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Heroes Community > Heroes 4 - Lands of Axeoth > Thread: To steal or not to steal - Stealth skill discussion
Thread: To steal or not to steal - Stealth skill discussion
SwordMaster
SwordMaster

Tavern Dweller
posted November 07, 2002 12:52 PM

To steal or not to steal - Stealth skill discussion

No matter what town you're plating for, you can hire a thief right from the start. It is very likely that he (she) would take an advanced Pathfinding on level 2. When playing for Chaos alignment you just have to build a Battle Academy to get this. And if you're lucky enough, you may get an advanced Stealth on level 3. This opens roads to mines, resources and artifacts guarded by 1-st level creatures, you can also get some experience without facing an enemy.
Such an easy way to play may be restricted by the mapmakers,
but in most original 3DO maps it is not. I played the whole
barbarian (Might) campaign, seriously fighting just in first two or three scenarios. Two heroes with grandmaster Stealth each, in the last scenario just traveled over the map gathering XP points. Moreover if you want you can just defeat creatures on the map in the battle and get even more experience.
So to someone it may seem such a 'cheating' way of playing. What is your opinion?  
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pepak
pepak


Adventuring Hero
posted November 07, 2002 01:55 PM

Pardon me? What game are you talking about? In Heroes 4, you can't "buy a thief no matter what town you play", and even if you could, he most certainly wouldn't "take an advanced Pathfinding on level 2" (you probably meant that he would get advanced Scouting, right?)

Now, to the point. Stealth used to be very powerful, because, due to a bug, it game you HUGE amounts of experience (far more than you would get through fighting). That's not the case anymore, the experience gain was reduced to the point it's now almost insignificant. Stealth is only useful to grab mines guarded by low level creatures since 2.0.

Stealth is nice, sure enough, but let's face it, it is not very useful anymore. I mean, you need level 3 to be able to steal around level 1 (easy to get), level 6 against lvl2, level 9 or 10 to walk around lvl3 and level 13 (I think) to avoid lvl4 units. The problem is, these experience levels will only work against neutral stacks - once you get those mines, stealth becomes next to useless. It won't help you in combats at all.

On the other hand, those same 13 levels invested in Combat would give you GM Combat, GM Melee and E Magic Resistance, making your hero VERY hard to kill, and at the same time allowing your hero to take those same mines by force. This fighter hero will be able to stand against AI or human players, unlike the Stealth hero.

Sure, you could get more levels and give your thief some combat or magic skills. But keep in mind that levels 14-27 are much harder to achieve than levels 1-13, and unlike pre-2.0 H4 Stealth won't help you with the task. I would say it's much easier to get those extra levels with a fighter or mage hero than with a thief.

To conslude it: Thief used to be very powerful. I wouldn't bother with him anymore, though.

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titanleader_dw
titanleader_dw

Tavern Dweller
posted November 07, 2002 02:26 PM

the thief is the crappiest hero in multiplayer because on good maps u cant even sneak the mines

in endfight i would take an lev 1 mage over an lev 13 thief

he is just useless in any case

on some maps u might need him to look at your enemy border but thats very unusual and u could use a lev 1 scout for it

much better option is to give your tactician some scout altars and he will bring u through snow and rain
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bobntamr1
bobntamr1


Known Hero
non dictionary ownen hero
posted November 07, 2002 03:45 PM
Edited By: bobntamr1 on 13 Nov 2002

my 2 cents...

i dont think that is entirely correct guy i think it is useful for sneaking in and taking the opponants towns and getting past low level guys to take towns and such
I would however prefer that high of a level fighter.
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god please spare me from my contribulations

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zud
zud


Promising
Famous Hero
box worshipper
posted November 07, 2002 04:01 PM

thief or essentiallly scouting

I love to have a theif, or perhaps a ranger (scouting and combat) not to sneak around, I try only to take scouting and pathfinding, the rest combat skills, for the movement he gives my party.  +50% movment and no penalty for terrain, very powerful and overlooked by many.
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Winner or Whiner?

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sos
sos


Known Hero
posted November 07, 2002 04:02 PM

bob, dont drink and type man

now to the point, thief is good for his pathfinding skill, especially on a map with snow, swamp, desert, etc. You don't need that many levels to get pathfinding to expert, master or GM. Once you reach that you may just use the hero to transport your army faster or you may develop him further.

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csarmi
csarmi


Supreme Hero
gets back
posted November 07, 2002 08:56 PM

Actually, I think that having a thief hero is a big advantage. If you cannot get a good thief, than chances are you'll lose the map.

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Laelth
Laelth


Famous Hero
Laelth rhymes with stealth.
posted November 08, 2002 12:20 PM
Edited By: Laelth on 8 Nov 2002

pepac's point (that the levels required to get stealth to where it can be truly useful could be better spent on another skill) warrants consideration.  GM necromancy, for example, is far more valuable that GM stealth, in my opinion.  But later posters are right to conclude that pathfinding is extremely valuable too.  In that sense, thieves aren't worthless because it's so important to have a fast army.

But I think all these decisions are map-dependent.  On a map like Dog Days, a very poor (not rich) map where each player is locked in a small territory and where there really is no neutral territory (except the middle which is also small and hard to conquer), on such a map stealth is next to worthless.  On large, rich, and open maps (Dunwold, for example) stealth is very valuable.  Once again, knowing the map is the key to playing it well.

Sword-master's original question, though, is it ethical/good/ok to steal in homm, has been ignored in this thread, and I think that's interesting.  In my opinion, if it's part of the game, it's OK in the game (unless it's clearly a game bug like the kingdom overview troop transfer bug).  To tell chaos, for example, that it's not ethical to steal is like telling death it's not ethical to raise the dead.  I think it's wrong to tell any alignment that they can not or should not use one of their primary powers.  That's basically the same thing as saying, "I won't fight you unless you've got one arm tied behind your back."  Is that ethical or fair?

-Laelth
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Aculias
Aculias


Responsible
Undefeatable Hero
Pretty Boy Angel Sacraficer
posted November 09, 2002 10:33 AM

Thieves preferably a hero then the bandits is extremely valuable excluding the final battle as a perfect scout & good to set up traps & can even possibly take a castle if mildly blocked.
Thang is that you cant take any creatures because orless they have Stealth too you will be seen even if you are grandmaster stealth.
You have to be all by yourself.
if you can get your stealth skills up you can do alot of damge & set up some traps & ideas for your next ambush lol.
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Thunder
Thunder


Responsible
Famous Hero
posted November 09, 2002 11:21 AM

I don't think that maps which erase the usefulness of Stealth make the maps any better, by making every mine and artifact guarded so that it prevent the use of Stealth. It is the same like making every neutral undead to kill the advantage of Necromancy.

The thing is that Stealth is useful in higher difficulties, where defeating Neutrals is a tougher task, but who would want to play them in multi? I bet most of the MP match are played in Novice and Intermediate.
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sos
sos


Known Hero
posted November 09, 2002 05:56 PM

I have about 40 multi games and only 1 or 2 were on noraml, the rest were on advanced. I guess advanced is the most played difficulty setting in multy.

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daikon
daikon


Adventuring Hero
with great magic powers
posted November 13, 2002 04:25 PM

Sure thing. The difficult level is important even if there are no computer players in the match. Advanced level is OK. Lower levels reduce the fun in fighting the neutral stacks because there´s no challenge, and higher levels tend to slow down the game. The game´s difficult also determines the amount of XP gained for the same neutral stack (if you defeat 5 black dragons in the novice level, you will receive more XP than if defeat the same 5 black dragons on a higher difficult).

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sos
sos


Known Hero
posted November 13, 2002 05:07 PM

Actually, it's the other way around I think. The difficulty level will determine the number of creatures in the stack for the same experience - for 1000 exp you will need to beat 100 squires on normal, 130 on advanced, 160 on expert, 200 on champ (numbers are just an example)


Quote:
The game´s difficult also determines the amount of XP gained for the same neutral stack (if you defeat 5 black dragons in the novice level, you will receive more XP than if defeat the same 5 black dragons on a higher difficult).

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Magus_Rex
Magus_Rex


Hired Hero
posted November 13, 2002 11:35 PM

I think it depends on what size map, on Larger maps a theif can be very usefull but on smaller ones or open ones where you might be fighting an openent quickly theives do not help much in combat.  Stealth ability is something I would get after good combat skills the send him out where he can also do some good damage to scouts and not well protected towns.
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SwordMaster
SwordMaster

Tavern Dweller
posted November 14, 2002 12:13 PM

I agree with Laelth:  from ethical point of view every alignment can use all of its powers in order to win. But when you play against the human opponent, and you know that his alignment allows him to hire a Thief, what will you do then? OK, he's just a lonesome hero, he has spent his XP points on a Stealth instead of Combat or smth. But how can we fight what we can't even see? Lets face it, to feel safe you also have to hire Thief even if you don't like to play in this style. This is a bit like Diplomacy in H3 - not the thing that brings much balance into the game.  
         
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EmperorSly
EmperorSly


Known Hero
Destroyer of Liver
posted November 14, 2002 05:48 PM

Multi is where the thief is not just useful but essential. Stealing another man's mines. Stealing his castle even -- as a good thief wont be seen and thus defended against. Unless your enemy has a habit of investing his hard-earned gold into creatures that stand in town and do nothing... Once your enemy knows you have a good thief, he can not afford to develop at full speed anymore, while you can. If he doesnt know, you just go and steal his house and rape his dog.

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