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Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 18:35:46

Xeno
Level 28
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Latest map revision nerfed mercenary camp? This is my first map in r18 but got blindsided by this.

r16 Scandinavia had 404.7B armies and 80.7B base mercenaries for ~20%
r18 Scandinavia has ~401B armies and ~61B base mercenaries for ~15%


The previous map I did was in r17 and had ~18-19% base mercenaries which I guessed was fine due to mortars rebalance but now in r18 it went even further down. This means that

Old:
Additional Mercenaries 75% => 35% mercs
Additional Mercenaries 100% => 40% mercs
Additional Mercenaries 150% => 50% mercs

New:
Additional Mercenaries 75% => 26.25% mercs
Additional Mercenaries 100% => 30% mercs
Additional Mercenaries 135% => 35.25% mercs (old 75%)
Additional Mercenaries 150% => 37.5% mercs


ATM I'm upgrading all my non-maxed hospitals since I thought I could finish the level with what I had but I estimate I will be roughly 20B armies short anyway since they are the early hospitals. I can fix this by using 5 SAC on my 5 best camps + superpower FC to get the missing ~20B but "this was not supposed to happen".
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 18:39:17


krinid 
Level 60
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Say it ain't so !!

This is devastating news if this is true across the board.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 19:26:11

Mathematician
Level 59
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Ohh is that the reason why I keep running out of merc today?
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 20:56:09


krinid 
Level 60
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Same for me - I didn't run out of mercs, but I've found the ends of levels are not quite the cakewalk they're supposed to be.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 21:23:57

Xeno
Level 28
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I have 45% additional mercs which I found to be the minimum for how I played. This ensured that I finished on the dot by buying all the mercs. I used the leftover money to pump all the camps since I would have a ton of backlogged drafts so 2-3 capped drafts was the worst case scenario. Now I have 28.5B less merc than expected and I'm short by around ~20B so it would have worked out like usual if it was still 20% base merc.


I would need 95% additional mercs now to get to my old levels so I guess people with 95+% would find it harder than usual. It would have been a normal day for me tho.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 21:47:01

Mathematician
Level 59
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I was at 110% Additional Mercs and ran out of merc in all 9 levels I've completed today so far. Luckily those were small levels (I've just ascended) so army camps and the fixed portion of drafts were useful. Would be quite a disaster if merc ran out in big levels and I need to actually sit there for days just to wait for army camps.

To put it in a perspective, I don't remember ever running out of merc after reaching 85% Additional Merc.

Did some quick calculations. Can confirm that the base merc for me is now 15-17% of the entire map.

Just now I've dumped my 5k reserved AP to boost it up to 137.5%. Let's see if it helps...

Edited 8/18/2021 21:47:53
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 22:53:37

Mathematician
Level 59
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Ok 137.5% Additional Merc is enough for The Siege of Feldmere. Well technically I still ran out of merc, but I just needed to wait for the sliding pool drafts, which in some sense came from merc income.

With so much AP needed to be invested on Additional Merc, I guess I have to delay my exploration on phase 4 advancements lol
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/18/2021 23:19:32

Xeno
Level 28
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I'm looking at spending 5100 AP on additional mercenaries while I only have 5.06 AP to just return to where I was. Also by the looks of things I have to spend 2-3d looking at Estoniaball on the map while my camps work for it unless I use the superpower FC to cut my losses short. Mortars are just taunting me since they are not helping me at all :(.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 01:00:23

megaol
Level 50
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If you're near phase 4, one thing worth noting is that 2 of the best (and cheapest) phase 4 advancements are sources of armies -- better hospitals and increased army caches, so investing in these over additional mercs is wise if you're in phase 4 or close enough.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 02:12:53

functor
Level 56
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The free Legendary Triple Strike should be able to make up for about 5% of total territory cost.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 02:46:07


krinid 
Level 60
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Agree w/megaol, Additional Mercs, Merc Discount, Increase Money Cache, Crafter Speed, etc, are fantastic Advancements to either get more mercs, cheaper mercs or get more money to buy mercs . . . HOWEVER . . .

Phase 4 gives 2 of the best advancements in the game. Both Better Hospitals & Increased Army Caches give army benefits based on map items that do not reduce with quicker level clear times. These are better than all the other items I listed above b/c they are either ways of making money which takes time and as your level speed increases, you'll earn less of it, or requires money, which requires you to take the time to earn it.

But these two phase 4 advancements will give increased benefit even when your level times drop! So make sure you set aside enough AP to pound those out once you unlock phase 4.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 03:12:27

Mathematician
Level 59
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Yea it's tempting to unlock Better Hospital and Increased Army Caches, though I'm a bit nervous because I don't know the upgrade costs after the initial upgrade. Currently the urgent problem to solve is not having enough mercs. For sure I know that Additional Merc can solve the problem. Maybe Better Hospitals and Increased Army Caches can solve the problem as well, but that depends on the upgrade cost.

From calculations, I needed around 4 levels of Better Hospitals, or 4 levels of Increased Army Caches, or 8 extra levels of Additional Mercenaries. For sure 5k AP is enough to purchase the Additional Mercenaries needed because I know the cost. I have no idea whether 5k AP is enough for the first 4 levels of Better Hospitals or Increased Army Caches because I only know the unlocking cost.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 03:29:30

Mathematician
Level 59
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If the subsequent upgrades of Better Hospitals or Increased Army Caches were cheap, let's say maybe like 1000 AP per level for the first few levels, then I should've gone for those instead. But I wouldn't know. So for now I'm sticking with Additional Mercenaries first as a safe choice.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 03:46:47

Xeno
Level 28
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Better Hospital
Total: 5518
2368 150 200 250 300 350 400 450 500 550

Increased Cache Armies
Total: 25739
2939 300 400 500 ... 2100

I would have done Hospitals if I had over 100% increased mercenaries.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 04:02:11

Mathematician
Level 59
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WAIT WHAT?
150?
300?

Are you sure?
That's stupid(ly cheap). I was expecting a much higher cost.

Maybe it's time to spend 150 coins to reset AP lmao. That's certainly a much better solution to the merc camp nerf compared to Additional Mercenaries.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 06:17:53

Sefer
Level 30
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Can confirm those prices. Hospitals are relatively cheap to max out (at 5518, including unlock cost), while army caches are very expensive (at 25739).
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 10:26:29


krinid 
Level 60
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Prices confirmed. I started putting AP into Army Caches before I realized how much AP it's going to take, and then switched to Better Hospitals.

Which is odd b/c over the course of a level Hospitals typically give a higher benefit than army caches, but it is what it is.

I recommend going for the Hospital buff first before the Army caches.

Not sure what priority to give to Faster Digs ... that's kind of a good one too!
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/19/2021 21:52:23

Xeno
Level 28
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Can't inline images but here:
https://i.imgur.com/vwsyX9A.png


Total Armies:
206.533 + 59.946 + 135.21 - 1.004 = 400.685 B

Base Merc:
88.768/1.45 = 61.219 B

%
61.219/400.685 = 15.279%


In the end I was actually ~16b short after exhausting drafts. I accepted rafflebot donation of a FC and used 2 SAC + super FC to get 14B and finish to save me 24+ hours. The map had 2 SAC + 4FC so it worked out.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/20/2021 03:50:41


krinid 
Level 60
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Seems like someone didn't like our Merc-centric strategy.

So maybe need to go all the way to +150% now. Another 9500 AP . . . hmmm

Edited 8/20/2021 03:51:18
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/20/2021 04:58:39

Mathematician
Level 59
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I'm now on 110% Additional Merc, 50% Better Hospital, 30% Increased Army Cache. Seems to have enough merc for now.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/20/2021 18:44:23


Master Jz 
Level 62
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Assuming mercs are now 15% of total armies needed and were 20%:

+20% additional mercs now needs to be +60%
+35% additional mercs now needs to be +80%
+50% additional mercs now needs to be +100%
+65% additional mercs now needs to be +120%
+80% additional mercs now needs to be +140%
+87.5% additional mercs now needs to be +150%

At 85%, I was running out on occasion even before the change. I'll need to almost max it to have the same number of mercenaries available as I did before. If it's universal, I suspect that the change is going to make it a lot harder for new players to get off the ground. Instead of needing 50%-60% to get a good start, they'll need 100% or more for the same effect.

Edited 8/20/2021 18:49:00
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/21/2021 02:31:38

dwaynerudd 
Level 59
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I've ascended once and am half way through second time. I rarely use all my mercs. I'm not saying it's the most efficient method, obviously, others have ascended multiple times. but it's certainly not something that makes the game impossible.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/21/2021 03:22:27

graemes
Level 59
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On v13 at +100% mercs I was fine on most levels but Triskelion, US Huge and Europe Huge gave issues. I agree that +150% is probably prudent for anyone nearing these last three levels on their second or third ascension in v14.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/21/2021 07:08:32


krinid 
Level 60
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@dwayne
How much has your level speed increased on 2nd playthrough? As clear time decreases, armies from army camps will go down, and to compensate, you need more mercs. If you're leaving mercs behind, you either aren't clearing levels as quickly as you could be, or you lack the money (likely due to advancements/artifacts, etc) to afford more mercs and thus increase clear speed.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/21/2021 09:04:35

dwaynerudd 
Level 59
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Clear speed second time through has been much faster. I think the last few levels (through Scandinavia) took me two weeks first time through, and have all been less than a week. But I was starting to hit a wall and have been starting to invest ap in mercs and crafter speed. That being said, I know alot about my playing style isn't optimal (you would probably be disgusted to see the number of powers I've stockpiled instead of using). But I enjoy not stressing about whether I'm doing things "right", just chugging along at my own pace.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 8/21/2021 20:16:22


krinid 
Level 60
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That's the best way to play Dwayne, just play however you see fit & enjoy the ride. Tbh, truly optimal play requires either a very active and time-intensive attention and effort, or just a slew of powers being dropped at the right times.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 9/1/2021 13:14:25


Master Jz 
Level 62
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I've replayed everything up through Scandinavian on the new version. I have a lot more upgrades this time through, so I tried to finish with most hospitals at level 1 to partially adjust for that.

I got my best time on most (possibly all) levels even though I ran out of mercs on all of them. Mercs were definitely reduced, but I was able to get more techs and more army camp upgrades.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 9/1/2021 15:05:02


krinid 
Level 60
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I have never tracked it during my runs, but now Mercs seem not only less in quantity (we've discussed this a fair bit), and higher in price.

Despite having 102.5% additional mercs, it's getting harder to afford them all.

It's as if a higher power is trying to thwart our Merc based strategy. LOL

So pushing Mercs to 150% will be beneficial just to create more of the less expensive Mercs, and not need the most expensive ones.

I've compensated for this by pushing Better Hospitals to 50% & Increased Army Caches to 95%.

My recent run on Triskelion left me in the end game using Leg TS to kill the 222B territory & dropping an IM to empty the 180B merc camp in order to finish quickly without having to do another 8-10h of crafting to afford the super expensive Mercs. I was surprised b/c this is after all my 3rd playthrough, and to account for the nasty anti-JS nature of it, I ensured that I did every Hospital upgrade that wasn't ridiculously priced, so wasn't anticipating Trisk to give me pause . . . ended up taking me 1d8h. I thought I was being overly cautious with the massive hospital upgrades, but as it turns out, it wasn't enough (thus the Leg TS & IM).

I suppose 1 factor is that there were a number of items like Thorium, Chromium, Bolts and Platinum (my first time seeing this!) that were not available in markets that were required for the Techs for Merc Discounts, Item Sell Values, Hospital buffs/discounts or +50% cache (those are the main ones I focus on, the rest are incidental).

Anyone else finish Trisk lately, since last update? How was your experience with it?

It was the last level in my 3rd playthrough, so now 3rd Ascension complete, my 4th playthrough has begun. Back to Tutorial & Huruey... on WOTW now again.
Mercenary camps in 5.14.1.1 + map r18, nerfed?: 9/1/2021 15:31:08

Olja 
Level 63
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I just finished hardened Trisk and can confirm that it was pretty annoying. Low profitability of ores, alloys and items in combination with overpriced mercs - and less use of JS ofc. Don't know how the normal Trisk is after the update but probably similarly annoying.

And yes, I ran out of mercs on most levels, too, which didn't happen for a long time. Overall, better hospitals and increased army cache advancements should compensate for the nerfed mercs.

Edited 9/3/2021 05:51:56
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