Dev Journal: Improving Race Variety & Starting Perks

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Home Forums Age of Wonders 3 Discussions Dev Journal: Improving Race Variety & Starting Perks

This topic contains 165 replies, has 66 voices, and was last updated by  vault101tunnelsnake 7 years, 5 months ago.

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    No funky special abilities such as those – they did have a two-weapon fighting unit, though.

    The main distinct factors compared to regular elves were:

    * Adaptions for underground living.
    * The could generate crops in wasteland terrain, which in AoW2 was something only dark elves and undead had.
    * Units indicating that dark elves could become shadows (which in AoW3 has spread to rogues of all races)
    * Cavalry with a lifestealing weapon (a red-glowing sword, kind of like the Shrine of the Wizard King in AoW3)
    * A drider-like “Spider Queen” unit.
    * The Incarnate, which could possess enemy units. (This is highly unlikely to return as a racial unit.)

    You can get more specifics for

    (Storylinewise, conflicts between the dark and light elves, primarily over the fate of humanity, was a central theme in AoW1. In AoW2, the rapprochement began that would eventually lead to the Mending, although it is worth noting that not all of the Dark Elves participated in that ritual. It is, however, unknown what happened to those that didn’t.)



    It’d be pretty cool if at least some of their units could cast (1)globe of darkness in combat, gain an (2)extra attack for twin weapon fighting, or (3)levitate over fortress walls!

    I numbered them, and they had 2 straight out, and 3 only if count just walking through them/climbing over them, since their T3’s could do that. They were awesome. Lore-wise, they assimilated into the High Elves(You could take the leader Saridas as a example), and still got some darker skins. However, they suddenly hate subterranean, which they “liked” in 2, kinda sad. (or at least, they had cave crawling and night vision).

    lore-wise, there is some reason for them to show their heads, but to small in number for a full race – hopes usually are limited to dwellings.



    I’m not sure about that last part. Dwelling inhabitants aren’t about being ‘minor’ or ‘major’, they’re more about being too exotic to fit the mould of a conventional race and/or being hindered in their ability to expand in some fashion (such as a low or nonexistent reproduction rate, or requiring very specific locations to live). Dark elves would have neither problem.

    After all, halflings are relatively few in number, but when they returned it was as a race.

    From a technical perspective, dark elves would probably be a fairly easy race to implement – class units could be literal reskinnings of their high elf equivalents, so all they’d need to do is come up with a distinct racial lineup. That, and racial modifiers that don’t leave high elves looking rather lackluster in comparison.



    Well, one of their favorite traits in Aow/2/SM IMO was their uniqueness in the use of Shock Bolts – they had the only priest to do so in AoW1, and the name “Stormlord” is kind of a hint as well. I’m still glad this carried over to the High Elves.

    As for the Reproduction rate, both Elves used to be much, much slower lorewise than any of the other races.

    I suppose it could be a race. Subterranean features, bladedancer T2 Infantry(Overwhelm, Tireless? low Def.). Copy the Racial Resist, invoke -1 racial defense. Racial Shock Protection, Spider Queen might be their T3 – it’s always been revered among them, just like Knights/Firstborns both carry the highest respect among their races, according to lore. It could be the first Racial T3 Support. (Charm/Web/Shock Bolts, Break Control at level?) Executioner Cavalry, Life Steal, but not higher stats otherwise. Night Guard Pikeman, from the barracks(to be able to move T2 infantry Bladedancer to the War Hall). Support can’t get around Shock Bolts, but can get Inflict Shocking at Gold medal, and maybe a Static Shield buff to give to ally once per combat?

    Archer might get Longbow(but has no racial damage bonus), and maybe Blight damage? Dark Elves won’t really mind using poisoned arrows. I feel giving shock ranged damage overlaps to much with focus chamber, cause it would be a much lesser buff to them then it otherwise could be.



    Could the dark elves not simply be introduced as skins via the Necromancer class? I would like the return of the units but within the high elven union. Namely, the bladedancer, executioner and spider queen. A separate race would be fine, but I do like the idea that the elves have united to reap the benefits of such a union against the challenges besetting their ancient kind. Also, I’d like for them to prioritise races like the Tigrans. That said, something like dwellings could also achieve this, rather than full blown races or class units.

    As for the Reproduction rate, both Elves used to be much, much slower lorewise than any of the other races.

    I guess that sort of thing can always change, particularly for a race adept at magic. Drow in conventional D&D actually breed very fast, even by human standards; it’s that they kill each other off in civil wars to please their goddess which leads to it being much of a muchness. Granted, AoW’s dark elves aren’t drow, but I consider it plausible for the race to adapt strategies regarding birthrates over time, and sorcery – much like science – can be used to hasten such adaptations.



    I’d be inclined to call lower dark elf defense values a lack of Armoured, myself.

    They’d have the racial resistance bonus, subterranean stuff, and possibly blight protection – although it would need to be balanced by a weakness, possibly spirit. I’d probably leave out the racial bonuses to ranged damage on the basis of them already having enough there, and as another distinction with high elves (so their archers could use longbows, but not quite as well as high elf longbowmen).

    Support-wise… I’d be somewhat inclined, for the sake of distinction, to say that the Cult of Storms proper mostly participated in the Mending, and focus on something else. Frost damage, for instance, could provide a nod to the traditional dark elf association with shadow while still fitting the storm theme somewhat. Spider queens I’d expect to use blight.



    I’m actually somewhat against the return of the dark elves. My reasoning is very selfish, but with a much larger contingent of the dark elves having left the world to go off through the shadow gates, I’m hoping we’ll see the eventual introduction of a re-imagined dark elf race based around how life in the shadow realm has altered them: “shadow elves” if you will. I can imagine cavalry with some sort of shadow demon-like mount for example.

    Naturally I’m hoping for this to be in a sequel set when the shadow gates are opened, but if we get traditional dark elves back first then my hopes for something even better later on will rendered far less likely.

    So I say let’s not cash in our dark elves yet – let’s save them and see if we can get something really unique after the gates are opened.



    I’m really glad that Triumph is trying to differentiate the races, as it stands to me as a pretty new player there are differences but they are fairly minor and to me seem to quickly get lost in the larger logistics.

    Here’s the fruit of some brainstorming….


    Defeat Bonus
    Going with the warrior theme and the Victory rush bonus, perhaps there could be a defeat bonus so that no matter the outcome orc’s enjoy battle. They like winning and they like to reclaim lost honour through crushing the victors.

    Perhaps if the orcs lose a battle for a small number of turns (1 or 2?) all Orc units gain slayer for whatever race composed the army which defeated them.
    Kind of like preferred enemy in WH40K, they really, really want to kill them now!
    To avoid scout baiting cheese for gaining a bonus the orc’s would have to lose with an army of at certain unit threshold.

    War on Muiltple Front Bonus
    Perhaps some kind of empire bonus which increases with the number of players/Independents your empire is at war with.
    Maybe a happyness boost, production boost (war footing)
    not sure how this concept could manifest but it goes along with the warrior spirit of AoW Orc’s.

    I really like the previous idea about a lesser penalty for rushing orc units (not buildings).
    Great ideas from the community.




    Innate Research
    Going with the research bonus due to the Elves spirituality through the resultant introspection and knowledge accumulation of immortality it would make sense (hopefully not game breaking sense) that Elf cities would start with the production option of research without having to build a library

    When you invest gold in a library it unlocks a better elf specific variant on research.
    Like the merging unification of minds, the elves in the city stop and dedicate themselves entirely to the project, kind of like a city wide psychic think tank.

    Perhaps choosing this research variant for production gives a better research boost but also eats the manna income and halts population growth of that city for the turn.



    Dwarves– Forgin’ and Minin’

    Innate Forging

    Dwarven city starts with a Dwarven Forge which is akin to Arcane Forge but with slightly less attribute options to add to the item.
    Once Arcane forge is built the options are opened up, crafting times are reduced, reduced cost?

    Prospectors and Mining
    I have ideas where the prospector besides being an irregular troop can also be used as a kind of resource gatherer that other races do not have. This could add a unique slant on gameplay particular to Dwarf players

    Also agree with the idea that Dwarfs get less penalty for rushing construction of buildings.

    Prospectors in a gold mine
    If you put a prospector on the same hex as a gold mine in your domain perhaps there is a small % chance the mine gains a small ammount of bonus gold each turn.
    The more prospectors one places in the mine the higher the % and higher bonus yield.

    This would have to be tweaked to not be game breaking.
    Perhaps each turn the prospector are working in the mine they lose health, so that players have to swap prospectors out and let exhausted workers regenerate, or the negligent Dwarf lord will find his gold mine littered with the bodies of loyal miners who worked themselves to death.

    Another variant of this idea: Mountaineering Prospectors
    Prospectors moving across mountain hexes gain a small % chance of finding gold (small ammounts 5 or 6 gold?), similar to how the dreadnought gains gold moving across forest hexes (but doesn’t destroy the mountains).
    In this way it is a viable Dwarven strategy, if one is really hard up for gold, to send out prospectors to comb the mountains for deposits.

    Another variant: Dwarven built Mines
    Dwarven builder can build a mine in any mountain terrain within your domain (takes up 5 hexes so can’t spam easily).
    This Dwarven mine would not act like regular mine. Like the previous idea the mine would have to be staffed with prospectors.
    The mine does not yield gold each turn but gives a chance each turn that some gold may be gained (the more prospectors = higher chance & yield)
    Any race to take over the city would not be able to use the mine, unless they absorb Dwarves and enslave the prospectors.



    Sorry about the mass idea posting. Lots of ideas!

    Going with the vermin horde theme of growth and cheapness

    Breeding Frenzy

    A kind of variant on build housing production where the bonus of choosing building houses multiplies the growth bonus with each consecutive turn.
    In this way with some sacrificed turns Goblin cities can grow big domains quick.

    City Growth = cheaper units

    At each Domain tier, goblin units become cheaper and cheaper to produce. The cost reduction bonus is less for higher tiered units.

    Goblin Wetland symbiosis playstyle

    Wetlands foraging seems like the beginnings of a possible unique Goblin play style where Goblin players pay equal attention to the wetlands as he does his units. Not in just in happiness/concealment/movement bonus stat boost terms ….ideas not quite manifested, here’s some roughs.

    Wetland Poisons
    Goblin units have a chance to gain random blight bonus for the next fight if they camp in a wetlands hex without having spent any movement points previous turn (perhaps +1 blight damage, stench, weakening fever). Foraging for venom’s and poisons for weapons.

    Perhaps Goblin cities have innate ability to slowly grow wetlands within their domain, a kind of nerfed version of Empire of X.

    Goblin Builder could perhaps grow a specially cultivated swamp on a wetlands hex, perhaps effecting enemies who traverse it (it would look undifferentiated from regular wetlands to all without wetlands walking).



    A simple way to cover those prospectors couls be to have them earn less than their income – so the can subsidise themselves, but you’re not intended to mass them.



    So I say let’s not cash in our dark elves yet – let’s save them and see if we can get something really unique after the gates are opened.

    Yes, that would be even better.



    I must say, with all the amazing unique abilities the recently revealed frostling units are getting, it’s going to take a lot to keep the old races from seeming bland by comparison.
    edit: I’m especially worried about humans. Since it’s been revealed frostlings get fast embark the humans are going to lose a lot of their naval edge.



    Embarking/Disembarking more easily and fighting on Water are two different traits entirely.

    That being said, Humans as the classically most ‘vanilla’ race, might seem comparatively behind to something like the Frostlings. Perhaps that Frostlings are balanced by other weaknesses, though.


    Hello! I would like to start off with a huge “Thank you!” to the devs for all their hard work.

    These butchers look amazingly awesome! But I stand with a decent portion of the community when I say, I would love to be able to keep the skewers. They are such a fun unit to mass, aestheticaly and gameplay wise. And it is my wish that they could be kept as a lower tier unit.

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