Right now, there really isn’t much in the way of a counter to massed siege. Get enough onagers and you’re functionally unstoppable.
There is one real potential counter in BBCs, but of course, not all civs have access to them.
While I don’t take issue with the current status of mangonels, I do think that, when massed, they could use some sort of counterplay beyond ‘spam your enemy with so many units they can’t kill them all’.
At the same time, Petards have sat in a sort of limbo for a long time. They’re very rarely used, and even their main niche, of blowing a hole in a wall quickly to let raiders through, has been partially supplanted by the introduction of the Siege Tower. So they’re less useful than ever, and I can probably count on one hand the number of times I’ve seen them used.
But Petards do have something we rarely see used; they do 85 damage to siege.
Which raises an interesting possibility. Why not make Petards a potential counter-unit to massed siege?
They’re available to all civs. They have the damage they need. They’re always going to be expensive, as a one-time use unit, which means you won’t see them used in situations where there are other possibilities, but having the option to make them could really widen the diversity of the game.
All you need to do is increase their speed! How much you increase it would take a little fine tuning, but I think we can all agree that they’re not fast enough right now to effectively counter massed siege. On the other hand, we don’t want them to be so fast as to be uncounterable.
But I can envision a scenario where the enemy has a mass of onagers and you send in half a dozen petards from different angles. Even if only one or two get in, you’d be looking at a cost-effective trade, especially if you can tag multiple onagers at once.
Imagine this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBiA8qaLxbI
Except with petards and onagers.
I think it could provide a good amount of counterplay to massed onagers and actually give Petards a reason to exist for once, both of which, imo, would be good things.
So…how about it? Bump their speed up from 0.8->1.0, or so? Give them a purpose for once?