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 Post subject: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve?
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 12:34 pm 
Star Player
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Given the massive debate the bonus points question raised another popped into my head and that is related to skill restrictions.

I.e. typically "no more than two of the same skill can be picked". So no more than two block, two guard etc.

I get the feeling this is usually enforced to prevent the much maligned Dwarf guard spam. But what other races get caught in the wake? Lizardmen? Amazons? I think there's a few races effected by the restriction that leads to them being less competitive and therefore less played.

The other thing that confuses me about this is that guard spammed Dwarfs aren't some magic ticket to auto win that many seem to think they are. They're incredibly tough no doubt but can certainly be out coached. I also hear arguments about them being "boring" or in general "not fun" to play against, but is it fun to see your opponents Wardancer pull off the impossible or their irrelevant and completely expendable zombie foul your skilled blitzer off the pitch?

The irony for me being the two top teams in the game Wood Elves and Undead are completely unaffected by skill restrictions needing only a couple of the same skills here and there anyway. With that in mind, let's for arguments sake say that Dwarfs are the third best team out of the box. It seems random to decide to nerf the third best team no?

Obviously skill packages are entirely up to the TO and not subject to the same scrutiny as point systems, and I'm not exactly an expert roster builder I'm just interested what the reasons are because they only seem to make some races less competitive IMO.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 12:38 pm 
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Personally I do it to promote variety. Sometimes it works.

This year I've done it to make coaches really think about skill choices as they will be losing them each game. It has provoked quite a bit of discussion and meta gaming, which I'm all for, and am really looking forward to seeing what choices people make for their rosters and what skills their opponents will take away from them :)

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:32 pm 
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Whenever I see spam restrictions I imagine the TO levelling a shotgun at a party of dwarves, aiming a little too high and obliterating the poor lizards walking past at that moment.

Except Exiles 8, obv, which kinda needs spam restriction to work or the spam teams would become overpowered in later rounds (they'd still have their best skills in rounds 5 and 6 when everyone else had lost their most useful ones)


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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:35 pm 
Ex-Mega Star, now just a Super Star
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I run BUBBA without Skill restrictions, race breakdown this year was:

High Elf 6
Skaven 6
Amazon 4
Halflng 3
Wood Elf 3
Human 3
Orc 2
Goblin 2
Underworld 1
Vampire 1
Necromantic 1
Dark Elf 1
Pro Elf 1

No Dwarf, Chaos Dwarf or Lizard

Go figure

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:43 pm 
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nonumber wrote:
Given the massive debate the bonus points question raised another popped into my head and that is related to skill restrictions.
The irony for me being the two top teams in the game Wood Elves and Undead are completely unaffected by skill restrictions needing only a couple of the same skills here and there anyway.


I think you make an excellent point. Nerfing dwarves in this manner only makes WEs even better (as they are less likely to have to deal with that tricky match up for them).


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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 2:19 pm 
Experienced
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I should clearly be licensing the 'what are you trying to achieve?' brand name :)

I think it's an interesting question though and I agree the target seems to be dwarf guard spam more than anything else. I guess people will say they want variety although as Lokis post makes clear you can lose the skill restrictions and not be drowning in dwarves or lizards. Add into that the NAF has no spam restrictions and I don't see that being dominated by those races either. Finally, as you say, totally favours the top 2 races who don't need any favouring. Interested to see what rationale the TOs have.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 2:22 pm 
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Greshvakk wrote:
I should clearly be licensing the 'what are you trying to achieve?' brand name :)

I think it's an interesting question though and I agree the target seems to be dwarf guard spam more than anything else. I guess people will say they want variety although as Lokis post makes clear you can lose the skill restrictions and not be drowning in dwarves or lizards. Add into that the NAF has no spam restrictions and I don't see that being dominated by those races either. Finally, as you say, totally favours the top 2 races who don't need any favouring. Interested to see what rationale the TOs have.


NAF a little bit only because it's 3 skills day one, so you're spending half the tournament short if you're a race that needs skills.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 2:27 pm 
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nonumber wrote:
NAF a little bit only because it's 3 skills day one, so you're spending half the tournament short if you're a race that needs skills.


Yes good point. Given a number of tournaments also stagger when you get skills I suppose you might double question why those need specific spam restrictions.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 2:48 pm 
Kommissar Enthusiasmoff
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Greshvakk wrote:
Add into that the NAF has no spam restrictions and I don't see that being dominated by those races either.


Took lizards in 2014 and all 6 top tables in round 5 had lizards on, including one mirror match. They don't tend to win the tournament though - that's Undead or Woodies :)

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 2:58 pm 
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nonumber wrote:
Given the massive debate the bonus points question raised another popped into my head and that is related to skill restrictions.

I.e. typically "no more than two of the same skill can be picked". So no more than two block, two guard etc.

This rule does make the WoodElves even stronger, as this roster don't need to spam skill to be powerfull (actually, it's even roster which need specialist... 1 kick, 1 leader, 1 frenzy, 1 strip ball, 1 guard, 1 wrestle, ...)

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 3:21 pm 
Ex-Mega Star, now just a Super Star
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If the rationale behind limiting skills in rulespacks is neutering a Guard dependant Dwarf roster (and I agree from reading around that it seems to be), I think that’s a bit unfair on Dwarves and their coaches. We’re all quite scared of them when we’re new to the game, but in actuality, Dwarves are pretty hard to play really well. Even when played well, they’re quite susceptible to draws, and not in the top five or six races you’d expect to win tournaments under vanilla-ish circumstances. I know some find them ‘dull’, but variety in playing style is what makes the game great. Without shade, light looks less exciting. The above posts are accurate in that this method of torpedoing Dwarves mainly serves to hinder other teams as well (e.g. Lizards) and help Woodies, Undead and maybe DE a little more. Those races don’t seem to need too much extra help to me. Some of our Danish friends (for instance) think about how to torpedo Woodies in rulespacks, and whilst I’m not overly fond of that either (I’m not sure I really like specifically targeting any team), it is at least a touch more logical in my mind.

To change the question to a more global ‘TO’s, what are you trying to achieve with your skills package?’, I think people are trying to achieve something different that makes their tournament stand out. That’s their rationale. By and large, I think TOs achieve that really successfully, and the variety in rulesets we have on these shores is a great thing. There are skillsets I like and skillsets I like less, but they all make up the rich tapestry, and almost all of the races have their day in the sun at some point of the year. This is exactly the area where TOs should be encouraged to show their flair and creativity (as opposed to scoring systems, without kicking that off again), in my view.

The NAFC, being a flagship event, is best off being vanilla. We probably only see 50 of those coaches once a year, so throwing ‘Pro Elves get 4 extra skills, unless one is a double. +MA is 2.5 skills, and with it you must take Pass Block and never put it on the LOS’ at them is a little unfair. Plus, it keeps everyone who would like to be in the hunt at a flagship BB festival in the hunt. Everyone reading these words knows what a winning Undead team looks like, the more complicated you make it, the more it favours goons like me who play much too often. :)

It’s nice to see threads like this crop up challenging what tournaments should look like. Good stuffs.


Last edited by Purplegoo on Mon Apr 04, 2016 3:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 3:32 pm 
Ex-Mega Star, now just a Super Star
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Giving a fuller answer to the original question, the basic thought around how I put my pack together was: 1.2M team (same as Bristol's 2 dayer for continuity), if we are give more cash then that in combination with some tournaments having loads of skills pushed me to give less skills; so 4 skills basic (no repetition limit). Gave a bonus for 'Tier 2' and then extra bonuses for Stunty to try and promote a range of races at the event. Basically, just trying to be a bit different from the other tournaments in the Southwest (of the UK) as much as anything else.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 4:04 pm 
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I bought in the no-spam restriction after the year I had 2 or 3 races make up over 50% of the total (40+ - not woodies or undead). Next year I had 13 stunty teams out of 42!

The tiers were added for variety, and seem to be working ok (Vamps in the hands of a good coach were runner-up one year, and Lycos won with Khemri [though he said he had a favourable draw]), and we've had a variety of races win (should update the list).

I added the "all skills (and what game they come in) added to the roster before round 1" just to make coaches think of their skill choices in advance, rather than "oh, there are x number of y teams here, I'll take skill z next". I know in the majority of cases it doesn't make a difference but see my point about the "Stunty year" above. I would have expected to see a lot more Tackle if my restriction hadn't been in place.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Mon Apr 04, 2016 4:25 pm 
Legend
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I haven't ran a tournament yet, although there is one in the pipe line...

http://www.talkfantasyfootball.org/viewtopic.php?f=59&t=42717

I thought about the tournaments I had been to an looked at others which I hadn't, I was trying to find somewhere roughly in the middle of the spectrum.

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 Post subject: Re: Skill Restrictions - TO's what are you trying to achieve
 Post Posted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:44 am 
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Eh, ninja'd by Phil.

But yeah skill restrictions seemingly to nerf Dwarfs just demonstrate a lack of understanding. Here are the NAF stats, Dwarfs are 8th. Clearly they are not all that. If you effectively 'ban' one race (accidentally banning a couple of others) then a new 'big bad' will arise to frustrate your poor coaching skills. Let's get rid of WEs and Undead too! Boo powergamers, anyone who takes a race other than the one I like is a baddy nasty boy! Where does it end? All stunty tournaments? Goblins are a bit good then. Ban Goblins!

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