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Thug rebalance: My Thoughts. Thug infighting powerfarm Ruined


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This is a balance change observation. I'm going to break down why I think the Thug Balance changes did not work.

 

I am writing this down knowing nothing will revert, but as an exercise to explore why no one has been thrilled and

it would have been better to do nothing in this case.

 

PVE Broken--------------------------------------------------------

1st off, pve Fire is dominated by Mine and Eruption already, Most of the time, hp matters less when the enemy is that weakened or disrupted, you don't tank in pve t1 fire, you kill or unit spam it dead. HP Regen, range and utilty tools like No summoning sickness, swift and L size are more important in pve t1 fire. Looting pve units was the thug's only previous niche. Remember this.

 

2nd, in PVE, Thugs are in a tough spot compared to North guard, Spearmen, Insert shadow t1 melee, because Scavengers are almost the exact same 60 power unit Thugs are, except better. Giving thugs 720 s dmg, same as scavs does nothing in PVE. Because Scavs have chad slowing and swift, Thugs have +100 hp and loot +power from cpu buildings. That's a fat zero power gained because cpu pve buildings have no power costs, useless. Also, see above about why more hp in pve mostly useless. The result is obvious, now pve players mostly have converted to Scav, Nomad and Sunstriders when they have chance because the thug's new advantages are mostly useless in Fire t1 pve. Essentially, thugs losing unit looting means Scavs are now better in every way that matters.

*edit: would also like to add and remind people, even if Scav equivalence issue is removed, Wreckers are 10 power cheaper (50) , have spearmen range behavior and are overall better even without factoring their game breaking ability, So it's actually even worse for thugs.

 

You guys also broke a niche classic Lost Souls Era deck where you grab a bunch of thugs next to healing and then trigger chaos warrior ability to fight each other to gain power. The new thugs are next to worthless for this as they only get power from buildings. This was THE only way to get free power in the entire game since lost souls and u guys broke it cause pvp. Cool coool coool cool cool. Wow.

 

See my frustration below.

 

PVP more of the same--------------------------------
 

Giving thugs with the attack statline of Scavs while looting buildings has pleased no one.

They're still doing the exact same thing except now buffed to kill defenders instead of trading card charges evenly with them.

And they still give free power. Like what changed? The niche thug strategy, if anything is stronger as they're now even more cost efficient backdooring

as always.

 

Overall worth.-----------------------------

This is I believe an example of where old thugs should have been kept. Because the new thug balance is basically the same annoying ass in pvp except buffed in their intended pvp role so it feels even shittier to face when working properly, while completely broke useless for pve usage now.

 

So we broke thugs for pve, and the same unpopular thug play in pvp is just as strong now in a different way. I would not call that a win, we're back to the beginning with a now completely PVE useless card.

Edited by chickennoodler
Spelling, formatting, Wreckers added
Buddelmuddel and Cryswar like this
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Our main priority when it comes to the balancing is PvP, not Pve. We might have ruined a niche strategy for Pve with this nerf but there's still the option to transfer that role to strikers instead.

For PvP it was a necessary step because generating energy out of nowhere was a very unpredictible design and turned out to be too strong in the long run.

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I think they were a threat to S T1 ranged and melee squads for a good reason - except those, T1 Fire only has the Scavenger, which is nice, but not great at taking down squads alone. Thugs could chase a single unit around making them valuable not only because of their damage but the Looting passive. I think removing that makes them quite a big "meh", since they are no longer a reason to truly run away and not let them hit you. The added pressure didn't make them op, and all it took to prevent them from being super useful was just running away, usually with a 50 Power unit, thus wasting the added 10 cost and giving you a very slight edge in the fight - an edge that was balanced by the threat of if you fail the micro to run away, you put yourself at a Power disadvantage. They had no charge, unlike Strikers, who (if I see everything correctly) still Loot both units and buildings for just 10 Power more. They are the ones I think needed the nerf more, since catching up to enemy units is that much easier with them. Right now, I feel you no longer need to run away from them and its fine to face them even when at a damage disadvantage.

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12 hours ago, chickennoodler said:

 

and loot +power from cpu buildings. That's a fat zero power gained because cpu pve buildings have no power costs, useless.

Wait a minute ... I remember gaining no Void Energy in Bad Harvest, from breaking apart your own NPC Turrets(Right at start)

Now.. this would actually be stupid, if it was that way

12 hours ago, chickennoodler said:

You guys also broke a niche classic Lost Souls Era deck where you grab a bunch of thugs next to healing and then trigger chaos warrior ability to fight each other

Lmao I didn't know about that, that's freaking funny

 

The stat increase of thugs is indeed nice for PvP, so don't complain about that

Edited by xs0ulLess
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The change comes from PvP top players. I don't dare arguing there, but I know a couple of things about PvE. As Chibi already pointed out, Strikers are still in the game thus making a looter strategy still possible with a slight disadvantage against S-units. 

Furthermore have not many environmental squads and buildings a powetcost connected to them and if it's comparably little to player used cards (that's also the reason why Nightguard can take over pretty powerful squads). 

By the way, powerwells and monuments are not considered 'buildings' by the games logic. They belong to a seperate, unique group. You cannot generate power from powerwells and monuments. 

Edited by Mynoduesp
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On 1/6/2021 at 2:33 AM, chickennoodler said:

 

 

You guys also broke a niche classic Lost Souls Era deck where you grab a bunch of thugs next to healing and then trigger chaos warrior ability to fight each other to gain power. The new thugs are next to worthless for this as they only get power from buildings. This was THE only way to get free power in the entire game since lost souls and u guys broke it cause pvp. Cool coool coool cool cool. Wow.

 

damn..i did not know of this strategy... this sounds brilliant! i wish they were still the old thugs to try that one out. I love these little nice strats and a thug fightpit sounds very fun lol please revert this balance thing ..the majority does not gravitate to pvp anyways lol. maybe make the willzapper a useful card in pve too xD ..had a chat somewhere here on the forum with a pvp-player and it seems like not even pvp lovers play that card. how hard is it to give the pve buildings powercost? and on that note: how hard would it be to make fleshbender work on the spawns of pve buildings? dying breed for pve would also be nice.

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On 1/16/2021 at 1:38 PM, Loriens said:

Same =(
1843812532_.thumb.png.782b59b4effa576f648698c72d3f5d49.png
R.I.P.

F

From a shadow pvp players perspective the change was great, of course. Fire still hast the late T1 advantage with sunderers and the guessing game where you don't know if youre ahead or not even after winning a fight involving thugs is gone.

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Using Looter in PVE is a shot-in-the-dark against null values, PVP you've got the prominent use-case against Phase Towers.

Making Looter work in PVE is a massive undertaking of design work. In PVP there were the issues as to why Looter was changed to begin with; a lack of transparency and notably permanent swings in power for Fire even when a player should mechanically be punished for poor play.

Looter should still not generate power, even against buildings for the above reasons, including for a unit like Strikers.

Instead, I would prefer to see a void return; the more damage (Edit: OR instead of doing damage, incrementing if an enemy unit/building died nearby) the more void return is stored. Then to access the void return, they have to return to "base" and deposit their looted cargo through an active ability (with the stipulation they cannot do this in a radius near enemy units). The ability then rewards Fire if their opponent cannot take back their "loot".

But I mean, Thugs are in a good spot if you like boring units.

Edited by DukeDublin
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  • 2 months later...
On 1/25/2021 at 7:39 PM, DukeDublin said:

Using Looter in PVE is a shot-in-the-dark against null values, PVP you've got the prominent use-case against Phase Towers.

Making Looter work in PVE is a massive undertaking of design work. In PVP there were the issues as to why Looter was changed to begin with; a lack of transparency and notably permanent swings in power for Fire even when a player should mechanically be punished for poor play.

Looter should still not generate power, even against buildings for the above reasons, including for a unit like Strikers.

Instead, I would prefer to see a void return; the more damage (Edit: OR instead of doing damage, incrementing if an enemy unit/building died nearby) the more void return is stored. Then to access the void return, they have to return to "base" and deposit their looted cargo through an active ability (with the stipulation they cannot do this in a radius near enemy units). The ability then rewards Fire if their opponent cannot take back their "loot".

But I mean, Thugs are in a good spot if you like boring units.

that sounds like a nice fun idea. 

 

I still don't really understand why thugs got changed and strikers didn't. However, I never had a problem with either of those. 

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  • 2 months later...

There is a big difference on how Thugs and Energy Parasite interact with the game. 

-> Energy Parasites are restricted by very specific orb limitations (double nature has inherent weaknesses, that make up for the strong upside of generating extra power)

-> Energy Parasite does not have an impact in combat as the hp pool is basically nonexisting (trade off between combat power and long term power generation)

On top of that there was no visual clarity on how much power got looted during fights compared to the flat 25 of EP, which made the Looter mechanic in PvP even more problematic to balance. Thugs were capable of generating leads through staying in combat for as long as possible regardless of the outcome, so the proper response for factions without hard cc options (Shadow/Fire decks without looter units) to this was avoiding fights at all costs, which lead to very stale, defensive and one dimensional gameplay. If you get into fights, there is no change in how thugs are played and they received a combat power compensation for the loss of looter to be more effective if they end up being ignored. PvE will also receive a compensation quite soon, which probably leads to Thugs being a lot better for the casual game experience than ever before. 

 

 

SunWu likes this
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I get your point , but I think the ability fit so well with Fire theme -harras and aggresive. It also act as a snowball tool.

can't just make it more costly? compare to northguard , it cost more for similar stats .

Have you consider make it cost 63-65?

and can make the ability more transparent through description.

 

Glad to hear that it  gonna be a viable option in PvE though

 

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