Theo Vs. Dread

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This topic contains 365 replies, has 30 voices, and was last updated by  ExNihil 6 years, 11 months ago.

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  • #212718

    I’m not sure this thread is needed.

    I appreciate the attempts to keep things civil Ex, but all I see here are the same arguments with the same evidence as in the other thread, with the same proofs and assertions put forth.

    I honestly think that the other thread has everything this thread had, and more ideas (but sadly a few people got hysterical and started crying).

    #212722

    Sorax
    Keymaster

    @exnihil, @bouh,

    I am kindly asking you to keep it civil and avoid discussions about whether or not smthg. is on- or off-topic.

    In general: Since the thread-title is “theo vs. dread”, I do consider Bouh’s posts as on-topic.

    Nevertheless, since we all are aware of the history both of you have in certain balance discussions, it might make sense to open a new, separate thread in order to:
    a) keep this one “clean” in terms of readibility (no one really wants another 30-pages thread that will end up containing several official warnings after the discussion heated up).
    b) narrow this one to the theo vs. dread matchup ONLY, rather than discussing the legitimacy of this thread.

    I hope the two of you are able to sort this out without me. Hence, I am leaving things as they are for the moment, not forbidding anybody to post here (as long as it is on-topic and I consider Bouh’s posts as on-topic) or taking any other actions.

    However, in case I see no proper solution was found, resulting in a derailed thread, my reaction will be rather harsh.

    Hence again, just asking kindly: Please behave, please accept opposing opinions, please do not repeat your posts from other threads.

    BR,
    Sorax

    #212724

    ExNihil
    Member

    Thanks @sorax!

    #212727

    ExNihil
    Member

    I raise the “I don’t think Dread is strong” argument and people tell me (especially in this thread) I am crazy.

    Can someone tell me why dreads are strong?

    It’s not that Dreads are very strong, they are strong but especially versatile. I have some aversion to playing them, conceptually – I am into high fantasy rather than steampunk, I much rather fight them. They can be very formidable opponents, depending on the matchup and skill of the player. Skill is very important here because I think its a difficult class to play well and relatively few have mastered it (I’m really not among them). The classes are in a good place balance wise I’d say, and almost all have stronger or weaker matchups. The one with the Theo though is broken. Theo is a strong class, but in this matchup it is ridiculously out-gunned. I’d say Dreads are hard-counters or can be to Sorcerers, but Sorcerers have some answers in their arsenal in the form of shock based spells and damage. The issue is that vs. Theocrat, Dread is very strong, to the point I find it IMBA and also not very fun.

    #212731

    NINJEW
    Member

    Racial units don’t really solve the problem – they are either forced to use physical melee attacks, which do less damage due to reinforced (and anyhow roll against the defense modifier which is quite high for machines and can be further buffed by Dread tech) or use elemental damage that is often also severly reduced or completely removed (blight).

    Literally the only thing you said in this sentence that is true is that machines dont’ get hurt by blight, it is ridiculous. Have you ever played as/against Dread? I’m beginning to suspect that you haven’t.

    Reinforced gives +4 defense against ranged attacks. This 1. doesn’t affect melee and 2. doesn’t reduce elemental damage at all.

    The only Dread machines that have defense in any notable quantity are the Golem and the Juggernaut. On the whole, defense is not high for machines.

    Elemental damage, with the exception of Spirit and Blight, isn’t reduced at all for any machines, in any circumstances, and thanks to the very low Res score that machines have, always a very good option (even the Juggernaut only has a whopping 11 Res)

    Physical Melee attacks will, in fact, totally shut down literally every Dread unit except for the Golem, and a simple Cavalry Rush (which any race can do, and the Theocrat can do quite well) can quickly decimate any Dread.

    Not to enhance the point of Theocrats being worse than Dreadnoughts, but many racial supports deal half their damage or less. Goblin, Orc, Human, Halfling and Tigran supports may be less effective.

    Dreadnought is however slow so you can play with that and IMO it is what makes Dread balanced enough.

    Goblins have Demolisher on Marauders, Big Beetles, and Crusaders, so they’re not exactly hurting for anti-machine options. Orc Shock Troopers have Guard Breaker, which will let them decimate Golems (which is most likely the only thing stopping them from destroying the Dread’s Cannons and Muskets). Tigrans have even easier access to Guard Breaker, and also highly mobile troops, which can spread out easily and quickly engage Dread ranged forces in melee. Humans have excellent cavalry forces, which as noted earlier is a great way to shut down a Dread. Halflings are really the only race that doesn’t come out with a terribly great answer for Dreadnought.

    Also I think this is besides the point – the issue is not whether one class has a stronger gameplay vs. the other but rather that one class is largely negated by the attributes of the others, which is a balance issue I’d say.

    In what way does forcing heavy reliance on support units at all negate the attributes of the class that gets healing on every support unit

    As Dr_K so amicably noted the only units that do serious damage to machines are melee based, and here you have the problem of range

    Racial supports????????????

    Dwarf Forge Priests do excellent damage against the Dread’s low res machines

    All support units are significantly hindered by reinforced and also don’t really get to apply debuffs due to the machine status

    How has no one else corrected you on this yet holy shit

    Reinforced adds 4 defense against ranged attacks. Elemental Damage is affected by Resistance, not Defense, so Reinforced does not affect support units at all.

    This leaves cavalry, which is useful in some situations (not wall defense for once and when amassed in large numbers), which remarkably (or not) is really not the Theocrats strong suit (unless using humans at the cost of having support units that can’t shot machines)

    Did you know that Order of Templar Knights makes all your Cavalry Devout? Which means that if you use Mark of the Heretic before the battle, all your cavalry have +3 damage?

    This is actually kind of a really huge buff to Cavalry

    Although rot is an excellent spell it was introduced and balanced based on a game balance that hugely favored trebuchets, which were the most IMBA unit in the early phase after launch. Dread machine units are much more mobile with the exception of cannons and can spread out of range very quickly.

    You literally haven’t played against a Dreadnought since EL launched, have you? Cannons are ridiculously mobile in battle compared to Trebuchets, as Cannons don’t require 3 AP to shoot like Trebuchets do.

    #212733

    Shakey
    Member

    In this matchup I think race matters a lot. Against machines, there is a massive difference between a Human Theo and a Dwarf/Elf Theo.

    If we want all races to be unique, then I think we have to suffer some unfavorable matchups at times. The question becomes what degree is acceptable.

    For my money, I’m happy with the current matchup, but I could be convinced to move the needle.

    I love playing goblins. Before demolisher was introduced they struggled pretty hard against machines. Maybe the answer isn’t the class, but the (Human) race.

    #212735

    NINJEW
    Member

    Humans can Cavalry Charge against a Dread just fine. Their production bonus is also one of the strongest racial bonuses period, so I’m not particularly concerned about their matchup here.

    #212745

    ExNihil
    Member

    ExNihil wrote:
    Racial units don’t really solve the problem – they are either forced to use physical melee attacks, which do less damage due to reinforced (and anyhow roll against the defense modifier which is quite high for machines and can be further buffed by Dread tech) or use elemental damage that is often also severly reduced or completely removed (blight).
    Literally the only thing you said in this sentence that is true is that machines dont’ get hurt by blight, it is ridiculous. Have you ever played as/against Dread? I’m beginning to suspect that you haven’t.

    Dude, you are extremely confrontational to the point it is unpleasant to read your stuff and communicate. You also choose to read stuff in the worst possible light. Let me repeat – I stand corrected on the reinforced, but you return to this point for no reason really.

    I will try to keep to the topic of this thread and explain myself: Elemental damage is completely removed on blight for all machines. Fire tank has good fire resistance as well. To this add the other options in the arsenal of the Dread, for instance the spell Force Field (60% x 3 elemental immunities) or the trait Forge Aprons (fire resistance for the entire stack), and you get elemental damage that is, and i quote myself “often also severely reduced.” You seem to miss this point in your drive for the conceived jugular.

    Physical Melee attacks will, in fact, totally shut down literally every Dread unit except for the Golem, and a simple Cavalry Rush (which any race can do, and the Theocrat can do quite well) can quickly decimate any Dread.

    I am surprised as you seem to have a handle on the damage calculations but you seem to ignore the simple fact that physical damage checks against the defense modifier, and as you will note machines have a fairly good one at that before being further buffed. Musketeers kill cavalry quite well tier for tier and that is without talking about golems and the anti-personal Flame-Tank. Also you need to get close to be effective and against amassed artillery this is really not the match-up you seem to envision. This is before we consider the wall defense situation, which contrary to how you portray this is often the the situation of decisive battles and it really doesn’t favor cavalry on either side. This situation is even more unequal when trying to take a city full of cannons and juggs and I assure you that you will discover that all of those heals you hold so dearly are quite worthless unless you can get your supports close to your assaulting troops somehow, which might be a bit of problem when pulverized by cannon, then bombarded, shot, burnt and finally pummeled by machines.

    Also I think this is besides the point – the issue is not whether one class has a stronger gameplay vs. the other but rather that one class is largely negated by the attributes of the others, which is a balance issue I’d say.
    In what way does forcing heavy reliance on support units at all negate the attributes of the class that gets healing on every support unit

    This is elliptic, and more importantly has nothing to do with what I wrote. If you argue with me at least argue with what I write.

    Did you know that Order of Templar Knights makes all your Cavalry Devout? Which means that if you use Mark of the Heretic before the battle, all your cavalry have +3 damage?

    This is actually kind of a really huge buff to Cavalry

    I am aware of this yes, and without this the Theocrat wouldn’t be viable at all. This doesn’t really solve any of the other problems, and you seem to have some fantastic notions regarding the power of cavalry.

    Although rot is an excellent spell it was introduced and balanced based on a game balance that hugely favored trebuchets, which were the most IMBA unit in the early phase after launch. Dread machine units are much more mobile with the exception of cannons and can spread out of range very quickly.
    You literally haven’t played against a Dreadnought since EL launched, have you? Cannons are ridiculously mobile in battle compared to Trebuchets, as Cannons don’t require 3 AP to shoot like Trebuchets do.

    I have as a matter of fact and thanks for asking. As you might note the text you quoted was on another subject and I was indeed unaware of the change to cannons, thanks for letting me know (although I was bombarded by them more then once recently). This though simply reinforced my point regarding rot and its relative usefulness. You seem to be interested in an ad hominem, but this isn’t the topic of this thread – if you find me worthless of writing in this forum you are welcome not to read what I am writing, but if you do please do it to the point and respectfully, even and perhaps (one can hope) when you find me mistaking in some details.

    #212760

    NINJEW
    Member

    To this add the other options in the arsenal of the Dread, for instance the spell Force Field (60% x 3 elemental immunities) or the trait Forge Aprons (fire resistance for the entire stack), and you get elemental damage that is, and i quote myself “often also severely reduced.”

    These are all true in the same way that it’s true that any old schmuck can pick up an AD hero and have a big splatter of resistances across all their units. What’s your point? Machines have low resistance across the board, which makes them much more susceptible to elemental damage than any other type of unit. Dreadnought has some tools that can provide some resistances, much like every other class.

    This is unbased on anything aside from your own words as far as I can tell. Physical damage checks against the defense modifier, and as you will note machines have a fairly good one at that before being further buffed.

    No? As I note, only the Golem and the Juggernaut have good defense. With 11 defense (12 after dread upgrades!!!!) Cannons will fall pretty quickly to physical damage.

    If you want to know why melee shuts down Dreads, it’s simple: Engineers are made of wet tissue paper and will die immediately. Muskets, Cannons, and Juggernauts can’t use their ranged attacks while engaged. I don’t remember if Flame Tanks can use their ability while engaged, but being in melee range dramatically increases the chances of friendly fire (friendly fire from a Flame Tank goes extremely poorly for low res machines). Machines also can’t retaliate against melee attacks. Getting in melee range quickly renders every Dread unit, sans Golem, totally impotent.

    This is before we consider the wall defense situation, which contrary to how you portray this is often the the situation of decisive battles and it really doesn’t favor cavalry on either side.

    Yeah the entire Dread gimmick is that they’re really good at ranged damage and siege battles. Sounds like you need to intercept your enemies with your faster cavalry before they reach your vital cities dude. It’s almost like there’s a heavy strategic component to Dread as well.

    This is elliptic, and more importantly has nothing to do with what I wrote. If you want to argue with me at least argue with what I write.

    You say that Dreadnought totally negates the attributes of the Theocrat. I say that being forced to rely on racial supports is very much an attribute of the Theocrat. In what world do those two lines of thought not follow each other?

    You seem to be interested in an ad hominem, but this isn’t the topic of this thread – if you find me worthless of writing in this forum you are welcome not to read what I am writing, but if you do please do it to the point and respectfully, even and perhaps (one can hope) when you find me mistaking in some details.

    Your inability to tolerate the slightest inkling of negativity is incredible

    #212767

    CrazyElf
    Member

    The hard part, apart from the question of whether it’s really necessary at all, is finding a justification for why theocrats would have all this anti-machine stuff.

    At the risk of being politically incorrect, one could potentially link it to the tendency of religion to be anti-progress, and thus a theocrat might extol extra hatred of the signs of progress. This could translate into an upgrade that grants Demolisher to some appropriate units.

    I think that it’s clear though that every class seems to have a particular matchup that they struggle with at certain points of the game.

    Warlord for example is an example of a very powerful late game class, but it suffers early game and gets progressively more dangerous the later game goes. Yet it has a class too it struggles against – the Rogue with it’s powerful Shadow Stalker.

    I could give the other examples, but let’s jump to the chase:

    Dreadnought is a class that struggles against Sorcerer. Perhaps it’s because I am a Sorcerer player, but I have never found DN to be the unstoppable terror that others say (indeed, it’s one reason why I called for the DN T4 to be buffed, something most people disagree with here).

    The problem I have with the suggestions made so far is that we are going to end up with a class (Theocrat) with literally no weak points.

    The end result would be:

    1. Arguably the best early game of any class
    2. A strong mid-game
    3. A pretty good endgame against most classes (especially with it’s Ultimate)
    4. A counter (depending on what is implemented) specifically for machines

    Theocrat already has 1-3. Giving it 4 may make it a class with no weaknesses.

    #212768

    CrazyElf
    Member

    The other consideration is that machines too have trade-offs:

    1. Very melee vulnerable, range-oriented. Machines don’t do well in melee in general. This makes them strong in sieges, but weak against flying/cavalry units.

    2. Limited options for repair.

    3. Can suffer due to attrition more or forced to go home. So poor strategic mobility.

    4. Vulnerable to being stunned and other abilities (like rust strike).

    Basically you are trading a lot of weaknesses for very specialized strengths.

    #212770

    NINJEW
    Member

    Warlord is pretty decent early game actually. Not on the same level as AD or Sorc, but ti can give them a decent run of their money with cheap powerful Berserkers and hordes of T1 units

    #212771

    NINJEW
    Member

    Also yeah, Crazy Elf has the core of it

    #212773

    Prodigal Sun
    Member

    Goblins have Demolisher on Marauders, Big Beetles, and Crusaders, so they’re not exactly hurting for anti-machine options. Orc Shock Troopers have Guard Breaker, which will let them decimate Golems (which is most likely the only thing stopping them from destroying the Dread’s Cannons and Muskets). Tigrans have even easier access to Guard Breaker, and also highly mobile troops, which can spread out easily and quickly engage Dread ranged forces in melee. Humans have excellent cavalry forces, which as noted earlier is a great way to shut down a Dread. Halflings are really the only race that doesn’t come out with a terribly great answer for Dreadnought.

    You know I was talking about racial supports and how some of them are less effective, as a response to when you said racial support were up to the task. This may be true for Elves, Dwarf, Draconian and somewhat Frostling, but that that’s about it.

    I wouldn’t even face a Dreadnought on even terms on land – I’d pick a class with better scouts and strike when I have the numbers or to weaken the economy. I don’t really like the idea of lining up Goblin racials to deal with the machines. Pretty ineffective and expensive so called counter if you ask me since Dreadnought already have one significant weakness almost every class can exploit.

    #212774

    Ericridge
    Member

    I’m back and with screenshots to make discussion more easier!

    Rot being cast upon Veteran Golems with Defend Stance active.

    Veteran Human Crusader stabbing a Veteran Golem with Defend Stance Active.

    Rot being cast upon Veteran Golem without Defend Stance. It literally takes off almost 1/3 of their hp!

    And now let us move towards the Elite Golems.

    We see that the claim that Rot only does 3-7 damage towards Golem is wrong.
    Instead of 3-7 towards Golem in defend stance, it does 5-7 towards Golems in defend stance! I attribute this to memory error.

    And if you take a look towards the golem that rot does 11-17 damage towards, that is without Golem’s Defend stance active. What this means is that Rot will easily knock off 1/4 of Golem’s hp if they decide to attack instead of staying in defend.

    And this is what happens if a veteran crusader tries to stab a Elite Golem in Defend. As we can see now, Golem is doing it’s job in discouraging melee attacks.

    Next experiment is the one where Golem don’t have the benefit of Defend Stance.

    What does this teach us?

    Golems is very tough to kill and doing it’s job in soaking up the damage by staying in defend.

    But if they start attacking that means they become easy to kill.

    And Golems in their current job is to be a tank, and if they choose to attack, they are taking a big risk in being killed off easily. And if Golems choose to defend all the time, they wont’ be able to drain the enemy unit’s action points. This carries the disadvantage of permitting the enemy unit to break the engagement with golems to get at the backlines. And this isn’t counting the bonus damage you can get from flanking a golem.

    I hope I help people understand that Rot isnt’ a spell that Dreadnoughts can just scoff and ignore completely, they have to keep it in mind as they fight. For Rot can force the Golems to stay in defend stance otherwise they will get punished harshly. And the -1 to both defend/resist only makes golems more softer and -200 morale increases the chance of fumbling and +60% extra blight weakness and is only 20 CP that can affect up to max of four targets.

    I repeat, rot is not a spell that I can ignore. It is nasty.

    #212775

    llfoso
    Member

    Maybe theocrats don’t have a problem with dreads, but having half your class features not function against another class is kinda lame from a “fun-ness” standpoint.

    On the other hand, if a dreadnought is playing properly *ahem* they won’t be fielding 100% machines. Maybe the real issue here is golem spam, and maybe this thread never came up before 1.5 because back then it was all musket spam.

    #212781

    NINJEW
    Member

    Golems have a poor capacity to deal damage, as well as awful resistance. Golem spam is easily countered.

    #212806

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    If Rogue has no problem against Necro, Theo for sure hasn’t one against Dread.

    #212807

    Bouh
    Member

    If we want all races to be unique, then I think we have to suffer some unfavorable matchups at times. The question becomes what degree is acceptable.

    Dude, you are extremely confrontational to the point it is unpleasant to read your stuff and communicate. You also choose to read stuff in the worst possible light.

    I am surprised as you seem to have a handle on the damage calculations but you seem to ignore the simple fact that physical damage checks against the defense modifier

    All these are offensive or sarcastic. Don’t call people on rudeness as long as you don’t apply your medicine to yourself.

    I am aware of this yes, and without this the Theocrat wouldn’t be viable at all. This doesn’t really solve any of the other problems, and you seem to have some fantastic notions regarding the power of cavalry.

    Theocrat is one of the 3 classes that can buff cavalry. I’d say the theocrat buff to cavalry is even better than the one of the dreadnought. What are your notions of cavalry power ?

    I repeat, rot is not a spell that I can ignore. It is nasty.

    No one honestly denied this. LordTyrael and ExNihil are fantasising the power of the dreadnought to the point nothing can stand against him.

    Maybe theocrats don’t have a problem with dreads, but having half your class features not function against another class is kinda lame from a “fun-ness” standpoint.

    It’s not half. And allowing a class to apply the same strategy against absolutely all ennemies regardless of their immunities would be boring too, just not the first time. And you have more than half your tools.

    Basicaly, Ninjew is right.

    There is no race/class/spe combination that is harmless to a dreadnought. You might find a couple of the worst of them, but so can you for any class. I’ll repeat my question of the other thread, but what race/spe theocrat combination actualy is harmless against the dreadnought ? I’d say the worst will be humans and halflings, but they still have some tools and spe will even the odds.

    #212808

    quo
    Member

    Random thoughts.

    It’s not Golem spam to be worried about, but rather the combined package of Golem/Builder/Cannon. This trio (especially when led by a hero) can make life hell. Luckily the AI doesn’t use it. Sadly most players don’t either. The main counter to it is Sabotage (and it’s a very very good counter, created back in the days when Trebs ruled) but it’s a thankfully rare ability. The Theocrat shouldn’t get anything as powerful as that, it’s fine where it is. The Theo can recruit a Dread or Rogue hero for Sabotage (its a hero skill for them) but then so can anyone, and a Theo with that skill is still the least of your worries because you can focus fire the offending hero without risking payback from units that might stomp you the way any other class would.

    Funny FYI for no reason except to share: If you blow a wall down with a Cannon, anything that gets hit by the remainder of the blast is no longer considered to be behind cover and takes full damage from that shot. If you happen to crit on this shot, everything in the blast area takes crit damage and you can easily 1/shot a Support unit.

    Of course the reason most Dreads take Air Adapt is so they can just blast Cannons over the wall for full damage without even bothering to knock it down. Cannons can shoot further than a Support unit, are harder to kill, and run as fast as Calvary if the game reaches the Great Mobilization stage.

    #212811

    quo
    Member

    I’m curious why there aren’t any Builders in these pictures? I know sometimes the AI (I assume this is SP) will focus fire them and knock them out, making you send out a new one, or you get caught out there for other reasons. But that’s a specific Dreadnought weakness, the possibility of getting caught with your pants down due your strength coming from synergy within your army, not anything specific to fighting a Theocrat (who can’t do anything especially nasty to Builders either except sometimes with spells, Fireball being the biggest trouble maker).

    On the other hand, if the answer is you aren’t building Builders, that’s why Rot is causing so many problems. With a Golem/Golem/Builder ratio your frontlines should recover from Rot in 2 turns. Rotate units in and out and if one dies, resurrect it (not always possible but certainly as increasingly feasible as you approach the end game.)

    Also one other thing, not in response to your post, I just wanted to share it: Halfling Builders get Lucky. That is part of why to me Halflings are tied for first place as the “best” Dreadnoughts with Dwarves and Humans.

    #212814

    Draxynnic
    Member

    So, now it’s not approaching midnight…

    Personally, I’d have to say I’m not entirely convinced it’s needed. The ‘where there’s smoke, there’s fire’ argument is an easy one to make, but I’m not sure it applies when it’s often the same people making the smoke.

    Nevertheless, I am inclined to think that when you’re unconvinced that something is a problem and people start discussing solutions, it’s more constructive to put forward your own thoughts on possibilities rather than digging your heels in, lest you forfeit the opportunity to guide the solution to a compromise you’ll accept over one you hate. So here are my thoughts:

    First, some rules. In my mind, any changes related to this should fit the following requirements:

    1. The changes should be targeted primarily towards the Theo/Dread matchup, rather than a general buff to Theo.

    2. The changes should be thematically fitting to the Theo (so no randomly giving Sabotage to everything).

    3. The changes should not involve research options that are only effective against machines, in order to avoid clogging up the book.

    With these rules in mind, there are two general approaches:

    Approach 1: Give the Theo access to specifically anti-machine abilities. These can include Demolisher, or the previously discussed Haywire on the Shrine of Smiting. (On which note, I will point out that while buffing the Shrine of Smiting against other machines is late-game, the complaints about the Theo-Dread matchup typically focus on the late-game also, so this is appropriate).

    Granting Demolisher too liberally has problems: it has the effect of whitewashing existing units that already have Demolisher, although Demolisher does stack with itself so this could result in certain units like goblins crusaders being really good at killing machines. A more elegant solution, though, might be to grant it as a result of enchantments: Holy War granting two stacks of Demolisher will make it something for dreads to worry about as well as everyone else.

    Approach 2: Reduce the Theocrat dependence on Spirit.

    Similar to how Death damage morphed into a mix of Blight and Cold, it’s increasingly clear that Spirit isn’t a direct replacement for Holy, as the latter didn’t have Spirit’s total inability to harm machines. Most likely, in AoW3 terms, the previous Holy was a mix of Spirit and Fire.

    We’ve also been getting increasing evidence that holy power isn’t entirely confined to Spirit in AoW3, as the Shrine of Smiting uses a mix of Spirit, Fire, and Shock in its various attacks, and the Exalted gains fire and shock channels against heretics at gold (giving frostling Exalted the possibility for a whopping five channels). While the sorcerer makes heavy use of shock, it isn’t entirely reliant on it, so it’s probably reasonable to lessen the theo’s reliance.

    There’s two approaches to this:

    The first is to mix in some other damage types in some of the existing attacks. Making Smiting Prayer Bolts triple-channel has already been discussed, and personally I like the idea of SPB having a shock component… although having three channels that are each boosted by the presence of devout units may be overkill. Similarly, spells like Wrath of God and Smite could be given a fire and/or shock channel (holy fire, thunderbolts, that sort of thing) – even physical might fit. This approach would potentially be a nerf in some other matchups, but that would not be a bad thing.

    The second is simply to add arbitrary additional damage of an appropriate type to some of these spirit effects, which only triggers against machines. The justification would be that it’s a burst of holy energy that acts as spirit on the (un)living, but also damages machines in some manner (maybe it causes soulless machines to burn, or corrode, or disrupts their operation in a similar manner as electricity). This would be simpler, allowing Triumph to fine-tune the damage they want these effects to do against machines: the additional damage may still be substantially less than the spirit damage that is lost to the machine’s total spirit immunity, but at least these effects are not rendered completely useless against them.

    #212816

    ExNihil
    Member

    These are all true in the same way that it’s true that any old schmuck can pick up an AD hero and have a big splatter of resistances across all their units. What’s your point? Machines have low resistance across the board, which makes them much more susceptible to elemental damage than any other type of unit. Dreadnought has some tools that can provide some resistances, much like every other class.

    My point is very simple. The Dread class has some weaknesses in combat and outside for which he can by and large compensate. The elemental weakness to shock or the none resistance to fire/frost can be mitigated with magic and hero traits, even to the point of complete immunity when combined (for frost and fire). The cannot regenerate situation has been dramatically improved with the inclusion of builders as machine healers (before it was only heroses). The mobility issue you return to time and again is really not that much of an issue in the particular matchup with Theo, who has only 2 quick units in class and the rest are as slow as those of Dread, that is, without taking into account racial units which can be very mobile if they are flying and can be substantially buffed when armored and armed with pistols. Also there is always the possibility of water transportation on most maps which really makes this much less of an issue. The result is a class that has weaknesses and vulnerabilities for sure but which also has a range of tools at its disposal to address and mitiagate these.

    This is true of all classes, except in the Theo vs. Dread matchup. The point is not to make the Theocrat OP or IMBA but to give it some extra tools to deal with this weakness. There is a difference between addressing the weakness in some way, e.g. builders with repair machine, and removing it – e.g. repair machine on engineer at baseline or even giving machines some regeneration. All were discussed, the devs opted for a balance adjustment that fits the concept and doesn’t break the game.

    I think that it’s clear though that every class seems to have a particular matchup that they struggle with at certain points of the game.

    1. Arguably the best early game of any class
    2. A strong mid-game
    3. A pretty good endgame against most classes (especially with it’s Ultimate)
    4. A counter (depending on what is implemented) specifically for machines

    Absolutely, all classes have difficult matchups and some are more difficult then others. The question is at what stage they are considered in Balance- factoring their respective weaknesses and strengths and so forth. IMO the Dread vs. Theo matchup is IMBA because the Theo’s strengths are all negated by the Dread unit properties. The options are to either change these properties or give the Theo some extra tools that can be deployed – if available and prepared – that change this situation to a certain degree (which is open to discussion, and ultimately is up to the devs). The issue is not necessarily a specific counter to machines although that is one possibility, there are also other options, like modifing the damage types Theo units and spells output, their effects, and the inclusion of debuffing spells and effects that change the situation. The assumption though is that a localized modification is better than a large one, thus a specific counter to machines is the most viable option probably.

    All these are offensive or sarcastic. Don’t call people on rudeness as long as you don’t apply your medicine to yourself.

    I was not rude at all in this thread, I have been polite and to the point, and I have also invited you to drop the arguments and join in the discussion. Please discuss the topic at hand only and drop the meta-arguments about the participants and their qualities.

    Theocrat is one of the 3 classes that can buff cavalry. I’d say the theocrat buff to cavalry is even better than the one of the dreadnought. What are your notions of cavalry power ?

    My notion of cavalry power is to be able to seriously buff cavalry as a type of unit, which the Theo can’t do. It can give all its units the devout trait and deal extra damage this way. It can increase the resistance of its units and boost their morale. It can heal them, and so on and so forth. It does not though reduce their price, increase their base stats, gives them extra abilities etc, etc. The devout trait in itself is not a sufficient balance to the Dread, where it was we wouldn’t have had this discussion at all, and neither were there so many threads concerned with this issue.

    Then again, the entire cavalry argument has been in my view exhausted. This is ultimately reducible to an imagined battle situation in which the Theo spammed a shit load of cavalry units and is fighting the Theo on open ground, with the Dread not having a very diversified army of his own. There are many alternative scenarios – quite common – in which cavalry doesn’t really make much of a difference, examples? Sea battles, Wall defense and Sieges (both cities and forts of course), battles on certain tiles that have constrictive geography etc.

    If Rogue has no problem against Necro, Theo for sure hasn’t one against Dread.

    I haven’t played that particular matchup yet so I can’t comment about how Rogue’s deal with Necro and vice-versa. The argument though doesn’t apply- Assuming the Rogue has no problem vs. Necro, as you (ironically?) say, this has no bearing on the situation with Theo vs. Dread. Assuming the Rogue actually has a serious problem vs. Necro (irony?), this also doesn’t apply – the existence of another IMBA does not preclude this also being an IMBA. I suggest you make a thread on Necro and Rogue, I promise to read your thoughts on the subject, lets please try to stick to discussions of the topic of this thread.

    @all

    Obviously Theo is not helpless completely and a competent player can win battles and vanquish opponents that use Dread. If this was not the case I assume that all (or at least most) of the participants here wouldn’t be arguing, because the disparity would be so glaring. Luckily the game isn’t broken and the balance is overall fairly good. The issue though is an assymetric matchup situation that is just too extreme. If you take two players of more or less equal skill, more or less equal luck and an average game to develop, the Theocrat is hard-countered by the Dread to a degree that is excessive. The Dread can hard-counter other classes, namely Sorcerer and Rogue, but really not to that extent. With the introduction of sabotage, more powerful Shadow-Stalkers, and the way Rogue can upgrade Racial units, this matchup is much more balanced then it used to be. The same is true with Sorcerer – the availability of an ultra-mobile T3 with phase is a serious game-changer, whereby the Sorcerer was too slow with its floating units to seriously oppose Dread Armies in later stages of the game, this has now been addressed and this matchup is more or less balanced. The same could be said of Goblins – they were unable to deal with machines at all as a race, and if you were unlucky enough to play say a Goblin WL against a Dread you were seriously f*cked. This is no longer the case. All of these are examples of balance- the game is diversified, Dread is somewhat passively nerfed without being conceptually or mechanic wise broken, and the overall experience is more fun and enjoyable.

    I would like to emphasize (and I know this is futile but still)- there is no point in arguing. If you think that the Dread vs. Theo is well balanced, great! You are probably though repeating the same arguments time and time again in multiple threads. The options are: take specializations that damage machines. Use racial t2 and t3 units (supports, cavalry and t3s) rather than class units to fight of dread. Avoid wall defense/siege and try to capture your enemy in the open. I and a bunch of other people here disagree with these points and have also explained why ad nauseum. You don’t have to be convinced, but if you don’t have anything else to contribute to the discussion except repeating these points and arguing them in increasing detail, then why bother really? As I stated earlier I am interested in discussing the possible solutions to this issue as well as innovative ideas. If you are interested in making proposals or commenting on them (civilly) you are welcome to do so. If you only want to rebuke me and other for making proposals, I will simply ignore what you are writing and stop communicating with you. I suggest the other participants who feel the same do the same.

    #212818

    Jolly Joker
    Member

    I would like to hear why Theo has a problem with Dread, but Rogue doesn’t have one against Necro.

    Rogue Class units are all handicapped: Assassins lose Blight stuff; Succubi lose Seduce; Bards lose Charm; both Stalkers severely lose damage and can be countered by comparatively cheap Banshees, before Reapers come into play …

    So why is Theo worse off against Dread than Rogue against Necro?

    #212819

    Bouh
    Member

    @quo : builders are not considered because they die to anything that looks at it. The point is that only the golem is actualy a resilient unit, but if you mass it to don’t show a weakness, you are still vulnerable to other things, because the golem is only good when doing the wall job for other units.

    As for canons, there are two cases : with engineer/hero reloading support and without this. Without this canons are worse than trebuchet. With support then your support are vulnerable to absolutely anything the theocrat can send to you.

    Dreadnought is a class that rely very highly on a good army composition and a good formation. The weaknesses are first the weak link in the army composition (heroes, engineers), and second anything that can bypass the formation.

    Another thing to consider is that the arguments saying that the dreadnought is strong work against absolutely all classes. Archdruid produced units are far more hindered against dreadnought than any theocrat unit ; rogue must rely on a T1 unit with 35hp against a class that specialize in AoE and torching low hp units from afar ; warlord must brute force the dreadnought and prey ; necromancer must gather expensive banshees to have any hope of survival, and the banshee will have to sacrifice herself to do it’s thing. Even the sorcerer will have to face the might of the dreadnought anti-magic.

    Dreadnought overall is a strong and versatile class. His armies don’t have many tactical weaknesses. They only have two as I already said : formation and frail support. They do have crippling strategic weaknesses though, and there lies the dreadnought weakness.

    And mind you that is true from the begining of the game : dreadnought always has been a strong class with glaring strategic weaknesses. During the first tournament the dreadnought was the second most used class, and yet the most failing class, and I explain this with apparent power (causing popularity, people take the classes they think is best in a tournament) that was stoped by skillful players who know how to exploit dreadnought weaknesses. Of course things were different back then. Back then the mighty flame tank was easier to get, and musketeers were far more powerful. And yet dreadnought was most often defeated eventhough he was *already* considered overpowered in many regards.

    Theocrat got far less damaging nerfs than the dreadnought got since then. And people still complain, and still for the same reason : they overlook strategy, focusing on tactic, and they trust their ability to overcome each and every single weakness the dreadnought have.

    But this is not objective observation of the class. Dreadnought do have glaring weaknesses. Your job when you play the class is to overcome them of course, and of course you can do it (the class would be unplayable otherwise), but the same is true for your oponents : his class has glaring weaknesses he will try to overcome, and he will try to hit you right where it hurts you the most. And the discussion can be endless on how one can do this or that against this or that, but that doesn’t mean one class is imbalanced or not. That is simply playing the game.

    Now, what are the objective facts of dreadnought vs theocrat matchup ? They both have powerful strengths and weaknesses in this matchup. Theocrat has an explosive early game ; dreadnought machines prevent some theocrat tools to work ; they both can counter what the other will bring. The match will revolve around the ability of each to scout the other and put his plan in place. And race and spe will transform the matchup very deeply.

    IMO, there is no theocrat combo who is harmless to the dreadnought. IMO none of the dreadnought strategies are failproof against the theocrat.

    Now if there is an imbalance, then there will be a failproof dreadnought strategy against the theocrat. And from the defender of this imbalance, I’d like to see what it is.

    Quo claim that golem/canon/builders armies are failproof. IMO they aren’t. I’d even say they are weak because they require a very slow start, are strategicaly slow and are vulnerable to flyers and cavalry. A basic theocrat strategy now is exalted martyrs, which provide the exalted required to kill canons and builders.

    The theocrat can rely on exalted stack for harassment and cavalry stack and trebuchet/crusader/support stack for wargaming. Mark heretic is the bread and butter of the theocrat. For combat, class spells will slay heroes, and specialization spells will deal with machines. For end game, I would go for specialization spells and armageddon and I’m sure I would be buzy researching stuff until the end of the game before having to research holy war, power of the word or wrath of god.

    #212821

    ExNihil
    Member

    I would like to hear why Theo has a problem with Dread, but Rogue doesn’t have one against Necro.

    Rogue Class units are all handicapped: Assassins lose Blight stuff; Succubi lose Seduce; Bards lose Charm; both Stalkers severely lose damage and can be countered by comparatively cheap Banshees, before Reapers come into play …

    So why is Theo worse off against Dread than Rogue against Necro?

    And I told you, I have no experience with this particular matchup but the existence of one IMBA matchup doesn’t effect this one. It could well be that the Necromancer / Rogue matchup needs attention but this isn’t the thread for this. Hence my suggestion that you make a new thread on the subject.

    #212824

    Bouh
    Member

    My notion of cavalry power is to be able to seriously buff cavalry as a type of unit, which the Theo can’t do. It can give all its units the devout trait and deal extra damage this way. It can increase the resistance of its units and boost their morale. It can heal them, and so on and so forth. It does not though reduce their price, increase their base stats, gives them extra abilities etc, etc. The devout trait in itself is not a sufficient balance to the Dread, where it was we wouldn’t have had this discussion at all, and neither were there so many threads concerned with this issue.

    This is biased toward summoning and production classes : theocrat and rogue don’t buff their units to the extent other classes do. But simply because it’s different doesn’t mean it’s not buffed and effective.

    The issue though is an assymetric matchup situation that is just too extreme. If you take two players of more or less equal skill, more or less equal luck and an average game to develop, the Theocrat is hard-countered by the Dread to a degree that is excessive.

    This is wrong.

    and the way Rogue can upgrade Racial units

    How are rogue racial units more upgraded than theocrat cavalry ?

    The same could be said of Goblins – they were unable to deal with machines at all as a race, and if you were unlucky enough to play say a Goblin WL against a Dread you were seriously f*cked. This is no longer the case. All of these are examples of balance- the game is diversified, Dread is somewhat passively nerfed without being conceptually or mechanic wise broken, and the overall experience is more fun and enjoyable.

    Goblins are a race. Theocrat is a class. In these theocrat vs dreadnought thread, people discard race when race will always provide a solution to the “problem”.

    I and a bunch of other people here disagree with these points and have also explained why ad nauseum. You don’t have to be convinced, but if you don’t have anything else to contribute to the discussion except repeating these points and arguing them in increasing detail, then why bother really?

    This is selfish. We all play the same game. If the change you are proposing made it into the game, MY playing experience will be altered because of YOUR fantasies. I refuse this and I hope you can understand this. What would you say if I was proposing a change you would considered stupid and damaging to your game experience ?

    #212826

    ExNihil
    Member

    @bouh

    First off thanks for discussing stuff, well written post with some salient arguments.

    Another thing to consider is that the arguments saying that the dreadnought is strong work against absolutely all classes. Archdruid produced units are far more hindered against dreadnought than any theocrat unit ; rogue must rely on a T1 unit with 35hp against a class that specialize in AoE and torching low hp units from afar ; warlord must brute force the dreadnought and prey ; necromancer must gather expensive banshees to have any hope of survival, and the banshee will have to sacrifice herself to do it’s thing. Even the sorcerer will have to face the might of the dreadnought anti-magic.

    I disagree with you. 1. AD has the ultimate answer to druid machines in the form of Horned Gods, which in late game make short work – from afar – of dread armies, and are probably the best tool to take fortified dread cities, even full of t4 Juggs. Before that stage the AD is more or less hard-countered by the Dread, but the disparity in teching speed makes the fielding of HG possible relatively early. 2. The strength of rogue is in its ability to (a) field a shitload of cheap very fast units that do serious damage to machine, (b) do excessive antipersonal damage to non-machine units, (c) shut down enemy spell-casting, (d) has a serious t3 unit that does damage to machines, (e) buff racial units by giving them backstab, which when combined with mobility makes them serious opponents. 3. The WL can buff unit defense and transform racial units into incredibly powerful melee damage dealers. Add to this the ability to move twice on the map with the use of magic, and you have here the only class that can outrun anyone and really make use of the Dread speed limitation. Of course this is without considering the class units themselves who can go tit-for-tat with golems, have high defense ratings and ultimately are highly mobile killing machines with extremely high HP. 4. The banshee costs 90CP to summon, this isn’t expansive at all. It also and especially effects non machine units, and if racial synergy is at all an argument then this really gives the Necro time and space to come in close and gut the Dread with elemental damage and physical damage.

    But this is not objective observation of the class. Dreadnought do have glaring weaknesses. Your job when you play the class is to overcome them of course, and of course you can do it (the class would be unplayable otherwise), but the same is true for your oponents : his class has glaring weaknesses he will try to overcome, and he will try to hit you right where it hurts you the most. And the discussion can be endless on how one can do this or that against this or that, but that doesn’t mean one class is imbalanced or not. That is simply playing the game.

    It has weaknesses, and it has in class ways of working around them and with them. That is the issue – the Theo doesn’t.

    Now, what are the objective facts of dreadnought vs theocrat matchup ? They both have powerful strengths and weaknesses in this matchup. Theocrat has an explosive early game ; dreadnought machines prevent some theocrat tools to work ; they both can counter what the other will bring. The match will revolve around the ability of each to scout the other and put his plan in place. And race and spe will transform the matchup very deeply.

    I disagree. By the latter mid-game there is a serious disparity in the ability of Theo to contend with Dread. The point is not to balance the game on situations in which you can rush (really not guaranteed to work vs. Dread as this class has a good early game, especially with dwarf), or to balance with a small map in mind, which means the mid-game arrives relatively early. On an average map with UG and a far starting location, especially with multiple opponents but even 1v1, you are often not able to engage some adversaries until they have well developed economies. This is as it should be. The issue is that even when both sides are well developed and properly leveled, the Theo doesn’t have the necessary tools to deal with Dread and this only gets worse with time. The use of t2 units with extended shelf-life (supports and cavalry) is not such a powerful schtick in the latter phases of an avg./med+UG game that extends into the 70-80+ turns range. The fact is this- Theo t3 and t4 units are severely hindered by the machine status, all in-class battlefield spells have no effect on machines, and convert doesn’t work. This leaves the only possible tool- devout units + mark of the heretic. This is insufficient, it is also not always possible to cast in time before hand, and evangelists are rarely ammassed in large enough quantities to mark an entire opposing stack, let alone 2,3 or 4 such stacks.

    The theocrat can rely on exalted stack for harassment and cavalry stack and trebuchet/crusader/support stack for wargaming. Mark heretic is the bread and butter of the theocrat. For combat, class spells will slay heroes, and specialization spells will deal with machines. For end game, I would go for specialization spells and armageddon and I’m sure I would be buzy researching stuff until the end of the game before having to research holy war, power of the word or wrath of god.

    See above for the devout/mark of the heretic. For the spells you mentioned – they have no effect vs. machines. Heroes can also be healed (it is not unheard of to have several healing heros + supports with some heal and perhaps a healing spell as well), and many units get mind control immunity when leveled or with items. These though are idle argument IMO and I’d rather discuss possible solutions.

    #212828

    Motasa
    Member

    You are probably though repeating the same arguments time and time again in multiple threads.

    Aren’t you doing just that?

    If you only want to rebuke me and other for making proposals, I will simply ignore what you are writing and stop communicating with you.

    If you only want to mute the nay-sayers and blatantly state in your first post you only welcome same minded people to discuss with you, I see no reason to elaborate my opinion to this “issue”.

    As I stated earlier I am interested in discussing the possible solutions to this issue as well as innovative ideas.

    It seems to me it isn’t fully agreed upon if the Dread vs. Theo match-up is an actual issue. Discussion of whether it is an issue or not should precede postulating something as an issue and discussing “solutions”. But apparently you have made up your mind, those who regard this match-up differently will be ignored by you.

    #212830

    ExNihil
    Member

    Aren’t you doing just that?

    Absolutely, and I have no wish to do so- I find it futile, boring and quite destructive.

    If you only want to mute the nay-sayers and blatantly state in your first post you only welcome same minded people to discuss with you, I see no reason to elaborate my opinion to this “issue”.

    I want people who wish to have a discussion not people who wish to bash heads. I especially want people with whom I don’t have to go to the meta-level of explaining what a discussion is and how to be civil.

    It seems to me it isn’t fully agreed upon if the Dread vs. Theo match-up is an actual issue. Discussion of whether it is an issue or not should precede postulating something as an issue and discussing “solutions”. But apparently you have made up your mind, those who regard this match-up differently will be ignored by you.

    And you are welcome to start a thread about this very issue and there argue about the question whether there is need of an argument to begin with. Since this is ultimately reducible to a yes/no position I see no point in this.

    Now, do you have anything to contribute on the subject of this thread?

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