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Funko Last Defense Available Now

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Sagrada: Life Expansion Unveiled

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Twilight Imperium: Prophecy of Kings Expansion Announced

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30 Jul 2020 11:25 #312601 by ubarose
Two additional players can now join the galactic struggle, bringing...

For the first time in years, a massive wealth of new content arrives for Twilight Imperium with the Prophecy of Kings expansion, bringing additional content to nearly every part of the game. 

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30 Jul 2020 12:25 - 30 Jul 2020 15:19 #312610 by Gary Sax
Because I have a lot of time on my hands, I've learned a lot about TI4 and high level play. I'm super curious if they're going to jolt the meta by redesigning some of the absolutely objectively garbage factions and tech and such (Winnu), the tourney meta sounds really weird. Or if they're just adding stuff? TI has had a lot of (good) expansions that also fix core problems and balance with the game that has revealed itself, so I think is pretty exciting for people into this game.
Last edit: 30 Jul 2020 15:19 by Gary Sax.

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30 Jul 2020 20:49 #312650 by Disgustipater
Been waiting for this announcement for like a month since it was leaked and couldn't confirm if it was fake or not . I'm both excited for it and also extremely curious/nervous about how 7 new races will change the meta that's been around for the last 9 years. I think 4th edition is great, and I've played it several dozen times. As much as all the new stuff sounds cool, I'm not sure I want to throw a bunch of extra overhead onto the game. The potential added time is not an issue for me, it's mostly an issue of adding even more facets to all the shit I already have to keep track of in a game. But I liked a lot of this stuff in their 3rd Edition analogues, so maybe it wont matter.

I'm confused about how I feel, I think. I'll definitely be getting it though.
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30 Jul 2020 21:30 #312651 by Jackwraith
So, just out of curiosity: What is the meta? You say "9 years", which I assume means because all of the races from TI3 are in TI4, right? So nothing really changed in the new version to make any of them function any better? Gary says the Winnu are trash (which they kinda were in TI3.) Nothing in the game function to make them viable or, say, slow down the Nekro?

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30 Jul 2020 21:38 #312652 by Disgustipater
Factions were tweaked in 4th, but are largely similar to their 3rd Ed counterparts. Maybe meta isn't the right word. Just the familiarity of how each race interacts with each other race. It is kind of exciting though to throw a bunch of new races in the mix that people haven't played to death.
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30 Jul 2020 22:20 - 30 Jul 2020 23:37 #312655 by Gary Sax

Jackwraith wrote: So, just out of curiosity: What is the meta? You say "9 years", which I assume means because all of the races from TI3 are in TI4, right? So nothing really changed in the new version to make any of them function any better? Gary says the Winnu are trash (which they kinda were in TI3.) Nothing in the game function to make them viable or, say, slow down the Nekro?


Yeah, TI3 and 4 are pretty close but FFG's design crew tried to make TI4 better balanced. They supposedly did a pretty good job but sort of messed up with a few factions---which is natural.

The community is deep on TI4, esp on tabletop simulator. People have planned and known openings like chess (more variance than that but you take my point), and some factions are known to be strong contenders (Sol, Jol Nar) and some are known to be kind of trash that you don't generally play in a tourney game except as an insult/challenge (esp Winnu, Sardak Norr aren't supposed to be very good, Xxcha). There are win rate statistics and all sorts of stuff for thousands of games. See here:

docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1c2fGqedk...LSRUKaKdo/edit#gid=0

These numbers aren't WAYYYYY off probably because there is self balancing at the table (28% win rate for top, down to 14% for Sardakk Norr) but the number of plays also is very telling about strength too---Winnu are so trash they are only played in *2%* of games even though of that tiny number of games they do ok. It's possible that they are only selected by really good players as a handicap, which might help explain why their win rate is ok.

It's one of these games that I have really enjoyed getting versed in, watching streams in the background, etc in but have no interest in playing unless I have a group of 4-5 friends who love it---it's a titanic box so I'm good hanging back unless this did happen. Like, if we got a group of fun casual in my town or here on discord with people I like I might buy the game and start playing on tabletop but there's no way I'd play with strangers or the community at large. Played at the high or tourney level, the game is very much like chess in that there are expected moves and there can be annoyance when you play outside of accepted efficient play because it fucks with other people's decisions.
Last edit: 30 Jul 2020 23:37 by Gary Sax.
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30 Jul 2020 23:22 #312659 by Disgustipater
I found this comment to be pretty amusing:
"The 'buff' for Winnu is the seven new factions. That means less chance of randomly picking them."
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31 Jul 2020 00:11 #312661 by Jackwraith
I remember the problem with the Sardak in TI3 was the fact that they started with only one carrier. That gimped their opening something fierce, especially if the map was set up so that they had to more than one space to the next nearest system. OTOH, if they were left to do their own thing for a while, they could build up a fleet and a network of PDS that was just devastating. Of course, no one let them do their own thing...

But those numbers for the Winnu (miserable pick rate, decent win rate) are the hallmarks of a "specialist." Using Heroes of the Storm as an example, Genji and Medivh have miniscule pick rates because their skill floor is so high (i.e. it's difficult to 'git gud' with them.) But in the hands of skilled/experienced players, they can be devastating. People often wonder why this or that buff isn't made to them and it's because, in top level play, they're ferocious and they'd be dominant if they were strengthened. I guess it's open to speculation as to whether that's the case with the Winnu, but their abilities are so tied to MR that it seems more like they were simply added as the "story faction", since they really don't have any advantage away from the one world that most players of the game really want to seize, for a variety of reasons.
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31 Jul 2020 00:23 - 31 Jul 2020 00:24 #312662 by Disgustipater

Jackwraith wrote: I guess it's open to speculation as to whether that's the case with the Winnu, but their abilities are so tied to MR that it seems more like they were simply added as the "story faction", since they really don't have any advantage away from the one world that most players of the game really want to seize, for a variety of reasons.


Yeah, if someone else manages to take Mecatol Rex before them, which isn't difficult given their crappy starting units/tech, their abilities are basically negated (don't have to pay the 6 Influence to take a fresh Rex, and they can put a PDS and Space Dock on the planet when they take Mecatol). They aren't likely to take it from someone who already has control of it. They are effectively a race with no abilities.
Last edit: 31 Jul 2020 00:24 by Disgustipater.
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31 Jul 2020 08:55 #312663 by Sagrilarus
So, speaking as a guy that does formal testing as part of my job, getting a TI expansion right should be easier than other games, because there is such a strong player base to test in. Has this thing been knocking around, being tested by the guys that have 50+ plays in? It seems to me TI has a really deep source of knowledge to draw from for IV&V.

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31 Jul 2020 09:36 - 31 Jul 2020 09:56 #312664 by Disgustipater
A bunch of the new components are re-worked ideas from 3rd Edition that never made it into 4th, so hopefully they were able to refine them like they did for the base game stuff. I'm particularly excited about a bunch of new objectives.

There seemed to be some experience people in the reddit thread implying they were playtesters and deliberately pushed the idea of the leaked image being a fake. The image popped up back in March (?) on the Discord and was dismissed as a fake. It doesn't appear the leak made it out of the Discord community the first time, which really surprises me. I didn't hear about it back then, but only when it resurfaced a month ago on reddit and BGG.

Edit - The lead developer of the TI4 stuff seems somewhat active in the online community, so hopefully that would lead to more thorough playtesting options.
Last edit: 31 Jul 2020 09:56 by Disgustipater.
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31 Jul 2020 11:23 #312669 by Gary Sax

Sagrilarus wrote: So, speaking as a guy that does formal testing as part of my job, getting a TI expansion right should be easier than other games, because there is such a strong player base to test in. Has this thing been knocking around, being tested by the guys that have 50+ plays in? It seems to me TI has a really deep source of knowledge to draw from for IV&V.


This is all anecdotal from watching streams and listening to podcasts, but one of the main design guys on this is pretty involved in the community, watches tournies, and releases ideas for fixes. So I think yes.

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31 Jul 2020 17:52 - 31 Jul 2020 17:52 #312683 by Gary Sax
More info: www.twitch.tv/videos/696491793

Guy on the left is very involved in the community.
Last edit: 31 Jul 2020 17:52 by Gary Sax.

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31 Jul 2020 21:29 #312689 by Disgustipater
Finally got to watch this. I take back everything I said. I'm super excited for all of it. ALL OF IT.

Dane specifically said the expansion is designed to be used as a whole and not as separate modules, which is nice, so as not to have fragmented rule sets when playing with different groups.

Nice of them to include hyperlane tiles. Glad I procrastinated in making my own.

The codex thing seems really interesting. Introducing variant cards for fun and scenarios on a regular basis should really change things up.
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31 Jul 2020 21:37 #312690 by Gary Sax
It's good right?

Do you play TI:4 online? I'm tempted to put it on my gift list.

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