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Is this healthy for the game?

Discussion in 'Access Guide to the Human Sphere' started by Zewrath, Nov 17, 2020.

  1. LoganGarnett

    LoganGarnett Well-Known Member

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    How about giving EVO some additional programs?

    E.g. "Backlash", that would force Hackers to take Dam 15 (or just reflect the hack onto themselves) if their hacking roll is beaten by Reset of a HI/TAG.

    Edit: and maybe return the "U-Turn", with an added benefit of redirecting the missile onto another Targetted models. Like with the Friendly Fire - impose a -6 to the roll, and if the shot fails by 6, you hit a friendly.

    Keeps it nice and risky, without straight up nerfing the mechanic into the ground.
     
    #641 LoganGarnett, Mar 17, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2021
  2. inane.imp

    inane.imp Well-Known Member

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    White Noise is a Hacking Program.

    And, again, I think that Guided is far too reliable at the moment. But that's the issue not how easy it is to get Spotlight off.

    Spotlight being easier is a good thing.
    Spotlight being easier and Guided being the same or better is a bad thing.

    I agree that the reliability of projecting Hacking aggressively over great distances is a problem.

    I don't agree that a relatively safe ARO option is bad for the game.

    But ultimately we disagree on that design space.

    What I'm pointing out is that you continue to just spout the same lines and don't at all seem to be engaging in a conversation or acknowledging other points of view: throughout this I've tried to see your POV and see your concerns. At every turn I've been rebuffed by some variation of "I need to be able to reliably kill high BTS Hackers through their own Repeaters or the game won't be fun for me".
     
    #642 inane.imp, Mar 17, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2021
  3. Hecaton

    Hecaton EI Anger Translator

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    It's not a matter of what's fun or not for me. It's a matter of one faction not having to play the risk game while the rest do is a problem; that's why Symbiomates and N3 Ghazi were bad ideas. That's bad game design.

    Also White Noise being a hacking program is besides the point. Let's include Mirrorball and Albedo in there, too.
     
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  4. inane.imp

    inane.imp Well-Known Member

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    N3 Ghazi were bad design because of how efficient they were for their effect: the risk was completely out of line with the threat they presented.

    N3 Hecklers, ZCs and (Sixth Sense shenanigans aside) Tian Gou were essentially fine. The cost and limited numbers kept them in line: their risk (which includes their opportunity cost) largely balanced their threat (although I will agree that the permanent nature of Isolated in N3, and limited responses did mean their threat did marginally exceed their risk - that is, the balance was mostly but not entirely right).

    But yes, you want to be able to kill everything that remotely threatens you. I want to have options that present a lesser threat at lesser risk. I acknowledge that balancing threat with risk is hard, and I also acknowledge that is probably not in the right place right now. That's ultimately why we don't agree.

    Tl;dr the last 20(?) pages.
    The risk/reward of Hacking is probably not right. If this is true then it can be fixed by either increasing the risk to Hackers or by reducing the pay off from using them. People who like low-risk attack vectors as a design element think reducing the pay off is better than increasing the risk; people who don't like low-risk attack vectors as a design element think increasing the risk is better than decreasing the the pay off. They are unable to agree.
     
    #644 inane.imp, Mar 17, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2021
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  5. SpectralOwl

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    I've been thinking there might be another side to this issue we haven't acknowledged yet; table design. The issue represented by dominant shooting in both ARO and active is amplified over tables with long sightlines and few ways to approach an enemy from Total Cover, and good trade performance is exacerbated by tables under the opposite conditions. We've slowly found methods over the years to mitigate these balance issues when assembling our terrain sets to maximise the fun we have with the game and keep our options open. Is there anything that we can do when setting up the terrain that could mitigate this issue?

    The answer, I think, is yes. In fact, the only thing in the game that hard-counters Guided (in the sense that it cannot overcome it) is a room with closed doors. Furthermore, Pitchers and Deployable Repeaters may be able to reach through walls easily, but only to a distance of 8 inches. Hacking also loses power on tables with reduced verticality, since it makes for less surface area covered by each Repeater/Hacker and less convoluted routing for most enemy pieces. Some terrain rules could also make for an interesting effect on Hacking; especially something like Dangerous Terrain in the safest deployment areas.

    Has anyone had any success with a particular table for mitigating this issue? I know my FLGS had a favourite for N3 due to its great balance in density, I can only imagine there must be some terrain sets out there that make for more fun N4 Hacking games.
     
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  6. Hecaton

    Hecaton EI Anger Translator

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    Yeah, and they could attack without real risk.

    Orthogonal to what I'm saying.

    Nope. Don't misrepresent my point. I just want players using these kinds of hacking setups to experience risk.

    The problem is that the level of risk is dramatically different for BTS 0-3 hackers compared to 6-9. Without making hacking by these better hackers less effective, it's difficult to balance.

    The problem is I think the people who are thinking of employing these low-risk attack vectors are counting on them being both effective and low-risk due to employing hackers that are very high-tier.
     
  7. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    Yeah they would help, shame CB removed the scenery and activation rules from the core rules.

    @Koni coming from a meta that actively used scenery rules in their normal games we'd all appreciate it if you guys released a rules annex for scenery stats, activation, etc etc. All the good shit from N3 that was taken out.
     
  8. inane.imp

    inane.imp Well-Known Member

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    I don't think it is. I understand that you're saying that things that can attack without risk are at essence bad design. I'm illustrating that there exists a category of troops that can attack without risk that are generally considered unproblematic.

    That wasn't my intent: I honestly get the impression that you think anything short of being able to kill Interventors through their own Repeaters with a KHD is actually sufficient. Any acceptance of suggestions less than that has been, at best, begrudging. If that wasn't your intent then it is not being conveyed in a manner I'm picking up.

    What you seem to describe as high-end Hackers (low-ish cost, high BTS with good Repeater coverage) are effectively a faction feature of Nomads: so making them weaker requires Nomads to be strong in more direct gameplay areas. Whereas the distinct response from Nomads has been a near universal "we would prefer to stay strong in Hacking, even if that means we need to be weaker in other aspects of the game to stay balanced.

    Which is to say, "People" are willing to accept a higher opportunity cost to make them effective. It's why a lot of the answers to "Kriza are OP, nerf Interventors" type posts complaining about Nomads getting all the best toys and also Hacking has been "woah woah woah, can you nerf Kriza* please because we like Interventors".

    * Other than losing B6, I'm not 100% sure Kriza need to be nerfed. But swapping their +1B for, say, a skill that allows them to be the target for Assisted Fire would be the sort of change that would reduce the efficiency off our gunfighting while emphasising Nomad's Hacking focus.
     
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  9. SpectralOwl

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    My read on this rather contentious issue is that Hecaton thinks that not all KHDs should be able to, but really good ones should at least be in with a shot. I think he does have a point; at present even the most heavyweight, expensive KHDs in the game (with the sole exception of Mary Problems) can't really deal with their equal in support pieces when that's kind of their whole purpose.
     
  10. inane.imp

    inane.imp Well-Known Member

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    Thats the thing, you don't actually need to be good - you just need to be able to get a Repeater within 8" of the Interventor, sorry high tier Hacker. The fact that they're only 1W means that even only a 25% of failing a Saving Roll is frightening.

    The fools errand is fighting anyone with any BTS who can ARO through their OWN Repeater.

    It's why I'm increasingly of the opinion just removing Firewall from Repeaters is probably the cleanest solution to Hecaton's issue with the relatively low vulnerability of high tier Hackers behind their own Repeaters.

    Make resilience based on Ws, BTS, Tinbots and ECM Hacking rather than who owns the Repeater: let Repeaters determine area of effect only.
     
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  11. Armihaul

    Armihaul Well-Known Member

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    There are some hackers that can deal with interventors, like danavas with b3 oblivion. It will not be dead, but stops his hacking. Oblivion with b2 AP means that most HD can try it in their active, but using the interventor repeater is (and in my opinion should be) a bad or at least difficult move. Is like trying to win over a top tier shooter when the objective is in cover and you use a worse shooter from outside cover. Remember that the repeater is not free, someone payed for it to be in their list, and most of the time spent orders for placing it

    White noise and KHD appeared one edition after Iguana. His repeater main point was just an extra repeater that nobody cared at that time. When KHD appeared it became a big burden in cjc, but in vainilla (and now in n4) was the easy way for it to get white noise. But it became a later use, and the tool to justify its cost.

    That's something I comented before, the table has a lot to do in how pitchers work and how some people see them. In tables with a high and simetrical density, and height variations, pitchers looked easy to put because positioning for certain units is safer and the high density allow to find harder to get places. But in asimetrical mid density things change. If the hacking player decides to go first, the enemy has to take into account that. Most of the time, those kind of asimetrical mid-high density tables I've seen have a side with access to long throws but unsafer for the pitcher (which expose them to aros), or a higher density zone on one side where to move a LI freely to get to possition to shot the repeater from outside its range. Or the other way high density zones where the pitcher thrower can move freely, but the repeater has not good places to hide and removing it is very trivial.

    Sniper nests have also a few things to do, because they can limit the thrower safe positioning, or be able to shot the repeater easy, but that depend of a lot of other things and hard to evaluate without a table to look at
     
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  12. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    And keep heavy infantry like Hospitallers or Hulang away from it, which is a big thing. Also means that factions that don't have much in the way of Pitchers have a more difficult time getting Repeaters close to it.

    It's an extremely low cost, passive, equipment that in a serious way alters the approach that certain opponents need to take to your unit. If it wasn't for that pitchers were immune to hacking and repeating repeaters wasn't a thing, it would've been a defining feature of a TAG, but as it is it's merely a great piece of equipment if you realise what it actually does.
     
  13. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    That'd be fair if everyone actually had repeaters that even had a remote chance of doing this. Go look in the spiral corp forum with the new guy asking how the fuck does he protect a Kiel-saan from hacking.

    For some factions the reality is your only option is to use the enemy repeater.

    There's been a constant complaint that the level in difference between have and have not factions is too damn high. If Hacking is going to be this strong, everyone has to have a serious foot in the game.
     
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  14. Armihaul

    Armihaul Well-Known Member

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    But do they have alternative ways? Hacking is not the only option. And the same way hacking is an alternative ti deal against other treats, there are other ways to deal with hackers
     
  15. inane.imp

    inane.imp Well-Known Member

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    Except Spiral can't even deal with a 2 Moderators and a Dep Rep Zero.

    So the issue is hardly "high tier hackers" at that point. It's the structural weaknesses in Spiral that's he's butting up against.
     
  16. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    That's kinda my point, there's more than just Spiral that have this structural weakness of they have a couple of basic bitch KHDs or less, no repeaters worth a shit, and that's what they're supposed to work with. So saying, eh, it's fine, just use your KHDs through your own repeater isn't really a fair comment. I play ISS, what fucking repeaters? CB even took the last jank one I had away. I'm supposed to run a Ninja into your DZ and somehow get past mines, koalas, and other shit to hack this interventor on what are garbage odds to begin with?
     
    #656 Triumph, Mar 17, 2021
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2021
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  17. Aldo

    Aldo Spare 15

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    No, you're supposed to do all that and shank him with the sword, because the KHD ninja right now is more of a liability than anything, so might as well bring the 26 points one.
     
  18. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    Funnily enough I used to task Monks with that job, but that's when I had waaaay more orders to pull that off. Between the Tactical Window change and a larger amount of units that can see through smoke now it doesn't work so great anymore.
     
  19. SpectralOwl

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    I mean... in this case, the example is Spiral Corps. The faction with three Impersonators. And three sub-30pt Hidden Deployment Infiltrators. They're a faction that has the tools to just opt out, because they can start the game with three guns at the back of the Interventor's head.
    Cybermask lets you completely ignore automated defenses like Mines, and it's still a Specialist. Furthermore, the Ninja KHD has the distinction of being the only Hacker in the game who can actually do stuff under Repeater coverage, since its Tactical Bow doesn't trigger AROs if it kills. It's still not really very good though, I'd pay 3pts for what it offers over the straight bow, but for not much more I can get the FO with a far more useful Combi Rifle.

    ISS certainly is one of the Sectorials that is really in trouble for anti-Hacker tools though. It's a largely DZ-bound army with not enough Hacking to break through a Repeater-saturated midfield and so few good unhackable shooters that you're better off picking another faction altogether than playing around that weakness. I've found NCA to be similar, though it gets enough of its own Repeater coverage that it hits hard against anyone who didn't even try to play the Hacking game.
     
  20. Ashtaroth

    Ashtaroth Aragoto GP Organizer
    Warcor

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    Although situational, Cybermask is quite handy for a Ninja to go through Mines and Koalas alike. The order consumption is a more tough question to answer though.

    EDIT: Ninja'd on a post about ninjas. Nice.
     
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