Major games like Warhammer 40k and Marvel Crisis Protocol always struggle with these balance issues amid global supply chain disruptions.
A recent post about the Marvel Crisis Protocol banned & restricted list got us thinking about game balance in general. As it’s not just MCP trying to balance their game, Games Workshop has been making more changes and tries to balance Warhammer 40k every three months now as well.
That’s obviously much different than small changes to a character card. It can completely change the way you play your game overall. If you want to see the latest restricted and banned list for MCP, you can here.
As we said, it’s not just MCP coming with changes; Games Workshop is also constantly throwing out new FAQs and points changes in an attempt to balance Warhammer 40k.
Are Constant Balance Changes Good For Games like Warhammer 40k, etc.?
Check out this post on the Marvel Crisis Protocol Facebook group, where players discussed previous changes when they dropped…
This does raise some great points. First, there will always be something considered the best “X” at any particular moment in any game. So just because a card or character is good, does that mean it can no longer exist in the game?
Should game devs go down the list of what’s best at the time and ban it? Probably not, but it’s still interesting to think about. This goes for every game and not just MCP as well. There will always be a better faction, play, etc…
The next good point is that by banning a specific crisis mission (or anything strong from another game), you don’t get rid of the underlying mechanics that were making it broken.
Sure, the OP of this posts we’re citing over-exaggerates a bit, but the point is pretty valid.
If you eliminate everything that is strong, everything good about the game will eventually be taken out. Plus, having one thing be stronger than another is just how games are, and it necessarily isn’t an issue.
GW is Constantly Trying to Balance Warhammer 40k
While people love to say the newest codex is always the best, that’s not always the fact in 9th Edition Warhammer 40k (Votann aside, as we will never know). While we do see a big win rate increase when a book drops, they don’t always top the tournament circuit anymore.
Games Workshop vows to make more updates every three months as they struggle with stagnation and balance amid supply chain issues. We think it’s way better than just doing nothing and letting one army be the best.
While it can be very annoying to keep up with the constant rules changes, sometimes you just have to look at the game, like Warhammer 40k, and do what you think is right for balance.
Plus, for a company like GW, you have to take into account that not only are they trying to balance a game with tons of armies and players, but they are also trying to coordinate simultaneous worldwide releases.
(If you’re offended, it’s probably true)
So while we all want a balanced, fun game, sometimes the price of getting there feels almost too much. The rules creep is hard to stomach, but if you want balance, you must have that type of thing.
It seems like a Catch-22, where if they don’t do anything, the game stays very unbalanced; if they make constant changes, people complain about too many rules…
Games Are Inherently Competitive
Another way to think about it is this: anytime two people play a game against each other, there is a level of competition brought in.
Just let that sink in for a second.
Whether that be a lot or a little, there is always some level of competition against one another. They create rules, points, and everything else for the sole reason of having a balanced (as balanced as it can get) game where you can test who is the better player.
While most of us like to say we play for fun, most of us would lie if we said we didn’t want to win.
Obviously, we don’t want to blow our opponents out; most of us probably want a close game where we win in the end and it is fun for both players.
Most of the comments on the above post were about a community standard of not trying that hard and being a good opponent. AKA playing with your opponent, and the social contract, etc.
There are things you can do as a player if you want a more competitive game against someone you know that isn’t as good as you. One is to simmer your moves and actions through the game instead of going “full heat.” Maybe mess up something “on purpose” to keep your opponent in the game.
Perhaps try to self-match the competitive level of your opponent and be a good gaming partner.
Overall we think it’s fantastic that developers like Atomic Mass Games and Games Workshop are constantly updating their and trying to balance their games. While they may make some blunders, it’s better than any of the games we love sitting and going stagnant.
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Do you like how game developers try to balance systems like Warhammer 40k or Marvel Crisis Protocol?
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