2020 Sneak Peek - A Year After Analysis

It’s been a year since we were teased with what’s coming into E&P in 2020. I feel like there will be some summary & look ahead topics coming up soon to talk about all the changes that happened in the game and am looking forward to them. But let’s start with the analysis of the Sneak Peek content itself, how it played out and was there anything that was teased but ended up not implemented?

While the Season 3 is still ongoing and we haven’t reached the end, I think we can evaluate it for the part that was published in 2020.

New heroes with new powers - that indeed was introduced, and brought plenty of the new mechanics. Some of them proved strong (Frigg, Heimdall), some wicked and satisfying (Lady Loki, Alfrike) and some unique but too niche to be useful (Baldur, Norns). I find none of these heroes stupidly OP and uncounterable, but it’s saddening that the weaker ones didn’t really get much attention to fix them or find them a place in the game where they could shine. But really can’t complain about the creativity in design of those. Not to mention beside the Super Stars we also got a lot of epic and rare heroes which at decent appearence rate brought a lot to many rosters (Almur, Gullinbursti, Mist or Nordri to name a few).

New story - well, I enjoy the narratives although with a lot of leniency. The way the story is delivered in E&P in general is silly. This one in its silliness is at least engaging. It’s fun that some older heroes are involved in new ways, like Hel or the classic elven duo.

New gameplay - well, uhm, if the rune stones are considered new gameplay then it didn’t quite work out. With or without them, the gameplay looks almost exactly the same as any other monster battles in this game. I was really hopeful that some new board challenges could be introduced but nothing like that. We got some in Seasonal Summer event, some in Ninja tower, but in S3… it was really nothing noticeable.

Path of Valor has proven to be quite enjoyable addition to the game in my opinion. With the pass cost of 10 USD it brought the most cost effective offer to the game, provided that you can finish it or at least get to the epic ascension mat tier. Even if you can’t afford it, the free tier rewards are still worth the grind considered that the challenges are mostly just usual gameplay. While for me these are way too easy and I wouldn’t mind some more variety of challenges, in general this is a nice feature to have to keep engaged in the game.

Perhaps most controversial addition this year - for many marking the worst update ever (v.30), some seeing benefit of it whatever the costs involved might be. I personally don;t mind it, even enjoy few levels of it quite a bit as a feeder production for both heroes and troops (as expensive and time consuming as they are, they still hasten the feeding process). The level 10 retraining turned out to be a long grind with diminishing hope of getting the hero you are after. While it is understandable SG wants premium heroes hidden behind a paywall and low odds, it is disappointing - especially for players who keep getting the same premium heroes while lacking others (something which HA was supposed to address but haven’t in the end). After a quarter of building up for it and another quarter of retrainings, I barely got only 1 non-classic hero which ironically enough was just a dupe of one I already had. Plenty of Horghalls though.

Well, the Seasonal events brought new legendary heroes to spend for even if you had full rosters. A few were strong and wanted (Killhare, Vanda… Krampus?), few meh (Rostley, Roc). Few decent rares and epics (Chick, Lady Wool, Frosty). The rewards rework was barely noticeable (emblems are always good but so few of them even on the hardest levels), the new tier only added more autoplay levels for little more reward, though I can appreciate that it might be significant for newer players. I liked the gameplay change that summer event brought, sadly it was really the only change of this nature till date. Didn’t like some of the offers around seasons being reworked, although perhaps I should because it made me save some money. Overall, I think beside few new heroes being added, these changes were neglible.

Mhmm, perhaps the biggest disappointment. While we did have Mythic Titans and Friendly Battles tested in beta, and the first ones supposedly in live game now (with unknown launch date), it is pretty safe to say that even if we got these changes they are not really “exciting ways to play with the alliance members”. I really expected more here. Even if we consider new war rules as an addition here it is still not even close to what I expected from this announcement.

…and we did get some more. Tavern, Ninja Tower, Alchemy Lab changes or emblem system rework to name few from the top of my head… but there were some dark times like the Telly + Vela situation. Since these weren’t directly mentioned in the Sneak Peek, I think discussing them doesn’t belong in this topic. Wouldn’t mind if someone prepared something like Unofficial 2019 Player Satisfaction Survey to have chance evaluate all of them and see how community felt about each.

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Nice little write-up to kickstart a discussion. Personally, I think this year’s updates have been quite a mixed bag. Given the global context of the pandemic and the restrictions on gatherings and movement, I think SG really missed an opportunity to bring us those fun and new alliance features. While I appreciate that they have pushed out a lot of new content this year, not doing much in that space was a real bummer.

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Great write up of the year. I think you hit the nail on the head.

Summer event was the best shakeup on gameplay yet with the changes to board play, S3 is interesting but not enough to make me play it fast.

Biggest let down is still HA. I’m training 2* troops and will get 10 done eventually just so I can get those 2 extra heroes a year that are not S1.

For a year that has been awful for most people I will give SG a strong 7/10. They delivered a lot of content but left a lot of room to improve most of it. SG leaves me feeling like I’ve eaten a bowl of pasta, its filled my stomach and was nice enough but I’d of rather had stake followed by chocolate cake

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Excellent writeup SB, thank you for the time and thought you’ve put into this analysis.

And yes, Almur, Mist and Nordri are awesome. But who is Gil…? Maybe a typo for Gulli?

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Yup, let me fix that in the OP - it’s one of the heroes I just can never name right so come up with ridiculous nicknames I then forget are actually ridiculous. :blush: The other example is Rumpumpltumplumpltblblbllskin

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Good review bud.

I have enjoyed my year of gaming. I’ll be honest and say this game helped me through Working from Home and the lockdown.

I did overspend too but I’ll be clear and say I don’t regret that. I got a lot of good heroes. I just wonder if I’d have spent that if I wasn’t stuck on my house for months on end.

So if I had to give a number I’d go 8/10.

Hopefully Mythic titans and the other additions land and are fun next year.

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