I have been playing with steppe lancers alot, and what really stands out is how they really don’t have a role. This isn’t just due to stats.
Spirit of the law- knight vs steppe lancer:
Hera- mongol steppe lancers are… trash:
Anyways, what roles are there? Well, we have the following cavalry roles:
Raiding - light cav
Main cav - cavalier/pally
Anti-cav - camel
The thing here is that all of these civs that bring steppe lancers are horse archer civs. Tartars, mongols, and cumans. They all are cavalry civs. From a balance standpoint, they all hate skirmishers and pikemen. So, the counter to pikemen normally is to make swordsmen. These are cavalry civs. Why not give the anti-pikemen role to steppe lancers instead?
Here is the idea:
- Steppe lancers only take 50% bonus damage from pikemen. This makes them similar to Sicilian units.
- Steppe lancers lose 1 damage, elite steppe lancers lose 2 damage.
- Steppe lancers gain significant bonus damage vs pikemen and skirmishers.
- Steppe lancers lose 1 pierce armor and elite steppe lancers lose 1 pierce armor
- Steppe lancers gain 2 unique armor against skirmishers and genitors.
So, what does this do? Well, now steppe lancers would have a very specific role. They would suck at raiding, they would suck at attacking buildings, and they would even suck at fighting most other enemy cavalry. In fact, hussars would almost be able to take them in a fight. However, they are now able to clear the battlefield of pikemen and skirmishers effectively. They are barely better than hussars in any other role.
In which patch do you live?
We had this Idea like a year ago. Besides I was supportive to it initially, I actually think the whole “steppe lancers vs trash” is a bad idea. Especially with these civs.
I think the best would to push them even more into that “high damage but low HP” type of unit. Maybe even increase their range by 1.
This way it can be used both as support for cav archers or to give the cav from these civs a bit of “extra punch” to work with.
WIth this change the pure steppe lancer balls would be no choice to go for anymore, but they could play an important role as support unit for these civs.
That seems like quite a reasonable way to do it. Increasing the range even further though just wouldn’t look visually accurate. What if they amped up the raiding potential as well by giving it a damage boost against villagers?
Another Idea I had posted is to give SL an extra hill Bonus. 50% instead of 25% (attack and damage recieved). Obviusly, its base attack should be a little reduced, but the main idea is that depends of the map, you should choose between go for knights or for SL. In a flat map, knights should wreck SLs, but by using the hill bonus in the correct way, SLs should defeat knights.
In the case of tartars, hills uld gain much more relevance, like relics for the Lithuanians
Giving steppe lancers raiding potential vs villagers would be interesting.
Then you have hussars as late game raiding or general trash units, but SL’s specifically for raiding eco when gold it still there.
Frankly we should see how lancers do in thr next month or so after rhe buff they just got.
The videos you linked are outdated to say rhe least