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Cavalry?! What for?!

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Gooblah, Aug 17, 2007.

  1. Stolen Rutters

    Stolen Rutters Deity

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    Still playing Warlords, I agree that if you play with the liberalism slingshot, might as well go through nationalism to Military tradition and super early Cavalry. You're not that far from early cannons or biology, so it would depend on your goals in that game. Once I get Beyond the Sword, I'll get to see how they rebalanced the tech tree. It looks real different.
     
  2. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    It's certainly a very popular option. The big advantage of those units is that with their extremely low strength rating, they will almost never defend and therefore be safe from enemy attack unless the entire stack gets wiped out, in which case you have bigger problems than just losing a medic unit.

    The reason why I usually prefer to use a Chariot instead is that it's far easier for the Chariot to get Combat I, get Medic I, II, and III from a Warlord, and then earn one more promotion: Morale, for +1 :move:. It's not huge, but every now and then I'm glad my super-medic has that one extra move. At 4 strength the Chariot is the same strength as an Explorer and rarely ends up defending.
     
  3. axident

    axident Emperor

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    Explorer medics do have an important advantage when going up against Khmer's UU though, as my medical chariots found out the hard way...
     
  4. blitzkrieg1980

    blitzkrieg1980 Octobrist

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    I almost always take Astronomy as I am usually on water heavy maps. The first to colonize and first to be able to form a decent inter-continental (or inter island) invasion force.
     
  5. popejubal

    popejubal Emperor

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    Before you go running for the Scout/Explorer for Woodsman III, though, take a look at the Civlopedia. Wood III is only available to Melee and Gunpowder.

    I was severely surprised by this in my most recent game.

    Going Scout/Explorer for Medic is a great move, though. One of my early explorers often gets medic since I know the 2 :move: will come in handy and my Warriors will be playing garrison duty while the Axes/Swords go out to play.
     
  6. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    Hmmm, good point. I haven't come up against the Khmer UU yet. That would be bad if the Medic III chariot is the only mounted unit in the stack! :sad:
     
  7. Yeekim

    Yeekim Moderator Moderator

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    Somebody dared to say something bad about Numidians??
    They get free Flanking I, and Hannibal is Chm! Very good UU in my book.
     
  8. Vynd

    Vynd Prince

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    The beauty of mounted units, be they early uints or later units, is their flexibility. Given the opportunity, what I like to do with early mounted units is this:

    Make use of a Barracks, Stable, and any other XP boosters I have available (GG, Theocracy) to produce mounted units with lots of XP out of the box. Do not give them promotions right away however. Send them in a mixed stack with Axemen, etc., to attack my opponents. When I reach the opponent's city, assess the situation. If the city has strong anti-mounted defenses, give my mounted units flanking promotions and use them to soften up the city and hopefully withdraw intact. If the city's defenses are somewhat weaker, give them other promotions and use them for outright assault.

    Of course this totally ignores the other outstanding characteristic of mounted units, which is their high speed. Which is plenty of justification for building them all by itself. I find it especially useful on defense. With roads to help them, mounted units can cover lots of ground quickly and thus you can move them from one threatened area to another instead of relying on big garrisons of slow units everywhere. They're also excellent for counterattacks against AI units damaged from attacking your cities or attacks of opportunity against stragglers wandering through your territory.
     
  9. blitzkrieg1980

    blitzkrieg1980 Octobrist

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    Also, you can give those flanking bonuses to your HAs and use them to lure city defenders out by pillaging important strategy resources (copper/iron). They have a good chance of withdrawal and your city siege/rush units will have less to deal with.
     
  10. mudphud

    mudphud Warlord

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    Another reason that mounted units are useful in pillaging is that you can have units with 1 movement with them to protect them and they can pillage with their extra movement point. It does slow down their movement but can protect them from attack and it is much efficient pillaging than just using the 1 movement units.
     
  11. ParadigmShifter

    ParadigmShifter Random Nonsense Generator

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    Flanking isn't ideal for bait troops i.e. drawing enemies out of cities since it only works when you attack.
     
  12. futurehermit

    futurehermit Deity

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    war chariots/immortals are two of the best uus in the game.

    cavalry-units = 2 move = speed = faster conquering = fewer defenders = good
     
  13. travathian

    travathian Warlord

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    You know what HA are also good for? Picking off lone units or stragglers while the rest of your stack continues to march on.
     
  14. Roxlimn

    Roxlimn Deity

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    I agree that HAs, even in Warlords, are underrated. They're phenomenally useful for obliterating enemy stacks. They're available relatively early in the classical age, and with Stables, easily are assured level 3 - easily enough for a Shock promotion, or Flanking 2.

    Ironically, I'm not as impressed by the Mongols and their Keshik. The UB Ger doesn't help much since you already get your essential promotions at level 3, and the Keshik's terrain advantages don't lend themselves to a significantly better performing Horse Archer.
     
  15. patagonia

    patagonia Emperor

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    The main advantage Keshiks have is being able to tear through any terrain. A stack of those can race to an enemy capital in no time.

    I'm gaining a fondness for Cataphracts. Since they're essentially Cuirassiers without the 15% withdrawal chance, but are available much sooner, they have an enormously long shelf-life. If you plan for a Cataphract rush from the start, you can generate a couple of great merchants for trade missions, stockpile hordes of horse archers and then blam...goodbye rivals.
     
  16. DutchJob

    DutchJob Prince

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    the posts about numidian HA just made me decide to start rolling a map for Hannibal!

    have a nice day!

    Namaste
     
  17. Gooblah

    Gooblah Heh...

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    YES! I finally started a thread which has all the big names like Sisutil joining in *gloating*


    Anyways, i was looking at cavalry from a Vanilla POV. A lot of these suggestions are good, but for a Vanilla Player, cuirassers and Numidian HAs don't really matter. But thanx anyways...I started a game for the purpose fo testing some of these strategies...I managed to get HAs up quickly then blitz the enemy axemen. I lost most of them, though. The Spearmen took their number except for 1 or 2. And no, i can post the save, my computer screws up whenever i try to attach something... Sry!
     
  18. futurehermit

    futurehermit Deity

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    the benefit of the mongolian ger is not to keshiks, but rather to war elephants, knights, cuirassiers, and cavalry!!!

    keshiks are a very powerful unit when used properly, esp in bts where the city-attack nerf has been removed.

    in vanilla, horse-based units are still great because they MOVE QUICKLY. try choking your opponents with horse archers. try getting to knights before your opponent has pikes. or, the most powerful, try getting to cavalry (or in vanilla, the powerful russian uu) before your opponent has rifles.
     
  19. Antilogic

    Antilogic --

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    In Vanilla, chariots have less utility because they do not have the attack bonus over the axes (unless that was patched...I haven't opened up vanilla for a long time). However, Horse Archers are still solid fighters, mostly because your enemies typically only have a handful of spears to counter them. All you need is a Flanking I/II horse archer to soften up those spears (and then have a decent chance of running), then you can send in the Combat I/Shock horse archers to mop them up.

    On the Numidian Cavalry...I would say that is one of the best-designed UUs in the game, not to mention incredible: the -1 strength may seem off-putting, but the +50% vs. melee can slaughter any melee unit, even their supposed counter, the spearmen. And, they have a free Flanking I, so they already get boosted retreat chances. In fact, the only counter for the Numidian Cavalry are Horse Archers, not the standard counter of Spearmen!
     
  20. Handel

    Handel Prince

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    In Warlords the mounted units are next to to useless for attacks. The counter-units are cheap and have great advantages from cities and fortify. But the mounted units are good for counter-attacking an incoming enemy stack. Besides you get more XP when attacking then when defending.
     

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