Element units sheet

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Element units sheet

Post  LRN on Sun Apr 08, 2012 11:43 pm

http://lrn.no-ip.info/other/ltd_elements.ods
This is my analysis of the Element race.
Things to note:
1) Food is assumed to cost 27/8 gold. The cost in lumber is not taken into account (since lumber cost varies over time; although you could think that each each unit of lumber costs 1/20 gold)
2) The fact that Disciple/Messiah/Fenix get bonus damage from mana is not reflected. That is, Disciple and Messiah will lose their bonus DPS after ~5 shots, and then will only get bonus damage every few shots, while Fenix will gradually lose damage while it is being hit. It's not a problem for Fenix (Fenix on front lines is a tank, you don't care about its damage; Fenix in back lines is a damage dealer and is not getting hit), but it is a problem for Disciple. Even though Disciple looks like a high-DPS unit, it really is not.
3) I don't know the percentage for Aqua Spirit/Oceanus attack bounce, so their bonus damage might be overrated a bit (or a lot).
4) Adepts are bugged, so they're not in the sheet (i'm still waiting for alpha 3)

Anyway, the conclusions from this sheet are:
1) For tanking you have to mass Mudmans, without upgrading them. And later mass Seers of Darkness. This means that there's really no point in having Golems, and you're not going to get any siege damage. Although you could try to upgrade some of them for each siege level, despite the fact that it's a waste of gold.
2) Best DPS units are Oceanus and Proton. Adept might have been close to the top, but we won't know that until alpha 3. That said, Protons are too weak (in all regards) to be massed - at some point they just start crowding, and not firing all at once, which dramatically reduces their effectiveness. Their small HP pool means that once Mudman line is broken, Protons get smashed in a blink of an eye. Oceanuses are, on the other hand, much tougher, and they have somewhat longer attack range, which makes them a better choice than Protons.
3) Watcher ranks fairly high, but its small HP pool and lousy attack animation make it worse than it looks. Violet gets DPS boost from its ability, and has somewhat decent HP pool, but that doesn't get it anywhere. In late game it's absolutely worthless.
4) Fenix makes worse tank than Seer of Darkness, because for 400 gold you only get +700 total HP, and DPS boost isn't worth that money (Messiah, being cheaper, has better DPS/Gold ratio).
5) It's difficult to measure "HP regeneration" equivalent that Fenix/Seer of Darkness get from Messiah's aura, but it wouldn't call it significant. They'll run out of their "real" HP faster than they'll run out of mana (on the other hand, i've never been able to see a Seer of Darkness dying with non-zero mana; it might be that Energy Shield actually absorbs 100% dmg instead of 90%).

That is, all high-tier Element units sux, DPS-wise. Despite being described as an "offensive" race. Their highest-tier unit makes a good tank, but that's the only thing it is good for.

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Re: Element units sheet

Post  Grassfrog on Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:42 am

signed by my side.
i am now used to the map and can play with nearly every builder very solid.
i tend to have 4 worker and one up at lvl6 and 8-10 worker at lvl 10, the second upgrade after lvl11.

but with element, im far away from that. i can still do it, with nearly no leaks until lvl 14,
but the units get really, really weak at that time, without massing golems it is even harder.
sadly we dont know yet how it would be with adept, imo they are way more usable than tier3,
even later in the game. its strange that the adept has a a shorter attack range than oceanus,
the adept is a dps only unit while oceanus can tank a bit, imo the range of both should be swapped.

i have started to note down the builder and the value for each level to give some input on lvl balance like van_Oberstain suggested.
i will soon post the first results, i did play element twice until now, sadly i didnt last longer than lvl 15 Sad
i'll try massing golems for these lvl next time. i wonder how it'll work.

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Re: Element units sheet

Post  von_Oberstain on Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:34 am

excel = good

libreoffice calc = like doubleplusgood

if i didn't gave you 'respected' already, i would do it now TWICE Smile

really good job, leading to correct conclusions. not a problem, but i'm doing this too, for more than 2 years but you ofc didn't have a way of knowing that.

first, the data you were missing:
adept HP = 720 (was 560)
aqua loss factor = 0.25, so dps=24.2 (range was 375, reduced to 300)
oceanus loss factor = 0.45, so dps=94.6 (range was 375, reduced to 300)
watcher/violet (range was 300, increased to 375)

in brackets are all changes made from lisk version, until now

so, by tiers:

tier1 - proton is average unit, but generally useful, mostly on beginning and as a tool for attracting creeps. nevertheless, i once played with guy who used only protons and 1 fenix (to kill lvl20) and no other units, with decent income (but his build started to fail at 27+, till than it was ok). adept, has large single shot damage, and is mainly useful when you need 1-shot kill (like lvl4) or bringing down the behemoths quickly, through focus fire (behemoth here is creep wave coming in smaller numbers, but with greater hp pools - like tuskars for example)

tier2 - widely known for being imba and nerfed few time by lisk (and later by us). main strength is in divided damage, which increases with number. works well with concentrated damage (proton/adept). anyhow, this unit is backbone of any element strategy (at least in beginning)

tier3 - both watcher and violet (dps 103 with ability accounted for, but its longer term damage, not the immediate strike like adept) are pretty good units for money, but sadly they see little use - mainly cause aquas being predominant earlygame, and violet usability window is small (in 1.6b)

tier4 - crap. period. mudman is inferior to similarly cost units of other races, and golem inferior to two mudmen. lack of (good) tanks is what makes element so offensive as a race

tier5 - crap. disciple is used only for killing the lvl10 boss in 1.6b and messiah only for aura from which seer/fenix profit tremendously (theoretically, it affects disciples too, but not nearly enough to be relevant as dps-er). however, aura is multi-purpose and OTHER races can profit from it, especially those relying on mana (nature/demi heal for instance)

tier6 - backbone on later levels, both tank (with aura) and dps-er. unlike you, i think mana regeneration is crucial factor for fenix, though less so for seer


having known all this, why changes were so small, compared to 1.6b?

well, element has quite unique gameplay - starts with aquas (i use 3-4, some up to 6, all in Pro/1.6b terms - frankly, i'm interested how this will function in Revo, but have strong belief that it will be similar yet modified somewhat), and pump wisps quickly - only thing between abusing aquas and having HUGE number of wisps is lack of a good tank. mudman comes in when punching bag is needed, usually one. disciple is needed for killing lvl10, while alternatively some elements (me, often) chose to ignore boss completely and have more wisps to compensate loss of money through income rather than having costly unit with very limited use. after lvl10, it's mainly wisp pumping and surviving through upgrades (or adding few mudmen) until income comes that high that enables making seers WITHOUT saving. then it's fenix backed with aura all the way...

bottom-line: yup, highly offensive cause no good tanks, can income VERY good and fast, has problems with lvl10 and 20 (often need to save gold for those two), lategame masses fenixes (also considered imba by many players, while high cost and only lategame availability limits their total number - current record holder is damned ishmael and i've been trying to dethrone him for months)

now, watcher/violet are indeed rarely used, although having superior stats on paper - some people use 3 watchers for lvl10 boss, but they are simply overshadowed by more useful units (in circumstances at least, even pitiful mudman/golem line has a place in element builds, while exact place of watchman/violet is... not known). "Green Bird of Luck" is a new upgrade of tier3, upgrading cost 420g (in element fashion, high priced), medium/magic unit with 30% evasion, has 'fortune' ability which adds 10% evasion to friendly unit - hopefully, tanking one ("of Luck"). idea is to make use of otherwise rarely used tier3 and to increase tanking in mild way, not to break general element theme. anyway, it *should* be comparable to fenix in usability, or it will never be used (then it will be rebalanced again and again until it gets useful). violet is maybe ready for cost/stats decrease, but we'll see...

anyway, current element gameplay is pretty unique (they can lumber on different levels than other races, they need to save when others don't, have a strong and weak points unlike *caugh*marine*caugh*...

strategywise, i would recommend massing aquas for first several levels with proton as a meatshield/dps (aquas need some precious seconds to get advantage of focusing), while heavy lumbering (even early food upgrade), then upgrading aquas (but NEVER immediately, cause 4 aquas >> 1 oceanus) and staying away of mudman as long as possible (on x1 it's 6th, may be 4th on x3 (i haven't enough experience to predict when and haven't tested it) or 4th may profit from few watchers and magic vs heavy (debetable). anyway, 1st line are mudman (on minimum) and protons (several prevent focus-fire, and even if it is offensive units, delays allow 2nd row to max their efficiency). boss should not be a problem in x3, and element is notorious for large lumbering potential...

very nice analysis btw (unfortunately is topped by my own research and fact that element is one of races i know best - hence decision NOT to change anything but proton). i have similar table (in wonderful .ods), i can send it to you guys upon request - it's less neatly arranged but noticeably similar - even the column names are almost the same, contains lots of data and crap i use for calculations - data-analysis it's my job in real life as well as writing lengthy text - i'm afraid both are quite noticeable Smile ). but, i haven't had GOOD legion .ods discussion in long time, and am always appreciating one

i'll play a test game to confirm what i said (would be a shame to fail miserably Smile ), but tomorrow
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Re: Element units sheet

Post  LRN on Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:07 am

von_Oberstain wrote: "Green Bird of Luck" is a new upgrade of tier3
Eh? I thought The Bird of Luck (also known as The Bird of Happiness) is blue, not green...

As for the analysis - well, i did it mostly for myself. It's one thing to have a gut feeling about the right strategy, and quite another to have some numbers to back it. Or find it, if you didn't know it. Because Element is one of the most difficult races, it requires a bit of insight.

I think i might make more spreadsheets, for other races (unless you'd want to just share your own sheets with everyone), just to see if my play strategy for them is right.

And yeah, i've seen mass-proton build back in 2.9, and was surprised that it worked (for a while). It's one of the things that nudged me to make this sheet, i think.

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Re: Element units sheet

Post  von_Oberstain on Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:46 pm

huh? you're native english speaker? that's good - i'm not one, and had problems on thinking of that name and this is what came out (mainly cause unit is tinted green). and that was just something it fell on my mind (it was just 'green bird' at start, like working name). now if it is called blue, then blue it will be. luckily, that was only problematical name (as seen by me, at least)

on test game: in spite of being overly confident and pumping too much wisps, the aquas worked well:
1. 4 aquas, self tanking (3 wisps total)
2. 5 aquas+proton
3. 6 aquas+ 2 proton
....
no aqua upgrade till 8 aquas, no mudman at all till 6 (then 2 (+1 oceanus from before) held against furbolg), no mudman upg at all, 3 max, several protons (not used adept this game, maybe i should've) - rest in wisps

10/1 on 10th, killed boss with 2 watchers+violet (had sudden urge to do it, but also think 2 watchers helped on 9, against furbolg and commander and whatnot)

i *think* i leaked one level (likely 7) and should have more protons (food upgrade(s) is needed regardless) - funny, you think that you'll remember every step of the build while playing and remember almost nothing later...

share, share, sure, why not:
http://ifile.it/mlqyut1

if it ask to update links from other files, just say no - it's drawing some constant from previous version and i'm too lazy to fix it
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Re: Element units sheet

Post  Grassfrog on Tue Apr 10, 2012 4:49 am

10/1 at lvl10 is nice, for element...
i'm still searching for a solid build :'(

but you said that element is a wisp oriented builder,
10/1 doesn't show this, because its a common stat for this lvl.
with shadow i even have 10/2 at the end of lvl9,
yesterday i had 10/2 at the end of lvl8 with marine, though i leaked 6 units at lvl9 Sad
(i played both games solo)

and like u said, its really hard to get 10/1 with element at lvl10.
dont mistake me, rather a bit harder than too easy, there has to be a challenge, else its boring!,
but compared to other builders, element is handicapped.

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Re: Element units sheet

Post  von_Oberstain on Tue Apr 10, 2012 11:43 pm

well, it was only a test game - probably strat can be executed more efficiently (it was, in fact, a semi-unorthodox one). in any case, element can mass first 5-6 wisps fast, and truthfully shadow is not a measure of balance - unlike element, it suffered a serious rebalancing of all tiers, but still remains one of strongest races overall (summons do that, i don't believe there will be another summoning-based race).

a3 will come out soon, will have bugfixes and also -cb - maybe interesting strat would be to mass those initial wisps till 5, then switch in hope for good tanks?

14/15 are a problematic for all players, regardless of version cause they both require heavy tanks, but 14 needs normal damage and is magic-resistant, while 15 profits of magic damage (this 15th seem to be bit overpowered, btw) - now element lacking 'heavy' option has to rely on magic in 15, which would imply tier3 (used rarely) or 6 (costly)

hopefully, i'll do that LAN-testing soon, so i'll have better understanding of individual level strengths, and then fix mudman/golem (mudman is bad, but golem is THE worst tank in game, and both are among worst-but-needed units overall - reason it's still like that is distinctive gameplay element has, and golem being a bad unit never stopped elements to be highly competitive in x1 - but if it's plagues Revo gameplay badly, x3-only version of tier4 is a possibility)

oh, on 10/2 thing - this was a subject of heated debate, resulting in optimal "6/1" and "13-19/2", then 3+ regarded as "not necessary" at all until wisp maxing. ask 10 good players, and there will be 10 answers when upgrade 2 is applied (not going into this debate AGAIN, but there were series of test done, math simulations and whatnot, without conclusive results)
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