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The Heavy Infantry Problem

Discussion in 'Access Guide to the Human Sphere' started by Weathercock, Jun 15, 2019.

  1. Section9

    Section9 Well-Known Member

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    Agreed.

    Judging by the example of Gadget programs, well, Enhanced Reaction and Assisted Fire require the target REM to be inside the user's Hacking Area, while Overclock requires the REM to have a repeater and Reboot and Fairy Dust are global effects. So I expect it to depend on the program.

    As a default I'd expect that most of the offensive boost programs to be 'within Hacking Area', while a defensive boost would be global.
     
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  2. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    Or any type of Haqq, or Shasvaasti, or JSA, or ... there's a lot of them and many armies now have E/Maulers or Zapper/Marat armed throw-away troops. If E/M presence was more like JSA (fair availability but typically requiring winning Face to Face rolls) you'd have more of a point. Fact is, there's a surprising amount of them now a days which costs less than 15 points.

    This wouldn't be a problem if the ecosystem had multi-wound units ruling the field for a long time, then E/M would be a neat solution without making massive alterations to the game, but Infinity's problem has been the opposite for years with 1-W spam ruling the field
     
  3. Hachiman Taro

    Hachiman Taro Inverted gadfly

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    If only you could dodge e/m DTWs or had options to engage them from beyond their range.

    I mean, it's an ok point that some HI might have been overcosted and hence why full HI links have been less seen over the course of N3.

    But Hollowmen seem to do OK (wiithout a frenzy discount). So its not troop type wide in general.

    But CBs solution to this seems to be mixed links, tac awareness etc to add efficiency. If it continues to be an issue and show up in the ITS data for some, I'm sure we will see more measures that address it.

    E/M isnt quite the bogey man some make it out to be in my experience though.
     
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  4. SpectralOwl

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    Some of the issue may spring from the fact that E/M, Hacking, Missiles and a dozen other things are disproportionately effective against single, expensive multiwound units, and nothing specialises in countering crappy LI/WB spam with the possible exception of the Dangerous Terrain rule. Templates work quite well, but require the enemy screwing up to get value out of and DTWs are bad on active-turn, high value units, especially since Warbands somehow usually have higher PHY then power armour and can dodge well, wasting tons of time. To this day I've wanted a "Quick Shot" type skill on certain poorly performing mid-cost assault troops like Bao, old Bolts or possibly Maakrep Trackers that cancel DTWs, Deployables and the Special Dodge of Smoke if they hit the declaring unit with a successful BS attack, giving them more utility in the job they're supposed to be doing but can't because Chain Rifles exist. At the moment there just really isn't a counter to mass spam of cheap guys unless the table is extremely open and those efficient short-range guns and Hacker/Jammer shenanigans run into problems, and until there is a way to throw "asymmetrical trades" back down the cost ladder it might stay that way.
     
  5. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    Hollowmen is another way of fixing the problem; extreme specialization, cutting away everything that's not necessary. Even in CC they are hyper-optimized, gambling on that they wouldn't be able to put up a fight anyway if faced with someone who means business instead they rely on ARM and W to keep them safe from units that retain costly mediocrity.
    It really is a different flavour of Discount It Until It's Balanced.
     
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  6. DaRedOne

    DaRedOne Morat Warrior Philosopher
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    I don't think this is a good argument for this situation.

    Even if the dodge is sucessful you're still spending orders doing it (if the DTW is aroing) or spending your ARO to do it, allowing the enemy warband to run free. It's a situation where the net is still a gain for the Warband in almost all cases.

    Besides, we've now seen HI models with PH of 12 or less, which makes them average to poor at dodging. This is usually the case for the discount 1W+NWI HI models even. So yeah, 'just dodge' doesn't really add much to the fact that if you've come to make that decision, things are usually going badly for you anyways.

    I'm not saying that Heavy Infantry should dominate the battlefield, neither should TAGs for that matter. But they shouldn't feel like a handicap, and some of them do give that impression.
     
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  7. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    I agree, and it's actually the strength of those cheap troops that helps keeps old Sectorials highly relevant. Certainly there's a lot of lethal new options out there, but cheap warbands never stopped being very good. It's actually one reason why I'm glad that we're seeing MSV2 Sensors, Jammer, and some other very powerful defensive tools present in these new Sectorials... They'd be in serious trouble if they didn't have anti-warband solutions.
     
  8. Hachiman Taro

    Hachiman Taro Inverted gadfly

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    In other words, the problem people are complaining about is already being fixed. Compare how HI used to be designed, an example being Mobile Brigada where you have to take two seperate models at 40pts ish each to get a hacker and a tin bot armed with combis. Cut to today and those kind of profiles have the tinbot on the hacker who is a khd with a good and chesp gun like a shotgun or smg.


    You already let the WB run free to get into DTW range in the first place. They had to run all the way over to you, or you did to them. If thats happening, you're being out played.

    The dodge comment was in regard to the claim that e/m would be ok if it was FTF. But its better than that though, you can get normal rolls!

    I mean e/m is a counter to HI. But not a hard counter. Theres things you can do. Like control the board against such generally short range threats. Especially if you are playing a skew list, which all or largely HI lists are, you need to account for the particular threats to your skew and defeat them to reliably win. Complaining that the counters to you troops are counters to your troops doesnt really advance the understanding of balance. Of course you have to play HI particularly well against its counters, and thats not simple. Thats just playing the game. Whether the cost are quite perfect, thats a more difficult question.

    Well apart from a) Shock and b) literally everything that is better against things with worse stats (ie almost everything).
     
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  9. Weathercock

    Weathercock Well-Known Member

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    LI/WB spam doesn't really care about shock. They're supposed to be expendable, using doctors to revive them is just a waste of orders.

    And as far as things being better against units with worse stats, that's not really the case. Critical hits and AP ammo exist to invalidate the value of armour.
     
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  10. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    I don't particularly disagree, but in this case, using Shock to stop Doctoring isn't really the point. You apply Shock to a Dogged Warband to stop them from Chain Rifling or Berserking you twice.

     
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  11. meikyoushisui

    meikyoushisui Competitor for Most Ignored User

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    Hollow Men are very min-maxed. Most HI pay for CC15+ and PH13+, Hollow Men pay only for CC10 and PH10. They also have points spent in many of the cheap things that have big impacts on a units viability, such as Super-Jump and a cheap DTW on most of their profiles, and a specialist profile with no weapon/loadout bloating (specialist op + bsg).

    No one would be mad if every HI was that optimized, but can you seriously tell me compared to a Mobile Brigada that you wouldn't mind paying 5 points of CC and 4 points of PH to get literally everything else in the Hollow Men profile, which includes: Super-Jump, Remote Presence, Religious, 6-2 Movement, +3BTS, a Chain -colt and a breaker pistol? Because that's what the difference comes out to.

    After rereading this thread, I am increasingly inclined to think HI problems are more a symptom of a more general problems -- the underlying issue is that stats are too expensive compared to skills.
     
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  12. Hachiman Taro

    Hachiman Taro Inverted gadfly

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    Brigada get something else that's super efficient instead of min maxed profiles - the ability to link with Alguaciles. A Brigada ML or HMG in that link is extremely effective for cost, even without a min maxed profile. This just shows that there are different ways this can be, and actually is addressed in the game. I feel like that's good because it makes for a very textured, nuanced game (at the cost of a lot of complexity).

    I'm not arguing that all costings are perfect (and perhaps they never could be). But i am saying these things can and are getting effectively addressed in interesting ways over time. And that some of the very broad criticisms about all HI in general that have been levelled are therefore a little hyperbolic, and perhaps grounded in a certain perspective (looking at IA lists and feeling threatened by the threats to them, for example).

    It's certainly likely that there are some structural miss costings in the formula used for points values. It also seems like CB are realising this over time, because optimised profiles seem to be becoming more common. You have to know what's better value to do that. No doubt they'll take further steps in future, maybe adjusting the formula, or making a new edition that's better etc.
     
    #92 Hachiman Taro, Jun 21, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2019
  13. meikyoushisui

    meikyoushisui Competitor for Most Ignored User

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    Every time I start to believe this, they release profiles like the Chaksa Longarms and I become very confused again.
     
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  14. Hachiman Taro

    Hachiman Taro Inverted gadfly

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    I mean I agree to an extent, but then also I think it's very easy to underestimate from the outside how difficult it would be to make a game as complex and well flavoured as infinity very well balanced for every troop on release.

    Also, sometimes it turns out they know more about their game than we do. For example for the longest time everyone seemed to think nimbus grenades were useless bloat. Then people in my meta discovered how useful they are against stuff like linked Kamau Snipers or combined with DTWs vs Dakini links and suddenly they were the new hotness, despite being ignored and derided for years previously...
     
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  15. Hachiman Taro

    Hachiman Taro Inverted gadfly

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    So a Shock Marksman Rifle is just as effective against a Jotum in cover as a Galwegian then?

    And if that Galwegian runs all the way across the table to get dropped by a shock (or DA or EXP) round in ARO from something that outclasses it, it's the one wasting orders. That's the point.

    You actually have to play to get that result to get that result though. Rather than just rely on the stats of your troopers to innately win. And you can. Particularly so with better quality troops, like HI.
     
  16. A Mão Esquerda

    A Mão Esquerda Deputy Hexahedron Officer

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    This. Sometimes a unit that comes out *now* and is useful but not stellar only truly comes into its own with the release of later units.
     
  17. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    This point came up in a different thread, but just wanted to reiterate that the effectiveness of Hollowmen is a major hook in playing TJC (and honestly, TJC sure can use them.)

    As mentioned, CB agrees that generic HI need some help, and now they get mixed links. Corregidor in general is an incredibly versatile Sectorial, unlike TJC. It's important to evaluate the whole Sectorial when comparing something like HI links.
     
  18. toadchild

    toadchild EI Aspect

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    Given that both Sogarats Suryats and Vanguards feel a little inefficient for my tastes I'm getting less mileage out of the mixed LI/HI fireteam in MAF than I would if I were playing Corregidor.
     
    #98 toadchild, Jun 21, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
  19. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    If all you care about are the Nomad HI, then sure it's fixed I guess. Meanwhile for factions which are designed to take an abundance of HI rather than as a one off skew, this is simply not true.
     
  20. ChoTimberwolf

    ChoTimberwolf Artichoken Friend

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    Yeah well Tohaas new HI the Kiel is fun but not really worth taking in a competive environment. That may be more a problem of Tohaa in general than the Kiel...