Nerfs to the evergreen universal S Tier civs

this is a lot of low elo talk. None of what you write makes sense. Khmer bonus is one of the most insane farms in the game, it’s not about booming but allowing you to hit Castle age before opponent and flood Knights vs Feudal army, part of the reason Franks, Poles, Lithuanians, Khmer are so strong is because they can hit this timing, let’s say 18-19 min be in Castle age after doing an opening (so not full Feudal with no units and no FC either), while opponent typically hits Castle age at around min 20-21. Knights harassing enemy eco for 2 min is a big deal for so many reasons.

this is just patently false, Britons will never go for Knight play and very rarely for Pike Siege push (which is also not very popular on Arabia). The civ is predictable so they need a eco bonus to back the archer play.

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I think you’ve fundamentally misunderstood nerfing. You don’t nerf 3 things per civ. You’re just gonna make all civs boring average C grade.

All strategies have a counter. You just need to scout and prepare the counter in time.



Also I think that people severely overestimate how strong a civ like Chinese is, yes technically they have the best start in the game, and until Castle Age they are probably the “best civ”. But not by much really, something like losing 4 Knights for free trumps any eco lead that Chinese can have, strategy, micro etc. always prevail even if you are say Burmese vs Chinese. It’s only at very top top level that something like Chinese and their small eco lead, in the hands of TheViper, translate in Viper having 4 extra Knights and since he micro’s nearly perfectly, those 4 extra Knights matter.

But even in 2k games, people are very sloppy, lose units for free all the time and go for wrong strats. So the 4 Knights’ worth of resources that the Chinese are ahead by don’t matter as much.

And by extension of course, they don’t matter as much in 1500 elo games or below.

In truth, there will ALWAYS be a top dog. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the top dog needs nerfs. Chinese, for example, is a fun to play against civ, that is a top dog mostly due to their versatile tech tree, because there are other civs that get extra villagers also, such as Goths or Malay and those are toward bottom tier.

The key to balancing is asking ourselves, is what a civ does beatable by an “average civ”. And in case of Chinese, the answer is yes, because if you scout their Stable transition, they have generic Knights, if you scout their Archer transition, they have generic Crossbowmen, etc. Really none of their strats are “unfair” per se. We should balance civs only when there are blatant dominant strats that don’t die even to their alleged counter.

One example of a POTENTIALLY unfair strat is Eagle flood, because 3 + 2 pierce armor and the high mobility they have mean that they have nearly no counter in the game. They are good vs most Castle Age units such as Monks (conversion resistance + Bonus), Siege (Bonus), Archers and to a degree vs Knights also. When civs get access to such “near 0 counterplay strats”, the barrier to enter such a strat must be high. In case of Meso, this is arguably not always true, because Gold is the easiest resource to gather, and Eagles are locked behind a Barracks which is a very easy to build building. So this is where you intervene with balancing, by giving, for example, Eagle Warriors 2 + 2 pierce armor so that Archer-line is a counter (this is all theoretical talk, I’m not actually suggesting to nerf Eagles). Or raise Food cost by +10. This is how you go forward with balancing, by finding actual problematic strats that, even when scouted or addressed properly, are hard to beat, and nerfing them.

Another example of such a strat that got nerfed in the past was release Steppe Lancers, which killed their supposed counter (Pikeman). Cumans back then didn’t have too good of an eco but got nerfed nonetheless because the STRAT was broken, and not because of some extra 50 starting food.

In other cases, you get dominant/0 counterplay strats such as Turk Castle Age Janissary flood, but since Turks have no eco bonus and the Janissary is locked behind a castle, the barrier to entry is so steep that the Turk player probably deserves to win if they managed to build a Castle unimpeded. Here the strat is too strong but also hard to reach so it’s balanced overall.

Another example of a strat that is very strong but hard to reach is Teutons Pike + Siege push. Teutons have one of the best pushes in the game in this sense, with extra armor on Siege AND on Halberdiers. But the problem is that Halberdier tech is expensive, Heavy Scorpion tech is VERY expensive, and Siege Engineers is an expensive tech also. On most maps, in 1v1, you can reach this hard-to-beat composition only around minute 50, so the opponent has plenty of time to scout your boom, numerous Barracks and have an idea that late game Teutons wanna play either this or mass Paladins. Here, the strat is kept reasonable by the sheer amount of time it is required to reach it, even though technically, Castle Age Teutons are one of the best booming civs in the game.

This is how you balance, looking at winrate and arguing for -20 starting food here or there is nonsensical.

tl;dr: nerfing should address easy to reach AND powerful strats and not just randomly nerf top dogs.


Also S-tier civs are part of the personality of the game. Nerfing them just removes the game’s identity. Why do you want to make civs the same average vanilla flavour so that civ matchups are meaningless and all civ bonuses are weak?

You love shaming low ELO players so much on the forums, you even bully them by smurfing in the game. Gatekeeping is not cool. Noobs and casuals are essential for the survival of the game. Be nice to them.


I like the idea of taking away +2 range for britons in imp (leaving it at +1 from castle age) and giving longbows +1 to compensate. Also reducing mayans longer lasting res to +10% seems fair.

Everything else feels over the top and unnecessary. Mayans don’t need to lose longer lasting res for hunt. This is their main part of the eco bonus in the early game. Or aztecs: They already have been nerfed several times recently and are still strong on aggressive maps, yes, but completely fine imo. Tartars are finally a good civ after so many changes. Why change that. And as people already mentioned the proposed nerf to Ethiopians is super arbitrary. I don’t see any reason to nerf them. Vikings also seem in a good state now to me after the last changes. Also franks aren’t too strong as you stated in my eyes. Strong but not opon open maps, mediocre on closed maps, bad on hybrid maps.


Proposing nerfs to S Tier civs and then in the same breath proposing nerfs to not S Tier civs is counterintuitive. You’ll just end up with the same meta again, since the S Tier civs will still be better as you’ve nerfed the other civs too.


The Britons are more of an A tier civ, if you have an S tier in your lineup. Adjusting them will hurt an otherwise well designed civilization. They have some fairly harsh matchups because of their design.

15% longer lasting trees is worse than Berbers speed boost even, Farms, Gold and Stone mostly relevant in the hyper-late-game where Mayans are already worse than many civs.
Berries is just a bad source of food, it needs to be 50% longer lasting Berries to actually be meaningful. So yeah we’re left with Herdables, that’s the only impactful early-game bonus they can snowball with, on top of their extra Vill that they get at the end of the Dark Age, not a big deal.
Once we over-sand a bonus we’re left with no playability nor identity.

It’s not about better or worse, it’s beyond just balance, the civ has a way too reductive design, eco bonuses into stream-lining the most generic meta unit, nothing inspiring, the least they could do as a developerment team is to make only Longbow benefit from the range bonus. The civ is too convinient and dumbed down, no wonder noobs love Britons.

Burgundians bonus is one of the strongest, perhaps too strong, it’s meh in terms of design. I do agree that Franks are OP, but on top of that they’re poorly designed as well, you need a bigger change to fix the civ in both ways.

those nerfs seems too much and too harsh for my taste. i prefere step-by-step approach to avoid over-nerfing.

in a dream world, i would rather have all civs as strong as these tough, so let alone these and buff the others, but that would be much more hard to do obviously :frowning:

No, khmers and tartars are already weak enough in 1v1s in 2k elos (weak - you don’t want to play them in serious games instead of Chinese, Mayans, Aztecs, Mongols…) .
Burgundians are slightly stronger but still weaker than Chinese.
4 knights matter a lot in 2k elo, not only in 2k5 elo.

For OP,

Don’t like the -10% nerf as it makes the civ too generic
Not sure about the -25w nerf, does not matter too much to me
Blast furnace nerf does next to nothing

Don’t like the change as imo Britions need a nerf specific to TG (in particular the team bonus), i.e. I don’t think their 1v1 should be nerfed.


I assume the +20% bonus is still here?
Don’t think nerfing Chivalry is the way to go

Barrack only bonus is not the best imo but whatever (their strength is eagle flood with monks)
Don’t like the +3hp per tech nerf, I would rather replace it with something funnier

Vikings are weak enough already

I haven’t gotten into all the details but I’m generally opposed to nerfing these civs. The core gameplay should be kept intact and ideally I don’t even think more civilisations should be added to the game. There’s enough of them. Let the classics shine please!

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Yeah, let the always OP OG civs (pure bias towards older civs, keep nerfing newer even more), the whole balance of those is untouchable…


If that’s the case why pick rates of these civs are abnormally high at multiple levels and tournaments.

It’s quite the opposite. If this were the case Cumans, Indians would never have received the severe nerfs that they got over time. I think there were about 4 changes for Imperial camels, 2 for fishing bonus for Indians and 5 changes for steppe lancers.
The point is to have civs that have relative strengths and weaknesses and can do well against some civs but might struggle against others. Not to have 5-6 S Tier civs that are extremely powerful and difficult to win against.

It’s not just 4 knights actually. 2 extra vills is 40 resources/min at least. By 20 mins that’s 800 resources and grows more as game progresses. Tech cost discounts add up more and the extra eco gives you the option to get techs sooner. And you’re saying that if you’re opponent loses 4 knights for free then you break even. What about the army that you lose? If you’re able to not lose army and kill 4 knights for free, you’re naturally a better player. So it’s not an even skill match. So a random 1500 might lose his knights for free but so will his opponent.

It’s a very good example. Look at the weaknesses Malay and Goths have in return. Malay don’t even get 2nd armor on cavalry nor bloodlines. Goths are primarily an infantry only civ. Whereas Chinese get great options, full upgrades on all military and tech discounts.

It’s impolite and toxic to try to elo shame people. If this is your opinion so be it but in practice it doesn’t work that way.
The boom is on closed or semi closed maps where Khmer shine. On open maps like Arabia, they’re not as strong as the S Tier civs. Franks, Lithuanians are strong because of the dark age bonus that helps them get aggressive early. Khmer have below average pick rate and average win rate on open maps at higher elos. In Kotd-4 they had less than 45% win rate (and that’s after 6 top civs were banned)

Depends on opponent civ but if opponent does elite skirms with +2 p.armor researched, the Britons player would certainly add stables.

There are numerous ways Briton players counter elite skirms that do not involve Knights, including the use of Light Cavs, and Magonels. Knights have other purposes, including cleaning up Eagles.

which is roughly 4 Knights give or take.

In truth people lose units for free all the time, such as Skirmishers to Mangonel shot, Knights badly microd vs Pikes, people like to have control of their own mistakes and think they can come back but when you are told that you must play from behind due to outside factors, people get mad.

Human psychology really, “I want to be the one wasting the 4 Knights and not them be given for free to the enemy” even though in numerical terms, it’s the same.

A posteriori rationalization happening right here, Malay have a very strong and hard-to-stop Elephant push that can happen at 16 min when opponent is still Feudal. They also have 4 extra vills by Castle Age and can play FU Crossbow. So if we consider only their early Castle Age potential, they get there with 3-4 extra vills and being able to do 2 possible strats, Elephant flood or Crossbow flood, so they are not very predictable either.

Goths is even better, getting 1 of best Drushes in the game (you don’t even need to go to Gold), they get FU Knight in Castle Age, usable Crossbow and 1 of the best UUs in the game (unlike many others, it’s very good in Castle Age also). And of course the “extra vill” that Mayans also get, Goths get it too

Really you are basing your reflections on anecdotal evidence, personal experience, impressions and not logic or observation of how high-elo games go and what strategies are applied.

I’m even willing to admit that:

  • Chinese
  • Mayans
  • Aztecs

are top tier on Arabia/similar open maps.

I’m willing to admit that:

  • Malians
  • Persians
  • Lithuanians
  • Byzantines

are top tier on hybrid maps


  • Bohemians
  • Britons
  • Burgundians
  • Turks

are top tier on Arena.

But I ask: is this really a problem? Are we arguing nerfs for nerfs’ sake? It seems to me that these civs have a nice spot on some maps and are average on others, for example Persians and Byzantines are very average on Arabia and Mayans aren’t very good on Arena (they are probably still top 10 ish but decidedly weaker than top 5).

I’m even willing in some cases to admit that some strategies these civs can employ are too strong, for example I think Mayan Archer discount is too good, but I see no problems with Aztecs Eagle Flood or Chinese as a civ in general, Aztecs are very predictable, you know they HAVE TO win in Castle Age because they suck hard in Imp and their composition in Castle Age is predictable too, few leftover Archers from Feudal and Eagle flood with Monks and Siege. It’s strong but also very predictable, Aztecs player will never try to 3 TC boom, they cannot do archers long-term and they cannot do Cavalry or UU.

So again I ask, are we arguing nerfs for nerfs’ sake? Right now in the game, I see a good mix of civs, and 20+ civs are top tier depending on the map. On maps like Haboob or Land Madness, you even see people pick Magyars, a decidedly mid-tier civ but top tier on that mode.

Are you arguing for nerfs because you would like to see Burmese or Malay or Teutons top tier on Arabia? Because it will be fun for 3 months, then you all will start complaining again that Teutons is too strong on Arabia after we have nerfed everything else and a cycle of nerfs risks only leaving a bland and boring game.

Khmer farms are good on Arabia also, you can do a number of hard to counter and unpredictable strats as Khmer on Arabia, such as Tati rush, 23 pop Castle Age, 16 min full Feudal Castle Age timing, I’m not talking about some 25-min boom you do with Khmer, at that point you might do Teutons also, I’m talking about the fact that Khmer farms gather at a faster rate so you reach Castle Age faster and you can start pressuring with Bloodlines Knights, gaining the momentum and initiative in the game.

no see, this is the stuff that makes me know you are low elo for a fact, you add Mangonels vs Skirmishers, not Knights, and in any case you keep flooding Crossbows because you only need like 3 Knights to beat a basically infinite # of Skirms.

So no you are wrong, you don’t add Stables, you always make 1-2 Knights in Castle Age to snipe Mangonels and Skirms as ANY civ, if you see +2 Skirms you just keep flooding Archers as the Britons.

Is easy to say that but that isn’t always true, Inca Noburu rush close to be uncounterable at lower ELO and even so hard to deal with at high ELO, there’s a reason of why Incas were directly touched here, Do you remember Rajas release Arambai, (which even lasted to early 2021) when the unit was just soo broken to the point doing a strat with very little effort for such insane amount of power then you couldn’t even do anything vs that? same goes for the war wagon right now.

This person said what I needed to say about this discussion.

Most of the “top tier” civs are civilizations with very clear gameplans and not a lot of versatility, where it’s simply the strength of the main gameplan that makes them good.

TBH, nerfing a mainstay civilization out of it’s most defined strengths just because it’s good is how you drive a game into the ground and make people quit. Every single nerf the OP suggested is just looking at the civ, saying “this is what they do, so let’s totally ruin it.” Thankfully, random forum posters with grand ideas of fixing the game of all these “broken civs” aren’t in position to run the design and balance discussions.


Bad bad.


Bad. (Yes I know this was actually a DE change. That doesn’t change my opinion on it. Clowns, they are.)

This is the worst suggestion I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot of bad suggestions. Bad.
Tatars free thumb ring might actually be the best designed bonus in terms of balance and strength, bar none.

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