The Deep Elves

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The Deep Elves

Postby Kwandulin » December 24th, 2016, 12:42 pm

This is the development thread for the Deep Elves - or Tiefenelfen, a multiplayer faction designed to be played within the default era.

The Deep Elves
"The Deep Elves live in a place called the Underearth, that is located in the realms of the far east, a land, where both sun and moon never set and day equals night. The Underearth is a huge earthly dome within the depths of the far east. Its vastness has often lead people to saying that the Underearth itself is an own world. Lonesome wanderers often report about seeing wandering stars inside the caves of the Underearth, but what do they know about a place, where the sky's the earth?

The beings living inside these darkest depths are of elvish origin, yet their prolonged exposure to the darkness led to various adaptations: while some adapted to the darkness, becoming the shadows themselves, the body of a few former elves resisted against the influence of the darkness, which resulted in them emerging light.

The elves that once descended into the depths had lost their faith in nature, believing that nature is just as influenced by the great things beyond as the elves themselves. Searching for exactly these things beyond, the ancestors of the Deep Elves discovered the works and scriptures of an ancient perished civilisation. Great vaults built by the Deep Elves are since then gracing the darkest depths, inside are shrines of Shassagoth - a being described in those scriptures and whose return they are awaiting."
- from the race description.

Unit Tree
Get an overview of all the faction in the unit database: Default + Deep Elves
underearthen-elves-faction.png
Unit Overview

The unit sprites are mostly edits of the work of Jetrel ([1]), but also of Zerovirus([1], [2], [3]) and neoriceisgood ([1], [2]). The proto-portraits (see some of them below) are my work.


Gameplay facets and intentions
1. New abilities
The faction features three new abilities: (a) Aspect of the Hunter, (b) Stardust and (c) Spurt. Aspect of the Hunter is the ability of the Bloodmaiden. Whenever she kills another unit, she deals additional damage against further units of that unit type. When fighting against this faction, spamming a single unit type is a rather bad idea. Stardust is the ability of the Lidh, she receives one less attack strike whenever she is attacked, making her practically immune against the Dwarvish Thunderer's ranged attack, halving the maximum damage output of grunts and reducing the maximum damage output of skeletons by 33%. Spurt is the characteristic ability of the Nightmaiden. Whenever she attacks at night, she regains 2 movement points, allowing her to move again. As such, she can pressure enemies at night without taking too many risks herself.

2. Three alignments
The Deep Elves feature units of all three major alignments. While the bulk of the army is neutral (Bloodmaiden, Priestress, Minotaur), a lawful (Lidh) or chaotic unit (Nightmaiden) can (and should) be brought in for support. The Deep Elves therefore have no time of day when they can't attack, yet in order to win a skirmish at a certain time of day, they need to reorganize their armies and make use of the non-neutral units.


3. No true scout but high mobility
The faction does not have a true scout. Instead, most units have a high base number of movement points (but not as high as a true scout) that allows them to quickly move around. Their high mobility also allows them to reorganize their army.

4. Bad at defending
The faction is intended to be bad at defending villages or areas of a map. Their low pool of hitpoints makes it unfavorable to be the one who gets attacked. When playing as the Deep Elves, one should make sure to be the one deciding when a skirmish takes place. The high mobility of the units support that intention.

5. Mostly arcane/blade, no easily accessible pierce damage Most units got either blade or arcane, impact is rare and pierce damage is only accessible via the expensive minotaur. The focus lies on hit and run tactics to slowly wear down the tougher enemy units.


The faction is accessible from BfW v.1.12 add-ons manager, is included in the Default+Deep Elves era and is still under development. It is intended to be balanced within the default era. If those of you, who got a clue about multiplayer and balancing, could help me out with the balancing, that'd be great!
Last edited by Kwandulin on June 24th, 2017, 5:31 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: The Underearthen Elves

Postby Crow_T » December 24th, 2016, 3:09 pm

Wow, good stuff so far, I'll be keeping an eye on this. These units have a certain "Wesnoth 2.0" feel to them if that makes sense :D
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Re: The Underearthen Elves

Postby Kwandulin » December 26th, 2016, 7:03 am

Thanks, I guess!

Released v.0.1.2
- added the Tyr'Hai Rider line (see first post)
- added Seer portrait
- added the 'Lithic Idol' ability to Minotaurs: they turn to stone at day, regenerating 10 hitpoints per turn then. At dawn, they are unpetrified again.

The Tyr'Hai Rider completes the list of recruitable units. The units of this line have the 'trample' ability that allow them to (a) attack an enemy without fearing retaliation and (b) moves them over the attacked unit. These units can therefore easily overrun enemy lines or hinder single enemy units from fleeing. Unfortunately, they are rather squishy and expensive again, so they are one of the high risk/high reward kind of unit types. The Tyr'Hai Cavalry has the charge weapon special, while the Black and Shadow Tyr'hai like to feast on poor goblins and grunts.
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Re: The Underearthen Elves

Postby beetlenaut » December 27th, 2016, 5:40 pm

This looks interesting, but English name doesn't work. "Underearthen" is not a word, and sounds very awkward to a native speaker. The actual adjectives are "underground" or "subterranean", but both sound more technical than interesting. I suggest "deep elves" or "cavern elves".
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Kwandulin » December 27th, 2016, 7:04 pm

Right, thanks for the clarification and suggestion; they're now called 'deep elves'.
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby FaeLord » December 27th, 2016, 11:11 pm

Very nice. Looking forward to future incarnations of this faction.
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Trayanee » March 1st, 2017, 7:25 pm

Nice faction. I like it a lot. Are there any new versions on the way? I would love for it to have at least one more lvl 3 upgrade and maybe even lvl 2 Mino. Are you possibly going to update Tyr'Hai sprites with a little more detail?
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Kwandulin » March 2nd, 2017, 10:51 am

Thanks! Yes, a new version is planned. I'd like to add a L3 Nightmaiden, as the Nightmaiden line is intended to by symmetrical to the Lidh line. The Mino is more or less a L1.5 unit, so I'm not sure if making a L2 Mino would add much. The Tyr'Hai sprites probably won't be updated; I like their color block style
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Trayanee » March 3rd, 2017, 7:58 am

Ok, thanks for the info. Looking forward to new version. About the Mino, I understand its purpose. I just mostly play RPG/Survival/Campaign style scenarios, where your units usually advance a little more than in classic PvP, so I always like for units to have deep advancement options.
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby ForestDragon » March 3rd, 2017, 8:26 am

Kwandulin wrote:Thanks! Yes, a new version is planned. I'd like to add a L3 Nightmaiden, as the Nightmaiden line is intended to by symmetrical to the Lidh line. The Mino is more or less a L1.5 unit, so I'm not sure if making a L2 Mino would add much. The Tyr'Hai sprites probably won't be updated; I like their color block style

well, if Mino is a L1.5 unit, then maybe you could make him have an advancement, but require a lot of exp
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Kwandulin » March 3rd, 2017, 7:36 pm

Alright, I've uploaded an updated version that includes the Baroness of the Night, the L3 advancement of the Nightstalker. The Tyr'Hai cavalry has now a right order of the attacks and the Tyr'Hai can't use their trample on defense anymore (which automatically rendered all attacking melee enemies useless).
A L2 Minotaur didn't quite work out
Attachments
baroness.png
Baroness of the Night
baroness.png (3.38 KiB) Viewed 1828 times
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Vulpine » March 21st, 2017, 6:24 pm

I love the faction, and have been using them in 1.12. IMHO they are well-designed and fun to play.

I did notice one problem though, with the Tyr'hai Rider unit, while attacking ulfserkers...
The Tyr'hai literally runs over the ulfserker repeatedly, and the poor dwarf has absolutely no chance; the most defense they get is like 40 or 50, and the Tyr'hai can take him out in a few hits using the trample attack. In effect the Rider has an 11-30 attack against the dwarf and high CTH, with no fear of retaliation damage. Which is fine with me when I'm not the dwarves :lol: But I thought you should know.
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Kwandulin » March 21st, 2017, 6:55 pm

Glad you like them!
Right, the Ulfserker thing is indeed not intended. I'll have to adapt the filtering a bit then. Thanks for pointing it out!
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby Kwandulin » March 26th, 2017, 6:36 pm

Updated to version 0.2.0 on 1.13.7:

Changelog:
  • added missing portraits for Tyr'Hai riders and the Tyr'Hai
  • the overwhelm ability of the Tyr'Hai now does not work on Ulfserkers or Berserkers, no more trample abuse possible
  • granted the "Descent into darkness" ability to the Shadow Tyr'Hai, which allows him to teleport to allied Priestresses, Matriarchs, Patrons and Seers
  • added minor attack effects for the nightmaiden lines
  • granted the black and shadow Tyr'Hai the drain weapon special
  • added the Night Stalker as a leader
  • added cropped image_icon for big units
  • added deep elf race image (editor only)
  • improved effects of the seer's implosion
  • added Phade, Irr and Shadow Tyr'Hai bob
  • added deep elven names (needs more work)
  • minotaur has no longer a female elf voice
  • when trampling, the Tyr'Hai's sprite is not set back shortly before changing its position
  • whenever a deep elf dies, Shassagoth embraces the unit and takes it back into the shadows
  • changed id Nightmaiden -> Night Maiden
  • fixed pop up error when Night Maiden/Stalker/Baroness attacked
  • fixed a pop up error that appeared when the lithic idol ability of the minotaur fired
Attachments
embrace.png
Embrace of Shassagoth - the death animation of every deep elf; depends on level and alignment of the unit
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shadows-1.png
Shadow Tyr'hai can now teleport to allied Priestresses, Matriarchs, Seers and Patrons
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Re: The Deep Elves

Postby ForestDragon » March 27th, 2017, 7:57 am

some balancing suggestions/misc. feedback:
1.Bloodmaiden's damage is too high, even when her ability isn't activated. nerf it to 6-4 (she will have 8-4 damage when her ability is activated), and increase her cost to 16
2.every unit in the faction doesn't have the '{MAGENTA_IS_THE_TEAM_COLOR}' macro. fix this.
3.make the aspect of the hunter reduce the damage recieved from the hunted enemies by around 10% or 15%
4.Irr is level 2, while she should be level 3. fix this
5.maybe add the 'explosion.ogg' sound to Seer's implosion animation.
6.increase Night Maiden's cost to 17
7.change Minotaur's level to 1
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