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Heroes Community > Heroes 5 - Temple of Ashan > Thread: The Best Caster in HoMM5 - Round 2
Thread: The Best Caster in HoMM5 - Round 2 This thread is 3 pages long: 1 2 3 · NEXT»
VokialBG
VokialBG


Honorable
Legendary Hero
First in line
posted February 23, 2007 12:03 PM
Edited by VokialBG at 12:07, 23 Feb 2007.

Poll Question:
The Best Caster in HoMM5 - Round 2

It is time for Round 2 after Round 1 we can say many for all "Best" Shooters in the game:

Master Hunter, Succubus Mistress, Titan and Marksman are on forefront

But it is time for Round 2, or the best caster!


NOTE:

When you are posting here comments please, know that in this Round we rate not only the creatures like caster, but like shooters too , and yes we must recognize all creature's abilities and stats

Vote here, post proofs, facts and other...

Main theoreticians here (I want to see your posts):

Doomforge
Alcibiades
Emilsn
Elvin
ZombieLord
TheDeath
sq79
GenieLord
Shauku83
dschingi

Many topics for "the best" we have here,... in HC. It is time finally to use all proofs and facts, pasted by the "theoreticians" and all members...


P.S.

We must count the Djinn Sultan as carter too (yes only 10 slots for "Poll Answers")

____________


Responses:
ArchLich
Archmage
Rune Patriarch
Shadow Matriarch
Inquisitor
Pit Lord
Druid Elder
Sprite
Mummy
Water Elemental
 View Results!

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sq79
sq79


Famous Hero
posted February 23, 2007 12:21 PM

I'm not too sure, but amongst all these casters, only druid elders do it on expert level + 12 defence, while even level 6 shadow witches do righteous might on only advanced +9 attack
Hence my vote goes to sylvan, druid elder again

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Doomforge
Doomforge


Admirable
Undefeatable Hero
Retired Hero
posted February 23, 2007 12:42 PM

That's kinda hard to determine.. well, harder than shooters, actually. The question is, should we take only their spellcasting powers into account, or everything? (offensive potential, etc)

I'll rate the units taking their overall potential, with all hero bonuses taken into account, so don't be surprised if an "inferior" unit gets higher rating than those statistically better ones.

anyways, let's see..

ArchLich - Decay spell is good when the creature can't attack in range. I'd say throw in some decays and then go for shooting. Suffering isn't bad, but to be exact, stat-lowering spells without mass effect are kinda sucky. So, I'd say he's a nice decay caster and a nice archdevil disabler IF he hero can't handle it.. but it's really better if he could. Offensively, the Liches do a lot of damage/week, but low necro's attack, no morale and only 2% chance for luck popping up kinda lowers their power in the long run, to a point where it's better to focus on decay if the Liches can't shoot without range penalty. Unfortunately, Arch Liches lack mana. Very durable, though, and can be quite good if you raised some of them via necromancy. 6+/10.

Archmage - Fireball is good in the beginning, and in rushes and antirushes. It's usefullness dimnishes later on, but archmage still has nifty endgame spells: cleansing (important to have a unit that can cleanse in the army, cuz if hero doesn't get cleansing in the guild, high level dark magic can be really scary), plus righteous might, which helps with wizards' lack of ATT. The durability is OK, and the attack is poor, with special that is rather a nuisance than help. Still, a very useful caster. 7/10.

Rune Patriarch - Another unit that's rather an attacker than caster. It suffers ArchLich's problems (low on mana), but, fortunately, Dwarven heroes' lack of ATT can be nullified via runes and easy access to light magic (not mentioning morale and luck), which puts Rune patriarchs above Arch Liches in terms of damage. Firewall is good to cast it in the first round for extra damage against shooters that stand still. Deflect missile isn't too good, though - the era of marksmen and skellie archers is over. 6+/10.

Shadow Matriarch - A useful unit. It's offensive potential is rather mediocre, but Warlock's attack makes up for it, and some spells are good when used at right time. The biggest advantage of Shadow Matriarchs is durability - they last quite long, allowing dungeon hero to cast more and more offensive spells. Don't expect too much damage from them, though. 6/10.

Inquisitor - EXTREMELY durable, and it's light spells can be a really good thing if the hero has to cleanse or use divine guidance instead of buffing. Since hordes of marksmen literally SCREAM for bless, Inquisitors are lovely if the hero got haste instead of bless in the guild. Imperial Griffins will love them too, and extra haste/endurance is never wrong. Oh, if you train a lot of inquisitors, they may become stronger than titans in terms of damge, but I'd rather train something else and use them only as buffers.. 7+/10.

Pit Lord - Mixed blessing.. If you have teleport assault, Pit Lord solves all the problems with creatures like phoenixes and magma dragons.. It does decent damage and is very durable too. Fireballs and Meteor Showers are showy, but ultimately inferior to melee attack due to demonlords' overgrown ATT and teleport assault. It's still useful to start with meteor shower: enemy units are probably clustered, and Demonlord is busy setting mark of damned and using power of speed. After that, their spellcasting abilities don't mean much. Rating: 8+/10 with Teleport assault and 5+/10 Otherwise.

Druid Elder - This unit is scary as a neutral, but it's lightnings are WAY less impressive if it's under your command.. yup, non-linear formula has it's bad points. Fortunately, they can cast expert endurance, act as phantom force killer with stone spikes and use their ranged attack, which ain't bad. 6/10.

Sprite - well, cleansing is as godly as always, but sprites are the most fragile unit in game (leaving peasants aside), so it's pretty uncertain if they will last long enough to actually cleanse a dreadful puppet master thrown and the middle of the battle. They have area attack, but their poor damage, growth and rangers' lack of ATT make it a poor choice. Wasp Swarm is a joke, invented to annoy the crap out of players who meet sprites guarding sawmill or ore pit. I don't know how to rate this unit cuz I don't play Sylvan much.

Mummy - to be honest, I never met mummies.. yet.

Water Elemental - One of the best offensive casters you can get. Too bad offensive casters tend to suck after a month, so.. no rating again, I use this creature extremely rarely.

Djinn Sultan - I'd say: An offensive unit. Casting may be good to use in the first round, since you don't want to charge with Academy.. The casting is random and tends to cast the same spells over and over, which is extremely annoying. I had them cast haste on titans three times once.. what a waste. Anyway, a decent unit. 7+/10 (or even 8/10 if you can boost them with light magic and miniarties.. or you have ressurection)


As you see, I don't rate casters particullary high.. they never really won a game for me. The main power in the battle lies in melee creatures, shooters coming second, casters third.. THey have their uses, though. Nice auxiliary units.


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Elvin
Elvin


Admirable
Omnipresent Hero
What if Elvin was female?
posted February 23, 2007 12:48 PM
Edited by Elvin at 17:08, 23 Feb 2007.

My top here are the druids, water elementals, rune patriarchs and archmages. In short:
Archliches are large and thus vulnerable. The death cloud won't be used more than once or twice in a battle and their spellcasting can't save them either. The plague is good but not special and the weakness although on expert is rather redundant with the necromancer able to acquire all three masteries as of 2.1. Good damage and stats nontheless.

Inquisitors are very useful for any task and may come in numbers with training but first you have to upg paladins and some other units. They come too late in play and are worse than rune patriarchs. I don't favour much support units either. It's not their low damage either as they have no melee penalty and high att/def.

The matriarchs I consider good for that lovely confusion and slow. With these nice spells(maybe also RM for the furies) the lack of shots isn't as noticeable but in a big battle it hurts. Their role is not as offensive however and that's why I don't rate them as one of the top. Not too high on damage.

Archmage. VERY good unit. Fireball for aoe, fist of wrath for resistant units and cleansing just in case. Somehow I never use their RM. Also helps the caster with mana and has no range penalty. However you can't shield them in a corner and use their ranged power too. And till you upgrade them they have just 18 hp. Good all around but vulnerable.

Water elementals are great too. If you consider their damage casting potential they are easily the best. At initiative 10 they can cast 2 circle of winter or 3 icebolts which is a lot plus they have enough hp too. Too bad their role is over when their their mana is but also the fact that you can only get 4 per week. Definitely offensive.

The patriarchs are quite an unconventional unit as most dwarves. Great hp, magic proof, aoe ranged attack and mark of fire for fireball/armageddon lovers. It is possible to mark the target first and then cast firewall but luck must be on your side. Their spells are not bad either: Adv deflect missile(55%) and a lovely firewall that makes the opponent think before placing his units. Large units are more threatened as the firewall cast on their front part will hit them twice by moving forward. On their negative parts they are not as damaging and you build them later than other tier 6 which the horde dwelling barely remedies. More of a support unit.

The druids are pretty good too. Their regular form starts with enough hp, have good stats and damage, they can cast up to 3 lightnings and have a super powerful stoneskin! And of course the seldom used mana feed tactic where you attack slow neutrals and wait until your hero sucks all their mana! Only problem the less growth.

Of these guys I favour the druid elders more. They have more damaging magic(even if the archmages are aoe) and are still useful as ranged after their mana is over. In a battle these guys last and keep firing with the possibility of hitting favoured enemies too. If getting the patriarchs was more of a priority and easier to get they would probably get my vote. The elementals are too rare and few to be considered better. Damage values:
18 patriarchs->221(firewall)
24 druid elders->289(lightning)
30 archmages->238(fireball)

The others have more or less serious disadvantages:
Pitlords are too slow both initiative and speed, sprites are too weak, djinns die just as fast even with the horde dwelling, mummies have too low a speed.
Time to read what has been posted so far!
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alcibiades
alcibiades


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
of Gold Dragons
posted February 23, 2007 02:03 PM

Ok, I'll give it another shot. Don't know if this will be as lengthy as the previous one, though.

First off, this should have been two categories, really: Best Offensive Caster and Best Deffensive Caster. I will, therefore, rate them as such.


Best Offensive Caster

The contestants in this group is Sprite, Archmage, Druid Elder, Water Elemental and Pit Lord. I will approach them by their usefullness.

Sprite
The Sprite as an offensive caster is in every way pitiful. In fact, I would not even rate Wasp Swarm as an offensive spell if it was not for the fact that Sprite uses it with no profficiency, and therefore does not enjoy the Initiative decrease that justifies this spell. Have anybody had any experience with whether changing the Sprites mastery to basic throws the game off ballance?

Pit Lord
The potent Meteor Shower spell is a force to count with, even if the Pit Lord has only mana to use it once and only uses it a basic mastery. The 5 x 5 target area seriously limits you opportunities for tactic plaing of your units if you want to avoid mass carnage. Fireball as a back-up spell certainly is no bad thing either (even though it's interesting that they chose to balance the Pit Lord spellpoints so that it will only be able to use Fireball twice, even if it skips Meteor Shower, instead of thrice), and again, only available at basic mastery, where advanced mastery would have been nice to make it a more viable choice than Meteor Shower.

The thing that hampers the Pit Lord from being a great unit, however, is the pitiful Initiative at 8. In a normal combat, the Pit Lord simply comes into play too late and too rarely to constitute more than a nice back-up addition to the army. Of course, it's pretty tough, and the Vorpal Sword ability will make enemy high-level troops think twice before engaging it in melee combat, buying it some time - but from an overall point of view, the Pit Lord is not a great creature.

Water Elemental
Whereas the Heroes 4 Water Elemental was one of the most fearsome enemies you could encounter because of their abnormal spellpower, the Heroes 5 version is better ballanced. It's an able caster, with both Ice Bolt and Circle Of Winter, and because of the Power calculation for Water spells it does not matter too much that mastery is only basic, because the damage multiplier is the same at all level of mastery. Mana is sufficient to use Circle Of Winter twice or Ice Bolt thrice, which seems ballanced. The Water Elemental is hardly going to be game-deciding, however, seing that you can only recruit it from neutral dwellings and their numbers are going to be fairly limited. Gone are the days of the Sylvan glory through Portal of Summoning ...

Archmage
The Archmage is an all-round excellent caster. The Fireball spell, even though only available at basic mastery, is extremely usefull for hitting tightly packed enemies - or to prompt the enemy to open up his ranks to avoid that, potentially making room for your Rakshasa to move in. Mana is fairly plentyfill - enough for two castings of Fireball and one Fist of Wrath, if you focus only on the Offensive spells - and Refined Mana would sit extremely well with this unit (but, alas, is unlikely, as it requires the odd combination of War Machines, Dark Magic, Destructive Magic and then Light Magic - though this combo might sit well with people who favor the MR strategy?).

The Archmage has a more general all-round use, however, with Expert Cleansing and Advanced Righteous Might (a nice +9 Attack bonus!), which will ensure his usefullnes as a caster in late stage of the game. Especially the Cleansing spell will be a life-saver against Dark Magic. Magic Channel ability is a nice bonus, although Wizards hardly are the ones most in need of saving Mana, which is generally plentyfull.

Unfortunately, the Mage has a fairly limited number of Hit Points and will be a likely first target for enemy shooters because of his all-round usefullness in the Academy army (whereas the Gremlin can easier be afforded to be ignored, and the Titan generally is a too strong creature to make a favorable first target). He will therefore be unlikely to last long in combat vs. enemy Heroes. Another disadvantage of the Mage is the annoying Magic Attack, which will force you to make the choice between shielding the unit against enemy melee attack but not being able to use ranged attack without suicidal effect, or leave it unguarded. Since the attack is a magic attack, it might have been nice to have the Gargoyle immunity and Golem Magic Proof abilities apply to this attack.

Druid Elder
The Druid Elder stands for me as the most usefull of the Offensive Casters. Even though they come in slightly lower numbers than the Archmage, they are capable in all three of their areas of use: Offensive Caster, Deffensive Caster, and Ranged attack.

On the Offensive site, the Druid is equiped with the potent Lightning Bolt spell at Advanced Mastery (17 x Spellpower, thank you!), and with sufficient Mana to cast it thrice! Of course, it does not have the Area attack of the Mage's Fireball - and the alternate spell, Stone Spikes at no mastery and same cost is not a very attractive choice in most situations - but in early and mid game, the Lightning Bolt attack is extremely usefull. In late game, Endurance at Expert level (a whooping +12 Defence!) is a very usefull spell - especially on the frail Emerald Dragons.

Finally, the Druids are capable offensive units with a nice Damage range and an excellent attack value. HP are again on the lower side, but Druids are likely to have a much higher survivability than the Archmages, because Master Hunters will generally attract first attacks from enemies.


Best Deffensive Caster

Inquisitor, Archlich, Shadow Matriarch, Djinn Sultans. I haven't played with Dwarves yet, so I'm not considering the Rune Patriarch (but my first impression is that this unit is primarily a ranged attacker rather than a caster).

Shadow Matriarch
The Shadow Matriarch have a couple of usefull Dark Magic spells in her spellbook, most interesting is the Confusion spell, which a small stack can apply on enemy shooters. Slow and Vulnerability also can come in handy in the same way, though neither probably will be life-savers in most games. And then there's always the problem with Dark Magic and Magic Resistance; Advanced Righteous Might doesn't suffer that problem, but is rarely a very attractive choice unless you single out a small unit for casting.

Djinn Sultans
The Random Caster ability is, like the name implies - very Random! Sometimes you'll get something really good, but it's difficult to rely on this ability in a tight combat. That being said, the Djinn's low HP considered, it's wise to hold this unit back a bit to single out an enemy target, and in that context, it's obviously a likely choice to throw a random curse at one of the enemy stacks, or maybe even try your luck with one of your own stacks (haste on Rakshasa is always welcome, obviously, as is Divine Strength on Titans).

Archlich
The Archlich is a very capable offensive unit, which might make the caster ability seem slightly less usefull, but Expert Weakness admittedly is an attactive choice in many situations. Singling out a small stack for casting is an obvious choice, but is made difficult by the large size of the Lich, meaning that shielding generally not is an option, and therefore almost guaranteing that casting will be a one-time experience with a small stack. The spellbook of Dark Magic spells only will also suffer from enemies with Magic Resistance.

Inquisitor
The Inquisitor stands for me as the most usefull Deffensive caster, not only because of its great assortment of spells, but also because its relatively limited offensive capability, which means that you lose out on less by using it as a caster. Advcanced Haste obviously sits well with Paladins, Advanced Divine Strength is designes for Marksmen,  Advanced Endurance can be usefull but a slightly less attactive choice at 6 mana with only 12 available. Cleansing would have been nice, certainly, but that's what the Paladin's for. High HP ensures great survivability of this unit.

The Zealot, the Renegade version of the Inquisitor, is not considered in this context, as the Blind Spell obviously is overpowered and not available to any in-town units.


So, my vote for best caster goes to Druid Elder, because it's the best Offensive Caster, it has a nice Deffensive twist as well, and it's a capable ranged unit. Inquisitor stands as the best Deffensive Caster, but is obviously weak on the offensive side.
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GenieLord
GenieLord


Honorable
Legendary Hero
posted February 23, 2007 02:04 PM

I like the Arch Mages.
Their Fire Ball is so useful! In the beginning of the comabt, you can blow out the shooters/casters of the enemy (AI always does the mistake of putting all his shooters/casters close to each other).
Magic Attack is wounderful, although it hits your army, too, with right position, it might have great tactical use.

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Fortress_fan
Fortress_fan

Disgraceful

posted February 23, 2007 02:51 PM

I side with the majoity, Pits are realy imba.

Why did you choose Sprires before Sultans on that poll, Sprites are thrash!
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Shauku83
Shauku83


Promising
Famous Hero
posted February 23, 2007 03:49 PM

Quote:


Sprite
The Sprite as an offensive caster is in every way pitiful. In fact, I would not even rate Wasp Swarm as an offensive spell if it was not for the fact that Sprite uses it with no profficiency, and therefore does not enjoy the Initiative decrease that justifies this spell. Have anybody had any experience with whether changing the Sprites mastery to basic throws the game off ballance?



Good review!
I will be making a similar distinction between the casters.. I just like to call Defensive Casters as Supportive Casters. Same idea though..

Basic mastery for Sprites would seem better in how the damage grows (4 per spellpower), but cannot be implemented because Basic Wasp Swarm has a base damage of 20! Which is out of proportion for a level 1 creature.


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sq79
sq79


Famous Hero
posted February 23, 2007 04:16 PM

For all the casters, i think the ones who really needed to cast a spell during a big battle are
Archmages - usually righteous might
Druid elders - endurance
Inquisitors - haste (They never really do much damage in their range attack)
Shadow matriches - This is a very useful unit for dungeon, to stop counterspell against academy, or confusion on shooters (-50% damage) They do really well in duel mode for eurina, the righeous might on the furies hehe



The others, like

sprites - they do the spray attack charge in 1st turn if they get the chance, since their cleansing can't really cleanse anything, and the wasp swarm is needed for creeping in the early game against gremlims or assassins.

Archliches - Its a waste not to do the death cloud attack if they get the chance, which they usually won't since they're big and bulky Faster creatures like paladins, sprites, griffins, angels, dragons. Too many to counter them.
Their best spell though is suffering i feel.


Sultans, its nice to split 1 of them to do a random cast, and let the rest charge forward. They die almost as easily as the sprites, not cool for a level 5, too vulnerable. I really hate to build this building for academy, but u need them to get treasure cave


Pit Lords, This is really cool unit. If they don't die in first round, a teleport assault would be deadly against the level 7s. But demons have low defence, It wouldn't be too hard to kill most of them.


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alcibiades
alcibiades


Honorable
Undefeatable Hero
of Gold Dragons
posted February 23, 2007 05:33 PM

Quote:
Pit Lords, This is really cool unit. If they don't die in first round, a teleport assault would be deadly against the level 7s. But demons have low defence, It wouldn't be too hard to kill most of them.


That approach, however, does not say much of them as Casters, which was the point of this thread.
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ZombieLord
ZombieLord


Promising
Famous Hero
that wants your brainz...
posted February 23, 2007 05:38 PM bonus applied.

ArchLich: A great offensive caster & shooter. Because of its stats which are very high, this creature seems overpowered for its level and price. But it has one pitfall: it is a large creature, and this makes sure it will be blocked easily by the enemy and thus not use it's shooting attacks (with DeathCloud) anymore. When blocked, this creature does not become totally crap, as it has spells; great spells that are cast with high masteries!

Spells:
1.Weakness - Expert: a very useful spell. It always reduces the damage range of the enemy to minimum, a perfect counter for Inferno's troops (and Haven, if the ArchLich is AFTER the Inquisitors, otherwise they will dispel Weakness with their Divine Strength). Great to use on tier 7s (except Spectral Dragons, Emerald Dragons and Magma Dragons; oh yeah, useless on ArchAngels) and especially on Marksmen.

2.Suffering - Advanced: a great spell which reduces the enemy's attack value by 9! Unlike Weakness, this spell garantees the enemy will deal less damage, regardless of the attack range. Still, it's better to use Weakness on stacks like Marksmen... DO NOT forget about Righteous Might! If cast on the target you just weakened with suffering, it will dispel it and place the bless! So watch out for ArchMages and Shadow Matriarchs

3.Decay - Advanced: use this spell when the ArchLiches are blocked and you want to damage the enemy, but use it on fast stacks, as Decay damages the target stack when it receives an action. Also, unlike Poison, this spell lasts for four initiative 10 turns (not 3 actions), so the higher the initiative of the target, the more Decay damage actions it will take

Mana: 16 (it's not that low, as some said - you can cast 4 Weakness/Suffering)

Archmage: This creature's Magic Attack is something very tough to deal with, because you have to choose between blocking it (and therefore, when attacking, killing your own units too) and leaving it unblocked (and will become easy prey for the enemy, because it is extremely weak in close combat). However, it's not the end of its usefulness when blocked because it has great spells and high mana.

Spells:
1.Fist of Wrath - Advanced: this spell is useless for the hero, and for the ArchMage it has only one use: to damage the enemy when it will kill your own units via Magic Attack, or when it is blocked. I'm not sure why Nival made this spell's damage so ridiculous, because even if it ignores Magic Resistance/Protection, it can miss on Spectres

2.FireBall - Basic: although cast with a low mastery, this spell can deal huge damage if the enemy has clusters of troops (likely for Haven and his Squire/Marksman combo). When you know the battle is going to end in a few turns, use this spell instead of Fist of Wrath even on one single target if it damages more (VERY likely), because 10 mana instead of 5 is of no importance to a fast battle.

3.Righteous Might - Advanced: this spell can help the Academy creatures to gain attack and become strong as lead by a Knight (ok, not really, but...). +9 Attack is not a joke, and use it especially on creatures that have been weakened with suffering (by ArchLiches) because from negative Attack they will gain +9 Attack!

4.Cleansing - Expert: with an expert mastery, the ArchMage can cleanse almost everything with 100% probability. The ArchMage has a level of 5, so if the curse is cast with a level 15 hero, the probability to dispel will be 100% - (15-5)*3% = 70%! Still very high, but does not garantee you the dispel process

Mana: 25 (a whole lot, it leaves you space for 2 Fireballs/Cleanses and a Fist of Wrath)

Rune Patriarch: don't have HoF, so can't comment.

Shadow Matriarch: a very durable creature which also has some good offensive powers. In fact, the damage is not very low compared to other creatures of this level, but because of Range Penalty it deals 50% of the damage from far range. But the good part is that it receives No Retaliation when shooting (except against Succubi). Under the command of Eruina, they can become devastation machines

Spells:
1.Slow - Advanced: a very useful spell; it reduces the target stack's initiative by 35%, which is a whole lot. Very useful against creatures with high initiative, as the % effect will be higher.

2.Vulnerability - Advanced: not really great, reduces the enemy's defense by 5. But the good part is that it cannot be dispelled by Endurance and that it is Permanent. Also, it can be cast several times on the same target for increased effect, unlike other blessings/curses.

3.Righteous Might - Advanced: +9 Attack! it can be very useful to cast on Grim Raiders so that their damage would be devastating Also, Deep Hydras are a good target for this spell, if they will attack several enemies, as the Six-Headed attack will increase this bonus.

4.Confusion - None: very useful against enemy stacks that deal HUGE damage with their shooting attacks, because it will halve the damage. Although I think Basic mastery would be more appropiate for a tier 6 caster, this spell has its uses nevertheless. Too bad it doesn't work on Titans...

Mana: 18 (allows reserve for two Confusions or lots of Slow/Vulnerability and some Righteous Might)

Inquisitor: the most defensive caster I've seen. In fact, its damage is so low and its Hit Points are so high that I'd consider this unit a tank (though it does not have low initiative). I don't get it why Nival made another tank for Haven (wasn't the Squire enough?), but anyway, the good part is that it has blessings, and some are very useful, especially for Haven (like Divine Strength). One thing to note about Priests/Inquisitors is that they have No Melee Penalty, so you don't have to block these creatures

Spells:
1.Divine Strength - Advanced: VERY useful for Haven units like the Marksmen or the Imperial Griffins, as the maximum damage of these creatures is four times/three times the minimum damage. Use it on Marksmen if they are numerous, and you'll create a killing machine stack Ah, yes, NEVER use this spell on ArchAngels as it is USELESS.

2.Haste - Advanced: +30% initiative? very useful on creatures with high initiative (so that the effect will be higher) like the Griffin, Paladin and Angel. Also good to use on Marksmen if they are many, to increase their pityful initiative of 8

3.Endurance - Advanced: Well, Knight already has high defense and this spell makes them even more durable. Great to use on units that charge the enemy (like the Paladins and ArchAngels) because they will very likely be attacked by the enemy.

Mana: 12 (very low mana, it garantees only 3 Divine Strength/Haste and 2 Endurance... this makes the creature use its shooting attacks even more, and being a tank it's not really something great)

Pit Lord: The Pit Lord is the most expensive tier 6 creature. It does not excell in damage but Vorpal Sword can surely come in handy against tier 7 and 6 creatures. It has high Hit Points and good offensive spells, but its main problem is the initiative, which makes it slow as a tank. It also lacks speed, which leads to the conclusion that this unit craves for Teleport Assault.

Spells:
1.FireBall - Basic: this spell deals a good amount of damage if targets many creatures, which is something that will not happen often as it has only a range of 3x3.

2.Meteor Shower - Basic: great spell with a huge 5x5 damage range. It can cause great damage if many creatures are hit. Use it ONLY if it targets more creatures than Fire Ball, because it uses 19 Mana instead of 10!

3.Vulnerability - Advanced: reduces the target's defense by 5 and can be cast several times on the same stack to reduce its defense even further. Great if the enemy has few stacks (like Razzak in Duel).

Mana: 29 (leaves use of 1 Meteor Shower and a Fire Ball/2 Vulnerability)

Druid Elder: Great offensive shooter with great spells. It has above average damage and 33 Hit Points, but it is expensive and, as a result, has only a growth of 4. The Mana Feed ability seems useless for me, as the Ranger already has huge mana reserves and even if out of mana, it gives only the amount of mana this creature has to the hero, regardless of the number of creatures. Crappy

Spells:
1.Stone Spikes - None: this spell can be used to destroy Phantoms and can also deal more damage than Lightning Bolt if it hits from three targets onwards.

2.Lightning Bolt - Advanced: a good destructive spell, extremely useful for creatures with high defense because it ignores it, but crappy against creatures with Magic Proof. If there are many Druids, the spell will often deal less damage than the normal shot even at far range because of the damn logarithmic formula, but can be useful when the druids are blocked.

3.Endurance - Expert: great spell; it gives +12 defense, useful for creatures that will be attacked often like the Emerald Dragon or the Silver Unicorn. Also useful on Treants if they entangled many targets (guess why?)

Mana: 15 (quite low, leaves space for 3 Lightning Bolts/Stone Spikes... Endurance just doesn't fit well)

Sprite: this creature is obviously offensive, because it has low hit points (not really low, but because of its growth and cost). Its spray attack can be a pain for the enemy especially with Luck and/or Favored enemy. The No Retaliation ability ensures it won't die in the first attack either, and it's also fast and can fly.

Spells:
1.Wasp Swarm - None: this is a joke, it deals ridiculous damage and being cast with no mastery, it doesn't reduce the ATB of the target either. Perhaps Nival implemented this spell to be annoying for neutrals

2.Cleansing - Advanced: with advanced mastery, it has a 80% base chance to dispel. But, because the Sprite has only a level of 2, the chance will be decreased significantly if cast by a high level mage. For a level 15 hero, the total chance to dispel will be 80% - (15-2)*3% = 41%! Well, not really low so you may want to give it a try

Mana: 10 (perfect for one Cleansing, so don't use Wasp Swarm!!!)

Mummy: don't have HoF, so can't comment.

Water Elemental: don't play much with elementals, but I'd say this creature is the best elemental in the game (because of its spells of course


hmmm. I don't know what to vote. It's between ArchLich, Druid Elder and Shadow Matriarch.

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Elvin
Elvin


Admirable
Omnipresent Hero
What if Elvin was female?
posted February 23, 2007 05:40 PM

They rarely die in the first round anyway!
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sq79
sq79


Famous Hero
posted February 23, 2007 05:51 PM

My point is.. are we rating them according to spells they got, level of spells or as a whole unit ? Obviously some are better off as melee fighters or shooter, rather than casters
And initiative of these casters are important as well.

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TowerLord
TowerLord


Promising
Supreme Hero
Hero of Good, Slayer of Evil
posted February 23, 2007 05:55 PM
Edited by TowerLord at 17:59, 23 Feb 2007.

My grades :

Pit Lords - 4/10 ... very low initiative, they will be dead before they cast the spells ... in the early stages they are not around, and late game offensive spells won't be a huge threat.

Shadow Witches - 8/10 ... these chicks are really something ! 3 dark spells and 1 light spell . WOOW ! and most importantly they have the slow spell. they can really delay the carnage against a knightish hero. defenately split them in 2 or 3 stacks. for me they are no. 1! Really fits Dungeon well

Inquisitor - 7/10 ... a very  fine selection of spells , a true caster, really helps to have some of these guys around in the final combat.

Rune Priest - 5 or 6/10 , more a shooter than a caster, but still firewall is not bad, and deflect missile might turn usefull sometimes.

PS : I forgot this one .
ArchLich - 6/10 , as a caster it doesn't shine very much, and its a pain giving up all that ranged damage. might be usefull against some blessed marksmen though

ArchMage - 6-7/10 , nice spells , but in the final battle they don't shine too much.

Druid Elder - 7 or 8/10 expert endurance , good lightning bolt... it would be nice to have one more blessing spell for them , instead of stone spikes, but they are great anyway. They fit the sylvan army very well,  making the dragons and unicorns last longer in the heat of the battle!

Sprite - 4/10 Cleansing might be a life saver , but theres also a gamble here (50 - 50 ). wasp swarm is useless most of the times.


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VokialBG
VokialBG


Honorable
Legendary Hero
First in line
posted February 23, 2007 07:09 PM
Edited by VokialBG at 19:12, 23 Feb 2007.

Archlich

Archliches are my favourite casters, you can kill hordes of shooters with necromanser and 4-5 archliches (but you need Mark of the necromanser )

I love to practise, this strategy:

Mark of the Necromanser on *Shooter*.
Archlich cast Decay on *Shooter*.

The Archliches support very good the Vampires Lords and The Wraiths in attack. (The good old Vampire Lord, Black Knight, Lich combo from Heroes 3 but in Heroes 5 variant).

This is triangular tactics:



Almost everything in this triangle is doomed , even if the creature attack the archliches, they can cast Decay.

The Archliches ARE killing machines:

1. High spells mastery
2. High Stats - the best for level 5 Upg. creature (only not in speed and some where in HP)
3. The Death Cloud ability in very brutal, and yes it is useful!

Also you can use it (The Death Cloud) against War Machines (especially the tent and ammo cart), many players place creatures near the War Machines.

4. They have immunity to poison, blind and mind-related magic, like all undeads

The most important problem is the speed - only 3 (), they have low mana, but actually their spells are not expensive, and on high mastery.
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supphanat
supphanat


Hired Hero
posted February 23, 2007 08:30 PM

umm I have some question. Actually, we all know that a caster is also a shooter. How can we know when is a good time to shoot or cast? For example, if you have two stack of inquisitors and maskmans, sometimes it is better to use inquisitors to cast some buff spell on maskman so that they can deal higher damage. However, one turn that you lose from inquisitor sometimes can even deal higher damage than buffed maskman. So where is the point to gain highest damage?
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Jospan
Jospan

Tavern Dweller
posted February 23, 2007 09:59 PM

I voted for Archmages for one reason. They sometimes need to relly on their spells, and they CAN do it, for having good mana and good decent choices.

That Means, when i use Academy and Archmages, I almost always use them as shooters. But Magic Attack means it needs to be unprotected in order to shoot. So sometimes, when facing some dangerous might enemies, I choose to protect archmages behind Golems/Gargoyles (these both very good at this task btw) cause I hate loosing Mages (I love them ).

Finnaly, behind wall of Golems/Gargs, it cannot shoot, so comes Fireball. If enemies and allies are all mixed and fireball isn't a good choice, here comes the last choice, Fist of Wrath. So I can say I can get an use for the Archmages 99% of the time. This 1% lies for long battles when mana is gone and I'm not able to open the Mage's path cause the enemy is still strong or other few particular situations!
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TheDeath
TheDeath


Responsible
Undefeatable Hero
with serious business
posted February 24, 2007 11:53 AM

Again alcibiades and ZombieLord summed it up a lot, so I might get repetitive.. Therefore I will only post a short summary about each of them, but I do not comment neutral casters :

ArchLich: Very good caster and shooter. First, it's damage is great and Death Cloud ability can help it do even more, if enemy does not have necro units of course. One downfall of it's shooting is that it will be blocked easily, but using some tactics you can place him behind obstacles, and once you have the Tactics ability you can arrange your creatures in a manner to protect the Liches Anyway on the spells as this thread's about that: The Decay is really useful, especially for stacks with lots of Archliches because the spellpower determines the damage, not the duration And it's really nice when you can't shoot, or do even more damage with one decay turn than normal shooting (against high defensed creatures). Sadly the mastery is only advanced though.. Suffering is another great spell that reduces attack by 9! Especially useful against creatures with a low dynamic range, otherwise Weakness is better since it is cast on Expert and can reduce average damage much more than suffering sometimes. Anyway, keep an eye out for already buffed creatures, for example Divine Strength on marksmen -- you can dispel the blessing AND put the curse with only one cast, which is IMO very frustrating for the enemy Only downfall is that it costs 900 gold, but that's not so bad.

Archmage: Very powerful caster. Actually it has so high masteries for it's cost.. well it is very poor at melee, but it's No Range Penalty coupled with Magic Attack can be deadly. Like others said, you have to make a sacrifice: either protect them and don't shoot or don't protect them and shoot. It depends on the enemy -- if it's fast, better protect them, otherwise well... Anyway it has a huge attack 10 for it's price (druids are more expensive and only 4 per week though) so it's definetely good at shooting. The spells are very useful too -- Cleansing on Expert is a very nice spell, and will succeed most times. Righteous Might is awesome too, but it's better to use it on a splitted and smaller stack of archmages -- you don't really need that long duration. Fireball is a killer, but the mastery is only basic, still if it hits 2 creatures it will be much better than the elder druid's lightning bolt (yeah, most overestimate it, and druids are more expensive). The mana is not limited either, at 25 it's one of the biggest reserve, except for Pit Lords. Archmages have incredibly high masteries and mana for their cost

Rune Patriarch: It's more like an offensive shooter than a caster, really. It's one of the most damaging units for Fortress, still durability is also found here . Patriarchs have very high mana, and a good Advanced mastery for their Deflect Missile, which IMO is much better than Matriarch's stupid Confusion at no mastery and costs less mana too, and has more mana reserves, guess where it leads? Anyway Firewall can be good, but it's just too expensive in mana costs.. Mark of Fire suggests this creature is even better at not casting spells. And Cross Fire, well, Liches have some challenge at this spot. Patriarchs have the 50% magic proof which is IMO a bit too much actually. But that's probably because I like Liches and want them to be 1st

Shadow Matriarch: Durability high, masteries good, but Confusion really sucks at no mastery! Not worth it's mana cost IMO. Matriarchs have very good offensive potential and can be durable, but they lack an Expert mastery which further suggests that in my opinion are poorer casters than Liches, Nival obviously don't know what they're rating -- Matriarchs cost is almost double as the Lich and should therefore have almost double power, but yeah high-tiers are overpriced. Slow can be very useful, in fact it's almost one of the best spells since it costs only 4 mana. Vulnerability is very good if you have a spare 1 Matriarch in a stack because spellpower does not apply to vulnerability, it's permanent. Righteous Might on Blood Furies or Shadow Dragons (not Black) is very useful too, and is the same as Archmages in mastery?? don't know, but I don't think it's fair. In a dungeon army it's better to protect her with Assasins, as they are tough in melee, believe me

Inquisitor: It's a very good defensive caster, and in the shooting part it sucks a bit damage power, but it's not as bad as most think. This caster is made to protect and buff marksmen -- No Melee Penalty means he is good to protect shooters like Marksmen and Divine Strength on marksmen, even if it's cast on Advanced, will buff their average damage considerably. Still there are other great spells available such as Endurance which seriously buffs defense by 9! Great spell. Haste is also good, but I'd prefer Endurance first. Haste can be used on your other stacks of Inquisitors on ownself to speed up the buff casting. Unless the enemy has Dark magic in which case every spell is good to counter the dark counterpart -- Haste on Slow, Divine Strength on Weakness. Endurance however has no counter (i.e Vulnerability does NOT dispel it), so I'd say it's one of the best choices against Dark Magic enemy.

Pit Lord: Hmm, slow caster.. and I am talking about casting spells. It can be boosted up with arties and Teleport Assault, however unless you don't have a good number of them, it's better to use normal hero attacks or spells. Still their spells are rather good, though a better mastery would have been better. Fireball and Meteor Shower are cast on basic, but surprisingly deal some good damage. If you plan to keep these creatures alive for some turns, it's better to use Fireball than Meteor Shower (unless the latter hits twice as many stacks) since it costs half the mana, therefore you will have more left for say Vulnerability, etc.. it's very good practice to split up your Pit Lords in small stacks, since then Vorpal Sword or Vulnerability works wonders. However the speed is ridiculous, and the damage not too good either. Anyway for such a high cost at 1850 I would really rate it as a good caster.. And it's potential is only in destructive and a bit vulnerability at spellcasting.

Druid Elder: Great caster, though it costs more than an Archmage and has less masteries in total and less mana? Are Nival really serious? Anyway the Lightning Bolt is not as strong as most think, in fact when you have lots of Druids it can become worse than normal shooting. Druids are also good at shooting, and have some potential there too. However the Mana Feed ability the Elder druid receives is a joke -- only 15 mana? too less. But it can be useful when you have a powerful spellcasting hero and mana drained by previous battles or Familiars or whatever.. But IMO it wastes the druid's spells, but are not too strong anyway. However the Endurance at Expert is really awesome, and cannot be dispelled with a dark counterpart (however cleansing can handle it). Druid elders are overall good casters with potential in a lot of different areas, i.e versatile.. pretty much as Archmages, though those damn mages are cheaper

Sprite: Well, it's actually a good caster at only 55 gold, believe you me. Wasp swarm is kinda sucky, but with only 55 gold you get 14 Initiative, No enemy retaliation, Flyer, Splash attack, all-around good 2-2 damage, but very poor 6 hit points. The other spell is Cleansing which unfortunately uses up all the mana, only at 10. At least it's cast on Advanced mastery, but the level of the sprite (2) is poor so chances are not that likely to succeed. However Cleansing does not depend on spellpower so feel free to cast it with only 1 sprite as will have the same effect as 1000. The sprite is actually good for it's price, but not as good as to get my vote

I think my vote goes for either the Archliches, Archmages or Druids.. personally I hate Archmages, love Archliches and like Druids.. this time I will vote the Archlich. And it's strong too to justify my vote
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emilsn
emilsn


Legendary Hero
posted February 24, 2007 12:36 PM

My turn ...

Archlich: I mostly only curse with this guy... Since my enemy never seem to pack his creatures tight... So I use decay to take out fast creatures or shooters(marksmen..) Don't really play that much Necro...

Archmage: This is maybe the best, for me. I like to use RM on Titans, or anything else that could use some good dmg. And then when those that i needed buffed are buffed, I go for fireball or Fist... and when mana is gone, the gargs or golems in front of him are gone, so finally he can shoot.

Rune Patriarch: These are tricky. Firewall, good for defense or offense. If you are getting sieged use them in front of gate, since its the only place where there are no runes(or other defense things). Then you got it all covered. Else you can use them for Armageddon thing. Else you could just use them to shoot. Deflect missel, no need for this. I got plenty of Light magic to cast that spell! Good in a couple of ways

Shadow Matriarch: Really dont like them. RM, Hmm? Well okay give it to furies and then! WOOPS Furies are gone.. :S Some dark magic spells, well good.. Okay i dont like these.. NEXT!

Inquisitor: These are just buffers, buff marksmen, angles and Paladins... Then when out of mana, Well shoot..

Pit Lord: They should just act faster, then we could use them... But when they act, they actully can kill! so lets make them faster, they should start running more!

Druid Elder: I hate these, only as neutrals They kill everything.. Stone spikes kind of suck in DMG, Endurance just to buff, but why buff when you got: LIGHTING BOLT! These guys kills with that and yes they can also kill just by shooting.. Good guys..

Sprite: Hahaha... If they could do that "Slowing Wasp swarm" instead of just dmg. They would be nasty, but they dont...

Mummy: Where do I get them? As neutrals they suck...

Water Elemental: Nasty things.. I don't like to fight agaisnt them, but that just means: They are good... Circle of winter kills everything and i cant seem to avoid..

Genie: This is nothing like it used to be... "Cries a bit"

My vote: ARCHMAGE!!! Offense and buffer. All I need... Second: Rune Patriarch, They can do a lot of things... Third: Druids or water , just because of their dmg. Last place: Genie and Sprite, these are not that good at casting spells... Nival was just drunk and laughing

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Ted
Ted


Promising
Supreme Hero
Peanut Exterminator
posted February 25, 2007 01:49 PM

i may be a bit late, but i'll just say that i voted for Rune Matriachs, their fire wall spell rocks! i had just been in a killer battle, huge necro army vs. my dwaven army, after i while, all that was left, was my rune matriachs (about 17 i think, i had a lot), a few spearmen, vs. 21 wraiths and about 100 or so skelie archers, i cast fire wall on the wraiths, next turn they touched the fire wall about 5 times, the lost loads of wraiths, they now had only about 4 left, i won with ease
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