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[Final-Discussion] About 2 rows

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#1
So after we entered the PTR we finally see all the cards and effects we were just thinking beforehand. And to keep the feedback-thread reasonable clean i will start here again
At first some numbers:
We have 497 cards in PTR. Out of this, 88 cards have either one melee/ranged tag or both (about 18%). There are 57 golds that have either one or both of these tags. So this are 11% out of total, or 65% of the card-pool with this tags.
22 cards (4%) have choice between melee or ranged effect, (not counting the soft choice because of reach 1 or 2). Out of the 22 cards 17 are golds (3% total, or 75% of this card-pool).
There are 48 cards with reach (10%) , some overlapp with melee/range. For the ease of complexity lets add them together. This mean we have 105 cards(21%) which benefits from the row placement in some way (+some special cards that just affects some row like frost). Add the percentage up to 25%.

One thing i am asking for is to cut the point "lets see in the final game if it works". We all see the final work in the PTR, just some bugfixes will occur or slightly changes to single cards, nothing more. So lets the disscusion begin.

At first, i dont see a reason, why the shown effects wouldnt work with 3 rows. I didnt saw a single effect, where 2 rows are better than 3 (balancing reason or any other one). In contrast it is even more difficult to have a good position against cards like G-Igni. I had one game against it and it was literally impossible to dodge that card in that game, caused by the lack of row to dodge. With 3 row i could avoid being grilled by the card (if i was thoughtfull about it). Even in theory, if i play a decent long round, i cant dodge this card, becaus emy row-stats going just to high.
On the other hand, i dont think we got meaningfull rows now. Take the number form above, only 25% cards were effected by rowplacement. And it is dicussion worthy for its one, if any of these cards really profit from their row placement in a way you could say "rows matter, now". in the games i played so far i (mostly) just evenly placed my units like in midwinter-Gwent, my opponents did the same. Some chosed the ranged row, to save their units from damage. Which didnt work because i could hit hem anyway. This would only work, if we have much more reach 1 units. In one game i faced a soldier-deck, which relies on melee row, butu evne there he placed the reach 1 soldiers front and all other behind. i never felt a drawback, if i had to play a card in a certain row. But thats what is "meaning" for me. When i start thinking: Do I or do I not play this card there. I get the ability but could get into a counter.

One thing i must admit i was wrong about, is the "full rows" problematic. I didnt play a game, where we reachd the row limit, mostly 7 cards each were at the field at a time.
 
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#2
There is no reason for not having another row.

Plus i find the range ability very binary due to just two rows.

With 3 you could have decent effects, like heal all units (range one, ability doest work on the row its in). You would play mid.
Then your oponent could displace that card to heal their own units too on melee.


Another row would add depth, wich the game right now really lacks.


Plus movement and row effects were pretty good with 3 rows...

Imo, bad call.
 

Silas4179

User
#3
The new movement effects are a clear step up over the old movement effects since you can actually control where units go now. It's a shame you can't play like that in regular Gwent. I agree none of the HC setup demands 2 rows or benefits from it, and I believe that the row reduction just achieves a reduction in positioning options and a loss of vertical effects. I'm guessing they did it to prepare the game for a mobile release, since removing a row allows them to compact the UI and make it easier to play on small touch-screens. Reducing the number of rows has consistently been an extremely unpopular change and yet they are determined to do it, so I assume they must be smelling money somewhere if they're so willing to alienate their own playerbase to force this in.
 
#4
The new movement effects are a clear step up over the old movement effects since you can actually control where units go now.
Arent the effects the same but you only have one possible row to "choose" from? Even in Midwinter you had movement that allows you to place your card in excact to row you want to. Namely Zoltan, Dwarf mercenary and Ciaran (the locking elf). These are missing now completely (but understandably).
 
#5
So far I haven't seen anything that wouldn't have worked with 3 rows too. But I can imagine that with three rows a lot of the row restricted abilities would have been too restricting or if the unit had abilities for all rows it would have been overloaded.

Nonetheless, I don't miss the third row either.
 
#6
So far I haven't seen anything that wouldn't have worked with 3 rows too. But I can imagine that with three rows a lot of the row restricted abilities would have been too restricting or if the unit had abilities for all rows it would have been overloaded.
I dont get this. Can you give me a example of one of these abilities?
 
#7
So far I haven't seen anything that wouldn't have worked with 3 rows too. But I can imagine that with three rows a lot of the row restricted abilities would have been too restricting or if the unit had abilities for all rows it would have been overloaded.

Nonetheless, I don't miss the third row either.
Nope, because units could have combination of abilities that are tied to each row, for example siege/melee or range/siege or unit could be row locked. Imagine Dimun Longship damaging unit to the right if only played on melee row, but Greatsword would Strengthen itself only if it is damage and on siege row, that would be cool, right?
 
#8
I dont get this. Can you give me a example of one of these abilities?
What I meant is that a card which works only on 1 out of 3 rows is a lot worse, than a card that works only on 1 out of 2 rows.
And having different abilities for each row gets a lot more complicated with 3 rows too.
But can't really say if that would be the case without having tested it.

Nope, because units could have combination of abilities that are tied to each row, for example siege/melee or range/siege
That would make those cards more complicated too.
 
#9
What I meant is that a card which works only on 1 out of 3 rows is a lot worse, than a card that works only on 1 out of 2 rows.
And having different abilities for each row gets a lot more complicated with 3 rows too.
But can't really say if that would be the case without having tested it.
Ah ok. I can agree with that. But i think you have to rearrange these effects a little, if you want a 3 row gwent. Not so much the melee/range one, you can keep them as they are and make some of them siege cards, but the reach-system has to go from reach 2 to reach 5. we only have 11% of row-using-cards, it should be easy to tweak them for 3 rows...
 

Silas4179

User
#11
Arent the effects the same but you only have one possible row to "choose" from? Even in Midwinter you had movement that allows you to place your card in exact to row you want to. Namely Zoltan, Dwarf mercenary and Ciaran (the locking elf). These are missing now completely (but understandably).
Falling Boulder is no longer one-directional movement. And Strays of Spalla gives you another neutral card that can reposition units for you. In Gwent it's hard to get good repositions for your enemies, and most of them are so low-value that it's generally hardly worth the trouble unless you go through an extensive and easily disrupted setup to trigger off of movement. Not to mention the movement effects you mentioned were all ST only. If you're trying to split up enemies for weather/pyrotechnician/crow's eye instead of movement triggers or row stacking, Gwent's repositions are pretty lousy.
 
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4RM3D

Moderator
#12
One post edited and another removed. Please, respect each other's opinion and do not engage in personal attacks.
 
#13
Not to mention the movement effects you mentioned were all ST only
Yeah, it was called: Movement-archetype. Killed by HC, too.
The mentioned cards are a good example: Because of rowlacking, you cant import this archetypes cards, because you need more than 1 possible row to work. All movement "choices" now are binary. Move Card X into the other row. No movement only up (except Aard) or ony down. Why? Because it is pointless other way around.
 
#14
Just found this thread, so re-posting here from big pile of random PTR feedback topic.

TL;DR: I think the new round system is way better than what we have now and sounds better to me what fixed-row early beta version (which I didn't have chance to play, only W3 version with some friends). I also think it actually would work better 2 rows than 3. Unfortunately there's just not enough cards that capitalize on that.
(Although statistics in OP seem significant underestimations to me as it doesn't account for many positional cards not having explicit Melee, Ranged or Reach keyword and actually these are the cards actually make the whole system interesting).

I'm not gonna talk about current system as there's more or less an agreement in the community that current row system is almost meaningless. Let me know, if you disagree with this. I can also share my opinion on this.

So what's good in the new row-system:
  • Reach mechanic obviously makes the list. It capitalizes on row placement and gives solid basis. It's simple and elegant: you have the vulnerable, but offensive Melee row and the more protected Ranged row. Reach 1 goes melee-to-melee, Reach 2 you have to decide to protect your card or target the ones your opponent tries to protect. It's also a choice whether you only want to protect your key engines, or want to spam Ranked row denying opponents Reach 1 (and Ranged Reach 2) cards risking a big Lacerate.
  • Then there are the cards that trigger only from one row. I think that's better than simple row-locking as it gives you options and while you pretty much have to place your stronger Golds on the "right" row, with bronzes you could often get by without the added benefit. I got punished a couple times when wanted to maximize effect of all my row-locked cards. Since we usually start the round with our bronzes, we have to anticipate and make these decision beforehand. If new Gwent manages to evolve into a meaningful 3-round game, then you also gonna have to plan from start which row-locked Golds you wanna play in this round and which one later - if necessary adapting on the way as round goes on into more risky plays.
  • Choose row for effect cards add even more complexity to this, as it may be non-obvious which is the right row from ability aspect (although very often it is).
  • There are also cards with less obvious row considerations like Magne Division which is one of the more interesting generic bronzes. It's usually your first play and you have to decide right then which row to put him on based on your and opponent's anticipated cards so that you can benefit from its ability for as long as possible (assuming he won't just get insta-killed of course :)). You also have to decide during the round when to put your first unit next to him (shutting him down in the process), because you want to play a row ability or just for the sake of avoiding excessive row stacking.
  • Then we have punish cards like Lacerate what we already know from old Gwent, but with less rows to distribute units among and the added restrictions, it's not that easy to dodge these cards anymore. You no longer have to build the entire deck around movement or row-stack encouragement (e.g. weathers) to get decent value from these cards.
    • Also we do not have these punish effects on dedicated hate cards only, but also on archetype cards like Deathwish Kitten (formerly Blood Moon, don't recall its proper name right now). Granted there's not many of these latter effects right now, but more on that later.
    • It's also nice to see more effects that capitalize on placement than plain "damage everything on one row", like Blue Mountain Elites or that NG Soldier unit that damages by number of the units on the other row. Many cards capitalize on adjacent placement as well: trying to play around Arachas Venom seems like an interesting challenge.
Where it should be improved:
  • While as mentioned there are some punish cards, there aren't that many that gets played. Probably it's just not that easy to make randomly room for a Lacerate in most decks. I still see possibility for it to become at least a tech card.
  • As mentioned before there are not too many archetype cards capitalizing on placement. We have archetype synergy cards with bland effects. And we have cards with interesting mechanics that capitalize on opponent's row placement on cards that have no synergy with anything, so don't find a place in any of the decks. The solution is obvious for me: move the interesting effect to archetype cards, redesign the other card from scratch.
  • I also see that Reach cards are usually not punished for Melee row placement. I mean they can be punished indirectly if they get played into row-hate cards, but most of them you don't really want to protect to consider Ranged row placement as they only have Deploy effect. A positive example in this sense is Imlerith or Ves as you have to decide whether you want to target enemy's engines on Ranged or protect your own Order activation. A less obvious example of the mechanic utilized well is Cyclops who you also don't have to protect, but the enemy can keep weakening your viable cannon fodder cards on Melee so adds a nice possibility for counterplay.
  • I don't think that any-row cards and any-row eliminations are properly priced at the moment. They should be either of higher cost or more conditional or risky plays. I see this mainly as a balance issue. I mean why play into Ranged row for protection, if it's not much harder to eliminate your unit there? Why worry about row-stacking if you can fill up your deck with enough any-row units to balance out the row-restricted ones?
  • I also think it needs some more fiddling in general to find out which cards and abilities should be row-restricted (and to which row) to have impact, but not too much impact. (Right now we're more on the not enough impact side it seems.) No wonder, it's a pretty hard balancing problem.
So why not 3 rows?
  • With more rows it becomes more easy to play around punish cards.
  • Row-restricted abilities would also get distributed into more rows weakening the restriction.
  • Choose row for effect cards would become impossible to balance in the masses. Coming up with 3 viable and sort of equal options is challenging enough. Weighing in which rows to put which effect (considering which rows other cards would get played) seems like a nightmare. Or you may make them activate an effect on multiple rows, again weakening the impact of row placement restrictions.
  • It seems like an overcomplication for no good reason.
    • I started my description with how 2-rows feel simple and elegant. It's also more intuitive. What would be the role of Ranged row in this system? You want your engines on Siege row, offensive cards on Melee, what to put into Ranged? "Protected but not that much protected"?
    • Same with Reach. We would have Reach 1-4. What would Reach 2 do in this system? Or 3 or 4? Again it's very intuitive with 2 rows, seems overcomplicated with 3.
    • Still only the same general rules would apply: put your units as backwards as possible to protect, while also avoiding excessive row-stacking and choose the row for effect intended. Choosing the right would just become a harder memory game to recall which possible enemy units have which row-restriction or exact Reach value. I see no real added depth.
  • UPDATE: Less tutors mean less units on the board, 2 rows seem more fitting for current number of units.
  • I said earlier that it's hard to make the system work properly even now. With 3 rows it would become even harder.
To summarize I don't think the new row system works perfectly right now, and that's an understatement. But also think it has great potential.
Adding another row would increase the complexity for sure, but I see no real added depth here, as all new mechanics work with 2 rows in a more intuitive and less finicky way. It may increase the difficulty of the game, but not the kind of difficulty I'd aim for. Also it would make it harder to implement and balance right.
 
#15
Sorry to say but no idea why we have this discussion as at least I think now there is no turning back for CDPR after homecoming & seriously I think we are not going to see that 3rd row ever as CDPR already worked hard on this version of gwent, throne breaker.

But anyways at least after playing PTR i too don't like the 2 row version may be coz I am so used to with current gwent or may be I prefer synergies & tactics more over graphics & looks, By saying that I definitelylooking forward to full version of Home Coming & the new game play.
 

DMaster2

User
#19
2 rows are better from what i've seen

- Better visuals (WAY better visuals, both the board and the new card style)
- Easier to balance (balancing cards around 2 rows is easier than 3)
- It's actually more strategic since you have to keep in mind the row limit and the various effects/ranges (both yours and your opponent) when placing units, especially when you are planning the turn.
- Easier to implement on mobile (which will be a huge step forward for this game)

Common complaint:
- There is nothing you do now you can't do on 3 rows. I reverse it. There is nothing you can do with 3 rows you can't on 2. Movement is there, if you want to make a spell like current beer/crow you also can (with only 2 rows and obviously adjusted accordingly).

Advantages heavily outnumber the disadvantages.
 
#20
Debatable. I dont see any improvement in visuals, they are only bigger. I dindt care much about it now and dont will in the future.
Easier to balance (balancing cards around 2 rows is easier than 3)
Only true for early Game-state. It will be more difficult to balance out 2 rows in later state, because you dont have less screws to adjust problems
t's actually more strategic since you have to keep in mind the row limit and the various effects/ranges (both yours and your opponent) when placing units, especially when you are planning the turn.
You still have these planning thoughts with 3 rows, even more planning is needing there, if you adjust the reach mechanic for 3 rows of course. It will be most likly never more strategic, if you remove some complexity out of something
Easier to implement on mobile (which will be a huge step forward for this game)
Very true. The game will be gain a much higher audiance from going mobile. Its just sad its loses many fans from today, so i dont care if it will profit from it,if I am not part of it.
There is nothing you do now you can't do on 3 rows. I reverse it. There is nothing you can do with 3 rows you can't on 2. Movement is there, if you want to make a spell like current beer/crow you also can (with only 2 rows and obviously adjusted accordingly).
Movement is heavlie restricted by the row-limits, which is a cause of the row reducement as well. You can also not permanent row effects, because they would be to strong, if you dont have a hardcounter with it. With 3 rows, you can always play around some effects and always get some time. Which is nearly impossible with 2 rows. With 2 rows it is also more difficult to protect your engines from row effects. with 3 rows i can dodge weather for example 2 rimes, with 2 rows only 1 time.
Advantages heavily outnumber the disadvantages.
It goes for the quality of arguements, not for the pure number. For exapmple, there will be always more advantages then disadvantages for killing people.