Something higher level players complain about a lot with monks is the randomness of conversions. Sometimes you get a conversion at the maximum speed, while other times it seems to take ages.
I understand the frustration this can cause, but I don’t think narrowing the window is the right solution. I feel like this could rapidly lead to monks becoming more extreme; absolutely OP against some units with no hope of success, and absolutely useless against others, with no chance of failure.
But on a deeper level, I don’t think this is what the actual problem is. Yes, it can be frustrating to feel like you have no winning move, but that is the real issue; not the conversion times themselves.
What do I mean? It all has to do with counterplay. Consider the early castle age; if you have gone for knights, or godforbid, elephants, and your enemy has chosen monks, then you have essentially no choices. You can either attack, and hope you get lucky, or run away, and let your enemy completely control the fight.
That’s no choice at all, and it all comes down to the fact that there is no downside to being hyper-aggressive with monks. If you fail a conversion, it doesn’t matter, you can convert the next enemy you see, the instant you see them. This leaves your enemy with no real choice but to just attack as soon as possible and hope for the best.
But what if monks instantly lost 25-50% of their faith when they start a conversion?
This wouldn’t have much impact at lower levels, where players often lack the micro to escape a monk, or to take advantage of a weakened monk even if they do; but at higher levels of play, it turns a simple and unavoidable encounter into a choice. Running away briefly, to escape the conversion, could be a reasonable choice, if you can turn back immediately afterwards and snipe the temporarily helpless monk.
This also fixes the issue of garrisoning a monk repeatedly, hoping to farm a fast conversion; they would need to wait for their faith to regenerate, dramatically weakening that tactic.
However, this wouldn’t significantly impact converting siege, as siege is too slow to effectively escape.
It seems to me this would solve the issue at higher levels, without breaking the game for anyone else.