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Contrasting lore and mechanics in which characters you like

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Jeysie
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Contrasting lore and mechanics in which characters you like

Various recent discussions here and elsewhere have made me curious about this as its own topic. Namely, what are some of the characters where you really like them as a character but are meh on playing with or against them, and vice versa, which characters do you like for their mechanics but feel kinda personally meh on their lore?


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

MindWanderer
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Thanks to the Letters Page, I like the lore on most of the characters, so it's mostly about which characters whose mechanics I dislike.  I like Unity's personality and gimmick but didn't like her mechanics until Termi-Nation Unity came out.  Setback has a fun concept but I find him utterly un-fun to play (Dark Watch is worse, but I don't find his vanilla version effective either).  Visionary is a bit frustrating because she's supposed to be an incredibly powerful telepath, but I usually play her mostly for Twist the Ether; otherwise she's pretty unremarkable mechanically.

On the flip side, speaking of Visionary, I find Dark Visionary, with her guaranteed deck control every turn, to be the most effective, but I dislike playing evil characters like that.  The Naturalist is incredibly effective but I don't find his lore compelling.  Some, like Tempest and Sky-Scraper, I'm still waiting on, of course.

Fortunately, most of the characters I find boring to play--Legacy, Bunker, Expatriette, Omnitron-X, Ra--also have stories and/or personalities that don't interest me, and many of the ones I enjoy most--The Scholar, Argent Adept, Chrono-Ranger, Guise, Parse, The Sentinels--have stories and/or personalities I like as well.


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Expat is one where I like the lore but not the deck mechanics.   Her deck works but it’s the only one I feel it doesn’t even portray her lore that well. For starters her base power should deal damage as I find it unlikely she’d never have a gun on her.   

 

On the the other side, I like the mechanics of Progeny but lore wise I can’t imagine he has much, if any, of a personality beyond just pummeling everything in its path. 


Crush your enemies, drive them before you, and laminate their women! - Guise, Prime Wardens #31

 
The Burning Stickman
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Yeah, that's something that's kind of struck me in some cases -- like that Fanatic is supposed to be this overwhelming, unstoppable force of nature...

...but her deck is filled almost entirely with 1 and 2 damage attacks and no way to really buff her own damage. Yes, she has Wrathful Retribution and End of Days, but those are rare and not really repeatable, while the Cosmic Contest podcast places her as someone who can go toe-to-toe with Citizen Dawn.

By contrast, Legacy -- someone who is notably holding back basically all the time and who Fanatic straight up defeats -- is capable in his deck of reliable damage that Fanatic can't match without either having taken a bunch of damage or doing a bunch of damage to herself.

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With respect to lore the only character I dislike is Fanatic. She's pretty fun mechanically though.

Mechanically I like all the heroes but if I had to pick one hero with great lore and merely ok mechanics I'd have to say Setback.

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mwc146 wrote:

Yeah, that's something that's kind of struck me in some cases -- like that Fanatic is supposed to be this overwhelming, unstoppable force of nature...

...but her deck is filled almost entirely with 1 and 2 damage attacks and no way to really buff her own damage. Yes, she has Wrathful Retribution and End of Days, but those are rare and not really repeatable, while the Cosmic Contest podcast places her as someone who can go toe-to-toe with Citizen Dawn.

By contrast, Legacy -- someone who is notably holding back basically all the time and who Fanatic straight up defeats -- is capable in his deck of reliable damage that Fanatic can't match without either having taken a bunch of damage or doing a bunch of damage to herself.

As much as SotM tries to tie flavor to gameplay, balanced and fun gameplay must come before perfect flavor matchups.  That's why it's possible for Argent Adept to explode his Pipes multiple times in a row (with the help of Instrumental Conjuration) with no ill effects, why Sarabande of Destruction can eliminate T-rexes but can't touch an Omnitron Assault Drone, and how Mr. Fixer is capable of taking out Voss' Flagships with a single attack (Grease Monkey Fist, Dual Crowbars, Harmony, Bloody Knuckles.  Attack self for 1+1+1+1+2+2 = 8, reflect for 15 toxic damage at a spaceship).


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In terms of "I like the character but not so much their mechanics":

I agree that Setback is a total adorable sweetie with fun lore, but even his normal version plays far too randomly. I mean, I'll give it points for being thematic, but it's kinda frustrating to actually play.

Also agree with Unity. She's easily my second fave hero close behind Argent, because how could I not love a fun-loving cheesy-humored Polyanna who commands an adorable robot army? (Since that's usually a villainous power, so it's fun to see a hero using it.) And yet I find I never manage to get around to playing her anywhere near as often as I do Argent since it's hard to actually get her bots out and manage to keep them there.

Captain Cosmic had me at "cute cheerful protective British guy", but his actual gameplay ranges from "boring but practical" matched up with the Prime Wardens to "meh" matched up with anyone else.

I've said this a number of times before, but just for completeness' sake, I like Spite's horrifying flavor but can't stand playing against him.

Something similar with solo Miss Information. As a former secretary myself I'm totally onboard with a supervillainous secretary, but gameplay where you spend half of it just mostly helplessly getting pounded is not very fun.

In terms of "I like their mechanics but not so much the character":

Yeah, pretty much Fanatic for me as well. Her variants and deck are fun and useful to play with, but honestly the more we hear about her in the podcast and the RPG, the more she just completely turns me off as a character.


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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Jeysie wrote:

 Her variants and deck are fun and useful to play with, but honestly the more we hear about her in the podcast and the RPG, the more she just completely turns me off as a character.

The thing that surprised me the most in the revelations we got is just what parallel she draws with existing comics characters - I never would have guessed that she was, of all things, similar to Ghost Rider.

Sure, Judgement and Angelic vs. Vengeance and Demonic, but despite the Dio references I didn't make the connection to just how heavy-metal Fanatic was.

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The characters whose decks seem to match the least to their flavour for me are definitely Fanatic and Spite. Just off her deck, Fanatic reads as a general supporting person who just reliably keeps coming, whittling away at the edges of the enemy with firm resolve until one of her teammates can do damage, and only unleashing a devastating power in the worst situations because of how harmful that kind of release is to her. Her lore is almost precisely the opposite.

Spite, of course, just doesn't have a deck that works right, encouraging you to ignore his victims to punch him in the face, which is unfortunate. 

 

The hero whose deck I'm least interested in compared to how much I love him is Haka. Haka's deck is okay - he's got some solid damage and self-heal, plus a couple of interesting Ongoings - but it's nothing special, and if I want to play a bruiser I tend to prefer Ra, KNYFE, or Young Legacy. On the other hand, Haka is one of my favorite characters in the multiverse! 

The hero whose deck I'm most interested in compared to how much I am meh for them is probably the Argent Adept. He's got one of my favorite decks, but I just don't really care about Anthony Drake. He's not bad, he's just... ehn, he's there. His stories didn't really grab me. 

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I dunno, when I'm playing Haka, I always come away with a big smile, because I feel like I've been playing as someone who really enjoys what he does, which is punching dudes. :D Maybe it's just because I like Haka so much.

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FrivYeti wrote:

Just off her deck, Fanatic reads as a general supporting person who just reliably keeps coming, whittling away at the edges of the enemy with firm resolve until one of her teammates can do damage, and only unleashing a devastating power in the worst situations because of how harmful that kind of release is to her. Her lore is almost precisely the opposite.

I 100% agree with that. Though I guess they expect you to have Fanatic blast herself down so Retribution will have a greater effect, but I don't draw it often enough to really have it be a safe or reliable thing.

Edit: Spelling and such.

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I like Fanatic mechanically as she has unique survivability.   While I may not like her as a character as much I do understand her motivation better.   Knowing all we do now the only piece I feel she is missing is just a better Sacrosanct Matyr.   By either having her self damage from her other Ongoings be radiant or the resulting damage should be X + 1(or more).   I really like playing her Variants more than her base version though.  


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Honestly? Tachyon kinda doesn't grab my attention. Maybe it's a consequence of the sorts of questions asked in the Letters Page episode about her - and I don't mean for that to sound rude to those who wrote in questions, I just think they all covered a similar area - but she barely seems to have a personality to me, other than "science and also gay". Her cards' quippy quotes seem at total odds with the idea of a serious, efficient scientist that we hear about in her episode, and the result is kinda like "I genuinely don't know this character very well".

 

I love her deck, but still. 

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Admittedly a lot of the Sentinels folks fall into the category of "Their job is their personality" to varying degrees, something that the Letters Page hasn't done very much to address much to my disappointment (I'm hoping the RPG ends up giving us more illuminating profiles for everyone).

Right now I feel like Absolute Zero, Haka, Setback, and Unity are the short list of heroes where I feel like I could credibly write them as people with a decent grip on what they'd sound like personality and dialogue-wise.


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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I mean, Biomancer seems easy. Just pretend everything is exactly as planned.

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What do you mean, "pretend?"


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I have this image in my head of Biomancer dressed up as Tuxedo Mask.

 

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FrivYeti wrote:

The characters whose decks seem to match the least to their flavour for me are definitely Fanatic and Spite. Just off her deck, Fanatic reads as a general supporting person who just reliably keeps coming, whittling away at the edges of the enemy with firm resolve until one of her teammates can do damage, and only unleashing a devastating power in the worst situations because of how harmful that kind of release is to her. Her lore is almost precisely the opposite.


 

BurningStickman wrote:
Yeah, that's something that's kind of struck me in some cases -- like that Fanatic is supposed to be this overwhelming, unstoppable force of nature...

...but her deck is filled almost entirely with 1 and 2 damage attacks and no way to really buff her own damage. Yes, she has Wrathful Retribution and End of Days, but those are rare and not really repeatable, while the Cosmic Contest podcast places her as someone who can go toe-to-toe with Citizen Dawn.

By contrast, Legacy -- someone who is notably holding back basically all the time and who Fanatic straight up defeats -- is capable in his deck of reliable damage that Fanatic can't match without either having taken a bunch of damage or doing a bunch of damage to herself.

It's interesting to read your perspectives.

I was surprised at how powerful Fanatic turned out to be in the lore, too, but I think her deck is a great fit to her flavor and in retrospect her power level makes sense. Sure she doesn't have the kind of straightforward big damage that Legacy gets from Backfist Strike and Flying Smash, but the decks do have to be balanced. She really has the feel of an "overwhelming, unstoppable force" in the card game as well - there are 27 cards in her deck that deal damage, 5 that give extra power uses, and all of her powers, including her base power, deal damage. When you have that kind of consistency and staying power you can't also have each card deal 3-5 damage - although once you find it, Absolution does deal 3 every turn, as much damage as Atomic Vision, and Sacrosanct Martyr can deal 5 damage per power use if you can afford to keep it up. That she needs to find these cards and set up to really get the pain train going, that she doesn't have an infinite supply of Aegises of Resurrection and that most of her cards deal 1-2 damage are gameplay artifacts, just like Legacy doesn't have an option to cut loose and switch to Iron Legacy's deck if he feels like it.

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WalkingTarget wrote:

The thing that surprised me the most in the revelations we got is just what parallel she draws with existing comics characters - I never would have guessed that she was, of all things, similar to Ghost Rider.Sure, Judgement and Angelic vs. Vengeance and Demonic, but despite the Dio references I didn't make the connection to just how heavy-metal Fanatic was.

She is a bad ass hot angel chick with a giant sword and armor.  She is a side of a van mural come alive!   The only way she could be more metal is if she rode an armored liger.  Man I can hear a squaling guitare solo in my ears just typing this! :)

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Nilus wrote:

WalkingTarget wrote:

The thing that surprised me the most in the revelations we got is just what parallel she draws with existing comics characters - I never would have guessed that she was, of all things, similar to Ghost Rider.Sure, Judgement and Angelic vs. Vengeance and Demonic, but despite the Dio references I didn't make the connection to just how heavy-metal Fanatic was.

 

She is a bad ass hot angel chick with a giant sword and armor.  She is a side of a van mural come alive!   The only way she could be more metal is if she rode an armored liger.  Man I can hear a squaling guitare solo in my ears just typing this! :)

I can't speak for WalkingTarget, but I'm one of the extremely few geeks not also into metal, so I initially just thought of Fanatic as akin to an Aasimar or Celestial Paladin.


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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My formative metal experience was mostly early-to-mid-career Metallica in that those are the albums I actually owned. No MTV out in the sticks meant that very little in terms of visual iconography of such things made it to my attention, and don’t immediately come to mind even now that I’m a bit more well-versed (even the concept of van murals are only something I’m aware of via parody/reference like Dr. Krieger’s series of them on Archer).

Of course, it makes sense to me now that it's been pointed out, but my frame of reference for her was drawn more to Hawkgirl (wings and melee weapons).

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Jeysie wrote:
... one of the extremely few geeks not also into metal,

Oh, there are loads of us.
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Trajector wrote:
Jeysie wrote:
... one of the extremely few geeks not also into metal,

 

Oh, there are loads of us.

Heh! True. Just feels like eight times out of ten when I meet a new geek on a personal level or find out a geeky creator's music tastes, they're way into metal and/or hard rock. (Which is usually awkward because my music tastes are mostly on the old-fashioned end aside from some outliers.)


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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I'm a nerdy Metalhead who goes to the the Opera.  Though the Opera is a new thng, but I've been enjoying it so far.

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WalkingTarget wrote:

(even the concept of van murals are only something I’m aware of via parody/reference like Dr. Krieger’s series of them on Archer)

That's exactly what I thought of as soon as I read "van mural."

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I have pretty strange tastes. At least, I think they're strange.

I was a big fan of 90s alternative in my teen years, with an interest in blues and jazz. Then I got into the Gorillaz with a little bit of toe-dipping into hip-hop, but not too many artists interested me. I always enjoyed Weird Al, but there wasn't much of a chance for me to buy his music until recently(Really want to pick up the Squeeze-box Collection). Then there was Ska and the Aquabats(went to one of their shows on the Eastcoast last summer, was SUPER RAD! 8D). My newest interest is Marshmello, an EDM artist.

 

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Blackfang108 wrote:

I'm a nerdy Metalhead who goes to the the Opera.  Though the Opera is a new thng, but I've been enjoying it so far.

When I stop to think about it, opera actually is sort of metal for classical music, isn't it? Like, it's people in over the top elaborate hair and outfits singing with volume about epic concepts; sounds more or less about right for the theme.


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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You're not wrong... My best friend was a super metal head in college, and he was always trying to explain to me how such-and-such song was based on a jazz composition, or so-and-so was a classically trained guitarist before joining a metal band. I just didn't like it personally, so I was kind of hard to convince. :)

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@Trajector: I more or less grew up being trained to sing stuff like folk songs, showtunes, choral music, holiday music (and played the violin for a brief spell). So my tastes run more towards that sort of thing (still like folk music and showtunes, also acapella and big band and 50s-80s music), and conversely a lot of metal and hard rock leaves me with a sort of instinctive wincing/cringing reaction.

So my outliers tend more toward what I'm familiar with; stuff like Nightwish, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Dropkick Murphys.

Also I weirdly don't mind electronica.


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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Jeysie wrote:

Trans-Siberian Orchestra


I saw their show this year.  I have no words.

 

RE Opera: It depends on the Opera and the Composer.  Wagner's Ring Cycle is certainly Metal, while Bizet's Pearl Fishers is far more down to Earth (but he has his moments in Carmen, too). Also, Verdi's Rigoletto, while awesome, is also far more down to Earth.  (Can you believe this is only my second season of going to the Opera?  Me neither.  If your  schedule is flexible, a season pass is suprisingly affordable at the Lyric Opera House in Chicago.  And the cheap seets are still good seats.)

 

Opera is really more like the Pop Music of its time, though Metal has CERTIANLY been influenced.  It's  kind of like Anime where, it's a medium, and there's a specific cultural view of it, but its far broader than the general public realizes.  (Not all Anime is DBZ, not all Opera is the Ring Cycle)

 

Edit: That said, I would pay well to have Tony Kakko of Sonata Arctica turn the story of the two "White Pearl, Black Ocean" songs into a full length opera.  or the three Wildfire songs...

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Trajector wrote:

 

Jeysie wrote:
... one of the extremely few geeks not also into metal,

 

Oh, there are loads of us.

I don't know a single nerd IRL who is into metal.  Interesting.  Punk, yes.  Metal, no.

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@carnilius: That reminds me that knowing people who like emo rock is a whole other ball of wax when you're a fangirl used to hanging around other fangirls.

If I never ever ever ever come across another shippy songfic set to My Chemical Romance or Linkin Park lyrics, it will be too soon. You have no idea.

I even had a long distance relationship  about ten years ago with a girl who was into emo bands and she was like "Oh gosh your music tastes are just so quaint" and would constantly try to introduce me to whatever her new favorite emo band was as a way to "update" my music tastes and it was like, OK, OK, think, what is the most polite and loving way to say "it's just not happening I'm sorry".


"If life gives you lemons, make a lemon cannon."

Not always the best at social skills; I apologize in advance. I don't apologize for any corny and morbid jokes, though.

Resident Argent Adept and Biomancer fangirl, be forewarned.

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Jeysie wrote:

@carnilius: That reminds me that knowing people who like emo rock is a whole other ball of wax when you're a fangirl used to hanging around other fangirls.If I never ever ever ever come across another shippy songfic set to My Chemical Romance or Linkin Park lyrics, it will be too soon. You have no idea.I even had a long distance relationship  about ten years ago with a girl who was into emo bands and she was like "Oh gosh your music tastes are just so quaint" and would constantly try to introduce me to whatever her new favorite emo band was as a way to "update" my music tastes and it was like, OK, OK, think, what is the most polite and loving way to say "it's just not happening I'm sorry".

Both of those bands have a couple of songs that wormed their way onto my playlists, but overall, yeah.

 

I think ther reason that there are as many metal fans in the nerd community is because of the sheer amount of nerds who are metal gods.

 

Blind Guardian has songs about ASOIaF, LotR, the Eternal Champion series, the Wheel of Time, Dragonlance, etc., just to name one band.