Is Lum's randomizer a good idea?


#1

While I understand that Lum is a gambler and having a randomizer in his move set adds flavor, is it really a good idea to have something like that in a competitive game?

Wouldn’t it be better to be able to choose which item to throw? I understand that some items are more powerful than others, to solve this there could be a cool-down for the ability, which gets longer depending on how powerful the item used is.

I wouldn’t know what to make of the Ground super, maybe the fireworks, maybe a card flavored move I’ve heard there was interest for.


#2

Lum has a couple of moves and they’re random because otherwise you’d just pick fireworks.
Having a bunch of meters would just make things more complicated.

Also Faust is a random character (who Lum is based on in FSFG)

I don’t know if you have actually played Lum yet, but it’s really not a huge deal, but it also feels far from finished


#3

I never meant for Lum to have a bunch of meters, just one that takes longer to recharge depending on the chosen move. Besides, if fireworks is that powerful it could always be super.

And no, I haven’t played Lum, I just find weird to have a randomizer in a competitive game, that’s all. I just wanted to give a different point of view before the character was finished.


#4

The best example of randomness in any competitive game that I know of is Faust in Guilty Gear. It’s not just good, it’s excellent. If you could control which items you get, then it’s all about setplay. It’s all about practicing forever in training mode. Happily, it is not like that.

Because it’s random, it’s all about improvisation. One of the items is very very good, so you want to throw items a lot to get that one, but along the way you get whatever you get and you just have to make due. Based on the items you happen to get, the positioning, the timing, the spacing of it all you have to make on-the-spot decisions to make the most of it.

This isn’t just a guess or hypothesis either. From 10+ years of Faust, we know that it’s excellent, leads to great dynamics, and skill-tests the interesting kind of skill (improvisation) instead of the training mode kind of skill. So it perfectly aligns with what Fantasy Strike should have. Further, we don’t have to guess if Lum’s version is fun and has good dynamics either. Lum has been implemented in a placeholder state (real gameplay but bad looking art) for many months and it all works just how I’d hope. He’s one of the most fun characters because a lot of improvisational decisions are asked of you so there’s a lot to think about, and a wider range of situations happen when playing him than other characters. It’s pretty great.


#5

Sounds pretty good, but I honestly still find it quite weird. Guess I’ll have to try Lum first hand.


#6

To be honest, it is weird. But it really does work! FS Lum feels more “gambler” than “accountant” as a result.


#7

Another example of a character with randomness in their moveset was Markman from Divekick, and he also worked out really well. He was my favourite character to use, at least until he was massively nerfed and his ability to take advantage of the items he tossed was basically removed.

The thing that makes the randomness work is that although the result of the move may be random, you can determine beforehand how advantageous each result would be. To go back to the Divekick example, it’s very advantageous for Markman to throw a spring on the enemy’s start position. That means that if I’m in position to throw an item on their start position, I’m more inclined to gamble on items because if I get the spring, it has a high payoff. Similarly, it’s super bad to have a spring on my own start position, so in that position I would be less inclined to dig for items.

Something similar to this even exists in Street Fighter. In situations where players are forced to guess (such as on wakeup), they consider the effects of guessing right vs guessing wrong and use that to make their choices. With a gambling character you’re just making similar assessments at neutral.


#8

Markman definetely wasn’t my favorite character in Divekick, and the randomness of his items was part of the problem. Hopefully I’ll enjoy Lum more as character design wise I really like him.

For your second point though, guessing is way different from getting items at random. While guessing you can try to give yourself a better chance by thinking about your opponent’s tendencies and his risk/reward in each of his options. You can’t really get in the RNG’s head :smile:


#9

In Melee, Peach pulls random items and its not an issue. She also swings a random weapon on one of her attacks, but that move is lackluster in all its iterations or too unreliable. I wish her attack was less random, and wish her items were more random.

I look forward to Lum.


#10

for an example of NON randomness, is Platinum the Trinity
her moves all come out in a set order, I think maybe teddie in P4arena too?

Hoever, all her moves are relatively “equal” in usefulness, whereas in Faust and Lum, some are better than others

But it fits with Lum’s gambling theme, y’know?


#11

What if beside Lum’s super meter you display an ‘item bag’ showing his next item (like in tetris)?


#12

That kind of removes the entire improvisation element, though. The whole point of “gambling panda” is that he gambles instead of knowing outcomes ahead of time.


#13

I agree with @GRAG here. Despite this being my own thread, I came around after playing with the character. Y’all were right all along.

That said, good items (cherries and cake) should in my opinion have a slightly shorter throwing arc then the others. I feel like throwing an item to then go for block pressure too often translates in “let me give you the life (or reversal) to survive the block damage I’m about to do”, which is honestly a little annoying at times.


#14

“The house always wins”


#15

Cherries and cake are like the worst items…


#16

They are actually overpowered if the opponent is far enough. Cherries make his keep away very good in some MUs as it urges the opponent to take risks and end the match. When you plan to go in for pressure and you heal your opponent though… damn…


#17

I see that, but also if you had an ‘item bag’ you are working with what you know you have, but you also don’t know what will come next.

Maybe better to think of it as a die that gets rolled each time you use it, or a small hand of cards getting shuffled and you have to use the top card


#18

He meant they are items that are good to pick up.