Overall balance changes ideas

And yet they did and from their point of view, SL should be somewhere between LC and paladins, around cavaliers but in high numbers also based on cost should utleast keep up with paladin civs.

To be more specific, and Elite Steppe Lancer in most scenarios in decent numbers should beat cavaliers and loose to paladins utleast the ratio is 1.7-2 to 1 for ESL and stand up vs standard Heavy Camels with no civ bonuses and loose against civs with camel bonuses.

They are, that is why they are useless.
Hussar is better because no Gold cost, and Cavalier/Paladin is a better Gold investment.

SL is a bad option, and should remain so. It should have never been added into the game, in the first place.
AoE2 does not handle multiple types of cavalry well.

here is the problem - how do you make the steppe lancer a knight/cavalier/paladin style unit without breaking it? the knights strength lies in its bulk and ability to take punishment and dish it out too. just 2 knights can clear up most feudal armies on their own. the steppe lancer can’t claim that.

and it clearly isn’t designed to be a knight replacement either, seeing as every civ that has it, has bonuses apply to it that apply to the scout line but not the knight line.
Cumans have Steppe Husbandry (Cav Archers, Scouts, and Steppe Lancers are all produced faster)
Mongols have the 30% HP bonus that applies to scouts and steppe lancers but not knights.
and Tatars have Silk Armor which gives extra armor to scouts, cav archers, and steppe lancers, but not knights.

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This way, it will have its place, after all it is not a global standard unit that all civs gets it.

and this was absolutely busted for Khmer and got repeatedly nerfed. they are also incredibly weak to monks.

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except it severely weakens all 3 civs in the early castle age because steppe lancers win with strength of numbers, whereas knights win with their individual strength and ability to use just a few of them for early castle age defense.
see the problem?

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I know what you mean, you are referring to early castle age. But their production time can be changed, i am sure solutions can be found to make them at least equal to knights in castle age

only 1 civ who gets Elephants has Heresy, think about that for a second and ask yourself why of 6 civs with access to elephant units, only 1 of them has access to heresy.

not without basically making them knights.

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well they are the replacement to knights for those civs after all, that is the whole point.

At that point it would be better to just delete them, because Knights already exist.

This game is not made to have culturally distinct versions of the same unit.

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so if your goal is to make them as strong as knights to replace knights for the civ, they would need to give up some of the advantages they currently enjoy. furthermore, this is clearly a change from what the devs view there role to be.

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Well think like this, knights in small numbers beat SL with around same number, but in slightly higher number SL wins, so the idea is that SL civs needs slightly more time to mass them, so it will always be pros and cons.

well yeah - because you keep comparing them to knights, which they aren’t a knight replacement.
absolutely nothing about them says they are supposed to replace the knight.

and if you maintain this style of design that you are advertising in this post - you severely weaken all 3 civs early castle age defense.

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Your ideas will only make players cry to have the Knights back, or cry because SL became too OP like at release.

It simply cannot be balanced, and is better left at it’s current state. It was a bad idea to begin with.
BE civs also use Knights instead of BE, there is simply no replacing the Knight, unless the replacement is grossly OP.

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it is all about how much damage you deal to your opponent and on top of that, you don’t have to go for them in castle age, all SL civs have options with other units and mass them in Imperial, it is all about details and situations.

so what do you use for early castle age defense of say heavy feudal pressure with these civs if you take knights away? steppe lancers don’t have the bulk defense or health to hold up, xbows are easily countered by skirms, and cav archers take forever to train up and require a mass to do so (and miss quite a bit unless you’re tatars).

this is your idea. knights replaced with steppe lancers. so how do you make the steppe lancer replace the knight, without it being too strong, and able to fill the role the knight does, especially in early castle age defense?

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well there is always the option to make it an UNIQUE Imperial age unit with same power as a cavalier, while cavaliers get paladins, SL need to be massed to keep up with paladins so it will be a quantity vs quality situation and keep knights for castle age

they already have this advantage as is, sometimes pros use steppe lancers over the knight line, specifically because their range and stacking advantage gives them situations where they excel

really the only thing that needs to happen to the SL is adjust their cost to something more reasonable and they would be just fine.

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I love how MatCauthon saves the games from unrealistic people. This guy is a boss

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i think he’s too patient :joy: im sure a lot of people disagree with the OP and just cant spend the time discussing it with him…