So following the Season Two patch I’m wondering how people are finding the balance of siege.
Personally I think it’s more or less as bad as ever. Perhaps it’s not quite as bad as it was during the ‘Age of Siege’, but in team games the need to amass siege units as you approach the late game feels as profound as ever. Despite constant reassurances that Relic wants to have good counter play to siege, mangonels and nest of bees are very hard to respond to without springalds because they do so much damage so quickly that rushing them, even with knights, is too costly.
The springald arms race is still very much in play. You need enough springalds to quickly deal with their mangonels, and then you need enough springalds to deal with their springalds. Personally I don’t find this very entertaining to play or to watch. You simply can’t afford to allow mangonels/NoB to be able to attack for more than a few seconds because their potential damage per second is so extreme. There is no other interaction in the game where such short periods of time can be so devastating.
Personally I continue to feel strongly that the balancing of springalds, mangonels, and Nest of Bees is deeply flawed and leading to situations where massing siege is not only viable, not only optimal, but absolutely vital.
- It is a bad idea for the best counter to siege units being a siege unit
- It is a bad idea for the best counter to a unit to be itself
- It is strange that mangonels were significantly rebalanced but Nest of Bees were not
- Given that siege units are borderline invulnerable to ranged units, it is a bit odd to give mangonel a specific bonus against them: they are already an extreme counter
- It is odd to talk of wanting to ‘increase realism in the interaction between siege and non-siege units’ while friendly fire is still absent
The lack of friendly fire has never sat right with me. I don’t mind mangonels being effective against my ranged units that are away from the fray, but having them massacre my frontline that is in a melee with my opponents? It doesn’t feel realistic, it doesn’t feel fair, and it doesn’t feel balanced. Mangonels and Nest of Bees peak potential DPS is far too extreme for them to not feature this key drawback present in classic Age of Empires games.
Most of all though, referring back to (1) and (2), could Relic please reorient the balance of this game so that the key to countering siege is not more siege. No other part of the game works this way. You don’t counter cavalry with cavalry. You don’t counter archers with archers. So why do you have to counter siege with siege?