What Age of Wonders 3 has Taught Us and What LH Can Teach AOW

By on April 1, 2014 9:43:05 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

XWerewolfX

Join Date 02/2006
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There is obviously quite a few similarities between these two games and after playing AOW for some time, I can't help but wish that some of the features from AOW were present in Legendary Heroes, and vice-versa. 

 

What AOW3 has that Legendary Heroes should have:

- Item courier: one of your heroes has an item that your other hero needs? Just click on it and send it to the other hero through a courier that takes X amount of days based on how far away you are. 

- Class-specific units: it would be great to see class-specific items, weapons and armor for each LH class that would be determined by which class your primary leader took. 

- Independent Cities: much like Civ V, it would be great to see independent cities and have each of them provide unique items or weapons or other commodities. 

- A plethora of mounts: I've already found over half a dozen different mounts, each with its unique look, feel and bonuses. I think LH only has, maybe, 4 different types? I want more. They add to the customization and personalization of our heroes. 

- SPACE LEFT INTENTIONALLY BLANK 

 

What Legendary Heroes has that AOW3 should have:

- More diplomacy options. I like that AOW3 is very focused, but it's almost TOO focused on combat. Would be nice to see non-combative ways to win.

- More quests and the like: while each cave or mine presents as a mini-quest, it would be nice to see more over-arching quests that present like LH's do. 

- Strategic resources: I want there to be resources required for some of the higher tiered units, much like LH does with some of its units. 

- SPACE LEFT INTENTIONALLY BLANK 

 

As I play more, I'll come up with what else I see. Most importantly, however, is that the LH one's can be easily added through DLC.

 

So, anyone else?

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April 1, 2014 1:41:21 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

- Class-specific units: it would be great to see class-specific items, weapons and armor for each LH class that would be determined by which class your primary leader took. 

This can be modded in directly. Thus, this can be a DLC in the future for LH.

- A plethora of mounts: I've already found over half a dozen different mounts, each with its unique look, feel and bonuses. I think LH only has, maybe, 4 different types? I want more. They add to the customization and personalization of our heroes. 

Actually LH, does have quite a few mounts.

Horse
Pony
Mire Skath
Ashwake Dragon
War Boar
Warg
Ravenous Harriden
Warhorse

Most of these are just not as easily gotten as in AoW.

Can't say I disagree with the things that AoW needs from LH. We'll see what the modding community there can cook up.

There is particular charm with LH. These two things you mentioned can be fixed in LH with DLC or modders that are dedicated.

Your first suggestion leaves some difficulty, but can be accomplished in a way (just not the way you suggest) (There is a mod for that) 

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April 1, 2014 1:52:16 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

How bout we play the game for a month or so then talk about how X game can learn from Y? Otherwise we're just pointing out differences... I mean, it's not like you can CHANGE mounts in AoW3?

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April 1, 2014 2:04:27 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Yes, you can Heavenfall. They drop as items from battles. 

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April 1, 2014 2:28:29 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Sieges!

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April 1, 2014 2:38:03 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums


dungeons and underground planes

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April 1, 2014 5:42:41 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Distinct-looking races with distinctly different equipment.

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April 1, 2014 8:27:21 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

N/A

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April 2, 2014 3:13:20 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Ongoing list of Likes/Dislikes of AOW3.  Will update as I get more familiar with the game

LIKES:
Hex Maps
Adjacency Matters, which is probably only doable because of Hex Maps
Terrain Affects Combat / Line of Sight


DISLIKES:
Horrible camera controls.  Rotating a map is an ugly experience
Terrain Tiles can make units hard to find
UI is a bit clunky/Disjointed
Lookouts/Outposts; There really doesn't need to be two seperate building types and I think LH implementation is much better than what they've done here.  At least the builder unit isn't consumed on construction of the tower.

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April 2, 2014 4:56:07 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Copied my own comment from other thread:

 

 

So.... after a lot of hours burned on AoW3.

 

Positives against FE/LH

1.) Hero's levelup is almost as bad as original Elemental's. Way too simple. Only thing that makes levelup meaningful is that unlike Elemental series, the game is well-balanced and still can make specialized heroes if you choose traits carefully. The hero's high initial hp also makes him/her not as utterly as useless as FE heroes in general. They also level up and grow fast enough to not make laborious unlike FE. 

2.) Sieges are awesome.

3.) Massive battles, up to maxium 36 units (I believe). It's amazing. With siege battles, the game's tactical battles are quite memorable sometimes.

4.) Graphics are quite pretty.

5.) And multiplayer. But then, I never play multiplayer anyway.

6.) Unit movements are fast enough. Please, FE/LH's two tile movements is just atrocious.

7.) The game is ultra-polished from top to bottom. There are some errors such as disappearing custom main hero and stuffs. But no game-breaking bugs found so far. Hell, even current LH has SEVERAL game breaking bugs such as Beast Lord and Auto-save bugs.

 

Negative against FE/LH

1.) Civilization option is non-existent Empire builders look elsewhere. All cities basically become non-stop unit factories. No specialization or any meaningful options can be found.

2.) Unit diversity by races are.... well, let's say FE beats it. Only meaningful differences are made by your main hero's profession, which do provides a lot of diversity in that way.

3.) Units are quite boring as hell. FE/LH's weapon system is far better.

4.) Monsters are boring as hell too. Sure elemental damages are included, but all units are too similar. There are no interesting unique, game-changing monsters such as Dark Wizard. Dragons in AoW3 are barely as strong as a mere slags.

5.) It's personal, but I think Initiative-based FE/LH turn-based battle is far superior than traditional turn-based AoW3. While AoW3 battles are massive in quantity scale, FE/LH battles are very dynamic.

6.) There are far more interesting magics in FE/LH than AoW3. I should play Sorcerer more, but this is my initial feeling.

7.) AI is... well... maybe tactical battles it is ok, but in strategic level, it is simply travesty. Too many nonsense movements and easily exploitable by any human player who figured out its tricks.

8.) No interesting event-related area as such as Wildland.

9.) Quests are far inferior to FE/LH.... Well, let's say there is no quest in AoW3. It's all "Plz kill these guys and then we join you!" 

10.) Other than levelups, hero customization is very weak and shallow compared to EF/LH.

 

Same with FE/LH

1.) AI cheats in massive scale. Even the easiest option, AoW3's AI cheat level is as extreme as 'ridiculous' in FE/LH. Since I play between Expert~Ridiculous, my feelings toward cheating AI is about same in both games.

 

 

 

 

The maddening fact is that FE/LH is actually far superior game than AoW3. It's no contest. If someone plays FE/LH for a very long time suddenly plays AoW3 will find himself/herself being very annoyed by this shallow, lacking-in-depth 4X fantasy game. Well, AoW3 is certainly has more depth than Warlocks and Eador, but FE/LH beat those games no problem.

 

Yet, unfortunately, terrible balance decisions such as low movements, hero leveups, loots manage to make FE/LH far less interesting than AoW3. This is why I called it maddening because there is literally no way FE/LH can be worse than AoW3 other than massive battles. Yet with all of comical balance issues pulled the game down.

 

Not to mention we are still having game-breaking bugs still present even the most updated versions of the game. AoW3 has just released but the quality of polish is just astounding  compared to FE/LH. 

 

 

 

Now, this makes me consider a popular mode called Patchwork... From what I've read, it fixed a lot of balance issues.

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April 2, 2014 8:34:55 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Agreed. FE and LH are at a great disadvantage when compared to AoW3 almost entirely due to sloppy execution.

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April 2, 2014 10:48:35 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

I was despondent about FE:LH lately, feeling that it was very bland.  However, after spending several hours with AoW3, I've come back to FE:LH with a greater appreciation for what we do have.  It should be a crime to call AoW3 a 4x game, because quite frankly it is not.  It's a combat game, focused on one thing only, combat.  There are not multiple strategies one could employ in different games, they all play the same.  City spam, rush to combat.  It's rather difficult to find any strategy in this alleged strategy title.

I do agree that the movement points is nice, being able to move more than 2 squares/hexes at a time is refreshing, and wish FE:LH increased their default movements a bit.  As far as it being pretty, it's ok.  But truth be told, I really really like the art style of FE:LH.  It's unique and quite good looking.  

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April 2, 2014 11:01:55 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Interesting posts so far.

I was planning to buy AOW 3 asap, as I am ready for something new after 800+ hours of FE/LH. Now I will have to reconsider...

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April 2, 2014 11:36:26 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Fallenchar,

Interesting posts so far.

I was planning to buy AOW 3 asap, as I am ready for something new after 800+ hours of FE/LH. Now I will have to reconsider...


There's a couple of indie titles in the works that you might want to keep in mind that were funded via Kickstarter and greenlit on Steam.


Worlds of Magic

http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=138313793
http://myworldsofmagic.com/

Telepath Tactics
http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=111308792
http://sinisterdesign.net/products/telepath-tactics/

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April 2, 2014 11:41:06 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Fallenchar,

Interesting posts so far.

I was planning to buy AOW 3 asap, as I am ready for something new after 800+ hours of FE/LH. Now I will have to reconsider...

 

If you liked the previous AoW games, you will love this one.

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April 2, 2014 11:50:18 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

In my oppinion, Age of Wonders beats LH in only two, but very important aspects, which makes it, as of now, the better game:

° The Interface is a lot better.


° Units are able to learn new skills as they level up.

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April 2, 2014 12:58:35 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Worlds of Magic
http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=138313793
http://myworldsofmagic.com/

 

 

I'm really looking forward to this.   The original Master of Magic was great and nothing has replicated it's magic to me.  LH comes closest but has a few drawbacks such as lack of fantasy races and game breaking bugs.   At least MoM "just" crashed but while playing I wasn't taken out of the game as much by balance decisions and bugs.

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April 2, 2014 3:10:03 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting Haydun,

In my oppinion, Age of Wonders beats LH in only two, but very important aspects, which makes it, as of now, the better game:



° The Interface is a lot better.


° Units are able to learn new skills as they level up.

 

I like your second point, but truthfully I like the interface in FE:LH better.  It has it quirks to be sure, but I find it much more informative and useful than the minimalists UI of AoW3.

 

The only things I like from AoW3 better, is as you said, learning new skills when a unit levels up, and the greater movement of the units in AoW3.

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April 3, 2014 6:42:54 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Go my Juggernauts! Get me closer so I can hit the dragons with my Sword!

 

I can be such a jerk

Sure it took me 11 Spy drones but I Sunk that frigate fleet for fun :3 Which also had a wraith king in it too.

 

Age of Wonders 3 is a complete war game through and through!

Diplomacy exists to show you what the opposition looks like in their garb before you put them into the chains.

Cities eh, they're basically a unit spawning spot once they grow enough and give you gold/mana for you to use to kill the enemies with.

I'm still playing through a Extra Huge map at the moment. But borders is starting to meet each other so I suspect war in near future!

You can research the entire tech tree in less than 100 turns

 

FE:LH is a 4X game.


FE:LH and AoW3 is very different beasts but it doesn't mean that they cannot learn from each other and what functions is beneficial to one can be used in the other! I have already seen a bunch but I want to finish at least one RMG map which is what i'm currently playing on before i comment further.

 

Edit: Age of Wonders 3 is meh. Once you hit the tier 4 spam it becomes a terrible game. Ai will use nothing but juggernaughts, sadly. SO i'm now putting it on hiatus and waiting for a update to make battles fun again. If nope, Oh well.

 

It gets boring using nothing but juggernaughts vs Juggernaughts urgh.

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April 5, 2014 5:12:37 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

So far i'm enjoying AoW 3. I'm finding it a great game. Then again I enjoy FE, HoMM 5 & 6, Warlock and Civlization 5. I wasnt so happy with Horizon though. I find it interesting that people feel one needs to be the bestest. The simple thing is that both do things well, and both do things badly.

My own personal findings are this,

Hero leveling in AoW 3 is better, much much better. The skill tree in FE was great the first through play through and then its all the same. Pick your path, buy pre planned points at level up. With AoW 3, you've got 5 points to distribute amongst various choices, each with different costs. Eventually the "best choices" will be come known and reduce the fun, but it seems to ensure at least SOME variety.

Combat. FEs combat is terrible in comparison. In FE mounted units hit combat round 2, if not round one, And ranged units can hit an enemy anywhere on the map from any location. Want to hide behind a wall to avoid arrows of death? That anit ganna work. AoW 3 shines here. Cover, range penalties, larger distances to reach the front line, attacks being listed between 1-3 with amounts based on how far you've moved. Flanking. And units die. In FE you make a stack of doom, you get it high level, and you roll everything with it (but fear that dragon breath), in AoW 3, units die. Its really hard to avoid that.

Random battle maps are much more interesting. Everything from jungles, to forests to plains to volcanic wastes to arctic blizzards. FE just seems to have very little variety in these things, and I suppose that makes sense, since the terrain doesnt matter. It matters in AoW 3.

This is all stuff that FE COULD do. And if FE did do it, it would be the better game. But it doesnt. Now dont get me wrong, FE does its own flavour of things well. Unit design and customization, a more exciting tech tree, city development is much more interesting. 

Dont write AoW 3 off though because its NOT FE. Variety is a good thing.

 

 

 

 

 

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April 5, 2014 5:48:26 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

AOW-type combat (Except for the flanking) with FE mechanics is pretty much what I want now.

 

I expect that will have to wait until the next Stardock fantasy TBS.

 

 

 

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April 5, 2014 10:19:18 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Last I checked 4x means expand,explore,exploit,exterminate.AOW3 is clearly a 4x.Mutiple victory conditions are great when done well ala Civ5 but in FE that are not very interesting to be honest.Reach end of tech and a linear quest is not Civ level.

 

The 1 lesson Stardock should take from AOW3 is that people like good tactical combat depth.Yeah Im looking at GC3.

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April 5, 2014 11:00:55 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

"Dont write AoW 3 off though because its NOT FE. Variety is a good thing."


Personally i wrote it off, at least till they patched it. The reasons being:

- terrible AI on strategy map 

- one type units armies in late game (only t-4, and they are available in like 40 turns)

- not working economy - tons of gold/mana


Thus, first 50 turns are great, but then that's it.  

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April 5, 2014 11:39:02 AM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

Quoting bpalczewski,

"Dont write AoW 3 off though because its NOT FE. Variety is a good thing."




Personally i wrote it off, at least till they patched it. The reasons being:

- terrible AI on strategy map 

- one type units armies in late game (only t-4, and they are available in like 40 turns)

- not working economy - tons of gold/mana




Thus, first 50 turns are great, but then that's it.  

 

I couldn't agree more.  And while AoW3 may be categorized as a 4X game, it feels like 4X-Lite.  I do not feel as if I am creating or managing an empire at all, just outfitting myself for a bunch of little skirmishes.  I do agree that the tactical side of the fighting is done well, but only as far as mechanics goes.  Flanking, Attack of Opportunity, etc...  But as bpalczewski said, mid to late game, every fight is the same fight, with the same units.  No matter how great the tactics and mechanics are, it just becomes tedious and quite boring mid to late game.

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April 5, 2014 7:27:10 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

What AoW3 does better is painting a beautiful world with interesting inhabitants. All elemental games have failed at this. Everything in the presentation of the game, writing, music, graphics etc, is much better in AoW3.

But there is something wrong with the balance at the moment, I always have unlimited amounts of mana not even half way through... I'm pretty sure Triumph will get this sorted, they usually do. There's a beta patch out now that slows down research and T4 construction. Haven't tried it though.

 

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April 5, 2014 8:59:39 PM from Elemental Forums Elemental Forums

End game being all T4 is kinda normal to me. People always build the best end game stuff they can build. And thats not a bad thing in and of itself. So long as you still end up with variety. In FE crystal sure slows me down (a lot) but I eventually end up with a doom army of magically equipped cavalry troops. And before trhat I end up with a non magical plated up cavalry army. With high level guys insta gibbing everyone first round of combat. 

Please dont mistake me, I am a fan of FE, but it could be better.

AoW3's issue is that it needs vairety, When you have a T4 cavalry who kills archers, T4 Archers who kill infantry and T4 Infantry who kill Cavalry you already start to get something more interesting. Mix in a few T4 support and away you go. AoW3's issue is that it doesnt offer enough T4. So you just end up with 1 doom unit.

The mana problem seems obvious enough to me. When you can only cast 1 spell around, and some of those spells arnt that good, And your character losses their turn for casting that spell... you dont use up a lot of mana. FE runs similar but it allows your various heros to all open up each round, which can eat a lot of mana, plus you have buffs to reduce income. I dont know AoW3's answer to this, it might be unbalancing to allow all heroes to cast each round, but it'd be more fun.

As for lore, I really like FE's approach. Instead of building up a civilization for the first time, your actually recovering from basically a nuclear holocaust (except with magic). Most of the tech being researched is rediscovery. And I like that. Very disappointed that despite all their mentioning in the lore, Titans just dont show up at all in FE. I think theres one or two quest lines that briefly touch on them. I'm hoping a later expansion / dlc touches on them. 

Also something both AoW3 and FE need to add, straight from warlock, is pocket worlds. I really enjoyed that concept. 

 

 

 

 

 

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