I’m only writing about what I’m familiar with. Please expand the list if you have any new idea.
I’d still use my favorite, Spanish Gold, as a good standard for changing a totally useless card into a really viable strategy.
I still see no point of investing one precious age 2 card slot just to improve one unit a little bit.
Not to mention as grenadiers are already a little more viable now, that card has even less value.
Suggestion: It should be an arsenal upgrade.
Grenade Launcher Card Should Be Part Of Veteran Upgrade
(Turns pikemen into rodelero)
This one is not only less useful, but also rather inaccurate (pikes remain the bulk of the tercio while rodelero actually diminished).
Even with royal guard and fast training, Spanish pikes are still not very useful and people seem to go for musketeers/dragoons/skirms with unction. So they need some improvements.
Suggestion: Maybe give pikemen a +1 range with this card?
Crazier suggestion: Pikemen buff each others’ hp like state militia (the archaic infantry hp card needs to be tuned down a little bit accordingly)
Again, age 2 card slot is very crowded and healing is not very useful in the first place, unless more accessible.
Suggestion: Also deliver a Field Hospital wagon.
(Manors can heal)
An even worse version of Master Surgeon. Manors sometimes are placed in contested resource regions so it might be of some use, but the healing rate is rather unimpressive.
Suggestion: Also deliver a Field Hospital wagon. Allow surgeons to be trained at Manors.
Crazier suggestion: Manors give a small buff to nearby units’ hp (like tepee)
Almost all hero upgrade cards
The effects are not so useful in the early game compared to the cost. There are not many card slots for age 1. Most heroes are not useful in late game battles. Explorer dog is even less useful.
Suggestion #1: For the European ones, move the “additional effect” (like swashbuckler attack, healing, etc.) to church technologies like those in Asian monasteries. Maybe keep the cards for Asian and Native American civs as they already have a few hero upgrades in the monastery and community plaza.
Suggestion #2: Offer something more useful.
BTW why don’t explorers get their unique profile icon that actually represents their “real” appearance?
Never seen them in game. Are they ever useful? If I really wish to go dragoons/skirmishers I’d FF.
Train time reduction is nice, but still not worth the cost.
The Lee’s Legion and Wamani (the Inca kallanka card) should be a good model for the early unit cards. They send some units/buildings besides simply unlocking the unit training, which pays off faster.
Suggestion: Not idea. These are team cards so you cannot send units. Maybe also give a military wagon, then add some cost to it.
(Camels and elephants provide resource trickles)
I remember this being improved once (maybe wrong) but still not very useful.
Suggestion: Give an even larger trickle>
Dumber suggestion: Allow elephants to work at rice paddies (this may sound stupid but now African cows can do that)
(Resource and xp trickles)
Looks nice, but there are far more better age 1 economic options.
Suggestion: No idea. Maybe give a small export crate as well? (I used to think this is impossible, but now we already have xp “crates” and influence “crates”)
(Villagers now cost 60 wood)
Another card that looks nice but there are much better options. Not to mention Japan already consumes lots of wood in age 2.
Suggestion: Japan already has a very coherent economic system. Just swap the effect for something more interesting like you did with the Spanish gold.
Almost all resource exchange cards
Very situational. Unless I want to spam mercenaries or consulate units, I don’t see any reason to do this. They also require large amounts of one resource type to be effective, which would ruin the entire economy.
Suggestion #1: Arrive fast.
Suggestion #2: Maybe also deliver a crate and/or improve market buy/sell rates as well?
Polish Winged Hussars (off-topic)
This is actually a pretty good card, I simply hope it could deliver true polish winged hussars (consulate unit like the US magyar hussar)
Update: Church card (treaty/decree) special (yes, again)
Good example include Russian (techs are very useful) and Ottoman (the Nizam tech can become a viable strats, and has larger impacts).
The card itself
Again, age 2 card slots are precious. So if a “unlock techs” card does not offer anything more useful (like those from Advanced Arsenal), there is no room for it.
Suggestion #1: Arrive fast
Suggestion #2: Improve the techs accordingly.
As for the techs, I have a simpler proposal and a crazier one.
1. The simpler suggestion:
The penalty would be balanced among the 8 vanilla civs. But now new civs can get similar buffs more easily and with no penalty. Not to mention some penalties are quite big.
Suggestion: Simple remove the penalty and add a cost.
Suggestion: Also enable training of the merc at taverns and/or forts.
2. The crazier suggestion:
This mainly is to let the free tech offer greater uniqueness to the European civs like the Nizam tech does, especially considering all the gimmicks the new civs have.
Also, the unit shipment techs could also offer a small bonus, just like the Swedish one and some African/US/Mexican cards.
Thin Red Line: Give musketeers a global “platoon fire” ability, which boosts reloading speed in a short amount of time (add a cost).
Black Watch: Give highlanders a global “highland charge” ability, similar to the carolean charge; enable training of highlanders at taverns and/or forts.
Coffee Trade: Also allow the training of bank wagons at churches. Bank limits still apply (remove the penalty and add a cost).
Waardgelders: Mercenaries also get -15% training time; enable training of stradiots at taverns and/or forts.
Code Napoleon: Also upgrade courer-de-bois to sans-culotte, with higher damage (remove the penalty and add a cost).
Young/Middle/Old Guard: Maybe also give grenadiers a slightly higher melee damage.
Tilly’s Discipline: Fine. Maybe simply remove the penalty and add a cost.
Wallenstein’s Contracts: Deliver a tavern wagon. Enable training of landsknechts and black riders at taverns and/or forts.
Pretty good. No need to change.
Encomienda: Change it to something entirely different. This tech is not even Portuguese. E.g. also allow militiamen to work at Mills and Estates (remove the penalty and add a cost).
Besterios: Now that royal guard crossbowmen is already available to the Portuguese, this tech can be changed to something entirely different as well. Maybe ship a group of cannoneers.
Tower and Sword: Also give black riders a “pistol volley” charged attack, which fires a powerful AOE shot at close range; enable training of black riders at taverns and/or forts.
Pretty good. No need to change.
Maybe the Kalmucks tech could also improve cavalry archers a little.
The Spanish church card is already quite useful with Coreslet + Alabarderos tech, so I’m not sure if we really need to change these two.
Corselet: Fine as it is. Maybe simply remove the penalty and add a cost.
Wild Geese: Also give lancers a “lance charge” charged attack (like the Mexican one); enable training of harquebusiers at taverns and/or forts.
Push of Pike: Pikemen get a global “pike charge” ability similar to the carolean charge (add a cost).
Savolax Jaegers: This is just the good model for merc techs.
Update: some generic card types that I think need to arrive fast (according to today’s standards)
- Resource exchange
- Cards that simply “unlock something” (except advanced arsenal because the techs are really good)
I’ll continue to update my list. Please add anything you guys come up with.