Idears on Balance changes for Sicilians/ Burgundians (mainly Sicilians)

Hello my fellow Players,

once again I wanna talk about the new Civs (Burgundians and Sicilians), because they still seem in a bad spot and I think the Buffs in these Patch kinda miss their identitiy:

This Post:
1: How to Balance
2: Clarification what isnt as strong as people think
3: How to change Sicilians
4: How to change Burgundians
5 Conclusion

Disclaimer: Obviously i make my suggestions from my perspective of the Game and Iam around 1600 Elo atm, which defines my View on strength. For Example I take a big value on resource and production efficiency, because its important by my personal experience.

1: How to Balance:

First we need to establish “how” we wanna make a bad Civ stronger. Ofc just giving them a big Tech tree and Eco Bonuses would make any Civ strong, but Civs normaly have an identity. Therefore for balancing one should try to figure out a Civs identity and then balance them according to these. (more details in Civ section)

2: Clarification on Civ strengths:
At release some people thought some Bonuses might be OP. Because I wanna talk about Buffs for the 2 Civs I wanan establish why these arent as strong:

Burgundians:
Stables: with lacking Bloodlines their Cavaliers are just like Knights with +2 Attack. Their Palas are significantly weaker (like Byz Palas. Byz Rarly go Palas). Its a good early Game bonus but falls of later on.

Sicilians:
Dmg reduce: Dmg reduce is strong in Feudal Age, because it affects their Scout/ Archer opening, but in Castle Age most Games will be played with Knights vs Crossbow or XBow vs Siege.
Ofc counter Units get build, but the most commenly builded Units (Cav, Archer, Siege) dont have any Bonus against each other (except Siege vs Siege, but the Bonus doesnt affect Siege)
Farm Upgrade: The Farm Upgrade Bonus isnt very strong. Compared to the Teuton Bonus they safe less Wood and also safe it later on in the Game.

For a more detailed explanation on the Power of these Bonuses, especially the Farming one look at my old Post , I made the Math for the Farming Bonus there: New Civs Discusion and potential Changes (Sicilians/ Burgundians)


Now to the actuall balance Discussion:

3: How to change Sicilians:

1: What is their Identity
2: What seems to be their Problem
3: Ideas of potential Changes to buff them

1: What is their Identity:

By a look at the Sicilians Tech Tree we can see that they neither have Paladins nor FU (Fully Upgraded) Arbalests. They also dont have special Units like Camels, Ele, Eagels or FU Cav Archers, which are normaly alternatives of Civs who dont have one of the main Unit Lines (Heavy Cav/ Archer).

They also dont have a super strong Eco to finish the Game fast with weaker Units.

But we can see they are having the Serjeant, which seems designed to be a strong unit and be builded in mass, because it can be build from somewhere else then a Castle.

We seemingly have a Civ which cant finish Games super fast with an S Tier early Game, but get an advantage in Feudal age with their more resilient Scouts/ Archer.
Then they can boom a bit in Castle Age with faster build TCs and then in Lategame they seem Designed around a Serjeant+ Halb combo.

Their heavy Cav and Arbs are no outstanding Lategame option and both dont get carried enough by reduced Bonus Dmg (because Halbs still deal +16 and cost no Gold, and Skirms 4 Pierce armor is a big Part of their Counter nature)
Halbs on the other hand get Bonus Dmg from Arbs/ Skirms and are effected quite well by the Sicilian Bonus. On top of That Serjeants are bad vs Heavy Cav (explained later) which gives good Synergie with Halbs.

As conclusion: they seem to be intended as a Civ which plays their early to Mid game normal with an Eco Focus to then go into full Serjeant+ Halbs in Lategame, because these are their only strong Lategame Unit options.

2 What is their Problem

Lets start with what isnt:
Their early to Lategame seems fine. They arent the strongest in this period of the Game and can be outpaced by Faster Civs like Franks, Mayans, Huns … but thats Ok, because by their Design without any fast Eco Bonuses they arent intended to be the best early on.

Problem:
Their Problem seems to be that their intended Serjant + Halb Combo wont work.
Why is that?
The Serjeant has 2 major Problems:
1: Power, 2: Accessibility.

1 Power:
The Serjeant seems to have nice Stats and can beat a Champion 1v1, BUT its a bad trade.
Before the Buff of 10 HP a Serjeant won by 1 Hit vs a Champion and now after the Buff it will be by 2 Hits (Champ has 13+4 Dmg; Serjeant 4+3 Armor → 10 Dmg; Buff got +10 Hp → 1 more Hit)
Winning this close vs a Champion which costs 45 Food (supplies) and 20 Gold with a Serjeant which costs 60/ 35 F/G is a very bad trade. The Serjeant costs 75% more Gold and only remains with 17% of its max HP. On top of that Serjeants are also bad vs Heavy Cav, because the Serjeant has low Attack and high Armor while Heavy cav has high Armor and high Attack.
High armor is more effective against enemys with low Attack, because it reduces a higher % of their total Dmg. Thats why Heavy Cav is a good counter to Serjeants.
Serjeants are also slow which means Siege is another viable counter. In the end they are only good vs Archers.
As an Army Comp Serjeant + Halb would work vs Archers and Cav, but get destroyed by Siege and generic Infantery. As the only main Unit Option of Sicilians their main Army comp should perform better.

2 Accessibility:
The Serjeant needs a Stone Building to be produced. By this there will always be less production capacity then with normal Champions. Because of that Champions counter them in equal costs as well because of the fact that Champions will always outnumber the Serjeants.
Ofc the stone cost got reduced, but you will still need like at least 10 Donjons to produce them in a fast pace, which is 1750 Stone (which is hard to have in Post imp).
Also its quite normal in the Imperial Age to build forward production Buildings while you are pushing. Building 8 forward Barracks in no problem in Post imp, getting 1500 stone to get 8 forward Donjons is.

Also they arent ranged Units like Mangudais. Range Units can be produced Slower, because they dont die as much, but melee Units are right in the battle, die a lot and because of this need to be replaced fast.
Just look at other Civs: Nearly all Melee UU are underused, except units like the Huskarl, which are more accessible.

3 How to Buff them while keeping their Identity:

To buff Sicilians while keeping their Identity a Serjeant play needs to be viable.
How to do it:

potential Ideas:

*Power:*The Serjeants Cost should be lower to around 30 to 25 Gold to be able to beat generic Champions in equal resources. This way their Halb + Serjant Comp could fight Archers, Cav and Generic Infantery, but would still get countered by Civs with stronger Champs (like Teuton, Aztec, Burmese) as well as Siege (like a lot of Scorpions) because they are a slow Infantery Composition. Keep in mind Sicilians dont have Bombard Cannon, which means Siege would be a solid counter to this Composition.
I would probably say a Cost of 55 F and 25 G might be a good first try.
(Problem: with this change Donjon rushs might get to strong, if Serjeants are cheaper, which is why it would make most sense to make them cheaper in Imperial Age. [Idear how to is in next text])

Accessibility: The Serjeant needs to be able to be mass produced for this Comp. There are 3 Idears of mine of how to do it:
For all of these I would exchange their Imperial Unique Tech. The Tech that gives 1 time Gold is pretty underwhelming and also kinda random. (what exactly is the design synergy with the Civ of getting 1 time Gold).
Idears depend on how you want the Civ to be:
1: Defensive:
If the Civ should be defensive a Tech like Royal Heirs would do that. With an Imp UT that lets Serjeants produce much faster from Donjons/ Castles it would be possible to mass from a few Donjons in your Base. But then it would be hard to finish a Game, because all died and replaced Serjeants would need to walk slowly accross the Map. (my least favourite Idear because Crusaders are supposed to attack agressvily, but an Option if people want them to be a defensive Civ)
2: Agressive Anarchy: A similar Unit to the Serjeant is the Huskarl. Its also good vs Archers, bad vs Heavy Cav and supposed to be the Main unit of its Civ. Huskarls are only viable because they can get mass produced. → give Sicilians a UT like Goths/Huns to let Serjeants produce from Barracks.
3: Agressive special: To not make it all about Barracks it would be possible to get a UT that lets the Serjeant produce a new Building (a Crusader Camp). This Crusader Camp can only be builded by Serjeants, costs only Wood and can produce only Serjeants (and maybe also Halbs for the Comp).
This Way it would be possible to get something similar to Anarchy, but you would still need to produce a bigger mass of Serjeants at home and then walk out with them to establish some forward camps. To balance it this building should probably build rather slow to force players to build them with like 8 Serjeants at once. This way it wouldnt be possible to build new Camps while fighting, because they would build to slow with only 1 Serjeant, and using more would reduce your fighting army.

In all cases this Tech should additionally reduce the Serjeants cost to the before mentioned amount of 55F 25G. This way they would be as expensive as right now before Imperial Age, to prevent overpowered Serjeant Cheese strats.

Conclusion:
The Serjeant should cost less and be easier to produce. For that exchanging the Imp UT could be an Idea, because the current one is pretty underwhelming anyways. To prevent Serjeants being to cheap in feudal Age for cheese rushes this Tech should reduce its cost.
With such a change the Serjeant + Halb Comp would be a viable lategame strat, because it could produce as many Serjeants as needed, as well as trade rather cost effective against Champions.

It also would still have counters, because Siege would counter this Composition. Also stronger Infantery Civs like Teuton, Aztec … could still use Champs very effectively.

In these cases the Sicilian player would then need to switch to either Cavalier to counter enemy Siege or Arbs to counter strong enemy Champions. This way Sicilians would have a good main Lategame Comp, which can be countered, as well as an interesting playstyle which can react to its counters, resulting in both Players cycling trough counters.
All in all it would give their Serjeants the Deus Vult they need without making it to strong.


4: How to change Burgundians

1 What is their identity:
2 What is their Problem:
3 How to fix it:

1 What is their identity:

Burgundians seem to have 2 seperate Identitiys before and after Post imp:

Before Post Imp: They have access to Cavaliers, fast weak Palas and earlier Eco Upgrades. This combination seems like they are supposed to overwhelm their enemy early with a huge mass of Cavalier/ Palas supported by their stronger eco, but then fall of in Lategame when their Palas are weaker then normal, as well as their Eco becoming normal.

Past Post Imp: After the Paladin rush failed they have FU Halbs as well as strong Gunpowder Units to support their Halbs. To be able to afford these Gunpoweder Units they can produce Gold with Vineyeards.

2 What is their Problem

First of all, I think with their Buff Burgundians winrate will be fine now, because cheaper eco Upgrades will give their Eco a huge boost.

Before Post Imp: before the Update their eco was simply not good enough, because noone could afford the Upgrades earlier, but now after the buff this section should be fine.

Past Post Imp: Again with the Buffs to the Gold generation of Farms they should be fine now.
I only would address that their Relics generating Food makes no sense synergy wise.
Because of Vineyards a Burgundian Player wants as many Farms as possible to get more Gold. Therefore Food will never be an issue, which makes Food from Relics useless.

3 Potential Change

Before Post Imp: I have no Change atm, seems fine.

Past Post Imp: I think it might be a good change to let Relics generate Wood instead of Food. With Vineyards a Player wants as many Farms as possible. These Farms need Lumberjacks to be supported. If Relics give Wood instead of Food then the Player could Balance its Eco in a way that has fewer Lumbers and more Farms, without spending more supply on Vils.


5: Conclusion:

Burgundians should see a good winrate increase soon and might be fine now, but the Relic Bonus makes no sense in combination with their other Bonuses, which is why I suggested a change.

Sicilians will still be bad as they are and would need some drastic changes as i mentioned, to make it possible to play around their Serjeant, as it was seemingly intended.
Therefore a better accessibility as well as a lower cost would be needed I think, otherwise Serjeants arent playable. I understand the Devs thought Donjons might be enough to mass produce, but not for a slow Melee unit, which dies a lot and needs a lot of time to walk from its production place to the battlefield. Especially if its not a Support but a main Unit, and by this needs to be in constantly big Numbers.

All in all I feel like the new Civs have same bad Synergies in their Design, with Civ Bonuses that work against each other (like Burgundian extra food and Vineyards) or just no good way to use their Techtree as intended (like Sicilians have with their focus on their Serjeant). Sometimes the easy and already used answer might be the best (look at Goth/ Huns Huskarl Spam) or a slight twist on it (like “Crusader Camps”).

Pls tell me what you think about the new Civs, my Ideas on how to change them and especially on how to make Sicilians playable without changing their identity.

I would like to hear your Input and Ideas,

GL HF,

Sylne4r

2 Likes

Maybe Sicilians still need something, but about Burgundians i have to say :NO NO NO

Burgundians after this sick buff will be broken, even Viper in his patch preview on youtube said those buffs are sick, 50% eco techs food discount is sick, relics generate 30food/min is sick, farms generate 33% gold is sick. This civ will be broken as hell, just keep watching to see next topics about nerfing their sick new buffs and I agree with you that their relics shouldn’t generate food at all.

4 Likes

I like the sicilian suggestion of lowered cost in Imperial age but you should make sure that it is an actual buff. If they don’t have their unique tech which gives them gold and instead also have to pay for that tech to get a price reduction you will probably have to create at least 50+ Serjeants before it even starts to pay off and that could be a nerf instead of a buff or at the very least only be useful in very late imperial age if you plan to spam Serjeants

Rather I see two other ways to reduce their cost in later game:

  • After First Crusade the unit price gets lowered to 55F 25G (or 30G)
  • Civ Bonus: Serjeant cost is lowered in imperial age to 55F 25G (or 30G)

That way it is an actual buff to the Serjeant.

Other possible solutions without changing their unique tech:

  • Overall price reduction to 55F 30G in any age
  • Increase the base speed to 1.0 (like halb) to justify the high cost.
    That way they would be far better against archers since the speed difference with squires would be 0.14 (1.1 vs 0.96) instead of 0.03 (0.99 vs 0.96) which would allow them to actually reach hit and run archers
  • a middle way of 0.95 base speed and a bit lowered cost of 60F 30G

It is also the high cost and slow speed that makes the Teutonic Knight a very situational unit and a D tier unit in Heras list. Archers are 0.08 faster than TK with squires which is a hard counter. But Teutons at least have other good options while for the Sicilians their Serjeant is an important part of their army composition and after First Crusade you really have to think about making more Serjeants with their actual price tag.

I like your reply on the Gold cost needing to justify the lose of the instant Gold.

Yes ofc it would need to produce some Serjeants before you get effectively more Gold, but can be fine tuned with the Gold cost of the new UT.
But I think even with the missing Gold from the old UT its still a buff to the Gold cost, because 50 Serjeants isnt a lot, considering its supposed to be their main Unit.

You didnt sayed anything about my claims about their accessibility. I think your comment regarding their Gold costs makes a lot of sense, but how do you think about the accessibility. I think even if you make them cheaper with a Team Bonus or with First Crusade, then you still can only produce them out of Donjons, and with this have the problems i mentioned.

Do you have another Solution to their accessibility, agreed with my Ideas or dont think they need to be able to be produced more accessible?

If you agreed with my stuff about accessibility, then how would you wanna do it without another UT, because you sayed you might wanna keep their current UT?

I think creating them out of a castle and donjons is fine. If you create one castle and then use the rest of the stone for donjons you can create a lot of them at the same time.

Considering that you might want to also spam a less gold dependent unit for your army composition like very Pike/Halb-resistant Light Cav I think there is no problem with production speed.

If the UT stays as it is these are three possible solutions:

I have a new Idea how Sicilians could be changed in a interesting way.

Two main concepts:
First: Infantry fokus should be reflected, givig bnus to all infantry, not just the serjeant.
Second: Making Use of their versatile early to mid game options.

Explanation:
A) Sicilians are categorized as infantry civ. But their non-unique infantry receives not a single (!) bonus. It’s all about the serjeant. Don’t get me wrong, i like the serjeant. But I think Sic should also be amphetised to make more use of their standard infantry lines. The 50 % less bonus damage is almost useless for infantry except for the very lategame, mainly because halbs receive less bonus damage from skirms… Yay!
B) I’ve seen Sicilians playing basically everything. They can open scouts and archers. The bonus helps scouts more than archers, but it also helps a little with the archer rush which is currently more meta.
We’ve seen it in two pools where sicilians were used as archer civ besides lacking the last armor upgrade and thumb ring. Besides it wasn’t very successfull, the Strat is actually somewhat justified. Their Archer line is in total somewhat average, as strange as it sounds.
And I like that diversity. They shouldn’t be pushed of it by only buffing one or two strats.

And lastly I would like the bonusses designed in a way that they improve their early game agression potential a bit, but in the exchange lower the lategame agency. Especially by looking at Arena, where Sicilians could just dominate together with burgundians (hopefully not for long) and malay.

So solution for
A) Give Infantry free armor, but reduce the amount of serjeants spawned by first crusade to 6 for maximum 4 TCs each
B) Forging and Fletching provide one more attack, but (elite) Serjeant loses 1 attack from castle age on. Sicilians lose also leather archer armor.

The changes would also push sicilians in using more unit compositions as their archers have a higher damage output but much lower armor, so they need the serjeant as a frontline to be effective.

The 1 bonus damage would make the sicilians halb also more versatile, so they could also build a more efficient halb/siege and cavalier/halb comp, too.

And I would take away the siege onager. TBH sicilians just don’t need it, it just makes them too strong in closed maps where they are already quite… op.

I would like to read your opinion about the other underperforming civs like viets, ports or Malay
Nice analysis and good reading

I’m with you with the buff on the Serjeant and agree with remove the production of food generation with the relics for the Burgundians (no sense at all)

2 Likes

Neither of those are undeperforming lol, Instead some like Koreans and Cumans.

Also the opinion about the OP ones like Chinese and Vikings.

2 Likes

I will have a look on Portuguese next. The civ is very interesting and I don’t know why it still sucks. I’m curious to find out what holds them back.

Malay is just… I think their faster up should be a straight-up bonus instead of possibly punishing.

And Vietnamese just doesn’t fit my playstile. I have basically no Idea how to fix them. It looks like some pros have somewhat cracked their code, at least they pick them frequently, besides they seem to suck on the ladder.

I’ve no answer to all problems, guys :D, but occasionally I will look at one or the other. But thanks for the kind words.

Hello,

by the fact you talked about the Burgundian Relic Bonus I assume you meant me.
First of all Thanks for your kind words and its nice to see that you agree with me in most cases.

If you have any other Ideas feel free to tell me those, its always good to hear other Opinion to improve your own Ideas.

On the Civs you asked for I cant give such a deep analysis, because I havent played them enough to do so sadly.

However by my limited experience with those 3 Civs the first things that come to my mind are:

Portugese:

By my experience the Civ is just to slow without any strong Bonus to get them going. Most ranked maps are played kinda fast, because many are quite agressive, and even Arena isnt the most defensive map compared to maps like Michi/ BF.

Port dont have a single Economy Bonus or significant Bonus to any Military Unit (talking land only. On water they seem good enough)
With their Tech Tree you could go Knights, but without any bonus, which forces you into Archers, which are FU, but nothing more.
Compared to a Civ like Aztecs, which not even has FU Archers, but an Eco Bonus, the Aztec Player will always get more numbers out then the Port player, and defeat the enemy with these.

I as a Player also play quite some FFA games, which are mainly Post Imp only, and in these Ports are quite good, but their lack of good Cavalery forces them into Halbs, Arbs and Gunpowder.
For 1v1 Games Gunpowder Bonus arent good imo, because they start to activate when you are already dead.

All in all I think they are strong enough in the very Lategame, with spaming Halbs supported by strong BBC against archers and maybe HC against Champions, but just die before they reach this state of the Game.

possible Solution:

They would need some more Tempo. An Economy Bonus would be the simplest way to do so, but it would need to be an Eco Bonus to Wood or Food (Gold is not as important in the early Game as Food/ Wood by my experience)
The faster research time was a try, but faster research most often wont matter, because you will need very tight time windows, but cheaper research might be an option. With cheaper researchs Ports could get fletching and their eco upgrades easier, resulting in a few more Archers.
Archers are a lot about Tempo, so an eco Bonus could help these a lot.
The only question would be how much this would suit their Civ identity, because as said in my original Post: “any Civ can make stronger with an eco buff, but a buff should suit the identity of a Civ”.

They gave them already a Bonus for research so it might be an option, but still feels kinda artificial.
The main problem is that Gunpowder is just to late. The same Problem had Turks, but at least nowadays they have good Light Cav.

Malay:
Similar Problem to Ports I would say. Both are an Archer Civ without any good Archer or Eco Bonus.
Fast Age Up can be super strong, but as said Archers is all about momentum and M@a into Archer is a tight Build order. Aging Up faster means you might lack some of the needed resources and if you click up later you have spend 100 more food on Vils, and M@a needs a lot of Food which might be a factor why the faster Age up might be stronger for a Cav civ, because a scout Bo isnt as tight as M@a into Archer.

Despite their Arbs Malay also dont have anything going for them in the Game. Ofc their Eles are cheap, but in the mid Game Monks and even Archer can counter Ele quite easy. I had a few Games in which i had a ton of Eles and just got killed by Hit and Run Xbow no matter how many Ele I had.
Same as with Ports they have huge Lategame potential with forced Levy which can make early Game buffs to impactfull, because if they reach Two Handed spam supported by Halbs and Skirms (and Arbs vs Champs) not a lot can stop that.
Giving them the second Cav Upgrade would probably make them much better, because then they could go Scouts into Knights, which would be able to use their faster Age up with an easier BO for Feudal Age, but ofc this would make their Eles to strong.

Possible solutions:

Probably something that supports a M@a opening to make the BO work better in sync with their faster Age up might help.
For that a Bonus like free M@a upgrade or getting 100 food on reaching Feudal Age would probably work, but also be kinda copy paste from other Civ Bonuses.

The Civ is designed around Ele and forced Levy, so maybe a “weird” bonus like “on reaching Feudal Age/ on every Age up Militia Line Units spawn at your TC” might work. This way they would safe enough resources to have a good M@a opening without giving a Bonus which would make their Eco or Units to strong otherwise. But ofc such a Bonus would be very weird and basicly only to make the M@a strat viable. Maybe there would also origin a super weird new strat to go for like a 16-18 pop feudal Age to make a weird late Drush, but other then that the Bonus would be only for one Meta playstyle, which might work, but also be very artificial.
Over all I think getting 2 - 3 Militia line Units at your TC at Feudal Age might be funny and even have some potential for weird Drush strats without giving to much somewhere else, but there are probably better potential Ideas without buffing their Cavalery or Economy, because if you buff their Cav or Economy their Ele or Mid- into Lategame might become to strong.

Vietnamese:

I have no Idea for Vietnamese. On Paper they are a strong Archer Civ with a nice Eco Bonus, so idk why they dont work. Also I never play them myself so I dont have enough experience to know some problems from my own experience.


As said I havent played Ports and Malay as much in 1v1 as Sicilians to give an as well informed opinion as I could with other Civs, but i tried to gather some spontanoues Ideas because you asked.

Over all I think both have the problem that they are Archer Civs which are just slower/ weaker then other Archers Civs that also cant really go for Cavalery. (Malay because of Upgrades and Ports because Eco and Lategame options. [Ports have the Gold Bonus which works for Archer in Feudal Age but not for Scouts, which makes their Scout into Knight Eco worse then their Archer play])

By not having good Archer options they will lose to better Archer Cvis mirroring what they do just worse (vs Maya, Brits etc.) and cant go into Cav as an alternative to not Mirror the enemy strategy in worse.

For Ports an eco Buff might be enough having the options of Arbs and Cavalier and by the fact that Ports are designed a bit around their economy aspect (in terms of having an Eco building).
For Malay getting a bonus to make their M@a opening better is my preferred way, because they are designed around their Milita line and giving them a better Eco might get them to fast into forced Levy lategame and buffing their Cav would make their Eles to strong for all in pushs in Castle Age.

I would be happy to hear your own ideas and thoughts on your mentioned Civs.

I wish you a nice Day,

GL HF,

Sylne4r

1 Like