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City Attack

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Fall from Heaven' started by kumquatelvis, Nov 21, 2008.

  1. kumquatelvis

    kumquatelvis Chieftain

    Feb 27, 2007
    Having played a lot of games of FFH2, I'm come to rather dislike the city attack promotion. First off, it's very, very powerful. Three promotions and even middling units can destroy a well defended city (especially if the AI is trying to defend). It's so powerful that I've mostly stopped using it because it makes me feel guilty, like I was cheating. True, taking that promotion instead of combat means that you don't defend as well, but somehow that's rarely been a problem (especially if you diversify your army). Second, the promotion is nonsensical. I can just imagine the following conversion:

    Commander: Units, get ready to attack!
    City Attacker: No problem sir. We'll crush them without mercy.
    Commander: Excellent. Charge on my mark. Ready, set, m...er, what's this?
    City Attacker: They appear to be opening the gate. Yes, they've left the city, and are now standing out in the open field.
    Commander: The fools! They're defenseless without their, er, defenses.
    City Attacker: Um...about that. :blush: I've never actually fought someone who didn't have several feet of stone to hide behind. I mean, what do you do when they're just out in the open like that? It's kinda scary really.
    Commander: :confused:

    I see two options for change.

    a) Instead of giving you a bonus against defenders, city attack would allow you to ignore a percentage of the defense bonus. This means that promoted units would have little no penalty attacking cities. The promotion would be worthless to an army with a lot of artillery (magic or mundane), but it would also allow for armies that didn't need to make use of said artillery.

    b) Remove city attack entirely. This would make taking cities somewhat difficult, but to compensate catapults and cannons could be improved (mages don't need it). For starts, engineering or machinery could allow siege units to take the mobility promotion (or to just start with it for free). Thematically you could also argue that they should get raiders instead of mobility. After all, wheeled units are great on roads, but not so much off in the wilderness.
  2. heisenberg

    heisenberg Lost in Erebus

    Sep 15, 2008
    That's what City Garrison I-III promotions are for.
    You claim that middling units can destroy a well defended city with them. Out of curiosity... have you tried taking a city with iron longbowmen with City Garrison promotions? especially those on hilltops, or with palisades+walls--and I'm not even going into Crossbowmen here.

    Against a human player who intelligently chooses his promotions carefully a few longbowmen hiding behind city walls can easily stop a stack of champions of the same size and more.
    And giving credit to the changes Kael's team have made in 0.34 giving the AI bonus experience levels at higher difficulties, even AI defenders are now taking up City Garrison+Hill defending promotions--making City Raider almost a necessity together with Cover promotions to dig defenders out.

    True, there's always that inexplicable case where your CR III unit finds it easier to kill a unit garrisoned in a city than one on a field, but that is just because the unit does not have city garrison promotions
  3. nihonjeff

    nihonjeff Chieftain

    Dec 14, 2007
    Los Angeles
    I've always considered the city raider promotion to represent that the unit is equipped with siege towers, ladders, etc. and trained specifically in their use. Could also represent special training in house-to-house fighting and other tactics that could have been used to breach the defenses of a city but which would not directly translate to success in formation-heavy open-field battles.

    I would agree that this promotion could just as easily be represented by having each level of City Raider reduce the defensive bonus of a city by a certain percentage. Actually, the more I think about it, the more I dig that idea... It would kind of make sense that a unit specialized in breaching walls would not have as much of an advantage while attacking a wall-less village.
  4. Kael

    Kael Chieftain

    May 6, 2002
    City Attack and City Raider will be reduced from +30/+40/+50 to +30/+30/+30. I like the +30 specialization compared to a +20 overall boost, but I agree that +50 compared to +20 is way to much.

    There is another significant change in 0.40 that will effect all of this, but more about that will come later.
  5. slowcar

    slowcar stratege

    Jun 19, 2006
    hamburg, germany
    without the backup of hard numbers i am not going to dismiss city raider, no sir.
    i think CG is a good counter, the only backdraw in defending is that you have a hard time earning promotions.
    it is important to have a good mix of units, not as important as in vanilla as you can get cover from heroes or very strong units but you need variety nontheless.

    the AI tends to sit in its cities with a lot of units, humans tend to be harder enemies. and if you have a whole army of CR units they will beat you to pulp in the field.
  6. TheJopa

    TheJopa Šumar

    Dec 29, 2005
    I always pointed that out - for mere 10 xp you get 120% combat. I used to make CR require combat promotions (CR1 requires Combat 1, CR2 Combat 2, CR3 Combat 3) but Kaels change works as well.

    And pleaseee Kael... What new change ;)?
  7. Stalin_Bulldog

    Stalin_Bulldog Chieftain

    Dec 3, 2005
    No more cities?

  8. megamanx06

    megamanx06 Caswallan

    Mar 4, 2007
    i like this idea. it makes sense.
  9. Shatner

    Shatner Chieftain

    Jan 24, 2008
    Austin, Texas
    I agree with the story and the suggestion; it's funny but it's true. When I was playing as the Kuriotates I found the worst place to defend my settlements was within my settlements. By retreating to an adjacent square and letting the Hippus take the settlement I was denying Rhoanna's CRII axmen from capitalizing on their promotions and denying her cavalry their insane withdrawal chance. That is precisely the opposite strategy that you would expect to work.
  10. Ksi

    Ksi Chieftain

    Jan 1, 2008
    It has nothing to do with them going outside during the fight. As someone mentioned it's a combination of training/urban warfare/infantry seige tactics. Secondly, many civilizations, especially Russia, have found it more effective to fight enemies outside their weak settlements.

    However, a slight reduction might be in order.
  11. deadliver

    deadliver Loud Mouth Amateur

    Oct 18, 2003
    Gotta love it. Instead of just axing entire promotions why not just make combat 1 a pre-req for it?
  12. Stalin_Bulldog

    Stalin_Bulldog Chieftain

    Dec 3, 2005
    If this route were taken I'd like to see the specialties meshed in with the combat line like shock I and II, combat1 for CR1, combat 3 for CR2, and combat5 for CR3, do the same for city defender as well.
  13. zup

    zup Chieftain

    Aug 14, 2008
    allow drill as a prereq too in that case. Drill is mainly good for already insanely promoted units, say combat 5 + city raider 3. While other promotions got buffed from vanilla, drill actually got nerfed as it used to be a prereq for shock, cover and formation.
  14. Micky Onimusha

    Micky Onimusha Chieftain

    Apr 26, 2004
    Aye, this sounds like a sensible change to me, in the way Stalin_Bulldog said. You get an effective city attacker with 2 promotions (Com1+CA1), but it'll take a lot more promotions to get a dominating city attacker. I think I agree that CA is a bit overpowered, 3 promotions and an Axeman becomes a city destroying beast (and usually better or equal to a veteran unit that's been trained up to Combat 5 and even heroic strength/s). If you made it require the Combat promotions, to get to CA3 would take a much fairer 8 promotions.

    But... just to be fair, I think the same should apply to City Garrison promotions (CG1 at C1, CG2 at C3, CG3 at C5). Like wise, it only takes 3 promotions to make a unit a greater city defender than a veteran. I think there's a place for specialisation, but you can't go straight to Shock I and II and the same should probably apply to the City promotion line.

    The thing I've noticed about the Warfare tech is suddenly, the Shock and Cover lines just become so much less interesting. You know your opponent may have a mix of melee and archery units, so just take CR and you get a bonus on both (provided they're in a city, of course). If you have Form of the Titan, you can instantly push out Axemen with CR2, which can do some pretty hefty damage.

    Regardless, if it's there, I'll use it, but I do agree it needs some toning down.
  15. Keeper_GFA

    Keeper_GFA Chieftain

    Aug 20, 2008
    I like the idea of prerequisites for City Attack, but none for City Defender. Defending is often a strategically bad idea anyway, so it's not so bad getting CD easily. And having CD be easier to get than CA would help the AI since they seem to prefer defending a city rather than preemptively attack an enemy unit outside the city.

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