Age of Wonders: Planetfall - Dev Diary #52: Heritor Secret Tech

Age of Wonders: Planetfall - Dev Diary #52: Heritor Secret Tech

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Tombles

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SecretTech_Illustration_Awakenings_05.png



“Feel the life around you. All of it is holy. Feel it struggling to cling to the fragile constructs of flesh. Full and bright in one breath, then gone with the next. Where is it? Gone. It is no more without Es’Teq. No eternal spirit survives. Until now, death was the end. We preserve it. Let us fill you with vitality from lost generations. This is the Blessing of the Es’Teq.”

- Sheera Na Teev, High Lady of Life


Long ago, the Es’Teq were a theocratic order that ruled a great empire. The core tenet of their faith was that life should never be lost, that the spark at the heart of every individual should be captured and stored for eternity, that none should ever truly die. The rise of conscious AIs led to a schism however, with many believing that the creation of a machine soul was an unforgivable heresy. The ensuing civil war rent the galaxy, and the surviving Es’Teq retreated into underground stasis tombs to await a time when the Age of Machines would inevitably end and they could practice their faith once more. That time has now come, CORE has fallen and it is time for a new Order to take control, and the Es’Teq are awakening to ensure that it is they who will triumph.


Isra_The_Houseless.png



The Es’Teq lie buried in massive stasis tombs scattered throughout the world of the Star Union, they are awakening slowly and they require the aid of others to regain their strength. In secret, their representatives approach all the major races, their offer is simple: Join us, become a Heritor to our power, and live forever.


The Heritor is the new Secret Tech coming in the Revelations Expansion. In this dev diary I’m going to be telling you about how they work, and showing you some of their units, mods and operations!

The Siphoner

Siphoner.png


This is the Siphoner, one of the early game units and one which best demonstrates the new mechanic that the Heritors use: Essence Charges


EssenceSiphon.png



Like most Es’Teq units, the Siphoner uses a new damage type called “Entropic Damage”. Entropic Weapons interfere with the very fundamental structure of the target itself, breaking down its structure and blasting it into muck. The Siphoner’s attacks can also apply Energy Drain to the target, a stacking debuff that reduces the target’s damage by 10%, at the same time this drained energy is transferred to the Siphoner in the form of an Essence Charge, which boosts the Siphoner’s damage by 10%. Most units in the game can carry 2 charges, while the Siphoner can carry 3.


Devotion.png



Essence Charges can also be used to power special abilities, the Siphoner’s devotion ability allows it to transfer its essence charges to its allies, boosting their damage and giving them another turn.


Unit Mods


Gauntlet.png



You can also mod your racial units to collect their own essence charges! The Es’Teq Gauntlets mod allows you to drain energy with your melee attacks, and then release that essence in an AoE blast that damages adjacent foes. Other mods allow you to collect Essence using ranged attacks, or even drain the essence automatically from those who attack you.


The High Lord

HighLord.png


The greatest Heritor unit is the High Lord, a being that has achieved the pinnacle of essence manipulation. The High Lord can shut down mechanical units with Ruin Machina, while Es’Teq Judgement is a powerful area attack whose power scales up rapidly with the amount of essence used to power it.


MindPuppet.png



Mind Puppet is the most powerful ability in the High Lord’s arsenal, he can use essence to channel an Es’Teq mind of a long dead citizen into the body of a dead unit, bringing it back to life under his control. This can even be used to resurrect the dead from the enemy, allowing you to turn the enemy’s weapons against them. Unfortunately for the Heritors, the effect is temporary, and the puppet will perish when battle ends.


Operations and Doomsday

HauntColony.png


Just because the Heritor’s preserve the dead, doesn’t mean they allow them eternal rest, many Heritor operations allow you to put the minds of the dead to work, in this case by terrorizing the populace of enemy cities, driving down their productivity and causing widespread panic.


FinalRapture.png


The Heritor’s doomsday weapon takes this approach to its extreme result, the Heritors flood the world with the minds of the dead, taking over the bodies of civilians and enslaving their bodies to the Es’Teq cause. As the weapon continues, the enemy populace slowly transforms into Drained, penitents of the Es’Teq faith who have taken the first step back towards rebirth.


Drained.png



The drained are weak, however they can convert the essence they capture in battle to experience points so they level quickly. Once they reach maximum level, they gain the ability to possess enemy units, destroying the Drained and bringing the enemy permanently under your control. You don’t need to wait for your Doomsday to get these units, they can be created early on by using operations, such as Condemn to Drained which allows you transform an enemy unit into a Drained mid-battle!


The Quintessence Ark

Arc.png


The last Heritor unit is the Quintessence Ark a support unit that is designed to help with the collection and distribution of essence in large quantities. The Quintessence Ark can connect to other units in your army as a communion, then use the essence it generates to buff and heal them. Initially the Arc can only connect to two units, but later mods allow it to rapidly connect to 5 units, providing support to the whole army!


Conclusion

EndShot.png



The Heritor are a powerful new secret tech, who’s support mechanics allow them to synergize with any race. On November 19th, the Revelations expansion will be released, and you shall be able to begin your own journey towards immortality!
 

Rognvaldr19

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Has a Necron/Undead feel to them which sounds great. The more races the better in my opinion.
 

Jean-Luc

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Wonder if this will appeal to people who wanted a fantasy, rather than sci-fi, game.

It's a pretty unique look.
 

Sifer2

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So when it says CORE is fallen is that taking into account the player siding with CORE in the campaign? Just curious if the new mission's stories will be stand alone canon or take into account choices made in the main campaign.
 

Ridixo

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Hey guys, did you see the High Elf in today DD?

High Lord - High Elf.jpg

Our most powerful and Wisest lords, the High Elves are back... apparently, otherwise this guy needs to consult a doctor :confused:
 

TheDarkMaster

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I think this is the first time we've seen a melee mod in the secret tech. Hopefully the other mod I can see in the initial technology is something that's more generally useful to all factions (there's also a tac ops). Kir'ko and Assembly should be able to make good use of that melee mod immediately, while the amazons and syndicate will be able to guarantee they get a melee mod for their starting skirmishers if they want. Vanguard aren't going to get much out of a melee mod though, they might not have a single regular unit that can equip it. Dvar can, but it won't be worth it.

So when it says CORE is fallen is that taking into account the player siding with CORE in the campaign? Just curious if the new mission's stories will be stand alone canon or take into account choices made in the main campaign.
All the scout and basic infantry units are considered 'Core' units. It's used when applying whether or not certain sector buildings apply bonuses to the unit and if you need a certain building to make them. The other three unit types here are, 'skirmisher', 'support', and 'elite'.
 

Ridixo

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All the scout and basic infantry units are considered 'Core' units. It's used when applying whether or not certain sector buildings apply bonuses to the unit and if you need a certain building to make them. The other three unit types here are, 'skirmisher', 'support', and 'elite'.
Em... what this has to do with what @Sifer2 said? :confused:
 

Picrasso

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So when it says CORE is fallen is that taking into account the player siding with CORE in the campaign? Just curious if the new mission's stories will be stand alone canon or take into account choices made in the main campaign.

IDK, but I think they refer to the collapse of the Star Union before the campaigns start off.
 

BBShockwave

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I just love the otherworldly but subtly egyptian style of the heritors! And that ghostly cyan blue! Awesome.
That starting background pic, thank you, that is my PC background now. :)
Really curious to try them in action. Hope we get some gameplay videos soon!
Curious about that battle map at the end, seems new! And what could be those snake-like green robots?
Also, while the end text of the bios is cut off, I seem to recognize the name Mah Reg'Nib from the top of the letters... :D Just how old is that guy anyway to have been around when the Es'Teq cult flourished? I hope we meet him in-game someday.

I think this is the first time we've seen a melee mod in the secret tech. Hopefully the other mod I can see in the initial technology is something that's more generally useful to all factions (there's also a tac ops). Kir'ko and Assembly should be able to make good use of that melee mod immediately, while the amazons and syndicate will be able to guarantee they get a melee mod for their starting skirmishers if they want. Vanguard aren't going to get much out of a melee mod though, they might not have a single regular unit that can equip it. Dvar can, but it won't be worth it.


All the scout and basic infantry units are considered 'Core' units. It's used when applying whether or not certain sector buildings apply bonuses to the unit and if you need a certain building to make them. The other three unit types here are, 'skirmisher', 'support', and 'elite'.
There is Core, and there is CORE.. as in, the AI that controlled most of the Star Union before the fall. Read some Autonom bios! Or play the main campaign.
 
Last edited:

Orinsul

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I've always wanted to channel my dead friends into the bodies of my enemies
 

Ridixo

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Really curious to try them in action. Hope we get some gameplay videos soon!
Curious about that battle map at the end, seems new! And what could be those snake-like green robots?

Here is a video from PDXCon, it show the tech in action and the new maps. The robots are the Reapers, no, not that Reapers, the RPR, watch the video and enjoy it :)

Also, while the end text of the bios is cut off, I seem to recognize the name Mah Reg'Nib from the top of the letters... :D Just how old is that guy anyway to have been around when the Es'Teq cult flourished?

https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/foru...ns-the-forgotten.1261146/page-5#post-25980020
Check the spoiler i made. Who knows? I may be right in this one :p

I hope we meet him in-game someday.

We all really hope that, maybe he appears as the true final boss :D
 

Round_Dice

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For those who didn't notice; The Imperial Archives have been updated and now contain DLC info.

The Heritor tech is extremely powerful. They debuff enemies in damage and entropy department while providing a ton of buffs and heals for their own.

The Ark is an absolutely outstanding support unit, essentially an improved Autonom node that supports a single stack (once modded).
Siphoner makes the Syndicate Overseer look like a chump.
Drained gain a crazy buff via a doctrine that, among other things, gives them Resurgence which turns them into both amazing shields and attackers while also making the mind control attempts risk free.
High Lord might as well be a T4 with how much power and utility it has.
 

Promethian

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For those who didn't notice; The Imperial Archives have been updated and now contain DLC info.

The Heritor tech is extremely powerful. They debuff enemies in damage and entropy department while providing a ton of buffs and heals for their own.

The Ark is an absolutely outstanding support unit, essentially an improved Autonom node that supports a single stack (once modded).
Siphoner makes the Syndicate Overseer look like a chump.
Drained gain a crazy buff via a doctrine that, among other things, gives them Resurgence which turns them into both amazing shields and attackers while also making the mind control attempts risk free.
High Lord might as well be a T4 with how much power and utility it has.
I just opened my game and did not see anything heritor in the archive.
 

Ericridge

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"Long ago, the Es’Teq were a theocratic order that ruled a great empire. The core tenet of their faith was that life should never be lost, that the spark at the heart of every individual should be captured and stored for eternity, that none should ever truly die. The rise of conscious AIs led to a schism however, with many believing that the creation of a machine soul was an unforgivable heresy. The ensuing civil war rent the galaxy, and the surviving Es’Teq retreated into underground stasis tombs to await a time when the Age of Machines would inevitably end and they could practice their faith once more. That time has now come, CORE has fallen and it is time for a new Order to take control, and the Es’Teq are awakening to ensure that it is they who will triumph."

Hmmmmmmm, so you're telling me that the Es'teq empire was one of the dominant powers and the unknown machine is the upstart power that took opporunity of the civil war in Es'teq to deliver an highly damaging blow to the es'teq to take the galaxy for themselves.. assuming this upstart machine empire is THE REAPERS, who decide that they hate all organic life and must be purged to help make galaxy more of a cleaner place to have even less dust, those dust allergies wont' go away by themselves..

Apparently after exterminating most of the Es'teq and other unknown species, THE REAPERS disappeared? And now they reemerge after they detected fresh Es'teq to be harvested so they're waking up too?

However is THE REAPERS that's awakening in response to the Es'teq the residual remnants of the once formidable THE REAPERS empire? They could've been easily seeded onto worlds and left in sleep mode waiting for the appropriate signal to activate once again, in this case, it was the Es'Teq's hardware.

But this brings into the question of what happened to THE REAPERS????

Did THE REAPERS get into an civil war of their own making or was exterminated by the abyss or was laid low by the forces of CORE who is now possibly an offshoot of THE REAPERS who didn't like the purge of organic beings because they wanted the organic beings for them to have fun managing and without them around it gets terribly boring for the CORE becasue they won't have anything to do?

And in the Heritor High Lord, we see the hints of what the past once was, is that Heritor High Lord an high elf?

If it is so, then it is very possible that the fallen Star Union is the survivors of the fallen empires that once populated the galaxy, their great works lost and forgotten in distant stars and buried under dust.

Thus CORE is greatly pleased to find still surviving human beings for them to manage and set up an interface that permits the bloodline of important emperors to manage its colonies and permit communication and control between THE CORE and THE STAR UNION.

This means the STAR UNION is not the first but would explains why many of unbeneficial things was done in management of its population because many empires perished in the wars of the past. And what we have now is simply the survivors relearning what was lost and is now lost once again and in process of relearning once again.

All of this is just guesses and estimates from what i've read in lore text of AOW3 + AOW3P.
 

Promethian

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Feb 2, 2016
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"Long ago, the Es’Teq were a theocratic order that ruled a great empire. The core tenet of their faith was that life should never be lost, that the spark at the heart of every individual should be captured and stored for eternity, that none should ever truly die. The rise of conscious AIs led to a schism however, with many believing that the creation of a machine soul was an unforgivable heresy. The ensuing civil war rent the galaxy, and the surviving Es’Teq retreated into underground stasis tombs to await a time when the Age of Machines would inevitably end and they could practice their faith once more. That time has now come, CORE has fallen and it is time for a new Order to take control, and the Es’Teq are awakening to ensure that it is they who will triumph."

Hmmmmmmm, so you're telling me that the Es'teq empire was one of the dominant powers and the unknown machine is the upstart power that took opporunity of the civil war in Es'teq to deliver an highly damaging blow to the es'teq to take the galaxy for themselves.. assuming this upstart machine empire is THE REAPERS, who decide that they hate all organic life and must be purged to help make galaxy more of a cleaner place to have even less dust, those dust allergies wont' go away by themselves..

Apparently after exterminating most of the Es'teq and other unknown species, THE REAPERS disappeared? And now they reemerge after they detected fresh Es'teq to be harvested so they're waking up too?

However is THE REAPERS that's awakening in response to the Es'teq the residual remnants of the once formidable THE REAPERS empire? They could've been easily seeded onto worlds and left in sleep mode waiting for the appropriate signal to activate once again, in this case, it was the Es'Teq's hardware.

But this brings into the question of what happened to THE REAPERS????

Did THE REAPERS get into an civil war of their own making or was exterminated by the abyss or was laid low by the forces of CORE who is now possibly an offshoot of THE REAPERS who didn't like the purge of organic beings because they wanted the organic beings for them to have fun managing and without them around it gets terribly boring for the CORE becasue they won't have anything to do?

And in the Heritor High Lord, we see the hints of what the past once was, is that Heritor High Lord an high elf?

If it is so, then it is very possible that the fallen Star Union is the survivors of the fallen empires that once populated the galaxy, their great works lost and forgotten in distant stars and buried under dust.

Thus CORE is greatly pleased to find still surviving human beings for them to manage and set up an interface that permits the bloodline of important emperors to manage its colonies and permit communication and control between THE CORE and THE STAR UNION.

This means the STAR UNION is not the first but would explains why many of unbeneficial things was done in management of its population because many empires perished in the wars of the past. And what we have now is simply the survivors relearning what was lost and is now lost once again and in process of relearning once again.

All of this is just guesses and estimates from what i've read in lore text of AOW3 + AOW3P.
Or the RPR class of machine was created by CORE in the war with the Es'Teq. Yes, I did just blow your entire big rant out of the water with a single simple sentence.