Wizards or Elf-lords

playing with which avatars?

I'd rather play as wizard only
4
24%
I would like to play as Elf-lord
9
53%
I would like to play without avatar, if compensated
3
18%
Other option...which I will mention in this thread
1
6%
 
Total votes: 17

Thorsten the Traveller
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Wizards or Elf-lords

Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Tue May 05, 2009 6:17 pm

Since there are only 5 wizards, and we would like Arda to be playable with 6 or 7 players also, to leave nobody out that wants to play (with 8 players you can play two Arda games of 4 players :wink: ), there is the obvious question:

do we duplicate unique wizards, or would we rather play wizardless, and if so then with some extra rules/bonusses or with another avatar?

Right now the option would be to have an Elf-lord like Elrond, Galadriel or Cirdan step up for the wizard, give you some extra GI, and make wizard only cards playable on that Elf-lord (e.g. spells). This Lord could count as avatar, or not.

Another option would be to play without avatar, and balance the game via other ways, like higher card draw, lower hazard limit, or other mechanisms. Having an avatar is good, but without him you can more easily play characters, for example, so other type of games are possible.

Remember, the avatars are drafted as per current rule, so you can't chose for other people to play avatarless unless you'd be prepared to play avatarless yourself :wink:

Let's hear your thoughts please.
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Vastor Peredhil
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Post by Vastor Peredhil » Tue May 05, 2009 6:28 pm

1st so no doubt what I voted for ;)

Thorsten the Traveller
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Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Tue May 05, 2009 6:47 pm

Well, someone else also voted, so you might still need to clarify :D . You could have chosen option D...for Dwarflords, though I don't see them casting spells. Starting Aragorn with Return of the King (no mp's worth) is an option too.
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marcos
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Post by marcos » Tue May 05, 2009 7:51 pm

i picked elflords because i think they are the easiest to understand

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Post by Shapeshifter » Tue May 05, 2009 7:52 pm

I voted for Elf-lord, would be really nice.
I don't see the necessity to have more avatars, though. It works quite well with duplicated Wizards imho.

Thorsten the Traveller
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Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Tue May 05, 2009 9:43 pm

it's just that, when a wizard would die (or twice, in Expanded Game :wink: ), and somebody else would play same wizard, that's weird, isn't it? For example.
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Frodo
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Post by Frodo » Wed May 13, 2009 7:43 am

Duplicated wizards works as a practical thing, but after playing some games where the feeling of Wizard ownership really took root, it seemed to me that if it was possible, why not prevent Wizard duplication?

People seem to like the Elf-lord approach, so let’s define what that might be.

ELF-LORD OPTIONS
1) New Text for "Saw Further and Deeper":
"Choose Elrond, Cirdan, or Galadriel as your avatar. You may not pick a Wizard. You may start the game at your avatar's home site.
+5 GI. You have an additional 5 GI ("defensive influence") that cannot be used to control characters. Your avatar is targeted by all cards and game rules like a Wizard."

2) New Text for "Saw Further and Deeper":
"Choose Elrond, Cirdan, or Galadriel as one of your starting characters. You may not pick a Wizard. You may start the game at the chosen character's home site.
+5 GI. You have an additional 5 GI ("defensive influence") that cannot be used to control characters. Your chosen character may use any card that says "Wizard only" as if he/she were a Wizard. There is no penalty if this character leaves play."

Basically, the difference between the two versions is that in the first, the Elf-lord becomes a true avatar, and you'd suffer the -5 penalty for him/her getting axed, etc. (And we might have to make a fallen version... or use Nicholai's...) I am on the fence as to which text we should use. It would be truer to a normal Saw Further and Deeper deck to NOT have the avatar ability, yet here we still need the home site bonus and ability to use Wizard only cards, otherwise many ARDA mechanics will be unusable. But the avatar ability could add fun as well. Thoughts?

3) We could instead incorporate some of the Elf-lord powers from the dream card elf-lords. This would make the ARDA Elf-lords a bit hyped up and definitely different than merely using “Saw Further and Deeper.” Related to this, Eric recommended giving them the elf-rings to start with.

Personally, I like the purist approach of number 2, that lets you run a deck much lik a normal Saw Further and Deeper deck where you have no “Avatar” and so can bring characters in anywhere.

New Construction Notes: You will need two Saw Further and Deeper (A) cards in your pool of Wizards for a 7-player game, one for a 6-player game, plus one copy of Elrond, Galadriel, and Cirdan.

Frodo

Thorsten the Traveller
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Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Wed May 13, 2009 8:51 am

Elf-lords are not really up to par with wizards, even with Saw Further. They have no abilities, one skill and 6DI less, and will not be able to control a big guy therefore, or influence a big faction. Galadriel moreover has very low prowess. This can all be fixed with other abilities for Expanded World games, but in the Basic game we must stick with the normal character cards.

So the proposed Saw Further is good, but they need something else. We could give them +DI against their race only. Or +card draw when moving. Or some cumulative ability that works if there are more lords in play: +2 DI for every other Saw Further in play and you may look at 2 cards from opponent's hand in org phase.
Otherwise they will always remain left overs for those who lose the toss...

The FW ability (as well as the improved wizard abilities) is only for Expanded World games, so in that setting I would also make fallen Elf-lords, why not?

You have -3 mp already when the lords are killed, so there is no real need to make them a true avatar. Yet, there is also no real reason not to make them an avatar, unless you'd consider them not thematically fit to be avatars (yet RW's are also avatars). With regard to keeping Fallen lords option open, I'd make them avatars.

I made less powerfull permanent-event versions of the elven rings for Arda, you could start the game with those in Expanded games, but again, not in Basic games, so once again I think a good/effective Saw Further card is the way to go.
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Post by Nerdmeetsyou » Wed May 13, 2009 11:05 am

I would just give the Elf-Lords new Gametexts.
So they become more balanced, instead of useing another card for it...

so it is easier to balance them properly....
maybe give Galadriel an additional forsight ability when she is in lorien...
so she becomes some kind of non moving avatar!!!
or letting her heal characters at lorien more quicker...
so they imidatly move from wounded to untaped when she is there!

Thraduil just needs a little bit mor influence.... so he would be good enough!
maybe 5 and +3 for elves?
(Maybe malke tranduils halls for healing purposes a haven for him!)

And Elrond should loose his At rivendell +1 hand... and just give him another cool ability! (because galadriel allready has that)

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Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Thu May 14, 2009 9:57 am

nice idea Boder, but remember that Arda format is also ment for newbees or those who play casually and only infrequently, and we need to make sure the basic game is just as playable as the Expanded game. So we need a simple solution, and we can't expect everybody to go printing new textboxes for the elflords.

btw Thranduil was not included in the list of options for elf-lords, he seems to be less involved leader of a seclusive kingdom. But, he did do his part in both WotR and Battle of Five Armies, so we could include him too, he's got good stats as well.
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Nerdmeetsyou
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Post by Nerdmeetsyou » Thu May 14, 2009 2:24 pm

If you want a simple solution for NON-printout!

Just give the elflords +10 general influence!!
And let their avatar NOT requier influence!
and use tranduil instead of galadriel!
then they would have good enough stats, I believe!

Leon
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Post by Leon » Thu May 14, 2009 3:20 pm

I think the 2nd option mentioned eartlier, +10 GI of which half can be used for characters, is sufficient or should at least be tested. In this case you do not even need to limit it to the elf-lords, this is just compensated without avatar.

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Post by Frodo » Mon May 18, 2009 10:39 pm

This is complicated, in part because of the need to create a Basic Game solution and an Expanded Game solution.

Leon points out that with the Saw Further +10 DI solution, and not calling them avatars, you don’t even need to limit yourself to the Elf-lords. That is true; but it seemed to me that it would be nice to give a player access to one of the most powerful characters. I had mentioned to my playgroup “What about including Aragorn?” but they seemed to think that it was better to keep the theme of the Elf-lords present in this choice, rather than opening up the choice to ALL of the high-mind heroes (what about Glorf? What about Beorn?). I also like using Galadriel, as the group seemed too, because even though she is weak, she is an extremely popular character from the ME saga. I’m not sure if extra abilities would normally be needed but they may at least be needed to balance the weak Galadriel with her brother-lords. So here is my suggestion for simple new abilities, all to be put on Saw Further and Deeper, so as to minimize printing issues:


New Text for "Saw Further and Deeper":
Choose Elrond, Cirdan, or Galadriel as one of your starting characters. You may not pick a Wizard. You may start the game at the chosen character's home site.
+5 GI. You have an additional 5 GI ("defensive influence") that cannot be used to control characters. Your chosen character gains the following ability:
Galadriel only. Once during your organization phase, tap any elf in her company to take Marvels Told or Nenya into hand from the discard pile.
Elrond only. He may use any spell that says "Wizard only" as if he were a Wizard.
Cirdan only. Your non-faction resources that require a particular site type (e.g., Rebuild the Town, Bridge, Wizard’s Ring) may be played at any non-haven site type.

Cirdan’s is very weird, I admit… I was trying to think of something that would connect to his being a “builder”… he has beautified Grey Havens at least… but maybe this is a stretch. Is he such a pied pipers that noble hounds would run around him at Darkholds? Not that there needs to be an exact thematic connection for everything.

Edits, objections, etc.?

Frodo

Thorsten the Traveller
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Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Mon May 18, 2009 10:55 pm

nice effort, I'll have to think about it a bit 'further and deeper'. But for now:
Nenya might not be in discard pile for ages (nor marvels).
Cirdan's ability might indeed be very powerful, like play Aiglos at a free-hold?
Elrond's ability is very allround and thus best, while he is already the best character.

I also think using only elf-lords is best, and the poll also shows this.
I don't think it's strange if all lords could simly use spells as if wizard, they all bore the rings of power, and two of them are Noldor elves.

you don't need to mention 'you may not pick a wizard' I suppose, since this is a card you play only at the beginning of the game. Picking a lord is just part of the rules.

The issue with Galadriel is that she has less prowess, but only 3 less, and she's hard to kill. So you could also even things out a bit by saying: +1 prowess to all characters in Galadriel's company while she is unwounded, or tap Galadriel to give -2 prowess to an attack, or when you play Galadriel, you may search the character deck for a character (thus you can choose a big guy, before the others get their pick of Glorfindel/Beorn etc), or hazard limit for Galadriels company is at -1. Things like that.
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Frodo
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Post by Frodo » Mon May 18, 2009 11:00 pm

I like the +1 prow or less HL ability for Galadriel. But if we give her an extra ability, shouldn't we give the the others extras too?

Aiglos in Cirdan-terms would translate as: playable at an underdeeps freehold.
So it would be unplayable.

What if Galadriel said: "She may tap to cancel any hazard permanent-event in play"? This is thematic and relatively-strong.

Frodo

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