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Sophotect Blues

Discussion in 'ALEPH' started by Nemo No Name, Mar 13, 2023.

  1. Nemo No Name

    Nemo No Name Aleph Cultural Atache
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    I know there isn't much that this post will do, but I just wanna vent a little bit. I haven't been much for playing Infinity for the past year or so, but I still go to the local tourneys. One such is coming up, and I've gone back to building my dear Aleph lists.

    Aaaand I get reminded of the Sophotect situation. Sophotect one of the units (next to Asura and Posthumans) that back in N2 days drew me both to Infinity in general and Aleph in particular.

    Screenshot 2023-03-13 14.55.47.png

    Back then, Sophotect was without peer. Super fast with 6-4, supreme Doctor / Engineer with WIP15!!!, resilient with it's NWI, it was the showcase of Aleph.

    These days, everyone and their grandmother moves at least 6-2 if not 6-4, WIP15 is everywhere, NWI has both been reduced in power due to everyone and their grandfather having Shock and given to every new unit and model. And Sophotect stayed exactly the same - including exactly the same point cost. despite vast majority of units getting significant discounts.

    But it was still the big utility piece we knew and loved, and was the best at it.

    And then came Parvati.
    Screenshot 2023-03-13 14.57.54.png

    Just from the lore standpoint I can't stand it. It's a entertainment piece. Why the hell is it better at everything that Sophotect?

    It moves better: 6-2 but with Superjump, also Dodge at 13s now that you can move in active turn vs 6-4 move.
    It fighters better: BS12 with SMG at +1B, and a Flash Pulse at WIP15 versus a BS11 Combi Rifle (which honestly doesn't need to be there - I love the old poster with Sophotect holding a pistol).
    It survives better: ARM2 and BTS6, on top of STR2 (and Immunity Shock that is always granted). Why the hell not. Compared to ARM2, BTS0, 1W NWI (also already mentioned Dodge 13 vs Dodge 10).
    It's even marginally better in CC, not that it matters.

    And then, to top it off, it's also a WIP15 Doctor-Engineer... Except it heals 2W with Doctor and has +3 for Engineer. What the actuall hell.

    (and not, other equipment isn't any better, Sophotect gets DCharges on her measly CC13 but Parvati gets Deactivator).

    Why the hell some rando entertainment bot is better at healing and engineering than the Aleph's own fragment designed for war, ferrying the Mother-Forge, the most advanced sanitary and military nano-tech?

    And all that for 38 points. 7 more than Sophotect. 7!!!
    (oh, also, Parvati is linkable while Sophotect isn't. Not that I want Sophotect linkable, but it adds to the insult)

    What I really want is for Sophotect to be again the best at doing Doctor and Engineer stuff. How? Simple:
    Give it Doctor 2W and Engineer 2STR, or +3 if that would be too strong for some people.

    Another minor point is, give them BTS 3. Just because I imagine they would have some BTS defences.
    And finally, it never made much sense to me they'd carry a full rifle. so please give it a nice Pistol - Assault Pistol, Heavy Pistol, doesn't matter. E/M Heavy Pistol for "fun" factor.

    This should leave Sophotect at around 28-30 points. Honestly, I'll even take increasing her cost so long as they're back to being the premier Doctor / Engineer.

    As for Parvati, downgrade WIP to 14 or even 13, and remove the additional bonuses from Doctor and Engineer. Let her be the shooty one whose good at fixing but not the best. Also, no points discount because she is severely undercosted anyway.

    I was never a fan of OSS part of Aleph having unique characters. It felt wrong from lore standpoint. But okay, we went that way.

    So lets talk about Trisha N33.
    Screenshot 2023-03-13 15.15.38.png
    [​IMG]

    As lore, it's fun and interesting, her loadout is interesting, but it falls in that uncomfortable point cost that makes no sense. She's only 1W (Dogged doesn't count for anything), but full 26 points. It's... just not a great idea.

    My preference would be to bring her to WIP15 and NWI, matching her with Devas and Sophotect, and thus providing an interesting option: you want supreme utility piece in Sophotect, or just an Engi with a bit of fighting capacity?
     
  2. redeemer

    redeemer Well-Known Member

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    power creep does sell minis and saves time instead of redesigning old models CB can put in new more powerful versions
     
  3. Fed4ykin

    Fed4ykin Well-Known Member

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    With the sophotect beeing the online Doktor and engineering in imperial Service i wholeheartedly agree. Another Option would be to leave the skills and Equipment but drop the pointscost.
    I am okay with parvati beeing a Premium doc and engineer thats what she was designed to do in the hexadom. And it even malen sense she is extraorinary in that as she is a propaganda Piece of aleph whereas the sophotect is a good supporting operative designed to seeing battle. But there are a lot of sophotect and only one parvati. Bit parvati beeing just 7 ponits Mode expensive is Insulting for the sophotect. I would Pick a 24 ponit sophotect any Day. As it is now she is often too expensive.
     
  4. LeGweg

    LeGweg Lucky dice roller

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    We need a big overhaul from CB to redefine clearly the roles and masteries of each vanilla/sectorials factions.
    I hope the latest reworks like Military Orders, Steel Phalanx and Bakunin will help units such as the Sophotec
     
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  5. Abrilete

    Abrilete Well-Known Member

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    I place the blame on the "submachine gun discount": not only it's a better weapon in almost any situation, it also optimizes new profiles compared with the older ones because it's cheaper.
     
  6. Savnock

    Savnock Nerfherder

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    The Sophotect seems fine for the points to me.

    31 points for what she does and is in a single troop slot is pretty dang good. I'd argue that in modern 15-slot lists her utility, mobility, WIP, and durability (which would be worth 31 points even if she were just one type of specialist) are even more valuable since she can cover two different specialties and so can her Yudbots, by extension.

    As for comparison to Parvati: You're right that Parvati is undercosted for what she does/is.
    - First there's the named-character discount that seems to have been fairly universal recently. Most N4 characters are just a bit more efficient than a normal trooper with their stats and gear/abilities would be. It's not huge, seems fine so far.
    - Then there's a bit of a curve applied at the upper ends of cost and capability for single-wound-ish troopers these days, to keep people from making very similar arguments about number of orders per point.

    And in a game where Classifieds are so important the fact that you could field BOTH Parvati and a Sophotect is insane. If the Sophotect were 24 points, it would be actually broken.
     
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  7. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    There's no named character discount. They're all optimised, not discounted. Only ever found examples of where the name is a tax and not a discount.

    Sophotect is a hard sell for the points, coming from ISS. Not bad, just combines a high asking price with the rather high difficulty to get Doctors/Engineers to be worth bringing along - and oddly mediocre repair performance in spite of that nano-forge of hers. Combining lots of abilities into a single troop slot also means you don't get redundancy.
    Bringing the profile out of N3 and into the N4 era would probably go a long way. Reversing what Parvati has would be funny and, for god knows what reason, free; +3 on Doctor and 2W on Engineer.

    I swear I'm not biased with my non-cubed HI and 2-wound kitties.
     
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  8. Delta57Dash

    Delta57Dash Well-Known Member

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    For what it's worth, a Sophotect with an SMG would only be 27 points; +11 points for upgrading to Parvati would be a much more reasonable comparison.

    Combi Rifles in general are overpriced on non-combat profiles, but CB generally doesn't care about a model's internal synergy or efficiency when doing prices; whether you're upgrading an BS 10 Keisotsu from a Combi to an HMG (9 -> 17) or a BS14 Orc from a Combi to an HMG (29 -> 37), the cost is still 8 points. Doesn't matter that one of those profiles is drastically more capable of using it; the cost is the same.
     
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  9. RolandTHTG

    RolandTHTG Still wandering through the Night

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    I definitely agree that Parvati has overshadowed poor Sophie, and would like something like mahtamori's idea to help her get back to being a choice instead of a downgrade. I've taken that downgrade a couple times for point reasons, but have always regretted it.

    As far as Trisha goes, I though the profile was a good representation of a 'first-model deva', and I've used her decently regularly in OSS as a linked engineer. I think she fulfills that fighting capacity engineer role, and I've often gotten valuable use out of dogged on her, since she's shock immune.
     
  10. archon

    archon Well-Known Member

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    Yes the good old Spohie is outdated. Sadly CB takes not much care to the old profiles. Even her box is OOP without any replacement. There has to be an event, a resculpt release or both to make them look over the old stuff and make shiny.

    Paravati on the other hand was an exclusive ITS mini followed by an regular relaese (with - erm - a slightly ackward leg posing, I was lucky to get a lim. ed. version) and has to be good. So good that she outshines mother Sophie but is a little bit more expensive. Seeing them both compared make me think what makes Sophie so expensive?

    The SMG discount is significant, but I think that is not enough. Boni to doc, engineer, dodge, movement and the huge differenz in BTS with real two wounds is not only 4 pts or something. But I would not go the way to nerf Paravatii, I would try to fresh up Sophie.

    I understand this skills should be very rare. We have N4 and so a simple but effecive way to boost her a little bit would be Medikit (and Gizmo) +1 B because thats the way we heal in N4. Problem almost solved. Give her a SMG instead of a full Combi Rifle and she will clocking in under 30 pts.

    Now to the good sides of Sophotect: She is faster than others. 10" instead of 8" without the need to roll for dodge. For 7 pts you can get a Lamedh and therefor one order more and a flashpulse more but if you hide it, your oder will last longer ;-) She can still get an objective and tank a shoot - not a shock round but any normal shot while just move-move - that works best in late game (yes parvati can that too and propably dodges the shoot and make the 10" distance anyway, but hey). Without an FTO option you can take two Yudbots and be in three places at one time.

    I do use her sometimes, but I donĀ“t replace her with Parvati, instead I use the Proxy engineer and the Para Dakini. In Missions, where you have to stay near an objective and be a specialst Parvati is clearly the better combat doc/eng. She is super useful at Cyrogenics.

    A word for Trisha. She looks nice (I like the Defiance version more, but stay with the DF one) but she has no real use. If you want an engineer, you take the MK1. If you want an engineer that is durable and a good gunfighter you take Parvati. So Trisha is the niche when you want an linkable engineer that has good gun and have not enough points for Parvati. She fills gaps that do not exist. More a collectors profile.
     
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  11. Stiopa

    Stiopa Trust The Fuckhead
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    What would make perfect sense: making Parvati combat-oriented character with plain Doctor/Engineer skillis, while making Sophotect less capable in combat, but better at patching other units up, giving them the Doc/Eng bonuses. They have that damn forge with them for a reason ;)
     
  12. Vaulsc

    Vaulsc Well-Known Member

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    Hi Nemo,

    As per our conversation on YouTube, I don't think the Sophect or Parvati are actually meta right now, it's the Proxy Mk1 or bust.

    While I agree that Parvati has a lot going for her, and I'd take her over the Sophotect in OSS if I was forced to pick between them, it just comes down to a matter of most cost-efficient model for the role at the end of the day.

    This kind of consideration actually has come up all over N4, and I do mean all over--just about every faction has examples of units that are rendered entirely redundant by the requirement for competitive players to jam as much efficiency as possible into those 15 slots. The game has become pretty bloated with profiles and loadouts and without any radical rules changes, they all start to overlap with each other. Just look at the comparison between Zhuyongs, Jujaks, Shangi Ji etc over in Yu Jing.

    You've basically got a couple of choices. Bite the bullet, and try to make the best list you can. This actually means skipping aleph/OSS entirely and going straight for CA, Nomads, Kosmoflot, Ariadna, Tohaa, or HB. Or, just run the Sophetect in your Aleph list regardless of the numbers, and play against other people who are also looking for a gaming experience that isn't hardcore meta. That's where the choices basically end--CB isn't likely to suddenly wake up tomorrow and make the Sophotect a few points cheaper, or make the Proxy Mk1 more expensive, or anything like that.

    Vaul
     
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  13. Nemo No Name

    Nemo No Name Aleph Cultural Atache
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    Hey @Vaulsc , thanks for the write-up but honestly it's a lore implementation issue I have, not a meta/list power one. As you say, I go with Mk.I if I'm building for power or just wanting to spend points elsewhere. Although I think that if Sophotect could heal 2W at current or few points lower there would be many lists where it would see use.

    I also know CB doesn't react much to player feedback, but I'm fairly persistent and we did eventually get a MULTI Rifle Hacker Asura - back in early N3, she only had Combi Rifle which was unbelievably crap. You can look at my posting history just how much I was complaining about it. xD We also got that profile Lt version :) but only in OSS :(

    Back to Sophotect, what really makes me burn is that it's not only making internal balance worse, it's a horrible breaking of lore for no reason.
    I just want them to be *the* best. Even if they end up overpriced I'll still play them.

    Both propaganda and entertainment pieces are never actually useful, they just look impressive. Example of propaganda piece would be WWII era Maus supertank, useless chunks of metal made to look fancy but weren't actually useable.
    Example of entertainment pieces are Formula F1s, which while showing superior speed barely survive use in highly specialised arenas and would fall apart on your average road, much less in a war.
     
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  14. anubis

    anubis sarcastic exaggerator

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    i wholeheartedly agree. The Sophotect is fine as she is. Parvatis is amazingly cheap for what she brings to the table.a couple points more on parvati would defenetly make the sophotect more valuable again as the "cheaper" alternative with less flexibility overall.

    not all of the charakters are optimized, luckily. Some of them are..... more like a lovers choice
     
  15. Nemo No Name

    Nemo No Name Aleph Cultural Atache
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    My problem is less that Parvati is undercosted than it is that she is better at doctoring and engineering than Sophotect.

    All I ask is that CB makes Sophotect the best at doctoring and engineering, like it used to be.
     
    #15 Nemo No Name, Mar 14, 2023
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2023
  16. Nemo No Name

    Nemo No Name Aleph Cultural Atache
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    I had an idea to keep Parvati a bit special but make it clear she's not the uber-engineer/doctor she is now:
    Drop Doctor and Engineer, but give her Medikit (+3, +1B) and Gizmokit (+3, +1B). That should keep her more than special, especially in links with both becoming B3.

    (of course, I still think Sophotect should get upgrades to her Eng and Doc abilities)
     
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  17. Delta57Dash

    Delta57Dash Well-Known Member

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    She should be both a Doctor and an Engineer to accurately reflect her abilities from Aristeia; she's all about healing people and removing negative states.

    The problem lies not with Parvati; the Sophotect is simply too expensive, and has been for a while. Nerfing Parvati won't magically make the Sophotect better. Not even ISS takes them all the time, and they're the only Doctor/Engineer in the entire faction!
     
  18. Nemo No Name

    Nemo No Name Aleph Cultural Atache
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    I agree on relative value between Parvati and Sophotect.
     
  19. Teslarod

    Teslarod when in doubt, Yeet

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    The actual problem is Sophie existing next to this:

    upload_2023-4-19_9-37-52.png

    Why am I paying 18 points for 2/3 of a regular Order and either Doctor or Engineer?
    In which universe can I afford that over taking one o these and going for a different Engineer/Doctor option. If I even need one. Most missions favor one over the other. Being a Doc and Engineer should probably qualify for a minor discount due to both Skills having the price for being a Specialist included.
     
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  20. Nemo No Name

    Nemo No Name Aleph Cultural Atache
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    Sometimes, yes, but other times I want other Posthumans and not spend one slot on the Engineer.

    In any case, my point is how the current situation completely fails with making Sophotect playable even in suboptimal lists, much less having a place in the super-optimized ones.
     
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