Making currently rarely used units more useful

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Home Forums Age of Wonders 3 Discussions Making currently rarely used units more useful

This topic contains 170 replies, has 22 voices, and was last updated by  Rodmar18 2 years, 3 months ago.

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  • #251652

    Hiliadan
    Member

    So we recently had a poll to survey the priorities of everyone regarding balance and one of the topic that came on top was “Make currently rarely used units more useful (e.g. non-cavalry units produced at War Halls)” (see the full poll results here: https://www.the-battlefield.com/aow3/index.php?page=bf_poll&pollnumber=18).

    One thing to do first is probably to list all the units rarely used.
    For me, it’s:
    – non-Archer T1 from Barracks (usually Infantry)
    – non-Cavalry T1/T2 from War Hall (usually Pikeman)
    – most of the first units from Dwellings: T1 Fairy, Ogres, Revenant Infantry or Archer… I usually go directly to their higher-tier units because they’re more cost-effective and also because usually it takes a lot of time to get a Dwelling and build all the necessary buildings to get even the 1st unit so it’s already end of mid-game or even late-game when you’re ready, and these units are not useful any more.
    – Merfolk units: Dwelling hard to get and most units limited to water (not Lost Mariner and Lord of the Deep).
    – some penultimate class units because the ultimate units are usually better and you usually need to specialize your cities (especially for MCU): Succubus, Exalted (though of course their Resurgence and Flying can make them interesting). But I have to admit my experience here is limited as I rarely reached late game in my games.

    Then how to make the rarely used units more used? I see several options:
    a/ make them easier to build (reduce the length of their building chain and reduce the costs of the building)
    b/ make other units harder to build (e.g. add some additional buildings in their building chains or increase the costs of existing buildings)
    c/ make them cheaper or other units more expensive
    d/ boost their stats or weaken the stats of other units
    e/ give them more abilities or more interactions with other units

    I think for T1 and T2 at Barracks and War Halls, option b/ would make sense. We could split War Hall into two buildings: one for 75 gold to produce the non-cavalry unit, and a second, the Stable for 100 gold, to build the cavalry unit. That would also to build the associated “medal building” earlier, without needing the full War Hall. It would have consequences on production because for instance you can build a War Hall in 2 turns if you have 90 production/turn but you need 3 turns to do a 75 and a 100 buildings. But I guess that’s ok.

    For Dwellings, my first instinct is to go for option a/ and make the buildings less expensive, but that may be bad as it may push the balance too much in favour of Dwelling. So probably the cost decrease would have to be gentle.

    Opinions?

    #251655

    Lykus
    Member

    Spliting the buildings sounds nice for war halls.

    For dwellings I would prefer a mixture of slight decrease in cost and boost in stats. (question Are they better than regular racial units at the moment?) If not we ahould make them. This way going through the process of getting a Dwelling would be worth it.

    For Succubi et al.- I think another ability would be the way to go. Would it be possible to add volunteer to units which the seduce (I remember there was a similar discussion before but i don’t know how that turned out).

    #251660

    I think partly we can fix this by fixing the issue in the other thread (the one that discuss late game unit diversity), by making T4 Weaker, but at the same time more synergestic with the T1~T2’s you will make T1~T2 more usefull.

    I again want to mention Theocrat here, it is not a perfect class by any mean, but it is a class that is cool because you end using a lot of different units, being by conversion or because the synergy between their units. Usually late game I will only not build Racial T1’s (except some amazing archers), And I will have a lot of T2’s/T3’s and just a couple of T4 in each party. I think we should aim for something like that, but adding a bit more T1’s in the mix.

    And I have two ideias of how to make this:
    1) Make Racial Governance Stronger, but at same time they make the unit that they buff more expensive. For example: Patron Orc Military now gives something like: Impalers and Greatsword now have +2 Meele Strenght, +1 Def, +1 Res, but the unit cost +2 Upkeep and +10 to produce (the numbers don’t need to be these, it is just the ideia behind), in a way making both Impaler and Greatsword a T1.5 unit. Also, it don’t need to be only raw stats, it could add some interesting abilities as well.

    2) Making an extra building that makes all t1 pikeman, infantry and maybe archer stronger but also cost more. It is the same ideia as before, but in a diferent way to implement. I would ratter have with Racial Governance, because if someone don’t like that unit ever after the buff or would rather have it being cheaper, it could just chose the economic version.

    #251662

    NINJEW
    Member

    splitting the warhall sounds like a really good way to make people pick the cavalry option 100% of the time instead of 90% of the time

    you’re telling me i can get my awesome cavalry for 100 gold now, instead of 175 gold? great! i can’t wait to build all my future strategies around spamming my awesome cav units as soon as possible, and never building my pikes in the niche situations where they’re useful because i no longer automatically get access to them from grabbing cav.

    i think the issue with most pikes is that you’re paying up for a barracks, then paying up even more for a warhall, just to get access to a t1 unit (that’s countered by one of the t1 units you get from the barracks). t1 units in general don’t see much use unless you’re using mana/as few resources as possible to get them. investing more to get a unit on par with what you had already, which you already aren’t using (because t1 infantry never getting used is ANOTHER issue) just isn’t a very convincing sell when put along side the always-t2 cavalry units.

    all of the non-cav warhall units that i see get built are the t2 ones. butchers are very good, royal guard are very good, prowlers are very good, because you actually get access to a decent power bump for your warhall investment (the t1->t2 power bump).

    making those t1 warhall units just plain accessible from the barracks would be a much better direction imo. make barracks the racial t1 building, and make the warhall the racial t2 building. i think that would better represent the actual reasons why players invest in additional buildings, rather than the infantry/archer-pikeman/cavalry dichotomy. it’d also be better in line with how the racial t3 building works: it’s not a “pikeman” building or an “infantry” building or a “support” building, it’s a “t3 unit” building. by making it, you’re guaranteed access to a unit that is substantially more powerful than what you already have, not a unit that is of equal power but fulfills a different role.

    #251663

    NINJEW
    Member

    i thinkt he problem with dwellings is that they’re fairly difficult to get, and on top of that you have to invest a lot of money into them before they’re useful. dwellings are always guarded by T4s, which means you need a pretty decently powerful army to grab one. an army stronger than your starting force, certainly, unlike most indie cities. trying to go the peaceful route is very expensive: dwellings, being placed at the center of the map, are always pretty expensive to vassalize, because they’re far away from your main cities. on top of this, once you do vassalize them, they don’t provide much economically (while the cheaper, closer indie cities will generally provide pretty good resource income for their cost). and then, you have to pay EVEN MORE to absorb them, and that’s all before you even start investing in their expensive buildings. much like no one’s going to pay 175 gold on top of a barracks just to get access to a new t1 unit, no one’s going to go through the trouble of controlling a dwelling just so they can build some better-than-average t2 units.

    personally, i think dwellings should give more resources, so that controlling them isn’t only useful if you’re going for a “i’m gonna dump all my money into this so that in 10 turns i can have a super unit” play, and they should probably be defended more lightly, so that an evil player can conquer them without already having an army that’s already war-capable anyway. by making controlling dwellings more accessible, you’d better encourage lightly investing in them for small advantages, over the current situation where they’re an all-or-nothing investment.

    #251664

    NINJEW
    Member

    the problem with t1 infantry is that they’re caught in the middle of two useful extremes. your racial irregular functions better as a cheap combat option (slightly cheaper, but more importantly doesn’t require the investment of a barracks to build) and aren’t really that much less effective than t1 infantry are. meanwhile, if you’re looking to spend more to beef up your army, t2 units/class units are the better option (they won’t instantly die in the first autobattle against a gold mine you put them in, for example). which means you build t1 infantry when, uh, you want an option that is cheaper than t2/class units, but also you need something stronger than your racial irregular. which is basically never?

    an interesting solution i see is looking a bit at units like the halfling nightwatch: they have urban concealment. that is to say, they’re meant to be kept in your cities as a garrison, kind of. perhaps this is a role that could be expanded a bit more? if t1 infantry were, say, given volunteer, it’d make a lot more sense to use those to garrison your cities to protect from scouts over irregulars, since you’d have to pay less upkeep, and the cost to build is practically the same if you already have a barracks. racial irregulars, meanwhile, could keep their role as cheap fodder that can be built anywhere with 0 investment.

    #251667

    Hiliadan
    Member

    splitting the warhall sounds like a really good way to make people pick the cavalry option 100% of the time instead of 90% of the time

    Forgot to say that obviously, you would need the 1st War Hall building (at 75) as a condition to build the Stable. So, no, what you say would not happen. 🙂 I cannot edit the 1st post any more (even with the direct link) so it will have to stay like that there.

    For Succubi et al.- I think another ability would be the way to go. Would it be possible to add volunteer to units which the seduce (I remember there was a similar discussion before but i don’t know how that turned out).

    Adding Volunteer to Seduced units would go in the opposite direction we took with the balance mod. As mind control is quite strong in AoW3 overall and is not counterbalanced by any disadvantage (compared to producing the units), we increased the upkeep of mind-controled units by 25%. I don’t think we would consider giving Volunteer to units Seduced by Succubi.

    and [Dwelling] should probably be defended more lightly, so that an evil player can conquer them without already having an army that’s already war-capable anyway.

    I’m not sure about that because getting early access to Dwelling also means getting a strong position in the middle of the map early, and that can be quite difficult to counter for your opponents. I think the difficulty to access Dwelling is OK right now (but probably not for live MP because in auto, you’ll get massacred against the T4).
    To complete your list of things that make Dwelling units unattractive, I’d add that their location in the middle of the map makes them highly contested sites, that are regularly attacked so it doesn’t encourage to develop them because you might 1/ get interrupted by an attack and lose all the gold/mana you had put in a building because the Dwelling changes hand and the production is cancelled, and 2/ develop the Dwelling for your opponent to reap the benefits and build the units there once he has conquered it. This would point to lowering the costs of buildings at Dwelling.

    Ok so other ideas listed so far:
    – boost T1 and T2 currently unused through Racial Governance and make them T1.5 or T2.5 (including upkeep and production cost increase)
    – add a building that boost unused T1 and T2 and make them T1.5 or T2.5 (including upkeep and production cost increase)
    – move T1 from War Hall to Barracks and T2 from Barracks to War Hall
    – give Infantry T1 Volunteer or a specific ability (like Night Watch’s Urban Concealment) to fill a specific role and be useful in complement to the basic Irregular
    – increase the income generated by Dwellings to make them more useful to control

    #251701

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    You got me mulling over this the whole weekend, after acknowledging that this is a valid point to address, and I think I have a couple of useful ideas that I will share in the course of the next days (and I will also make my own mod to check on things).

    One thing should be clear, though. If you want to address this then you will have to “reshape” the Elves, because with the Elves you have a clear preference not only in Longbowman vs Swordman and Pikeman vs Unicorn Rider, plus a great support (and a great T3), racial governance is also supporting this massively, making the choice even more clearcut. Building Swordmen and Pikemen with Elves is clearly not advisable, so it’s clear that Elven Racial Governance will have to change, if you want the alternative to Longbowman and Pikeman be viable. Clearly, you cannot boost the latter to the point that they can compete with the former, so you will have to simply change RG in favor of Inf and Pike.

    I point to this because you’ll have to decide between making units more viable and keeping the character of a race – although, with the Elves you wouldn’t know why you’d be a foot soldier, the way they are organized, so finding the right line here will prove difficult.

    #251739

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    Okay, so let’s start with the easy stuff: Frostlings and Tigrans should be perfectly ok. 🙂

    So let’s start with Draconians.
    Imo, Draconian Protector RG is a killer, giving Regrowth to Crushers and Chargers, and with Crusher’s Tireless on Elite, building them in a Dungeon town you have mini Warbreeds. I also think that the Charger is a pretty solid choice, because it offers a lot, while the Raptors, not being bad or something, do not profit from RG at all.
    I see the following issue:
    Draconian I) Chargers won’t become Tireless, but are faster (on the BF) and therefore more versatile; with CHARGE as an additional ability, Chargers are basically a cross between Raptors and Crushers and too good OVERALL as a unit (they also profit from RG5). “Too good) means, there is not much reason why you shouldn’t build a Charger over a Crusher (provided you can do so in 1 turn), and there is also no reason to go for a Raptor when you need 2 turns for them.

    Suggestions: a) Draconian Champion Military is weakish compared to the economic option (which is massive when you play with Racial heroes option). I’d add a goodie for Raptors, say, Raptors gain Devastating Charge and Projectile Resistance (in addition to supports being cheaper).
    b) option a) takes care of raptor/charger balance. However, you need something to go explicitely for Crushers. Option 1) Give Crushers +4 Movement (note that this a suggestion I will make for all non-armored Inf units, following the lead of the Frostling Raider); OR option 2) Remove Regrowth for Chargers from RG2 (making Crushers fairly unique) and add something else for them. With their first strike and charge ability Guard Breaker would be rather neat, imo.

    In this case I think I like option 2 better; while the Charger looks like it is nerfed, and the Raptor is boosted, the Charger still retains enough of a great unit, gaining Guard Breaker, while the Crusher is the sole Regroth unit, and the Raptor is a getting a boost.

    I don’t think this would warrant any cost changes.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by  Jolly Joker.
    #251755

    HellBrick
    Moderator

    A bunch of random non-structured thoughts on topic:

    1. Making “less used units” more appealing by making “more used units” more difficult to build sounds like a very bad idea to me. First of all, I think production strategies in general should be boosted, not nerfed. We’ve been down a long road to make mind controlling strategies not so obviously overpowered, and I think they are fine now – they are interesting and powerful, but not overwhelmingly powerful. So now’s the time too make production strategies more interesting to reach some kind of parity. Nerfing production would undermine all the hard work of mind controlling balancing, which sounds dangerous. And secondly, if some units are useful now and some are not, please don’t ruin the useful ones, I believe the correct way is to turn uninteresting things into something interesting. Stop nerfing, start buffing =)

    2. I find racial swordsmen useful during the first few days, especially for Dread/Warlord/Rogue. Some battles require additional tanking and units with Shield are good for that. If you want to make them more useful, boost their defensive characteristics a bit / make them cheaper. But by the end of the day most of racial T1s are probably not what makes the game interesting, so I’m not sure if I care much about them.

    3. Which leads me to the next point: have you ever seen people complaining about low-level Tigran/Frostling units? They are unique, interesting and useful. Royal guards/Prowlers are probably a bit outshined by the cavalry though, that can be dealt with by making their racial synergies more powerful and/or the units themselves cheaper. But my point is they have something that makes them appealing, and that is something the most races lack. There are nice features sprinkled here and there (like Defensive strike of Dwarf axeman or Charge + Lesser flying of Charger), but most of low-level racial units are simply boring. Give them something nice and let’s see what happens =)

    4. Exalteds are awesome. I actually struggle to justify building Shrines of smiting because they are so damn slow in comparison.

    5. I have never found myself actually considering building *anything* in the dwellings. You can’t boost the production and you have to waste a crapload of time and resources into the buildings required to unlock anything good, it feels like the same time and resources can yield much better army if you go for racial or class units in one of your normal cities. Simplifying building requirements (at least for low-level dwelling units) and/or adding ways to boost dwelling production might make things more interesting here.

    6. Succubus do feel lackluster. They try to be both mind controllers and good supports at the same time, but they achieve neither goal. A stack of Bards is better at charming everything (and is available much earlier, which is quite important), and they cost way too much for a support that can Throw curse instead of a ranged attack. Just compare them against Evangelists: Succubus are both more expensive and less useful. I’d say they should be T2 and way cheaper to build/research. Either that, or have some nice (de)buff abilities added to them, but making them cheaper sounds more in line with the current Rogue paradigm (and I can’t come up with any interesting abilities to give them on the spot).

    #251759

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    I’ll continue with the Goblins. And I’ll make it short and say that Marauders could get:
    a) +4 Movement and
    b) Goblin Patron Military could give Untouchables Sprint and Marauders Projectile Resistance and +2 Blight Damage.
    Price at 50 (-5).

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by  Jolly Joker.
    #251762

    Gaslov
    Member

    the problem with t1 infantry is that they’re caught in the middle of two useful extremes. your racial irregular functions better as a cheap combat option (slightly cheaper, but more importantly doesn’t require the investment of a barracks to build) and aren’t really that much less effective than t1 infantry are. meanwhile, if you’re looking to spend more to beef up your army, t2 units/class units are the better option (they won’t instantly die in the first autobattle against a gold mine you put them in, for example). which means you build t1 infantry when, uh, you want an option that is cheaper than t2/class units, but also you need something stronger than your racial irregular. which is basically never?

    an interesting solution i see is looking a bit at units like the halfling nightwatch: they have urban concealment. that is to say, they’re meant to be kept in your cities as a garrison, kind of. perhaps this is a role that could be expanded a bit more? if t1 infantry were, say, given volunteer, it’d make a lot more sense to use those to garrison your cities to protect from scouts over irregulars, since you’d have to pay less upkeep, and the cost to build is practically the same if you already have a barracks. racial irregulars, meanwhile, could keep their role as cheap fodder that can be built anywhere with 0 investment.

    I like this solution. Giving T1 racial infantry and pikemen less upkeep (or no upkeep) gives them a useful role.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by  Gaslov.
    #251764

    Make a new t2 infantry. At upgrade to War Hall you have a t2 infantry. t1 for dwarves is axemen t2 new unit axe throwers that they would have range but no shield. t3 infantry is obviously firstborn. Buff pikemen make them more expensive and the unit choices would be situational.

    #251765

    Have an infantry cavalry and archer for every tier of hall. This is part discussion on unit diversity. t1 has a scout cavalry that is fast, can’t cross water and is weak in combat. Rather than splitting the Warhall into 2 separate buildings you can work with what is already there.

    The issue that has to be addressed is foregoing class units. The way around this is to integrate class units with building units. The warlord would build the phalanx from pool of Firstborn. You would have to nerf the Phalanx. The manticore would have increased research.

    If you are interested in new buildings make enchanted forges and stylites available in city production. The stacked unit builds would need attention. Warlord Phalanx with researched stylites, enchanted armory, alignment spell on city, a racial governance bonus etc. You could limit units to 2 buffs.

    Another option is more racial governance choices. Separate trees for RG. Each RG tree has one production and a unit bonus. Lower the number of RG tiers to 3.

    There are a lot of ways. A new animation for enchanted armor would add a cool factor to them.

    #251776

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    Look, guys, it’s impossible to use ALL units, because you get 7 racial units plus up to 6 Class units – PLUS any number of additional summons via specializations and secret spells, PLUS any number of DWELLING units PLUS any number of different units when you have more than one race in your empire.

    In the end it amounts to what is cost effective on one hand (that is, does the job), and what is “unbeatable” (that is, does EVERY job).

    The question isn’t, what people subjectively don’t like – for example, depending on the Class/race I play I’m really keen on bolstering my troops with this or that dwelling units. The question is what doesn’t make sense to build.

    To give you an example, no matter what class you play with Halflings, it’s really difficult to see what could bring you to build Farmers. Because you’ll build Pony Riders (or anything cheaper except Farmers) before you grade up to Eagle Riders.

    Dwellings are a different matter. It would probably be different with the perception of them, if the same rules applied for them as for towns, but I’d expect too many Giants and Dragons in that case.

    Class units are completely different as well. Warlord is actually the Class to make racial units obsolet – sans Support -, that’s the nature of things. Berserkers and Crusaders ARE better than the usual Inf, so when you play Warlord or Theo, the Longswordman is more or less “absorbed” (a lot of fine-tuning has been put into race-based class individuality). You might say the Crusader/Berserker is the Upgrade of the Longswordman when you play Human Theo/Warlord.

    There is nothing wrong with it.

    #251782

    Hiliadan
    Member

    To give you an example, no matter what class you play with Halflings, it’s really difficult to see what could bring you to build Farmers. Because you’ll build Pony Riders

    In general, I think Farmers make sense to build because their ranged attack + First Strike means they can be quite useful in creeping. With the PBEM & Single Player balance mod, you actually may prefer them to Ponies or Eagle Riders because they get Lesser Mighty Meek which can be very effective against hier tier units. They also get an interaction with Brew Brothers (which “reload” their Throw Chicken) which makes them more useful. So I think they’re more or less OK now, especially if we do a “War Hall” and “Stable” separation (with the 2nd needing the 1st to be built).

    1) Give Crushers +4 Movement (note that this a suggestion I will make for all non-armored Inf units, following the lead of the Frostling Raider)

    Mmh, I don’t think that’s the way to go. Each race should have specificities and each racial Infantry should have a niche. Goblin Marauders are OK for me because they have Cave Concealment, which makes them very attractive to do sneak attacks and concealed scouting, they don’t need much change. Frostling Raiders have 32 MP. Crushers get Regrowth with RG. Axeman have Defensive Strike (though that’s not enough for them to really have a niche). Nightwatch have Urban Concealment. We need to find similar stuff for the other Infantry units I think.

    there is not much reason why you shouldn’t build a Charger over a Crusher (provided you can do so in 1 turn)

    There is one good reason: not build a War Hall. But yes, if we make Chargers easier to build, Crushers will suffer from it. Changing RG as you propose is probably the way to go.

    For Dwellings, let’s take the Fey Dwelling as an example:
    You need:
    1/ Buttercup Meadow – 150 gold – to get the T1
    2/ Toadstool Ring – 150 gold – to get the T2
    3/ Nightshade Hollow – 200 gold – to get the T3

    The Dwelling has a base production of 50, which means – without taking into account morale modifiers – you need 3 turns to start producing T1, 6 turns for T2 and 10 turns for T3.
    Unicorns require Unicorn Glade (150 gold) and Nymphs require Fairy Charm (160 gold) and Nymph Pond (150 gold).

    We could maybe change costs to:
    100 gold – T1 building – same as Barracks
    150 gold (unchanged) – T2 building – 25 lower than War Hall
    250 gold – T3 building (and replace some gold by mana?) – 50 gold lower and 100 mana lower than the T3 racial building
    And then make it possible to build the Nymphs and Unicorns’ buildings if you have the T1 building, and reduce their cost to maybe 100 each.
    Then we would keep the defense building in a separate building chain.

    #251784

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    First of all, I don’t think it’s a good idea to separate the War Hall into 2 buildings. For all points I could make against it, the one that stands out is, that if you do THAT, there is the question why you don’t separate Barracks as well, making the Barracks a necessity for the Archery.
    No, I think, the aim must be to make both picks worth the bother.

    For Dracs, I do think that the 28 MP solution with slightly changed RGs is good. Crushers can indeed become very good and Chargers are as well, while Raptors miss the generous HP reserves of the Mammoth Riders, which means, you need a careful mix, and I’ve already a mod in use to test that.

    For Goblins, I do think that Marauders have a VERY difficult time to get built. Cave Concealment is all very well, but the UG tends to have not only a lot of choke points and one-hex tunnels – where the Concealment ends against a careful player -, there are also nasty wandering monsters around that will at least deplete your Marauders. Their problem is, they have low damage and low health and are not featured timely in the RG. I think, if you don’t go for Darters, Untouchables are (currently) the better choice.
    Making them faster is somewhat logical (Raider, Marauder, that’s two sides of the same coin), and adding substance via early race governance suddenly makes them viable with Darter support.
    I already test this in a mod as well.

    Currently, I’m mulling over Halflings. As opposed to probably most PBEM players, I’ve played my share of Halfling (SP) games. Yes, THE ODD Farmer is good to initiate combat and to create the space for ranged units to get in without risk.. But Halflings “suffer” (when you can call it so), from the fact that they have a very usable Irregular and a comparatively decent T1 Inf, with the Archer not being overwhelmingly good, but it works. In my experience, if you go for War Hall at all (if you do NOT rely on Class units and Brews), most of the time you do it with the Eagle Riders in mind, because that’s where the Halflings excel in. (And, as an additional thought, going for the T3 racial is always a reason to build the War Hall; if you don’t, you must have other ways to field something comparable. Draconian Flyers are pretty good as well.)

    I had a couple of ideas here – funny ones, actually – to solve that (at least for me), but it will be a somewhat more involved operation.

    For DWELLINGS

    I agree that lesser cost for T1 and higher for T3 is good.

    #251786

    Hiliadan
    Member

    First of all, I don’t think it’s a good idea to separate the War Hall into 2 buildings. For all points I could make against it, the one that stands out is, that if you do THAT, there is the question why you don’t separate Barracks as well, making the Barracks a necessity for the Archery.

    I hope you’re conscious that’s not a very strong point? The difference of value between Archers and Infantry is not as big as the one between Pikeman and Cavalry. And Pikeman are not useful because they’re not distinct enough from Infantry and far weaker than both the Cavalry and the T3. The investment for War Hall is also much bigger than for Barracks so you often don’t want to go for it, whereas if you split it in two, you might want to go for the Pikeman building.
    If that’s your strongest point against splitting War Hall, then I think we definitely should do the split! 😛

    #251787

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    I give that right back, because just because the difference between Archers and Infantry isn’t as big doesn’t mean making Inf build a necessity for Archer isn’t justified, because your points apply to that as well. For example – the Halflings we mentioned. The adventurer is cool enough. Bossting them with the odd Nightwatch is enough, even without a costly Jester.

    Also, there is no need to separate in those towns where you’d actually WANT to build the Pikes (and not the Cav and the T3), while in the others – why go for Pikes when you don’t want them?

    I’m pretty sure, it’s possible to bring everything in line without this. It works fine for Tigrans, Frostlings, Dracs and Goblins, and Dwarves, Elves, Humans, Halflings and Orcs can be brought to line as well. You just need those Pikemen to get to do a little more than just stand up against Cav.

    #251789

    Zaskow
    Member

    We could maybe change costs to:
    100 gold – T1 building – same as Barracks
    150 gold (unchanged) – T2 building – 25 lower than War Hall
    250 gold – T3 building (and replace some gold by mana?) – 50 gold lower and 100 mana lower than the T3 racial building
    And then make it possible to build the Nymphs and Unicorns’ buildings if you have the T1 building, and reduce their cost to maybe 100 each.
    Then we would keep the defense building in a separate building chain.

    I like this change. Let’s do it.

    #251791

    Zaskow
    Member

    About archon dwelling…
    Archon dwelling suffers from its evilness, unit prices and lack of regen, only necro has something useful to negate this problem. Normal living player won’t develop it, imao.
    While evil alignment of dwelling is good for game background, it causes serious problems for players (except evils), in short, if you’re neutral or good your archons units will suffer from low morale and dwelling would be unhappy always. Fixes for this problem could be deleting Dedicated to evil from archons, but I don’t like this idea myself. Second fix could be setting morale of all archons on neutral always (don’t know yet if it’s moddable).
    Unit/building prices – situation here for archons is pretty sad. Archon T1s are a bit stronger than racial analogs, but to the time you get archon dwelling racial t1s are mostly obsolete.
    I have 2 variant of suggestions to address this: make all archon T1 infantry into T2 with buffing accordingly and adding some new fancy abilities OR decrease price of starting production buildings (graveyard, charnel house) from 100 to 50 gold each (in sum they will cost as 1 barracks) and buff a little units. I think buffing of units are necessary, because if you have a dwelling, which you get not easily, you could expect some nice prizes.
    Sigil of awakening is analog of racial shrine. It can’t cost 100 production, it must cost 75 (50 gold + 25 mana or 75 gold whatever).
    Obelisk of Undeath – difficult to say, but I would not build this building for such price it’s better to invest in unit production buildings.
    Barrow – analog of racial Temple, but normal Temple has very nice +10 mana and +100 mana cap bonuses. What if we add something similar, maybe not exactly these, but close? Archon caster is okish unit maybe, but I’d add some flavour – add undying on medal or similar necro abilities. Also its price is a bit high, caster isn’t stronger for +20 gold comparing to racial support.
    Haunted vault placed in T3 buildings, but produces T2 unit. It should be moved to T2 buildings (look at this scheme – http://i.imgur.com/qdArrayu9ui.jpg). Building is overpriced, i think it could cost similar to War Hall (175 production in sum).
    Wraith is strange unit. Its closest analog is phantasm warrior, which is much better and has nice self-buffing ability (shocking), can regenerate, has uncommon type of damage, bigger HP and cost less (100 in gold). Wraith has wrong unit type (support), it’s closer to infantry or monster type. Brain Rot is piece of crap (ability needs to be fully redo). Recommendations: decrease a price, delete/redone brain rot, add some nice abilities – undying, inflict curse, fear (this is ghost!) whatever…
    Chamber of the Rite – probably good, but I never build Hospital (racial analog), so I will never build this too. Maybe we should make this building to heal all undead in domain, not in garrison only?
    Throne of Bone – should be moved to T3 buildings.
    Wraith King – overpriced. Its closest analog is Shadow Stalker and Stalker is much, much better. Decreasing a price would be nice, I think.
    Mausoleum/Titan – okish.

    to be continued…

    #251793

    NINJEW
    Member

    If you want to address this then you will have to “reshape” the Elves, because with the Elves you have a clear preference not only in Longbowman vs Swordman and Pikeman vs Unicorn Rider

    funny enough elves are one of the few times when i actually do consider building t1 infantry. their strong longbows need something to hide behind, and elf swordsmen are both cheap and are on par with axemen defensive stat-wise (i believe they have equal defense and like 3 less hp) so pumping out a couple early on i tend to think is a good idea

    personally i’d say that maybe the best option is just buffing all the warhall units to t2 level

    #251807

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    It probably depends on your starting forces whether you build a few or not. But be that as it may, that’s not contradicting the point: you’ll build Longbowman (or their Class variant) over the whole game, and you’ll also build Unicorn Riders, because they are fast and can take out towns. If that’s boring, you can always slip in a Storm Sister. You won’t do that with Inf and Pikes.
    The thing is that you’d do that even without and before Racial Governance, so I don’t really see any point in Elven RG. I mean, you can boost them in even more ways.

    Buffing all the Pikes to T2 wouldn’t really gain that much (imo), because Cav has the speed. You need to still find something for the Pikes. Butcher has Life Drain (keeps himself alive). Frostling has Pledge which basically is a damage reducer that you can slap on. Naga Guardian has Regrowth. So if you make Elfen Pike a T2 for, say, 90 Gold, you make the unit more durable, but not more of an option to build because it takes as long as Unicorn Rider, is slower, works only against Cav and doesn’t take towns. (However, an assortment of cheap T1 Pikes will be a tough nut to crack for Unicorn Riders).

    ———————————————————————————–

    Current state of things for me is this (active in a beta mod): (Tigran/Frostling: no change)

    Dracs: Charger loses RG Regrowth and gains Guard Breaker; Raptor gains Projectile Resistance and Devastating Charge on RG3 (in addition to existing RG3).

    Goblins: Marauder gains +4 speed for +5 Gold cost; Untouchable loses Projectile Resistance on RG1 while Marauder gains Projectile Resistance and +1 Physical Strength. (Speed 5 battlefield Marauders are pretty scary, actually :))

    Halflings: WIP, update following

    ———————————————————————————–

    Lastly a comment on Archon dwelling: For me, this is actually the simplest dwelling (and how to deal with it):
    a) You have at least one Necro hero (no matter your class); great, because now you can have nice little playthings for your hero (and you don’t even have to go for Casters first, but can hire T1s).
    b) You don’t. Die, scum, aka. Plunder.

    I’m totally happy with that (I mean, with the fact that without a Necro hero the thing isn’t really playable; due to undead being so different I think that makes sense, and it’s not that difficult to hire a Necro either, if you really want to).

    #251811

    NINJEW
    Member

    ut be that as it may, that’s not contradicting the point: you’ll build Longbowman (or their Class variant) over the whole game

    to be honest actually no. only exception i can think of is AD hunters. i tend to find that even long bows drop off in effectiveness pretty quickly, once you’re slamming T3s together you’ve come to a point where even the best of the T1s is still just a T1. every time i’ve tried running a longbow centric build it’s failed pretty bad (like 50% of the time shadow stalkers or machines are the reason though), i’m pretty sure my goblin engineer gimmick build has seen more success. i’d say “i build a few of these when i want to buff my early army up some” is pretty much the ideal use case for t1 infantry

    Buffing all the Pikes to T2 wouldn’t really gain that much (imo), because Cav has the speed. You need to still find something for the Pikes. Butcher has Life Drain (keeps himself alive). Frostling has Pledge which basically is a damage reducer that you can slap on. Naga Guardian has Regrowth. So if you make Elfen Pike a T2 for, say, 90 Gold, you make the unit more durable, but not more of an option to build because it takes as long as Unicorn Rider, is slower, works only against Cav and doesn’t take towns. (However, an assortment of cheap T1 Pikes will be a tough nut to crack for Unicorn Riders).

    all the pikes do have stuff like that already though? elfen pikes have dual channel damage, chargers have lesser flying and charge, human pikes have overwhelm (essentially putting them into a pike-killer role. as an added bonus they completely wreck knights for cost, and compete with human swordsmen for design space), halfling pikes have throw chicken, tigran pikes have guard breaker, orc pikes have warcry, the only ones that don’t have anything are dwarf pikes (so i guess they could be given defensive strike?).

    generally i tend to view good pikes as a kind of infantry++. they fill more or less the same role in a field battle (beefy frontliners), but with a more defensive focus. theoretically infantry counter them, but who ever fields infantry anyway? the only time it’s a realistic problem is if you’re fighting a warlord (berserkers are really cheap and also pretty decent!) otherwise i guess the next most common use case is dreadnought firstborn? maybe someone bought some orc shocktroopers from an inn? in t2 focused games, butchers are really nasty to go up against (stacking shadowborn spec and necro life steal is a really, really nasty combo!), and their gimmick is “dies less in melee combat.”

    Dracs: Charger loses RG Regrowth and gains Guard Breaker;

    guard breaker? on a t1 flying unit? hahaha holy shit dude

    #251813

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    Dracs: Charger loses RG Regrowth and gains Guard Breaker;

    guard breaker? on a t1 flying unit? hahaha holy shit dude

    Not bad, right? 🙂 Well, Regrowth ain’t too bad either, though, and as “Chargers” they guys are still as vulnerable. Shooters are pretty devastating against them – no Shield, no Projectile Resistance. The thing with Chargers is that they CAN be a cavalry, albeit a very squishy one, but they are still SLOW folks on the map.
    The trouble is, the way things are the Crusher loses out completely, because WC isn’t that great compared with flying over the wall, and with both Crusher AND Charger gaining Regrowth, well.
    We’ll see, how this works out. In all seriousness, I think that Guard Breaker is a good way to make some T1 Pikes something (more) special, because it can be a battle changer. And if you can give a T1 Inf “Defensive Strike” (which is basically the opposite of Guard Breaker), well. 🙂 Keep in mind, you need the frigging War Hall for them to build.

    #251815

    NINJEW
    Member

    regrowth is ok on chargers because chargers have 46hp (and therefore regain only 9 hp per turn). it’s useful, but doesn’t really let them hit “above their weight class.” they’re still easily focused down, or slaughtered in a couple of hits from a high tier unit. even if you don’t kill one right away it’s not THAT big a deal, because they likely won’t regain enough hp to bring them out of oneshot territory next turn. it’s really more of a “can’t chip them out” advantage, or forcing your opponent to commit 2 units to killing a unit that could otherwise be easily taken care of by 1.

    guard breaker, on the other hand, is an extremely powerful ability that is useful against units of any powerlevel, regardless of any powerlevel discrepancy (unlike, say, defensive strike). you are proposing putting it on an extremely cheap unit, that unlike the tigran sun guard is also highly mobile (sure, sun guard have one extra movement, but they can’t, say, fly behind a unit and break its guard so all their buddies can smash them from the front. sun guards require either taking up valuable melee-space, or getting into a good position ahead of time). charge letting you maximize the value of getting just one hit in is really the icing on the cake on that one. i’d take a full stack of chargers around with me every rogue game, no matter what class i’m playing as, no matter what stage of the game it’s in, because they’d always be extremely valuable as one-off throwaway “i sacrifice my charger to cast Obliterate Guard on your manticore”s

    imagine if wisps had a guaranteed stun, is what i’m saying.

    what if, instead, chargers were given devastating charge with RG?

    #251816

    NINJEW
    Member

    let me put it this way: if it makes your unit stronger (defensive strike, life steal, regrowth, warcray, overwhelm), that’s OK on a t1 unit. good, but the unit probably still gets made obsolete as the game progresses. if it makes an enemy unit weaker, that’s Really Good on a cheap, expendable, spammable t1 unit, and will always be useful, against any enemy it can effect.

    i seem to recall many arguments over guard breaker being broken on sun guard. it’s arguably balanced there by the tigran lack of sustain and requiring the sun guard, the only tigran unit with any survivability at all, to open itself up to counterattack (making that lack of sustain all the more important!). and, still, sunguard are certainly the most useful of the t1 pikes. this isn’t an ability that can be thrown around willy nilly!

    #251817

    NINJEW
    Member

    see also: endless rage over ice scrapers (and there it’s a percentage chance! guard breaker is guaranteed!)

    #251818

    Just remembered, the Empire Building Mod kind fixes this, by adding one evolve/evolved version of one t1 of each racial class. Orcs, Dwarfs, Human get the evolve on the T1 Infantry. Elfs, Goblins, Tigran, Draconian, Halfling get evolve on the T1 Archer. Frostling gets on the T1 irregular. The unit can both evolve or can be build at an alternative Warhall (that you have to choose to build instead of the traditional Warhall for that city). And to be honest I found that solution pretty good for this. Whenever I play with this mod I find myself using a LOT of the evolved options, they add a lot of diversity and also is fun to try to keep your units alive to evolve then with ALL races.

    Just as a example, of a game, I was playing as dreadnought Dwarf, and I used a lot of the Dwarf Axeman evolved (I think it is called Dwarf Axemaster) version in that game, because they just provide a cheap cover for machines, replacing golems or firstborns in a way, but more defensive.

    I don’t know if it is the rout you guys want to go, but I thought at least to mention so you can check it out.

    Also, in this alternative Warhall you can build another t2 (new) option, like the Dwarfs get a Dwarf Axethrower that is a short ranged Archer. All races get something as well.

    #251822

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    @ Ninjew
    Devastating Charge is a good idea.
    What I was thinking about from the gitgo – but was too lazy to mod – is making the Charger Guard Breaker a Once-per-battle ability like War Cry.
    I may actually do it, because it’s already pretty clear that I will give Impaler that kind of Guard Breaker.

    You also can make it INFLICT Guardbreak (like Inflict Stun).

    Evolve is nice, but too much evolve is not to my liking.

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