May 11, 2014

Terrain Ho!

When I first wrote Incinerator, Ensnaring Trap, and all those other pretty little abilities that mimic Terrain were slightly different. The ones that caused Extreme Terrain outright said "Flyer and friends won't make you immune to this." while the ones that halved Guard and Speed just said "This halves Guard and Speed." and did this specifically to make sure everyone got how they worked. I later thought of doing away with the reminder text to tidy them up a little and tried to convey it saying "the effects of Terrain" instead of creating a Zone of Terrain. Then I added a bit in the Troubleshooting section so the way they work would still be clear and the abilities would have less redundancy. Mission acomplished!

...It turns out the old way was much more clear. Whoops. That brings us to the most recent poll in which I bring up a third option: Turning them into abilities  that create Zones of Difficult/Extreme Terrain. For the most part this changes very little, it just weakens them slightly because now you can avoid them via flight or terrain adaptation. It is an acceptable setback, all things considered, but more on that later.

Anyway this also got me thinking about possibly making a few changes to Terrain itself. If abilities that mimic Terrain could use a rewrite to work like you would expect them to, then Terrain itself could also deserve getting another look at. It is not an herculean task by any means, but still one not to be taken lightly.

Time for a (relatively) short aside about rewriting things!

I'm no stranger to tweaking mechanics until I get them right, and can do adjustments on things that just need a slight buff or nerf fast and easy. The problem is when a change is not a matter of tweaking one or more knobs but requires an actual rewrite. Changing the rules of a thing often means changing what that thing represents in fluff terms and sometimes it requires changing multiple other rules to go with it.

I'm fine with doing that too, in moderation and for a good reason, like with Beams and Attributes/XP. But those changes are not just more complex from a design standpoint, they also take a whole lot longer and sometimes delay other things. When you have a +2 Gun of Shootin Gud and you buff it to make it a +4 Gun instead, everyone understands what you're doing right out of the gate. When you turn it into a +2 Scoped Silenced Gun of Shootin Gud you have to first test it out to make sure that the scope and silenced bits work as intended, make sure you write out the final version in a way that reads as intended, then finally make sure it doesn't create a black hole in rules terms when sitting right next to the rest of the game. Playtesting and editing are twice as rigorous when rewrites are involved.

Terrain is one of those rare instances in that the Terrain rules can get a tweak and the rest of the game should hold up fine enough in theory. In practice there's a lot of other rules that care about Terrain and those are going to need adjustments in response to make sure they work not just fine enough but flawlessly.

Pictured: My editor every time I bring up rewrites.

Old Places with New Faces

Plain and Impassable Terrain are fine as is. They are both pretty simple concepts and Let's start with the simplest change I've got in mind.

Extreme Terrain: As is, but you can use the better of Systems or Speed with the Test instead of averaging it. Conceptually this means you can maneuver out of the way of trouble or use your equipment to mitigate damage depending on what you know best, rather than being forced to do both. I also think Extreme Terrain could use a slight nerf. Since the DN increases with Tension and you can get hit by Extreme Terrain twice per Turn, repeated exposure feels like you're being hit by multiple Techniques. This way Extreme Terrain would still be pretty strong, but all it takes to decrease the average Damage taken is Systems or Speed, not both.

Difficult Terrain: Difficult Terrain would just halve your Speed and leave your Guard untouched. This is not because of balance concerns but rather for pure flavor reasons. Difficult Terrain is currently any kind of place where it is hard to move and you are a sitting duck, but if we change it to just halving Speed (what it originally did) we can now have Zones where it is hard to move but that also provide protection, like rocky hills or thick jungles. This would obviously affect the power level of anything that creates Difficult Terrain but let's set that aside for now.

Defensive Terrain: Defensive Terrain shields you with a Disadvantage against all attacks made against you instead of giving you a huge bonus only when Maneuvering. It does make sense that everyone would have an easier time in there rather than just Mecha playing defensively, right? This simplifies the entry considerably while making Defensive Terrain useful for everyone, not just the team tank. One Disadvantage may not seem like much compared to the combos you could pull off with it previously, but when you don't have to do anything other than sit there to get it every Turn, it tilts the odds in your favor considerably.

Simplifying Terrain and making it less excessive in its benefits and hindrances means we can let multiple instances stack safely. Two instances of Difficult Terrain will lower your 4 Speed to 2 and then to 1. Three of Extreme Terrain means you get hit between three and six times during your Turn. Four of Defensive Terrain means four Disadvantages or a +8 to Defense.

AND FOR MY NEXT ACT I WILL STACK ALL THREE TOGETHER.

Terrain-to-Terrain Weapons

We need to update two Weapons and two Supports that deal with Difficult and Extreme Terrain. Let's not waste further words and get to it.

Ensnaring Trap: Halves Guard and Speed for a Round. Creating Zones of Difficult Terrain does not achieve much by itself, even if it were to continue halving Guard. Anybody you hit with it can just move 1 Zone away, after all. It also basically fails to do anything if they can fly, so just causing a debuff seems the way to go.

Finger Net: Halves Guard and Speed in the area of effect. This was always intended as an area debuff to more than just Speed, and thus would work more or less the same way it does now. It hits more targets than Ensnaring Trap and even deals some Damage but you have to get up close to do it, which makes it harder to use.

Fire at Will: Hits the target for Tension Damage and creates a single Zone of Extreme Terrain for one Round. The first real change. Just having one Zone of Extreme Terrain is pretty weak, most of the time it will only hit once and you can use your better stat to negate the Damage. This one hits twice right out of the gate, so it feels like a more focused Bombardment - and you better move out of the way before the second barrage hits you.

Incinerator: Gets a clarification at the end that it ignores abilities that would normally cancel Extreme Terrain. The flavor of being on fire makes sense like this and the simplicity of Extreme Terrain is important enough from a rules perspective that I don't mind making this the only ability in the game that needs this kind of reminder text.

There's other minor adjustments to make with things like Remote Hotfix or Stealth Field, but that covers the big ones. That's it for this week. I don't have a poll to follow the last one with but I'm still interested in hearing what you think.

30 comments:

  1. If Fire At Will gets these tweaks, you need to knock Airstrike into the 5-point price bracket, because 'I do what Airstrike does, BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE' is kind of the textbook difference between upgrades with two different price ranges. As a bonus this gives support attackers one of their toys back while making their big gun both more interesting since you can avoid half of it (a third?) and also raising its damage ceiling for a higher payoff.

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  2. Airstrike is guaranteed damage in a big area of effect, Fire at Will is guaranteed damage to one guy with what can either be a small bonus or a devastating followup provided you can hold them in place. The setback is that they have a limited amount of uses and that they are costly.

    Support Users are a godsend against Bosses, because the group should be able to take them down before you run out of Support activations. But they don't do so hot against waves of Grunts, since you'll run out of those before you run out of enemies.

    Airstrike is the one way Support users have to combat multiple enemies while staying out of their sights, and it does a very good job of softening them or outright destroying them. I actually think it is a bit too strong for what it does, but it gets the job done.

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  3. You think? I feel like Airstrike is actually really bad at taking down Grunts, except Threshold 0 ones. Since it does damage that only scales with time, you can't abuse the fact that you'll have stats on the grunts to deal more damage and instantly KO them. Even a Threshold 1 grunt can survive a really strong Airstrike and not really give a damn. I think I'd like it more if AIrstrike was single target and reusable, rather than consuming support uses and hitting groups. That way it'd be a better Anti-Rival tool, the type of enemy Supports are worst against.

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    1. It builds with time, but Supports are unmaimable, have really long range, and let you fall back while you use them. If you need to kill those Grunts yourself, you can start using Airstrike after the first few rounds when it already hits for a decent chunk.

      If you don't have to take them out yourself and want to assist your team from round one then there are better options, yes. But the biggest weakness of dedicated Support users are mobs (this is by design), and without Airstrike they don't even have a fighting chance.

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  4. Taking higher of systems and speed instead of average is better but it's still very strong. Most mechs will have guard higher than systems or speed so it's still more effective than normal attacks and bypasses most barriers.

    Incinerator is still retarded 3x tension weapon that outperforms all other melee weapons.

    Fire at will is super long range technique that can be spammed every turn without disadvantage.

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    1. The disadvantage of Fire at Will is that you have to spend essentially a whole power level to repeat it every turn and once you run out of uses there is no way to get more back.

      It lets a support user beat a heavy combat specialist one on one, but I don't see this as a bad thing. If stacking damage-per-turn bonuses beats everything else all the time, why would you ever play anything else?

      Incinerator does have the issue that it causes a powerful status effect -and- grants you an advantage to make it easier to stick said effect. It attacks from two angles when most weapons can only hit from one, but it does cost quite a bit of energy and hits you too.

      There's a few ways it could go. It could cause just one Systems/Speed Test on hit. It could lose the Advantage from Boosting. It could be Slow. The main reason I haven't touched it is that nothing quite feels right for a flamethrower or equivalent.

      Delete
  5. Fire at will-spam-cost

    fire at will = 10XP
    commander type =20 XP
    resupply = 5 XP
    invincible alloy = 10 XP
    systems 4->6 = 10 XP
    might 0 = -10 XP
    reversible thrusters = "free"

    That comes to 45 XP investment ie. starting build

    normal sinper build cost

    sniper weapon = 5 XP
    anti-maim = 10 XP
    reversible thrusters = 10 XP
    might 4->6 = 10 XP

    total 35 XP

    "support" sniper build (45 XP)
    + damage estimate = 4.5 + 2x tension - enemy systems/speed
    + range 12
    + bypasses most active defenses
    + ability to cheaply expand utility by taking 5 cost supports
    + cheaper in the long run because you don't invest in might
    - only 7 "ammo"
    + very good scaling from systems (range 16 and 9 "ammo" with systems 6->8)

    normal sniper (35 XP)
    + damage estimate = 0.5 + might + tension - enemy guard
    + range 9
    + ability to aim
    + ability to spend energy to improve damage
    + unlimited ammo
    - more expensive in the long run because you need to pump might

    damage analysis

    Let's assume you have +2 might advantage over enemy guard and enemy systems/speed average is 6. Very generous assumptions that favor normal sniper.

    estimates
    normal = 2.5 + tension
    "support" = 2x tension - 1.5

    support should outperform normal on tension 4

    actual expected values
    normal vs "support"

    tension 1 = 3.6 vs 2
    tension 2 = 4.5 vs 3.5
    tension 3 = 5.5 vs 5.1
    tension 4 = 6.5 vs 6.8
    tension 5 = 7.5 vs 8.6
    tension 6 = 8.5 vs 10.5
    tension 7 = 9.5 vs 12.5

    "support" deals more damage on tension 4+
    overall very comparable values. And that's on assumptions favoring normal build. Speed/systems 6 is reasonable assumption for most enemies. Only bosses, support mechs and lance chargers will have one of those above 6.

    Now more realistic scenario where normal sniper is aiming with sniper rifle at the start and support has target assist support to use on low tension. (target assist counts as +4 damage on another mech using ranged weapon)

    tension 1 = aim vs +4 damage
    tension 2 = 10.5 vs +4 damage
    tension 3 = aim vs 5.1
    tension 4 = 12.5 vs 6.8
    tension 5 = 7.5 vs 8.6
    tension 6 = 8.5 vs 10.5
    tension 7 = 9.5 vs 12.5

    Damage comes out to be basically the same. Most active defenses however significantly lower damage of normal sniper while "support" is only vulnerable to absolute barrier that affects normal guy the same. The enemies "support" is bad against i.e. supports and chargers are very unlikely to compromise entire enemy force so he should be able to pick targets he's effective against most of the time.He does have some problem against bosses but base tension damage is still not bad against them by any means.

    "Support" is also cheaper XP wise in the long run because normal sniper will have to participate in might/guard arms race and pump it to 10 eventually while
    "support" can very comfortably leave his systems at 8.

    tl;dr Both sniper builds are very similiar in dpr effectiveness which is ridiculous because "support" is much more versatile and has more easy branching options.

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    1. Also. Normal sniper cost should include slippery and be 40 XP. "Support" effectively gets it for free and extra ability to "ignore" enemies engaging him in duels.

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  6. I don't like the whole (boosted) beam weapon idea. Why would beam weapons have the ability to attack without spending energy? The whole idea of them is that they need energy to be used. This and reducing their cost means they need to be toned down in power. They also can't be too versatile now. It makes them loose a lot of flavor. The unboosted mode of the weapon is almost useless anyway on almost all weapons. It makes beam techniques useable but the old ones could be discounted to 5 XP too and work just as well. Overall I like the old beam weapons better.

    BTW
    Radiant fist is still inferior to incinerator and pointless.
    Beam saber is still worse than the new chainblade.
    Beam rifle is still kinda bad.

    You also can't take both active defenses and beam weapons. You either pour all your energy into offense or defense. Splitting it is just too inefficient.
    You either go
    beam + reactor + integrated weapons
    OR
    normal + active defenses + invincible alloy

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  7. The problem with the 'Supports can fall back!' assumption is that it does not actually work in play because most 'maps' have limited sizes, as per the rulebook. If we very generously estimate that you're in a 40-square map and deploy smack dab in the middle of it while an enemy deploys on a corner, and assume you're facing a reasonably built melee foe, AND have Systems 10 and Speed 4 (somehow, don't ask me what voodoo magic went into it), and your opponent has Speed 4 as well...it covers 6 squares a round by Boosting, plus five from Overboosting, meaning it gains seven squares on you per round. Assuming you go second so you get to move back and fire every turn, here's how things go (and remember, this is a BIG battlefield, AND I'm making assumptions that do not favor the guy trying to close in. There's a lot of stuff that is going wrong for the targeted mob, and in a normal 20-square battlefield you're just plain hosed):

    Round 1: 13 zones away
    Round 2: 5 zones away. (NOTE: Support attacker hittable with Extending Blade at this range)
    Round 3: ENGAGED

    Conclusion? Assuming you're facing a grunt squad (heck, grunt PAIR) that is competently built, you're just gonna get mobbed to hell and back and die horribly. Airstrike doesn't help you deal with small mobs coming at you because it takes way too long to ramp up. It's not an actual answer to mob squads and it doesn't give you a fighting chance. If you have to beat down a mob squad, your best option is to use Assisted Targeting on the dude who can use a Rail Bazooka, not try to go heromode and Airstrike them. It really doesn't make sense to keep Airstrike around as an anti-mob weaponry that doesn't work the way you need it to to keep mobs down.

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    1. You still got extra free shot from reversible thrusters.

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  8. Anonymous is getting Beams wrong. To cover it quickly:

    A) Boosted Beams and the Experimental Reactor are not part of the same ruleset. You're mix-and-matching pieces.

    B) There's actually a really long stretch where you can easily sink energy into Beams and still have a decent leftover for Active Defenses, assuming you're using Boosted Beams. Starting with EN 6, you have enough energy to use Assisted Targeting/Extending Blade and still have 1/2 EN leftover to protect yourself with. This is a pretty practical thing to do, even if you're eventually gunning for the Double Blaster/Assisted Targeting combo that guzzles up all ten points of EN, because a support unit can feed you energy wtih an Overcharger so you can defend yourself.

    On a similar note, those sniper builds feel wrong to me. As a sniper, Reversible Thrusters are of questionable use IMO, for the reasons I presented above to debunk the theory of Airstrike being good against mobs. It's *better*, for sure, but when you do a sufficiently high amount of damage you don't need the thrusters for a while, since you're dismantling your targets. Here's what my own sniper build would look like, instead:

    Sniper Rifle (5 XP)
    Might 4 -> Might 8 (20 XP)
    Energy 4 -> Energy 6 (10 XP)
    Commander Type (20 XP)
    Assisted Targeting (5 XP)
    Speed 4 -> Speed 2 (-5 XP)
    Guard 4 -> Guard 2 (-5 XP)

    Total: 60 XP (15 more than support sniper, still doable at PL1)

    Assuming identical XP investments, one build is more mobile, less fragile, and has room for other options, but the other has longer range and higher damage. Using the assumptions you proposed and assuming the Sniper aims every turn, damage estimates:

    normal = 10.5 + tension
    "support" = 2x tension - 1.5

    As a plain analysis shows, the Support Sniper never catches up with the dedicated sniper, who puts out an absolutely scary amount of damage per turn. Even if you grant the bonus from Assisted Targeting to another ally for the support sniper, he is still massively outperformed by a dedicated sniper build. And I'd argue that if we're assuming a support sniper has an ally to pass Assisted Targeting to, it's not even much of a stretch to assume the standard sniper has a friendly Base Unit to shield him and let him run a proper kiting operation as one unit boosts forever forward or backwards and the other fires killshots round after round. Most amusingly, a true sniper team still works in pairs in BCG!

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    1. The reason you shouldn't use active defenses on beam mechs is that they get maimed. Integrated weapons only makes your weapons unmaimable not defenses. Invincible alloy protects defenses but has energy upkeep.

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    2. Also that sniper build is terrible because it has no anti maim and can be taken out by a light breeze. It gets disabled with 1 hit of any kind. Way too glass cannon.

      Delete
  9. Do note that while Extreme Terrain is strong, it can be cancelled via flight and movement. Fire at Will is meant to do above average damage and to attack from an angle that might/guard specialists don't handle very well. It should also be something that can represent an attack from turrets/bits/sidekicks/whatever. Everything else is flexible. I just thought using preexisting rules would work well, but if Ensnaring Trap and Finger Net discarded the Terrain rules to be more straightforward then so can Fire at Will and Incinerator.

    But it is supposed to hit for a decent chunk, and potentially let a Support specialist beat a straight combat specialist who didn't invest in alternative defenses.

    Airstrike could use a different variable too, I just don't want it going over 5 too easily. It has to be good but not better than using actual long range blast weapons for a fraction of the price. I'd like to avoid giving it infinite ammo though, infinite unavoidable area damage raises too many red flags.

    Beams are a different issue. Conceptually the idea is that they have a normal firing mode and an overload mode for an energy cost. It also keeps them from being dead weight when something happens to your energy reserves. if it does not come across well we could ultimately remove the option and just make them always cost energy.

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    1. What if you're in space? Does flight protect you there too?

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  10. Actually, that build DOES have anti-maim, I just forgot to list it. Run the numbers, it comes out to 50 XP total as it is now. Add Integrated Weapons and you get the actual XP value I listed. It's a 'whoops', but not a big one.

    As for not using active defenses because of maims, it honestly doesn't matter. Damage mitigation is damage mitigation, you don't care if it gets maimed so long as it gives you more combat stamina before it croaks. Your only job is to outlast enemy fire long enough to dismantle your targets. Anything that helps you kill quicker or last longer is a good deal. Considering your enemies have to scan you to find out where your ADs are, it's a crapshoot whether they even get to maim it before destroying you unless they burn GP on it. Should you prioritize it over more killy? No. But when more killy isn't available and you have the energy to spare, ADs ain't a bad deal.

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  11. I forgot to mention it was going to have Incinerator's energy cost go up during sunday, to bring it up to par with the Double Blaster. But this is not about it being difficult to use but about it scaling in power way too fast. I looked at a few alternatives for the three discussed abilities. Here are two options I particularly liked:

    Fire at Will: One Enemy must Test Speed against a DN of 15, if they fail they take the amount they missed the DN by as Damage.

    This makes sense from the angle that you can't shield yourself against or parry a barrage, you have to get out of the way. There are no strange rule interactions here, because it only deals with Speed and pure Damage.

    On the rules side this is powerful enough that can take out two grunts or a rival of moderate Threshold/Speed (4-6ish) in 6 shots or less. It suits them well because most of the time it delivers an unavoidable chunk of damage with no delays, attack rolls, or requiring a tension buildup.

    The downside is that it does not scale well, so there are a lot of things you simply won't be able to solo with it. Anything with a Speed of 8 will take an average of 2 Damage per use and therefore laughs at it, Healing/Regeneration essentially counter each activation with their own, and Absolute Barrier blocks it forever.

    Haven't tested it obviously, but it looks solid.

    Airstrike: All Units within a target area the size of a Blast suffer an amount of Damage equal to half your Systems.

    Better control over your drones and funnels and superior coordination with your minions and allies means they can dish out the pain more efficiently. This is also quite simple.

    Balance wise it is going to take several activations to kill anything with it. But at Systems 6 you have enough ammo to take out a wave of Threshold 4 Grunts. It is not fast and it does not get better with time, but it is upfront and it does hit in an area.

    It bothers me a little that it gets double benefit from Systems, kind of making it a power stat instead of working off of opposed rolls or something else. But it gets the job done at being a tool for specialists who want an alternative to Bombardment.

    Then there's Incinerator. I'm not too pleased with this one, but the numbers add up pretty decently from what I checked.

    Incinerator. Boost 2, Overheating. When you boost it and it hits, it deals an additional amount of Damage equal to half the current Tension.

    Spammable like you'd expect from a flamethrower. Hits often for a little extra bonus damage. Sometimes hurts you. It is not as flashy as its brother the twin buster rifle but it does not have to be, it just has to work.

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  12. That Incinerator just feels kinda lame. Half-Tension effects generally are, even when they work perfectly, and the fact that it can seriously hurt you more than it can help (Round 3, you overheat and add one damage while taking three. Talk about a gyp compared to +4 damage or hitting two targets!). As for the other two tools, my thoughts:

    A) That Fire At Will variant could afford to be a five-pointer and not mess anything up too terribly, since it'd be single target and not scale with your competence but with the enemy's crappiness. It's neat, but should not replace the current one which is just damn useful and a good thing to have in the Support's arsenal.

    B) That Airstrike is exactly what you want out of a minion killer. I'd implement the switch right not and never look back. The current version is just not needed compared to something with upfront damage. It's not good against bosses and rivals, but makes you feel like a king against mobs. That's what a good upgrade does. Well done!

    Overall, decent batch. Two out of three ain't bad, IMO.

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  13. *And the fact that it can hurt you more than it can help is awful. Whoopsadaisy, typo! May as well attach some ideas to this post to make it worthwhile while I'm at it. If the Incinerator is too powerful (which I question because it's a fucking melee range weapon that guzzles energy to be worth a damn, the whole fucking weapon goes against the things a melee build needs, especially with an EN cost of 4 that makes it piss-easy to shut down), how about giving it a Boost cost, then a certain amount of extra energy you can overcharge into it to burn off the target's EN for their next turn and deal them an equivalent amount of damage? So say I use my Incinerator, Boost it, and spend 3 extra EN on it. If I hit, I deal +3 damage, and my target regains three less energy when he next takes a turn (because he's overheating). The numbers could be tweaked (maybe the bonus damage should be halved, maybe it shouldn't), but it seems like a potentially decent way to make it unique and not too deepsy. How's that sound?

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  14. If I'm going to make an energy burner I'd rather set out to make one from the start. I'd like to keep this as a flamethrower if possible. Might as well go all the way conceptually then.

    Incinerator: Boost 4, Long Range, Overheating. This Weapon attacks all Zones within Range in a straight line aimed in a direction of your choice. When you Boost Incinerator, all Zones affected become Extreme Terrain for a Round. This cannot create Extreme Terrain while underwater or in space.

    I haven't done any math on this yet, but the extra damage has enough conditionals attached it shouldn't be a problem. This way it keeps its flavor and can hit for a lot, but against fliers/terrain specialists/in the wrong type of terrain it is just an overheating beam.

    It is a bit complex, though! Coincidentally related to a topic I wanted to discuss next, which is complexity and when it is good and when it is bad.

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    1. I immediately realized this also sets your own Zone on fire which can be pretty awkward when you accidentally kill yourself. Guess it would also need a line about letting you spare your own Zone if you want to. Only optional because it'd be pretty useful in a duel.

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  15. That 'cannot create terrain while underwater or in space' line is a dealbreaker. That's "REALISM!" bullshit that gets in the way of what would be a strong but fun weapon otherwise (which would be more overpowered in Anonymous' opinion compared to the current one, but idgaf about that). I'd axe it, because it's not like it's a balancing factor or whatever. It just means that the Incinerator is a weapon you take Trump Card for and just pull out when the terrain allows for proper use, which is dumb.

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  16. Support abilities that give low-moderate guaranteed damage without rolls is a good niche. They won't have the dpr of normal weapons but are very reliable.

    Airstike (10) - half-systems damage seems like a good point
    Fire-at-Will (10) - it should scale off half-systems too, maybe half-systems + half-tension

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    1. I tried that for fire at will first, it doesn't work out too well.

      Base damage starts at 1 and increases by 1 for every 2 systems and every 2 turns. This gives us the following results:

      (Note that I am rounding tension up)

      Systems 4 - If we start firing from round 1 this only deals 14 damage. Not enough to kill anything with Threshold 4. If you start firing from round 3 you still need to survive until round 7 to reach 18 damage.

      Systems 6 - Four shots deal 18 Damage then the last two deal another 12 for a total of 30. If you wait until round 3 to start firing you'll need a Threshold of 10 (or a lot of healing) to survive. This is a 6 turn clock that is not too hard to pull off if you just buy a ton of defensive stuff.

      Systems 8 - 16 Damage in 3 shots. Six shots nets you 36 and by the end you've dealt 52 unavoidable flat damage. You can basically kill anything while throwing active defenses/defensive genre powers at whatever comes your way.

      Basically by the time you are done with your barrage there is nothing that could have survived barring a similarly specialized regenerator. Systems alone is even more overpowered.

      Speed vs 15 is effective from the first few turns and the damage it can deal right out of the gate looks scary, but there are more ways to mitigate it (you can use Try Again if you roll a 1, unlike with flat damage) and the average it deals is overall lower so it should work out.

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  17. Incinerator with a line effect looks ok. It's melee so aiming won't make it OP.
    It doesn't need the provision about underwater or space. Maybe it shoots acid or electric gel and can work everywhere.

    I would just change extreme terrain to one roll at the start of round instead of both at the start and at the end. Extreme terrain is dangerous enough with just one roll. It doesn't really need two.

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  18. I disagree with that because otherwise Extreme Terrain is something Bosses laugh at. It's a sadly real fact that with only one roll per round, Extreme Terrain scales too slowly to ever frighten them, and a higher DN just makes mincemeat of mooks and rivals. Doubling the number of rolls is the best possible solution,r eally.

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  19. If boss has speed/systems 10 and you have expected damage of 0.6 damage on tension 3 doubling that will give you 1.2 damage. Not a huge change exactly.

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    1. It's actually 0.3 on tension 3
      0.6 on tension 4
      1 on tension 5
      1.5 on tension 6

      If you have systems/speed 10 you just don't worry about extreme terrain.

      Delete
  20. The thing with Extreme Terrain is that most of the time it should only trigger once. You can, after all, move with every action.

    When you can't move away easily is when you basically got done by positioning + planning. But you still have countermeasures like Slippery Chassis and Mind over Matter to get out of Duel + Extreme or Difficult + Extreme lockdowns.

    If your Sys/Spe are both low then yes, it is really dangerous. But it basically exists to scare the narrow fighters that have it easier against most other threats, so that's intended.

    Invest in getting either stat up to eight, unmaimable antigrav, or an applicable transformation (flyer and extreme fortification both work) and you'll be fine.

    If you spend enough MP to get a stat up to 10 then you've earned the right to not have to worry about it, I think. But at that point I'd expect the opposition to be able to halve your Speed too anyway.

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