1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

Armies

Discussion in 'Communitas Expansion Pack' started by Thalassicus, Oct 17, 2010.

  1. civcivv

    civcivv Warlord

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    Messages:
    126
    Location:
    London
    I did not suggest that Knights also gain +1 movement, only Cavalry should. Sorry if my post was a bit confusing in that regard :)
     
  2. alpaca

    alpaca King of Ungulates

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Messages:
    2,322
    From what I've seen the AI rarely has units above level 2, so I highly doubt it would be able to cope with such a system. Apart from that, I doubt it's a lot of fun. Losing XP on upgrade works quite nicely and has a similar effect (and more) in that it only makes real sense to upgrade veteran units. It also makes sure you don't have an all-veteran army at some point that just wreaks havoc on other units. Combined with the upgrade cooldown this solves both issues I had with upgrading: Veteran armies requiring very little investment for huge gains, and the huge power leaps after researching a new tech.
     
  3. Thalassicus

    Thalassicus Bytes and Nibblers

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2005
    Messages:
    11,057
    Location:
    Texas
    Musketeers feel alright for me. Musketmen in general are one of the weakest units of the game, but more UUs are based off that unit than any other unit, and they've gotta be significantly better than the base unit to be useful.

    To be clear, the chariot penalty actually expends all movement upon entering rough terrain (different from rough terrain costing double).

    Faster cavalry is something that's been requested a lot. I kept it as-is in the past out of consideration for balance between mounted unit movements speeds, but I think it's safe to say at this point cavalry vs rifles are not considered equal in value. If higher movement reduced the importance of lancers, what if Cavalry got some other bonus like slightly higher strength, bonus damage on open terrain, reduced cost, or some cool new special promotion?

    I've always felt lancers are rather underwhelming. Even without any other mounted unit changes they could probably use a buff. I don't think increasing their movement speed or bonus vs mounted would help, though... along the lines of Ahriman's point about their usefulness vs siege, what if due to their agility they were able to evade cannon fire more easily? They could start with a Cover I promotion, helping them close the gap to ranged units and siege.



    Right, flavor values determine what to build, but not how to use what's built. I don't think we have much if any control over actual AI movement of units, so I don't believe there's much we can do to keep AI ships around their ports. I'll keep an eye out for possibilities though, because overall I agree with you rhammer640!
     
  4. civcivv

    civcivv Warlord

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    Messages:
    126
    Location:
    London
    To be honest, buffing Cavalry speed would not weaken Lancer if Lancer got a Strength buff.

    Their uses are a bit different in my opinion. Cavalry being the general field unit, able to do every job but nothing particularly well.

    Lancers have a bit weaker strength, but come a lot earlier along the Tech tree and can be used against Knights and eventually Cavalry. They are also great for taking out Siege until you can get cavalry. Once you have cavalry, I do not think you would still use lancers for the purpose of attacking Siege units simply because Cavalry has a lot more strength and no 30% penalty on defense which the lancer has. Having 1 move less in vanilla isn't a big difference usually.

    Consider that Cavalry and Lancers both have only lower or equal strength of their era's basica infantry units and unlike the infantry actually cost strategic resources.
     
  5. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    8,259
    Location:
    Venice, California
    I agree with this line of thinking.

    I wouldn't sidestep a cavalry fix because of its effect on lancers. Cavalry are much more of a staple.
     
  6. Ahriman

    Ahriman Tyrant

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    13,266
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    If the lancer got a strength buff, then what would cavalry be for?

    If you have: cavalry = 4 moves, 25 strength
    Lancer = 4 moves, 24 strength, +X% vs mounted units
    then the lancer is pretty much superior.
    The strength gap between them is already very narrow.

    If cavalry are more of a staple, doesn't that imply that the lancer purpose is already narrow, and that care should be taken not to narrow it further?

    I don't think this would be very helpful. Mounted units hardly ever get fired on by siege, their speed usually prevents this when they're used properly.
    Maybe: a bonus on attack, like Janissiaries? Or bonus on attack vs open terrain?
     
  7. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    8,259
    Location:
    Venice, California
    No, it implies that we should fix the staple first, restoring basic foot/horse balance, then consider what to do with perhaps the least used unit in the pre-modern game.
     
  8. Thalassicus

    Thalassicus Bytes and Nibblers

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2005
    Messages:
    11,057
    Location:
    Texas
    I think one thing we can all agree on is Lancers need more value.

    Lancers do have the -50% defensive penalty, which is what I think civcivv meant about the general unit vs specific role comparison. Cavalry can be used to protect flanks of an advancing force or defending on open terrain while lancers are purely for hit-and-run. Perhaps the capability to heal 1hp after killing a unit might enhance this role... or give them the March promotion for free?

    One thing I could do is shift flavor values so the AI builds a few more mounted units. I've actually seen the AI use mounted units on the offensive rather well in open terrain... it's their capability to defend against human-controlled mounted units that's lacking. If a third of AI army composition was knights or cavalry I think Lancers would be a bit more useful.

    Here's a list of all promotion stats in the game, copy-pasted from the file. Perhaps something might spark an idea. I don't have a clue what some of the unused ones do, like the "river" stat (inverse of Amphib, perhaps?).

    Spoiler :
    t/f = boolean true/false
    num = numeric integer


    t/f : CannotBeChosen
    t/f : LostWithUpgrade
    t/f : InstaHeal
    t/f : Leader
    t/f : Blitz
    t/f : Amphib
    t/f : River
    t/f : EnemyRoute
    t/f : RivalTerritory
    t/f : MustSetUpToRangedAttack
    t/f : RangedSupportFire
    t/f : CanMoveAfterAttacking
    t/f : AlwaysHeal
    t/f : HealOutsideFriendly
    t/f : HillsDoubleMove
    t/f : RoughTerrainEndsTurn
    t/f : IgnoreTerrainCost
    t/f : HoveringUnit
    t/f : FlatMovementCost
    t/f : CanMoveImpassable
    t/f : NoCapture
    t/f : OnlyDefensive
    t/f : NoDefensiveBonus
    t/f : NukeImmune
    t/f : HiddenNationality
    t/f : AlwaysHostile
    t/f : NoRevealMap
    t/f : Recon
    t/f : CanMoveAllTerrain
    t/f : FreePillageMoves
    t/f : AirSweepCapable
    t/f : AllowsEmbarkation
    t/f : EmbarkedNotCivilian
    t/f : EmbarkedAllWater
    t/f : HealIfDestroyExcludesBarbarians
    t/f : RangeAttackIgnoreLOS
    num : RangedAttackModifier
    num : InterceptionCombatModifier
    num : InterceptionDefenseDamageModifier
    num : AirSweepCombatModifier
    num : ExtraAttacks
    num : ExtraNavalMovement
    num : VisibilityChange
    num : MovesChange
    num : MoveDiscountChange
    num : RangeChange
    num : InterceptChanceChange
    num : NumInterceptionChange
    num : EvasionChange
    num : CargoChange
    num : EnemyHealChange
    num : NeutralHealChange
    num : FriendlyHealChange
    num : SameTileHealChange
    num : AdjacentTileHealChange
    num : EnemyDamageChance
    num : NeutralDamageChance
    num : CombatPercent
    num : CityAttack
    num : CityDefense
    num : RangedDefenseMod
    num : HillsAttack
    num : HillsDefense
    num : OpenAttack
    num : OpenRangedAttackMod
    num : OpenDefense
    num : RoughAttack
    num : RoughRangedAttackMod
    num : RoughDefense
    num : AttackFortifiedMod
    num : AttackWoundedMod
    num : UpgradeDiscount
    num : ExperiencePercent
    num : AdjacentMod
    num : AttackMod
    num : DefenseMod
    num : DropRange
    t/f : GreatGeneral
    num : GreatGeneralModifier
    num : FriendlyLandsModifier
    num : FriendlyLandsAttackModifier
    num : OutsideFriendlyLandsModifier
    num : HPHealedIfDestroyEnemy
    num : ExtraWithdrawal
    num : EmbarkExtraVisibility
    text : LayerAnimationPath
    text : TechPrereq
    text : Invisible
    text : SeeInvisible
    text : PromotionPrereq
    text : PromotionPrereqOr1
    text : PromotionPrereqOr2
    text : PromotionPrereqOr3
    text : PromotionPrereqOr4
     
  9. civcivv

    civcivv Warlord

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    Messages:
    126
    Location:
    London
    It would be nice to see the AI field more cavalry, but only if it doesn't use them to charge head long into city walls :)

    In terms of promotions for the lancer, heal after killing a unit would be quite nice, but then it seems very similar to the Jaguar/Janissary. March might work, it is a powerful promotion though.
     
  10. Ahriman

    Ahriman Tyrant

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    13,266
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I don't see any logical/realistic reason for either of those.
    For Janissaries, for example, the healing effect represents the fact that they were slave-soldiers, so they're refreshing their ranks with slaves captured after the battle.

    For lancers, surely we need some kind of open terrain advantage.
    One possibility would be to boost their strength quite high, give them a rough terrain penalty, and their existing defensive penalty.
    But if they have the same movement as cavalry, the only way they're going to be useful is if they are superior when attacking a unit in open terrain.
     
  11. orangecape

    orangecape Chieftain

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2010
    Messages:
    89
    I find that Lancers are terrible simply because of their defensive penalty. They can never get in there and mix it up because unless they retreat to total safety any unit of their era one shots them. Reduce their penalty on defense to 25% and I would be interested in building them, otherwise they are simply too flimsy. AIs are happy with suicide units that can deal some damage but players aren't and you simply aren't going to get players building units that never accumulate promotions unless extreme care is exercised to protect them (in which case, why don't you build a unit that doesn't require such care?).
     
  12. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    8,259
    Location:
    Venice, California
    The reason why the lancers have a problem is because they are perhaps the only pre-modern unit that overlaps with another one. It could be argued that lancers should just be eliminated. Since we're not likely to do that, it's worth considering civcivv's point that they come earlier than cavalry, and perhaps have them appear a bit sooner, rather than making them more powerful.

    All that said, the only way to clearly differentiate lancers from cavalry - not to mention make them fun - is to make them faster, but weaker overall. All these other changes either don't do enough, or make them kissing cousins to cavalry. Giving them a rough-terrain penalty along with one added move is a moderating option.
     
  13. alpaca

    alpaca King of Ungulates

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Messages:
    2,322
    I'm currently experimenting with lancers at 5 moves. I'm trying to give them more of a flanking role (PWM has +25% per flanking unit) so they provide a passive benefit, even if they aren't actively fighting. Another option is giving them an attack bonus, which would push them even further down the hit&run path.
     
  14. Ahriman

    Ahriman Tyrant

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    13,266
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I prefer an attack bonus; the advantage of 5 movement over 4 is pretty minor.
     
  15. SSgtDuke

    SSgtDuke Chieftain

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2010
    Messages:
    82
    I'm not sure about that. With their big defence penalty (it's still -50%?) it could mean the difference between getting out of range or dying in the next turn.
     
  16. alpaca

    alpaca King of Ungulates

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Messages:
    2,322
    5 moves means they can move, attack, then retreat out of visibility range again, especially if you add roads. Their survivability is significantly higher at 5 moves rather than 4. The visibility range thing is important because artillery can shoot 3 hexes, so they cease to be so much of a lancer killer now. Some attack bonus of 25% or so might still make sense on top of that.
     
  17. Ahriman

    Ahriman Tyrant

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    13,266
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    I see your point, but would have to test.
    One thing to note is; there isn't much difference between a high strength unit with a large penalty to defense and a medium strength unit with a bonus to attack and a small penalty to defense.
     
  18. alpaca

    alpaca King of Ungulates

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Messages:
    2,322
    True enough but there is a difference (and I wouldn't say it's insignificant): How other bonuses are handled. The unit with the stronger base profits more from stuff like great generals and promotions.
     
  19. Thalassicus

    Thalassicus Bytes and Nibblers

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2005
    Messages:
    11,057
    Location:
    Texas
    5 movement points is one reason why CCs were so powerful before, primarily because the AI just can't evaluate the potential outcomes of several units with that many potential destination hexes. It's pretty good at recognizing threats within 2-3 tiles, but further than that and in combination, things get too complicated to process efficiently.

    Also, it makes a unit basically like longbowmen/artillery: can attack a target 3 tiles away and retreat back to the same hex it started on.
     
  20. alpaca

    alpaca King of Ungulates

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Messages:
    2,322
    Yes but they still get damaged by the attack. Lancers are kind of similar to a ranged unit in that they do fine when attacking but are vulnerable when defending. They are not the same by a long shot, though, especially not in rough terrain.
     

Share This Page