Heroes of All Stars V9 (Obsolete)
townkrier Nov 16, 2013 @ 7:44am
Balance Suggestions
Epic has done a masterful job with the mod and it is definitely in the playable and very enjoyable stage. I think to make it the best mod on the workshop (I'm biased :D) we need to help suggest balance changes to ensure that it is a fair game for all civilizations and all victory types. This can only be found out and done through playing it a few times.

Here's some early suggestions:
- I think that the Heroes excavation of Dig Sites should take the same amount of time as regular excavation. The idea of it is awesome, however in the two games I have played, right when I researched Archeology, I sent all my heroes out and dug up like 90% of the sites in 10 turns. This really eliminated pretty much any chance for an AI tourism victory. If it took the same amount of time (or even longer) to get the artifact, it would still be a good bonus but not eliminate the need for Archaelogists.

My suggestion - takes 5 turns, but when digging, the hero gets a -30% defense debuff due to digging.

- The wonder (can't remember which currently) that gives 1 engineer, scientist, and merchant is a bit overpowered. I think 1 engineer and 1 merchant is good enough.

My suggestion - Having the scientist + engineer basically ensures that Civ gets another Wonder that hasn't been discovered yet (pop research then pop wonder).

Last edited by townkrier; Nov 16, 2013 @ 7:50am
Showing 1-15 of 44 comments
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HiddenSquire Nov 24, 2013 @ 12:23pm 
I can definitely agree somewhat with your concerns about the Antiquity Site blitz. However, it is also bad for heroes to spend that much time locked down while they could otherwise be farming culture and XP, or supporting a war. What if, in addition to your suggestion, heroes also got 5-10 XP for every turn spent "dungeon crawling" within the Antiquity Site?
epic  [developer] Nov 25, 2013 @ 3:03am 
Thanks for the ideas!
I'll add a cooldown like 7 turns for Antiquity Site dig(it's easier to implement)
for the wonder, I'll remove the scientist
for Protoss, I'll add 20 damage for spells

in fact I never have time to play more 100 turns, and can't find out these balance problems myself, your idea are very important to improve this mod

besides, I wonder if one of you are interest to join as an author, no coding skill needed, you can help the design, and I'll more focus on development, it's fun to create mods:)
HiddenSquire Nov 25, 2013 @ 3:53am 
I would be very interested in that. I have a fair amount of experience when it comes to laying down balanced game mechanics under various systems. I wouldn't want to go as far as to claim co-ownership of something like this, though. You have already put a ridiculous amount of work into this mod on your own and you deserve 98% of the credit for pretty much everything. But I definitely want to help, and I do have enough free time to do so.
townkrier Nov 25, 2013 @ 12:08pm 
Like Hidden -- I would definitely be okay with being at the "contributor" level but you have done most of the work so I wouldn't feel right being a co-author :).

You have my email as well and I've played a few times through and most of it is good balance but there are things that can still be changed for sure.
HiddenSquire Nov 25, 2013 @ 1:41pm 
Got an additional idea already:

If spells and skills are supposed to be different but equal, then things as they are right now are not balanced. Skills are already great without any talents modifying them, but spells are mostly worthless by comparison unless you invest talents in them. I think that if you increased the default range of spells to 4, rather than 2, it would give players more reason to use spells directly from the start. This makes even more sense when you consider that spells are meant to have more range than skills anyway. It is their primary advantage that even you already stated in the premise, so the default game mechanics should reflect this. The reason that I say the default spell range should be increased to 4 rather than 3 is because the Firebolt skill's default range is 3.
townkrier Nov 25, 2013 @ 3:37pm 
I actually feel like Fireball should be in the spell category and not the action category.

I have thought it might be nice to have fireball replace burn, reduce the damage slightly, and have the burn effect still on there. My reasoning is that the other "Sword" skills are all physical abilities, whereas Fireball is a spell.

You would want to replace the fireball skill in the "Sword" skills.. Though I think it should be a melee ability. Melee skills should be the touchtone of the action skills to me. I think the ability "sap" or "war stomp" could be a fun abilities if they is possible. However it would take adding an extra item.

Also, one of the things I noticed is that all my heroes eventually get all the abilities and kind of lose their personality and uniqueness from each other.

A couple possible way to combat this:
- to decrease the initial cost for a first item, but as you buy more kinds of items (new items, not upgrades), the cost increases dramatically per item owned. Kind of like being overburdened.

- a hero can only equip a certain number of items. Maybe could sell items back if found unwanted items?

Last edited by townkrier; Nov 25, 2013 @ 4:22pm
HiddenSquire Nov 25, 2013 @ 4:43pm 
@townkrier Well, I don't think it's a good idea to break the pattern of a default of no damage for spells. Although there are obviously countless fantasy settings in which spells deal devastating damage, by bringing even a piece of that into this mod, you will take away the very thing that makes spells and skills distinct from each other. Even when reducing the damage, it's still contradicting the theme.

That said, taking away the Firebolt skill entirely is not a bad idea. For one, without a skill that already inflicts burn, the Crushing Blow talent under the Might pillar becomes much less redundant. For two, removing it would make the Burn spell seem much less wimpy by comparison. The only problem is that the replacement skill would need to be a another powerful single-target attack (although perhaps not with a range as long as 3). War Stomp is distinctly area-effect. Sap, dealing the same damage as Firebolt at a range of 2 and inflicting confusion, would probably be good. You wouldn't even need to change the staff into a different item, since it still fits well enough thematically. If we did that, then a default spell range of 3 would be fine.

epic  [developer] Nov 25, 2013 @ 5:10pm 
thanks for the suggestions, feel free to join as co-author when you like:)
I just uploaded a beta version, with 5 new races : Nage, Murlocs, Primal Zerg, Troll and Tauren
can you help test them ?
epic  [developer] Nov 25, 2013 @ 5:55pm 
you are right that skills are more powerful than spells now, I think we can make the following changes:
1) spell range increase to 3
2) reduce skill damage by around 10% to 20%
3) change firebolt to another skill, it's still a ranged one, deal damages to every units in a tile, and knockback these units( in case they stay in city, can knock them out ), and name that one "war stomp"
epic  [developer] Nov 25, 2013 @ 6:59pm 
and for artifacts changes, it's hard to add more type of them, but to make different classes of heroes really different, I'd like to add some requirement for aritfacts, e.g., you can't use a book unless you have 8 Wisdom, and can't take up an axe with 8 Might, this will make these heroes use different abilities
HiddenSquire Nov 25, 2013 @ 9:23pm 
Hmm, that could be interesting. But when you refer to Wisdom or Might, do you mean the base Wisdom/Might, or the total Wisdom/Might after promotion and era modifiers that add to it? Would a hero who normally wouldn't qualify for a certain item be able to temporarily use it while activating Meditation or BloodRage?

Yeah, I'll help you test. I should have some feedback on it within 24 hours from now. Gotta finish the game I already have going first, though. Myself as High Heavens vs The Dominion; I want to kill them so badly because they have been building most of the wonders!
townkrier Nov 25, 2013 @ 11:57pm 
Originally posted by HiddenSquire:
Yeah, I'll help you test. I should have some feedback on it within 24 hours from now. Gotta finish the game I already have going first, though. Myself as High Heavens vs The Dominion; I want to kill them so badly because they have been building most of the wonders!

I think epic balanced the one policy that had increased wonder speed by like 20-25%. I think its 15% now.

While I'm on the subject, in the current build, here are the most powerful policies:
- Bonus of 100% happiness goes to culture. This really really benefits low unhappiness Civs (namely Dominon b/c its a 1 city Civ usually, and Night Elves because of their Unique Ability). They really are powerhouses because of that single policy. I think a fairer bonus is 50% of happiness goes to culture.

- Religion Ender - 2 free social policies. It's not really broken, it's just a good ender. I am a little sad that there is no reformation bonus though. I really like the reformation bonuses.

- CIv State - Townportal to friendly Civ States. Not broken, just a good (and awesome) policy.

I think currently the two weakest trees are the Barbarian tree and the bottom right tree.
HiddenSquire Nov 26, 2013 @ 8:57am 
The policy that increases wonder production has always been 15%, both in this mod and in the original game.

The 100% happiness policy was a policy from the base game from before BNW. They nerfed it to 50% after the advent of great writers and musicians and theming bonuses. But in this mod, with no policies for bonuses to artistic production, and no policies for boosting theming bonuses, maybe we still need the help with culture? And besides that, I've noticed that the overall power level of this mod is generally stronger than in the regular game. So, if everything is equally more powerful, then it's balanced.

Are you referring to Khala and Shamanism when you speak of the two weakest policy trees? I can maybe agree with you on Khala, but completing the Shamanism tree effectively doubles the power of most of your heroes. It grants a total of 2 extra attacks, 2 extra movement, a bunch of flanking bonuses, great ranged defense, and powerful open terrain buffs. It doesn't do anything for your cities, but it is definitely an essential policy tree for war.
HiddenSquire Nov 26, 2013 @ 3:45pm 
Note: all games played were set to difficulty Immortal (7). This beta has a lot of crashing problems, so no games were completed to the end, but I was able to try out some races extensively.

Murlocs: I really wanted to test this race because of their inability to build ships. However, the first time I tried them, the game crashed during the loading screen. The second time, after a full computer restart, I got it to load fine, but the display for what tiles the citizens were working in the city view was buggy, covering the tiles they were working in a white and red checkered pattern instead of displaying yields. I kept playing anyway, since actual yields were not effected, only the display. The game then crashed shortly after I hit the "next turn" button at the end of my first turn. LUA log from the second game here: http://forums.civfanatics.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=365391&stc=1&d=1385509201

Murlocs try #3: Restarted the computer again. This time, I did it on a duel size map to leave less room for errors. I managed to get well past the 1st turn, but the bug with the civilians working tiles in the city view remained. I was able to try out the race well enough before it crashed (when I clicked on the Civilopedia). They do NOT have extra embarked defense, despite what the race description says. This made it very hard to fend off barbarian ships, since they kill all land units in the water and I can't build my own ships. This will probably be the weakest race without a custom type of embarked defense that is even stronger than the War Canoe and Amphibious promotions that the Songhai Civ receives. LUA log from the third game here: http://forums.civfanatics.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=365392&stc=1&d=1385509201

Naga: I love the loading screen and I hope it doesn't get you in trouble. Heh. This is a fun race, but they are far, far too strong. Getting a free tech AND a free policy for female heroes creates a snowball effect that makes it easier and easier to build more and more wonders containing female heroes. Since two of the three starting Naga heroes are female, I was able to take Pottery and Sailing for free and start working on Skovos from turn 1, guaranteeing that I would not be out-built. Since the first hero is free, I also started turn 1 with Colonialism already opened. The next policy I took was the one that not only boosted wonder production, but allowed me to hire my second female hero for free immediately so that I could immediately get the policy which doubled palace output, also for free. Long story short, I was crushing everyone with my heroic female royal guards, decked out with full Shamanism, before anyone else had gotten out of the classical era. I suggest you either remove the free techs or remove the free social policies to balance this race. One is good, but both is too much. It will need one tiny extra benefit after that big benefit is removed, though. Maybe take away the free tech one, and then also add a slight culture gain for succeeding with Allure, haha.

Tauren: About as powerful as the Naga will be after the Naga are modified as I suggested. A solid race with a superior religious start thanks to the turn 1 great tile providing faith. A smart player will start with a Great Scientist or a Great Engineer. I started with an Engineer to ensure enough production to secure the next wonder. That early extra 4 production was very helpful, but not overpowering, especially when compared to The Dominion's abilities. Good stuff.

Troll: Played this one on a duel map as well. Heroes that start as Shadow Priests correctly receive the two Medic promotions and the March promotion, but heroes that are promoted to Shadow Priests only receive the Medic promotions, no March. This can be solved by getting a magic ring, but those take time to get, and heroes are missing out on a core ability until then. I was in the middle of building up for an early war when it crashed for no reason at the beginning of one of my turns. LUA log for that game here: http://forums.civfanatics.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=365393&stc=1&d=1385509201

Primal Zerg: Spain + America. Like Spain, they're great if you can manage to find a natural wonder that isn't claimed yet. Without that, they are a tad lame. I noticed that you moved the zerglings from Kerrigan to Zurvan, which makes complete sense. I like the idea you had with the Spawning Pool, but I don't think it's enough. Zerglings are very good by scout unit standards, but still technically weaker than warriors. 2 free units is not enough to make war with, and even if you just want to explore, you're still mainly using heroes to claim goodie huts since the heroes are the only ones who can choose the benefit. To get the true "zerg rush" feel, I think that Spawning Pool should create 3 or 4 zerglings rather than 2.
Last edited by HiddenSquire; Nov 26, 2013 @ 4:02pm
epic  [developer] Nov 26, 2013 @ 4:36pm 
for reformation bonuses, I remove all BNW only features, for a future Gods and Kings version
I'll enhance the Khala tree
and thanks for the detailed test HiddenSquire!
I found some bugs with hero revive, and will fix the balance problem
but for the crash, it's harder to find since it's DLL error, may caused by wrong use of database
can you also post a save file before crash, I'll debug the save
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