It’s A Race Thing

Gottfreyd made an interesting comment on my Red Plague / Red Herring post about having the six current races as distinct, separate factions. And a post over at One Shard got me thinking about an off the wall idea for splitting up the Forces of Order and Destruction. Gott isn’t far off from how the Warhammer world really is where everyone fights everyone. Alliances are few and far between and before you know it some elf insults your family’s homebrew stout and their name appears in the Book of Grudges.

Similar to a three faction dynamic where alliances are made and broken and made again you could wind up with some strange bedfellows. Dwarfs kicking everyone’s ass? Form an alliance and put those stunties in their place. What if Finubar and Malekith kissed and made up creating a blue/purple pointy-earred emo-team-up. This sounds interesting (to me at least) but sadly a year and a half in … it’d be tough to separate us from each other. Guilds would fold, guild alliances would crumble, and players who have played together since launch as allies would become enemies. On the positive, it could be the excuse you’ve been looking for to ditch that lame Archmage who decided DPS spec was their bestest build. “HEAL ME, STUPID!”

Something like this may not be practical from a permanent standpoint but as a week long live event it could be a nice short-term change of pace. It would take some work to create alternate warcamps, hubs, and the whole kit and kaboodle but somehow, someway it could happen. Sadly no Dark Elf, Dwarf, Greenskin, or High Elf capitals to seek refuge within. I’m sure a few makeshift tents could spawn somewhere for their sorry, homeless butts.

Would it be fair? If anecdotal evidence suggests, Dark Elves and Empire could be overly dominant. I state that because between them they hold the four most OP classes in the game … according to many players you read on the forums (Bright Wizard, Warrior Priest, Sorcerer, Disciple). Of course it’s the player who makes the toon and classes that are perceived weak — like the Magus — I’ve seen light people up in the right hands. And classes that can wreck you — like the Choppa — can be a joke if not played properly. Despite class strengths and weaknesses a well coordinated team can overcome much and someone who knows their class inside/out can work wonders.

As a fun bit of flair, each faction could receive a race-only buff never seen before. Chaos could get “Tzeentch’s Favor” that would proc to increase a random ability. Greenskins could receive the “Gorkamorka Boon” that does something whacky only an Orc or Gobbo would appreciate. I’m no ability designer but you know what I mean. Make it fun … make it different … make it something we’ve never seen before. I love live events but the tasks lists are what they are and something like this would turn the game on its ear. Interesting and new racial items, trophies, weapons, kitchen sinks could be out there waiting to be found. In game on each server there could be a scoreboard tally that shows what army is leading. Those falling behind could get buffs to help level the playing field and catch up. Whatever army wins gets a bevy of prizes, bragging rights, and other assortments of goodies. (And the losers would get stuff, too.)

Nice idea, Kro, but what about class population imbalance? What if my racial pairing holds one (or more) of those underplayed careers? Good question. Checking Winkl’s for my home server, Iron Rock shakes down like this:

  • Chaos — 141 Chosen, 66 Marauders, 55 Magus, 97 Zealots, 359 TOTAL
  • Dark Elves — 69 Blackguards, 81 Witch Elves, 140 Sorcerers, 157 Disciples of Khaine, 447 TOTAL
  • Dwarfs — 96 Ironbreakers, 74 Slayers, 84 Engineers, 99 Rune Priests, 353 TOTAL
  • Empire — 112 Knights of the Blazing Sun, 110 Witch Hunters, 193 Bright Wizards, 182 Warrior Priests, 597 TOTAL
  • Greenskins — 66 Black Orcs, 108 Choppas, 70 Squig Herders, 126 Shamans, 370 TOTAL
  • High Elves — 63 Swordmasters, 64 White Lions, 85 Shadow Warriors, 120 Archmages, 332 TOTAL

This is only a slice of Rank 40 toons that logged in the past week, and not knowing how many of these are ALTs or how many are out there that haven’t logged in for awhile, it still shows what many of us knew. Empire and Dark Elves have the superior numbers yet the remaining races are all fairly close in population to each other (except for those lagging High Elves … no love). I’m not able to see the numbers in the lower tiers but let’s assume they fall roughly in the same deviation. In a perfect world where all the realms had equal numbers this could be fun. Temporary alliances could be forged and those lacking numbers could join forces to pummel the rest. Scenarios could be limited to 6 v 6 affairs to keep things fairly even. The campaign? It’ll still be there when we’re done.

Something like this would probably never occur and my less-than-sharp brain has surely missed important details … but would players like it? Are you sick of the same old, same old and want to try something different for a mere week’s time? Is that pompous Bright Wizard getting on your nerves and once, just once, you’d love to split his skull with your Axe of the Sandstorm. Are you tired of being killed by that hot Witch Elf and would rather cozy up next to her … she simply misunderstands your dwarf sensibilities, so form an alliance.

This concept is not new for me. A few months back I posted an idea on the forums about race-specific group buffs in scenarios. It didn’t get a lot of reads nor any kudos, but somehow I still find it compelling. Just like One Shard’s warband-o-gobbos, to run against a whole party of one race in a scenario would be oddly amusing. And for those who’ve played Marvel Ultimate Alliance and purposely grouped your party to have all Avengers or all X-Men just to get the special group buffs and combos, a similar mechanic in WAR would be … well … sort of cool.

What are your thoughts? What race would win? What group makeups would be unstoppable or pathetic?

9 Responses to “It’s A Race Thing”

  1. Damphatter Says:

    Some nice thoughts there man. I play dwarves mostly, and have been aching to show those “High” Elves what’s what since game launch. And I think you’re right in that a lot of players would really go for a limmited mix up to settle a few scores / or to finally see who really is the best, as there’s currently no realy way players can compare their skills to those of their teammates in a direct way.

    In terms of who would own, and who would be crushed, I think numbers could be some indication. But like you said, the popularity of a class is no indication of the skill of the individual player.
    You also mention that Empire and Dark Elves have the most OP classes, but they also have 2 “glass cannons” each (WE/WH, Sorc/BW). Also, their healers are hybrid, and so tricker to get the max potential of either dmg or heals from. So that said, as long as numbers were controlled for (i.e. 6v6 or something) I think Dwarves or Chaos would stand the best chance. These are the races with decent classes which are relatively easy to get the most out of (IB/Chosen, RP/Zealot) but also have room for individual flare and dynamics (Engi/Magus, Slayer/Choppa).

    Oops, kind of a long comment; I guess I had a fair bit to say :p

    Nice post 🙂

    • Damphatter Says:

      EDIT: I mentioned Choppa above, I meant Mara! my bad…

    • The glass cannon comment is true but those four classes are the ones players seem to complain about the most. The WP is a very good healer but its single-target heals are not nearly as good as the RP and AM.

  2. Wouldn’t it look epic? A mass of greenskins facing a dawi throng…

    On the fallen RP server of Burlok in Europe we had guilds with a race theme. Events were organised and armies met on the battlefield. Though there were always a problem balancing the numbers.

    It would be nice to have some sort of incentive for people trying this. Why? Because it keeps true to Warhammer, it give more options to the players and I’m sure many people find it fun.

    I really hope to see every race with a capital (even if you can’t raid it) some day.

    • I was wondering if there were any race-specific guilds out there.

      I think it could be a cool little live event with bonuses, incentives, etc. to simply give players something different.

      The capitals … I’ll write about those at a later date.

  3. I could finally show that snot-nosed Nirvaesh how useless he is. “Oh I’m sorry you died but I went to kill their healers”. Try and kill me now, punk! Oh, you’re a tank and you can’t? Point.

    From Destruction, I think we could expect the Chaos and Greenskin factions to be stronger, mostly because you’ll find more DPS specced healers in DEs than any other. And we all know how well Sorcs need to be pocketed.

    • With the announcement about being able to roll both sides on a server you may get to do this to Nirvaesh sooner than you thought just as Order.

  4. I have let this idea fly too. I know it would be a little to hard to implement, but the thought of 6v6 faction fighting would be awesome.

    Originally when I bought the game I thought that was how it was going to work with each faction having their own city. Who knows maybe it was the original plan, but than it had to be changed.

    I think it would definitely encourage more realm pride, or racial pairing pride.

    • The 6 v 6 would be the fun part of this. Perhaps not a total faction-split but merely a race-only 6 v 6 tournament weekend. Smallscale fights are a lot of fun. I enjoyed the Ironclad so more of that kind of scenario would be a good thing.

      You may be right … when they decided not to finish the other capitals due to time … their whole plan could’ve changed.

      Maybe one day we’ll get a candid “what their thought process was” back then.

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