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Why is CC different from every other part of the game?

Discussion in 'Access Guide to the Human Sphere' started by theomc, Apr 8, 2021.

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Does CC working different than Ranged, Dodge, Doctoring rolls enhance the game?

  1. Yes

    39 vote(s)
    73.6%
  2. No

    5 vote(s)
    9.4%
  3. Meh

    9 vote(s)
    17.0%
  1. WiT?

    WiT? Well-Known Member

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    Exciting stuff for a dedicated fighting game, but not necessary. Adding options and complexity does not mean the same thing as adding all of the options and all of the complexity. For example, theres no mechanics involving aiming, steadiness. actual suppressive fire (the rule with this name is more of a guard mode, N2 had something closer to suppressive fire), reloading, weapons customization etc. Just because its a game about shooting doesn't mean it has to contain everything about shooting, so adding content to the CC aspect of the game would not necessarily need to involve this much detail.

    The analogy you make between fighting terminology and Infinity is interesting, but not a strong argument for leaving any particular mechanic without substance. Its all equally valid or invalid whether you are referring to shooting, CC, hacking, deployables or other forms of combat.

    For example, much of what you say here is just as valid if I replace the word CC with "BS Attack", or the Change Facing Shenanigans approach with "flank their cover" etc. Theres little here that relates specifically to CC as opposed to just different forms of offense and defense.

    I'm not totally in disagreement. But there are two things I do disagree with.

    Firstly, that if you want CC to be a 'foregone conclusion' we can achieve this without a martial arts table and with some simpler application of "CC+X" type skills - this avoids bloat. I'm not completely opposed to a take on CC that is essentially base contact = death for non-CC orientated models, but one of my arguments has been against using a bloaty and uninteresting table to achieve this.

    It's all well and good to say that if Musashi reaches base contact, the opponent should vanish, and that the skill in CC is delivering him there. But this system is flawed in that it gives a) only a very simple binary outcome and b) gives less room for application of CC for anyone who isn't a beast as well as for varied and decision driven outcomes.

    We get at least two other interesting CC situations that are not meaningfully accommodated by this system. Firstly, model with middling (or even poor) CC against non-CC expert, and Expert vs Expert. Both of these are essentially boiled down to "roll dice, remove model" and could potentially be improved upon by giving the models some agency that goes beyond "punch or dodge".

    I agree with this, which is why I have never advocated for it. Why would you bring it up?

    Still, the martial arts chart does not promote change given that it is a completely static ability.
     
  2. Diphoration

    Diphoration Well-Known Member
    Warcor

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    Martial Arts in N4 is literally "nested skills", the opposite design of what N4 intended to do.

    Basically a nested version of these skills
    CC Attack (+3), CC Attack (-3), CC Attack (+3 Dam), CC Attack (+1B)
     
    #42 Diphoration, Apr 17, 2021
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2021
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  3. Skoll

    Skoll Well-Known Member
    Warcor

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    MA4 does not provide a +1 burst anymore , only 5 does
     
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  4. theomc

    theomc Well-Known Member

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    "In this case, consider the Success Value to be 20, but with the peculiarity that the player adds the amount by which the Success Value exceeded 20 to his result on the die (a Success Value of 23 would add 3 to the result)." - p.29

    This is my new favorite sentence from the rules. When you're own rulebook describes itself as peculiar, something's gone a little wrong...
     
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  5. Space Ranger

    Space Ranger Well-Known Member

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    I'm still thinking CC would be at least better, in the sense of consistency, to be more like shooting. Bring the CC back down to below 20, give certain CC specialists +Burst to CC. What would be the numbers for a trooper with CC17, and +2 CC burst, vs. a say a CC 13? Sure the CC13 guy could win just like they can now but I think it's more unlikely since it's 1 die vs. 3.
     
  6. CAnon

    CAnon Well-Known Member

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    I'm thinking CC would work better without everyone getting access to 9 point NBW mercs.
    Or 14 point NBW HI mercs. :expressionless:
     
  7. Muad'dib

    Muad'dib Well-Known Member

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    The big issue that I have with CC is that it remains very volatile, even when supposed CC masters are fighting troopers with basic training, due to the very low burst involved in CC. I had proposed an alternative martial arts table within my gaming group, but we haven't had a chance to playtest it yet. I've included the concept for each level of MA in parentheses.
    • MA1 (Natural Aptitude): Attack MOD = 0, Opponent MOD = -3, DAM +1
    • MA2 (Special CC Training): Attack MOD = +3, Opponent MOD = -3, DAM +2
    • MA3 (CC Expert): Attack MOD = +3, Opponent MOD = -3, DAM +2, +1 Burst
    • MA4 (CC Veteran): Attack MOD = +3, Opponent MOD = -6, DAM +2, +1 Burst
    • MA5 (CC Master): Attack MOD = +3, Opponent MOD = -6, DAM +3, +2 Burst
    In addition, I would modify NBW to only neutralize attack mods and opponent mods (with no effect on damage or burst). I would also make it so that all units with MA can also declare something similar to berserk (full mov + cc attack), but without it being normal rolls, since normal rolls are actually an advantage for the berserk unit in most situations rather than a disadvantage.

    In combination, these changes should make it easier to reach CC and reduce the volatility experienced by MA3 and above (which are usually premium profiles) due to improved burst and more negative mods on the opponent. This also helps stack the deck so that MA2 vs. MA4 is weighted in favor of the MA4 from both a mods and burst perspective. NBW still levels the playing field in terms of target numbers, but a CC Expert can still land more hits and hit harder when they do. The chance of a CC master dying to a line trooper should be extremely small.

    As an example: Shinobu Kitsune vs. Ghulam
    • Kitsune has Burst 3 on target number 28
    • Ghulam has Burst 1 on target number 8, reduced to 5 if Kitsune has surprise attack
    • Ghulam needs a crit to win the FTF, even if Kitsune rolls a 1 she will still have the result of a 9. Kitsune neutralizes the Ghulam's crit on any roll of 12 or better.
    Alternative example: Kitsune vs. Asawira
    • Kitsune has Burst 3 on target number 25 (affected by Asawira's MA2)
    • Asawira has Burst 1 on 20 (affected by negative mod from Kitsune)
    • Kitsune maintains burst advantage and better target number, but Asawira maintains a fighting chance

    Alternative example: Kitsune vs. Tarik Mansuri
    • Kitsune has Burst 3 on target number 22 (positive mod neutralized by NBW, affected by Tarik's MA1)
    • Tarik has Burst 1 on 23 (ignores negative mod from Kitsune)
    • Kitsune has burst advantage but slightly lower target number, so she is still favored to win but it could go either way.
     
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  8. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    So... instead of addressing the issues with CC, you're proposing to make close combat even more about the level of Martial Arts, especially Martial Arts with Natural Born Warrior?
    Btw, B3@25 vs B1@20 translates to 81% Dead vs 6% Unconscious.

    I do maintain that I think CC should have an inherent active turn advantage. The unit that spends the resources should be the one having an advantage. Fluff-wise this is the unit that rallies resolve and takes the initiative. Just like with shooting (and Nourkias). The dynamic that people, including IJW, talks about up thread is completely dead because most people can make the quick comparison and realize who will win and that it is a waste of an order to push the issue for the other player - though, I've noticed that even experienced players don't always realize how completely boned even small differences in high level CC makes the unit with lower numbers, they might think it is a 50% vs 30% chance in favour of the reactive player and not spend the order when it's actually a >70% vs <10%.
    Unless I'm rolling. My CC dice likes to cosplay as D8's.

    (I'm not sure what Natural Born Warrior is meant to do on units that are inherently hyper-competent in melee as this kind of removes the equalizer or the RPS quality of the skill and instead just makes a new layer of "the best", the best solution is probably to either have it affect everyone equally or to remove it from anyone with a Martial Arts higher than 1)
     
  9. Kreslack

    Kreslack Unknown Ranger lead the way!

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    I was thinking NBW was waaay to common. So I checked all the Martial Arts units.

    30 NBW
    19 MA1
    40 MA2
    32 MA3
    18 MA4
    2 MA5
    (a few of these numbers might be off by 1, in case I missed a sectoral merc or double counted one.)

    There are also about 37 units with a CC stat of at least 20 no MA. This also includes all berserk units. A few sub CC 20 are also included here, but have either berserk that puts them over CC 20 or (CC -X)

    There are almost equal MA4 as MA1.

    There are 93 MA units without NBW, and 18 units with both. 12 of the NBW have no MA, (and only 3 of those are commonly available mercs.) And finally there are another 37 CC effective units.



    So NBW isn't as common as I initially thought. 30/111, which is still roughly 1 in 3.7. And counting the ones that are actually a real threat to MA units is more like 1 in 5.16.

    If anything I'm more surprised MA1 isn't more common. MA5 should really be on more units other than 2 characters in one faction. Many MA 4 characters really should be bumped up to MA5.

    Though I think the 'B' problem could be solved in CC by giving a +1 B to active MA units fighting non MA units. With NBW still shutting it off. Least I think that idea has some potential.
     
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  10. Abrilete

    Abrilete Well-Known Member

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    It's even more complicated than that: there are units with not so good CC value that end up being competent at CC thanks to currently having +1B. For example, Tohaa's Sukeul or the Greif Operator (both with a CC of 17).
     
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  11. Kreslack

    Kreslack Unknown Ranger lead the way!

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    You are absolutely right. Wild Bill is also on that list. But I find they tend to have even narrower opportunities to CC. Since their shooting might be just as close for numbers and will have at least B3. Against Mimetism -6 and sometimes -3 it can be a great alternative option. But these are also units that will fold pretty hard against MA or CC -X
     
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  12. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    It's funny how having (+1B) starts making CC a viable alternative for dealing with highly mimetic units in the active turn at close range as opposed to giving everyone and their (synchronized) dog a DTW. Like a tactical layer of consideration that's just been sacrificed on the altar of making CC viability static by a simple comparison of effective CC values...
     
  13. Fed4ykin

    Fed4ykin Well-Known Member

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    Why not compare MA levels with each others? For example: MA1 vs MA3 becomes Ma0 Vs.MA2 regarding bonussess.
    Dmg could be unfazed by that.
    Another suggestion: an experienced Martial artist knows where to strike to deal the most dmg sp the dmg shuld not just be indicated(limited) to physique. so give dmg +3 and not phys +3 for levels of MA4 and higher.
    would make it a lot less swingy..
    Anyways, don´t pit Martial artists against each other if he is good with the knife shoot him! :D
    NBW as it is makes no logical sense as a trained artial artist will dupe on someone untrained with talent all day long. reminds me a lot of the archvillain of a anime who trained for millenia and gets rekt by the hero because of the power of friendship....
     
  14. Kreslack

    Kreslack Unknown Ranger lead the way!

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    The biggest problem is MA vs MA the values are usually so close that you won't push your MA unit against another unless yours has NBW, theirs is only MA 1, or yours have a B advantage.

    Most CC units do have odds in their favor fighting non CC. One of the biggest problems is that advantage isn't great enough to justify spending the orders to get their and risk it all on one dice roll.

    On your second point I see NBW as less of just innate fighting talent and more the ability to fight an expert on equal footing. (And game wise gaining no extra advantage over non CC units) NBW + MA is more just a clearer indicator of being a level above most CC fighters.

    Rather than subtractive levels it'd probably just be simpler to add a +1 B to a MA attack against a unit possessing lower MA than you. Mean alot of the upper tier units can now engage non CC units and lesser CC units with more reliability. But NBW still acts as an equalizer. You can take away their bonuses including the B. But being lower on the MA chart means they still won't have a B bonus either, since they we're entitled to it in the first place.
     
    #54 Kreslack, Jan 7, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2022
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  15. WiT?

    WiT? Well-Known Member

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    I quite like the "if higher" clause on that. Simple and rewards the few units that exceed MA2. And honestly, CC is expensive and risky, I support it becoming more decisive for high tier CC units.
     
  16. Muad'dib

    Muad'dib Well-Known Member

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    One of the major issues is the current power curve of the MA skill table. No MA to MA1 is a big step as is MA1 to MA2. But MA3 and MA4 do nothing to affect F2F probabilities, so these profiles are easily outclassed by high burst, Non-MA units such as Zuleyka, despite paying what appears to be premium for "better" martial arts. MA5 is so rare as to not even matter to the balance of the game. This was one of the driving factors for my alternative MA table proposal in this thread, as right now MA1/2 is as good as MA3/4 in almost every situation.

    Within the Infinity F2F system, burst and negative opponent mods are the only reliable way to emphasize the advantage of one unit over another. And close combat seems to have completely missed the memo. Against MA1/MA2 units, I think I would rather send in an Odalisque with CC(-9) instead of an MA3 or MA4 model:
    • Odalisque vs. Teutonic Knight (MA2) is B1 CC 16 vs. B1 CC 16
    • Fiday (MA3) vs. Teutonic Knight is B1 CC23 vs. B1 CC 22
    • Al-Djabel (MA4) vs. Teutonic Knight is still B1 CC23 vs. B1 CC 22
    Did you happen to put your MA, NBW, and CC counting data into a spreadsheet? I would love to visualize some of the data.
     
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  17. Mahtamori

    Mahtamori Well-Known Member

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    It kind of is less about how many units with <ability> and all about how likely you are of seeing play with those units. Looking at MA5, there's two units with that skill but one is very unlikely to see board time at all so that takes probabilities down significantly while the other is fairly likely as long as either player is playing JSA bringing the likelihood up somewhat.

    More to the point, however, is when you look at the combination Martial Arts and Natural Born Warrior. While these profiles are pretty rare, almost all of them or actually all of them are so well optimised that you'll see them even more often than you'll see JSA play Shinobu (and that's not making a pun about Hidden Deployment)
    Compare that to Natural Born Warrior without Martial Arts and their tendency to be on profiles that are usually fairly poorly optimised and as such you won't see them on the table as much. In my opinion, this is mostly because CC that's gracing 20 or below 20 isn't actually very useful, it just costs a lot and NBW is meant to one-up units with CC 23+ who'll still have better chance than your unit.
    The silver lining is that they did in fact increase the CC of most of these units to a useful value, but the dynamic is still kind of there.
     
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  18. QueensGambit

    QueensGambit Chickenbot herder

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    I don't really see that changing things like the MA table or the way NBW works would meaningfully change CC. Fundamentally, CC is about:
    1. Calculate the odds that A will win against B, and decide whether the fight is worth taking.
    2. Maneuver past the enemy's defenses to get A into sil contact with B.
    3. Trivially win the fight.

    Changing the MA table would change which units had sufficiently good odds of beating which other units, so it would change who you would decide to attack with and what targets you'd pick, but it wouldn't otherwise change the tactics involved which really all happen at step 2.

    Burst bonuses are different because they only work in the active turn, so they create the possibility of situations where it's worth sending A to attack B, but not worth sending B to attack A. That's a bit of extra tactical depth, so it's probably a good thing although a minor one.

    To make CC more interesting, you'd need more skills that only work in some circumstances but not others. I dunno, maybe make NBW only work in the reactive turn - the unit is good at defending against martial artists, but isn't an attacker. Or bring back MA5 from N3, which only works against the Gang Up bonus. Basically, make the players have to control more factors than just "is A a sufficiently better fighter than B" and "can I get A into sil contact with B".

    But honestly, I'd be just as happy leaving CC at its current level of tactical depth and simplifying the CC skills. Get rid of MA levels - it just gives +3/-3. Give some units CC Attack (+x DAM) if needed.

    Well, but the point is you wouldn't take any of those three fights. They're way too swingy. Terrible tactical choice unless you need a hail mary.

    Fidays and Djabel exist to murder mooks with no CC. They're supposed to be badass ninja types, but on on the table they're cowards and bullies.

    Teuton is the same, except their CC is also good defense against assassins like a Fiday. You'll sometimes attack with their CC, especially if you manage a gang up bonus with their fireteam, but more often it's a deterrent.

    And Odalisque is pure deterrent. You'd never waste time getting her into CC in the active turn, her CC Attack(-9) is there to make her an invalid target for something like a Fiday.
     
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  19. CAnon

    CAnon Well-Known Member

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    Sheskiin now has DAM 17 AP+EXP D-Charges (as opposed to her current DAM 18 DA CCW), which she can still Protheion off.
    And i'm sure there's worse examples.
     
  20. Fed4ykin

    Fed4ykin Well-Known Member

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    D-charges as of now have a fixed dmg. And sheshiins dmg +2 only effects her bs attacks.
    What i wanted was for MA of 4 and above to affect the dmg of monofilament. To show that the masterful Martial artists aim for weakspots where they can inflict the most damage.
    When someone tries to punch you, you dislocate his shoulder or break his arm. Or attack your oppenents eyes, ears or nose... And you don't necessarily need a lot of force to do this. Speaking of personal experience here sadly. This should only be done in self defense and you have to warn the aggressor before that you are capable of doing so...
    D-charges should not be accounted in this as you don't stab your opponent with them but put a life explosive on them. But then I have no personal experience in dealing with explosives.
     
    #60 Fed4ykin, Jan 10, 2022
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2022
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