I hear a lot of complaints about ELO mode these days, what with cards like Kalindra and Askai roaming free.
I think these come from people focusing too much on cards that are individually strong and not enough on which cards have good synergy. Right now, building a good ELO deck is a fun puzzle. Which cards are banned this week? What can I do to counter the strong cards that aren't banned? While everyone is busy complaining, I am having the time of my life.
Let's take a look at Kalindra (the card people complain about most) and then take a look at some possible half-decks in two different clans, FPC and Pussycats. Think about using Fei, Chan, Shifou, and Zhu Tang -- three of those cards can easily beat Kalindra pill-for-pill, and the forth lets you threaten a fairly big life-per-damage gap of your own. Think about using Clover, Charlie, Lucy, and Ella in a Pussycats half-deck... All of these reduce Kalindra's damage so hard, that it's impossible for her to be the huge threat she usually is.
I think the definition of "OP" in this game is starting to change. When most players say a card is "OP" they now mean "I have to work to counter this card, and I don't wanna." A card that forces you right out of your comfort zone and into a creative deck you would have never tried otherwise is *good,* both for you and for UR. IMO, you can complain, or you can step up your deck-building game. The choice is yours.
14/4 with an Ulu/Vortex deck so far this week.
"As for what can be done to improve participation in ELO... change the available pool of cards in some drastic manner... sooner or later this will have to happen. eventually there will be enough "newer" cards out there that old ones can be removed from the ELO environment. Balancing this will be challenging. This is good for new and future players, and this is potentially good for veteran players who might regain interest, this will not go well for content players --- so exactly what happens in this community every single time change happens"
Ehh... Similar argument as the one for Standard... I don't at all see the necessity of this. The meta has changed greatly in the relatively short time I've played, just by the natural process of new cards being added and some power creep. Old cards phase out of ELO naturally, without being forced out. For instance, Tula, who was once considered a great 2*, is nearly helpless in an environment with more attack manip, Prot: Power/Damage, ability SoA, and 8 powers added to the game with great frequency. She is not entirely gone, but she is at a point where no amount of great new Piranas cards will make her a 2* everyone will want to use. Soon, she will not be seen in ELO at all... Eventually Piranas will get a much better 2*. I don't see the down side of this naturally occurring process, and don't see the need to give a bunch of cards the axe and have to try to rebalance the rest. Just my two cents.
Elo is a chaos of luck, a maelstrom of nooby proportions. I have hit 1500 several times in this current format, and I will admit, it took a whole lot of luck. Not only are cards overpowered, but the way people play has changed dramatically. Olding and playing for the 50/50 is as much part of elo as oxygen is of water (Which is 16/18 ;) ). Deck building has almost nothing to do with your scores now a days, like you said in your initial post, your 14/4 with an ulu/Vortex deck, I don't mean to sound like a prick, but that is a bad deck.. Yet you're having marginal success. It's hard for players to see the flaws with elo when they are either fine floating in the 1300 zone or they have not experienced old elo, where olding was rare, deckbuilding was key, It's not that players are to lazy to adapt to the current elo format, there just is nothing to adapt to. It's impossible. You just have to get Lucky, despite your level of skill, in order to get high end elo scores like 1470+. (Or you can just be on all day like Mario Gomez) :S
You call ELO "a chaos of luck, a maelstrom of nooby proportions" (kudos for the poetic language, by the way) ...yet you mention hitting 1500 several times.
Now, let's quickly go over the facts.
-UR is a card game.
-The ELO format has 8 card decks, with unequal star counts that must add up to 25.
-A 5* card is, as a rule of thumb, going to be significantly more powerful than a 2 or 3* card.
-Your opponent may not draw the same number of stars as you, may draw cards without bonus, etc. This gives the game an inherent element of luck that *has nothing to do with the meta.*
I'm more of a 1350-14xx player, myself. I know from experience that the best way to get to 14xx without grinding for the entire week is to pull off a good winning streak, or at least a set of games with a very nice win/loss ratio.
So... To get to 1500, you not only need a large set of games with a very high win/loss ratio, but you must achieve it while matched up with some of the best players in the game. You are fighting great decks in the hands of seasoned and skilled players.
Let's try to get this straight. Do you REALLY think that something like a 10-game streak against the best players in UR is "good luck," and that if you handed some 12xx player your deck and gave him enough time, he would be able to do the same? Because that strikes me as an absurd conclusion, which disregards statistics in favor of personal bias.
I think for 1400+, luck is optional, but skill is mandatory.
You mistook what I said :s. You can not achieve 1500 without skill. But you can not achieve it without look. Regardless of how much time I give a 1200 player, he's not going to get 1500, there's not enough luck in the world for that to happen. But as you were saying, winning a 10 streak vs top end players is in no way just luck, it takes skill as well. But I don't care how good you are at elo, you're not going to win all 10 of those with just skill. In the current meta, people love to old their cards round 1 and 2. You can overpill r1 vs any one of those 10 players because you were expecting them to pill, and you would lose or at best earn a 50/50. It takes some skill and some luck to make that opening move, and it takes some skill and some luck to beat good players to get into the 1500's. I guarantee atleast one of the matches vs the 10-12 matches it takes to go from 1400- 1500 will be a 50/50, in which case luck is involved, and if you lose, you get set back 3 matches, thus the cycle repeats. Skill is Mandatory, Luck is too ;)
I got over 1400 with FPC. Honestly, if skill was even a remote factor, I'd be number 1 every week.
I'm not going to lie, back when I started to about the middle of my time playing, I thought this game took skill. Although it does, not to the extent I thought.
Dunno if you guys know/remember M-Bison . When I first started I saw him issuing a challenge where he fought any deck with his 20* Piranas deck. I looked through the thread, and he won around 15/17 of the games. Naturally, I had to ask him how thats possible, people were facing him with Ambre and rainbow decks and still losing. And he told me:
"UR is just glorified rock, paper, scissors"
And it made sense. Because you have to guess in a lot of situations when the opponents action is ambiguous. And convienently its the worst on the most important, and opening round: 1. The opponent uses Azel first round. He's either bluffing (Rock) 2 or 3 pilling in case you think its a bluff (Paper) or trying to out-pill you, trying to stop it (Scissors).
Now you either: Call his bluff with a few pills (Paper) Out pill him, or call his few pills (Scissors) or just let him overpill (Rock).
Now it is possible to predict what he's about to do depending on the cards in his hand. But not 100% for sure. That mixed with 50-50s and some days I would rather buy a lottery ticket than credits :P
Wow surprised no one has pointed this out yet but the real issue this brings up is why are there so many cards on the perma ban list then? if something like Azel is not friggin op then neither is sylth.... Arkn with 5 power is pathetic... Lou is essentially xu-52... sure not a single card in Montana can be directly considered op, but if you dont have SoA, heck if you are not using Roots/GHEIST and you are facing Mona/ Avola/ pretty much all the good cards life is miserable. SOME clans need a balance and honestly kalindra is the only good card in Frozn now she doesnt need a ban (a hand without kalindra is SO weak you guys have no idea....)
I think you're absolutely 100% right, but what I keep trying to point out is that the degree of luck involved is an element that's inherent in UR itself. People like to blame an "unbalanced" ELO mode... When in reality it sometimes comes down to this:
The other guy drew a 5* against your hand full of 2s and 3s.
Or, your improbable, brilliant play was blocked by your opponent's Lucky guess.
In no way do events like those mean that ELO itself is not balanced, that the meta is broken, that "swingy" cards are making ELO a 50/50 fest, that 14 life is too much, etc. But statements like "ELO is a chaos of luck, a maelstrom of nooby proportions" help perpetuate the idea of a broken ELO. (Not trying to single you out by any means... I hear this kind of thing a lot, from all sorts of players!)
The fact is, that it's possible to build a deck and playstyle that helps compensate for bad luck pretty consistently. If that were not true, winning streaks at high level of ELO play, and great scores such as your 1500, would simply be impossible. Because of this, I find ELO to be the most balanced and fair mode of play.
I think M-Bison unintentionally played a great trick on you. Instead of explaining in detail, I invite you to play Rock-Paper-Scissors with 17 people, and try to win 15 of those games. You will see for yourself how completely inaccurate the comparison is.
The fact is that without a huge element of skill, a 15/17 series is just statistically impossible. UR allows for more than an RPS approach: if you have a good deck and playstyle, you can try to figure out the "safest" strong move -- that is, one that does not significantly reduce your chances for victory even if your opponent happens to read it pill-for-pill, but creates a significant advantage if it works as intended. Learning to play like that is the key to a Top 100 score without excessive grinding.
@Oracle: I agree, a lot of cards could stand to leave the ban list, and some "OP" cards need to be left alone (notice all the people picking Askai over Kalindra because Jungo is overall much more stable?)
Not sure about that Sylth though... His min is lower than Azel's, and he is in a clan with a life gain bonus. Jungo have ridiculously good synergy with poison, because their bonus gap does not contribute to reaching a poison's min.