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Thread: Counterplay

  1. #1
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    Counterplay

    Hey guys it's me again Wollelol. There has been a lot of stuff going on lately in AR and RL as well so my motivation to keep the Guides coming has suffered alot. I'm not sure if this will change looking in the future cause I'm no fortuneteller. Only time will tell. So lets put that aside and make a short introduction to todays theme! Counterplay! Yeah you like the sound of it? My prototype title says "Why Oz is the worst freelancer!" and I'm still not sure which would have been the better pick so I choose the more neutral one.

    Now some people of you will be "WAIT! NoNoNoNo Oz is not bad! You're just bad!" and I'll first say some boring facts like then why hasn't he been picked by a good tournament team in a important match and argue and.... NO! I won't do it again so I'll partly agree with the statement that someone is bad (Isn't that always the case? ^^)! Which might not be you or any other random Oz Player out there. It's the opposing team...

    Why would I say that? Now here comes counterplay into play (so puny). Oz is a very unique lancer that has mechanics not seen on anybody else (I'm talking clone here if you haven't guessed yet). So lets dive straight into why, what, how, oz is bad.

    Why would you use counterplay?

    Seems like a silly question? That's cause it is one. You want to adjust you're playstyle to the enemys team lancer to avoid bad scenarios (getting damage you could have avoided), limit the enemys team option and get a higher chance at winning the game! The easiest to understand example would be against a enemy Gremolition INC. you would want to avoid spots that he is most likely to mine to avoid unnecessary damage, move diagonally to dodge mines that will be placed right next to you, etc. Simple enough right? This is a form of counterplay that doesn't involve anybody but you! Which is great and you're probably doing it allready subconsciously! Lets call this type of counterplay passive, cause there is litteraly nothing offensive involved.

    So if there is a passive one there's gonna be an offensive one right? RIGHT! 100 points for omnicore! Lets go to the next Chapter!

    What exactly is counterplay?

    So in the last few sentences (or really short chapter) we learned about passive counterplays, so you should have a general idea about what I'm talking and what could be writen in the next few sentences. Let's talk offensive counterplays! So since it's offensive we need some interaction with a enemy! Here is another super simple easy to understand example:

    QUARK! Knock him back and break his tether!

    That's it. So what happened? Pretty easy Quarks unique mechanic is linking himself to other players and getting free energy/heal/damage cause of it. So to counterplay him we just knocked him away and break all his tethers which will cost him multiple turns to regain. Talk about some tempo win (for whoever read my old guides knows what im talking about). So for this offensive counterplay to happen we needed to understand Quarks mechanics and realize what to do to interrupt his gameplan.

    So how to you find/create counterplay against certain lancers?

    Well first: not every lancer has counterplay. The best example being as always Lockwood. This guy just has no weakness, bouncing around wall shots so you can not hide behind walls, super big trap, free dash direction that gives energy without hitting enemys -> so you can not rly predict him to consistently (if he didn't screw up). Yeah this guy got it all. So for counterplay you want to focus on the lancers which have certain mechanics that make them what they are. Like Grem and Quark in my examples. So first of you need to understand the lancer his quirks and his gameplan to effectivly disrupt him. Which leads me to the next title line!

    Oz is bad!

    Oz might be one of the most unique lancers in the relativly small lancer selection. He's super likeable, his mechanics are sweet, can dish out tons of damage and he has a MAGICIAN skin!!!

    How can I not like this character? The answer is I can't. Oz is one of the sweetest lancers and I personally love him to death (killed a lot of oz in my time). Now why do I tell everybody that he's bad? Cause he most certainly is, if you counterplay him correctly and if there is one thing I hate then it's lying to someone to not hurt feelings. So without further ado: Why Oz ****s so hard!

    Lets take a look at his unique and super interesting abilitys!

    He has a clone that spawns at the spot he was last turn (if he moved). Oh jolly that's super sweet now i got 2 lancers!

    But you only can swap your position with your afterimage...

    Well if you slow Oz or knock him back his afterimage will be right next to him -.-. So yeah one of the weakest dashes if you counterplay him there. On a sidenote a lot of lancers can just hit Oz and his afterimage if they line themself up for it.


    But both he and his afterimage shoot so he has like the highest damage ingame! I've a good friend and I like to quote him here: "She's better the worse your enemy team is!" This Quote was made for Elle but I think it's useable here (except for the she part). So let's think about it for a second here. If you got more damage then every other lancer if you hit both your shots, that means if you only hit one you got less then any other lancer (we're talking firepower, oz is a firepower lancer...).

    Now how do we counterplay this? Well we know where oz is, we don't know exactly where he is going so we won't be able to avoid him. But if he moves his afterimage will spawn in his last location! So just make sure the spot Oz currently is in can't hit you next turn!
    This is also a reason why turret Oz (the ones who run up in the middle and dash back; using their clone like a turret) is the worst, cause you can just go out of his line of fire and make him waste a couple of turns coming back into the fight.
    This leads to Oz dealing less damage then other firepowers.

    Next lets talk about his blast phase zap trap. This thing has a Gremolition INC. mine problem. If you pay attention to it you can avoid it a lot of the times! It's also not a trap cause those are prep! Rename plz

    Now his aoe and ultimate are fine. I would even say his ultimate is great if used correctly.

    But the odds are allready against poor Oz having one of the weakest dashes of all firepowers. Doing less damage then other firepowers (if counterplayed correctly) his potential goes down the drain.

    So why would one even play a lancer that has easy counterplay?

    The answer is potential. Quark is my favorite example for this. Sure you can easily break his tethers by knocking him back and make him loose a whole bunch of turns. But if you don't! Boy are you in trouble this guy...girl?...thingy?...CRYSTALLIZED LIGHT! (what the homepage said) is gonna wreck your day healing, dealing damage and getting energy every turn. FOR FREE! So if you want to take a lancer which can be counterplayed easily make sure he has a lot of upside if it's not played around correctly.

    Also since he is a support, he can just make sure to be not in line of sight and do his job uninteruppted without being knockbacked. So there is some defensive counterplay involved to offensive counterplay of the opposing team.


    Conclusion:

    Counterplay is a huge part of AR and if you want to step up your game you need to understand the enemys lancers and get in their mindset, doing what they dislike and making it your gameplan. Also on the Oz, I like him a lot but my brain sadly tells me that he's not worth it. To much uncertain problems and his uniqueness is what really hurts him the most. There are just much more solid Firepower Lancers without his downsides that can still do more then him and help the team out more efficently. Lockwood, Celest, Grey, Grem, Nix all of those are just more solid and have way higher upsides.

    I hope you enjoyed this Guide and I feel like there will be some hate by Oz lovers all over the globe but the truth must be told! So go on now and spread the word of the downfall of oz!
    #NerfAsana #NerfGrey Trash

  2. #2
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    Well if you slow Oz or knock him back his afterimage will be right next to him -.-. So yeah one of the weakest dashes if you counterplay him there. On a sidenote a lot of lancers can just hit Oz and his afterimage if they line themself up for it.
    I absolutely love Oz, but this right there is his main problem that i believe should be worked around. One of the first things i suggested through the ingame function was concerning this issue.
    My ideas were: replace the last position instead of the first with an afterimage if (a) oz gets knocked back and/or (b) the new position is fewer then 2 tiles away from his last position (well, unless it is even closer to his previous position if he moves back).
    or add an unstoppable mod for zap trap (not the dash itself because when you use that it's already too late).

    that would fix a few things. it's harder to deny him a reasonable dash by knockback or slow (you still know the resulting positions in most cases though) and oz could even choose to keep a good afterimage in place by not moving far (reducing counterplay to his dmg).

    the general counterplay around the dmg of his afterimage i think is fair, if his dash problem is fixed. your team can play slightly towards your afterimages too (especially vs melee range lancers) . And his numbers are in a range that it's ok to only make use of the additional dmg every other turn. this can be number tweaked easily (up base by 2, reduce double hit by 2 or whatever) anyway and dont forget: his after images can deny dash destinations for enemy freelancers too.

    just fix his dash/after image positioning, trion !

  3. #3
    I think giving him a proper dash instead of just switching with his afterimage. That's the worst thing about him, he can't effectively avoid damage with his dash since you know exactly where he ends up.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Vostok View Post
    I think giving him a proper dash instead of just switching with his afterimage. That's the worst thing about him, he can't effectively avoid damage with his dash since you know exactly where he ends up.
    It is an interesting concept for the dash but in practice it makes it super weak and perdictable. he can still do a move action after it which redeems it a bit so its not terrible overall movement wise it is just either you park your after image where it is safe to dash to and likely means it can't do any damage so you are weaker than normal or its positioned where it can get shots at somebody meaning the opponents can likely cover both of your spots so your dash does not work.

    I think overall they probably will long term need to make is normal dash work like the dash part of his ult where you can project it in a direction of your choosing.

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