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Old July 21st, 2006, 07:14 PM

shovah shovah is offline
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Default Even in CB are black servants too strong?

I ask due to some recent tests, an un-experienced black servant with horror helm, lucky coin, chainmail of displacement and girdle of might (had him out by turn 15 on hard research) entered the deathmatch. Once there he managed to slaughter (without recieving any afflictions or, too my knowledge being hurt) a 250health, lucky, ethereal golden naga and a 150 health moloch with 28 attack. I know black servant thugs are powerful but isnt this a bit much? he now has the trident but i gave him a lycan amulet and now (due to his experience partly) he has a 22 strength, 21 attack, 27 defence (well 29 but im not counting his heroic quickness), 17 prot, he can fly, has quickness and a 2 atk per turn item, fear, ethereal and small regen. How much (if at all) do you think these things should be toned down?
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Old July 21st, 2006, 07:51 PM
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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

in the next version of CB they are changing his drain life to steal strength. It should make a big difference.
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Old July 22nd, 2006, 07:13 PM
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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?


Given that they're not particularly powerful unless you toss on some forged items, I don't think they really need nerfing : only the AI would lose a naga / moloch to what you described, imo. And when you lose an equipped BS, the enemy gets some of the gear, while you lose all the gems invested.
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Old July 22nd, 2006, 07:21 PM

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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

The problem is that with any decent research pretender all you need is conjuration 1 and constuction 2-4 and with alot of races you can get a strong black servant out by turn 15-20 (with a rainbow pretender as ulm i reckon i could have one out sooner) and it can take out practically anything else avaliable at that time.
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Old July 22nd, 2006, 08:16 PM

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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

Ok, these guys are definetely too strong, in my latest test with ulm i had my fourth fully equiped (every slot other than 1 hand for lifedrain) by turn 28. first had around 28 prot, 15 def and 17 strength, second was 26 prot, 14 defence, 17 strength and +0 awe, third was the same as second but with charcoal shield instead of golden one and fourth was 28 prot, 17 def and 17 strength. All of these guys were soloing lvl 8 indies with no afflictions and i have no doubt that the other nation i was using (1v1 clash of the titans) wouldnt have stood a chance.
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Old July 23rd, 2006, 05:10 AM

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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

They make a good chassis, but have two big weaknesses: low hp and vulnerability to banishment. 2 basic priests and 20-30 crap troops (200 gold) have a good chance at taking one out. And then you lose items to the other players and your 20-30 gem investment.

They are great vs the AI though, who doesn´t understand how to handle lifedraining units.

Making them have steal strength only would make them pretty useless as fighters and would remove one of the interesting strategys out there.
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Old July 23rd, 2006, 06:17 AM

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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

The BS is useless unless you give it the right equipment. In the last few weeks I have been playing with them and often sending them out with less than a full range of equipment. What happens? They get killed. You get the right equipment on almost anything and they become very dangerous, it is just that the BS is the first of the potential thugs.

You are right, you can push hard and get one out early. What is the cost? You have not pushed hard in other areas and are behind in them. You have spent your gems on him instead of reseach boosters, summons or searches. I have gotten beaten in a recent game as I was so focused on getting a good BS out that I did not use the resources in covering the basics. Next thing I knew, I was well behind and could not catch up.
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Old July 23rd, 2006, 09:12 AM
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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

I noticed if you prophetize them, they gain the hp bonus for being in your dominion, making them excellent inde clearers. And their low MR is not too hard to get rid of.

yeah, its not good to base an entire strategy around them, but they have their uses.
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Old July 23rd, 2006, 11:43 AM
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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

There's also a penalty in enemy dominion, and that bonus is percentile based, so even a huge bonus doesn't amount to much HP.
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Old July 23rd, 2006, 11:50 AM

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Default Re: Even in CB are black servants too strong?

And having 4 thugs expanding by turn 30, all of which are stealthy is nice. Priests rarely, if ever seem to damage mine and with thier 26-28 prot and good defence almost no basic troops can hard them, they usually make enough with lifedrain to stay alive (although i kept playing that test, one of my servants lost and arm and his lifedrain in the process).

Another option instead of removing lifedrain would be making them have very low strength, i tend to boost the strength of mine alot (boots of strength, girdle of might and sometimes bearclaw talisman/lycan amulet) so reducing the strength reduces lifedrain which reduces their effectiveness. or you could give them a fixed (say 10ap) lifedrain attack so they cant drain too much.

By turn 30 (as ulm) in that test i had 2 earth boots and dwarven hammers, and rainbow mage (3 in almost all, higher in death and earth) so i had good research and forging. I had 6 (nearly 7) construction and 2 in conjuration on hard research.

This was just a test and i made all the servants without even searching for any sites due to my forge bonus, had i used my rainbow mage to search for sites i would have had great income and would have had the black servants out only 2 or 3 turns later at most (since they used almost exclusively lvl 2-4 items my smiths could make), i agree there are counters but the fact that 1 guy i had out before turn 15 can solo a priest,20ish crossbows (maybe 30) and 20 knights is just wrong.

The fact that i can have 4 of them (or possibly better versions) out by turn 30 while still producing masses of arbalests (mainly for SC's/very tough troops life neifels), black plate infantry (when backed wtih priests or mages can handle practically all chaff/undead) and smiths/priests (research, preaching and battlefield support) and still have some gems, cash and good research power just seems overpowered (although ulm does need all the help it can get). Also black servants with a good shield (charcoal is good), marble armour, horror helm and amulet of anti magic has great prot, defence, routing ability and priest resistance.

Id prefer (as i suggested earlier in this post) them to have reduced strength but not lose lifedrain, that could make black servant packs useful. 3 or so at a time, all with good prot and some fear and berserk (lycan amulet?). Very hard to kill and with their cold aura+alot of attacks could be useful but take lnoger to get working.
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