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More balance changes and more new cards

Hello friends!

It’s that time of the week again when we update the game with improvements and/or screwups (opinions differ). Next update is scheduled for tomorrow morning, gods willing, so hold onto your panzers as we go through the latest offerings. As before, we start by going through changes to existing cards and end with showcasing the new cards about to be added.

One quick general note before diving into specific cards. We are currently in an ongoing effort to make several shifts in the card pool, so many of the changes you are about to see reflect that. The shifts in question are:

  • Reduce amount of incidental damage, especially on deployment effects.
  • Reduce/alter random effects to be less pronounced.
  • Reduce overall amount/power of discard and bounce (send units back to hand).
  • Reduce overall power level of removal orders.

There are more changes in the pipeline for these things, so expect more card changes in this vein in future updates.

The big change this week is that we have removed the targeting restrictions of units requiring a specific target. Before, these units were stuck in your hand until a suitable target showed up, but now you can play them even if no legal target is on the battlefield - when you do this the targeting part is simply skipped. Needless to say, this improves the power of these cards considerably, so some of them had to be hit with the nerf hammer. Let’s begin with these victims cards:

These are the cards that are changing. All these cards have very strong deployment abilities and are frequently used, so reducing their power level a bit seemed prudent. Changing the abilities of the P-38 and the Panzer IV F2 is in accordance with reducing the power of “bounce” effects in the game. You notice that not all cards that target are being changed, cards such as Model 25, the Skua and the Mosquito are remaining as they are (for now at least).

We also want to change several other deployment effects on units, especially those with random or incidental damage effects. Here are the changes for those:

These three cards had powerful anti-unit deployment abilities, and as we generally want to curb those a bit, all are being changed. Only the RAAF keeps it ability, but now at a heftier cost. The ability on the Claude now reflects a sub-theme of Japan of operating cheaply.

These four cards all had random damage deployment effects, which we want to reduce in number. The Japanese units now have abilities that reflect their strength when allowed to build up without interference, while the P-51 now has the US sub-theme of stifling enemy operation costs.

Again, there are several other candidates here that could see change, such as the B-25 or the 17 Pounder, but for now they are being kept as are.

Finally, we are changing a couple more of the “global” effect cards. Last time we changed four, now these two are also being changed to only work based on your own side:

That’s it for balance changes to cards this week. Let’s have a look at some of the new cards coming. In total there are 12 new cards being added. 10 will be shown here, the other 2 will be shown in a different venue, so stay tuned for that.

A couple of new anti-air units are coming, including the first Japanese one. Anti-air is the unit type most missing from the card pool, simply because finding suitable pictures is more challenging. We still aim to add several more, as a strong suit of anti-air is good to keep air units in check. Note that the ability of the Japanese one does trigger when it uses the special anti-air ability of firing upon air units.

Couple of more infantries are getting added. Both of them take advantage of the targeted abilities no longer being a must, so they can still be played if no target exists. Note that the ability on the US unit cannot target itself.

Here are a couple of new standard-rarity tank units, one for the Soviet and one for Germany. The Soviet one strengthens a theme of inflicting pain for power - a 5/5 tank unit for just 3 kredits is an incredible value, but if you run into aggro decks, losing 15% of your starting health can be a serious downside. The German tank may be a vanilla unit (meaning it has not special abilities), but it still has solid stats, allowing it to trade favorably for many much used units such as its cousin Panzer IV-F2 and T-34. In general, it is important for card games to have a fair number of vanilla cards to keep complexity in check, so we aim to improve on this front a bit.

These two new Soviet cards are a new take on the Soviet themes of benefiting from destruction, and units replenishing themselves. The abilities of course are random, which in general we want to lessen the usage of, but when we do want to use random effects, it is more like we do here, which is why we feel fine with this addition. These are cards that won’t go into any deck, but in the right deck aimed to maximize the abilities they can be quite powerful. One strong strategy is to use this on a unit that is dying anyway, for instance because Final Push was played on it or the T-34 you get from Siberian Transfer. Another strategy is to set up situations were you know exactly what you will get because of limited number of units at certain costs. For instance, you could attack with your Stirling, then use Red Banner on it to get a Lancaster and attack again with that. Other things are possible, such as using this on units with destruction abilities, or to upgrade weak units with good deployment abilities, like the Arado or Panzer 38. Be careful though that if there is no unit from that nation with the higher cost, you will get nothing.

The Red Banner name and picture might be familiar to Alpha players, as it was one of the take control cards there. We since had to remove those cards because of technical issues they caused. While the plan is still to add those cards once we find time to solve those issues, it is not going to be in the near future. So we decided to re-purpose Red Banner.

These are the final two cards we are adding, both of them elite. The Firefly is a bit of a glass cannon, in that it has a very powerful front end and, because of its ability, can trade even with the mighty Tiger in combat. The lower defense does matter though, as it puts it into range of many threats, such as T-34 and For the King. The Shiden was one of the premium fighters of WWII and its host of abilities makes it very dangerous in any situation. Turn 5 playing a smokescreen unit into two attacks on turn 6 is pretty powerful and you can do it all in one go on turn 11 - 10 damage out of nowhere is nothing to be sneezed at. With ambush the Shiden can even put up a formidable defense, especially against bomber heavy decks.

You might have noticed a trend in the new cards that most of them are either standard or elite rarity. That is simply because those were the biggest omissions in the card file - most of the limited and special rarity cards were already in, so you can expect most new card updates to be a combination of standard and elite cards.

That’s it for now, please keep an eye out for the 2 other new cards coming in the new update - both are quite powerful. We aim to update the game tomorrow morning. See you in game commanders!

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