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Thread: Very first impression

  1. #21
    Mage’s Assistant
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    Sep 2014
    Ge at least 1 Human city early, i always play elf, and re-roll if no human cities close

    not swordmen...pikemen destroy werewolves, they must use silver tipped pikes :/....I know it takes awhile up the chain but you need those pikemen

  2. #22
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    Aug 2014
    First some comments on this thread, then my views on the game.

    I never see werewolves early so have no complaints about them, I just avoid the lairs which can be uncomfortably close to my city but nothing bad has happened from that.

    How the methods suggested to deal with werewolves are mostly nonsense for the early game:

    - you will have neither the spells nor the manna to kill them with magic

    - you will not have an alchemists guild (that is 100 turns or so into the game)

    - you will not have the capability to summon powerful beasts to fight them

    - you may be able to make a magical weapon (if you have the capability to take the huge manna flow hit) for your hero (if you have one) who might be good enough to take on a werewolf (as noted, I have never faced one so only have hearsay on how tough they are)

    - the stack method is certainly feasible/credible but again manna is scarcer in the early game than it used to be

    Now my thoughts on the game state:

    - maps seem to be oceans at N and S poles (which I suggested in the world map winge thread). So from N to S 12-16 tiles of ocean, a slightly greater number of useful land tiles, then an endless morass of swamps and deserts, then a few more rows of useful tiles then the S Ocean. There is zero fun available from cities in swamps/deserts - they never grow and never make anything, So the prime plane (only one I have tried) has been reduced to two thin bands of 'playable' terrain. Not saying this makes the game unplayable but for empire growers like myself, it is simply no fun to play. So have stopped playing; will try again after an update or two

    - I DEMAND deer in my forests. Damn it man, I'm an Elf, not a farmer. But more seriously, another food resource would be good; as would a 'dialable' start option for resource density. Having only ever been on one plane, I have no view (worth listening to) on whether the total number of resources is reasonable (that said, please give me at least a chance for mithril (or equivalent) on the prime plane, please).

    - not convinced that bonus tiles provide an adequate bonus

    - on a similar note, dialable terrain type (or wet/dry, long/old, etc as per Civ) would be nice. With 'paradise' as an option for those of us who just want it easy.

    - there are too many neutral cities. At some point in the game, expansion stalls as all your new units go into armies whose only goal is to defend the existing boundaries. Not saying way too many, but definitely above optimal.

    - in my best recent game, sadly lost after 65 turns due to the next beta, I had 8 cities, three of them captured neutrals. Captured very early by my starting 'army'. All three were 'defended' by one weak unit and were easy prey. That was actually very nice for me but two of the cities were more populous than my starting city. Now the occasional very small, lightly defended neutral city is a good thing. But I think you should follow the MoM model: neutral cities can be small, medium or large and the garrison should reflect that.

    - heroes apparently show proportionately to your inability to pay for them. Early on, bunches, later, nada. Haven't seen a 'Noble' to date, which was a great early boost in MoM. I always choose Merchant so can normally afford one hero; otherwise one is totally dependent on the hero generating gold from taking undefended or poorly defended lairs. Fine for awhile, but hardly feasible when one has a few heroes early.

    - I do like that manna availability has been dropped significantly (I used to have 1000 manna 25 turns in, now I have less than 100)

    - roads are either totally broken or not implemented. If the latter, please remove the capability. Don't make me waste the time of building an engineer, building a road then moving a unit along it (unit pathfinding actively avoids roads) to find that I have again wasted my time.

    - my guess is that your game design has way too many planes and not nearly enough races. More is not always better; neither is less. Has any thought been given to what races have which plane as 'home'? I am surprised to have neutral Draconian cities on the prime plane when one would have thought that either Air or Fire would be more natural. Everyone/everywhere is easy but 'wrong'. So if you have as many planes as you are planning, you really need 2-3 home races for each. Some overlap would be fine. But that is probably at least twice as many races as you are thinking about.

    - high end units, the one time I got deep enough into the game to have quite a few of them, don't seem to be as good as they were in Mom. But that may just because I have never seen mithril or adamantine (or even know whether they exist and 'behave' as per Mom)

    - high end enemies are definitely underwhelming. This is presumably due to the relative absence of summonable/summoned creatures. But should the WoM equivalent to Great Wyrms ever exist, I know I won't have the units to take them.

    - way too many circles of magic (and no real idea what any of them do)

    - no clue as to how access to spell research works vs picks. Nor have I ever got a retort, so don't know what they might provide

    - I do like the multitude of wizard skill choices I have but there are some pretty powerful negative/positive combos, which allow quite a bit better than break even (IMO). Maybe that is the intent and I would be fine with it if that were true

    - I really, really want to be able to set my default start picks. I wasted a lot of time entering the same ones over and over to try to find a reasonable starting position - before I realized that there weren't any.

    - Oracle 'spots' don't seem to be sticking anymore

    - you need a summonable scout unit like MoM for those periods when otherwise one is turtling

    - high level units don't seem to be adequately better than starting units. Certainly more HP so they don't get 'one shot' very often but not really much better otherwise.

    - for those units with magic capability, it would be nice if that increased (not by a lot) with each promotion.

    - lots and lots of spells (even for those of us who only use 9 wizard picks on spell schools); will only ever use a very small percentage of them. But that was also true in MoM and I recognize that you need to cater for a wide variety of playing styles. Still, see comment that more is not always better

    - more elite units coming in at higher levels sucks. They really aren't much better than a base unit of the same level and take a long time for each promotion. I presume that they can go to higher levels but I am over 60 and may not have enough time left to find out.

    - having heroes come in at very high levels REALLY sucks. See above.

    Now that all sounds pretty negative but there is much to like about the game:

    - there is lots to do, there is much more 'room' and lots more lairs. Both are significant advances on MoM

    - like that units can gain many levels; wish it made more of a difference.

    - like the city building aspect.

    - really like the militia concept

    - pacing seems about right. A good starting position though is necessary or it is an early and long turtle. But no worse than Civ, MoM, etc

    - the races do play adequately differently - although I haven't tried undead and never will. Building evil empires is not what I do.

    - the team has been very responsive to feedback, e.g. the saved game bug - which absolutely is a game breaker = appears to have been fixed.

    - do like the split between high pop/growth and high production tiles.

    - most importantly, the game is both fun and challenging (OK, a bad starting position equals too much challenge and not much fun) and getting better

  3. #23
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    Aug 2014
    And yet somehow in that very long list, I forgot to note the thing that annoys me the most: food.

    That is food as shown at the top of the screen. It seems to be - almost certainly - net food but does not include units. Which is fine when one has 2 units or even a handful of units - but once is into the dozens, having to do this balancing becomes a chore. And one that is totally unnecessary. If MoM could do it for you in the early '90s, pretty sure it is still possible now. So please change it so that it is 'real' net food shown, i.e. total harvested minus all that is used.

    Two other minor things involving food:

    - the Animist Guild specifically notes that it provides no food. Does this mean all the other buildings do? Know the answer, just making the point. I assume that at some point, the AG will provide food, just not yet. If/when it does, it would be nice if it affected all farmers, not just the ones feeding the local populace. That always annoyed me in MoM.

    - Not sure about the 'cumulative surplus counter'. Early on, it does seem to go up and down as expected (and can manage farming with that once one has a safe buffer) but when I hit about Turn 60 in my 'good game', I had about 32 units, had a cumulative surplus of 25 and a per turn surplus of 35. Five-six turns later, I had 38 units, was still running a per turn surplus of 35 and at no point in those turns did my cumulative surplus move from 25.

  4. #24
    Glorfindel7, I don't feel that my suggestions on dealing with werewolves were “mostly nonsense”, but you are certainly welcome to your opinion, lol.

    Killing them with spells can be difficult, as I mentioned at the time, but it can be done. You just have to work to find the mana you need and spend power on getting your spell craft high enough to be able to bring enough mana to the battlefield. At the moment it's very difficult to do, but not impossible. (Once we have Circle Mastery implemented it will be a little easier because you'll be able to start with a tier 3 destruction spell if you like.)

    I've managed to build the Alchemists' Guild by turn 49. I'm not saying that it's easy, or even that you can normally do that (it takes a bit of luck), but you can do it. And if that's your plan you can stack the deck in your favor. At the moment I'm not sure that the Alchemists' Guild is working like it should though... I need to double check it. I took a look this morning and there may be an issue.

    Summoning is another case of “it can be done”. Again, it's not my current preferred method. For one thing we need to get more summons in game.

    Stacking works. I tend to have plenty of mana even in the early game. I scour the countryside for easy to take world features and use the mana I get to buff my starting army. As a result I can take more features and, to a certain extent it snowballs.

    In any event, werewolves are showing up too soon and we need to address it.

    Deserts and Swamps are too common. We're going to have to address it as well.

    We have “Wild Game” which look like deer (and have some deer in there in theory). That world resource has been scarce lately. I'll have to look into it.

    We may tinker with the terrain bonuses, but we're not to that stage yet.

    “Too many” is a relative term. In time we plan to offer a number of “frequency sliders” in the settings. You'll be able to turn neutral cities down, others can turn them up if they like.

    Heroes do love to show up when you're broke... We need to work on that. (Along with balancing their upkeep costs a bit).

    Roads are implemented and should be working. Can you provide a little more detail on what you ran into?

    There will be eight races in the initial release. Draconians will sometimes start on the plane of air. In time we hope to add more races to the game. Not all of them will be native to the prime material plane.

    Mithril and Adamantine do exist and work something like they did in MoM. (They are certainly worth having.)

    A lot of high end roaming creatures aren't in the game yet. They are coming.

    There are not too many circles of magic. Once you know what they do you'll understand.

    Some “retorts” (which we call Disciplines) will alter your potential spell list. They're not all in place yet.

    A clever player can take negatives and positives and end up with an advantage. It's by design.

    We do need to allow you to save a Sorcerer Lord build. You're not the first person to mention it.

    We're still working on balancing units. Expect changes before release.

    The magical abilities of units should increase as they level up. Just give us a little more time.

    Most players love the wide selection of spells. Still, we understand that not everyone is going to enjoy that.

    We do need to take a look at the level progression of the high level units.

    I acknowledge the hero issue (see above, lol).

    The food bar at the top does include unit costs. (We had a bug where it didn't for a while, but that should be fixed now.)

    The Animist Guild will effect food and it will apply to all farmers.

    Keep an eye on the food surplus. If it seems to be acting oddly give us as much information about it as you can. (We could have a bug there I suppose.)

    And in closing: I'm glad we agree that the game is good so far. Once we get it polished up it's really going to shine!
    Everybody needs friends! Aaron's Facebook Page

  5. #25
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    Aug 2014
    Thanks for the feedback. I will fess up to a couple of things:

    - early on the beta trail, offensive spells were pretty underwhelming, so I stopped picking them. Much has changed so maybe one can now take a werewolf out with first level offensive spells (and maybe we should define early or we will be in agreement in reality, but still arguing on paper. So for me, the first 60-70 turns are 'early').

    - I don't pick summon anymore because early on it didn't provide a big capability boost. Should have another look. But I do realize that summoning is one of those 'later on' things you will be adding.

    - I spend the entire early game exploring in ever expanding circles looking for those easy lairs to boost my manna and gold. But the amount of manna you get this way is now much lower than it was in the earlier betas (it was like 75, now 17). I cast Fertile Soil on all my cities and always a few other spells on units or cities. So early on, I am facing three issues when (theoretically) attacking werewolves magically: I don't have very good offensive spells, I don't have a high casting ability and I don't have a lot of manna. Now only one of the last two will be the bottleneck - and it is usually the casting ability - but it still greatly limits what I can do - especially if I need to toss in a heal or two.

    - in my best game that I refer to, I had an alchemist guild by about turn 60. But that was because I had four good cities and could afford to take one 'offline' and concentrate on getting to the higher level buildings. But newly founded cities take a very long time to become productive, so when one only has the founding city as a producer of settlers and units, that will delay the appearance of an alchemist guild by quite a long time - unless one goes straight for the alchemist guild and builds nothing else.

    Some other comments:

    - I have never seen wild game on the prime plane

    - I have never seen mithril or adamantine either - but wasn't really expecting to (assumed maybe mithril would be there but adamantine would be only on the tougher/more rewarding planes)

    - don't have any save games with roads but will play a new game long enough to get some (there must be some high men around somewhere). But in the last beta, units would not pathfind along roads and when I force marched a unit along a road, there was no movement bonus. Will see if that is still true in this beta

    - the food bug does seem to have been fixed. I am only 10 turns in but it seems like the bug made one double count units for food. They were included in the net surplus shown but not recognized as such - so the surplus had to have enough to feed tham again. This view is based on having many fewer farmers to feed my now three unit strong army

    - I play on colossal worlds which gives a lot of room for neutral cities. By turn 50 or so they are all sending out armies and seem to know where I am, even if I don't know where they are - where they appear from is a clue. It is not overwhelming but it does become option limiting when one's empire is too big for a single, or even two. mobile armies to defend. It is just a later turtle phase and does offer a challenge as one rushes from one neutral army to another to keep your cities safe.

    - I will congratulate myself on cleverness and use my combo guilt free going forward

    I should state the obvious: if I didn't have a very positive view of the potential of this game and the capability of the designers/programmers/artists, I wouldn't be playing the beta and writing very long emails expressing opinions and hopes.

  6. #26
    Well, however we deal with werewolves, we can agree that they may show up a little too early for some players, lol.

    I'll have to find out what's going on with wild game. It used to be everywhere. There are so many world resources that I didn't notice it was missing until you mentioned it. I'll see what I can find out.

    Again, I'll check into what's happening with mithril and adamantine.

    Roads weren't working before. They are supposed to be now. Let us know if you run into anything odd.

    Glad we got the food issue sorted. Just shout if anything else crops up with food. (← Did you see that? Crops up... with food... lol. Man... It's early here....)

    We can take a look at the number of “default” neutral cities depending on how much more feedback we get about it.

    You should congratulate yourself. We hope to encourage clever play.

    To state something equally obvious: We really appreciate detailed feedback. We feel that WoM is on it's way to being a really good game. If we keep getting feedback like this we may just be able to craft it into a modern classic.
    Everybody needs friends! Aaron's Facebook Page

  7. #27
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    Aug 2014
    OK, as far as I can see, roads don't work - at least if reducing movement cost is one of their functions. Built a road 6 tiles long across plains then walked a (Grey Elf) unit along the road - had no movement points left at the end. And as I have noted previously, unit pathfinding AI sees (correctly) no value in travelling along roads.

    Now, most of the rest of these points should be in other threads, but I am inherently lazy so I am listing them here:

    - rivers closely parallel the coast for long distances. This used to be even more prevalent but still exists

    - I play colossal panagea worlds with 70% land. First, all the water seems to be at the N and S edges, which may not be unreasonable for this configuration. I had a starting point near the north coast. Moved units east and west near coast and the coast pretty well parallels the northern map edge, at least for the 50% or so of the east-west map direction that I have covered to date. I also sent a unit due south until the southern ocean was in view. So on this map configuration, there are north and south oceans taking up 30% of the north-south total 'linear tile availability', there are then two strips, each comprising about 10% of that linear tile availability that are the nice place to visit (or found cities) tiles. In between, 55-65 tiles thick, is the desert-swamp region. Not 100% of these tiles are desert/swamp, but probably 80-90% are, leaving very few places for even a half decent city. So, between the oceans and swamps/ deserts, roughly 80% of the map is unsuitable for elven habitation. I know you are aware that there are too many swamp/desert tiles but wanted to quantify this for myself and thought it worth passing on just how imbalanced this is. I do recognize that the configuration I picked may have been the worst possible from this respect - but it does need to be addressed as playing a 'horizontal Chile' map quickly loses its appeal.

    - when one is building roads, the number of turns left is handily shown. However, this little box is often persistent, i.e. when one moves the map, the little box becomes detached and keeps its position relative to the map center. No big deal obviously but presumably something you will want to fix eventually.

    - I am not entirely sure (or unsure) that the combat engine is correctly accounting for number of figure reduction when calculating damage to the opponent. Of course, I am not entirely sure I entirely understand the combat damage generation algorithm, which I assume takes each figure and 'rolls the dice' for a damage value from 1-X (with X determined by that unit's combat damage value), looks for criticals, applies whatever saves/damage mitigation factors that may be appropriate and then applies the net total to the defending unit. But sometimes, especially in ranged combat, one gets a damage result like '15' when there is one figure left with a 1-8 damage weapon and no critical.

    And finally, 'crops up' did indeed generate a chuckle in that context. And my response would be that everything seems to be working as one would expect.
    Last edited by Glorfindel7; 11-04-2014 at 10:43 PM.

  8. #28
    Roads should make movement cost 0.5. So if you have a unit with 3 movement points it should only be able to move 6 tiles on a road. (I checked it recently and it was working, but I haven't messed with High Men since the new build. I'll try to double check it soon.)

    Rivers are still likely to undergo changes before release. Thanks for pointing out the anomaly.

    The desert/swamp issue has been brought up officially in a meeting. We intend to fix it. Also, up to this point “preferred terrain” hasn't been introduced yet. We mean to take care of that soon as well. That will make forest tiles much more inviting to elves.

    I'll need to take a look at the “”build counter” as well.

    In combat each individual figure in a unit makes an attack roll, may score a critical, and rolls damage. One archer should not be able to do 15 damage (under most circumstances). If it happens again please let us know (and be as specific as you can about the units involved).

    I'm glad the food is fixed and that you enjoyed my humble bit of humor.
    Everybody needs friends! Aaron's Facebook Page

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    - when one is building roads, the number of turns left is handily shown. However, this little box is often persistent, i.e. when one moves the map, the little box becomes detached and keeps its position relative to the map center. No big deal obviously but presumably something you will want to fix eventually.

    Fix will be available in the next build.

  10. #30
    Mage’s Assistant
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    Aug 2014
    Thanks, just to clarify the movement thing, my elven units have a base move of 6 - and roads definitely cost 1 MP.

    I have ticked the box for fast movement - but assumed that just meant the AI teleported no LOS neutral and opposition units rather than having them trace paces, so reducing the time between turns.

    And may I say that 'preferred terrain' will be a great addition to this game. Different races should get different food/production values from different terrain types, e.g. mountains should be better for dwarves than elves and woods should be better for elves (at least the sylvan/green ones) than for dwarves. Pairing this with a map generator that built, e.g., mountain ranges, large forests and great plains would be even better. But love the concept and really impressed that you guys are implementing it.

    Will take note of any apparent damage anomalies in combat.

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