ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Errata issued by the CoE, open discussion of candidate rules for errata, and submissions for the Annual Rules Vote.
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Bandobras Took
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Bandobras Took » Fri Aug 13, 2010 1:23 pm

Bruce wrote:If the CoE started altering the ICE legacy (modifying rules and or card texts), I'm afraid it would all end up in an arm-wrestling between opposing parties with different ideas of what is broken, what is cheezy, what is unthematic and so on.
Bandobras Took wrote: 1) Errata should never change the function of a given card to something else entirely. This is the purpose of the Virtual Card project, and it is doing well in its way. The purpose of CoE Errata should be to make cards work as intended, not to make cards do something different.

2) Errata to rules should have in mind simplification and intent. For example, the rules for facing automatic attacks are very poorly written. An erratum would ask "What was the intent behind these rules? Is there a way to more simply express that intent that results in fewer gray areas and less vagueness?"

3) Errata should never be solely for thematic reasons. A balance issue or a card not working as intended should always be the overriding force.
What in these three guidelines gave you the idea that theme ever entered into it?
Some cards and strategies are more powerful than others, and some cards are much more frequent in decks than others. That happens in all CCGs. The same applies for the number of top-competition decks being very restricted. I don't think this is the real problem. No CCG can be 100% perfect, at least not for everybody. I think MECCG is well balanced and thematic as it is.
So, because a CCG cannot be 100% perfect, we should give up on attempting to perfect it? Some cards and strategies are more powerful than others, but to the day that they went under, ICE issued errata and created cards to balance out the game and make sure that cards weren't too powerful. Their whole goal was to reach that 100% perfection, regardless of whether it was attainable.
Intervention on existing rules and/or cards is justified whether its benefits are clearly greater than its costs. In other words, whether they fix unanimously acknowledged faults. Not by chance the only precedent was the Balrog 2-mind rule, which fixed an imbalance, and was welcomed by the whole community and didn't create any rift. Nevertheless, I consider this as a pretty unique case: an abuse of such intervention may lead to endless conflicts.
As opposed to the current endless conflicts on Chance Meeting, or being able to play River on non-moving companies, We Have Come to Kill and Ringwraith Followers, etc.?
Developing new sets of cards (if necessary accompanied by new rules, and/or modifications of existing rules) instead of struggling over modifications to the existing ones can be more productive, IMO. In my view, the "standard" MECCG, i.e. the whole ICE-era's legacy, would become an introduction to the "CoE-era" of MECCG, an inner core of something bigger (and better). ;)
If the core of the game is dead, extensions will already have limited life. If you object to rules modifications on principle, then you object to Vastor's entire dream card project. The number of rules he's modified for the dream card format to work are too many to count.
To make it short, the point is not being conservatives or non-conservatives: the point is where we need to act in order to achieve our goals. IMO we should focus on developing something new, instead of taking huge efforts (with uncertain benefits) in order to retouch the existing.
So we should take huge efforts with uncertain benefits to create something new, rather than take huge efforts with uncertain benefits to make sure what we've got is actually working the way it was intended? :?

I'm sorry, but the only huge effort an errata process will require is one we put in place ourselves. I would not endorse Vastor's Dreamcards for normal play because he's made too many drastic changes to the rules, and that strictly on his own authority. That does not mean that his Dreamcards are without value or do not serve the community.

There is no correlation between us issuing errata and divisiveness. The divisiveness was already there, it's just that people who would like to see the game polished and balanced have been on the receiving end of all the negative results.
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by marcos » Fri Aug 13, 2010 1:44 pm

I'm sorry, but the only huge effort an errata process will require is one we put in place ourselves. I would not endorse Vastor's Dreamcards for normal play because he's made too many drastic changes to the rules, and that strictly on his own authority. That does not mean that his Dreamcards are without value or do not serve the community.
what about Virtuals? they mostly keep the rules as they are. And btw all this talking made me want to bring a new VC set, i will start collecting ideas again :)

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Bandobras Took
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Bandobras Took » Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:24 pm

Thank goodness. :)
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Bandobras Took » Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:36 pm

By the way, I'd just like to silence the whole egregious "The rules and cards work just fine as they are" by presenting a list of cards that don't work.

River: It's impossible to tap a Ranger for this card.
Far Sight: Fizzles itself.
Traitor: Never creates an attack.
Bane of the Ithil Stone: Can't cancel anything before the effect it's supposed to cancel resolves.
Anduril: Fizzles itself.
Dreams of Lore: Fizzles itself.
Test of Form: Cannot be canceled by Blind to the West, as playing the card is an active condition of the ring testing action.
Test of Lore: Ditto.
Wizard's Test: Ditto.
Ringlore: Ditto. (By the way, I'm going to start enforcing these in games I play.)
Sacrifice of Form: Fizzles itself under current rulings.
Wizard's Laughter: May not cancel agent influence attempts.
Quiet Lands: First use is impossible.
Fell Winter: Turns Free-Domains to Wildernesses
Morgul-Night: Turns Wildernesses to Dark-domains

Dragon-Lore: Fizzles itself.
Not at Home: Second use is impossible.

Vanguard of Might: Allows you to steal your opponent's Balrog.

More when I have more time, or perhaps when somebody establishes some sort of rules-and-text based counterargument.

Also, those who believe that the rules and cards are fine as they are have absolutely no problem with being unable to play Cracks of Doom and Gollum's Fate if the One Ring was not moved to Mount Doom.
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by thorondor » Fri Aug 13, 2010 8:10 pm

Bandobras Took wrote: There is no correlation between us issuing errata and divisiveness. The divisiveness was already there, it's just that people who would like to see the game polished and balanced have been on the receiving end of all the negative results.
agreed!
and for me the major point in this discussion. both things (seperatedly) are needed.

lets have a look at the ongoing discussion about Ringwraith folwoers. thats completely nuts. the card texts are in parts just stupid.
why not fix this, so that players like ugluk (who just wants to play a cool deck!) dont has to go thru endless posts without result by konrad and bandobras?

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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Bandobras Took » Fri Aug 13, 2010 10:24 pm

Or my personal favorite:

On A's Turn --
A: I play Helm of Her Secrecy and have Eowyn face the Nazgul auto-attack!
B: You can't. The rules clearly state that you can only play cards that cancel the attack, cancel a strike, or would be otherwise playable during the strike sequence. ICE clearly wanted you to deal with automatic attacks, not take cheap shortcuts around them.

On B's Turn --
A: Well, you're all wounded after that automatic attack. I guess turnabout's fair play, huh?
B: I play We Have Come To Kill and pick up 6 MPs this turn. This is because the METW Player's Guide clearly shows that ICE wanted people to take cheap shortcuts around auto-attacks. :roll:

If that exchange won't alienate a new player, I don't know what will.
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Bruce » Sat Aug 14, 2010 7:46 am

Bandobras Took wrote:
Some cards and strategies are more powerful than others, and some cards are much more frequent in decks than others. That happens in all CCGs. The same applies for the number of top-competition decks being very restricted. I don't think this is the real problem. No CCG can be 100% perfect, at least not for everybody. I think MECCG is well balanced and thematic as it is.
So, because a CCG cannot be 100% perfect, we should give up on attempting to perfect it? Some cards and strategies are more powerful than others, but to the day that they went under, ICE issued errata and created cards to balance out the game and make sure that cards weren't too powerful. Their whole goal was to reach that 100% perfection, regardless of whether it was attainable.
I'm not saying that MECCG could not be made perfect, theoretically at least, but there's a point beyond which you won't find agreement between the players. It is fallacious to believe that there can be a "war to end all wars" under the standpoint of balancing. ICE was free to issue all the erratas they wanted, simply because they were the authority publishing the game. People were free to accept ICE's conduct by following the official ICE rulings (and keeping on buying MECCG related products) or not. CoE is not the authority publishing MECCG. It is just a self-proclaimed body supposed to guide the international community, elected by a very active and very restricted minority. I'm not excluding the possibility of some intervention, but only in cases of evident imbalances. I don't see any widespread complaint of huge imbalances arising from the players' community at the moment, that's just what I meant.
Bruce wrote:If the CoE started altering the ICE legacy (modifying rules and or card texts), I'm afraid it would all end up in an arm-wrestling between opposing parties with different ideas of what is broken, what is cheezy, what is unthemathic and so on.
Bandobras Took wrote:I play We Have Come To Kill and pick up 6 MPs this turn. This is because the METW Player's Guide clearly shows that ICE wanted people to take cheap shortcuts around auto-attacks.
This is exactly the "arm-wrestling" I referred to. You consider ACM/WHCTK + character as a way too easy shortcut to go past aa's. Other people do not. Is it really worth it to have huge threads where people keep on arguing like this?
"this is overpowered because..."
"no, it isn't because..."

Relying on erratas to renew the game won't give many results IMO. As I said, there are DCs, VCs and alternative game formats for this. If erratas are meant to fix rules loopholes and paradoxes, then there's scope for productive work. Let's start from that list you made and analize each single case separately.

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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Sat Aug 14, 2010 10:32 am

The use of Latin died out when the Roman's left Gaul and the church monopolized it.
It's obvious that making changes in the regular game is also needed to keep that scene alive, and perhaps bring those who have wandered from it back. I use myself as an example, I stopped playing GO 5-6 years ago, I am still an active player though.
Nevertheless, it is true that we lack the automatic authority of the designers of the game, so we must earn it, and that's usually done by not going about too drastically.

Bandobras wrote:
I would not endorse Vastor's Dreamcards for normal play because he's made too many drastic changes to the rules, and that strictly on his own authority.
I must take some of the heat for Nico as well. The discussion is interesting of course, as with getting more serious about dreamcards comes the question, how far do we want to go to make it more appealing to a general meccg public? We have always adopted a pretty strict role-playing position when designing the game, but that's not for everybody. Plenty rules could be skipped while maintaining a pleasant dc game, perhaps that sacrifice should be made. We could eventually split up the project in 2 again, the hardcore dc player and the softcore dc player (the extreme and the pussy dc player so to speak), but I admit that will not be easy to do and truth be told, we've been playing and designing dc games for our own fun.

All depends on whether or not we decide to manufacture cards on a larger scale. As an online project only I don't think dc's will gain wide recognition.
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by marcos » Sat Aug 14, 2010 12:18 pm

i like the splitting into 2 DC projects idea, but as i mentioned before the original rules shouldn't change too much
All depends on whether or not we decide to manufacture cards on a larger scale. As an online project only I don't think dc's will gain wide recognition.
I'd like to see this coming true, but i have a question, why you think it wouldn't gain much recognition?

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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Bandobras Took » Sat Aug 14, 2010 12:32 pm

Bruce wrote:I'm not saying that MECCG could not be made perfect, theoretically at least, but there's a point beyond which you won't find agreement between the players. It is fallacious to believe that there can be a "war to end all wars" under the standpoint of balancing. ICE was free to issue all the erratas they wanted, simply because they were the authority publishing the game. People were free to accept ICE's conduct by following the official ICE rulings (and keeping on buying MECCG related products) or not. CoE is not the authority publishing MECCG. It is just a self-proclaimed body supposed to guide the international community, elected by a very active and very restricted minority. I'm not excluding the possibility of some intervention, but only in cases of evident imbalances. I don't see any widespread complaint of huge imbalances arising from the players' community at the moment, that's just what I meant.
That's because most of the people who found it frustrating have left. Jambo's selling his cards, for crying out loud. :)
Bruce wrote:If the CoE started altering the ICE legacy (modifying rules and or card texts), I'm afraid it would all end up in an arm-wrestling between opposing parties with different ideas of what is broken, what is cheezy, what is unthemathic and so on.
Bandobras Took wrote:I play We Have Come To Kill and pick up 6 MPs this turn. This is because the METW Player's Guide clearly shows that ICE wanted people to take cheap shortcuts around auto-attacks.
Actually, no. I don't mind it as such, I mind it when a card that was not meant to bypass attacks is used to bypass them and a card meant to be used when facing an attack is unable to be used when facing an attack. It is the inconsistency that irks and will drive away a new player far sooner than an official errata will drive them away.
Relying on erratas to renew the game won't give many results IMO. As I said, there are DCs, VCs and alternative game formats for this. If erratas are meant to fix rules loopholes and paradoxes, then there's scope for productive work. Let's start from that list you made and analyze each single case separately.
I agree to this, however. So long as we're actually working on it, I'll be content.

If we actually issue an errata, we could send a mass email to all the people that have left the game. They might get excited again. :)
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Sat Aug 14, 2010 5:24 pm

@Marcos. Because people experience something as real when they can see it, smell it, taste it...well I wouldn't eat precious cards, but it's been done. :wink:
When it's only an online project people will think more of it as a fancy.
We have RL DC tourney's, but the hassle printing/glueing cards will prevent people from joining in big numbers. I can tell you, it's a lot of work.
We could issue DC cards for the pussy game and not change any rules, you can play a normal game with mefb cards on gccg of course, but it will mean some texts have no/less meaning.
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by marcos » Sat Aug 14, 2010 5:30 pm

ok, got your point, but it is a hard work when just 2 people does it (you and nico), but if it is approved for normal play it is up to everyone to have a deck with a wide range of cards. If your opponent is lazy and you are not its his fault :lol:

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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Sat Aug 14, 2010 5:34 pm

Still you can do about 10 cards per hour (all included), so creating a brand new dc deck will cost you at least 3 hours. Not to mention printing individually is actually way more expensive than manufacturing large scale, of course. Only the real fans take that effort.
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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by thorondor » Sat Aug 14, 2010 8:37 pm

this thread is another good eample that we need some more structure when discussing. too many different topics ar emetnioned ehre already. i will do this tomorrow.
on the other hand, i thing this is a very good sign, cause finally the COE is awakening from its entish state.

@ A Chance Meeting:
i am pretty sure, the cards was laways meant to be played exactly as it is played right now. the title says CHANCE meeting, something unexpecting is coming the way, this can happen always and everywhere. this sudden popping up of a character in the site phae exactly reflects what the title says imo.
generally, i agree with bruno, that we should start with cards, where mistakes are obvious. that would give the COE some sort of legitimatin from the very start when we are about to begin with issueing errata. if we start with cards, where it looks like we want to balance the game, it will definately lead to splitting the community, i fear.
The use of Latin died out when ...
talking of latin:
"erratum" = error, mistake (singular!), while "errata" is the plural.
the soul of a philologist in me always cries out when seeing the wrong use of this latin word ;-)


finally quick note on DC:
as a whole i like it.
but new cards and rules are deliverd too fast. and the constant changes are annoying. i think thats why the tourney right now isnt taken as seriously as it should be: players feel to play an incomplete game, rules arnt finished, the map isnt finished, the decks arent finished (last lure i played a CH deck with out any ally in the deck. and it was no mistake, as nico told me).
imo the most important thing is to consolidate parts of DC. printing a first series with some additional rules would be prefect.
thats for the normal DC players then, let the nerds have there playground with thouands of more cards and rules and changes and maps.

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Re: ICE-Era Rulings and Conservatives

Post by Thorsten the Traveller » Sun Aug 15, 2010 12:23 am

never thought I'd be called a nerd...this is the only cardgame I play!
on the upside, now I can apply for the Beauty and the Nerd program :D

Well I'm sorry that it's not all finished, we've only put like 10000 hours into the development, but it takes more. And desinging solid DCCD's, over 20 of them, is more than ICE ever did, but yes each should have an ally. I recognize the problem, but basically since Christmas no cards have been added or rules have changed, so I hardly think that's why the tourney isn't advancing, but yes people get interested once development is over. Still, during 4 years the players had to buy/collect 1500 cards, 2 sets coming out per year, so it wasn't a problem then to deal with new stuff, apparently. And on gccg people can play mefb only, which is a fixed dc set....

feel free to move this to a DC project discussion thread.
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