[Updated 2020-10-12] Aaand it is time again to engage in some speculation about the future. The deafening silence from the development team with respect to the new tournament is disappointing, and there is not much to add there at the moment. So instead let’s try to imagine how the next chapters are going to looks like. In particular, the rumors are swirling about Chapter 17 coming up somewhat soon. So let’s take a look at what is speculated so far – of course, anything you find here is subject to change. Or it might be entirely made up. You have been warned 😉 So without further ado, let’s preview research tree in Elvenar Chapter 17.
POTENTIAL SPOILER ALERT! Now, if the intro above didn’t get the message across 😉 The following post is potentially a one giant spoiler for the upcoming chapter. So if you don’t want to spoil this until it hits actual beta or live servers, you should stop reading just about now. Or if you just don’t like engage in rumors and speculation, you should press that Back button now. You have been warned!
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So here is how research tree for chapter 17 looks like currently (you probably want to open the image in the new tab and zoom in):
And here is corresponding research for chapter 16 for reference (taken from the last preview, so a few things have changed since then):
OK, so what do we have here? Here are some of the things that pop up.
Whoa! There is a new Advanced Trader upgrade, to L6. And right from the get go! The last time we’ve seen those was… I don’t even remember when. Chapter 14 / Constructs, for the S3 trading upgrade I think? So are we going to get some new resources? The answer is YES! Or so it seems. You can notice a few new names in the diagram, and most of them would be new guest race goods. But there is one that is likely to be a new resource on par with mana and seeds. It is called Unurium. We’ll talk about it a bit more in the resource section below.
Scouting and Expansions!
There is no Advanced Scouts tech in chapter 17 again (the last time we’ve had one was in Chapter 15). So no reduced scouting costs and times. I am certain a great number of people are excited about that 😉 But then again, if the new tournament will go the way it currently looks like, scouting in the end game may become largely irrelevant. No one would be hitting those 50+ provinces in the tournaments, so scouting beyond 500 provinces would make little sense.
We’re getting 2 more research expansions – the same as in chapter 16. One is optional and only requires coins and sentients, so you can do it at your leisure. The second one – City Expansion 51 – is a mandatory tech, and needs guest race resources.
Upgrades – same-same, but different
There are again 4 possible Squad Size upgrades this chapter – the same as in chapter 15 and 16. The difference is, in chapter 16 two were optional and 2 were mandatory. This time around, you’re getting all 4 SSUs as optional ones (the same as in Chapter 15). Of course, with the new tournament this, again, will be irrelevant. So now we’re going to get these as optional, ffs…
As anticipated, we’re getting 4 extra upgrades for T3/T6 manufactories (I’ll probably make a separate post on buildings / upgrades). We’re also getting usual chapter upgrades to residences, workshops, armories and a Main Hall. Nothing particularly unexpected here.
We’re now used to residences, workshops and Main Hall upgrades to be split into 2 techs each. This is still the case. But manufactories upgrades are NOT split into 4 techs each – there is just a single upgrade for each that covers all four levels L28-L31. There is only 1 tech out there that gives chapter-specific culture buildings.
You can also see that finale of the chapter is the same as in Chapter 16. So instead of the usual final AW tech there are again two AW research items for each of the two new AWs.
OK, so here are some unexpected changes again. We used to have upgrades every two chapters, alternating between Barracks/Mercenary Camp and Training Grounds. Well, this is no longer the case. In Chapter 17 we’re getting just 2 levels, but for each of the 3 military buildings! We’ll talk more about it in the post about building upgrades.
Now, lets preview resource requirements for the Elvenar Chapter 17 research tree. There is no one single set of requirements as a lot depends on how much Portal Profits you’re going to deploy, what configuration of settlement buildings you’re going to use, what are your production boosts etc. There are also different ways to produce the same settlement resource (different inputs etc). So treat the following table with a big grain of salt – that’s why there are some big ranges in there. Some numbers might be even wrong 😉 But, at least for chapters 15-16 these were reasonably accurate for my setup. So, here it goes:
These numbers include necessary intermediate production required for research, as well as settlement construction / upgrades. This does not include regular building upgrades that you unlock in a particular chapter. These also do not include optional Squad Size upgrades in chapters 15-16 (because you were not supposed to be touching those back then ;)), but it does include all SSUs for chapter 17. T1-T3 requirements for chapter 15 are empty not because there are none, but because I never bothered to calculate these. Those were never an issue even with fairly lean manufacturing. I also ignored decay.
So, what do we have here? They bumped minimum number of provinces to unlock chapter 17 from 440 to 480. That’s pretty much expected, so just make sure you have enough provinces to proceed.
Now let’s look at total KP requirements. After the shocker of Chapter 16, total KP requirements for Chapter 17 are lower. But it is still higher than Chapter 15. More importantly, it is quite likely that the new tournament setup will be in place before Chapter 17 goes live. This would mean dramatically reduced KP intake. This means that this chapter can be as long as Chapter 16, or potentially even longer – and that’s just on KP requirements alone. Remember, most of the chapters from 14 backwards were about 2,000 KPs, and those were the times before tournament score inflation.
This time around, it is harder to estimate possible usable amount of Portal Profits. In chapter 15, you could have used up to 1500-1800% worth of Portal Profits at L4 portal. And you would be losing some resources against the portal cap – hence the top range estimate. In chapter 16, you could only drop up to 1000% worth of PPs – potentially less than that if you have Vortex of Storage AW. And there were no issues with hitting the portal cap, as there was only 1 capped resource – Statutes.
Chapter 17 also have only 1 capped resource – ElvenarinZero. But this time around, instead of capped resource being the final resource (i.e. output) of production it is instead an input into guest race production. So you can produce it from base resources (mana, seeds, S3), but you also use it to produce uncapped guest race resources that are used in the research. And the way it is used it is tricky to estimate total input needed, as a lot will depend on settlement configuration and production choices.
My current estimate is that it may take slightly less than 3000% PP if you would want to skip ElvenarinZero production completely. This would be doable for end-gamers who hit the Spire consistently. But you’ll likely won’t need to avoid production completely, so your requirements might be quite a bit less.
Mana requirements for Chapter 17 are similar to Chapter 16. You will need about 15mm or so, with pretty big chunks (1-2.5mm per research). This assumes you won’t be using mana to produce ElvenarinZero. Otherwise, you can spend much, much more than that. This number also ignores decay. But having said that, this is certainly doable in the end-game over the duration of the chapter.
Moving on to seeds. Pretty much the same situation as with mana. You will need about 4mm or so to produce needed sentient goods – which is about the same as for chapter 16. Now, you may also want to produce ElvenarinZero from seeds. In this case you may need more – much more – seeds. As it is, seeds requirements are reasonable for the end game (with no ElvenarinZero production).
But make sure to check caveat in the Unurium section.
OK, so we do have some positive news for a change. Orcs requirements in Chapter 16 were massive – we’re talking 1-2mm or so. But in Chapter 17 we fall back to just ~150k or so. No, it is not a typo – the requirements are indeed 10x less than in Chapter 16. Incidentally, it is back in the same ballpark as it was in Chapter 15.
But before you rejoice, keep in mind that upgrading buildings and AWs will still need some non-trivial amounts of orcs. These are not accounted for in this summary.
Chapter 16 also introduced some pretty sizable regular goods (T1-T3) requirements – and not just as an input into sentients. Quite a few of these were also front-loaded, i.e. you needed a good chunk early on in the chapter (e.g. unlocking guest race buildings). We’re talking about something like 12mm/9mm/6mm for T1/T2/T3. And good news here as well – Chapter 17 will need a lot less regular goods. We’re looking at 1-3mm each of the tiers, so that would be 3-5x reduction overall.
But again, before you think you will resume your hoarding, remember that you will quite likely be dumping A LOT more regular goods in the new tournaments. Well, if you want to get anything material out of it, that is.
Which brings us to sentients; that T6/S3 in particular traumatized so many players in chapter 15. We’ve had those requirements reduced in chapter 16. And now in Chapter 17 we have almost the same numbers. But you need to keep in mind that T6/S3 requirements could be very volatile. S3 is the most efficient input to use if you want/need to actually produce ElvenarinZero. If you do, S3/T3 requirements will be at the top range which is probably doable still.
But keep in mind that this chapter has less KP required, but also intake will be lower, so it is unclear if you’ll need higher or lower peak production for the sentients.
And last – but not least – unurium. So what do we know so far? Not much, certainly not terms of the details. Here are some speculations each of which which may or may not be true:
- Unurium might be an umbrella term for two different resources. That is, humanium for Elves and elvarium for Humans [it seems unurium it is]
- Unurium will be produced in the Trader as a user-selected option instead of seeds. If that turns out to be true, this may have serious ramifications. If you relied on your Trader only to produce seeds you may have shortages if you have to block Trader for unurium. [and that speculation was right on the money ;)]
- Unurium production can be timed (like workshops) or continuous (like residences) or hybrid (like seeds from Trader); details are unknown. [hybrid like with the seeds, but calculation is based on working pop and required culture]
- Unurium might be decaying like mana and seeds, but we don’t know if that’s true, and what the parameters of decay are. [yep, decay 10%/day non-negotiable]
Total requirements for unurium stand at about 2mm for the whole chapter. As we don’t know details of production it is hard to say if that is a lot or not. But if I have to speculate, this might be a new base gating resource – just like orcs were in the previous chapters. Now when end-game players got their mana, seeds and now orcs in order (especially considering orcs do not decay), I’d be expecting this new resource to be in very short supply vs the requirements. Think seeds in beginning of the Halflings without any possibility of using event buildings to cover the shortfall.
We will see how it plays out…
So this is it for now. Let me know what you think about this preview of Elvenar Chapter 17 research tree in the comments below. Certainly let me know if there are other things that you know about the chapter. I may make another post about new buildings / upgrades that are coming up.
Stay tuned! 😉