Secrets of the Ancients

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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby UnwiseOwl » March 14th, 2017, 11:44 pm

Aye. All good advice. I think that I was extra-cautious given my failed attempts at the level previously.
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby beetlenaut » March 15th, 2017, 2:12 am

In case anyone is interested, here's how I do it.
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby UnwiseOwl » March 16th, 2017, 11:23 am

I've played a little further and thus post my notes for the next section. I continue to be really impressed by this campaign and 100% agree that it deserves to be mainlined.

Notes:
It's weird that the kids suddenly get old when they upgrade from Dark Adepts. It might be nice to force their portraits to remain the Dark Adept ones to reflect their youth. This is particularly obvious for Carcyn.

11_Battleground
Nice little bits of Saurian lore there. Much appreciated.

12_Walking_Trees
Enjoyed this one. I hope we meet that elf again later, she needs teaching a lesson.
The 'uprooted' image is a nice idea, but feels weird. If it were up to me, I'd place if when the Woses first spawn, just because it seems really confusing when it's appearing in situations after we'ce seen that the Wose has already moved away from that position.

14_Entering_the_Northlands
This one seemed unusually easy for me, but that might have been due to the large amount of gold that I'd saved up in the previous scenarios.
I was disappointed to see a Shaman and not have anything remotely interesting happen with him. I can't think of what I would have happen, but it feels like he's there just so that we can see some rare units, and doesn't really add anything to the scenario, which is a pity given the importance of the Shamans in orcish lore.

15_Mountain_Pass
Honestly getting a bit sick of the 'single unit type attacks out of fog' mechanic so soon after the Woses, but it's only the second scenario like this. It's fine.
It's weird that the Griffins recruit from Keeps. Can they be changed to nests ala Heir to the Throne?

16_The_Mage
Oh awesome, we walked through Arken-Thoria without a dungeon-crawl level!
Hey, its Crelanu! I'm really enjoying the nods to Wesnoth lore going on in this campaign.
The free Archmages that appear out of the blue are a little mean. I was just closing for the kill on turn 5 when an Archmage appears out of the blue with full movement points and rips my units apart. If Crelanu is going to get free units, I think that's more than fine, but maybe they should have 0 movement points on recruit.

17_Mortality
Ras Tabahn goes behind the altar sprite before appearing on top of it. I think it would look better if he stayed in front of it.

18_Abandoned_Outpost
Looks like I spoke too soon about avoiding a dungeon-crawl! :p
Art in this level is kick-ass. Spiderwebs are sweet and Adryn-Na's portrait is a glorious thing.
Terminal bug found at the end of this level that means it's impossible to advance without debug. When you kill all the spiders you get:
Code: Select all
20170316 11:09:52 error scripting/lua: game_error: creating unit with an empty type field
stack traceback:
   [C]: in field 'create_unit'
   lua/wml-tags.lua:1027: in local 'cmd'
   lua/wml-utils.lua:137: in field 'handle_event_commands'
   lua/wml-flow.lua:6: in function <lua/wml-flow.lua:5>
   [C]: in field 'fire_event'
   lua/wml-tags.lua:145: in local 'cmd'
   lua/wml-utils.lua:137: in field 'handle_event_commands'
   lua/wml-flow.lua:20: in local 'cmd'
   lua/wml-utils.lua:137: in field 'handle_event_commands'
   lua/wml-flow.lua:6: in function <lua/wml-flow.lua:5>

Pretty sure that this is caused by trying to unstore a non-existant unit (since I didn't move either leader to the end of the passage).
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby SigurdFireDragon » March 16th, 2017, 5:30 pm

UnwiseOwl wrote:
16_The_Mage
Oh awesome, we walked through Arken-Thoria without a dungeon-crawl level!
Hey, its Crelanu! I'm really enjoying the nods to Wesnoth lore going on in this campaign.
The free Archmages that appear out of the blue are a little mean. I was just closing for the kill on turn 5 when an Archmage appears out of the blue with full movement points and rips my units apart. If Crelanu is going to get free units, I think that's more than fine, but maybe they should have 0 movement points on recruit.

17_Mortality
Ras Tabahn goes behind the altar sprite before appearing on top of it. I think it would look better if he stayed in front of it.

18_Abandoned_Outpost
...Pretty sure that this is caused by trying to unstore a non-existant unit (since I didn't move either leader to the end of the passage).


16_The_Mage - Fixed for BfW 1.13.7 version

17_Mortality - I'll take a look at this.

18_Abandoned_Outpost - Already been fixed for BfW 1.13.7 version
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby beetlenaut » March 16th, 2017, 6:35 pm

UnwiseOwl wrote:It's weird that the kids suddenly get old when they upgrade from Dark Adepts.
It needs better portraits in general. (And zombie rats.) I'm hoping some artist will take an interest in it now.
UnwiseOwl wrote:Ras Tabahn goes behind the altar sprite before appearing on top of it. I think it would look better if he stayed in front of it.
This would be a lot harder than it sounds because of the way some kinds images are adjusted for the light levels, and others are not.
UnwiseOwl wrote:Terminal bug found at the end of this level that means it's impossible to advance without debug.
Yeah, you're right about the bug, but it used to work fine. Like SigurdFireDragon says, it's fixed for 1.13.7, but I forgot to update the scenario on the add-on server. I've done that now.
UnwiseOwl wrote:It's weird that the Griffins recruit from Keeps.
I've seen that in lots of campaigns. Only HttT has something different. I'll think about it though.
UnwiseOwl wrote:Hey, its Crelanu! I'm really enjoying the nods to Wesnoth lore going on in this campaign.
It was fun putting them in, too! I'm still waiting for someone to say that they noticed the most obscure one.
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby SigurdFireDragon » March 16th, 2017, 7:11 pm

beetlenaut wrote:
UnwiseOwl wrote:Ras Tabahn goes behind the altar sprite before appearing on top of it. I think it would look better if he stayed in front of it.
This would be a lot harder than it sounds because of the way some kinds images are adjusted for the light levels, and others are not.


It didn't seem to be, I have a fix in the PR. the results looked fine AFAICT. Did I miss something? Did something change from when you did it?
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby beetlenaut » March 16th, 2017, 8:07 pm

SigurdFireDragon wrote:the results looked fine AFAICT.
Yeah, it looks fine now. They must have changed the way TOD affects images. I did it that way originally, but then the altar changed color. (We should remember to check it before 1.14 to make sure it still looks right.)
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby Samonella » March 22nd, 2017, 4:02 pm

Hey, I just tried playing this campaign in 1.13.7, newly in mainline. It looks great so far! I came across one really weird bug though; from this save, I can't get the second scenario to load. Whether i move to the signpost or use ;next_level, the game crashes without any kind of error message. It saves the replay, but doesn't load or create a save for scenario 2.

I tried restarting the campaign and cheating to win on the first turn, which works and I can keep playing. So I'll just do that and cheat to get back the experienced units that I care about.
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The last few months have been nothing but one big, painful reminder that TIMTLTW.

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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby beetlenaut » March 22nd, 2017, 5:06 pm

It crashes for me too. If I run Wesnoth from the console, it tells me that there is an error with a modification called "hi" (I assume that's an abbreviation), and not actually SotA itself. On my system, that problem makes sense since I don't have any modifications loaded. Everything works fine if I remove the lines referencing hi from the savefile though, so maybe that will fix it for you too. I uploaded that version of the savefile. Even if you don't need it anymore, please try it and see if it works. Run Wesnoth from a console if you know how so you can see if you get an error. If you know what hi refers to, let me know that too. I'm trying to get some more information because one of us should write a bug report about this.
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Anyway, I'm glad you like my campaign so far!
Campaigns: Dead Water
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby Samonella » March 22nd, 2017, 6:10 pm

beetlenaut wrote:It crashes for me too. If I run Wesnoth from the console, it tells me that there is an error with a modification called "hi" (I assume that's an abbreviation), and not actually SotA itself.

Ah, that somewhat explains it. It definitely has nothing to do with SotA. I had a temporary modification called "hi" as a work around for a 1.13.6 bug (see here for details), and I guess I removed it in-between starting and finishing that scenario. The only strange thing is that I could swear I didn't check the modification to be active when I started the campaign, but I'll experiment with it when I get a chance. Thanks!

EDIT: Now that I know what the problem was, everything seems to be working as expected. My crashes definitely were due to the missing mod, confirmed by the logs (which I should have known to check anyway :mrgreen: ). Also, it doesn't crash if the modification isn't active when the campaign is started; I must have had it turned on without realizing it. I guess the only problem here is that there's no player-visible error message.
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby UnwiseOwl » March 23rd, 2017, 6:30 pm

19_Lava and Stone
I do wonder if Adryn-Na should skip straight to Ancient Lich. It seems that she and Ras-Tabahn should be the same, either both Ancient or both Liches, rather than her skipping ahead. She WILL upgrade, so you'll still get the cool sprite soon enough.
Ugh. I do hate dungeon crawls...
Good use of the stone bridges, they look excellent with the lava.

20_North_Knalga
Hall of Heroes is nice. Reminds me of A-Red's Stone Remembers, very cool.
The level works fine, but I think I'd prefer it if the miners ran away (maybe using an animal AI?) more actively.
I'm not sure if allowing the long passage on the Western side to sneak ghosts in and assassinate the leader (which I did) is really that great at this stage of the campaign, as an early end to the level is likely to make a huge difference to the amount of carry-on gold for the final scenario, which will make it pretty tough to balance.

21_Against_the_World
Bloody hell. I started this level with 600 gold, which I suspect is more than most people will, and I found this level exceedingly difficult.
I'm getting extremely poor performance on this level (almost a minute for the dwarfish, mage and elfish leaders to speak), but I guess it's not surprising considering my laggy pc and the sheer number of units out here.
I kinda wish that the Elvish leader was that snotty lady that set the Woses on us, I'd really have liked to have had a chance to teach her a lesson.

The campaign credits appear twice at the end of the campaign.
Thanks again, good campaign and well-placed in the Wesnoth lore. I like it a lot.
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Maintainer of the Imperial Era and the campaigns Dreams of Urduk, Epic of Vaniyera, Up from Slavery, Fall of Silvium, Alfhelm the Wise and Gali's Contract.
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby SigurdFireDragon » May 25th, 2017, 9:35 pm

UnwiseOwl wrote:I'm getting extremely poor performance on this level (almost a minute for the dwarfish, mage and elfish leaders to speak), but I guess it's not surprising considering my laggy pc and the sheer number of units out here.


It's not your computer, a bug had crept in during the conversion to 1.13. It has been fixed for BfW 1.13.9
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby revolting_peasant » December 23rd, 2017, 5:06 pm

Basic info:
  • Difficulty Level: Medium
  • Game Version: 1.13.8
  • Scenarios: Have played up to the middle of S3. Will perhaps update this post as I play further.

I've started playing this campaign, and am enjoying it quite a lot so far. I like how the limitations on what you can do and which units you have available affect the gameplay. Let's see if it holds up.

On the negative side, I find Ardonna to be kind of flippant. Perhaps some more personal back-story, some more dialog with others at Alduin etc.

Scenario 1

The isometric graphics are rhombic, not hexagonal like they should be. This is weird. Also, the scale is off. In isometric Graphics, things like a bed or a cupboard etc. should take up exactly one hex - just like a character or a monster.

It should be made clearer Ardonna is studying on Alduin.

Ardonna speaks as though she's already omnipotent and needs to decide whether to exact revenge or not. Or is it tongue in cheek? Either way I'd drop that part.

It seems pretty useless - on Medium anyway - to even go to the ruined castle in the forest. You don't have that much time (the wolves delay you). Unless you go there straight away to recruit and then you could have more bats to harrass wolves - but is that really worth it? Not clear.

Scenario 2

"I will have to use ice though, as I have never mastered fire" - this alludes to a claim that ice magic is inferior to fire magic, and that Ardonna should have mastered fire already, or tried to and failed. In fact, you need to be a 2nd-level Red Mage to actually attack with fire magic. Mages at Ardonna's level typically use a Magic Missile - not even a Chill Wave. I'd rephrase this as suggesting she has advanced faster than her peers, but is more confident in her skill with ice magic than with fire magic.

On Medium, by the time you get to the guardhouse, you've already killed everybody else, including the guardhouse gate, so you probably won't even need to recruit anymore just to handle the extra two spearmen: 2-3 walking corpses and an L2 Ardonna handle them just fine. There needs to be more of a motivation to raise a Skeleton.

Scenario 3

The academy doesn't need to find Ardonna just anywhere - only at the docks on the island. Also, the Academy must have some kind of scrying ability, especially for Undead and from Mages.

Wouldn't hurt to explain how come there are bandits on a relatively small island that's supposed to be rather civilized, in that it is under the influence of a seat of power and knowledge like the Academy. Some explanation about this might help. Or, actually, I know it's a tall order, but - a map of Alduin which would at least make it seem larger than a speck on the main map of Wesnoth.
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby beetlenaut » December 29th, 2017, 11:39 am

revolting_peasant wrote:I've started playing this campaign, and am enjoying it quite a lot so far.
Good to hear! And thank you for the extensive feedback.
revolting_peasant wrote:On the negative side, I find Ardonna to be kind of flippant.
That's intentional. She has fantasies about being the most powerful mage in the world someday because she's an arrogant teenager. I don't know why that's a negative.
revolting_peasant wrote:The isometric graphics are rhombic, not hexagonal like they should be. This is weird. Also, the scale is off. In isometric Graphics, things like a bed or a cupboard etc. should take up exactly one hex - just like a character or a monster.
I don't understand your objection. The room is rectangular, and if you make a rectangle on a hex grid, it shows up as a rhombus. You can see this most easily in fences or the new "rug" terrain (in 1.13.10). Also, there is nothing about isometric graphics that requires objects to be the same size, that's just a Wesnoth convention, making the scale really far off during game play sometimes. The story screens are supposed to look like Wesnoth graphics but with a more realistic scale: castles, trees, and mountains are much bigger than a person, and writing desks and gravestones are smaller.
revolting_peasant wrote:It should be made clearer Ardonna is studying on Alduin.
It would have been contrived for her to say so in her journal. The same goes for her backstory. Also, I think it's more fun if you make a connection with other campaigns and Wesnoth history without it being explicitly mentioned, so there are several other instances of that. See if you can find them all!
revolting_peasant wrote:this alludes to a claim that ice magic is inferior to fire magic
And so it is! Magic missiles seem to be a type of fire magic, and they are apparently faster than ice, so they can do more total damage during neutral or favorable times of day.
revolting_peasant wrote:The Academy must have some kind of scrying ability....Wouldn't hurt to explain how come there are bandits on a relatively small island that's supposed to be rather civilized.
The school has only been there for a year at this point, so they wouldn't have that much influence yet. You can see this in the timeline. I can't think where it's ever implied that BfW mages have a scrying ability. In fact, they go out of their way to point out that a mage can detect the Ruby of Fire at a distance, which makes me assume that they can't do that with anything else.
revolting_peasant wrote:you could have more bats to harrass wolves - but is that really worth it? Not clear....2-3 walking corpses and an L2 Ardonna handle them just fine. There needs to be more of a motivation to raise a Skeleton.
I was assuming that Ardonna wouldn't usually be at level-2 in the graveyard, but good job getting her there so quickly. Anyway, you don't have to use everything just because it's there; You can make you own strategy!
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Re: Secrets of the Ancients

Postby revolting_peasant » December 30th, 2017, 12:28 pm

beetlenaut wrote:
revolting_peasant wrote:On the negative side, I find Ardonna to be kind of flippant.
That's intentional. She has fantasies about being the most powerful mage in the world someday because she's an arrogant teenager. I don't know why that's a negative.

Because it doesn't sound believable even for a teenager. It sounds like she's not serious about her fantasies. It won't do to have one-sentence phrases motivating her. IMHO.

About the rhombic room: I'm saying that this room in particular, as opposed to other smaller-scale graphics in the campaign, looks weird to me. Maybe I'm not good enough at putting my finger on it.

revolting_peasant wrote:It should be made clearer Ardonna is studying on Alduin.
It would have been contrived for her to say so in her journal. The same goes for her backstory.[/quote]
1. Nobody said the whole narration of the campaign has to be her own journal. Especially in the first scenario, before you actually get any of her journal, but also later.
2. Within the journal this can be said indirectly by sentences such as complaints on having been sent to Alduin to study magic, reference to the environment or to other students, talking about her past (e.g. "Ever since I came to XYZ to do ABC") and so on.

revolting_peasant wrote: Also, I think it's more fun if you make a connection with other campaigns and Wesnoth history without it being explicitly mentioned, so there are several other instances of that. See if you can find them all!

As for the more obscure connections - ok, I guess. But not for the basic premise. Think of newbie players.

revolting_peasant wrote:this alludes to a claim that ice magic is inferior to fire magic
And so it is! Magic missiles seem to be a type of fire magic, and they are apparently faster than ice, so they can do more total damage during neutral or favorable times of day.[/quote]

1. It's not canon, in my opinion, that fire magic is superior to ice magic.
2. Magic missiles are not a type of fire magic at all (neither in Wesnoth nor in role-playing games) - it's either more "abstract" energy damage or the impact of an actual missile, except that it's conjured up by magic.

revolting_peasant wrote:The school has only been there for a year at this point, so they wouldn't have that much influence yet. You can see this in the timeline.

Oh, I didn't realize. I really think that should also be mentioned in the narration - how the academy is new, and perhaps the facilities are not yet done, or perhaps the mages barely know the paths through the woods themselves, or how some of the roads on the island have not been made secure for travel yet (but some have), et cetera.

revolting_peasant wrote:I was assuming that Ardonna wouldn't usually be at level-2 in the graveyard, but good job getting her there so quickly.
Once you get her into fights with wolves, she starts losing HP; and thus I found myself needing her to heal-at-level-up to get past the last couple of wolves near the town.
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