Synergies for Archdruid

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Home Forums Age of Wonders 3 Discussions Synergies for Archdruid

This topic contains 23 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  llfoso 6 years, 9 months ago.

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  • #221101

    Exhumus
    Member

    For the creation of my first Archdruid i wonder, which race and specialisation i should take. High elf i think would be the best, but i don´t like them at all..

    Are there any suggestions and why?

    What about draconians? and which spec?
    Or better Tigrans? The Shaman´s looks promising with the ability to shapeshift..

    Thanks in advance!

    #221104

    Gloweye
    Member

    *Cast summon chys spell*

    High Elf is a good one for starters – longbow hunters are pretty strong. You’ll also get CP boost in higher racial governance for better summoning if the game gets a bit longer.

    Don’t know the class that good TBH, but the above could get you started. As for specs, I can’t recall any highly preffered ones, so play whichever ones you like and see how it goes.

    #221108

    Motasa
    Member

    Arch Druid benefits from Seeker (Adept Air) if you like to mass hunters, the Hell Hound (Fire Adept) is an animal unit and works well for this class (affected by Beast Mastery, Awaken Spirit, Savage Rage etc.), the earthquake of Master Earth works well when all of your units fly or float (Wild Hunt).

    As for the race, any race will do. Draconians and Frostlings have shamans with fire or frost instead of blight damage. Tigran Shaman shape-shifting to a Dire Bear allow for more versatile units and their hunters ignore line of sight penalties and bleed foes without Hunter’s Finesse. The racial governance champion tier economic and military upgrades of the Draconians are both great for an Arch Druid.

    Personally I like the Dwarfs, they provide nothing special to the Arch Druid, but I like to complement my growing menagerie of summoned animals with a sturdy army recruited with my excess gold. And armored Hunters and Shamans are very nice to have around. And Dwarf hunters are arguably among the best scouts and harassing forces with their forest + mountain concealment.

    #221110

    Hasbulat
    Member

    AD is for me one of the strongest and most comfortable class. Easy Rider!
    You can use them successfully with each race. He supports the archers, summoned and support units which is for each race wonderful!
    I personally use the summoning way mainly. Just from the beginning research wild creature summoning and gain druidary till 40 casting points and summon for each army at least two spiders. Better, the hunter spiders, they haven 36 speed and phasing. And let them grow.

    Mainly, I have at least one army with 5 spiders. Due to net ability the spiders, heroes and other units in the stuck gains new levels very fast.

    And at queen size such armies are very powerful. Also the shock snake babies are wonderful and are the part of the main army.

    Afterwords I research strait ahead to Summon a Horned God and Druidary (Cast Points).
    Spiders, snakes and horned gods are units I only use to use as Druid in the high end army and very seldom use to build other units.

    As a race I would prefer the elves – strong support and archers, forestry for the conventional units and heroes and research-buff as a racial trait. Or, perhaps, the halflings – two racial archers, good support with bard ability on gold, druids with bard ability.
    As a sec – mastery of creation for the heal (or at least adept), for the bless for the nodes upgrade with +10 research, the tempered empire and domain of life. Other(s) are just for own wish – adept of water is good against the machines, adept of fire gives us the wonderful cast combo – Oiled skin and fireball which is most efficient from the beginning and till the end of the game! And cheap.

    #221112

    Exhumus
    Member

    Thanks for all helpful answers.
    One further question: How does the racial governance (military) from the draconians help here?

    The racial governance champion tier economic and military upgrades of the Draconians are both great for an Arch Druid.

    The military governance affects fire melee damage from draconians. Shamans seems to be best at range, right?

    `

    #221114

    Amulet
    Member

    Hi Exhunmus,

    I’m also playing with Arch Druid for now, with High Elves… but the Tigran Shaman looks very promising, that’s true. Even maybe better than the High Elf one.

    Also the High Elf Hunter is wonderful but the Tigran Hunter looks amazing. A fast scout with forest concealment but also redoubtable in combat: without sight of line penalties, fast with Athletic movement ability, Razor Projectiles and Coup de Grace… All this make a very good combination with the Tigran Prowler for maintaining the scouting abilities but also for the Bloodthirsty ability they have and the Hurl Net ability they can get with second racial governance level.

    Also the Tigran Prowler has improved wall climbing so if you combine these two units with summoned animals with similar abilities like spiders for climbing and webbing touch but also bloodthirsty predators like tiger or dire panther even maybe elephants or mammoths for wall climbing you can get a fearsome scouting army capable to take cities with walls.

    So, there are a lot of more details to evaluate but, yes, the Tigran seems a very good Arch Druid candidate to me.

    #221116

    Hasbulat
    Member

    Thanks for all helpful answers.
    One further question: How does the racial governance (military) from the draconians help here?

    `

    I don’t see it does. If any Governance provides something special for AD, it is eleves governance, which gives more damage to sisters, hunters and archers or/and gives more mana and research income on the economic path.

    #221122

    sexilicious
    Member

    frostling or elf but frostling is IMO best AD. harpooners get insane. twisting roots is insane. longbowmen get insane. you will never ever fear dwarves again.

    #221126

    Motasa
    Member

    The military governance affects fire melee damage from draconians. Shamans seems to be best at range, right?

    Champion Military

    All your Draconian Support units are 20% cheaper

    Champion Economic

    Your Leader and all your Draconian Heroes receive +10 casting points each

    Either cheaper Shamans or quicker summoning units/cast spells in tactical combat, both are very useful bonuses.

    #221132

    Hasbulat
    Member

    The military governance affects fire melee damage from draconians. Shamans seems to be best at range, right?

    Champion Military

    All your Draconian Support units are 20% cheaper

    Champion Economic

    Your Leader and all your Draconian Heroes receive +10 casting points each

    Either cheaper Shamans or quicker summoning units/cast spells in tactical combat, both are very useful bonuses.

    Oha! Sounds nice, but… At champion… so so. At that time I already use to summon horned gods and build great palace, which gives also +10 points, so the price for supports isn’t interesting anymore and also +10 point are nice but not as significant anymore. Or let us say, this bonus of +10 point for every hero you have is interesting for each class and is not more useful for AD, than for any warlord or sorc.

    Elven gives at the first level already buff +1 damage for the hunters and archers, which is just in time and very useful on that stage of the game.

    Later they elven governance gives even +5 cast points for each great temple you have. But it is too late in order to play too big role in the game play.

    #221162

    For future summoning, please find a gilded book written in red gold ink in the gold lands of the thrice ninth kingdom in the thrice ninth realm. There may be Oleaginous creatures, so bring fire and earplugs. You then have to dance on the dwarf of ignorance while singing of the stars and moon.

    Formalities aside, High Elves, Tigrans, Frostlings, Halflings, Humans, Orcs, and Dwarves all make very good AD roughly in that order.

    High Elves are great because the AD can remove their population malus both with fertile domain and the class building, they have top tier hunters who combine extra ranged damage with full damage at range, and their racial archer benefits from all this and the occasional crystal tree (with magic armor). Unicorn riders can go perfectly with tree focused armies, aid in siege, and add some anti armor abilities without cp use. Gryphons keep up with fast swimming or free movement armies, and are amazing front lines/siege forces (tireless at gold and first strike).

    You can also grow forests for happiness (especially when boosted with one with the elements) and hiding. Unusually, high elves also have a top tier shaman with total awareness. This ability makes them impossible to flank, and thus much better at being a front line entangler of things.

    The AD also boosts resistance on top of high resistance, and removes blight weakness, which is an innate elf weaknesses.

    But most importantly, high elf hunters and storm sisters do not wear out over time (where the AD tends to run into trouble) because of race governance. The champion buff not only gives the storm sister more damage, but also longbow. That lets them sit back and load up on damage.

    Arcane arrows is exactly as good as it sounds. This lets your hunters (and some racial archers if you have crystal trees) fight anything that isn’t both incorporeal and shock immune (basically, air elementals). It lets you kill all kinds of t-3 units (and some t-4) in a cost efficient manner. And this is at t-1 upkeep levels.

    The Deity military is properly named because it gives all your archers and storm sisters seeker. Seeker is no ranged penalty, no obstacle penalty, and +1 damage to each open channel. Your hunters have no ranged innately, gain no obstacle, and then already have +1 to physical and shock (which opened on arcane arrows). Storm sisters already had +1 innately for shock, gained another +1 and no ranged/no obstacle from the rg.

    Tigran AD are almost as good, although their hunters don’t have quite the longevity. Early on, innate razor projectiles and the ability to shoot around corners makes their hunters great (as well as the athletic ability to move more hexes). They are not as good at defense, though (because the enemy will be far away enough to trigger the ranged penalty), and don’t get stacking razor projectiles from the empire upgrade. Low resistance also makes them especially squishy for clearing magma chambers or fighting the undead.

    But then you have supports, who are truly magnificent. the mystic is a solid bombarding unit with magic bolts, and phase at gold is nice. However, the real deal is the ability to transform into a were panther (really more of a feliswere panther, but whatever). That lets it be its own heal (15) and melee unit. It also gets to benefit from both awaken spirit (which is a cheap animal damage and morale buff available from AD leaders and non tigran shaman) and savage rage (a key animal and monster based spell).

    The Tigran shaman is also super great, since it becomes a bear. A very large, powerful, dangerous t-3 melee unit that benefits from both awaken spirit and savage rage. That can swim and be concealed on the strategic map. It is expensive, and doesn’t have awaken spirit, so you’ll have to rely on non tigran shaman and leaders to buff animals.

    Later on you get invigorate on supports (rg 5), which lets your supports buff fellow tigran units so they can end any turn defending regardless of the actions you took.

    For the leader, you can double up on spirit protection (immunity for the leader), and get resistance and frost protection.

    Then you have frostlings. Like most races that aren’t High Elf or Tigran, they have only one really good production class unit. They have a dull hunter but excellent shaman. inflict chilling boosts the shaman’s damage (frost weakness) and any physical damage from ranged units or animal summmons (defense lowering).

    But that is ok because they also have an excellent racial archer. The harpooner pins things in place and benefits from rg military 1 (10 hp) and has polearm. That makes them good at trapping stuff for other race hunters to work on, and your leader (longbow).

    frozen flame is also quite excellent when paired with great hunters, especially high elves with the longbow. That often takes the added frost and flame damage from only one to one to two (because the ranged penalty is reduced), and eats away at defense values.

    on a strategic level, white witches can swim, so they can accompany leader stacks without reducing mobility on the water. A T-3 support with lots of slaying abilities and 40 mp (32 basic and longstrider) is also very nice.

    Late game, white witches work particularly well with The Horned God. Fire weaknesses are removed, non physical damage added, and inflict chilling makes the god more likely to entangle strike impudent things near its woody majesty. Frost aura also makes supports much less squishy (from deity if you are that late).

    Then you have the really good, but not spectacular, options. Dwarf is fairly simple: the hunters have armored, so they are very very not squishy for their tier. combine with an enchanted armory for seriously non squishy archers or shaman. Also mountain concealment Dwarf shaman are top tier entangle front line troops, because armored combines with dwarf nature to make them practically melee units.

    halfling gets you extra damage hunters just as good as elves in close, luck (which can be easily boosted with one with the elements and forests), a ready source of fire damage (jesters), and minor bards skills on shaman. eagle riders also fly, keeping up with things, and are great at turning stuff for arrowing in the back.

    humans have two things going for them. One is net hunters, who are really good in manual for various things that require netting stuff (like befriending an independent animal). The second is that these hunters are concealed in water. This is the best for sneaking.

    Orcs are quite good. Their hunters are probably the best right out of the bat on defense, since they have a shield and high hp, and warcry lets them really pummel stuff. Later on, they become too fragile to be front line troops and engage tier three units themselves per cost.

    However, they are still very good at protecting high elf or tigran shaman with their shields, and warcry lets them still do good flanking damage. martial arts at gold lets them beat other scouts or counter scouts (like monster hunters) per cost.

    Orc shaman also uniquely have a dual channel ranged attack, which means that they get double flanking damage. This makes them great when something has been entangled, and they have the hp to handle some in close work.

    Orc priests are worth a separate bit. Throw curse isn’t that great for an Orc AD (since they want stuff in close to pummel), but it is a spectacular thing for high elf or tigrans or halflings who want stuff to stay at range.

    You often want the ability to fail rather than succeed, because a failed curse drains half mp. Two failed curses totally drains mp. So two orc priests can keep any unit (as long as it isn’t blight immune) far away. blight resistance is actually often not good, because it increases the mp drain chance.

    Draconians are solid because their shaman have fast healing and fire, and fire damage from elders is pretty neat.

    Goblin AD are, unfortunately, not that great. Plague doctors with weaken help blight based attacks (including the shaman and the reed serpents/spiders), and noxious vulnerability is nice for the shaman, but there is no way around the fact that -5 hp is crippling for ranged units that don’t have the ability to fire at long range or through obstacles.

    As for specializations, try anything that boosts defense and morale (so creation adept, earth adept, Keeper mastery, grey guard adept) or gives a solid non physical direct damage spell/blight immunity remover (fire adept or wild magic).

    You can also try destruction adept (hasty plunder and fast sneaky units with slayer on good hunters).

    Beyond that, remember dwellings. You can buff nearly everything out there, and two hold special attractions.

    The first is the Naga. They are all monsters, so all benefit from beast mastery (+2 resistance and mci (naga already have the latter), and wildlife preserve (25% less gold upkeep), and savage rage. They also have a tier 3 support, and can produce mature reed serpents.

    The second is the Merfolk. Not only can you reach them better than all except perhaps the sorc, but you also have the hunters to really benefit from lost mariner net hurling.

    And then there is the Lord of the Deep. it has thunderstorm, which reduces your gods fire weakness and boosts their/your leader’s lighting damage and does shock damage itself.

    Dragons are dragons, and you can make the Golden Dragon even more betterer by removing its pesky frost weakness. Wyverns can be savage rage enhanced (as monsters), so watch out for that.

    #221171

    Gloweye
    Member

    For future summoning, please find a gilded book written in red gold ink in the gold lands of the thrice ninth kingdom in the thrice ninth realm. There may be Oleaginous creatures, so bring fire and earplugs. You then have to dance on the dwarf of ignorance while singing of the stars and moon.

    I’ll keep that in mind.

    Nice write-up BTW.

    #221195

    Medic-Tank
    Member

    Earth mastery complements a very late Druid very well earthquake is nice when you get your stuff to float but most of all earth elementals destroy dreadnoughts. Playing Druid against late game dreadnought isn’t easy but having access to an immune to fire, immune to frost (for frosting tanks) and resistant to physical regrowth monster will force the dreadnought to adapt or die and such an attempt can be dealt with with your regular troops. Of course this mostly applies in x-large maps with underground against 7 ais but can be considered if such a game floats your boat.

    #221201

    that is actually permanently broken: Anything that has walking will be damaged by earthquake, even if it flies or floats otherwise.

    Elemental mysteries are generally not great for summoner classes, since you need the cp to get your best troops (exception Age of Magic sorcerer).

    Earth adept, on the other hand, is pretty good. Wild magic is also good, as you can transition from evolving baby stuff to a mid grade one.

    Late game dread, on the other hand, is a good time for Air Mastery. If you are fighting a Dread (or likely to) at that time of the game, all hunters and basic supports are obsolete (unless you are a High Elf or Dwarf). Reinforced means no more archers, and the high damage from cannon and juggernauts rip apart low tier stuffs.

    So you can then research wind ward, and mix in some air elementals with gargantuan animals and Horned gods.

    #221216

    Exhumus
    Member

    Wow, thank you chrysophylax (and of course all others) for your very detailed answer.

    So i decided to go frostling AD, (named him Narmuk Ghostwolf^^) and took air mastery with creation adept. For the first rounds played it´s great. Frostlings seems to fit very good for me.

    Thank you very much for the help. This is a great forum.

    #221245

    llfoso
    Member

    The Deity military is properly named because it gives all your archers and storm sisters seeker. Seeker is no ranged penalty, no obstacle penalty, and +1 damage to each open channel. Your hunters have no ranged innately, gain no obstacle, and then already have +1 to physical and shock (which opened on arcane arrows). Storm sisters already had +1 innately for shock, gained another +1 and no ranged/no obstacle from the rg.

    Doesn’t it just let them ignore obstacles? Or do you just mean with all the upgrades combined it’s as if they had seeker?

    Another thing to keep in mind is to look not only at how the race benefits the class, but how the class benefits the race.
    For example, I would rank halfling AD higher because AD offers 1) one with the elements, lesser bard skills shamans, and wild growth for excellent luck 2) high mobility (thanks to longstrider) for jesters and the short-ranged brew brothers 3) animals to serve as meatshields for the not-so-tough-in-melee halflings.

    And goblin AD does have two advantages worth mentioning: major population growth between Goblin’s +10% and fertile domain, and tame trolls are monsters and therefore benefit from a lot of AD abilities.

    #221266

    Hasbulat
    Member

    And goblin AD does have two advantages worth mentioning: major population growth between Goblin’s +10% and fertile domain, and tame trolls are monsters and therefore benefit from a lot of AD abilities.

    You are able to build tame trolls first with arrival to Prophet- Level in the governance, which is too late in order to change anything in the game play. Definitely, you are able to summon at that time the horned god, so you can build a troll, but just for the city museum. 😉

    #221272

    llfoso
    Member

    True it does come late, which is why goblin still isn’t an awesome AD, but when it does come you can produce them in cities rather than summoning them like other AD animals/monsters. The horned god is pretty difficult to mass. So the trolls are definitely still good.

    #221289

    Hasbulat
    Member

    Really? Playing high elf or halfling with mastery of creation at king I actually don’t have any difficulties to summon strong army, even of horned gods.
    Besides of that, I don’t need only horned god army, at that time, I have already one or even some armies of spiders and shock snakes at queen size. They are as strong as most of t4.

    And you have access to excellent archers, hunters, shamans and supports, which are cheap and very efficient, if you need a mass production. Also for the mass you could spam the racial flyers, especially halflings flying riders with frontal ae makes a good job.

    Why should I play as a goblin with AD? In order to get at prophet a possibility to build mass of trolls while you opponent spams T-4 or even have a strong and leveled to veterans army of high end units?

    #221335

    Doesn’t it just let them ignore obstacles? Or do you just mean with all the upgrades combined it’s as if they had seeker

    yes, the equivalent of seeker is there when all the upgrades are combined (actually an additional damage point from the rg makes it a little better).

    Halfling AD is good, don’t get me wrong, but the problem is that its marquee units don’t gain that much from the AD, and those that don’t are not that useful for the AD with their summons.

    To start from the beginning, the adventurer is the key halfling unit. One with the elements certainly benefits adventurers, but you are better off using that spell and the summons to start leveling your hunters asap.

    Indeed, getting gold hunters is very much like evolving the serpents and spiders: Martial arts lets them either get away from things (or act as better front line infantry for orcs), but most importantly lets them get the +10 hp from champion. If you can get one or two on a stack of hunters, then you’ve essentially got a full t-2 stack hp wise that does t-3 damage with t-1 upkeep.

    So in order to do this, you need to have your hunters out asap. A necromancer, on the other hand, likes to build adventurers throughout the game because they get the more hp from embalming, have lifestealing, and get medal upgrades/the damage boost, and fill a critical hole in the necro line up (a physical damage archer).

    initiates are not directly boosted by the ad, but can become storm sisters, who are.

    Then you have the nightwatch, who is totally useless for the AD: they might build a high elf or dwarf unit at first, to act as a super tough shield, but only at first for a top tier infantry.

    Jesters are very useful and get nice upgrades, but they don’t benefit from any specific race gov boost (this is opposed to the three that longbowmen get). Longbowmen stay around as supports to hunters and garrison troops because 1). they are cheaper, 2). they don’t require the class building, 3). enchanted armory, and 4). projectile resistance at gold makes them really great counter archers and machine fighters.

    farmers are always useless all the time, and then we come to the pony rider. Now that is a very useful unit, but not for the AD. its primary purpose is to fight supports and the undead. AD can arrow anything that isn’t a banshee easily, and have fast supports/summons to kill incorporeal enemies. Hunters (especially high elf and tigran and halfling) also kill supports easily.

    The unicorn rider, on the other hand, is faster, better in melee, has phase, and has armor piercing (a skill the ad otherwise do not have without casting savage rage). They also benefit from the multi phase upgrade. That makes them really good as, essentially, a rust strike in horse form (since they can phase up to obnoxious machines/armored infantry and use armor piercing to do good damage).

    So if I do want a small cavalry supplement, the Unicorn rider works almost perfectly (especially since 100 happiness from the baths isn’t exactly super duper useful).

    Then you have the brew brother. It is a great unit with the buffs, but gets outclassed by the shaman (who has lesser bards skills). In the past, it used to be hard to level shamans, but with awaken spirit, they have something to do repeatedly in every battle, so they get to gold fairly quickly. This is totally the opposite of the storm sister, who gets more valuable over time with rg 3 shock longbow and inflict stun as the end goals. Total awareness and stunning touch also let them help shaman to incapacitate stuff that gets too close.

    The eagle rider is highly valuable to an AD, but the Gryphon rider is better because it is durable (easy to level) and immune to mobbing at high levels (tireless and first strike). This is important, because the AD top summons are vulnerable to getting mobbed by particular units.

    Reed serpents by those with strong will, shock serpents by those with shock resistance, and horned gods by incorporeals.

    Now, compare the halflings to tigrans: the cheetah is supremely useful to tie up things and keep them at a distance, the sun guard provides a super shield line and can destroy defending, the prowler can gain a net, and the sphinx provides fire damage.

    Then the great supports.

    #221451

    Weltenreiter
    Member

    Does the Earthquake thing even work?
    Last I checked, the interaction of “aquired” float/flight with ground-affecting stuff like Twisted Roots was borked and not planned/possible to be fixed soon. (after allegedly having been fixed for a while or something)

    #221472

    llfoso
    Member

    Halfling AD is good, don’t get me wrong, but the problem is that its marquee units don’t gain that much from the AD, and those that don’t are not that useful for the AD with their summons.

    You know what I misspoke, when I said I would rank them higher I didn’t mean higher on the list as it’s easy to see how frostlings, elves and tigrans are better. I just meant that I feel you’re initial write-up of them left out some significant benefits.
    I’ve struggled a lot with halflings and losing too many units in the early game. AD are the only class I played with them where everything flowed smoothly, mostly due to One with the Elements and animal meat-shields. But I am by no means an expert.

    Really? Playing high elf or halfling with mastery of creation at king I actually don’t have any difficulties to summon strong army, even of horned gods.
    Besides of that, I don’t need only horned god army, at that time, I have already one or even some armies of spiders and shock snakes at queen size. They are as strong as most of t4.

    Out of curiosity, how many armies do you usually have late game?

    Why should I play as a goblin with AD? In order to get at prophet a possibility to build mass of trolls while you opponent spams T-4 or even have a strong and leveled to veterans army of high end units?

    Why? For fun.
    I’ve never said they should be higher on the list. They’re certainly at the bottom. I just felt there were two decent bonuses worth mentioning.

    #221479

    Hasbulat
    Member

    Why? For fun.

    Fun is important, nothing to say. But here we was asked what is better and not whaat is more funny.
    By the way, for me fun – it means to find an optimum, to find out the best way to play in each situation.

    Out of curiosity, how many armies do you usually have late game?

    Depends of the map settings. With the normal size I use to set 4 heroes as maximum, that means, I have 5 armies.

    #221497

    llfoso
    Member
    Why? For fun.

    Fun is important, nothing to say. But here we was asked what is better and not whaat is more funny.
    By the way, for me fun – it means to find an optimum, to find out the best way to play in each situation.

    I feel like you sort of ignored the second half of my statement: that I never said goblins weren’t at the bottom of the pile.
    You asked why someone should play goblin AD, and I answered. It was not an answer to the OP’s question.

    Out of curiosity, how many armies do you usually have late game?

    Depends of the map settings. With the normal size I use to set 4 heroes as maximum, that means, I have 5 armies.

    That’s reasonable. What I don’t understand is why you would stop unit production late-game except for summoning.

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