How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Share and discuss strategies for playing the game, and get help and tips from other players.

Moderators: Forum Moderators, Developers

Post Reply
gorgolok
Posts: 50
Joined: October 5th, 2008, 5:15 pm

How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by gorgolok » October 5th, 2008, 7:27 pm

There are a few scenarios that make it near-impossible for me to make it out with any money. Two that spring to mind are EI's Undead Border Patrol going after the Lich and TRoW's The Dragon. The problems I have differ a bit, but the gist is this: For both scenarios I need a sizeable, high-level fighting force, which costs a lot of upkeep. However, it's nigh impossible to ZoC villages against Bats (coming from two sides) in the former, and skirmishing saurians in the latter. I keep running up negative balances in both.

Maybe I don't have enough money going in in the first place, but I can't afford the troops to hold villages as well as a fighting force. Plus, I generally need my leaders in the battle lines - in TRoW the Ruby of Fire is awesome to kill saurians day and night, and in EI a leveled Gweddry makes a huge difference with his leadership - which means once my scouts get invariably overwhelmed, I can't recruit new ones.


EI;UBT going against Green:

Even with a half-decent carryover from earlier scenarios, I find it difficult to commit more than 2 cavalry to scouting, which is a losing battle against ever-increasing numbers of bats. Until they are overwhelmed, they can hold a village each reliably, meaning they pay the upkeep for 2 level 1 troops. These are usually HI I send towards Blue, to at least slow his foot troops, but they can't stop his bats. Stationing those HI in villages whenever possible I gain some more income, but not enough to sustain my striking force. To take out the lich in his swamp I use: 1 holy swordsman/royal guard, 2 HI/Shock Troopers, a healer (free), and a mage/red mage. I try to level those as I go along, rather than bring them in fully leveled. However, due to mortality issues, I often need to bring at least some backup so throw in 3 more lv 1 units I'm keeping around in case I need to replace my fallen veterans.

Sadly, my scouts are generally dead after a while, and that's when I start running -11. And because the bats give him income, my opponent creams me.


TRoW; The Dragon

I hate hate hate saurians. My scouts, whether I use footpads or thieves, keep getting slaughtered, and they do precious little to divert the attackers before they die. The swampy terrain keeps my main force bogged down, and by the time I get to the first enemy keep I have little money left to recruit new scouts.

Of course, without decent scouting the enemies only get harder as time progresses, which means that the battle drags on, and there's hardly any early finish bonus. So what can I do on large maps where scouting simply won't work?

User avatar
Turuk
Sithslayer
Posts: 5283
Joined: February 28th, 2007, 8:58 pm
Contact:

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Turuk » October 5th, 2008, 7:34 pm

Off the top of my head, I only vaguely remember both scenarios in question, so you can write this off if you feel it doesn't apply at all. But I can speak to the question you asked about what to do on larger maps.

I generally play tag. Scouts have such a large movement range, that I jump them from village to village, and the enemy spends a long time trying to keep up. Sometimes you can even go in a circle, and this way you keep roughly the same number of villages while occupying a portion of the enemy's force. Not only is one enemy unit sidelined to recapture the village, the others also might not be able to reach me and do any harm.

However, I know that with bats, that renders that advice pointless as they can easily keep up with you.
Mainline Maintainer: AOI, DM, NR, TB and THoT.
UMC Maintainer: Forward They Cried, A Few Logs, A Few More Logs, Start of the War, and Battle Against Time

User avatar
zookeeper
WML Wizard
Posts: 9740
Joined: September 11th, 2004, 10:40 pm
Location: Finland

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by zookeeper » October 5th, 2008, 7:54 pm

What difficulty levels are we speaking of? If it's too hard even on easy, then we can always up the starting gold, give less to the enemy or tweak terrain and villages.

gorgolok
Posts: 50
Joined: October 5th, 2008, 5:15 pm

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by gorgolok » October 5th, 2008, 10:45 pm

It was on Easy, but I think in EI it might be expected - the next level is doable with minimum gold (if you have the right troops to recall and save/load a lot).

About the Dragon, I'll post in the campaign feedback forum once I've tried a few more things - but it seems the experience has been similar for most who replied there.

User avatar
Turuk
Sithslayer
Posts: 5283
Joined: February 28th, 2007, 8:58 pm
Contact:

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Turuk » October 5th, 2008, 10:56 pm

Gorgolok, if you want to save a replay of how far you've gotten so far in each scenario, I can watch it for you and offer tips/advice if you'd like, and help you try to find a solution to the problem.
Mainline Maintainer: AOI, DM, NR, TB and THoT.
UMC Maintainer: Forward They Cried, A Few Logs, A Few More Logs, Start of the War, and Battle Against Time

Anonymissimus
Inactive Developer
Posts: 2458
Joined: August 15th, 2008, 8:46 pm
Location: Germany

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Anonymissimus » October 5th, 2008, 11:48 pm

is it ok to assume that "northern winter" in HttT has the same problem ? a large map, with enemy units being faster (wolf riders not slowed by mountains) than any of your own units
maybe this tactics work: try to attract the bats by placing a single unit with low hitpoints, or wounded, or on bad terrain or whatever, in movement range of the bats that may cach your villages in their next turn
if it's nighttime, the bats will most likely prefer to attack, maybe even at daytime if they're likely enough to kill your unit, instead of caching a village, if they have to choose because the ai is so stupidly eager to kill any of your units
this cannon fodder unit will probably die then, but now several bats are within movement range of your good units...
projects (BfW 1.12):
A Simple Campaign: campaign draft for wml startersPlan Your Advancements: mp mod
The Earth's Gut: sp campaignSettlers of Wesnoth: mp scenarioWesnoth Lua Pack: lua tags and utils
updated to 1.8 and handed over: A Gryphon's Tale: sp campaign

User avatar
zookeeper
WML Wizard
Posts: 9740
Joined: September 11th, 2004, 10:40 pm
Location: Finland

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by zookeeper » October 6th, 2008, 5:29 am

Anonymissimus wrote:is it ok to assume that "northern winter" in HttT has the same problem ? a large map, with enemy units being faster (wolf riders not slowed by mountains) than any of your own units
For what it's worth, I've always found that scenario to be easy, no matter the circumstances. There's no time pressure and the enemies are pretty weak.

gorgolok
Posts: 50
Joined: October 5th, 2008, 5:15 pm

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by gorgolok » October 6th, 2008, 11:12 am

Turuk wrote:Gorgolok, if you want to save a replay of how far you've gotten so far in each scenario, I can watch it for you and offer tips/advice if you'd like, and help you try to find a solution to the problem.
Actually, I've beaten them both, but at the cost of being virtually unable to succeed in the next scenario, due to low gold. Against the Dragon I figured out a strategy I wanna try - skirmish the skirmishing bastiges with rogues/assassins (won't save you money at the start), then teleport some silver mages to their leaders in the back - it's those that recruit the main body of saurian troops, the ones in the front just ZoC you and hold you, it's the ones in the back that really swamp you badly. Sadly, that means going back a bit and getting more of those silver mages and rogues. Also, it probably means I'll trigger the dragon way too early... *sigh*

User avatar
zookeeper
WML Wizard
Posts: 9740
Joined: September 11th, 2004, 10:40 pm
Location: Finland

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by zookeeper » October 6th, 2008, 11:24 am

Well, as I said, we can always change things to make it easier, if it's unreasonably hard even on easy. Player feedback is what we're relying mostly on for campaign balancing. If you know how, you can tweak the scenario file (give the enemy less gold being an obvious one) or just edit the map itself a bit (less villages for enemies, more for you, better terrain) and post changes you think would rebalance the scenario back to suitable difficulty.

Lumaca
Posts: 7
Joined: October 5th, 2008, 11:18 pm

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Lumaca » October 10th, 2008, 3:33 pm

I am now also having problems in the dragon, my last quest. I did the saurian-clearing mission just before, and it zapped my gold reserve from 300 something to 80+... And worst of all, I don't have a paladin (lost in the final spring) which means that I have to get my mage of light (-offensive power, +victim for the enemy).

Also a problem for me is that my lack of heavy-armored humans. My main force comes from evolved footpads, thiefs, and poachers. Saurians do a LOT of damage, and the augurs' magic can't even be dodged...

I really need help :?

gorgolok
Posts: 50
Joined: October 5th, 2008, 5:15 pm

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by gorgolok » October 10th, 2008, 5:30 pm

I found the only way to even survive the saurians in this one is to have the following troops around:

Daddy's 3 loyal Shock Troopers, by now leveled to Iron Maulers.
A few Spearmen leveled into Swordsmen.

Without those to make up your line (backed by healers), I find the Saurians just go through you. Plus, you have to compensate for their weakness to ranged attacks. Against the Mudcrawlers you'll likely need mage support, they simply won't die from conventional weapons. For the Dragon, Grand Knights are probably best, you'll want to get a lot of damage in quickly, and be able to survive the counter-attack. Having an assassin poison the Dragon early on can work, but be aware it's a suicide mission, without insane RNG luck you won't survive the counter. Even if the Dragon doesn't get him, the Saurians likely will. Also be prepared to have your Assassin mercilessly surounded and killed by the Saurians before he can even get there.

Lumaca
Posts: 7
Joined: October 5th, 2008, 11:18 pm

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Lumaca » October 11th, 2008, 12:55 pm

I'm screwed because I only have one mauler left... But I finally managed, because the Dragon conveniently decided that it's alright to attack me (if only I knew about it!) and Haldric+Mage of Light dispatched him in a turn (I was VERY lucky with the percentages :lol2: ) And after that decided to get the hell out of it!

Glowing Fish
Posts: 855
Joined: October 3rd, 2004, 4:52 am
Location: Portland, OR
Contact:

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Glowing Fish » October 11th, 2008, 7:08 pm

For the Dragon, have you tried using lots and lots of Mermen?

That doesn't solve the scout spam, but it does make the scenario easier in general.
Don't go to Glowing Fish for advice, he will say both yes and no.

Velensk
Multiplayer Contributor
Posts: 3984
Joined: January 24th, 2007, 12:56 am

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Velensk » October 11th, 2008, 9:31 pm

Realy mermen? I find that mermen in swamps tend to lose to saurians in swamps, untill they get blade attacks, or unless they have a storm tritant. It also takes them awhile to get to the swamps.
"There are two kinds of old men in the world. The kind who didn't go to war and who say that they should have lived fast died young and left a handsome corpse and the old men who did go to war and who say that there is no such thing as a handsome corpse."

Glaucon
Posts: 10
Joined: October 9th, 2008, 7:28 pm

Re: How do I stop losing money against scout-spam scenarios?

Post by Glaucon » October 12th, 2008, 7:52 am

I found The Dragon to be a money losing but pretty easy stage. For me the key units are the Iron Maulers, Pikemen, and a whole lotta thugs. The time of day is extremely unfavorable to lawful units, especially since the opponent has level 2 skirmishers that can go behind and wipe out all your injured and low damage dealing lawful units before they can even retaliate correctly.

I used about 5-7 thugs, three pikemen/halberdiers (preferebly halberdiers), one mage of light (swamp of esten,) Jessica, Burin, Grand Knight....guy, Haldric, a Silver Mage and completed this on Hard mode.

I sent the Silver mage to the Northwesternmost village. Both to get him away from the nighting onslaught and for the village itself (best of all he can tele back.)

I used the three forest hexes right below the base as an anchor (thugs with Jessica support.) To the west I abandoned the village and had all remaining thugs sit on the camp hexes. For the eastern portion of my line I have maulers and Haldric forming a solid line right in front of the village. My white mage camped on that village and my maulers held the line there. My pikemen/halberdiers took care of the east flank. They can handle the saurians at night in the forest with their 40% pierce resistance.

Use the thugs mercelissly and waste all the saurians on bad terrain. Try to keep the saurians fighting in the open, even if it means losing a few thugs (not your lawful guys however). Your Iron Maulers and Halberdiers can easily pick off the injured once dawn comes; avoid attacking at night with them, you want them in decent condition when dawn comes...but Haldric can attack with impunity. From then on it's a battle in the swamps, but now the computer doesn't really have a unified front to abuse their skirmishing ability. All that's left to do is to follow ToD and mop up. Be sure you cycle your lawful units when you can, cause the maulers will be taking a beating from the oracles and soothsayers.

When the Dragon comes either pull everyone back, or pull one side back and have Jessica lure the Dragon away from whichever side is vulnerable. In my case my western side were all fighting in the swamps when the Dragon appeared. Halberdiers and the Silver Mage (50% fire resist) are good against the Dragon, you can also try to mauler it if they're close enough. Compared to the first night of saurians this is a piece of cake.

Kill all Saurian leaders and you get 200 gold....yay. I ended the scenario with around 330 gold to spare.

Keep a Silver Mage; these guys are wonderful for any stage, and especially this one.

Post Reply