Siege being used to attack other siege and defenses is reasonable and adds a necessary dimension to gameplay. Siege units breaks down into three main categories as is:
Includes: Siege tower (I know…), Ram, Trebuchet, Bombard and their unique variants
Anti unit AOE
Includes: Ribauldequin, Mangonel and its unique variants
Includes: Springald, Culverin
At the moment siege units reload their munitions while moving. Decreasing the raw damage of anti siege while increasing attack speed presents a theoretical damage increase, but my experience has been seeing a siege focused army prioritizing anti siege elements or moving back to safety and re-engaging once their weapons reload.
For some siege units this can be annoying but less impactful. Mangonel type units may have reloaded but have a slower turn radius and will be extremely vulnerable while accomplishing this maneuver. Multi purpose unique siege such as the great bombard with its larger health pool and increased ranged armor have the potential to destroy multiple counter units in one volley and retreat before you can retaliate.
Having a siege unit fill multiple roles is something that helps define them as a unique unit and adds utility to a toolkit to make up for other areas or create identity for a civ. The problem is when those siege units fill all three roles, anti building unit and siege, it leads directly to having an immense focus on that unit. They represent a literal arms race, and there is a lot of pressure when a game goes past 25 minutes when facing a civ with that option.
At the very least we need to ensure that anti siege is somewhat effective in its role. 6-9* springald shots (or 4-5 culverin shots) to kill a great bombard means you can’t directly engage them without taking significant losses, and the resource and population investment is completely out of order for a unit designed to counter it. (For reference a springald is 250w 250g 3pop, while a GB is 450w 800g 4pop, an equal resource investment is approx. 2.5 springalds… that is never enough for even one GB)
A GB can fire one shot approx. every 7 seconds (5.6 with vizier upgrade), springalds fire ever 3.125/2.5 seconds (depending on upgrade). With any less than 3 springalds per GB you will not kill them if they focus your springalds and you both start firing at the same time. That combined with the combo of Janissary and Sipahi leads to battles of attrition where they let the siege be the main DPS, have Janissaries heal through any damage while protecting them from cavalry counters, and finally Sipahi acting as anti siege or flanking attacks. It is a gold heavy composition but if you do not kill them quickly and move into the Ottoman economy it is unlikely you will win that game, they can generate the gold heavy units automatically and win stalemates by default through that mechanic. That is a balance issue with the civ comp more than siege by itself.
If the units that persist through attacks had a slight reduction to ranged armor, or even no armor while moving creating a payoff for surprise attacks, it would help. Keeping siege units from reloading while moving would also help.
More than unique units I have a lot of negative experiences with AoE siege units controlling choke points on maps with impassable terrain. Normally they can be eliminated slowly with anti-siege or outflanked if there is another route. I don’t think that needs to be tuned as heavily because it adds another dimension to gameplay and presents a puzzle to be solved in a match. It isn’t effective to base race someone who has siege knocking on your door, but they can’t out maneuver a counter strike force and don’t require a resource rich army composition to counter.
Historically, not really much and game wise, it is really boring to have that. It is like, if a spearman is produced by the enemy I must train spearman to counter that spearman lol. This is just pointless part of the sieges.
Moreover, most sieges like bombards, culverins etc have 100% accuracy. Its projectiles cannot miss its target and is making a lot of people annoyed and gives that fake feeling to players. In other words, a Call of Duty player dont have to aim in fast paced shooter game. Because the bullets will hit the enemy no matter the case. See! This sounds fucking boring. Takes away a lot of the effort and skill from the player to try and it creates lazyness and pointless gameplay.
Adri, a survey has already been done that shows that the people who frequently appear in these forums are not exclusive AOE4 players. When their old game Retold comes out, we will surely not see them here again.
I always thought Siege should’ve had a bigger role in this game. Don’t get me wrong, I love infantry. But, AoE4 specifically struggles with the “progression” fantasy. Units don’t turn into cooler units in the next age (they just become Veteran, or Elite), and for the most part, the game stays infantry focused from Dark Age to Imperial.
It is a farcry from games like Empire Earth or even AoE2. I think Siege should play a role, and they should be powerful, fun and accelerate the game’s ending. This game should build towards a lategame that is bombastic and rewards players who tended more to their economy. With stronger Siege, we can have stronger and more fun defensive buildings and structures. Right now, the game is too much about spamming infantry everywhere. In early game. In the late game. Winning or dying by infantry spam.
All the springald was doing, was preventing any progress from being made by functioning as the sole hard counter to Siege. I think it is also important to remember that Siege was orignially very painful. They moved quicker, could only be torched down and took forever to die–which is why the Springald was introduced.
But, Siege is now quite vulnerable. Only a few changes should be needed to deal with them with traditional units. Perhaps Horsemen can be buffed to attack while moving (Like War Elephant’s Spearmen riders). This would make Horsemen even more effective against Archers (which IMO, is also needed), but would also help allow them to properly counter these things.
I’d much rather see the Springald function like a Scorpion from AoE2.
I’m not a fan of any kind of large scale siege warfare. I kind of like how it is right now, where it’s just your normal army, plus a few siege weapons. Conquest victories are very fun the way it is now.
Ideally, siege wars shouldn’t be a thing. Siege has to have purpose and utility but shouldn’t in no way be pivotal in a composition or worse a meta. Maybe if you managed to amass a lot of it it could be competitive but never OP. Anyway, I think unit composition should rely on infantry and cavalry, with siege dealing with defences and special targets.
I think a rebalance is necessary and a rework is useful. I’m not fond of the increase of the ranged armour, but let’s try to iterate, instead of reverting. Let’s address the elephant in the room, the Great Bombard. It went from “meh” to “actually good” and then to “too much”. Cost has dropped, it shoots faster and has more armour. It’s too versatile, it needs a ranged weak spot, and I think it could be a negative modifier to damage vs Siege, so that it won’t one shot Springalds. They can even improve the splash damage vs Infantry, to compensate.
I would be in for some kind of rework, but I don’t have real ideas other than adding some units to differentiate, though balance is already a issue with what we have.
Reducing the armour of packed Siege could be an alternative to slowing them down further. Halting the reload while packed probably has a great impact on the tactics… Overall Siege should be more stationary? Longer packing/unpacking times (possibly different), travelling unloaded in general (hence requiring at least partial loading after unpacking, only true for Mangonels, Trebuchets, all Bombards).
I always found big guns to be underwhelming in AoE4. Bombards are for many Civs the pinnacle of artillery, which is odd considering the game creeps into the XVI century, and still can’t kill an Elite Archer in one shot. I’d like to see more advanced guns, there were so many pieces of all length and calibres it’s embarrassing, changed from region to region. Having superior artillery units, locked behind expensive technology, would be interesting. To name a few: robinet, falconet, falcon, serpentine, minion, saker, culverin, cannon, basilisk, mortar, howitzer…
I especially liked that the game acquired the idea of sacred places, as a way of victory that is similar to the stars in coh, and not on the contrary having to look for the last villager hidden in a corner
I think they nerf to much the Springald, the atack and the shield, one thing is going to be enough, now there is a lot of mangonels that can not be destroyed.
Suggestion to improve the siege tower, so the players can use this unit with more frequency.
Instead of the actual mechanic to garrison and ungarrison the siege tower could create a new path through the wall, once you put the siege tower on the wall and select a unit and click to move to the other side of the wall it will automatically garrison and ungarrison in the tower, of course we should have a delay of units per second that can cross the wall.
Take aoe3(de) as an example.
Siege there works beautifully.
Age3 you got falconets which BLAST away infantry, especially ranged infantry and culvs to WIPE falconets.
In aoe4 you got weird @ss mangonels and springalds with are both super unreliable, super clumsy to use and unpredictable in terms of dmg and impact. Plus the siege crews are missing and the siege engines move magically on their own which looks more than just questionable.
Mangos should also do way more dmg against buildings. It’s another reason for the turtle being so strong in aoe4.
Aoe3 did these things all 1 million times better and Relic learned nothing…
Instead we got some outdated mechanics, super clumsy siege fight micro and no reall ALL INs.
I think the recent changes to siege were ill-thought through for dealing with the situation they identify in the patch notes.
I.E. I think its fair that late game you can get into stalemates where stonewalls and keeps provide a major force-multiplier, especially when armies are kept relatively small due to the 200 pop limit and the need for 100-140 eco units. The relative ease that springalds/culverins could deal with bombards/trebs that should take down said keeps was an issue. This was especially the case with landmark keeps like Red Palace and Berkshire Palace.
But by nerfing springalds, you’ve significant boosted the effectiveness of Mangos/nobs in pitched battles. (And the less said about Ottomans the better). Which wasn’t obviously a problem. Yes, springalds hard countered these units - but so long as relatively small numbers of these units could one-shot piles of regular infantry, it kind of has to work that way.
I think the answer should have been some late game buff to siege damage to buildings. Geometry and Chemistry for example could give a much more significant boost to taking down buildings.
Perhaps we are all getting it wrong on the issue of stalemates in the late game of aoe4 and perhaps we should point out what I call “artificial population”. For example, that units come out instantly, knowing the queue is filled, but the unit doesn’t come out even if you have 200/200) . There is no AoE that has had that.