Buffs for the terribly weak Bengalis and Dravidians

While Dravidians are good on water, they seem to be completely trash on land. Bengalis seem to be average on closed land maps but extremely weak on open maps. Both these civs have good options only for casual Black forest 4v4 but in general games they lack mobility and don’t have strong generic units in their stable which they can directly get into in castle age. The other 2 civs are fine as they have mobility and units to counter most of the standard single unit armies from other civs. My thoughts to address this:

Dravidians:
Barrack techs except Halberdier and Champion upgrades available one age earlier and cost -50%
Medical corps - Cost increased to 500f, 400g, Infantry and cavalry regenerate 20 hp per minute.
Get Redemption.

Bengalis:
Trees last 25% longer (consistent with being a naval civ and helps with Ratha production as wood lines remain efficient slightly longer.)
Cavalry get +1 p.armor in castle age and additional +1 in imp but lose plate barding armor (the old Indian bonus)

EDIT: Changed Dravidians to keep them immobile with a horrible stable but make their infantry more usable. Changed bonuses for Bengalis without any changes to Rathas

You can’t just randomly make a unique unit into a regional unit with no historical basis. I know the game needs to prioritize balance, but unique units and regional units need more of a historical justification than that.

What, so they go from being the only civ with Shrivamshas to not even having an elite? It’s also fine for them to have a terrible stable.

Why? Seems like an overbuff. BBC I could maybe get behind, because it lets them deal with mangonel line, which right now is really good against literally anything Dravidians have.

Way too much at once, and no justification for any of it.

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what’s the historical basis of Mangudai’s bonus damage against siege, Ghulam’s thrust damage, Franks forager working faster or Mayans starting with an extra villager or having el dorado?
I don’t think every bonus in game is history based and is given for game balance.

More than a dozen civs with great military options have almost all important monk techs. Nothing wrong in giving these to an incredibly weak civ with very limited military options and making them a viable Arena civ.

Very much needed for arguably the second weakest civ in the game.

Shrivamsha become a regional unit for all. Only Dravidians don’t get Elite upgrade, rest do. And that’s why I mentioned “OR”. “OR” means either the first line of changes or no first line of changes and just the second line of changes. So its either making them a decent open map civ or a decent closed map civ.

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Also not a fan of that. For UU you really need some historical basis to make stuff like that happen. Also I don’t think it’s good gameplay wise. All the new civs have concepts of how they play out. Arguably that does not work to great for 2 of them so changes should try to improve that. If the devs fail to do so after several attempts they can still apply a last resort solution that isn’t pretty but works (see sicilians).

So imo they should prioritize reworking urumi or so.

I guess making a unit with a spear having pierce through dmg or giving a mobile archer unit that was known for their battlefield tactics bonus vs slow and stationary stuff requires less imagination than giving a civ a UU that they didn’t have at all. For generic units that has to be the case to some degree (meso siege for instance) but imo not for UU.

Siege engineers and bbc I agree (they already have hc so adding bbc does make sense I guess).

I think if you did all that at once they would be much more than simply decent. Their eco bonus is way better for fc maps than arabia or the like and they have one of the best infantry and good archers. If you give them all siege and monk upgrades the civ would literally not a single weakness on arena.

Adding thumb ring is fine I guess but apart from that try to give them bonuses that fit their concept before adding units arbitrarily.

Btw reducing bonus dmg in melee mode just cries for abuse. You shoto switch mode, shoot again. These things shouldn’t be in the game imo.

I believe the reason why Dravidians don’t get Bloodlines is because of Wootz Steel. Spammable, fast moving, 80hp light cavalry that deal 11 damage per hit regardless of armor could be a little too strong. I think giving them bombard cannon is a good idea in order to give them a counter to heavy scorpions and onagers (aside from building their own). The only monk tech they’d need is Redemption, so that they have a counter to mangonels in the Castle Age (aside from building their own), since most (all?) other civs have either monks, knights, or eagle warriors as an alternative counter. I haven’t played much with or against Dravidians, so I haven’t experienced personally their shortcomings.

I have played a bunch with Bengalis though, and share the opinion of others in that there weakness is Castle Age play. Their Imperial Age is fine, but they struggle to get their healthily due to a lack of Castle Age options. Any buffs they receive should probably phase out and not provide too much of a bonus in Imperial Age, where they’re already fine. I think having a subpar Castle Age is fine, as long as they have other options to help alleviate that. The best suggestion I’ve read thus far is to give Bengalis free cavalry armor upgrades. It would be a buff that’s unique, possibly overpowered on most other civs but not on Bengalis, and has the most impact early in the game but wouldn’t be too powerful and buff their current Imperial Age play. It would buff their Feudal Age scouts, allowing them to potentially get an advantage in Feudal Age that could help them get through Castle Age. In their Castle Age stable, they only get Light Cavalry and Battle Elephants, which aren’t optimal food-wise for that phase of the game so it wouldn’t cause too much disturbance there; and the armor is mostly negligible on Armored Elephants. Similarly, in Imperial Age the free armor is nice but by the time you’re fielding battle elephants or spamming light cavalry you probably could’ve afforded the final armor upgrade anyways. An alternative I read was free Bloodlines/Husbandry, but since Bloodlines is an expensive Feudal Age tech that may be a bit too strong.

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Are the Dravidians even that weak? Like I can kinda agree they are unusually bad against mass siege so they could use BBC or better monks, but they probably are as “terribly weak” as civs like Vietnamese or Tatars thx to stats charts’ tendency to put perfectly fine civs in the bottom 10.

Both Dravidians and Bengalis need a better technology tree for sure.

I believe the reason Bengalis don’t have thumb ring is to discourage players from using their strong economy to field arbalests, while ignoring the units the civ(s) were designed/intended to use. That’s a big reason why Vikings had Thumb Ring removed; since players were using the Vikings economy for mainly archers instead of infantry. Giving Paiks the accuracy boost instead might be ok since it would be limited to the intended units of elephant archers and rathas, but I haven’t given it much thought.

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6th Worst in open maps and 7th worst in closed maps

The problem is that while Bengalis are Massively handicapped by not having a thumb ring & Knights, their other options are just average or below average at best. Their entire army composition can be killed by just Skirms

Did you actually read what I said? This isn’t necessarily meaning anything because there is a bunch of civs with the same winrate that are held in higher regard than this one.

Yes I guess so. However even if you could argue for bengalis having viking level eco you don’t really have the potential to fast imp like vikings can as you don’t get that food collection power spike. Also imo bengalis should get thumb ring for elephant archers. They do have paiks but besides the missing accuracy it’s not like the unit would be really powerful now. I mean on closed maps they are good but still you can’t open with them early imp as you’ll die to arb halb pushes.

Other than that I agree. If there is ways to improve their mid game options (and maybe elephant archera get some general changes) there is no need to add thumb ring.

Sure but at least you can argue that Vietnamese and tartars are good gameplay wise. That doesn’t really work for dravidians. You have strong maa archer opening and good infantry late game but that’s it. With bengalis you have at least the ratha option and strong late game in general but with dravidians your options are pretty bad past mid castle age. You can play the arb route but it’s not like you have any bonuses for that as the game goes on.

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Yes, absolutely they are. Most mediocre eco bonus for land, No knights, almost all cavalry upgrades missing. UU is a zero p.armor melee unit and is almost never needed except niche situations. - All these mean they’re one of the worst for open maps. No bombard canons, monk techs, special advantage on siege or a super powerful late game unit for closed maps either. And if you’re going to be like “they’re a water civ”, Italians, Portugese are water civs with quite a lot of bonuses for water but yet have a diverse tech tree for land. So giving good bonuses on water doesn’t justify the handicapped land tech tree.

Tatars were one of the weakest when DE released. They got 6 buffs - free thumb ring, halb upgrade, parthian tactics, keshiks cost, buff for timurid siege, sheep bonus. And then finally they’re a strong civ on open maps with hills. Vietnamese got their share of buffs too and are now great on closed maps. So while I agree with your indirect mockery of calling out a civ as weak just based on stats (even though current Tatars and Vietnamese are not appropriate examples), I’m not talking just in terms of stats. From the very first time the tech tree was released on April 14, it was obvious that this civ is terribly weak on land. I just waited to see if uu was usable and compensated for the awful stable. But it doesn’t. When you compare the tech tree to the civs which are similar in terms of having full upgrades on infantry and ranged units while missing stable upgrades, its Japanese, Malay, Vikings. This civ has the worst features of those 3. Siege is worse than all these 3, stable is as worse as the worst amongst the three - Malay, Monastery is as worse as the worst of these 3 - Vikings, eco bonus is similar to Japanese till castle age and weaker than the other two. Overall the weak components of all the closely related civs were combined into one to produce the ultimate worst land map civ for 1v1. I think even pre-DE Khmer, Tatars from Dec 2019 to March 2020, Sicilians from Feb 2021 to May 2021 were much better than current Dravidians.

Vikings bonus is orders of magnitude better than that of Bengalis. Free wheelbarrow is like 8-10% faster eco in feudal age. So while Vikings might be trailing slightly in terms of resources collected till Bengalis click wheelbarrow, the cost of wheelbarrow and the 3 villager time overcompensates for it and in the end Vikings turn out much better. Once you hit castle age the bonus is even bigger for Vikings with free hand cart. And they also have knights with 2+2 armor in castle age which is a good option to kill opponent scorps or mangonels and elite skirms which Bengalis don’t have. So I don’t think giving Bengalis thumb ring is going to rise them to Viking level but rather make them more usable and a nice mid-tier civ with some strengths and weaknesses.
The other option of not giving thumb ring is to buff the base stats of Rathas. But that will rather be beneficial primarily on closed and control the gold type maps where they’re already average and not the worst.

Tbf getting that extra 200 wood in castle age makes them way better eco than japanese at that point. So eco wise the civ is better than japanese. I’d say about average (maybe slightly better but not sure) on open maps and way above average on closed maps.

Problem is contrary to something like japanese you neither have knights in castle age nor any other good stable units to play here. And even if you have strong infantry you need to invest into these. The UT is super expensive while japanese have their bonus as civ bonus. Cheaper barracks techs only has noticable effect for champ or halb upgrade but that comes in somewhat too late I guess.

Well why buff an already good unit? I mean surely there are other possibilities to not make them even more one trick pony.

i agree. i also think ratha are perfectly strong the way they are.

It will be same as Incas Eagle Warrior. But I don’t think we should start making every UU as new regional UU. Bengalis and Dravidians have problems but S.Rider will surely not help to solve them. Their bigger problem is keeping up with opponents mobility - cav, camel and Eagle (Not that much for Dravidians). S.Rider is the fastest unit that can keep track with them but is terribly weak everything that has melee attack.

Exactly. I was also thinking about giving them bonus archer armor like similar to their Elephants. But this will be for both mode. Ratha both melee and ranged +2 archer armor. But again, I don’t want them to be a one trick Ratha pony civ.

Well thanks. It was me. I personally think a defensive bonus will help them more though. I think they are slow, steady, and late game civ. Free cav armor is somewhat aggressive bonus that doesn’t fit them.

It is actually the opposite. Armor is a must for armored and siege elephant as they become ridiculously strong against villagers and low attack melee units.

They didn’t get any buff for PT. I think you tried to mean Silk Armor.

Not so different from the Polish winged Hussar, which gets 9+4 attack, 20 more HP, is faster (husbandry), has trample damage, and a much better food eco to back it up. As it is, nothing in the Dravidian stable is worth making.

Right now I think of them as a somewhat worse version of Japanese. Their infantry strength is similar in Imp, but they have to pay for it whereas Japanese get it free. Their wood bonus is fairly comparable to Japanese, maybe somewhat better early game, but Japanese is better long term. On water/hybrid maps, Japanese have a similar but more powerful and longer lasting bonus (Dravidians carry bonus is unhelpful when fish are close, and becomes useless once you make fish traps). Dravidian faster firing skirms are nice, but IMO Japanese have the better range overall since CA > EA. Japanese also have perfectly serviceable castle age stables, and light cav that are at least good enough for raiding/siege sniping lategame. That said, Dravidians can be decent against civs with bad siege, but even as a fan of Dravidians, I kinda feel handicapped when I play as them. So I’d be wary of giving them a huge powerup, but BBC at least is a must, and they could be given more without becoming OP.

Probably. Bengalis supposedly have 2 strong unique/regional archer units that should be incentivized rather than going for generic play with Arbs.

Actually Dravidians having almost no stable was likely planned right from the start, as when the bonuses were leaked woodz steel only worked on infantry, yet one of the hint pictures already showed a civ with no imp stable upgrades. So they probably decided to not make their stable completely useless by throwing it a bone for the late game.

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Honestly I don’t have a lot of experience with Bengalis or Dravidians, but if a civ is ever getting free cavalry armor upgrades Bengalis make the most sense to me. It enables them to play light cav/elephants so much easier and doesn’t tax them too much when switching to rathas

Dravidians I don’t know, but at the moment it is still too early to see wether the new civs are too strong/too weak

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Could just as well be a defensive one. For instance of your opponent plays archers in feudal you can defend just fine from that without making skirms. Also you could defend from smaller groups of xbows with light cav this way. At some that probably won’t work anymore but until then you can easily field siege I guess. Ofc your opponent could add spears/pikes in both situations but that’s what a defensive civ is about: Your opponent needs larger investment to make their aggression work. That’s why I think the idea fits quite well to the civ.