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Disappointed with Ant Upgrades..

veryhot post 4066 39
Wood ant melee need a special ability like ignoring death for 5 seconds at lvl 3, as that would make them far more worthwhile when using them to tank the tiger beach beetles and wolf spiders. 

Workers currently don't really need adjustment imao, except for their upgrades.  They're plenty useful in harvesting or economy teams, especially if you're growing the colony's size, Their upgrades just really need to make them better at these tasks, which would diversify the ant type into lvl 1 harvesters and lvl 3 nest management
And on the sixth day, God created ant in his own image, and gave them dominion over the earth and all of its creatures.  Amen.

The wood ant melee soldiers are unused due to having so many instant-kill enemies on 2.1, making them objectively worse off than just using workers to tank instead. Workers are really cheap at 20 food to build and 2 food to replace.
That's another issue, the ONE THING that rufa soldiers are good at (taking damage) is COMPLETELY ignored by a lot of enemies, especially the spiders (but to a lesser degree also the Tiger beetles, they chop through soldiers almost as fast as through workers, effectively making workers the more efficient choice).
The rufa shooters need a nerf (less ridiculous damage) and the rufa soldiers need a buff (like an ability to limit the damage they take so they can only ever take 25% damage from a single hit, and a short-range burst damage spray attack that makes them more effective when assaulting small pockets of weak enemies), RUFA SOLDIERS SHOULD BE A VIABLE ALTERNATIVE TO SHOOTERS.
You definitely want some shooters anyway because they're unaffected by numbers (they don't need to make direct contact to the enemy which means they can't block each other from attacking) and don't have to bother with enemy debuffs like rending, confuse or stun (because if things go well they never ever make direct contact with the enemy) but you should not be forced to build tons of shooter because they do ALL the damage (the soldiers' DPS is absolutely pathetic, actually they do the same damage as the cheaper workers which renders them even more obsolete than they already are).


Workers currently don't really need adjustment imao, except for their upgrades.  They're plenty useful in harvesting or economy teams, especially if you're growing the colony's size, Their upgrades just really need to make them better at these tasks, which would diversify the ant type into lvl 1 harvesters and lvl 3 nest management
Yes, workers are in a pretty fine spot but I think buffing them in the things they're supposed to do well in isn't an issue as long as the soldiers get better in the things they are supposed to do (taking and dealing damage).
Or in other words if you refine their roles so there is less competition between workers and soldiers it doesn't matter if they become really good at their jobs (and it doesn't even matter if they can do each others jobs because you always want the specialized version anyway).
« Last Edit: December 17, 2017, 04:52:53 PM by Serafine »

Remember with the maximum of 25% damage in one hit at lvl 3 or something that the wolf spiders also have venom, so that should be taken into account when attempting to make workers obsolete as tanks. 

At the same time though, I really wouldn't mind workers being efficient tanks, as long as the soldier ALSO had their place in an army (unlikely currently, where they have no place in 2.1 or 2.2). 
And on the sixth day, God created ant in his own image, and gave them dominion over the earth and all of its creatures.  Amen.

Remember with the maximum of 25% damage in one hit at lvl 3 or something that the wolf spiders also have venom, so that should be taken into account when attempting to make workers obsolete as tanks.
Another problem is these bonuses don't apply in the levels.

You know what would be cool? If we had a list of 4-5 abilties for every ant and before the levels starts could pick one they should get when they become level 2 and one they should get when they become level 3.
That would allow for different play styles (like using soldiers as assault stormtroopers or as tanks, shooters as support unit or raw DPS unit, workers that are better at nest tasks or overworld tasks, etc.) and make the game a lot more interesting (especially in multiplayer).

At the same time though, I really wouldn't mind workers being efficient tanks, as long as the soldier ALSO had their place in an army (unlikely currently, where they have no place in 2.1 or 2.2).
They are useless because they are utterly overshadowed by the ridiculously broken overpowered shooters. A single shooter has more DPS than 5 soldiers combined and costs only slighty more than one of them. Why should you EVER build a single soldier under these conditions?

The shooters are not the issue.  The entire point of wood ants is that all of your damage is in formic acid, but that the ants capable of using it are all glass cannons. 

The real issues with soldiers are two things: 

1) Their health per food ratio is not enough to compete with worker spam, especially when factoring in the high damage of some enemies.

2) Their lvl 3 bonus increases attack speed, and thus damage, which goes against what they're supposed to be made for, and has no chance of competing with spitters. 
And on the sixth day, God created ant in his own image, and gave them dominion over the earth and all of its creatures.  Amen.

The shooters are not the issue.  The entire point of wood ants is that all of your damage is in formic acid, but that the ants capable of using it are all glass cannons.
The shooters ARE an issue.
Imagine 250 fucsa ants vs 250 rufa ants. Half of the fusca ants wouldn't even be able to get into combat while those that can are getting NUKED by the huge (area) damage of the shooters.
Combined the rufa ants would have more than 5 times the DPS if half of their ants are shooters - 10 times if you only count the ants that can actually apply their damage (and even more when the fight takes place in a choke point) - which would end in a complete massacre of the fusca ants.

Tankier soldiers would only make that worse, MUCH worse.

This isn't a competitive game atm.  There are also far more ways that you could balance a PVP arena: 

  • Force all players to start with the same colony type
  • Give Fusca better nesting grounds, with weaker enemies and a lot more food, especially with passive foes
  • Give the Fusca cheaper ants
  • Prevent the Fusca from being attacked from the surface (underground only, dig to their enemies through a central area; would only be possible to attack if the other colonies became strong enough to fight off the stronger groups of enemies, such as devil's coach horse beetles and their larvae)

In a 6 player free for all, underground only Fusca with easier to obtain food would make competition very tight for the overground colonies, especially with nightly dangers, as they'll need to make the best defense they can in preparation for an assault. 

I personally think that Dev focus should be on PvE, especially when it comes to playing the missions. 
« Last Edit: December 18, 2017, 12:18:41 AM by Rayalot72 »
And on the sixth day, God created ant in his own image, and gave them dominion over the earth and all of its creatures.  Amen.

I agree, the focus should be more on PvE. (more content!) Right now its upgrades, and why they are a waste of food for anything other than wood ant spitters.

If, all across the board, upgrades cost half the initial unit cost.  Maybe for black ants 20, then 30.  For workers 8 then 12. 

That would make upgrading black ants in 1.1 and maybe 1.2 beneficial, instead of hurting the player.  Though mission objectives in 1.2 would have to be adjusted. 

It would also make upgrading workers a little more attactive... but I still think L3 workers need even more speed or something.  You are literally just throwing food away if you upgrade workers at all in any of the missions.  In the formicarium workers can get a nice speed boost, and you have no reason to not upgrade them anyway, since you get unlimited food with limited population.

Wood ant melee should... I don't know?  Be removed?  What if they only made a single caste for wood ants?  Workers.  Make all workers spitters, tone the damage down a bit. (or quite a bit)  Make them cost 35 food or so...  with 4 respawn. It might take a little longer for wood ants to build an economy but once they do they'd already have a fighting force.  Especially if upgrades costs only 15 then 20 food.  Also this way different colonies would then function much more differently from each other.


This isn't a competitive game atm.
Yes it isn't, but one day it might be. And it's easier to fix a tremendous imbalance caused by one or two units now rather than having to rebalance ALL ants to the point of entirely redesigning them before you can add multiplayer.
Also remember that in the main campaign you're playing Formica ereptor which will have access to all other ants in the game - would be a bit stupid if 80% of them were useless.


Wood ant melee should... I don't know?  Be removed?  What if they only made a single caste for wood ants?  Workers.  Make all workers spitters, tone the damage down a bit. (or quite a bit)  Make them cost 35 food or so...  with 4 respawn. It might take a little longer for wood ants to build an economy but once they do they'd already have a fighting force.  Especially if upgrades costs only 15 then 20 food.  Also this way different colonies would then function much more differently from each other.
I like that idea of giving all rufas ranged attacks (even better make them shoot at range and attack normally when they're engaged in close combat). Although two unit types (small workers and big workers) would probably be fine (Formica rufa are actually polymorphic and produce workers of vastly different sizes).
« Last Edit: December 21, 2017, 04:19:34 PM by Serafine »

Hope dev take some consideration of @serafine idea, I personally like the idea of non-teleportable food, and smaller and bigger ant instead of caste system.

Upgrades should be free and automatically complete after a certain time if the prerequisites are met - for example 5 minutes for level 2 and another 10 minutes for level 3 (or 2/5, whatever ffits the game flow).

A highly equipped group of super soldiers just isn't what this game is about. I'd rather see manual upgrading change the TYPE of ants so we can upgrade workers to soldiers (or shooters) if we want.

And PLEASE give soldiers all of the worker abilities.
FORMICA ANTS DO NOT HAVE SOLDIERS. They only have bigger and smaller workers.
This would completely and forever solve the issue with those silly colony compositions that consist to 90% of soldiers and suffer an economy collapse when more than 5 workers die (which is EXACTLY the reason why real Formica ants do not have soldiers - even Pheidole, who have the species with the highest soldier-to-worker ratio in the ant world NEVER go more than 40% soldiers, usually they have 10-30% soldiers depending on the species).


I agree with this, but maybe instead of having free upgrades after a certain amount of time, another idea could be:

There is only one type of buildable ant, the worker. These ants would be minor ants who are best at tending to brood. The more food gathering/fighting these ants do, the more experience they get. After gathering a certain amount of food/dealing enough damage, they become major workers, or the equivalent of a level one soldier atm, however they can still replenish brood. If a major worker does even more fighting/food gathering, they become super majors, which would be the equivalent of the level three soldier in the game. Therefore the ants the player designates to tend to brood would always be minors because they gain no experience, while the ants he sends out to forage would be larger majors. The game could look more realistic in this way.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2018, 07:10:34 PM by Buffalo981 »
Posted from my Zombie bunker in northeast Ohio.

Actually ants don't work that way. Once hatched ants do not grow anymore.
Also minors and majors behave differently and have different tasks. For example the majors of my Camponotus barbaricus colony NEVER harvest food. Their task is protection and killing stuff, once it's dead the minors and medias take over.

Okay, i tried reading this thread... i'm already lost... but have fun i guess...

They should add majors into the game, but the amount you can create should be dependent on the size of your army. Like every 30 soldiers you have, you get one major or something of that nature. You shouldn't be able to build them as tiles. 

The fix for upgrades is simple. Just make the upgrades worth getting. A level three soldier ant costs 50 food to build + 100 food to upgrade to level three. Therefore, a fully upgraded soldier should be equal to three regular soldiers. That means same damage, same health, and same food harvesting capability as three regular soldiers. Right now we have a level three soldier with the same dps and same food harvesting capability as ONE level one soldier. Only difference is slightly higher hp. Black ants are different because their soldiers actually get an attack speed boost, which makes a huge difference in DPS. I would say that black ants are fine the way they are and wood ant soldiers need a rework. They get no attack speed or damage for being level 3, which is why people just spam workers for meat shields. Workers were supposed to be used for harvesting only, their tiles can be upgraded to make them harvest faster, dig faster, bring eggs to the tiles faster, etc. They should never be used for combat IMO

The last thing that can be done (assuming the wood ant soldiers get a buff) is to drastically reduce the damage output of a spitter. They are ridiculously overpowered.



 

The tier balancing is actually not that easy. If you make a tier 3 soldier equivalent to 3 regular soldiers it will be MUCH better than them.

1) It has three times the health and it does NOT loose efficiency until it dies. This means when the bigger soldier reaches 1/3 of it's health pool it has 200% more DPS than 3 soldiers would at that time (150 vs 50).

2) It has a lesser risk to die. This is especially true against weaker enemies that get obliterated before the soldier's health pool goes to zero, but even in larger fights more of the tougher soldiers will survive.

3) Larger soldiers have much more EFFECTIVE DPS because the soldiers' DPS is limited by how many of them can get into actual physical contact with the enemy. An army of large soldiers can apply three times the DPS of an army of smaller soldiers and also has less overhead (that does zero damage because it is blocked by other soldiers).
This is also one of the reasons why the Formica rufa shooters are so ridiculously imbalanced.

The combination of these effects (mostly the higher effective DPS and the lesser loss of efficiency) will make such a group of larger soldiers absolutely murder the regular soldiers and the effect will even increase when they are fighting even smaller/weaker enemies/mobs.
« Last Edit: February 19, 2018, 10:27:42 AM by Serafine »