Gunpowder redesign concept

The way gunpowder currently works is kinda off. It’s supposed to be an early imp thing, yet it needs chemistry, which takes almost 2 minutes to research. Also HC train super slow.

And with gunpowder UU civs I don’t think anyone can deny it’s ridiculous as they have way too few counters in the castle age, especially on closed maps where they can go under/in a castle.

The fact they deal 10+ damage to mangonels with high bullet speed and it’s basically free damage due to how slow mangos are means the only real way to engage them is either with monks or mass knights, and both of those are mostly for scaring away, as you can’t dive the castle anyway.

Extremely one dimensional and unbalanced design.

So, what if gunpowder units had much lower base damage stats, but got extra damage based on a new mechanic, such as, the civbuilder one, every university tech granting +1 damage.

Due to the short range and lack of ballistics gunpowder units have, I don’t think they would be unbalanced in late imp even if they dealt 24, 25 damage, there would still be much more powerful UUs such as mangudai, magyar CA, 11/12 range arbs/lbows, or siege onagers.

So what if conqs had 12 base damage, instead of 16, but their damage in post imp was… say, 25. Same with Hussite Wagons who won’t be as dominant against archer civs in the castle age, or organs, who trade cost effectively against their supposed counter, mangonels.

Alternatively this can be done with their elite upgrades, but I looked for a solution that also works for Hand Cannons, as their stats in late imp aren’t too great either.

Also I envision that really scales with game time, if you have to get all university techs, that is a lot more expensive than just the elite upgrade, and actually can rival full blacksmith + thumb ring + parthian + recurve bow + bloodlines + husbandry + chemistry + ballistics in terms of cost.

Hence the imp scaling won’t be relevant except in super long games, where gunpowder greatly suffers.

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Tbh I don’t think this would change anything in imp while decreasing their usefulness in those few scenarios in which they perform well (usually closed maps and castle age push). Problem with gunpowder units in imp is their damage is already kinda overkill. But they still perform rather bad in high number battles as half of your army will shoot at one unit and then takes much time to reload. So if you wanna make them better longterm you’d need to reduce reload time or so.


Handconners should be train in castle age and gunpowder units need a tech similar to thumb ring.

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Chemistry is a significant power spike. Hand cannoneers are okay, the way they are now. They very useful to civilizations that do not have Arbalester. Take for example of me playing as the Persians (even before Kamandaran was a thing) a few Hand cannoneers, let’s say ten is very useful to get rid of annoying halberdiers away from my elephants, so my elephants do their thing by smashy smashy stuff down.

Or simply my civ lacks even crossbowman. Making a hand cannoneers is rather nice to deal with trash like halb units if let’s say I am some sort of knight civ like the Franks or something.

I don’t like this proposal.

I think you’re putting the cart before the horse. Gunpowder is not “supposed to be an early imp thing”. The 2 minute chemistry research and slow HC training time are there precisely to allow HC to be decent in post-imp without being OP in early imp.
HC are only an early imp thing because the devs made a few small mistakes tuning the units, which they can’t be blamed for because you can’t expect perfect balance when a game is released, and which they have now (finally) begun to fix.

Jay for the devs! Better late than never! :stuck_out_tongue:

To get their post-imp strength up to the ideal level, I think all they’d need is a little more hp and/or armour and/or attack.
Perhaps a technology in analogy of thumb ring. It was a bad idea back when HC were trash, but HC are almost strong enough for this to become a good idea. (Not quite yet I think, but almost.)
We’ll get there eventually…

If this is a genuine problem, there’d be something to say for your proposal.

I don’t perceive Portuguese or Turks to be a problem though, and all of this is true for their UU push and their fast-imp push.

Hussite Wagon look a little broken, but I’m sure they’ll be changed one way or another.

As for Conquistadors… perhaps some changes there could be good. But I don’t think your changes look very good.


For once it’s not a proposal that risks making every HC civ imbalanced, but Idk if locking the HC’s full power behind thousands of res is going to help anything. If you use them to shoot infantry, they already have their bonus damage. If you want them to start getting strong enough to kill cavalry/buildings, you’re better of using all these res for actual anti-cav/siege.

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Any reason to come up with this assumption?


IMO, gunpowder units should be an Imp thing
The power spike of gunpowder was such that changed the warfare at the end of Middle Age
Some can argue that HC shouldn’t be a AoE2 unit but the inaccuracy and the cost compensate for this
Even the Janissary and the Conquistador with guns are beyond AoE2 timeframe (not really sure about the OG and HW)
I like the way they are right now but Castle Age gunpowder units are useless in Imp


So you basically want to flatten their powerspike at the midgame, for the sake of some bizarre equality, every month or so there is a post calling to nerf Janni’s and Conq’s, and basically turning Conq’s into a CA. Same scaling into late game, same reliance on upgrades, something in you guys cant accept this form of diversity. Having a type of unit in the game that have a midgame powerspike, yet no lategame abilities, that’s a brilliant organic design by the original developers, but for some reason the OCD is bigger than strategy, and we always seem to have an urge to flatten ideas and concepts. Please dont. <3

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for me, the balance is in such a sweet spot right now. I don’t think it needs changing, its been getting tweaked for ages but seems in a good place imo.

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I think we need first to tackle the question what is HC purpose.
Currently it looks to me it should be the late game supplement for a good archer line. Mostly intended to be used against infantry.

Then we should ask ourselves how a unit should be designed to fill that role.

I currently think that the HC has two main issues: A) too high gold ratio for it’s purpose B) Too low firerrate and too high damage (the idea would be same effective dps but firing faster).
This together could bring them to the spot they seem to be designed for.

Also possible: An imp tech “Matchlock” that increases the rof of HC.

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it’s a raw ranged damage output unit that reach maximum effectiveness in low numbers in mid-game, scales awfully into deep late-game. (due to overkill potential, lack of attack speed, lack of ballistics, range, animation, cost)
The bonus vs. Infantry is mostly relevant vs. just Eagles and Huskarls.

You guys aim to basically Archerize Gunpowder units, nonsense in my opinion. Killer to diversity, HC will become a fancy skin of a Crossbow. Great.

You should watch the video of sotl on that.
At one point he analyzed that almost no civ has actually a choice between FU arbs and HC. HC seem intentionally be given to civs with bad archer lines.
So yeah I think they are intended to have the same lategame utility in countering infantry. Which makes sense as infantry becomes way stronger in lategame cause of the gold running out.

And that’s also what they were historically most effectively used. Only with the invention of the musket they were finally able to penetrate hardened plate.