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Ikeda on Power Level of Apprentice & Knight

Posted on 27th December, 2020 at 8:51pm CST
The Author's Honest Corner

Apprentice and Knight. Apprentice was made "for casual gamers" and Knight was made "for TCG veterans"...I think everyone is aware of that at this point, but now that we're after the release, the biggest challenge in development that we were adjusting up to the last minute is "what kind of winrates they will have".

The challenge I had gave to the test play team was as follows:
"Casual players will enjoy it as long as it is an interesting TCG. For most serious players who will use Knight, we need to disappoint them in a good way."
"What do you mean?"
"When you first see it, you should say, "This is strong. If I use this I can win.", but in actuality, its a game that you cannot easily win."
"In other words, Abyssal Summoning is a trap."
"Its hard to hear that (laughs). However, its really strong if you can master it, but there are more barriers to mastering it than you can imagine, so you won't reach the correct answer easily."

Shallow gamers may feel self-satisfied if they're able to win easily, but Gate Ruler doesn't need them. "Huh? That's strange? I can't win the way I thought?", and then you try various tweaks on your own to find your own correct answer. I want players to find value in the original fun of TCG to become players of "Gate Ruler's serious side".

"At first, Apprentice will win. But eventually, Knights will start producing results at tournaments."
"Strictly speaking, master Knight players have a high overall win rate, and will win 60-70% of the time, though an Apprentice player can still turn it around.

When the tournament metagame has matured, and the number of players who have mastered and are winning with Knight has increased, the netdeckers say "Is this strong", but even if you copy and use a Knight deck, the winrate doesn't reach 50%! That's what we're aiming for.

The aim is: When the casual player participates in a tournament with competitive players, witha normal TCG you can't even win 10% and get discouraged, but with Gate Ruler there's a chance for you to win 30%, and you can possibly take down a giant. Only the really strong can win at the top tables, even after fully adding the luck element to the equation.

That's Gate Ruler's ideal game environment. For the first time, we will create a TCG that can be enjoyed by both competitive and casual players without being discouraged."
"That's a difficult task."
"But in theory its possible. Its a TCG environment that no one expected or imagined, but its my ideal. Can you do it?"
"If need be, the Ruler system can be fine-tuned with the digital data section. But I understand, that's a last resort! Let's do it!"

The result is Gate Ruler as it is now. Of course, there is also the genre of "the serious Apprentice user". Apprentice is not a luck game either. As expected, so far, the tournament winners are overwhelmingly Apprentice. Going forward, we'll see is the Knight decks of serious players can produce results. And on top of that, will my ideal environment of "There are Knight decks for serious players, but only those who have mastered it can win." be realized?

I've already played my hand. Its yours now!

(Sources: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10)

In a quote retweet, Ikeda added this:

In other words, when people say "Knight is weak! TD is unreasonably weaker than OD! OD abilities are too strong!" this is as planned. The difference in the evaluation of TD and OD has a reason for being that way, and eventually the number of people winning with Knight will increase, so given time, "history will prove".


And below, are more things Ikeda said on the subject in replies to quote retweets to the thread.

User @LT1eOJ0iKbG00Vc:
I see, so Abyssal Summoning is a trap...or rather, a swamp?

Its a deck where you cannot win without struggling, so if the two Starter Decks fight, the Abyssal Summoning player will be at a disadvantage.

"But that's good!" its for people.

Exactly! Think of the Abyssal Summoning Starter Deck as a challenge letter. "If you think you're a strong gamer, try to win with this! Overcome the luck game with your power!"

User @uki_ulforce:
Overall, OD effects tend to be stronger than TD effects, and since Apprentice ignores costs and can play its cards more often than Knight, I think there are many Apprentice users. My personal opinion is that cost management is difficult, so if TD effects are stronger than OD effects, the number of Knight players will increase, and it will result in a good game.

Its fine! From the early stages of development, this is what I dared to do. Since TD can choose when to be played, theoretically, the effect costs must be heavier than OD. If you think that TD and Knight are weak, then I encourage you to hone your play so that you can win with Knight in that situation. Some people have already won.

User @uki_ulforce:
Thank you for your comment! I don't think I've mastered Knight yet, so I'll do my best! Gate Ruler has impressed me with its intent to make sure the previous set is not made worthless by the next set (which is very difficult), so I want to enjoy it and support it sincerely!

Thanks! Knight and TD were designed with the balance that "they make you think they're weak at first, but if you study well, you will be on par with Apprentice, and those who master it will stand at the top of tournaments." To start with, believe in that! (However, depending on the route, you might lose, so be sure to try various decks)

User @uki_ulforce:
The fun of playing Apprentice is a stupid feeling (compliment), and Knight has its demand for deep playing skill, each one has its own fun and difficulty, so I would like to proceed with play, deckbuilding, and research, step by step!

Its a really fun card game where you get to choose the rules and make lots of decks lol
Edited by HunterSerge on 27th December, 2020 at 8:56pm CST