I've accidentally created a new thread, so i'll just copy/paste my opening post in here. Please excuse the introductiory stuff that doesn't make much sense in the context of an existing thread. It also kind of resets the discussion because I had not seen this one. I'd still like to hear opinions on it.
Is it way too early to talk about expansion characters while the funding for the base game is still in jeopardy? Yes, but it's fun anyway!
We've had a brief discussion on Discord today and I wanted to archive all points that were brought up. As I took part in the discussion, expect my biases to influence this post.
Who is Gwen, mechanically?
What is Gwen's basic concept?
All of Gwen's iterations would be overly powerful if it was not for some explicit drawback. This drawback differs from game to game but always makes her pressed for time. She has a powerful pressure game but the opponent wins if they can just defend against her long enough!
What are Gwen's signature moves?
Burnbarrow is a fast sliding move that plays a major role in Gwen's offense in Yomi and Puzzle Strike.
Chains of Ice only exists in Yomi but always makes for hype moments. Slow, so needs a hard read but starts big comboes if it connects. Relatively high block payoff (high chip!)
Relentless Strikes isn't exactly a move and will probably just turn out to be the design of her normals and specials in general. It's an abstraction of her ability to keep attacking/pressuring when she gets blocked, and eventually sneak a hit in.
Dreadlands Portal: Gwen is one of the few non-grapplers with a (weak) super throw.
Gloria's Remedy is a special block that heals Gwen, counteracting her drawback a bit. While this one is not exactly iconic (is only in one game and technically Gloria's doing), it may be useful to add depending on how we implement her drawback.
Shadow Swarm is a move that is pretty abstract and has not shown up in Yomi. It nebulously makes Gwen's offense harder to deal with.
Ideas being thrown around
Where does Gwen's ability to pressure come from (asbtracted as Relentless Strikes in the tabletop games)? My FG-beginner mind thinks that having most of her moves be +on block would be the first step. Gwen can do long-ish block chains with only small windows of opportunity for the opponent to re-take the initiative. She also needs a way to beat blocks, either by dealing lots of chip, throw-mixups, cross-ups, or unblockable moves
Gwen's One Flaw
Gwen would not feel like Gwen if she did not have an explicit drawback. There are several ways we considered to do this in:
- Gwen simply loses health every X seconds
- Gwen auto-loses on time-out, regardless of HP
- This one feels bad. It's hard to communicate and playing for time-out isn't hype either.
- Gwen's specials cost HP to use
- This steps on Jaina's toes but could feel very distinct if the risk/payoffs are different.
- Gwen's playstyle involves her taking damage voluntarily to unleash her full potential.
- The idea would be to give her a couple armored moves without Rook's HP to back them off.
- Gwen slides towards her opponent in a low posture
- Might beat projectiles by being immune/ducking beneath them, or by armoring through them.
- Can be used at the end of a block chain to recover the ground lost from pushback.
- Maybe not safe on block but great positioning tool if whiffed on purpose?
Chains of Ice
- Slow move that leads into big combos, like Pilebunker but without Dandy Step's mobility.
- Maybe literally freezes the opponent in place for a moment so Gwen can get a full combo? Or works mechanically identical to staggers in e.g. Skullgirls
- High payoff on a read
- ++ on block
- Beats armored moves?
The flaw concepts that have Gwen lose HP either automatically or as a resource are likely to need a way for her to recover health to avoid lame-duck situations, It also makes for interesting mind-games. The lower her health is, the more likely she is to use this.
It could be a counter move on one of her buttons, but we figured it might be a cool additional effetc on her Yomi Counter.
Since throws are often used to exploit brief windows of opportunities in the opponent's offense, giving Gwen a reward for not immediately restarting her chain at the right moment sounds cool. It also feels a lot like in Yomi, where her playing 10-block is a lot akin to "letting go of all buttons".
Could this be an empowered state? Maybe her air super engulfs her in shadows that briefly power her up?
- How about she cannot be reduced below 1HP by hits that get absorbed by her armor?
- That's reminiscent of Desperate Strike
- Some of my fondest memories of playing Talos in Rising Thunder are of making a comeback with his armored boot
- Could also/alternatively give it some offensive boost that make blocking harder.
I think leontes' most recent posts matches a couple things from my favorite ideas from the Discord discussion:
I think an armored move that she has to rely on would be perfect for this!