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ValihrAnt
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Sep 21 2019, 3:08 PM (27 w, 22 h)

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ValihrAnt abandoned D2605: [gameplay] Fix loot oversights.
Sun, Mar 29, 12:06 PM

Thu, Mar 26

ValihrAnt accepted D2675: structure selection groups.

This is a great improvement. When I'm trying to select all my barracks or Civic Centers I don't care from whom I captured something, I care about getting those buildings in the same selection.

Thu, Mar 26, 8:19 PM
ValihrAnt added a comment to D2669: [gameplay] new Gaul team bonus.

Does this require further testing?

It's always best to playtest changes. In general 4v4s are the most played and so 3 players would be getting the bonus. If none of the players decide to be more creative and go for the usual ranged infantry upgrades then the resources saved would be 1800W, 600F, 300S, 630M and 72 seconds. As blacksmith techs are generally researched after reaching Phase 3 then the teambonus doesn't come into play for a while. I suppose if we want to stay more on the side of safety then 15% would be better.

Thu, Mar 26, 7:19 AM

Wed, Mar 25

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2669: [gameplay] new Gaul team bonus.

Looking at it from a balancing POV the value of 20% seems to be pretty good. The average blacksmith researches include infantry armor and ranged infantry attack and this teambonus would save 600W, 200F, 100S, 210M and 24 seconds. So overall I think it would be a very useful teambonus, but also not overwhelming.

Wed, Mar 25, 9:11 PM
ValihrAnt accepted D2622: [gameplay] make chariot Amanirenas the default.

Don't have any problems with this.

Wed, Mar 25, 12:47 PM

Sun, Mar 22

ValihrAnt accepted D2659: [gameplay] standardize structure loot.

This is a huge improvement over the current inconsistent and quite random structure loot stats.

Sun, Mar 22, 2:35 PM

Sat, Mar 21

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2580: display centre before house.

_ CC, Storehouse, Farmhouse, House, Farm, Barrack, Minitower, Vision Tower, Mini CC (if any), Market, Tower, Temple - Armery (i don't know how to order them),..... Stable, Darsena (i try to order them by priority and useness.)

Sat, Mar 21, 2:39 PM

Feb 7 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D1863: [gameplay] reduce Blemmye and Nuba camp building time.

Didn't even realise they take took longer than barracks to build, doesn't make much sense to me. It makes sense for a camp to be built faster than a pretty big stone building. Won't change how often they're used but it will make more logical sense.

Feb 7 2020, 2:55 PM

Feb 2 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2612: [gameplay] Balance ranged infantry citizen soldiers.

although building an average of numbers can also mean that units become more alike, but one of the original visions was also that unit types are differentiated / unique roles
Spread nerf might be in line with the preservative nerf, but is it in line with the role of the unit too? Is it ballistically accurate?

I didn't even think of the fact that it does make units more similar. Slings are weapons that are much harder and also take longer to become proficient with than bows. Even then an archer will be able to hit the target more consistently. So it would make sense for slingers to be more inaccurate than archers, though the patch doesn't really do that. The current change only means that they will miss a few more shots if fighting at maximum range.

Again doesnt state whether that were 2 1v1s or 8 4v4s.

I should've mentioned that right away. From checking the replays of the newest version I have 4 4v4s, 1 3v3 and 16 1v1s.

Feb 2 2020, 8:11 PM
ValihrAnt created D2612: [gameplay] Balance ranged infantry citizen soldiers.
Feb 2 2020, 3:35 PM

Feb 1 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2605: [gameplay] Fix loot oversights.

Remove this here and set the loot in the individual structures/palisade* templates instead, because those have different costs and health.

From what I understand you want me to set different loot for gates, wall lengths and the wall turrets? In that case it's something, which should also be done for stone walls too as those share the same loot across all types just like palisades.

Maybe do units in a different patch? Also, it seems that this loot was intentional (10% of cost + 10 of each resource); it was introduced in rP12057 eight years ago, though the commit message doesn't mention the loot change.

So the loot of it makes a bit more sense. I don't have a problem with keeping the old loot value as the impact is very minuscule. For units, I don't currently have any others to adjust other than this one.

Feb 1 2020, 8:10 PM
ValihrAnt added a comment to D2605: [gameplay] Fix loot oversights.

This patch is obviously an improvement, however, I wouldn't be surprised if there are more structures with inappropiate loot.

The two others I have found now which don't make much sense that I know of now are temples (10W, 50S, 50M) and palisades as mentioned by Angen, which always give more wood back in loot than they cost to make.

Wouldn't it be better to decide upon a number (e.g. 20% of costs) and then standardize loot for all structure templates?

I guess it would be best if building loot was standardized like for citizen soldiers, if there is enough agreement to do so.

If all other buildings give proportional loot, then it would be consistent if these do too. Again not a big problem.

Still not bad to adjust. Changed it to be 40M as the other two values were also 20% of that respective materials cost.

Would you take a look to loot for palisades ? at some cases loot is bigger than cost.

At their current 10W per part of the wall loot, palisades quite frequently gave more than 2x in loot than they cost to make. Changed it to 3W.

Feb 1 2020, 4:14 PM
ValihrAnt updated the diff for D2605: [gameplay] Fix loot oversights.

Change loot of more things.

Feb 1 2020, 4:07 PM

Jan 30 2020

ValihrAnt created D2605: [gameplay] Fix loot oversights.
Jan 30 2020, 6:36 PM

Jan 29 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2587: [gameplay] Loom buff.

Forgetting means that they knew about the tech at one time.
I guess its more than most players learn from other players which technologies are important and thus never learnt about this, or never considered it.
Thats relevant because then the solution to the problem would be making the tech more obvious, or considering the problem rather a user mistake, since all technologies are already advertized in the structure tree, ready for the dedicated players to perceive, learn and judge.
Also increasing the numbers wouldn't make the information more available except for the word of mouth in the lobby.
But youre right that the missing use of the tech might be taken as an indication that its not useful currently.
Either that is the reason, or that people never consider it. Or because the one time in the match where the tech would be most useful is passed quickly and then its not useful anymore (because the game is already won, or because one changed to corral economy, or because one has so much >food in the bank already.)

Yes, the tech isn't hidden in a dark corner. A house is probably the most used building and I'm sure that nearly all players will have looked at the 3 techs available in it, but while the other two are useful situationally, Loom ends up being very underwhelming. In the very early raids consisting of few units, Loom doesn't come into play due to the upfront cost delaying the beginning of researching and the research time itself, which I think is good. I don't want people to just get loom right away no matter what. In the later rush consisting of more units, it also plays little to no part because an extra hit often doesn't mean much. Going from 2 to 3 hits for javelin cavalry and from 3 to 4 for spear cavalry. However, with the frequent overkill due to many attackers targeting the same enemy unit, the tech can be unnoticeable again. In late game food raids, it ends up being quite useless again. Quite often Loom won't even increase the number of hits it takes a unit to get a kill. So, while investing in Loom as the game goes on is certainly not bad it generally doesn't come up on the mind due to the little effect. Certainly, I don't think of it. There's a reason both borg and feld buffed it in their mods.

My question is how do we determine the best values so that some players will choose to research the technology and others not (or only in some situations).
How do I/we know 200 is better than 250, how do we know that 200% is not too much, not too little?

For the best values, it's basically impossible to know definitively. I know that going much over a 2.0 time hp increase is a bad idea from test games done in borgs mod where I was able to successfully spam women from houses as a cheap and quick meatshield.

That the change was tested in the balance mod doesnt imply that the test was conclusive (perhaps people didnt consider it either there).
For instance were there rushes in the matches? Were those 1v1 games where attacking early economy might happen more often? Were it players who did rushes?

I did inform players about the technology changes at the start of the games when the mod was newer, later on stopped doing that. Even then I saw people researching it in the most recent matches. I have also played multiple aggressive 1v1s against feld and Loom was researched in each of those games, either as a response to scouting the other one massing up cavalry or when it felt like the enemy will be capable of doing good food harass.

Out of curiosity, why does the technology cost food? Wouldn't wood or metal make more sense? Cf. armour technologies.

Wood can still make sense, metal not so much in my opinion. The thing about food and wood is that they're the two most important resources for early development. Metal isn't needed to develop economy and so a player could easily research it right after building their first house. If Loom were to be researched in the Civic center and thus stop production of units from it for a set amount of time then metal would be fine as a player would sacrifice economic growth for it.

I'm not against this tweak, though I doubt it'll make a difference; people will probably continue to ignore it.

I'm certain there will still be people who will still ignore it, but hopefully more people will use it. Loom did seem like a more worthwhile investment in my experience.

Jan 29 2020, 7:19 PM

Jan 25 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2493: [gameplay] make siege engines uncapturable.

I'd be very happy if attacking siege engines was the default, but in my opinion, capturing ranged siege engines isn't too bad. It already happens very rarely as players tend to have those things near their army, so capturing them only really happens if a player somehow forgets the siege weapon in some area or the siege engine wasn't brought back in time after an enemy gains a big army lead. Even in such cases, players have plenty of time to delete the siege engine as capturing takes a while.

Jan 25 2020, 8:09 PM

Jan 24 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2596: [gameplay] unify Cavalry walk speeds.

I like having champs having the same move speed as their citizen counterparts. As mentioned it is much more realistic and has the additional benefits of making them feel fairer to play against and also easier to balance.

Jan 24 2020, 7:31 PM

Jan 21 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2585: [gameplay] Cavalry archer speed adjustment.

Then why not lower heavy skirmisher speed?

Fewer to test, basically. An additional benefit of the change being more minor, which is something I aimed to do when balancing. Avoid making big sweeping changes and if a change turns out to be too minuscule it can be further adjusted in the future.

Or raise cavalry javelinist speed?

Obviously, this would make javelin cavalry stronger, which I think is very unneeded as they're in a good spot balance wise currently.

By the way, this makes elephant archers slower, since they have the horse archer as their parent. Also, keep in mind there are two cavalry speed technologies (+10% each), from which elephantry and infantry don't benefit.

Didn't actually realize that was the case, will fix it in the patch soon. Getting the first speed upgrade will actually restore cav archer speed back to slightly higher than initially.

Jan 21 2020, 9:05 PM

Jan 20 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2585: [gameplay] Cavalry archer speed adjustment.

Out of curiosity, why exactly 0.92, not 0.95, 0.90, or 0.85?

Initially, I did 0.90 but then they were slower than Heavy Skirmishers, which didn't feel too correct. When I tried 0.95 (in a single-player test environment) I didn't feel like the change was significant enough. So 0.92 was a nice middle ground.

(I guess it takes a bit of time, but it wouldn't hurt to document the test sample (i.e. approximate number of matches, list of participating players who may be considered either capable of judging or capable of playing representatively for competitive players. If its easier, one could also just upload replays and perhaps a link to the mod. The purpose of the list of test participant would allow (1) the reviewers to determine in how far the patch was tested and (2) later consumers of the patches (a24 players and devs) to find identify which players were capable of judging, or what might have gone wrong or right in case it was a fail or success.)

Changing just speed is my idea. Christmas wanted the changes to include a reduction to speed and range, but an increase to dmg. badosu suggested having a small (0.3 to 0.5) damage increase to make up for the reduced speed. Then lastly I have Boudica and Stockfish agreeing with how they are nerfed.
Test match wise I have participated in 8 matches were cavalry archers were used. Though, the matches were spread across the mod versions, which I only have the last one on hand. 2 of the matches had cavalry archers as the main army, in the others they were used for rushing.

Could this make skirmisher cavalry rushes too strong?

I don't see how this makes skirmisher cavalry rushes any stronger. Previously skirm cav struggled to get even 1 hit off on camels running away, now they should be able to fire off at least one shot. Still, when the camels are back at home they will simply be laying suppressive fire from the safety of the CC due to their vastly superior range.

Jan 20 2020, 9:28 PM
ValihrAnt created D2587: [gameplay] Loom buff.
Jan 20 2020, 6:32 PM
ValihrAnt created D2585: [gameplay] Cavalry archer speed adjustment.
Jan 20 2020, 4:10 PM
ValihrAnt updated the diff for D2575: [gameplay] Elephant balancing.

Changed war elephant cost to 300F and 200M. So their total cost is the same as in A23, but they are more accessible due to having a lower metal cost. Also adjusted their loot.

Jan 20 2020, 3:34 PM

Jan 19 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2575: [gameplay] Elephant balancing.

True, there are no Elephant-specific technologies, though e.g. archery tradition does apply to elephant archers.

True, I forgot about it.

Something that could be tried is introducing two technologies, the first upgrades elephant archers from basic (one archer) to advanced (two archers), the second to elite (three archers). I'm not sure it's a good idea, though. And probably beyond the scope of this patch.

It is beyond the scope of this patch, but it's an idea I've thought about. Upon each promotion the elephant has another archer firing off of its back, but even though there are 2 or 3 units firing in the animation only 1 arrow gets shot, so what could also be done is to have the upgrades give them an extra projectile, kind of like the Chukonu in AoE2.
But, overall the patch makes elephant archers more useful in the early game and them falling off as upgrades start kicking in is something that can be addressed in a future patch.

Jan 19 2020, 5:09 PM

Jan 18 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2575: [gameplay] Elephant balancing.

Infantry archers cost 50 food + 50 wood and have 50 health.
Camel archers cost 100 food + 50 wood and have 100 health.
One would expect the elephant archer to cost 200 food + 50 wood (it has 200 health).
200 health is not really a lot, though: worker elephants have 300, champion elephants 750, champion cavalry spearmen 300, and citizen cavalry spearmen 160. So maybe the elephant archer deserves a significant health increase?

Jan 18 2020, 4:12 PM
ValihrAnt added a comment to D2532: [gameplay] train champion cavalry at stable.

I support this change. Also, I remember there being a Persian cavalry archer champion in the files somewhere. Wouldn't be bad to include that guy in the stable as well if possible.

Jan 18 2020, 3:53 PM
ValihrAnt added a comment to D2510: [gameplay] change phase requirements.

Town phase from five village structures to one corral, farmstead, house, and storehouse.

I dislike forcing players to make a corral to click up to Phase 2 just for the sake of differentiation. It feels a bit too artificial. Corrals currently are a very rarely used building due to taking much longer to set up and also requiring constant attention, but if a player does plan to use corrals as the main source of food income they will start setting them up early due to how long it takes to get them going. So it doesn't feel like anything gets differentiated for the start, just a mild annoyance is added, due to a building that isn't made in 99% of multiplayer matches being required to click up.

City phase from four town structures to one blacksmith, market, and temple.

As a consequence building towers or military structures no longer brings you closer to the next, which means there is now a greater differentiation between early strategies (e.g. neglecting defences and military to rush to city phase, or train more units instead).

Again, maybe I'm missing something, but I don't feel like it adds any differentiation, just hinders it. In a 1v1 if I'm going aggressive and my opponent uses towers for defense and then clicks up to City phase with just those towers, I know that I can severely hurt my enemy by just idling any single one of his resources since he won't be able to buy it to, for example, continue unit production, build a fort or get economy upgrades.
I feel like forcing players to have 3 specific buildings to click up will only mean that there will be much less differentiation between the buildings and the situations the players arrive to City phase in due to lacking those buildings.

Jan 18 2020, 10:51 AM

Jan 16 2020

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2575: [gameplay] Elephant balancing.

Given that only a minority of civs can train elephants, I'm still not convinced the kush civ bonus is appropiate.

I don't know Kushite history well enough to be able to think of an appropriate teambonus. Though, it is sort of similar to the Athenian teambonus, 1 only works on a specific map type and the other works only for a specific set of civilizations.

Champion elephants are quite powerful. Why not lower the metal cost but raise the food cost, keeping the total unchanged? E.g. 300 food + 200 metal. Metal can be scarce but food shouldn't be a problem in late game. Also change loot below.

I talked to some players in the lobby and they were down to test such changes out too, I'll update the mod to include that soon. Also the War elephant loot is the exact same as all other champion units (10F, 10W, 20M). I suppose it wouldn't be too bad to remove wood loot and increase food loot?

Jan 16 2020, 8:49 PM
ValihrAnt updated the diff for D2575: [gameplay] Elephant balancing.

Actually fix the changes.

Jan 16 2020, 8:38 PM
ValihrAnt updated the diff for D2575: [gameplay] Elephant balancing.
Jan 16 2020, 8:35 PM
ValihrAnt created D2575: [gameplay] Elephant balancing.
Jan 16 2020, 7:28 PM

Oct 28 2019

ValihrAnt added a comment to D2392: [gameplay] Team bonus balancing.

Thank you.

That's basically the "test that it works" plan which basically should be implied by performing a review.

I'll try to improve on that in the future.

A typical oversight is to forget some files that should receive the analogous change.

Yeah, I did do that, but I went back and fixed all I could find, which is only the History tab.

But what the summary / test plan misses to explain is the reason as to why this nerf should be performed, why this is team bonus is too strong.

I added that to original.

Finally if possible it would be good to have a peer review, as in some competitive player judging whether 10% is the best number - (did borg- have an opinion on this, what changes did he perform in his mod?)
borg- said he agrees with rome and iber, but says that kushites are underpowered and that this would nerf them further, i.e. that it would be better to keep the kushites bonus as long as they lack other bonuses.

I have talked to Feld and he agreed with the changes. In the case of borg- I was trying to contact him , but didn't get a response yet, though in his own balance mod he changed Kush bonus to 10% as well. I think it's just that he didn't didn't know the full context of the change, which is reducing elephant base cost just like he also had done in his mod. But I have no trouble changing this if he disagrees. Bonus wise Kush have more bonuses than most other civs, they're just all very weak, but that's a different matter.

Oct 28 2019, 7:34 PM
ValihrAnt updated the diff for D2392: [gameplay] Team bonus balancing.

Actually fixed it. :)

Oct 28 2019, 7:25 PM
ValihrAnt updated the diff for D2392: [gameplay] Team bonus balancing.

Apparently I need to combine them, sorry for spam.

Oct 28 2019, 7:17 PM
ValihrAnt updated the diff for D2392: [gameplay] Team bonus balancing.

Fixes oversights.

Oct 28 2019, 7:10 PM

Oct 27 2019

Stan awarded D2392: [gameplay] Team bonus balancing a Like token.
Oct 27 2019, 3:37 PM
ValihrAnt updated the test plan for D2392: [gameplay] Team bonus balancing.
Oct 27 2019, 3:24 PM
ValihrAnt created D2392: [gameplay] Team bonus balancing.
Oct 27 2019, 3:21 PM