A few newbie questions

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A few newbie questions

Postby Teaboar » May 19 2010, 17:40

Hello,

I figured I'd give homm III another try after a very long break. Back when I used to play the homm series a lot I was like 10-13 years old, and I never got that good. Now I'm doing better, but I still have problems playing against higher difficulty AI opponents. I can win hard mode opponents on small maps, but the XL maps I've downloaded online tend to get too difficult for me even on hard mode. The map difficulty of these maps is impossible, but this should not effect the AI difficulty, right?

Anyway, to the point. I never played wog before now, and I was wondering if it's worth demolishing towns to rebuild them as the same faction towns as your main? I tend to have huge problems getting enough gold when I do this, and as an example, in the last game I played I had 4 dungeon towns, and each town had like 3 months worth of creatures or more all the time. I just can't seem to find a way to get enough resources, and so I'm wondering if I'd be better off having a few towns just to gain some more gold and not waste the money on demolishing everything? I mean it's frustrating when I get to an azure dragon shrine and can't afford to buy more than 1-2 azure dragons, and then a week later the computer goes there and buys like 18 of them. I mean that's over 500k gold, how does the computer manage that and still keeps producing units in it's towns? :P

I relize it's hard to give advice with such a vague explanation, so I'll try to explain a bit more. Assuming I play on hard mode, I tend to buy 3-4 heroes the first turn, and then roughly one more every other week once I explore more of the map. I tend to have most of my army on 1-2 heroes because the neutral monsters are so strong on impossible, which means even slower progress. I usually reload to an earlier save if one of my weak heroes gets ganked by bandits (which I suppose some would consider cheating :D). In any case one or two of the computer players tend to explore much quicker than me and get most of the best artifacts etc. I'm just not sure what to do considering that if I split my army on all heroes I tend to have a too weak army to even get to the better artifacts.

That's pretty much all I can think of right now. Any help would be appreciated, thank you for your time.

EDIT: nvm, found the option now.

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Postby obelisk v2.0 » May 20 2010, 11:38

My advice would be not to hire so many heroes. I only hire 1 extra hero on the first day for his troops, and then don't hire any more for several months. Personally I also enable any scripts that make neutral battles harder, and while I don't know if they also affect AI battles vs neutrals, I definitely don't have any problems with the AI getting all the good stuff.
My tactics suit me well, and I find it quite easy to defeat 7 impossible AI's who are all on the same team, playing on a random XL map. The only problem is that one hero can't be everywhere at once, so the game goes on for a very very long time...

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Postby Teaboar » May 21 2010, 8:55

obelisk v2.0 wrote:My advice would be not to hire so many heroes. I only hire 1 extra hero on the first day for his troops, and then don't hire any more for several months. Personally I also enable any scripts that make neutral battles harder, and while I don't know if they also affect AI battles vs neutrals, I definitely don't have any problems with the AI getting all the good stuff.
My tactics suit me well, and I find it quite easy to defeat 7 impossible AI's who are all on the same team, playing on a random XL map. The only problem is that one hero can't be everywhere at once, so the game goes on for a very very long time...


Thank you for the reply. I gave it a shot and only bought 2 heroes to start with, and a third hero the second month. It seemed to work better, the only problem being that I'm having a hard time collecting all the weekly resources from windmills etc. but atleast I save some gold. I managed to survive for roughly 4 months on an impossible map with the impossible ai. I'm still completely clueless about how I'm supposed to win opponents like this though, that start with 50-70 in every primary attribute at the start of the game, and get twice the amount of units as me. What's even more disturbing is that the computer player that defeated me wasn't even the one with the best attributes, this one "only" had 40ish in each attribute (while I had roughly 20 each :D). Should I try to be more agressive and try to get some towns from the easier opponents early on, or what can I do? The map in question was Kurgadako's apocalypse 1.1 and it takes a long time for me to get started because certain creature stacks are very strong right from the beginning. The reason why I insist on playing these maps is because imo they are generally better made than the other maps, and I think it gets boring to play against the weak ai. Then again what can I do against heroes that kill my entire creature stacks with 1-2 spells and have way bigger armies? In the last battle the ai hero had 45 blood dragons and 6 rust dragons at the start of combat, while I had 24 supreme archangels + the rest of my castle army. I also had like 12 more supreme archangels in my main town, but I gave up once I lost this battle.

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Postby Salamandre » May 21 2010, 10:36

Kurgadako's apocalypse is a hard map, where AI starts with huge boost. You need to study the map before playing and fix objectives, like Utopias and relics collect. 25 supremes vs 1 million dragons can still win, if you got force field and sphere of permanence (just in case he has the bad idea to dispel)

BTW, this map is an Armageddon blade version. If you play it on wog you must face the consequences:)
Blood dragons are a real pain, because of aging capacity, it works almost always. in original map he would only have bone dragons, weak and vulnerable to spells.

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Postby Ojcar » May 24 2010, 20:04

Some basic hints that will help you in all maps, but obviously it depends if the map is excessively difficult:

At first I usually tend to hire 2 heros, so i can explore a little and get some mines. Then, get some 3-4 creature dwellings on town and capitol. Mithril is crucial in wog so try to use it to upgrade your town income always; mistical gardens and sawmills can give mithril if you have that option activated on wog options so have heros there to check once a week. And, focus on leveling just one hero, get expert wisdom, expert earth magic, expert learning, town portal... it would be easier to face XL maps for you.

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Postby Teaboar » May 26 2010, 15:38

Thank you for the replies. I'm just curious, why earth magic? I generally try to get all spell schools for my main hero if he is a spellcaster, and otherwise I usually just take 1 spell school for buffing + wisdom and then consentrate on skills like offence, armor, resist, leadership, luck etc. I'm not sure if this is the right way to go though.

I Just lost another game as castle on kurgadako's map btw. :P This time the hero that walked over me was also one of the relatively weak ones. He had close to 800 of the upgraded hell hounds, 500 ghosts, 15 hell hydras, 10 darkness dragons, 17 hell barons and 10 devils. At the start of the fight I actually thought I had a chance, but it turns out that was wishful thinking. He had exper leadership and expert luck, he kept using mass misfortune on my army and I ended up missing a few turns on almost all my creatures entirely. Not really sure what to do in a fight such as this. I mean it's a bit too late to get my luck and leadership up at this point. My army consisted of 400ish marksmen, 160 zealots (hero speciality), 250 crusaders, 430 royal griffin, 78 champions, 38 supreme archangels and 33 sacred phoenix. Imo I had the strength in numbers, but the computer had a way stronger hero. I suppose I just need more practice though. :P

EDIT: Forgot to mention this was on expert difficulty.

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Postby Ojcar » May 26 2010, 16:11

For me To have expert on elemental magics is essential to win any game you encounter; my order of importance is this one:

1 Earth Magic, because of mass slow and town portal. Mass slow can be used for two things:

-having first strike on battle.
-Kill enemies from a distance with shooters bfore they reach you.

2. Air Magic, because of mass haste wich gives you first strike if you have a fast creature to start with the battle. If they have more shooters than you, it´s perfect for charging on the enemy.

(i dont tend to like much dimension door or fly).

3. Fire Magic, because of expert berserk, combined with an orb wich negates all natural magical resistances of the creatures can be definitive to win very odd battles in wich your army is ridiculously insuficcient to win.

4. water magic, because of prayer.

Not much more to mention...

You can have a hero with all schools of magic on expertise level but is not really recomended to have more over 3 of them, even two, the least important water. Essentially, is to have earth magic. Spells does really makes the difference.

Funny to see you use the least useful skills on your hero for me. I would reccomend instead: Warfare(a mix of balistics, first aid, and the siege catapult, if you have that wog option mix active, you should), tactics, logistcs, navigation (if there is a lot of water), diplomacy (this skill is nearly, or really cheap in advanced games, as if you combine it with all 3 diplomat artifacts, you can make to join you all wandering monsters in the map, more if you have the wog option "spawn monsters on monster week" activated, those will either ask to join you for free or for a fee. Neither way, you can end up with throusands of troops, and trousands more in reserve.), maybe pathfinding depending how rough is the terrains... you have to focus on being fast and practical-effective, more than just a though slow tank.

One last tactic is one i call myself "breeding", wich it could be considered cheating, depends. Activate the Wog option wich lets you abandon troops on the map, then if you attack them they rejoin you. As any neutral stack on the map grows 10% per week.... you can figure. That´s a measure that works more efficiently when more months has passed. You can use it if you feel desperate.


I have downloaded the map you talking about so ill try it soon to see if it is that much hard to beat. But again, seeing the skills you used and the little importance you give to spells, is not rare you end up losing.

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Postby Salamandre » May 26 2010, 16:36

If he goes for berserk, warfare, diplomacy, he will not play Heroes much. Usually the mapmakers limit their maps by prohibiting those cheap tricks, even more if we speak about a regular map played with WoG version. If you like the game, try to avoid the flaws which will give you great satisfaction for once, but will never show you the hidden real mechanics of the game.
Leaving the creatures on seventh day is lame. Purely cheat, as it was introduced for tactical decisions (block a path) and not for harvesting free mobs every week.

My opinion is that Kurkagado is a very nicely designed map, but by an Heroes amateur. The huge mass of relics, tomes, dragon utopias, ruins a savant design. When I played some time ago, I ended on month 2 with backpack full several times, that means 75xX artefacts. Seems hard on start but once you locate the tome of fire and the orb, no one can beat you and the challenge is gone.

Teaboar wrote:I Just lost another game as castle on kurgadako's map btw. :P This time the hero that walked over me was also one of the relatively weak ones. He had close to 800 of the upgraded hell hounds, 500 ghosts, 15 hell hydras, 10 darkness dragons, 17 hell barons and 10 devils. At the start of the fight I actually thought I had a chance, but it turns out that was wishful thinking.


The AI starts with all those creatures, so there is no way to win one on one early. You need the orb and blind spell, combined with mass slow/haste. You don't need crap griffins/halberdiers and other weak units. Just use Archangels and shooters, a lot of shooters. Cast blind on the unit that threat you the most, next turn cast blind on next one and don't worry about casualties. Once all his army is blinded, use your shooters to kill one by one his mass slowed units, casting blind before your slowest unit finish its turn. Resurrect all before the end using clone/archangels (tome of water is plenty on the map).

Of course, on single maps like this one you need either intelligence or a mana vortex to visit before difficult fights. While armorer/offense are the best skills in multiplayer, they do not play a major role in single player where AI forces are overwhelming the player. Magic is all you need.

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Postby Ojcar » May 26 2010, 18:47

I concur that diplomacy and leaving creatures just makes it all easy.. but berserk and warfare "cheap tricks"?¿.... warfare just makes useful something that was useless for me particularly. Berserk.... from some perspective it can be seen as cheap. I rarely use it, but sometimes is fun.

Haven´t anyone of the modders thought about rebalancing such features in next patches of Wog?¿.

Everyone is free to play as they wish, cheating or not. And everyone enjoys this game it´s own way.

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Postby Teaboar » May 26 2010, 18:56

Thank you for the quick replies.

Ojcar: I must say I agree with salamandre here. The tactics you posted sound very effective, but they also sound very cheesy. I suppose I' should've been more clear anyway. What I should've said was that I'm looking for tactics to defeat the enemy without abusing the AI (atleast too much). :) You're probably right about my skill choices though, because now that I think about it I can't understand why I've neglected the movement skills. I still think the skills I'm taking are very useful, but I suppose I can't afford to take them when some skills are so much more important.

Salamandre: Could you suggest any other well designed XL sized maps to me? The problem for me is that I've tried to find decent maps but I haven't been able to find many. Or rather, I've found several, but most of the time I can't choose a starting town and hero, and I don't like maps like that unfortunately. I've also tried Endless Struggle, which I think is another very well designed map, but I've played it so much now that I'd prefer to try something else (btw I haven't been able to finish this map, either :D).

I suppose one issue for me is that I enjoy the start of the game most. Then, even if I make it past the beginning (which I rarely do), I generally end up starting a new game the next day anyway. For the record, the only time so far that I've done reasonably well on kurgadako was with conflux, and frankly I think conflux is incredibly cheesy so I'd prefer not to use them.

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Postby Ojcar » May 26 2010, 18:59

my tactics cheesy?, man, i regret talking here.

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Postby Teaboar » May 26 2010, 19:16

Ojcar wrote:my tactics cheesy?, man, i regret talking here.


I didn't mean to offend you. Like you stated in your ealier post, everyone is free to play as they wish, and as I stated in the post before this one, I should've phrased my question better to begin with.

EDIT: Just thought of another question: Does a high map difficulty always mean it's a more difficult map to play? What I mean is, can a normal difficulty map with the ai difficulty set to impossible be more difficult than an impossible map with an impossible ai? I'm just curious since I'm not completely sure how the map difficulty changes things. As an example, if creatures get stronger faster in impossible maps, that could potentially make it more difficult for the enemy to get to you, and in return make it easier for you, no?

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Postby Ojcar » May 27 2010, 1:19

How many times you have played this game?¿. In reality, the AI setting is really useless, when a map is previously set in wich the enemy has more than you have; or, wtf, how many maps have you played in wich you get all your resources set to zero because of "cjedhcjdfhvguv", lol, that´s it.. The best ai is just stupid, sadly as they don´t have any kind of strategic planning on conquering opponents, just conquering dwellings and mines.. . Many maps you play bypass difficultity settings, by scripts, etc... indeed, for example, some maps made in an rpg style make the ais to be stuck in some point. It´s a fault of the base code.

so, you call my tactics cheesy when you ask stupid noob questions like the one you do ask. That´s offensive. it´s great you recognice your own stupidity.

I was showing you the way of the noob on wog because you are suffering, here it comes the **** master of map making (with his "awesome" maps in wich i have enjoyed and suffered) to ridicule me and... you can ignore it, wtf :D. well, im drunK, you all, now, it´s the time, to have some sense of humour.

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Postby ByteBandit » May 27 2010, 2:35

A noob question is a noob question. When I started, I asked real stupid questions. Worse than these actually. In fact, I still ask them. And you know what? I will continue asking them. Played the game since it's inception. I can't wait til I'm an expert. :)

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Postby Salamandre » May 27 2010, 2:41

That"s because I don't need berserk :devil:
Here some skelies for you from my current game (a chinese map). No berserk!
Image
Image

I can't even know how many they are, game does not display millions. But the damage says all.

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Postby obelisk v2.0 » May 27 2010, 2:47

Ojcar, don't worry about cheesy tactics and whatnot. I play similarly too. At least I definitely use Warfare, as the separate skills were just useless, and on occasion, if my army is very weak, I use berserk too. I don't use the 10% growth trick, I just enable the daily 4% army growth. And I like the results.

The bit about even the best AI being stupid is sadly true. You need to give them every advantage to even have a challenge.

What I don't agree with is Ojcar's view that Fire magic is more important than Water. For me, I only pick Fire magic in about 15 - 20 % of my games. Berserk and Frenzy are the only Fire spells I use that are in any way dependent on the skill, and I use them rarely enough that Water magic's damage spells (early game), and teleport, clone and prayer (late game) are more important...

Salamandre: While getting so many skeletons seems like a somewhat admirable feat, isn't it boring to play with an army consisting only of them? I recall one time before the 3.58f script update (it nerfed the Diplomat's Ring's ability to double the amount of lvl 1 creatures) I had about 80 million skeleton warriors. I kept them all in a single stack and let the other dead guys have their fun too. :)

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Postby Ojcar » May 27 2010, 3:09

Well, i have to admit Salamander´s response is weird.

first, i have a wog version that only allows stacks of 32768 (more or less, 32 bits) creatures by position (wich version you use salamander?¿).
Last edited by Ojcar on May 27 2010, 15:06, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby Teaboar » May 27 2010, 8:11

Ojcar wrote:How many times you have played this game?¿. In reality, the AI setting is really useless, when a map is previously set in wich the enemy has more than you have; or, wtf, how many maps have you played in wich you get all your resources set to zero because of "cjedhcjdfhvguv", lol, that´s it.. The best ai is just stupid, sadly as they don´t have any kind of strategic planning on conquering opponents, just conquering dwellings and mines.. . Many maps you play bypass difficultity settings, by scripts, etc... indeed, for example, some maps made in an rpg style make the ais to be stuck in some point. It´s a fault of the base code.

so, you call my tactics cheesy when you ask stupid noob questions like the one you do ask. That´s offensive. it´s great you recognice your own stupidity.

I was showing you the way of the noob on wog because you are suffering, here it comes the **** master of map making (with his "awesome" maps in wich i have enjoyed and suffered) to ridicule me and... you can ignore it, wtf :D. well, im drunK, you all, now, it´s the time, to have some sense of humour.


I think you're taking this too seriously. Homm is a game and you're obviously free to play it the way you want. Some of the tactics you posted go against the type of play I want, and that's all I'm saying. Also, what I think is odd is that you're getting mad at me for calling some of your tactics cheesy, while you agreed with salamandre earlier, that some of them infact do make the game way too easy.

As for my stupid questions, why did you even open the thread if you feel that way? I mean the title clearly states "newbie questions", and so you can expect the questions to be very simplistic in nature. I don't understand why you'd take the time to make this post just to insult me a few times.

EDIT: PS. the tactic I thought was cheesy in the first place was the growth trick.

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Postby Ojcar » May 27 2010, 14:42

Teaboar wrote:.

EDIT: PS. the tactic I thought was cheesy in the first place was the growth trick.


saying that other person tactic is just "cheesy", without giving further explanations after my effort posting here is insulting; so you propose here you are a newbie and you give yourself the license to call other people´s tactics with ten years of experience in this game something "cheesy". You are contradicting yourself. I openly said that some of them could be considered cheap. Now you finally correct your mistake by saying what is "cheesy"; you could have done that earlier. That´s all. Sorry if i called you stupid i was drunk. :(

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Postby Teaboar » May 27 2010, 15:26

Ojcar wrote:saying that other person tactic is just "cheesy", without giving further explanations after my effort posting here is insulting; so you propose here you are a newbie and you give yourself the license to call other people´s tactics with ten years of experience in this game something "cheesy". You are contradicting yourself. I openly said that some of them could be considered cheap. Now you finally correct your mistake by saying what is "cheesy"; you could have done that earlier. That´s all. Sorry if i called you stupid i was drunk. :(


I'm sorry about that, I didn't even relize I hadn't typed it, sometimes I end up writing only parts of what I'm thinking (2nd time in this thread now :D). In any case, I've gotten several helpful suggestions now so I think this thread has served it's purpose. Thank you for all the suggestions.


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