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AoS Warhammer Weekly: Seraphon OP?

Discussion in 'Seraphon Discussion' started by Kilvakar, Dec 3, 2020.

  1. Erta Wanderer
    Skink Priest

    Erta Wanderer Well-Known Member

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    wow you ignored more then half of what i said including my response to this hmmm. let me repost it then.
    being "to simular" isn't even a problem in the first place. it is common practice to have a better more expensive version of a unit in strategy games. feral carnasuars are weaker but cheaper then mounted heroes in TTW2, standard zomby dragons/ terrorists are cheaper then their mounted versions in AoS(and people still use both) IG troopers and psyons, great wyrm and crawling wyrm, varka dragon and brood mother dragon, maelstrom and twin twister. this happens all the time and it's fine. just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's bad. so yeah all of these and sooooo many more are in games that people love all of them get used and the way they get that effect is by balancing points.(or that games equivalent) this is a cost problem not a concept problem


    ok well then how would you make him a defensive caster? +1 to saves is about as powerful as defensive spells get. and if you did give him a +1 save spell or worse then you would have the same problem as with kroak(oh dang that's what i said earlier huh) where the seer is a better version of the slann only this time cheaper or a -1 to hit and he gets to compete with a even cheaper hero. aaaaand you also ignore half of this point soya lets adreas that. the slann is already geared far more towards utility casting then kroak is he already has a different roll then kroak hence why people use him. him not needing to cast damage spells and having the ability to double up on lore spells makes him much better at that roll then kroak

    so? why is it a problem that some units are more popular? it's impossible to get equity in this department. as in all things there is going to be a best one there are to many verriables in this game not to have a better option
     
  2. ASSASSIN_NR_1
    Carnasaur

    ASSASSIN_NR_1 Well-Known Member

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    Guess I'll butt in with what I have gathered from your discussion: Kroak with everything is problematic, not Kroak by himself (okay maybe slighlty him as well), and you have been kind of discussing a fix.

    Now I have nowhere near enough experience with AOS to say whether the Slann or Kroak is actually correctly costed or not and whether one of them can be or is OP.
    One personal shortcoming of both Kroak and the Slann in my eyes, is that they share a base spell, which lore wise is fine and dandy, but seems to slighly defeat the idea of having both, though maybe that is the intention.

    That out of the way, the "easy" solution seems to me, is to not explicitly nerf any one element of "Kroak and everything", but instead change the synergy between the individual pieces. granted that likely won't happen before a new Seraphon book is released, just thinking of an ideal scenario.
     
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  3. Erta Wanderer
    Skink Priest

    Erta Wanderer Well-Known Member

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    yep thats about it. well summed up and with the fact that you can't get bale winds any more i think they are already doing that
     
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  4. Putzfrau
    Skink Chief

    Putzfrau Well-Known Member

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    If you remove balewinds (and i think they should), I think Kroak just needs an extremely modest increase to make the choice between him and a slann a little more interesting. To the point you made earlier, limiting celestial deliverance to 10'' (or even 16'' with an astrolith) makes the most irritating part of his kit so much more manageable.

    IMO the easiest way to differentiate between Kroak and a Slann while also making both worthwhile options would be to remove kroaks aoe mortal wounds and replace it with some kind of powerful support spell. Teleport, run and charge, a flat 3 summoning points, etc.

    I just think aoe mortal wounds is always going to be an irritating play experience and extremely difficult to balance around.

    Either way, been some great discussion around Kroak and Slann in the past few pages. Will be interesting to see what the future holds for seraphon!
     
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  5. Canas
    Slann

    Canas Ninth Spawning

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    Didn't particularly feel like going into it but sure.

    Normally when you have 2 units that are similar but one is cheaper and worse you have to make a choice based on the role they fill which generally boils down to one of the following three options:

    - Early v.s. Late game unit.
    - A spammable fodder unit v.s. A low count elite unit
    - A significant difference in power/utility that changes how the unit is used.

    Now the first point isn't relevant in AoS, so we can skip that.
    The second isn't relevant in the case of Slann and Kroak as they're lynch-pin general type units and you'l only really ever see one of them in a given army and you'l not see either option ever being spammed. So skipping that too.
    The third option would be were they have to differ. Now let's start by taking a good example that actually differs in that respect; the zombie dragon:

    The unmounted version has the following abilties/strengths:
    1) It's a powerfull beatstick with a melee focus.

    The mounted version additionally gains acces to:
    1) Magic
    2) An offensive command ability to buff allies
    3) Self-healing
    4) A defensive support ability in the form of deathly convocations.
    5) Even more attacks and possibly a better save depending on the loadout you pick for your vampire.

    This changes the unit from a pure beatstick to a unit that can participate in the magic phase, is vastly sturdier with self-healing, and has both an offensive and defensive buff for his allies (on top of whatever utility the spell you pick from the spell-lore brings). This is an absolute massive shift from pure beatstick.

    So in summary: pure beatstick v.s. magic beatstick with healing & multiple forms of support.

    Now let's compare the slann and Kroak.

    A slann has:
    1) Magic
    2) Generates CP.
    3) A Command ability
    4) Can cast through a skink.

    Kroak on top of this has:
    1) A relativly short range AoE damage spell.
    2) A 4+ ward-save.
    3) Slightly better CP generation.
    4) An additional spellcast.

    Now the slightly better CP generation isn't super relevant as the difference is fairly minor.
    Idem for the additional spellcast. It doesn't change what you use Kroak for.

    The 4+ ward save is a more significant difference, but doesn't provide enough protection to actually change how Kroak plays. He's still nowhere near strong enough to go roam the battlefield on his own and still needs his guard to babysit him.

    Which leaves us with celestial deliverance. Which also fails to distinguish him from the regular Slann.
    To begin with the regular slann already has an AoE damage spell. So it's not an unique utility. It's just more of the same. Definitly usefull, but doesn't change how you use the unit. Hell it even has a similar target cap. So it doesn't even get an edge there.
    Now what is different about celestial deliverance is that its much shorter ranged than comet call. Which would change how you use kroak. Except that this difference is largely negated by all of our range modifiers, many of which we're already going to be bringing regardless of what we play anyway. With those Kroak can still comfortably be a backline wizard and doesn't need to go close to the enemy. Which means that even this difference is largely irrelevant.

    So in summary:
    Backline wizard that generates CP v.s. More powerfull backline wizard that generates slightly more CP.

    Do you see the difference? One choice actually offers new powers & utility which impact how you use the unit. The other just offers a more powerfull version of the exact same thing.

    And that's bad because with that being the only difference people will just go for what's the most efficient. Or at best for their personal preference. But either way the other option essentially doesn't need to exist as it'l rarely get a second look once it's been decided which is the prefered option.

    - A ward save
    - An AoE (de)buff
    - A debuff for enemies (other than -1 to hit)
    - An offensive buff (e.g. +1 to wound)
    - A crowd control spell
    - Movement based shenanigans

    There's plenty of options for defensive or utility focused casters that aren't explored in the slightest and don't overlap with the starseer or starpriest.

    O something not being the most popular is fine. But if something is fairly consistently ignored it might be worth to look into it and change some things to make it more appealing, or just remove the option entirely if you can't fix it, as apparently it's niche simply isn't relevant enough. Especially when even in casual play it's a very unpopular pick, as the meta is much more lenient there.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2020
  6. Canas
    Slann

    Canas Ninth Spawning

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    Again, from a spreadsheet point of view, yeah it has an impact. However, at only 60 points, or even a 100, the difference is going to be roughly 1 battleline unit worth of points. That should not completly overhaul your entire list. Not unless you have absolutly zero wiggleroom in your list to begin with.

    Now if you compare a complete kroaknado versus a naked slann, where the point difference (and power difference) is much much larger then I'd be inclined to agree. But when comparing a naked Kroak against a naked Slann I wouldn't say it's exactly a massive impact that changes your entire list...
     
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  7. Putzfrau
    Skink Chief

    Putzfrau Well-Known Member

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    Yeah. But why would you ignore that? If you're investing in kroak, its part of the consideration. And you keep saying from a spreadsheet point of view, this game isn't played ona spreadsheet its played on the tabletop and thats where the impact is. "From a spreadsheet pov" actually doesnt show the true depth of the impact.

    And you're still clearly misinterpreting the point. Its not about "oh you have 100 more points for a battleline unit" its about how it changes what the list is trying to do. If you're designing a list that doesnt need kroak and his mortal wound output, its a different list design than one where you do.

    Seems like you're looking at this way too narrowly and its making it harder to see hiw something is "inconsequential" as slann or kroak can drastically change what a list is trying to do.

    Can't say i agree.

    I'll repeat something i said earlier. Seems like a lot of the criticism is only valid when you brush off any and all nuance or incorrectly label things as "the same" when they clearly, clearly, are not. Feels like you're intentionally warping the comparison to be in-line with your argument. Comets Call and Celestial Deliverance are not the same thing, aren't used in the same way, and provide vastly different utility.

    One is used to target backline heroes that will NEVER BE WITHIN 22 OF KROAK assuming the person you're playing against isn't garbage. Celestial Deliverance is a shotgun of mortal wound damage that punishes armies for collapsing on you and helps you mop up late game threats. You're way more often going to be using this on units or tough, fighty monsters. You're also way more likely to position and play with Kroak aggressively, to maximize the psychological impact of his threat range.

    I would argue those two things are not the same.

    A regular slann doesnt need a balewind (because the range is irrelevant), doesn't need saurus guard (unless in DT) because its often not as important if it dies, and doesn't need an astrolith outside of starborne where i can agree, you're probably bringing it for the summoning points. Possibly.

    Again, i'd argue the choice between a slann and a kroak is way more nuanced then you continually let on.

    Sure, if your idea of list building is cramming as many of the most "efficient" options into a list and calling it a day. List building is about problem solving, where your opponents are the problem. Smart list design is a holistic experience, and not at all similar to what you are describing.

    edit: I apologize if i'm coming across a little spicy. I mean no offense, and always appreciate the conversations we have. I just feel pretty strongly that there's so much about this game that you need to feel on the tabletop. Math and numbers on a warscroll only tells a tiny sliver of the picture, and I think people use it to incorrectly brush off, justify, or demonize certain units without truly understanding what those math and numbers mean within the context of the larger game.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2020
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  8. ASSASSIN_NR_1
    Carnasaur

    ASSASSIN_NR_1 Well-Known Member

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    My inner mathematician got a little hurt there, though I'm not offended :p

    I think you mean the same as I'm going to say here:

    The math do tell/paint the whole picture, if one actually takes everything into account, which I guess is not often the case since to be fair there is a ton of variables; As such it is just that it is not a picture that is easy to interpret, whereas it is easier to get a feel for how things actually function in practice if one plays with the stuff on the tabletop.

    Or maybe you just meant that if you only look at the warscroll and the numbers on there, it can be misleading, in which case I agree :)
     
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  9. Putzfrau
    Skink Chief

    Putzfrau Well-Known Member

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    Agreed on both counts!
     
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  10. Erta Wanderer
    Skink Priest

    Erta Wanderer Well-Known Member

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    none of my examples fit this description

    none of my examples fit this description

    only one of my examples fit this description
    so i guess those aren't the only ones and some of them are literally just a cost difference the feral in ttw2 it's to fit other things as you have a point cap.

    double slann lists are a thing also kroak slann lists. they aren't spamable units but this will come up latter

    i was talking about the FEC one so not a great comparison but that was my falt for not being clear.


    ok lets do the camparisen that i was talking about to prevent confusion terrorgyst big beat stick monster
    arch reagent on terrorgyst bigger beat stick with miner summoning(doesn't change how you play him) self healing(doesn't change how you play him just lets you hold on longer in battle) and unholy vitality a self buff that helps them be a bigger beat stick. it also helps with clouds chaff but most people don't run those and still use both ferals and mounted.(again my bad i was unclear in my earlier statment
    so a beat stick and a bigger more expensive beat stick so very much in line with what you say slann/kroak is
    and all that doesn't even matter because i reject your above 3 options. it also doesn't apply because as we will get to the slann and kroak do have different rolls and are only " the same" when you vastly misrepresent them.

    it does in lists like dracotion or tunder lizard when you want to keep your slann near units or start with much less protection on the bord

    wow this can not be more wrong it definitely changes how you play him i don't see many slann sitting in the middle of the board throwing doom spells at people they tend to be far more mobile and focus more on(wait for it) our utility spells.
    commits call is not a AoE spell it's a multi target sniping spell that can hit out side of line of sight. and is used diferently such as hitting back line heroes that are hiding from SD.

    you don't say? also you need line of sight on SD
    not really bale wind is almost never taken with slann, astrolith is also a optional choice and there is a much bigger difference between 22" and infanit range spells then you are admiting. SD is also much better at grinding down non hero units and changes positioning play.

    he can but thats not a good way to play him. so yeh relevant if you ignore a lot of the game

    no i realy don't see the difference. you do not play the same way with kroak and slann at all. you ignored artifacts our lore spells differing mods of play do to new options, changes in targeting and positioning and the double slann builds. all to force your point and i reject your conclusion.

    except they don't the slann sees just as much play(and so far as i can tell more successfully). you can totally put this down to personal preference but that would be dishonest.heck if you don't like statistics(and we know you don't) we can go anecdotal(ug). i don't use kroak in a good chink of my lists. i don't use him for a few reasons. 1 his roll is not needed in some of my lists my damage comes from other sorses and the slanns lore spells help my army more(huh) 2 i need those 300 points i really do thats the difference between a skeletal list and one with full skink screens and agsilery support.

    1 our astrolith does that already so overlap
    2 ok so crowd control? ya we can do that or do you mean -1 to attacks because we can do that already for cheaper. the only thing left is -1 to wound and im honestly surprised that you would advocate a army that gives -1or 2 to hit -1 to attacks and -1 to wound that seems excessive.
    3 our sunblood skink priest old blood scar vet all already do that so even more over lap
    4 see above im fine with this
    5 so more teleport? charge fun is unneeded as all of our chargers already reroll that our faction gives +s to it and the seer gives 3d6 so a lot of overlap there
    and this is all assuming he needs a change. it would be nice but you haven't proven that yet


    oh ok then non of this is a problem since both the slann and the seer are taken all the time because people find their roll useful.
     
  11. Erta Wanderer
    Skink Priest

    Erta Wanderer Well-Known Member

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    then you sir are not using enough numbers:p i kid we already know where each of us stands on this subject.
     
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  12. Putzfrau
    Skink Chief

    Putzfrau Well-Known Member

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    Haha, that's probably true!
     
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  13. Grotpunter
    Troglodon

    Grotpunter Well-Known Member

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    Imo the Kroak vs Slann issue is very close to Gordrakk vs Megaboss on Maw Krusha for Ironjawz. While you get additional MW output with Gordrakk with his special weapons, he is generally considered a significantly worse pick since you lose out on a trait and artefact, and the Ironjawz ones are incredibly strong. Before with Ethereal Amulet in the game, there was simply no contest - You would NEVER take Gordrakk since 3+ Ethereal was so much better.

    I feel like this might be a similar situation for us - Kroak is just superior in all aspects compared to a normal Slann , which is expected for a unique/named hero - But unlike Ironjawz our traits and artefacts are pretty damn bad and you have no way of juicing up a Slann with trait + artefact to make him compelling.

    Imagine if something like boardwide dispell wasnt a baseline thing for both Kroak/Slann, but rather a trait or artefact you could pick for your Slann. Suddenly there was a real choice between more damage output from Kroak or more utility from the Slann.

    Kairos vs Lord of Change is another situation where the named hero is just miles ahead. There is pretty much no world where you bring a normal Lord of Change over Kairos. The only reason you see Lord of Change is because Changehost requires him, and putting him + Kairos in your list is a huge point sink.
     
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  14. Kilvakar
    Ripperdactil

    Kilvakar Well-Known Member

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    I think this is a very good point. Named characters are almost always better than their generic counterparts, but most factions have at least some decent artifacts and command traits that when put on the generic hero, can actually make them worth taking over the named one. Our artifacts are just bad, and our command traits aren't much better. Not to mention that the new realm rules don't really have any artifacts worth taking either.
     
  15. Killer Angel
    Slann

    Killer Angel Prophet of the Stars Staff Member

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    I would also add that when you need to choose between A+ and A++, 99% you pick A++, paying the points difference, if that difference is not that big, as 60 pts.

    The only moment when that difference can shift your choice is if you are already building a list that requires a massive amount of points to work, as (for example) a thunderquake starhost, that needs the points for the battalion, the big dinos and the troops.
     
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  16. Dread Saurian
    Razordon

    Dread Saurian Well-Known Member

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    I still can't fit kroak into my dread saurian army angel I'm literally out of points
     
  17. Kilvakar
    Ripperdactil

    Kilvakar Well-Known Member

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    To be fair, there isn't quite as much room for magical domination when you're going full Jurassic Park ;)
     
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  18. Killer Angel
    Slann

    Killer Angel Prophet of the Stars Staff Member

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    A basic Slann fits into?
     
  19. Dread Saurian
    Razordon

    Dread Saurian Well-Known Member

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    Yes
    Slann starmaster 260
    2 dread saurians 1020
    3x40 skinks with javelins,daggers, and bucklers 720
    Simple effective and fun to use.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2020
  20. Killer Angel
    Slann

    Killer Angel Prophet of the Stars Staff Member

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    Have you tried to trim to 30 a unit of skink?
    110 skinks is still a good amount of bodies.
     
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