FRA 2.0 Review - Initial Thoughts

    • Why i dislike the current Teeth kicking incarnation of FRA is that it feels unfair.

      I guess an analogy for me to explain, I've beaten dark souls 2 and 3 with just punching.

      Just.

      Punching.

      It was a terrible idea, and extremely difficult, but i chose a VERY suboptimal thing to do to beat the content and with gumption, practice, and MANY MANY DEATHs, i beat the content.

      That, was a perfect, FAIR challenge. Nothing about FRA feels fair, and it swings to far in the "LOL, You died cuz i gave him an extra turn!" Direction. The elites are too oppresive, the hard counters make certain decks have a built in failure rate, which sucks, (lulz, your playing burn! Meet the medic! Lulz constants? Botanist!) If the encounters could be streamlined a bit to be "Tough, but fair" (As in not auto losses) I would be fine with FRA keeping it's new more ruthless difficulty.

      Just make it fair. (or MORE fair. you get the gist.)

      -e-
    • Even with the help from Morphology and Spirit it still fails from time to time because the Elite had too strong a start and Gift wasn't played early enough. If even terrormill has to settle for less than perfect runs, then it is not much different from the other decks that can clear arena now, except that it is faster.
    • Gravitygroove wrote:

      Why i dislike the current Teeth kicking incarnation of FRA is that it feels unfair.

      I guess an analogy for me to explain, I've beaten dark souls 2 and 3 with just punching.

      Just.

      Punching.

      It was a terrible idea, and extremely difficult, but i chose a VERY suboptimal thing to do to beat the content and with gumption, practice, and MANY MANY DEATHs, i beat the content.

      That, was a perfect, FAIR challenge. Nothing about FRA feels fair, and it swings to far in the "LOL, You died cuz i gave him an extra turn!" Direction. The elites are too oppresive, the hard counters make certain decks have a built in failure rate, which sucks, (lulz, your playing burn! Meet the medic! Lulz constants? Botanist!) If the encounters could be streamlined a bit to be "Tough, but fair" (As in not auto losses) I would be fine with FRA keeping it's new more ruthless difficulty.

      Just make it fair. (or MORE fair. you get the gist.)

      -e-
      You do know you are comparing to a game with very little RNG, based almost exclusively around skill, to a game with very heavy RNG, based a lot around luck?

      I mean, I could tell you that you give me two crappy cards that have synergy to build around, and I can build a deck to clear FRA with them. That is as close to punching bosses as you will get in HEX, and I can assure you it's possible. (within reason - I'm sure someone can serve up something so bad here so, reserve the right to refuse service :) )

      In regards to Terrormill: There is a reason why Terrormill is Ranked S Tier on the Arena Tierlist. It is truly that strong. There are 2 major factors to it getting consistent flawless. Spirit of Retribution, and timely Phenteo's Gift procs. However, without the semi-control elements, it can still mill by turn 4 without them. In fact, with a Lookout backed build, sometimes Phenteo's Gifts are far better for their recursion ability, than the Terrorantulas because it is another 1 cost card being played that will trigger more cards to be milled.
    • New

      Arkansaw wrote:

      Even with the help from Morphology and Spirit it still fails from time to time because the Elite had too strong a start and Gift wasn't played early enough. If even terrormill has to settle for less than perfect runs, then it is not much different from the other decks that can clear arena now, except that it is faster.
      Well, no deck can perfect 100% of the time. And my reply is more on the low score(IMO) given by other players on Terrormill.

      Vroengard wrote:

      @Goliathus What's the shardbase you're using for that? Or, maybe, can you provide a tcgbrowser link? Your deck seems much different from mine. Is Spirit of Retribution worth splashing and what equipment you use?
      I run 20 shards with 3 Ices but it's not optimized. I am not really that good on mana base adjustment so you will have to try it yourself. I think 22 shards with 4 Ice might be safer if you want consistency. I run 20 shards on the expensive list because you don't really need more than that and I did not adjust the mana base just now when I run the budget list, even though I should have. TCGBrowser doesn't sync for some reason, it doesn't update my deck and I am too lazy to create a deck manually there.

      As for Spirit of Retribution, if you still remember the discussion few pages ago, I call that card a freaking cheat code for a reason. You can look at KotoTheMage's or Renault's list in TCGBrowser, they all run SoR. SoR is insanely versatile. It is a win con against Archon and Burly Botanist; or any encounter that you start with like 3 SoR in hand, you can just swing in every turn, let the opponent swing back for +ATK on the SoR and swing again until your opponent is dead. It is anti-aggro and can defend against early aggressors like the Avalanche Giant, its stat line of 2-4 can kill mostly early threats of FRA like 3-2 without dying itself. It has lifedrain to give you that extra sustain. It makes AI not willing to attack assuming that's what you want.

      As for equipment, most lists and myself run the two Phenteo's Gift equipment, Spirit of Retribution's boots and Dream Eagle's glove. Head, some players run Chaotic Murmur's, I personally run Spirit of Retribution's. Trinket, some runs Fever Bloom's, I run Nazhk Lookout's.
    • New

      ShinGuard wrote:

      Been over this a lot. Just ran into the thing I think most people are not super excited about. FRA is a wild west gunfight. Whoever draws fastest wins. Poet definitely drew faster this game.


      This is the sort of OTT stoopid that makes players go and play something else. Hard is one thing, next to impossible without a perfect opening hand is ridiculous. I'm loving the Roars! though, mine have been gathering dust since the unneeded nerf.
    • New

      Lets look at the two biggest success stories out of FRA 2.0 because they both follow the same pattern, Terrormill and Egg hunt.

      -Both have a 1 drop card that hits the board like a meteorite.
      -Both have a 1 or 2 drop that enables the first 1 drop incredibly efficiently. Morsel of Madness, mill, Runts of the Litter, warpsteel shardsworn.
      -Both have mana fixing in the form of wells and fateweave shards
      -Both tutor for the 1 drop using tricks like eagle, seer, focus.
      -Both can use Spirit of Retribution to stall if needed.

      The problem with FRA 2.0 is a problem of efficiency. In essence, FRA 2.0 requires a level of efficiency in your deck that most casual decks cannot match. Your deck has to go off with 1 or 2 shards max or its too slow, too fat, not fast enough for this foot race. Its a game mode that requires superior tuning and I think hexent needs to ease back the throttle to allow less efficient decks through or we're only going to see a very narrow build type of decks that can be the "solution" to this game mode puzzle.

      That's just my opinion though. I kinda miss being able to run off the wall ideas like a w/d conscript deck and have it actually have a chance of making it past tier 2.
    • New

      TheBlackCrypt wrote:

      ShinGuard wrote:

      Been over this a lot. Just ran into the thing I think most people are not super excited about. FRA is a wild west gunfight. Whoever draws fastest wins. Poet definitely drew faster this game.


      This is the sort of OTT stoopid that makes players go and play something else. Hard is one thing, next to impossible without a perfect opening hand is ridiculous. I'm loving the Roars! though, mine have been gathering dust since the unneeded nerf.
      It's Sethanon's deck. It plays very well. It's very fast and wins virtually every game the AI DOESN'T do this. Therein lies the problem. Craziness is about the only way to challenge a deck such as this, but anything that wants to play a card with cost 4 is much too slow.

      Maybe we need an opponent like Glorfenblort to slow down the 2 turn agro wins and allow space for slower more conventional decks.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by ShinGuard ().

    • New

      PlatinumDeTwenty wrote:

      Lets look at the two biggest success stories out of FRA 2.0 because they both follow the same pattern, Terrormill and Egg hunt.

      -Both have a 1 drop card that hits the board like a meteorite.
      -Both have a 1 or 2 drop that enables the first 1 drop incredibly efficiently. Morsel of Madness, mill, Runts of the Litter, warpsteel shardsworn.
      -Both have mana fixing in the form of wells and fateweave shards
      -Both tutor for the 1 drop using tricks like eagle, seer, focus.
      -Both can use Spirit of Retribution to stall if needed.

      The problem with FRA 2.0 is a problem of efficiency. In essence, FRA 2.0 requires a level of efficiency in your deck that most casual decks cannot match. Your deck has to go off with 1 or 2 shards max or its too slow, too fat, not fast enough for this foot race. Its a game mode that requires superior tuning and I think hexent needs to ease back the throttle to allow less efficient decks through or we're only going to see a very narrow build type of decks that can be the "solution" to this game mode puzzle.

      That's just my opinion though. I kinda miss being able to run off the wall ideas like a w/d conscript deck and have it actually have a chance of making it past tier 2.
      fyi my angel deck cant win on less than 3 shards and average is like 5
    • New

      That is why the Elite encounters are the most problematic, you need to keep a removal handy otherwise the bad starts are simply lost outright.

      Hogarth does "allow" you to play high cost cards, until you took too long before Frostmare and his constants become too overwhelming.
    • New

      Arkansaw wrote:

      That is why the Elite encounters are the most problematic, you need to keep a removal handy otherwise the bad starts are simply lost outright.

      Hogarth does "allow" you to play high cost cards, until you took too long before Frostmare and his constants become too overwhelming.
      Yeah, I'd actually argue Hogarth inspires you to play high-cost cards, given that the effect of his cost-increase becomes lower, assuming you can survive that long.
      Never shift in to reverse without a backup plan.
    • New

      The more I think about it, the more I am on board with the idea of reserves and/or mercenaries. Initially I thought this was a lazy solution to counter 'hate' fights that your deck had no way of winning, and was catering the the incorrect notion that you should be able to perfect the arena most of the time with a good deck. But thematically, Set 7 sets the lore of teams coming to the arena, so bringing one solo deck and nothing else is contrary to how the new FRA is actually portrayed.

      The upside is that it allows FRA decks, both players and AI to be more complex, interactive, and possibly even allows the AI to play even more difficult decks. Terrormill is dominant and successful because it is both quick and requires no interaction with whatever the opponent is doing. There are fights (Poet, Phenteo, etc) where the longer the match goes, you are guaranteed to lose - and there are fights designed to counter quick aggro (anything with troops starting in play).

      No matter which encounter you tune your deck for, you're screwed by the other, so why bother. Reserves and/or mercs let you actually attempt to win fights that you'd otherwise not bother deckbuilding for - and if you can tweak your deck to give you a boost against certain matchups, that gives HXE license to actually make the fights harder to compensate for that fact. But now they can actually fair but difficult fights instead of instant you-lose scenarios because both sides are bringing the best deck for the situation.

      The current dissatisfaction with FRA is the same reason people dislike Elite Hogarth - successful FRA decks have nothing to do with what the opponent is doing; you're gonna play the same line of cards no matter what the AI is up to, its only a question of whether the AI is able to break that sequence and force you to acknowledge the board state. Elite Hogarth doesn't care what deck you're playing, it's going to ignore you and do its thing and maybe you will luck into a way to stop it and then a real match might happen. Being able to change a deck beforehand makes you pay attention to what your opponent is actually attempting to do and plan accordingly.
    • New

      Well said draftpunk, that's essentially the logic behind the 'bring a team' approach. It allows players to more thoroughly strategize both before the run and throughout it. It also allows for more possible strategies to have a place within the arena(since it's illogical to run a deck that has a guaranteed loss when you have the choice), and allows for Hex Ent to build even stronger decks down the line since they wouldn't have to account for player morale as much.

      I don't really care the methodology... but I personally think the best method is to simply let us bring 3 decks with us, and then adapt the difficulty to that.
      Gamer. Streamer. Photographer. Writer. Anime Lover. Possessor of Stuffed Animals.

      Also... I'm terrible at this game.
    • New

      I like the Arena now.
      It's a challenge and I need to be concentrate in every fight.
      I like it.
      Now it's hard to do a perfect run and I think that the dev wanted since it's the extra PVE Challenge after the campaign.
      So it's hard to do perfect but it's not to hard to finish it with a lot of different deck.

      Some example











      I invite you to at least look at different deck list I pull of with different champion.

      There is a lot of viable deck out there