Protector IV: Mercenary
Almost everything is done with the mouse, with mouse+[shift] to place multiples of the same unit, and [spacebar] to cancel out of a unit placement. The main part of the game is tower defense. Scouting reports about upcoming waves appear in the lower left, with important information such as the elemental strengths and weaknesses and other vulnerabilities. Based on this information, strategically place units on the board. Once you start a wave, killing enemies will increase your money and give your units experience. From there, you can choose to place more units and level up the units you have.
Between quests, you hire and equip heroes. "Heroes" are associated with two units and one element, and you can take three heroes into a quest. Depending on the quest, you might try to have all one element and six different units, or the same units but three different elements, or something different. In whatever case, you'll clearly want a full arsenal of heroes at your disposal. In addition to a main storyline of quests with linear progression, the game is full of side quests that pop up randomly depending on your skill level and your relationship with the eleven different factions. The side quests are offered by the different factions, and only by increasing your favor with different factions will you be able to hire the very strongest heroes. There's also an option to fund expeditions to discover rare artifacts, whose name, "Protectomon", suggests a certain "gotta catch 'em all" factor.
The inability to save during a quest will probably cause dinnertime and bedtime brawls between parents and children across the world. Parents: don't forget to tell your kid that there is no penalty for ending or losing a quest early. On the contrary, you get to keep any loot you've found up to that point, and you also get some experience and money based on your score.
The only real fault I can find with the game is that it's still using the same (terrible) sound effects. The shrieking bat in particular, when you're fighting a large, fast wave, is ear-bleedingly annoying. Thankfully, nothing in gameplay really depends on sound effects, so you can turn them off by clicking on the volume icon at the top of the screen and selecting the sound effects. If you hated the previous games, there's not going to be anything in Protector IV to make you change your mind. For the large number of established fans, it's what you loved, only bigger and fresher. Hit mute and have fun!
Has anyone taken the time to check the actual bonuses from the questions you get asked at the start? I'm taking it for granted that the merchant background and "explore new markets" both add to the mercantile stat. I also see that choosing "revenge is sweet" speeds up your reputation gain.
Poor sound effects. I suffered through you for years in Ultima Online. Not gonna do it again.
Is anyone else becoming thoroughly sick of tower defense games? After Don't Touch my Gems it all seems a bit pointless.
I did a quick check on the starting stats, they should all be correct.
Base skills - 4 Leadership (Number of Heroes Allowed)
Travelling Merchant - Mercantile +1 (Better Value in Shops)
Noble's Squire - Leadership +1 (Number of Heroes Allowed)
Steet Urchin - Looting +1 (More/Better Loot)
Wandering Bard - Charm +1 (Higher Relations and Quest Exp., Hero Cost Down)
Student of Magic - Wisdom +1 (More exp. From Quests)
Foest Dweller - Tactics +1 (More Gold From Quests)
Sneaky Getaway - Sneaky Trait (Thieving Checks +5%)
Protect the Innocent - Protective Trait (1 Extra Life)
Sweet Revenge - Vengeance Trait (Relations Improve Faster)
Suits Me - Neutral Outlook Trait (Relations Improve Faster)
Love a Good Book - Well Read Trait (+5% Quest Exp.)
Me Smash - Brutish Trait (Melee Units +1 Base Damage)
Swordplay - Swordplay +1 (Melee Unit Damage Bonus)
Spell Slinging - Magic Use +1 (Mage Unit Damage Bonus)
Archery - Ranged +1 (Ranged Unit Damage Bonus)
New Markets - Mercantile +1 (Better Value in Shops)
Riches and Treasures - Looting +1 (More/Better Loot)
Power and Glory - Tactics +1 (More Gold From Quests)
Helping Others - Leadership +1 (Number of Heroes Allowed)
Destroy Evil - Charm +1 (Higher Relations and Quest Exp., Hero Cost Down)
Hidden Knowledge - Wisdom +1 (More exp. From Quests)
Physical - Phys Skill +1 (Bonus for Physical Units)
Fire - Fire Skill +1 (Bonus for Fire Units)
Ice - Ice Skill +1 (Bonus for Ice Units)
Poison - Toxic Skill +1 (Bonus for Poison Units)
Energy - Energy Skill +1 (Bonus for Energy Units)
I think starting Heroes, Gold, etc. remain the same, but didn't check to closely.
I think the heroes skills and objects management is far too complex.
I've played a lot with Protector 2 not long ago, so I thought I would not be too bad for this one, but I have great difficulty in completing quests (my victory/defeat ratio must be like 1/10!). Probably a game that require hours and hours of play to master.
I dunno about getting "sick" of it, Rose. It's a genre, just like a shooter, or an RPG, or a simulation. Everything has its audience, after all.
I do agree that you've got to do a lot to make your defense title stand out from the pack these days, since it seems to be a pretty popular concept to cut your developer's teeth on.
I think a single word can sum this game up quite nicely. Tedious. I've only gotten past the first 8 story levels, but I've already had much difficulty getting the right heroes and getting them high enough level to be useful and leveling myself to get more heroes and getting more money to get better stuff and getting more relations and getting more, well, you get the point. You have to grind. A lot. And it may seem okay at first, but it gets monotonous and grueling after a few hours. This was always my problem with all the other protector games. They are simply too tedious and, quite frankly, unappealing to most gamers.
@Apocalypstic: I wouldn't call them unappealing to most games, considering they have very high ratings. This is currently at 4.5/5 on Kongregate.
I haven't been far enough to require grinding, but I probably wouldn't mind it. I actually miss the days when games didn't hand out instant gratification.
The current rating for it was probably just first impression ratings by most gamers. Few bother to change their initial rating, and only once you get past the first hour does it seem to drag. I also do not appreciate instant gratification, but large amounts of grinding is also not to my liking. I prefer a more balanced game which rewards you for good playing and determination rather than how long you can sit in front of your screen watching waves and waves of slow monsters come by, minute after minute, hour after hour.
On a side note, I think this game would be half as grueling if it added a super fast forward. The current one barely makes a difference in pace in the long run. I also like how you can't sell units, but that's just about it.
I'm with Apocalypstic on this one--it's tedious, and has other problems to boot. I played for over 2 hours and had an abysmal win/fail ratio. I don't know if it's my placement strategy, unit upgrade tactics, underpowered heroes, or an unbalanced difficulty scale...but on most quests I would cruise through the first 5-10 waves, then get swamped by a VERY dense wave that my units couldn't chew through fast enough. Apocalypstic's comment sums up the immense amount of recursive leveling-to-get-better-at-leveling that would be necessary to get through these barriers.
Other quibbles include: the annoying sound effects others mentioned; quest descriptions that occasionally get cut off by a too-small, unscrollable box; a clunky mouse-reliant interface; no option to sell or remove a misplaced unit; and all the units sharing basically the same skill tree.
I was willing to sink a lot of time into Protector 2 despite some of these issues, but that last one is a biggie for me in this version. In Protector 2 I felt like I was making strategic choices about each unit's progression as I added modifiers, buffs, area affects, etc. onto their basic elemental attributes. Here, I had a hard time figuring out how elemental properties were even related to my units. Does a melee unit from a fire-aligned hero deal fire damage? If that unit attacks a fire-resistant enemy, does the melee attack suffer a penalty, or do they just lose the fire bonus? Do the 'debuff' modifiers have different effects depending on a mage unit's elemental alignment? I assume answers are in the Protectopedia, but I'm simply not willing to read an encyclopedic manual just to understand a "casual" game.
The developer deserves credit for experimenting with RPG elements and reaching solid production values on the world map and menus. I really like the ideas presented such as heroes, items, and achievements to boost the player's efficiency and unit's base power as the game progresses. Unfortunately, these innovations aren't integrated properly into the series' established gameplay framework, which seems largely unchanged from previous versions. This could have been a great leap forward, so hopefully the next iteration will make good on that potential.
I think this game falls into the trap of many more "advanced" flash games.. People forget what they're playing is a game produced for free over a couple of weeks/months by one or a couple of people.
Compared to your average flash game it's an amazing achievement, it has it's faults and issues but when stood against snowman launch 6 or room escape 42 games like this just can't be compared.
#Apoc: Hmm, I haven't had a problem with needing to grind yet and I'm a few hours in. I'm 25-3 win/fail so far.
@Tedric: Not being able to sell units is a Protector series staple. That will never change. As for the questions you asked - yes, the hero damage type is the damage all of the units deal. In game, they have a border that matches their damage type as well. Also, for example, a mage from a fire hero will do 50% damage to fire resistant enemies, but the debuffs/modifiers from that mage will still have 100% effect.
LOL these are some pretty silly comments. Protector 4 is amazing for a Flash game...
And it's actually too easy. Just go with a hero that has Trainees, and focus all in Magic Use and that element. In no time at all you literally can't lose and all strategies cease to matter because your units just blow everything away regardless of resists.
I don't think you can say in one breath that a strategy game is amazing, and with the next say that it breaks under one dominating strategy. Either or.
Haha lol, the bar-brian protectomon is a tribute to the book The Bfg
As long as you remember that adding new units is more efficient than upgrading units, you should be fine in this game.
The main reason for the suggestion that you use mages as opposed to other units is that mages can hit anything, while melee units can't hit anything that flies.
Oh, and put your first units close to the exit, and upgrade from the back to the front. If you upgrade front-to-back, then your back units will never get experience, and you leave yourself open to being overwhelmed.
I can't, for the life of me, figure out how to progress through the storyline. I have completed the ruined smithy quest 9 times and have gotten a score well over 5000, don't care if you got a better one... My reputation with The Kingdom of Arkandia is at liked. So I am really just stuck for a loop. If anyone can help it will be much obliged.
Not being able to get rid of a misplaced unit has been with us since the first installment of Protector.
And it doesn't take grinding, it really doesn't. It just takes some planning. You don't need to have your reputations and stats maxed out to beat the game. Though the usual course of action from people here seems to be "OK so I got destroyed by that wave there so I'll go grind up some levels and come back when I'm stronger". That's hardly ever needed. Some tweaks and pre-planning in your unit positioning can save you much grief. True, it's some trial and error, but it's not a tedious grind if you use your head a bit.
Plus, there's no penalty for losing, there's no penalty for not getting everything done "instantaneously or quicker". I've been missing a game that you don't have to, and don't want to complete in one sitting, and this is it. There's also more than one way to the goal, too.
It's amazing how a flash game can be better than many of the licensed games out there. Even though it's "just another tower defense game." Then again, Oblivion was "just another FRP game" as well...
And for those people that are stuck/stumped, there's a nifty little thing called "Protectopedia".
Also; when "most gamers" ask you to speak on their behalf, do so, but not until then. Just because you like or hate it, that doesn't make everyone else like it or hate it.
The game has some flaws indeed, and one of them is imbalance. While your initial choices of heroes should influence how hard you just made a map for yourself, that's taken a bit too much into extremes. Many maps can be won with as much as one well-placed unit with a proper skill set. The same maps can be utterly and completely failed with a whole army. While it's a good thing that you can't just bruteforce your way through the maps, the extremes need to be cut off a bit.
Sound effects? A tad annoying, but they can be turned off.
@Akelix . Check all the other flags/banners on the map. There should be 1 for your base, 1 for Arkandia Jones, 1+ for random quests and at least 1 for storyline quests.
This game no longer feels like it's about tower defense, but rather the choices you have to make to upgrade your own stats and the stats of your heros. I dread making the wrong decision and upgrading the wrong thing, because you can't reset your points. I loved the first 3 episodes but can't get in to this.
I agree. This game just isn't appealing to me at all, and I loved the first 3.
I've played for a while on this and at first I agreed with the complainers. However as I'm a complete TD nut, I kept on coming back and I've come to like it. As Vegos says, grinding isn't necessary. If you are then you are doing something wrong or have missed something like the stats upgrades.
It is worth putting some time and thought into this game. It takes a while to get into but I like it.
has any one noticed that beating the great hydra is FREAKING IMPOSSIBLE!
How does "gold steal" works?
Seems that i can't stole any GP (i am equipping stealing chance %+ items)...
I beat this game in 2 days; it's as usual very well done, but in the end, I felt it was too customizable: you can change the element, the name and even the units of your characters, so the only different thing remaining was their little picture. Nonetheless a very, very addicting game (my eyes, agh!).
This game isn't really that difficult once you've gotten the hang of it...i completed it largely using only three heroes.
My strategy. Using spoiler tags just in case:
This became really lengthy. I'm adding a summary at the back.
Using ranged units is really important. I didn't bother with melee at all.
The first two heroes i rely on are the dude with the crossbowmen you get at the starting, and the energy mage. Their units are fantastic; the crossbowmen have a slow which is ESSENTIAL and the mage has an archwizard (did i get the name right?) with infection and teleport. Also, the initiate may be slow but it is one of the more powerful and cheaper ranged damager. She becomes your main damager.
For the third hero, I waited till i got someone with archers from flitwind, primarily because you gain favours with this section earlier in the game. Also, their ranged units typically have a range of three which really helps.
To break it down:
1) Flitwind/or any 3rd hero you like--the very first units you put near the back of the map. Upgrade them decently before adding more. They will be your "final stand defenders" if you encounter a really tough wave.
2) Energy mage: when you proceed to later maps always add an archwizard after you've upgraded your final stand defenders. You can adopt two strategies with this unit: make it an infector or a teleporter.
a) Infector--typically able to hit the enemies once they enter the map. Since poison work over time, the further they are from the exit when they get infected, the more it damages them.
b)Teleporter--less effective because the chance to cast teleport is very low even when fully upgraded, so this wizard is only recommended when you have money to burn (and you will, in later matches). It makes sense to put this wizard as far back as possible because you want to damage enemies as much as possible before putting them through the mill again.
Also, initiates will be your main source of damage until you've upgraded your flitwind hero to a decent level. These robed creatures deal big damage even when the element is wrong. Since many maps typically have at two dominating recommended elements with a third element (usually with flying units) that only last three waves, I find changing the energy mage to that element a very viable strategy because the initiates have decent damage, range, and a debuff to make up for it.
3) The crossbowmen. Don't bother with paladins. Just focus on leveling the HERO's skill in ranged combat. I ALWAYS add two crossbowmen (up to four on long maps) right in the front of the map. However, be sure to do this only after you've upgraded your final stand defenders (maybe around 6?) and that one or two archiwizard to a decent level (up to 3/4 skill upgrades typically)
These two buggers should be upgraded till they have the MAX slowing speed. You'll see your enemies crawl. This is especially important for the hydra map and other short maps. They work fantastically well with infectors.
1) Put final stand defenders first (up to 6 usually) focusing on upgrading their damage.
2) Put one or two archwizards (or any units with infect/teleport/good status skills) to engage the enemies at the front and/or back of the map.
3) Put in your crossbowmen at the front.
4) fill the maps with main damage dealers (initiates in my case) and upgrade everyone accordingly.
1) Although adding new units on maps with less money is really important, i find that upgrading your first units with the additional 40 percent increase in damage helps alot too. Its quite affordable and in certain cases, could be more value for money.
2) Each hero should only focus on ONE type of unit, either melee ranged or magic.
3) Upgrade from the back.
4) Units with low damage but big range (like the wizards) are actually great because you can put them on the map earlier without compromising your other units. They get a chance to gain experience while your other units finish the kill.
5) If you have a spot on the map which is close to both the entrance and the exit, LEAVE THIS for a crossbowman or a wizard; someone capable of controlling the pace of the enemies essentially. Slows at the beginning AND at the end of the map is deadly; also, a wizard with both teleport and infect upgraded will cause some serious damage here.
There are definitely more permutations and combinations but this is definitely one of the most convenient ways of beating the game.
I don't understand how people could find this game difficult. Basic strategy will get you a long way. For one, read what you're up against and pick your units accordingly. If there are units that absorb an element, DON'T USE THAT ELEMENT. Do pick units that are effective against the enemy. If you come up against enemies that have contradictory weaknesses and strengths, pick a mixed set of elements to balance things out. Place your units for maximum range. Use ranged units. Think about what abilities you give each unit. Really, how you customize stats doesn't have that much of an impact on the game. You just need to THINK before you play.
And as to that hydra, I used a pair of poison Archmages, a fire technomancer, and an energy archwizard and chewed through them. Just be sure to equip a bunch of stuff that lowers paving costs beforehand and you should be good to go. Hell, you don't even need to use those particular units, just stick with those elements. I've never lost more than one life on that level.
It seems like at first, Fire is an amazingly useful element. Energy is pretty good too.
Physical kind of sucks though for the most part.
I generally try to use 2 elements for every battle. This way, if someone Absorbs from element 1, the second element still nails em.
I was able to hire this Fire hero who has Skirmishers(?) and Guardians pretty early. These guys are fast shooting archers with range THREE. Guardians are just a slightly bigger skirmisher though. Their special is to deliver extra beatings to fliers.
I like to start with the skirms and then bust out the archwizards with their range 4.
This combination has been very powerful, even when taking on maps with Fire resistant foes. The archmages with infect and damage upgrades are enough to kill a boss even with them absorbing all the fire-archers.
Some abilities such as Steal are totoally useless until you get a hero with UNITS capable of stealing.
I really wish there was a list of what units are in what faction. Also that the unit-convert scrolls were not RANDOM and cost so much. Once again, knowing what units are in each faction and what their Trees are(roughly) and what they do would be super helpful.
Best Protector yet! I've tried all of them, but this is the only one that really seems to work as claimed. I haven't had to do any grinding, even when I've failed a quest. I just change my tactics and nine times out of ten I've beaten it the second time out.
I really love the new skill tree that each unit has. It makes it so much easier to figure out what I've done. I can't think of a single thing I would change or improve. GOOD JOB!!!
I also have no idea how to steal. I've done about 15 quests so far, and not have gotten even the first badge of steal 50 gold (sneak thief). Equipping +steal% or not.
Certain units have steal as a special power. It's not usually worth it though, since money flows freely in most maps. Go for the +looting units instead. They're fun.
@GP: There's actually an item you can get in one of the stores that does reset your exp. You just have to play enough story quests to unlock it.
I found it pretty easy once I picked 3 heroes to upgrade and just made sure to collect as many different "elemental switch" items as possible. There's no point in trying to level up one hero for each element when you can just slap a ring onto one that's already leveled up.
There are also a million stacking bonuses, especially for fire. My strategy is entirely ranged/magic, since melee can't attack flying waves at all. I put physical crossbowmen in front and max their slowing ability, then put in energy trainees with debuff, and then lots of fire archers to do the most damage.
Ickle Cactus = Cactuar from the Final Fantasy series
I like the "Skully Moulder" enemy, hurray for The X-Files
I love the random names of the units, from "Hrothgar", who is the warrior king whose hall is being plagued by Grendel and later by Grendel's mother in the Old English heroic epic poem Beowolf, to such names as; Larry, Bob, and Myrealnameisjohn. I'm sure there are some other great names that I've forgotten and some other wonderful references I've missed but these are the ones that come to mind. This is one of the best flash games I've played in a long time. A hearty ‘well-done' to this games' creator(s), she/he/they deserve a cookie.
Oh, and for those of you that say the Great Hydra is impossible, I beat the level with one huscarl, no life boosting equipment, and lost only one life (to the hydra, but I killed him on his second pass through). Have a day :-l
I have finished 5 red storyline quest and 4 storyline quest for "Rangers Of Flitwind" and don't have any other storyline quests to choose. What should i do now?
i have completed what i beleive to be al storyline quests, all arkandia ones, 4 flitwind ones, 2 council ones and a gentlemans one, after that there is basically nothing, there is room for addtion t this game
An incredibly easy way to beat the hydra level is to realize that NO ENEMIES IN THAT LEVEL FLY. Melee units inherently do a lot more damage than ranged units, and you start with enough cash to clear all 4 squares and then place ADVANCED units on each of them. I use 2 "Augmented" from a poison hero I got, a "Knight" from one of the first 3 heroes you start with, and usually a "Guardian" (I think, name may be wrong), which is a melee unit WITH A RANGE OF 2. The "Augmented" are in front, and I almost always end up with at least one of them maxed. This is also a great way to level up a poison hero, btw, as he usually ends up with around 2,000 exp for this quest even though it only has 5 waves (ymmv, I like upping my heroes wisdom to make leveling faster).
I have to play on different comps and is wondering if it is possible to take some file with to the comps so i dont have to start all over again?
[The answer you seek is on this page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Local_Shared_Object Look up the location for your OS of where the Flash local shared object is stored (that's where game saves are stored). -Jay]
Heres how to win every time.
Only use range or magic. It takes 1 flying round to lose if you use too much melee. Level either range or magic till it is capped, and only use the respective type with that hero.
Spamm basic units with only the 40% damage upgrade.
Ignore the weaknesess, and choose an element for which no round is strong against it.
May lose the first round or two, but after enough points go into range/magic you can't lose.
Your supposition as to how the game achieved its rating shows a bit of ignorance as to how Kongregate rates games. On that site, game ratings are a constantly adjusted average of all the ratings a game has gotten. TD & RPG fans love it, and those who aren't TD fans won't go near it, so they don't rate it. Plus, I have yet to see anything with an RPG aspect that doesn't require a bit of grinding. The trick is to do it smart.
Equip the hero you're trying to level up with whatever will give him the most Wisdom. Equip the other heroes with blanket effect items, especially items that increase your chance to steal.
Just raising the Wisdom on a hero can have a snowball effect on leveling, but you also want to pay attention to Leadership, Tactics, and Logistics for cheaper units & cheaper unit leveling.
Hire a guild of honest gentleman hero and place the adv. unit "Gentleman" and level up with the gold skill to max.
what are the 5 protectomns at the bottom of the protectomon screen?
what happpens when you max all relationships
The most important things to remember in this game are that melee units can't hit flying things and never depend on an element that will be absorbed. Leveling units up in the skirms is far more important to winning each skirm than leveling yourself or your heroes. The Great Hydra is pretty much the simplest skirm there is on the game: fire with advanced melee units works best for me. If you want to learn what kinds of units each faction has, collect all the protectomons. When you look at them, they tell you the names and factions of every available unit. I got them by using the guild's gentlemen on the great hydra. Maxing some of their looting will almost assure at least one protectomon per skirm. I sometimes got three or more.