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  #1  
Old October 4th, 2011, 03:27 PM
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Default Adept's Mod (weapon, magic and monster changes)

Updated to version 1.10. Name shortened to Adept's Mod to avoid confusion.

1.01
Minor pricing and weapon adjustments for Jomon, fear removed from Aka-Oni samurai.


1.10
I had forgotten to bring Hatchets to the same standard as other things (left the damage to just +1 on shortswords here). Gave werewolves back the head slots. If dragons get to wear helmets, so should they.

Mod feels ready now. Some day I'll try to bring Hinnom and the rest of that nation path to some sanity, but that can wait for a while. For now we just don't play them.

-Adept

---

Hello everybody, sorry that this took so long. Many things were more tedious to do than I anticipated, and I wanted to test things extensively before making this public.

But here it is. Click on the banner to download.



I'll try to summarise the mod without going into every tedious detail. This is not in order of importance, just the order in which I built the mod.

1) Adjusted weapon balance, mainly for the sake of realism, but also for game fun reasons. The weapon modelling in Dominions has had some oddities since the original game. I have some passion for archaic weapons and history, so I got together with like minded friends and have done my best to address the oddities.

The game reason is that in Dominions it has often seemed that swords are the best all around weapons, and most of the others are inferior or even horribly inefficient chioses. This isn't historically true and not very interesting in the game. The attempt here is that weapons have strengths and weaknesses, and the combination of their stats and resource cost should make them all feel like valid choises (for the cultures equipping their soldiers).

Here are some general principles. All in all we tried to leave well enough alone, and not over adjust. Swords and the spear were used as the yardstick for determining values for other weapons.

Two handed weapons have +2 damage to the equivalent one handed weapon.

Axes have less reach, no defence bonus and +2 damage to swords.

Jotun giant weapons adjusted accordingly. Jotun axemen and such should now suck a bit less.

Mace is a cheap res 1 weapon. Reach 1, damage 7 (one point more than on a sword). Decent low tech weapon.

The hammer is now modelled after the medieval warhammer. Higher resource cost and less damage than the mace (5), but it's armour piercing.

Glaive, which in Dominions represents many polearms should be a pretty good polearm. It and it's relatives were used a lot over history. The accuracy and defence penalties made it stupendously bad previously. The glaive is by nature a defencive and versatile polearm, so we went with that. The damage was brought down to a still respectable 8, att 0, def 1. All other glaives adjusted accordingly.

Halberd is the offensive polearm. The impact of a twohanded battleaxe with reach 4. Att 1, Def -1.

The giant's hurled boulder now has the standard acc -2 of thrown weapons.

Slings have damage 7, range 25 and acc -1. (2 points from the rather high damage were given to accuracy and range, if you will.)

---

The japanese weapons of Jomon and it's earlier incarnations had very strange values. I can't blame Kristoffer too much, since looking for information on them one is swamped by orientalist hype. We made a decision to go with closest european equivalents, adjust for credible research results and make the weapons "offensive" instead of defensive where appropriate to reflect different approach to martial arts. For instance the katana's attack and defence values are those of the greatsword, but swapped around. Where the greatsword has att +1, def +2, the Katana has att +2, def +1. Damages were are based on european equivalents, with the +2 added for being used two handed.

The Naginata, being basically a Japanese glaive has the defence bonus moved to offence, to keep the flavour of the nation.

The bamboo longbow called Yumi was created for the samurai archers to differentiate from the generic longbows. As in real life it has less damage than the Welsh longbow, but to compensate we upped it's attack to +2. Considering the samurai archers have a prec of 11 already, this makes them excellent at long range archery.

The japanese spear (or Yari) inspired me to fix something that has long bothered me. Dominions has a generous handful of troops with spear and no shield, but they all use the normal one handed spear stats. As yari is just japanese for spear, I decided to use it in fixing this. I turned the Yari into "War Spear", which is just a more atmospheric way of saying a-spear-used-with-both-hands. With the usual logic this ends up being a polearm with dam 5, att 1 and len 4. It also meant I had to go through the unit list looking for all the troops armed with spears only, and create a war spear version of any exotic spear used in this way. This took some months as it was very slow and frustrating. Do tell me if (when) you find some that I've missed.

The shuriken is capped at one point of damage, and can't take anybody's head off anymore. Still quite efficient with the strong poison.

---

Magic adjustments:

Items that create magic gems out of thin air have been removed or turned into unique artifacts. Forge of the Ancients has been removed from play, as has the Hammer of the Forge Lord and Dwarven Hammers. Aside from the few gods and units that have built in forge bonuses, magic items will cost the full amount.

Frost Brand cost 10 water gems, to be better matched with fire brand.

Sanquine dowsing rod is now unique, so blood income will require more honest work as well (and there won't be the pressure on blood nations to drive for construction).

---

Creatures:

Werewolves now have 2 claw attacks and a bite, and they don't have weapon or head gear slots. I hope I found every werewolf.

Dragons have 2 claw attacks and a bite.

The Kindly Ones, The Damned Admiral and Lord of the Hunt have no item slots. Especially the Lord and the Erinyas suffered from stupid effects when they happened to pick up some gear after a fight, often rendering them practically harmless and easy to kill (see what happens when one of the Kindly Ones finds a skull amulet).

---

Unit changes:

All samurai have have a gold cost of 11 to reflect their skills and morale as veteran troops (att 10, def 11, Mor 11). The prec has been brought down to 10 on non archer samurai for neatness (no actual game effect).

Ronin adjusted to the same standard, as they are just masterless samurai with different armour.

The higher level Samurai were brought in line with the elite troops skill / cost levels from other nations.

Samurai cavalry prec brought to 8 as they are mounted.

Sacred Sohei and Yamabushi priced at 30 gold. The yamabushi's attack and defence swapped around at att 11, def 13. They make a great defensive line with their naginatas.

The ninja gets the standard att 13, def 13 of any assasin. Other stats and price kept.

Hatamoto and Mounted Daimyo get standards (at 6 and 10), as a nod towards the banners in their graphics, and to add flavour.



---

There you go. Feedback is welcome.

Last edited by Adept; October 19th, 2011 at 07:10 AM.. Reason: Updated to version 1.1
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  #2  
Old October 4th, 2011, 04:39 PM

kianduatha kianduatha is offline
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

Mm, Samurai Archers have two copies of their weapons. You need to #clearweapons before giving them your own.

You may wish to rethink the 'werewolves have no weapons' thing, as this basically destroys Skratti thugs.
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  #3  
Old October 4th, 2011, 05:19 PM
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

Fear on a 20g troop is definately underpriced. Fear auras stack, so fear 0 on massable troops is extremely cheap. I'm not sure you can balance it actually.
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Old October 4th, 2011, 05:21 PM
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

I definitely don't want to rethink it, as Skratti are supercombatants not thugs with a bit of thought. The mod is all about removing cheese.

Samurai archers don't show up with extra weapons in my game, nor do any of the others..
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Old October 4th, 2011, 05:25 PM
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

Fantomen, I do have some worry about that. I was hoping to give them a fear -2 or so, but couldn't figure out how to do it.

It's possible they can't have fear. It's the bit of the mod I'm least sure about. Jomon just needs more character, rather than just a long list of tougher and tougher samurai.
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Old October 4th, 2011, 06:02 PM
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

So you remove options from the skrattir to force them to be used like you envision?
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Old October 5th, 2011, 02:13 AM

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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

The weapon changes here are strange to call as balance. Weapon ones might turn weapons more realistic - I honestly have no clue - but it doesn't achieve that much in reality. The thing with buffing axes and maces is that it does not really buff many units. Most of the infantry in the game just happens to have a sword of some kind. I mean, seriously, all I can think of is is this improving the monkey nations' terrible infantry very slightly and making Marverni's berserk infantry more desireable. If you want to see more mixed units in field, you need to actually give most nations options to begin with: human nations in general only have swordsmen and some two handers to begin with.

Two handed weapons need a lot to be worth using. You're after all losing a shield in most cases, and that's arrow protection and 3 def in most cases. I generally consider that worth more than a couple of points of offensive stats at least since if you lose an unit, you'll have to rehire it and besides, two more turns of one handed weapon hits due to survivability are a lot to catch up for for any two handed weapon. Twohanders have their niche uses, but I bet small changes won't make people use halberd infantry etc too much more.

Nerfing Jomon by making their weapon stats more realistic is in general pretty stupid in my option. It's not a strong nation to begin with and has serious lack of shields. That said the fear 0 20g samurais are bat**** insane and probably way more than make up for the change. Now any Jomon player will only spam those.

Magic item changes are roughly in line with CBM, no comments on those.

Making werewolves pretty much useless seems dumb and removes a really fun aspect of Jotun nations. If they needed a nerf (I don't think they did since there are many other roughly equally easy options of just fine thug chassises too, but I'm no expert) they should've gotten a slight stat nerf at most.
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Old October 5th, 2011, 06:35 AM
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

I don't aim to please everybody Elmokki. Leaving unbalanced weapons as they are "because everybody just uses swords anyway" is a very silly way to go about things. There are quite a few troops in the game armed with axes and maces for instance, and there is no reason for them to be unduly nerfed.

The choise of using two handed weapons is now a bit more realistic and a real choise, as for instance the main polearms aren't nerfed to hell.

I suspect I'll bring the jomonese things up to western standard (with the reversed attack / defence), even though the japanese metallurgy and blade harmonics really don't justify it. But, it's a game, so I shouldn't go into too much real world detail. I was reluctant to up the damages from those used by Kristoffer, but I think in game terms it will make more sense to just treat the katana as a broadsword sized 2 handed sword, for instance. I'll do that.

As for the fear effect, I suspect it will have to go. I didn't bother using those troops much in my test games, as samurai archers, samurai cavalry and naginata armed samurai as the defencive line worked perfectly well. The lack of shields naturally hurts Jomon in many situations, but that is the style of the nation. If you don't like the challenge, pick something else. Their masses of summoned creatures (I'm especially looking at the tengu) more than even up the score I believe.

Werewolves are not useless. They are better right off the bat and in line with the original werewolves (like the Vanir skinshifters and Mictlan jaguar warriors). Werewolves should claw and bite, and with 3 attacks, built in regen, a strength of 25 and the ability to quicken self the Skratti is a good thug without any gear at all. You still get to beef them up with misc, feet and armour items. What you can't do it spam supercombatants with no weaknesses.



---

Oh, I forgot something. I fixed the chariots that have been broken since the original game. Now the Arco chariots have enough ambidexterity to actually use those spear and shortsword attacks if they run into something too big to trample.


As for the fear produing Samurai, I guess this is the unit we should be looking at: http://dom3.servegame.com/wiki/Nightmare

80 gold for a fast, sacred, fear +5 cavalry soldier. Do you guys think there is any way to price the Aka-Oni samurai with fear 0, or do I need to do something entirely different with them?
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  #9  
Old October 5th, 2011, 07:20 AM
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

If anybody has ideas on how to differentiate the high end samurai from each other other than increasing cost and ability I'll be glad to hear it. The Aka-Oni samurai description talks of them infiltrating the besieged city (stealth? siege bonus?) and being the most feared troops of Jomon (fear is indeed maybe too effective, or the price should be kicked to 40 or so).

The on-foot daimyo looks exactly the same as the Aka-Oni, so if they were turned to special troops neading their own type of leadership, the Daimyo is the commander to adopt.
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Old October 5th, 2011, 10:14 AM
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Default Re: Adept's Balance Mod 1.00 ready

Adept, you missed one important part of the Nightmare. They have encumbrance 15! They better hope that the fear scares away the enemy on the first try because if it takes two turns then they are dead. They are the ultimate glass cannons! Note that I would have no problems with 50g Aka-oni that have enc 15.

But no, there is a reason that fear is only given to recruitable commanders and not troops. Its because fear auras stack with each other. So 4 Aka-oni samurai would have stronger fear than a prince of death. Its hard to mass commanders in that way however.
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