FWIW, smart tactics can make scouts a viable option on the offensive as well. They can get +1 health/turn with their first upgrade via survivability. Now, if you know how to work the rather idiotic AI, you can get the Scout to be the target of city bombard, perpetually healing to no loss (assuming your on rough terrain). This in turn gives your warriors free access to the city without fear of getting bombarded down. Finally, you're scout can attack the city if need be. Using this tactic, I've successfully taken a city with just a scout and 2 warriors. As for the barbs, I've found my scouts are great at taking down weakened barbs, or weakening the barbs so that my warriors can finish them. The issue isn't really that scouts are worthless, because they aren't. The issue is that there is no upgrade chain for scouts EVER outside of a goody hut upgrade. The easiest solution is to mod in, or DLC/expansion in a unit chain. If not, scouts should at least be allowed to upgrade to gunships late in the game. Otherwise, I'm in favor of a scout>explorer>???>partisans (from civ 2) chain.