PDA

View Full Version : Avoiding mana screw/flood and hand restriction?



MugenMusou
05-10-2013, 08:50 AM
So at the first glance, the resource system of HEX appears that of Magic. Due to pure chance, there are potential of mana screw/flood with the system. So some games came up with sacrificial system i.e. you can sacrifice any card to make it into a resource. This pure sacrificial system then created an issue of rapidly depriving cards in hand i.e. hand restricted game play.

So some game came up with a mixture of the system. You have resource card and by using it to create a resource, you gain some bonus e.g. most fundamental bonus is you draw a card i.e. you don't lose a net card # from hand if you use resource card to create a resource. However, if you are unlucky and don't have a resource card in the hand, you can still create a resource by sacrificing any card in your hand. The cost you pay is that you won't get special effect like draw a card but at least you have a choice to avoid mana screw/flood situation.

Since HEX's resource card add mana, affects threshold, and charges champion, I wonder if they could incorporate this mixed resource management system i.e. sacrificing regular card will only get you mana but won't unlock threshold nor charge champion. Using resource card get you an extra card to ensure you are not hand short.

Or perhaps these are all needless concern and maybe HEX has some other system to avoid these issues.

WWKnight
05-10-2013, 08:52 AM
Actually Mugan, the game that came up with that concept, WoWTCG with the quest cards, is made by Cryptozoiac, the same people who made this game :P

They've decided that mana/resource cards add to the gameplay and have gone with it.

Also, welcome to the Hex forums :D

MugenMusou
05-10-2013, 08:58 AM
WWKnight,

Howdy. I actually never played WoWTCG myself before despite some had recommended it. It's just hard for me to start out new TCG when the TCG has been out for so many years. Mainly due to my personality of trying to collect them all mentality, which is just not possible when there are already thousands of cards e.g. Magic.

But good to know that HEX creators are aware of the system, and yet decided to take this approach. Not knowing would be an issue, but if they are aware of the existence (in first hand) then whatever they are doing with this system must be working better.

Xenavire
05-10-2013, 09:17 AM
I think the threashold/charge system is a big step already.

It means you can safely add a few more resources to stop yourself running dry, and then those extra resources charge your champions ability, even if you get flooded.

It isn't perfect, but it is a lot safer than MTG. Plus theres not "Destroy land/permanent" issues here, its all in a pool that can't be touched.

WWKnight
05-10-2013, 09:19 AM
Im sure they will introduce mechanics that can drain the pool. At least, I hope they do. Not a fan of it myself, but its an interesting design space.

Xenavire
05-10-2013, 09:22 AM
Draining the pool for a turn is not as bad as losing a resource permanently, and threshold etc gives more options of what could be removed or tampered with, while stilll leaving the player SOME defences.

I hope they do have some at a later point though, makes fights more dynamic.

Joolz
05-10-2013, 11:30 AM
FWIW Cryptozoic didn't come up with the quest concept since the game was originally made by Upperdeck. I haven't played a ton of MTG but Hex's resource system seems less likely to run into the mana-screw problems since you don't actually spend threshold and supposedly most cards will only require 1 or 2 threshold. So it might be important to get 1 or 2 blood resources out but they're not wasted if you get more than that.

S117
05-10-2013, 12:37 PM
Plus remember what it means for multi-shard decks...say you have 4/4 resources 2 Ruby and 2 Blood. You could cast 2 cards that both cost 2 resources with 2 Blood threshold...

Xenavire
05-10-2013, 12:38 PM
Yeah, it is going to make multishard the stardard, and mono shard a little rarer, but more specialised.

Perfect, in my opinion.

Fireblast
05-10-2013, 01:45 PM
You know that WOW system is very bad too, because by never missing "land drops" you always get an edge by playing first.
By having good quests as resources it lead to aggro decks keeping CA on par with control decks.

MtG system is better, and threshold assesses the biggest issue.

~

MugenMusou
05-10-2013, 01:48 PM
As I recall, Magic gets mana screw because of the multicolor approach as many of you mentioned but even if we use a classic ~20 land cards in 60 cards deck, just by pure luck there were times my mana build up did not happen simply because I just did not have any land card in my hand turn after turn. The opposite with mana flooding with hand filled entirely with lands but just no creature or spell had happened as well. Threshold seem to definitely help color related mana screw issue, but I just was not sure more of purely luck based mana screw/flood. But if most cards have relatively low casting cost, may be it is not an issue.

Are everyone ok with hand size reduction every turn due to resource build up?

After playing game like Shadow Era, Infinity Wars, I do actually like resource management system as it add another layer of game strategy and potential area to expand mechanics, but just was curious of the balancing side as nobody likes flood/screw and potentially hand size reduction.

But its a digital game so maybe like Infinity Wars, they can have a global command that you pay certain resource and draw card whenever you want.

houjix
05-10-2013, 01:49 PM
You know that WOW system is very bad too, because by never missing "land drops" you always get an edge by playing first.
By having good quests as resources it lead to aggro decks keeping CA on par with control decks.

MtG system is better, and threshold assesses the biggest issue.

~

One of the most skill intensive parts of WoW is deciding what to resource when you don't have a quest, or to just skip that resource drop alltogether. But never can you ever lose a game by not drawing a resource or by drawing too much. That is the single biggest complaint from all the people I know who switched over to WoW from Magic.

MugenMusou
05-10-2013, 01:55 PM
One of the most skill intensive parts of WoW is deciding what to resource when you don't have a quest, or to just skip that resource drop alltogether. But never can you ever lose a game by not drawing a resource or by drawing too much. That is the single biggest complaint from all the people I know who switched over to WoW from Magic.

Never played Wow TCG but sounds definitely identical to Carte's Shard system. I totally agree with your comment. TCG will create inevitable luck element, but always should strive to minimize luck factor and rather more tactics and strategy that decide who wins the game.

Perhaps Wow had same thing, but in Carte (when I last played) had a basic shard/quest which does nothing but allows to restore a card by drawing a card. There were few special shard, but with basic one I didn't think it was much an advantage for one player over other rather I felt it truly avoided flood/screw, and also hand restriction.

Fireblast
05-10-2013, 02:27 PM
One of the most skill intensive parts of WoW is deciding what to resource when you don't have a quest, or to just skip that resource drop alltogether. But never can you ever lose a game by not drawing a resource or by drawing too much. That is the single biggest complaint from all the people I know who switched over to WoW from Magic.

That's what I liked at first when WoW came out.
Although we now see its limits, there is not much skill involved, it's all about having a good deck and the right matchups.

~

WWKnight
05-10-2013, 04:16 PM
Isnt building a good deck the cornerstone of having skill?

Fireblast
05-10-2013, 04:18 PM
Isnt building a good deck the cornerstone of having skill?

Not when there's internet :D

~

Xenavire
05-10-2013, 04:18 PM
Not really, you can copy/paste decks and if you can play them well, you win.

GOOD players can make good decks, but bad players can just copy them and profit, so usually the skill is seen when playing.

Kami
05-10-2013, 04:19 PM
That's why Draft tourneys are so important. Constructed, less so.

omghex
05-10-2013, 04:31 PM
Some good players never make a good deck. Some just play good decks. Some of the best deckbuilders aren't the greatest players. Mechanical skill tends to be one of the most important aspects of any TCG, but a good player must always understand what makes a deck good, and must understand why his good deck is good if he wants to play it optimally. Also there are various articles on manascrew in MTG out there that, if you read them, communicate underlying principles of gameplay mechanics that can be applied to just about any game with a similar system. All of these games are based in math, and therefor many of the principles important to playing well and understanding the game, apply across games.

WWKnight
05-10-2013, 08:07 PM
Not when there's internet :D

~

True :/ I've always rogue decked, netdecking just doesnt even appear as a consideration for me.

Xenavire
05-10-2013, 08:10 PM
I never netdecked either - I prefer to lose based on my own skill and inventiveness, than win using someone elses idea.
When I win, the victory is all that much sweeter.

Plus netdecking seems like getting a starter deck, only more expensive - theres a 'proper' way to play it to get results, and if you don't then you are doing it wrong. Meh.

Blare731
05-10-2013, 08:18 PM
Drafting in Hex Article (http://hextcg.com/drafting-in-hex/) Really interesting article but there is a section on deck-building and how one might look at draft deck-building. Most importantly relating to this thread he talks about the basic ratio of resources to troops and why they help not getting resource screwed.

Now of course this is just a simple explanation and guide, but it points out that they are planning on the element of ratios of different types of cards is one of the strategies to Hex. And as clearly seen in the how to play video, there is a reshuffle feature, that I wish he used to show exactly how it might work, but either way I'm assuming it reshuffles the deck and gives u another hand but I'm assuming with only 6 cards instead of 7 for some penalty for shuffling, much like MTG. Maybe one of the devs can say more about how this feature will work, but it seems a solid way to prevent you from at the very least flopping on your first hand from bad luck.

MugenMusou
05-10-2013, 08:25 PM
Drafting in Hex Article (http://hextcg.com/drafting-in-hex/)And as clearly seen in the how to play video, there is a reshuffle feature, that I wish he used to show exactly how it might work, but either way I'm assuming it reshuffles the deck and gives u another hand but I'm assuming with only 6 cards instead of 7 for some penalty for shuffling, much like MTG. Maybe one of the devs can say more about how this feature will work, but it seems a solid way to prevent you from at the very least flopping on your first hand from bad luck.

I must have missed that part. Are you talking about the first turn Mulligan? Or is there reshuffle throughout the game?

houjix
05-10-2013, 08:25 PM
It's a one card per mulligan penalty in opening hand only, just like Magic. It's further down on the how to play page. And draft decks end up being 22/18 or 23/17 cards to lands in magic draft a lot. I see that as being pretty standard here too.

Blare731
05-10-2013, 08:50 PM
It's a one card per mulligan penalty in opening hand only, just like Magic. It's further down on the how to play page. A draft decks end up being 22/18 or 23/17 cards to lands in magic draft a lot. I see that as being pretty standard here too.

That's what I was thinking and trying to describe for people that don't play Magic. But I must have missed when he explained the Mulligans.


@MugenMusou: I was talking about first turn Mulligan. Not reshuffling anytime. I should have clarified.

MugenMusou
05-11-2013, 08:27 AM
@MugenMusou: I was talking about first turn Mulligan. Not reshuffling anytime. I should have clarified.

Got it. The reason I asked is I have seen games that actually allow reshuffling during a game not only first turn. It is one way to reduce mana screw/flood by pure chance.

Blare731
05-11-2013, 10:23 AM
That's really interesting, but at least in the how to play video and what they've said so far I don't think that is there intention.

EntropyBall
05-16-2013, 07:35 AM
One of the most skill intensive parts of WoW is deciding what to resource when you don't have a quest, or to just skip that resource drop alltogether. But never can you ever lose a game by not drawing a resource or by drawing too much. That is the single biggest complaint from all the people I know who switched over to WoW from Magic.
I was extremely disappointed to see they are using MTG's resource system. Threshold does not at all address the biggest issue, screw/flood. MTG was the first TCG I played, and after playing newer TCGs, I find it extremely frustrating to play MTG because too many of the games are decided by one of the players having too much or too little mana, and nothing they can do about it.
This game seems pretty amazing, but the resource system is the only reason I'm still on the fence about backing it. Maybe I would understand this better if I was a better or more competitive player, but I don't see the benefit of allowing the game to have mana screw.

As a digital TCG, they could solve this problem in even more creative ways than WoW did. Playing a card as its resource type could incur a small penalty, like not charging your hero. Or every hero (champion, whatever) could have an ability that costs 1 charge and lets you literally change a card in your hand into a basic resource.
For a game that is all about choice, and letting the player customize things, and rewarding good play, having games decided by flood/screw will be very frustrating.

Mugaaz
05-16-2013, 07:45 AM
I just cannot understand why people can't accept the screw and flood is INTENTIONAL. You are SUPPOSED to automatically win or lose some games due to screw/flood, or due to topdecking like a champion. It's DESIGNED that way. It's designed that way, because the element of chance in the game allows bad players to win. No one would play poker, ever, if the best player won every single time. The possibility of the worst player winning the game is what keeps them coming back. Even a newbie playing against a pro occasionally wins and gets an awesome story, sometimes you draw you're one out and have an awesome story, and when you lose to someone who is better than you are you can blame getting mana screwed instead of feeling like a loser.

You know all those super awesome games no one plays anymore? A lot of them died because bad players stopped playing. There needs to be a reason for bad players to play. They have to feel like they have a real shot of winning their draft pod. They're not just going to donate entry fees and packs over and over to better players for the hell of it, they will move on to a different game. There is a reason you see bad players in Magic playing the game for years on end, BECAUSE THEY GET TO WIN 30%~ of the time. When they lose they get to blame flood or screw and not feel bad.

Almost nobody wants to play a game where the best player wins 100% of the time. We have that game already, its called chess.

caffn8d
05-16-2013, 07:48 AM
I personally prefer the accessibility of having resource cards. Reduces analysis paralysis of deciding which cards to ditch for resources instead of keep for their effects. Also allows for more risk/reward/variety in deck construction by running high/low cost decks and adjusting the resource level accordingly. Obviously that's just my preference though. Considering how much Magic I've played in the last couple of decades my bias is probably showing. ;)

caffn8d
05-16-2013, 07:51 AM
There is a reason you see bad players in Magic playing the game for years on end, BECAUSE THEY GET TO WIN 30%~ of the time. When they lose they get to blame flood or screw and not feel bad.

Almost nobody wants to play a game where the best player wins 100% of the time. We have that game already, its called chess.

Also this. Though I wouldn't say "bad players" so much as "players with different objectives than maximizing their win %".

Mugaaz
05-16-2013, 07:57 AM
Also this. Though I wouldn't say "bad players" so much as "players with different objectives than maximizing their win %".

I oversimplified and used the most emotionally charged term to make a point.

EntropyBall
05-16-2013, 08:07 AM
You know all those super awesome games no one plays anymore? A lot of them died because bad players stopped playing. There needs to be a reason for bad players to play. They have to feel like they have a real shot of winning their draft pod. They're not just going to donate entry fees and packs over and over to better players for the hell of it, they will move on to a different game. There is a reason you see bad players in Magic playing the game for years on end, BECAUSE THEY GET TO WIN 30%~ of the time. When they lose they get to blame flood or screw and not feel bad.

I honestly had not considered that explanation, so thanks for the post. I feel like a game with an easy online ranking system could still give "bad" players a reason to play, since they would be matched with other players of similar skill. But maybe many gamers don't have the same motivations or mentality about gaming that I do. I am far from a pro player, but I don't get much satisfaction out of winning a game of MTG because my opponent couldn't draw a 3rd/4th land. Conversely, it is *extremely* frustrating to me to lose a game because I can't draw any land.

Even in a game without screw/flood, the best player will not always win, due to the luck of the draw, but as someone else said, having screw/flood as a possibility is a serious NPE in my opinion.

The fact that resources will charge up your champion makes mana flood just a tiny bit less painful. Why not put in a suboptimal way of getting resources when you are mana-starved?

I've read as much about this as I can for Hex, and I see many people saying that Threshold in Hex is a huge improvement over MTG, but I don't understand why. It clearly makes it easier to run a multi-color deck, but is that it?

ShaolinRaven
05-16-2013, 08:09 AM
Also playing resources charges your champion, so at least on the flood level you're getting something out of it with a constant champion ability up. Still doesn't help on the screwed side of things. Honestly though I like the system, I like a bit of luck/randomness and some of the strategy that comes out of trying to recover from a flood/screw scenario.

Mugaaz
05-16-2013, 08:20 AM
I honestly had not considered that explanation, so thanks for the post. I feel like a game with an easy online ranking system could still give "bad" players a reason to play, since they would be matched with other players of similar skill. But maybe many gamers don't have the same motivations or mentality about gaming that I do. I am far from a pro player, but I don't get much satisfaction out of winning a game of MTG because my opponent couldn't draw a 3rd/4th land. Conversely, it is *extremely* frustrating to me to lose a game because I can't draw any land.

Even in a game without screw/flood, the best player will not always win, due to the luck of the draw, but as someone else said, having screw/flood as a possibility is a serious NPE in my opinion.

The fact that resources will charge up your champion makes mana flood just a tiny bit less painful. Why not put in a suboptimal way of getting resources when you are mana-starved?

I've read as much about this as I can for Hex, and I see many people saying that Threshold in Hex is a huge improvement over MTG, but I don't understand why. It clearly makes it easier to run a multi-color deck, but is that it?

Yes, even with no screw flood, you'd still lose games due to chance. But, I need to use extreme examples of automatically losing / winning 100% of the time for people to understand the argument. In reality its the difference between the best playing winning 60-65% of the time and 80-85% of the time. However, stating the argument isn't conductivity to people understanding the underlying concept. When people play Monopoly or Bridge they get to win often, even if they are the least skilled player. In games where thats not true people will not play again for fun, only for competition. Most people are not Spikes, designing a game for Spike is why Vs System died =D.

Turtlewing
05-16-2013, 08:57 AM
i always looked at resource management as part of deck building.

Your deck should be designed such that you have a strategy for how to deal with manna screw/flood, and you may need to make design tradeoffs in order to do so.

To me complaining that you can't handle 5 consecutive turns of not drawing resources is the same as complaining that your deck can't win unless you draw a copy of one specific card.

Mugaaz
05-16-2013, 09:05 AM
i always looked at resource management as part of deck building.

Your deck should be designed such that you have a strategy for how to deal with manna screw/flood, and you may need to make design tradeoffs in order to do so.

To me complaining that you can't handle 5 consecutive turns of not drawing resources is the same as complaining that your deck can't win unless you draw a copy of one specific card.

That's not really true at all. Yes you can lower the chance you get screwed through good deck construction from say 9% to 4%, but it's still 4%. You still get screwed 4% of the time. regardless of what you do There are plenty of tier 1 decks that had bad mana and got mana screwed or flooded much higher than other tier 2 decks, but had a higher win percentage than they competition. You design your decks to win the highest percentage of the time, not to to specifically not be mana screwed, unless doing so increases you win percentage more than any other deck option would. There are decks like 2 land Belcher that have some of the worst mana ever, yet are very strong. There are many factors in designing a winning deck, mana screw/flood is just one of them.

houjix
05-16-2013, 09:08 AM
It's still a little disappointing that they are using a 1st gen resource system, especially for a digital game. I guess it does make design a lot easier as the framework with all its hits and misses has been in existence for 20 years now.

Mugaaz
05-16-2013, 09:20 AM
It's still a little disappointing that they are using a 1st gen resource system, especially for a digital game. I guess it does make design a lot easier as the framework with all its hits and misses has been in existence for 20 years now.

There hasn't been a resource system I have ever seen that's "strictly better" than land drops. There have been alternatives, but they all have their own problems. Its just the problems they have are harder to notice by the player specifically, yet ruin their enjoyment in the same fashion.

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 09:22 AM
Side note:
First player doesn't get to draw a card.

Draft system isn't done on matchmaker (afaik). I wonder if they will add player ranking tiers if there's enough interest in drafting.

houjix
05-16-2013, 09:31 AM
There hasn't been a resource system I have ever seen that's "strictly better" than land drops. There have been alternatives, but they all have their own problems. Its just the problems they have are harder to notice by the player specifically, yet ruin their enjoyment in the same fashion.

Well WoW's let's any card be a land, but there are cards that can only be used as land but they do things besides just generating mana. So you can add as many or as few as you like. There have been decks that ran as low as 6 and were successfull and some that ran around 30+ because it was some crazy combo deck that worked. Kaijudo or whatever that game is called does something similar where any card can be used as a resource. Others have had a set pool you can use each turn. Never can you get land screwed in those games. Flood in WoW can still happen, but it's not as bad as Quests can power you past flood. Frankly the one I liked the best was LotR TCG. Basically how much you spent on your good guy turn gave determined how much was available for the opponent on their bad guy turn.

But as I said they are using a mostly known variable to make the game more accessible to players already familiar with the system.

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 09:35 AM
Resource management separates good players from mediocre players. It isn't just deck building, knowing when to mulligan is key - something I learned from some if the best players I have ever known.

It can still happen, but good players can work around it, and admit when they screwed up the mulligan. Very few times have I seen someone so unlucky to mulligan down to a single card, but it happens to the best, but overall it comes to skill over luck.

Turtlewing
05-16-2013, 09:35 AM
That's not really true at all. Yes you can lower the chance you get screwed through good deck construction from say 9% to 4%, but it's still 4%. You still get screwed 4% of the time. regardless of what you do There are plenty of tier 1 decks that had bad mana and got mana screwed or flooded much higher than other tier 2 decks, but had a higher win percentage than they competition. You design your decks to win the highest percentage of the time, not to to specifically not be mana screwed, unless doing so increases you win percentage more than any other deck option would. There are decks like 2 land Belcher that have some of the worst mana ever, yet are very strong. There are many factors in designing a winning deck, mana screw/flood is just one of them.

I think you've missed my point because you're entire post supports my point. Resource management is part of the game and you need to decide if loosing 10% of games because of manna screw is worth it because you win 80% instead of 70% when you run leaner on lands.

Those are design tradeoffs.

Mugaaz
05-16-2013, 09:39 AM
I think you've missed my point because you're entire post supports my point. Resource management is part of the game and you need to decide if loosing 10% of games because of manna screw is worth it because you win 80% instead of 70% when you run leaner on lands.

Those are design tradeoffs.

I read what you said as properly designed decks don't screw/flood, and that if you screw/flood you are a bad player/deck builder. Which is just not true.

BigDog
05-16-2013, 09:55 AM
I just cannot understand why people can't accept the screw and flood is INTENTIONAL. You are SUPPOSED to automatically win or lose some games due to screw/flood, or due to topdecking like a champion. It's DESIGNED that way. It's designed that way, because the element of chance in the game allows bad players to win. No one would play poker, ever, if the best player won every single time. The possibility of the worst player winning the game is what keeps them coming back. Even a newbie playing against a pro occasionally wins and gets an awesome story, sometimes you draw you're one out and have an awesome story, and when you lose to someone who is better than you are you can blame getting mana screwed instead of feeling like a loser.

You know all those super awesome games no one plays anymore? A lot of them died because bad players stopped playing. There needs to be a reason for bad players to play. They have to feel like they have a real shot of winning their draft pod. They're not just going to donate entry fees and packs over and over to better players for the hell of it, they will move on to a different game. There is a reason you see bad players in Magic playing the game for years on end, BECAUSE THEY GET TO WIN 30%~ of the time. When they lose they get to blame flood or screw and not feel bad.

Almost nobody wants to play a game where the best player wins 100% of the time. We have that game already, its called chess.

......Don't tap the glass.

stiii
05-16-2013, 10:05 AM
Clearly there is no room between Chess and magic.

There is a huge different between the best player always winning and it just being a coin flip. Mana screw leads to utter non games where one player does nothing and just dies.

Even something like discard two cards generate a random basic resource would help a huge amount in allowing people to play their spells without meaning you can run zero resources.

Jetsetneo
05-16-2013, 10:06 AM
I've always felt that the mulligan in magic compounded the mana screw/flood issues. I've always seen it as punishing a player who wasn't lucky enough to draw a semi-competent hand.

There are a few steps forward here in hex to address that concern, but it doesn't feel like enough to me, I can see individual card mechanics taking advantage of the 'digital realm' but why are the resources still being held back with 'real world' limitations?

Barov
05-16-2013, 10:18 AM
I don't really understand all this argument. Resource system is a large part of how a TCG plays, if you aren't happy with what they have chosen for Hex you probably won't enjoy the game, and the system is not going to change. The debate seems moot.

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 10:23 AM
The reason mulligan makes you drop a card is so you dont abuse free draws until you have a combo (or other advantage) in your hand. That is the only reason they make you drop a card, as far as I can see.

If you could trade in cards in your hand for resources instead of mulligans, I think that would be fair, but being selective about what you keep could give you an unfair advantage. I don't think there is a middle ground here, unless they can implement something digitally to prevent abuse.

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 10:24 AM
Free Mulligan if you get 0 or 6/7 resource cards?

I guess its technically possible to still abuse the 6/7 resource card rule or the 0 resource card rule, though. Maybe just limit it to 1-3 free mulligans?

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 10:35 AM
I agree that they could add limits to mulligans and give you more of them, but at some point you have to start dropping cards from the hand. I have seen in Pokemon TCG (the original rules) decks that only had a small number of a certain card to force free mulligans and get the cards they wanted. It is possible to abuse, and it is very hard to stop without just ending up at the same point.

I do think maybe electing to shuffle a random number of cards back into your deck in exchange for gauranteed resources could work (you would have no control over what cards get shuffled, so your 'key' card may end up back in the deck.) It would make the start of game easier, but late game you could still get flooded or screwed.

Turtlewing
05-16-2013, 10:40 AM
I read what you said as properly designed decks don't screw/flood, and that if you screw/flood you are a bad player/deck builder. Which is just not true.

If it happens to you often enough that it's a problem you think needs the game to be redesigned, you are a bad player/deck-builder.

But, that's not the same as it never happens unless you're a bad player/deck-builder.

A lot of low-mid gameplay is learning how to not get screwed/flooded and how to design a deck to mitigate the impact of a screw/flood when it does happen.

A lot of the mid-high gameplay is knowing when to mulligan and when to forfeit a game (forfeiting on of 3 games in a tournament round), to get around the random chance that can't be designed out of a deck.

Jetsetneo
05-16-2013, 10:45 AM
The reason mulligan makes you drop a card is so you dont abuse free draws until you have a combo (or other advantage) in your hand. That is the only reason they make you drop a card, as far as I can see.

If you could trade in cards in your hand for resources instead of mulligans, I think that would be fair, but being selective about what you keep could give you an unfair advantage. I don't think there is a middle ground here, unless they can implement something digitally to prevent abuse.


I don't think its unfair if your opponent gets to do it also. I want X and Y to stay in my hand, ditching Z so i can play X and Y for whatever reason is just as fair if your opponent is considering it. Then it comes down to deck construction and gameplan/play. (Maybe Z is bad for that match-up, or is useless till you see what your opponent is packing, you already see their avatar, so you can already have state based decisions the second you sat down).

So personally, I feel that, yes, there is something you can do digitally to prevent abuse,(as to what im hoping was at least discussed) thats my thought here, is that we're playing a digital card game 'built for digital' but then letting 'non-digital' restrictions still determine design?

Perhaps this thread isn't the best place to voice my concerns. Hex has intrigued me, I want it to be good, but i don't want to play Magic 1.5 especially if its keeping some questionable design decisions out of 'well its what people know, so we're going to just leave it'.

Turtlewing
05-16-2013, 11:02 AM
I don't think its unfair if your opponent gets to do it also. I want X and Y to stay in my hand, ditching Z so i can play X and Y for whatever reason is just as fair if your opponent is considering it. Then it comes down to deck construction and gameplan/play.

The mulligan limit is meant to prevent players from reshuffling until they get exactly the hand they want. Which takes a really long time (especially for decks designed to use the free reshuffles as a crutch to avoid making other tradeoffs). The issue is less about "fairness" and more about "stop shuffling and play already".

You could put a time limit on reshuffles, but the decreasing hand size mulligan rule really is a more elegant solution.

Turtlewing
05-16-2013, 11:08 AM
A thought just occurred to me.

The shuffler doesn't have to be completely random. it could reshuffle if it detects a 5+ resource run exists within the deck, or go though and selectively break resource streaks.

caffn8d
05-16-2013, 11:21 AM
While you are absolutely right, Turtlewing, I have to admit that idea makes me feel uncomfortable. Now I'm designing around some kind of resource algorithm instead of straight forward probabilities? It might mean there are different values that are "optimal", but it doesn't take them away. It's still going to be min/maxed by astute deck builders. I could figure it out given my math background. Little Jimmy from down the street is going to have a harder time. :)

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 11:30 AM
There's also another option of giving you a % chance to draw a new resource card that decreases the more you have in your hand + in play, but I feel like that's just going overboard.

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 11:39 AM
They shouldn't implement something too focused on the digital in case it detracts completely from the feel of a physical card game. The element of luck and being able to use cards to stack your deck are important in TCG's, we don't want an algorithm messing something up and making the game feel unnatural.

It would be nice to see a fair solution that doesn't break anything else.

Boojum
05-16-2013, 11:52 AM
Yeah, I'd be very wary of anything that tweaks shuffle randomness during play, and would rather address it during setup.

I think the charge system already goes some way to alleviating issues of mana flood, since you can get some benefit for each extra resource.

Games that are decided because one player only got 1-2 mana and was never really in the game at all are simply boring on both sides. I'll play the game either way, but I'd hope that they wouldn't just accept that 10-20% of all games will be strategically uninteresting because of something easily preventable. I would really prefer to see some mechanism for guaranteed minimum mana in the opening hand, especially since in a digital game, there should be some available tweak that might not work as well in a paper game. There are probably several viable tweaks for doing this; maybe your opening hand is two random basic resources from the deck plus five cards drawn as normal. That would mitigate the worst of the mana-screw issues, and would also have the secondary effect of shifting the optimum number of resources down a bit, which would further reduce the chance of mana flood and also let decks contain a slightly higher proportion of interesting cards.

Jetsetneo
05-16-2013, 11:59 AM
I guess the more i think about it, mana screw is the only thing to be concerned about (because of avatar abilities). Mulligans still bother me, but i guess I'll just wait and see more.

For comparisons sake here are a few ways other cgs use/d mulligans, they are generally tied to the game mechanics pretty closely, the only game I'd consider closest to Magic/Hex is pokemon in this regard.
L5r: Ability inherently tied to a card that began the game in play; choose and replace x cards for you.
Pokemon: Reveal a hand with no energy, redraw, opponents get 2 cards. (iirc)
Yugioh: No such thing (last time I played that is...YEARS ago)
Vs System: Place your hand on the bottom of the deck, redraw. 1-time)
Wow: 1 time full redraw.

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 12:02 PM
That would reduce mana screw, but having a gauranteed minimum in the hand would lead to people abusing low cost spam and run much less mana (I can think of some examples that already do that in MTG, and they arent gauranteed anything.)

I think starting hands should be manipulated after the draw, not before, just to make sure there is a random element.

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 12:03 PM
I guess the more i think about it, mana screw is the only thing to be concerned about (because of avatar abilities). Mulligans still bother me, but i guess I'll just wait and see more.

For comparisons sake here are a few ways other cgs use/d mulligans, they are generally tied to the game mechanics pretty closely, the only game I'd consider closest to Magic/Hex is pokemon in this regard.
L5r: Ability inherently tied to a card that began the game in play; choose and replace x cards for you.
Pokemon: Reveal a hand with no energy, redraw, opponents get 2 cards. (iirc)
Yugioh: No such thing (last time I played that is...YEARS ago)
Vs System: Place your hand on the bottom of the deck, redraw. 1-time)
Wow: 1 time full redraw.
Actually, the original rules of the Pokemon TCG was requiring Basic pokemon cards, not energy - you could still get screwed there.

EntropyBall
05-16-2013, 12:05 PM
If it happens to you often enough that it's a problem you think needs the game to be redesigned, you are a bad player/deck-builder.

But, that's not the same as it never happens unless you're a bad player/deck-builder.

A lot of low-mid gameplay is learning how to not get screwed/flooded and how to design a deck to mitigate the impact of a screw/flood when it does happen.

Does the existence of screw/flood add enough to the game that its worth adding that huge frustration for low-mid players? (i.e. roughly half the playerbase by your definition) The assertion that good players/deck-builders know how to mitigate screw/flood also runs pretty much contrary to Mugaaz's assertion that it is there to help keep bad players playing, since it gives another way for good players to be better than them.

EntropyBall
05-16-2013, 12:07 PM
I'd hope that they wouldn't just accept that 10-20% of all games will be strategically uninteresting because of something easily preventable.

This is exactly how I feel about this. Well said.

Boojum
05-16-2013, 12:28 PM
That would reduce mana screw, but having a gauranteed minimum in the hand would lead to people abusing low cost spam and run much less mana (I can think of some examples that already do that in MTG, and they arent gauranteed anything.)

Yeah, I thought about that, but who's to say that's actually abusive or degenerate if the game design takes it into account? Decks that run much less mana (down to an extreme of 2 resources and 58 other cards) are making a tradeoff, ensuring they're more likely to draw their offensive cards, but committing to regularly trying to win with only two resources. I haven't played Magic since Weatherlight (and this is a new game so we have to take any crossover lessons with a grain of salt anyway), but it seems like a deck taking that tactic would be pretty consistent, but would likely have trouble with a control deck with defensive troops and board sweepers, or a tempo deck with some mid-size troops able to eat the little ones (especially since these decks would also benefit from the change with a better chance of getting to their 4+ cost cards). And such a deck would also likely run out of gas, falling to anything that holds off and stabilizes or heals itself. It might have a niche as the hyper-aggro approach, and there's not necessarily anything wrong with that.

In any case, there are certainly other approaches that could work as well. The issue with mulligans, selective reshuffling, or other post-draw mechanisms is that they work by increasing the sample size (you see 10-14 cards instead of 7). This mitigates the mana screw issue a bit through the law of averages, but doesn't actually solve it.

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 01:09 PM
I guess you can avoid mana flood by giving people the option to spend a resource, sacrifice a threshold, and consume a charge point to draw 1 card.

Might have to restrict it to resources played this turn.

Turtlewing
05-16-2013, 01:13 PM
Does the existence of screw/flood add enough to the game that its worth adding that huge frustration for low-mid players?

Yes, it's what keeps card colors relevant.

You could remove resource cards all together and let the equivalent of one basic resource of your choice enter play every turn, but then there's virtually no design tradeoff between a one color deck and a 5 color deck.

You could compromise and have a separate "resources deck" and every card draw you draw from either your main deck or your resources deck, but then the same people who can't get their deck straightened out as is will just complain that they get a streak of one color or another and it's really just the same problem with a different Groucho nose.

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 01:14 PM
Or you can go the Duel of Champions route, and you just choose which "threshold" you want to increase OR draw a card.

caffn8d
05-16-2013, 01:51 PM
I don't know of a good solution to mana screw that wouldn't fundamentally change the game at this point. Digital or not. Considering how long HEX has been under development, I think all of this is academic. Not that it isn't interesting to hear folks' design ideas. :)

Fireblast
05-16-2013, 02:52 PM
The system they've choosen is not abusable, sometimes you'll freelose (or mulligan poorly), so be it, the odds are that your opponents will freelose as much as you.

About mana screw, what is annoying is when you have 2 lands in starting hand and you never draw the 3rd, but it's the same for everyone.

~

Deciphered
05-16-2013, 02:58 PM
The fact that anyone can get bitten by a bad mana screw doesn't make it fun, and fun should be the first priority when making a game. I hate hate hate that I'm pretty much guaranteed 1 loss to mana screw in a 4 round, best of three, tournament.

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 02:58 PM
Fireblast has it right. I personally only stick with a hand if it has 2/3 lands, and the amount of times I have had the bad luck to not draw more is fairly large, but small in comparison to how many times I have played.

A small percentage of my competetive games were won or lost because of flood or screw. Most of my losses came from being outplayed, or poorly choosing to mulligan.

caffn8d
05-16-2013, 03:41 PM
I don't know, Deciphered. Having that perfect hand where everything ramps perfectly is a pretty great feeling. Would it be as sweet without the occasional problem hand? Maybe for some... maybe not for others. I don't think there is a black and white "this way is always more fun" kinda call to make on it.

One thing that no one has considered (that I've seen anyway) is that maybe there is a champion type specifically for folks who dislike resource problems and can mitigate them somewhat. I can think of a few ways to do that given the mechanics we've seen so far.

stiii
05-16-2013, 04:01 PM
The system they've choosen is not abusable, sometimes you'll freelose (or mulligan poorly), so be it, the odds are that your opponents will freelose as much as you.

About mana screw, what is annoying is when you have 2 lands in starting hand and you never draw the 3rd, but it's the same for everyone.

~

I guess this is a true statement?

This is a bad thing but it happens to everyone seems a bit odd to me, there must be some way of designing the game to reduce this issue.

Clawdius
05-16-2013, 04:03 PM
It really depends on how the shuffle and draw system is set up. For example, the shuffle system in MTG: Duels of the Planeswalkers is nonexistent in my experience (although I haven't played 2013), because you can't actually sort through your deck and know what is coming next they don't even seem to bother with the "shuffle" aspect of any cards. This resulted in a hand that has you mana starved or flooded remaining disadvantaged, even if you had the chance to pull a card from your deck and afterwards should have had them "shuffled" by the client.

A lot of TCG games on PC use an RNG that seems like it grabs a hunk of numbers and designates anything from that range as land. I have never understood that myself, as they have computer programs capable of determining where cards will end up when a deck is actually shuffled with reasonable accuracy (although I think they're typically used for people cheating casinos). As such it's frustrating when an RNG doesn't even try to reassess the values that represent land when your deck should have been shuffled. Personally I feel like the best way to deal with an RNG for cards in a TCG would be to use non-sequential values for land, and eliminating numbers that have already come up by rounding up to the next unused number.

Of course I guess I may just have the worlds worst luck with RNGs in general, and I may well be applying a mix of logic and the gambler's fallacy to my own experience in being mana flooded or starved in something like 5/7 games of MTG: DotPW. I have literally had to redraw my hand in multiplayer so many times I had to play with 3 cards just to have a single land in my hand. This may have led me to draw erroneous conclusions about the method they use to determine the order of the deck.

Xenavire
05-16-2013, 04:10 PM
It really depends on how the shuffle and draw system is set up. For example, the shuffle system in MTG: Duels of the Planeswalkers is nonexistent in my experience (although I haven't played 2013), because you can't actually sort through your deck and know what is coming next they don't even seem to bother with the "shuffle" aspect of any cards. This resulted in a hand that has you mana starved or flooded remaining disadvantaged, even if you had the chance to pull a card from your deck and afterwards should have had them "shuffled" by the client.

A lot of TCG games on PC use an RNG that seems like it grabs a hunk of numbers and designates anything from that range as land. I have never understood that myself, as they have computer programs capable of determining where cards will end up when a deck is actually shuffled with reasonable accuracy (although I think they're typically used for people cheating casinos). As such it's frustrating when an RNG doesn't even try to reassess the values that represent land when your deck should have been shuffled. Personally I feel like the best way to deal with an RNG for cards in a TCG would be to use non-sequential values for land, and eliminating numbers that have already come up by rounding up to the next unused number.

Of course I guess I may just have the worlds worst luck with RNGs in general, and I may well be applying a mix of logic and the gambler's fallacy to my own experience in being mana flooded or starved in something like 5/7 games of MTG: DotPW. I have literally had to redraw my hand in multiplayer so many times I had to play with 3 cards just to have a single land in my hand. This may have led me to draw erroneous conclusions about the method they use to determine the order of the deck.

I once saw a guy mulligan with no land in his hand until he had no cards left, never seeing a land once. He conceded instantly. Worst part is it was during a sanctioned tournament.

RNG in games is pretty much the same as random chance in real life. Anything could potentially happen when shuffling.

jai151
05-16-2013, 04:16 PM
Random is random, and it tends to be more random in games than in real life (depending on how you shuffle, you can stack the deck to make your chances of land draw more likely to be shuffled to a good distribution). I will say there are fetch cards and peek cards in DotP 2013 that assure me it does keep track of the deck, but I am pretty sure that was the same in 2012

Maligance
05-16-2013, 04:55 PM
If you look at the socket bonus diagram it seems that major ruby gems can make champions lose resources, which I assume is permanent?

http://hextcg.com/socketed-cards/

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 05:06 PM
The deck has to be instanced for many of the effects of the all-digital cards to work. (For example, the shrine.)

DeusPhasmatis
05-16-2013, 06:14 PM
If you look at the socket bonus diagram it seems that major ruby gems can make champions lose resources, which I assume is permanent?

Resources are mana in the pool (automatically refreshed at the start of your turn). Threshold are land and add 1 mana to your pool at the start of your turn.

So, the red socket drains one mana when you damage a champion.

MugenMusou
05-16-2013, 06:22 PM
Has anyone noticed that in the play video we have, Ben drew resource card after resource. In his case, it turned out to be fine but you can certainly see this as a potential issue.

For the one made Poker vs. Chess comparison, I like the comparison but our conclusion is different. Because I see TCG as more of true strategy/tactical game like a chess. The difference is you don't play with the same pieces every game; hence, I find it fun. So less the chance driven the game becomes, I think it is better. But again this is my personal view of TCG.

Obviously, I think there is a place for randomness and luck like Orson's dream deck someone suggested. But winning or losing because of mana screw/flood is not the answer. I'd rather lose or win because of lucky transformation with Orson's dream than the mana screw/flood.

Kagim
05-16-2013, 06:23 PM
So, I've been thinking about what this since i read it this morning, and the largest problem with any way to avoid screw/flood is the fact that no matter what you are going to be messing with the random chance of the game. The problem with that is it severely reduces a great deal of the freedom of choice in the game.

So, I realize I haven't played TCG games since I was in elementary school, but I do play heroclix so if you will indulge me for a moment I want to show how any real changes to the random nature of a game, be it TCG, DND, or tabletop greatly reduces the overall choices you get. Yes I am going to use heroclix as an example.

In heroclix, all characters have four values: Speed, Attack, Defense, Damage. The more points a character has the higher the combined total of those values are (in general). So while a lower point value piece might have a high speed it likely suffers everywhere else. Meanwhile a significantly higher point piece might have the same speed but with higher totals all around. As well all characters have abilities, up to one for each value.

The probability comes in when an actual direct attack is made. The dice is rolled and if the attacker+roll meets or beats the defenders Defense the attack hits and the damage is received. In general 7-8-9 is the average roll needed at the start of a game.

Now, lets say we change it so from now on you just roll a d6, 4-5-6 is a hit. Now the chance of a hit, no matter what, is a 50/50 chance.

What we have effectively done is put small teams of high point valued characters at a significant disadvantage. Since the chance of any given hit is a Known value teams will generally be built around this knowledge. Afterall if you know on average 50% of your attacks will hit which team is better? A team of 7 guys landing 4 attacks per turn with up to 28 abilities to be used, or a team of three guys landing 2 attacks per turn with up to 12 abilities?

That's the problem with making an unknown a known in these kinds of games.

As it is now say a 300pt(very high) character is against 3 100pt characters. While they have the advantage of numbers the 300 has a significantly higher chance to hit, deal more damage, and be missed altogether. The probability + proper strategy can determine the outcome.

With the same situation but with the 50/50 hit chance about, the 300pt piece barely stands a chance. The enemy can simply do more moves, hit more often and will less frequently miss, killing the 300pt piece. The odds simply get skewed against teams that don't work with the known variable. That's not to say the piece is absolutely screwed, it just means there isn't a lot of hope.

Which, as meandering as this seems, is where I make my point. If you create a situation in Hex where you know you will get X number of resource cards, and that flooding will never happen, you remove a great deal of risk/reward options.

If you know you will never flood, then you can build your deck so half your cards are resource. A algorithm that stops flooding guarantees you will get the cards you want and the resources to play them.

An algorithm that makes sure you get X cards can mean decks instantly cutting there resource totals in half. If one is assured then you can cut down greatly (from what i read 18) to 10 or 9 due to the odds stacked in your favor of getting a second one in your first hand. This becomes even worse when you guarantee 2 at the start.

The threat of these two things happening keeps decks more varied. Do you increase the risk of flooding to stop getting screwed or vice versa? It's the same with my heroclix rambling, do you sacrifice your overall ability pool for more straight stopping power or do you make it harder to be hit and less damage for more abilities?

Once the randomness is truly gone, the 'good' decks are the ones that work with this known variable, and anything that deviates has a much lower chance of success. Sure screw/flood loses won't happen, but deck builds overall will become more bland and cookie cutter.

Now, I have seen a number of "Losing because of screw/flood isn't fun and is boring! Fun is top priority!"

Well, first off I see people sighting 10% to 4% of games lost due to that. Meaning for, about, every ten games you lost once because of being made into probabilities shower buddy. While that sucks when it happens we, as species, are more likely to focus on the one terrible time a system screws us than the nine times the system worked great or even in our favor. It's a matter of perspective.

As well beside, where is the joy of getting a truly great hand if there is no risk of getting utterly screwed. The higher the risk the more exciting it is when everything goes right. Afterall, when i play heroclix, losing a tourney because I can't roll over a 6, roll a critical miss(which hurts me instead) three times in a row sucks and totally isn't "fun". However without those truly terrible moments the time my buddy dealt 12 damage(average is three for context) because everything went right is diluted. As well those rare few times when I'm being stomped and suddenly my opponent rolls a critical miss off his powerful click and then you just turn it around...

Just my two cents. I much rather a system that occasional utterly screws me over but provides so many opportunities for awesome stories and great moments as well as gives me tons of options to build a deck/team/character to a system that reduces all of that and dilutes truly great moments.

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 06:28 PM
Basically:

Randomness is necessary because otherwise you will build decks around whatever they use to prevent mana flood/mana screw.

and

Everyone remembers bad beats even if they are statistically uncommon.

Kagim
05-16-2013, 06:33 PM
Basically:

Randomness is necessary because otherwise you will build decks around whatever they use to prevent mana flood/mana screw.

and

Everyone remembers bad beats even if they are statistically uncommon.

Yes... I.. umm.. do tend to ramble...

.... Sorry....

MugenMusou
05-16-2013, 06:36 PM
@Kagim

It is true there is always a luck element to it, but you can nearly eliminate with different ways. Since you like a statistics, let's take a example of coin flip.

Let's say you need one head. One coin flip is 50:50 so if you want to have a head, yes you have 50% chance you won't get it with a single coin flip. Now what if the system allows you to flip twice? You have 0.5 + 0.5*0.5 = 75% you will get a head. So what essentially happening here is more you flip, the more chance you get a one head i.e. the card you want. This is similar to the concept of mulligan or reshuffling or redraw. It will never be one, but every shuffle/draw technically increases the chance of card you need i.e. decrease the mana flood/screw.

The modified sacrificial system is personally the best approach. So never mana screwed but with risk i.e. strategy of the player.

Tyrfang
05-16-2013, 06:40 PM
In retrospect to that suggestion...

STRAIGHT sacrificing extra lands has a problem because you end up with the ability to stack only the combo you want (and it limits design space so that you can't "buff" resource cards or else you get bonus effects when you play a land, and then sacrifice it.)

You would have to choose to do it DURING the draw phase, which is fine digitally, because you can "hide" your information. The opponent wouldn't know you chose to not pick the card, and your discard can be placed back into your deck at a random spot. (Incidentally, this makes for an interesting card idea.)

It should only come into effect when you have more resources than the most expensive card you have in your deck + 1 or some other threshold to try to prevent abuse, and you should limit the max number of resource in your deck to around half the deck to prevent people from stacking resource cards until you only have "the combo".

caffn8d
05-16-2013, 06:45 PM
The lengthy post was appreciated, Kagim. Illustrates the points that Tyrfang summed up. :)

Kagim
05-16-2013, 06:48 PM
@Kagim

It is true there is always a luck element to it, but you can nearly eliminate with different ways. Since you like a statistics, let's take a example of coin flip.

Let's say you need one head. One coin flip is 50:50 so if you want to have a head, yes you have 50% chance you won't get it with a single coin flip. Now what if the system allows you to flip twice? You have 0.5 + 0.5*0.5 = 75% you will get a head. So what essentially happening here is more you flip, the more chance you get a one head i.e. the card you want. This is similar to the concept of mulligan or reshuffling or redraw. It will never be one, but every shuffle/draw technically increases the chance of card you need i.e. decrease the mana flood/screw.

The modified sacrificial system is personally the best approach. So never mana screwed but with risk i.e. strategy of the player.

I'm not against things such as mulligan etc, though I am pensive about modified sacrificial but not exactly against it. I was mostly speaking out against the people asking for algorithms dictating card draws rather than randomness. Specifically "Get two every time, instant reshuffle if 0 or 6/7 resources"

I realize this is digital but that sort of idea bothers me greatly... As much as one might hate to lose because of screw/flood I would really hate to lose because someone made a deck that tricks the algorithm into giving them a perfect hand 80% of the time.
My problem with sacrifice is it still greatly reduces the risk, which as said kinda dampens the reward, it's always scary to roll the dice because of that snake eyes.

However that might be the point we settle into opinion over true design, I like the little bit of danger, and while it pisses me off when it happens, it's what makes it so exciting, for me... anyways.


The lengthy post was appreciated, Kagim. Illustrates the points that Tyrfang summed up. :)

... Sorry... I talk a bit to much...

MugenMusou
05-16-2013, 07:00 PM
I realize this is digital but that sort of idea bothers me greatly... As much as one might hate to lose because of screw/flood I would really hate to lose because someone made a deck that tricks the algorithm into giving them a perfect hand 80% of the time.
My problem with sacrifice is it still greatly reduces the risk, which as said kinda dampens the reward, it's always scary to roll the dice because of that snake eyes.

However that might be the point we settle into opinion over true design, I like the little bit of danger, and while it pisses me off when it happens, it's what makes it so exciting, for me... anyways.


Got it. :)

I don't know if you ever played sacrificial system based TCG. Though you won't have mana screw, pure sacrificial system will be problematic because you get hand screw i.e. every turn if you play one card, you essentially lose over all one card from you hand i.e. like turn 6-7, you have only 1 card in your hand and make decision to play a card you draw or not.

So personally, I don't like pure sacrifice either.

Modified sacrifice (the only game personally experienced in first hand is Carte) is the best system I've ever played in terms of resource handling. As it provided the pleasure of resource management but also up on need we can sacrifice non-resource to avoid mana screw. It was player's skill that dictated whether losing a precious non-resource card into a resource pile and also don't get land bonus.

BTW, I talk a lot too. ;)

Kagim
05-16-2013, 07:19 PM
Got it. :)
So personally, I don't like pure sacrifice either.

Modified sacrifice (the only game personally experienced in first hand is Carte) is the best system I've ever played in terms of resource handling. As it provided the pleasure of resource management but also up on need we can sacrifice non-resource to avoid mana screw. It was player's skill that dictated whether losing a precious non-resource card into a resource pile and also don't get land bonus.

BTW, I talk a lot too. ;)

I am pretty sure I get what you mean, and that doesn't sound bad.

Honestly I just want to get my hands on the game and see it for myself, as long as the deck itself remains a random shuffling rather than a predetermined draw I'll be happy with the system.

... Also it's nice I won't be the only one rambling...

MugenMusou
05-16-2013, 07:41 PM
I am pretty sure I get what you mean, and that doesn't sound bad.

Honestly I just want to get my hands on the game and see it for myself, as long as the deck itself remains a random shuffling rather than a predetermined draw I'll be happy with the system.

... Also it's nice I won't be the only one rambling...

We'll ramble together.

Facilier
05-16-2013, 07:51 PM
My all-time favourite resource system was in Vs, where any card could be used as a resource, but actions could be played from the resource row instead of from hand.

I think a fundamental change in resources is not possible without having to review how every single card works, but I would really like to see 1 free mulligan, to avoid immediately punishing people for a bad draw. Magic uses this in their more accessible version of Duels of the Planeswalkers, and it's really strange they haven't extended this to the actual game, since it can lead to awkward conversations as a new player who liked Duels decides to try real Magic, and is forced to mulligan to 6.

I appreciate that chance needs to be part of a game like this, but losing to chance where you at least got to play some things is at least interesting, whereas losing to mana flood/screw where you get to play nothing has no game to it. And the mulligan forcing players to lose cards is actually more punishing on players who are not very good at deck construction, so if somebody builds a draft deck with 14 lands, they will often find themselves starting with 5 or less cards in hand, as they desperately look for a combination of cards that is actually playable.

So randomness is good for the overall health of the game, but I would like a bit of the edge taken off it.

Deciphered
05-16-2013, 08:15 PM
Vs. did have a great resource system, Facilier, but the power curve on cards was so steep that if you ever didn't play the best card you could every turn, you were in very bad shape.

Some good resource systems from other games (not really practical here in a Magic clone, but interesting):

Star Trek 2nd Ed.: Everyone just gets 7 points to spend every turn, and you can use those to play cards or (for 1 point) draw cards.

LotR TCG: You can spend as much as you want on your turn, but that same amount is what your opponent will then get to spend to oppose you.

Star Wars CCG: You start with a small number of resources in play, and if you get a bad draw, it isn't the end of the world to spend a turn or two just spending all those resources on card draws (often being the second person to commit forces to the board could be advantageous).

And, FWIW, I much preferred CZE's solution for the WoW TCG to what they're doing in Hex, where you could just lay anything as a resource, but only Quest cards had gametext when used as a resource. I read their explanation for why they didn't retain that system (it tricked weaker players into not dropping resources, because they wanted to save those cards to play later), but I mean...I'd rather have a more consistent game that rewarded skill, even if that skill was "when to lay rescources".

The point a lot of people have been making: you need some random chance in a game, and you won't appreciate a good hand if you never have a bad one. Well, all those games I just mentioned up there, it still felt great when you had a good hand. And you could still have bad hands that were challenging. But I see a difference between "oh man, this hand is bad, I'm going to have trouble recovering" and "I drew 1 land the entire game, I literally could not play a single card, I just had to sit and watch while my opponent slaughtered me".

I guess I'm just talking about the difference between "a bad hand" and "an unwinnable hand", and how often those appear. Let's say in Magic, it's 1/10 for an unwinnable. Vs? I've had some awful hands, but I don't know if they were ever unwinnable. I mean, I feel like I was always at least putting up a defense, trying to see if I could come back later. Same for Trek. Rings, you'd get an absolutely abysmal draw and be just too far behind, oh, 1/20? And Star Wars? I think I lost purely to draws maybe twice in my career.

I think it is much better to at least make a game of it, than to be completely locked out.

Oh, and much earlier in this thread, someone made a point about color bleed if you didn't use the Magic resource system. Well, plenty of other games have not had different colors of mana, but segregated cards in different ways. WoW TCG, for example, your hero limited what cards could go into your deck. A Horde Warrior? Well, no Alliance cards for you, and no cards that are just for any other class (like Mages, Rogues, etc.).

KeplerVerge
05-16-2013, 10:20 PM
"One of the most skill intensive parts of WoW is deciding what to resource when you don't have a quest, or to just skip that resource drop alltogether. But never can you ever lose a game by not drawing a resource or by drawing too much. That is the single biggest complaint from all the people I know who switched over to WoW from Magic."

This. I think I understand the design aspect chosen for Hex because quest cards in WoW led to quite a card cluttered board but I much preferred clutter vs game paralysis due to unlucky manaless draws. This was the #1 thing I came to hate about Magic, especially if you got really unlucky and had 2 out of 6 tournament games result in mana screw losses. Even if it's your opponent getting screwed, it isn't a satisfying win and it feels broken. It made me lean heavily toward designing decks with a 3 cost max curve just to specifically lower my chances of a guaranteed loss. Those losses are infuriating and feel like a waste of time because you didn't actually play.

I do like the threshold implementation as (I think) it improves upon multicolor play. And Charge powers do somewhat offset floods. However, I would still like to see one free mulligan if 0/1/6/7 resources in starting hand. This seems easily doable and a relatively fair, low abuse advantage.

And to address an in progress dry spell, perhaps something like: "Once per game, if you have 2 or less resources in play and your hand(and it is.. turn 4? 5?), you may discard 2 cards at the end of your turn and draw a random resource card from your deck." And for further balance, perhaps: "cards discarded by this action have no abilities and activate no abilities" or "cards discarded by this action are removed from the game"

funktion
05-16-2013, 10:28 PM
There's three things regarding mana flood that not enough people acknowledge:
-If it can happen to you, it can happen to them. Sure this is a lesser point because I'll admit that it waters down the enjoyment of the game if you start talking about averages in this sense.
-There are so many hands that seem like they auto-lose because of flood or screw, but when played propperly they are still fine. Sure some hands are just straight up garbage, and in many cases that is just people being greedy and not-mulling. In many other cases it's rookie players not playing out the next couple of turns where they would have drawn what they needed.
-People get upset when they screw or flood, they remember those games, but in the games they lost, a large minority of them are actually do to screw or flood.

For every time I've actually lost or been frustrated because of screw or flood, I can easily think of 4-5 times that I won DESPITE it happening to me. Those games where you win despite it help you become a better player and are very rewarding.

From personal experience I find many players who complain about this have a defeatist attitude...

Fireblast
05-17-2013, 02:37 AM
Ben Stoll explains why they choose that resource/combat system in that video with Mozu:
http://www.mozupro.com/

Enjoy

~

MugenMusou
05-17-2013, 08:11 PM
Well. So today's Twitch video showed mana screw. I am sure Ben had decent statistically significant number of resource cards in a deck and yet this happened. Again, I think it is not too uncommon. I hope there is some sort of mechanics in play to avoid this. Especially, the cards in HEX seem so interesting, I don't think our play should be bound/constrained by luck of resource draw.

Qorsair
05-17-2013, 08:54 PM
Ben Stoll explains why they choose that resource/combat system in that video with Mozu:
http://www.mozupro.com/

Enjoy

~

I was definitely on the on the other side of the fence until I watched this interview, and realized that this really is why I keep going back to Magic even when I academically prefer other card games. Mana flood/screw truly annoys the hell out of me, but it does make the game so much more exciting.
Watching the Twitch.tv stream today reinforced that feeling. "Is he going to get a resource this turn? If he does he could win... if he doesn't, it might be over!" It certainly makes the game a lot more interesting to play and watch.

funktion
05-17-2013, 09:03 PM
Watching the Twitch.tv stream today reinforced that feeling. "Is he going to get a resource this turn? If he does he could win... if he doesn't, it might be over!" It certainly makes the game a lot more interesting to play and watch.

And yet in game 1 despite him not drawing that resource turn after turn, it was still an incredibly close game.

Kagim
05-17-2013, 09:12 PM
Bare in mind, six hands were made (three for each player) and of them only one got stuck with three resources. Even then, he still didn't just lie down and die, he did have a few options overall. Notice his next two games, with the same deck, he wins the second and only loses the third because Dan drew two of those really jerky heal cards and killed off his heavy hitters.

He wasn't limited in the end, his deck is fine. Remember due to a glitch a number of Ben's plans kinda failed because he didn't get the boom he wanted in game two and three, as well Ben kinda screwed the pooch in game three when he made that trade losing two of his good hitters rather than holding back.

As well his main loss in the first match had less to do with more mana and more to do with that Life drain card that wrecked him.

To that end I do not believe his deck has been bound or constrained by resource luck draw. He still had a chance to win the first game.

However....

A thought... Maybe include a system that allows you to discard cards for -1 discard to draw... So...

Discard 2 get 1
Discard 3 get 2

With the stipulation that the card is GONE for the tournament (meaning that the blessing of the fallen card does not take into account cards discarded this way).

And i mean just a basic draw, not a free resource draw. Basically a more permanent mulligan.

The reason I would greatly prefer this is because instead of a colorless mana is because it can to easily be used to make unstoppable artifact teams. As they require no threshold they can easily and quickly beat down most teams.

I think the discard would be the better option then sacrifice for colourless energy.

Edit: I am still greatly happy with the system they have now, and rather they didn't change it. However if they have to change it, that is what I would prefer.

DanTheMeek
05-17-2013, 09:55 PM
My opinion has already been expressed by other people, but just in case anyone is monitoring this to see opinions, I am of the school that is unhappy with magic's land system and that this game is recreating it. There's a lot of reasons magic has been as successful and has lasted as long as it has, but when it comes to its resource system, I've always felt it has had success in spite of it, not because of it.

As stated, the excitement of hoping for a land draw when your mana screwed or an actually useful card draw when your mana flooded have never outweighed the frustration of being mana screwed/flooded or the empty feeling I get when I beat some one who clearly was suffering from mana screw/flood. Maybe its just my personality type, but whether its effecting me or my opponent, mana issues suck the fun out of the game for me, they're much more frustrating when they happen to me, but even when they happen in my favor (aka, to my opponent) I end up feeling sorry for my opponent and even feeling bad when I win so in the end no one really comes out a winner.

All that said, I fear the game is too far along at this point to change the system, so I'm not really holding out any hopes it will be changed. I do agree with some people though that the digital medium really could allow for some superior ways around this one major flaw in magics other wise very solid system which hex is recreating and I really wish they'd at least look into further taking advantage of these relatively untapped digital advantages to dramatically reduce mana screw/flood.

MugenMusou
05-17-2013, 10:08 PM
My opinion has already been expressed by other people, but just in case anyone is monitoring this to see opinions, I am of the school that is unhappy with magic's land system and that this game is recreating it. There's a lot of reasons magic has been as successful and has lasted as long as it has, but when it comes to its resource system, I've always felt it has had success in spite of it, not because of it.

As stated, the excitement of hoping for a land draw when your mana screwed or an actually useful card draw when your mana flooded have never outweighed the frustration of being mana screwed/flooded or the empty feeling I get when I beat some one who clearly was suffering from mana screw/flood. Maybe its just my personality type, but whether its effecting me or my opponent, mana issues suck the fun out of the game for me, they're much more frustrating when they happen to me, but even when they happen in my favor (aka, to my opponent) I end up feeling sorry for my opponent and even feeling bad when I win so in the end no one really comes out a winner.

All that said, I fear the game is too far along at this point to change the system, so I'm not really holding out any hopes it will be changed. I do agree with some people though that the digital medium really could allow for some superior ways around this one major flaw in magics other wise very solid system which hex is recreating and I really wish they'd at least look into further taking advantage of these relatively untapped digital advantages to dramatically reduce mana screw/flood.

Extremely well stated. +1.

Qorsair
05-17-2013, 10:09 PM
Ben discusses their decision in detail here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQX028AG7XU
And just look at how many times you used the word "feel" when describing the mechanic. It's almost subconscious, but the mechanic really gives you an emotional connection to the game.

MugenMusou
05-17-2013, 10:33 PM
Ben discusses their decision in detail here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQX028AG7XU
And just look at how many times you used the word "feel" when describing the mechanic. It's almost subconscious, but the mechanic really gives you an emotional connection to the game.

Yeah. True. Ben's belief is indeed many of you are expressing here that the mana screw/flood essentially allow the excitement. I guess its really depends on the personal choice.

As far as the fundamental of the game change goes, it's not possible at this point nor it sounds like popular opinion (at least from these posts I see). But still several things that can potentially happen in the future.

For instance,

Have a Champion with a charge power to draw a resource, exchange resource/non-resource card.
Perhaps, have a cards that searches for resource card.

In any event, I still ended up pledging for this game because other aspect of the game are so intriguing for me.

DeusPhasmatis
05-17-2013, 10:36 PM
I'd be fine with there being some small, finite number of free mulligans. In much the same way that WowTCG's system resulted in new players not using cards as resources when they should because they'd rather gamble on being able to play them later, MtG's mulligan system results in new players not taking a mulligan when they should because they don't want to give up a card.

Advanced players would be able to use free mulligans to obtain better hands regardless of mana screw. But I find that acceptable, since they can use the normal mulligan to do that too. It is, however, less gameable than some condition-based mulligan, particularly since it doesn't care about the components of the hand or deck. And it does reduce (but not remove) the probability of getting mana screwed in general, which I think is something worth considering.

funktion
05-17-2013, 10:43 PM
The resource system is fine, though the mulligan parameters could be adjusted... maybe so that you still mull to 6, but your second mull keeps you at 6 then 54321? That feels a little better than a flat out free mull...

mauvebutterfly
05-18-2013, 01:31 AM
The easiest alternative is to simply limit the number of mulligans. Say, 1 free mulligan, and you're stuck with whatever you get in your second hand. I've played games using this, and if your deck is set up well, you very rarely get two hands in a row that aren't playable.

Then again, the system they have in place now should also avoid having too many unplayable hands. I was initially leery of this system, but I think it should turn out fine.

Qorsair
05-18-2013, 01:43 AM
The resource system is fine, though the mulligan parameters could be adjusted... maybe so that you still mull to 6, but your second mull keeps you at 6 then 54321? That feels a little better than a flat out free mull...

I like this.

Other dTCGs I've played have used the "first mull's free" rule and I didn't like having no penalty for a redraw, or maybe not being rewarded for playing the hand you were dealt.

Rapkannibale
05-18-2013, 04:40 AM
If mana screw/flood was SUCH a big issue in Magic (not saying it doesn't happen) then you wouldn't be seeing the same faces year after year after year in the top spots of mayor tournaments.

Managing your mana and adapting to situation where you have mana problems is one of the things that makes the difference between a good Magic player and an expert Magic player.

Not saying the system is perfect but obviously if it was so bad Magic would not still be going strong after almost 20 years. It adds another layer of skill (trying to deal with mana problems) and it gives newer or worse players a chance to sometimes win because your opponent had bad luck. That is actually a very important aspect. In Chess I could never ever beat a top player, which is very demoralizing. In Magic (and in Hex) there is always a sliver of hope that even if I am playing against a better player, luck may still be in my favor and help me win. Still most times a better player will beat a worse player.

Fireblast
05-18-2013, 04:51 AM
Not saying the system is perfect but obviously if it was so bad Magic would not still be going strong after almost 20 years. It adds another layer of skill (trying to deal with mana problems) and it gives newer or worse players a chance to sometimes win because your opponent had bad luck. That is actually a very important aspect. In Chess I could never ever beat a top player, which is very demoralizing. In Magic (and in Hex) there is always a sliver of hope that even if I am playing against a better player, luck may still be in my favor and help me win. Still most times a better player will beat a worse player.

That is the reason why WoW Minis and VS System failed, the same guys were always winning cause the luck factor was not high enough.

~

Hock
05-18-2013, 05:04 AM
If mana screw/flood was SUCH a big issue in Magic (not saying it doesn't happen) then you wouldn't be seeing the same faces year after year after year in the top spots of mayor tournaments.

Managing your mana and adapting to situation where you have mana problems is one of the things that makes the difference between a good Magic player and an expert Magic player.

Not saying the system is perfect but obviously if it was so bad Magic would not still be going strong after almost 20 years. It adds another layer of skill (trying to deal with mana problems) and it gives newer or worse players a chance to sometimes win because your opponent had bad luck. That is actually a very important aspect. In Chess I could never ever beat a top player, which is very demoralizing. In Magic (and in Hex) there is always a sliver of hope that even if I am playing against a better player, luck may still be in my favor and help me win. Still most times a better player will beat a worse player.

Well stated.

I also think the Hex system with thresholds solves some of the problems with multi-colour decks in Magic. It's not going to stop Mana screw, but it will help mitigate it.

droth25
05-18-2013, 07:13 AM
For everyone to want to pick up a game and keep playing there has to be a certain amount of randomness too it. There are only two games where randomness does not enter chess/checkers. Everything else has a die roll or a card shuffle to help randomize it. You have to have the randomness to it to allow more people to come back. I only wish that you could get a free mulligan if you have a hand will all mana/no mana. Although that means that people could cheat around that and game the system, but people will ALWAYS try to cheat and game the system anyway they can.

Rapkannibale
05-18-2013, 08:56 AM
For everyone to want to pick up a game and keep playing there has to be a certain amount of randomness too it. There are only two games where randomness does not enter chess/checkers. Everything else has a die roll or a card shuffle to help randomize it. You have to have the randomness to it to allow more people to come back. I only wish that you could get a free mulligan if you have a hand will all mana/no mana. Although that means that people could cheat around that and game the system, but people will ALWAYS try to cheat and game the system anyway they can.

One of the awesome things about a digital tcg is that there is a completely objective judge always watching, the computer. So a free mulligan like you describe could still be implemented since the AI knows if you have all mana or no mana. :) although the likelihood of you having a full hand of resources or no resources is very slim.

Karnegal
05-18-2013, 09:31 AM
Having a no mana mull with no penalty encourages you to build your deck extra low on mana - particularly if you're making an aggressive low casting cost deck.

Xenavire
05-18-2013, 09:40 AM
The moral of the story is - if there is a chance to abuse something, someone probably will. It might only be a small percentage, but if they profit off it and others don't, something is wrong.

I think mana screw and flood is just a fact of life and it helps balance the game out - theres always a choice to use mostly low cost cards, that mitigates the issue a lot. When half your deck is 4 cost or higher, you either are playing stall/combo, or just didn't plan ahead.

I think it is safe as it is, they have done it nicely. The stream yesterday showed just what you can do, even if you get 'screwed'.

ShaolinRaven
05-18-2013, 10:39 AM
After watching the twitch play I feel even better about the chances for recovery from a screw. Even the games he lost from screw were close. Also as we see more of those champion abilities might actually thrive on a flood, like oh, I got a ton of resources, guess I can get another creature out/draw a card/pump a creature again... oh darn.

EntropyBall
05-19-2013, 02:24 PM
I don't think using MTG's resource system is a game breaking decision (obviously these guys have a lot of experience), I just would greatly prefer if they gave a gameplay option that let you mitigate mana screw. As noted in that interview with Ben Stoll, your resources aren't fun, playing the cards is what is fun. He even points out how nice it is that Hex gives a way to mitigate the effects of mana flood, giving the impression that its not a desirable feature, but then doesn't apply the same logic to mana screw.
The argument that it adds tension is a good enough point, but you could still have that same tension hoping you draw a card that lets you save your life, rather than just hoping that you get to actually play the cards in your deck.

All heroes could just have the ability to spend a charge to convert a card in their hand into a basic land of its color. You effectively lose the benefit of gaining a charge from a land, but it helps avoid those situations where you can't play a reasonable defense and no one enjoys it. This would probably skew decks to run slightly leaner on mana, but I think that's a good thing, since it will increase deck variety and free up more space in your deck for cards that actually do something. Without knowing more of the cards, its hard to say if this would be imbalanced, but nothing I've seen of the rules so far makes me think so.

Fireblast
05-19-2013, 03:27 PM
Mana Screw is kinda mitigated by Threshold.
And since Mana Flood is not that bad, you could play 1-2 more resources that you would in MtG

Everything will balance out, and best players will still win most of the time.

~

Talreth
05-19-2013, 03:32 PM
I like the mana system because it is just like life - you don't get to have all of your things all of the time. It makes you adapt and make the most of your situation, and I think it makes people a better player.

jai151
05-19-2013, 03:35 PM
Without the possibility of flood/screw, you would have to rebalance the entire game. This would include weakening or increasing the cost of every high mana spell in the game since there would be nearly no chance that you wouldn't have the mana to cast it by turn X (where X equals mana cost).

Fireblast
05-19-2013, 03:48 PM
Without the possibility of flood/screw, you would have to rebalance the entire game.

And you'd come up with WoWTCG and its toss related/tempo based gameplay.
Which is fun but not very deep.

~

Llew
05-19-2013, 08:45 PM
I like the mana system because it is just like life - you don't get to have all of your things all of the time. It makes you adapt and make the most of your situation, and I think it makes people a better player.

This argument is a cop out.

Say the game had a 1 in 10 chance at the start of the game that you start with a bonus 5 life. This would create diversity and make the game a "greater challenge" for the player with 5 less life... but it's still stupid. It's a terrible idea. Having substantial disadvantages because of avoidable random factors isn't fun or good game design.

The argument that never missing land drops encourages certain deck types is also a cop out. The counter argument is that randomly missing land has the same effect - encouraging certain deck types... it can all be balanced with card design anyway.

Llew
05-19-2013, 08:46 PM
And you'd come up with WoWTCG and its toss related/tempo based gameplay.
Which is fun but not very deep.

~

The mechanic of allowing creatures to attack other creatures directly contributes to the tempo based gameplay far more than the resource system.

stiii
05-19-2013, 08:57 PM
And you'd come up with WoWTCG and its toss related/tempo based gameplay.
Which is fun but not very deep.

~

Wow is just as deep as mtg. The number of people who have played high level wow and mtg and therefore are really able to judge this is also rather low.

Veggies
05-20-2013, 01:43 AM
The main problem with the 'free mana' systems where any card can be a resource is you just change what kind of screw you encourage in the game.

If everyone can hit their land drops every turn, then it becomes a question of hitting your drops on time and curving out properly. Didn't go 2-3-4-5? Well then you probably aren't beating the guy who did. There are ways to curb this design, obviously, but generally what happens is that the game becomes all about staying on curve or attempting to disrupt the opp's curfve. Missing drops becomes incredibly painful in a short time and while not as depressing as mana screw it can be just as big of a game ender.

EntropyBall
05-20-2013, 04:44 AM
If everyone can hit their land drops every turn, then it becomes a question of hitting your drops on time and curving out properly. Didn't go 2-3-4-5? Well then you probably aren't beating the guy who did. There are ways to curb this design, obviously, but generally what happens is that the game becomes all about staying on curve or attempting to disrupt the opp's curfve. Missing drops becomes incredibly painful in a short time and while not as depressing as mana screw it can be just as big of a game ender.

I don't question that if you remove the randomness of mana screw/flood, you will just end up with a new factor that is the primary source of luck in the game. I just haven't seen much to convince me that it will be a greater source of luck and/or more depressing/unfun than winning/losing a game through screw/flood. Only having a hand of 2-3-3-3 is more interactive than having a hand of 2-3-4-5 and only having 2-3 mana. Playing sub-optimal cards, IMO, is still a lot more fun than not being able to play cards.

I played a lot of MTG, then a little WoW TCG, then a lot of Warhammer Invasion. From my middle-tier perspective, the MTG resource system was always the most frustrating.

jai151
05-20-2013, 05:43 AM
I don't question that if you remove the randomness of mana screw/flood, you will just end up with a new factor that is the primary source of luck in the game. I just haven't seen much to convince me that it will be a greater source of luck and/or more depressing/unfun than winning/losing a game through screw/flood. Only having a hand of 2-3-3-3 is more interactive than having a hand of 2-3-4-5 and only having 2-3 mana. Playing sub-optimal cards, IMO, is still a lot more fun than not being able to play cards.

I played a lot of MTG, then a little WoW TCG, then a lot of Warhammer Invasion. From my middle-tier perspective, the MTG resource system was always the most frustrating.

The resource system is the driver of the rest of the game. If you have a system where you're always hitting your mana drop, it encourages an environment of bland cards. The reason being if you have a guaranteed curve, the higher cost cards and abilities become more of a sure bet, meaning they need to be more expensive or less powerful.

By guaranteeing the drop, you neuter weenie decks (no pun intended), and you empower beater decks. You encourage vanilla design simply by taking away the "Can I play this" variable.

stiii
05-20-2013, 10:41 AM
I don't really see how changing how powerful aggro is relative to control leads to bland cards? It just means you need to make the aggro cards stronger. The wow tcg has had aggro decks as the best deck plenty of times.

At the end of the day any different system will have problems and the question becomes are these problems better or worse than mana screw/flood. And given that one problem means you can't cast spells and the other might result in balance issues it doesn't seem very close to me.

jai151
05-20-2013, 10:46 AM
I don't really see how changing how powerful aggro is relative to control leads to bland cards? It just means you need to make the aggro cards stronger. The wow tcg has had aggro decks as the best deck plenty of times.

At the end of the day any different system will have problems and the question becomes are these problems better or worse than mana screw/flood. And given that one problem means you can't cast spells and the other might result in balance issues it doesn't seem very close to me.

The blandness comes in the way card costs must bloat relative to the strength of the effect. By making a mana drop a sure thing, card costs MUST increase. Which makes cards that were interesting now unplayable.

Turtlewing
05-20-2013, 10:58 AM
I've never played the WoWTCG, so I don't know this first hand, but it seems to me that the WoW resource system would have a steeper learning curve than the MTG resource system.

In WoW, you have a lot more control over your resource curve during play, but that means you need to make more correct tactical decisions during play (use this card as a resource or hold it to play it later). The MTG resource system however requires less tactical prowess but more strategic prowess (how many/what kind of lands and mana fixers you include in your deck).

Personally I'm inclined to follow CZE's lead on this since they're the creators of the WoWTCG and decided not to use their own innovation in Hex. I also don't see the kind of losses due to manna screw/flood in Magic that some people here are claiming so I expect a fair amount of the issue is overblown.

houjix
05-20-2013, 11:02 AM
WoW is filled with a lot Savannah Lions that all are more than just a vanilla 2/1 and most of them still only cost 1.

A lot of the stuff in WoW is slightly overpowered when compared to a comprable costed Magic card when you factor into account the nature of the combat. When you can directly attack most allies, a 3/3 with special abilities for 3 makes sense as your average 2-drop can destroy it..

caffn8d
05-20-2013, 11:28 AM
As someone who played on the Magic pro-tour many moons ago, let me assure you that I did lose some games to mana problems. Let me also assure you that I used it as an excuse when talking to my contemporaries FAR more than I ever actually had the problem. ;) That's a hidden benefit to this sort of system... blame shifting. Wargamers have their dice and Magic players have their mana screw. Both things allow them to still feel good about themselves as players despite losing. It's a bigger deal than you might initially think. I've played against some opponents who routinely made bad tactical choices, but both of us had a good time playing and they were back to play again without having their ego demolished.

Edit- cleaned up typo.

Deciphered
05-20-2013, 11:43 AM
You can blame shift onto any aspect of luck though, it doesn't have to be a mana screw. LotR TCG players called a bad draw "getting lotred", as if any card game couldn't give you a bad draw.

Here are some other things you can blame. Feel free to print this out and keep it in your wallet, just in case:

Bad draw
Bad matchup
Opponent saw my hand
Opponent's friend played me earlier in the tournament, and told him about my deck
I got paired up
My most important card never showed up, despite how likely it was to show up
Opponent's deck/card is broken!
My deck/card is underpowered!
I couldn't sleep last night
I haven't eaten yet today
Cosmic rays
Bad Karma
It went to time, and he played first
It went to time, and I played first

...and I'm sure there are some other great excuses out there that people can add to this list.

My point is, you don't need Mana Screws for there to be luck or random chance in the game.

MugenMusou
05-20-2013, 11:55 AM
You can blame shift onto any aspect of luck though, it doesn't have to be a mana screw. LotR TCG players called a bad draw "getting lotred", as if any card game couldn't give you a bad draw.

Here are some other things you can blame. Feel free to print this out and keep it in your wallet, just in case:

Bad draw
Bad matchup
Opponent saw my hand
Opponent's friend played me earlier in the tournament, and told him about my deck
I got paired up
My most important card never showed up, despite how likely it was to show up
Opponent's deck/card is broken!
My deck/card is underpowered!
I couldn't sleep last night
I haven't eaten yet today
Cosmic rays
Bad Karma
It went to time, and he played first
It went to time, and I played first

...and I'm sure there are some other great excuses out there that people can add to this list.

My point is, you don't need Mana Screws for their to be luck or random chance in the game.

I don't know which way you are going with it but I agree. No matter what we do TCG has random element. What card you draw, when you draw so my take is that alone is enough random factor and not necessary creating purposely creating randomness on resource to limit your capability.