Confused on skills and abilities

The new Heroes games produced by Ubisoft. Please specify which game you are referring to in your post.

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mrPassenger
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Confused on skills and abilities

Postby mrPassenger » Aug 21 2008, 15:20

I've just started playing Heroes 5 after completing all the Might and Magic RPGs and other Heroes games
(see the thread "I just finished playing Might and Magic...all of them in the Might and Magic forum.)

I'm a little confused on the skill and ability system.

I used the skill wheel to map out the skills and abilities I wanted. I found that upon leveling - the skills I wanted were offered and I took them. but hardly and of the abilities seem to be offered.

What is a good strategy? Do I max out my skills first. should I jump on any abilities I want as soon as they show up?
Should I concentrate on one over the other?
Is it a bit of a crap shoot with respect to getting desired abilities?

According to the skill wheel - there are some cool feats dependent on abilities - and it doesn't look like I'm going to be offered those...I assume that means I won't get those feats ever.

Any other suggestions for managing skills/abilities?

Oh yeah - one more question that's bothering me. (And this might be in the manual - I'm just at work now and can't look it up). How can you split a stack that a hero has?

Thanks in advance for any help.
-mrPassenger

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Re: Confused on skills and abilities

Postby Asheera » Aug 21 2008, 15:28

mrPassenger wrote:Oh yeah - one more question that's bothering me. (And this might be in the manual - I'm just at work now and can't look it up). How can you split a stack that a hero has?
Hold Shift and drag the creature stack to an empty slot.


And about the skills/abilities offered at level up - yes, it is random, but there are some rules... check out the FAN Manual found in the Fan Documents folder where you installed TotE - it explains A LOT of important Game Mechanics, including this level up stuff. ;)
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Postby mrPassenger » Aug 21 2008, 16:35

Hmmm, I don't yet own tote.

Is the fan manual available online anywhere?

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Postby Asheera » Aug 21 2008, 16:36

Ofc, they are here
No matter how powerful one becomes, there is always someone stronger. That's why I'm in a constant pursuit of power, so I can be prepared when an enemy tries to take advantage of me.

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Postby mrPassenger » Sep 2 2008, 18:59

Ok, I think I am starting to understand. Can anyone confirm if how I think skills/abilities work is indeed correct?

So - on the skill wheel - am I correct in saying that only the first circle of abilities are ever selectable on level up? And that the subsequent abilities are automatically gained when you have the prerequisites (does skill level come into play here)? If this is indeed the case - where do these other abilities show up on the game interface?

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Postby Jolly Joker » Sep 2 2008, 19:15

No.
You can get an ability ONLY when you have the prerequisite skill. HOWEVER, you need a skill level (there are 3) for every ability as well.

THis means, as soon as you get a skill on BASIC level, you are eligible to get an ability of the first circle as well. The abilities of the next circles mean, that you need other ABILITIES as a prerequisite as well - which makes a skill level necessary.

The pick, which abilities are offered, is random between all ELIGIBLE abilities.

So: For Cold Death you need:
Basic Destructive Magic - this allows picking the first circle abilities, but for Cold Death you have to pick Master of Ice.
So you pick Master of Ice, if and when it's offered.
Next you need Advanced Destructive Magic
As soon as you picked that MORE abilities become available Cold Death among them (but Master of Fire and Master of Lightning would still be eigivle picks).
ZZZzzzz....

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Postby Asheera » Sep 2 2008, 19:17

@mrPassenger: No, the advanced abilities are not automatically gained, you'll have to select them at level up. However there are some rules:

Skills
For skills, you'll have two pop-ups: one of a new skill, which is selected from all the skills you don't have based on some specific chances your faction has, and an old, upgradeable skill (upgrade it to higher mastery) chosen from the list of all your skills not taken to Expert mastery yet, with the same chances. That's right, once you pick a skill it won't matter that it pops only 2% for your faction anymore, it will have the same chance to pop up at "upgrade" as the others.

There is the special case when you don't have more skills to upgrade, and you'll be offered two new skills. There is also the special case when you can't learn a new skill (you have all 5 slots occupied) and you'll be offered from two upgrade-able skills to choose.


Abilities
First, there is a rule: You can learn only ONE ability per mastery level of the respective skill. So, to learn Battle Frenzy AND Archery, you'll have to have at least Advanced Attack.

Now, there are three "basic" abilities for each skill. These pop up with equal chance at level up, regardless of the skill they are in.

There are also "advanced" abilities with specific requirements based on your class.

When you level up, you are offered two abilities: one basic and one advanced (doesn't matter the skill from which they originate). If you have no advanced skills, two basics will pop up, and vice-versa.

Don't forget the rule that you can gain only one ability per that ability's skill mastery level. This also means you can learn only THREE abilities max for a specific skill.
No matter how powerful one becomes, there is always someone stronger. That's why I'm in a constant pursuit of power, so I can be prepared when an enemy tries to take advantage of me.

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Postby mrPassenger » Sep 2 2008, 20:52

Ok, thanks for the explanations. This was my original understanding - but it seemed at odds with what I was seeing in game.

When I select a hero and look at their skills (eg. Expert Logistics) it says something to the effect of 'provide skills Scouting, Navigation and Pathfinding' which are all first level, even though I've updated that skill.
(This is on the skill tab - ability tab still shows question marks)

Also, I've played through the first campaign (Haven) and part of the second (Inferno) and it SEEMS I have yet to see any of these second level abilities offered, even though I've advanced further than basic on a number of skills.

Is this my bad luck? Or are the options predetermined for the campaigns?
OR (and I add this after reading one of the responses) maybe they just arent' ones I'm interested in and I'm not realizing they are advanced level abilities. (I'll pay more attention tonight)

Sorry to be having so many questions with this. I just want to check out some of these advanced abilities - and have yet to be offered the chance to do so.

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Postby Asheera » Sep 2 2008, 20:56

Have you checked the fan manual? Advanced abilities have prerequisites based on the race you play. ;)
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Postby Grumpy Old Wizard » Sep 2 2008, 22:46

Avoid learning too many skills at the once or you are unlikely to get the abilities you want. Only work on 1 or 2 skills at a time.
Frodo: "I wish the ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened."
Gandalf: "So do all who live to see such times but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us."

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Postby Asheera » Sep 3 2008, 12:53

Also, by following those "rules" I tend to not get advanced abilities when some other interesting choice pops up, because I know the advanced ability will pop up 100% certain the next level up ;)
No matter how powerful one becomes, there is always someone stronger. That's why I'm in a constant pursuit of power, so I can be prepared when an enemy tries to take advantage of me.

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Postby Ambrose » Jan 20 2009, 13:39

Hey, i have a question relating to this. I am in the necromancer campaign, with a level 24 hero. Unfortunately when I level i am offered a choice between navigation and master of mind. I am sitting in front of a witches hunt which grants navigation when i talk to it. Since i am aiming for the ultimate skill, i would rather not grab that ability.

Should i accept that I am not getting his ultimate skill? Or if i use Isabel for the rest of the mission will i get a different selection of skills in the next campaign? If i restart from a previous save in this mission could i end up with different choices here?

I am playing unpatched if that matters

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Postby Asheera » Jan 20 2009, 13:43

Ambrose wrote:Or if i use Isabel for the rest of the mission will i get a different selection of skills in the next campaign? If i restart from a previous save in this mission could i end up with different choices here?
For that Isabel-thing I'm not sure, but restarting from a previous save and picking the same choices when leveling up will not help at all, it will end up the same.
No matter how powerful one becomes, there is always someone stronger. That's why I'm in a constant pursuit of power, so I can be prepared when an enemy tries to take advantage of me.

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Postby Ambrose » Jan 20 2009, 21:17

Thanks, I was wondering if I could get a different set of skills to appear since they are randomly selected (atleast to some degree, i think)

Anyone else have any ideas?

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Postby Asheera » Jan 20 2009, 21:43

Ambrose wrote:Thanks, I was wondering if I could get a different set of skills to appear since they are randomly selected (atleast to some degree, i think)
Yes they are randomly selected, but it's not true random it's pseudo-random. If the 'seed' is the same as before and you take the same path it will have the same results. And the 'seed' is saved in the file so...

The only way to get something completely different is to take one other skill at one level up. That will change everything from then on.
No matter how powerful one becomes, there is always someone stronger. That's why I'm in a constant pursuit of power, so I can be prepared when an enemy tries to take advantage of me.

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Postby BigBadPig » Jul 29 2009, 17:11

Got a question, maybe a noob one, on the ultimates... How the hell do you get them? I mean, the fourth level of a racial skill. Ultimate Rage, for instance (not the Absolute Rage). Anyone?

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Postby Asheera » Jul 29 2009, 17:42

You need to wear the "Pendant of Mastery" artifact, which gives one level to the racial skill, so you also need to have it on Expert and it will become Ultimate.
No matter how powerful one becomes, there is always someone stronger. That's why I'm in a constant pursuit of power, so I can be prepared when an enemy tries to take advantage of me.

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Postby BigBadPig » Jul 29 2009, 19:58

Wow... Pity. Thought it would come naturally (sort of). Thanks for the answer anyway.


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