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Revenant Discussion Thread

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18 days ago
Figured there should be a thread to centralize discussion (since the existing replay threads are supposed to be replays only, no discussion of Revenant in general).

Existing Threads:

Replays of Revenant being OP
Replays of Revenant not being OP
+2 / -0

18 days ago
My opinion:

Revenant is anti-quant by nature of its attributes. It's faster than all true raiders, has better hp/cost than all raiders (and even all riots), better DPS/cost than Harpy and Nimbus (and almost as good as Locust), and delivers its damage in the form of a burst which allows it to eliminate potential threats or priority targets without having to linger in AA. It's designed as a hit and run unit but it's so tanky it doesn't need to run. This is on top of, by nature of being an air unit, requiring AA to be built to properly deal with it. It does too many things too well; at least one of its strengths needs to be nerfed to create an exploitable weakness.
+2 / -0
18 days ago
What about a reload mechanic after x shots? After 1 shot might be too much back and forth, but after for example 3 shots might be nice. This would force the Revenant to travel more, reducing actual dps, and prevent revenant balls to scale as nicely.
+2 / -0
quote:
reload mechanic


That is too different from how gunships work...
+0 / -0
For the purposes of this discussion I am going to refer to an essay by David Sirlin:

https://www.sirlin.net/ptw-book/introducingthe-scrub

(Sirlin's presentation here is pretty blunt, so I want to emphasise I am not calling anybody in particular a scrub here.)

A few particular quotes I will pull out:

quote:
A scrub is a player who is handicapped by self-imposed rules that the game knows nothing about. A scrub does not play to win.


quote:
the scrub labels a wide variety of tactics and situations “cheap.” ... Nearly anything you do that ends up making you win is a prime candidate for being called cheap.


quote:
A common call of the scrub is to cry that the kind of play in which one tries to win at all costs is “boring” or “not fun.”


By design, Revenant is a unit that punishes scrubly play. If it is nerfed, it will either be nerfed into uselessness or it will still be a unit that punishes scrubly play, it will just do it less.

To give you an example, a replay in which I was pretty brutally demolished by, among other things, a revenant:
Multiplayer B1937886 10 on LimeQuat Republic v1.24
A scrub might look at this game and think that how the Revenant situation played out was 'unfun'. I, trying not to be a scrub, look at this game and think that I overextended in a way that might have been salvageable with a little more help from my teammates, but went terribly wrong in the absence of that help. A learnable moment.
[Spoiler]

In order to not be scrubly against Revenant, I think it's important to think about a few things:
* Where should I plop my factory? Is it near cliffs Revenant can abuse?
* Do I have, or am I near to an ally with, good raiders or other tools for dealing with Revenant?
* Am I walking my Commander somewhere dangerous? Does it have an appropriate escort for where it is going?
A scrub wants to answer these questions with "wherever and whatever I want, in the first few minutes". To beat Revenant reliably I think we have to be better than that.

Now after all this, it may well be the case that it is better for the game that Revenant should be weaker. But I for one would like to see further serious stabs at playing around and against it.
+3 / -0
This almost feels like we're slowly discovering why Starcraft has a tech tree.

Should GS fac be made non-giftable like the strider hub?
+0 / -0
17 days ago
quote:
That is too different from how gunships work...

Not all planes need to rearm either, so not sure I see this as a very strict way of working.

Regarding the scrubiness, not sure if it addresses the remark of USrankStuart98 - revenant has good stats all around without clear downsides. Maybe one is that missile are somehow inaccurate, but I find that annoying and a gamble, so if anything I would prefer them to be more predictable rather then less.

It might be an issue the larger the game it is, as due to its speed a reasonable (not expert) player controlling it can easily find at least someone to strike. Planes do not have similar advantage as they take a long time between attacks so more players will have some time to react.

+1 / -0
17 days ago
GBrankDasFapitale
I apologise for derailing your other thread

USrankBuckymancer
I think your feedback on his part also deserves an answer, so I'll provide you with one here.

You claim that my assumptions are pessimistic.
I argue that your assumptions are unrealistic.

AA that is in front of the actual army is dead AA. It is easy for raiders to kill them before the actual army can protect them. Also they would never be safe from Arty either. I made the assumption of 9-10 seconds because it takes about that long for a Revenant to reach its prey, shoot once and retreat again. In addition, any argument that under certain circumstances the fights are shorter supports my opinion. That's why I don't really understand this part of your message.


In your second paragraph you argue that fast AA could follow a Rev. This is theoretically true, but since an enemy army usually appears before the AA, I can't accept this argument. The AA would die, and even if the Rev dies too, the reclaim would probably be enough to build a new one. Eg. 1 Rev and 0 AA remaining.

I have not ignored static AA. Sure static things have more DPS/cost. But they have the disadvantage of being static. That means you have to build them everywhere. So every time you move the front, you have to build it again. I would also like to remind you again that my argumentation is deliberately simplified and that I have also written this. It is a conceptual problem. I would also like to mention that static AA is cheaper, but not stronger! At least with the exception of Artemis.

You have played a total of 37 rounds. I'm sorry to write it like this, but you simply lack the experience to say whether a unit is useless or not. Watch games from good players. They usually don't build Vandals. (Missclick happen)


If the best strategy is your own Rev and every other decision is actually the worse way to play, then...
Not to mention that even in this scenario, a full Rev spam is the better option. Because cost, kill probability aso..
+2 / -0
AUrankAdminAquanim, i checked out your replay.

So, the Rev killed you Stinger (450metal), a Koda (170metal) and shot your com down to 1000 hp all on its own.
And afterwards it retreated to repair. (in total it faced a stinger, a koda, a knight, a gremlin and 2 coms!)
The same unit later on pursued a mace, tanked a full hit from a penetrator, killed the mace with a oneshot and retreated again.

Meanwhile his new best buddy Rev started bullying a mino and a com at the same time.


I argue that no matter what you would have done (not start so far forward, aso), that rev would have seriously slowed your progress, even if it didnt kill your com. And that without dying.
And that your team would still get bullied by revs for the rest of the game until you all resigned.
+2 / -0
17 days ago
My assessments of Revenants is pretty strongly colored by this game: http://zero-k.info/Battles/Detail/1930214
It featured decisive Revenant strikes behind the front line, multiple cases where a Revenant got chased halfway across the map, though not usually by dedicated AA, an example of the aforementioned Flail vulnerability, a Razor saving a base, and Revenants lingering for multiple strikes. I had broadly assumed this was typical of early game Revenant usage, even though I messed up my own response to the enemy Revenant.

For a Revenant acting as a bomber - striking once and then retreating to get fully repaired - 9s is indeed optimistic rather than pessimistic, though not impossible for the longest ranged AA options you discussed. A vulnerability period as low as about 7s seems to be possible under sandbox conditions even without cliff abuse. However, I'd inferred from your original comment that the 9-10s involved several strikes, in which case the Revenant would not be able to get in and out in one second. This covers a majority of our apparent disagreements.

Regarding Vandals, I did run some tests in response to your response and they ended up being about 25% worse at picking off Revenants than I thought, partly because keeping a lot of them in a tight formation made them vulnerable, but partly because some of them seemed to take an extra half-second to shoot for no discernible reason even after controlling rotation. However, where you're criticizing all the other mobile AA as inadequate in this application, Vandals aren't particularly worse. I know I'm not the only player with this opinion, see for example AUrankAdminAquanim's assessment at http://zero-k.info/mediawiki/User:Aquanim/UnitTierList#Anti-Air_.28mobile_and_static.29

+1 / -0
17 days ago
I like that you try to find good examples for your point of view.

However, I must point out that I see/interpret this round quite differently.

If you watch the replay you will see that the first rev was simply very badly manoeuvred by the opposing team. (Flown into crossfire, distance to enemy units not maintained, etc.) Nevertheless, it destroyed a factory + small items and survived.
The Razor had no influence at all on the retreat.
I would even go so far as to say that your team was lucky that only the factory was destroyed and not your com in the base. With slightly better micro, that would be quite realistic.
I would also like to point out that while the first Rev was still retreating, the second had already put an end to the first Com.


Can anyone please name a unit that could have achieved this scenario? 1 Com & 1 Factory + small stuff dead, completely without losses.

The only reason your Rev died is because you flew into a flock of Glaives and AA.
+2 / -0

17 days ago
quote:
In order to not be scrubly against Revenant, I think it's important to think about a few things:
* Where should I plop my factory? Is it near cliffs Revenant can abuse?
* Do I have, or am I near to an ally with, good raiders or other tools for dealing with Revenant?

I agree with what you are saying, but thought I should point this out: these are both good questions to ask about non-specific things, for example "is my factory in a defensible position?", but if a player is only ever thinking about countering Revenants then Revenant is too powerful. I mean, once you know the enemy has Revenants, then the second question is understandable, but if it gets to the point where players are deciding their factory placement around Revenant then I think it's too powerful.

I will say that when I use Revenants I find it really easy to get kills and make cost with very little support, strategy or input and still have them survive with a surprising amount of health. I don't think they are that overpowered, but it could use a health nerf or something, as it seems to be overly tanky.
+2 / -0

17 days ago
Don't have the replay at hand, but I did play air once against purple GS making revs.
Killing off the revs with Raptors worked really well.
The GS player had to swap to striders after also losing a Krow.

There is a big catch with Raptor vs Revenants though, you MUST micro them!
Revenants can turn around and shoot down Raptors with ease, thus Raptors need to maintain distance.

Positioning is also key, since the Revenants are good at hit&runs..
+0 / -0
Funny thing is raptors are pretty bad at killing revs. If the rev runs away, all the raptors end up stacking together behind, and the rev can turn around and 1shot all of them.

If you're planes and are asked to counter GS, it's hell.

Anything short of a giant volley of swifts 1shooting GS with their missiles is bound to fail. Either because tridents kill planes, or because GS are durable enough to retreat into the cover of their team's AA.
+2 / -0
quote:
I argue that no matter what you would have done (not start so far forward, aso), that rev would have seriously slowed your progress, even if it didnt kill your com. And that without dying.
And that your team would still get bullied by revs for the rest of the game until you all resigned.

And yet this isn't what happens in every game with Revenants. The first attack doesn't always inflict critical damage, and in that case the team with the Revenants generally finds themselves at a disadvantage (in small teams, anyway). So I find this argument extremely unconvincing.

In this game I have the wrong units to fight Revenant (no raiders), no buffer space between 'where I can safely send raiders' and my com/factory, and I am already substantially weakened by other attacks. So I got punished.

quote:
If you're planes and are asked to counter GS, it's hell.

In the long term I tend to agree with this, but in the long term GS is countered by enough Razor. Against a Revenant rush a few Swifts (which you ought to have anyway, dont rush first unit bomber if you want to win games) plinking away and taking off 1k HP can make the difference between a commander living or dying.
+0 / -0

17 days ago
But ravens can bomb revs.
+0 / -0

17 days ago
It takes 1800 metal in ravens to kill one full-health revenant; Raven's kinda a bad unit (or at least outclassed) unit right now, with both Odin and Revenant itself outclassing it.
+0 / -0
Yah for sure not kill, but AUrankAdminAquanim said:

quote:
Against a Revenant rush a few Swifts (which you ought to have anyway


Ought you?

If the purpose of swifts is to dissuade the revs from wandering enemy territory, wouldn't bombing them instead be a bigger deterrent because ravens can both be a threat to ground and take off a decent chunk of HPs from revs? If there are static/raiders chipping off HP of revs, isn't there a better chance at finishing off revs with ravens than with swifts?

And even if you do manage to chase revs off with swifts. Well now you're stuck with a giant ball of units that will essentially do nothing vs ground army.

So, really, ought you?
+1 / -0
17 days ago
quote:
It takes 1800 metal in ravens to kill one full-health revenant

I don't think your goal with planes is to kill the Revenant rush on your own. I think the goal is to weaken it to the point where it cannot go in against your com/factory/whatever. Remember, your planes are not going to die, so merely weakening the Revenant while your planes (ideally) lose no HP is a fine outcome from your perspective.

quote:
Ought you?

If you/your team thinks a plane plop makes sense on whatever map you are playing on, then presumably the other team has the same option available - and my experience is that rushing bombers against a competent air player who makes Swifts is somewhere between "bad" and "instantly and literally game losing" in small teams.

In a situation where the other team has no air at all, two or three Swifts are still not awful. They can harass raiders and scout.

In the particular case against Revenant, Swift costs half as much as Raven and doesn't have to rearm between shots. I think that at least in a lot of situations I would expect two Swifts to deal at least 800 damage to Revenant if the Revenant is going in for an attack.

+0 / -0
17 days ago
https://zero-k.info/Battles/Detail/1941997
in this replay rev snipes a commander expanding normally within 2 minutes of the game and causes another commander it's death within 3:30 of the game, because of this south will be 2 commanders down and outexpanded as the phantom commanders cannot fight over map control. South will now lose as by minute 4 they have 30% less mexes caused by the rev killing 2 commanders
+1 / -0
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