energy costs are raised by 10 and yours are lowered by 10 for the next 4. Both.
-#1. Went with the certain proc and the lower energy drain. The hit is weak enough that it warrants a positive benefit and draining away energy would count. Losing 15 energy means an opponent will only gain 5 at the end of the turn, so this skill gets scary fast.
-#2. Lowered the cost and turned it into a multi-hit so it wasn't such an obviously weaker version of Gangster #3's Skill #2. Lowering the cost makes it work better with both Skills #3&4. It can now be used twice following Skill #3 while at 40 energy you'd only get one shot and that's just not lethal enough.
-#3&4. Switched around the damage types. This creates a bit more separation between the hits on #2 and #3. They're both in the 30 range but now, at least, you get to work around resistance types (Although not much since Skill #2 ignores resistance).
-Protection: I'm thinking softie here. The Stoolie is a character that seems weak and reveals his potential over time as his abilities start getting into play. So, below average health but we'll compensate with some solid resists that'll help him survive longer. I think a Juju-esque bar here, two moderates and a weakpoint will work best – let's remember that thanks to Skill #3 his resists can inflate considerably, too. (Per turn kills: 2 – 34/31/35, 3 – 24/21/25, 4 – 19/16/20)

Still having problems cracking this nut.

The way I see it working, there should be a few ways this character can get to a 3-hit kill, most of which should involve Skill #4. First, an initial cast of #4 lowers costs just enough for skill #2 to be used twice in a row (Lowering it to 55 energy) and that would be 12+32+32 or 76 raw damage. Second, you can get two shots in with Skill #2 and follow with #4 for 82 raw damage.

Bah.


GANGSTER 6. GINNY
Name: Virginia “Ginny” MaGee, the Gun Moll
HP: 70
RES: 2/1/4
Innate: Concealed Weapon. Has a 75% chance to deal bonus damage equal to opponent's physical resistance when attacking.
Bar (v3): #3 changed to Far range.
  1. Derringer. 10en, 2spd, 12(P). 100h, 100p. Speed +7 (9spd) when Close. Both.
  2. Tommy Gun. 40en, 5spd, 9x5(P). 90h, 100p. Far.
  3. Hand Grendade. 35en, 4spd, 24(P). 90h, 90p. Hits random opponent for 24(P). Far.
  4. Incendiaries. 30en, 3spd, Phys. 100p. For next 3 turns, gun attacks cause Burning, 4for3, and ignore opponent's resistance. Both.
-#1. Frighteningly efficient. By itself, it's a 12dmg hit for 10en or 1.2DPE. But it gets even better thanks to her many procs. Throw in the Burn from Skill #4 and that's 24dmg for 10en, or a ludicrous 2.4DPE (In that turn, anyway. Really, you've spent some energy gaining that buff so you don't get quite that good of a deal. But, here's the neat thing that shows how finely honed my balancing instincts are. Incendiaries lasts for 3 turns, giving it a potential damage of 3 12DOT Burns or 36 overall, if you hit everytime. That, again, doubles the damage of 3 Derringers. But if you add the energy costs, they've also doubled, so you wind up dealing 72 damage for 60 en or a return to 1.2DPE. Although since that's someone extended, regeneration comes into play and the delayed damage should probably be pro-rated as well.). It also gets to ignore damage and add more damage besides. It's still not quite a great skill but for a 9 speeder that only costs 10 energy it can pack a surprising punch. And that's exactly what I want.
-#2. Contemplating changing this to something weird like 3x15 or something so that you really, really need that resistance ignoring buff. Also plays better into the flavor since it can be rationalized as firing off a heck of a lot of inaccurate rounds.
-#3. Changed to a Far range skill, want to give her more of a Fra-ranged feel. This leaves her with only a weak hit when Close but a variety of options form the back line - a 2/4 character. That works, I think, now that we've opened up the far-ranger slot on the team by transitioning Gangster #3 to a more flex-range role.
-#4. The change to limit it to Skills #1&2 is working, I think. Skill #3 deals up to 48 dmg for only 35en – another reason we want to restrict it to Far, those are single-range numbers. I'm not a big fan of DPE, I think it's not really a useful metric, generally. But if Ginny's about anything she's about cranking out efficient damage. But giving her a skill that not only ignores resistance and procs a healthy Burn twice is just a bit too much. So, here, I think it's useful to consider. If Grenade could get that buff it would deals 48 raw plus 24 DOT, absolutely none of which gets reduced by resistance. And 72dmg for only 35en is just way too efficient.
-Protection: I hate making the girl the weakest one but it's justified here since she's also the highest damage dealer in the line. Since she can hit harder, she needs to be a little weaker so that she can be spiked out herself. So, average health and a small, for a Gangster, pool of resistance. (Per turn kills: 2 – 37/36/39, 3 – 26/25/28, 4 – 20/19/22)


GANGSTER 7. THE VAMP
Name: Rebecca Vampinsiaro, the Boss's Daughter
HP: 55
RES: 2/2/5
Innate: Black Widow. When opponent switches in, gains 20HP.
Bar (v3): #2 changed to Both, dmg raised. #4 revised to include chance to avoid stun, cost raised 35 from 30.
  1. Slap. 10en, 7spd, 8(P). 80h, 100p. Interrupts if first. Cannot use twice in a row. Close.
  2. Six Shooter. 45en, 2spd, 7x6(P). 90h, 100p. Ignores resistance if target is stunned. Both.
  3. Kiss. 60en, 6spd, D. 100h, 90p. If this hits first, opponents attack heals rather than harms this turn. Cannot use twice in a row. Far.
  4. Heart Breaker. 35en, 3spd, 12(D). 100h, 90p. For the next 2 turns, when target attacks, there is a 75% chance that they are stunned. Both.
-#2. Changed to work at both ranges. This should add a bit of punch to a character that really lacks damage. The Vamp won't be the best attacker but she needs to be able to throw a rock every now and then. I've also raised the damage slightly because it will cost her 45 energy. Now, it deals 42 raw damage and will probably be really glad to see that stunned condition.
-#4. I've altered the functionality here slightly. Now it's a 2 turn debuff that gives its target a chance to stun themselves every time they attack. An alternative idea here would be to make it stun every time they fail to attack because that would mean if Vamp landed an interrupt they'd wind up stunned the next turn. But that would probably too powerful and we're trying to limit the power level here.
-Protection. This is a scary card, one that's not going to get hit a lot. So, we're going to give her rock bottom health to make each go that much further and make her more difficult to work with. With those 55 hit points, each point of resistance is critical so we'll give her a deep pool to work with. (Per turn kills: 2 – 30/30/33, 3 – 21/21/24, 4 – 16/16/19)


We're about where we were last time. We've got 2 or 3 good cards, 2 or 3 more that could get there, in time. And then we've got the Stoolie. Who's just a mess. Most of the cards have made steady improvement whether it's coming down from the perilous heights, like the Vamp, or rising up out of the muck, like the Hit Man, or even just circling the zone, like Scareface or the Moll.

That's about it for now. We'll pick up again when we move into the Psychos. Or maybe a quick return trip to tie up some loose ends with the Gangsters. Either way, I wouldn't expect too much out of me for the next few days.

4 comments:

x1372 said...

Ok, comments.

Don't these guys in general look a tad bit overpowered? Lets look.

Scarface - wickedly evil innate, and the molotov cocktail as a 60 damage multi-range bomb seems way too much, especially when combined with the innate and the fact that you can always throw two in a row since you don't care about range with that move. I can easily see that guy turned into an alternate zina (some players switch her in, throw off a eye of tiger, switch her back out) setup with this, especially since SOMEONE is taking 50+ damage in one of the two turns.

Ox - this guy is so far ahead of the current tanks its not even funny, if he was added no one would ever use them again. A potential 75 point swing for only 40 energy seems absurd, especially when its 100% accurate. Additionally, his relatively cheap alternatives let him keep going even if it misses, and leg breaker gives him something very significant to do at far. On top of that a hits fleeing move and pseudo-death mask make this guy insane.

Fingers - pickpocket is absurdly powerful, and could instantly wreck virtually any single ranged opponent alone. Additionally, how would it handle opponents using slow attacks that they no longer have enough energy to use (get close pilebunker, but fingers procs pickpocket first). This guy can afford to play well at either range and has the energy to kick the opponent out of theirs.

Sully - Parting shot is 1.8's boomerang chakkra for valk'd anex. I really like this guy though, he has a lot of "scare factor" moves.

Bobby - I like a lot of the moves, but not sure how well they work together. This one's hard to visualize for me somehow, especially since some seem to completely contrast one another (one ignores resistances, one lowers resistances?)

Ginny - I see this character becoming scary quick. Be careful before making that one hit be 3x15 though, as that could easily get into instant kill range on a lot of characters with just two ubuntu rain dances, and on virtually everyone with two rain dances and incendiaries

Vamp - ok, see, that first skill? insane. against many characters, you have no reason NOT to throw it out every other round, as it does damage, gains energy, and has such a high interrupt rate. There's a reason why popo and helene have such high costs on their similar moves. I do like this character though, it has a "marquis le morte" feel while forcing the opponent to pick their poison in so many cases. I can't see kiss getting a lot of use though, as she can't range change into it and pretty much every long range specialist has faster moves (how would this work with spirit assistance anyway?)

Really interesting stuff though, glad to see them coming along.

Sausaletus Rex said...

Don't these guys in general look a tad bit overpowered?

Yes, they do. But, then, I find it easier to overshoot and then turn down the power knob rather than to undershoot and have to go the other way. Taking away what works too well is easier than figuring out what works that isn't there.

But, yes, the Gangsters are in sore need of a massive line-wide nerf. Which is probably why they get one in the next patch. I actually have it good to go (Along with the first two Psycho posts and the first Necro one, as well. It's just taking too long to get them done. An hour or so that I just haven't had lately.), I just haven't had the time to write out the comments and format it so that it's fit for public consumption. I'm working on it, though, but I'm also working on about half a dozen other things as well. I'm probably really going to have to push to dive under the wire here.

Scarface - wickedly evil innate, and the molotov cocktail as a 60 damage multi-range bomb seems way too much

Yep. I might as well let you in on some notes from the upcoming patch, since it adresses most of those problems. First, the new innate is gone and replaced with the old one - we went from a card whose innate was a nice boost to a powerful bar to one that had a massively powerful innate resting on top of that same bar. I kinda forgot there that I didn't want the innate to be too good and went too far. Skill #3, Molotov, is also getting a nerf, turning it from a hit into a pure DOT debuff. It's now like Blood Ritual on steroids but it's still far less threatening. Although it deals a lot of damage but a lot of that is delayed damage and while it might deliver a hit good enough to kill someone off that leaves a lot of zombie turns where a card's dead but still standing and able to attack.

Ox - this guy is so far ahead of the current tanks its not even funny, if he was added no one would ever use them again. A potential 75 point swing for only 40 energy seems absurd, especially when its 100% accurate.

Yeah, he's too hefty to be a scrapper and deals too much damage to be a tank. I keep forgetting that Bapho was supposed to be a 70HP bar. I basically reused the resistance here and the combination is a solid hunk of meat with a killer's edge. A bit of a lost cause since I'm reverting him back to his old bar – the flip-range idea has had a bit of time to marinate and I think I can get it to work now. This psuedo-Death Mask will make a return but it'll have a pretty different look.

As for this Ox, you're right, he's a monster (Bapho, by the way, was almost worse since he had a Far-range nuke as well. Didn't hit fleeing, though, which is where a lot of the problems here come from.). I do love me the nasty single-ranged characters, though. Shows you what I think about the current crop of Close-onlies, doesn't it?

A 75 health swing is significant but it's also an incredibly rare one. Skill #2 costs 40 energy because we're talking about a character that only has, at best, 50 to work with. Ox needs to step into range or otherwise play the range game just to get to attack (And, really, no one's going to be allowing him to just stand there. Even heavies like Ashi and Oni are going to back off, at least at first.). And that means he gets one shot with Gut Punch in order to get it to work. Hence the 100hit. Nothing worse than working to get into range and planning things just right only to have your move whiff so it's just not going to miss if you can get into position to use it. If you can, it only gives you that 25HP if you manage to kill your target. And that's not easy since you need at least one other hit – and those other hits on the bar cost enough (Or should have. I think I screwed up when I cut the cost of Skill #2 so it had a bit of breathing room. The other skills should have gone up to compensate and I forgot to do that. Skill #1 should be about 30~35 energy, I think. And Skill #2 should really be 45. And #4 should probably be 30 as well. Yeah, the energy curves are all off here. Ah well, live and learn.) that you wouldn't be able to land Gut Punch as a follow-up unless everything was going perfectly right. Which your opponent shouldn't be allowing to happen, anyway. Unless you get a crit, of course.

What I was trying to get as was a choice between a nuke and a skill that hits fleeing – what'd you'd get if Yoshi's Chi Blast was Close instead of Far. An incredibly potent combination that I've hit on before and an idea that I really like. The nuke offers a bigger reward but it's riskier since it might completely miss. While the fleeing hit is more likely to land but not as likely to hurt. So, you have to decide whether you're going to go for the nuke when they might switch away or the hits fleeing when they might stay. And your opponent has to decide whether to stay since you're going to hit them when fleeing or to switch out since you're going to blast them with your nuke. Creating situations like that where one player or the other is screwed if they guess wrong while they're both rewarded for guessing right is what I think the game is all about. And it's different from the normal intercept dillemma to be worthwhile, I think. And, here, Ox's decision making is altered even further by that possibility that he could heal himself away from death by landing that nuke. If his opponent stays and wacks him he might get that hits fleeing off to finish them off but the nuke is what he really wants since that lets him continue to fight.


Fingers - pickpocket is absurdly powerful, and could instantly wreck virtually any single ranged opponent alone.

That's the general idea. His ability to frustrate single-ranged characters is a feature, not a bug. But, the problem I see is that, with this version, he's dealing too much damage. I'd think it'd be alright if he could steal a lot of energy (Although, you're right and Skill #3 does come down while it undergoes a bit of a revamp. As I see it, by the way, stealing enough energy away would prevent an attack, just another form of interrupt - the game would read "Constantine attempts to use Pilebunker but the attack fails because he doesn't have enough energy." or something else like the message you get when you change ranges.) but only if he couldn't kill quite as fast. He's currently in the 3-hit range and that's against any card because he ignores all resistance (And pretty much any other defense, too.). But if he was up in the high 4 to low 5 range then he'd be a much fairer card and that's where he's headed.

Sully - I really like this guy though, he has a lot of "scare factor" moves.

I'm rather pleased with how his revamp turned out. I wish I could come up with something better than his tangled mess of multi-conditional skills but, yeah, turning him into a card that's a Trapper has worked rather well - and, yeah, he does it by being scary.

The thing about Parting Shot is that it's patterned on Rising Dragon. And it's actually less effective, if you compare them side by side, so make of that what you will when thinking about how that skill is balanced. But combined with his innate and those debuffs he procs, you just do not want to switch out against Sully or you will get your button punched.

Bobby - I like a lot of the moves, but not sure how well they work together. This one's hard to visualize for me somehow, especially since some seem to completely contrast one another (one ignores resistances, one lowers resistances?)

The thing is you have to see it not as lowering resistance but stealing it. Bobby steals from his opponent to get better. And, in this case, it's lowering their speed and resistance in order to increase his. It's not very relevant in terms of his damage but because it helps to blunt theirs - and with only 60 health, each point of mitigation helps Bobby immensely. Effectively, it lets him potentially add his opponent's resistance matrix to his own. You're using Skill #3 more for the damage, anyway. The procced effect is just a nice defensive boost. It is a bit weird but I like the effect and I thought that the energy swing on Skill #4 was both more relevant and more likely to see play if the two were equal so I stuck it on the psuedo-nuke. Might be worth finding something different, though.

Ginny - I see this character becoming scary quick.

I know! Isn't she vicious? She'll look a lot better, too, once the rest of the line gets rebalanced down. The thing is that they're largely flex-range characters while she's a single-range character. Her damage metrics are going to be through the roof since she only gets that single range in which to attack (Although you can't overlook Skill #1. That's a sneaky, Voidstream-like cheap attack that can really hurt. It's largely there, though, to give Ginny something to do when Close that lets her gain energy and then push back away.).

As for the 3x15, I guess getting decks constructed to get those 2 Rain dances out there is what I'm trying to get at - people thinking about how their characters can influence each other. Don't forget about Gangster Item #5, either. That adds +1 to the multi-hits here and toning down the boost that gives to Moll (She'd be a 9x6 or 54/81 with a crit versus 3x16 or 48/72 with a crit. It is indeed, really high, but, then, I've come to appreciate Helene's original ludicrous Frenzieds.) And, really, is 5x16+12DOT that ignores resistance all that much worse than 11x6+12DOT? Actually, yes, but I've also become convinced that Ginny's power attack needs to be a little weaker in other ways, too.

How about 5x9? I want to get after the concept of a tommy gun here. A high volume of fire where each packet doesn't match up to the other guns. An attack that really relies on the Skill #4 buff to ignore resistance. Something with a lot of damage potential but with that potential hidden, at least at first.

Vamp

Yeah. Vamp...needs work. But the concept is strong enough. And, yeah, the reason those other interrupts cost a lot is so they don't get used to much, which is what I was hoping the cooldown would solve. It still is really strong and probably needs either a longer cooldown or a hit/proc cut...

As for Kiss, it's not intended as perfect protection. And, indeed, I hope it's not, but more like Hypnotic Stare or Shield Bash where the faster attacks that tend to be weaker will get past but it takes care of the larger hits that destroy such a low-health character. A card like Rumiko is going to eat her up and Kiss won't help but it means that Vamp gobbles up a Chi Blast (Well, the Higashi one. And probably Amaya's, too. I'm thinking that rather than stritly hitting first, as long as you get the Kiss shield up at the same time, you're getting the benefit. That turns anything under 7 speed into a real risk.). And it's really there to give a difficult time to cards like, say, Andromeda who have the low speed heavy hits and the higher speed lighter attacks - it's what keeps her from being a greasy smear against cards with the like of Trueshot or Power Toss.

Like with a non-Valked Ashi up against Cornelius, do you want to risk a Signature Slice? Do you want to hold it back a turn? Is he popping off Hypnotic or is he blasting you with Pilebunker? Vamp can't quite deal the same damage but the same sense of twisting her opponents into knots is what I want to get at.

As for how Kiss would deal with something like Spirit Assistance, say, Touch of Doom, it wouldn't. It's not a reflect in the strictest sense because it doesn't affect targeting. It only affects the damage from attacks, turning it into negative damage or healing. Spirit Assistance is a debuff, not an attack, so it would just ignore the effect and apply as normal. If Kiss was used on the turn that Spirit Assistance was supposed to go off then it, likewise, wouldn't matter. SA would still go off and Vamp would still take the damage at the end of the turn. Same thing goes for DOTs or something like Leafy Trap as well – they aren't attacks and they don't get affected (Which makes for the weird spectacle of, say, Ashi hitting with Bleeding Slice, healing Vamp, and then having her Bleed apply but, you know, whatever. Stop trying to get it all to make sense.).

Thanks for the comments again and I'll try and get the rest of the stuff up before the end of the week.

x1372 said...

just a quick comment on what you've said here

Honestly, it sounds like you really like what anex turned into. She's quite often in a situation like you described at far - she has boomerang chakkra, for 30 energy to do 25 damage and hit fleeing, or power toss, 60 energy for a massively powerful hit, or just flat out intercept. The best move is largely dependent on the situation - when winning, go with the safe guaranteed damage, when losing go for broke with either an intercept or a power toss.

Glad ox is getting a major revamp... especially given his leg breaker. Completely dominating single rangers at close AND having a good energy neutral move at far that deals damage... *shudder*

I'm not sure even you realize quite how deadly pickpocket could be to a single range character. Even if it has a one turn cooldown, it means that you gain 30 energy on a RESTING opponent, in addition to any damage and interrupt it does. If this move is not altered in any other way, I'd have the cooldown be at least THREE turns.

The rest of the stuff you've said sounds really good, and the 5x9 should be fine for the gun (though kinda makes onimaru with his 5x7 cry). Looking forward to the next update.

Sausaletus Rex said...

Honestly, it sounds like you really like what anex turned into.

I haven't played in months so, honestly, I wouldn't know. But, yeah, I've thought Anex looked sexy for a while now. But Anex is more of a range-specialist than a range-only character and where I like that dilemma is on a character who has to work to move into their desired range and, then, has to decide whether to go for broke or play it safe. It's a real make or break moment that gets to the heart of what the game's about - making all the stats and balancing not matter worth a damn because it's all about what's between you and your opponent.

I'm not sure even you realize quite how deadly pickpocket could be to a single range character.

As you should see from the patch notes, it's down to 20 energy now and the speed has been chopped so it shouldn't interrupt. Lost some damage, too, and does, in fact, have a sneaky way of having a 1 turn cooldown.

But, yes, I'm perfectly aware it destroys single-ranged characters. That's the point. That's the point of the whole Gangster line, really. O course, you haven't seen some of the other single-rangers I've got in the back that make Ox v3 look like a pansy. Some of them need a steel-toed boot to the pants in order to destroy.

5x9 should be fine for the gun (though kinda makes onimaru with his 5x7 cry).

Yeah, but that's 30 energy and chops a buff (Which kinda sucks now but in a set like this where almost every character has something to play with there and everyone else benefits from them in other ways, well, it's a nice ability. Incidentally, Onimaru's 5x7 Flurry should make him cry anyway because it's the crappy skill that holds him back from being actually good. If it did 7x5, he'd be a much better card - if only because he wouldn't need to rely on Curse.). G6's is 40~45 energy and does nothing but deal damage. Granted, it's a vehicle for getting her procs across, too, but I think @45 damage is good for a vanilla skill on a single-ranged character when we're talking about that kind of energy range.

Also, speed.

But, anyway, it's 3x15 now since I wrote the last patch over the weekend but I'll make a note and kick it to 5x9 or something like in the next patch. Which will hopefully show up a lot sooner.