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Helios 09-02-2011 04:17 AM

Best Class for Race-Based Games via Editor
Since I learned that the KB Scanner and Editor for AP work on TL, I've been thinking of creating some basic scenarios in which I play through the game with units/wives etc. that I never normally use, so that I really need to apply the best tactics that I've learned and to add more challenge to Impossible difficulty. I'm simply going to replace King Mark's supply of humans with whatever race I'm playing with, and make some of these troops available in each major continent/area of the game so I don't have to run back to him for everything. Also, I don't want to break the game, so I'm not going to put a ton of Dragons for an all Neutral game, and only make them available later on like a normal KB game. Also, I'll be editing in equipment sets that boost particular races.

I have only had preliminary thoughts on most of these Race-based runs, so I'd love to hear advice on which class would be the best match for each race to enhance or make up for various deficiencies. Here are my 9 ideas, for which I'd like to divide between 3 Warriors/3 Paladins/3 Mages if possible:

Undead: Doing this first since I almost never have used them. They have great variety, so I don't think they have a huge weakness. I'm thinking a Warrior would be the best match for quick access to the Dark Commander and Onslaught skill in the Might tree, and obviously marrying (eww) Zombie Rina for the speed and initiative bonuses, but possibly switching her out for Xeona (or even Mirabella if I get an early Poison Dagger) to add the Dagger and Isshara's Whip to the Skeleton Archers, and when I think I'll have Onslaught high enough to get in that crucial first turn of initiative.

Human: Pretty good variety of units here, too, but I think it will be harder since they don't have any no-retal melee units. I think a Warrior would be best here, too, to make use of his Iron Fist skill and easy access to Bowman Commander. I'll probably swap wives, making Rina a baby-maker for the early bonuses when I lack equipment and cash, and switching around if I get good enough items to warrant a switch to someone like Feonora until I can equip 4 weapons with Xeona.

Elves: Probably the easiest of all the classes to play with Anga's Ruby making the girls awesome. Not sure on the class here. Paladin or perhaps a Mage. No skill jumps off the page to me that is buried in one of the trees that desperately needs to be reached. Wife seems obvious to be Neoka, but with the girls, would Xeona (yawn, again) be the best for a Poison Dagger and Isshara's Whip?

Demons: Not many units, but I'd imagine this one won't be hard, since Demons and Demonesses have such useful abilities and talents. Anga's Ruby will nullify a need for Onslaught, so Warrior isn't a priority, and Sacred Anger doesn't work for allied Demons and Undead, so I'm thinking a Mage would be the choice here. Obviously, I'll end up with Xeona as the final wife for the morale boost.

Dwarves: Ouch. Miners and Dwarves have no useful ability, and I can just see them dying in droves later on with such a lack of unit diversity--there's only five of them! I may let myself have Giants from the start just to diversify the army. I'm not sure about the class either. They may need massive nuking spell support from a Mage to make up for their lack of magic damage, but their Dwarves, and possibly (?) the Miners would get a bonus from the Battle Hammer, and Axe of Craig the Destroyer, but they also need a weapon slot for the King's Hammer (leadership requirements lowered) and the Mithril Shield, so I don't know which class to choose. Perhaps they would benefit from the Steam Armor and Drill? I'm not sure. The wife seems a no-brainer with disgusting Gerda, but with all those weapons, a Warrior and Xeona might be necessary I don't know.

Neutral: Great variety, and with so many units to choose from, I think any class would do fine. Frog Feonora would be the wife of choice with the bonus to snakes and spiders early on. Perhaps the Paladin would be a good choice for balance to compliment the wide array of strengths this army will have.

Orcs: Have barely thought on this race, since their units are usually few and far between. They may have similar problems with a lack of variety in types of damage they can deal, but they have some good units in the Shamans and Veteran Orcs. Since Shamans are key, perhaps a Mage would be best to open up different damage types in spell damage, and quick access to Archmage skill, but maybe a Warrior for sheer numbers as this group is damage oriented, and has a unit that can cause distraction without spells with totems. Not sure here. Wife also seems completely open, though when that's the case I end up using Feonora followed by Xeona.

The last two aren't really races, they just have an item set or wife that would help them:

Archers: Yes, an army of all Archers to benefit from the Sight + Ale Barrel bonus. And I'd make sure the Elven Bow was in the game. I'm not sure which units I'll use, as the Dwarves and Elves would suffer morale for being together. But I think it will be: Bowmen, Skeleton Archers, Elves, Hunters, and Goblins. I hate to miss out on Cannoneers, though. A Paladin would probably be the choice with a charge through the Mind tree to get Tolerance for the Skeletons, or a Warrior to get Bowman Commander immediately. Wife is completely open and likely end with Xeona. This could be tough when enemies inevitably do reach them.

The "Outcasts": A group of the humans that don't go with the other Human run--Robbers, Marauders, Pirates, Sea Dogs, Barbarians, and (puke) Berserkers. This army would likely be the hardest to deal with: all physical melee damagers, and no ranged damage, except for the one-space biting strike of Robbers and Marauders. They will die in droves trying to attack later mobs. I thought of this group considering the equipment that specifically boosts these first four units, and Mirabella's 100% Attack bonus. Also, I *think* the battle axe that boosts "cold steel" weapon users boosts this group, as would the Battle Axe of Craig the Destroyer. I think a Mage or a Paladin would be necessary to try and add some spell damage to a group that has no other ways to damage an enemy at long-range. This is the only group that seems to jump off the page as perhaps not possible to me.

I'll edit this as I think about it more, and hopefully get more input from other KBTL vets. All commentary is welcome!

ShuiMienLung 09-06-2011 03:22 PM

Remember that there are more Elves than just the girls, so don't discount everything but the Fairies/Dryads/Sprites. How about Neoka plus some Silver equipment (horn?) in an all-Elf army [== +3 Morale], telescopic sight with Elf & Hunter to sit back and plink while your (possibly Ancient) Ents get teleported to the front to tank?

Play around with different things, rather than getting yourself closed into one specific way of looking at what's available.



On your "outcasts" army I would rather take a blank stack than include Berserkers: after the first time they killed the army that I was keeping alive to farm mana, I decided I'd never use them again.

Sea Dogs, on the other hand, are one of my favorite units of all time. It's true that Cerberus will *always* get the three-way attack... but I typically don't get access to them until later. Knights take a lot of skill development to get their circle attack--I have *never* played a game where I trained up to it--but Sea Dogs are a unit that I can get fairly early, lead a lot of them, they're low enough level to be able to use Ressurrect/Time Back on fairly early... just not enough good things to say about them.

So much so, that I was interested to see in my KB:AP game that I just finished (first time through, finally!) where I shifted to single-stack Black Knights at the end--dishing out 30K+ damage in single hits to dragons & bosses & whatnot--that the Sea Dogs from earlier in the game had *still* inflicted 28% of the total damage whereas the the Black Knights only did about 23%.

Helios 09-06-2011 06:35 PM

Thanks for the input, ShuiMienLung! That's a great idea regarding teleporting Ancient Ents to tank. These were my preliminary thoughts on the races, so I hadn't thought of good ideas like that! I'll bet the Elves end up being the easiest with their variety of good units. I also forgot to mention here that I'll be using the sets that I think will benefit each race, like the one for the Elves that you indicate. I've set up a spreadsheet of all the sets and useful equips for these playthroughs in this topic:

I've just started my Undead army, which is rolling along.

And thanks for relating your experience with Sea Dogs. That's just the sort of thing I was hoping to discover with some of these units I haven't used. With Mirabella's bonus, I'll bet they'll be the MVPs of that Outcast team. And I'm in agreement on the berserkers--no control over them = impossible to use tactically. Having a reserve of Sea Dogs would be better than them. They might be the worst unit in the game.

Vulture 09-07-2011 02:38 PM

In an all-undead army, neither the Whip nor the Dagger are a choice, mate. Only for one unit (Skellies) that is a terrible waste of slots. Any +Atk weapon greater than 3 (Dwarf hammer, Demetrius, Dragon Slayer, Equilibrium) will perform better in the long run.

Btw letting Ancient Ents tank is a terrible idea since you can't ress them.

As for the Human playthrough. Depending on if you count Sea Dogs and Marauders to them you can have a fairly decent team (Biting Strike and Fury Attack are beast) until you get to boss battles :> I'd NEVER play Warrior with humans. Ever. Reason: a Paladin can easily (!) get Bowman Commander and Onslaught. My Paladins always have so many might runes left I take Tactics 2, and Dark Commander and have still might runes left. It's not like it makes sense to take Destroyer or Chaos 3 with a Paladin, is it ? A Paladin is a warrior with more runes and less ldr and atk. A warrior can never sustain enough mana and spellpower to keep them all alive. Unless you don't care for losses and give yourself "Horde" for everything. but that's kinda pointless. Impossible isn't a challenge if you keep restocking everything. Every beginner can do that. Marauders btw only cost 30 ldr. Fairly priced for a lvl 2 unit. Compared to Priests with 50 ^^

As for the Animal/Neutral playthrough I agree on the Snakes. With Feonora and the Snake King Ring (maybe even two) you might even bring regular snakes, too (No Swamp Snakes, tho, as their damage is poison only. Royal and Snakes have physical damage. The poison is an after effect as a bonus)

As for the archer playthrough. A: it is completely impossible. You WILL be wiped on all major bossfights. And in order to not get your ass handed to you, you MUST play mage in order to Phantom + Teleport early on (which both you won't get before the Islands), else everyone will just swarm you in melee. Imagine Dragon fights, fights against Lake Flies/Fireflies, Griffins and heroes with the Lightning spell. You can't spread out 5 troops on the left part of the battlefield far enough so he would refrain from doing so or doesn't hit more than 2 of them. Also you'll always need rage before the battle to drop a Wall/Icy Thorns/Ice Orb against otherwise fast melee units with "Running".
Next problem will be the range penalty. There is no mass Dragon Arrows. Skeleton Archers and Bowmen suck donkey balls when it comes to range; 5 or 6 tiles. 5 tiles is also what many units can bridge to get into melee in one turn, the rest in 2 turns.
Elves suck in general. The leadership/dmg ratio is dreadful. You should replace them with Thorns. I don't think the Telescopic sight works with them but it doesn't matter anyway as it only works with the base Atk of the unit which is pretty much nonexistent ^^ Just like with the Bowmen and Skellies.
Next thing is that you need Cannoneers. There's no way around that. You didn't honestly suggest Goblins, did you ? Crappiest archer in game ^^ To compensate for the morale loss you have the Ale Barrel and the Elven crown. That'll bring them all down to +/- 0.

I don't want to burst your bubble there but an all-archer playthrough on impossible is... impossible.

As for the Dwarf playthrough: not impossible but you'll run out of money in the late game as you will never have first strike except in round one and only if you play Paladin or Warrior and get Onslaught early. The best initiative will be 6 with the Cannoneers. Idk but you'll get stomped in Ultrax, Demonis and the Labyrinth so much that you'll go and restock your troops after every other fight.

As for the "Outcasts": lol :> We don't have to talk about that. Not a chance. But if you urgently need to, do yourself a favor and take Human Rina over Mirabella. You'll need the init and speed, believe me :>

Helios 09-07-2011 07:01 PM

Thanks for the thoughts, Vulture. How many units would you think you'd need to warrant using the whip and dagger? Just the Elven girls?

And what do you think of item sets--pointless given how much you have to equip for the bonus? I'd love to get the Knight set for the human playthrough (plus I was thinking of Iron Fist so I'd have an insane amount of troops), but devoting five pieces of equipment to get the bonus doesn't seem as good as just equipping the best equips. What do you think? Maybe viable early-mid-game, then ditch it? I imagine it would be hard to keep the Bow equipped for the Elves for very long, even if I carried both Elves and Hunters along. Combined with Neoka, there's no way to even use the whip and dagger with that set.

Noted on the Ents. I hate units I can't heal/ress unless I absolutely have to use them: Royal Thorn + Blackthorn Crown.

I should probably just junk the idea of the archers and the "Outcasts". Like you say, there's no way to keep the enemy from reaching the archers, and the outcasts will get slaughtered worse than the Dwarves. If I did try them, I'd probably end up trying to max Int as a Mage and Fire Rain everything to death since I couldn't stop the hordes from reaching my units. And if I end up doing that, the troops I choose wouldn't really matter that much then, so what's the point? I was just trying to come up with ways to make the Archer set and Mirabella usable for once. I'll probably be too bored by the time I get that far down the list and want to give AP a whirl.

Sounds like a Paladin would be best for the Dwarves. The more I've looked into the weapons I thought were good for them, the less I realize that they are good. The axe of Craig the Destroyer is useless due to how few units it affects.

If I scrap the Outcasts, then I would just lump in Sea Dogs and Marauders with the humans, despite the morale penalty from the latter. I had been thinking of the humans game as "King Mark's Army", but it's probably for the best to lump these units in together.

Thinking all this over, I may trying using that "Ultimate Hero" mod that lets a Paladin get Iron Fist (to actually make use of the skill) for a human army. I may mod the wives a little myself to make Gerda actually hold a weapon, too. I'm not sure. I don't want to break the game too much, but I want to try different approaches with armies, sets, classes, and wives.

Also, is there a way to keep Vampires/Ancients in bat form so that they start a battle in that form? I really miss that initiative point for the first round.

ShuiMienLung 09-07-2011 07:12 PM

@Vulture: There was a (lengthy) discussion about Ancient Ents tanking in another thread; that was what I was thinking of when I mentioned them.

Also, with one of the boots (Pilgrim? +1 speed to slowest) and some of Lina's boosters--KB:AP makes it even easier with dragon to give +2 speed--they can actually get nearly halfway across the map on turn 1 even if you use your cast for a buff spell (Stone Skin, Magic Spring) to boost their defenses.


@Helios: Take advantage of the fact that they are not subject to retaliation from the flanking units (the bonus damage hexes). So if you KILL the unit they are targetting directly, they face no retaliation and stay undamaged heading into the next turn for Time Back.

Also, militaries all over the world are built on the premise that Speed. Kills. Run away from a tough spot, get to an opponent that thought they were safe, whatever. Particularly if you're using them to mop up after (you 'Wait' on their turn, with them out of range of the opponent) you've done distance damage from other units, and then dart in for a quick mop-up so they stay undamaged.

The very first game (non-Sega Genesis version of 'King's Bounty') that I played I found multiples of everything: 3 silver rapiers, 2 snake boots, 2 jackboots, 2 dwarf hammers, two or three of a bunch of things. Unfortunately Royal Snakes were *not* that thick on the ground, so those boots didn't help much... but that was when I fell in love with Sea Dogs.
+ 2 base speed
+ 1 bonus (wife: Rina)
+ 2 wear two boots (Rina can have the other...)
= 5 base speed before adding in Lina's chargers, Haste, or their built-in Running talent.
AND Rina gives them +1 initiative as well as the speed.


Would I have preferred to use froggy Feonora with two snake boots for Royals? Sure, but sadly she can't wear boots. So I can either stick with one of the double-boot wives and have fast movers, or I can increase the attack but slow down the movement. If I'm fighting Haas with two Dragon Slayer swords equipped (yes, I had one show up in addition to the one from the tourney) then mobility matters more to me than raw attack.

Helios 09-08-2011 09:20 PM

I take it that AP has bonuses for flanking units? Interesting addition.

And it seems that with certain equipment, units can become quite useful. That much speed on a Sea Dog is killer.

Vulture 09-09-2011 12:39 AM

Certain equipment to boost a flaw is always inferior to increasing an already amazing feature with even more of it. What's the point in equipping utter crap to make up for major flaws of your arm composition when instead you can just get better units and then have no obligations equipment-wise because you don't have to make up for anything ?
Except of course, if you don't care how you perform and just zerg through with Hordes of your 5 troops edited into King Mark's castle.

I don't see the point in equipping 3 items with speed boost and nothing useful otherwise on them just to correct speed problems. I mean, wearing Anga's Ruby just for one unit is even borderline wasted and I sometimes wonder why I do it but 3 to everything including morale for them is way better than just +1 speed.

The Human set is just bullcrap. You'll end up with 12 Atk and 35 Def, killing exactly nothing past Elinia. Until then, tho, you'll have decent fun with the increased morale through Knights and Guardsmen.

About the Whip/Dagger: if those are your ONLY weapons you will wear (aka you're not a Warrior or your wife has no weapon slots) then you'll have to go with 4 that benefit. That means girls, Skellies and Bowmen/Thorns with a random supporter (Shaman because you'll probably need the totems to keep the damage off the girls). If you can wear 3 or more weapons so you'll have some atk, too, you can probably only go with anything you want but should use the girls at least.

Helios 09-10-2011 03:24 AM

No argument there about enhancing a strength rather than compensating for flaws. My interest in using these different units is to get some more variety out of the game and try some things I haven't before with some added challenge.

The sets in general don't seem to add enough bonuses to warrant taking up the equipment slots required. They could use a boost.

Thanks for the advice on the viability of the whip and dagger. I'll keep that in mind as I play. The Undead don't seem like a good choice for those equips, and it seems highly dependent on class + units when to use them. I still haven't completely settled on the class for each race I'll play with either--I'll leave that open to advice, as I'll have plenty of time between each lengthy game!

I can't believe I didn't make an effort to get the two kinds of vampires into my playing style before! They're great, and would be well worth investing in Tolerance to get into a typical game. I'm going to be spoiled by their ability to replenish themselves. I'm not enjoying the ghosts as much, though. They get out of control very easily, and I find it impossible without loading to get through battles without losing one or a few when getting them back under control when I inevitably lack the leadership to control them. I'm hoping to find some other gems of units that I've missed like the vamps.

Vulture 09-10-2011 02:19 PM

I understand your desire for some change and all that. In the end you'll play whatever you want to play and whatever provides you with the fun you wanted to have :> I'm just poop shooting terrible ideas xD In the end, you decide.

If you want challenge: play no-loss :P With a Mage. On impossible diff. Have fun :> If you make it through Demonis and the Labyrinth without losses, you can still start 5-melees-with-crappy-stats games ^^

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