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NPC Difficulty Guide

Printed From: Illyriad
Category: Strategies, Guides & Help
Forum Name: Strategies, Tips & Tricks
Forum Description: Player created guides and advice.
URL: http://forum.illyriad.co.uk/forum_posts.asp?TID=2378
Printed Date: 21 Oct 2019 at 17:21
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 11.10 - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: NPC Difficulty Guide
Posted By: Manannan
Subject: NPC Difficulty Guide
Date Posted: 10 Sep 2011 at 22:23
A lot of people are asking in Global Chat how difficult certain NPCs are to defeat. As a rough guide here are some figures I will call, for want of a better name, the 'Manannan Difficulty Quotient' (MDQ)... Hey I invented it therefore I get to name it after myself! Tongue (Please note the name may change at a whim in the future!) LOL 

As it is a quotient it is an average figure for all troop types in that faction/species so lower tier troops (e.g. Wild Dogs Pups) will be easier than the MDQ given and higher tier troops (e.g. Wolves Wolfpack Leaders) will be harder than the MDQ stated. The figures are put together from the hours of research I used for the (unpublishable) NPC Guide and Bestiary.

In theory, the lower the MDQ the easier it should be to defeat that particular NPC if you have sufficient troop numbers. Obviously if you attack a 'Legion of ???' with only a dozen troops you will be annihilated! Plan your troop numbers accordingly. Don't say I didn't warn you!

It should also be noted that the rewards for attacking Faction NPCs are normally greater than those of Nature NPCs (explained more in the unpublishable NPC Guide and Bestiary - lets not go there) so given a personal choice of attacking 100 Nature NPC Scaled Chargers troops (3.225 MDQ) or 100 Faction NPC Baynes Irregulars troops (2.6775 MDQ), I would hit the faction for the easier (theoretical) attack and bigger (theoretical) payday of gold and commander experience. This is of course totally dependent on the troops faced.

REMEMBER theses figures are a guide only and in no way guarantee success in any attack. That is down to the troop numbers and tactics you decide to use! 

Faction MDQ
  • Crimson Dawn              2.2875
  • Treggar's Crows           2.775
  • Brotherhood of Kerala     2.775
  • Marauding Skullsplitters  2.775
  • Baynes Irregulars         2.6775
Nature MDQ
  • Alligators          2.350
  • Anacondas           2.425
  • Arctic Wolves       2.275
  • Baboons             1.875
  • Black Bears         2.000
  • Black Panthers      3.100
  • Brown Bears         2.150
  • Cobras              2.450
  • Coral Snakes        2.225
  • Cyclopes            4.000
  • Elephants          12.750
  • Fire Salamanders    3.000
  • Gharials            2.200
  • Giant Beetles       1.425
  • Giant Rats          1.200
  • Giant Scorpions     3.025
  • Giant Scuttlers     3.250
  • Giant Snakes        3.100
  • Giant Spiders       2.700
  • Golden Monkeys      1.300
  • Ice Salamanders     2.575
  • Jaguars             2.200
  • Leopards            2.575
  • Lions               2.825
  • Mammoths           18.100
  • Massive Scarabs     2.050
  • Poisonous Crawlers  2.875
  • Polar Bears         2.550
  • Pumas               2.425
  • Rhinoceros          7.275
  • Roaming Trolls      3.300
  • Salamanders         2.825
  • Saurians           19.250
  • Scaled Chargers     3.225
  • Scritchers          2.525
  • Simien Wolves       2.075
  • Snow Leopards       2.250
  • Tigers              3.300
  • White Tigers        3.575
  • Wild Dogs           0.700
  • Wolves              1.540

I have not listed the Elemental NPCs as they have been removed from the game and no longer lay waiting in ambush for you in dead cities. Obviously they still exist in the game in players armies who were fortunate enough to bind them in the third tournament, but as I'm not about to encourage new players to attack the experience/veteran players who have them for their own safety, therefore they are omitted.

This is still very much a work in progress (and has been for several months) so I will be back in to edit it in the future with more accurate numbers and, for the ever faithful horde of Illyriad number crunchers, an explanation of the maths used for the figures. The reason I am publishing it half complete is people who have used it already have said they find the 'ball park' figures as they are useful as a guide to decide.

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Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude



Replies:
Posted By: Rill
Date Posted: 10 Sep 2011 at 23:46
Thank you Mana! this represents a lot of work and is an awesome resource!

I am adding this information copied from Gryzelda's profile so people have it in one handy place.  As for NPC numbers, my motto is: When in doubt, scout!


Sizes of NPC Occupations
LabelMinimumMaximum
Few13
Handful48
Several921
Pack2281
Many82128
Gathering129227
Horde228461
Throng462814
Host8152,499
Legion2,5007,207

http://illyriad.honoredsoft.com/wiki/Critters_Chart



Posted By: Manannan
Date Posted: 11 Sep 2011 at 02:42
Your numbers vary very slightly from those I gathered over the months, but not by much:

Few

1-3

Handful

4-10

Several

9-23

Pack

22-83

Many

77-128

Gathering

135-226

Horde

205-481

Throng *

561-823

Host *

1538-2410

Legion *

4202-6793


* When obtaining these figures there were anomalous scouting numbers around the 200 mark which have been excluded.

Like Rill says 'When in doubt, scout!' Especially when it comes to the faction armies




-------------
Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude


Posted By: Albatross
Date Posted: 22 Sep 2011 at 11:04
Because these figures are meant to be 'hand-wavy remarks based on sightings' rather than counts, I expect there's some randomization before the Label is assigned.

What follows [long post!] is my own reading of how much effort is worthwhile, and is by no means belittling the effort that Manannan and others have put into this.

I've taken a brief look at the problem of assessing one's own chances of defeating creatures (and therefore losses), but found the variables to be too far-scattered to make accuracy practical. Each missing variable (or guess), e.g. terrain, unit types, and so on, introduce significant error to an assessment.

In a way, this is good, because if we're accepting the role-playing nature of the game, then we shouldn't be certain of outcomes, and a hand-wavy observation should be enough to help a player gauge whether their capability is in the same order of magnitude as that of the NPC. Scouting gets more precise figures, which would answer the question of "what are my losses likely to be?"

Players should be attacking only those NPC squares where the outcome is clearly in the player's favour, to minimize losses - we don't want to be burning through troops just to give commanders experience. Given this requirement, accuracy of assessment becomes less important (you're looking for at least 5:1 advantage before attacking).

If we're looking for a discussion point, my question would be this: Could we get by with in-game information only?

By providing 'Labels' and scouting reports, the Illy developers have given us a standard way of assessing capability. Is that enough, or is the need for a more precise estimator just an indication that people want to reduce their safety margins using variables that are not usually available to a player?

Edit: I made a related game suggestion, which has been moved to:   http://forum.illyriad.co.uk/forum_posts.asp?TID=2434&PID=27379&title=moved-strategist-scout#27379" rel="nofollow - http://forum.illyriad.co.uk/forum_posts.asp?TID=2434&PID=27379&title=moved-strategist-scout#27379

I see this proposed enhancement (if adopted) firstly as a justification that extra information could validly be gained through experience; we merely make the game a bit more fun by giving the option of automation using a new unit. It reinforces the idea that all players are created equal, and advanced analysis is not just for the mathematically-minded real-world players.


Posted By: Createure
Date Posted: 22 Sep 2011 at 11:17
Nice guide Manannan.

@Albatross: this is a guide... go make a thread in suggestions if you want new units.


Posted By: Albatross
Date Posted: 22 Sep 2011 at 11:48
@createure: absolutely, yes. I had forgotten where I was posting :)


Posted By: Smoking GNU
Date Posted: 01 Oct 2011 at 12:45
Well in that case i would LOVE to see someone kill a Legion of Saurians at some point int he future.


Posted By: Althathwe
Date Posted: 10 Oct 2011 at 14:05
Monsters outside "newbie ring" more difficult than inside? Maybe more dangerous types or more biggest spots?


Posted By: Yso Sris
Date Posted: 18 Oct 2011 at 22:33
I want to point out for example saurians, some with 200-400+ attack, still only give 1-2 experience points each. This is very cheesy IMO, they aren't worth the losses.

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-Molg


Posted By: Manannan
Date Posted: 18 Oct 2011 at 23:15
Originally posted by Yso Sris Yso Sris wrote:

I want to point out for example saurians, some with 200-400+ attack, still only give 1-2 experience points each. This is very cheesy IMO, they aren't worth the losses.

Firstly you need to get a better understanding of how attacking NPCs works. I'm sure someone will be willing to explain it to you. Geek

Secondly I wonder if the difficulty and rewards of the Saurian NPC type has anything to do with why it has an MPD as high as it does? Nah... that would be too simple an explanation! LOL

To the pub!!! Beer 


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Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude


Posted By: Yso Sris
Date Posted: 19 Oct 2011 at 00:41
Originally posted by Manannan Manannan wrote:

Originally posted by Yso Sris Yso Sris wrote:

I want to point out for example saurians, some with 200-400+ attack, still only give 1-2 experience points each. This is very cheesy IMO, they aren't worth the losses.

Firstly you need to get a better understanding of how attacking NPCs works. I'm sure someone will be willing to explain it to you. Geek

Secondly I wonder if the difficulty and rewards of the Saurian NPC type has anything to do with why it has an MPD as high as it does? Nah... that would be too simple an explanation! LOL

To the pub!!! Beer 

Then why not  you set me straight? You attack 4-5 saurians w/200-400 attack each with 200 troops and loose about 80 or so. And  get about 8 commander experience on top of a half dead commander. Am I wrong that that  sucks and is out of proportion or am I missing something.


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-Molg


Posted By: Manannan
Date Posted: 19 Oct 2011 at 04:07
Originally posted by Yso Sris Yso Sris wrote:

 
Then why not  you set me straight? You attack 4-5 saurians w/200-400 attack each with 200 troops and loose about 80 or so. And  get about 8 commander experience on top of a half dead commander. Am I wrong that that  sucks and is out of proportion or am I missing something.

There's numerous factors when attacking NPCs:
Your troops and type
Your commander(s) skills
Targets troops and type
Targets defence ratings
Terrain
Etc. etc.

I'm sure you can get one of the maths buffs to go fully into it but I'm not... mostly because my explanations are long winded and I really can't be bothered to be typing for hours.

There are no greater rewards for attacking higher MDQs than attacking lower ones... This is mention in the full NPC guide these difficulties are taken from. God only knows why the forum won't let me publish it in its entirety. Its a subject of great angst to me!

If you want to level up you commander quickly attack low level NPCs like Wild Dogs or Rats... If you are bored and want to fight something that looks like my ex mother in law attack Saurians or Rhinos... Unfortunately the fire-breathing dragons haven't been released yet so none of you can play at being St George!

I have no idea about the troops you attacked with or any of the other variables but the losses sound about right for 200 troops attacking a handful of Saurians (I'm assuming they were mostly, if not all, Spike-backed Saurian troop type). By the way the attack for Saurians is between 83 and 301 depending on the type. With the handful you attacked it wouldn't be at the higher end of the scale.

To try to cut the attack down as simply as possible without breaking into multiple troop types, commander bonuses, terrain etc. We'll say that you attacked with 200 militiamen with an attack rating of 7 each (1400 total). The 5 Saurians each have a defence rating of 70 against spearmen (350 total). Difference between the two is 75% in favour of the attacking side so you'll get 25% losses from your 200 militia (50 total). The Saurians are defeated and you earn a massive 5 experience and 60 gold for the loss of a huge number of troops and equipment... bummer!

Now lets swap it around just for fun. The 5 saurians (spear units) have an attack rating of 83 each (415 total). Your 200 militia have a defence rating of 11 each against spear (2200 total). Difference this time is 81% but in favour of the defenders this time which will equate to 19% losses from the militiamen (38 total). 

Now for fun here is what would've happened with Wild Dogs. We already know the attack rating for the 200 militiamen is 1400 total. The defence rating for the 5 Wild Dog Pups is 3 each (15 total). difference between the two is 99% in favour of the attackers equating to a 1% loss (2 militiamen). Same experience gain of 5 and 60 gold for the loss of 48 less troops. 

In general its all about having the right troop at the right place at the right time. A lot of this was factored in when calculating the MDQs. Bigger isn't always better. In the case of the MDQs bigger means more business for your undertakers and smaller means a dog skin rug and a some fluffy slippers... Thats slippers made of Wild Dog and not Fluffy the player!

For everyone reading this and panicking that Saurians are coming for them don't. NPCs don't attack players.... For the moment anyway. I did that example for fun only.

That is about as basic as I can really cut attack and defence down to using only one troop type and no variables. There's a hell of a lot more to it than that though, especially throwing in more troop types etc, but that should help you with the calculations a little more. Like I said at the start I'm sure the maths nerds will be happy to help you with the full ins and outs of it.


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Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude


Posted By: fluffy
Date Posted: 19 Oct 2011 at 04:19
Yeah, if you try to make slippers out of me I will not be happy.  Rawr!



Posted By: Rill
Date Posted: 19 Oct 2011 at 04:24
Anyone who wants Fluffy slippers has to fight through me first!

/me snuggles Fluffy


Posted By: Manannan
Date Posted: 19 Oct 2011 at 04:26
Originally posted by fluffy fluffy wrote:

Yeah, if you try to make slippers out of me I will not be happy.  Rawr!

You may not be happy... But that persons feet will be lovely and toasty!

...

...

...

Maybe a little itchy too, but mainly warm and toasty. Just what we all need with winter creeping in... Illyriad branded Fluffy slippers... Purchase now for delivery for Christmas! Only 99,999,995 gold including delivery.


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Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude


Posted By: Gossip Boy
Date Posted: 20 Oct 2011 at 17:01
sent an army of 665 t1 human cavalry with a commander having full charge and heroism against a legion of giant rats on plains.will share the outcome after a couple of hours



Posted By: KillerPoodle
Date Posted: 20 Oct 2011 at 17:28
I agree with Yso that experience received ought to better reflect the toughness of the target you're attacking/being attacked by.

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"This is a bad idea and we shouldn't do it." - endorsement by HM

"a little name-calling is a positive thing." - Rill


Posted By: Tordenkaffen
Date Posted: 20 Oct 2011 at 17:29
If SC and TC made fluffy slippers as merchandise I would buy a pair :) But they would have to come with a guarantee for my feets level of toastiness :D

Excellent work on the guide Manny


Posted By: Yso Sris
Date Posted: 20 Oct 2011 at 23:38
Originally posted by Gossip Boy Gossip Boy wrote:

sent an army of 665 t1 human cavalry with a commander having full charge and heroism against a legion of giant rats on plains.will share the outcome after a couple of hours

awesome 

Also fairly clear mini-guide Manannanaana


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-Molg


Posted By: Yso Sris
Date Posted: 20 Oct 2011 at 23:53
Manannan   now I need to figure out what terrain does as a variable... so say 50 calv against 50 archers, you could take calv attack against archer defense (are battles 1 round only??? with attack on the part of the attacker and defense on the part of the defender?) and what would terrain add- Say plains, is that a defense hit on the archers, say -20-30% and then an offense bonus for the calv say 20-30%? Then also commander skills add -alot- of possible variables.

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-Molg


Posted By: Nirod
Date Posted: 29 Nov 2011 at 11:39
Is there any order in which the attack/defense is taking place? For example, if I sent 20 swordsman and 10 bow how will the fight take place? First the strongest attack units or ... ?
Thank you!


Posted By: Createure
Date Posted: 29 Nov 2011 at 13:37
all attack at same time Niro.

First - a combined offense strength is summed across all troops in your whole army. (modfied by terrain/commanders/prestige)

Second - combined defence strength is summed across defenders' troops. (modified by terrain/commanders/prestige/walls)

Third - The victor is decided based on who has the greater strength*.

Fourth - The victor's(s') losses are calculated based on the ratio between their own strength* and the loser's(s') strength*. E.G. If the attacker had x10 more strength* than the defender - then the attacker would lose 10% of their army. (Spread evenly across all troop types)

There are a few more intricacies than that - but this is pretty much the basics.
(*denotes strength altered by modfiers)

To work on improving your combat ratios you need to think about altering the modifiers.

For example - altering the composition of troops in your army will alter the way terrain modifiers affect you in the battle - which will give you a greater (or lower) army strength* - when your losses are calculated the loser will then have a lower (or greater) strength* compared to yourself and you will lose a lower (or greater) percentage of your army.


Posted By: Nirod
Date Posted: 29 Nov 2011 at 13:44
Thank you for your answer... really helpful.
One question: I've sent an army with something like 30 swordsman and 1 t1 archer. Not just once. I had swords casualties but the archer never died... Why?


Posted By: Createure
Date Posted: 29 Nov 2011 at 13:50
No prob! It is something that interest me so no trouble explaining.

Yeh you can explain this thing with this statement:
Quote (Spread evenly across all troop types)


So for example your army has twice as much strength* as your target. This means you will take 50% losses.

If you apply this to your troops evenly you with lose 50% of 30 swordsmen (15 casualties) and 50% of 1 archer (0.5 casualty, rounded down to 0 [casualties are always rounded down])


Posted By: Nirod
Date Posted: 29 Nov 2011 at 14:06
Logic... thank you!


Posted By: phitones
Date Posted: 04 Dec 2011 at 12:49
sorry for my clumsy question but : how i can use this figures?
Embarrassed


Posted By: Manannan
Date Posted: 05 Dec 2011 at 01:15
This seems to have gone a bit off subject for the original guide it was intended. Combat guide though not irrelvent for this is a good add. Maybe a clean up is needed here please GM Luna and the extra moved to a separate thread?

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Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude


Posted By: John Marston
Date Posted: 08 Apr 2012 at 01:10
How about Cyclopes?

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Veni, vidi, vici


Posted By: Manannan
Date Posted: 10 Apr 2012 at 14:04
Originally posted by John Marston John Marston wrote:

How about Cyclopes?

What about cyclopes? MDQ was 4.000 if that's what you were asking.


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Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude


Posted By: Noideron
Date Posted: 24 Apr 2012 at 16:46
the developers have release this chart of terms regarding unit strength
  • "Few": Less than 4 units
  • "Handful": 5 to 8
  • "Several": 9 to 21
  • "Pack": 22 to 81
  • "Many": 82 to 128
  • "Gathering": 129 to 227
  • "Horde": 228 to 462
  • "Throng": 463 to 815
  • "Host": 816 to 2,500
  • "Legion": 2,501 to 9,999
  • "Myriad": 10,000 to 25,000
  • "Sea": 25,001 to 49,999
  • "Cornucopia": 50,000 or more
This was posted in the thread regarding the update that went live on 4-22-2012.


Posted By: jordigui
Date Posted: 26 Apr 2012 at 22:32
 sorry, but i would say that this is unit size, not unit strength.

 Of course a lot of weak NPCs can be more dangerous than few strong ones. But they provide more xp as well.

 I would recommend to do your "difficulty guide" considering what troops do you normaly use.

 TH


Posted By: Manannan
Date Posted: 28 Nov 2012 at 12:19
I just had a conversation with someone about this guide and a very good point came up I should've pointed out originally. The MDQ is an average for all races and it does vary from race to race. Different races, different unit stats obviously. The formula is based on defensive stats only for the moment but if as they will no doubt start attacking in the future then I will revise the numbers accordingly as I need to.

-------------
Doesn't look good... doesn't look bad either!

"Manananananananananan, so long Sir, and thanks for all the fish." ~ St.Jude


Posted By: Rosenfield
Date Posted: 09 Feb 2013 at 14:43
Manannan,

Thanks so much for your guide! I've found it a tremendous help in knowing which NPCs I can attack and which I should avoid.

If I may submit my own small contribution: I've also found this reordering of the list according to difficulty a great help. And I present it here in the hope that it might benefit others as well:

NPC
MDQ
NPC
Wild Dogs
0.700
Dogs, Wild
Giant Rats
1.200
Rats, Giant
Golden Monkeys
1.300
Monkeys, Golden
Giant Beetles
1.425
Beetles, Giant
Wolves
1.540
Wolves
Baboons
1.875
Baboons
Black Bears
2.000
Bears, Black
Massive Scarabs
2.050
Scarabs, Massive
Simien Wolves
2.075
Wolves, Simien
Brown Bears
2.150
Bears, Brown
Gharials
2.200
Gharials
Jaguars
2.200
Jaguars
Coral Snakes
2.225
Snakes, Coral
Snow Leopards
2.250
Leopards, Snow
Arctic Wolves
2.275
Wolves, Arctic
Alligators
2.350
Alligators
Anacondas
2.425
Anacondas
Pumas
2.425
Pumas
Cobras
2.450
Cobras
Scritchers
2.525
Scritchers
Polar Bears
2.550
Bears, Polar
Ice Salamanders
2.575
Salamanders, Ice
Leopards
2.575
Leopards
Giant Spiders
2.700
Spiders, Giant
Lions
2.825
Lions
Salamanders
2.825
Salamanders
Poisonous Crawlers
2.875
Crawlers, Poisonous
Fire Salamanders
3.000
Salamanders, Fire
Giant Scorpions
3.025
Scorpions, Giant
Black Panthers
3.100
Panthers, Black
Giant Snakes
3.100
Snakes, Giant
Scaled Chargers
3.225
Chargers, Scaled
Giant Scuttlers
3.250
Scuttlers, Giant
Roaming Trolls
3.300
Trolls, Roaming
Tigers
3.300
Tigers
White Tigers
3.575
Tigers, White
Cyclopes
4.000
Cyclopes
Rhinoceros
7.275
Rhinoceros
Elephants
12.750
Elephants
Mammoths
18.100
Mammoths
Saurians
19.250
Saurians


In case that doesn't show up properly, here it is in graphical form:

NPC Difficulty Table, Sorted by MDQ

(The uploader seems to have arbitrarily reduced the resolution.)

Thank you again! It's magnanimous of you to put your accumulated expertise at the service of others in the community.

Best regards,

R.

P.S. I hope you won't mind a question: I'm still rather vague on how you derived these numbers (which informs their meaning). Would you be willing to describe your process? R



Posted By: skyarix
Date Posted: 11 Feb 2013 at 08:37
Thanks!


Posted By: mastere1
Date Posted: 26 Mar 2013 at 04:36
Big smile very usefull tyvm

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...then I'll come to light anyone in the dark.


Posted By: Bolvar Fordragon
Date Posted: 02 Jul 2013 at 17:55
That is indeed really helpful!
Thanks for posting it:)



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