AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

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AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby Vic Davis » Fri May 30, 2008 3:35 pm

Announcing the Free Mini Expansion Pack "The Tip of the Spear"

Thanks to all the great discussion here, I've been working on a smallish mini expansion to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of the release of AE. It will hopefully appear on 17 JUL 08 and be version 1.08 The Tip of the Spear. The idea is to boost the infantry type cards up in usefulness a bit. I'm not a believer in pure mathematical balance for every card in the game but even a crotchety, recalcitrant, stubborn fool can see that the low end cards are not pulling their own weight just by being lower deck point and resource cost cards... the calculus of the challenges is way too brutal.

So here is what I have been testing so far and it's been promising.... but remember it's not world shaking and the basic dynamics of the game are not going to change... which for me is essential because I don't want to start at ground zero for testing the AI all over again. My basic goal was to make the infantry type cards more "interesting" to the players. With this in mind here is what I will be offering:

Heroes (Generals) can create "Advanced Training" enhancement cards at their respective Academies by succeeding in a "challenge." The challenges are tiered like the tech/genetics cards but a little easier threshold level wise. These enahancement cards can be used to tailor the infantry to missions you might have in mind. Here is a tentative list but the names and effects are likely to change... this is just a first pass. You can only put ONE of these on an infantry card so the normal enhancement rules DO NOT apply. Once the infantry type card gets an Advanced Training enhancement it gets a special Chevron icon on the top left of the card (same place the plague/immunity icon goes). The effects are stil being tweaked so I won't list the specifics yet... and this will likely change but you get the idea..... you can make significant custimization choices now. Right now PBA will get this opportunity but that may change

Advanced Training Firepower
Advanced Training Defense
Advanced Training Toughness
Advanced Training Flanking
Advanced Training Maneuver
Advanced Training Anti-Armor
Advanced Training Medical
Advanced Training Shock Troops
Advanced Training Assault
Advanced Training Precision Fire
Advanced TBD
Advanced TBD

Additionally there will be two new innate abilities for the infantry type cards (PBA not included) -- names and effects still being tested but here is what I have now:

Fire and Manuever - Infantry can use this ability to fire and maneuver more easily in difficult terrain. When fighting in terrain that costs more than 1 movement point to enter (i.e. brown and dark brown hexes) then any attack against any large* unit card whether successful or not results in a "disable" effect being applied to the target that last for 1 turn and is equal to the terrain cost -1 (i.e. brown = 1 and dark brown = 2)

* large indicates the following unit card types: Armor, Mecha, Support, Artillery, Automat, Automecha, Robot Artillery, Robot Support, Dragon, Giant, Xenomorph

Combined Arms Damage Bonus - If an army contains an infantry type unit in the front row then there is a positive modifier to damage done by an Armor, Mecha, Automat, Automecha, Dragon, Giant, Xenomorph or Bio-Mecha of 1 for each infantry type unit in the front row during combat.

Optional Rule Being Tested
Army Fuel Use: An additional cost of 1 unit of energy is required for each Armor, Mecha, Automat, Automecha or Bio-Mecha when an army with those types of unit cards moves.

So, any and all comments, complaints, etc. welcome. I know this won't probably please everyone but I think this is a solid move in the right direction. At the very least it will allow players to have some fun customizing some of their cards.... I had always wanted to have some type of level up action for the cards so this is a small way to try and add that.
Vic Davis
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby skavenhorde » Fri May 30, 2008 4:05 pm

Sounds great to me. I've started winning the normal game and have attempted two games with Cults in them. I say attempted because I was utterly and completely destroyed each time, so any mini lvl ups for my poor muties would come as a welcome relief against those cult fanatics :)

Thanks for all the hard work on this great game.
Despite all my rage. I'm still just a rat in a cage.
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby potatoedoughnut » Fri May 30, 2008 4:23 pm

skavenhorde wrote:Despite all my rage. I'm still just a rat in a cage.

Completely off topic, but I just noticed your sig + username. Very clever.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to the tweaks. It will definatly make my all egg Xeno deck more interesting!
Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines.
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby spacedust » Fri May 30, 2008 4:57 pm

Fantastic!! Really looking forward to this expansion. Vic continues to amaze.

Edit: thought about it some more and starting salivating at the changes announced. This is amazing stuff. This will really open up the deckbuilding space for alternate combined arms, infantry, and other strategies. I CANNOT wait to use light infantry in a deck properly, without thinking 'there I go again crippling myself'. Fantastic.
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby Stercus » Fri May 30, 2008 6:13 pm

Add a first round retreat ability for my poor engineers.

Poor suckers...
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby AuralParadox » Sat May 31, 2008 5:09 am

I am so completely looking forward to it. More than anything, I hope the computer can exploit it well.
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby Kruztee » Sat May 31, 2008 8:33 am

Sounds awesome so far! Thanks for your continued efforts, Vic! :D
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby ker » Sat May 31, 2008 1:47 pm

Kick ass! More customisation is always fun :) And that means more choice in Deck Builder – Double kick ass!

My only cautious thought is: if I understand correctly Infantry signifies Robots, Mutants, Xenogytes as well as (Human) Infantry? Then you might want to consider moving Elite Robot Infantry to a different class (PBA?) since they are pretty potent as is.

Otherwise totally awesome!
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby Therlun » Sat May 31, 2008 2:07 pm

Sounds great.

I know it might be VERY early to post complains and suggestions already, but one thing I miss is the movement cost.
A big number of infantry units makes moving around pretty expensive AP-wise and I didnt see anything addressing that... :P

I think the Fire and Maneuver ability has great potential to change the game in an interesting way.
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Re: AE 1.08 The Tip of the Spear

Postby CitizenKang » Sat May 31, 2008 5:23 pm

Hi Vic -
I've been lurking these boards since around when Cults came out, but I wanted to post for a few reasons. First, to tell you what a great game you've made and how much I'm looking forward to Tip of the Spear. Secondly, I've been reading the posts in here about ideas for fighting the uberstacks and I've come up with an one that might work for the TBA abilities you are going to be introducing.

It would be a guerilla ability that you could attach to infantry, and would give that army the possibility of a guerilla attack, which would be 2 dice + total number of units in the army being attacked, meaning against a general with a command rate of 8 and a full army, they would get a 10 die attack. The thinking is it would be easier to find and hit a target in a large army on the move than a small one. I think the target should be a unit the player can choose, not just random, and a successful attack could do damage to the unit plus give it negative modifiers either for the next round, or indefinitely. This would soften up an uberstack so a medium strength army could then go toe-to-toe with it.

After the guerilla attack, the guerilla army would make a roll against the recce of the army it attacked, and if it beat the recce, it would immediately withdraw. Failing the roll would lead straight into combat with the army it just attacked, because the guerilla army was spotted. I've been going back and forth on also including something like 'trickster' in the guerilla skill, too, so even if the unit is spotted, it can still make an escape. Maybe the guerilla unit could withdraw before the first round, but there won't be negative modifiers to the attacking roll, so it's more likely that the guerilla unit will take some damage or be destroyed if the recce roll succeeds?

I also think there should be penalties if you are moving multiple guerilla units within the same army, say bonuses to recce rolls or the subtraction of defensive dice in retreat rolls, with the thinking being that it would be easier to spot the larger army as it tried to escape.

So that's the idea. Obviously the inspiration for it came from ideas and comments other people on these boards have had, but I don't think I read any where the potential attack against the stack is being determined by its size. Not sure how workable it would be, but I wanted to throw it out there.

Again, thanks for making such a fantastic game, and for all the work you are doing to keeping adding even more. Now it's time to get back to Toxic Bog's mutant scenario 8. So many mountain bases to build!
Don't blame me, I voted for Kodos.
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