Mar 22, 2015

Oh you thought I was done making changes?

Being a perfectionist sucks. Thank God the game is out in two months or I would keep making changes every time someone brings up something that could be better until the end of eternity. My personal hell is being cursed to forever try to please the most finicky and demanding of people: Myself.

Okay, I'm done being Tsundere for game design. I have not one or two but three polls for you all today, that's three times more democracy than a normal poll! Here is the copy and paste from the Kickstarter update:

Subject 1: Gotta go Fast
Currently, this power is a movement boost for the user or another squad member. It is a somewhat niche utility power that also grants a +3 damage to Boosted Lance users. We could change it to a teleport-like effect that instantly repositions the user (and ONLY the user) 5 Zones away. This would let it get around tricky terrain and even function as an emergency replacement for Reversible Thrusters + Slippery Chassis if you don't have them. The tradeoff is that the original works better with movement-based weapons and can be used on allies.

I can see either of them working out fine, so it is up to what you guys and girls would prefer. Vote here:

Subject 2: Beam Weapons
Beam Weapons cost energy to use, but only when you boost them. If you don't boost them, they cost no energy to use, which is a bit iffy from a pure flavor standpoint but means you can at least use them when you can't spare any energy at all. I've been thinking of changing that by giving unboosted Beams a cost of 1 Energy for flavor's sake. In gameplay terms it is strictly a nerf, but unboosted Beams rarely see use anyway and when they do you can probably spare all of 1 point.

I would not feel comfortable doing this without your approval though. So tell me what you think here:

Subject 3: Antimaim Upgrades
This one is trickier than the previous two. If you've played BCG at all you've probably realized that having one of the various Antimaim upgrades (Invincible Alloy, Integrated Weapons, Expansion Pack and Secret Equipment) is a must by the time you're Power Level 2. I see this as a good thing, since it means they are doing their job. What I'm not sure about is if they are too good at their jobs, since you want them as soon as you can spare the 10-20 points they cost.

I said this one was trickier and that is mostly because, depending on your playstyle, you might even want to do away with them entirely. Negating the loss of areas means there is less luck involved in who wins, since getting your best stuff disabled early on can unfairly ruin your whole game plan. At the same time, it also means you don't have to adapt your plans on the fly as much. It is a complex issue and I'm far more interested in what you have to say about this one than the previous ones.

If we were to nerf them, by the way, it would be a small nerf like a bump to their cost or a reduction to how much stuff they can hold each. I'm not including the power or feature Antimaims in the poll because those are much weaker than their counterparts:

And now, a long summary of things I'm still trying out.

In addition to a whole bunch of stuff that got reworded for clarity's sake, which I'm not including, here's a list of potential changes straight from my workbench:

-All Miracles now have their Specializations split into different uses by mechanics rather than flavor. For example, Force has two specializations: Fitness and Intellect Tests for offensive or utility purposes respectively. This works a lot better than the previous approach, which was kind of vague.
-Streamlined the Sample Tests with a better and more balanced power curve for DNs going up to 15. Removed the DN 20 examples for now. There'll be a sidebar about those until I expand the use of Miracles in the expansion.

Genre Powers:
-Believe in Myself's antimaim effect lasts 3 Rounds. That buys you some time to finish the fight.
-Come at Me Bro affects enemies that stay within 5 Zones of you. This removes the potential exploit with taunting enemies from across the battlefield and taking free shots at them when they can't reach you.
-Trump Card lasts 3 Rounds instead of the whole Operation. Just enough time to use each of them once, but not enough to forgo buying weapons entirely.
-Mind Over Matter is a 5-Zone aura that negates debuffs for one Round. This makes it a much better option for support PCs.
-You are Going Down grants all attackers one Advantage instead of the Defense reduction. It is now very good when there's a bunch of people focus firing instead of an instant kill when there's a bunch of people focus firing.

-Stealth Field is a 2 Disadvantage shield vs non-area attacks instead of untargetability. This is both to line it up with what Interference Terrain from the Expansion does as well as to tone down how abusive Combiners with a dedicated maneuvering Stealth Field subpilot can get.
-Jamming Barrage halves Might and leaves Tension alone. This way it only really hurts the glass cannons instead of, well, everyone. The Tension raisers don't appear until the expansion and will have their own counters there.
-Superheavy Machinegun cannot be used if you cannot move at all. This means you can't mount and fire it during a Duel or if you're under like three layers of Difficult terrain. It is a small nerf meant to line it up with similar Weapons from the expansion.

-Do you Desire the Power? tweaked to only target allies with the second option. This is mostly for fluff reasons.
-Die for Me! can be used multiple times per Round but must have different targets each time. This makes it a lot more effective as a countdown timer for the PC squad without being too much for one individual PC to handle.
-Useless! is a once-per-round shield of 5 Damage + Tension. The power is meant to be a stalling mechanism and this conveys that much more clearly.
-Adaptive Morphology buffed to shield for 5 and 10 at Threshold Levels 2 and 10 vs the chosen type. This means you can expect it to block 15 damage per fight which is fairly reasonable considering all the ways to circumvent it and makes it comparable to Nanoskin Shell.
-Phantom Predator's untargetability changed to a 2 Disadvantage shield just like Stealth Field. Less likely to suddenly turn into an unwinnable battle.
-Three Times Faster makes you choose one Enemy and you increase the result of Might Tests against them by half your Speed at Level 2, your Defense against them by the same amount at Level 3, and boost up both values by your whole Speed score at Level 4. This makes it a lot less explosively good and keeps it in line with the similar Bloodlust.
-Overfreeze no longer creates Extreme Terrain. It was just too much vs low level groups and high level groups had plenty of ways around that anyway.

No pdf because I'm still not 100% sold on any of these. You know how I usually am about feedback? Yeah, that goes double now that we're potentially making changes so close to the release date. These are going to be some intense weekends to be sure.