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Card Discussions #1 What makes a card good or bad

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2016 6:49 am
by AlabamaMan
I am starting a regular forum thread to help peak more interest from the community and make us a little closer potentially. All in all I love this game and besides those who play on kongregate together, this game can seem lonely and one sided for some. The object of this thread is to talk about facts, opinions, and the players mind-set.

I was sitting here playing a hard colo and faced an escipion 3 turns in a row and my usual outburst cam through of 'WTF that card is stupid". So that got me thinking, why is that card so good. I mean it is a great card, but it can also be an ok card. So before I get into more about this card lets start with something easy.

Card expectations: What do we expect to get from a card when it costs a certain amount of gems. Basically meaning if we pay 2 gems for a card we expect an 8/8 body and that's about it. For 2 gems we expect a vanilla 8/8 (hastati). Of course we also have promotes involved and that takes it further but for now we are going to look at base costs. So for what we can see each gem gets us 4/4 worth of body. For the way the game is structured, that equation diminishes the more a unit costs. For example a 4 gem unit gets us roughly a 10/10. Now we have gone down tremendously. Each gem is only getting us 2.5/2.5 vs the other unit for 2 gems getting us 4/4 for each gem. This is why you see most players at the top of pvp playing the smaller units, they are simply more efficient. As the gem cost goes up on our units, the respective attack and defense of the unit per gem will go down. This is where unit abilities can make up for the losses.

Well what will make an ability good. Each ability should be given a gem equivalent. Basically if your unit does 2 damage to card, we can give that a 1 gem value because the hero power strike costs 1 gem. So lets take Chu-ko-nu (rare) for example, for 4 gems we get a 7/14 that does 4 damage to an enemy card when it comes into play. We can value this ability at 2 gems since heavy strike (which does the same thing) costs 2 gems. So for 4 gems we get a 7/14 with a 2 gem ability. This helps make up for the weaker stats to make this card a little more valuable than a 7/14.

And last we have promoting units to add value. Lets take hastati again at rare value, for 2 gems you get an 8/8, promote once for 3 gems and we have an 11/11. With the final promote of 2 gems we get a 17/17. So for 7 gems we have a 17/17. On top of that if the unit dies it will stay a 17/17. 7 gems will get us close to 2.5/2.5 respectively. That comes close to our value at 4 gems for an unpromoted unit. The extra bonus we get here though is should it dies and we redraw, the value of the card increases where if an unpromoted unit dies and is redrawn it's value remains the same.

Understanding the value of a gem is needed to understand what makes a card good or bad. Each person may have their own value of a card but numbers can't lie. Numbers are the cold hard facts of this game and ever game. The fact that we also only get 10 gems a turn (8 for going first) limits how cards can be valued.

Now lets go back to escipion. (at rare value) We get a 10/14 for 5 gems that's 2/2.8 for each gem. We also get a come into play ability that reduces the attack of non hero's by 8. So obviously this hero's value increases with your opponent having more non hero units on the field. So how can we value that ability. The closest things we have is the hero power coin (for 3 gems reduce a unit's attack by 10) and with knossos labryinth ( epic for 1 gem reduce all enemy cards attack by 4 and this can be used up to three times total in one casting). With the abilty being specific to non-hero units it dpends on how many are heroes and not. with the hero power costing 3 for -10 attack and the wonder costing at most 3 for -12 attack I think we can value -5 attack to a non hero at 1 gem. That means escipion can be valued at over 10 gems depending on the board. His value can also be incredibly sub par with 1 to no units effected leaving us with a 10/14 for 5 gems with one upgrade option to a 16/22.

These cards can be useful in certain situations and may no always be the best play. Ultimately what will make a good card is consistency. As far as I can tell, and from what the top players play, the smaller units are most consistent and units with abilities that gain board and gem advantage are consistent. That's why Hastati Pelast Principes are your core units to go with and Aquiles and Minamoto are the good heroes. They have come into play abilties that create major gem advantages. I want to go more into gem advantages but I will leave that for my next topic "Creating and keeping gem advantages".

To end this I want to say that I am sharing my opinions and views. If you do not agree lets discuss, that's the reason for the thread. Otherwise I am trying to help those who may not know or thought of the game in this perspective.

Bama aka superman

Re: Card Discussions #1 What makes a card good or bad

Posted: Sun Jan 17, 2016 3:28 pm
by framer
It is ultimately all about consistency. Since the game doesn't have a hand where you can hold cards to make a combo but draws 5 random cards each turn a card has to be good on its own. The best example is Moctezuma. Probably the potentially strongest card in the game, but hardly used since unless you combine it with other cards it will just die to any cheap card. If you could consistently combine it with something like an (upgraded) attila it would be a devastating card.

This is also why the discussion about making limits on # of copies in the deck is hard to balance. People advocating it want more variety in the decks they face, but limiting the number of copies of a card will only drive people to the same cards, the cheap consistent ones. Where the nature of the random drawing would probably require 6 or more copies of a card to count on it for making consistent combo's. For which pretty much no one will have the card base yet and is the main thing I think is holding the game back: lack of rewards for actual gameplay (the raids are a step in the right direction, but of course limited by the tickets).

Re: Card Discussions #1 What makes a card good or bad

Posted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 10:20 am
by AlabamaMan
Not only limited by the number of tickets but by the alliance you are in. when I was in CCCP we struggled to finish medium even with a full alliance. In order to receive the maximum benifits you need a group of at least 12 fully active members. You guys already are crafting legendaries. Pretty soon if the game goes as is, you guys are going to drive out the rest of the players because there will be no competition. Not even buying gold will close the gap!