Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

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oaq
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Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by oaq » January 5th, 2018, 1:18 am

At hard difficulty, can Heir to the Throne be won without scenario restarts? If you lose a scenario, it's permadeath: you go back to the beginning—not of the scenario—but of the campaign. That is the challenge.

Four years since my first attempt, I have done it.

Has it been done before? By whom?

The style of play is interesting. The style forces one to value mandatory companions like Delfador more than other loyal units. Moreover, the style promotes sound operational plans that have high chances of success.

Replays can be posted if demanded.

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max_torch
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by max_torch » January 5th, 2018, 4:51 pm

i would like to look at your replays and see the way you played. What version of wesnoth do they have to be viewed on?

Dugi made an "unforgiving hardcore mod" which forces a player to play without any loading and restarting. It's in the add-ons list. You could try to use the said add-on when you undertake another campaign.

oaq
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by oaq » January 5th, 2018, 7:53 pm

I would like to look at your replays and see the way you played.
The 24 replays, bundled into a TAR file, are attached. (If the format is inconvenient, please advise.)

Note: a permadeath player plays early scenarios more often than late. Therefore, the replays may show more skill early than late.
What version of wesnoth do they have to be viewed on?
I played them on 1.12.6.

Thank you for the information re the "unforgiving hardcore mod."

(Note to Wesnoth beginners: the replays are spoilers, posted at an experienced player's request; as a beginner, you probably don't want to review the replays. However, should you review a given replay, anyway, to help you to pass a particular scenario, you could observe that much of my play is opportunistic. For example, the first scenario's recruits are not a finely balanced selection of forces but are the result of my looking strategically for certain traits toward future scenarios; and, indeed, I would probably recruit a different mix of units next time I played the first scenario, depending on the traits of my other recruits; so, by reviewing the replay one can misinterpret the plan insofar as part of the plan is to recruit not only units but traits. Likewise, the times and places at which attacks are launched, or defenses erected, during some later scenarios depend on when and where the foe seems relatively weak. Therefore, were you inclined to model your play on mine, you could do so with respect to general principles but maybe not with respect to particular details.)
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Oaq's Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory replays
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max_torch
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by max_torch » January 9th, 2018, 1:05 pm

I've been watching the replays and I'm now at "The Lost General". I had to pause and comment here and say:
Spoiler:

oaq
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by oaq » January 10th, 2018, 6:36 pm

@max_torch:
Spoiler:

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Inky
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by Inky » January 17th, 2018, 8:27 pm

Wow, that's some real dedication, congratulations! 8) I just finished looking through the replays, very interesting and informative! Great tactics and experience management.

One scenario which I would have done differently is Siege of Elensefar - I think it's better to hold the water's edge and destroy the enemies in the moat, because retreating lets them take all of your southern villages and you lose a lot of gold that way.

My favorite was the Valley of Death replay - I was wondering how you were going to deal with that massive horde of wraiths, but you managed to avoid that problem entirely :eng: I wouldn't say that your strategy relied on the RNG, because with all your elvish sorceress units I think it would have been fine even if the leader assassination didn't work.

It must have been really tense in the later scenarios, I got nervous just watching some of the more unlucky moments! I think you could have avoided much of the risk by keeping your leaders out of the battle if at all possible, since you have so many other powerful units to fight with. I definitely would have left that giant spider alone in Plunging into the Darkness, as the extra gold isn't necessary and that fight is based entirely on RNG. I also personally would have gone for the Void armor (the swamp of dread route in A Choice Must be Made) instead of the flaming sword, as that armor would have made one of the leaders practically invincible.

One thing that surprised me about your playstyle was the lack of healers - in most scenarios you only used one +8 healer and sometimes you didn't use any at all! I think you would have had a much easier time and avoided many of the close calls if you had used two +8 healers every scenario.

This is a nice illustration of how Wesnoth is more about strategy than luck. I'd love to see summaries/replays of any future challenges you attempt!

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Crow_T
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by Crow_T » January 17th, 2018, 10:23 pm

I remember following the original attempt, and was like WHAAAAT oaq is at is again? when I saw this thread. I look forward to watching a master player make it through HttT in one go :)

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max_torch
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by max_torch » January 18th, 2018, 1:28 pm

OMG oaq we've already been talking to each other way back 2011 in the forum:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=38378#p564188
oaq wrote:I do not know how to reach a satisfactory result at The Valley of Death without relying on the RNG
That's what I didn't know as well until the replay Velensk made:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=38378#p564190

Both of the above links are from the same thread :)

oaq
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by oaq » January 19th, 2018, 7:06 pm

Inky wrote:One thing that surprised me about your playstyle was the lack of healers - in most scenarios you only used one +8 healer and sometimes you didn't use any at all! I think you would have had a much easier time and avoided many of the close calls if you had used two +8 healers every scenario.
I think that you are right. Of course, the replays show only the one winning campaign attempt, not the many gruesome losers. Because the strategy is opportunistic, the one winning campaign attempt suffers some idiosyncrasies. In other attempts I had used more healers. Likewise, if I tried again, I would probably use more healers.

However:
Spoiler:
It is probably true nevertheless that I favor healers a little less than some other players do. So many scenarios are decided by concentration of forces at a single point of decision during a single turn that, where and when it counts the most, healing can be too slow to help. One fewer healer means one more striking unit with which to shatter the foe's power at the point of decision, after which plenty of time remains to send wounded survivors to villages. I like healing, of course (who doesn't?), but, if well coordinated, one more striking unit can be worth a lot.

It is good to see you all in the forum again. It is like old times.

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Inky
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Re: Heir to the Throne hard permadeath victory

Post by Inky » January 19th, 2018, 10:57 pm

Wow 2011- I feel like a total newcomer to the forums :D

It's nice to see your reasoning behind all the decisions. At Elensefar, I don't think holding the water's edge is too dangerous. A single unit like the elvish hero blocking the bridge can stop any orcs from coming over during afternoon/dusk, allowing your other units to catch up by nightfall. The knights are perfect for holding the shore with their blade resistance and flat terrain defense, and with some mermen in the moat plus constant reinforcements since you'll be making a lot of gold, it's possible to win without losing any important units.

About A Choice Must be Made, that's a good point about giving the experience to useful units rather than mermen, I hadn't thought of that. I wish the merman were more useful later on, it's kind of sad to either not use them, or watch them flop around on land and promptly get turned into sushi :doh:

The fight with the spider looked pretty risky to me. A double hit with the poison fangs followed by 2/3 hits with the web would have finished any of the heroes, and given everybody's bad defense on caves it's not that unlikely. It's a risk I'd take normally, but definitely not on a permadeath playthrough.

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