Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Combo buddies - bffs

So, new day, new team, new gimmicks. :) you've heard of the Shaolin by now, I hope, and the combo system. In short, each new Shaolin attacker gets bonus damage when attacking the same unit within the same turn. Combos. Big flashy numbers on the screen, you know you want them shiny numbers.

Unsurprisingly, the best unit to start a combo with is the one that has 3 range and debuffs resistance. The poisoner.

Lookkit all that sweet, sweet range. The other units, though, are a lot more piddling on range. Still, you need at least one other unit if you want a combo, so you need to move another unit in range. Like the windblade.

See right there? That's combo goodness coming up. So, keeping in mind that the windblade has 2 range and 2 move, here's where you want to end up (the green targets) and where the windblade can be standing the turn before if you want a combo next turn (the shaded green tiles).

Nice. Now (and this ties in with my previous post about the white and black tiles), notice that the windblade likes to stand on the black tiles, when the poisoner stands on the white tiles (and by inference, the target is on a black tile). This means that the poisoner and the windblade are far less likely to be fighting over turf. For example, the poisoner and the windblade can "leapfrog" over one another to get in range, much like in this example, or the windblade can be standing in front of the poisoner to shield the squishy poisoner. Paris Poisoner and Wendy Windblade - bffs.

When taking about meat shields, you immediately think of the monk. However, the monk has 2 move, but only 1 range. What does that mean? That means the monk has to be a lot nearer to the enemy than the windblade to start with, and only has 3-4 possible attack angles. Bt the worst bit is, if you want to make full use of the monk's stumpy range, the monk has to be on the white tile, same as the poisoner! You'll come across this quite often if you play SL regularly - either your poisoner can get into position but your monk can't, or your monk is in position but your poisoner gets blocked. And this is why. So Paris poisoner says to Micole Monk - TTYN. Ok not really because SL needs every last resource it can get, butt you know what I mean.

The shadow. Ah. I ran out of green so I used grass clippings instead. Range 3 move, range 3 attack, range 3 stomp, and a big buff body means that he should be poisoners bestest friend ever, except for just one tiny thing - he does PIDDLING damage. Even with the combo and poisoner debuff, he only does 320 damage. What? Ugh. He hits as hard as a Phantom. Dude gets made fun off at the super unit parties all the time, even level 0 Wraith picks on this guy at the buffet. Anyway, super easy to get combos with him, but even getting combos don't mean much. Still, poisoner packs a hefty punch by herself - just save the last hit for shadow dearest to get the combo so he doesn't feel left out.

Ok ok I'm being mean, it's a valid tactic to do move, poisoner attack poisoner attack, shadow attack (800 units die here) and shadow rez. But generally, unless you get him in front first to get tanky, you're going to have to do a lot of work.

Right, so you may have noticed in the pictures above, the target cleric didn't actually bite it. Which is why combos kinda suck right now. In order to get the 2 hit combo kill, you need to sword the poisoner. Which you should do anyway, because who else are you going to sword, the shadow (haw haw haw). I personally find naked sworded poisoners useful generally, as throwaway assassins combined with dragon, against those dangerous +3 units. Even better if you can stomp with bamboo and somehow save the poisoner, but rot now..... Meh.




Just grab your combo buddy / and say these magic words: / "f*** you combos! / you don't do jack for me / i cant get no combos / 'cause it's just too hard!"


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Oh My Damage Calculator! A Hero Academy Damage Calculator

I've been busy recently! I used to study programming, when I thought I wanted to be a computer engineer, but I took a degree in something less outsourceable in the end. I always wonder if I'd be happier as a programmer, though, and so I decided to flex those long atrophied programming chops and do up.. *drumroll*

A Hero Academy Damage Calculator!

It's fairly basic as apps go, no fancy nothing, but I'm happy just knowing that I did it. =) Remember, you can add this link as a link on your homepage, and nestle it next to your Hero Academy icon! Let me know if you like it, or if you find any bugs - leave a comment! I'll (try to) fix it!

NOTE: Please check the version number at the bottom of the calculator with the version list below - if you don't have the latest version, you may have to clear the cached website on your phone or computer. On iPhones, go to Settings / Safari / Advanced / Website Data, and delete the stuff under tabbynat.github.com.


Ver v1.4.2.4 - 21 / 12 / 2013
Fixed damage modifier for archers and grenadiers

Ver v1.4.2.3 - 24 / 2 / 2013
Fixed Shaolin converted units dragon scale physical resistance.

Ver v1.4.2.2 - 15 / 2 / 2013
Gunner ranged damage fixed
Multiple paladin aura damage bonus is now multiplicative instead of additive.

Ver v1.4.2.1 - 9 / 2 / 2013

Updated version numbering convention to match HA patch numbering
Updates to match HA balancing v1.4.2 patch changes.
Added Grenadier Melee attack

There's a strange intermittent bug with the max hp display. Please consider just hitting the refresh button when changing target teams etc.

Ver b0.6.1 - 5 / 1 / 2013

Implementing bugfix log

Fixed Annihilator damage type

Fixed Heavy melee damage bonus

Fixed display bug for max HP

Added support for Shaolin Shadow converted units

Friday, December 7, 2012

It matters if you're (on) black or white

You might have noticed that on most of the maps, some of the tiles are lighter and some are darker, arranged in a chessboard pattern. I think that's no accident!


When you're learning how to play chess seriously, one of the first things you learn about the bishops (other than the fact that there are two of them) is that there is one bishop on the white tiles, one bishop on the black tiles, and the bishop on the white tiles NEVER can move onto the black tiles. Fascinating! But, you say, in HA units can take 1 step or 2 each turn, so that situation never arises. That true, but if you pay attention to what units work better on what tiles, you will find yourself having just the right units in just the right places when you really need them.


This comes out most obviously with the spy and the pyro from TF2 - both units have 2 move, but the pyro works best at range 2, whereas the spy works best when stabbing from behind. We'll have each nit start 1AP away from the deploy tile - most often, a player will deploy a unit and spend at least 1 AP clearing it off the deploy tile so those units don't clog up the deploy area.

The target wizard is standing on a white tile, so by starting from a white tile, the pyro only needs to take 1 AP to move into ideal range.


The spy, on the other hand, would prefer to start from the black tile when targeting the archer on the white tile. The spy gets full use out of each of his AP spent moving.


What if the pyro was on the black tile instead? Here you see that the pyro has to take a half-step in order to get the wizard in range, thus leaving no AP left to stomp.


Whereas the spy, when starting from the white tile, doesn't gain any AP advantage from starting one tile further in front - he has to take a half step forward.


This might seem obvious when we're dealing with a target and units already on the board, but where this concept really comes in is when you have a tile you really want to protect, like the sword tile on the teleport map, or a gem tile. Lets say you really really wanted to protect the gem tile marked below.


Clearly, you would want to have the spy on the black tile, and the pyro on the white tile, since the important location is on a white tile. So next time you're deploying your units, consider the prime spots on the map, and which units should cover which squares!