Balance Suggestions - towers and french

Mostly feedback from team games and trying to account for the chat messages that get thrown around. Essentially every game with French people say stuff like “report french” or “no gg french”. Clearly, an issue. The other really unpleasant thing is tower rushing. Not news to anyone. A thought or two:

  1. Towers take 100% bonus damage while being in construction.
  2. Villagers deal 100% bonus damage against towers (AOM does this, and it doesn’t stop tower rushes or penalize you for not reacting, but it makes it recoverable with a price).

The french problem is two fold.

  1. Early knights are tool effective against most and chivalry is always picked up.

    • fix: make chivalry much more expensive so it’s more of a choice (+100 gold maybe)
    • fix: make early knights have less armor (25-50% less) so defensive towers, and or TCs are more effective. It’s too easy “dive” right now. I get French need to raid, but map control is enough, making them able to dive in, kill villagers, and leave and heal is too powerful of a combination.
  2. French team game players only build one unit, an entire mass of maxed knights. And then they win. Because maxed they basically win against any units there needs to be a more effective way for most civs to counter them. New landmark team game changes will help, but won’t fix problem.

    • fix: units can only take a single charge damage within a set amount of time (10 seconds).
      -fix: buff spearmen or hand cannoneers with specialized available techs.
      -counter play shouldn’t be free, but possible. Make it so spears can get higher bonus damage against armored knights. Perhaps a tech that allows hand canoneers to debuff cav akin to camels (10% maybe).

Really enjoy the game, and I think it’s close to being in a really great place. The PUP doesn’t address any of the above and I think it’s going to continue to hinder the community.

bonus other more wild ideas:

  • wild idea: make a third kind of call, that is passible it just slows units down. Similar to palings for longbowmen, but villagers or infantry (with upgrade perhaps) can build it and create ways to punish non-mircoed heavy cav.

  • wild idea 2: I wish there were a way to invest even further in armory upgrades that provided more specific specializations. Even an “either or” option, where I can give more specific customizations to my units to counter the other player. Upgrade my spearmen to be more effective any Cav, but slows them down and makes them worse to archers. Or upgrade them to be faster and take less arrow damage. ETC.

1 Like

Early tower rushing definitely needs some tweak. Recent PUP reduced the range of arrowslit upgrade but I don’t think that is nearly enough. Things you suggested might help the current problem but one can only tell whether it is sufficient or not if we can actually test it.

Regarding the topic of early knights(Especially French ones), yes I do feel like they become out of control in team game where most of the time a session goes into super-late game and French players can win the match by just spamming them non-stop. Even in 1 v 1 situation you can just force your opponent to build barracks, train handful of spearmen and build palisade walls + towers just by picking French then building School of Cavalry. So, I do agree that this needs more tweak too.

However, rather than straight-up nerfing the stats of French Knight, I think a bit more indirect approach could be more interesting.

For example :

  • Make cavalry maneuver more like a ship. Ships have significantly slow rotation speed & acceleration compare to land units so they cannot dive in and out quickly like current cavalries do. By reducing cavalries rotation speed & acceleration it would be more risky for them to dive if the initial assault fails because it would take noticeably longer for them to retreat back to safety, leading them to sustain more damage.

  • Add special buff effects to formations. Currently, formation in AOE4 has little to no purpose in most combat scenario. I always thought it is a cool idea to have formation function in RTS game but the current iteration needs more practical effects (other then making pretty shapes with units) to incentivize players to use it. For example, Box Formation adds armor bonus to melee units on outer rim and attack speed bonus to range units on inner rim but reducing the movement speed of the group making it as effective ground-holding tactics. Things like this could bring possibilities to add anti-cavalry formation that could deter mindless dive-in.