Hypotetical change to Crossbow and Knight lines

How does the balance and meta would change with these 2 changes:

  1. Generic Crossbowman -1 attack
  2. Knigh -1 PA

First thought: Cav Archers would rule the world :smiley:


Why? You still have skirms and scorpions

Then you could just add light cav. They would have more pierce armor than knights and are a good addition to Cav Archers anyway.

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Aggressive play in Castle Age seems less rewarding.


Just reduce the DPS of both; and make technologies, as Thumb Ring, and upgrades, as Crossbow or Cavalier, increase the DPS


DPS? you mean attack speed?

Actually, It would be logic tha crossbows have less rate of fire than archer. it is weird that an upgrade ironically downgrade an stat, but we already have a precedent with the movement speed of Scout and Light cavalry upgrade

May be make knight line regional unit

Problem of nerfing crossbow/knight directly is that it actually buff to pike/skirm and game will go to more stalemate with trash unit.

Just propose to buff underwhelming UU to diversify meta , or buff steppe lancer/ battle elephant or scorpion line.
I also want to see more use of monks outside of Arena. how about reduce the maximum conversion time of Knight?


Mmm I’m not sure about this, because you still don’t want to take a fight against skirms with archers, a -1 attack doesn’t change that, and the same for KTs vs Pikes, because the -1 PA doesn’t even matter in this matchup…

Most UU already are enough strong playing their role, I think the problem is the great powerspike and rounded performance of KTs and Crossbows in early castle. This force you to use them over any other option in almost every situation…

Yes what could go wrong by dropping the attack of crossbows by 20-33% vs units with 0-2 pierce armor?

I keep mentioning causal inference for a reason on this forum. When you try to make a balance change you have to take into account that people change the behavior that is currently being taken for granted.

Think of how this affects unique units like cataphracts, and obuch. Just because people dont go straight UU now doesnt mean that if you nerf their primary counter’s dps by 25%+ that people wont spam them. What about konniks, leitis, and coustillier? Think about how civs like ethiopians deal with coustillier or konniks. Or how vikings deal with cataphracts.

Not to mention cavalry archers have their DPS vs knights boosted 25% so they can now more safely use staggered formation which totally ruins the mechanic by which scorpions achieve their ability to counter CA.

Obviously you can make this change and get back to a balanced game. But good luck tracking down all the other changes which also need to coincide with this change to achieve that objective.

The narrow meta is a symptom not a disease. Its caused by a host of factors from micro potential, player bias due to history, farm setup costs, walls not reducing projectile damage/accuracy, tower costs, pike cost and training time, etc. It would be a miracle if a small direct change to xbow or knights was capable of fixing the meta in any meaningful sense without simply causing a different possibly worse problem.


Kts is fine, i would like to see archer’s cost increased by 5 wood that’s probably the main issue with them along with attack mouvement speed buuff : the cost which is very low and make it very easy to pump on early game while booming.

Actually even +10 w and -5g seems to be good to me.

Mayans laughing at this

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I think it is probably too drastic. A better way to nerf them would be increasing the training time of the Crossbowman a little bit (27s → 30s for Crossbowmen, Arbalesters unaffected) and increasing the upgrade costs for the Crossbow upgrade: 125 food 75 gold → 150 food 100 gold and Arbalest: 350 food 300 gold → 400 food 350 gold (850 total resources → 1000 resources). I wouldn’t change their actual stats, but I think their timings are a bit too strong. These changes should make it a bit harder to get critical masses of these units without changing their fighting performance, which is ok imo.

For the Knight line, I would increase the attack rate of the Knight and Cavalier: 1.8s → 1.9s to make them slightly less overwhelming in large melee engagements (and to homogenize the upgrades of the Knight line, no longer “nerfing” the attack rate of the Paladin).

I don’t know what you guys think, but these changes seem reasonable without screwing their stats around too much. Thoughts?


This. Not sure about the TT though, because xbows are already slow to mass, and need that mass to be effective, so if you lose them coming back from it becomes exponentially more difficult with increased TT.

And this

Really good ideas. Increase in knight tt (think +3sec) has been suggested as well. Since Knights don’t need the mass to be as effective for a comeback. But can still be oppressive when massed with their fast reinforcement time due to speed. And specifically need something to delay their castle age impact

But specifically I would prefer to see the arrow upgrades made more expensive. (Potentially+50f each, or staggered at +25/50/75)

You get far more out of those upgrades than melee, it should be costed accordingly

In conjunction with the small xbow tech increase it works out to 75f in castle age, not a massive but still an impactful hit.


I was also thinking about increasing the training time of the Knight for the reasons you’ve mentioned, I think it would be an ok change that makes them less snowbally without removing the “cool factor” of being strong all around units.

Well, 3 extra seconds aren’t that much, it means that instead of getting 10 Crossbowmen you get 9 in a 5:30 min span. Or about 3 less crossbowmen per Archery Range every 16:30 minutes. Not exactly sure how much of a nerf that is, but it doesn’t sound too bad in theory.

Increase the unit size of archer line so it can’t stack up 1000 xbows in 1 tile.

Decrease movement speed of knights.


this would make mangonels and scorpions weaker counters against them

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