Single Minions, the red haired step childs. ;) (in General)

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 9:42 AM EST

Just for Dude! :P (I'm trying to be as difinitive as I can, but please highlight anything I miss!)

Single Minions have been much maligned in CB. From the glory days of CB1, where it was the only way to start, through the beginning of CB2 to the nerf provoking era of the RBF Evader.

Back in CB1, new players were advised to play a single Tank, until at least 500K MPR, before hiring new minion, or even training anything other than the three intrinsics. Due to XP concentration, and making sure that your Tank was 'big enough'.

At the start of CB2, a single FB Mage was simple to run, didn't require much NW and was competitive to run.

Then we reach the heady days of Evasion, which when combined with a RBF on a Single minion created a nerf storm the likes we've not recovered from. ;)

All of these revolve around the single benefit remaining single has in CB.

XP Concentration. (Well , there is a second lesser benefit. Single Minions take the least overall damage from SoD attacks)

For that priviledge, Single Minions lose out a lot on skills and Items that absolutly have no effect for them, or at best, have a reduced effect, only for them.


PL: And this one is quite big. As I'll get into later, PL goes a long way to evening out the XP concentration benefit single minions have. But it also provides a 10% global damage reduction, that single minions cannot have access to.

AS: Provides 50% Effect on single Minions. For every other Minion count, this works at 100%+ effectiveness.

GA: While the spell itself doesn't change when used with a single minion, it has a massive synergy with AS on multi minion teams. Allowing a 4 or 5 minion team with AS to have signficantly more HP to chew thorugh and take more GA retaliation than a Single Minion.

Decay: This is two fold. First Decay isn't really useable on a single Minion, as you can never kill with it. Decay is a very powerful tool, unavailable to single Minions. When Facing Decay, there are two main defenses. AMF or a 20 HP minion backed by PL. As one option cannot be used by Single Minions, the presence of Decay rail roads Single Minions into almost the necessity to use AMF over DM or EC.


Leadership: Provide *no* use to Single Minions. The only time you can crowbar this to work is on the BoF if you Junction them to your Familiar and make sure it spawns in front, or you use them to boost a Familiar that spawns behind you.

Tattoo Restrictions: Single Minions cannot use a Tattoo and the TSA. A massive detriment due to the power of the TSA's regeneration. The same holds for cloaks, but no cloak is a defining as the lack of a TSA is. In addition, it's impossible for a Single Minion to use a Tattoo and run a high AC minion.

Tattoo Auras: A few of the Tattoos provide additional 'Aura' Effects, which offer *no* benefit to Single Minion Teams

RoE: Has *no* use on a Single Minion Team

General Drawbacks;

Kill slots: Multi minion teams can set up Enchanters to waste opponents attacks, to improve survivability, or weaken opponents with having to kill through GA.

Lack of Item/Skill slots: Kinda obvious, but needed to be noted. Single Minions can't utilise two types of Weapons (like and EXBow and an ELBow), or take advantage of Item synergies (Like a Corn, SB, BoE wearing AS caster landing on an AoF Meat shield). Or esily work items with drawbacks into thier Strategy (Single Mages can't use a MGS on thier team).

All this, for XP concnetration.

But with the Advent of PL (and the new RoE), you can achieve similar XP concentration on Multi Minion Teams.

Single Minions have a lot of drawbacks, some specifically to them only (as things like AS improve with minion count, and a 2 minion team is worse off than a 3...), with the only only specific benefit for Remaining single being the lack of SoD splash damage.

This goes beyond a strategic choice now, to forming an in game bias towards single Minion teams.

They don't have the option available to every other minion size, and nothing of worth to counterbalance this negative.

iBananco [Blue Army] March 8 2010 9:44 AM EST

All true, but irrelevant, since Jon thinks single minions are boring and thus doesn't want incentive for people to run them.

iBananco [Blue Army] March 8 2010 9:46 AM EST

Disclaimer: That's my interpretation of the situation, anyways.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 8 2010 9:49 AM EST

i feel like the kill slots along with all of the extra item slots that multi-minion teams get are the biggest factor against single minions.

this could be addressed simply by allowing them some "extra" item slots, not nearly as many as a four minion team of course, but some pretty strategic ones like two body armor slots to allow a tat as well as some armor and a cloak.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 8 2010 9:50 AM EST

bananco, if i remember the quote correctly jon stated he thinks a game dominated by single minions is boring. i never took that to mean that some balancing in the future would be out of the question though.

we also do have the chance of a different or additional perspective with ns coming on board.

QBJohnnywas March 8 2010 9:51 AM EST

I think that a lot of the drawbacks you list, and I've always thought this, are actually advantages. You're limited, so you're forced to make hard choices. But this limitation forces you to simplify and focus. A single minion if done correctly is like a shark, simple but deadly in design.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 9:51 AM EST

In my mind Dude, aside from AS+GA, the largest detriment is the inability to use a combination of Tattoo, TSA and PL.

These three have been some ingrained, and so no-brainer powerful that not being able to use them puts you at a significant disadvantage.

I know I left Invisibilty out of the list, but at least the Amulet has a use on single Minions, for the -20 BCTH reduction.

Demigod March 8 2010 9:54 AM EST

... Jon thinks single minions are boring...

Jon's all but gone. But that is true. The direction of the game moved away from single minion, USD powerhouses and into more multi-minion strategies. It makes sense, but single minions are so much more fun to run and invest in.

Demigod March 8 2010 9:55 AM EST

Jonathan Supporter
Last login: Feb 21

Sickone March 8 2010 9:57 AM EST

You forgot one little aspect that made single minions much MORE popular - the change from an increasing XP cost per trained level to a flat 12 XP per level.
Single minions received the largest overall boost with that rescale.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 9:57 AM EST

I don't want the game to revolve around the largest single minion.

But if they suffer so many drawbacks, they should get some kind of positive to off set this.

I want Minion count to be a strategic choice, in addition to personal preference.

In any case, the 'end game' of CB has always revolved (bar the end of CB1, where x25 ELBows broke the system, and were best on a Single Archer) around 4 Minion Teams. Spid. Red Dwarf. Koy. Dag. Heros. Running a single Minion is always the 'launch pad' for just being able to buy larger for your last 3 minions to let you rule the end game.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 9:59 AM EST

Sick, the only benefit Single Minions got then, was that it was no longer absolutley best to have 4 smaller stats, as a cheaper cost, to one larger one.

It didn't make Single Minions any better, but just fixed yet another inequality they had to suffer from.

iBananco [Blue Army] March 8 2010 10:02 AM EST

GL, removing an inequality in favor of non-single-minion teams is a buff to single minions.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 10:04 AM EST

It's all about PoV. ;)

Nothing changed to make Single Minion better, the game changed to make them suck less. ;)

Sickone March 8 2010 10:10 AM EST

If having minions would be a purely strategic choice, then XP would be team-wide instead of minion-based, and minion hiring cost would be minimal.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 8 2010 10:11 AM EST

item slots would likely then be team-wide as well with a fixed number per team rather than minion.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 10:13 AM EST

You'd still need a high cost, as minion purchase can be used to accuire 'extra' XP.

But minion count shuld be a strategic distinction.

Unless CB want's to embrace Iron Man / Hard Modes and say, "hey, we've got this option, it's not really strategically viable, but go knock yourself out if you want the challenge".

AdminNightStrike March 8 2010 10:33 AM EST

Propose an idea that buffs single minions without breaking the game.

AdminNightStrike March 8 2010 10:34 AM EST

Oh, and do it in a thread that I can read :)

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 10:44 AM EST

Nuts! ;) Dude just wanted a list of the existing state of play. Coming up with soultions is going to take a littl emore effort! :P

And I should be going home soon! ;)

AdminTitan [The Sky Forge] March 8 2010 10:46 AM EST

Add the ability to add a 0 xp minion for like 1M CBD.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 10:50 AM EST

You could do that from the start with a RoE. But you're then no longer playing a single Minion. :(

Sickone March 8 2010 11:33 AM EST

You'd still need a high cost, as minion purchase can be used to accuire 'extra' XP.

Not if the cheap extra minion comes with absolutely no XP.

ScY March 8 2010 11:36 AM EST

Bananco should know that single minions are boring. Especially unmannered ones with archery trained.

spydah March 8 2010 11:53 AM EST

go spid!


Zenai [Cult of the Valaraukar] March 8 2010 11:55 AM EST

As one option cannot be used by Single Minions, the presence of Decay rail roads Single Minions into almost the necessity to use AMF over DM or EC.

I know I am only one in a crowd and I am an extreme case but I circumvented this withy an very high offense. My only real defense is massive DBs and a minimal DM. Of course this makes me GA food and weak to RoS builds but I take that as the trade off for not having 50000000000000000 people farming me. Although this could very well happen in the future :-/

On a suggestion I think another slot is a good idea althugh I just cannot see how that would be easy to code. Maybe a Bonus to Defense while a Single Minion would be a ticket?

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 8 2010 3:26 PM EST

On a suggestion I think another slot is a good idea althugh I just cannot see how that would be easy to code. Maybe a Bonus to Defense while a Single Minion would be a ticket?

i was kinda heading in that direction as well if extra item slots fell under the category of breaking the balance of the game. give single minions a boost to either their body armor stat/ac or to their tat.

if a good boost to those is too strong then maybe just an extra ten percent on all items?

Guardian March 8 2010 4:05 PM EST

very good thread, thank you GL very good info here

Wraithlin March 8 2010 5:25 PM EST

In my opinion, Single Minions should not be buffed.

This game should be about strategy and coming up with a perfectly planned and designed team. Just getting one minion at the start and running some simple strat for 6 months shouldn't be the answer to the top. I feel that cheapens the game.

On the other hand, I don't think someone who starts off day one and buys 4 minions and keeps them all at the same XP level should be competitive at the top end either.

The game should be about planning how much XP they want for thier distribution that makes for the most deadly team for when they get to the top 10% level 6 months after they start thier ascent, and therefore when to buy the second and third and fourth minions.

I think that the end game should be planned to be balanced for a four minion team with varied XP levels so that it makes the people with the most team building skills to be at the top. Not the people who can log in a click fight more times than anyone else.

That's just my two cents.

Kefeck [Demonic Serenity] March 8 2010 5:28 PM EST

I agree with wraithlin.. If anything single minions are OP.

Zenai [Cult of the Valaraukar] March 8 2010 6:43 PM EST

To a degree gentlemen Single Minions can be powerful but OPed? No.

I have to say that the fine balance you have to have to make a Single Minion work in an environment of 2,3, and 4 minions is not simple nor easy.

I have heard it from one end of the spectrum to the other. To prove or disprove these things I heard I decided to find out myself. I have played 2, 3 and 4 minion teams in varying levels of MPR, simplicity and complexity and none are harder to maintain and manage than a Single Minion imho.

The reason why, one tiny Error takes Forever to fix without having to retrain and throwing away weeks worth of work and planning. It takes perseverance and a great deal of playing Devil's Advocate to keep from just scrapping a Single Minion or hiring another minion.

Most find that they would have rather started with 2 or 3 Minions and tend to lean towards just scrapping it and starting over because of hiring costs. Still more find it easier to hire so that covering the holes in their Strategy are easier. This at times leads some to playing a Single Minion and Support Kill Slot Strategy or a 3 Minion Team with a 2 Minion Strategy.

Overall it is not as easy as it might seem if you are actually serious about being and Staying a Single Minion.

Just my opinion.

three4thsforsaken March 8 2010 6:52 PM EST

After running what was the largest Single Minion for over a year, I can say without a doubt that Single minions are not OP.

The only way to truly run a great Single Minion team, you must choose to do one thing, and do it very well. This might sound good and dandy, until you try to figure out what exactly you want to do very well.

Doing something very well is one thing, doing something very well and winning 90% of your battles is quite another. In competitive play, a huge part of the strategic aspect is the ability to cover your strat holes and the ability to adjust with the punches.

Single minions do not have this. You can't change minion order, equipment change is seldom an option and retraining is so painful it's silly. You can't start training other stats because of your skill limitations.

You're probably asking "But if single minions are so weak why are some top characters single minions?" Well, I never said single minions can't be powerful, they just have huge disadvantages. But the question you really should be asking is "Would any of those top single minions be more powerful if they hired?" And the answer is YES.

Imagine of Zenai had a relatively small wall minion in the front. Heck imagine if he just had another kill slot or two, Did his team get better? Yes. A lot better?

Well, now he can use a TSA and a tattoo, now if he had problems with MM he could move his minions accordingly. Now he has more options. Previously, his only real option was: SPEND MORE MONEY. Not really what you called versatile.

Now, that being said, I don't really think single minions should be buffed. As much as I love brute forcing problems, I don't want CB to be a brute force game. If single minions were to be "buffed" it'll have to be subtle. I good way I would imagine would be to introduce a tattoo with a bunch of secondary abilities, or abilities dependent of the minions survival. Those kind of items benefit all characters, but benefit single minions more. This where I think the conversation should be at imo.

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 8 2010 6:54 PM EST

That Z is why I'm enthralled by single minions, and find thier limited choices enticing, and not boring. ;)

But I said the same thing in answer to Jon ages ago.

Wraithlin March 8 2010 7:16 PM EST

The reason they can be seen as boring is because someone can spend 6 months trying to get the perfect mix of 4 minions with all sorts of gear and skills and spells and order.

Then some guy with 33% HP, 27% DM and 40% FB with a FF comes along and wipes him out.

It's frustrating to the 4 minion team who is working with alot more variables to see some guy do that to them. I know it's been frustrating for me as I've leveled up my 4 minion team.

Aera Cura March 8 2010 7:54 PM EST

Yeah. I was being kind of sarcastic when I made the op comment.

Zenai [Cult of the Valaraukar] March 8 2010 7:55 PM EST

Oh I can see and understand that frustration Wraithlin. However you are seeing it only from a Multi-Minion Standpoint.

See for me as a Single Minion it is tough to see my Advantage of EXP to be completely Blown out of the Water when a person Hires another Minion. Even worse just when I am able to beat them they change one thing and I'm toast again. Options for a Single Minion are low to zero after a certain point.

3/4ths hit the nail on the head once you hit that wall the only real option you have to stay a Single Minion is to pour in a generous helping of USD. Honestly any number Minion Team can do that so here we go with another vicious cycle.

I think this saying sticks:
The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side.

A lot of players want to have their cake and eat it too but we should have known from the start that there is gonna be drawbacks no matter which route we take :-/

Aera Cura March 8 2010 8:00 PM EST

^^ that's what he said to me in a cm.. Anyhow with the ability to add hundreds of thousands of mpr with hiring that already puts them at a nice advantage compared to mutli minion teams.

Admiralkiller [Cult of the Valaraukar] March 8 2010 8:23 PM EST

4 normal guys vs 1 tough guy in a real life fight.....4 guys win.

three4thsforsaken March 8 2010 9:02 PM EST

this game aims for realism!

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 8 2010 10:56 PM EST

how does decay fit into realism? ; )

Admiralkiller [Cult of the Valaraukar] March 9 2010 12:38 AM EST

A lot of things in this game are real katanas, maces, magic missiles, gold, decapitations. Anyway it's not all real but my opinion is 4 or 5 (familiar) should have an edge over 1.

Rubberduck[T] [Hell Blenders] March 9 2010 2:08 AM EST

large single minions are OP.

as the basis for a multi minion team :P

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 9 2010 3:45 AM EST

Win! ;)

Joel March 9 2010 11:19 AM EST

DOn't you guys watch Kung Fu movies or DBZ? Just one strong guy destroying countless other guys? Thats why I like playing single minion! I can imagine myself as that uber guy destroying teams of other guys ^.^

AdminQBGentlemanLoser [{END}] March 9 2010 12:07 PM EST

Joel is over 9000!

Joel March 9 2010 12:55 PM EST

Rofl! I love that bit ^.^
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