[NFP] Hero Observations

Ashmantious

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Playing my first game with the Heroes. A couple of thoughts as a muddle through my first game. Some of these may be obvious or may have been talked about in release videos or developers notes but these are things I learned by playing and it will affect how I play it in the future:

1) Don't recruit the Hero until you have a foreseeable need for it. I didn't appreciate the fact that they have a life span and will die after a bit.

2) Pay attention to the area where the hero dies. Each monument gets two Heroic Relic spots. You get an Epic Poem about your hero that is automatically generated upon the hero's death. The second spot is a Heroic Artifact that can be unearthed in the general area where your hero dies. When you get an archeologist, they can uncover the artifact and place it in the monument. This does not take up one of the three charges the archeologist gets. Next game, I am going to drop a map pin in place to mark the spot.

3) I jumped on the first hero I came across, next time I will be a bit more selective to make sure the hero, and their respective bonus, works with my play style.

4) Heroes make great "meat shields" when attacking another city. The AI tended to focus resources on getting my hero. Their high movement bonus makes it easy to move them out of harms' way to heal up and get back in there.

5) You can "teleport" the heroes from city to city just like a great person which makes moving them around your map much easier.

Here are the Heroes I got in my game and my thoughts on each. I tend to be more of a "turtler". You leave me alone, I leave you alone. You mess with me, I wipe you from the face of the planet. If your playstyle is more aggressive or military focused, this might not help too much:

Himiko: My first Hero, her buff is great for establishing Suzerain Status and a great way to get levy troops to help in an early war from a city-state that has a ton of units. I will go for her again for sure.

Maui: Oh how I love Maui, his ability to spawn bonus and/or strategic resources is very nice. I respawned him a couple of times to "seed" parts of the map I had an eye on but didn't have the ability to settle just yet. If you try to use Maui's power on a spot that has a resource that hasn't been revealed yet, it keeps you from doing so which is nice intel to have as well.

King Arthur: I wasn't a fan of Arthur. You have to have a unit to spare to generate the questing knights and the questing kinghts expire. I'll probably pass on him next time.

Anansi: I got him late in the game and will probably try to get him sooner. His bonus gives you a nice science and culture buff that is more helpful earlier in the game. His ability to take resources off the map gives you a great way to "troll" other players who occupy spots you can't or don't want to get to but allows you to deny those resources to the other player.
 

Morningcalm

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Nice tips. Can Arthur use his ability to knight scouts? I might use him for that after I’ve explored the map.

Sinbad has been quite great even for just regular coast, as long as there’s a barbarian vessel or two hanging around.

I found Mulan to be a bit meh; she’s basically just a really strong mounted archer but lacks the utility of Himiko, Maui, Anansi, Hunapu and Xbalanque, etc.
 

Ashmantious

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I forgot to post about Sindbad! My bad! I like Sinbad a lot. His ability to take out coastal Barb camps is great and the gold boost is nice. In my current game, my continent is locked in ice in both the north and south poles, so the ability to teleport him was very nice.
 

Morningcalm

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He gives tons of money! As a player who typically only settles a few cities and conquers the rest I like his money ability—helps me build up my conquered cities that much faster. And yes, the teleport is nice, as is his overall speed.
 
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I found Arthur to be very powerful, I captured all four of Arabia's cities with just him and the four questing knights before they came to the end of their lifespan. Sure, when they died I was left with no military at all, but I also didn't have a neighbour so it wasn't a bother.
 

Palo

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I suggest not bringing out a combat hero right before the end of an age. If you bring them out right at the start of a new age they will be stronger.
 

Brutus2

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I wish they had more non-combat focused heroes. The ones like Hercules, Sinbad, Ananzi and Maui seem to be the most fun and most popular. The combat focused heroes are obviously very powerful for conquest it just seems that there are a lot of them and it would be nice to have more "utility" type heroes especially because even the ones that don't have combat abilities are still powerful units that are useful in combat too.
 

kaspergm

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I hired Hercules in my game, but I was kind of surprised how easily he died. It was in ancient era, and Zulu DoW'd me, and he died after being attacked a couple of times by warriors. Shaka hired Beowulf, which could easily have been the bane of me, but the AI doesn't seem to know how to use his charges, or otherwise Shaka just decided it was more fun to loose his empire to my warriors and archers.

Later I hired the one who heals units with his charges, which was very useful, along with Mulan, who I actually found quite powerful.

I only discovered Sinbad late, and though I tried to recruit him, Scotland beat me to him. He seems super powerful, particularly as I really needed the gold as Babylon (upgrading your units to those new units two eras ahead of world era is really costly :rolleyes:).
 

Equilin

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He gives tons of money! As a player who typically only settles a few cities and conquers the rest I like his money ability—helps me build up my conquered cities that much faster. And yes, the teleport is nice, as is his overall speed.
How many does he gives per instance, is it 600 on standard? That's a LOT, and he can get to do it 8 times for 4800 gold (not counting exploration bonuses).
 

Noble Zarkon

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Can Arthur use his ability to knight scouts?
He certainly can - 4 scouts and you can suddenly have the most frightening army the Ancient Era has ever seen! Sure they have a short lifespan but if you time it / place it right you should be able to roll over a neighbour maybe even two.
 

AntSou

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Heroes have enhanced my enjoyment of the game. You can now Early Game Poke in a way that previously was simply not attainable. Heroes will move to face one another, attempt to cause some damage, then retreat. Losing a Hero at the wrong time can have serious consequences too.

But I've been playing a 4-Civ Hotseat with Babylon, Gaul, Byzantium and Colombia. I don't know how the AI handles Heroes.
 

Banazir864

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Anansi: I got him late in the game and will probably try to get him sooner. His bonus gives you a nice science and culture buff that is more helpful earlier in the game. His ability to take resources off the map gives you a great way to "troll" other players who occupy spots you can't or don't want to get to but allows you to deny those resources to the other player.
Trolling seems very fitting given the source material (“Anansi’s Tricks” indeed). I’m guessing can also use him if a luxury resource blocks a great district spot (and you’re not using the “Harvest anything” mod, which I view as essential for this reason).


He certainly can - 4 scouts and you can suddenly have the most frightening army the Ancient Era has ever seen! Sure they have a short lifespan but if you time it / place it right you should be able to roll over a neighbour maybe even two.
Seems like a useful way to pivot from exploration to conquest/defense. So does that mean that the original stats of the unit he knights don’t matter (e.g., would a knighted scout with no promotions who somehow survived to be knighted in the endgame be the same as a knighted maxed-out GDR)?
 

Abaxial

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My first hero was Hippolyta - who I thought was bit dull. Then I rolled over Lautero in short order (I don't usually go in for early game warmaking) and changed my mind! She is GOOD.
 

Noble Zarkon

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Seems like a useful way to pivot from exploration to conquest/defense. So does that mean that the original stats of the unit he knights don’t matter (e.g., would a knighted scout with no promotions who somehow survived to be knighted in the endgame be the same as a knighted maxed-out GDR)?
I upgraded 3 scouts and a warrior in the Ancient era and they all had 34 strength, Arthur had 36.
 

Amrunril

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Things might be different when playing against the AI, but based on my hotseat experience, I'd be careful about being too picky with hero choice and timing. On a standard size map, there are only 1.5 heroes per civ, and even the comparatively weak ones are very powerful. Choosing the right heroes or the right timing needs to be weighed against the risk of ending up with fewer heroes than your rivals, or even missing out entirely.

Regarding specific heroes, Arthur reminds me of Hungary, with the ability to conjure an advanced army from a city state. With an early 5 movement, he can combine with Amani to do this anywhere on your continent, and you can easily find yourself heading into the classical era as the owner of two starting capitals.

Anansi's 6 charges of ~50 science and culture are quite a lot, given they can be triggered when your science and culture per turn is in the single digits. This can put you far ahead of the competition in racing for Political Philosophy and Horseback Riding or Iron Working. Sinbad's yields seem similarly impressive: few thousand gold in the ancient era can buy units that translate into the difference between a standard start and a deity AI's start. Himiko isn't as dramatic initially, but she can pay to bring herself back every time she's off cooldown, giving 8 envoys each time.

Some of the unique combat abilities seem less impressive. Oya's AOE damage/heal mostly goes to waste in the less crowded early game, and Hippolyta really needs a highly promoted ranged unit to reach her full potential. These abilities do seem like they'll scale well into the later game, but I don't think that'll be enough to compete with the snowballing that heroes with stronger early games can kick off.

Overall, I'd say devs did a great job of coming up with interesting hero abilities, but got a bit carried away with the numbers, especially the charge numbers for some of the stronger heroes. Beowulf being able to delete a powerful opposing unit or Sinbad being able to give you an early 500 gold is the sort of exciting thing that should be happening in a fantastical game mode like this one. Being able to do it six times, though, feels like you're starting to trivialize the rest of the game, without actually making the heroes any more interesting than they'd be with smaller charge numbers.
 

Noble Zarkon

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Arthur reminds me of Hungary, with the ability to conjure an advanced army from a city state. With an early 5 movement, he can combine with Amani to do this anywhere on your continent, and you can easily find yourself heading into the classical era as the owner of two starting capitals.
That's exactly what happened in mine - I discovered Arthur and Gran Colombia on the same turn (13), I built a monument, 2 scouts and a devotion to Arthur (bought another scout and had my starting warrior). On their way to Bogota they found newly settled Caracas, war was declared, the knights created (one per turn) and 5 turns later Simon Bolivar was no more! Very powerful.

Overall, I'd say devs did a great job of coming up with interesting hero abilities, but got a bit carried away with the numbers, especially the charge numbers for some of the stronger heroes. Beowulf being able to delete a powerful opposing unit or Sinbad being able to give you an early 500 gold is the sort of exciting thing that should be happening in a fantastical game mode like this one. Being able to do it six times, though, feels like you're starting to trivialize the rest of the game, without actually making the heroes any more interesting than they'd be with smaller charge numbers.
Agreed.
 

DWilson

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I think it needs a balance pass. Hercules feels good, as does Arthur, but I can see why people think others have too many charges. Maui probably needs more.
 
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