Dravidian civ has a poor win rate and consequently play rate. There are a couple of big problems and a small problem I have sought to solve.
- Dravidians don’t get any long term eco bonuses or unit discounts. They can’t make more buildings or units once their 200 wood bonus is up. But south India was an economic powerhouse. Spices and cotton farming gave huge advantage to the region economically. Spice export made surpluses for the region against Romans, Portuguese and even the British. South India was referred as the gold sink of the world in medieval age. It makes sense to have a farm based bonus which exhibits this trait.
- Knights have crazy DPS in castle age. Dravidians don’t get them and don’t have any similar replacements like camels. So they lack a mobile, tanky raiding power unit in castle age which is poor design for an aoe2 civ. This gap in design needs to be closed.
- Monks don’t have fervor and redemption making them too easy to snipe by siege. Give Redemption. If not, give fervor and make Urumi a siege sniping unit.
Here is a rework of Dravidian civ bonuses based on the strategies we discussed and games I played this Christmas weekend:
Dravidian Civilization bonuses * [**CHANGE**] Receive 150 extra wood at the start of the game. * [**CHANGE**] Farms have 2 times the food as regular farms. (2 x 175 food) * Barracks technologies cost -50%. * Skirmishers and Elephant Archers attack 25% faster. * Team bonus: Docks provide +5 population space Unique units * Urumi Swordsman: Melee infantry armed with a long steel whip. They do charge attack based on charge bar. During charge attack, they deal 1/2 splash damage to units 0.75 tiles near them. [**CHANGE**] Rate of attack is 100% faster and moves 0.1 tps faster [**CHANGE**] The charge bar is also a damage avoiding bar like Shrivamsha Shield. Enemy attack on Urumi both melee and Pierce will reduce charge attack bar first before reducing Urumi’s real health bar. [**CHANGE**] Exchange Eagle attack bonus and Building attack bonus for cavalry and Siege attack bonus. * Thirisadai : Warship that fires multiple projectiles Unique technologies Castle Age Unique tech : [**CHANGE**] Strike Corps - Barrack technologies effect is doubled. Imperial Age Unique tech : Wootz Steel - Infantry and cavalry attacks ignore armor. Tech Tree: [**CHANGE**] *Dravidian Monks have access to redemption or fervour.*
The 200 wood per age is replaced with a +150 wood at the start of the game like Lithuanians. Since the next farm bonus is a wood bonus which kicks in later. The 200 wood per age has been reworked into a one time early wood bonus. This helps with early rush. Thus maintaining the civ identity too.
The new farm bonus is a replacement for +15 fish carry capacity bonus. The new farm bonus is essentially crop rotation baked in as a civ bonus. It saves 75 wood and 75 food by deferring Horse collar to late castle age and farms will save 120 wood in feudal age. This will help Dravidians float wood and redirect villagers to food when they need to switch to elephants or stone to place defensive castles without killing economy. In water maps, it helps to create more ships without stressing out the land economy.
Strike Corps: The effect of researched barrack technologies is doubled. Supplies, Squires and arson will have double the effect on their military units. It will make Militia line cheaper(30 food) and faster(1.08 tps), Pikes(1.2 tps) and Urumis faster(1.38) as well. The building attack bonus for all infantry(+2) helps against lack of siege engineers. This buffed up infantry is a good replacement for missing knights. With this change, Dravidians could overcome the absence of Knights and cavalry upgrades.
Urumi does not have any significant role in Dravidian gameplay. If we made some adjustments to the stats, they could become the Knight and Siege counter that Dravidians lack. Here is a Link to that post about Urumi stat changes. Urumi will be exactly equal to Knight in a one on one fight provided armour and attack upgrades are same. With charge attack, urumi can take Knight out always. But Knight will kill urumi otherwise. Urumi is a solid defensive unit vs Knight. Urumi can snipe siege even if Knight engages like current gameplay of normal Knight civs. So Urumi can be the Dravidian answer to a siege push.
Due to current meta, Knight is a vital capability, almost a civ bonus for castle age. The power gap has to be filled using eco bonuses and existing units available to Dravidians. So the new design distributes that power evenly across infantry and Urumis. This rework can make Dravidians a well rounded infantry and naval civ with wood bonus along with infantry power spike in late game. Despite the absence of Knights, Monks and Urumi along with skirms should make it #####ble to defend in castle age without falling behind too much. Please share your thoughts.