Collaborative H4 campaign

The old Heroes games developed by New World Computing. Please specify which game you are referring to in your post.

Moderator: Moderators

User avatar
Karmakeld
CH Staff
CH Staff
Posts: 1112
Joined: 12 Nov 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Karmakeld » Dec 30 2015, 13:15

Interesting idea Maciek (I fell like writing as always ;)) the only issue is with 4-5 different map makers each doing a map, we wont have the luxury of knowing army size, like we would with hero level, when testing balance.
I was about to suggest that level caps could be in/decreased depending on test results, like Duzeom suggests with the settings if Combat Skills, but as I just wrote the previous line, I realize it will cause the same issue when balancing, although it's basically just an unknown amount of extra work.
I don't really have new comments on the other matters, till Taro/Derrick/Dr. Marsupio post.
Dr. Marsupio, if you're keen on making the map, I could take over with the story, that's no prob. for me.
Maciek, I think you're right with your focus, but you could still be useful when balancing on Champion :)
I'm silent in seven languages - and I got all my familys fear.
Everytime you throw dirt, you loose a little ground

User avatar
Taro
Scout
Scout
Posts: 163
Joined: 11 Feb 2011
Location: Poland

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Taro » Dec 30 2015, 20:30

Allright, so how can we create an army oriented campaign if we choose high level caps and allow combat skills? Level 10 - 15 hero is strong enough to beat neutrals even o champion. Without a lot of power ups.

User avatar
Duzeom_
Conscript
Conscript
Posts: 235
Joined: 07 Mar 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Duzeom_ » Dec 30 2015, 21:25

Taro wrote:Allright, so how can we create an army oriented campaign if we choose high level caps and allow combat skills? Level 10 - 15 hero is strong enough to beat neutrals even o champion. Without a lot of power ups.


So how is it made in original campaigns? Combat is allowed there, isn't there?

User avatar
iLiVeInAbOx05
Equilibris Team
Equilibris Team
Posts: 585
Joined: 21 Jul 2014

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby iLiVeInAbOx05 » Dec 30 2015, 22:01

Couldn't the neutrals / starting armies for enemies be increased to adjust for hero levels? Then the creature armies would be necessary to advance. You could also increase the enemy hero levels to reflect the level caps, no? (Assuming there are enemy heroes in the map)

I personally wouldn't play a campaign if combat skills were unavailable, as I enjoy having my heroes take a direct role in combat.

User avatar
Duzeom_
Conscript
Conscript
Posts: 235
Joined: 07 Mar 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Duzeom_ » Dec 30 2015, 22:08

I inspected Tawni Balfour campaign and i see that there is in first map a global periodic resource boost for AI. So ... I think it is acceptable to do so. I still be avoiding a things like periodic army boost and showing whole map boost. Of course if someone wants to do it - let him to do it, but I really want to this campaign to be a similar to classic campaign style.

User avatar
Duzeom_
Conscript
Conscript
Posts: 235
Joined: 07 Mar 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Duzeom_ » Dec 30 2015, 23:09

OK so I inspected also death campaign and thats my result:
Nowhere combat is banned.
There are also periodic resource boost for AI.
There are following number "power ups" in maps: 2, 5, 3, 10, 2.
And I am counting also buildings where you can buy a basic skill (fighting or magic) which are a really small power up (only in first maps).
Lot of the power ups were one shot skill. (altars)

Getting back to power ups (PU), I was thinking on better description which power ups we should limit:
PU which gives permanent boost for main hero statistics or skills.

For example:
Tree of knowledge isn't PU, because it give boost in EXPERIENCE.
Library/Altar/Veterans Guild are PU, because they give a skill for a hero.
Fountain of Vigor isn't PU - it gives boost only for next battle.
Ruby of Offence is PU.
Witch hut is PU - it gives skill. But it is lame PU because it will give you basic skill only when you can take it and that's why it can be count as a 1/2 of PU.
Mercenery camp is PU.
Magic shrines aren't PU.
Rally flag IS PU - it gives permanent boost of movement points.
A PU which isn't accessible for main hero isn't a PU. (eg: e Ruby of Offence accessible only of AI isn't PU)
Et cetera...

User avatar
Karmakeld
CH Staff
CH Staff
Posts: 1112
Joined: 12 Nov 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Karmakeld » Dec 31 2015, 16:23

Well basically it's a matter of facing eg. 1 or 5 Black Dragons. Compared to arenas sure, combat is the skill which may decide if you can beat 5 BD's or not, but with neutrals we can easily increase numbers to force player to ge in need of an assisting army.
And sure AI heroes that either match or are stronger than main hero is also a way to force player to use army. Ultimately questgate is a tool, but I don't think that's preferable with this project. But if you can beat neutrals with just your level 10 hero, the way I see it, it's cause the neutrals aren't strong enough.
If we make stacks large enough, Derrick can still use his hero in combat, but engaging +5 BD's would be at the risk of getting his hero killed. If I'm not mistaken, you'd need at least some +100 defense to be sure to survive against the 5 BD's and attack above +70 to kill them before you die. Again I would suggest level caps reducing with each map, rather than an even average.
View world was made, coz it was confirmed AI would act wiser if shown the surroundings.
A resource boost is an was way of giving AI a helping hand instead of army/stat boosts. Duzeom I remember one of your maps where AI had grail structures, and it was tough. I don't think we can avoid some AI boost/help if we want AI to be challenging. With 'classic' I understand classic game play not classic campaign scripting :)
Last note Rally Flag is a permanent movement boost? Are you sure? I recall it give +1 movement for like a week, but not permanently. But the rest I agree with - but good to point out, to avoid confusion.
I'm silent in seven languages - and I got all my familys fear.

Everytime you throw dirt, you loose a little ground

User avatar
Duzeom_
Conscript
Conscript
Posts: 235
Joined: 07 Mar 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Duzeom_ » Dec 31 2015, 17:17

Ok but I repeat the question: "So how is it made in original campaigns? Combat is allowed there, isn't there?"

I played the classic campaign and it was tough. It uses only resource boost. So it is possible to create map which is challenging with not banning combat and not using sophisticated scripts.

And Taro's argument "Level 10 - 15 hero is strong enough to beat neutrals even o champion" is invalid. Because it depends on stack. But assuming normal stacks I would like to see some real evidence, because it feels fallacious. 10-15 level hero using combat is stronger that 10-15 level hero without?

User avatar
Taro
Scout
Scout
Posts: 163
Joined: 11 Feb 2011
Location: Poland

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Taro » Dec 31 2015, 17:54

Original h4 campaigns are pathetic even on champion. Only in first scenarios you need an army, but after level 10 you need only PoI, after 20 you don't need them at all. I don't want to create another campaign where the best strategy is a single fighter. By classic campaign I mean a campaign where the main hero is a LEADER, but not a SINGLE FIGHTER. I can give you my save games from every scenario from basic campaigns. Sometimes I don't choose combat skills because I want have a challenge. Not because army is better or faster way.

User avatar
wimfrits
Round Table Knight
Round Table Knight
Posts: 2030
Joined: 06 Jan 2006
Location: Utrecht, the Netherlands

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby wimfrits » Dec 31 2015, 18:22

Original campaigns are too easy. Except for campaigns with low buffing magic (Tawni, Waerjak). Restricting key spells is as much a factor in hero survivability as the combat skill.

Sorry to put it this way but POI is a non-factor that inexperienced players keep complaining about. Players that stack POIs to win will progress slow compared to players that know how to play the game. Meaning: don't waste time worrying about POIs

Restricting combat forces the mapmaker to deal with things like fairy dragons, evil sorceresses, devils, which will be hard to balance instant hero killers.

Best balance option imo is to highly restrict A/D power ups as has been said, combined with fair level caps. But keep in mind that from a player's perspective it is not fun to max out at 30% of the map.

If you truly want a campaign focused on armies, then I suggest... to focus on army size ;) Extra dwellings, double towns, stuff like that
Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?

User avatar
Duzeom_
Conscript
Conscript
Posts: 235
Joined: 07 Mar 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Duzeom_ » Dec 31 2015, 18:46

Taro wrote:Original h4 campaigns are pathetic even on champion. Only in first scenarios you need an army, but after level 10 you need only PoI, after 20 you don't need them at all. I don't want to create another campaign where the best strategy is a single fighter. By classic campaign I mean a campaign where the main hero is a LEADER, but not a SINGLE FIGHTER. I can give you my save games from every scenario from basic campaigns. Sometimes I don't choose combat skills because I want have a challenge. Not because army is better or faster way.


Here I see your attitude: I don't like ice-creams so ban them for all. I don't think is good choice. Maybe banning magic resistance is solution?

User avatar
Dr.Marsupio
Leprechaun
Leprechaun
Posts: 16
Joined: 04 Dec 2015

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Dr.Marsupio » Jan 1 2016, 1:40

Restricting combat forces the mapmaker to deal with things like fairy dragons, evil sorceresses, devils, which will be hard to balance instant hero killers.


Yes indeed! In my eyes is not the whole "combat" skill tree the problem, but the melee and archery branch, those are the ones that divide the defense of the creatures / give extra attacks that allow you to cut them like butter. Combat is still necessary to make your heroes sturdier and allow them to resist rush-down units, and magic res. should also be an option we give player if they wanna build the hero that way, at the end of the day is a trade off.
Also, the sandro campaing in heroesIII is a much better exaple of difficulty balance than anything we have in H4.

(Already started doing some landscaping in a two-level small map, FeelsGoodMan)

User avatar
Karmakeld
CH Staff
CH Staff
Posts: 1112
Joined: 12 Nov 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Karmakeld » Jan 1 2016, 14:17

Well I guess there's no need to wait for us to agree about some settings, before starting map making :D
I'm glad for your inputs Wimfrits, and funny enough your input are quite similar to some of the feedback I got from one of my testers, the need to ban certain spells in certain maps, due to them being overpowered. I think to some degree it's easier to decide what to restrict and ban once playtested, though I understand Duzeom's desire to plan our way out of too much testing, question is if it's realistic/possible.
The discussion on whether the official campaigns were tough or not on champion, I believe to be a matter of the known imbalance between the neutral being stronger whilst AI remains the same strength. If you fight only neutrals in a map, it will be more difficult on champion than on intermediate, as you face 3x as many creatures. The issue is that applies to AI as well, but I don't see a need to go into discussions about how challenging the official campaign are or whether POI's are a waste of money for the experienced player but believed a necessary tool for survival by the inexperienced.
I agree with Wimfrits and his view on how to balance. And like I suggested, a way of preventing reaching level cap by 30% map completion, is a slowly decrease in level caps, as higher levels require more XP.
And it's true that Archery and Melee are the factors that greatly help create godlike heroes.
I believe we've all agreed so far that the goal is to make the main hero a LEADER, not main fighter as Taro wrote, so no point arguing about that.
Now we could agree upon giving AI heroes more attack/defense as difficulty increases, weekly resource boost, a one time creature boost or similar ways of helping AI. Restricting Archery/Melee or MR or Combat are ways to force the main hero to rely on army (and boosts like POI's, if facing several Fairy Dragons, like Wimfrits example, to avoid instant death in first round), but it doesn't balance AI or help AI survive the battles against neutrals, leaving us in no different situation than the classic campaigns, in which champion isn't really a challenge for champion players.
So, lets focus on way to help AI with simple scripts, to improve balance. I support Duzeom's suggestion of keeping it simple, thus I believe some simple but general script boosts are better than 5 different settings for available skill, spells, creature access etc. But I don't think we can avoid AI boosting script if we don't wanna end up like the official campaigns.
I'm silent in seven languages - and I got all my familys fear.

Everytime you throw dirt, you loose a little ground

User avatar
Duzeom_
Conscript
Conscript
Posts: 235
Joined: 07 Mar 2011

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Duzeom_ » Jan 1 2016, 14:20

@wimfrits maybe You want to participate in our project?

User avatar
Maciek
Scout
Scout
Posts: 168
Joined: 14 May 2009
Location: Poland

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Maciek » Jan 1 2016, 17:29

Maciek wrote:Since you want army oriented maps instead of hero oriented, why not carry over armies (and perhaps some artifacts) instead of heroes?

Karmakeld wrote:Interesting idea Maciek (I fell like writing as always ;)) the only issue is with 4-5 different map makers each doing a map, we wont have the luxury of knowing army size, like we would with hero level, when testing balance.

Well, you could agree on some kind of army caps, such as max (approximately) X level Y creatures or max (approximately) Z peons worth of army carried from map A to map B.

Perhaps you could also have Kings Bounty styled army limits within maps to make the army caps act similar to the usual level caps, so that the limit to how much army you can have in map A and how much army you can carry to map B are similar.
Either that or some kind of time limits or increasing expected final army strength by an order of magnitude between maps. (So that players don't bother waiting endlessly for creatures to grow in map A, because they'll soon grow much faster in map B)

A feature taken from h3 (that seems easy to implement with scripts) - growth boosts in towns depending on number of captured dwells could help build large armies quicker.

User avatar
wimfrits
Round Table Knight
Round Table Knight
Posts: 2030
Joined: 06 Jan 2006
Location: Utrecht, the Netherlands

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby wimfrits » Jan 1 2016, 19:02

Karmakeld wrote:But I don't think we can avoid AI boosting script if we don't wanna end up like the official campaigns.


I agree. Without at least some resource and army boosts the AI is too much of a walkover. Especially on higher levels, as like you said AI is unable to cope with stronger neutrals. Wasn't there a thread on creation of a generic AI hero boosting script? That would be perfect for a shared endeavour like this. Or was that Equi only ;|

Duzeom_ wrote:@wimfrits maybe You want to participate in our project?


Not really. I get my drive from heavy scripting to create a specific atmosphere. That and I have W10 installed :disagree:
I do think your approach on shared mapmaking is a very good one!
Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?

User avatar
jeff
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3713
Joined: 06 Jan 2006

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby jeff » Jan 1 2016, 19:14

wimfrits wrote: That and I have W10 installed :disagree:

Well he said he wants it to be H4WOW, and that editor runs in Win 10, Equilibris also runs in it, but the Equilibris editor does not. :disagree:
Mala Ipsa Nova :bugsquash:

User avatar
Dr.Marsupio
Leprechaun
Leprechaun
Posts: 16
Joined: 04 Dec 2015

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Dr.Marsupio » Jan 2 2016, 1:33

I agree. Without at least some resource and army boosts the AI is too much of a walkover. Especially on higher levels, as like you said AI is unable to cope with stronger neutrals.


It's funny, I always hinder the player with annoying taxes / revolts / a crippled economy to accomplish the sense of challenge instead of buffing the AI player with extra stuff, I find overcoming these negative conditions to be more rewarding that beating the influence of some invisible hand, but that's only my opinion, other people might find it frustrating. Of course the exception to this rule is the "final battle" when the heroes have to have a script to make them stronger on an x time basis to prevent the player from amassing a huge army.

User avatar
Taro
Scout
Scout
Posts: 163
Joined: 11 Feb 2011
Location: Poland

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby Taro » Jan 2 2016, 7:50

Tawni and Wearjack can have SOOOO much attack that they don't need spells to win. They can have also stealth skill and with this they can avoid difficult battles.

Now, about PoIs. You sound like a guy who played mostly single scenarios. Because when you play single PoIs are rather bad strategy, that's true. Also in first scenarios of the campaigns we have the same. But still your goal in a campaign is to make a hero who is able to deal with everything ALONE. With regenaration, healing or PoIs, whatever.

I agree that we should focus on double towns, creature dwellings etc. With this player will rather need an army, espacialy if AI heroes will have tactics skills. So for now let's not ban combat skills and we will see how it works.

And about level caps - in campaigns from h3 sod they were like:

*mission 1 - 10
*mission 2- 15
*mission 3 - 20
*mission 4 - 25

I can agree with something like this, with some reluctance.
Last edited by Taro on Jan 2 2016, 11:32, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
wimfrits
Round Table Knight
Round Table Knight
Posts: 2030
Joined: 06 Jan 2006
Location: Utrecht, the Netherlands

Re: Collaborative H4 campaign

Postby wimfrits » Jan 2 2016, 8:46

Attack is much less of a factor than spells. It helps to speed up battles, but does not do so much for increasing the enemy army sizes you can take on. A simple summon leprechaun can already take you farther than attack can. Once Waerjak gains life or nature magic, challenge drops greatly.

How about scripted army growth of whatever the hero is carrying? Some on-the-road breeding program. That could be a strong incentive for the player to keep the army with the hero at all times
Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?


Return to “Heroes I-IV”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Majestic-12 [Bot] and 7 guests