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Nightblades
Tactical Nightblades
Race Dark Elves
Req. Town Buildings Fighters' Guild
Construction Cost Icon Production.png 120
Upkeep Cost Icon Gold.png 3
Icon Food.png1
Unit Properties
# of figures Icon MultiFigureUnit.png 6
Moves Icon Movement Ground1
Melee Attack per figure Icon Melee Normal.png 4 *
Defense per figure Icon Defense.png 3
Resistance Icon Resist.png 7 *
Hit Points per figure Icon Hits.png 1
Unit Abilities

Ability Invisibility Invisibility

Ability PoisonTouch Poison Touch 1

Nightblades are a type of Normal Unit. This unit is unique to the Dark Elf race, and may only be created at a Dark Elf town, for the Construction Cost of Icon Production.png 120. The town must already contain a Fighters' Guild for this to be possible.

Nightblades are a Melee Attack unit, possessing similar combat characteristics to the common Halberdiers. However, they possess two important abilities that basically define their entire role on the battlefield: they are Invisible, and perform a Poison Touch attack that is deadly to low-Resistance targets. While other Dark Elf units are busy showering enemies with their Ranged Attacks, Nightblades move stealthily behind the enemy to take out Ranged Attack units in the rear or ambush other weak enemy units. Like all other Dark Elves, Nightblades are highly resistant to magic.

Nightblades require an Upkeep Cost of Icon Gold.png 3 and Icon Food.png1 to maintain. Failure to pay these costs will result in the unit being disbanded automatically.

Unit Properties Edit

Physical Description Edit

Nightblades are a group of Dark Elves - slender humanoids with violet-colored skin and white hair. Nightblades however possess the ability to become so stealthy that they completely disappear from sight. The Nightblades use this ability to sneak up on their targets and attack them with deadly poison-tipped weapons. They are also incredibly resistant to magic and other ill effects.

Nightblades are a Icon MultiFigureUnit.png Multi-Figure unit, containing Icon Figure.png 6 figures when fully healed.

Attack Properties Edit

Nightblades rely on a strong Melee Attack that is roughly on par with that of a Halberdiers unit. However, they back this up with poison-coated weapons which can easily kill low-Resistance targets. Unlike other Dark Elves, the Nightblades lack a Ranged Attack entirely.

Each Nightblade has a default Melee Attack score of Icon Melee Normal.png 4. However, since Nightblades usually come with at least one free Icon Experience Level.png Experience Level, their actual attack score is normally Icon Melee Normal.png 5. With no additional bonuses, this delivers an average damage output of about Icon Damage.png 1.5, a formidable attack that can pierce most Normal Units' armor.

With all Icon Figure.png 6 figures in the unit attacking simultaneously, the resulting damage output can be quite high, especially against poorly-armored targets. On occasion it can also hurt low-tier Fantastic Units.

In addition, each time the Nightblades attack or Counter Attack, they also carry out a Touch Attack delivering 1 point of Poison Damage per Nightblade. The target unit makes 1 Resistance roll for each living Nightblade - and each failed roll causes the target to suffer Icon Damage.png 1 point of Damage. The average damage output from this attack is therefore dependent only on the target's Resistance score, and can thus vary greatly from one target to the next.

Targets possessing Poison Immunity or a Resistance score of Icon Resist.png 10 or higher are completely immune to the Poison Touch attack. Such targets will only suffer Melee Damage, if any, from the Nightblades.

Defense Properties Edit

Nightblades possess a Defense score of Icon Defense.png 3, which is average for a Normal Unit. They can deflect about Icon Damage.png 0.9 points of Damage from any damage source, on average. This can help against weak opponents, but will not save the unit against any decent attack.

As with most Normal Units, each Nightblade possesses only Icon Hits.png 1 Hit Point. In other words, each point of Icon Damage.png Damage inflicted on this unit will kill off one of its Icon Figure.png figures.

Fortunately, the Nightblades' Invisibility serves to protect them during battle. They cannot be attacked while invisible (see more on this below), nor can be directly targeted by any spell. Furthermore, if they do become visible to the enemy, any unit attempting to attack the Nightblades receives a penalty of Icon ToHit.png -10% To Hit, reducing damage significantly.

This makes the Nightblades unit a little more resilient than Halberdiers. Still, because the unit is so expensive, it is often best to avoid serious combat, instead using the Nightblades to kill off weaker units.

Dark Elves are inherently resistant to magic, and so Nightblades possess an impressive Resistance score of Icon Resist.png 7 by default. Again, since Nightblades are almost always created with at least one free Experience Level, they will normally have a score of Icon Resist.png 8 instead. This provides good protection from Curses and other ill effects. With additional Icon Experience.png Experience, the Nightblades can become significantly more resistant to such effects, and may even become immune to some of them as the unit crosses Icon Resist.png 10.

Other Properties Edit

Nightblades move at a slow Icon Movement Ground1, and can only traverse land tiles. The unit has no special movement properties.

Nightblades possess the Invisibility trait, which renders them invisible to almost all enemy units. As long as the Nightblades are not directly adjacent to an enemy unit, the enemy cannot see them at all, cannot make any attacks against them, and cannot directly target them with any spells. Furthermore, the enemy cannot see the Nightblades on the overland map, and is not aware of their existence until they suddenly appear in battle.

When the Nightblades move to a tile adjacent to any enemy unit, they become semi-transparent. At this point, all enemy units can see them on the battlefield, and they can be targeted with attacks and spells. If an enemy army contains at least one unit possessing the Illusions Immunity trait or the True Sight spell, the Nightblades will become semi-transparent immediately regardless of their position.

Still, any enemy unit attempting to attack the Nightblades suffers a To Hit penalty of Icon ToHit.png -10%. This can be a very significant penalty, reducing the enemy's average damage output by a large amount!

Note that spells that choose their own targets (or affect multiple targets) may end up affecting the Nightblades even when fully invisible. It is simply not possible to directly choose the Nightblades as the target for any spell while they are invisible.

Basic Strategy Edit

Nightblades are stealth units designed for cunning tactics rather than brute-force combat. They differ greatly from all other Dark Elf units, primarily in the fact that they do not possess any Ranged Attack. The Nightblades' task is to surprise the enemy, who is not normally aware of their position, by outflanking it and attacking the weakest units for high damage.

At the start of the battle, while other Dark Elf unit bombard the enemy with their Ranged Attacks, Nightblades must immediately advance up-field. In some scenarios, they will maneuver around the enemy lines to reach the weaker Ranged Attack units in the rear, which they can then easily kill with Melee Attacks, Poison Touch attacks, or both.

In other scenarios, Nightblades will maneuver to the edges of the enemy lines, and then move in to attack exposed low-tier Normal Units or any other unit possessing a low Resistance score. Such units can be killed rather easily by the Poison Touch attack. In fact, some low-Resistance Fantastic Units can also be targeted by the Nightblades, as they too will suffer significant damage from such an attack. However, Fantastic Units' Counter Attacks may prove more than a match for the Nightblades, and could end up killing them all.

Remember to keep your Nightblades hidden until they are ready to strike. The enemy has no idea where they are when invisible, and in fact does not even know they are present on the battlefield until they first reveal themselves. Use this to your advantage, and also make sure to pull your Nightblades back after each attack they make in order to become invisible again. The last thing you want is for enemy units to detect, surround, and destroy your Nightblades.

Remember that if the enemy army has even a single Illusions-Immune or True-Seeing unit, part of this advantage is lost: these units will spot the Nightblades at any distance, and all units on that side can give chase. The Nightblades can also be targeted by spells. Some advantages remain, however: units attacking the Nightblades without Illusions Immunity still suffer a serious To Hit penalty which can impact their damage output, and in version 1.31, the AI will not target invisible units with Ranged Attacks, ever.

Ability Overview Edit

Ability Invisibility Invisibility Edit

  • During combat, this unit is only visible to the enemy when it moves adjacently to an enemy unit, or when any unit in the enemy army possesses the Illusions Immunity ability, or is affected by the True Sight spell.
  • While undetected, this unit may not be attacked by any enemy, or targeted by any spells.
  • The unit inflicts a Icon ToHit.png -10% penalty on any enemy that attacks it with a Melee Attack or Ranged Attack.

Ability PoisonTouch Poison Touch 1 Edit

  • During this unit's Melee Attack, each Icon Figure.png figure will also make a Touch Attack against the target, delivering 1 point of Poison Damage per attack.
  • The target unit must make a single Resistance roll against each Poison Attack. For each roll the target fails, it receives Icon Damage.png 1 point of Damage.
  • The Poison Damage is dealt simultaneously with the exchange of Melee Damage between the two units.
  • The Poisoning also occurs when this unit Counter Attacks against an enemy assailant.
  • This effect does nothing against targets possessing the Poison Immunity ability.

Experience Table Edit

The following table illustrates how Nightblades improve as they gain Experience. Any properties that are not listed here do not improve with Experience in any way.

Level Icon Level Name EP Melee To Hit Defense Resist Hits
Experience 0 Recruit Icon Experience.png 0 - Icon Experience.png 19 Icon Melee Normal.png 4 Icon ToHit.png 30% Icon Defense.png 3 Icon Resist.png 7 Icon Hits.png 1
Experience 1 Regular Icon Experience.png 20 - Icon Experience.png 59 Icon Melee Normal.png 5 Icon ToHit.png 30% Icon Defense.png 3 Icon Resist.png 8 Icon Hits.png 1
Experience 2 Veteran Icon Experience.png 60 - Icon Experience.png 119 Icon Melee Normal.png 5 Icon ToHit.png 30% Icon Defense.png 4 Icon Resist.png 9 Icon Hits.png 1
Experience 3 Elite Icon Experience.png 120 Icon Melee Normal.png 6 Icon ToHit.png 40% Icon Defense.png 4 Icon Resist.png 10 Icon Hits.png 2
Experience 4 Ultra-Elite Icon Experience.png 120 * Icon Melee Normal.png 6 Icon ToHit.png 50% Icon Defense.png 5 Icon Resist.png 11 Icon Hits.png 2
Experience 5 Champion Icon Experience.png 120 ** Icon Melee Normal.png 7 Icon ToHit.png 60% Icon Defense.png 5 Icon Resist.png 12 Icon Hits.png 3

* To achieve this level, either the Warlord Retort or the Crusade spell must be in play.
** To achieve this level, both the Warlord Retort and the Crusade spell must be in play simultaneously.

Average Damage Output Edit

The table below details the average amount of damage that each Icon Figure.png Figure in a Nightblades unit will deliver with each type of attack, based on Icon Experience Level.png Experience Level. It can be used in comparison to the target's Defense rating to figure out the chance of hurting that target.

Select weapons:
Level Icon Level Name Melee Ranged * Thrown Breath
Experience 0 Recruit
Experience 1 Regular
Experience 2 Veteran
Experience 3 Elite
Experience 4 Ultra-Elite
Experience 5 Champion

<img src="Icon_Melee_Normal.png"><img src="Icon_Melee_Magic.png"><img src="Icon_Melee_Mithril.png"><img src="Icon_Melee_Adamantium.png">

Acquisition Edit

Nightblades are unique to the Dark Elf race, and thus may be produced in any Dark Elf Town.

A town must contain a Fighters' Guild to be able to produce Nightblades. Should a town lose an existing Fighters' Guild, it can no longer produce Nightblades until a replacement structure is built.

Note that this building requirement means that Nightblades produced in towns will always start as "Regular" troops (one free Experience Level), giving them a small but significant bonus above the default unit strength.

The Construction Cost of this unit is Icon Production.png 120.

Nightblades may appear for hire as Mercenaries. They may already have some Experience on being hired, and several units may be hired simultaneously. Hiring these units requires a certain cost in Icon Gold.png Gold that depends on many different factors. Nightblade Mercenaries have the same Upkeep Cost as a normally-constructed unit.

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