General - Upgrades

Tutorial By Sim


1. Introduction
2. The Entries
3. The Effects
4. Upgrades vs Units
5. Link 'em
6. Advanced - Sample Hero Upgrade
7. Conclusion

1. Introduction

This is the moment for you to customize the upgrades in your map. Default upgrades of Blizzard? no thanks, I want specific upgrades made by myself. You open the Object Editor and take a look at the upgrades. How does it work? You take a random upgrade named "Magic Sentry" and look. It does nothing. You ask yourself the most important question : What do I do now?

Well, your answers are found in this tutorial. After reading it, you will be able to make your own upgrades... Simple ones as well as customized ones.

2. The Entries

Here I will list all the entries in the Upgrades editor and explain their use. (Credits to Darg for the following fields : Art - Button Position (X), Art - Button Position (Y), Art - Icon)

Art - Button Position (X) - Defines in which column to place the button for the upgrade, in the bottom-right command-interface area. Column values range from 0 (Left-most column) to 3 (Right-most column).

Art - Button Position (Y) - Defines in which row to place the button for the upgrade, in the bottom-right command-interface area. Row values range from 0 (top-most row) to 2 (Bottom-most row).

Art - Icon - Defines what icon the upgrade will have when present in the bottom-right command-interface area.

Data - Effect 1/2/3/4 - Defines which effect/improvement will be applied to the units affected by the upgrade. It includes but is not limited to Attack bonus and Defense Bonus. Attack Dice Bonus will boost both the ranged and melee damage of your units, even if you choose Melee in the Stats - Class Field. That last choice will show the Melee attacks as upgraded. See the field named Stats - Class for more information.

Stats - Applies to All Units - I don't know the exact use of this field, but what I know for sure is that it is buggy as hell. Either it doesn't upgrade your units or it only applies to alive ones. Never check this to True.

Stats - Class - Defines where on the user Interface it will show the upgrade. Example : I select Melee. Then all the units that I affect with the upgrade will have their melee attack upgraded by 1 - but only in the user interface. If you upgrade their attack but select the Class "Armor" then it will show the armor as upgraded, even if it upgrades the attack of your units. See the Data - Effect 1/2/3/4 field for more information.

note: if your unit is a ranged unit only and you select Melee it will still show the ranged upgrade as 1 level higher if you give that unit your melee upgrade.

Stats - Gold Base - The number of gold it will cost to research the first level of the upgrade.

Stats - Gold Increment - The number of gold added to the last level's gold cost everytime you research the upgrade. Example : at level 1 an upgrade costs 5 gold and has increment of 5 gold. So, at level 2 it will cost 10 gold, level 3 15 gold, level 4 20 gold, and so on.

Stats - Levels - The number of times you can research the upgrade. Maximum of 100.

Stats - Lumber Base - See Gold Base, but using Lumber instead.

Stats - Lumber increment - See Gold Increment, but using Lumber instead.

Stats - Race - Defines in which race’s folder the upgrade will be showed in the Object Editor. Does nothing in-game.

Stats - Time Base - The number of seconds needed to research the upgrade.

Stats - Time Increment - The number of seconds added to the last level's time everytime you research the upgrade, Example : level 1 an upgrade takes 10 second to research and has an increment of 10. Level 2: 20 seconds, level 3: 30 seconds, level 4: 40 seconds, and so on.

Stats - Transfer with Unit Ownership - Determines weither or not the unit will keep its upgrades' benefits if it changes owner. Example : my unit is charmed (transfered ownership with the player who casted Charm on my unit) and I have Long Rifles upgrade applied to my rifleman who got charmed. If I checked this, the player owning the charmer will keep the Long Rifles upgrade applying (+200 range to riflemen). If I didn't, the rifleman will lose its +200 range bonus from the upgrade.

Stats - Techtree - Requirements - Determines which units/buildings/other uprades/tiers you need in order to research the upgrade.

Stats - Techtree - Levels - The number of levels needed from another upgrade in order to research this upgrade. To determine which upgrade will apply to this field, selecting an upgrade with the Stats - Techtree - Requirements field.

Text - Editor Suffix - The text following the upgrade that will be displayed in the World Editor only. Often a reminder for you.

Text - Hotkey - Determines which key to be pressed in order to research the upgrade when you have the unit currently selling the upgrade selected. Example : "A"

Text - Name - The name of the upgrade.

Text - Tooltip - The short text that will be displayed above the upgrade's description. Often something like : Research |cffffcc00A|rnimal War Training (the code is a color code... for more information on Color Codes, go at and read this tutorial).

Text - Tooltip - Extended - The description of the upgrade.

3. The Effects

Here I will list all the effects of the upgrades, and what they do.

Ability Level Bonus - Adds the number of levels you wish to a selected ability.

Add Ultravision - Enables the units affected by the upgrade to see as far at night that they see during the day.

Apply Attack Upgrade Bonus - Increases the unit's damage by its Damage - Attack1/2 - Damage Upgrade Amount field. Go into the Unit Editor and select a unit to find the field, and set the amount of damage you wish it will gain with this upgrade.

Apply Defense Upgrade Bonus - Increases the unit's armor by its Combat - Defense Upgrade Bonus field. Go into the Unit Editor and select a unit to find the field, and set the amount of armor you wish it will gain with this upgrade.

Attack Damage Bonus - Increases the unit's damage by a set amount.

Attack Damage Loss Bonus - Increases the unit's damage loss by a set amount. Go to this link for more information on Damage Loss :

Attack Dice Bonus - Adds a damage dice to the target. For more information on Attack Dices, visit the link

Attack Range Bonus - Adds a set amount of range to a unit. In the chapter 6 of this tutorial I will give an example of Attack Range bonus to an hero.

Attack Speed Bonus - Increases the attack rate of the units by a set amount (In Percentage).

Attack Spill Distance Bonus - Increases the spill distance of a unit. Spill distance only works with Missile (line) and Artillery (line) attacks and defines how far the missile can go and still do damage. For more information, visit this link

Attack Spill Radius Bonus - Increases the unit's Spill Radius. Spill radius only works with Missile (line) and Artillery (line) attacks and defines the size of the area the missile will do damage. For more information, visit this link

Attack Target Count Bonus - Increases the amounts of targets the unit will hit with a bouncing attack by a set amount. Only works with the units having a Missile (Bounce) attack set.

Aura Data Bonus - Increases all the data fields of a selected aura by a set amount (percentage).

Defense Type Change - Changes the defense type of a unit to another type. Example : Medium --> Heavy.

Enable Attacks, Enable Attacks (Rooted) and Enable Attacks (Uprooted) - Enable Attack 1, 2 or both attacks of a unit. If you select rooted or uprooted, it will enable only that attack when the unit is rooted, and vice-versa.

Gold Harvest Bonus, Gold Harvest Bonus (Entangle) - Increases the gold workers can hand in. Example : 10 --> 15. If you select Entangle, it will increases the gold given by a set amount every x seconds (as the wisps give 10 gold every x seconds), since they don't need to actually "carry" the gold to your base.

Hit Point Bonus, Hit Point Bonus (%) - Increases the hit points of a unit by a set amount. In percentage if the (%) one is selected.

Hit Point Regeneration - Increases the hit point regeneration of a unit by a set amount, either in Percentage or an integer.

Lumber Harvest Bonus - Increases the lumber workers can carry and hand in.

Magic Immunity - Gives the unit magic immunity.

Mana Point Bonus, Mana Point Bonus (%) - Increases the mana of a unit by a set amount. If (%) one is selected, it increases the mana of the unit by a percentage.

Mana Regeneration - Increases the mana regeneration of a unit by a set amount, either a percentage or an integer.

Movement Speed Bonus, Movement Speed Bonus (%) - Increases the movement speed of a unit by a set amount. If (%) one is selected, increases the movement of a unit by a percentage.

Raise Dead Duration Bonus - Increases the duration of the Raise Dead spell.

Sight Range Bonus - Increases the sight range of a unit by a set amount. The sight range of a unit is how far they can see at day or at night. Increases both the Day and Night sight vision for a same amount, and doesn't increase it proportionally. Example : Day - 600, night - 400. Final result with a +100 bonus : Day - 700, night - 500.

Spiked Barricades - Increases the damage of the Spiked Barricades ability by a set amount.

Unit Availability change - Changes the availability of a unit. The way you should do it is the way they used with the Troll Headhunter/Troll Berserker upgrade, that is first selecting as Effect1 this effect, selecting the first unit and disabling it, and for Effect2 this effect again, selecting the new unit and enabling it. Take a look at the Berserker Upgrade for more information.

4. Upgrades vs Units

This part is really simple. You need to apply the upgrade to units, so let's do this.

Open Object Editor, then go in the Upgrades section. Select Iron Forged Swords. You see that the Data - Effect is to add an Attack Dice to the unit.

Next, go in the Unit Editor. Select a footman and scroll down to the field : Techtree - Upgrades Used. You should see Iron Forged Swords.

Note that Stats - Class : Melee is selected. (it will add a level in the user interface to the unit only to the melee attack)

It's that simple!

5. Link 'em

This section is dedicated to link Abilities and upgrades. First thing first: Open the Object Editor. Go in the Upgrade panel and select Magic Sentry. You will notice that the upgrade does nothing. Next, go in the Abilities section and select Magic Sentry (Human Towers). Scroll down to the field named Techtree - Requirements.

What do you see? YES! Magic Sentry. So, in order to have the ability "Magic Sentry" on and having your towers see invisible and burrowed units, you need to research the upgrade first!

If you take a peek into the Unit Editor and select a Scout/Guard/Cannon/Arcane tower you will see that it has the ability "Magic Sentry (Human Towers)".

Now, another case. Go into the Upgrades section and select Vorpal Blades, in the Night Elf folder. It already has an effect: it increases attack Spill Distance and adds an extra attack to the units affected (Here, Glaive Throwers). Perfect. But why do I do this? Go into the ability editor and select Vorpal Blades, still in the Night Elf section - Units. What do you see? It has no Data fields. No Data fields means that it has no effect. This ability does nothing! Take a look at the Techtree – Requirements and you will see Vorpal Blades, as an upgrade.

Next, go in the Unit Editor. Select a Glaive Thrower and what do you see in Abilities - Normal? Vorpal Blades.

Simple, the upgrade does everything, while the ability is only there to tell you that if you research the upgrade, it will do "Something"... In our case, increasing Damage Spill Distance by 200 and enabling another attack, attack 2. Why do some upgrades do nothing and enable an ability which does something and others do everything and enable abilities which do nothing?

It depends on the effect you want. When creating an upgrade, look in the Effects to find what you need. If you don't, then look in the abilities to find what you need.

6. Advanced - Sample Hero Upgrade

Sometimes your hero learns skills needing upgrades. It may or may not happen in your map, but here's an example of a common wanted upgrade : Range Increase hero skill. Yes, it requires an upgrade.

First : open Object Editor and go in the Upgrades section. Select Long Rifles and make a custom upgrade off it.

In the field named Stats - Levels set the number of levels your +range skill has. here I will proceed with 3. In the Data - Effect 1 field, select Attack Range Bonus. Next, set the base number of range you wish the add your hero at level 1, then set an increment that will be added to the previous level as a bonus range. Here I will select 100 range base and 100 range increment, for a total of +300 at 3rd level. All the other fields are not required to be changed. You could give it a name to remember what it is.

Next, in the Abilities section, make a new custom ability based off Magic Sentry. In the field Data - Detection Type. change the data to none. In the field Art - Caster remove the at there and in the field Art - Attachment points remove the attachment point. Next, simply make an hero ability off it, with the texts and tooltips you like. Check the Stats - Hero Ability field and give it the number of levels you want (here, 3).

Next, open Trigger Editor and do this (the name of the ability will be Markmanship and the upgrade, More Range) :
More Range Events Unit - A unit Learns a skill Conditions (Learned Hero Skill) Equal to Marksmanship Actions Player - Set the current research level of More Range to ((Current research level of More Range for (Owner of (Learning Hero))) + 1) for (Owner of (Learning Hero)) **All credits to AceHart for this trigger, as I encountered this problem before!**

Also, make sure your unit has more Combat Acquisition Range than the total range it will have at the last level. If your unit has 600 base range and the ability gives 400 total, make sure it has 1000 Combat Acquisition Range. Else, it won't receive any range bonus above its Combat Acquisition Range.

What it does is simply add range to your hero. There are no abilities doing this, only upgrades. That's why we use upgrades.

7. Conclusion

So this concludes my tutorial. I made this because I think everyone gets to upgrades one day and it saves time to learn already how to deal with 'em, instead of checking "Applies to All units" and see that it doesn't work then waste time trying to fix it by changing its Class and/or other things. Yes this is what happened to me :)

Also, upgrades are always good things to add to a map, and there are many ways of using them, especially when trigger-enhancing them.

Happy Mapping :D

~ Daxtreme

Important notice: Upgrades cannot be unlearned. Once you set it to a value, you cannot decrease it, only increase it.

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