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Old January 16th, 2013, 05:54 PM

JonBrave JonBrave is offline
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Default Mage Range Problem?

I'm noticing the following. I script up mages to cast stuff I want. "Leeching Darkness" is a typical example (none are gems), with range 25. I don't have early turn buffs I want to cast. I'm leaving mages positioned as default, not even moving back, so "middle" distance.

For the first couple of turns many of these "average distance" spells are not being cast, and some mages cast fatigue-consuming I don't want. Then they come on script. I am supposing that the opponent is positioned "averagely" too. Doesn't 20--30 range cover middle to middle?

If I am casting these type of spells, am I supposed to actually position mages more forward? Am I supposed to always find a couple of buffs? Or is that not the reason?
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Old January 16th, 2013, 09:25 PM
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Default Re: Mage Range Problem?

Try the grid command (g I think) and count squares. The battlefield can expand if there are lots of troops in play.
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Old January 17th, 2013, 09:29 AM

Man with No Name Man with No Name is offline
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Default Re: Mage Range Problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonBrave View Post
I'm leaving mages positioned as default, not even moving back, so "middle" distance.

For the first couple of turns many of these "average distance" spells are not being cast.... I am supposing that the opponent is positioned "averagely" too. Doesn't 20--30 range cover middle to middle?
Dominions 3 is a game that tends to punish players who lack accuracy and play under "general assumptions" or "ambiguous vagueness", as highlighted above with selective quoting. There is no "middle distance", "average distance", or "positioned averagely" in Dominions 3. You will likely find the game to be a frustrating experience on occasions if you think in that way.

As sansanjuan says, you can enable the gird by pressing "g" and counting the squares. Or you can enabled debugging with the -dd command line switch, and that causes coodinates to appear in battle, which will do the counting for you (with a small bit of arithmetic on your part).

The default starting position for units that have been been left on default positioning is 14,15 (column 14 row 15) for the attacker, while for the defender it is 46,15. So spells that have a range of <30 are likely to be out of range at the start of battle. I say likely because if a lot of units have been left on default, then they will expand out in all directions from the default position, which may result in some being in range at the start of battle. As if a unit is unable to start on its designated square, then it will try to start as close to it as possible.

Also keep in mind that Leeching Darkness is one of those spells that can affect friendly units, so your mage may refuse to cast it if it calculates that it will cause friendly fire by doing so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JonBrave View Post
If I am casting these type of spells, am I supposed to actually position mages more forward?
Yes, if you want your mages to cast any spells then you need to make sure that there are going to be targets in range of that spell. So if the spells are of short range, then your mages will need to be closer to the target. Shouldn't that be very logical and very obvious? And isn't this a good thing? As it creates player-interaction between the player and the game engine in relation to the battle element of the game. It also encourages the player to make decisions on where troops and mages will be positioned in battle in order to maximise their efficiency.

It is your responsibility as a player to position your mages so that the spells you have scripted will have valid targets available. And to check that your scripts are realistic in regards to the "range" of the spells you have scripted, and where the targets of your spells are likely to be in relation to when your script orders are supposed to be executed. If you script a range 1 damage spell (eg. Fist of Iron) as your first order, then you can't really expect there to be an enemy target within range 1 at the start of battle. This is being unrealistic. You also can't expect the game to account for the player failing to carry out their responsibilities in this regards, or when the player asks their mages to cast spells that have no valid targets in range. The game can not break the rules of spell casting just because the player slacked off from their duty.

Mages should always be positioned, along with all your other troops and units. That is a large part of the game. If you don't position your mages, and don't check that they have realistic scripts, then I don't really see how a player can complain about their mages not following their orders. As the player has orders to follow as well. That being "positon your mages and script them realisitically". A mage will only fail to follow his orders if the player first failed to follow theirs.
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Old January 17th, 2013, 06:41 PM

JonBrave JonBrave is offline
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Default Re: Mage Range Problem?

Thank you for your tips, Man with No Name. I certainly hope I do my duty as a player I wasn't intending to complain about anything in the question, I was just wondering if it was usual that to cast a spell like, for example, Leeching Darkness from turn 1 you would have to position mages forward.

sansanjuan, I hadn't thought out the expanding battefield, I guess that means the centre lines could be further apart in some battles, so sometimes my scripts are in range and sometimes not.
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