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New FAQ (11/4/2019)

Discussion in 'News' started by Ayadan, Apr 11, 2019.

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  1. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    As someone who has witnessed the transition between not allowing pre measuring then allowing it, it warps the game in a manner that for Infinity, would not be healthy.

    Warmachine was that game going from limited pre measuring of caster zones of control in Mk1 and Mk2, to allowing full on pre measuring in Mk3.

    The biggest single negative that came with the introduction of pre measuring was that players when armed with the information of perfect knowledge, would go about bogging the game down by searching for the perfect turn sequence. By that I mean that they would lay down literally dozens of widgets and proxy bases trying to figure out the optimal sequence of moves for a turn. Many players would literally map out multiple possibilities of their entire turn before committing to what was a checkmate maneuver.

    This became such a problem that Privateer Press literally banned placing more than a couple of widgets on the table at a time in an attempt to curb the behaviour. It didn't really work players just didn't clutter the table as much but they kept doing the same thing.

    If pre measuring was a thing in Infinity I would for example, find myself compelled to do things like map out optimal smoke placements to just see if the possibility existed that I could chain 4 Cautious Move orders together hopping from smoke cloud to smoke cloud to facilitate assassinating a Lieutenant in exactly 5 orders to a Su Jian to cripple my opponent in the following turn.

    This became a big problem with Warmachine was that one player would essentially get in a position and "solve" the game in their turn, not necessarily end the game but solve it. Because they could map out their entire turn, then map out exactly where their opponent could be, they can and would essentially figure out exactly how the game was going to go and end before their opponent even had a turn, and in their turn they would move exactly as had been foretold, because it was the best series of moves because their opponent had placed their army assuming that they were going to make the optimal moves against them. If you think this was kinda like one player playing the game, yeah, it kinda really was.

    The actual models and dice rolling became largely for show, hell in many games the second player was often just for show and wouldn't actually get to do much. I would know, having seen this first hand frequently. The no.2 ranked player in the world plays at my LGS and this kind of thing is common place, shit like his 9 Slayers list's effectiveness works heavily off the fact that he can position the 9 warjacks perfectly everytime to bully things out of zones or to make sure they can always trade or threaten zones. Disagree all you want, but I do not find that a healthy or good thing for the game.

    Uncertainty is a good thing in Infinity. Things like Holoprojectors, Private Information. They all contribute to part of a guessing game about feeling your opponent out and discovering things during the game, not having it all spelled out in front of you from the get go.

    Just to show the other side of the coin a game that did pre measuring right was Guild Ball. The main reason it works well for Guild Ball and doesn't fuck the game up and slow everything down is that players don't feel compelled to need to pre measure a tonne of shit. This is due to players taking turns as the active player after each model activates so it heavily limits the amount of pre planning you can do. There's no point planning out the movements of 12 models when as soon as you move 1, your opponent has a turn to move 1 of his and changes the board state.
     
    #181 Triumph, Apr 20, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2019
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  2. toadchild

    toadchild EI Aspect
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    I think you raise some valid points about the extreme possible outcome of premeasuring, especially in a highly competitive game. (Not all games are have as highly competitive environments as Warmachine)

    I'm not convinced that Infinity is as "solvable" as Warmachine is; there are fewer models, more terrain, and more varied objectives. A big part of Warmachine is jockeying for position to determine who is able to charge, countercharge, etc. Infinity has very different movement mechanics (since you can spend multiple orders on a single model) which make positions and attack angles much harder to predict. There are also a lot of skills such as camo, smoke, etc. that allow models to cross any gap, no matter how well defended.
     
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  3. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    I can say even increasing the amount of pre measuring a little bit leads towards this outcome.

    Our group used to play Smoke Grenades wrong. We used to allow what was essentially pre measurement by placing entire smoke circles where you wanted them before committing rather than picking a point then checking the circle.

    Even with this very limited form of pre measurement everyone including myself was very much guilty of mapping out perfect smoke chains to move models around, except the Pan-O players. I may or may not have stabbed alot of shit with Kitsune doing this.

    Since correcting our play this behaviour has been eliminated and it leads to faster turns. Also tends to make people less rambo and a bit more conservative with certain models.

    While the game is not to the same degree of solve-ability as warmachine I agree, there is still the capacity for huge game changing swings. Like can I cautious move past this ARO piece? Could I move this camo marker 3 times then assassinate an LT? Can I get to your main attack piece and delete it crippling your offensive output for next turn? Is 4 orders enough for this 1 specialist to reach and press this button to go from losing to winning the game on the last turn or do I need to have 5 orders? If you give players access to perfect information they can and will measure all that stuff out.

    One of the things our players coming over to Infinity from Warmachine have enjoyed is the level of uncertainty the game has from hidden lists vs list chicken, to no pre measuring, to surprise attacks from disguised models.

    There is no spending the turn in search of the perfect sequence of events. The game is far more free form, people makes plans and take risks or don't. You wanna do something that you're not completely sure about? You man up and make a call on it and see if you were right and when you are right vindication feels really good. It's a refreshing change of pace.
     
    #183 Triumph, Apr 20, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2019
  4. toadchild

    toadchild EI Aspect
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    @Triumph I definitely get where you're coming from. I don't have a lot of premeasured Infinity under my belt, and even when I do play games that use premeasuring I'm not the sort of person who obsessively plans out perfect turns. And I've played games of Infinity where one person does try to plan out their perfect turn beforehand, and let me tell you, having them hem and haw over what distances might be doesn't make the process faster than just pulling out a ruler would have been.

    I feel like it's more about personality and group norms than an actual rule for or against.
     
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  5. Nuada Airgetlam

    Nuada Airgetlam Well-Known Member

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    Just forbid stalling, for example by introducing chess clocks. That speeds up the game overall and ensures your opponent doesn't stall you like that.
     
  6. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    Firstly deathclocks don't stop people from doing that at all. See Warmachine.

    Secondly Infinity's constant switching back and forth of decision making doesn't lend itself well to deathclocks. If this was a computer game it and was automated sure, but in reality you're going to have players fuck it up and accidentally leave time running repeatedly because they forgot to hit it back. They're more arguments than they're worth.


    That's a fair point some players are prone to analysis paralysis I know some of these types of people too, but my counter point is no matter what you do those same players are always going to be stuck in a loop. If you don't give them pre measuring they'll wring their hands over making a decision, if you do give them pre measuring they'll get stuck pre measuring a dozen different things. It's up to you (or a TO) to make sure they don't get stuck in one of those loops. If I notice my opponent is getting stuck over making a call I just gently push them on "Do you think it's in or out? Out? Then statistically those are poor odds." or vice versa. If you help them get over the hump they can normally sort it out.
     
    #186 Triumph, Apr 20, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2019
  7. Section9

    Section9 Well-Known Member

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    I'll be honest, the only time I think pre-measuring is actually important to the rules in Infinity is Impetuous orders and ZOC. And Impetuous orders don't often come down to having two targets equally close but in two different directions, so it's really only ZOC where premeasuring would matter often.
     
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  8. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    Impetuous pre measurement would probably be fine. There's no deliberations to be had from either party it's just a quick check it's no different to checking range bands in that effect.
     
  9. Icchan

    Icchan Well-Known Member
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    There are also different levels of premeasurement. Warmachine as I understand it (I think 40k does too) allows for full measurements from any point to any point at any time.
    Darklands on the other hand only allows premeasuring after you've committed to an action. If the action is invalid because of range or other issues, you can pick a new action. X-Wing used to be quite similar, but in 2nd ed they introduced fail states to actions.
    Also helps that Darklands switches the active player between activations.

    But Infinity does have many interactions that get confusing or even broken unless Zone of Control is known. Skills like Sixth Sense, Hacking, mandatory Change Facing or Reset.
    I'll give you an example:
    Active trooper fusilier Eduardo moves behind a building, getting quite close to reactive alguacile Hidalgo. Reactive player is convinced that Eduardo is not in his ZoC. Eduardo declares a second move, this time moving closer and in his LoS. Hidalgo declares ARO Shoot.
    At this point, do you go to retroactively check the distance where Eduardo was and change Hidalgo's ARO to Idle because he couldn't have declared Shoot on the first short skill? Is that even allowed in the rules? Are we supposed to mark our positions for later reference everytime we move?

    You can even break the game with the no premeasurement rules, for example revealing Hidden Deployment troops from ANYWHERE on the board after an enemy activates or intentionally deploying Cadmus' decoys out of range when he lands, then later adjust their position.
    A few metas I know have already houseruled these instances so these don't happen, but house rules are technically playing against the rules, and I'm not a fan of that.
     
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  10. Guardian

    Guardian Well-Known Member
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    OK, wait... I used to think and play like that as well (not placing the template but just picking a point) but then someone argued and convinced me (somehow, not sure anymore) that its legal to place the whole template.

    I can't find a reasonable quote on the wiki for the "pick a point" ruling... Could you link me the rules on this, please?
     
  11. toadchild

    toadchild EI Aspect
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    When you fire a template weapon, you immediately place down the template. Smoke falls under that.

    However, it's an impact template, which normally have to be centered on the trooper you declared your attack against. It's not clear either way if that then means you have to pick a point and then place the template there, or if you place the template and then the center of that becomes the target point.

    Similarly, it's not clear if you're firing an impact template weapon in ARO if you have to say the point you're shooting against first, or if you can wave the template around over their entire movement path and then pick the most advantageous moment once you see what additional targets you're able to catch.
     
  12. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    If I remember correctly what changed our method was an @ijw post but it's probably been purged with the old forums gone. I dunno, maybe @HellLois can answer how it's supposed to work.
     
  13. Triumph

    Triumph Well-Known Member

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    I'll tell you how we resolve that one:

    • Situation A: Both players believe Fusilier Eduardo's first move doesn't enter Hidalgo's ZOC
    As both players are on the same page, nobody bothers to check the previous movement. Whether it was or wasn't in ZOC is irrelevant as neither player is ever going to know otherwise and the game moves on. The opposite situation where both players believe Eduardo's first move is inside ZOC is the same, neither player bothers to measure as they're both convinced the model is in range. You simply make the PH-3 test and move on.

    In a similar fashion if both players are sure that model X is the closest to an impetuous trooper, do you call for a judge to measure the distance between several models or make their own call? Of course not, you both agree on the game state, you just move the models and proceed with the game.

    • Situation B: At least one player believes Fusilier Eduardo's first move order enters Hidalgo's ZOC
    Eduardo's player informs the other that they believe Eduardo's first move order may be triggering an ARO from Hidalgo as he is attempting to fish out a Change Facing ARO. Hidalgo's owner says they do not believe they are in range for an ARO, but if they have one they will declare Change Facing. Eduardo's owner then indicates their second short skill will be to move into LOF of Hidalgo. Hidalgo's owner then says if it becomes apparent that the first move skill did not trigger Hidalgo's ARO, then as they have not yet actually been granted an ARO it will be to shoot with a combi rifle.

    ZoC is then checked just before Eduardo's owner moves the mini to its intended finishing point. It turns out Eduardo was out of ZoC and Hidalgo did not have the opportunity to ARO from the first short skill useage. Eduardo is moved and Hidalgo's player resolves the combi rifle attack as the second short skill is what triggers their ARO.

    That's the easiest and sanest way to work through it with no arguments. It fits Infinity's flow as a conversation between two players. While both players may disagree on a point, each has a chance to say how they'd like the situation to unfold, then you just check the position of the models and that dictates which course of action gets taken.
     
    #193 Triumph, Apr 21, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2019
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  14. psychoticstorm

    psychoticstorm Aleph's rogue child
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    Hence why I asked to discuss premeasuring on a new thread, I am really more than happy to read this discussion, but please do not derail the thread.
     
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  15. toadchild

    toadchild EI Aspect
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    Oh, whoops, missed that post. Can you split some posts off into a new thread for us perhaps, so as to clean this one back up?
     
  16. Lothlanathorian

    Lothlanathorian Not a custom title

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    No. This is 100% opinion based. Demanding I follow some rules you just made up to justify me having my opinion just makes you sound like an ass. Don't be an ass. Although, if the hex gird thread happens, I'll happily weigh in with my opinion and why (basically what PS already said, so, that was easy).

    This is neat, though, and is cool of you and your group to try out to help a friend be able to be part of the group.
     
  17. toadchild

    toadchild EI Aspect
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    Thanks. It's an experiment, but I hope it'll work out well enough.
     
  18. psychoticstorm

    psychoticstorm Aleph's rogue child
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    Lets just create a new thread, sometimes it bugs out and I would not like to loose this thread.
     
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  19. Ginrei

    Ginrei Well-Known Member

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    The rest of us were discussing the idea of Infinity being played on a hex grid. You felt the need to say that if you want to play a hex grid you'd play a different game. My response didn't demand you follow any rules I made up. I pointed out your opinion doesn't add anything to the discussion. It's like a few of us were discussing what shade of blue we want the walls to be painted, because we decided blue might look better, and you've walked in and said you don't come here for blue painted walls.

    I assume you have reasons why you don't want a hex grid. Offering those reasons sounds far more helpful than jumping in to say that's not why you're here. My mistake was suggesting a way for you to contribute or be included in the conversation.

    So no, I didn't demand you follow rules I made up to justify you having an opinion. I've given my opinion, on why your opinion, isn't helpful to the discussion at hand. This is not the same as what you're claiming. While your response has been to tell me I sound like an ass.

    I'll try to learn from this. If you add your opinion in this manner again I'll ignore it and try not to respond.

    edit, *I've seen other posters get warned for telling someone to go to hell. Is telling someone they sound like an ass, an offense worthy of a warning as well?* @psychoticstorm
     
    #199 Ginrei, Apr 22, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2019
  20. BLOODGOD

    BLOODGOD Vampire Hunter

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    I find counting hexes of range one of my least favorite parts of playing Battletech. I'd much rather take out a tape measure and check ranges. Buildings on hex boards look much less realistic, and can't have flat sides (in game space, obviously you can just slap an existing building down and assume it covers all touched hexes). All my other objections to hexes in Infinity are similar, opinion-based "I would not enjoy how that would change Infinity" kinds of things. Hexes are just too abstract for me to enjoy the grittiness of Infinity.
     
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