Friday, November 11, 2016

Basic Hunting Guide

This guide was originally written for Night Squires, a long time ago.


Hunting is great for teaching the following knowledge: scouting, battle calculation, terrain bonuses, army composition, commander builds, crafted equipment, harvesting, market valuation. Hunting is much easier than PvP because nothing attacks back, but as you can see it teaches many valuable skills. The general process goes like this:
  1. Locate NPCs on the map.
  2. Verify that they aren't in anyone else's claimed zones. Once you hunt a few times, you'll get a feel for your neighbors and their policies about resource ownership and encampments.
  3. Decide if the NPCs drop interesting parts for crafting. Some parts are much more valuable than others. Hides are moderately valuable, and all animals drop those.
  4. Know which creatures to avoid. For example, giant spiders are very tough and drop nothing of interest except generic hides.
  5. Dispatch scouts. 3 basic (t1) scouts should almost always succeed.
  6. Punch the results into the Battle Calculator.
  7. If the casualties are acceptable, dispatch your army set to Occupy. Some players will debate this practice, but it is functionally the best way to establish immediate ownership of valuable animal parts and minimize pointless arguments about harvesting kills. It also prevents spawn points from popping out another critter while your very tasty skinners are still approaching.
  8. Collect the hides with cotters, and the animal parts with skinners.
Hunting commanders follow a very simple build: Heroism 10, Vitality 3, Accelerated Healing 3. You will get much better results if you use 3-5 commanders in an army. Hunting armies are usually cavalry or infantry; elves sometimes use bows. Nobody hunts with spears, not even orcs. The commanders should be t2 units for greater Attack values (and thus Heroism). A starting player can learn with a basic (t1) infantry, cavalry, or bow commander. The commander should be the same category unit as the troops; it is common for t2 commanders to lead t1 units. As a player advances, they should switch to using t2 commanders for greater efficiency.

Common hunting army combinations are: human knight leads knights/chariots, dwarf stalwart leads axemen/stalwarts, elf trueshot leads sentinels, elf marshal leads swiftsteeds/marshals, orc fist leads fangs.

When using the battle calculator, notice how terrain changes the way your units attack. The complete modifier table can be found at the Illyriad Institute. Cavalry armies prefer plains and small hills. Bows like mountains, hills, and plains. Infantry likes forests, buildings, hills, mountains, and plains.

Once Heroism is 5+, it becomes an advantage to research Military Outfitter and the elite division for the chosen hunting army type (cavalry, infantry, bows). Equipping items to the commanders can provide another 240-350% in attack power, and that is doubled with elite divisions. A properly constructed army with 60 units receives about +200 units for each equipped commander. With 4 commanders, that's a 60 unit army hitting like 860.

Good hunting equipment includes: boar spears, animal scale armor, overpadded chainmail, hunting bows, and terrain-specific weapons and armors. Elemental hunting for salts is aided by dragon spears, reinforced swords, hero bows, spiked platemail, terrain armors, and animal scale armor.

Some players prefer general-purpose Silversteel equipment, as it works equally well in all terrains and does not require constant swapping around. I don't prefer that, as the bonuses are smaller (except the swords), I like optimizing my arsenal, and it drives me nuts when I lose expensive weapons to unexpected shifts in animal populations (and yes, that does happen).

New players with small armies are advised to attack easy creatures in a Horde or less. Favored targets include: wild dogs, bears, wolves, pumas, golden monkeys, giant beetles, wolves, rats, scorpions. As you grow more powerful, it is possible to kill bigger groups, but that makes it hard to harvest all the parts before they expire on the map. Experienced hunters will also take down tougher creatures like scaled chargers, elementals, poisonous crawlers, and other beasts with highly valuable parts. 

Example hunting armies:
The Rookie Special. 3-5 t1 human chariot commanders (plains spear, plains leather or vanguard leather, heavy warhorse), 60 t1 cavalry. Spectacular for hunting on plains, and for teaching all basic attack skills.

The Stalwart Slam. 3-5 t2 dwarf stalwart commanders (war axe, terrain armor or overpadded chainmail, riding horse), 150 axemen or 60 stalwarts. The war axe gives a +60% everywhere for dwarves, and the riding horse compensates for the axe and the stalwart's slow speed compared to the axemen. Great in forests and buildings, good on hills and plains.

Fist of Fury. 3-5 t2 orc fist commanders (terrain sword, terrain chain/plate or overpadded chainmail, riding horse), 150 fangs. Similar to the stalwarts above, with the advantage of fast build times on orc fangs.

Unseen Arrows. 3-5 t2 elven trueshot commmanders (hunting bow, animal scale armor, riding horse), 100 sentinels. Absolutely fatal on mountains and hills, good on plains. A little rough in forests. Very cost effective because sentinels are so cheap.

Cavalry standard. 3-5 t2 cavalry (plains spear or boar spear, plains armor or overpadded chainmail, heavy warhorse), 60 cavalry. Pretty much the standard issue plains hunting force for humans and elves. Orcs and dwarves tend to use it less, as their cavalry isn't quite as good, and they have a stronger advantage for infantry.

Stubborn Mules. 3-5 t2 dwarf Runerider commanders, (boar spear, overpadded chainmail, dwarven battle mule), 60 rune riders. Apparently this configuration is good for hunting on hills, and can even be used on mountains. I personally find it ridiculous, but to each their own.

Now go kill some poor defenseless animals!

Misbehave. Kill lots of stuff.

<^^^^^^^^==O    Skint Jagblade


  1. I would add to this that I had gotten absolutely killer results with marshal commanders and sentinels on an elf account.

    1. Man, what i know for sure is that boar spears and spiked armor and similar anti-animal stuff is complete rubbish. Terrain stuff rules it all except swords, where ss excel. In all other areas ss crafted goes second best after terrains. Boars can be only left fortroops, their actual bonus is several times less than terrain weapons/aror. Don't have exact figures atm but plz mail mr if you want to diskas the matter:)

    2. In theory, hunting equipment (boar spear, overpadded leather, hunting bow, etc.) give a very large bonus against animals. However, that gear doesn't work against creatures like scuttlers and scritchers. It also seems that the 2x elite equipment bonus doesn't function on anti-animal gear. We would like more data on that, but it's much harder to run controlled experiments on animals instead of troops.

      In practice, it's so easy to kill animals with Heroism that I just use terrain gear and vanguard leather. That saves the headache of switching gear when hunting bugs.

  2. scuttlers and scritchers would actually be bugs, not animals. Possible that's the reason Skint? If so, possibly other NPC's that the anti-animals gear would not work as well i.e. spiders, crawlers, etc?

    1. quite too smartassy i'd say:) besides, it doesn't work well on rats too. Well it didn't, I ran the checks ages ago

    2. Just checked cause wasn't too sure: bugs like all other insects ARE animals