The new age: Age of Awakening

Posted by Akku on Aug-6-2008

Changes:

* Elves get +30% Spell Strength (from 25%)
* Gnomes get +50% Thievery Effectiveness (from 40%)
* Dark Elves get a 5/6 Elite (from 4/6)
* Orcs have their science effectiveness penalty replaced by a +25% Science Cost penalty

* Sages get 60% protection from learn attacks (from 50%)
* Warriors get 20% lower attack time (from 15%)
* Artisans get limited 25% building effectiveness bonuses (from 15%)

The last age

The NW-values of the elites last age were:

Peasants = 1
Soldiers = 1.5
Money = 0.001
Thieves = Wizards = 4
War Horses = 0.6
Land (full) = 55
Unbuilt Land = 40
sci = sci/100

Defspecs(/5) 5NW
Human Defspecs(/6) 6NW

Offspecs(5/) 4NW
DE Offspecs(6/) 4.8NW

Dw(6/6) 7NW
Hu(6/4) 5.5NW
Elf(6/5) 5.75NW
Orc(8/2) 6.75NW
DE(4/6) 6.5NW
GN(5/5) 5.25NW

Last age, our kd again decided for the sheer power of the dark elf in a full hybrid kd-strat.  Most went DE/mystic A/T/M or A/M, some DE/sage or DE/thief (A/T) and some others were Elven TMs. A full hybrid strategy made the following things possible: 3tpa and 3wpa throughout the kd, making it hard for enemies to get CBs, SoMs and any other spells and ops through; destroying weakly thievery-defended provinces with ops from the whole kd; having meteors and riots on every enemy 24/7; attacking with nearly all provinces for land.

The dark elf sages grew unbelievable high amounts of science last age - mostly on behalf of the sages auto-sci-ability.

Orc and human were the attacker types.

General impression

The Age Of Awakening is here. Looking at the last ages elite values above, the DE’s elite NW will be raised to 5.75, which would be more of a problem for dark elves than an advantage, as it stays a defensive elite. DE’s would be turtles now too, as they can use their elite for attacking a bit more, but their overall NW would rise a bit. They’re still the number one A/T/M and A/M race in my eyes, as the no-runes-needed trait makes them the perfect meteorslinger. DE / mystic as A/M, DE / sage or rouge as A/T.

Looking for strong A/Ts, I unexpectedly see the orc/sage as new contender. The science cost of the orc doesn’t bother the sage, and the orcs science penalty is gone. Still the orc has +30% gains, -50% wages and draft costs (which will make it possible to get science in peace times not harder than other races with +25% science costs) and it still spreads the plague, which is a kd-strategy factor for chaining plagued targets down. Very high science rates (that also cannot be stolen easily due to the sage bonus) means, that we have a very effective attacker here, that can also afford some thieves. Combined with the thievery-science, it should make a very good A/T. Only 50% bonusses from honor is the only real disadvantage.

Human / sage is the other possibility for having a fine A/T. Works like the orc sage above, but doesn’t deal that much damage as the 30% gains and the plague misses. As the orc/sage, the human/sage would also be a good pure attacker. As pure attacker, they both would need a completely attacker-based kd and a good coordination of attacks to be working, and as full attacker they would need to deliver a double hit each time to make them pickable.

Advice

As there will be many hybrid-kingdoms this age (same as last one), you wouldn’t want to be vulnerable against mages and thiefs, as the hybrids tend to win all longer wars as pure attackers loose the grip and get opped to death with time. As said above, pure attackers would need a completely attacker-based kd (so the enemy ops don’t get concentrated on the single full attacker - who get killed by that helplessly) and a good coordination of attacks to be working, and as full attacker they would need to deliver a double hit each time to make them pickable. We at least don’t have such a coordination. So no pure attacker can be picked if you want to have at least some fun in the game.

The best defense against ops is to be A/T/M yourself. Pick a focus (DE/mystic will be the A/M-type and sages will be the A/T-type), and try to be good at attacking AND spells / ops. If everyone did that, a strong hybrid kd would be the outcome.

Picking T/M is (again) for the weaker players. They’re the best defended in all areas, but they just don’t deal enough damage and don’t really help winning wars as they don’t attack. Their only real purpose is getting spells and ops on enemy T/Ms - which is unnecessary as those aren’t dealing enough damage themselves.

What others think in the forums

Here I got two other opinions.

VT2 from utopiatemples forums writes:

Warrior is fine.

Sage is fine now, despite what everyone says. Anyone silly enough to pick orc, and pretending the lowered ambush-effectiveness of warrior will protect their hordes of elites deserves to be taught a lesson. It’s a nice price.

Mystic is useful to save time, but that’s it. Give it something cool sometime in the future.

Warhero is - for the first time ever - fine.

Artisan is a niché thing for gnomes. Change that, please.

Merchant is fine, but boring.

Rogue is, and has been, fine for several years, but greater arson still does too low damage to be useful for real.

Shepherd remains a comfy personality, but doesn’t really add anything of major value. It’s just a nice thing.

-

Dark elf getting 5/6 won’t change a thing, since it’s still a defensive elite, and it’s going to remain at home. Keep the networth-tag the same, or it’s going to become another beginner’s trap.

Orc is good as it is, really. I don’t see anything majorly wrong with it, or majorly weak. The changed penalty to science won’t make a big difference.

Elf is still not going to make a good offensive caster, because spells eat up runes, and it still won’t make a badass mofo, because it has no economy. Warrior and quick feet can’t be abused unless you skip A LOT of sleep - which I did early this age, but it wasn’t really worth it at my level. Let anyone who wants to use it use it.

Dwarf still has fog, and it’s a problem that dwarf has fog, because it already has everything else that makes a race badassly solid at war. I really don’t like the focus of power, and it should be moved to someone softer. Who’s softer? Well, anyone, really - but preferably a race with wizards that aren’t really awesome.

Human remains solid, but aren’t really awesome. I’m gonna play one next age, because I want a comfy age, where I don’t have to worry about getting massive aid when hit mildly hard. Human’s like shepherd - comfy.

Gnomes suck hard, and it’s the elite’s fault. It’s a beginner’s trap, and we’ve had to kill off so many stubborn idiots who refused to go anything but all-elite, or to even learn when they got raped while sending out their armies. It needs to drop in power, and in networth, so it can be used by new players, without them overdoing it, or getting seduced by the price.

-

Learn blows.
Science isn’t so hard to get it needed THAT big a drop in effectiveness. Seriously.
I tried it once, used it two times on a really, REALLY science-intensive dude, and that’s it.
It’s just not worth using.

“We need to protect n00bs from chain-learns!” Oh, okay. If you say so.

kyte from utopiatemples forums writes:

Learns were only good if you get their sos, survey and see they’re not a sage first. if they have a super high amount of population (especially since it’s about half effective now), tools, and income, and NO GS/Schools… then you’ll get amazing learns. I think with the added level of science more people will be able to have more science, and learns will thus increase in strength. Amnesia will also be more valuable. (maybe sages should have protection against amnesia too?)

The orc change combined with the added science level pretty much makes them more powerful in general, which was needed compared to humans and elves this last age.

Basically these new proposed changes made everyone a little better at what they do, or specialize in…

gnomes better at thievery
humans get the added science level, and science getting tweaked
orcs is the same as humans, with better science they lose a little disadvantage.
sages can now hold their treasure even better which is okay.
Warriors let those active turn tides of wars by themselves,
Artisans aren’t so crappy anymore, although they dont’ seem strong enough compared to merchant, rogue, mystic, warrior, war hero, etc.
Elves better spells, and not needing as many runes for self spells. It will help more than you think. Find a new improved artisan to build a few extra towers for you and you’ll be set.

Dark Elves, however, seem to be getting the only addition that doesn’t fit the “make everyone better at what they do already” strategy. perhaps (and I agree) Swirve has identified that DE’s are very good at what they do (spell cast for free runes)… and they can be a decent attacker with the night rangers. It is a thought to have these stronger elites, though, since it will make playing them just that more interesting. Will they be overpowered? possibly, although it seems every other race and personality (other than mystic, the most popular DE personality) here just got a little better too, so this is just a slight advantage… many will still not want to send out their elites ever. Any NW change will probably not be an issue to a t/m.

Hope that helps you deciding what to pick. Have fun. And leave comments if you want to add something.

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