Tom played two games of Hextok today with Jamie Maurer, one of our play-testers. The first game, we played on the revised version of the symmetrical map that had given the other testers trouble in the last session. This time, the game lasted only twelve turns-- confirming that, even with revisions, it's a pretty shitty map. So, out it goes.
One thing we did notice in both games (Jamie won both, by-the-by) was that neither of us opted to use the four-point buy to heal a level-one or level-two unit. In the previous session, the four-point healing option extended to level-three units, which basically kept the level-three units immortal if the player was holding onto enough bases.
It was abused so severely and made the game so lopsided that I removed the healing for level-three after that first session. In this session, though, there was no point in spending four points to heal a level one or level two since you could just as easily spawn a new level one for two points or level two for five (two for a L.1 plus the three points to upgrade). I briefly considered sliding the points down, but both Jamie and I found the game very high stakes when you couldn't correct a mistake or compensate for an opponent's advance.
The removal of the healing system makes the game both simpler and deeper, and as far as my design goals are concerned, that's a compelling combination.