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Warlords Are Wusses! Cowardly, Snivelling.. Why Don't They Actually Lead In Combat?

Inky

Warlord
Joined
Jan 9, 2007
Messages
229
Stop me if you heard that before:

Brave Sir Warlord ran away
Bravely ran away, away
When danger reared its ugly head
He bravely turned his tail and fled


So you got a Great General and made a warlord, but you're so afraid to lose him that you don't attack at less than 99+% odds. Even then, you lament the low experience you get doing that. And if your stack is threatened, your Warlord hides away, not willing to risk being killed out as the "toughest on the block".

Often, I don't even get my Warlords into combat at all, because the risk of losing outweighs the benefits. He dare not go in early on a sea invasion, even if some units will survive, because he is the prime target.

How often is your Warlord just a glorified Medic?

Medic 3 plus Woodsman 3 is pretty excellent, to be sure, but a regular unit with Medic1/Wood3 isn't too shabby. The sort of unit which you actually want weaker than the stack, so it doesn't defend, and only gets combat XP when the enemy is trounced near to death, easy pickings, but otherwise never fights.


The problem is survivability. Warlords are too rare to be worth risking in ordinary battles. Compared to the use you get out of settled Generals -- many units affected over the course of the game -- a Warlord only has a few chances to actually affect combat directly.

I know this has come up before, but I think it is still a good idea: A Warlord whose unit is destroyed should have a chance to escape -- go back to the capital or somewhere, much like a spy after a mission. My suggestion is to base the survival chance on the Warlord's withdrawal promotions, perhaps with some base chance (10%?). Now, coupled with the unit's withdrawal chance, this could make for very good odds of survival. The tradeoff would be that you'd have to take the right promotions to do so.

It could be automatic, but then Warlords might become *too* good. As it is, though, they are of limited use in many games.


The other problem is defense. A tough combatant Warlord is often the best defender, and on defense, there is no withdrawal chance. You can have a stack of 20+ tough units there, and the Warlord is still drawn into the fight and killed anyway.

To fix that, make the Warlord the last defender. Don't let it defend unless there are no other units.

Alternatively, defending Warlords could have an evasion chance, to escape back home. We could do both, but that again might make them too effective.


We could take a poll and see, but I rarely use more than one or two Warlords in a typical game. If one dies, I might make another -- a super medic is still always useful -- but I often prefer to simply stack up instructors, so my units are born with an extra promotion, or an academy for higher production from my military cities.
 

Venger

Give it a tumble, sport
Joined
Apr 18, 2002
Messages
783
I do agree that sometimes they are "too valuable" to risk except in clearly advantageous combat.

I'd prefer it if you could "build" a Warlord - actually, a General is the perfect concept. It leads the unit, opens new possibilities, gives experience. But is costly to make. It couldn't make the "Great General" buildings, just act as an XP conduit (maybe only 10XP given) and allow the advanced promotions.

Venger
 

eewallace

King
Joined
Nov 1, 2005
Messages
797
Location
USA
At least for early warlords, I often attach them to a mounted unit that has a reasonable chance of retreating, and attack with them anyway! What is the fun of having one if you don't get to watch him lead the charge? So they occasionally get killed--who cares--if I'm warmongering, another will be along soon enough.
 

peter450

Prince
Joined
Sep 24, 2006
Messages
392
99% odd's?? you obviously have your warlords lead a risky life, 99.9% is what you need for a guranteed win, 99 without the magic .9 on the end won't get you through a bad round, were you seem to loose no matter what the odd's

I agree with you, that warlords need a lot of babysitting to get to the magic 200xp range, were you the have enough promo's to get to 99.9% odd's on most combat, it's shame the warlord promo's are not more expansive, but thats something i'm looking at fixing with a small mod to my game files
 

Bad Brett

King
Joined
Sep 4, 2002
Messages
828
It's pretty stupid that people don't use the free upgrades just to avoid getting it killed. That should speak for itself.
 

Quagga

Former Dictator
Joined
Aug 31, 2006
Messages
663
Location
Li'l Rhody
How about Heroic Epic can be built only after a Warlord dies in battle. Or maybe another Heroic Epic can be built each time a Warlord dies.
 

DodgyDave

Warlord
Joined
Sep 8, 2006
Messages
169
perhaps change how Warlord unit works, instead of giving 20xp spread out, they should just give 10xp to unit they attach too and he stops being a Warlord and becomes general instead, if the unit then dies, then will a general unit turn up in capital and you need to attach him to another unit, which gets 10xp, but all the previous xp is gone.

So if he had 120 xp on a horsearcher and he does die, then general turns up and you attach him to a Axeman instead with perhaps 3xp and then 10 more from merge, total 13.

and no more free upgrade, as this general will stay around forever, just in new units as they get killed :)
 

lulu135

Warlord
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
135
How about Heroic Epic can be built only after a Warlord dies in battle. Or maybe another Heroic Epic can be built each time a Warlord dies.

I like it! But, it needs to be less powerful than a military academy for obvious reasons. Maybe a +25% production boost.
 

Welnic

Emperor
Joined
Jun 19, 2006
Messages
1,057
Another verse for the poem:

Brave Sir Warlord ran away
Bravely ran away, away
When danger reared its ugly head
He bravely turned his tail and fled

But he came back after the fray
Though it was very late in the day
He attacked the units that were practically dead
And picked up XP for chopping off their head
 

Sycraft

Chieftain
Joined
Sep 10, 2004
Messages
18
Personally, I've never made one in an actual game. I've tried it of course, first thing I did when I got BTS was to fire up World Builder and just try a bunch of things out to see how they work, but I quickly decided against ever using it in a real game. The other benefits a general can provide are far more worth it.
 

eric_

Emperor
Joined
Nov 29, 2005
Messages
1,725
Location
Riverdale, MD
Maybe more of the promotions should provide a small bonus to other units in a stack with it...like a medic does, but a boost to combat odds as well. Maybe all level-three+ promotions should bleed over to other troops in a stack. So, combat III would provide, say, a 5% boost to strength to the units in a stack. That would make it more like a real general, who rarely fights, but rather works to keep up morale, teach tactics, etc.
 

peter450

Prince
Joined
Sep 24, 2006
Messages
392
Warlords are not bad, a unit with woods 3, gurilla 3 and 75% str + those FS can defend against waves of attackers if it's on a forest or hill, just like those same stats with the city 3 promo can see you get 99.9 on even hardened defenders, the trouble is it needs a lot of XP 200, comming up to 300 really, which means making the warlord early and really playing a aggressive game, and there's always the chance you might get attacked at a vunrable point an loose your stack + warlord. i just think compared to the easy option of dropping him in a city, an then getting good benefits over the whole game, that making a warlord is the far harder one to get a benefit from, sure if you make it the promise dland of 300xp it will most definately be worth it believe me! but that's an awful lot harder than getting to the promised land of a city with herioc epic, wespoint an 4 or 5 instructors, churning out lots of standard units with good levels of veterancy off the bat
 

LiDDiS

Warlord
Joined
Sep 3, 2007
Messages
125
Location
Canada
It would have made more sense if warlords had promotions that benefited an entire stack. It's probably too late for that to ever happen though, unless someone mods it.
 

Naismith

Prince
Joined
Feb 27, 2006
Messages
438
Personally, I've never made one in an actual game. I've tried it of course, first thing I did when I got BTS was to fire up World Builder and just try a bunch of things out to see how they work, but I quickly decided against ever using it in a real game. The other benefits a general can provide are far more worth it.

Yes. Quite a disappointment for Civ3 army junkies like me. I once played a game I dedicated to cheating in every way possible. I ended up creating a swordsman, and giving it every promotion possible using WB. That was worth having. :lol:

Perhaps rather than giving a set number of XP, it should give a set number of promotions. That way, you could build a unit worth having if you used enough warlords on it.
 

lulu135

Warlord
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
135
Another idea: Give leadership promotion for free (what's a General if not a leader?) and also give +100% XP to all units in stack.
 

Tiberias

Chieftain
Joined
Nov 22, 2006
Messages
82
Location
Washington, DC
I use them as leaders, at least after I've had a military academy built. Life is short, it's a game, and it's just a unit, it's not my life savings.

But if they wanted to encourage their use in combat, they should have a free special promotion that gives them a VERY high (50% or so) withdrawal chance. Put them with a mounted unit and give them all the withdrawal upgrades, and you could put them up to a 90% withdrawal, or something like that. It would make them an extremely useful unit for "cracking" a city defense--not to mention the havoc they'd wreak on siege units.

Another fix that would help would be, as mentioned above, always making them the last unit attacked, regardless of the circumstances. That would make them a great city defender, especially with a few other units to be the cannon fodder. The attacker would have to take out all the other defenders, and then they'd have a super-powerful defender to take out after all of that.

But you wouldn't want to make them too powerful, which can unbalance the game . . . remember the old pick nine Death books->summon Wraith->win strategy from Master of Magic? :lol:
 

RockTheCazbah87

Pacal's pal
Joined
May 28, 2007
Messages
649
Location
Manhattan, NY
Brave Sir Warlord ran away
Bravely ran away, away
When danger reared its ugly head
He bravely turned his tail and fled

:lol:

Gotta love Monty Python...

but on-topic, I usually never get GG's anyway. I'm one of those peaceful builder guys. :cool:
 

AriochIV

Colonial Ninja
Joined
Jul 25, 2006
Messages
5,978
Location
Nehwon
Real-life warlords and generals were rarely the first into the fray, and for the same reason... a leader is of no use if he's dead. It seems clear from what I've heard of the design discussion that Firaxis didn't like the Army super-unit from Civ3, and they wanted to create in the Warlord a unit that was powerful but vulnerable if you weren't careful with it. That's exactly what they got; I don't see that they would wish to change it.
 

OTAKUjbski

TK421
Joined
Mar 4, 2007
Messages
1,511
Location
not at my post
I agree with the OP. The current 'Warlord' mechanics make utilization the opposite of what Firaxis probably intended.

Giving fallen Warlords a 50+% chance of surviving the battle and returning to the capital for use again would definitely increase their combat time.

This way, if a Warlord loses, you might get to re-attach him to a different unit.
 
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