So, from what I’ve seen in this weekends tournament, Annoying Gnat turns out to be a very powerful card, which received both positive and negative feedback. I feel the negative feedback grows, though. However, everyone’s biggest concern doesn’t seem to be the fact that - without phantasm/frogify - it’s an immortal body, nor the fact that you get it for only 2 faeria and 1 desert (which is questionable, though). No, the main problem is the huge amount of rng it adds to the game.
I believe, most Faeria players stated they do not want the game to become more rng, especially not another Hearthstone.
So, long talk, short story. Here’s my version of Annoying Gnat:
So what changed?
The faeria cost went up to 4. After all, it’s an immortal body, which is WAY too strong a collector when being summoned on turn 1 for only 2 faeria. Another option would be to make it 3f 2D, so you can’t summon it on turn 1 in any case, not even using your explore card when going second.
More importantly, I removed the rng of the resummoning completely and added a little tactical element: What the text “the play, whose action killed this” wants to tell you (in case it’s not clear), is this: The player on whose turn the Gnat died, has to resummon it immediately (multiple times, if necessary). This is mainly to prevent having an opponent’s action during your own turn and vice versa. However, it also adds quite a lot of tactics in terms of repositioning. (probably hard to code, though)
I reduced the area it can be resummoned to just adjacent tiles. With the current version, it can be killed by a Deathwalker/Shaytan Assassin sacrifice while it stood next to your orb and (if lucky) be resummoned between 2 faeria wells or on a very defensive land tile of your opponent (-> place a land). I think this scenario is toxic to the game and should be prevented.
[optional: 4) Another idea would be to remove the immortality. Like: Last Words of the resummoned Gnat will only be activated on the original player’s next turn]
So, what do you think?
If I could chose where my opponents gnat would spawn, my opponents would just take soo much damage by me attacking it 3 times each turn with something like Guards, Living willows or anythign with combat really, if i had like 3 grimguards/shedimbrutes (any combination) they would deal 12 damage to my opponent and the gnat would be in a spot where I could do the same thing next turn
I dont know. I agree that the RNG is frustrating, how about if it could only respawn on a random desert? or a random land of the owner?
I wonder, maybe the increased faeria cost makes it balanced. But I’m not sure. The immortal gatherer is definitely strong, and the downside of 2 hp on death is quite ridiculous and doesn’t have much impact in many games (and even less when there is powerful healing). In other words : why would you invest resources in killing something that would once again harvest after you’ve killed it ? (and this time, no more RNG placement, you kill it next to a well, it comes back next to the same well). And the 2 damage is not enough an incentive to kill a gnat.
Maybe you could have it stay at its cost, but trigger his last words only on combat ? (not sure it is doable, though). This way, you can kill it with a spell/effect just like any other harvester.
I really like @J0k3se’s idea of it respawning on a random friendly desert, that way it only spawns next to wells if you actually invested in putting lands near the wells, and conversly only spawn near your opponents orb if you manged to get some lands there. Which offers some tangible counterplay by increasing the importance of land placment, rather than ignoring it.
Also if there are no empty deserts it dies, so if you can cover all of the deserts then kill it it actually goes away. (Unlikely agaisnt a mono-yellow deck without using Baeru, but very doable against a multicolored deck.)
@Eggr I really like that one. Also having a way to eventually kill it (by blocking every desert before), would make the much more interesting on both sides.
@J0k3se haven’t thought about the scenario that you have a 2/1 body next to your orb, you can’t remove. Then again, I think the -2 hp/kill would be too much of a downside to go for that strategy. Sure, let it attack my orb once each turn for 2 damage. His owner will receive 4, 6 or even more on my turn then. Sometimes even with combat effects like card draw/faeria gain (King’s/Queen’s Guard, Underground Boss/Brigand).
Exactly my thoughts, I really back this up.
As for the card, what about: 3F D, 2/2 Flying, Last Words - If you have another Yellow Creature on the field except Annoying Gnat, summon this creature to an adjacent tile.
Gnat can’t stay like that, we all agree. In every card game, recuring creature are limited or ban, and they try to not do same mistake again.
I come to suggest 2 possible balance to this card, but the infinite revie is hard to solve.
-reduce the attack of Gnat by 1. The creature will be still strong farmer / sac but less dangerous to trade. She still can be boost to improve the offensiv potential.
-Simply make Gnat can’t farm. 3 cost, 1 desert. Still a strong annoying creature with many use, but not that stupid double farmer who just allow to the owner to ignore the board at all.
I really think the second option si the best, what do you think about it?
How about - cost 3f D, same exact re-summoning mechanism as now, but “Cannot gather Faeria while on Ocean”? This would eliminate the cheapest double-gather scenarios, but would still allow a Yellow player who actually earned board control on one of the wings to use their Gnat to safely farm for a while if they can keep it alive.
I actually like Gnat being able to farm.
If it can’t farm, with the current stats/cost it’d be almost unplayable.
I know, many people don’t like the card(s rng), but destroying a card is stupid and lazy. Every nerf’s/rework’s goal should be to keep things viable and interesting, while removing/reducing the problematic aspects.
So the only thing that bugs me is the swingyness of its rng. It’s not as bad as Hearthstone’s piloted shredder for example, but pretty close for Faeria’s standards. A single lucky respawn on an opponent’s land can win you the game, because of sudden immediate pressure (-> place aggressive land on an otherwise unaccessible tile). A lucky respawn between two wells can net you a faeria advantage and force your opponent to spent resources (removal) for only a chance of getting a temporary catch up.
Disabling faeria collection makes the latter situation impossible, so there is a flat out negative outcome for its owner (respawn between wells) which can mess up the whole investment (close to getting a doomsayer from a shredder).
The current version was a step into the right direction (3f DD means no summon on turn 1). The rng problem stays though. And so does the problem of impossible removal (except for frogify/phantasm). In that regard, I’d like a circumstance dependant removal, like the above mentioned respawn “only if there’s a free desert” or “only if there’s another friendly creature”.
Best thing to solve rng stuff is either remove the rng or make it more controlable like mentioned in my original post.
To me, moderate rng, like the Green land placement, is fine, but global positioning rng is just too huge and not very tactically involved.
I’m not a fan of the Sagami Huntmaster for the same reason, even though it’s a huge buff to my favourite deck. Global repositioning in Faeria just feels like cheating.
The ability to double-collect or place offensive lands from nowhere seems like a bonus that an “immortal” creature doesn’t need. I would prefer something like this:
If it read “summon adjacent to an Annoying Gnat”, that could be more fun, especially in a mirror match, but obviously way too vulnerable to cards like Groundshaker, so not really an option.