Shadow Realm – Brainstorm

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Home Forums Modding and Map Making Shadow Realm – Brainstorm

This topic contains 1,098 replies, has 37 voices, and was last updated by  Refineus 3 years, 3 months ago.

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  • #249146

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Hi there! I plan to write another news on the project and try to get some progress on it.

    So what’s up?
    Gloweye, any progress on the RMG integration?
    vfxrob, it’s great that you managed to finish all the racial units, good job! Sorry for the lack of reaction on my part but your job is key in the project so we cannot thank you enough for it! Maybe we could try to discuss with Charlatan and the devs to see how to solve your issue. Could you please post screenshots of the results?
    Dr_K, any news on the Archon Dwelling?

    I wanted to update the Wiki with the latest discussions but I realize it’s really difficult for me to find the time because I tend to prioritize the balance discussions… Could someone help and do a GoogleDoc with a summary of the discussions? And best, a line-up of the units already discussed?
    We need to get on discussing the class units but probably better to finish the summary first.

    #249149

    Gloweye
    Member

    Not much yet. Really busy here ATM.

    #249175

    Dr_K
    Member

    The dwelling is nearly finished with the exceptions of different models (if we want to differentiate it from the archon revenant dwelling) and the labels/descriptions. If there are any obvious choices for dwelling upgrades or unit descriptions, let me know and I’ll add them in.

    The big issue I have run into is the Living Archon Dwelling no longer can find the strategic map dwelling skin. I thought I rewired everything properly after making a copy of the original, but apparently not. If anyone has any experience with this, are there any obvious gotchas that I might have missed?

    The stats have not changed from the last post, but I have added the Lesser Resurrect to the Saint. Still needs to be tested to make sure it works properly.

    I assume that it would be cleaner to set up the RMG integration in another mod dependent on this one, so it isn’t possible to use the mod standalone and have the RMG work with it. It can be added back in if that is desired.

    #249176

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Great news!

    The dwelling is nearly finished with the exceptions of different models (if we want to differentiate it from the archon revenant dwelling) and the labels/descriptions.

    What do you mean? Did you use the models from Flenom?

    I assume that it would be cleaner to set up the RMG integration in another mod dependent on this one, so it isn’t possible to use the mod standalone and have the RMG work with it. It can be added back in if that is desired.

    Why?

    Ok so could you make a test mod so that we can check if it works and start testing it for balance? 🙂
    And would you have the courage to add a page in the Wiki with it (like Gloweye did for the DE Dwelling)?

    #249185

    Dr_K
    Member

    What do you mean? Did you use the models from Flenom?

    Sorry, that wasn’t very clear. I have Flenoom’s unit models. I don’t have any different models for the strategic or tactical buildings.

    Why?

    If we are planning on having multiple items being integrated into the RMG from different mods, especially with a whole new layer, then putting all of the new RMG entries into one mod that relies on the others would probably reduce duplicate work and cut down on potential issues when combining them.

    Ok so could you make a test mod so that we can check if it works and start testing it for balance?

    Yep. I think it should be relatively simple to get the single dwelling to appear in the RMG, so that you don’t need to create maps.

    And would you have the courage to add a page in the Wiki with it (like Gloweye did for the DE Dwelling)?

    Of course. I probably won’t do it in quite the same way since there is a bit of functionality that broke or was disabled a while ago (probably by wikia/fandom updates).

    #249186

    Gloweye
    Member

    If we are planning on having multiple items being integrated into the RMG from different mods, especially with a whole new layer, then putting all of the new RMG entries into one mod that relies on the others would probably reduce duplicate work and cut down on potential issues when combining them.

    I was working on a way there might be that’ll allow all mods to be dependent on the RMG, or have a patch per mod that works. So you have the RMG that gets the shadow realm in your game, and every mod has a dependency on it, with the RMG just creating the map based on which mods there are.

    Basically, I make dummy lines in the RMG and you flip them to point to your dwelling in your mod.

    Up for debate tho. Might build seperate patches or something, or one combining mod.

    #249200

    Hiliadan
    Member

    I don’t fully understand what you’re discussing but I think in the end, we should have 1 mod compiling everything (we can also have separate mods in addition to that, with all the components). Otherwise, it will really be painful for users and it will not be an expansion but just some nice mods.

    Looking forward to test the Archon Dwelling! My 8 human players test of the DE Dwelling is moving slowly, haven’t found one DE Dwelling yet.

    #249211

    Charlatan
    Member

    Boo.
    Came back today, kind of. So today I made “district” blocks for the Dark Elf Dwelling
    Dark Elf Dwelling NEW

    And also made the Dark Elf Shade Unit. Anti-climatic after the Stormlord, but a half-transparent shadow-stalker isn’t supposed to appear pompous anyway.

    As always, white is teamcolor.

    Dark Elves WIP Image 13
    Dark Elves WIP Image 14
    Dark Elves WIP Image 15
    Dark Elves WIP Image 16

    s’ppose Blade Dancer is next. And some deco/detail for the shade’s robes.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by  Charlatan.
    #249213

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Really like the Shade! 🙂
    The Dwelling is looking nicer and nicer but what do you mean by “district blocks”? You mean you added some housing to improve the lore aspect but it’s not linked to any in game function, right?

    I’m going to draft a news article to update everyone on the project today. 🙂

    #249214

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Proposition of news article:

    A glimpse of the new race in the future Shadow Realm community-made expansion

    Who are the current inhabitants of the Shadow Realm? It is time to discover the Shadow Elves and to get to know (a little) more about the structures in their mysterious and dangerous world. Their distant cousins, the Dark Elves, who stayed in Athla, also reveal themselves a bit more in this article.

    Almost three months have passed again since the last news regarding the Shadow Realm expansion and the team of volunteers working on the project have some nice pictures to share with you to report on the progress of the expansion!

    The previous article stayed silent on the new race that would inhabit the Shadow Realm, it is time to provide a few details!
    The Shadow Elves are Elves who followed Meandor in the Shadow Realm and stayed there. Through contacts with local races and acclimation, they developed their own, very distinct culture.

    Shadow Elf unit by vfxrob, work in progress


    Another Shadow Elf unit by vfxrob, work in progress

    The Shadow Realm will host several exclusive sites to visit, and players should have the opportunity to encounter new creatures in some of them. The previous news article revealed one such structure, the Sword of the Ashen Rose. This time, we display the Ghrauth Flames!


    Example of structures that players will encounter in the Shadow Realm, the Ghrauth Flames, by Charlatan, made as a tribute for Kranfordseveral of the structures that will be included in the Shadow Realm were first made in tribute to players who helped Charlatan in his work, and are now included in the Decodence mod

    The Dark Elf Executionner and Sharpshooter presented in the previous two articles are part of the Dark Elf Dwelling. This Dwelling can only be found in the Underground where Dark Elves have hidden ever since they refused to attend the Mending, and isolated themselves from the rest of the world, led by Hester. Dark Elves worship the Cult of Storms and compensate their low numbers by very powerful combat skills. They live in Dwellings far in the depth of Athla.


    The Dark Elf Dwelling, by Charlatan, work in progress

    Reminder: the team working on the expansion is looking for someone with skills in using the software Maya to weight paint the 3D models. The project would also welcome very warmly any person with other graphical skills (icons, 3D models).

    Future news may provide more information on the gameplay aspects of the new Dwelling, Race and layer.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by  Hiliadan.
    #249221

    Charlatan
    Member

    The Dwelling is looking nicer and nicer but what do you mean by “district blocks”? You mean you added some housing to improve the lore aspect but it’s not linked to any in game function, right?

    Cities and Dwellings both have “districts” in the vanilla game too. The city is only the walled-in middle hex – the 6 hexes surrounding it are the districts, randomly picked each time a city is generated or grows. For the Giant Dwelling, it’s hexagonal blocks. For the Sylvan Refuge, it’s shrubbery/trees. etc.

    You will see exactly what I mean if you place 1 single passable hex in a body of water, then put a town on it. The districts won’t be visible because they can’t be placed on the water. Same goes for mountains.

    #249234

    Hiliadan
    Member

    vfxrob also told me he would probably have some free time in the coming weeks to debug the issues with the Shadow Elves models. So we should get some great progress in the coming weeks! 🙂

    #249490

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Dr_K, I think you created a Wiki page for the Archons?

    vfxrob told me he had the SE’s models under control, looking forward to more news!

    Have nice holidays all (if you’re on holidays)!

    #249503

    Dr_K
    Member

    Dr_K, I think you created a Wiki page for the Archons?

    Yes I did sorry. I forgot to post about that since I was planning on putting up a basic testing version sooner. Archon lineup.

    I finally figured out the missing texture issue. The testing version will be up on Monday since I won’t be able to do it this weekend. It should work with the RMG unless I messed something up since I got it working.

    The names for the structures aren’t set yet (nor have I chosen substitute images) so they are following the Archon Revenant building sequence. Those changes should mostly be simple icon edits and xml changes.

    #249505

    Gloweye
    Member

    1) (reduced magnitude) Healing for the Paladin ? Would be a nice throwback to AoW 1.
    2) Archer got a lot of damage for a T1. Its on par with mounted archers.
    3) Kill the Projectile Resistance on the Titan. Undead version got it cause skeletal.

    Like them like that, tho.

    #249520

    HousePet
    Member

    Why do they like Dense Vegetation?
    Should Archers have Shield?
    If the Avenger is getting 100% blight protection, I think it should only have 40% spirit protection.

    #249540

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Shouldn’t they be found only in the Shadow Realm? And then shouldn’t they have immunity to Shadow Sickness?
    I don’t like the Archons much because they’re too similar to the undead Archons but as my main policy is to use what is already available, we need to include them, but if we could differentiate more (especially in terms of gameplay), that would be great.

    #249567

    Dr_K
    Member

    1) (reduced magnitude) Healing for the Paladin ? Would be a nice throwback to AoW 1.

    I thought about it and thought it might be too much. However, we could remove some of the slayer modifiers or add them to medals instead and then add a lesser healing/iron heart to the unit.

    2) Archer got a lot of damage for a T1. Its on par with mounted archers.

    Should Archers have Shield?

    It’s only one point more than the standard Revenant version, on two damage channels. I wanted to keep the blessed arrows by default to at least differentiate the two a bit, but we could reduce the base physical damage if it’s too much. Also, the DEF/RES should probably be lowered by 1 each as well.

    Shields? Copy and paste error. They don’t have them.

    3) Kill the Projectile Resistance on the Titan. Undead version got it cause skeletal.

    I wondered why most of the Revenants had projectile resistance. Should probably replace it with some other bells and whistles.

    Why do they like Dense Vegetation?

    Well I thought I had written down the older versions of liked terrain, but I think I screwed up what I was reading. Looking back at the manuals again, the archons/highmen were always indifferent to all terrain.

    We could try to set it up so that they dislike blight and like temperate climate and avoid the standard liked terrain/disliked climate formula.

    If the Avenger is getting 100% blight protection, I think it should only have 40% spirit protection.

    In most of the previous iterations the Avenger had both protections, and I figured with the high price tag that two immunities would not be a big issue. I’d rather lower the defense or Blight protection than lower the spirit protection.

    Shouldn’t they be found only in the Shadow Realm? And then shouldn’t they have immunity to Shadow Sickness?

    Currently, they can’t appear in the Shadow Realm since the mod does not depend on the mod with the Shadow Realm. For the same reason, I haven’t added the Shadow Sickness in. I can put a dummy attribute in for it however.

    Gloweye, is there a separate shadow realm mod, or is the whole shadow realm currently built into the decodence mod? And in either case, did you ever get the dummy entries working in the RMG patch? If not, I’ll try to add a patch with the Decodence RMG to get the Archons appearing in the shadow realm.

    I don’t like the Archons much because they’re too similar to the undead Archons but as my main policy is to use what is already available, we need to include them, but if we could differentiate more (especially in terms of gameplay), that would be great.

    In general they are going to be similar since the lineups are very close.

    One idea I had, but thought it might be a little much is a morale (or other stat) boost for the Archer, Footsoldier, and maybe the Saint & Giant for each adjacent friendly archon units (and possibly negative morale for enemy Archon units). This could also be tailored to each one of the units. This would probably be useful if we remove the terrain/climate bonuses and penalties.

    I will have the play test version up later today.
    Link to Download
    Can confirm that RMG works with the mod by itself.

    One thing I do need to fix is the alignment of the Dwelling. Currently, it defaults to Neutral instead of Pure Good.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by  Dr_K.
    #249575

    HousePet
    Member

    Why am I Anonymous???

    #249576

    Hiliadan
    Member

    One idea I had, but thought it might be a little much is a morale (or other stat) boost for the Archer, Footsoldier, and maybe the Saint & Giant for each adjacent friendly archon units

    That would not work well in auto combat and for the AI in general.
    I think Archons are elite units? What about giving them extra upkeep cost but making them stronger? I thought about giving them a free combat ability like War Cry (e.g. to boost morale or boost defence and resistance) but we would have the same issues: AI would not use it well. We could give them some Shadow Realm related abilities to make them play differently, e.g. a Surface and Underground sickness, Shadow Demon Slayer, concealment on certain hexes of the Shadow Realm (e.g. Plains), a short range blast of shadow energy usable only in the Shadow Realm (possible?) once per battle, etc.

    #249578

    lordoflinks
    Member

    I had 3 questions and a suggestion.
    1. Firstly are you going to do anything about the fact that there will be two “Archon Titans”; I was thinking, if it was possible, you could rename the undead Archon Titan to the “Revenant Archon Titan”.
    2. Will the mod included a Wizard King class eventually? I was thinking it could have very few units but could focus on spells.
    3. If it is possible, will the mod add in a new victory condition? I thought a fun one could be to collect all items of an armour set or shards of an incredibly powerful artefact
    My suggestion is that what if you gave the Shadow demons one or two very powerful units they could not train; rather they have to evolve units to them, perhaps all the way from larvae level. This could show while the Shadow Demons do not have the infrastructure to produce their power units anymore they can still evolve into them; plus it makes their dwelling unique.

    #249583

    Hiliadan
    Member

    1/ yes, I guess we’ll need to rename the first
    2/ that’s not planned and I’m rather against adding a new class or spec because none is ready or convincing enough and it’s already a lot of work to finish the rest
    3/ I would really love to add a new victory condition because for me an expansion needs to bring new gameplay options, but I don’t think it’s moddable unfortunately

    Good ideas for the Shadow Demons but actually I don’t think we’ll have the resources to make them a Dwelling. I only hope to add a few units as independent and roaming units.

    #249584

    Gloweye
    Member

    @ map making:

    Im hoping I can get the RMG to overwrite any changes in your mod without a patch, and spawn your dwelling in the SR without dependency. Not tested anything like that tho.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 11 months ago by  Gloweye.
    #249600

    HousePet
    Member

    I have been putting in some work into Spec design. And it appears they are pretty easy to make. (Except the icons, where I fail miserably.)

    Current design is for a Soul and Void element pair to give Shadow Native race leaders some extra flavour and a Shadow Dweller single spec for non Shadow Native leaders to not be crippled in the Shadow Realm.

    Shadow Dweller:
    Inherent: Leader and Heroes get Shadow Walker.
    Shadow Domain: City Enchantment. Target city loses Shadow terrain penalty.
    Materialise: Battlefield Enchantment. Incorporeal creatures become vulnerable to physical damage.
    Shadow Walk: Strategic. Target party gets Shadow Walker for a few turns.
    Shadow Hunters: Empire Upgrade. Grants Disrupt Shadows to your Irregular (and Support?) units.

    Soul Adept:
    Inherent: +5 mana from Soul nodes. Heroes get Shadow Walker.
    Lifebind: Tactical. When target friendly unit dies, nearby friendly units are healed.
    Radiant Light: Tactical. Radius 1 spirit damage burst and blinding.
    Recovery: Strategic. Target party heals faster for a few turns.
    Something else.

    Soul Master:
    Inherent: +5 knowledge from Soul nodes. -5 mana from Void nodes. Can convert Shadow nodes to Soul nodes.
    Phase Blades: Battlefield Enchantment. All friendly units get -2 phys/+4 shock damage and armour piercing.
    Soul Flare: Tactical. Target creature gets buffs based on its category and increased resistance.
    New Dawn: Strategic. Regenerates Shadow terrain.
    Shadow Slayers: Empire Upgrade. Grants Shadow Slayer to your Infantry/Pikeman/Cavalry units.

    Void Adept:
    Inherent: +5 mana from Void nodes. Heroes get Shadow Walker.
    Shadow Bolt: Tactical. Shock/Blight damage to a single target. Inflicts Shadow Sickness. Shadow Walkers resist.
    Antigravity: Battlefield Enchantment. All units on the battlefield gain flying.
    Time Warp: Tactical. Ages everything on the battlefield, dispelling all effects and inflicting blight damage and reduced damage.
    Vanish: Strategic. Target party is invisible for a few turns.

    Void Master:
    Inherent: +5 knowledge from Void nodes. -5 mana from Soul nodes. Can convert Shadow nodes to Void nodes.
    Shadow Shift: Battlefield Enchantment. Your non-incorporeal units become partially incorporeal.
    Time Freeze: Tactical. Radius 1 cold ball that makes the victims immobile and invulnerable for a turn.
    Night Falls: Strategic. Degenerates Shadow terrain.
    Touch of the Void: Tactical. Target unit gains incorporeal, pass wall and void implosion until the end of battle, when it dies.

    #249601

    Dr_K
    Member

    1/ yes, I guess we’ll need to rename the first

    Unless there is a better naming convention, I think Archon Revenant Titan, etc. should work.

    Also, if anyone is interested in doing translations once we have all of the text completed for the whole mod, it’s pretty easy to add in.

    That would not work well in auto combat and for the AI in general.
    I think Archons are elite units? What about giving them extra upkeep cost but making them stronger? I thought about giving them a free combat ability like War Cry (e.g. to boost morale or boost defence and resistance) but we would have the same issues: AI would not use it well. We could give them some Shadow Realm related abilities to make them play differently, e.g. a Surface and Underground sickness, Shadow Demon Slayer, concealment on certain hexes of the Shadow Realm (e.g. Plains), a short range blast of shadow energy usable only in the Shadow Realm (possible?) once per battle, etc.

    The AI use of it was also part of my hesitation to go ahead and add it in at this point. However the free use abilities might be able to be used by the AI provided that the effect is not too complex since War Cry is used.

    Shadow Demon Slayer would be appropriate. I’m not sure if I’d use “shadow energy”, but we could add in a little bit of the fire/shock damage to the line up’s damage output in some way or another.

    Im hoping I can get the RMG to overwrite any changes in your mod without a patch, and spawn your dwelling in the SR without dependency. Not tested anything like that tho.

    If there is anything you need me to change or do to help out with that, just let me know.

    2. Will the mod included a Wizard King class eventually? I was thinking it could have very few units but could focus on spells.

    Not part of the project, but I started work on a Wizard King Class a while ago. Between life and a of lack of motivation at the time, I essentially stopped work on it for a while. I’m hoping to get back to it eventually. Even though it is unfinished it is playable (more or less with a few bugs I believe), unbalanced, and heavily based on the spheres from AoW2/SM.

    http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=547743388

    #249606

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Yes I had your specs in mind HousePet and you’re not the only one who made some but I don’t feel they bring enough to be included in the extension.

    Regarding the use of abilities by the AI, yes War Cry is used but I suspect it is hard-coded because other abilities like the cry by the neutral Angel are used very inefficiently by the AI which uses them on round 1 when it’s totally useless.

    When I said Shadow energy, I was talking about energy from the Shadow Realm, not from the Shadow Demons. Maybe Astral Energy or something. I don’t think additional damage is required, I was thinking more about an extra ability that would make them play differently. A short range attack would be such a thing, a bit like Dreadnought cavalry plays differently once you have researched the Pistol tech.
    Is it possible to have an ability dependent on the terrain type where the unit fights? (to make it appear only in the SR)

    #249609

    Gloweye
    Member

    Antigravity: Battlefield Enchantment. All units on the battlefield gain flying.

    Gonna bug out horribly. Not all animation resolves have something for flying, and giving a unit flying while it’s animation resolver cant handle it crashes the game.

    Night Falls: Strategic. Degenerates Shadow terrain.

    uhm….change it to void ? baaaaad idea. Technically, there are three master types of terrain – land, water and lava. Void is a kind of Lava. You literally can do nothing on it. Totally inaccessible.

    However the free use abilities might be able to be used by the AI provided that the effect is not too complex since War Cry is used.

    This is like really simple. Any ability can be configured to be used in a moment war cry would, i. e. when it’s about to attack.

    Regarding the use of abilities by the AI, yes War Cry is used but I suspect it is hard-coded because other abilities like the cry by the neutral Angel are used very inefficiently by the AI which uses them on round 1 when it’s totally useless.

    Totally different ability. Reason AI misuses this one is because it doesnt really understand durations.

    #249611

    Hiliadan
    Member

    Well yes but we were talking about the possibility to add abilities with durations, like for instance a buff to defence and resistance for 2 rounds. If the AI uses it on turn 1 of a siege, it’s pretty useless.

    #249614

    Gloweye
    Member

    Well yes but we were talking about the possibility to add abilities with durations, like for instance a buff to defence and resistance for 2 rounds. If the AI uses it on turn 1 of a siege, it’s pretty useless.

    Nope, should work fine if you make it a self buff classified like War Cry.

    However, NOT if you just classify it as a buff. (Like Touch of Faith/Bless/Star Blades)

    #249624

    HousePet
    Member

    D’oh, I hadn’t thought about the animation silliness when giving everything flying. XD
    Wasn’t intending on changing terrain to void. Just defiling it a bit to either a blighted shadow terrain or barrens.

    The question about victory conditions made me think up a new one for the Shadow Realm:
    You search some ancient ruins for three mythical spells, which should you have all 3 active at once will grant you godhood. The difficulty being that they are scattered randomly around the Shadow Realm, cost 1000 each to cast, 100 to maintain and stress out your population by inflicting a morale penalty. On the plus side they boost the stats of your leader unit. Unfortunately I don’t think we can do it.

    On the subject of victory conditions, can we block the construction of Unity Towers/Beacons in the Shadow Realm? Not sure it makes sense lore-wise to have them their and they could be easier to defend there.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 10 months ago by  HousePet.
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