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Dwarf / Orc re-tune seriously needed in Mortal Empires

Adder007USAAdder007USA Registered Users Posts: 77
edited March 28 in General Discussion
I'll be the first to admit that dwarves were overpowered in the early years of the game. It wasn't uncommon to see most of the badlands blue by turn 50-75, and that's even after TW2, and the initial wave of old world rebalancing.

Recently picked up the game again after about a 6 month absence....and this just flat out isn't fun anymore.

The old adage goes about being "beset by enemies on all sides". This has never been more true. To the south, you have Grimgore and the assorted greenskin tribes. To the north you have Vampire counts, and more orcs. To the east now, where there used to be a reliable wall to your back, you now have skaven and more undead. And to the west you have bloody handz and...border princes?! Yes, that's right, now they're apparently against the dwarves as well.

The bottom line is that dwarves do not have the stalwart bastion they used to. If it's not your allies being absolutely useless (I've seen barak varr fall while one of their armies is in Empire lands fighting Vampires), it's random events causing damage, growth penalties to an already slow race, or massive public order penalties from who knows what. Dwarf heroes and lords are also far and few between, and expensive. On top of that, the Greenskin re-work allows orcs to have literally twice as many units on the field as they used to, for the price of one, and they just develop a momentum that can't be stopped when they start chain-waaghing.

I'm not a game designer, or a hardcore player, so take this with a grain of salt. Here are just some of the problems I've noticed, along with possible suggestions of fixes. As a side note, I'm more in favor of bringing dwarves in line with other races than nerfing others, as the only real buff they've had since TW1 is the forge system, and that's not really all that helpful if you don't have the territory with resources to use. I'm also looking at fixes that will primarily affect the campaign without messing up pitched battles.

1. Slow growth. Dwarves used to start with their capital city at tier 2; this was nerfed, though they start with enough population to immediately upgrade it to tier 2. The growth penalties from perpetual low public order and random events make this even worse. Even if you aren't constantly fighting off raids and other issues, it's almost impossible to get your capital city above tier 3 until after turn 50 unless you funnel all growth into it and neglect your other settlements. I've seen it where you take over the rib peaks (Mount Gunbad area) on turn 15 or so, and it's actually got NEGATIVE growth because of the vampiric and skaven corruption affecting it.

Possible fix: Revert the above mentioned nerf, or make it so that dwarves are more resilient to having their growth impacted by public order. There needs to be some way to start seeing tier 4 units before you get hit by wave after wave of rank 5 black orc stacks. It may also be a good idea to re-visit the dwarf research tree; Some techs barely make a dent, while others are absolutely critical, but hidden behind otherwise unhelpful choices.

2. Enemies all over. Prior to the patch where preferred climate was introduced, you didn't have to worry about border princes taking over barak varr, or mannfred taking over zhuffbar. Half the time this is exactly what happens; the AI is absolutely dead set on taking over that unfavorable yellow climate province. It also doesn't help that both greenskins and skaven can use the underground, so there's no way to build up any kind of barrier to entry, short of more armies that you can't afford.

Possible fix: Re-focus the priority of the AI. Zhuffbar now has skaven nesting in bugmans old tavern, isn't that enough of a problem to deal with? And aren't the border princes just supposed to more or less sit there, be a pain in the neck for the empire, occasionally fight against greenskins? The skaven that have also popped up are less of an issue, thankfully, but every now and then they do the sneaky thing somehow decide to strike at the exact same time as the greenskin wave.

3. Corruption. This is getting crazy. It used to be that the only corruption you had to worry about was the undead to the north of zhuffbar. However, there are now skaven bordering almost all dwarf lands, so you have to deal with two kinds now. The biggest impact this has is public order: On just hard mode, having only about 20% of skaven and vampire corruption leads to a -7 public order penalty!

Possible fix: Move some of the "untainted" traits to lower tier buildings. As it stands, dwarves don't have any way of fighting corruption until tier 3. Or, as suggested above, at least make it so that they aren't affected by it as hard until it really gets out of control.

4. Expensive/difficult to acquire characters. Dwarves flat out can't afford more than two armies at the beginning unless they put everything into toolmaker guilds. With the exception of the freebie runelord you receive from the first quest, you also don't have access to more heroes until tier 3 or higher; this wouldn't be as much of a problem if not for the earlier mentioned growth issues; you flat out can't get engineers til tier 4, and they're almost mandatory to make firing lines work against greenskin hordes. The quests for your legendary lord equipment are also horribly out of tune: The first quest Thorgrim gets requires 2 gyrocopter units in his army, a tier 4 unit that you usually don't see until extremely late, and which honestly isn't all that useful. By comparisson, so many other legendary lords in the game either start with a legendary item already equipped, or have relatively straightforward requirements that can be done as long as you put effort into them.

Possible fix: Dwarves have a history of being a race of mountain kings, where each king, while paying fealty to the high king, is still the master of his realm. Possibly reduce upkeep costs provided your number of lords does not exceed the number of complete provinces (Re-unite the underground realm, as Thorgrim has made his mission?). Also, re-tune the legendary quests for each lord, so that they're more effective, and make it so that at least runesmiths or engineers are easier to acquire. The lack of magic means that dwarves sorely need the special abilities granted by these characters.


5. Greenskins. I have to say this; if all of the above can't happen, one thing that would help; Tone down the waagh campaign ability of the greenskins. it used to be that you would face maybe 2-3 armies at once, which is fine, greenskins should be hordes. That number has now become 4-6, sometimes including elite units, all practically for free, and on top of that, the WAAGH in battle ability just ruins any armor advantage dwarves have. Even if you manage to lightning strike the core army, the WAAGH army just sticks around, and if you don't get jumped on by them, it's another greenskin army that somehow was just outside of your sight range, and yet had enough movement ot catch you. I don't like calling for nerfs, but this is getting out of control.

Possible fix: If you punch the biggest orc, and he goes down, shouldn't that mean his followers run as well? Limit the size of WAAGH armies to be capped by that of the host army, adjusting accordingly if the host takes a beating. Grungni knows there still plenty of other orcs out there.
Post edited by Adder007USA on

Comments

  • Arcani_4_EverArcani_4_Ever Junior Member Registered Users Posts: 2,741
    Removing Supply Lines would fix this issue.

    As that way you can leave small garrisons on The Silver Road and rapidly stomp Grimgor.
  • Adder007USAAdder007USA Registered Users Posts: 77
    Yeah, removing supply lines for dwarves, or reducing it under certain circumstances, would make a huge difference. As it stands you have to have lords hanging around to prevent rebellions, so you just don't have the ability to get income from fighting constantly like other races do.
  • BereaverBereaver Registered Users Posts: 911
    Wierd enough, all the things that you listed as bad things needed to be changed are everything I love about Dwarfs campaign!

    I love having awful growth and having to spam growth building in every settlement, I love having to deal with corruption and I'm totally cool with enemies coming from all sides.

    That'a the authentic Warhammer Dwarf experience, one of few races which play as they should.

    I would give them earlier access to geroes though, tier 4 is indeed too late.

    I also would love to see meaningful Rune system to add more layers to Dwarfen campaign.

    Overall, Karak Ankor is one of my favorite campaigns in the game.
  • ItharusItharus Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 13,590
    Actually, when you punch the biggest orc and you're not trying to lead them - it makes them want to have a go at you, too, to see if they can do it better.

    Also... ****... Dwarfs are probably the second easiest thing in the game to play after Gor'Rok.

    And dwarfs are SUPPOSED to grow slow. They are a dying race.

    You can literally develop Silver Road and only Silver Road, hold against all comers until you can afford three decent stacks out of it, and then just rickroll everything in that corner of the map, adding ever more stacks as you go. Once you have a port? You've basically won the game because your economy will be so incredibly ludicrous through trade, that you will be able to field almost endless high tier armies and still make money every turn. Assuming you actually had the presence of mind to scout out trading partners, that is.

    There's really only one way to lose as Thorgrim/Grombrindal that doesn't involve sheer incompetence.

    Letting your reach exceed your grasp.

    That's it. Take what you can hold. Hold what you take. If you play steadily and fortify and hold and don't overreach, you more or less can't lose. Turtle up then when you hit a critical mass - expand. Take. Hold. Repeat. In other words? Fight like a Dwarf.

    If you're trying to be aggressive and quick about it, you'll need to be a better player to pull it off and there are some situations where you might get caught with your pants down and just flat out lose because you took that gamble.
  • Pr4vdaPr4vda Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,831
    edited March 28
    I agree with the others : the dwarfs campaign is far more interesting than ever due to the huge modifications of the campaign map (no more "impassible wall" on the east) and the addition of a lot of foes (more GS, skaven, etc.).

    Dwarfs have to struggle. They are not mean to create dozen of armies and crush everybody as they used to.

    GS are far better than before, and they have to stay like this. I just would prefer if they had more armies of "chaff" like gobbos and standard orcs rather than elite armies. I mean, Grimgor could tend to have a powerful stack of BO or Wurzag getting only SO. But too much of that is hard to counter as dwarfs early on apart from camping in your settlementn which can be a bit boring.

    So where I can agree is :

    - Rework the victory conditions of the Dwarfs. Just take back lost Karaks and create back the Karaz Ankor, and kill GS and Skaven would be great. Especially with new Karaks on the East coming with WH3.
    - rework the Legendary items. Make them better and also available earlier. But it is the same for all the WH1 races who struggle to get them, while the last LL have them for free or at turn 3 of the campaign !
    - allow more steps for the dwarfs buildings. As you say, I never have the occasion to play more ingeneers or flame canons because tier 5 is sooo long to get ... a few units at tiers 2 or 3 would be welcome and allow more play styles.
    - Then, dwarfs need a new huge rework : rework the GBOG, give them a real rune forge, rework the skill trees of their lords and LL (poor Belegar lol he is the most generic LL of the entire game!), rework the anvil of doom and the runesmiths runes, rework the dwarf diplomacy ... they will be better at what they do without making them OP as they were.
    - add true Karaks. Taking Karaz A Karaz should be near impossible. I mean, sometimes I see GS AI taking over it in like 30 turns. Dwarfs should have more advantages in defense in their main settlements. Small bastions under a GS and Skaven flood in fact lol
    Team Dawis

    Dawis shall purge all their fallen Karaks, with the blood of the Greeskins and the skavens !
  • peabodyestatepeabodyestate Registered Users Posts: 1,400
    The key is either to put off waging war with Grimgor, and taking the golden path to the northeast and securing all the way up to Azhag, thats money right there - Or to go and pwn him immediately (which is doable) and give him the full wipe out, and then kill purple dorfs to the west for trade route.

    Heres the thign that finally helped me complete dorf campaign after hundreds of attempts - Its good to kill other dorfs, you get a massive casualty replenishment bonus at the end of the fight.

    Also, growth buildings in every settlement.
  • RikRiorikRikRiorik Registered Users Posts: 10,795
    edited March 28
    I love a rough Dwarf campaign. The longer the Dwarf campaign is awash with enemies knocking on your door the better.

    If one has trouble select Grombrindal as the starting Lord.
    Lord of the Undermountain and your friendly neighbourhood giant (Dwarf)
    Favourite campaigns: Clan Angrund, Followers of Nagash and the new Huntsmarshall’s Expedition
  • LordSolarMachLordSolarMach Registered Users Posts: 1,331
    I think it's thematic for Dwarfs to be really beset in their Mountain Holds, but they do need something to help them with surviving in that state.

    I don't know how possible it would be, but maybe giving them a special Major Settlement building chain when in Mountain Climate that automatically has huge garrisons? But balance that with weaker garrisons outside of the mountains?
  • Pr4vdaPr4vda Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,831

    I think it's thematic for Dwarfs to be really beset in their Mountain Holds, but they do need something to help them with surviving in that state.

    I don't know how possible it would be, but maybe giving them a special Major Settlement building chain when in Mountain Climate that automatically has huge garrisons? But balance that with weaker garrisons outside of the mountains?

    The garrisons and garrison buildings are quite strong in the main settlements to be honest.

    No they need better karaks, where they can create more chockpoints, slow the foes with barricades and runes, more resistant gates, etc.
    Team Dawis

    Dawis shall purge all their fallen Karaks, with the blood of the Greeskins and the skavens !
  • Adder007USAAdder007USA Registered Users Posts: 77
    edited March 28
    I get it that they're supposed to struggle. That's totally fine.

    That being said, I have no idea how someone can afford three armies using just silver road: Two maybe, but three? That's a massive turtle game that honestly, I don't see being very fun to play. I would at that point question if you've played dwarves recently, or if you're remembering from a year ago when that would have worked.

    What I've found after restarting the dwarf ME campaign 5 times is that you just have to get really freaking lucky. Essentially, you can play the game if the following things happen:

    1. You luck into an early random event engineer
    2. Grimgor doesn't get invited to join war with the bloody handz
    3. Clan rictus-nest doesn't decide to backstab you, and/or gets into a war with greenskins first
    4. Border princes don't annihilate your ally to the west
    5. Vlad or Mannfred doesn't decide to wipe out zhufbar and come at you through gunbad.

    If all the above lines up, the game goes fine. Just about any of those can go wrong though. I've tried the turtle strategy before, and then around turn 50 get hit with 3 WAAAGHED double stacks from grimgor; I didn't declare war on him, he got invited by Wurzhag. I've tried doing the "golden road" to the north, then suddenly the skaven to the east hit me at the same time as bloody handz from the south. I've also had it where border princes suddenly declares war on me, and after knocking down the army I left behind to defend silver road, I then got run over by the WAAAGH again. The tier 3 walled settlements that used to be able to buy you time do absolutely nothing against a 20-but-really-40 stack of greenskins that include 3 aracknarok spiders, 2 of which are on fire.
  • ItharusItharus Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 13,590

    The key is either to put off waging war with Grimgor, and taking the golden path to the northeast and securing all the way up to Azhag, thats money right there - Or to go and pwn him immediately (which is doable) and give him the full wipe out, and then kill purple dorfs to the west for trade route.

    Heres the thign that finally helped me complete dorf campaign after hundreds of attempts - Its good to kill other dorfs, you get a massive casualty replenishment bonus at the end of the fight.

    Also, growth buildings in every settlement.

    ROFL.... Dawi Zharr player right there.

    PITY IT WONT BE IN AT LAUNCH....... shameful that not one but TWO core army books got shafted just to make 4 armies out of 1 book and add one faction that used to exist and one that didn't. The latter two are great to have but they should have been DLC :(
  • peabodyestatepeabodyestate Registered Users Posts: 1,400
    I for one cannot wait to buy Chaos Dorfs as DLC for game 3.
  • ItharusItharus Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 13,590
    edited March 28

    I get it that they're supposed to struggle. That's totally fine.

    That being said, I have no idea how someone can afford three armies using just silver road: Two maybe, but three? That's a massive turtle game that honestly, I don't see being very fun to play. I would at that point question if you've played dwarves recently, or if you're remembering from a year ago when that would have worked.

    What I've found after restarting the dwarf ME campaign 5 times is that you just have to get really freaking lucky. Essentially, you can play the game if the following things happen:

    1. You luck into an early random event engineer
    2. Grimgor doesn't get invited to join war with the bloody handz
    3. Clan rictus-nest doesn't decide to backstab you, and/or gets into a war with greenskins first
    4. Border princes don't annihilate your ally to the west
    5. Vlad or Mannfred doesn't decide to wipe out zhufbar and come at you through gunbad.

    If all the above lines up, the game goes fine. Just about any of those can go wrong though. I've tried the turtle strategy before, and then around turn 50 get hit with 3 WAAAGHED double stacks from grimgor; I didn't declare war on him, he got invited by Wurzhag. I've tried doing the "golden road" to the north, then suddenly the skaven to the east hit me at the same time as bloody handz from the south. I've also had it where border princes suddenly declares war on me, and after knocking down the army I left behind to defend silver road, I then got run over by the WAAAGH again. The tier 3 walled settlements that used to be able to buy you time do absolutely nothing against a 20-but-really-40 stack of greenskins that include 3 aracknarok spiders, 2 of which are on fire.

    I have a game started with Grombrindal right now. It's like turn 50 something and I have two stacks that have a goodly number of longbeards in them and I'm dumping econ into the sudden rapid growth of Karaz-a-Karak that's possible now that my minors are t3 and I have extra money laying around. I will very soon have a third stack. I've got to slap grimgor (happening next turn) and then I'll have Barak Varr. I have already scouted out Ulthuan and a number of imperial provinces as well as the bretonnians. I've greased some palms already. As soon as I have that port I'll probably have 5 damned armies pretty fast and the snowball will begin.

    Yes the early game was turtling - but that's what dwarfs do. It's also more fun than you think because you are CONSTANTLY under-siege. You have to maneuver well to defend from all sides, and when you think you can catch a breath -- DONT! Go sack/raze some nearby settlements to slow them down or make them sacrifice half an army to resettle. It gets you the breathing room you can actually use. Once you have walled t3's you can start doing those strikes a lot because you have time to return home. If the Dawi cannot take the holds back, no one can have them. Better to burn them out than leave them infested.

    At no point did luck have anything to do with this (aside from an underway intercept or two maybe). I was a very active and very responsive Dawi that aggressively defended his holdings. Now that the everpeak is nearly restored, it's time to reclaim the holds. Khazukan Kazakit-ha!

    Also if those perfidious manlings take down Barak Varr - that's a grudgin'. They're also easy to spank so it means you may get Barak Varr faster/more easily. Number 2-3 always happen. 4 sometimes happens. 5 I haven't seen in ages. Kadrin and Azhag usually stop that, and if not, they get dragged into it with Silver Pinnacle and that one tiny skaven clan over there that weirdly does extremely well until Eshin inevitably confederates them despite being a vastly weaker faction -- Gritus? Number 1 I'm not sure has happened to me since like... I don't even know when. Game 1? Did they have engineers then? I can't remember, lol.

    Seriously though, turtle for a little bit then you can be aggressive to your heart's content. Dwarf walled garrisons can defeat pretty much any army that's tier 3 or less except for probably dark elves with all their damned AP damage.

    Edit: Not every faction is designed to be a highly aggressive super mobile rampaging force. When the Chaos Dwarfs get added, they should add that flavor of Dwarf to the game, though. There's a good chance that you just don't like the faction, even if you like the lore. They play pretty much exactly how they do in the TT game, minus the fact that some of their weapons should be more effective than they are represented in TWWH.
  • Pr4vdaPr4vda Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,831

    I get it that they're supposed to struggle. That's totally fine.

    That being said, I have no idea how someone can afford three armies using just silver road: Two maybe, but three? That's a massive turtle game that honestly, I don't see being very fun to play. I would at that point question if you've played dwarves recently, or if you're remembering from a year ago when that would have worked.

    What I've found after restarting the dwarf ME campaign 5 times is that you just have to get really freaking lucky. Essentially, you can play the game if the following things happen:

    1. You luck into an early random event engineer
    2. Grimgor doesn't get invited to join war with the bloody handz
    3. Clan rictus-nest doesn't decide to backstab you, and/or gets into a war with greenskins first
    4. Border princes don't annihilate your ally to the west
    5. Vlad or Mannfred doesn't decide to wipe out zhufbar and come at you through gunbad.

    If all the above lines up, the game goes fine. Just about any of those can go wrong though. I've tried the turtle strategy before, and then around turn 50 get hit with 3 WAAAGHED double stacks from grimgor; I didn't declare war on him, he got invited by Wurzhag. I've tried doing the "golden road" to the north, then suddenly the skaven to the east hit me at the same time as bloody handz from the south. I've also had it where border princes suddenly declares war on me, and after knocking down the army I left behind to defend silver road, I then got run over by the WAAAGH again. The tier 3 walled settlements that used to be able to buy you time do absolutely nothing against a 20-but-really-40 stack of greenskins that include 3 aracknarok spiders, 2 of which are on fire.

    I played a Legendary campaign as Thorgrim a few weeks ago.

    The key is to keep your main settlements, and take Mount Gunbad fast. Create garrison building in each main settlements asap. Once you have them, you can hold any karak even against 3 armies (you can insta buy a Lord + regiments of reknown if needed). Use one army to take cities and the other to hold your kingdom. Go slow. Do not hesitate to wait a turn to replenish id needed. Also concerning the humans, give them presents and take NAP to avoid any backstab.
    Team Dawis

    Dawis shall purge all their fallen Karaks, with the blood of the Greeskins and the skavens !
  • endurendur Registered Users Posts: 4,069
    I think Dwarf and Greenskin balance is in a good place right now.

    Dwarfs aren't the clear easiest faction like they were in TWW1, but they are still comfortable.

    Specifically with Silver Road, my recommendation is try to hold Karaz a Karak, Barak Varr, and the minor settlement inbetween the two major settlements. If you can hold those three, you should be able to support enough armies to win the game.

    I recommend taking Black Crag before you expand to Mount Gunbad and the North.


  • arthadawarthadaw Registered Users Posts: 1,092
    I just wish that Confederation would be reworked, make it more likely but have it be under a quest (Clearing a Grudge):

    Confederating Belegar/Angrun:
    Retake K8P
    Kill either Queek or Skarsnik (If both character are dead an Army will spawn near K8P with them in it)

    Confederating Karaz A karak:
    Clear X Grudges (Lord Hunt)

    Confederation Kadrin:
    Clear X Grudges/thematic (Monster Hunt)

    Future:

    Confederating Bugman:
    Kill a specially spawned army (Gitguzler)

    Confederating Torek:
    Take Silver Peak
    Kill the Lamian Vampire Queen

    ETC

    Those quest could be timed and if you fail it you get a diplomatic debuff, LL faction would have Special Quest while smaller/non Player faction would only have a random set of Mission (Basically what ever Grudge they would have at the moment)
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