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Thoughts on the future of AMTL

 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:17 pm 
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Perhaps, but I don't think this should be tested initially. Titans have to have weaknesses and the need for thunderbolts and units that can capture objectives might be a good tension to have.

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:32 pm 
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Hmm, would be a hard nut to crack. Then maybe thinking of tweaking CML?


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:39 am 
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Wow, radical!

I agree with increasing the power of titan weapons.
I'd rather go for 4BP for the AML like Epic-UK have given it. It doesn't particularly seem like a disrupt weapon?
I think 6 shots for the Las Blaster is sufficiently good already even compared to the other boosted weapons.
A long range Melta Cannon would be radical change, I'm more inclined to leave it as is here but if you did want to change it I would rather include the effect of the melta heat being a better at up to half range (as in the 40k rules and background for the all melta weapons). I'd add an extra OR to the weapon profile with 60cm 2+ TK OR 30cm 2+ TK(D3).
All others I agree with.
Vaaish wrote:
Titans are very good at clearing, contesting, or breaking through enemy forces but they aren't really all that great at purely holding territory. I'd like to see a shift to a more mobile, destructive titan force that focuses more on killing than holding. In other words, a force of titans that spearheads across the table scything through enemy formations while smaller stuff holds objectives...

1. Scout and Battle Titan formations cannot contest or capture objectives. Lesser formations may capture objectives for Titan armies as normal. The idea is to promote movement and destruction of enemy units holding objectives rather than sitting on them. I realize this is a bit of a departure, but I'd like to see titan formations focused on killing and breaking the enemy while other formations clean up and hold or contest objectives.

Hell no! I think this change is crazy and very bad for the list. Titans should be excellent at killing stuff but would also be good at capturing objectives. Why should AM titans not be able to capture objectives when all other titans and units can? Why can a Reaver in a SM list but one in an AM list not be able to? If a lone survivor Rhino is able to capture an objective why the heck would a Warlord titan not be able to? It makes no sense.

Also the Titan Legion list should make it possible to run an all titan list and under this change that would be unfeasible (even if it were just Scouts titans that could capture the enemy would focus on killing these even more than the large amount they would already and if they were taken out the remaining battle titans would loose).
Vaaish wrote:
What we want to avoid is a titan running over the centerline, planting between two objectives or starting on the blitz and doing little else the rest of the game.
No, that's not what 'we' want to avoid – I have absolutely no problem with this at all. It's standard tactics for any list including a large titan or gargant, a normal and fine part of the game. In that position it will likely also be attacking units in that area as well (and being attacked for the sake of the objective) it wouldn't be doing little for the rest of the game. A titan left guarding the blitz will often have some indirect fire options, so will be taking part in the game that way.

What makes the list boring to play currently is the high amounts of tough WE DC combined with other units. The list can be made more fair and fun to play in other ways without this.

If you implement this objective change I will never, ever choose to play the TL again and will switch to using the Epic-UK list for it instead, I hate this suggestion that much.

Vaaish wrote:
3. Introduce a degradation mechanism to titan formations..."crippling" a titan below half of their hitpoints or the plasma gen idea we discussed earlier.

These could work and would have been interesting to suggest during the development of Epic Armageddon.

Where we are now I think it would be a very, very, very bad idea however. It's too radical a change to balance where we are now and it isn't needed. None of the titans and gargants in the other lists have this degradation mechanism and it would be particularly odd and inconsistent for the Reaver in a SM list not to be degraded but the same Reaver in a AM list to be. I would hate to see it implemented and think the idea should be abandoned.

There are easy, conventional ways to balance a TL list and make it fun and reasonable to play against (namely reduce the activation count and limit the other choices in the list). I've thought it over while doing the chores on the farm today and written up some alternative suggestions for the future. I was going to post them here, but they came out long so I thought it better to start a separate thread rather than cluttering up here – see here.


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 8:57 am 
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Isn't one of the current major criticisms of the AMTL that they're too hard to kill? Upgunning them would seem to make that worse, not better...

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:09 am 
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hence the degradation mechanic.

Vaaish. I like it, and it holds well together. but please can we just push the current one to approved first? Stop distracting people :)

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:34 am 
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Simulated Knave wrote:
Isn't one of the current major criticisms of the AMTL that they're too hard to kill? Upgunning them would seem to make that worse, not better...


That, and the way they invalidate huge swathes of the weapon choices opponents have paid for; all those AP stats become pointless, and units that have nothing but AP become only marginally useful.

That's a larger criticism on a game-design level of any pure Armoured lists though since it also applies to Minervans and Ulani, but it's a stronger frustration vs titan lists since I've heard of games where the opponent killed nothing.

The take-away from this comment should be that if a list negates/invalidates a large portion of the opponent's TAAC options and units, it had better pay for it in some other way. The degradation mechanic where guns or extra attacks in firefight are removed as damage mounts up could be another step towards that.


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 9:53 am 
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Not really keen on a degradation mechanic myself.
More things to remember and keep track of, slowing down the game.

Even AP armed weapons have CC and FF attacks. See those wonderful huge Krieg formations with a Stubber that can roll 26 dice in an engagement!

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 12:57 pm 
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Vaaish wrote:
Alone, yes it will. With the other changes the titans role becomes that of formation breaker or destroyer. The goal is that fresh scout and battle titans are well able to clear an enemy formation entirely or make it combat ineffective allowing smaller units like Skitarii, Sentinels, or Forge Knights to claim or contest objectives.

What we want to avoid is a titan running over the centerline, planting between two objectives or starting on the blitz and doing little else the rest of the game. Make the titans have powerful weapons, degrade artillery, and prevent them from capturing and contesting objectives and perhaps we'll see titans armies moving around the table more.


Surely this will just lead to the AMTL opponent killing the few formations capable to capturing objectives making it that much harder for the AMTL player to win on anything but points draws.


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 3:48 pm 
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Quote:
Vaaish. I like it, and it holds well together. but please can we just push the current one to approved first? Stop distracting people :)


yes, we can do that and we are doing that. What I need are battle reports from you guys to do that. :)

Quote:
Isn't one of the current major criticisms of the AMTL that they're too hard to kill? Upgunning them would seem to make that worse, not better...


This is why some form of degradation mechanic is necessary. It might not be a permanent degradation such as the plasma generation discussion but having something is needed.

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Not really keen on a degradation mechanic myself.
More things to remember and keep track of, slowing down the game.


There is always a trade off, but in this case I think we can find an elegant solution that's minimally invasive. The goal would be a mechanic that allow you to know by just looking at the titan what state it is in with zero additional book keeping.

Quote:
Surely this will just lead to the AMTL opponent killing the few formations capable to capturing objectives making it that much harder for the AMTL player to win on anything but points draws.


It may, however I think it's a bit premature to jump to this conclusion. Tim had a good suggestion with allowing battle titans to claim the enemy blitz objective and I've softened a bit with allowing scout titans to contest objectives. It could also lead to more interesting lists where Corvus pods are taken to get skitarii which have the numbers to hold or taking more forge knights which can do the same. It's definitely something that needs to be watched closely.

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:19 pm 
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Vaaish wrote:

Quote:
Not really keen on a degradation mechanic myself.
More things to remember and keep track of, slowing down the game.


There is always a trade off, but in this case I think we can find an elegant solution that's minimally invasive. The goal would be a mechanic that allow you to know by just looking at the titan what state it is in with zero additional book keeping.




It would only be as much "book keeping" as dealing with blastmarkers on a non WE formation (how much of my firepower is suppressed etc). In fact, it would be less as there'd be no figuring out which units were furthest back (and hence suppressed).

So yes, I don't think this would be a problem or too onerous.


Last edited by MikeT on Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:33 pm 
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I'm really against lists being balanced by changing the rules of scenarios.

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:41 pm 
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zombocom wrote:
I'm really against lists being balanced by changing the rules of scenarios.


This I do agree with. If your list doesn't work in the Grand Tournament Scenario (the one thing all tournament lists are supposed to be balanced against at 2-5k points) then you shouldn't be re-writing the scenario (which your objective proposals are getting very close to doing).


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 4:51 pm 
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I can't say I'm in favor of any of the proposals.

The low activation count of the army represents the reasons for 1) ("not that great at purely holding territory") well enough. I don't think messing with victory conditions is desirable.

On 2), I'd rather see price drops (chassis or weapon) than stat changes. There's no reason for Titans to be the same price in the Guard and Marine list given the SR disparity and the different synergies of troop choices. The same goes for the AMTL prices, I don't understand why we have to shoehorn a stock Warlord into 850 points, or why everything has to be in 25 point increments. Base the cost off of what the list can do, not what other lists have it at.

For 3), it would be fun but I'm not convinced it's for a tournament list. WM does the half strength thing but that would need some serious testing.

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 5:27 pm 
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Well, these ideas would continue the retrograde progress of the list, I guess.
They'd punt it back to early Experimental status, even.

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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts on the future of AMTL
PostPosted: Mon Jan 06, 2014 6:37 pm 
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Yes, but Vaaish stated that this will take part after approval for the current list.


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