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Tournament Design: what missions do you choose?

Discussion in 'ITS' started by BLOODGOD, May 28, 2019.

  1. Solar

    Solar Well-Known Member

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    Crazy in love with Highly Classified my man!
     
  2. csjarrat

    csjarrat Well-Known Member
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    I like highly classified too, makes for a really good casual game. Makes you do weird stuff you wouldn't otherwise do.
    Just needs a tweak for big events, needs one set of classifieds for all the tables rather than each table picking their own
     
  3. barakiel

    barakiel Echo Bravo Master Sergeant
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    I actually really like the layout and scoring for Trans Matrix, but the Repeater component just impacts factions in ways that are altogether too different. When you take certain Hacking programs / Hackers and give them universal Repeater access, it clearly flexes their power level in a way that wasn't intended during design. Nasty.

    Hacking aside though, the thing I dislike the most is how small the zones are for controlling the various antennae. If you're at an event where the TO didn't bother making the various zones defensible, the mission becomes all but impossible.
     
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  4. inane.imp

    inane.imp Well-Known Member

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    My preferred fix for it (for both casual and tournie):

    * Both players each select two Main Classified Objectives.
    * The players reveal their selections simultaneously. Replace duplicates with the Extreme mode version, which is worth 2 OP, and counts as 2 Objectives for determining who has completed more.
    * Secondary Classified are still drawn randomly.

    IE. I choose 'Test Run' and 'Experimental Drug' my opponent chooses 'Test Run' and 'Retro-Engineering'.

    The Main Classifieds would be:
    Test Run - Extreme Mode (2 OP)
    Experimental Drug (1 OP)
    Retro-Engineering (1 OP)

    The point is that it reduces the randomness while increasing player agency by creating a meaningful decision as part of list construction. It also allows the mission to be tailored by players to suit the rest of their lists more which makes it less of an 'outlier'.
     
    #44 inane.imp, May 31, 2019
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
  5. BLOODGOD

    BLOODGOD Vampire Hunter

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    I actually like several of my "bad for tournament" missions for casual games. The surrounding context is totally different, which changes the judgment calculus on mission quality. I still don't like Highly Classified, though. ;)
     
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  6. kinginyellow

    kinginyellow Well-Known Member

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    My issue with highly classified is 3 cards: experimental drug, test run, and a little of rescue. These cards require your opponent to either hurt your models in specific ways or to hurt your own model. The concept that the best move is to try and hurt your own model to accomplish the objective is dumb imho. The other cards is either get to a place, do something to an hvt, or do something to an enemy.
     
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  7. BLOODGOD

    BLOODGOD Vampire Hunter

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    Jumping dudes and hoping they make their second or third save from fall damage definitely sucks.
     
  8. inane.imp

    inane.imp Well-Known Member

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    This is another reason why I think choosing the Main Classifieds is better: it allows you to select Classifieds that you control whether you can do them or not.

    Those 3 cards still work as the Secondary Classifieds as none of those cards are an issue if your opponent doesn't know you have them, they're only an issue if they're Open Information (and, in any event, as a Secondary Classified they can be replaced by Secure the HVT).
     
  9. Section9

    Section9 Well-Known Member

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    Exactly.
     
  10. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    Test Run and Experimental Drug are kind of bad, but Rescue I put in the same category as ITS' tendency to force you to not shoot your opponent out by changing the way Retreat! works. It should be possible to accomplish this mission without playing poorly and as long as you don't put your opponent in Retreat! there's not that much of a deal.
    Nearly all REMs can be picked up by an LI, most main attack pieces in Fireteams will have a friend with the same PH nearby, and at the end of the day it has the potential to give you an extra OP as a reward for picking it and jumping through an extra hoop.

    I do think Test Run and Experimental Drug could or should be shifted to "unconscious Enemy" or possibly have "unconscious Enemy" as an additional potential target for +1 OP.
     
  11. kinginyellow

    kinginyellow Well-Known Member

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    yea, its why i commented its only a little rescue. its the same idea as the other 2 but so much easier to accomplish that i find it fine.

    i have had times that later in the game i actually don't have any unconscious models to doctor or engineer and my opponent knows it so won't fire at me to let me get the card. if test run/experimental drug were only allowed as secondary cards (because then they can always be replaced with secure hvt) or where to do a thing to enemy wound/str, then sure no complaints from me, but as stands i find highly classified better than biotechvore but still not a great mission.
     
  12. grampyseer

    grampyseer User of the "ignore" button
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    I’m realizing that I think of tournaments quite differently from many of the posters. For me, a hallmark of good mission palette of a tournament is the players really struggling to create optimized list builds.

    I think that it should be a challenge to figure out what pieces to use. I think it’s a phenomenal feature of the game that a player may be forced to consider abandoning their “comfort zone” in favour of less optimized, but more generally useful units in the tournament.

    This helps break the meta slaves.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  13. Hecaton

    Hecaton EI Anger Translator

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    I think people should have to contend with their opponent, not the tournament format.

    Besides, if you change the mission setup, it merely makes different things optimal. You can't take way the idea of optimal choices for a given mission.
     
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  14. grampyseer

    grampyseer User of the "ignore" button
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    I hear you, but I don’t think it’s an either or. To try a metaphor, I think making a player shoot a left-handed jump-shot on occasion is a good test of someone’s basketball skills. Concordantly, making someone take a TaG for full OP in a mission stresses their play in new ways. They still do have an opponent to deal with, so the competitive aspect is still there.

    For me, this rewards a player’s adaptability more than their ability to optimize a mission. Yes, they can do that for a single mission, but ideally it will be at the expense of another.

    I should also note that I prefer this as a player, not just a TO. I love the challenge of a difficult mission set. It makes the game much more about my in-game decisions.


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  15. A Mão Esquerda

    A Mão Esquerda Deputy Hexahedron Officer

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    Agreed. Missions that encourage, or even force out of the box thinking are good things.
     
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  16. Hecaton

    Hecaton EI Anger Translator

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    Being forced to take a TAG to score full OPs is horrible game design. Playing USARF it puts me at a ridiculous disadvantage.
     
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  17. grampyseer

    grampyseer User of the "ignore" button
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    The fact that USARF doesn’t have a TAG option seems to be the issue here.

    To that point, yes. Those missions are problematic in their current state. If everyone had access to a TAG, they’d be better.

    Pointedly, we’re talking about mission groups in tournaments, and whether odd pairings are okay. I think everyone gets that there are a couple of missions that need work.


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  18. Hecaton

    Hecaton EI Anger Translator

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    No, it's not, because that's an element of the setting. It's an issue with that mission.
     
  19. Daniel Darko

    Daniel Darko Well-Known Member
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    It is controversial, but the Extra Soldiers of Fortune helps regarding TAGs. If a TO does not want to exclude some players (who are playing only one sectorial), he/she can always open up that can...

    But all of this is still holding on @grampyseer 's prefered way of challenging the player due to the set up. I am pretty sure, those, who would like to have a plain playing field don't find a comforting answer in playing plain armies without their "limitations"*.

    *as Soldiers of Fortune allows for every army almost every trick.
     
  20. xagroth

    xagroth Mournful Echo

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    The problem is that other armies can get other uses or advantages from SoF, while the factions without TAG (including some sectorials: greeks, Hassassin Bahram, etc...) are forced to grab an Anaconda.
    You can't modify the mission to let those factions access to mercenary TAGs, since you would be forcing them to make a single list for that mission they would not be able to use otherwise.

    The only solutions I can think of would either allow the alignment of mercenary TAGs in all tournaments with missions requiring TAGs for full scoring, either to change the way to make those last 3 points (for example, break the enemy TAG) for those factions, or add TAGs to all factions.
    Besides removing the mission, of course.
     
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