Free Saurian Faction (now in the "Era of Strife"!)

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Free Saurian Faction (now in the "Era of Strife"!)

Postby Lizard » January 19th, 2008, 9:15 am

The Free Saurians
The Free Saurians are now featured in the Era of Strife, which also puts them in a Campaign context giving them finally a backstory.

Their Main origin is Firecloud Peak, a big mountain where they where former slaves of the Silver Drakes. Some small saurian tribes life shattered on the whole "Continent".

In the Time of great Strive they defeated their master and got free. Sages and Mystics ruled the Saurian society.

In the Era of Strive(as a timespan) the Saurians leave Firecloud and head South for the Swamps. I'll probably make a Campaign about this once the Map is finished. I already have some reasons and scenarios in my head.

In the original Post I wrote:The Free Saurians

After reading about the free goblins I made an own free faction.

My free saurians don't have a story yet, but they have an Era.
All not ugly :D images are from the Graphic Library or Mainline.
The image for the "Ice Heart" isn't stolen yet :roll: .
They have some stupid names like "Saurian knife thrower", because i'm not native English. There are already two eras: Free Saurians(+ Mainline) and Free Saurians + EE (my aim).
I'll upload them onto the 1.4 (beta) campaign server.
In the folder is an Free_Saurian_tree.htm you may guess what this is...

I don't know anything about balancing, so it's unbalanced.
The Teacher and the Wise should get the Battle Tutor ability, I have to ask irrevenant about this ability.

That's it.
:?: Do you have balancing ideas?
:?: Do you know any better names?
Attachments
Wise.png
This is the "Saurian Mystic" the head of them.
Wise.png (2.22 KiB) Viewed 7085 times
Last edited by Lizard on September 7th, 2008, 8:59 am, edited 4 times in total.
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Have a look at the Era of Strife, featuring Eltireans, Eventide, Minotaurs, Saurians and Triththa
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Postby Darth Jordius » January 19th, 2008, 4:38 pm

Hm, I'm nobody of consequence but this seems like it would be a fun faction to play, hopefully you can get some people to help you balance it. Out of curiosity, how many sprites do you have?
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Postby assassin » January 19th, 2008, 4:45 pm

SWEEEEEEEEET!! I love the saurian they are like some of my favorite units glad to see some one is make something out of them!
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Postby Lizard » January 19th, 2008, 6:37 pm

Darth Jordius wrote:Out of curiosity, how many sprites do you have?

Several... I added a little Image to this post.
26 + 6 from mainline = 32, but I have 33 Units...
To see more of them in Game, you can Activate the Free Saurian heroes era. you have to remove an ~ in ../saurian_era/eras/saurian_aoh.cfg~. I disabled it, because as I already said it isn't a bit balanced, and the aoh is even worse. :(

I've got irrevenant's Battle Tutor ability, so I'll include it. Also the races are messy some are race=free_saurian others are race=lizard.

I'll try to make the frozen soul from scratch, because the actual image don't lock as a flying soul and I also want to change his attack into a ranged one.

You see this little spider-rider in the bottom-left corner? I'm not sure if I should keep it, but it is the only lv 1 which have Poison (Assasine, the second neighbor of the lv 0 trainee, and a "poisonous" trainee are the other Units.)

The "trainee" is mend as a trainee which could gain several traits; they are:
DEFENSIVE
HELPFULL
LOYAL_AND_MORE
POISONOUS
GUARD
ASSASINE
VERY_QUICK
REGENERATIV
DEXTEROUS
(the big spellings aren't scream, but copies from source)
I may remove some advancements, and probably add a "apprentice mage"(lv zero) which advance to an mage or teacher.
Attachments
Tree_0.0.2.1.png
0.0.2.1 tree
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Last edited by Lizard on January 20th, 2008, 3:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby TL » January 19th, 2008, 7:42 pm

Cool stuff. There have been a couple various sarian campaigns/factions floating around before, I think; you might want to do a search for old forum threads to compare notes.

My comments: Yow! 10 recruitable units, plus 1 non-recruitable unit and a slew of upgrade branches? That's quite a lot. 9 recruitables is already more than any mainline faction. Moreover, there's relatively little difference among the units you've got here; there's some slight variation in movetypes, which is a nice start, but personally I would recommend trimming the number of units down a bit and working on making the remainder a bit more distinct.

Moving right down the line: why is the Saurian Fencer so expensive? It is a substandard melee unit with a poorer movetype than normal saurians. You could possibly cut it down to as low as half the current cost without breaking anything. Certainly nothing higher than 14 gold would be justifiable. It does have a very nice level 2, but nothing earth-shattering. It's also a pretty bland unit in general and doesn't stand out very well against the other melee-oriented saurians, of which this faction has many. Considering the number and variety of other units available, you could probably get rid of it entirely. More units generally do not make a faction better.

The Lizard Rider may be slightly too expensive as well, but it's closer to the right ballpark. Having two blade attacks is redundant, though. If at all possible I would recommend tweaking the sprite to wield a hammer rather than an axe, and giving it an impact and blade attack (this would help justify its current high cost a bit). Actually this would probably be entirely necessary to make this play nicely with mainline MP; with only blade, pierce, and cold attacks on its recruitable units, the faction as a whole is pretty helpless against undead. It would also be cool to play around with the movetype and resistances some: one would expect a dinosaur-sized beast like that to move a bit differently than the ordinary small, scurrying saurians. Giving it better than normal damage resistances but worse than normal terrain defense would help diversify the faction a bit.

The Saurian Mage is also very expensive; it costs more than the standard human mage, for a weaker attack. It does have more HP and a better movetype, so maybe a slightly higher cost is justified, but I'd shave a gold or two off the cost all the same. The explicit linking of saurians to ice magic clashes somewhat with mainline, too; the "cold" type of mainline saurian magic has become mostly incidental in the last several versions. Saurians are based on ectothermic lizards and aren't very fond of cold. The upgrade tree for the mage looks pretty interesting, although the healer and elementalist may be a bit underpowered considering the high price and XP requirements to attain them (compare to the 16 gold mainline saurian augur, which has a very low XP requirement to upgrade to the soothsayer/oracle--which are almost as powerful as the healer and elementalist here). The frosty (a name which could use some work) is a very neat concept with the freezing ability, though, which I think probably justifies the frosty's relatively low power.

The knife thrower--not actually a bad name, other than the small spelling error--is again slightly overpriced, although it makes for a very solid mixed fighter. The assassin upgrade may be slightly overpowered, though, as it gains poison on both attacks as well as a pretty substantial boost to its ranged. 5-4 would be more reasonable for a level 2 unit's poison ranged attack.

Saurian rider looks interesting, and here I think the cost might be fully justified: it's a very fast scout, excellent movetype, a bit fragile but with a poison attack. Seeing as orcish assassin costs 17 gold for a slower unit than poisons, 18 gold for the spider rider is too low if anything (but I'd leave it for now, it looks like it may be right). It also has a distinct movetype that varies from the rest of the saurians, which is good. If anything I would mix things up even more here and bump hills back down to the standard 50% defense, so that the spider rider is distinctly better than most saurians in forest but distinctly worse in hills. The leech ability is a nice touch, but perhaps a bit overcomplicated; level 0 units are relatively rare so it doesn't come into play all that often. I would suggest getting rid of it and having a level 2 upgrade for the spider that would have the regular drain ability. I would definitely recommend keeping it, though; it's one of the most unique units in the faction, and also a badly-needed scout unit (the lizard rider's 7 MP is good, but doesn't quite cut it).

(Actually, why does the saurian rider have to be a rider at all? It doesn't seem that the rider does that much--leaving the saurian off and using it as a plain spider might make more sense. It seems a little odd that the saurians would use two completely different variety of mounts, giant lizards and giant spiders both--so maybe have it so they use the lizards as mounts and the spiders as attack animals only).

Saurian skirmisher is a standard unit, so no comment.

Saurian spearman: holy cow, this guy is hugely overpowered for 16 gold. I think having another spear unit is redundant with skirmishers around, but if you're bound and determined to keep this guy around, you really ought to jack the price way up. The spearman here should be closer to the 20 gold mark.

I'm not sure what the "battle trainer" ability is, so no comment on the teacher yet.

The trainee is an interesting idea, but I'm not sure it's feasible to balance such a heavily randomized unit. It's also quite powerful. Having a recruitable level 0 unit around is itself a strategic boon which is often overlooked, and even without the special traits these guys are pretty respectably powerful for level 0s.

The "swamp saurian" is interesting, although I see from its movetype it's actually oriented to open water just as much or arguably more than it is oriented towards swamp. I gather that it's intended as a water unit, which is good because having a water-capable aquatic/flying unit is practically necessary, but I would recommend repurposing the sprites and names towards a more aquatic/amphibious bent; I really can't see a bipedal lizard swimming around in water with all that armor. The cost here might be about right as 70% defense is a pretty nice edge (not to mention 20% pierce resistance, great against mermen), although bumping it down 1 or 2 gold might not hurt.



It's an interesting start and has a few cool concepts behind it, but it'll take a lot of work to get polished, IMHO. I'd be happy to offer some assistance on unit artwork if you need it, though. I do think there's some pretty good potential here.
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Postby Lizard » January 19th, 2008, 9:48 pm

THANKS to TL :D
I now made 0.0.2 including most of this. This changed:
Code: Select all
-Saurians generally worse in Forest def 50% instead of 60%

-Delete the Fencher in FS+default and FS+EE.
-Lizard Rider line have own movetype.
  -Tail instead of Fangs, impact instead of blade
  -dagger do pierce damage
-Mage get cheaper
  -lowered XP 45 to 40
-Teacher get more expensive
  -Teacher and wise have the Battle Tutor ability
-Nive Thrower renamed: knive thrower
  -get two HP
  -Assassine's knive throwing decreased 5-5 to 5-4
-Spearman's cost raised from 16 to 19,
  -HP decreased to 36 (was 40)
  -Decreased Warrior damage 10-4 to 9-4
-Rider changet into Spider
  -Get worse in hills
  -wasn't changed in Forest
  -no weak drain


Actually, why does the saurian rider have to be a rider at all? It doesn't seem that the rider does that much--leaving the saurian off and using it as a plain spider might make more sense. It seems a little odd that the saurians would use two completely different variety of mounts, giant lizards and giant spiders both--so maybe have it so they use the lizards as mounts and the spiders as attack animals only

You got a point there, actually the spider rider ride an ant :oops: , but now it's just a single spider.

There have been a couple various saurian campaigns/factions floating around before, ...

That's a good Idea! I already found one by db0.
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Postby TL » January 19th, 2008, 10:00 pm

Whoops, heh! I thought the "spider" looked a bit funny, but with the saurian on its back I couldn't tell that there was supposed to be a middle segment there (one of the major anatomical differences between ants and spiders). Either giant ant or spider is fine.

Anyhow, that sounds like a good start for now. The main thing to do now would be to playtest it online as much as possible, once you get it updated on the campaign server. I lurk on the 1.3 server quite a bit, so if you ever catch me when I'm free I'd be happy to take it for a live test.
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Postby assassin » January 19th, 2008, 11:41 pm

ME TOO
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Postby Lizard » January 20th, 2008, 3:41 pm

yes, Play testing might be a problem, because we don't live in the same time zone. But I added you as Friends to see you immediately.

I have stolen the magic servant from the EoM to use it here.i called this version 0.0.2.1 , because there is just a graphic difference. In 0.0.3 I'll change his stats. (I attach this, when I get my USB-stick with 7-z back. It just had fallen behind some Wardrobe :( )

Also a fire attack instead of an cold attack would make the saurians better against undeads and Woses. A also may give the Swamp Guard/Margrave an spear attach only & shield defeat only, as the Dark Elven Noble.

I'll now test it against AIs

P.S. Wardrobe was Googles idea, i don't know if this is the right word.
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Postby ael193 » January 21st, 2008, 4:09 pm

A while ago i frankenstined a Unit you might be able to use, its one of my early atempts, so it needs some polishing.
Attachments
suarian-swamp-rider.png
Saurian on a Hippo, with crappy shading
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Postby Lizard » January 21st, 2008, 4:59 pm

the hippo might be a good water unit, but as TL said I already have many units. I might add an Tarantula, and an other branch for the spider, to not let it left an lost level level 1. (It has several ALMA options now, but this is unkiss)

I already found the first bug. Do not let the Saurian Trainee advance! It tries to get an Nive thrower, but it should be an Knife thrower. Actually i renamed it to knive thrower which isn't better.

the balancing thing: I let a bunch of AIs do some fight here are the results.
Code: Select all
         FS vs Undead
CotB   1  :  1
DoD    0  :  1
CB     0  :  1
WC     0  :  2
--------------
all    1  :  5


this is quite clearly.
the Drakes are a problem:
Code: Select all
         FS vs Drakes
CotB    1  :  0
DoD     1  :  0
CB      0  :  1
wesb.   5  :  2
t.Free. 3  :  4
---------------
all     10 :  7


I don know what this means... but an fire attack for the teacher might help against UD.
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Postby gotrek860 » January 21st, 2008, 5:18 pm

Just an opinion, don't you think instead of a mounted saurian you should have some big fast saurian on its own?
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Postby TL » January 23rd, 2008, 2:21 am

Don't trust AI results for balancing; I imagine if you ran the same tests using standard factions against each other you'd get results that were just as wildly varying. The problem is with the AI, not with the factions themselves.
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Postby megane » January 23rd, 2008, 3:54 am

Well, I thought I might try my hand at making up names.

First off, there're a couple misspellings:

Assasine > Assassin
Elementarist > Elementalist
Knive Thrower > Knife Thrower
Fencher > Fencer

The rest of these are just my opinion; what sort of theme were you going for? (the mainline saurians are sort of creepy and cabalistic, but yours seem a little "nicer"):

Frosty > Frost Mage, or perhaps just Sorcerer or something?
Healer, Holy > Heirophant (one of my favorite words), Cantor, Cleric
Killer > well, Slayer maybe? Diablerist? Killer seems awfully generic, and "Saurian Killer" reads as "someone who kills Saurians" :P
Teacher, Wise > Sage, Mystic

Hmm, hope that helps /swt
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Postby assassin » January 24th, 2008, 6:28 pm

Ok I downloaded the free saurian faction today and played them on 1.3.14 I LOVE THEM but there is one error I found the trainee tries to upgrade to the Nive thrower so when you lvl one of your trainees the game ends because it can't find the unit Nive thrower! as to balancing well I have only played one game so far so not much help there but one suggestion lower the ranged dmg of the saurian healer and adding 1 strike to it's melee weapon might be a good idea. <<<just my thoughts.
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