Format Fail

I hesitated even writing this one up to be honest.  However, I wanted this site to share the good, the bad, and the ugly of what we ran.  Tonight’s format was more on the bad/ugly side.  I will share it regardless, and hopefully the Community can come together and help make it work.  I still believe there is something here to salvage.

What Did You Play?

No Team builds to share tonight.  Tonight is about the Format itself.  What we decided to try out was flipping the game upside-down.  You opponent was going to spend your energy for you.  They would lose life for any energy left over in your Reserve Pool at the end of the turn.  The only restrictions we put on this were that you could not use Crossover characters/actions and could not have anything more than 5 cost on the Team (we limited it to no more than 2 of these characters).

The rules were as follows:

  • You roll and re-roll on your turn as normal.
  • You opponent will then spend the energy in your Reserve Pool a they see fit, but using the following order of operations:
    1. They must spend the energy to field characters first.  If two or more of the same character roll, they must field the highest level version of the character.
    2. They may then spend energy to purchase characters/actions.
    3. They may spend energy to use Global Abilities.  (We messed this one up lots and allowed Globals as in a normal game).
    4. Any energy left over is now yours to spend as you see fit.  Your opponent loses life equal to the amount of energy left in your Reserve Pool at the end of your turn.

With the rules set out, we decided to give this format a try.

Game 1:

Bye!… Oh wait… Someone showed up late.  Bye-no-more.  This kind of set the table for the night.  It was basically a race to buy the crappiest BAC’s and load your opponent’s bag with them.  As I suspected it would be part of the game, I brought a Yuan-Ti to deal out Attune damage.  However, it took forever for me to roll only a Bolt and another useless energy to force my opponent to buy her for me.  Once she hit, the bag-o-actions I had actually became a weapon.  However, time got called as we started way later than the other players.  I was behind in life at the time, so I took the loss.

0-1

Game 2:

This player brought Fireball and Tabaxi Rogue.  This is where we really screwed up our own rules.  The Tabaxi Rogue Global was wasting energy like crazy.  I knew this format was not really working by this point, and decided to give my opponent stuff to kill me with.  I was buying him Fireballs in the hope of him murdering me.  However, it turned out that eventually I squeaked out a win with a Yuan-Ti/Fireball combo.

1-1

Game 3:

Tsarina.  I bought those for my opponent as fast as I could and took it to the face.

1-2

Post-Mortem:

The idea was good.  The execution was not.  We all kind of agreed on that fact.  Something was missing.  One player made the comment that if your build was specifically built for this format that it may have worked better.  Too many of us brought “regular” Teams and they suffered as a result (I am planning on playing the Team I built tonight in regular constructed as there is something there that I want to try).  I think tailoring your build to this specifically would work much better.

I know the Community is filled with creative people.  I am reaching out to you to help fix this Format Fail.  How would you tweak the rules to allow your opponent to use your energy on your behalf?  Limit it to a single purchase on your turn?  I would love to hear your thoughts on this one.  Please share them in the comments below.

We will be cleansing our palates of this one next week with regular old Constructed.

Thanks for reading!

– jourdo

 

2 Replies to “Format Fail

  1. Seems like you’ve already figured out my suggestion. Build specifically for the format. Don’t bring globals, and make sure every piece you have is useful by itself. I imagine I would build my team with all 8 call out/ unblockable pieces and my actions to investigate/ shra. I would also limit how many globals I had, and probably not have any. That would be my thinking anyway.

  2. I’m not going to post an article of my own this weekend, but just discuss my experiences with the event and format here in a reply to Jourdo’s article.

    I actually did build my team with the format in mind, but in retrospect I must admit I wasn’t particularly inspired about it. I certainly was surprised to see opponents bringing out Gobbys and Tsarinas.

    With the exception of my BACs – Power Bolt (3) and Fist of Fury (4) I had nothing on my team that cost more than 2. I was thinking with only cheap characters to buy, my opponent would be forced to buy plenty of them for me, and I would quickly outnumber my opponent.
    How did it work?

    Game 1 – I was up against a team with SR Yuan-Ti Pureblood and C Tabaxi Rogue. We loaded each other up on action dice to start, and I then resorted to buying him his R Blink Dogs and R Gelatinous Cubes. We were chipping away at each other, mostly with Power Bolt and Fist of Fury action dice, but it was a slog and we went to time, nearly even in life. On my final turn, I drew and landed two Power Bolt dice allowing me to do him 4 damage and remove any doubt about which of us would get the “ahead on life” win.

    Game 2 – Gobby. Tsarina. Vicious Struggle. Intellectually, I understood that the way to build for this format is to put together a “Choose Your Poison” team, but I hadn’t been expecting anybody to bring out the high yield nukes like Gobby and Tsarina. He made short work of me.
    1-1.

    Game 3 – Teen Titans team with Magic Missile and Delayed Blast Fireball as his BACs. I was running C Chwinga, which gave him plenty of bolts for the Magic Missile global. It also felt like my Sidekick dice were landing on their bolt energy sides more than 1/6 of the time during this game. He used the Magic Missile global extensively to keep my field thin and spend my energy on something that wasn’t characters. Even so, he resorted to buying me a Delayed Blast Fireball die at one point, which was my only hope of winning at that point.
    The game was another slog. His field was bigger and beefier that mine, but somehow I managed to keep enough of a wall of my own that he couldn’t just come charging through for the victory. Delayed Blast Fireball came around twice, and both times I whiffed both the roll and the re-roll.
    The game was taking forever – it turns out we’d missed a time call while concentrating on the game – and was showing no likelihood of ending anytime soon, so in the interest of time we chose to decide the ‘winner’ by having a Sidekick roll-off, which I won. But it was not a victory I truly earned.
    2-1

    Post-Mortem:
    Can something workable be made out of this format? I’m not prepared to say “No” just yet, but there’s a lot of work to be done before I can say yes.
    I didn’t find any of the games I played particularly enjoyable – two long, drawn-out slogs and one quick massacre, but some of that may be on the teams we brought.
    One thing that definitely needs to be addressed is global abilities, particularly ?energy fixer globals. Who can use them, and when? If we don’t ban ALL globals, I’d strongly recommend banning fixers.

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