New regional unit : hwacha rocket launcher


I have an idea for a regional unit for the Koreans, Chinese and Mongols : a medieval rocket launcher, also called hwacha in Korea, that would be a replacement for the onager and siege onager.

Compared to the mangonel line that it replaces (as an anti-mass-infantry ranged siege unit) :

  • Wider blast radius
  • Fires shots by salvo (like the chu-ko-nu) instead of all at once, each shot dealing full damage
  • Higher reload time
  • Poor accuracy, slower projectiles

Overall the unit would perform better against large formations as it would output more damage per salvo, but would perform poorer against isolated targets due to its poor accuracy.

I will not state any exact unit stats, except that it should feel like a satisfying upgrade to the mangonel and still offer a similar overall efficiency as the onager and siege onager (as it would have the same price)


Your description sounds pretty similar to organ gun

It technically was a rocket organ gun so similarities are to be expected (though the ingame organ gun fires all guns at once), but due to the price difference (mangonel line : 160w 135g, organ gun : 80w 56g) it would be individually much more powerful.

Also the organ gun would look like a surgeon compared to the hwacha. It would cause damage over a significant radius.

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Interesting suggestion. Presumably it would benefit from Rocketry, Drill, Shinkichon and the Korean team bonus.

Would you upgrade mangonel to hwacha? If so, then it can’t really have

because the upgrade would become a downgrade in some ways. In particular, it would make them worse in mangonel vs mangonel battles, which seems unwise to me.


Right, didn’t think about that case.

Making it an alternate unit, unlocked after researching chemistry, then ? This would free it from the cost of a mangonel, which would allow balancing it more freely. The hwacha would become the better anti-mass-infantry choice, but countered notably by onagers, a more accurate artillery being a logical anti-artillery choice.

Thats what I was thinking. Not intrinsically a bad idea, but yeah.

The problem I see is that then you have multiple units that fill a similar role so one ends up being much more situational over the other.
How about instead of replacing the mangonel, it replaces the scorpion? Dunno if is realistic to make the projectiles fall in a line tho

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Alright, thinking about it again if the hwacha replaces the onager and siege onager :

  • make sure the hwacha is at least as good as the mangonel, against mangonels/onagers. No downgrade when upgrading, even if it ends up at a disadvantage against onagers.
  • give the Chinese the bombard cannon, which they should have as they invented gunpowder, to help counter onagers
  • (Koreans also have the bombard, while Mongols have the mangudai, to counter siege)

The scorpion is cheaper, overall weaker, and wouldn’t fit the mass-fire bombardment style.

I think Sandy Peterson said in a video this was what he and his team were thinking about when they designed the Korean war chariot, except they didn’t have time to do their research because they had one week to create the civ. Anyway, the idea sounds really nice and could maybe be included in a future East Asian dlc.

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Perhabs the Jurchens should have it indeed, as they seemed to enjoy gunpowder.

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Yeah, I thought so too. No idea about the Tanguts or Khitans, however…

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How large of a slice of China did they get and when did this happen ? The Jurchens controlled the northern half when Genghis arrived (Jin dynasty) and the Mongols conquered it whole (Yuan dynasty).

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Look up Western Xia for the Tanguts and Liao dynasty and Western Liao for the Khitans. The Khitans were already not at their peak anymore when the Mongols attacked, but they had been quite relevant in the earlier centuries. The Tanguts never had as huge of an empire as their neighbours, but I still think the region would not be complete until they are included. Genghis campaigns had you fighting all of those foes, the third mission especially include the Chines Song, the Jurchen Jin and the Tanguts Western Xia.

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I’d give it as a replacement of (Heavy) Scorpion, unlocking in Imp after Chemistry.

Missing scorps in Castle would hurt but not very much, and it’s pretty easy for the unit to have more utility in Imp then what it’s replacing. The hurt and gain could balance each other out reasonably well, so that it wouldn’t massively throw off balance.

Also having more Imp only units is fun.

To address the criticism posted earlier in this thread: The important thing if it replaces scorps is that it’s good vs infantry and archers, weak vs mangonels. Having the projectiles all land in a line is irrelevant. It lacking true AOE and/or lacking anti-siege damage could easily justify a lower cost. Even if it would be a very different unit from Heavy Scorp it wouldn’t matter much, because HS see very little play.


This could work if it fires 10-20 projectiles but each projectile has very low attack.

It’s a suggestion, possibly for a future expansion. Nothing official at all.

I need a source. Whipping up a wholeass civ that fast seems incredible so why do they do yearly delays anyway with less and less civs?

One week seems insane especially with lesser tech.

Oh, you were talking about the Koreans.

It’s widely known : the only reason why the Koreans were added in The Conquerors is because Ensemble Studios got a phonecall from Microsoft, asking them to add the Koreans to court the korean market (Starcraft had sold 2 millions there). Making the Koreans a last-minute addition to the expansion.

It’s a much shorter delay than the devs were confortable with, hence the amount of changes the Koreans had over the years as there was not enough time to give this civ a coherent gameplay. A Conquerors patch (that was in 2000) even changed how the turtle ship looked, as they didn’t have the time to make an accurate design in time.

The point is, if they can last minute a civ in a week on a tight pressure moment then it should be reasonable to mathematically add a civ every 2 weeks to give a little generosity.

Mathematically a new expansion having less than 5 implies there’s almost laziness

Just adding a civ like that wouldn’t cut it, they’d make it part of a DLC notably with a campaign for each new civ (campaign is the main course for singleplayer), and new campaigns for the DE have been of a great quality overall. And there also is the issue of making the civ :

  • have a gameplay that makes sense to what it historically was
  • have new things to offer gameplay-wise. The hussite chariot was a headache for game designers, notably.
  • be somewhat balanced (yes yes whether it’s OP or too weak, some fine tuning will be necessary). And that part is important, the most important for multiplayer.

Now yes the Romans don’t have an AOE2 campaign but they are intended to be a bonus for the ROR content.

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