Profile photo of mrfroggies By mrfroggies On March 16, 2012 Posted In Other

My thoughts on Fixing Healing

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March 16, 2012

For me healing breaks down into two categories, Healing that requires a successful roll of the dice and Healing from an action.  For healing that requires a roll, like brawling a building or munching on a unit, or use of leach I wouldn’t change anything.  The reason for this is because you can miss.  Sometimes it doesn’t work and you can leave your self in a worse position for failing.  I see nothing wrong with this kind of healing.  Buildings are a finite resource, units to munch on tends to be a weaker option then going for an attack on there monster.  If you getting a point for leach it means that your units are engaged in the battle.

Now for the Healing actions.  Here’s a list of actions that heal.

  • Bleed
  • First Aid (not out yet, I still have hope)
  • Repair
  • Restoration
  • Sacrifice

Those are all the actions that can heal a point of damage to your monster.  There are tools in the game to stop this, but with good planning you can get around it.  What I don’t like about this is that it’s automatic health.  There’s no automatic damage sense the ignite nerf so why does healing still work the same way.  Here’s my very simple fixes to these rules.

  • Bleed – Restore +1 health to 1 adjacent FAC monster with less then half it’s health.  Then crush this figure.
  • Repair – Restore +1 health to 1 adjacent Mechanical Monster with less then half it’s health.
  • Restoration – If this monster occupies a space with a power zone and it’s has less then half it’s health, restore +1 health.
  • Sacrifice – Crush 1 adjacent unit to restore +1 health if the monsters has less then half it’s starting health.

I don’t want to negate these actions, I want to balance them some.  This seems like a simple solution to what I think is a problem in the game.  Rather then doing a drastic change I thought I would borrow the rules language that they use in First Aid.  Healing is still good, but it keeps if from being so overpowered.  I’m curious what the rest of you think.

  1. Bleed comes with it’s cost – being the loss of the unit, so I am happy with what you are mentioning there, but I hearken back to the original thing you had mentioned – the chance to fail.

    I think making battlefield repairs should be less than a guaranteed fix (I jus’ kanna doo eet kap’n!), and should be done like Pathfinder, i.e. only works on a roll of a strike or superstrike on the a-dice.

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    1. RV/MRV cost 1-2A to use, excepting the spawn cost which leaves the unit in play (and therefore isn’t strictly LOST). If healing costs were doubled (2A or 4A depending on whether you needed to advance the unit), that’s still a great price for returning 1 health.

      Meat Slaves costs 2-3A to use, on account of you don’t get to keep the unit in play. If you double that cost, you approach it not being worthwhile to attempt healing — you give up TOW or SUMMON to use it, and 1-2A toward spawns that would stay in play. If on a roll-fail the Meat Slave DIDN’T DIE, I could see it.

      My main issue is this though. Pathfinder is bloody terrible because of the 50% odds roll you have to make. It’s borderline useless most of the time because you cannot rely on it and it’s generally not doing all that much for you to begin with. For a long time I’ve been advocating for at least a marginal improvement to this action… and I think adding more 50% rolls to the game would squash any hope I have of making a case, even though Pathfinder would still be terrible if it happened.

      I’d advocate ONLY actions that heal you be required to roll, and ones that don’t heal you don’t require the roll. That way everybody wins. Except some of the healers who were staying in games solely due to healing… they’ll probably lose all the time if this ever happens.

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  2. I’ll have to think about this one, but certainly it would be a game-changer. In particular the game’s godmode monster Ultra Osheroth suddenly becomes pretty easy to kill compared to what he is now. This would put heal-by-action monsters at max 3 health instead of 5, 4 health instead of 6.

    Certainly games at the start would look more like games between non-healers, at least to a degree. Your units might whittle down the enemy healer before engaging monster-to-monster, or you might land 2 damage then flee back to your side to recoup dice.

    It would make starting the fight with a 2 damage attack a bit easier, since you’d no longer have to time it to avoid an immediate heal-off of 1 of that damage… basically letting you spike 4 instead of just 3 on a back-to-back offensive. This means that with most monsters you could reliably take out a health 5 healing form with a monster/monster/unit/monster schedule, and their healing couldn’t save them at all except to keep them from dying on your unit turn. Health 6 monsters could still survive a while if they were lucky/careful.

    On the surface I like it.

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  3. I notice you leave out munch and Vampirism, but have Sacrifice. So I guess that the omission is a mistake.

    I think monster-side healing should be left as is. Unit side, however, i think stands to be tempered some. But I don’t know if this is the solution. It makes monsters with less than 7 health wait until they are down to 2 before they can heal…and there are a lot of monsters that can deal 2 damage fairly easily. I think your change would take too much healing out of the game.

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    1. He didn’t leave it out; paragraph one sites that Scott would leave healing that requires an attack roll alone, and then he says why he would.

      There are a lot of monsters that deal 2 at range, and those monsters handle healers reasonably well (but when the healer also does 2 at range, the healer still has a big edge). Those monsters that struggle to deal more than 1 offensively are generally what we are really looking at when we say healing is a problem. If we help the weakest monsters (low offense non-healers) by nerfing healing, we end up buffing the offensive titans that almost take healing to beat.

      Broad solutions for complex problems are always give/take. Fixing one thing breaks something else. We have monsters that live and die by their healing, and those for which it is just something they fall back on if things go wrong. We have monsters that you almost have to fight by healing, and those that can’t fight you if you do. It’s complicated. Convoluted even. I’m sure there is a package of tweaks …several changes… that could counteract one another and form a smooth solution.

      I’m not sure that this would take too much healing out of the game. I don’t actually think it would.

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      1. Missed it, thanks for pointing it out. :)

        I think you’re really underestimating the impact this will have. By my count, there are only 9 forms that have 7+ health, and only one of those has access to action healing. For every monster that’s not alpha Gorghadratron, it means action healing can ONLY be used when the form is at 1 or 2 health. It becomes nearly useless in 2-monster games, and even in one monster games, it’s still nearly useless against any offensively-minded monster.

      2. I agree to the potential uselessness of healing were we to play under this rule. I’m not sure it would have a negative impact on the game or render certain monsters unplayable. You could still fend off damage from enemy units and pings from enemy monsters that struggle to deal 2 at range. My greatest concern is Ultra Cyber Khan — he’s not very high-offense, and really counts on REPAIR to keep him in some fights.

        But to be fair, this is precisely my opinion of the action MEDICATE. It’s generally useless to be able to heal only when you will die to the next hit anyway, and not many monsters will be able to use it all that well. I’m looking forward to my Mega Gorghadra getting plenty out of it, and that’s about the only monster I think will other than maybe the health 7 forms out there (Mucustos…YAY!).

        What about the reverse? Healing by action gets shut OFF once your monster drops under 50% health, but you can heal off light damage from a monster afraid to go after you.

      3. An overhaul errata is necessary. Though I like what the “less than half its health” thing does for UNIT-side healing, like you say, some monsters would be hard-pressed to even stand a chance against the titanic SS, Mucustos, Voltis, MZM, Osh, Tec, crowd.

        This is why I think the weaker 1-damage guys should have something extreme to back this up. I’ve been doing this in my homebrew errata. Basically, having ONLY 1-damage options is a handicap; being FULLY pedestrian is a handicap too, as well as: having 5 defense, having a hyper cost of 5 or more, and having no healing.

        The problem really, lies in how these tend to stack up without a significantly powerful ability/abilities to balance out how crappy it makes you monster when fighting, say, any of the monsters from the above list. Essentially, healing IS that buff, or comes close to it, for many monsters! Quantum Cthugrosh is a perfect example. This monster has some big handicaps: no 2 damage option (this one being the biggest), and 5 defense in both forms. But what this monster does have is healing in 2 WAYS, Flight, a descreen (which is as good as a 2 damage option in MANY ways), a hyper cost of 1, and some POWERFUL abilities. With limited healing, Q-grosh would not be as good; with a two-damage option, say, Crunch, it would be GODMODE, similar to Osh.

        I agree with Theorist here: When you make healing “worse” you only help those that it is used most effectively against. Healing is NOT winning the game guys, it is your choice of monsters that are losing for you. Choose Ultra Volits, Ultra SS, Mega Tec, Ultra Mucustos, Ultra Gakura, Osh, Mega Yash, Ultra Tyrranix, etc… and you’ll just start mopping up all the Cthugrosh’s. I think monsters like SS et al would not get WORSE, they would only get better. SS without constant healing? Still sounds like I’m dead.

        An enormous errata needs to take place, not to nerf what’s too good, but level the playing field and make whats bad much much better. Then you get a competitive game with all good options, which I’ve never seen.

        I guess the whole “Booster” concept really made this game what it is… What I mean is that PP made bad stuff on purpose to add dynamics to their packs so that people bought more packs. i think the logic is: if every pack came with Tornadus-level stuff in it, you’d only ever need to buy one pack at a time. But this is so not true. If everything was that good or close, I’d have bought a lot more than I did.

        Seriously, I know a lot of you feel like playing underdog monsters to prove something, but wouldn’t you just rather that Mega Hammerklak, Mega Zorog, Mega Leviathron, Ultra Ares etc. etc… be as competitive as the top tier, or at least have less of a divide?

        I for one am getting tired of not being able to run belchers or destructomites or carnidons or carnitrons or Ultra Yasheth or Aquosia or Blastik or all the other useless figures. They can be made to equal the greats, and they should be, because this game is not nearly as diverse and fun as it could be. At it’s heart, it is the best game there is, hands down; on the surface, it’s lacking the years of experience in design that WE could give it.

        We are what is keeping this game alive, and no one at PP could possibly do what we could to fix it, because they haven’t played 1/10th as many games as we have. It’s not going anywhere any time soon. We need to give this game the overhaul errata it deserves.

        I am trudging along with a preliminary errata for my own self-enjoyment, yes, but also with the hope that one day, when the errata is necessary, people will look at what I did and start thinking about how to fix all the CRAP figures creatively, without destroying the game.

        Sorry to take a huge text-dump on your blog post… Perhaps I should write a blog about this….

      4. Jeff, I like the idea of healing turns off after you take too much damage. I don’t want healing to be useless, but it needs some adjustments. Maybe this is will work better. I also like it for cinamatic reasons, I can just see the MRV rushing over to CK and the mechanics inside saying there’s just no way to fix that in time.

  4. I would like to see what happens when all factions, especially Zors, get access to healing. But, in the meantime or if a fix is still needed, then I like a roll being required, and can give a little variability by giving a marker style re-roll for a 75% chance to some of the actions. I also think ignite should damage on a roll and pathfinder should either not need a roll or get a re-roll.

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    1. I hate Pathfinder because of it’s roll. All the other actions just work. I think Ignite should be un-nerfed and restored to how it was played before. The good thing about Actions is that you know it will happen. With so many rolls in the game it’s nice to have one part where things always work.

      1. Yeah I agree, when you have something that always works it becomes like chess and can therefore plan on it as a certainty and look ahead.. especially healing

        It would be trolLOL if tow required a roll :) all of a sudden no more splashing for tow!

      2. Ignite had an utterly absurd power level before, and any monster that wasn’t 2-blast or 2-swat was getting eaten alive by it for sometimes 3-4 damage a game just from Fire Kami Ignite. Especially when they had to be aggressive on the enemy side. Incinerus was pretty much impossible to fight, depending on what you were facing him with. That change needed to happen. I understand saying “I wish they would un-nerf ignite” from a nostalgic POV, but as soon as you say “should” I have to disagree. It would re-break the game.

        If you must say certain errata should be reversed, solid/beatback and toss/massive is much better to advocate. It was not needed, and has been nothing positive. LK is extra broken, and a few monsters that could fight Ulgoth before now can’t. Ignite at lower power levels has been positive, and I stick to the point that Incinerus STILL wins his share of games and Fire Kami still use their Ignite to good effect. There is just zero real reason to ask for or even want old Ignite. Basically you would be putting both super-damage power and hazard immunity on the same (blasting) monster… in BOTH forms. Incinerus was extremely broken before.

      3. Prior to the Ignite change, the Fire Kami controlled the board. It was in EVERY list, because it could deal 1 automatic damage to any monster that decided to stand on a rubble tile, or happened to get moved there and unable to move off. It WAS absurd. Not because it won so many games, because it wasn’t hard to avoid it, but because it changed so many games.

      4. As much as I would love to see Mega Leviathron get an offense bump, all forms of Incinerus getting the same bump puts him into the realm of not fun to play against — unless you deal 2 damage at range or do a metric ton of hiding/healing, you cannot win. Being able to super-damage level power attacks without hypering up is absurd, which is what alpha Incinerus could do with bodyslams and short 1-2 space sideways throws.

        Right now the meta is squarely centered around radioactive monsters, on account of how big a deal it is to have hazard immunity. They are winning more than their share. Incinerus is that game PLUS — he has Protector units backing him up, better hazard immunity, and Ignite is still ramping his damage on some turns even though it has been nerfed.

        It’s just not fair to restore Incinerus to what he was. He was THE monster to beat before the nerf, and the only reason people didn’t play him was because everyone switched to screening tactics and 2-blasters out of fear of him. I don’t want to see a return to that.

      5. Honestly, though I would love for Incinerus to have the un-nerfed Ignite, I don’t think he needs it… after playing both Incinerus and Tec for a while now I think Incinerus is superior even with the nerf… speed kills.

        But if he gets the old Ignite back, I won’t complain.

        And ja, healing, something has to be done, but I’m not sure what yet… I haven’t seen an idea that jumps out and seems right to me yet.

      6. I like this quote “all other actions just work”…. I personally feel the limit to one action a turn means actions SHOULD be strong and just work.

        I think there are other places to look at buffing or nerfing, I’m still more for idea sweeping errata like a Monpoc 2.0.

      1. I’m against actions requiring a roll to work. It’s why I don’t like pathfinder. Even if pathfinder was given 3 a dice, or a boost die, I still would like it. Given the right conditions actions should just work.

      2. I agree. Attacks should need a roll, and all damage to monsters should need an attack roll. Pathfinder and Abduct should have been triggers.

        I’m not sure how I feel Tow should work as a trigger. Maybe make it an effect that gets activated if you land the associated attack? So Tow on Brawl, if you land the brawl, you get to move an enemy unit from up to 5 spaces away next to the lead/Towing unit?

  5. Here’s my revised idea for how to adjust the different healing actions.

    Bleed – Restore +1 health to 1 adjacent FAC monster. Then remove this figure from the game.
    Sacrifice – Crush and Remove 1 adjacent unit from the game to restore +1 health to this monster.

    By removing the unit from the game your making a trade off and there comes a limit to the number heals you can have in a game. I also like how this sort of fits the theme for this kind of healing.

    Repair – Restore +1 health to 1 adjacent Mechanical Monster with 3 or more health, and crush this unit.
    Restoration – If this monster occupies a space with a power zone and it’s has 3 or more health, restore +1 health.

    I like this change because at some point the damage is just to severe to be repaired.

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