Discussion: Adding New Tribes to All Servers / General Game-balance

  • Add Huns & Egyptians as "standard" on all new servers


    I favor the immediate addition of Egyptians and Huns to all new servers. I do not think it is fair to players who commit to 230-350 day long servers to have to wait until their next, next server to use them. I say this with the assumption the tribes will be rolled out universally at some point. Not doing so would likely foster more frustration and anger in the community. I do understand the decision to utilize them only on "specials" currently, i.e the Birthday Special that ran in Sept and the "New Years Special" that started last month. Doing so increases the amount of players on those servers, increasing the competitiveness etc. which should result in greater gold expenditure ("revenue"). It can also be seen as an additional opportunity to test the new tribes in a WW setting. (Though given the fact the Beta server was not used properly by the Devs, I have doubts as to how much such a thing factored into the decision making process)


    However I also recognize that there are concerns about the balance of the new tribes on their own, within the context of WW servers and of the general tribal balance when all 5 are present. Below are some thoughts on addressing tribal balance.


    Here are some figures I pulled for tribe distribution, comparing NYS servers to other active (and relatively full) servers within the same domains. I got them from Getter so I don't have info on Hun and Egyptian %, since the tables currently don't reflect the new tribes.


    Note: Since I started drafting this post, Travian has released overall NYS stats from across the domains.



    The Data

    To better address the question of game balance I've begun an analysis of the tribes, looking at different things from Attack Power, Effective Defense, Raiding etc. I am by no means done nor is it all necessarily original. I have seen various threads address different aspects that I am looking at, but I think my work is a bit more comprehensive. I hope that it aids in the discussion. Since I lack an organized draft, let alone a final draft, I will keep things as simple as possible, opting for highlights of the data. (usually through graphs) Since the work is incomplete I will note that everything I say in relation to the data is part of a "working thesis". It could be entirely wrong, but based on the information I have now, these are my thoughts.


    Since its incomplete I'm also missing a lot of categories for data that I haven't gotten to yet, nor have I had a chance to find real world data to compare to "textbook" data. But I think its important that this discussion start sooner, rather then later.





    Egyptians



    Offensive & Raiding Hierarchy



    Other Things

    Here are some other general balancing issues and ideas that come to mind that don't fit in the above sections.

    • Merge Gaul Cranny & Trapper - This could be more useful for inexperienced players to defend themselves and protect resources. I think it makes the trapper a bit more valuable than it otherwise is by reducing the number of building slots used.

    Tribe / Unit related things I haven't gotten to yet but will at some point. These include data stuff, as well as sections of the post that I don't have the energy for at the moment.

    • Defense Comparison

      • Discussion of Tribe Infantry / WW Defense
      • Cavalry Defense Analysis - Comparing speed, effective defense, training cost, upkeep
      • General Defense Analysis - How do the tribes stack up defensively?
    • Additional Raiding Analysis - Evaluating raiding potential i.e estimation of daily raid income based on different attributes like average farm field distance, unit speed, units trained per day etc.
    • Overall Analysis - How do the tribes unit combinations compare based on different play-styles and "overall". Considering all information, raiding, defense, offense, cost, upkeep etc.
    • Real World vs Theoretical Hammer AP Ratios - Compile battle reports to compare real world hammer use to the theoretical standard.

      • Use to offer additional insight into defense value comparisons

    I feel like there should be more but this is all that is coming to mind that falls within Tribe specific game attributes. If anyone has anything else please offer them up.


    Summary


    It is important to remember that these are simply options. They do not constitute anything that must be done but they may help address various community concerns. The addition of the tribes across all servers is the thing that I absolutely 100% support.




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    Note: This post has been added to all English language domains. I will try my best to respond in all threads, but depending on the depth and quantity of the responses this may prove difficult to keep up with.

    What I have written here is in part a derivation of work I began 10 months ago with a simple list. The list asked a basic question, how can Travian be improved. Over time this list has grown to become a project devoted to proposing and advocating for things to improve the game. Right now I call it the "Veteran Legends Project". I hope soon to have a dedicated thread on the subject but the project is rooted in the same concept as my original list and the sentiment that I have expressed above. I am looking for people to help with this project, I have be accumulating a list of community leader names who may have both the ability and willingness to aid the project. That list likely won't be enough as the project is ultimately a reflection of the community's answer: "How can Travian be improved?". More voices and more hands will improve the efficiency and value of the project. I also understand that this game is something we do for fun and this project involves a bit of work. I also understand that game communities worldwide have done things above and beyond for their games, regardless of the cost in time or money.

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  • good summary ! I'll take a look and i hope they will add new tribs on 3x servers

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  • Your numbers are off somehow (not sure what you did, guess you didn't count in upgrades?) - mercs actually give more off/time than bows at level 20.


    Other than that, you know my objections from the document, and have adressed them ;)



    I think either suggestion to nerfing waterworks would be in order. The infantry one might provide another balancing issue though, with the slave militias unique nature. I think 3/4 reduction should be more than enough. The bonus should also definitely only count for own troops staying in own villages. This is a very important point imo. If it reduced the upkeep of foreign (Egyptian) infantry, it would be insane for WWs - and Egyptians are of course already pegged as the best WW holders with their very strong wall.



    Not sure I feel like the merc needs to be changed. It's a great combined unit... But not too great as a purely defensive unit - while they give very good def/time (second to slave militia), their def/upkeep is very low and def/cost is low too compared to phalanx and spears. It's worth noticing that def/time isn't that important - you can always add additional defensive villages (at some cost of course, but still).


    I think the changes you suggest to marksmen would put Huns in a good spot defensively. However, the question is - do we want to make Huns more viable for pure defense? Or would it be okay that they keep the possibility of the (somewhat unique, though something slightly similar can be done with Roman legs) role as hamvill with mercs and marksmen being as they are right now, instead of giving them slightly more defensive power? Though of course, this possibility could still be there, even with a slight nerf to Marks off power.



    Something also definitely needs to be done for Gaul unique building as you said. In effect adding traps to crannies could perhaps be the solution.

  • Gauls definitely need something better for the Unique Building. Adding Traps to crannies is one solution that doesn't get rid of an early game tool for new players. Yes, Gauls already have a boost to their cranny but is that really as powerful as the boost Romans get to their Trade Office. All in one Trapper/Cranny would be a step in the right direction.


    But in terms of their Uniqe Building. What do we think of something like the Roman HDT but for Speed. +1 Speed at LVL 10 and again at LVL 20. Put Gaul TTs back on the raiding map. Maybe too powerful but Gauls were known for their speed until the Huns took that away from them.


    I will give my thoughts on the new tribe balance later, but having a quick look I had similar thoughts in terms if balancing Hun Cavalry.

  • I dont agree with some points, but I appreciate your post. Balancing cavalry nerfing huns and buffing other cavalry units will make all tribes less unique and it doesnt favor different playstyles. I think we need more testing before pointing out numbers. You also ignore brewery bonus in your calculations. Why would you buff egyptians offensive? IMO every tribe stands out in different aspects. I think thats is what makes new tribes attractive. I really agree that a top egyptians acc can be overpowered. But there are not that many top acc in a server, maybe in a Finals server in a competitive alliance, yes, but most players wont exploit egyptians bonuses to consider them overpowered.


    I really agree with the need to do something with gauls, I think they lost their own singularities.

  • Yea I just realized my trained per day numbers are incorrect on the Offensive calculations, I used an incorrect formula to calculate lvl 20 training times. Why I didn't just grab the times from Kirilloid is beyond me. I'm working on updating them now. The nice thing is I linked them in my original post, so they will auto update. AP per hammer combo should now be reflected properly. I was also able to add in the Marks combos. And made them based on lvl 20 smithy. (originally it was just base AP)


    The Romans took the biggest hit from my original calculations but otherwise the general order is the same. I should probably take a look at siege impacts as well. While they all do the same building damage, the difference in AP might impact the ranking order. I'm might even say Bows need a buff, to make it a tougher decision between them and Mercs. Something small like +5 AP.


    Regarding the waterworks replacement, yes I fully intended for that to be village troop specific. I should have clarified that originally. I do agree 3/4 would also be the more appropriate choice for such a building. I also think if the waterworks is replaced as the unique building, it could then be given to all the tribes. I know it would fill another building slot, but I also think the Flour Mill and Bakery should just be combined. Such a combined building would still offer a 5% bonus per level but have a max level of 10 instead of 5. (Though I also think all the production buildings should offer offer a greater bonus, say 75% on wood/clay/iron buildings (3.75%/lvl) and 100% (5%/lvl) on the crop building, all going up to level 20)


    As for the Merc:


    1) Not crop efficient for defense - Yes, however if you are routinely splatting hammers (or defending a WW), the need is generally about having "more" defense. Being able to quickly muster more in a single village has a lot of value.
    2) Expensive defense - Also true. I actually hadn't thought about comparing costs. I would expect though that a Hun would be a solid raider, making the cost not that big an issue.


    I actually didn't realize they were so expensive. So I withdraw my Merc suggestion.




    Marks:


    I see what you are saying. I haven't run the actual numbers to see how they would fit in to the defense picture yet. And of course the concern of giving Huns more defense capability comes with its own concerns. But it also isn't like Tuets don't have spears and paladins, which while not the best unit combo (I don't know this for sure, but that is my perception) are capable.


    Huns and Egyptians aren't balanced at all, they shouldn't add them before balancing .

    The thing is, I'm wary about waiting for them to balance them. They could take years, or not do it at all. In my mind balancing them should be relatively easy, both in terms of developing and implementing those changes. But an MO of inaction is something that I've come to expect. Despite that I still think its important for discussions, ideas and proposals to be worked out in the community.


    But yea I'd like to see them added, even with the imbalance. It took 12 years to arrive in the first, and I like them and know other players who do as well.



    good summary ! I'll take a look and i hope they will add new tribs on 3x servers

    I do agree speed needs more love. I don't play it but have seen a lot of people who only play on those servers. They deserve the love of Fire & Sand too. (And future birthday servers)


    I would suggest running at least a 3x BS and NYS on the COM domain and perhaps other larger domains. (not the other English ones though) In addition, run 1 in the times between the NYS and BS. You could probably run that 2 times a year around the BS/NYS, for 4 speed rounds per year of region based servers. I would suggest a length of 75 days, allowing for January (BS), March/April , June/July and Sept/October.

    Gauls definitely need something better for the Unique Building. Adding Traps to crannies is one solution that doesn't get rid of an early game tool for new players. Yes, Gauls already have a boost to their cranny but is that really as powerful as the boost Romans get to their Trade Office. All in one Trapper/Cranny would be a step in the right direction.


    But in terms of their Uniqe Building. What do we think of something like the Roman HDT but for Speed. +1 Speed at LVL 10 and again at LVL 20. Put Gaul TTs back on the raiding map. Maybe too powerful but Gauls were known for their speed until the Huns took that away from them.


    I will give my thoughts on the new tribe balance later, but having a quick look I had similar thoughts in terms if balancing Hun Cavalry.

    A unique building for speed isn't a bad thought. I'd certainly be open to it, but is it enough of a value for Gauls? That would also mean eliminating the Trapper, which I think is useful for inexperienced players. However, if they got a new Unique building, that would also mean Trappers could be given to all tribes.
    A speed related building could allow for +1 speed to each of the Gaul horses. 5 for scouts, 10 for TT, 15 for Druider and 20 for Haeduan. Given the weakness of the TT, it wouldn't do much other than aid raiding, and make defenders a bit quicker to the punch.


    So in short, I'm open to it but would be interested to see what others say.

    I dont agree with some points, but I appreciate your post. Balancing cavalry nerfing huns and buffing other cavalry units will make all tribes less unique and it doesnt favor different playstyles. I think we need more testing before pointing out numbers. You also ignore brewery bonus in your calculations. Why would you buff egyptians offensive? IMO every tribe stands out in different aspects. I think thats is what makes new tribes attractive. I really agree that a top egyptians acc can be overpowered. But there are not that many top acc in a server, maybe in a Finals server in a competitive alliance, yes, but most players wont exploit egyptians bonuses to consider them overpowered.


    I really agree with the need to do something with gauls, I think they lost their own singularities.


    Yes I did ignore the Brewery. But I generally don't know Tuetons who use it that often. The inability to target specific buildings and weaker chiefs make general play more difficult. It is a good tool on singular targets when you are a WW rammer though. All it does is increase the AP for a Club/TK build and its already number one, though it will push the Axe/TK above the two Hun Marauder builds.


    I think every tribe should be viable to play offensively or defensively. It makes them less predictable, I find that predictable is a leading cause of casualties. I also think the buffs to each tribe's cavalry is relatively minor. The biggest is for the Romans but Romans have always been feared because of their EC, now they are tied for strongest cavalry. I also think Romans should have a more powerful offense than Gauls, and with the updated numbers they do not.
    With the proposed buffs, they would be and would still reign as having the strongest cavalry unit.


    Based on the proposed buffs and nerfs the following would remain the same:

    • Huns would still have 2nd fastest cavalry
    • Huns would still have 2nd and 3rd highest AP (excluding Brewery)
    • Huns would still be able to out raid Tuetons

    Based on the proposed buffs and nerfs the following would remain the same (assuming my calculations on changes in AP are correct):

    • The Marauder would be 2nd strongest instead of tied for #1
    • Romans would have the strongest Cav, a status they enjoyed did prior to Huns and become more offensively capable (Imp/EC from 71,321 to 77,507 (+4,659.2 AP) and Imp/EI from 67,043 to 69,608 (+2,565 AP) moving from the #10 to #6 strongest hammer when factoring Huns. They are the #4 AP combo without the Huns.
    • TT would get a little faster, and be faster than the Steppe/Hero combo by 1 FPH. They would also become slightly stronger +3,302.40 AP but would still make the TT/Sword the #12 hammer combo in the game.
    • Marks would be less of a utilitarian workhorse than it currently is losing 4,128 AP. It would retain its general place, losing only 2 ranks but that is due to the Imp/EC build and Sword/Haed build moving up. The reduction in carry capacity and slight increase in cost per unit, combined with the reduced AP would make them less of a nightmare unit. Huns can raid with them, attack with them and defend with them. With the nerfs they can still do that, but not quite as well.
    • Gauls AP would go up slightly, making their Sword/Haed build strong than the Hun Marks combos (+2,747 AP) and TT would be a little harder hitting gaining 3,302.40 but should still be the #11 AP combo
    • Steppe become a little less OP with slightly reduced carry capacity and increased cost.
    • TK become slightly faster
    • Egyptians become a more viable offensive build with +4,353.70 but still fall in last place.

    Generally I think the combined effect makes the Huns just right instead of OP. I think Romans and Gaul are too marginalized without their buffs. The only thing Teuts get is a slightly faster TK, which won't do a whole lot except make their raiding a tad more quick. Egyptians would become a bit stronger but still fall in last place. It would also reduce the overall daily AP spread by about 1/4.


    In relation to the waterworks bonus you are right on an individual player level, the majority won't tap its full potential. But on most servers, the top croppers in the boonies are left unsettled. For the Tournament servers and on some domains, alliances utilize "tech" accounts. They are basically players whose sole purpose is to serve as a garage for top players EGH. Just because a problem is limited in the scope of servers it impacts, doesn't mean it should be fixed. It reduces the urgency but certainly doesn't eliminate the issue.


    Update #2 2/27 @ 04:30
    An additional error in the data was pointed out to me: I neglected the HWP/HDT. Which is clearly absolutely essential to a Roman hammer being effective in AP per day. Based on that I would withdraw my suggestion about increasing EI AP. I would however still advocate making the EC 185 AP. While they don't "need" it, I feel like the EC should still be the most powerful attacking unit.


    Would a mod be kind enough to merge this post into my last?

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