TESTER LIFE SERIES #2

Written by Jesse Bergman


Testing, testing, and more testing...

Hey everyone, I know it has been a few weeks since we did our last tester life article. This was due to basically two reasons.

  • Reason #1: We have all been super busy here at Punch-It getting ready to show Battle for Sularia at the GAMA trade show in Las Vegas.
  • Reason #2: We have been essentially testing the same two base battle kits against each other to get enough data.

Since its been a couple of weeks this article will be slightly longer.  Grab your favorite beverage and dive into what its like to test Battle for Sularia.

This update is pretty awesome for us because I can officially say we have concluded the battle kit 1 & battle kit 2 playtesting.  We know how each of these decks behave against one another and I can say we are (mostly) happy with the results.

Now you probably caught that! Mostly!? If you are asking what that means, fear not dear reader I will explain. All of the factions play very different and have different approaches to defeating your opponent in Battle for Sularia.  We designed them that way, so the fact that the Battle Kits really showcase the strengths of that particular faction is a major plus for us and was a major design goal.


 
 

Battle kit 1 is made up of the Synthien and Jotune. If you haven’t played a demo yet then, you need to, because these two decks are so vastly different they provide countless games of play.  The Jotune are very combatant aggressive and they try to win by having combatants that are difficult to defend. For example, the Cloud Falcon has flight and flying combatants may only be defended by another flight combatant or a combatant with specialist.  The Synthien deck doesn’t have flight and opts for a more tactic/condition heavy deck list that allows them to damage combatants through effects, damage sites through effects, or damage an opponent through effects.  Their combatants can still do some heavy lifting though and are not completely useless.

Battle kit 2 is made up of the.. we'll call them by their code names [Yellow] and [Green]. The [Yellow] is a control faction at heart. They don’t do a lot of aggressive tricks and rely on attrition to finally defeat their opponent.  They do have one or two serious threats, but for the most part their combatants are not combat oriented. [Green] design revolved around not needing sularium.  [Green] don’t need a lot of sularium to make things happen because they can create token combatants. These tokens can quickly overwhelm the board with not left in check. This is why the [Yellow] and [Green] factions play so well against one another.

When we bring this all together and do not allow any customization you quickly find some imbalances, as certain cards chosen to balance against the “inter” battle kit faction are not effective or not nearly as effective against the others.

For Example: [Green] have a very tough match up against the Synthien when you make absolutely zero changes to the battle kits. This is simply because the [Greens] don’t have significant answers in their Mercenary card, and in their defenses to protect against specific Synthien effect combos.  

We believe these answers already exist in the form of the current Mercenary cards which can be added and adjusted.  We also believe the decks can become more “competitive” by adding copies of the cards that may only have one or two copies in the base battle kits.

Now that we have finished up the testing of the base battle kits our testers get to flex their proverbial muscles a bit.  But just a bit, because testing is about creating controlled environments where we can accurately analyze what is happening in the meta.  

Matt G., one of our testers, and I got the first crack at this over the weekend. After 5 months testing these battle kits, I had almost forgotten how our game plays when the floodgates are opened.  It was exciting and FAST!!!!  

In base battle kit testing, most games ended between turn 7 - 9.

Matt and I got in 5 games, this last weekend and we got all 5 games done in under 90 minutes!  We don’t have enough data to give you average turns, but lets put it this way.  7 - 9 rounds is upwards of 40+ minutes per game!

I played a [Green] build and they were matched up in against another faction where they lost 62.5% of the time in base battle kit testing.  After 5 games the [Greens] were 3 - 2!  They nearly flipped the win/loss ratio. This is important in order for us to understand which cards are necessary in developing command packs.

So dear reader, all I ask while reading this article is to know this. With support from our players the metagame for Battle for Sularia can be vast and it will always be changing. It is up to all of us to make sure these amazing cards and mechanics that we work so hard to test, get into your hands! Know we will continue to be thorough in our testing and evolving Meta to make sure you the players always have the best possible experience with whichever faction you choose.