A Dwarvish Tale

Discussion and development of scenarios and campaigns for the game.

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Crypto
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A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Crypto » February 5th, 2012, 12:21 pm

'A Dwarvish Tale' is a campaign about two dwarves, Dursil and Aldrus, who journey through the northlands initially seeking to reclaim their gold. This simple task soon escalates into a much larger conflict with dark elves.

There are eight fighting scenarios, one dialogue scenario and an epilogue.

You can play single player, taking the role of Pathfinder Aldrus, or two player on a single computer, controlling both Runesmith Dursil's and Aldrus' teams.

Underneath is a very brief outline of each scenario:
Spoiler:
There's a file called 'placeholder.txt' in the campaign directory which lists the yet to be completed aspects, but the campaign is largely finished and well tested.

I would be very grateful for any feedback - which scenarios you liked/disliked, any spelling or grammatical errors, and how difficult you found the campaign.

Hope you enjoy playing 'A Dwarvish Tale', it's available from the 1.10.0 add-on server now.

Thanks

MRDNRA
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by MRDNRA » February 5th, 2012, 3:10 pm

Have played the first 2 levels so far (controlling both sides). The first level I had to restart, there was a bit of weird recruitment by the brown trolls, they only recruited 4 units on the first turn, which made me somewhat tempted to try to defeat them quickly with Aldrus's group, went down one of the tunnels towards them, by which time they had recruited a lot larger force on the 2nd turn, and Aldrus's group ended up surrounded and eventually defeated. 2nd time around the recruiting was much more regular, though browns still didn't use all their gold or recruitment spaces on first turn. I held Aldrus's group back a bit at the choke point, Dursil's army (which I assembled just using starting gold) lost 2 or 3 units but eventually was able to defeat both troll leaders by about turn 20. By this point I had got a lot of gold with Dursil (in the region of 300 or so I think) but I noticed that Dursil only started the next scenario with 100; I can't recall if the previous level had said the gold wouldn't be carried over, but it made no difference anyway, the 2nd level was rather easy, even if it did take a few turns to get to the main orc leader after all their units were dead.

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Crypto
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Crypto » February 5th, 2012, 6:12 pm

Thanks for the feedback.

The gold carryover for scenario 1 is set at 15% if you just run Aldrus to the fort, and 18% if you defeat both the trolls. Both Dursil and Aldrus will also receive a 100 gold bonus for killing the trolls. However, I've only used small carryover percentages to make the campaign more challenging in later levels.

Hidden features for scenarios 1 and 2:
Spoiler:
Hope you enjoy the rest of the campaign!

MRDNRA
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by MRDNRA » February 6th, 2012, 11:39 am

Am now on the level "An Elvish Encounter". The 3rd level was pretty tough, those dark elves really do pack a punch in the caves. Managed to lose almost all of Aldrus's starting units and recruits at one point.

Just a small thing I noticed, as of the level "To the Runeking", Aldrus's side has 2 options for recruiting dwarf fighters.

Something else, I've noticed that the AI opponents seem to heavily favour their melee attacks, even when their ranged attacks are both stronger and safer. I've even just had an elvish shaman with 3-2 melee and 4-2 ranged do a melee attack against a full health ulfserker stationed in a village! Might be something worth looking into, it is making at least the Elvish Encounter level easier than it otherwise would be.

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Crypto
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Crypto » February 6th, 2012, 6:08 pm

Thanks once again,

I hadn't spotted the problem with the duplicated dwarvish fighters on scenario 4. It happens because, when you find the miners on scenario 3, it alters the recruit list and originally Aldrus could recruit fighters who could level up into runesmiths. When I changed it so they could only level to steelclads, I forgot to reset this.

As for the AI favouring melee attacks, I think this is down to aggression being too high (I think it also happens with drake burners on S7, but I might keep it that way). I'll test scenario 6 with lower AI aggression.

I'll publish version 1.1.0 shortly to remedy these problems.


Crypto

MRDNRA
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by MRDNRA » February 6th, 2012, 6:25 pm

Yes it happens with the drake burners also, although they still sometimes do use their ranged attack against units with non ranged attacks. Plus, that level is quite challenging, so it does help to some extent that they do that sometimes!

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Crypto
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Crypto » February 6th, 2012, 7:09 pm

I thought the same thing in regard to the drakes and the difficulty of that level. Thanks for your help, version 1.1.0 is now published on the add-ons server, with corrections implemented.

MRDNRA
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by MRDNRA » February 6th, 2012, 7:56 pm

Just completed the campaign on the first version. Excellent work. Will go through again see how things play out on the updated version.

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Crypto
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Crypto » February 7th, 2012, 5:44 pm

Thanks, I'm glad you liked it and really appreciate your feedback.

If you do play any of the scenarios again, it would be great if you could tell me on what turn you finished and how much gold you finished with, after all bonuses are added but before the carryover percentage is calculated (called just 'Gold:' on the summary screen when you win a scenario). In single player mode, only Aldrus' gold is important, but in multiplayer I need both. This will help me balance the carryover percentages etc. in future.

Many thanks.

Update:
I have now (10/2/12) published version 1.2.0, which includes updates to ai behaviour and recruiting on scenarios 1,6 and 9 and changes to gold carryovers and how these are displayed to the player. The undead dwarf feature on scenario 1 has also been removed as of this version, and there have been some minor updates to the campaign description.

Update: (12/2/12) Version 1.3.0 is now published. This version has modifications to scenario 4.

Update: (13/2/12) Version 1.4.0 is available to download. I've made changes to scenarios 4 and 8, namely the addition of naga hunters with new graphics.

As always, any feedback/comments would be gratefully received, particularly concerning the difficulty/balancing of levels.

Roland de Ronceveaux
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Roland de Ronceveaux » February 26th, 2012, 1:08 pm

I've played the campaign in it's entirety and I found it free of bugs and technically well made. The maps were nice and the scenarios - in my opinion - well balanced.

The remarks and criticism I have bear more on the storyline and logic points, and range from the trivial to the important. Of course, they represent my point of view, and as such are subjective.

Here we go (by order of importance, from trivial to crucial):

- In cave scenarios, the light shines on mushroom path and not on crop fields. It should be the reverse, mushrooms not needing light to thrive while vegetable crops do.
- In the first 3 scenarios, I found the fact that Dursil and Aldrus start everytime with rookie troops illogical and annoying (aside from the first scenario). It would be better if they were surrounded with troops from their recall list.
- I liked the beginning of the campaign, where you have a mystery to investigate. The fact that it morphed into yet-another-repulse-of-an-epic-invasion pleased me less, especially considering the following (see below).
- The Dark elf invasion is supposed to come from the western ocean, yet the final battle is on the shore of a lake, and on the wrong one when you see the scenario map. How did those boats cross the land?
- Various illogism such as: the Runeking is an old friend of Dursil, yet he only knows that he "rules an empire (no less) in the north" and that this empire can be reached by crossing a simple cave system. A human Wesnothian town in the middle of the Heart Mountains. An "epic" invasion with only two enemy generals.
- Many surface scenarios feel more like they are there to offer a different type of enemy rather than being part of the storyline.

The campaign is clean and enjoyable, and I think that by modifying the story to something more local it would gain in credibility and be even more enjoyable.

Regards,

Roland

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Crypto
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Crypto » February 27th, 2012, 6:50 pm

Thanks for the feedback!
- In cave scenarios, the light shines on mushroom path and not on crop fields. It should be the reverse, mushrooms not needing light to thrive while vegetable crops do.
Thank you for pointing this out, version 1.4.2 will correct this. Unfortunately, terrain can't have fields and light at the same time, but I've tried to put light beams near fields and away from mushrooms as much as possible now.
- In the first 3 scenarios, I found the fact that Dursil and Aldrus start everytime with rookie troops illogical and annoying (aside from the first scenario). It would be better if they were surrounded with troops from their recall list.
For balancing reasons, I think it might be best to stick to level ones. The scenario might become too easy otherwise, and anyway, you can always recall from a keep near the start.
- The Dark elf invasion is supposed to come from the western ocean, yet the final battle is on the shore of a lake, and on the wrong one when you see the scenario map. How did those boats cross the land?
The speech at the scenario nine trys to imply that the dark elf ships have travelled along an uncharted river from the the west coast to Lake Vrug. The map icon is where it is due to space constraints, with the idea that the large scale map doesn't show scenario-sized variations in the shoreline.
- Various illogism such as: the Runeking is an old friend of Dursil, yet he only knows that he "rules an empire (no less) in the north" and that this empire can be reached by crossing a simple cave system. A human Wesnothian town in the middle of the Heart Mountains. An "epic" invasion with only two enemy generals.
The idea is that Dursil and the Runeking knew each other a long time ago, but had lost contact. The caves between Dursil's land and Thor's empire are unused and bandit-infested, and their journey is not just the length of the scenario but a larger distance on the map. Furthermore, the mine in scenario 3 is fairly far from Dursil's main base, and the cave/mountain terrain would make apparently small journeys take quite a long time.

The human town is fairly small and isolated, hence only a small militia defend it. It's meant to be situated on the lowland area around the river that leads to Lake Vrug.

The 'epic' invasion force has 900 gold, if only two leaders, although the orcs do absorb much of this. Scenario 9 is probably the least well-balanced scenario, so I may look into making it more challenging.
- Many surface scenarios feel more like they are there to offer a different type of enemy rather than being part of the storyline.
They are. Hopefully the variation in enemies makes the campaign a little more interesting to play. The elves in scenario 6 link to the outlaws in scenario 4 who, it transpires, have stolen some of their gold. Dwarves and wood elves generally seem to dislike each other. The drakes in scenario 7 refer to being driven
from [their] underground homes
This refers to an older drake campaign in which drakes originally live underground (I think).

Generally, the idea is that old enemies and old rivals are being found again.


Thank you again, I really appreciate your comments :D

JaMiT
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by JaMiT » March 9th, 2012, 2:03 am

May I hazard a guess that you made this under Windows? Under an operating system with case-sensitive file names, the sides do not have flags, making it rather difficult to see who owns which villages. (Or at least that happens in the first scenario. I have not checked the others.) The problem is that you defined the sides using {FLAG_VARIANT KNALGAN} and {FLAG_VARIANT RAGGED} when that should be {FLAG_VARIANT knalgan} and {FLAG_VARIANT ragged}.

(version 1.4.2)

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Crypto
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Re: A Dwarvish Tale

Post by Crypto » March 10th, 2012, 10:44 am

Thank you very much for pointing this out!

I have now changed all the flag variants to lower case as you suggested and published version 1.4.3 which includes this revision.

Feedback like this is very useful, as I would not have noticed this on my operating system.

Many thanks again!


As always, I welcome any comments, suggestions and feedback...

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