Author Archives: Arnout

FIRST LOOK Age of Wonders: Planetfall

Hi everybody,

You can now watch back the first gameplay footage from Age of Wonders: Planetfall featuring the Vanguard on YouTube! The footage was taken from the first official Planetfall Gameplay twitch.tv Stream September 7th.

Vanguard First Look gameplay Video

Developer Q&A Vanguard gameplay footage

Bonus: Faction Spotlight Vanguard Video

During a couple of weeks, we will focus on Vanguard in both videos, text and Dev Diaries on the new forums. After that, the rest of the factions will follow. Please see this as an opportunity to learn more about your favorite faction and prepare for the battle to come.

Sign up to learn more about the game and earn rewards! https://www.aow-planetfall.com/

An important message regarding locked Triumph forums

Hi everyone,

We would like to take a moment and share an important change happening in regards to the Age of Wonders forum.

We have decided to move the Age of Wonders forum to the centralized Paradox games forum. In a few weeks, we will lock all current Age of Wonders forums and start fresh on future titles on the new site.

There are of course a number of reasons that we’re making this move, one of them being that Triumph now is an official part of Paradox Interactive (Yay!), but the most important one is that Age of Wonders will soon need more support than Triumph alone can provide. With the Planetfall release on, we anticipate a new influx of players to welcome in to our community. This is of course fantastic, and we want the community to be able to scale to our ambitions for the AOW series!

You can expect our volunteer Mods and Devs to still be present in the forums because hey, one does not simply leave an amazing community. Together with the full support of both staff and volunteers at Paradox we can now also spread out the workload and keep the community even more engaged and up to speed on news and updates.

Even though we know moving forums can be a hard and disruptive process, we are certain that this change is a positive one and we look forward to continuing to grow a strong community together with all of you!

We hope to see you on the new site to continue share of love and memes for our games.

Below you will find a FAQ that hopefully might answer some of your first questions.

 

FAQ

New accounts?

You’ll need to create a new account on the Paradox site if you haven’t already. Here’s the link where you can do that.

New forum name?
This also means that you might need to choose a new Forum name if yours isn’t taken already!

Where can I find the new forum?
You can find the new forum for Age of Wonders III here: https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/index.php?forums/age-of-wonders-iii.1020/

And you can find the new forum for Age of Wonders Classics here: https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/index.php?forums/age-of-wonders-classics.1021/

What happens to the Triumph forum?
We will lock the Triumph forums in their current state in a few weeks. The web pages will still be left for you to visit.

Anything else?
If you have any more questions or would like to chat with us at PDX or Triumph, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us on the Paradox forum or send us a private message.

Age of Wonders: Planetfall Gameplay Reveal Stream September 7th

Planetfall Gameplay Reveal Stream September 7th

Good afternoon! Today we have some great news to share with you all. It’s finally time to show you some new footage and invite you to the first official Planetfall Gameplay Stream!

This event will take place on September 7th, 18.00 CEST/12 NOON ET right over at https://www.twitch.tv/paradoxinteractive.

The livestream will later be published on our Youtube channel, so for those of you who can’t make it, fear not!

We hope to see you on stream!

Dev Journal: The Tigrans Part I

Yes – we have another race lined up for you for the upcoming expansion, and as many of you have already guessed that race is the Tigrans! These warmth loving cat people make for a great contrast with the Frostlings (we already have some cool terraforming maps in development)  Also with their Egyptian inspired culture, they make for a great fit in the Necromancy theme.

Prowler_illustration_c

Tigran Prowler Concept Art

Background

Tigrans are a race of feline humanoids, hailing from remote desert lands. Reclusive and mystical, they tend not to get involved in the conflicts of the populous northern lands. But when opportunity favors them, they pounce and kill without mercy.

Their reclusiveness has given rise to some rather extreme religious sects. Most Tigrans worship a new incarnation of the ancient Fire Wizard-god, Yaka as the Sun God. Tigran ferocity is legendary. The most devout strive to unleash their inner predator, seeing mercy as weakness. They worship the sun and track the cycle of day and night; life and death. Their natural curiosity about necromancy and the passing of regal souls into kingdoms of glory in the afterlife inspires them to construct massive tombs.

Cheetah_ConceptTigran Cheetha Concept Art

Traits

Tigrans are lean, muscular and agile. They are clever with magic and move quickly across the battlefield, able to avoid may obstacles. Many are masters of the flame, which they believe pleases their god. Some of their Racial abilities include:

  • Predator: Gain extra attack/damage with attacks of opportunity.
  • Athletic: Tigrans use fewer move points per hex in tactical combat, allowing to move much more quickly
  • Bloodthirsty: Some tigrans gain an attack bonus vs. bleeding and crippled enemies, while others can inflict bleeding on their targets.
  • Spirit Protection: Tigrans are highly focused creatures, and are resistant to mind affecting spells and damage.
  • Low Resistance: Tigran agility and high damage comes at a cost, they have -1 resistance compared to other races and are especially susceptible to cold damage

Blood_ThirstyAthleticsPredator

We’ll start by looking at three base units:

Tigran Cheetah

The Cheetah is the Tigran’s tier 1 predator skirmisher. They have the ability to pounce, a fast attack that teleports the unit behind its target allowing it to strike without fear of retaliation.  After a Pounce the unit automatically enters guard mode. Cheetahs also have the ability to inflict bleeding wounds, which synergizes with the Bloodthristy ability of some other Tigran units.

“Entering the Tigran camp, I instinctively knew our best course was to surrender; especially as I saw the long-legged, spotted cheetah-ladies who served the settlement as its hunters. I tried to warn my party that it would be futile to run away. Sadly, my message didn’t get through to all, the back of the party fled.  Before they could even scream, the cheetahs pounced. Their extended claws slashed the fools. I will spare the reader a description of all the blood.” – “Where’s Symba?” by Ham the Wanderer

Cheetah_c

A pack of Cheetahs in-game

Tigran Prowler

Prowlers are critical to the Tigran’s mobile attack force. Unlike other Tigran warriors, prowlers are stealthy and have incredible constitution.  They may lack high defense or armor found on typical infantry, but make up for this with their stealth, Martial Arts ability, and Improved Wallclimbing.  Prowlers have the new Bloodthirsty Ability, and Coup De Grace, for extra damage versus incapacitated targets.

“The most gifted battle surgeon I ever met had a gift for cutting up bodies.  Apparently he’d witnessed his father, a Tigran Prowler, eviscerate many a foe.  The cat man was dark like the night with eyes like amber jewels. He could disappear in the shadows of the trees. Unfortunately, he ran away when the city guard caught him selling our healing herbs on the black market. They say he clawed his way up the city wall and was away before any of the guards could reach him.” – “Battlefield Medicine” by Doctor Schwartzendoof

Prowler_c

The stealthy Prowlers in game

Sabretooth Chariot

Tigran Cavalry consists of light chariots functioning as mounted skirmishers.  Drawn by sabretooth tigers they  share the race’s core abilities such as the predator and athletic abilities, with good melee abilties. Although far more  fragile than the cavalry of other races, the charioteers can hurl enchanted sun spears, powerful single shot weapons that do physical and fire damage, and can set opponents on fire.

“Yaka dresses in Destroyer’s Flame. His breath is the Heat of Life. I serve the god of the Greatest Star. Yaka raises His head in the morning, drives His chariot across the sky, and hides His face at night. I revere Him by throwing beams of pure sunfire. My shield enables me to embrace Yaka’s body. My mane is His corona of fire. I am His devout tribute.”  — “Prayer of the Sabretooth” by Charioteer Felixine

City_Screen_EProwler, Sabretooth Chariot and Cheethas with a glimpse of Tigran Architecture in the background

In an upcoming development journal we’ll be looking at more Tigran content!

Dev Journal: The Frostlings are Coming

Today we reveal the first information on the Frostlings, who return as a revamped, fully loaded playable race in the upcoming Expansion

Frostlings are a race of humanoids that settled in the cold northern regions long ago. Gradually adapting to the harsh winter clime, they possess a pale complexion and large, beady, deep-blue eyes. Often called Snow Goblins or Ice Devils the Frostlings have been at constant war with people living in more comfortable climes.

 City_impression_frostling_lowres

Frostling Architecture is influenced by Nordic Pole Churches, Iglos and organic Gaudi style Spires.

After the Second Age of Wonders, the Frostlings retreated deep into the lands where winter never subsides and the sun’s rays have no power. There they evolved by mating with native Frost Witches. They developed a strong resistance to cold and some Frostlings gained magical abilities.

Frostlings embark on frequent raids on warmer lands. Their seafaring skills, offensive fighting style and frost magic strike fear in the heart of the peoples they raid. But Frostlings are even more deadly in their home arctic clime, where they build big cities crafted from ice. Their matriarchal society is governed by chariot riding Frost Queens.

Frostling_Spire_s

Frostling_Houses_colorStudies for Frostling Structures

Today we take a look at the first two Frostling Units, the Icescaper and the Frost Witch

The Icescaper: The Tier 1 Icescapers have their origins in Frostling city building; they have the ability to magically form and scape ice. The Icescapers’ ice balls damage and Freeze units at a distance. Their ice pick has the Shatter Strike ability which inflicts extra damage versus frozen units. The Icescaper pairs well with the Frost Witch as she can cause Frost Weakness with her Inflict Chilling ability making the Icescaper to be much more effective. As all Frostling units, the Icescaper has the ability to Fast Embark.

FrostlingIceScaper

The Frost Witch: Frost Witches were originally native fey creatures of the arctic. After they were absorbed into the Frostling race, the Witches were treated with something almost resembling worship, and they have been held in high regard ever since. The most powerful of them are elevated to Frost Queens. The Frost Witches’ Castigate ability throws Frozen Flames (a mix of fire and ice) at enemies. Futhermore, her attacks Inflict Chilling, making enemies more vulnerable to Frost Damage.

FrostlingWitch

In coming development journals we’ll be looking into more Frostling Units!

 

Podcast at eXplorminate covers Frostlings, Race Relations, PBEM,

The new dedicated 4X site eXplorminate did a podcast with AoW3 Development Director Lennart Sas, who still was a bit hung over from the Dutch Game Awards night.  Listen to the podcast for background on development, questions from the community and new reveals on Race Relations, the new PBEM system and the upcoming Frostling Race. You heard it first at eXplorminate!

Explorminate

PS: Pay close attention, as you have a chance to win copies of Age of Wonders 3!

Age of Wonders III wins big at The Dutch Game Awards

Wow! Age of Wonders III won best PC / Console game and the Control Industry Award. That last award was won as a result from votes from the Dutch games industry community. Thanks everybody, this means a lot to us!

The Dutch Games industry is bigger than you might think.  Killzone is made by Guerrilla Games in Amsterdam. Nixxes is behind the tech of many Square Enix such as Tomb Raider. Vlambeer makes fantastic arcade like games such as LuftRausers and Ridiculous Fishing.  Reus is a break out indie hit by Abbey Games and there is much, much more. (check the games for 2014 here: http://dutchgameawards.nl/2014/category/games-2014/ 

TriumphAtDutchGameAwardsThe Triumph delegation at the award ceremony: (Left to Right) Front: Arnout, Djurre (Sikbok), Nick Middle: Lennart, Lascha,  ArnoTop: Godewijn/Narvek, Daniel & Eric

Dev Journal: The Bone Collector and Deathbringer

Hi there,  today we introduce the second batch of Necromancer units, that we are currently developing for the upcoming expansion.

Up first is the Deathbringer, this unit was designed to be able transform enemy units into ghouls during battle. Although this is a strategically interesting and powerful ability, some of you pointed out issues around dealing with infected units in your ranks, such as how easily they could be cured and how much of a burden it would be for non-necromancer players to have undead-ified units under their control. To try address these we’ve changed the design so that the Deathbringer can curse units during combat. If the cursed unit is then killed, it will come back as a Ghoul under the Necromancer player’s command after combat, if that player is victorious.  If the other side wins, the corpses are considered to have been burned. There is no infection through mere damage (this would be OP and bring about the Ghoul apocalypse a little too easily J ).  This way it is a reverse style of resurgence with no post battle healing frustration for victorious players facing Deathbringers.

Necro_LineUp-Deathbringer

The Deathbringer, isn’t she stylish?

Although not the hardest hitting melee unit in terms of physical strength, the Deathbringer has a phase like ability and backstab, making her a very  dangerous opponent. When you are fighting a battle and about to lose, keep your more powerful units away from her or you might encounter them as Ghouls during a later encounter.

With the visual design we aim to move away from the standard vampire type.  She is hardened for battle looks menacing, spiky, her rapier made for the final piercing strike bringing unlife.

The second unit for today is the Bone Collector, a massive tank unit that feeds on – and gets buffed by corpses.

Necro_LineUp-BonecollectorBone Horror Concept. Note the dragon head pincer and the little skeleton as its wiggling “mouth” tentacles

The bone collector is constructed from of a giant pile of bones of various creatures. When moving it resembles a giant crab; using a dragon’s skull as a giant pincer melee weapon.   It has the ability to collect the bones of dead units, and add them to itself,  which heals damage it has sustained, and also provides it with a small buff to attack and defense, making the unit more powerful for each body it eats for the duration of the battle. To top it all off, this unit has wall crushing and undying, meaning the unit reassembles itself after death if the enemy takes too long winning the battle.

BoneCollector6

The Bone Collector looking for more Bones

We plan these two as city production units for the Necro, with the Deathbringer likely having racial (ghoul) variants. Let us know what you think of this units and stay tuned for more Necro and of course many of the other features we are working on for the coming expansion!

 

Dev Journal: First Necromancer Units

Today we take a look at the conceptual designs for first Necromancer Units.  As we posted in our last dev journal, the Necromancer can turn many types of living units into Ghoul variants using the Great Transformation spell, but of course, the Necromancer comes with its own unique unit roster.  Today we’re going to take a look at the first lower tier Necromancer units.

The Lost Souls

These are the souls of troubled people who are not able to find rest, even in death.  Lost Souls are incorporeal, making them hard to kill with physical damage, and have the Exploit Despair ability, which allows them to deal extra damage against units with low morale. When fielded with higher level Necromancer units that can reduce the morale of living units, the effectives of the Lost Souls can be greatly enhanced.  Defeating a Lost Soul during combat is tricky, as it also has the Undying ability. Undying units automatically return from the dead after a few turns in tactical combat.  Lost Souls float, and can be summoned onto the world map, making them great scout servants.

Necro_LineUp-lost soulConcept Art: The Lost Souls float as in Zero-G

 

The Reanimator and Creeper

The Reanimator is the main support unit for the Necromancer.  It is able to heal undead units, which is vitally important as most of them don’t naturally regenerate.  The Renanimator has a Black Bolt ranged shot and a melee attack with its staff which doubles as a shovel. His attacks Inflict despair, giving him the chance to lower the morale of enemies.

The ability that gives the Reanimator its name allows it to reanimate bodies of the fallen, into undead puppets called Creepers. These cadavers crawl over one another like the maggots they contain. The soulless bodies know no fear, are resistant to many types of damage and can be used to tie up enemy units while the more powerful necromancer units get into position.  After the battle, the Creepers disintegrate.

Necromancers will need to make careful tradeoffs using fallen units, as they have other uses as well! The Creepers can devour corpses to rejuvenate themselves and regain lost hitpoints, for example, while the Corpus Furia spell causes dead bodies to detonate, damaging every nearby enemy.

Lost souls that refuse to die, and mindless horddes of reanimated corpses can make like difficult for the living. Of course we are developing counters that help the dead find their peace for good. Some of these abilities will find their way in the new specializations that we will be announcing soon.

Necro_LineUp-Reanimator and creeper

Concept Art: The Reanimator helping out some dead folks

Dev Journal: Exploring Wonders of the Third Age

Hi everyone, welcome to another development journal for Age of Wonders III! My name is Arnout Sas and this time I will tell you something about the wondrous structures that can be found in our game world.

In Age of Wonders III there are many mythical locations for your empire to explore and exploit! We’re not talking fabulous cities or the monster dwellings we showed before, but we will look at the more hidden and secret places; like the ruins of a Wizard’s Tower or the Sunken City of an ancient civilization. All of these offer great rewards. These locations have special combat maps associated with it, along with its unique sets of (usually) monstrous guards. High level locations are protected with enchantments posing extra challenge to your adventuring parties.

We have also added a lot of new sites and functionality, as well as keeping some classics.
Whether you find Treasure Sites, Visit Sites or Constructs, all are of great value; either offering rewards, permanent income or a onetime-boon. These exploration sites are best discovered in game, so we’ll only highlight a few.

WondersofTheWorld_Intro

The world map seen from the level editor, showing many different structures

The Treasure Sites that keep on giving

Treasure sites are generally ancient structures guarded by powerful beings. They can be raided for all sort of treasure such as magical items, units and spells for a reward.

What bothered us in the previous games is that treasure sites became useless once explored. So we created a new type of treasure site that, after giving you their initial exploration reward, keeps on giving steady income when they become part of your domain (unless occupied by enemies!). These per-turn bonuses range from basic gold, mana to production, although food, knowledge or happiness income is also possible.

This way treasure sites keep their value throughout the game. Just make sure that you don’t do the hard work of clearing a site and subsequently another player plunks down a fort or outpost right next to it before you do! This system is also applied to basic resource sites like gold mines and mana nodes. We experienced that this system rewards both brave exploration as well as the calculating domain expansion.

So what kind of specific treasure sites are there? There are many and here we’ll give you a sneak peek of some of them!

Examples of Treasure Sites:

AculpolisThe Sunken City
“After an act of unforgivable hubris, Aculpolis, the ancient capital of the Archons was swallowed by the waves, taking with it the treasure and knowledge of an entire civilization.”
Amitil the Elder, Histories of the Archons

Visit this water structure for ancient magical items and other riches. If you manage to get hold of it, you’ll receive 10 Gold and Knowledge per turn.

DungeonDungeon
This remote prison holds prisoners you can set free and who will join you. Of course you need to kill those hateful prison guards first. The dungeon offers 10 Production so it seems the slave labor doesn’t end when the dungeon is freed!

ForbiddenSanctumForbidden Sanctum
Explore this magical site for treasure. All manners of evil cults make this their home and nefarious, forbidden rituals take place here.
Located within your domain, it also provides Knowledge income.

WizardTowerWizard Tower Ruins
The Ruined Wizard Tower has a permanent version of the Sorcerer’s Static Electricity spell active; the defenders are protected by Static Shield and attackers suffer 40% Shock weakness. So any explorer must pack some serious punch to conquer one the most challenging treasure sites out there. It’s definitely worth it though as the rewards are great!

Monster Spawning Camps

These secluded sites spawn roaming monsters that threaten the area around their hide-out. Upon killing the baddies, and getting your reward, camps are destroyed. The biggest reward is getting a safe area for your empire to expand to.

CampsiteThe Brigand Hideout
This is a low-level camp, spawning thugs. It needs to be wiped clean as soon as possible, before building up a threat. Over time raiders spawn from the Hideout and rampage across the land, performing opportunistic attacks on ill defended settlements and resource sites. Successfully conquering the Hideout will result in some nice treasure (especially gold).

Brigand Hideout in game

Brigand Hideout in game

Visit Sites

Visit Sites is a wide category of structures that can be visited more than once and give you a boon like a blessing or new options like teleportation or instant unit recruitment when you visit them with your armies or heroes.

Visit Site Examples:

Haste berryHaste Berries
Eating the berries restores all move points. Located within your domain, it also provides production.
On each visit the berries are depleted and players have to wait a few turns for them to grow back.

ShipyardMaster Shipyard
Here you can buy naval units outside of cities. Located within your domain, it provides a Production and gold income bonus.

Hearts

Hearts are a new type of structure found in Age of Wonders III. Usually found at the center of specific climes there is the heart of that clime. Blighted Lands, Temperate lands, Tropical Lands, Arctic lands, all have a corresponding heart. Hearts are powerful structures and owning them gives you a considerable advantage.

Heart of the Blight

First of all, each heart provides a happiness bonus to the owning player and negates any negative terrain penalties normally associated with that terrain. For example HighElves dislike Blighted terrain and suffer city penalties when settling these lands. When owning the Heart of the Blight, High Elves are actually happy to be there!

Hearts and their surrounding area cannot be permanently changed by terrain changing spells or abilities– at least not for long as the land reverts back to its original clime quickly.

A High Elf Town on the intersection between two hearts, each spreading their domain.

A High Elf Town on the intersection between two hearts, each spreading their domain.

We still have many surprises up our sleeve, but you’ll have to wait until the game comes out! However in the upcoming dev journals we’ll look closer at cities and domains!

Thank you for reading!