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Unit promotion upgrades idea

Discussion in 'Idea Factory' started by Standhaft, Aug 6, 2019.

  1. Standhaft

    Standhaft

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    I had an idea today about a sort of mechanic that I think would be fun inside of a custom campaign (been thinking about getting back into warcraft 3 mapmaking once reforged comes out).

    Basically, my idea is that there is some sort of mechanic to upgrade units but which is more like a promotion than it is just like buying an upgrade at the blacksmith.

    For example, footmen can become captains (or some kind of elite foot soldier or whatever). Knights can become paladins, etc.

    My first thought is that I would want this to be limited somehow. E.g. you can have a maximum of 2 captains or only 1 captain per 5 footman or something so you can't just mass captains. Essentially, I want it to be a fun way to make your army stronger without it breaking the immersion of a campaign.

    My second thought is how to make it happen. I thought maybe it could just be a paid upgrade. Meaning that you select your footman, click on the upgrade to captain ability which costs 100g, and there is just a limit to how many captains you can have. So assuming 2 is the limit, if you have 2 captains then you just get an error message saying, "You can only have 2 captains at a time" if you try to use it on a 3rd footman.

    Alternatively, I thought maybe it could be an automatic upgrade. Sort of like how in Starcraft the units get "promoted" ranks based on their number of kills, but in this version they actually get slightly stronger. So maybe a footman would become a veteran at 10 kills and a captain at 20 kills or something. Each time getting a small boost to stats.

    I really like those story units and I would like to incorporate them in the campaign in a way which feels fun, organic, and doesn't encourage the player to just mass 1 type of unit.

    What do you think?
     
  2. cleavinghammer

    cleavinghammer

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    You could have trained (bought directly or upgraded) and field-promoted (veteran) units with different abilities (both have better stats and an aura, but trained ones have better auras and fp have better stats), with the amount limited for each unit type (or per army).
     
  3. Banelingline

    Banelingline

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    Unit promotion in a Campaign? Sounds like a great excuse for some multiple-choice plot elements, having each unit "kind" (not necessarily specific type) have a Hero promotion that you get one of and keep inter-mission, with side quests and dialogue differences based on what ones you have.

    As for method, you could have some other kill-dependent functions and use the Custom Value to track kills (or damage dealt, or some other promotion-relevant property), then promote the unit when they reach a certain threshold. Possibly varying based on unit type, so that a long-range high-AoE siege unit isn't just clusterbombing hordes to Hero status.
     
  4. cleavinghammer

    cleavinghammer

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    Yeah, siege units should probably be exempted.
     
  5. Standhaft

    Standhaft

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    Yeah, I agree that it wouldn't be for all unit types. Probably not siege.

    Thinking on it, there could be 2 different mechanics just like cleavinghammer says. Veterancy which is from unit kills and results in something like an overall 5% stat buff. And actual promotion which changes a footman to a captain, changing the model and giving some fixed buffs (possibly including new abilities). I do like the idea of captains having a command aura passive ability.

    Thanks. Glad you like the idea.

    I am not that good at warcraft mapmaking/editing so I will probably try to keep it a simple as possible to start with, but I would love to achieve something of that level.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2019
  6. doom_sheep

    doom_sheep

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    getting to promote some number of units whenever you accomplish an objective seems like a logical direction
     
  7. cleavinghammer

    cleavinghammer

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    Another possibility would be a unit-wide upgrade (e.g. Headhunter->Berserker) that gives better stats, but the new unit is both more expensive and takes longer to train.

    Siege engines: Instead of the engines being promoted themselves, you can train an Artificer, a weak unit with artillery support abilities and auras. Every time a siege unit kills something while the artificer is in range, it counts towards the artificer's kill count, and every X kills his abilities get stronger or he can apply buffs. For example, a melee-channeling spell that targets him and a siege engine, preventing either from moving, but giving the engine increased damage and range, giving an engine a different attack (diseased corpse, burning rock, shrapnel shell, etc.).
     
  8. Prince Aerrus

    Prince Aerrus

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    This is a very interesting idea, in theory it will be excellent, however it could be very messy in practice