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Topic Subject: A Guide to the Dryad
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posted 21 February 2004 03:54 PM EDT (US)   
A Guide to the Dryad

After a close poll last week, the Dryad just managed to creep up to the top spot, making it the subject of this week's guide. Having to cast a God Power to get these units makes them quite unique, and I'm sure we've all seen them walking and screaming around the battlefield. But can these tree-nymphs (or drag queens as some call them) actually cause an opponent some real harm?

Let's look at their stats:

Cost: 150 Gold, 0 Favour, 0 Pop Spaces
HP: 275
Speed: 4.50
Crush armour: 99%
Hack armour: 40%
Pierce armour: 50%
Hack damage: 15

Special attack: None
Special ability: None
Only 5 may be owned by one player at a time

Weak, light, moderate speed with no real special attacks or ability. But just look at how cheap these things are! The only heroic MU that can match how cheap it is in terms of resources is the Scorpion Man (150 Wood), but in terms of favour and pop, it cannot be beaten.

Sure it's mega cheap, but just how strong is it? Let's see how it does against a Greek Hoplite

NOTE: All units have been upgraded with Medium and Heavy line upgrades and Copper and Bronze armoury upgrades. All buildings have been upgraded with the Masons and Architects upgrades. Any other upgrades will be stated

All attack rates are tested per hit, not second. The Dryad attacks every 1.5 seconds, so it's base hack attack each hit is 21.5, which has been rounded up to 22.

Test 1: 1 Dryad vs 1 Hoplite (Zeus)

Dryad does approximately 12 damage to Hoplite per hit.
Hoplite does approximately 8 damage to Dryad per hit

Dryad kills Hoplite in 18 seconds with 146 HP left

Interestingly, the Dryad only just managed to do worse than the Satyr. No real shocks or surprises here, although it did manage to lose quite a large proportion of its HP.

Now, I had quite a problem with running some of these tests, in terms of making them as fair as possible; because the Dryad costs no pop, how can I make each side balanced? I've decided (for the purpose of these tests alone) to make the Dryads equivalent to 3 pop spaces. This doesn't affect in game battles and games in any way, it is just a way of working out how many units to use vs so many Dryads

Test 2: 3 Dryads vs 3 Chariot Archers (Set)

CA stats:
HP: 108
Speed: 5.00
Range: 20
Hack armour: 43%
Pierce armour: 35%
Pierce damage: 11

Dryads win with 2 still alive

Not really a surprise here. When there's a battle between myth units and human soldiers, then myth units should win.
Luckily for Oranos and Gaia players, we don't have another Satyr on our hands, and the Dryad at least seems to do as expected for a cheap, Heroic myth unit. But also, we don't have another Heka-Gigantes which out-performed even itself.

Because these units are so versatile, just how do they do against buildings?

Test 3: 1 Dryad vs 1 House (Thor)

House stats:
HP: 495
Crush armour: 14%
Hack armour: 30%
Pierce armour: 95%

Dryad does 16 damange to house per hit

Dryad takes 47 seconds to destroy house.

Maybe not the fastest building killer in the game; certainly by the Scarab, Behemoth and Heka-Gigantes standard. Still, it's better than the ranged units, and sending 1 Dryad to attack a building isn't really going to help you very much. But what about more than one of them?

Test 4: 5 Dryads vs 1 Palace (Kronos)

Dryads take 50 seconds to destroy the Palace

You see, when massed, they can take down a building with as many HP as a Palace in approximately the same time it takes for one to destroy a house.

From my experience of using Dryads in games, They're useful to aid in an attack on an enemy base. Once their army is out of the way, send Fire Siphons with the 5 Dryads to pick off any lurking villagers or milita while the rest of your army heals or moves on to another base. They may not be the game's most powerful unit, but any unit that costs 0 favour and no pop spaces must be good for something.

Just don't forget how easily they die to heroes, particularly with that low HP. Also remember that if your opponent takes the Hesperides Tree, they can also create Dryads, so have some heroes ready

Further Notes:

The Dryad defeats all human units with Heroic upgrades one on one except:
Jarls
War Elephants

The Dryad is defeated by all heroes in the Heroic Age except for the priest; although it was very close

The Dryad is defeated against all Heroic MUs. They also lose to all Classical MUs (excluding the Caladria}. This is due to its weak HP and lack of a bonus against other Myth Units.

Dryads can be affected by Mythic Rejuvination (they will regenerate HP) and Celerity (they are quicker to train from the Hespiredes Tree.)

If Dryads are owned by other civs they can be affected by:

  • Eclipse
  • Monstrous Rage
  • Thurisaz Rune
  • Rampage

    If the Tree is owned by Kronos, they cost 135 Gold instead of 150 due to his cheaper MU bonus.

    Dryads are affected by:

  • Medusa Stone Gaze
  • Perseus Stone Gaze
  • Mummy's Minion Change
  • Argus' Toxic Acid
  • Lampades' Chaos
  • Frost Giant's Ice Breath


    Suggested Usage

    Mainly for army support. Using them alone in a battle is just suicide and a waste of gold. An even battle between Atlateans can quite easily decided if you use these Nymphs correctly. Although they die miserabley to heroes, they make nice general melee units; you could pretty much call them human soldiers if it wasn't for the fact they fall to heroes so badly.
    I'd say use them to harrass an enemy's buildings, especially houses. 5 Dryads should manage to take down a few before the heroes come along, and they certainly won't fall to villagers as bad as Fire Siphons do.
    Particularly for Gaia who doesn't receive a single siege bonus, along with Theia's Contarius, you could do some pretty severe damage to your opponents buildings while they're not looking.

    Saying that, they're main usage is not siege; Dryads can do pretty much anything - including raid, although they'd be a little slow to run away if a hero comes along. Use them for backup, siege, raiding or just a diversion to draw out your enemy's heroes while you send in the Stymphalian Birds or Behemoths. Just try not to waste them - sure you won't be using up favour and pop space, but 750 gold is a heck of a lot to waste if they just get slaughtered.

    Use your head - don't just train Dryads because you can and you think win with them; after seeing you've just worshipped Theia, your opponent should be expecting to see some Dryads, and will probably perpare for them. And like most MUs in AoM, Dryads need micro; if you keep them away from heroes and attacking the weaker units, you should be fine.

    Conclusion

    The Dryad is not an amazing unit; and for only 150 Gold, it shouldn't be. They're excellent support units, just don't expect to win because you have a few crazy=haired trees walking around.

    Against Greece: If you manage to get the heroes away from the Dryads you should be ok using them. Target the archers with your Dryads leaving your army to take care of the infantry and cavalry
    Against Egypt: Raiding with Dryads against Egypt is your best bet. Priests are slow and if the mining camp isn't being empowered by the Pharaoh, you could cause them some real annoyance. Other than that, go for the slings and weak infantry units.
    Against Norse: Not being ranged, and being quite slow, Jarls and Hersir can take down Dryads easily. Use them against weak buildings such as houses, and try and bring down their ox-carts with the Dryads.
    Against Alantis: Atlantean heroes can't be re-made too often, or your opponent is going to run out of resources. And because the Dryads cost no favour, you can keep producing them to harrass normal human units whilst your opponent focuses their heroes on the "stronger" MUs like Heka-Gigantes and Argi.

    Cheap, quite weak and strange looking (not to mention sounding); the Dryad seems to fit in with the Atlantean culture quite well, and can certainly help win you clinch close battles. They may not defeat your opponent by themselves, but they can definitely help your army to do so.

    Thank you for reading guys.
    I will be taking a short break from guide writing, and will return soon to carry on. ManticoreKiller will be handling the Greek and Norse Myth Units, which leave me to do do the Egyptian and Atlantean ones.

    Please vote for whether I should carry on with the Atlantean guides, or the Egyptian guides

    EDIT: Oh BTW, my old name, ArtemisChimera kinda went a little screwy and I can't get into it anymore, so I re-created as the same name I use on ESO for less confusion


    ESO user name - ChimeraArtemis
    Favourite Major Gods: Isis, Hades, Gaia, Loki, Ra, Thor

    Creator of the Egyptian Myth Unit Guides - Phoenix, Wadjet, Scorpion Man, Scarab, Petsuchos
    And the Atlantean Myth Unit Guides: Stymphalian Bird, Satyr, Lampades, Heka-Gigantes, Man O'War, Dryad, Automaton

    [This message has been edited by ChimeraArtemis (edited 02-22-2004 @ 07:28 AM).]

  • Replies:
    posted 22 February 2004 10:14 PM EDT (US)     51 / 68  
    hey REGULAR GUIDE IS JUST SOO SIMPLE, AND MAN CMON FINICH THA ATTIES GUIDES THE EGGYS CAN WAIT
    posted 23 February 2004 00:15 AM EDT (US)     52 / 68  
    dryad hmm i thought they were a bit stronger than that but oh well.
    HEY i vote for Automaton!! come on give it a chance haha its been 2 or 3 polls and it's always 2nd place. Last time was only by 1 vote... hah anyways good guide.
    posted 23 February 2004 02:08 AM EDT (US)     53 / 68  
    Really nice guide AC. When u come back take up the Eggies again. I really want a guide on the Petsuchos. Anyway, have a nice brk.
    posted 23 February 2004 08:11 AM EDT (US)     54 / 68  
    You didn't do any testing of the Hesperides Tree itself and it's god blocking ability. I would be very interested in seeing how it compares to the Isis monuments and if there is any benefit to building your Titan gates next to them. Keep up the good work - your guides are great!
    posted 23 February 2004 08:11 AM EDT (US)     55 / 68  
    For all of you who want the Scorpian man, he already made a guide on them... <_<

    I vote finish out ATL


    Death comes on swift wings to all who oppose me.....

    WND_Banishment
    1780+
    Clan Link: http://www.geocities.com/clanwnd/

    posted 23 February 2004 10:06 AM EDT (US)     56 / 68  
    Nice guide. As has been stated by others though, they are much more useful in practice than their stats would seem to indicate.

    Having superior numbers is very important in this game, and putting down 2 trees let u have 10 more myth units on the battlefield than ur enemy, at 0 favor cost! Chances are, he cannot use his heroes very effectively vs many of them (u should of course have other regular mu:s in ur army), and u could easily focus fire on his heroes.

    One of the things that pleases me the most when playing vs attie though, is when I get control of one of their "trees" and can turn their own weapon against them. The difference in number really is important, and when attacking and stealing a tree it means u get reinforcements directly on the battlefield which is invaluable.

    I vote for u to continue with the Atlanteans!


    [img]http://ratings.fearclan.net/amicus_curious,1.png[/img]
    posted 23 February 2004 01:14 PM EDT (US)     57 / 68  

    Quote:

    Not being ranged, and being quite slow, Jarls and Hersir can take down Dryads easily.

    *klaxon sound*

    Dangling participle alert!

    posted 23 February 2004 03:24 PM EDT (US)     58 / 68  
    nice guide chimera (twitches), I think you should continue with the atties first.

    "how do you prove that we exist? Maybe we don't exist." Vivi
    why does anything happen? because it wants to?
    "god created idiots first, for practice, then he created school boards..." mark twain
    "drink beer, buy art" glass at the Saint James art festival
    posted 23 February 2004 04:05 PM EDT (US)     59 / 68  
    Automaton. The people want it!

    - Me
    posted 23 February 2004 06:06 PM EDT (US)     60 / 68  
    I vote automaton!Its keeps on getting 2nd place!Man these nicknames are popping up evry where.Atlanteans:Atties Egyptians:Eggy.

    Whats next, Norse:No Greek:Geek?

    posted 23 February 2004 06:39 PM EDT (US)     61 / 68  
    I vote for Automaton I want to know if I should use them or not
    posted 23 February 2004 10:44 PM EDT (US)     62 / 68  
    Great information, i vote automaton as well, but egyptians have some really crazy mu's too.
    posted 24 February 2004 04:43 AM EDT (US)     63 / 68  
    I vote Egyptian Avenger, then Petsuchos, then Atlantean Automaton. =D

    Great guide, but like some one previously said, I think u should compare Dryads to Mercenaries, and if ya want to be really analytical, take a look at mercenary limited time to live vs dryad unlimited time to live (until it dies) =)

    posted 24 February 2004 04:51 AM EDT (US)     64 / 68  
    do u get 5 dryads 4 each tree or total 5?
    i vote for atties
    posted 24 February 2004 05:02 AM EDT (US)     65 / 68  
    total of 5 regardless of 1 or 2 trees. nice guide. i think of dryads like mercenaries with a production site that can be dropped anywhere, unlike a tc. like mercs, they are not a great mainline unit but rather have huge impact because they are IN ADDITION to your already popped-out kata/cheiro/promethean/stymphalian bird/valoured hero op'd army.

    fh

    posted 24 February 2004 06:11 PM EDT (US)     66 / 68  
    Interesting and excellent guide, as usual.

    I vote for you to continue with the Atlanteans because they seem to be more complex than the Egyptians/Norse/Greek. Within the Atlanteans I vote for the Automaton!

    I am a miserable failure when I try to use them, so a guide might help me to actually choose Leto over Oceanus as Gaia...


    BTW, Clarissimus: That IS a dangling participle! I never noticed that...

    [This message has been edited by Drowzee1_2000 (edited 02-24-2004 @ 06:13 PM).]

    posted 25 February 2004 05:25 PM EDT (US)     67 / 68  
    Nice guide yet again *gets tired of saying nice job*
    i vote atlantean and i vote neired yet again.


    ~Skele10~
    posted 25 February 2004 06:09 PM EDT (US)     68 / 68  
    Great as usual ChimeraArtemis!!
    I don't get tired of your guides though, I find them very....refering, I love reading them.

    O, and lay-off the MU's for a while, do some heroes!!
    Like the Egyptian Son of Osiris, I always wanted to read a guide about him.

    For Atlanteans though, the Citizen Hero.

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