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Author Topic: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?  (Read 7937 times)

Knallogfall

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Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« on: 08 August 2014, 07:21:02 »
Curiosity, I have a large stockpile of mechs and such which I picked up on sale from a crumbling store chain many years ago, including a very nice looking Zeus. I've never seen or even heard of anyone actually playing it around here (which I guess was part of the reason I got it so cheap), but I do have the plain Dark Age starter with the accompanying rules as well as various 'expansion' leaflets that came in the boosters. I've heard mention that a couple factions were extremely unbalanced and that they made the entire initial line-up illegal with the release of Age of Destruction, which in turn was one of the killing blows for the game as a whole. Not to mention these stupid dials won't turn...

Anyway, yay or nay? I've seen a lot of people using their models for plain BattleTech or selling them off in bulk on eBay (usually at extremely inflated prices for a dead and seemingly unpopular game), I happen to have a hex mat that suits them size-wise so I was considering both using them for CBT or playing it by itself as it was intended to be played.

Kharim

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #1 on: 08 August 2014, 09:13:33 »
The game is dead for long time now. I think hardly anybody plays it.
I use most of my clicky vechicles and battle armour in Battletech. Though I stripped them from their bases.
I dont use clicky mechs- the seem to big, however they are good to use as bits for modeling.

GhostCat

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #2 on: 08 August 2014, 11:33:44 »
You can find complete Rules and errata on Warrenborn.  Nothing new has been produced in six years, so, in that sense, yes, it's dead and buried.

Whether it's fun or balanced depends on who plays and how well they understand the rules.  Manufacturing quality control in China is an entirely different issue.  Let's not go there.

At one point, Wizkids thought they could follow the card flipping games as a model for continued success, but pre-painted figure sets produced every four months costs a lot more than a deck of paper cards.  WK even experimented with retiring whole sets after a limited life span in organized sponsored events.  The fan base rejected that idea and the retired sets had to return to organized play.

The unbalanced factions were the result of the rules being changed even while these sets were still in the design stage.  Age of Destruction was not a killing blow, it cured many things and explained them better.

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Atlas3060

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #3 on: 08 August 2014, 12:14:15 »
AoD was the 2.0 they needed, but it just came too late for some.
It really did fix some things up, but it also still tried to keep the older sets relevant IIRC.
Of course then WizKids tried to retire sets which hurt some of the players' strategies and armies.
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LordNth

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #4 on: 09 August 2014, 19:16:05 »
For a Dead Game I know quite a few that play it.

For a set of long not produced models, others are still posting pictures and AAR of games and paint jobs.

For a long gone and forgotten game there is a board that shows life.

Was it good?  It's still fun to play.

Greywind

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #5 on: 09 August 2014, 21:43:02 »
Balance is relative. Was is balanced to play solo faction? Not really, but playing rainbow didn't have a lot of innate flavor.

GhostCat

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #6 on: 10 August 2014, 02:26:09 »
I suppose that some factions did seem weak without help from allied factions.  The synergy of having all units able to make formations and change them as needed made a big difference to a lot of people that did play single faction armies.  I did notice that some players (mostly for economic reasons) limited their collections to just one or two factions.  So they have to learn how to get compensating value from the units they do have.

So, too, the Rainbow Army has to have some kind of value that makes not having easy to use formations worth doing.  There are quite a few items that either can not be part of a formation or even performs better without a formation.  The VTOLs do not move or attack in groups larger than a single unit.  Artillery gets no real benefit from attacking in formation, and transports can move with other units in formation but only one carrier can load or disembark with each order.  Also, transports don't really care what faction their passengers belong to.

I played with a lot of faction pure armies and I learned quickly how to make teams and formations that performed well.  Rainbow armies made from three or more unrelated factions are by definition Order intensive and it can take a long time for scattered units to get organized.

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jackpot4

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #7 on: 10 August 2014, 14:21:42 »
The game is a lot of fun.  There are plenty of ways to alter the rules and make it more fun.  When we play here we do not use artillery but we don't turtle either.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but one of the reasons artillery was introduced was because of the jonah levin atlas camping in deep water and not moving back in the 300 point armies.  Artillery is badly broken and if you have two or more then the other player has very little he can do before his powerful pieces are brought down. 

To me it was artillery being the first blow and the set retirement being the knockout.  I stopped playing with the retirement.  I came back a few years later but the game was long dead and it has been incredibly hard trying to find anyone who would have an interest.  But, then again that just kind of speaks to the state of the people around us because no one can use their imagination or enjoy some good science fiction unless they are already into some kind of gaming.  It's all xboxes, ipads, and cell phones now. 

At the end of the day the game is good and even great with a change in some rules once you know which ones are bad.  This is how you fix the card/pilot issue with the orginal sets: For example take Lt. Diane Jameson in her Ryoken II and the only pilot cards she can use are heavy pilot academy certs, no named pilots.  Of take a nameless Spider and you can put either an academy cert pilot or a named pilot in them. 

As long as there is cooperation, patience, and understanding the game can be fixed and played enjoyably.
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GhostCat

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #8 on: 10 August 2014, 16:41:38 »
The game is a lot of fun.  There are plenty of ways to alter the rules and make it more fun.  When we play here we do not use artillery but we don't turtle either.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but one of the reasons artillery was introduced was because of the jonah levin atlas camping in deep water and not moving back in the 300 point armies.  Artillery is badly broken and if you have two or more then the other player has very little he can do before his powerful pieces are brought down.  <snip>

As long as there is cooperation, patience, and understanding the game can be fixed and played enjoyably.

The direct result of the Submarine Atlas strategy was that Deep Water got banned from sanctioned events in tournament play.  When you say you don't Turtle, was that by agreement?  Or did you find some other way to out run the Charge Monkeys? 

I've been on both sides of the Artillery Issue, and if you've seen a Spirit/Nova Cat Long Tom in action, you'd laugh, too.  The main point about Artillery, is that it can damage things from very far away.  Most players have a bad habit of retreating back out of range after that first attack pog is placed.  That usually means they Pushed to Run Away, and then have to rest or repair before trying again.  Yep that's what makes Artillery so annoying, people are afraid of taking damage.  On the flip side, If you were to suddenly charge to the Guns, you'll be too close for the target tokens to have any value.  And, you'll notice that the points spent on Artillery units means points not spent on something more durable or damaging. 

Too many people whined about the brokenness of Artillery, but never learned to either use it or defeat it.  Same thing happened with Tank Drop when it first appeared.  These are basic Game Mechanics that have to be learned before any discussion about the metagame can begin.

The biggest flaw in the Dark Age Rules that was cured by the Age of Destruction upgrade was the whole Base-the-Target, Break-away-from-the-Target, Shoot-him-in-the-face-with-a-firing-squad, Base-it-again-so-it-can't-shoot-back... "Base/Break Attack" for short.  The cure was allowing modifiers for attacking distant units while in base contact with other opposing units. 

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Knallogfall

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #9 on: 10 August 2014, 22:30:39 »
I see, so the recommendation is to at the very least use the Age of Destruction rules then. Fair enough, I never got the starter for it though, and although prices for it aren't too unreasonable for the most part the shipping costs tend to be through the roof. I'll keep it in mind in case it ever becomes relevant. On a side note, how well does the plastic used for the models take to ethanol cleaning? I'd like to repaint one or two of them, but I would need to break the whole thing apart, clean and repose it before I do so.

worktroll

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #10 on: 10 August 2014, 22:38:38 »
Two things:

1) The figures only need a wash in warm soapy water and they're ready to paint. Just consider the supplied paintwork as "colourful primer" ;) You can go to the effort to strip and disassemble them if you want, but people are getting very good results with just a wash.

2) The biggest issue I've seen with the MW game is that if one tries and play it like it's BattleTech, it doesn't work. The game engine is fine, but very different - if only for the "move-shoot, then move-shoot" sequence (compared to BT's "move-move, all shoot" sequence). Play it as itself and it works better.
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Knallogfall

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #11 on: 10 August 2014, 23:34:25 »
Of course, I have a preference for Classic BattleTech but I figured having access to ClickyTech and other fast-paced rulesets would be a good way to introduce people to the universe even if they're not into the complexities of record sheets and such.

As far as the models are concerned, some of them are quite nice, I have a Zeus which is pretty cool, but a lot of them suffer from poor workmanship and quality control, and in some cases even the underlying paint has been applied in rather thick layers. I have a pair of Nova Cats that suffer from this, and it looks really bad. I wanted to rework and repaint a Wolfhound to bring it in line with my CBT Wolfhounds, so I'd have 4 different ones... that would be all the official Wolfhound models, right? Each sculpt seems to increase in size as well, so why not.

worktroll

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #12 on: 11 August 2014, 00:22:18 »
A few more things :)

1) Some of the MW paintjobs are actually very good. The older ones tend to be better. I have some which I won't cut up for parts - mainly Banson's Raiders, an Arbalest and a Raider in particular, but some of the Capellan and Highlander designs too - because they look great. Base colour, accent, metallic & black, with a little weathering - hard put to do better myself! But some are indeed apalling. The later ones - around the time they started introducing box sets - are IMHO cartoony, with no attempt to detail them. Just wash & repaint.

2) If you want something faster paced, but capable of using your DA minis, look into Alpha Strike. AS is the "quick playing" version - it goes a different direction than MW, but keeps a lot of the engine of BattleTech - eg. move-move-fire, range bands - while using a much simplified damage & structure system. Relatively new, and growing in interest. It's not trying to replace "classic" BT - it needs the existing rules for design, etc - but is aimed at those times you want to get companies, battalions or more on the table. This can be done with BT, but takes a lot longer - an AS company-on-company game is, from what I've seen, potentially the same time or quicker than a BT lance-on-lance game.

3) I love "accurising" the DA minis - you can see what I've done here[/i]. Make sure to post pics of your repaints/alterations!

W.
* No, FASA wasn't big on errata - ColBosch
* The Housebook series is from the 80's and is the foundation of Btech, the 80's heart wrapped in heavy metal that beats to this day - Sigma
* To sum it up: FASAnomics: By Cthulhu, for Cthulhu - Moonsword
* Because Battletech is a conspiracy by Habsburg & Bourbon pretenders - MadCapellan
* The Hellbringer is cool, either way. It's not cool because it's bad, it's cool because it's bad with balls - Nightsky
* It was a glorious time for people who felt that we didn't have enough Marauder variants - HABeas2, re "Empires Aflame"

jackpot4

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #13 on: 11 August 2014, 00:54:56 »
The direct result of the Submarine Atlas strategy was that Deep Water got banned from sanctioned events in tournament play.  When you say you don't Turtle, was that by agreement?  Or did you find some other way to out run the Charge Monkeys? 

I've been on both sides of the Artillery Issue, and if you've seen a Spirit/Nova Cat Long Tom in action, you'd laugh, too.  The main point about Artillery, is that it can damage things from very far away.  Most players have a bad habit of retreating back out of range after that first attack pog is placed.  That usually means they Pushed to Run Away, and then have to rest or repair before trying again.  Yep that's what makes Artillery so annoying, people are afraid of taking damage.  On the flip side, If you were to suddenly charge to the Guns, you'll be too close for the target tokens to have any value.  And, you'll notice that the points spent on Artillery units means points not spent on something more durable or damaging. 

Too many people whined about the brokenness of Artillery, but never learned to either use it or defeat it.  Same thing happened with Tank Drop when it first appeared.  These are basic Game Mechanics that have to be learned before any discussion about the metagame can begin.

The biggest flaw in the Dark Age Rules that was cured by the Age of Destruction upgrade was the whole Base-the-Target, Break-away-from-the-Target, Shoot-him-in-the-face-with-a-firing-squad, Base-it-again-so-it-can't-shoot-back... "Base/Break Attack" for short.  The cure was allowing modifiers for attacking distant units while in base contact with other opposing units. 

GC

True, I did forget about that little tactic of base and break. 

But, even charging up the field to fight the artillery your mechs may blow themselves up, your vehicles will be pushed, or your heavy tank drop will be left alone to get swarmed by infantry or hit by a big mech sitting with the artillery.  Every turn the artillery can be fired(with two or more pieces), forcing a mech to push every turn to avoid damage (So it can still fight the opposing high defense unit waiting).  If the units you do task with fighting the artillery never wind up killing it, you are fighting a losing battle with less units. 

Artillery can be cool and even playable but with a drastic change in rules.  One rule change I was thinking about was if artillery fired over the course of four turns.  Turn 1: place pog
Turn 2: fire
Turn 3: round flies through air
Turn 4: round impacts/unit "reloads"
Turn 1: Unit fires again

This would keep people from firing two pieces, one every other turn, until the opposing pieces overheat or push and are forced to sit through artillery barrages until they have an attack of 7 or 8, movement of 4, and a defense of 17 or 18.

Being able to "beat" artillery is about lucky dice rolls, not skill or tactics.  The artillery owner needs to miss every pog, while the opposing player needs to pass every heat roll or use figures like the Ghost Bears who can still really fight and pack a punch in their last 5 clicks of life once they have overheated crossing the field to fight the full health units just standing guard around the artillery.

Sure, when both players use artillery it's a different outcome, but then it is pog wars/arty wars rather than Mechwarrior.  Artillery should be a support unit, not a primary offensive unit.
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GhostCat

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #14 on: 11 August 2014, 07:51:26 »
I think Wizkids tried something like what you suggested for artillery, but they added the need to place an Order token to the artillery unit on the turn it fires, and then another when it resolved that order, thus Pushing the unit to complete one attack.  If I remember correctly, the tokens were removed separately.

1. Give Fire Order, add Token.
2. Resolve Attack, add Token, apply Pushing damage, remove one Token for "Resting the unit".
3. Give new Fire Order, add Token, Push unit damage.
4. Resolve Attack, remove a Token, add a Token, Pushed again.
5. Rinse and Repeat until dead.

We called it the 'Token Tango' and even those of us that didn't like Artillery, thought it went too far.  Then a Sword Sworn Arrow IV tank got seriously nerfed by published errata that converted its Armor Piercing SE to 'single use'.  Auctions on eBay were dominated by players bidding hundreds of dollars for a single unit.

I personally preferred to fight Artillery Turtles with fast moving mechs tanks and infantry that could run through the rain without blowing up.  A Saxon/Hoverbike Drop can be very annoying by basing units in Deployment Zone on Turn 2, adding VC3 for each H-bike in the DZ. 

Quote
Being able to "beat" artillery is about lucky dice rolls, not skill or tactics.  The artillery owner needs to miss every pog, while the opposing player needs to pass every heat roll or use figures like the Ghost Bears who can still really fight and pack a punch in their last 5 clicks of life once they have overheated crossing the field to fight the full health units just standing guard around the artillery

I disagree, if luck was the only variable, then flip a coin and declare a winner.  Artillery can be defeated with skill and tactics that don't depend on "bring artillery to fight artillery".  There's a lot more to the metagame than just luck or dice.  And it's not 'always win' or 'always lose', that's why it IS a game.

There is no "super magic handwavium" that guarantees total victory and world domination every time you use it.

GC
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cavingjan

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #15 on: 11 August 2014, 08:08:57 »
I'll be honest. My Liao Anubis army routinely ate arty armies for lunch. The only ones I couldn't easily deal with were the ones surrounded by two layers of peasants. I just suffered agains large hardened armored beasts.

jackpot4

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #16 on: 11 August 2014, 11:16:29 »
I think Wizkids tried something like what you suggested for artillery, but they added the need to place an Order token to the artillery unit on the turn it fires, and then another when it resolved that order, thus Pushing the unit to complete one attack.  If I remember correctly, the tokens were removed separately.

1. Give Fire Order, add Token.
2. Resolve Attack, add Token, apply Pushing damage, remove one Token for "Resting the unit".
3. Give new Fire Order, add Token, Push unit damage.
4. Resolve Attack, remove a Token, add a Token, Pushed again.
5. Rinse and Repeat until dead.

We called it the 'Token Tango' and even those of us that didn't like Artillery, thought it went too far.  Then a Sword Sworn Arrow IV tank got seriously nerfed by published errata that converted its Armor Piercing SE to 'single use'.  Auctions on eBay were dominated by players bidding hundreds of dollars for a single unit.

When did they try this "token tango" out?  Was this a later change during Wolf Strike's release or something?  I have never heard of this.

Well the problems I face tend to be that I enjoy using House Davion units, so moving fast isn't much of an option.  Sure, I got Hendrene Michalik and Leo Riordan but all the mechs run fairly hot and my die rolls in general aren't that good.  I miss many of my 8+rolls and I avoid heat dials with a lot of ammo explosions like the plague.  I just find games far more enjoyable without artillery. 
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cavingjan

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #17 on: 11 August 2014, 13:02:22 »
That was a problem I noticed that a fair number of people had (more CBT players than nonCBT players). People playing a faction that did not match their playstyle so their tools were not what they needed. (That isn't a knock against anybody.) Davion was an artillery faction and not really a counter artillery faction. The way that the game was designed meant that you really couldn't use a ton of units from another faction and really call yourself by a different faction.

jackpot4

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #18 on: 11 August 2014, 16:07:30 »
Yeah I have noticed from the few artillery units I do have that they are pretty nasty, but then again, I just don't think using them nor fighting them they are very well balanced.
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Greywind

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #19 on: 11 August 2014, 21:58:40 »
I've never seen the arty-push-death scenario in the rules, either.

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #20 on: 12 August 2014, 03:34:22 »
I've actually picked the game up with a few friends, after not playing it for five years. After digging out my pieces and teaching them how to play, one of them dropped the money for a booster case from the Domination expansion.

With my old clickies I had just a hodgepodge of various factions. This patchwork army was part stuff the people who taught me how play gave me and things I pulled out of boosters. I can attest it's a bitch to play if you don't have a coherent force. I ended up gravitating toward mercs since they're relatively common and super flexible (not to mention cheap). I now run a proud Jade Falcon/Merc force thats tough as nails.

Some things are fairly overpowered. I have a merc Jade Hawk that just tears through mechs like butter, and it with its pilot costs as much as a decent medium class. Decoy and Evade are nasty together, and artillery sucks no matter who has it.

We've ended up house ruling the hell out of the mechanics, changing the rules for hieght, deployment zones, and even terrain. I made some awesome Lego stuff to go with it, even cut out some roads.

I'm really excited because I've been attempting to get back into CBT, and fudging the rules like this has seemed like an obvious stepping stone to that system. I even dug around and found a guide for using DOA clickies for CBT, and these guys seem pretty interested.

Might not be for everyone, but I love it.
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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #21 on: 12 August 2014, 07:42:08 »
I've never seen the arty-push-death scenario in the rules, either.

They were some playtest rules WK published and had asked for feedback. They disappeared within a month. Way overkill.

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #22 on: 12 August 2014, 07:53:30 »
I've never seen the arty-push-death scenario in the rules, either.

It didn't last long and it was presented to the envoys and battlemasters as an alternative to the basic rules that had so many complaints.  Other alternatives included a limit to the number of artillery units in a standard point total.  I may have remembered it badly, it happened well before the AoD rules set was published.

Part of the problem with the original rules was that the pogs were allowed to act as a force multiplier when stacked together from units that could hit multiple targets, the overlapping area of effect gave each pog full damage in the blast zone.

So, what Artillery could do was eventually fixed, but for many players, the damage was already done. 

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #23 on: 12 August 2014, 11:05:32 »
I was an envoy. I just don't recall that.

jackpot4

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #24 on: 12 August 2014, 11:40:41 »
Was there ever any tournaments using the colossal class mechs?  I was curious how those would have gone. 
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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #25 on: 12 August 2014, 12:20:49 »
The beta arty rules were also in one of the scenarios to get a wider range of views.

The tripods were tourney legal. The only reason you didn't see them used much was due to the cost. I know I used them a couple of times as an envoy for the bye round army. Mixed bag. You had to find and hit their hammers before they started knocking you down. Some of the planetary conditions really hurt. You really did want to ht from water. It usually boiled down to you winning VC1, losing VC3, and VC2 was won by whether or not you went into salvage.

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #26 on: 25 June 2017, 18:00:15 »
I'm curious, after reading this debate... what is the consensus?

Is it that artillery was overpowered until MW:AoD, and is okay now?
Is it that artillery is still overpowered even in MW:AoD, and shouldn't be used?
Is it that MW:AoD over-reacted, and now artillery is under-powered?

I'm curious to hear people's thoughts... What will result in the most enjoyable game?

cavingjan

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #27 on: 25 June 2017, 19:00:21 »
It works fine as is.

wantec

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #28 on: 26 June 2017, 11:55:11 »
It works fine as is.
I agree, for the most part it worked fine as is. Obviously some pieces were better than other arty and it depended on how you played each faction or force.
BEN ROME YOU MAGNIFICENT BASTARD, I READ YOUR BOOK!


Iron Wolf

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Re: Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?
« Reply #29 on: 30 October 2017, 21:15:45 »
Was Clickytech actually any good/balanced?

Yes, it was good. It had flaws, but could be fun. Get a couple friends to play a casual game and it's fine.

The problem in my opinion was balance, which varied from set to set. I played at a couple local game stores in the area. I remember a particularly annoying (pre-AoD) event I played against a guy that had a couple Highlander artillery pieces and mostly peasant infantry. I don't recall what my composition was, but he used the infantry as fodder to swam and pin down my units then drop artillery on them. I spent turns trying to break from the infantry and get across the map. It wasn't much fun.

Once AoD came about things smoothed out. A friend of my was a big fan of Banson's Raiders and made liberal use of repair vehicles. My Falcon's would blow holes in them and he would just patch them back up. It was fun to watch him come up with creative ways to make use of the repair units.     
« Last Edit: 30 October 2017, 21:41:14 by Iron Wolf »