Dominions 6, the history/mythology/pulp fiction/dark fantasy Turn based Strategy game

Rumour mill:

-new ways to fight against ethereal/mistform/invuln (aoe buff spells that turn weapons in magical weapons? all magical creatures have magic attacks?)
-Size scale changed to 1-10, more granularity
-Economy readjusted: base income is higher (I’ve been told neutral scales give around 20% more) but Forts and other buildings are almost twice as expensive. I think this is so indie recruitment is more common.
-Cavalry reworked. Now all riders can fight even if the animal dies, and can be re-recruited at the home province for half the cost.
-Bless point system changed, now all magic paths gives a common pool of points. This should benefit rainbow mages, that before didn’t have access to strong blesses. Weapon blesses are cheaper.
-some sacreds cost multiple holy points to recruit now
-larger battlefield
-larger population in provinces, provinces has a default small % growth by default
-cave layer map, Agharta and others start there
-remote spell attacks can be watched
-different sized arrows for different army sizes, improved side menus in the UI
-flanking action in scripting (very unconfirmed)
-province terrain can change with scales
-battle props (trees, rocks) have HP and be destroyed. Like CoE?
-elemental spam nerfed; elementals harder to summon, ethereal tramplers deal half damage
-elves have received a mysterious sidegrade that somehow relates to gem economies becoming more competitive with blood economies
-mounts have all stats regular monsters have, natural weapons, can be affected by buffs (and there are some mount specific ones)
-Dom6 is changing piercing damage to -15% prot (with the reduction rounding down). blunt to +25% damage BEFORE protection (still head hits only!) and, IIRC, leaving slashing unchanged. (editado)

Same. I only played a bit of a Qt3 async Dom4 game some years back and the UI/UX and micro drove me mad even in the early game. I was totally set on getting into it; I printed off, bound and read a good chunk of the instruction manual, made a custom map for our game and spent a good 40 hours playing and trying to get into it (with lots of Q&A) but found it impenetrable. A tutorial would probably go a long way if the UI/UX was improved as well. I really hope this clicks for me one day.

I remember that game, and that was a beautiful map you made.

In reality, Illwinter need to have a good look at the units, spells and items and recognise which ones players are basically never using. Sure, the units are great to have present from a thematic perspective, but in a game where efficient gem usage and mage turns matter, anything that costs gems must be worthwhile.

The first example I thought of with national units is EA Ermor’s Triarius. The grizzled veterans, the old guard, whose stats make them not very good to use (hello encumberance 10), have a massive cost to recruit, and have “Old Age” to really scream “Do not recruit this!”

Hahah thank you!

Yeah, this is something that bothers me in other games. I recall liking the look of various units and spells when we were preparing for our async game but being warded off from them due to their viability or very specific favourable conditions. To newcomers they can be like traps that lure you in then hobble you.

Dominions games always need a few years in order for Balance Mods to come out and update everything.

This has been true since Dominions 3, at least.

I assume this will be true in Dominions 6, although I will say that the balance has usually improved between versions of the game (vanilla Dominions 4 had better balance then vanilla Dominions 3, and vanilla Dominions 5 had better balance then vanilla Dominions 4).

That being said, one of the nice things about Dominions, and its art, is that it’s easy to create new content for the game.

@Brooski,

Do they have you lined up for another manual update?

Kristoffer asked me if I’d like to playtest but has not said anything about manuals.

Say to him you can recommend a beta tester. I have two weeks of vacations now :P

How real are these rumors? :-)

let me reclassify it:

Confirmed by the devs
-Magic attacks, magic movement is seen on the strategic map
-some possible way to see diplo status against AI (diplomacy screen??)

Confirmed by beta testers:
-Size scale changed to 1-10, more granularity. Humans are size 3, cavalry is size 5.
-Economy readjusted: base income is higher (I’ve been told neutral scales give around 20% more) but Forts and other buildings are almost twice as expensive. I think this is so indie recruitment is more common.
-Cavalry reworked. Now all riders can fight even if the animal dies, and can be re-recruited at the home province for half the cost.
-mounts have all stats regular monsters have, natural weapons, can be affected by buffs (and there are some mount specific ones)
-Bless point system changed, now all magic paths gives a common pool of points. Weapon blesses are cheaper.
-some sacreds cost multiple holy points to recruit now
-larger battlefield
-larger population in provinces, provinces has a default small % growth by default
-cave layer map, Agharta and others start there
-remote spell attacks can be watched on the battle screen, as part of the battle report
-different sized arrows for different army sizes, improved side menus in the UI
-elves have received a sidegrade that somehow relates to gem economies becoming more competitive with blood economies
-Dom6 is changing piercing damage to -15% prot (with the reduction rounding down). blunt to +25% damage BEFORE protection (still head hits only!) and, IIRC, leaving slashing unchanged.
-Poor amphibian is less bad in water: -1 def -2 att

Rumour mill:
-new ways to fight against ethereal/mistform/invuln (aoe buff spells that turn weapons in magical weapons? all magical creatures have magic attacks?)
-flanking action in scripting (very unconfirmed)
-province terrain can change with scales
-battle props (trees, rocks) have HP and be destroyed. Like CoE?
-elemental spam nerfed; elementals harder to summon, ethereal tramplers deal half damage

So, there is a new Glamour path, which will take the place of the illusion make of Air.

Yeah, let me paste this…

(edit, see below)

Ok, I reorganized the existing info in a more readable format:

Scales

Scales by default now go from -2 to +2. Pretenders modify those limits as explained below, and nations can have modifiers on top of that (like Berytos being Heat +1 or MA Ermor being Death +2, or Yomi Turmoil +1). Some spells and random events can also modify a province beyond the default limits, going up to -5 and +5. However, extreme scales like these are not natural and will have negative consequences, even when we are talking positive scales, like Order 5 making mages less creatives reducing their research, or Magic 5 horror marking people in the province.

Pretender

Pretender choice is a bit more important, because they can modify the scales default limits (toward the positive or negative side). One can move the max limit to growth+1 (meaning, the limit will be 3 instead of 2), another can give you turmoil and death +1. some pretenders give a bonus starting site (even if imprisoned), usually +1 gem. Apart from that we can expect the typical changes (new Pretenders, rebalanced existing ones).

Provinces

Provinces can change more. Heat/Cold 4 and 5 make neighboring provinces have the chance to modify their temps up to +3 and +4, respectively. Strong death scales can transform a province type from forests to plains, and from plains to waste (or the opposite with Growth). There are some spells to change province scales too, and even the type more directly, like flooding a province.

Provinces now have a very small population growth by default, with Growth 0, btw.

Finally, indie armies in neutral provinces will be somewhat stronger than before, to compensate for the bigger armies we will have.

Blesses

Blesses are more flexible, because any magical points give bless points, and they all go to a common pool. 2 Fire, 3 Astral => 5 bless points, for example. Blesses themselves still have adequate prerequisites, so you need high nature to get regeneration. That said, you don’t get the ‘extra’ points for having 3 in all sorcery paths or all elemental paths.

Finally, take in account that you will have less sacreds in the game, proportionally speaking (see Economy changes). Some new blesses can give stealth, others give you glamour, others counter glamour, one gives fear aura but it doesn’t work against people who see through the glamour.

Economy

You start with 50% more gold (600g). You gain around 30% more gold than before, as provinces have a bigger population, however, Infrastructure is more expensive, with forts costing around 80%? more, and mages are 30% more expensive. The net result should be having a bigger ratio of mundane troops vs mages/sacred (as sacred are still limited by sacred points), also a bit more of use of indie troops and non-forts national recruits. About sacreds, the more expensive ones like big Giants and Zhadeyans cost 2 and 3 sacred points, respectively.

Cavalry

Cavalry has been reworked. Mounts and riders are different units, with different stats, and they can die and the other survive. Mounts can be affected by buffs, in fact they are specific spells for them. They have barding, with a magical slot for magical barding items. They can have different weak and strong points than the riders (say, low MR and lower max age, or lacking cold or heat resist the rider have). If the mount is killed, the troop can be rehired at the home province with a 50% discount. Some horses have more protection, others are faster.

There is a new unit trait that is fairly common for elite cavalry, Skillful Rider, gives a defense and morale bonus to the mount. Less effective with heavy barding.

Combat

As you have more gold to recruit troops, battlefields are also larger.

Unit Size scale changed to 1-10, from 1-6, to have more granularity. Goblins are size 2, Humans are size 3, cavalry is size 5, giants can be size 9, dragons are size 10. This makes harder to hit the torso and head of giants by humans.

Piercing damage type nerfed to -15% prot (with the reduction rounding down). blunt to +25% damage BEFORE protection, instead of 50% after prot (still head hits only!)

The battlefield can have props (trees, rocks), which disrupt formation, and have HP and be destroyed. Some other misc changes:

-poor amphibian att/def penalties are reduced to -2/-1

-Bark/Stone/Iron spells are less effective for units that rely on armor.

-Ethereal tramplers deal half damage

-Human average hp and strength is slightly higher than before.

-Poison will reduce attack and defense (but kill less, I guess?)

-Sleep resistance is a trait.

-Chaos Power benefits more of unrest.

-Frost Brand is Const 6 and no longer does AoE damage. It does do AN cold damage.

-New item: vine sword. Like vine whip but with higher damage.

Magic

Some AoE spells are larger, to make sense in the larger battlefield, too. However, the 100% battlefield wide spells are harder to cast and more expensive (for example, Foul Vapours is one more path and one more gem). Instead, there are some new similar ‘mid range’ spells, with biggish AoE but without reaching 100% of the battlefield. We can imagine a lesser ‘Fog Warriors’ that is “just” AoE 50.

There is a new magical Path, Glamour, the magic of illusions, phantasms, dreams and the stuff of forgotten legends. It has its own new gem type.

-Regarding Magic Duel, there's a glamour spell that ensures you only get brain damaged instead of killed.

-There are a new glamour magical item that 'feeds' you but it's an illusion, it only serves to 'not be sad until you starve to death'.

-Glamour also has 'false damage' spells, the damage will evaporate if there is no glamour mage on the bf.

The three types of communions are not shareable anymore. You can’t use a crystal matrix to join a blood communion.

-There is a 'bunch' new air spells that improve Precision.

-air mailing stuff is an Air spell now.

-Wailing Winds is Glamour/Air now.

-There is a new global spell similar ‘Acid Sea’ that kills things in the oceans.

-There is a new spell/site to travel through the Astral Nexus (bit like stygian paths, it's a virtual trip)

-New spell, Astral/Glamour, to make horrors ignore a province.

-Charm animal is MR easy now.

-Elementals are harder to summon and/or has been nerfed.

-New battle spell to make someone invisible.

-There are spells to grant true/spirit sight. Darkvision too.

-Burden of Time is Thaum 9 spell.

-Legions of Steel has been split in three versions of it, with different amount of power.

-Flaming Arrows spell that affects the entire BF is moved to Ench 7, there is a lesser version that is normal AoE x.

-There is a new Poison Arrows spell, similar to Flaming Arrows.

Layer/Planes

There is a second layer in the strategic map, for a caverns ‘plane’, a bit like in Conquest of Elysium games with their multitude of planes. We don’t know if there will be extra planes too, it hasn’t been announced, by in a screenshot in the Steam page, you can see a third icon. Some nations start in the cavern layer, like Agharta, Xibalba, etc.

UI/QoL

-remote spell attacks can be watched on the battle screen, as part of the battle report

-Magic attacks & magic movement are indicated by icons/arrows on the strategic map

-some possible way to see diplo status against AI has been hinted (diplomacy screen??)

-different sized arrows for different army sizes, improved side menus in the UI

-PD starts at 1

- new table screen to manage your magical items and who owns them

- y key shows people who will be in the target province, not the ones inside a fort

-You can preview the possible forgeable items, and filter by path.

-Click on treasury will tell you how much you are spending this current turn on various stuff (commanders, troops, buildings...)

-clicking on income will show income by province and upkeep per unit.

-The score graphs for gem income now display income from things other than magic sites and globals

-New filters on the F1 screen.

Nations

There will be new nations, we know so far only Pyrene, inspired by Basque Country. We know it’s at least EA and MA, and we know there will be new ones in LA.

Multiplayer

There will be a new lobby system so people can more easily find and join games. Most probably, it will be the same lobby system that exists in Conquest of Elysium 5, the other Illwinter series.

edit: I’m not a beta tester, so this is all semi-official hearsay. Chances are, I misunderstood some stuff here and there, even if the changes are real, so take all with a pinch of salt.


TLDR:
The new features, apart from the typical new content in the shape of new nations, pretenders, units and spells, are a new ‘cave’ layer like in Age of Wonders or Conquest of Elysium, new magical Path called ‘Glamour’ focused on illusions, reworked cavalry system for units with mounts and new multiplayer lobby system.
Apart from that, there is something that is less tangible as ‘new content’ but it’s equally important, there is a heavy rebalancing (not just adjusting gold costs or damage points) of the game in most aspects, from how Dominion scales work, how scales affect provinces and how nations and Pretenders affect scales, how the balance between mundane armies, sacreds and mages is in army compositions, with an attempt to move things a bit more toward the mundane armies, and high end magic has been reigned in, with more mid tier magic to compensate.
There will be incremental updates to the UI, with new shortcut keys for new functions and new filters in some screens, and I barely have heard anything about AI improvements :(.

Thanks for taking the time to pull that information together and do your best at summarizing the changes.

I went from being mildly happy and glad to support another Illwinter product to genuinely excited to try this new version with these changes.

Thank you for this!

There are, of course, people discussing in Discord the balance of the new changes, but it’s kinda a moot point. It’s still an early beta. They said it will release at the end of the year. That’s potentially early December, for example. So they still have four full months where they can change numbers up and down.

A video from youtuber about the announcement

Some people here already know, but you have a more up to date list of features and changes on the Steam forum

A very new info is that there will be 8 new nations.

Also, it seems steam workshop for mods is almost confirmed. Before it was only for maps.

Also confirmed is the fact there is a rudimentary diplomacy system, you at least can request a nap3.

Speaking of mods, it has been confirmed that blesses can be modded. This is important because it was the remaining big thing that balance mods couldn’t touch. So now the typical community balance mods will be better.