Solutions for Ballista Elephant and Elephant Archer

War elephants were buffed time ago, Battle Elephants for Burmese, Malay, and Vietnamese werea also improved (with Khmer BEs nerfed because being too OP long time ago, and the Burmese ones with the questionable buff from Rajas days), but the other elephant UUs (Ele archers and Ballista eles) are just left behind.
So if you watch almost every high level game with those civs in 1v1, for Indians is almost always the game with Hussar and Cavalry Archer, and for Khmer lol, the player only go for Hussar and Scorpion, crazy army comp though, so at that point why ever you will go for the elephant units, is sad because those barely are pratcical to use, yet too expensive and with soo many (and Cheap) counters.

My suggestions for those are:
Ballista Elephant now affected by Battle elephant speed bonus, this not only fits thematically, but also gives them a distinction from other slow but with high HP ranged units.

Ballista Elephant (Standard and Elite) Attack increased from 8 to 10 and 9 to 12, this could, at least, puts their damage on par with proper siege weapons (cmon, is a freaking Ballista).

Food cost decreased to 95, so more affordable at least.

For Elephant Archer
Sultans also allows the Elephant Archer to be trained at the archery range, this, could be the best buff for the unit, the main drawback is the unit needs castle to be massed properly, archer units are only effective when massed, elephant archers simply don’t get that, but being able to be trained outside of castles will give the player better accesibility to the unit, and thus be used more. Also, Indians lack proper tools vs Archer civs because their main tank unit is also hard to use. and it will gives Indians a much, much better identity as a civ that uses elephants effectively, and in Imperial, it could make the Elephant Archer+Hussar army pretty interesting, instead of the Hussar+Heavy cav archer, which more than one civ already does but even better, and get rid a bit of the one trick Strong Camel civ identity, which again, other civs already get.

Elite Elephant Archer +1 range, I mean, Elite War Wagon, which is cheaper (costs wood, with a discount lol) and faster, is almost better, in every way, than ele archers, also gets armor upgrades for free, but the elite elephant archer has worse attack and range, fair…

Food Cost reduced to 95F aswell.

So those are my points, not sure what more left.


I suggested this ages ago. And like it.

Not so sure about yout elephant archer buffs though. Indians already get 1 unique unit outside the castle as is

Maybe change both units food cost to wood?


Yes but I mean, in 1v1 Imperial camels aren’t impressive, and get hard countered by halbs and arbalests, the unit however doesn’t suffer of these units in TG.

Not sure about that one, both have very high HP and PA, War Wagon and Hussite Wagon cost wood and have both HP and PA, look how problematic can be on early castle age (especially WW with the double castle strat).

I would like Elephant archers to be able to fire while moving, but possibly with lower accuracy. That makes them more realistic, as well as a more interesting unit. Letting them be massed isn’t the problem. It’s the high cost, relatively low range, and low speed, among other factors that make them see little use. If they had their range increased, or had their elevation count as +1, that could be good. Also, if you could garrison up to 3 archers in them for extra damage, that could be possibly. Those are just some ideas. I agree with the Khmer stuff.


Just going to preempt this: Battle elephants (as a whole) have been nerfed, not buffed, since Definitive Edition. They’ve lost 50% of their trample damage (from 50% of their attack, to 25%) and lost a tenth of a tile in splash radius to boot. They’ve had their overall damage reduced as well by two points, and their bonus damage against buildings reduced by three points.

All warranted, mind you, but there’s clearly some compensation being had here in the elephant line from past changes to the civ and the unit on a global scale since DE dropped.

Elephant Archer does not need a buff. Ballista elephant is a hard one to evaluate, but it could probably use a tweak here and there… If I had to express exactly what I want for the Ballista Elephant, it would be for them to always aim one tile further past the target they are trying to hit, to mitigate the wasted damage when they attack the closest target by default when you aren’t actively micro’ing them. Beyond that, I really don’t think they need a whole lot…


I look into the game file while modding, sadly, as far as I can tell, the engine cannot make a unit fire while moving. However, you can make it so that elephant archer can allow extra foot units to garrison inside to make them fire extra arrows like towers or castle

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Tell me what was the last time you saw the unit being used over Indian Heavy Cavalry Archer??
Like never right, because the unit can be created in large groups since castle age, also has mobility, and the upgrades are cheaper, how you justify going ele archer over them?

The only one I remember is that match of MBL against tatars, in an empire wars tournament.
Although I think the tatar player forgot about flaming camels.

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Only a couple of niche time… that tells you how poorly the unit does in combat

The same way you justify going any elephant unit over any other option.

When your economy can effectively support having it without sacrificing military population to do so, you probably should. You don’t need to go full elephant to take advantage of having a more population efficient unit sprinkled into a composition.

One of my most upvoted posts ever was a post endorsing buffing the Elephant Archer and showing just how bad it was. It’s been buffed since then, pretty dramatically.

EA do melee dmg and affected by blacksmith melee upgrade? Indian units seems kinda bad in melee fight.

All elephant units are meant to be used in team games for the most part. Their cost is what holds them back. Massed elephant is already strong. Elephants in huge numbers are death machines. A moving well of high HP meat.

They are meant for games that drag on. Where you have like 50 farmers and 30 to 40 trade carts.

I think yes, they all can be viable in TG because of reason you cited, but of all Elephants UUs, only the War elephant has a clear role at the Persian army, yes you see most of the time Paladins being used instead for agressive maps, but on Arena, BF and similar, War eles are occasioanl too see with great success, same thing can’t be said of ele archers and ballista eles

Well tbf both units have completely different roles. Elephant archers are archer counter for late game or closed map. In the latter it is even a decent unit, problem is just that nobody goes for indians on arena or the like bc it simply doesn’t fit the civ. Cav archer on the other hand is mostly used against pikes.

I guess nobody would really mind some rather small buff for ea but heavily buffing these units is usually problematic bc elephant units are inherently difficult to balance. Mostly they are useless but if you can get to them and get a critical mass they can stomp everything when both players are pop capped.

So, how do you buff BE??? Or are you fine whit their current state?
Why would you say the Elephant Archer is fine? Would you change something on it?
And Ballista Elephant only need to be more close to a Scorpion? That’s it?

I once had the “pleasure” of playing against a Ele archer stack with britons, on hideout, this was after I said that they are UP and need buffs. Needless to say, I don’t think they do anymore. Indians need buffs for earlygame and 1v1, but in TGs they are still ridiculous. Best answer to cavalry civs, and an amazing answer to archer civs seems like, on closed maps. Only sensible counter to that unit is paladins, even SO don’t seem to do the trick.

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But that eco bonus fo cheaper vills is a super strong one for 1v1, especially for a scout rush.
I just want the ele archer with a much, much better role for Indians.

Ballista Elephants need to move as fast as Khmer Battle Elephants, I agree. It’d make the Ballista Elephant a decent support unit for Khmer Battle Elephants.

I’m okay with the Elephant Archer. It’s the most population efficient anti-archer archer unit in the game, gains resistance to heavy cavalry when in a large enough army, and has bonus damage vs. stone defense and standard building. I’m okay with the EA being expensive enough to be consistently viable in only team games and certain 1v1 maps. Because once Elephant Archers get rolling, they’re harder to stop than FU Mangudai. For the only units which have an okay chance against them are Genoese Crossbowmen, Huskarls, Camel Archers, and Paladins.

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Well if you already made Battle eles as Khmer, I think is more effective to use the deadly Khmer Scorpions, because they are cheaper, get more range and the extra projectile.

Ballista elephants also get the extra projectile last I checked.

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