Challenges

24 Jun
June 24, 2015

Sigh, my next game is going to be something simple.

I keep telling myself this, repeating it like a mantra, as I pull my hair out in frustration at trying to balance a strategy game with a huge number of variables and potential interactions.

This weekend’s challenge: the elite Rush deck beats other elite decks around 50% of the time. It’s pretty fun, go fast enough and they don’t have time to build up their cool combos before you’re already at the finish line. But the starter deck, it turned out, beat the elite Rush deck 4 times out of 5. Even though that same starter deck lost consistently to the other elite decks.

Fuck.

So the hair-pulling came as I tried to rebalance some of the rush cards so that it could beat the starter deck consistently while not unbalancing it versus the other elite decks.

Not a simple task, let me tell you.

The problem turned out to be that while the starter deck doesn’t have a lot of good cards in it, it does have a lot of cheap ones. And some of the cards it does have had a bit too much card draw boosting. So it managed to churn out enough cheap, disposable Agents, without emptying its hand completely, to keep the Rush deck from, well, rushing effectively. Long enough, at least, to move out of the early game, closing the window in which the rush deck can win.

I eventually managed to make certain cards stronger and others a little weaker (particularly some of the starter deck’s card draw boosting cards), leaving the final balance about the same, but making it harder to simply block a Rush deck with a pile of cheap bodies.

Which was a whole lot of tweaking and testing just to get me back to where I was in the beginning, thinking I had my cards pretty well balanced and moving on to setting up the story campaign battles.

Sigh.

My next game is going to be something simple.
My next game is going to be something simple.
My next game is going to be…

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