Card draw power creep is a major issue

  • Sykomyke's Avatar
    Grand Crusader 780 984 Posts Joined 05/30/2019
    Posted 9 months, 1 week ago
    Quote From dapperdog
    Also, I'd like to agree with meisterz39's assessment. In metas where attrition based control were prominent, it was mostly an awful experience. I like slower games myself, and was gleefully playing control bomb warrior before the last rotation, and was playing lots of control priest in the early parts of the barrens meta. But whenever I face up against a mirror match I often find myself silently praying my opponent just t1 concedes. And I think this is a general sentiment towards control decks in the community.

     

    This feels kind of hypocritical:  "gleefully" playing bomb warrior, or control priest but then when you go into a mirror match hoping that they concede.  What's that saying?  "You can't have your cake and eat it too".  You can't be someone who "enjoys slower games" and "plays control decks" but then agrees with the sentiment that "control decks bad". 

    And meisterz sentiment about how "control doesn't play a large part in Hearthstone's metagame" is PRECISELY why aggro is always running rampant.  Aggro at it's core is about consistency and (lately) card draw.  Control doesn't generally want a ton of card draw because naturally their cards are more expensive.  Control's archtype is to keep aggro in check.  Going back to the "holy trifecta".  Control's role in card games is to keep aggro in check.  OTK decks keep control in check.  If control is pushed out of the meta all the time because of lack of support that's on the devs.  If control is pushed out of the meta because people can't be bothered to play a match for anything longer than 5-10 minute games.  That's on the players:  The game is not here to cater to ADD kids who can't be arsed to think beyond their 5 minute face hunter smorc gameplan.  Control is often given a bad rap because "my game lasted 20 minutes....hearthstone is so boring" , then perhaps those people are playing the wrong game.

     

    <Your Ad Here>

    0
  • Sykomyke's Avatar
    Grand Crusader 780 984 Posts Joined 05/30/2019
    Posted 9 months, 1 week ago
    Quote From meisterz39

    Show Spoiler
    Quote From AngryShuckie
    So to clarify, by 'control' I mean a deck that favours the path of removal and/or armour/healing to survive long enough to reach their win condition. What that win condition is can vary greatly, including plain attrition, overwhelming the opponent with big minions, or maybe even an OTK. The biggest distinction with combo is the amount of draw they run. Combo will tend to draw as quickly as possible, only using stall/removal to buy a few precious turns, whereas control will draw their win condition more naturally, needing less card draw as they deny the opponent's attempts to pressure them.

    I can mostly get behind this definition, though I think it highlights exactly how fraught drawing these lines is. I would argue that if your win condition is an OTK, you're a combo deck. Traditional control doesn't have to be strictly attrition decks, but the win condition is generally just to run the opponent out of resources, then play some big threats the opponent can't deal with.

    The "extreme" version of that is a fatigue/attrition match where running the opponent out of resources means eventually having them expend their whole deck (because the games are slow and the big threats that typically win games for control can't get a foothold in mirrors), but the principle is the same whether you're trying to run an aggro deck out of cards in their hand or a control deck out of cards in their deck. Your win condition is to eke more value out of your cards than your opponent so that you eventually have more threats than your opponent and win.

    Not entirely sure why you're making specific examples that "an OTK, you're a combo deck".  Yes, and water is also wet.  What's your point in defining things that have already been defined before?  Traditional control isn't strictly attrition, but yes generally does involve "outvaluing" your opponent in terms of resources.  Once again, what is the actual point you are trying to make here, other than padding out a response to make it look more substantial or have a higher level of veracity?

    Show Spoiler
    Quote From AngryShuckie
    I am not advocating for a return of attrition decks to the top of the meta. I just want there to be enough games that go on for enough turns to allow everyone to have the opportunity to try whatever they like. Super efficient card draw is enabling a two-pronged attack on that ideal by squeezing everything slow out of the meta.

    I didn't mean to suggest that you were looking for super slow attrition. And I don't mean to suggest that having some long games is bad. All I meant is that because Hearthstone's design/rules emphasize more mixed archetypes like Midrange, when Control plays gets to play a major role in the meta, it often ends up warping the meta. RoS Control Warrior isn't the only example here - I think another good one is KaC Cubelock, which was able to generate a ton of burst with Doomguard and a ton of defense with Voidlord, enabling it to completely dominate any other board-centric deck.

    Control can and should find success by preying on popular decks through disruption rather than playing a major role in defining the meta. That can come in the form of AOE and removal against aggro decks, but you can also have hand and deck manipulation to mess with combo decks if those are a significant part of the meta. In that sense, I think the bigger problem is less about card draw and more about combo decks lacking interactivity. Mage Quest is a great example of this - it's really hard to disrupt it because they can play the quest before you can disrupt it (usually - I guess Oh My Yogg! is kind of an option), and can complete the quest and play Arcanist Dawngrasp in the same turn before you can disrupt that because their spells are so cheap. Typical combo disruption would destroy key cards (e.g. with Altar of Fire), but that doesn't do much when they have tons of spells that can complete the quest, and get to draw/play their key cards within the span of a single turn.

    Kobolds and Catacombs was released 4 years ago.  Using that one specific control deck from a 4 year old meta is hardly being realistic.  For one, it was SO oppressive that they ended up hall of faming Doomguard.  That was right around the time they shifted away from Charge as a mechanic to Rush.  They realized that charge as a baseline mechanic was rather unhealthy because it could be abused. (Same reason they HoF'd leeroy)

    Quote From About Control
    Control can and should find success by preying on popular decks through disruption rather than playing a major role in defining the meta. That can come in the form of AOE and removal against aggro decks, but you can also have hand and deck manipulation to mess with combo decks if those are a significant part of the meta.

    So it's ok for aggro or even combo/OTK to define the meta, but the minute control defines the meta it's "woe is me"?  C'mon.  This debate is getting ridiculous.  It's like that meme...

    Let's examine a much more relevant card:  Fire Sale.  This card is the *perfect* control card.  Cheap, decent aoe,  tradable.  Means control doesn't have to have it clog their hand.  Yet, it's not really being used in control decks right now.  It's being used in quest mage, which is (if we are being honest)  closer to a OTK/combo deck than an actual Control deck.  Though I could see arguments made to "classify" it as a partial control deck (it does control the game before completing it's quest).

    Yet the inherent problem here is that a control tool being used by a combo deck because it's cheap and easy to use and scales extremely well with spellpower.  The main issue with that is that the developers didn't think of a way to print the card in a way that combo couldn't use it (they figured out awhile ago the way to prevent aggro from using a cheap board clear was to print symmetrical board clears)  

    This is why expensive board clears that are on-sided are so expensive, to prevent other archtypes from using them.  Inherently this leaves us with the problem of "ok, so how do we get to that mana cost without losing".  Cause I'll tell you right now,  there's no way in hell a single control mage deck that isn't quest would run flamestrike.  

    And that's just a single comparison of AoE, I haven't even touched on your subject of hand or deck manipulation.  Which I do think are good ideas, but once again:  The tools generally available to control for hand/deck manipulation would be available to other archetypes as well.  We could even subjectively say that Incanter's Flow is self-deck manipulation. And we've seen how that's turned out.  

    I do think that spell schools is a good direction to help dictate different archetypes (holistically cold spells are more control based, fire spells are aggro based, and arcane spells are value/generation/RNG) but they've still got a ways to go on balancing things.

    <Your Ad Here>

    0
  • AngryShuckie's Avatar
    1595 1562 Posts Joined 06/03/2019
    Posted 9 months, 1 week ago
    Quote From meisterz39

    Quote From AngryShuckie
    So to clarify, by 'control' I mean a deck that favours the path of removal and/or armour/healing to survive long enough to reach their win condition. What that win condition is can vary greatly, including plain attrition, overwhelming the opponent with big minions, or maybe even an OTK. The biggest distinction with combo is the amount of draw they run. Combo will tend to draw as quickly as possible, only using stall/removal to buy a few precious turns, whereas control will draw their win condition more naturally, needing less card draw as they deny the opponent's attempts to pressure them.

    I can mostly get behind this definition, though I think it highlights exactly how fraught drawing these lines is. I would argue that if your win condition is an OTK, you're a combo deck. Traditional control doesn't have to be strictly attrition decks, but the win condition is generally just to run the opponent out of resources, then play some big threats the opponent can't deal with.

    The "extreme" version of that is a fatigue/attrition match where running the opponent out of resources means eventually having them expend their whole deck (because the games are slow and the big threats that typically win games for control can't get a foothold in mirrors), but the principle is the same whether you're trying to run an aggro deck out of cards in their hand or a control deck out of cards in their deck. Your win condition is to eke more value out of your cards than your opponent so that you eventually have more threats than your opponent and win.

    I would argue that if you play like a control deck and win like a combo deck, you're both! But overall I would lean on the play-style as the dominant aspect since that drives what you do for the most time. In this case you would also beat aggro without really needing the combo, so yeah, if I have to pick one term I would call it control.

    Really though I'd love to construct a visual representation of the N different deck 'qualities', placing each deck as a single point in the N-dimensional scatter graph/phase diagram/Venn diagram. Then you can call the control-combo deck whatever you like, without confusing the fact it is just a point where the control and combo regions overlap.

    Hmm, it's a discussion for another time, but I wonder how many qualities (or equivalently axes) you need. It's probably not very many, but unless N<4 it's going to be a nightmare to visualise.

    1
  • meisterz39's Avatar
    915 1199 Posts Joined 06/03/2019
    Posted 9 months, 1 week ago

    Quote From Sykomyke
    Not entirely sure why you're making specific examples that "an OTK, you're a combo deck".  Yes, and water is also wet.  What's your point in defining things that have already been defined before?  Traditional control isn't strictly attrition, but yes generally does involve "outvaluing" your opponent in terms of resources.  Once again, what is the actual point you are trying to make here, other than padding out a response to make it look more substantial or have a higher level of veracity?

    I am not just padding my response, I'm responding directly to AngryShuckie's definition of the control archetype. The relevant quote here from Shuckie is "What that win condition is can vary greatly, including plain attrition, overwhelming the opponent with big minions, or maybe even an OTK. The biggest distinction with combo is the amount of draw they run." My point was that I don't agree entirely with the definition Shuckie put forth - if your deck relies on an OTK, then it's a combo deck, plain and simple. Whether you do that quickly or slowly is irrelevant to the actual strategy of your deck.

    Ultimately, I think any deck that's classified as Control needs to playing a value game. Brian Kibler's Control Shaman is a great recent example of this.

    Quote From Sykomyke
    So it's ok for aggro or even combo/OTK to define the meta, but the minute control defines the meta it's "woe is me"?  C'mon.  This debate is getting ridiculous.  It's like that meme…

    This is not a "woe is me" complaint - I actually really like control decks, and played a ton of Reno Control Priest back before Knights of the Frozen Throne turned the deck into a combo deck. I'm fine playing some slow games, but tons of control mirrors do make for a boring, grindy experience.

    It's also not me trying to define which decks are "allowed" to define the meta, I'm just trying to articular which archetypes tend to define a healthy metagame.

    Quote From Sykomyke
    Let's examine a much more relevant card:  Fire Sale.  This card is the *perfect* control card.  Cheap, decent aoe,  tradable.  Means control doesn't have to have it clog their hand.  Yet, it's not really being used in control decks right now.  It's being used in quest mage, which is (if we are being honest)  closer to a OTK/combo deck than an actual Control deck.  Though I could see arguments made to "classify" it as a partial control deck (it does control the game before completing it's quest).

    I sort of feel like you're making my point for me here. My original argument was that the Aggro > Combo > Control triangle doesn't fit well in Hearthstone, and the place where it fits the worst is the Control part. I've already described in other posts why I think this MTG concept doesn't map perfectly to Hearthstone, but I'll sum it up as this: Hearthstone is much more tempo-oriented, and teching against other strategies is more expensive. This is exactly why you might reasonably classify Quest Mage is being "partial control" - it runs a bunch of cards like First Flame and Fire Sale to control the board because of how important it is to stifle opposing tempo.

    This happens all the time in Hearthstone - Aggro and Combo archetypes are more frequently successful, so when you see slower value decks in the early days of the meta, you tend to see more mixed archetypes (i.e. Midrange and Control-Combo) that take elements of Control archetypes, but don't go full control. Traditional control decks don't really come about until late into a meta when the game is stable enough that a more traditional control deck can know what to build against.

    All of this is why I think AngryShuckie's original argument is flawed; it leverages that triangle to articular what's wrong with the balance in the game, and blames card draw for that issue, but I don't think that balance problem really exists to nearly the degree that triangle would suggest because we're seeing exactly the kinds of archetypes we'd expect to see in Hearthstone at this stage of the meta: Midrange, Aggro, and Combo. That's a fairly healthy metagame for the early days of an expansion, and exactly what I'd expect to see in Hearthstone because Control in Hearthstone naturally needs a solid meta to play off of. There's a real possibility that the Tradeable keyword changes that by lowering the costs of early meta Control, but so far I don't think we're there, and I don't think we'll get there unless the keyword goes evergreen.

    0
  • dapperdog's Avatar
    Dragon Scholar 1590 3868 Posts Joined 07/29/2019
    Posted 9 months, 1 week ago
    Quote From Sykomyke
    Quote From dapperdog
    Also, I'd like to agree with meisterz39's assessment. In metas where attrition based control were prominent, it was mostly an awful experience. I like slower games myself, and was gleefully playing control bomb warrior before the last rotation, and was playing lots of control priest in the early parts of the barrens meta. But whenever I face up against a mirror match I often find myself silently praying my opponent just t1 concedes. And I think this is a general sentiment towards control decks in the community.

     

    This feels kind of hypocritical:  "gleefully" playing bomb warrior, or control priest but then when you go into a mirror match hoping that they concede.  What's that saying?  "You can't have your cake and eat it too".  You can't be someone who "enjoys slower games" and "plays control decks" but then agrees with the sentiment that "control decks bad". 

    And meisterz sentiment about how "control doesn't play a large part in Hearthstone's metagame" is PRECISELY why aggro is always running rampant.  Aggro at it's core is about consistency and (lately) card draw.  Control doesn't generally want a ton of card draw because naturally their cards are more expensive.  Control's archtype is to keep aggro in check.  Going back to the "holy trifecta".  Control's role in card games is to keep aggro in check.  OTK decks keep control in check.  If control is pushed out of the meta all the time because of lack of support that's on the devs.  If control is pushed out of the meta because people can't be bothered to play a match for anything longer than 5-10 minute games.  That's on the players:  The game is not here to cater to ADD kids who can't be arsed to think beyond their 5 minute face hunter smorc gameplan.  Control is often given a bad rap because "my game lasted 20 minutes....hearthstone is so boring" , then perhaps those people are playing the wrong game.

     

    Is it hypocritical to like playing with slow decks while not liking to play against slow decks? Im not sure. I'll leave that for others to judge.

    But to address what I think is the central point of your response to mine; I simply don't believe hearthstone needs to follow a strict holy trinity, a 'trifecta' of how archetypes work, or should work because hearthstone decks regularly crosses between the lines. Quest mage plays like a control deck, controlock has at its core a combo that wins the game for them (whether its tickatus or neeru), as does barrens control shaman. Token druid is a combo deck that sometimes play like an aggro deck. It can never have a strict definition, much less a 'role' because one card can mean all the difference (Lock and Load in face hunter, Doomhammer or Whack-A-Gnoll Hammer in elemental shaman, etc.). For the sake of brevity we apply labels to them, but there's no holy book to mandate their roles in the game. Metas and viability are determined by deck builds, and certainly not by its 'roles' as the labels seem to imply. Control warrior in barrens specifically have a good match against pre-nerf control priest, and are played in tournaments to do just that. Pre-nerf token druid has good matchup against face hunter but not against rush warrior.

    Im not saying we can't continue to use the labels, but to imply that they have to have certain specific roles in the game is perhaps a tad too far for something so fluid in a game like hearthstone.

    0
  • Sykomyke's Avatar
    Grand Crusader 780 984 Posts Joined 05/30/2019
    Posted 9 months, 1 week ago

    I never meant to imply that the archetypes were strict and didn't have fluctuations or even combinations between them.  Just that the archetypes (as loosely defined as they can be) should still exist, and for lack of a better argument ...control is simply heavily under-represented in the current meta.

    I'm fine with classes and archetypes being weaker in certain metas than others (we've seen this in the past, and it's generally how blizzard rotates balance between classes) but right now the combo-esque control decks (like mage and warlock) are so uninteractive that there's little to no way to counter them as a control deck.  This leaves the only viable way to counter them to play faster combo decks or fast aggro decks.

    This is not a healthy meta, not by a long shot.

    And I constantly feel like I'm banging my head against wall trying to explain as such.  I just had a debate on a reddit thread where a guy claimed that "they wished hearthstone would put a 7-8 minute timer in the game, and then control decks would be palatable".  

    7-8 minute hard-coded timers.  That's insane.  And makes me realize that people's idea of what a control matchup should be (versus what they think it is) is heavily warped.  Most AGGRO matches last 6 minutes to maybe 10 minutes.  For people to think that a Hearthstone should have a 7-8 minute timer to "curb the length of control matches" makes me think that the demographic of Hearthstone has changed to ADD fortnite players who's attention spans start to wane the minute their aggro plan goes out the door.  (Yes, that's a bit of a snide comment, but I'm extremely frustrated at the lack of verbal support for the control archetype...both from players and from developers.)

     

    <Your Ad Here>

    0
  • Leave a Comment

    You must be signed in to leave a comment. Sign in here.