British: Worst pikeman no cards, nothing even when they had guard/imperial it was bad
French: they got an armor upgrade now
Spanish: RG with triple cards (Attack, HP, Combat), and another for super fast train speed.
Portugal: decent, got good HP and fast train speed with new church tech.
German: Pretty good since they can be triple carded (Attack, HP, Combat), can get speed upgrade
Dutch: Same as german without speed upgrade
Swedes: RG with attack, HP and HP again. raw stat wise not quite as good as spanish but have access to speed upgrade at church.
Maltese: Triple card (Attack, HP, Combat) with civ bonus for extra HP and regeneration a solid unit for the civ
Azap: more vulnerable to ranged attacks, can’t burn buildings as well, you need to put them into melee stance all the time but they do their job and they get 2 combat cards (not counting flight archer). so comparable to a german or dutch pikeman.
Insurgente: Cheap good damage…My primary infantry as Mexico
Puma: Powerful but expensive for a Pikeman
Plumed Spearman: a musketeer without a musket
Qiang: it’s a pikeman but only a special one with Old dynasty reforms which is late game
Rajput: these unit if they exist are something between a Pikeman and a rodelero and got strength of both but since villagers cost wood it’s not economical to train them until late game where they aren’t likely to make a difference
Club Warrior: better than British pikeman at least.
In late game if your making pikes its prolly to protect your cannons from hand cav. Given that, from best to worst:
European pikes - Best place goes to German pikes for the big speed boost and cards. The range is big enough deal vs heavy splash damage cav (mahouts, cuirassier) that the entire type is pretty top tier. Good for sitting in front of siege in cover mode to block cav but still not as good as light cav at that job. After Germans the order prolly goes; Spanish, Dutch, Swedes, French, the rest.
Qiang pikes - Same as european pikes, but the banner army thing is a bit of a drag for me personally.
Puma spearmen - The gold cost is a bonus for me since wood is a the hardest res to get at some point. Stats are just a stronger spearman and the big speed combined with the siege damage means they can actually raid in late game. Still gonna fold to lancers and the really heavy cav over the no range tho.
Plumed spearmen - Similar reasons as above, but has watered down stats and a wood cost. Lotta durability tho so that counts for alot.
Azap - The lack of melee range means its not near as good vs hand cav and cant fight heavy splash damage cav and has no cover mode, but its still the only pike that can counter ranged cav. Given that cav archers can handle the really heavy cav (curassier/lancer) and are better cannons shields than any pike, the tradoff is pretty valuable.
Rodelero - less stats than the rajput and loses to most heavy inf head on, but cheap and beefy enough to be a nice cannon sheild - but since Spanish have regular pikes for that its redundant.
Rajput - More like a faster/weaker halberdier. Does more damage vs cav per hit but still not enough to outdo the longer range pikes. For all its stats it’s pretty easy to shut down via halbs/musks/skirms and even ranged cav. India’s lack of cannons also makes it a bit pointless as a frontline so it’s kinda redundant like the rodelro.
Swiss pike - better than regualr pikes by miles. Just waiting for an update to give it the range and then its at the top of the list.
Swedes also get the speed boost, plus they’re Royal Guard so they’ve got an extra 10% and no need for Papal Guard politician. It’s probably a toss up between German, Spanish, Maltese and Swedish, then it’s between Dutch, Portuguese and Italian, then French and then finally in dead last the British.
Well it’s got more speed than a pikeman so it’s faster than swedish and german pikes, plus it’s got that huge 40% melee resist. I wouldn’t say it has less stats than a Rajout since that unit is in-between pikes and rods. So it depends on what you value more, damage or speed and durability. Against shock infantry I find rods to be better.
Inca and aztec pikes can be upgraded to have incredible speed too. The inca pike is unusually tanky and high damage (ROF increase card). That’s my personal favourite pike. The aztec pike has high siege and fast movement so that’s very good too. So with inca and aztecs pike is actually a big part of my army. Not with other civs though.