German press tour finished, new footage and screenshots

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  • #13326

    Tomipapa
    Member

    my gut is saying knights, since knights are significant enough in the AoW human culture to be something separate to and more powerful than ordinary cavalry, but I guess we’ll see.

    Yes, they are in

    knights

    #13327

    …while most units could certainly be fit into categories (heavy cavalry, scout flyer, melee/missile hybrid, etc) the races each had a different mix.

    Did they really? Every race had a level 0 “derp unit” and then went on with the infantry, ranged, cavalry, priest formula. It was usually the non-cavalry warhall unit where diversification in terms of “unit category” began, the same thing that is now handled by classes mostly.

    As long as the units themselves within the formula are different in terms of abilities and such, and I think they are, it should be fine.

    #13334

    7) Special – the pinnacle for each race. Goblin beetle riders. Orc Blackguards, Dwarf first born.

    So based on all the info we have, the special units are as follows. Elves, Gryphon Cavalry; Goblins, beetle riders; Orcs, Blackguards, Dwarves, First Born, Humans, Knights, and Draconians, something.

    So what you people think the draconian special unit is?

    #13338

    Red Key
    Member

    So what you people think the draconian special unit is?

    Draconian Flyer (a.k.a. Draconian Lander in AoW3) 😀

    #13339

    I think Flyers are supposed to be the Draconian “cavalry” unit. Could be wrong.

    #13342

    Knight9910
    Member

    Well, it can’t be hydrae or dragons, since they said that the races won’t get monster units like that anymore. My guess is they’re going to make something new for them.

    That said, here’s what we’ve seen so far, just to keep it in one place.

    Humans
    Irregular: Civic Guards, who seem to be dual-wielding rapiers and crossbows.
    Infantry: Longswordmen.
    Ranged: Standard archers.
    Polearm: Halberdiers.
    Cavalry: —
    Support: Priests.
    Special: —
    Note: Not sure if the knights are the humans’ cavalry or special unit.

    High Elves
    Irregular: Chicks with daggers?
    Infantry: Sword-and-board fighters.
    Ranged: Longbowmen.
    Polearm: Guys with cool-looking glaives.
    Cavalry: —
    Support: Chicks with staves.
    Special: Gryphon Rider.

    Dwarves
    Irregular: Miners, who we saw in the Dreadnought video digging through dirt underground.
    Infantry: Axe-and-shield fighters.
    Ranged: Crossbowmen.
    Polearm: Huge pole-axes.
    Cavalry: — (Probably boar riders.)
    Support: Dwarves with staves.
    Special: Firstborn.
    Note: I saw something that looked like the Runemasters from AoW2 in one of the screenshots they posted before. Maybe these are the Firstborn?

    Orcs
    Irregular: —
    Infantry: Greatswords.
    Ranged: Archers.
    Polearm: Look like guisarmes.
    Cavalry: — (Probably horses, judging by AoW2.)
    Support: Shamen.
    Special: Blackguards. We don’t know exactly what that entails, but I imagine they’ll probably be something like the Warlord unit, renamed to prevent confusion with the Warlord leader class.

    Goblins
    Irregular: Dudes with awesome scythes! (I was hoping for Bombers. Evil midnight bombers, even. …what bomb at midnight.)
    Infantry: Axe-and-shield.
    Ranged: Homing mosquito darts, apparently.
    Polearm: Spears.
    Cavalry: — (PRobably wolf riders, if it’s like the previous games.)
    Support: —
    Special: Beetle riders.

    Draconians
    Irregular: Hatchlings, which are damn creepy looking.
    Infantry: Crushers with huge saw-tooth clubs.
    Ranged: Flamers, though apparently they’ll shoot firebolts this time around rather than breathing fire.
    Polearm: Guys with partisans and little wings, look kinda like the Chargers from the previous games.
    Cavalry: Raptor mounts, as has been confirmed by the devs.
    Support: Elders with big feather hats!
    Special: —

    EDIT: Formatting fixed.

    #13345

    Very nice compilation, thanks, Knight.
    Not 100% sure but I think I remember it was mentioned in one of the video features from the GamersGlobal preview that the Draconian cavalry unit is the flying unit we see in there wielding a massive sword(?). Raptors are the mounts exclusive for Draconian heroes I think.

    We also saw some mounted unit that looked very similar to the human knights in one of the vids where the horses had no barding. Maybe these are the standard human cavalry and the knights are the special unit. OTOH, knights are a unit composed of three figures on the battlescreen while I doubt a giant beetle will have three figures. Not sure if it’s a defining element of a special unit that they are BIG and consist only of one figure per unit.

    #13349

    Nice list Knight 🙂 I think the amount of units isn’t really a factor when it comes to the Special units. I just feel that knights are too powerful to be regular cavalry and seeing as Triumph focusses more on authenticity than before and knights used to be the nuclear arsenal of the medieval times, I think it’s safe to bet they’re the special dudes.

    #13350

    Knight, an addition to your list: If you look at the screenshot posted by Tomipapa, you’ll see the humans fighting Dwarves. On the bottom of the screen, you see a dead boar and its rider. I’d say we’re gonna get DORFS ON BOARS!

    #13356

    11balanced
    Member

    Knight9910

    On the moment all the racial units are revealed and could be found in screenshots or videos (may be with the except for beetle riders). You can make your list 100% compete, without ‘—’ signs ))

    #13358

    Would hope to see the Butcher as the goblins’ polearm unit and we already saw the humans’ light non-knight cavalry in the German vid. Don’t know what they’re called though.

    #13362

    Tomipapa
    Member

    Draconian special: Draconian Flyer. In the 27 min german lets play you can see them. According to it’s upkeep and xp requirement it is a T3 unit.

    Goblin support: Goblin Blight Doctor. You can see them in Lennart’s gamescom presentation.

    Orc irregulars: Spear Thrower or something like that. The devs said it

    About Black Guards: I think this unit is formerly knowed as Orc Shock Tropers. The guys with the very big axes in the Dreadnought gameplay video and in this screenshot(and those orc spear throwers near them):

    black guards

    About the knight: i think it’s the human special unit not a class one. The knight was revealed in the Sorceror gameplay video, and i dont belive that the Sorceror has a knight as a class unit. Ok, she might dominated/seduced it or get it as a quest reward but i don’t think this happened in this case. And the knight always was an iconic human unit.

    #13364

    Arnout
    Keymaster

    You are totally correct Tomipapa. 😉

    #13365

    Knight9910
    Member

    I would like to see the Butcher as the Goblin polearm unit too.

    Upon further thought, I wouldn’t put the Bomber as a goblin racial unit, since they’re trying to move away from the “goblins are mindlessly evil” thing. I think it could work as a class unit, though: either Dreadnought (as a little explosive drone) or for the Rogue.

    #13367

    Well, if you’re playing good goblins it turns out bombers are all willing, eager volunteers. 🙂

    #13378

    I wasn’t sure about the Draconian flyers at first glance (and before dev confirmation), since they have such low hitpoints (only six more than the front line infantry), but the high defense value, damage, and leapfrogging ability makes it seem like a capable special unit.

    I like the idea of the leapfrogging ability because it allows non ranged flying units to skip over defensive lines in a way they couldn’t before. Sure, they could fly around, but that would take valuable time and allow ranged units behind protecting troops extra shots.

    This might also create a “blobbing” dilemma for people fighting flying units: do I encase my ranged units, to protect them from being “assault marine’d”, or is the risk from continuing canon shots, or area effect spells too great?

    #13384

    Draxynnic
    Member

    Working through:

    @tomipapa: It looks like it’s pretty much been confirmed now, but yeah, my question wasn’t on whether knights were in, but whether they were the cavalry unit, or whether they were the special with a lighter cavalry taking the cavalry slot.

    @jeanlucpicard: Oh, I wasn’t saying that there were no formulaic units in AoW2. However, let’s go through the roles available at each tier:

    Tier 0:
    Light Infantry: Militia, Axeman, Peasant, Halberdier, Spearman, Grunt, Impaler, Night Guard, Zombie, Larva
    Cheap Scout: Glade Runner, Prospector
    Cheap Ranged: Shredder, Hatchling, Snowscaper

    Tier 1:
    Regular Infantry: Legionary, Swordsman, Berserker, Spellbinder, Infantry, Hunter, Charger, Raider, Barbarian, Axeman, Warrior, Spawn
    Ranged: Archer, Longbowman, Crossbowman, Slinger, Lightning Catcher, Fire Cat, Shard Thrower, Horse Archer, Darter, Bombard
    Special: Flamer, Bomber

    Tier 2:
    Cavalry: Paladin, Scout, Boar Rider, Pony Rider, Rider, Cavalry, Prowler*, Wolf Raider, Elephant Rider, Wolf Rider, Heavy Cavalry, Executioner, Death Knight, Stag Mount
    Melee/Ranged Hybrid: Avenger, Engineer, Rogue, Swashbuckler, Cat Master*, Slither, Frost Witch, Abomination
    Heavy Infantry: Shadow Runner, Crusher, Butcher, Bladedancer
    Support: Nymph, Vampire
    Flyer-ish: Djinn**, Skimmer

    Tier 3:
    Flyer: Pegasus, Gargoyle, Eagle Rider, Manticore, Flyer, Icedrake Rider, Wyvern Rider, Doom Bats
    Heavy Cavalry: Chariot, Iron Maiden, Mole, Sheriff, Knight, Mammoth Rider, Chieftain, Big Beetle, Spider Queen
    Elite Infantry: Treeman, Runemaster, Giant, Astral Sprite, Hydra, Yeti, Pit Guard, Spectre, Bone Horror, Harvester, Spirit
    Support: Saint, Druid, Chaplain, Slaver, Warlord, Shade, Succubus, Brain
    Special: Changeling
    Elite Ranged: Centaur, Herbalist, Mystic, Beholder, Elder, Troll, Shaman, Necromancer

    Tier 4:
    Top Melee: Titan, Sphinx, Doom Wolf, Kharag, Glutton, Dread Reaper, Lord
    Top Flyer: Faerie Dragon, Red Dragon, Roc
    Transport: Steam Tank, Forceship, Air Galley
    Special: Leprechaun, Incarnate

    *Technically these might be the other way around, but in terms of role, this is how they end up

    **With gold medal. The djinn is a weird unit that otherwise I would probably have had to put into “Special”, though, so here it goes.

    At Tier 1, it lines up pretty much as you say, with a couple of exceptions. At every other tier, even with my quite crude division of categories that ignores subcategories that really should probably be their own categories, each tier has at least two more categories than any race has units at that tier, and even with my incredibly broad categories there are times I’ve had to throw my hands up in the air and label something as “Special”… meaning “there is nothing else at this tier that is equivalent”.

    While there are certainly broad categories, and some that are near-universal (tier 1 melee, tier 1 ranged, tier 2 cavalry) the different combinations of these categories among the different races is part of what makes them distinct. The categories you mention essentially serve as the “core base” (although even there you’re wrong, since the “derp units”, as you put them, have different roles depending on race), but building up from that they have much more variation than I think Triumph will be able to achieve by sticking to the “irregular, infantry, ranged, polearm, cavalry, support, special” formula – which really only leaves two units per race (irregular and special) which aren’t in the same category as their counterparts in every other race.

    While I hope Triumph will continue to make meaningful distinctions within the broad categories they’ve limited themselves to, it is a step towards making the races less distinct and more interchangeable.

    And while bringing up the class units helps keep the total unit count up, it really just proves my point even more – class units do nothing to keep the races distinct from one another. In fact, it does the reverse, since if you’re focused on building class units, it almost doesn’t matter at all what race the city belongs to.

    Also @jeanlucpicard: The lore thing on Flyers talks about them taking the place of cavalry, but I’m pretty sure they’re the special unit, and they have raptor riders for conventional cavalry. It’s possible that that lore snippet came from a period in history when the draconians truly didn’t have real cavalry.

    @Knight9910: The elven cavalry unit appears to be unicorn riders – we can see them in some of the older screenshots.

    #13386

    No bombers? And no Orc Warlords? If the blackguard is the warlord by another name, then why ‘blackguard’-the name implies treachery, deceit and more of an assassin type aspect, whereas orc warlords were good honest smash everything up fighters…

    This is making me pause slightly in liking the game:(.

    #13391

    11balanced
    Member

    No bombers? And no Orc Warlords? If the blackguard is the warlord by another name, then why ‘blackguard’-the name implies treachery, deceit and more of an assassin type aspect, whereas orc warlords were good honest smash everything up fighters…

    They were my favorites too. Warlords obviously have to be renamed (there is such a leader class) and I hope those blackguards would be a good enough replacement. I don’t see here any assassin influence: ‘black’ – reminds elite big black orcs from Warhammer, ‘guards’ – also indicates more on honest fighter than on some ‘treachery’ IMO.

    But I’ll really miss that pearl of goblin race – the kamikaze bomber. Since the unit list become more ordered, there seems to be no vacancy for him (((

    #13392

    Believe it or not, I wasn’t making up the connotations of Blackguard:

    http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/blackguard

    blackguard
    ˈblagɑːd,-gəd/Submit
    dated
    noun
    noun: blackguard; plural noun: blackguards
    1.
    a man who behaves in a dishonourable or contemptible way.
    verb
    verb: blackguard; 3rd person present: blackguards; past tense: blackguarded; past participle: blackguarded; gerund or present participle: blackguarding
    1.
    abuse or disparage (someone) scurrilously.
    “you know what sort she is, yet you blackguard me when I tell the truth about her”

    and in popular gaming culture, it means criminals in general:

    http://store.steampowered.com/app/249650/
    http://broodslayers.com/nwnblackguard.php

    I first came across the term playing Warlords Battlecry, as a darkelf unit:

    http://etheria.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Elf

    Anyway, I suppose you could say it’s all down to opinion, but I personally don’t think this fits as an orc warlord replacement.

    #13393

    In fantasy a Blackguard is usually just a kind of evil warrior or anti-paladin. The only bad thing here, imo, is that it automatically creates the connotation of orcs being evil which was fine in AoW1/2 but AoW3 strives to be free of this prejudice and rather let the player decide on the morality of their faction/race.

    Maybe he could be called Warmaster (similar to the old name) or Vanquisher, something more neutral but still warlike.

    The categories you mention essentially serve as the “core base” (although even there you’re wrong, since the “derp units”, as you put them, have different roles depending on race), but building up from that they have much more variation than I think Triumph will be able to achieve by sticking to the “irregular, infantry, ranged, polearm, cavalry, support, special” formula – which really only leaves two units per race (irregular and special) which aren’t in the same category as their counterparts in every other race.

    Of course there was variation in between equal tiers in SM just as there is in AoW3. For example, dwarven lvl0 unit is a Miner that can dig paths underground while the human tier equivalent is the Civic Guard that fights with sword and x-bow. But they’re both “irregular”. Like I said, AoW2/SM also had the same general categories but it didn’t preclude variation within and there’s no reason to assume it will in AoW3.

    The only difference is that now these categories have been explicitly stated which creates the illusion that thing might end up less diverse. There are other examples, the secondary magical ranged attacks on elven units, Orcish and Draconian infantry using 2-handers instead of sword/shield, Draconian “archer” with fire bolts, the different “special” units like knight (heavy cav.), blackguard (heavy inf.) and Gryphon Rider (flier), etc.

    #13394

    Draxynnic
    Member

    Like I said, AoW2/SM also had the same general categories but it didn’t preclude variation within and there’s no reason to assume it will in AoW3.

    The only difference is that now these categories have been explicitly stated which creates the illusion that thing might end up less diverse.

    Except that what you said, and what you’re still saying, is wrong.

    There are some – very few – categories in AoW2SM that were universal or close to universal. Basic infantry, basic ranged, cavalry, and in Shadow Magic, most races had a tier 3 melee. However, there are exceptions to those rules: draconians don’t really have a classical tier 1 ranged (hatchling is tier 0 and able to fight in melee as well, while the flamer is… something different), nor do they have a typical cavalry unit (neither the Slither nor the Crusher fill the same role).

    That covers… five out of the ten units each race has (including priests but not including war machines, since war machines haven’t been included among the list of racial categories in AoW3 so far). The other five varied widely between races. There were some things that were very common (a weak melee unit at tier 0, tier 3 flyer, and so on) – but the same is true for the two slots that are allowed to vary in AoW3 (we have at least three melee/ranged hybrids – the elf dagger women, hatchlings, and Civic Guard – for the irregular slot, for instance, and it looks like we have at least two races with flying units in the special slot). Even if we rule out some of the weird stuff, though, and count “heavy melee” in tier 3 as a single category regardless of whether it’s cavalry or infantry, there are ten distinct categories competing for those five slots with each race, and some races have multiple units that fit within each category – resulting in each race having a different mix.

    Seriously, what we’re looking at is where 5/7 units in each race fit the same basic category as their counterparts. I’d challenge you to come up with seven categories for AoW2SM races that are universal across each race and where each member of a category is roughly equivalent in role to all of its peers. That the Shadow Magic races have some units that share roles is a very different situation to the AoW3 scenario where the majority of units for each race fill the same role.

    To give a, possibly somewhat extreme, example comparing races between the games, let’s look at the elves and draconians, working on the assumption that draconians have raptor riders as cavalry as has been indicated. In each game, what considerations would you have in deciding which race to have build a new city with in your empire?

    First, you have the economic effects, but since we don’t know what they may be in AoW3, we’ll handwave those for now. However, as a rule, economic effects are a pretty poor thing to distinguish between races on their own.

    Looking at the SM race comparison:

    Both elves and draconians have a dragon at top tier. Red dragons are a bit tougher and have a breath weapon that is generally more useful at killing targets. Faerie dragons, on the other hand, have phase, which means that once per battle you can have a faerie dragon go straight to wherever it will do the most good. These are the sorts of things I imagine to be comparable to the differences between units in the same category in AoW3, though, so let’s say they fit the same role.

    At tier 3, you have the Iron Maidens and flyers. Both units excel at getting past enemy walls and other obstacles during sieges – flyers do so through flight, while Iron Maidens through phasing. Because they’re ground troops, Iron Maidens are more vulnerable to being mobbed by ground troops after arrival and can’t engage enemy flyers, but have better stats to compensate, which means that they do better in situations where the advantage of flight is limited. For the purpose of this example, I will begrudgingly consider them as being equivalent, especially since in AoW3 the distinction between flying and phasing would be less.

    Hydras and treemen I’ve already put in the same category, so let’s move on to the wild card:

    Druids and elders. There is a HUGE difference in role between these two. Druids lack a ranged attack and have weak (for their tier) melee attacks – their primary role is support, entangling foes so that other units (or the druids themselves if nothing else is around) can finish them off. Elders provide some leadership effects along with a ranged attack. Even if you could loosely call them both “support”, they do so in very different ways where, if you were considering using either unit, would mean the choice of which race to take would have a substantial effect.

    At tier 2, unlike many other race pairs where the distinction is mainly near the top, SM elves and draconians become completely different. Elves have a typical cavalry unit – instead of cavalry, the draconians have the Slither, a wall-climbing unit with a ranged attack similar in behaviour to halfling Rogues, and the Crusher, a slow melee fighter who can break down walls. This combination gives early draconians a strong focus on bypassing defenses of enemy cities, which is further developed by flyers at higher tiers. Elves, by contrast, have regular cavalry, but their alternate tier 2 unit is the nymph, granting the ability to take control of enemy units. This is an ability that only five races have at all (and that’s including the Changeling…) and which only one other can do so with a cheap and quickly available tier 2 unit. Canny players can also combine nymphs with druids to immobilise and then take over enemy units. A player may or may not choose to take this option, but whether they’re going to go this route cannot help but be a factor on which way they go.

    At tier 1, again, I’ve already regarded chargers and swordsmen as being in the same category. Let’s be generous for the sake of argument and say that hatchlings and archers also fill much the same role. Glade Runners and Flamers, however, are very different – the former serving basically as a cheap scout and raider, while the latter provides the draconians with a cone attack on a unit which, while fragile, is available two tiers before anyone else has an equivalent – distinctions that can have a massive effect on your playstyle between the two.

    So, in this comparison, you’ve got five units that are going to perform much the same duty for each race – but that’s glossing over some pretty major “subtleties” between some unit pairs. The other four units of each race, however, do very different things. While it’s certainly possible that a player is just going to rush to dragons anyway and doesn’t care, in the earlier game at least, the distinctions between these two can provide a significant difference in playstyle between the two and play a role in the player’s decision of which race to have.

    Now, let’s compare elves and draconians in AoW3.

    I chose this pairing with some malice aforethought that, assuming the assumption about draconian cavalry is correct, both races have essentially the same special (flyers) and irregular (melee plus ranged) units. We don’t know what the distinction between griffons and flyers are, but I’m going to hang out on a limb and guess that it’s probably going to be less than the difference between phasing and faerie-dusting faerie dragons and firebreathing red dragons. Likewise, the distinction between hatchlings and the elf dagger-women is primarily in the element they use – while the secondary effects may be significant, at most we’re looking at the distinction between hatchlings and snowscapers in AoW2. They’re doing basically the same thing. The major point of distinction is probably the ability of the hatchlings to grow – so a draconian player might get a free unit upgrade, while the elven player can remain confident that their irregular isn’t suddenly going to morph into something less suited to their current situation.

    For infantry – elven swordsmen have shields granting block, draconian crushers have greatswords giving them Overwhelm. Now, at this stage we don’t really know what the distinction between these two are, but my gut feeling is that it’ll be about the same as that between chargers are elven swordsmen in AoW2.

    At ranged – I can’t point to anything that says it specifically, but the impression I’ve got is that flamers are now shooting fire bolts rather than having a wide-area breath attack. So that means the distinction between flamers and elf archers is, basically, that one is using fire and the other physical attacks. Which is not really going to change much unless you’re playing elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors.

    Polearm we haven’t seen much on yet, but they’re probably going to be doing much the same thing. Similar with cavalry – the impression I get from the talk on hero mounts is that the distinction between a green raptor and a regular unicorn is nothing to write home about, so I’m not expecting something like elven cavalry getting phase and draconian cavalry getting a ranged attack (although it’d be awesome if that did happen) – that sort of thing is reserved for the upgraded hero mounts.

    Support… we’re basically looking at a ranged attack and some sort of buff. If we went searching through the videos and screenshots, we could probably find exactly what each buff is called for the elders and storm sisters, but I doubt it’s going to prove to be as different as the distinction between druids and elders in SM.

    As I said before, class units aren’t going to change anything here. Maybe having different races for a class unit gives you bonuses and penalties to a couple of stats. Whoop-de-doo.

    So, compared the major distinctions between the races in SM, what do we have in AoW3? Transforming hatchlings (which, if the transforming hatchlings in SM are any indication, may come up so rarely that you wouldn’t actually consider it part of your strategy), a bit of elemental rock-paper-scissors, and the possibility that the elven lightning attacks might stun an opponent. Unless there’s something really major – bigger than the difference in SM between an actual flyer and cavalry with phase – that’s… really, about it. I’m having real trouble seeing how my tactics and strategy are going to differ at all between playing elves and draconians in AoW3, except that every so often with elves I’d get to take advantage of a stunned enemy unit.

    And that is something that saddens me immensely, and I’m growing more shocked with every post at your refusal to see it.

    #13395

    You’re using selective examples and exceptions from SM but ignoring the same of what we’ve seen in AoW3.

    You’re complaining that the hatchling is similar to the civic guard but are ignoring how different both are from the miner (the hatchling’s evolve ability also does much to make it stand out imo). Same with flyer/griffon while ignoring the knight or blackguard. The spell casting/priest units in AoW3 especially seem to sport different abilities compared to SM’s priests that mostly only differed in their elemental attacks. The slither/crusher example is a valid one but that is literally the only one. Every other race has a mounted unit at that tier. It’s just one example out of 15 races and AoW3 has only 6 races so far. And considering how little info we have on core racial units in AoW3 you’re making a big assumption I think.

    Mind that I said that the formula in SM held up only up to the Warhall cavalry units. I acknowledged that the Warhall “special” units and upward saw much more diversity. If you want to go beyond that to include entire units rosters you need to take into account AoW3’s class system which creates at least as much difference between AoW3’s factions as there is between SM’s races and probably more.

    And that is something that saddens me immensely, and I’m growing more shocked with every post at your refusal to see it.

    Yeah, I can tell.

    #13411

    Draxynnic
    Member

    No, I acknowledged there are differences between them. But they’re not as large as some of the differences between AoW1 and AoW2 lineups.

    You keep referring to those warhall and earlier units. So let’s go back to AoW1, where apart from the optional tier 1 unit, everything at tier 1 and 2 fit into the same categories (except that halflings have their cavalry at tier 1 and their racial special at tier 2). You have your infantry, your basic ranged, your cavalry, your priest, the optional tier 1 is roughly the equivalent of the AoW3 irregular… you know, that’s all but two of the AoW3 categories already covered in the first two tiers.

    But when you go into tier three and four… they’re all special. Yes, there are categories that they each have in common, themes that keep coming up – the tier 3 flyers, the tier 4 flyers, ranged/melee hybrids like the ranger and spider queen, heavy cavalry like cavaliers, executioners, and unicorns – but you get the same overlaps from what we know of the AoW3 lineup. Three of the irregulars are the same ranged/melee hybrid concept (hatchlings, the elf dagger/lightning women, Civic Guard) and the orc and goblin irregulars have yet to be identified. The special units fit nicely into three categories – flyers (griffons and, well, flyers), heavy cavalry (big beetles and knights) and heavy infantry (firstborn and blackguard). Yes, I am fully aware that this is handwaving a lot of differences within the category, but this is like the difference between the priest types in AoW1 – they’re still, basically, filling the same role. (Well, except for Doom Priests).

    You keep pointing out that previous installments had their “formulaic” sections of the list as well, and that there are differences between different iterations of the same formula. <I have been acknowledging this all along. It’s also completely missing the point. The point is that in AoW1, not counting war machines, you had four out of nine units per race that followed the formula, and then you had five out of nine that didn’t, and gave the races the opportunity to really vary more than the odd stat tweak, special ability, and elemental rock-paper-scissors consideration. AoW3 has five out of seven units following the formula and only two on which bigger differences can rest – and as shown by the elf and draconian example, we have at least one case of two races (when we only have six to begin with) where even the irregulars and specials are performing the same role. If it turns out that the goblin irregular is another melee/ranged combo like the Civic Guard, we’ll have two.

    To reiterate, since you seem to be missing my main points and arguing against an extreme position that only vaguely resembles what I’m trying to say:

    I am not saying that there are no differences between AoW3 races, or that there are no formulaic elements in races in previous installments. I am saying that the differences are much less than they were in previous installments.

    It’s not about absolutes. I’m not claiming that they’re completely identical – but the differences are much less than they were in previous installments, to the point where race choice seems to be something that is going to matter a lot less than it did previously.

    You also keep bringing up class units as if that has any bearing on my argument. Just to make it clear:

    A set of units that are determined by the class of your Leader, and thus explicitly have few if any differences between races, does nothing to help to make the races more distinct from one another.

    If anything, they do the exact opposite. The impression we’ve been given is that, as a general rule, the class units are higher quality than equivalent racial units and as you go into the end game you’ll largely want to transition into class units. What this means is that, towards the end game, the class units are just pushing it to a scenario where it really doesn’t matter at all what races you have – what will matter is what class your Leader is and what neutral structures you’ve been able to woo or coerce to your cause, while what race you happen to have beneath your class units is purely aesthetic.

    And here’s the thing: I want race to matter. But with 70% of the units in every race following a formula, and with class units being pretty much identical for any given leader regardless of what race they are (I should note here that I’m not opposed to class units – I think they’re a cool idea – but their presence does mean that it’s more important to have large distinctions between racial units of different races to make up for the homogeneity they create), it’s increasingly looking like choice of race might be one of the least important decisions an AoW3 player could make.

    #13415

    And here’s the thing: I want race to matter. But with 70% of the units in every race following a formula, and with class units being pretty much identical for any given leader regardless of what race they are (I should note here that I’m not opposed to class units – I think they’re a cool idea – but their presence does mean that it’s more important to have large distinctions between racial units of different races to make up for the homogeneity they create), it’s increasingly looking like choice of race might be one of the least important decisions an AoW3 player could make.

    Ok, so as to the whole debate here, I think that Draxynnic is correct that race will have a lower importance in AOW III than in earlier titles (how could it not with the class units). However, I think that overall diversity will probably be greater when we combine, not only the different class units, but also the monster units recruit-able from the Dragons’ Peak, Giants’ Keep, and other dwellings.

    When combined with the “player morality” and action scale that interacts with diplomacy towards such sites, that means that the player is much more responsible for the construction of their empire’s diversity (or lack thereof). Indeed, playthroughs with the same class and race on the same map could have quite a different feel.

    For example, lets say that you are a goblin dreadnought, and lack flying units. In one playthrough, you could befriend a draconian town to get flyers. In another, you could find a Slyvan Court, or even the mighty Dragons’ Peak (speaking of Dragons, I like that the Golden Dragon now does spirit damage, rather than fire, for its breath attack). In a third, you could double down on brute force and field rock throwing Giants from the Giants’ Keep. That is plenty of diversity for me.

    We should also be aware that the DLC’s adding new races could easily add in more “classic” racial diversity, if players wanted the option.

    #13421

    I am not saying that there are no differences between AoW3 races, or that there are no formulaic elements in races in previous installments. I am saying that the differences are much less than they were in previous installments.

    It’s not about absolutes. I’m not claiming that they’re completely identical – but the differences are much less than they were in previous installments, to the point where race choice seems to be something that is going to matter a lot less than it did previously.

    I get what you’re saying and I disagree.

    And I don’t keep bringing up class units, that was the first time I mentioned them. However you can’t choose to arbitrarily ignore them. You’re no longer playing with just the racial units and your class is as an inherent part of your unit roster as any racial aspect or unit, it holds a very significant part of your faction’s flavor, gameplay and unit diversity. You can’t just dismiss class to make the facts fit your view.

    Now, if you have a problem with the whole race/class combo system that’s fine but it’s also a whole other topic.

    #13422

    Draxynnic
    Member

    You’re missing the point. Again.

    Class units are quite valuable for promoting diversity between factions. Agreed. I have no problem with having class units.

    However, a set of class units that are effectively identical between races does nothing for promoting distinctions between races. This is something I shouldn’t even have to say. I’m not “choosing to arbitrarily ignore them”, I am saying that they are completely irrelevant to my point, and in fact any relevance they have only serves to strengthen my point that the races appear more homogenised compared to earlier installments.

    What I’m looking for is reasons to care that, for instance, city A is an elven city, and city B over there is dwarven. My class, obviously, doesn’t care what race they are, they’ll be building the same class units regardless, so that’s not a point of distinction. Five of the units are following a formula and thus represent only a weak distinction – no more than between the priests of different races in AoW1. The only major points of distinction are miners versus the elven dagger women, and firstborn (presumably a heavy melee unit, like in AoW1) versus griffons (flyers).

    Now, that’s a distinction, but that combination probably has the largest distinction between AoW3 races, while for AoW1 races that’s about the minimum level of racial distinction you can have (ironically, with the same matchup – you can equate firstborn with nature elementals, giants to rangers… kinda, and unicorns to moles). As shown above, if you compare elves with draconians instead, you get… not much more difference than there was between orcs and humans in the early Warcraft installments. A few special abilities are different, but basically, they’re mirrors of one another.

    Comparing to earlier installments: in AoW1, the races in your empire were the core of your strategy. Your starting race largely determines which other races it is practical to absorb into your empire, and those races you’ve absorbed are where most of your military is coming from. With AoW1’s tiered city system, not only is it important which races are in your empire, but also which ones are in the larger cities.

    In AoW2, it’s about fifty/fifty. The greater range of summons and the ability to cast spells to influence any battle within your domain rather than just in battles with a spellcasting hero means that your personal identity has become much more important to your faction’s overall flavour, but the races within your empire are still likely providing most of your troops.

    In AoW3… it’s honestly looking like it will be all your character. Your class and specialisations determine what spells and abilities you have access to, and your class provides a set of powerful units that you can build at any city regardless of what race they happen to be. When the races also have most of their units structured according to a formula that means the differences between them are likely to be largely superficial, then the effect of race on your strategy is also likely to be, well… largely superficial.

    To reiterate: My issue is not related to diversity or flavour between different factions with different leaders. It’s related to the comparative lack of diversity between races within the same faction.

    #13424

    To reiterate: My issue is not related to diversity or flavour between different factions with different leaders. It’s related to the comparative lack of diversity between races within the same faction.

    Couldn’t you fix this with some (mildly) creative map design? For example, you could place a Sylvan Court near a High Elf faction, or put in a condition that the Sylvan Court will ONLY join and produce units for either 1). a Druid class, or 2). a High Elf of any class (maybe except for Dreadnaught). We saw that there is a “sister city destruction” option in the video, so there is probably a way to make the dwelling “auto raze” if certain conditions are met.

    You could also probably limit Giantkin and Giant recruitment on racial/elemental alignment grounds.

    #13425

    You’re missing the point. Again.

    As are you.

    However, a set of class units that are effectively identical between races does nothing for promoting distinctions between races.

    This is what you need to get. There are no races in AoW3, only the constructed factions made up of a race and class. You will never be playing just the race. There are no elves in AoW3, only elven theocrats, warlords, rogues, etc. Race is only half of the equation. What would SM’s races be like if you removed 50% of the units?

    You can’t ignore half the units and the say that what’s left is not good enough. It’s like ignoring the warhall, champion’s guild and everything in SM and then complaining that the units provided by just the barracks and temple are not diverse enough (which they wouldn’t be). The argument is flawed at its basis because you’re arguing about a thing that doesn’t exist (the race concept) or rather is only partial in nature.

    Obviously your leader (and his class) influences gameplay more relative to the race compared to previous games, that’s just how it is in AoW3. But I’ve already listed a decent number of racial differences based on what we’ve seen. And I do believe 3’s racial units will provide more diversity than SM did in low/mid tiers, especially when taking into account the different ways races will synergize with specific class/spec combinations.

    Here’s a potential race specific strategy for ya. Since AoW3 has guaranteed hits it will be much easier for Draconians to set up kills for their hatchlings and if the warlord class provides some kind of exp buff/bonus Draconians could easily end up with an early game strategy based around “hatchling rushes” and getting some powerful units early (via evolving).

    It’s also important to note that different races get increased resources from certain terrain types which isn’t as “cool” but is a significant gameplay determiner that’s based on one’s race. For example, elves depend on the forests a lot. In AoW3 they might even get extra resources from them. So an elven dreadnought will have an awkward time when building and moving his landships which destroy forests as they pass and take away the elves’ movement and concealment advantage, especially if they also damage the city’s income. It’s going to warrant some decision making and compromise.

    Hell, the diversity of racial priests in AoW3 alone is already a big bonus compared to SM when it comes to lower tier units imo.

    But as I do keep mentioning there’s a lot we don’t know yet.

    #13428

    11balanced
    Member

    Draxynnic

    I’m also concerned on races being unique and important, but can’t agree with your pessimistic conclusion. Besides the unit lineup there are a couple of factors:

    1. AoW-3 unit special abilities (could be very different for the same unit types of different races.

    2. Different terrain bonuses / penalties which affect cities growth, income, production) and troops morale (strength and loyalty). That’s what previous AoWs lacked so much.

    3. It have been told somewhere that some class skills can dictate the player the policy which would be OK to one race but not OK to another (like practicing Rogue ‘dirty tricks’ will make your leader turn to evil, which wouldn’t please you high elven electorate). And I still hope that they make (at least as a mod possibility) ‘exotic’ race / class combinations having another challenges, like weaker / more expensive / low morale class units and so on.

    I think all these aspects do make races an important factor, don’t they?

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