Proposal: Arcane Arts Specialization

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Home Forums Age of Wonders 3 Discussions Proposal: Arcane Arts Specialization

This topic contains 20 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  ExNihil 6 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #213722

    ExNihil
    Member

    Hi Guys,

    I want to hear your thoughts on an idea I want to propose: An arcane art specialization that is composed of two categories of skills – Artificier skills and Alchemist skills – that are spread in the two spheres of adept and matestery. Alternatively it could be two stand-alone specializations – Artificer specialization and Alchemist Specialization, but because these two are connected I decided to propose a single specialization with an adept and mastery spheres rather than two seperate ones. This also allows for high tier skills/spells that are impossible with an adept level specialization alone.

    The basic idea is a specialization in the auxiliary arts of arcane knowledge, which focus on the transformation and transubstantiation of materials, the creation and use of magical artifacts and devices, and the harvest of magic substances from creatures and resources structures.

    Here are some ideas for techs, I’d love to read more suggestions:

    Tier I – 80 RP – Scrying: A strategic map spell, costing 30CP and using a crystal ball, the caster reveals a 5×5 segment of the strategic map, and makes all non-invisible units in that portion of the map visible for the duration of the turn. This spell will *not* allow for the casting of other strategic spells – for instance on a city that is revealed with the spell, bcs for that a proper channel for the caster is necessary in the vicinity of the city (i.e. a controlled unit).

    Tier I – 100 RP – Quicksilver Armor: Combat Spell, costing 20 CP. Target friendly unit becomes semi-fluid for 3 rounds, receiving +40 physical resistance but deals -3 physical damage on melee attacks.

    Tier II – 120 RP – Resource Gathering: Passive empire upgrade. Monster, Magical Origin, Dragon and Undead units killed in battle generate 2 RP, 2 Gold and 2 mana for each tier of the unit killed.

    Tier II – 200 RP – Transmute: Strategic Spell, converting mana to gold or gold to mana at 50% efficiency. The amount that is possible to convert is x3 the total CP of the leader. For every Heart Structure in the domain of the leader this modifier is increased by + 0.5. Thus a leader with 100CP and two heart structures can convert a total of 400 mana/gold into 200 mana/gold.

    Tier III – 300 RP – Troll Blood: Combat Spell costing 20CP, target friendly (living) unit receives greater regrowth for the duration of the battle but incurs a -20% fire resistance malus.

    Tier III – 350 RP – Grenadier Training: Pass. empire unit upgrade. Infantry and Irregular units receive the “Throw Prismatic Grenade” ability, dealing an AoE damage of 3 shock, 3 fire, 3 frost damage, and 3 blight damage in a x3 hex radius.

    Tier III – 350 RP – Vorpal Weapons: Strategic spell, costing 80CP. The spell is casted on a friendly unit or stack of units on the strategic map, giving the unit(s) the vorpal weaponry ability for 4 strategic turns. Units with Vorpal Weaponry deal +2 shock and +2 fire dmg.

    Tier IV – 400 RP – Spirit Totem: Combat Spell, costing 50CP. The caster summons forth a spirit totem that is generated from the soil of the battleground itself, placing it within 3 hexes of a unit under his control until the end of combat or until the totem is destroyed. The totem is a structure like unit that is unable to walk or defend and has 100HP, 11def and 15res + 40 elemental resistances (perhaps with weakness to spirit damage), but is susceptible to demolisher as well as the Summon Slayer trait. The totem gives all (living?) friendly units +200 morale, +2 resistance and +20% elemental resistances (all except spirit), and deals 2 points of damage in all elemental channels to enemy units that come within 4 hexes of it per combat round.

    Tier IV – 450 RP – Arcane Support: Support Units receive Cure Disease and heal/repair other units in a stack for a total of 12 hp per strategic turn (except undead units but inclduing machines.)

    Tier V – 600 RP – Meistery: pass. empire upgrade All Resource Structures generate +2 points of the opposing element (e.g. Gold Mines give +2 mana and mana nodes +2 gold per turn); the resource bonuses of Haste Berries, Melons of Plenty, Clove Fields and Flowers of Solace are increased by +50% (before other increases, thus not effecting the halfling bonus of cloverfields), and the effects of hospitals are doubled.

    Tier V – 800 RP – Grand Artificer: pass. empire upgrade. reduces the price of forging magical items by 20% and granting +2 points for item forging.

    Tier V – 800 RP – Simulacrum: Combat Spell, costing 30CP. The caster attacks a target enemy unit using the equivalent of a Voodoo doll. The unit checks against 12 spirit or comes under the control of the attacker for 3 combat turns, if the attack fails the target unit suffers -300 morale and loses 12MP for the next round of combat. Cannot be casted on machine units, but works against undead.

    Tier VI – 1400 RP – Philosopher’s Forge: Units produced in cities with an arcane items forge receive +2def and lesser regrowth, machine units receive the “Magical Construct” label which allows them to regenerate normally.

    These are just a few ideas, so pls feel free to add some others.

    #213760

    Dagoth Ur
    Member

    Some nice ideas, both the Alchemist and Artificer are things that are better introduced as a spec than as a class in my opinion. What would the spec be called?

    I think some things are more Shaman / Witch Doctor-like than Artificer / Alchemist though, like the Spirit Totem, but I really like the idea of being able to summon a structure that buffs your units in battle though.

    Suggestions for passives:
    Adept: all heroes under your command receive the ‘mystery potion’ ability, which gives a random buff to a unit.
    Master: all item forges can make items with 6 slots, using the 6th slot makes the item cost 20% more (<=> Grand Artificer?).

    #213761

    ExNihil
    Member

    Yea the idea is for a specialization with adept/mastery spheres rather than a class – such a class will be a bit too difficult to balance around I think with the existing classes.

    I think some things are more Shaman / Witch Doctor-like than Artificer / Alchemist though, like the Spirit Totem, but I really like the idea of being able to summon a structure that buffs your units in battle though.

    Well, I like to think of it in a bit wider context – building all sorts of magical constructs and stuff, not necessarily in the strict western-fantasy style but more like a combination of these.

    Adept: all heroes under your command receive the ‘mystery potion’ ability, which gives a random buff to a unit.

    Mysterious :). I like it although one needs to think of the effects.

    Master: all item forges can make items with 6 slots, using the 6th slot makes the item cost 20% more (<=> Grand Artificer?).

    Well thats basically the idea of Grand Artificier but here turned into a mastery perk that is not researched. I guess this can work just as well :). The idea though is to have 7 slots, to be able to create truly mythical items – so one could do 20% increase for 6th slot and another 20% increase for the 7th slot, so mythical items really cost a shitload of resources/time to create.

    #213790

    Ravenholme
    Member

    I like the ideas (I tend to when the Artificier/Alchemist idea gets floated every now and then by various people) but some of them feel a little two powerful for a specialisation. The big culprits in my eyes are Grenadier Training – Its a huge buff to the affected units with no downsides, and gives them access to a diversity of damage channels which would basically remove strategy in race/class choice, and Troll’s Blood – Though this is balanced by some fire weakness, I think that is fairly weak in the face of the huge bonus of Regrowth.

    Also, in keeping with specialisation buffs to existing units, it should really be a spell that you cast on a city that affects the units produced from that city.

    #213791

    Xaneorath
    Member

    Actualy when I read this, it more sounded like a new class, than a specialisation to me. I was like “Oh, right, Alchemist, now that would be a fitting class, which is still missing for a fantasy setting”, but then I realized something: How the scholarly/student theme is already built into the Sorcerer class and the magical construct theme is part of the dreadnought class. So it would be hard to seperate such a class from those two other classes.
    So, back to your idea about it being a specialization.

    scrying
    Could be hard to implement with the casting restriction.
    Maybe it would be better, if it would only show terrain with fog of war. So it will lose efficiency later on, but still is strong enough early (when you check for your opponent/cities/pickups), or if you experience trouble scouting.

    Transmute
    shouldnt it be 400 to 240 in your example?

    Trollblood
    If the enemy doesn’t use fire damage at all, it would be a very strong buff with no disadvantage at all. I guess it might work though, since the majority of races have a way to deal fire damage. Then Id make it -40% though, like the “real” trolls ingame. Also normal regrowth might be more than enough for such a spell.

    Grenadier Training
    Seems too strong for me. Perhaps it would be ok, if it’s a spell like the analogue equipment spell of dreadnoughts.
    Giving a large bunch of melee units the ability to be usable as semi-ranged unit, sounds like it would make the specialization a must-have at some point, and more than slightly unbalanced. Also I think global “all units of type xyz”-buffs are something better suited in basic classes than in specializations.

    Vorpal Weapons
    Having a globaly temporary cast buff for units would at least be something new. And with 80cp its unlikely to be cast on all 3 stacks of an advance army too early. Im fine with that one.

    Spirit Totem
    I agree that it doesnt fit the theme, and more sounds like druids/shamans. Make it an “field twiddle” or something abstract to prevent that.

    Simulacrum
    Sounds ok, if dispellable with break control.

    To all the other proposals I don’t have anything in particular to say. Generaly those are nice ideas you got there!

    The Mystery potion of Dagoth Ur rather sounds like something wild magic would have though. How about a potion that changes its effect depending on your “highest variable ressource”? Holy Protection if you got more gold, Cold Protection if you got more mana and some physical protection if you got most current cp. With gold > mana > cp in case of ties.

    .. Ill stay back with gamedesign ideas now though, since I do not like to spread those around too much, if Im not creating something myself. :p

    #213846

    ExNihil
    Member

    Good input, thanks! So I’ll post here an amended version of the techs (can edit the OP, but then the discussion would look weird – changes are marked in Bold):

    Tier I – 80 RP – Scrying: A strategic map spell, costing 30CP and using a crystal ball, the caster reveals a 5×5 segment of the strategic map, and makes all non-invisible units in that portion of the map visible for the duration of the turn. This spell will *not* allow for the casting of other strategic spells – for instance on a city that is revealed with the spell, bcs for that a proper channel for the caster is necessary in the vicinity of the city (i.e. a controlled unit). Addendum: Possible to limit this spell so it will show the map with fog of war, I don’t particularly like this option as I think it could be interesting to have a scrying mechanic in latter stages of the game, with invisibility and concealment receiving a bigger role (that is, they don’t show up in scrying). Thus a player feeling he might be under imminent attack will use all of his CP to search for his opponent(s) – revealing a largish chunk of the map every turn, for a single turn. If there is a need its possible to balance invisibility/concealment with scrying so these don’t give too much of an advantage in comparison to stacks that don’t have them by making invisible/concealed units invisible to scrying as long as they don’t move, thus making these visible once they do.

    Tier I – 100 RP – Quicksilver Armor: Combat Spell, costing 20 CP. Target friendly unit becomes semi-fluid for 3 rounds, receiving +40 physical resistance but deals -3 physical damage on melee attacks.

    Tier II – 120 RP – Resource Gathering: Passive empire upgrade. Monster, Magical Origin, Dragon and Undead units killed in battle generate 2 RP, 2 Gold and 2 mana for each tier of the unit killed.

    Tier II – 200 RP – Transmute: Strategic Spell, converting mana to gold or gold to mana at 50% efficiency. The amount that is possible to convert is x3 the total CP of the leader. For every Heart Structure in the domain of the leader this modifier is increased by + 0.5. Thus a leader with 100CP and two heart structures can convert a total of 400 mana/gold into 200 mana/gold.

    Tier III – 300 RP – Troll Blood: Combat Spell costing 20CP, target friendly (living) unit receives regrowth for the duration of the battle but incurs a -40% fire resistance malus. Addendum: I sort of like the idea of alchemical effects having side-effects, so its possible to slightly balance this by giving the unit a 1-2 strategic turns malus to regen speed, say 50% penalty.

    Tier III – 350 RP – Grenadier Training: Pass. empire unit upgrade. Infantry and Irregular units receive the “Throw Prismatic Grenade” ability, dealing an AoE damage of 3 shock, 3 fire, 3 frost damage, and 3 blight damage in a x3 hex radius.

    Tier III – 350 RP – Vorpal Weapons: Strategic spell, costing 80CP. The spell is casted on a friendly unit or stack of units on the strategic map, giving the unit(s) the vorpal weaponry ability for 4 strategic turns. Units with Vorpal Weaponry deal +2 shock and +2 fire dmg. Addendum: If it is determined that there is a need to balance this out, it can be done by making this spell appear as a dispellable battlefield enchantment at the beginning of combat, thus giving the opponent a chance of dispelling this effect (unlike mark of the heretic but like one of the racial defense structures’ effects.)

    Mastery Sphere Ability (starts out researched once the mastery specialization is unlocked) – Grand Artificer: the price of forging magical items is reduced by 20% and unlocks the creation of mythical magical items by granting +2 points for item forging.

    Tier IV – 450 RP – Arcane Support: Support Units receive Cure Disease and heal/repair other units in a stack for a total of 12 hp per strategic turn (except undead units but inclduing machines.)

    Tier IV – 400 RP – Runic Sentinel: Combat Spell, costing 50CP. The caster binds elemental energies that are materialized in a runic construct, placing it within 3 hexes of a unit under his control until the end of combat or until the sentinel is destroyed. The sentinel is a structure like unit that is unable to walk or defend itself (it is not under the players control and cannot do any controlled action) with 100HP, 11def and 15rs and 40% elemental resistances (perhaps with weakness to spirit damage), but is susceptible to demolisher as well as the Summon Slayer trait. The sentinel gives all friendly units +200 morale, +2 resistance and +20% elemental resistances (all except spirit), and deals 2 points of damage in all elemental channels to enemy units that come within 4 hexes of it per combat round.

    Tier IV – 500 RP – Meistery: pass. empire upgrade All Resource Structures generate +2 points of the opposing element (e.g. Gold Mines give +2 mana and mana nodes +2 gold per turn); the resource bonuses of Haste Berries, Melons of Plenty, Clove Fields and Flowers of Solace are increased by +50% (before other increases, thus not effecting the halfling bonus of cloverfields), and the effects of hospitals are doubled.

    Tier V – 750 RP – Simulacrum: Combat Spell, costing 30CP. The caster attacks a target enemy unit using the equivalent of a Voodoo doll. The unit checks against 12 spirit or comes under the control of the attacker for 3 combat turns, if the attack fails the target unit suffers -300 morale and loses 12MP for the next round of combat. Cannot be casted on machine units, but works against undead.

    Tier VI – 1400 RP – Philosopher’s Forge: Living/Ghoul units produced in cities with an arcane items forge receive the “Rune Skin” label, granting them +1def, +2res and lesser regrowth, machine units receive the “Magical Construct” label which allows them to regenerate normally.

    #213924

    Xaneorath
    Member

    About the Vorpal blades change:

    From a programmers point of view, I’d guess that this would be troublesome as well, since I believe the field effects to be either triggered by “location of battle” or added during the battle. Of course one could make a “at beginn of battle check all units, if ability xyz is there, if it is, create a field spell”, but that would create additional runtime in every case (reduced if it is checked first, if a player actualy has the specialization.. but its still an additional check), just for 1 single spell.
    I prefered the initial version, where the effect was added to units like similar effects of shrines (for example arctic walking). A way to balance it could be to make it “for the next battle”.. BUT I think that would actualy be even stronger.

    #213942

    zealot83
    Member

    You might be able to do the totem like the spell jammer that might be another consideration?

    #213983

    Shaithias
    Member

    I feel that there should be use items that can destroy themselves, and that this specialization can be used to really give those items a go. For example, a potion that gives the user lesser regrowth: fantastic.

    Actually crafting a crystal ball that allows scrying, and treating scrying as a strategic ability like last rite of winter: omg.

    Arcane support should not give in combat bonuses, but it should be given to irregulars instead of support units.

    I think a lot of these things should cost money as well as mana to create these next level spells.

    #214081

    ExNihil
    Member

    You might be able to do the totem like the spell jammer that might be another consideration?

    Interesting idea! I don’t think this will work with the Totem-turned-Runic Sentinel, but it could definitely be the center of another kind of tech. Maybe you have a suggestion?

    I feel that there should be use items that can destroy themselves, and that this specialization can be used to really give those items a go. For example, a potion that gives the user lesser regrowth: fantastic.

    Actually crafting a crystal ball that allows scrying, and treating scrying as a strategic ability like last rite of winter: omg.

    Arcane support should not give in combat bonuses, but it should be given to irregulars instead of support units.

    I think a lot of these things should cost money as well as mana to create these next level spells.

    This is a very cool idea! Yet, I dunno whats the chance it will be implemented considering existing game mechanics. But the idea of one-time use potion making and other kinds of magical items is very intriguing- it potentially allows you to prepare for a battle before hand, compensating for CP using resources to get magical effects in battle. I think this can be a gr8 new mechanic.

    @all

    Well, I’m also interested in new tech ideas, anyone wants to contribute some?

    #214375

    Xaneorath
    Member

    Alright, let me add a detailed version of the idea I was able to get, based on Dagoth’s potion remark.

    Tier II – 200 RP – Battle Potions:
    Battlefield spell, 10CP.
    One of the casters units quaffs the latest alchemical booster for a long term effect.
    Each turn this unit will gain a permanent increase, which lingers for the remainder of the battle, and is based on the casters highest expendable ressource. It gets +10% spirit resistance if gold is highest, +10% cold resistance for mana and +10% physical resistance if the casters current cp during that turn are the highest ressource.

    [Individual spell dispellable with banish or cure disease. Already applied bonuses however stay for the remainder of the battle. In case of tie ALL boosts will aply that turn.]

    #214401

    ExNihil
    Member

    Interesting, thanks for the proposal! First off I think +10% won’t be implemented – the mechanics favour +-20% increments, so this is the baseline. Second, I think the randomness is a bit too much here – why tie it to resources? Also, the buff is a bit too small for 10CP, If we are talking about a potion that does weird alchemical things I think it should have some weird alchemical effects. For instance, 20% to give the unit a breath attack, 20% to give it physical resistance, 20% to make it floating and so forth.

    #214407

    Xaneorath
    Member

    First off I think +10% won’t be implemented – the mechanics favour +-20% increments, so this is the baseline.

    Oh, whoops. You might be right there. And with +20% increases, it might potentialy be too strong, since a +100% can be achieved in 5 turns (considering there isn’t protection to begin with). Hmm.

    Also, the buff is a bit too small for 10CP, If we are talking about a potion that does weird alchemical things I think it should have some weird alchemical effects.

    I think you missed out on the important part of the increase being applied each turn, as long as the trigger buff is still on the unit. And after that, the applied increases are permanent for the battle, much like the sadism-increases are.
    So you would want to banish it fast or kill the unit fast enough, before the effect peaks to ridiculously high protection.

    Second, I think the randomness is a bit too much here – why tie it to resources?

    Because of the theme you proposed. ^^ I thought it fitting for a specialization that deals with ressource manipulation to have a spell that is a direct result of that.
    That example with the random effect still sounds more like Wild Magic to me, than anything else.

    Still I got a slight chaotic effect, considering the cp can change in a battle. But its controlled chaos!
    Lets asume you got 65 gold, 100 mana left and 80 cp, you could cast it on a unit, creating the +ice protection effect to begin with. Then you spam some mana with your heroes, until your mana actualy is lower than 70 (your own current cp), resulting in the effect switching to provide a physical bonus each turn. BUT you wouldnt want to cast yourself, since you dont want your cp to be reduced below 65 too fast. When you do, you will change the effect once again, because now gold is your highest ressource in turns.. resulting in the + spirit protection effect.

    #214605

    ExNihil
    Member

    How about a tech that gives bonuses to the use of magical items? It could be a mid-high level tech, say tier IV. This could work in one of several ways:

    1. A simple power buff, thus it will give extra 50% on the bonus received from magical items. If the item gives +2 vision range and +1 resistance you will receive +1 and +1 on this item. Ofc this works only for numerical bonuses, so for traits it will be one level up if that exists, and if it doesn’t it will have no effect. Example: if an item gives you lesser life drain, you will receive life drain from it. But if it gives you water concealment you will receive nothing else.

    2. Adding random or semi-random effects to existing items based on their type. If you got a sword that deals fire damage and gives you armor piercing, you will get one extra trait on it (only when equipped by your heroes/leader) that fits this item.

    3. Adding secondary effects based on existing ones – basically as above but less random.

    I’m sure there are other possibilities, so pls fire away 🙂

    #214656

    quo
    Member

    How about this for passive abilities:

    Arcane History (Free with Adapt) The location of all Lost Libraries, Scrolls, and Mana Vaults is known to you from Turn 1.

    Arcane Terramancy (Free with Mastery) The location of all Heart structures is known to you from Turn 1.

    You could then use your other scrying powers to scope out what’s nearby instead of shooting in the dark.

    #214659

    quo
    Member

    Tier II – 200 RP – Transmute: Strategic Spell, converting mana to gold or gold to mana at 50% efficiency. The amount that is possible to convert is x3 the total CP of the leader. For every Heart Structure in the domain of the leader this modifier is increased by + 0.5. Thus a leader with 100CP and two heart structures can convert a total of 400 mana/gold into 200 mana/gold.

    BTW I like this but we could make it easier. Transmute–transform a Gold mine to a random Mana node, or vice versa. This would actually be a super strategic option because it would let you create cities that specialize.

    #214664

    ExNihil
    Member

    BTW I like this but we could make it easier. Transmute–transform a Gold mine to a random Mana node, or vice versa. This would actually be a super strategic option because it would let you create cities that specialize.

    This is great but it is very OP and borderline IMBA – I mean it would pretty much become mandatory for longer game as you could get insane income. On the other hand, how about a higher tier spell that you can cast on mana nodes and gold mines that increases the income? Say by +5. The cost will be 1 gold / 1 mana per casting on account of this being a magic that involves both technology and enchantment of some sort.

    #214666

    ExNihil
    Member

    Arcane History (Free with Adapt) The location of all Lost Libraries, Scrolls, and Mana Vaults is known to you from Turn 1.

    Arcane Terramancy (Free with Mastery) The location of all Heart structures is known to you from Turn 1.

    I like the direction of developing the cartographic aspect. For the first you mean this as a baseline tech that you unlock automatically on adept? This might be a bit OP considering the bonuses other specializations give on adept but the concept works for me. If not maybe it could be combined to an expansive tier 2 tech with the other, so you could take this within the first 10 turns of most games without much problem, and if you actually do find scrolls you can get it even faster. Opens a new research strategy :).

    #214672

    quo
    Member

    I like the direction of developing the cartographic aspect. For the first you mean this as a baseline tech that you unlock automatically on adept? This might be a bit OP considering the bonuses other specializations give on adept but the concept works for me. If not maybe it could be combined to an expansive tier 2 tech with the other, so you could take this within the first 10 turns of most games without much problem, and if you actually do find scrolls you can get it even faster. Opens a new research strategy :).

    I don’t think it would be overpowered. Other “free” techs tend to provide actual resources (extra mana, knowledge, population, or casting points). This would only provide some degree of knowledge about the map. You’d still have to make it there and take the resource. It’s just that you would know if any were resources close by, mainly. You wouldn’t retain active view of the location, so you wouldn’t even know if it had already been raided.

    #214691

    ExNihil
    Member

    Ok, lets hope the devs see it that way :). +1

    #214914

    ExNihil
    Member

    You might be able to do the totem like the spell jammer that might be another consideration?

    Thats interesting, although I changed the name to Runic-Sentinel :). Perhaps if it was similar to spell-jammer – costing a certain amount of gold and mana to construct, but with some small CP cost it would work. What do you guys think of the following?

    20CP, 30 Mana / 30 Gold, the caster builds a Runic Sentinel, placing it on a landmass tile of the strategic map. The sentinel costs 3 mana / 3 gold per turn to maintain. It can be razed by enemy units, given that no friendly units are stationed on or adject to it. If a battle is takes place within a 3 hex radius (units do not need to be immediately adjacent to it) the Sentinel will materialize on the battlefield beyond the its owner’s forces (central stack) and act as described in the proposal.

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