Current Night Elf Build -
hope to give you a taste of WC3 gameplay and tactics by describing
my current Night Elf strategy. I mostly developed this build by
playing, and losing, a lot of games. I'd try to figure out what
went wrong, adjust, and try again. I'm certainly not the only
person playing a build like this one, though. :) I'm also sure
that there are other ways to play Night Elves, many of which might
be a lot more interesting in the long run. But, as a new RTS player,
I'm happy to find something that works. We will have time to go
"beyond" as we learn about the game in more depth.
build is powerful, probably to the point of being overbalanced,
and I expect there to be significant changes to the Night Elves
in the final version. Unfortunately, I'm not sure that very many
of those changes are ever going to be patched into the beta. In
any case, I still find this plan interesting to play for two reasons:
tough monsters compensate for my newbie playstyle
-There are some significant strategical holes big enough to fly
a gargoyle through.
also think this will be fun and challenging in bigger, longer
games, 2v2 and up.
Night Elves are based upon one type of big, bad monster: the Chimaera.
With 650 hitpoints and hefty damage, the power of a pack of Chimaeras
dwarfs even a hero and party.
example, this Level 6 priestess of the Moon has 650 hitpoints
and does 38-41 + 2 damage. Now, she's not a meleer, so she's not
supposed to be a tank. But, the Chimaera has 650 hitpoints
as soon as it's summoned, and Chimaeras fly, leaving them invulnerable
to most attackers (only some units can attack creatures in the
air). I am a bit confused by the chimaera's damage column, because
there seems to be 2 numbers listed (one for each head?). But,
even if the lowest numbers are used all the time, Chimaeras can
do 24-34 points of damage, from the air. You could also get armor
and weapons upgrades to increase their damage or low armor rating.
what's the catch? There are a few, but not many. First of all,
you need two buildings, the Ancient of Wind and the Chimaera roost,
before you can train Chimaeras. The Ancient of Wind can be built
when you have your first Tree upgrade (the Tree of Life is the
"primary" building for the Night Elves), and the Chimaera
roost can be built when you have your second Tree upgrade. In
the beta, you train Chimaeras at the Ancient of Wind, but in the
full version, it appears that you will train them at the Chimaera
roost. I'm not sure if this means you will need to have an Ancient
of Wind before you can build a Chimaera roost (or train a Chimaera).
Chimaeras can't attack air units. At 420 gold apiece, plus the
cost and time of building for them (and they do take quite some
time to train), I haven't found any additional resources for training
anything that can attack air units, and I'm not sure what I would
use if I wanted to develop an air attack. The Priestess of the
Moon can attack air, but she can't be expected to counter an air
can attack air units, but they die too quickly with only 220 hitpoints.
You can train Hippogryphs for your archers to ride (or to use
on their own), but these (to me) seem like a big hassle. First
of all, you have the time and effort required to train 2 units
for each one mounted unit you want. Then, you have to instruct
each one individually to pick up its rider. Plus, there's just
the added cost of training an army of hippogryph riders. Hippogryphs
aren't cheap, and I'd rather have a Chimaera.
don't generally go around killing creeps with Chimaeras, but just
for an example to their power, I had them attack some poor defenseless
ogres tried to run away, but weren't fast enough:
of the lack of air defense, my solution is to develop a strong
offense. Let's start from the beginning:
start the game with a Tree of Life and 5 wisps (night elf peons),
plus about 700 gold. The tree of life automatically roots itself
and entangles the nearby gold mine, meaning the tree collects
its own gold (rumor has it that this may change in the release
version). The first thing I do is have a wisp start building my
Ancient of War, the first real "unit" building. Wisps
are destroyed by the building process. Then, I get to work harvesting
lumber and making some moon wells (these provide food for your
of the first 5 wisps, 1 builds the Ancient of War, one makes a
moon well, and 3 go to lumber. The general consensus is that 5
units on lumber is ideal, so I train 3 more wisps pretty much
right off the bat- 2 for lumber and another for a moon well. Then,
I train my hero (the hero and the wisps are trained at the tree
of life). The hero takes much longer than the wisps to train.
After that, it's one more wisp, to make the Hunter's Hall, and
then it's time to upgrade my Tree.
the Ancient of War is complete, I train 2 archers (seems to be
about what I can afford by then). As soon as my hero is out, I
set the Ancient of War rally point on my hero. Now, all units
trained from the AoW will go to my hero, wherever she is. So,
I group the hero and the 2 archers, and send them out to scout
and level up. They won't be back unless my town is attacked. I
try to keep them moving, and peek back in the town when they're
in transit and I'm pretty sure they're safe.
first few creep battles require extra care, because the Priestess
is young and delicate, and moves faster than the other units in
the group. She needs to be reminded to take a step or 2 back and
let others take her hits for her.
she levels up, I like to put points into her trueshot aura. Because
it's an aura, it benefits all nearby friendly units, so it's useful
even when the Priestess is moving around and not firing. My other
options (before level 5) are Scout and Searing Arrows. Maybe I'm
missing something, but I don't see the use of Scout at all. It
sends an owl to illuminate an area, but as far as I can tell,
the owl will only fly to an area that is currently illuminated.
Then, they only stay where they are sent for a little while. So,
it seems to me like a "spell that allows you to see stuff
that you already can see". Ugh. Searing Arrows adds fire
to the Priestess' attack, which is nice. I usually put a point
to it about level 3 or 4. Level 5 is reserved for Starfall, of
course, which does good damage to a large area.
back to the town for a moment, the Hunter's Hall should be built
rather quickly. When you have a Hunter's Hall, you will be able
to train Huntresses. They cost only a little more than archers,
but have more than twice the hitpoints and damage. So, the only
archers I usually train are the first 2. I train huntresses as
I have the money, and they will find my hero's adventuring party
and join, as long as I don't leave any creeps in the way that
will kill them first (or stumble onto an enemy's party, of course).
I have my Tree upgraded, I'll need some more wisps. The wisps
will need to make an Ancient of Elders (res'es your hero), an
Ancient of Wind (eventually, you will train Chimaeras here), and
some more moon wells to support my growing army. My adventuring
party usually clears a nearby gold mine early, so this is a good
time to think about sending a wisp to the gold mine to start an
expansion. There are also armor and weapon upgrades, which I must
admit I use inconsistently at this point. Generally, each one
is fairly inexpensive, and done at a building that doesn't create
units (so you're not tying up the unit production by upgrading,
in most cases).
I have the wisps trained and have enough gold, it's time to upgrade
my tree again. After the tree is upgraded, I'll build a Chimaera
roost and start training Chimaeras. I won't send them to my hero,
but hold them in reserve until I've built up a decent-sized group
and the hero's party has found my enemy's town. They can also
blast anyone that comes to my town to start trouble at this point.
:) Chimaeras train slowly, as I've said, so it might make sense
to build a second Ancient of Wind at the expansion and train in
my Hero and party, after a few Huntresses arrive, is looking for
my enemy's town. Going on the offensive first seems to give you
a huge advantage. Also, I consider my hero and units to be expendable-
they're there to distract the enemy while I build my Chimaeras.
The Chimaeras can do the job on their own later, if I have time
to build them.
attention to the possible starting points on the map can help
a lot. I don't rush from one spawn point to another, but I do
want to find my opponent first. Clearing creeps on the way is
a good way to level up and make sure your reinforcements arrive
safely (but of course it marks your path too).
the other hand, I don't want the game to last long enough for
my opponent to develop an air attack that could easily wipe me
out. So, I need to be aggressive. This is also my only way to
deal with an air attack on me- I have to send my guys in to attack
the enemy's town, in hopes that they will have to back off their
own attack until they've saved their own city.
haven't looked into the Spellcasters or Hippogryphs too much at
this point. I hope to learn more about them soon, but I might
try to play some other races first.
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