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 House rules for Ninja All Stars 
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obligatorysalmon wrote:
Here's another hero that needs tweaking.

Yobuko

This guy's awesome, but I hate his ability text with a fiery passion. New text:

"Supreme Master of the Fist: If at least one enemy model on the board has an attack or defense attribute equal to or greater than Yobuko's Attack attribute, one of those models must be designated as his "rival" for the entirety of the match. Yobuko gets +1 AT when attacking his rival. During his activation, if Yobuko ends his movement farther away from his rival than his initial position, then he suffers a curse token (for being cowardly) immediately after movement ends. If Yobuko can attack his rival but chooses not to, he suffers a curse token after his activation. Yobuko will never be cursed as a result of combat movement."

The old version is bad, because it's trying to AI the model and is pretty sloppy about it. If they wanted to go for a frenzy effect, I would rewrite it like this:

"Blah blah blah "rival." If Yobuko has line of sight to his rival, and is not already adjacent to his rival, he moves in a straight line directly toward his rival, ignoring models and influence zones. If he is not adjacent to his rival at the end of his movement, he will use his action to run, if he can, continuing to move as above. Any models Yobuko passes through during this movement are pushed one space by Yobuko's player. If Yobuko is adjacent to his rival, he may attempt to move, so long as the movement allows him to remain adjacent to his rival. Yobuko must use his action to attack his rival, if possible. When attacking his rival, he gets a +1 to AT, and spirit results stun, rather than injure Yobuko."


The design is to have this guy singularly focused on his rival (or nemesis). Which is a novel idea but sometimes good ideas translate to too much words. And the title "Supreme Master of the Fist" doesn't really put flavor or apt theme description to the mechanic. In other games, this may be called "There Can Be Only One" or "Nemesis". (Or maybe I didn't read the flavor text too much that Yobuko walks around looking for who the best is and trying to prove the way of the fist is the best.")

I'm not sure I can simplify it further with less words or not making it too powerful but let's see:

"Supremacy of the Fist: On activation, if an enemy model within 8 spaces and LOS has the same AT or DF as Yobuko, he must use his movement and action to challenge that model. Place Yobuko in that model's front influence zone, ignoring terrain and other models' zones. Yobuko may then attack with a +1 AT, and may re-roll any number of his dice. Give Yobuko a stun token at the end of his activation."

This gives him a "mini-blink" and more like other games' charge mechanic, with a bonus to movement. Might not be thematic if he's more a "strength/power guy" but I can invoke DBZ and ninja trickery on this :)

The stun in the end is just a cost add to the move because he can re-roll (and dictate the number of) his dice.


February 5th, 2016, 2:32 pm
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I'm seeing a lot of dissatisfaction with how the Ronin Goemon works as currently printed. I'd like to propose a small adjustment to his card that should make using him less controversial:
Image


But seriously I do have one house rule to propose and it is Ronin related. The way Ronin costs work currently it is only economical to hire them in the long term thanks to their substantial up front costs. This would be fine except that a lot of the Ronin options are designed for temporary use in certain game modes or matchups (e.g. Benkei, Arashikage, Blind Swordsman, Bakusho Mondai, Momotaro, Tengu, Moon Princess, etc.). For understandable reasons then a lot of us seem to be ignoring most of these models in favour of the few Ronin that are worth using in every match and building teams around (Inu Kaiken, Goemon, Mochizuki, Onibaba, Jorogumo). I'd like to suggest a rule that should help players field Ronin as temporary sellswords and should open up the meta a bit.

My suggestion is that when a player hires a ronin the up-front cost of the ninja should be held on deposit. At the end of every game in a league after koban upkeeps have been paid a player may release the ronin from service, removing it from their team and getting their deposit koban back. If the Ronin released this way cannot play due to a Fire or Void result on a Downtime roll the player only gets back half the deposit; and of course if the Ronin had to be released because the player could not pay the upkeep they lose the deposit completely.

This should allow players to use a Ronin for one or two games for a fair and reasonable net cost and should ensure that more Ronin become worth using. This hopefully will deepen the strategic dimension of the different challenges NAS has to offer.

Oh and Re Yobuko I'm not too happy with him either. As soon as I read his card I was reminded of old MTG cards like Animate Dead, Ice Cauldron or Word of Command that used an awful lot of words to relate a rather simple concept.


February 5th, 2016, 4:55 pm
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Arydis wrote:
Usagi

You might want to float the alternative handicap list into it's own thread over in the League/Scenario section. I think league organizers will be interested in this going forward.


That's a good idea, so I did it.

Also, I slightly updated my alternative injury rules by adding a couple more possibilities of missing matches (increasing the importance of having a deeper ninja roster).


February 5th, 2016, 6:22 pm
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Hey I thought of a way to fix the affinity rules as they seem horrible and make affinity checks completely garbage. I think that if you use the moon chart and say if you roll the elemental affinity or either of the adjacent affinities then you succeed. This way it's more of a 1/2 instead of a 1/6 which is much better as 1/6 is complete garbage and means that many times you won't do anything


February 5th, 2016, 6:46 pm
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Affinity tests are roll 3 dice if only one matches than you succeed. How is that 1/6th?

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February 5th, 2016, 7:34 pm
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azuretide wrote:
Hey I thought of a way to fix the affinity rules as they seem horrible and make affinity checks completely garbage. I think that if you use the moon chart and say if you roll the elemental affinity or either of the adjacent affinities then you succeed. This way it's more of a 1/2 instead of a 1/6 which is much better as 1/6 is complete garbage and means that many times you won't do anything


Yeah, an affinity test is done on 3 dice, yielding ~45% odds. If you made it so 3 of the six sides worked, that would make the odds of success jump to ~88% or so (this is rough, off the top of my head, statistical math here). But, you are close to doubling the success percentage and, more significantly, reducing the failure percentage by close to a factor of five. That's an enormous, quite literally game breaking, swing.


February 5th, 2016, 8:02 pm
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Simple fix for Tamamo no Mae:

Add Entangle.

I'd also like to change her special rule - instead of some lame-ass "Kunoichi can't escape" rule - something like:

"Alluring Perfume. Even if Tamamo no Mae is in Stealth, her Influence Zone is still active as though she were not in Stealth."

That way she can act as a buffer for the Yajiri, put a slowdown on enemy models (without stopping them dead like Jorogumo), and despite her low stats still has survivability.

Plus, it's pretty flavorful. A hidden witch stalking through the woods, sending drifts of her perfume to slow down and distract the intruders...

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February 5th, 2016, 9:14 pm
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I have read a lot of different comments from a lot of different people about the similarities between Blood Bowl and Ninja All Stars. I have been a big fan of Blood Bowl since the first edition and have been a witness to it's evolution during it's versions. With each edition the game had improved by leaps and bounds, until we have the version that is available today.

The point is that I think that there is room to borrow come of the ideas from Blood Bowl (just so long as we acknowledge and give credit to the source) , I would like to propose the following changes to the list of considerations:


Injury Rolls
One thing I would really like to see in this game is the potential for ninjas to die. It sucks when it happens to you, but that's what happens when you play with swords. I would suggest implementing the following injury table:

Spirit - full recovery
Air - full recovery
Water - full recovery
Fire - miss next game, niggling injury (see rules below)
Earth - miss next game, roll again and consult second chart (see below)
Void - Dead

If Earth is rolled, roll again and consult the following:
Spirit: no further effect
Air: (Broken Leg) -1 MA
Water: (Broken Arm) -1 ATT
Fire: (Blinded in One Eye) -1 DEF
Earth: (Broken Spirit) Miss two games
Void: (Niggling Injury) For every niggling injury that a character has, they must roll one extra die on any future injury rolls, and take the worst result.

Team Rating
The Team Rating currently being used by NAS is very similar to previous versions used in Blood Bowl. The new one used by Blood Bowl, would also work for this, and that is why I propose it.

Rather than adding the total Koban cost of the models and then dividing, just keep the Koban cost at full price. So a rookie clan that has cost 91 Koban to buy has a rating of 91. Under the current rule, all skills add 1 to the value, so it could be extrapolated that a skill would add 10 full koban to the value. So the same rookie team finishes a match with no injuries and they do not buy any new ninjas. They did, however, earn 2 skills, so their rating is now 91+20 = 111.


Rogues similar to Freebooters
In a league game of Ninja All Stars, when ninjas are missing the Team Rating will be adjusted accordingly. Any missing ninjas remove their full value from the roster for the period that they are missing. Now, with the Team Ratings being at full value, it is an easy matter for the two teams to compare and make up the difference. So Clan Tanchyo and Clan Ika are gearing up for a match. Tanchyo has a TR of 133 and Ika has a TR of 114. There is a difference of 19 points which Clan Ika can spend on temporary ninjas or Ronin to make up the difference. Any Ronin and ninjas hired in this way are outsiders.


Outsiders similar to the Loner skill
Any ninjas or Ronin who are not hired on as part of the permanent roster are considered to be outsiders. Outsiders are not used to working, training with the clan and so are not as cohesive with them as a group. Any Ronin or ninja outsider is unable to use any Moon Cards or re-roll tokens.

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February 6th, 2016, 9:00 pm
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iamfanboy wrote:
Simple fix for Tamamo no Mae:

Add Entangle.

I'd also like to change her special rule - instead of some lame-ass "Kunoichi can't escape" rule - something like:

"Alluring Perfume. Even if Tamamo no Mae is in Stealth, her Influence Zone is still active as though she were not in Stealth."

That way she can act as a buffer for the Yajiri, put a slowdown on enemy models (without stopping them dead like Jorogumo), and despite her low stats still has survivability.

Plus, it's pretty flavorful. A hidden witch stalking through the woods, sending drifts of her perfume to slow down and distract the intruders...


While I like the idea...I'm under the impression that Tamamo No Mae is actually fine the way she is. She's cheep for a hero, and while she doesn't boast and amazing stats or skill, she has her use as a deterance. With how Alure is worded, she doesn't need to pick an enemy model that is even in her influence done, and as such you can play mind games by picking certain enemy models, and force them to go around Tamamo No Mae, or else be force to stop dead in their tracks. Essentially, she acts as a reliable road block limiting the path of enemy ninjas, and perhaps forcing them into bad positioning (like near lanterns or negative shrines).

Of course, I agree that she perhaps would be better off if she had Entangle...

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February 7th, 2016, 1:00 pm
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Does anyone have a good house rule / system set up for incorporating the shrine ninja into the clans for league play? Obviously not for "sanctioned" leagues or whatever, but for casual play.

I mean, I would start with the premise that you could only recruit from the shrine team for your team's primary element (Ika could only recruit from the Water Shrine team, etc.), but that seems pretty straightforward.

You could go the simple route and swap (for example) the Ijin chunin for the Void Shrine chunin at the same koban cost, but the Void Shrine chunin is lacking Void Mastery (he's one ability short overall, and none of the Shrine team chunin have unique abilities). Shouldn't the shrine chunin in that case be cheaper to recruit?

But with the Void Shrine madoushi, if you preferred (for some reason) Void Curse over Blood Frenzy or Skull Hex (the Ijin madoushi abilities) and were willing to have that one less DF, how would that impact the koban cost?

Anyway, just curious if anyone has anything worked out (ideally that they've tried out, but I'd like to see any system) in this regard?

If this is covered elsewhere, I apologize; please point me in the right direction.


February 10th, 2016, 9:50 pm
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You can just use the models as clan models. So you could use a clan madoushi model and a shrine madoushi model on the same team, both are just clan modoushi stats. The only model this might feel weird for is the Tancho Chunin because they have a ranged attack and the shrine chunin is waving swords around. I guess Tora Yajiri as well are a little off as they aren't using guns.

Was there a particular shrine unit you wanted in a league because of their stats or ability?


February 10th, 2016, 10:01 pm
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homedrone wrote:
You can just use the models as clan models. So you could use a clan madoushi model and a shrine madoushi model on the same team, both are just clan modoushi stats. The only model this might feel weird for is the Tancho Chunin because they have a ranged attack and the shrine chunin is waving swords around. I guess Tora Yajiri as well are a little off as they aren't using guns.

Was there a particular shrine unit you wanted in a league because of their stats or ability?


I have the models I need / want, I was definitely thinking more in terms of the different abilities between clan and shrine.

There's no shrine unit in particular I'm dying to have on a clan team at the moment, but I feel like it would open up some options, particularly with regard to the madoushi ... I believe the shrine madoushi all have unique abilities that don't show up in the clans and are enhanced by the corresponding moon phase.

It might also let you "handicap" your team a bit in terms of ranking if you are using some cheaper shrine units ...


February 10th, 2016, 10:16 pm
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So the house rules we addopted so far are working out well.

1) Attacker always chooses from remaining dice. The dice mechanic is still flawed. With the official rules the odds change in favor of the defender, when the defender gets more dice than the attacker. Consequently it's just plain a bad idea to attack if you have fewer dice than the defender. What you're actually doing is giving him an attack. This change fixes that. Additional defense dice still help limit the attacker's choices but they don't turn the tide and turn the attack into a "Bad idea".

2) We found that stun tokens were nearly useless. Opposing players would just wait until they had two stuns, activate their ninjas and the stuns go away. Yeah, you lose the move and attack combo, but more often than not you're already adjacent to an opponent so the stuns become more "inconvenient" than a problem. What we did was make it so the way to remove a stun token during activation is to give up either movement , actions, or both (to remove 2) AND each stun token gives the ninja on whom it's placed -1 to all three stats.

3) We thought the break away penalty was too harsh, so what we did was each failed break away roll results in a -1 to all stats until the end of that ninja's activation. So if you fail a break away, you can try again....and again....you just won't be going as far....or you can stop and attack or take some other action.

4) Respawning could not be done adjacent to an opposing Ninja. (This was just too powerful.)

5) If Samurai are in play, the player to your RIGHT controls them, not the player to your LEFT. This stops a player from placing the Samurai in advantagous positons for them, since they are not going next (In multi-player games.)


February 11th, 2016, 4:47 am
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foosninja wrote:
1) Attacker always chooses from remaining dice. The dice mechanic is still flawed. With the official rules the odds change in favor of the defender, when the defender gets more dice than the attacker. Consequently it's just plain a bad idea to attack if you have fewer dice than the defender. What you're actually doing is giving him an attack. This change fixes that. Additional defense dice still help limit the attacker's choices but they don't turn the tide and turn the attack into a "Bad idea".


Can you provide an example of how this makes an advantage for the defender?

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February 11th, 2016, 12:57 pm
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foosninja is suggesting the removal of the "highest # of dice chooses result" rule. As it is written, the rule provides a threshold the attacker must overcome to be able to choose the result. This suggestion is harmful to the Yamazaru in particular as their stats are focused on def (on the flip-side, the Yamazaru would have a higher-ish chance of injuring when attacking as well). The suggestion also makes ranged attacks more effective and preferable as even a shuriken would have a better chance of injuring an opponent and there would be no risk involved of self-injury.


February 11th, 2016, 5:08 pm
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In the next couple days I hope to sweep through here and compile stuff that has been talked about and compile it on the front page. If anything seems too incomplete to post, or I don't understand it well, I'll ask about it here before pushing it to the front page.


February 11th, 2016, 6:57 pm
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I added a few more things talked about in here. Notably, I added (my) system for adding shrine ninja to league games. I put up an alternate way to play Tamamo no Mae that is not 100% the same as the author posted. But, I think it's more in line with her cost (I didn't include the entangle keyword).


February 13th, 2016, 2:10 am
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@Usagi I like your rule about adding Shrine ninja to clan teams and have posted a setup in the starting lineup thread that takes advantage of it. I would however recommend against giving shrine ninja upkeep costs as these make them too pricy to consider using. I also think that you might have priced the shrine kaiken a little to high since (according to the last set of info I have for Shrine Ninja) they are all just 5 MOV 3/2 or 2/3 models.


February 13th, 2016, 9:19 am
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Dr. Despair wrote:
@Usagi I like your rule about adding Shrine ninja to clan teams and have posted a setup in the starting lineup thread that takes advantage of it. I would however recommend against giving shrine ninja upkeep costs as these make them too pricy to consider using. I also think that you might have priced the shrine kaiken a little to high since (according to the last set of info I have for Shrine Ninja) they are all just 5 MOV 3/2 or 2/3 models.


As it stands the costs aren't final (for sure). But, I would rather start high and come down than start low and go up. It's just easier to adjust that way. The costs of the particular types I put down is really just an average of the same unit's cost over the clans. I'm hoping a somewhat expensive seeming cost is compensated for by the variety of elemental types it brings to teams (that can actually level up).

I would love to see some people try it as it is now and give feedback on what works, or feels worth it or not after a little bit of testing.


February 13th, 2016, 6:41 pm
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After playing a few more games, I really do find all the token placing and moving a detraction from the game. Get a little bru-haha going and it becomes easy to confuse which activation tokens, stun tokens, and stealth tokens were going to which models.

As well, facing seems more fiddly that is a benefit to gameplay.

They might be drastic changes, but I'd like to hear any ideas people have on how to change both of those issues.

For example, I think if rear influence zones were removed, you could get the back attack bonus if you had a friendly model on the opposite side of the defender as the attacker. Sort of a special double assist bonus.


February 14th, 2016, 6:25 pm
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