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Messages - Phoenix

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Strategy and Tactics / Re: Domination Games and Strategies
« on: June 12, 2015, 11:54:21 AM »
I too have noticed a definitive pace to the game, inevitably one player gets a V'tar advantage.  At this point the opponent must decide wether to increase the pace and restore or remove the V'tar advantage or just kill the other mage.  It is a change of rate problem, there has been in each game I have played a tipping point where either I had the advantage and could predict a win in X turns, or I was behind and would lose in X turns.
My game with Laddinfance there was a point where he had 7 of the 11 V'tar needed to win, and without some change in course would have one in two turns. This decision point has been in every game I have played so far, about 20. The games are faster paced and though a control build is still viable, turtling will lose. I have been adjusting my spell books to a more mid-range value, trying to balance controlling the game while I am ahead in V'tar yet still having the aggressive posture to kill the enemy mage if needed. 

Strategy and Tactics / Re: Domination Games and Strategies
« on: June 12, 2015, 08:22:47 AM »
      Even though it feels right thematically, I do believe you're correct.  Since Reanimate requires it to come from the graveyard to the zone, and the Sslak is removed from the game when it dies, The rise again spell will not work on Sslaks.
     It was still a great play by my son.  This demonstrates the versatility and how new tactics can be explored by mages that have been around from the inception of Mage Wars. 
     Thank you for the heads up.

Strategy and Tactics / Re: Domination Games and Strategies
« on: June 12, 2015, 07:37:50 AM »
Now I understand your point.  I will have to look into it a bit more.  Thank you for the heads up. It feels right, but you may be correct.

Strategy and Tactics / Re: Domination Games and Strategies
« on: June 12, 2015, 05:58:13 AM »
     Not Reanimation, Rise again.  Rise again is a curse that when a creature dies, the warlock, or dark mage pays half the mana and at the beginning of the next turn it comes back as a zombie with damage equal to its level.  It does work, and works well.  Combining it with the AC warlocks ability to curse weave is very strong.
     What he also exploited was my inability to remove face down enchantments. I did not have any seeking dispels in my book. So just by casting rise again on a Sslak or Usslak, I had to consider the ramifications of killing it, giving him another creature.  This definitely slowed my progress with the V'tar.
     In short he used the Sslak's abilities to his own advantage. The damage shield on the demon hide armor hastened the Sslak's demise and after it died he had a very effective guard in the zone.

Strategy and Tactics / Domination Games and Strategies
« on: June 11, 2015, 01:49:02 PM »
I just finished two games of Mage Wars Arena Domination with my son.  We played the Court of The Antarians scenario.  The first game was his Johkari Beastmaster vs my Druid.  The second was the remarkable game.  My son played an AC Warlock, one of my older Arena books. Vs my AT Warlord.  His opening was an enchanter's ward and Sectarus, mine was Construction Yard with a Barracks. 
     I initially like the board configuration allowing me to stagger the outposts nicely.  The second turn he quick cast Demon hide armor, moved into a zone with a Sslak and an orb and attacked.  Sectarus cast a face down curse. The Sslak performed his counter attack, doing minor damage.  My son flipped the face down enchantment rise again and the Sslak died to the damage shield.  He then curse weaved the spell back to his book.  This was great, the battle was difficult for me but eventually beat down his warlock. Zombie Sslaks are not easy to kill.

     Laddinfance talked to me about your match, the third wall was inspired.

Events / Re: Origins Events
« on: June 10, 2015, 01:09:37 PM »
It was my pleasure.  Mage Wars is awesome in a box! I will see you guys next year at Origins.

Absolutely agree, effective use of the map was important to my match with Laddinfance.  He had early in the game pushed me through his wall of thorns to a corner of the map with a secret passage.  I was able to use that passage to get back into the fray much quicker by jumping to the other side and regaining my line of sight/fire.  Additionally at one point he used a wand with Windstorm attached to push my gremlins into the lava square. 
In a separate match, while Laddinfance was dueling a Necromancer, a wall of bone cut the arena in half with a single cast and extension of the spell.  There are a lot of new tricks to discover.

No, I am quite sure that "yuck" perfectly describes my emotional response to adding a draw mechanic to MW.  I have been a gamer for over 40 years and have gone through many phases of the types of games I enjoy.  Two of my favorites have been miniature gaming and MTG.
MW fills both of those loves, with nothing I dislike about each.  For miniature gaming i eschew unpainted miniatures, unfortunately as a single father there is not enough time for me to start painting again.  As for MTG, I played since the revised edition.  I love the idea of dueling wizards but had several issues with the game, beyond the chasing of rates.
     The first is that even a well tuned deck sometimes gets bad draws, lots of lands or no lands.  Either way you face a situation which is not much fun.  Your opponent runs away with the game, not due to your  misplay, but solely due to your random chance which is in the nature of card draw and shuffle.
     The second is the randomness to which spells are available.  Being an old D&D player I am used to my mages preparing spells for an adventure and using the most appropriate spell for the situation.  Mage Wars allows me to plan my spells, by preparing my book, and then use the most appropriate spell for the situation.  Why would I want to destroy one of the main mechanisms that make Mage Wars the "best game".
     That is why I believe "YUCK!" was the proper response.


How do we add card draw into this game?


I like to think of it as a progression, even in apprentice mode Mage Wars has a fairly steep learning curve.  There are still a lot of conditions, actions, spells, different types of spells, order of casting, revealing enchantments, etc. A full game of Mage Wars is more of apprentice mode + added depth and difficulty.  Domination is a twist on the full game of Mage Wars that shakes up the general premise of enter the arena kill the mage, to one with different shapes and terrain and the possibility of winning with out having to engage only the opponent mage.
On the other side of the spectrum is Academy, familiar to players of other card games yet introduces some of the staples of MW like spell books, the type of spells, enchantments, equipment, etc.  I enjoyed academy, but would not want a steady diet of just that game, but it facilitates two things.  First is portability, If Academy was released at Origins I could imagine many people dueling in the open gaming area because all I need is table space, my spell book, and some dice. The second and in my humble opinion it provides a great introduction to the full MW game.
What is particularly thematic is the progression of the spells and mages. 
     Academy mages are young and use mostly level one spells, their spell books contain about 40 spell book points, and they duel in a small one room training hall.  Apprentice mages are fully grown, have a wider variety of spells, books contain about 60 spell points, and duel in a larger venue.  Full mages have all the items of the full game and 120 spell points.  Domination is a battle in a unusual arena with a native population of terrain, conjurations and terrain.
Bottom Line: There is room for all three, Mage Wars will gain players, those playing academy may or may not move on but they are still playing mage wars.  Just as Mage Wars Arena players may or may not play domination.  It expanse the player base and, I believe, will lead to a healthier meta for all.

Events / Re: Battle Report from Origins Domination.
« on: June 09, 2015, 07:31:05 AM »
Thank you
     I realize my prose is not polished, but I wanted to report on the Play Aaron at Origins event as soon as I could when I got home.  Not having proper notes, I couldn't write a turn by turn report giving mana totals and details, so my son and I set up the board and I recreated the events from memory.  It was an exciting battle with an insane pace.  I felt I was in trouble at the end of turn two.
     I had actually prepared three different spell books for domination. Had I chosen the druid, my favorite, there is not a doubt in my mind that I would have lost that battle.  My warlord may have been a bit better off, but it still would have been close.
     Aaron is a great player and a wonderful host.

only new spells yes, however a lot of the spells seemed like less advanced versions of some normal spells.  Like there was a small hydra with double strike. For an example of an item that would have gone in a normal mage wars deck, there was a belt that granted regen 1 and armor 1. A dagger that had a set of stats for the level 4, academy mage and a bonus if it was wielded by a normal full fledge mage.
I want to emphasize that I played the prototype and the spells may be added, changed, or deleted.  The information I am sharing is just what I saw and experienced at Origins.
I for one, am very much looking forward to the Academy Expansion.

     Even though academy spells cost less mana, tend to dissipate, and are generally (from my observation) level one, do not get the idea that they are insignificant.  There are many, and I do mean many, spell which would have gone straight into my normal Mage Wars spell book.
     This is an expansion that will allow me to carry just my spell book and duel in a coffee shop with any other apprentice.  The back cover showed a two-wheeled panel for keeping track of life and mana. I truly believe that academy will be the introduction game I need to spark interest, a Arcane Wonder(fully) expansion to the main game, and the mobile casual card game style game that is portable and quick to play, yet retains the theme, spell books, and flavor of the full game.

I had the opportunity to demo the up coming release of Mage Wars Academy. (hopefully released at GenCon 15). I believe that it is what you are looking for.  It plays like a standard card game and a game of mage wars. The turn sequence was normal mage wars with no planning phase. Mages can pull spells from their books as they activate the mage.
     The spell books contained about 40 spell points of spells, and some of these spells where just wonderful.  Many of them will find spots in full mage books without a doubt.
     The game was played in a single zone, imagine a small magical training dojo, instead of a large public arena. Initiative alternated from player to player after one activation.  Mages still have a quick cast marker and can still use it before or after any creatures actions.
     It was a nice hybrid between the Mage Wars we love and a traditional dueling mages card game.  I really got the feel for an apprentice mage training for the arena, lower life, less channeling, and spells which would slowly fade. It made for a wonderful doorstep into our beloved world.  Academy leads to apprentice to full mage in a logical and thematic method.
Bottom Line...... Loved it!

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