Request: Make Goths Okay Again

Some interesting ideas. I think the cheaper barracks and initial +10 pop are pretty good.
As for plate barding armor or guard towers, that’s not something I would really want. See, there are (broadly) 2 ways to improve a civ. One is to give it more options (“flexibility”), and another is to increase the strength, utility, or cost-effectiveness of the options it already has.

I would argue that “flexibility” has never really been part of the Goths’ identity, and perhaps that they’ve intentionally been designed to be inflexible, but really good at one thing, and in fact more so than any other civ. As the ancient Greeks said, with great applicability to the powerful yet inflexible Greek phalanx, “The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.” Some civs are foxes, and are good for having lots of tricks in their bag, and other civs are not as versatile, but are really good at executing one type of strategy (another example of this is Mayans, who are excellent with archers, but don’t really have other good options besides the eagle). There are more civs that are “flexible” and able to execute a wide variety of strategies at different stages in the game, and I think Goths would lose a lot of their identity if they were to become less one-dimensional. Or, to another point that has been brought up in this thread, why would you make purely generic units for which you have no bonus (e.g. Saracen or Mongol champs)? Sure, in a pinch it would be nice to have better cav, but making infantry viable for Goths is the most important thing, and if a civ tends to use units for which it has no bonus while ignoring units for which it does (an awful lot of pre-de pro games featuring Goths involved going knights or crossbows, or just slinging in team games), is a symptom of poor design/balance for that civ.

3 Likes

I think one point is worth mentioning here, (and the point that dev missed),
10 more pop was there when max pop was 75 (and later 125), so in that time, it was around 13-10 percent increase, which was game changer, but today with minimum 200 pop it’s 5% maximum. so i think 5% increase in pop started in castle age justify (and as an extra option +1 attack versus buildings is quit useful).
with goth, it should be hard to boom so i disagree with economy bonus to stay alive in the early game, but if you could be able to to reach to post-imp it should be as destructive as it could get. let’s destruction began :slight_smile:

I agree with focusing buffs on infantry and their current bonuses only. Being a civ that does only one thing exceptionally well feels like the Goths’ design. Here are some ideas:

o Infantry costs less starting in Dark Age.
o Infantry has +1/+2/+3/+4 attack bonus vs. standard buildings in Dark/Feudal/Castle/Imperial Age.
o Lose Arson.
o Barracks costs less wood.
o Militia line and Spearman line upgrades cost less food and gold.
o +10% maximum population in Imperial Age.
o Lose hunting bonus. I want all-in infantry buffs and no other eco buffs to encourage super-aggressive play.
o Gain Plate Mail Armor. But if that would make them too powerful, then I want better early game buffs over better late game buffs.

Overall, I want most of the buffs to go to the Goths’ early game aggression through a combo of infantry discounts so that they might apply constant pressure earlier than probably almost every civ, thereby possibly overcoming their severe defensive and economic handicaps while still maintaining the “flavor” of the Goths civ.

2 Likes

I dont know why, but i dont like the idea of early game strong goth, maybe because I learnt to play this style, be careful and defend and boom behind it and then crush your aggressive enemy with infantry waves.
and another point to mention, goth does not have stone wall for some reason, it should be hard for them to boom and defend, honestly I think if they provide early game advantage to goth, they will be imbalance, because if you cant kill them in early game, definitely you cant kill them in post-imp (unless you are aztec :slight_smile:

1 Like

I discussed this with @SirWiedreich, and turns out that civs with bonuses on infantry, like Japanese, Burmese or Malay, could answer to the Goth flood with their own infantry spam, and now that they get Supplies they can use this counter-strat as a consistant defense. Got h definitely could use some help right now

totally agree,
I think 10% increase in pop and better building destruction is a good enough balance change, and does not make goth another cumman (so with 20-30 more villl depend on max pop,is a game changer if you reach that point)
they ran out of resource earlier than us and we can continue to push, and beside we could produce more vill on castle and imp, so it’s kinda should be counted as economy improvement either.
at the end, goth really need improvement.

1 Like

Supplies did nerf them.

The most straightforward counter against mass halb / champion / huskarl spam which is the lategame “combination” for goths, is to make champions. Archers would get eaten by huskarls, cavalry by halbs, while the champs would handle other trash and deal reasonable damage. Goths lack the last armor upgrade, so their champions are weaker (especially against civs that get specific bonuses), and both huskarls and halbs don’t do well against other melee. Goths can do hand cannons against mono infrantry counter spam but it will be costly.

The strategy for goths is very straightforward. The discount is what makes their infantry viable, the production speed boost is what - supposedly - makes them able to win with their infantry. But to get to the latter you need to hit imperial without stone walls, and research at least one, likely two, relatively expensive technologies that feel like they’re mandatory to begin with.

With most civs getting champs or similar options (Malay gold-less 2H, Bulgarian extra-armor 2H) with supplies, I don’t think the payoff for Goths is there, since it is not necessarily possible to swarm the enemy and expect cost-effective trades doing so.

The final straw is that in Imperial, anything but infantry (and HC) is awful. They can do knights but they will ultimately only get Hussar from the stable, archers suck without thumb ring or bonuses, no Siege Engineers for siege. Your winning strategy is very much to swarm the opponent.

And for actual fighting, if the space is even somewhat busy and blocked off, the infrantry pathfinding doesn’t seem to be all that great.

I dunno, aside from the obvious like giving the last armor upgrade - make perfusion affect all military production sans siege? At least that way the can get Hussar and HC out faster if needed. Though most of their problems still lie in the early game, I think that for a Civ that is supposed to peak at Imperial Age, their “peak” is rather weak.

I think Supplies should stay though, other infantry civs had difficult time to justify making infantry in the late game. I think another look at some infantry UUs should be taken a look at as a result.

2 Likes

They peak in Early Imp, not Late/Post-Imp, so comparing all late game techs is meaningless. The Goths are meant to obliterate their opponent in Late-Castle to Early Imp and then ride off of the economic gap. Any buff to them would need to impact early game. I don’t think the Goths need a huge buff though anyway. Tweaking their hunting anti-bonus would be enough. Supplies doesn’t speed up training time and the resources saved are negligible on most maps when their Champ/Halb spawn rate makes up for the discount and then some in the right hands.

Well yes - but that was the point. For a civ with several key omissions in the tech tree and lack of stone walls, the big “payoff” isn’t that big even if you get there. Both of their unique techs, the unique unit, and 3/4 of their bonuses are just geared towards getting the flood going. It’s not even unimaginable to simply contain the goth player and deal with the flood once it comes out. Though that’s how it should be, or we’d have a similar case with Goths in DM as we have with the Chinese in Nomad.

The tech tree omissions kind of show what you can ultimately build into, and that affects what makes sense earlier on. There aren’t many natural transitions for goths, knights into infantry is just about the biggest one they can get. The value of a lot of the tech tree inclusions depend on what else has been omitted, getting some siege toys is way less impressive if you still lack siege engineers.

Not every civ needs to be tailored for 1v1 Arabia. Goths also have decent lategame water but for most game types water ends up being rather irrelevant. Early game is still bad without appropriate eco bonuses.

Now it’s more about where to take them from here though. Lacking stone walls is supposedly part of their identity, them having lackluster range, stable and siege is the price of pay for the infantry flood and huskarls. Mongols already have the relevant hunt bonus.

Maybe villagers would take signficantly less damage from boars to enable long lures, and the population boost starts right away with +10 pop at any point in the game so they don’t need to start off by building houses.

3 Likes

Right on. What a lot of people who don’t play as Goths often don’t realize is how their extreme sounding bonuses are (were) justified because they were balanced by similarly extreme liabilities. In a lot of situations, being the only civ to lack stone walls (until Cumans) translates to a fairly heavy eco penalty in that your eco is much easier to raid all game, and you don’t really have the option to turtle up and fast castle very effectively.

Even in a match like Goths vs Mayans, which on paper would seem to favor Goths since the Mayans don’t have a great answer to the Elite Huskarl flood, the Mayan player has plenty of opportunity to harrass the Goth’s eco (Mayan cheap archers wreck Goth cheap infantry in Feudal, Plumes and eagles can raid and avoid huskies in Castle and Imp) while keeping himself safe with cheaper stone walls and excellent fortifications. According to aoestats.io, in this matchup, Mayans actually have a higher winrate than Goths at every point of the game, but their advantage is especially strong for the first 30m.

Mayans, by the way, are also a civ that peaks in early imp, and drops off somewhat in mid-late Imp, but unlike Goths, they have strong eco and defense bonuses that help them get there. I agree that the Goths’ peak is somewhat weak given how hard it can be to get there. Contrast that with a civ like Franks that has a strong eco bonus in Dark, a mid-tier eco bonus in Feudal and Castle, a Perfusion-like tech in Castle, and a sustained strong Imp that doesn’t really drop off in power due to having the 2nd best knight line in the game (after Lithuanians with relics) and a strong UU from cheap castles that is excellent at dealing with most of the knight’s counters.

I kind of look at the AoC days as the gold standard of how Goths should be balanced. Back then they had a pretty strong identity, and were kind of a dark horse civ - not chosen all the time for any particular map (as Mayans or Huns were for Arabia), and certainly not widely considered overpowered, but situationally strong and viable in the hands of a player who knew how to use their strengths and compensate for their weaknesses. As they are now in DE, they theoretically remain as my favorite civ, but I honestly see no point in using them right now.

Anyway, I was hoping at least part of the promised Goths buff would be delivered in the most recent balance update, but with no sign of it, I think I’ll go ahead and make a Youtube video discussing the situation and the pros and cons of various things that could be done to balance it. Definitely a decent early game/eco bonus would be a key part of it.

1 Like

What do you think of giving them a starting house?
It could even point to the enemy, that way it can be used for walling.

I recently played the AoK beta and it made me realise that the AoK iteration of Goths must have been the worst civ in AoE2 history. No perfusion, anarchy, no thumb ring so archers were less of a threat (so less purpose for Huskarls). Oh and their pikeman was 1 armor upgrade away from being the same disaster Tatar get nowadays. With no bloodlines/hussar, the only thing they had in the cavalry department over Vikings was Husbandry. And good luck trying to get gunpowder with no eco bonus when you had to research 3 techs to get everything. Fortunately they got some love in AoC, but they became the “forgotten” ones (hehe) after AoF. All that was changed was just losing Trademill crane and then Arrowslit

How the heck are you playing Mayans?! They’re strong all through.

I’m thoroughly convinced that it’s more like Turks than a balance issue at this point: it’s operator error.

Goths actually did very well in that balance. Infantry was much more of a focus back in those days and their Fedual bonus actually helped more.

1 Like

Oh, I thought AoK was all about Teutonic TCs, Frankish Paladins and bombard towers 11. Like they say, you learn some more everyday

That’s literally my point. As I alluded to, they are stronger than Goths at every stage of the game, although on paper, they do peak in early to mid Imp. They’re still strong in late Imp, but they’re generally not considered a late-game power civ by most pros and casters, compared to civs that get the Paladin, Battle Elephant, strong bonused siege units, and other late-game power units. I’m not saying that Mayans are bad or need a buff - they’ve been top tier on land maps since AoC, just using them as a foil to show one of the ways in which Goths are comparatively weak, despite having many seeming similarities. The reason I even brought Mayans up was related to the point you brought up about Goths peaking in early Imp, but I already mentioned that Mayans have strong bonuses all along to help them get there.

Surely you’re not talking about AoK? Their infantry discount was staggered (only 10% cheaper in feudal), and they missed all the techs CactusSteak pointed out.
http://will_r.tripod.com/aok/aok_civs_goths.htm
Yep, the AoK Goths were awful, but the AoC iteration was pretty strong. Hence, I think AoC is a decent reference point for the power level that the Goths should be balanced at.

Losing treadmill crane definitely didn’t help, but there are definitely a lot of other “behind the scenes” reasons that Goths became comparatively weaker with time. One was the proliferation of new civs with strong infantry bonuses and strong eco bonuses, especially in ways that were similar to what the Goths had (e.g. Malian infantry and Inca eagles having Huscarl-like pierce armor, Malay 2H Swordsman and karambit spam, Ethiopian Shotel spam). Even if these civs only did infantry, say 90% as well as Goths, they had strong eco bonuses and greater tactical flexibility such that their addition meant there was much less reason to choose Goths. Another reason was that in AoC, the Goths were the only civ to have 2 Unique Technologies. Subsequent expansions gave a second UT to every other civ, but the Goths got nothing in return (In some cases, like Mongols, the UT didn’t boost their power much, in others, like Franks, Mayans, or Aztecs, it provided a significant boost). There are other factors as well, such as the increase in counter-infantry units, and even the way the meta shifted to favor cavalry and archers (partially due to better internet/less lag, meaning that archers and cav could be microed better).

2 Likes

I play Goths about 50% of the time because I’m an old school AOE 2 player. (Aside from water maps) With that said, I agree totally this civ needs a buff with the power creep in place with these new civs etc. Since after AOC, Goths were nerfed by taking away treadmill crane and nothing has been provided ever since. Now the supplies argument is being used too and rightfully so because I don’t see how it’s fair to give every other civ that tech and not compensate the Goths in some way. I saw someone post that civs like Mongols and Franks wont use supplies because they have bonuses elsewhere. If the game goes late Imperial, Champions are very useful in trash wars last time I checked. And giving them supplies saves them food to convert to gold in the market. Just saying…

My proposal to change the civ is as follows: Increase the Infantry price reduction from 35 to 40% starting in Feudal Age. This would help alleviate not having supplies IMO and would be a fair change. I’m also in favor of giving Goths the last plate mail armor upgrade especially due to the fact that Elite Huskarls are still outclassed against Champions, Cavalry, and Hand Cannons late in the game. Personally, I would not give them an Eco bonus aside from possibly changing the boar eco bonus to have more benefit. Maybe have the Goth Boar hunters work faster or something along those lines.

The OP has a point and it should be taken into consideration by the Devs. Even the Khmer and Vietnamese got Buffs lately and so should the Turks too but that’s another story. Hopefully we can see some buffs in favor of the Goths in the near future.

I wouldn’t worry about the house direction, but i actually think them having 10 extra pop from the beginning might be a viable option rather than just having it at the imperial age. Maybe start with -50 food or something like that to make up for it if it’s too strong.

None of that buffs their early game.
Mabye change infantry cost reduction to 25% all ages?

I don’t really care where the house starts.
It just seems like a potential problem to me.
The extra pop really should be 10%, instead of a flat number.

1 Like