New Faction: Tamers - added to MP server - desire feedback!

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deoxy
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New Faction: Tamers - added to MP server - desire feedback!

Post by deoxy » July 29th, 2007, 8:59 pm

OK, I took what meager feedback I got on my ideas (in a Dragon faction) and made a full faction. Things to note:

-Yes, the dragons all have the same graphics. It doesn't bother me, but if I get some feedback that people like some of my ideas, I could be convinced to make some graphics (or at least try again - I suck at graphics)

-When you complete a game, there is an error message (something about "unable to deserialize empty unit" or something). It doesn't cause any in-game problems, but if someone knows what's causing it, I'd love to hear it

-I need to make a "warrior" type unit, but for now, it gets spearmen (yay, generic) - if it does well, I'll try making a custom one

-I would like to add one or two more beasts that they have tamed (besides slimes and dragons/hydras), probably one watery type; open for suggestions

-the difference between Hatchlings and Noble Hatchlings is in the traits they get

-I would like to add an AMLA for dragons (or possibly just another who unit?) to switch over to ice instead of fire... I might get to it, eventually. A switch to "holy" (or arcane in Dev) might be nifty, too.

-The upgrade to "Swallow whole" is broken - it loses the berserk-like ability and becomes "magical" instead. I've reported this as a bug, but I think the Dev branch would probably handle it OK (and I'm thinking about switching over for that and some other functions I want)

OK, besides that, the faction seems to dominate at low XP requirements; at high XP (above 100%) it seems to do poorly. Also, it fairs poorly against factions with lots of magic users (as it relies more on not getting hit than most).

Let me know what you think.
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Coaxke
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Post by Coaxke » July 30th, 2007, 11:15 pm

i have to think that it is much better than your other attempt at a faction, but still i have noticed some strange things-
1- There are 2 units (Dragon Hatchling & Noble Hatchling) that are exactly the same! there is no difference except for their name & 1 of them costs 8 gold while the other costs 25 gold!
2- You should deffinately up the Dragon Hatchling and Noble Hatchling's attack damage, number of attacks, and their HP, having these stats so low makes the units practically useless
3- Again, the Noble Hatchling costs 25 gold! i would never pay 25 gold for a lvl 0 unit with terrible stats.
These are all the things i have noticed at this point, i'll give you more feedback if i notice anything else
i like the idea of a dragon-based faction since the only 1 i have seen is the Drakes so i think this could turn out to be a great faction if you could get help with art & the things i just listed above.
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MDG
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Post by MDG » July 30th, 2007, 11:38 pm

FSR_Coaxke wrote:1- There are 2 units (Dragon Hatchling & Noble Hatchling) that are exactly the same! there is no difference except for their name & 1 of them costs 8 gold while the other costs 25 gold!
Deoxy wrote:-the difference between Hatchlings and Noble Hatchlings is in the traits they get
I suspect the different traits for this faction are more powerful than for most units and therefore justify the costs involved.

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Coaxke
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Post by Coaxke » July 31st, 2007, 12:00 am

MDG wrote:
Deoxy wrote:-the difference between Hatchlings and Noble Hatchlings is in the traits they get
I suspect the different traits for this faction are more powerful than for most units and therefore justify the costs involved.
that post wuz from the dragon faction that deoxy made, not the faction this topic was meant to be about. apparently u have not downloaded the EETamers era and saw that there is no trait difference
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deoxy
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Post by deoxy » July 31st, 2007, 4:20 am

FSR_Coaxke wrote:
MDG wrote: I suspect the different traits for this faction are more powerful than for most units and therefore justify the costs involved.
that post wuz from the dragon faction that deoxy made, not the faction this topic was meant to be about. apparently u have not downloaded the EETamers era and saw that there is no trait difference
Not to be rude (I love feedback, and I appreciate you taking the time to look at my stuff), but apparently YOU have not... the traits are indeed QUITE different!

To summarize: Hatchlings have a list of possible traits including all the usual plus dexterous, evasive (+5% defense on all terrains), tough (+5% to all resistances), vicious (+1 melee attack), and volley (+1 ranged attack).

Noble Hatchlings always get the same two traits: loyal (which doesn't matter at level 0, obviously) and Paragon... which is, essentially, ALL the normal traits plus ALL the traits I mentioned above. That is, you are making an INVESTMENT (which is a bit of a risk) - if you level that unit (which is not too hard, as it has 85% defense on some terrains), you get a level one unit that is quite powerful and has no upkeep.

I am certainly open to the idea that I have not balanced it correctly (that's why I want feedback... and why I posted the original EEDragons era - I wanted feedback on this exact concept before I took it much further), but do take the time to understand it, please, before you just say it sucks (if you still think it sucks after you DO understand it, well, back to the drawing board for me, I guess).

Edit: Almost forgot... Thanks for the feedback! Please keep it coming... this is my first attempt, and I probably have some significant balancing mistakes.
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Coaxke
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Post by Coaxke » July 31st, 2007, 2:37 pm

none of us ever said it sucks, deoxy :shock:
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deoxy
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Post by deoxy » August 1st, 2007, 12:52 am

FSR_Coaxke wrote:none of us ever said it sucks, deoxy :shock:
Heh, ok then...

what did you think about the actual Tamer unit tree? Low damage, relatively high survivability, skirmisher, slow capability at melee or range. Too good (too much slow that hits too well). not good enough (too little damage)?

And the Medic tree - is the medic too expensive? Is the War Witch (with magic attacks of multiple damage types at ranged and melee) too good, even though it does a little less damage than the archmage or comparable magic users? Is the seer too over the top?

I wonder if the hydra is too hard to kill (high hp + regen)...

I don't expect anyone to get to the upper Dragon levels (it goes to *5*, with several AMLAs as well), so balancing them is really almost a moot point... I'm hoping to make a campaign at some point, though.

About your comment on the hatchling... I rather like it as is (highly expendable, good movement, skirmisher, good upgrades), but if you think it is too useless, perhaps lowering the XP requirement would help? I am also working on an ability to help it be a little more survivable as well, but I'm having a little trouble (going to go post on the WML workshop next).

Thanks for being willing to give me feedback, people - I appreciate it, and keep it coming!
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Post by Free » August 2nd, 2007, 2:30 pm

First off, in my opinion, there really shouldn't be 80% defense anywhere in MP factions; it just makes for unbalanced situations because magic units become really useful, while factions with no magic struggle greatly...and there also shouldn't be any 45%, 55%, 65% etc. defense too, as I see no other main factions containing those values.

Also, some interesting traits and abilities; not quite sure what to think.

Hatchling: Really, really weak unit. 80% defense may seem nice, but against a dark adept it is absoultely doomed due to its HP, as even if the adept misses both strikes, the Hatchling returns minimal damage.

Noble Hatchling: A waste of money at this point. Yes, I see the difference in traits, but it really isn't worth 25 gold! (Also, Loyal is useless until the unit levels)

Slime Puddle: I am quite opposed to the high resistances here, but 2 MP does't really get you anywhere. 4 MP is required for a good unit basically. (Also, Melee should be listed before ranged attack and I don't see how this units fits in the faction)

Medic: Pretty well-balanced.

Tamer Trainee: Cunning—absouteley not! if you want a balanced faction. Offensively, cunning 100% guarentees (rounding up :) )that a 30% or 40% defense opposing unit is slowed. (Oh, and it does guarentee that 20% is hit 4 strait times) unitsWhat's even more is that this attack is melee and has over 1 hit...and this unit also has a ranged slow!...and the unit has skirmmisher. Tamer Trainee is a Steppe Hunter on steroids. Bring the strikes down to 2 for both melee and ranged, up the price, and lose the cunning is my advice.

Overall, this faction looked really weak to me, but I found out that if you use a lot of Tamer Trainees, you can win easily. No unit does any real damage, so you really have to utilize slow to get kills. I recommend improving both Hatchling's damage, and HP. Same thing with the Slime Puddle, except lower the resistances.

I also strongly suggest that you lower some defenses here and there, because factions without magic will struggle. If you don't lower the defenses, atleast make poor resistances so that they don't overpower.

I played a quick game of Elves vs Tamers. I found that I basically used Tamer Trainees and Spearmen with an occasional other unit thrown in. Skillful doesn't seem to do anything. Yeah, Tamers are just way too hard to kill, they need changes more than anything else.

deoxy
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Post by deoxy » August 2nd, 2007, 9:48 pm

First, thanks for taking the time to try out my stuff! Yay, feedback!

Defense: is there a rule somewhere about having defense percents at even 10s? I don't see the point... help me out, here. (Actually, many of the 5%s come from the "evasive" trait.) And the 80%... see below.

Hatchling: your critique is almost exactly what I wanted: not very offensive, easy to kill if hit, but very hard to hit (without magic and/or marksman). For balance reasons, I think I may need to up the damage a bit and/or lower the XP requirement. About the damage: higher level dragons give some pretty serious bonuses to Hatchlings (double damage in some cases), and I originally allowed recruitment of those, too (at a high cost). Since those aren't available for recruitment now, I probably need to revisit the damage output.

Noble Hatchling: This is an experiment; I wanted to err on the side of caution (too expensive) to begin with - I guess I succeeded on that (ha ha). If the basic Hatchling did an extra point of damage all around, what do you think the Noble Hatchling would be worth? 20? Keep in mind that, if you manage to level it, that investment pays off big time, so it can't be too cheap, either... A Monstrous Hydra (level 3) or Greater Dragon (level 3) with the Paragon feat is a nasty thing!

Slime Puddle: my intent was to create a fairly cheap blocker/village holder, but I see your point regarding MP. On larger maps (I usually play test on small maps to save time), I bet that 2 MP really does make it practically worthless... but I don't want to be as fast as everything else, either. Would 3 still be too slow? At level 1, I gave it 4 MP, but levelling is not a good balancing factor in skirmish, I see. As to resistances/HP... um, if I double the HP and halve the resistances (you suggested raising HP and lowering res), there is essentially NO change to the unit at all (that is, everything does twice as much damage... and it has twice as much HP to take those hits). I intentionally gave it lower HP to compensate for high resistances. The only game effect is that healing has a larger effect on it, which was the point. I DID notice the ranged/melee thing... but they are in the right order in the file (I'm 90% sure, since I went looking for that myself), so I don't know why it is switched... any suggestions you have regarding that would be helpful.

Medic: Yay! I got one right! Did you look at the upgrades at all?

Trainee: Over the top? OK, I'll work on that. I added Cunning after the fact, and I think your advice to lower the number of strikes is dead right. I think I'll dial Cunning back to 15%, but leave it, or perhaps make it an improved Marksman (or maybe just go with Marksman) - not sure yet... they need something to help them hit Hatchlings, which they are supposed to be good at catching. I was trying to balance all their good points with low damage output, but I guess I didn't do it enough.

Skillful: you must have downloaded it the first day - I noticed that shortly after and fixed it (version 0.1.1a). It adds 10% to hit on both offense and defense. Is that too much? Maybe I'll adjust that to 50% or better on both, to avoid getting too high a hit percentage. What do you think?

Thanks for your input - I'll definitely be incorporating some of your suggestions!

PS: the thing I felt most difficult to do was set the XP requirements properly. Any advice you have on that would be appreciated (though with the balance of certain units still in flux, I suppose the XP requirements would be about the last thing to worry about, eh?).
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Free
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Post by Free » August 4th, 2007, 8:40 pm

Using defenses at even 10s just makes the game a whole lot simpler—especially when trying to balance out a faction. 5% doesn't make that much of a difference, but all mainline factions use even 10s and I think all extended era factions do too. If you really want to use 5s, I'm not going to stop you. And like I said earlier, 80% will favor magical units and destory no-magical ones.

Both Hatchlings: I noticed that paragon is really nasty when you level up. I also noticed that the level 1 units are actually a lot more useful since they have a lot higher HP and good resistances while keeping good defense. When a unit levels up, the unit shouldn't upgrade too much and the way I see it, Hatchlings are just recruited to level up. Period. They don't do any damage so their skirmisher is quite useless, they don't plague, they don't do anything really. When they level up, they both become nasty units, quite overpowered at this point. I would say to get rid of regeneration for sure, that ability is reserved for bad defense units. Then lower defense or lower HP slightly, because they are presently too hard to kill.

Slime Puddle: In theory, halving resistances and doubling hp would do just about nothing, except of course for healing. But due to rounding issues, halving resitances and doubling hp does in fact make the unit easier to kill. (I can give you an example if you don't understand this). As for movement, 3 MP might be okay...but I'd stll say 4 would be more appropriate. If you raise the HP, you could give it one trait, so any given slime puddle would end up with either quick or resilent.

In my .cfg ranged is listed before melee.

Medic: For some reason I missed the high defenses last time, so you should probably up the price or lower the HP a bit.

Witch: Holy moly! 4 attack types? 3 Magic, and 1 slows...my, my, my... :shock: Get rid of 2 of the attacks, then we'll talk.

Healer: Lose the cunning or slow. If you get rid of the cunning, lower the HP about 20. If you get rid of the slow, up the ranged damage a few and lower the HP about 15.

Trainee: Cunning is partially the reason this unit is really good. Cunning/Marksman/Magic + slow is really overpowered because it allows the units to slow any opposing unit at will. (Or pretty much ;) ) This would really limit the other team, because they would lose the effectiveness of their heavy damage units. I would say to just lose the barbed net all together. The Trainee just has to many special powers right now.

If you still want to use cunning somewhere, you could, just not with slow.

Skillful: Adding 10% shouldn't be too much, just don't use it with slow :)

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Post by ezysquire » October 23rd, 2007, 3:32 am

Well, I played with the tamers faction for the first time today and they need a lot of work i think.

Essentially the core problem is that the tamer trainees are far too strong. Spam recruiting of them almost guarantees you a win.

The group of players that were playing with them quite liked some of the concepts and the theme of the side was nice, but the faction is just simply too strong. If you care to discuss it with me, pm me.

deoxy
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Post by deoxy » November 13th, 2007, 9:59 pm

Thanks for the response, ezysquire!

Yes, it has been pointed out to me (and I agree) that the trainee is too good. I've nerfed it some in the development version, but life has called me away from this wonderful game for a while, so little further work has been done.

Thanks for the encouraging "concepts and themes" comment. When I have more time, I'll try to contact you again.
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deoxy
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Post by deoxy » November 15th, 2007, 2:37 pm

Darn it, reading this post got me to pull it all up again last night, when I really should have just gone to bed...

Anyway, I've modified the Trainee some more (NERF), added a level 0 Recruit, and realized/remembered that Hydras need a serious hit with the Nerf stick. Dragons maybe a little, too, but not as bad (they do get more powerful than Hydras, but only after leveling up more and using a LOT more XP).

I think I need to add a level 1 pre-Witch in there, so they can recruit something with Magic instead of having to level a Medic. I don't know exactly... I like the progression I have, but the faction needs something that lets then hit sometimes.

Anyway, thanks for getting me sucked back in...
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deoxy
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Post by deoxy » November 29th, 2007, 11:28 pm

I think I found the perfect nerf for Hydras - Swarm. In fact, it's so strong of a nerf that I may have to remove some of the other nerfs that I put in first. I applied it to both the fire breath ranged attack and the bite attack.

I played some more with it last night, and I found that they really need a way to do damage before stuff has levelled... if you can level a couple of hatchlings or a medic into a witch, you're golden, and you can start putting some serious hurt on people, but before that... um, damage output? What damage output? It gets REALLY hard to actually kill anything (proper use of trainees can leave your opponent having a hard time killing your stuff as well).

I think I'll start a new thread on this once I've got things re-balanced.

I also had an idea for that one last unit I wanted to add...
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