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Autor Thema: Edain 4.5: Uruk Hunters  (Gelesen 993 mal)

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Edain 4.5: Uruk Hunters
« am: 20. Apr 2019, 18:57 »
Greetings, Companions of Edain!

After the latest, rather unpleasant news, today we are more than happy to showcase some progress again: the reworked Uruk-hai Hunters!



The previous Uruk Scouts were, in our opinion, no longer satisfactory. Although they disposed of interesting interactions with Lurtz and Uglúk, we felt there was still room for improvement. In a lot of cases, either Dunlendings or the fully-equipped Uruk-hai were the first choice, whereas Scouts came second or even third. On top of that, there have been some balance issues so far, which we were able to address properly with our overhaul. We have now devised a new unit, whose mechanics are unique in Edain, and at the same time fulfilled an old request of many fans. This is because they have access to a new passive ability that lets them grow stronger the longer they stay alive.

Level 1 - The First Uruk-hai: Hunters cannot receive upgrades from Isengard's War Machinery yet, but level up to rank 10. They receive more powerful bonuses per level than regular units.

Up to now, Isengart has not been able to access heroic units, as that would have gone against our idea of its rigorously organised, mass-production-style war industry. Hunters seemed to us a viable way to at least soften this founding principle: they are the first Uruk-hai that Saruman could breed, like a sort of prototype. Instead of being part of the mighty army that marched to Helm's Deep, their foremost duty was to pursue the Fellowship. With this passive ability we wanted to highlight the fact that they are the first of their kind and consequently quite inexperienced, but should they survive for long enough, their potential is enormous.

At a initial cost of 350 resources, they are more expensive than other standard swordsmen, but they are not superior in terms of values. In order to be worth their price, the player has to play wisely and level them up. At level 2, they are already stronger than enemies of the likes of Gondor Soldiers or Lórien's Border Guards; at level 5, they can engage in battle even when they are outnumbered. Once reached level 10, they turn into a force to be reckoned with, even for the opponent's heroic units!

Same as all other heroic units, the new Hunters are limited; you may only command four of them at the same time. However, they differ considerably from their counterparts in other factions, given that they are already available at the beginning of the game and develop an only equal degree of strength after a long time. If compared to Dunlendings, the alternative to the early-game Hunters, they cost more and are a great deal more valuable; that is the reason why they should be kept alive at all costs. On the other hand, they can increase their effectiveness substantially, since, like all heroic units, they have access to powerful abilities:


Level 1 - Hunting Arrows: Deal armour-piercing damage to enemy units and heroes, knock them to the ground and slow them by 50% for a brief duration. Hunters move 50% faster during that time.

Hunting Arrows have been adapted to better suit the own role of Hunters themselves (hence the new name). The cooldown of the ability is relatively high, but it allows Hunters to strike down and catch their target very reliably. This renders them a very versatile unit: if they come across careless enemies who are about to attack an Orc Camp or try to harass Isengard's economy, they will fall prey to Hunters very easily. However, if they find themselves in dire trouble, this ability will also work for their defence: assaulting cavalry can be halted for a short time, for instance, while escaping to safety thanks to the speed bonus. And as soon as they get to level 5, they can improve their melee prowess immensely for a short duration:

Level 5 - Hunting Fever: Hunters restore large amounts of hit points with every strike for a brief duration. At rank 10, they also knock enemies back.

As you may see, Scouts will no longer be able to switch to bows in the future. They are intended to embody pure melee warriors, who approach their prey with their crippling arrows and then finish the target rapidly. Not only do we solve some balance problematics here, caused by the old bow switch, but there is also space left for a new ability that will let them really bring the pain in their new role.
This is because as soon as the Hunters activate Hunting Fever, they can even hurl themselves right into the middle of the fray and still survive. Unlike other Uruks, they cannot count on upgrades like Heavy Armour that make them more resilient; as such, they solely depend on the bonuses earned by leveling up and on the impact of their abilities. While under the influence of Hunting Fever, they regenerate health with each blow and become extremely hard to kill, unless they encounter charging cavalry or focused archer fire. In combination with their first ability, a clever use of their arrows will also permit them to track and eliminate heroes, while the constant health regeneration keeps them alive. At level ten, only the strongest foes can go toe to toe with them in melee.


Purchasable Upgrade - Hunt Leader: Recruit Lurtz or Uglúk to enable this upgrade.
Promotes the horde to rank 2. Units at rank 2 replace fallen troop members when not in combat.


As before, Hunters have no standard banner carrier, but they may buy a hunting leader later in the game. Compared to before, we have simplified the upgrade: you must only recruit either Lurtz or Uglúk now. And of course, Hunters are going to synergise amazingly with both leaders: they can facilitate Lurtz's main task, hunting and slaying enemy heroes, or benefit from Uglúk's defensive influence to ensure their survival until they are highly leveled.

As you may have realised, the two active abilities of the Hunters mirror those of the Uruk-hai chieftains, Lurtz and Uglúk. We reckoned that said features would not only be very interesting to use in battle, but also provide very fitting connections to their leaders. Moreover, if you happen to play with the two heroes of the Uruk-Hai in 4.5, you may even discover other small changes involving Hunters. We hope you enjoyed this update and are always looking forward to your precious feedback!

Your Edain Team