[Suggestion] Norse Civilization brainstorming (if we get norse, what would you want of it?)

Norse Civilization suggestion:

I’d like to make a “idea” base for how a Norse civilization should be designed in AoE 4, lets pool our ideas.

My suggestion would be the following.

Norse Unique troops:

[Villagers] - Replaced by Norsemen

Norsemen: The basic “villager” unit for Norse is a double unit with double the cost of a regular villager, and with a 75% gathering rate of regular villagers… instead, they are also the civilizations basic military unit, wielding a spear and shield in battle.

[Spearmen, Men at arms] - Replaced by Norse Warrior

Norse Warrior, in addition to the regular Norsemen, the more professional Norse warriors are recruited with a random set up equipment, being in the variant of spear and shield, sword and shield, and dane axes… each version having their stats and bonus damage based on the weapon’s usage.

[Replaces Stable with Household building]

Housecarls: The Elite troops of a jarl, the only Norse troops equipped with heavy armor, sword and shields… while lighter armored than the elite troops of other civilizations. they make up for it with both a higher base speed and the ability to inspire nearby non-housecarl infantry units. The Housecarl comes in both cavalry and infantry version… they are the only cavalry Norse gets.

Norse unique mechanics:

[Thralls]

To make up for the weaker economy the Norse civilization is in requirement of additional workforce…. that being “Thralls”, The Norse begins with a certain number of thralls… additional thralls can be acquired by defeating enemy units, enemy military units having a low chance of converting to a thrall… while enemy villagers have a high chance. Thralls can only gather supplies, and act similar to sheep’s in that they’ll turn switch allegiance if a enemy unit comes near and their unattended. Enemies can turn thralls back into villagers at their own town-center.

[Go Viking/go Raiding]

In reference to the actual meaning of “go Viking” which is basically to go raiding… the Norse trade building is replaced with a special building that can be built on both land or as a dock… thou with benefit/preference towards bring placed on a dock.

The building serves to send out raiding and trading caravans (Vikings may be known to be raiders, but they were in fact even better traders than raiders) which will seek passage to the exit of them map via waterway, or by foot… benefiting from the distance travelled like regular traders. Raiding ships, or Raiding parties (foot or water) will return with a greater amount of supplies… as well as bringing back spoils and loot which restocks a moral ability that can be triggered from the trade post once enough traps have been made.

Unique buildings:

[Household] – Replaced Stable

The Household building is a house, which gives population to the civilization but equally allows to recruit a limited number of Housecarls.

[Staging docks/grounds] – Replaces both the Docks and the trade post

This building can be built on land like a trade post, or on the water-edge to become a dock. This building allows to build a unique form of merchant/trade caravan which will seek to exit the map, and return with resources and spoils… once enough spoils has been collected, they can be distributed in order to create a morale boost to the entire civilization, giving minor but wide bonus to every unit for a period of time.

[Wooden fortification] – Replaces Stone Wall, Gate, keep, tower.

The Norse built properly fortification, but most commonly using pure logs made to fit each other in a locking formation which allowed them construct rather quickly solid defensive locations.

Each row of walls can be upgraded with stones to reinforce the walls several times to fortify specifically important locations.

Now this is a very rough sketch, and there are plenty of faults… so feel free to add your own suggestions, or to pound or support the suggestions I’ve made… perhaps you have a better suggestion or idea?

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The Byzantine Empire had a very famous Viking battalion, the Varangian Guard, very well paid and selected among the most elite, fierce and brutal norse and rus warriors. They were the most famous elite mercenary unit in the world for 400 years in AoE 4 time and were quite rich, using ruby and diamond as jewelry!

Even though they were a palace guard of the emperor, they were decisive in many major battles in the Balkans and Anatolia, but original Viking forces were OBLITERATED by the Seljuk Turks (predecessor of the Ottoman Empire) in the epic mega battle of Manzikert 1071, the battle that caused the Crusades. The Varangian guard came back to life later, when Norwegian King Sigurd Magnusson sold all his Crusade ships and armies to the Byzantine emperor.

The Byzantines and the Turks / Ottoman Empire are BY FAR the most important, powerful, complex/diverse and gameplay-rich civilizations not yet included in AoE 4, in particular in the European region, and I think the Norse should be represented as mercenaries of the powerful Byzantine Empire.

If there any any other slots available for Europe after these two classic medieval superpowers with unique characteristics, they should go to Hungary, Spain or Poland-Lithuania which were all much stronger than the Norse or even the English (if not a bit more diverse).

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Norse were pretty powerful though, especially during the Viking Age.

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While i’d love to see a Poalnd-Lithuania part, I’d honestly think Norse should be added, they’ve been a massive influence to many major civilizations with traders traveling as far as Byzantine and past.

I’d love to see a connection for the Byzantine thou with Norse.
The Norse should have a mechanic to send units off to Byzantine, and get stronger units after a longer waiting period… in fact Harald Sigurdsson , also known as Harald of Norway One of our norwegian kings which alas died during the Battle of Stamford Bridge due to making a mistake (he though Godwinson would surrender, so he didnt bring his full force) otherwise england might been a Norse kingdom… if they’d beaten the duke of normandy.

But yes, if they add the Byzantine, then i expect the Varangian guard to be a unique unit.

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In the Norman Campaign we already have anglo-saxon units that make shield wall formations.

We might see a similar unit if norsemen are ever added.

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Based on this vote

It seems Norse is atleast somewhat heavily requested, being 3rd og top 3 voted picks.
So i’d say by popular demand we’ll likely see Norse one day… thou i think Byzantine and Ottoman empire might come out first… unless they decide to proper “expansions” and not just Dlcs so we get scores of civs at once.

For those interested in how far the Norse/Scandinavians expanded, while not “one” large empire… they were found almost all over the European, and mediterranean area, even as far as North America (Vinland).

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Age 2 Landmarks :

Chieftain’s longhouse : can create Jarls that can buff nearby units much like daimyo in AOE 3… when dies it will return to Warriors Hall after 2 munites
Maiden’s gathering : Defensive building , will dispatch shield maidens when towncenters under attack

Age 3 Landmarks :

Pagan Shrine: Shamans (Viking healers) can sacrifice animals (sheeps/ cattles) to buff military units or villager gather rate
Hall of the all father : All structures acquire ravens which increase LOS of structures and also alarms the player if enemy unit nearby much like the scout.

Age 4 Landmarks :

Viking Harbor : After some time interval dispatch viking raiders using longboats who go out off map to raid other lands and bring back plunders. Needs water to be built. Also fire arrows at enemy ship

Christian missionary house: Allow christian missionaries to spread their religion… garrision villagers in this bulding to recieve 50 gold per villager

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I could be wrong about some stuff, but I feel like the following could also be appropriate for a Norse civ. Somethings may not be accurate though, so I apologize ahead of time.

TC:

Villager (75fd, 20wd), can change between a Villager and a Warrior (Norsemen or Axeman, whatever it would be called)

Barracks

Spearman (50fd, 20wd) Has a Shield and Spear. Can use the “Shield Wall” ability, allowing units to form a shield wall either stand ground, or move slowly in groups towards enemies. Good vs Cav.

Warrior (Norseman/Axeman) (75fd, 20wd) can change between a Villager and a Warrior (Norsemen or Axeman) Can use the “Shield Wall” ability, allowing units to form a shield wall either stand ground, or move slowly in groups towards enemies. Good vs Ranged. Bonus vs Light Infantry.

Shield Maiden (75fd 20gld) Can use the “Shield Wall” ability, allowing units to form a shield wall either stand ground, or move slowly in groups towards enemies. Good vs Ranged. Bonus vs Light Infantry.

Archery Range:

Archer. Good vs Light Infantry

Axe Thrower. Unit that throws axes at a short distance. Good vs Armored Units. Bonus vs Cav.

Stables:

Horseman Good vs Ranged.

Raider (replacement for heavy cav?) Has a Sword and Shield. Faster than Lancers and Knights. Bonus vs Buildings and Siege.

Jarl Heavy Cav.

Dock:

Fishing Boat

Longship Can transport units, Trade with other docks, and Attack. Units embarked on a longship when disembarked gain a “raiding buff” that makes them deal a % damage increase for a short time.

Siege Factory:

Not sure what siege they would have, but im sure they would have some since they used some in their raids of both England and France.

Long House: Replaces Houses. Counts for 20pop instead of 10.

Palisades + Palisade Gates can be built by Norse Infantry. Stone Walls + Gates must still be made by Villagers but must be unlocked with a tech instead since they probably learned it some point in their raids on England and France

Pagan Church Here Shamans can be made.

Unique Traits

Vikingr (To go a Viking) All norse units gain a % damage buff when disembarking a Longship, or from putting a Monastery (or other religious buildings) and Town Centers in a “Burn” state. This buff does not increase damage to buildings, only to units.

Seafaring Mastery Norse Ships (both fishing and longships) have increased health, damage, and speed. Fishing Ships collect food from deep-sea fish faster and Villagers collect food from shore-fish faster.

Berzyrkr Norse take decreased damage the lower their health is.

5 Likes

Loving these suggestions.

Personally i’d not include the Shield maiden and instead include the Berserker which would be built from the civilization “church” as Berserkers were generally fanatically (and heavily drugged on mushroom) from the instances they appeared.

for Siege the Norse should not have siege engines, by history they tended to avoid larger fortified settlements, but their infantry should be able to build rams, siege towers etc, leave its a weakness for the civilization… instead they should rely more on technology making units more effective vs buildings.

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Perhaps something like an improved Ram and Siege Tower. That would at least make it so that they would be more viable in their case, since they would not have other siege options.

Based on people’s feedback i’ve tried to make a updated variant after my own heart, what’cha guys think?

[Civilization]
Norse (Northern europe, Danmark, Sweden, Norway)

–[Unique Mechanics]–

[Longhouse] → House variant

Norsemen In the nordic civilization every man and woman is a potential warrior… to die in battle is but the highest honor… and when the Jarl calls his clan to battle… every capable man is likely to take up their own weapons and armor to join the fight… be it a raid… or to defend one’s home and heart.

Norsemen are a villager type that also doubles as the most basic infantry unit for the Norse civilization, The average strength of a norseman depends the current “spoil” score… indicating better equipment, and wealth for the tribe/clan.

Norsemen cost significantly more per unit than villagers, and train slower, however they are trained from houses, rather than the town center, each house can only recruit a certain number of norsemen, recruiting the unit to have died before allowing for new recruitment from the same building.

[Village Center]

Thralls Thralls were the lowest class of workers in Scandinavian society. They were North-Western and Eastern Europeans who were enslaved by being prisoners of war, incurring debt or being born into the class via their parents. The living conditions of thralls in Scandinavia varied depending on the master. The thrall trade as the prize of plunder was a key part of the Viking economy.

Thralls is a special villager type that can only be acquired in two ways, either through spending the Norse unique resource “spoils” or by a military unit “slaying” a enemy civilian unit… which will instead convert into a thrall…

Thralls behave as regular villagers with improved gathering rates… however they cannot construct buildings, and similar to gaia ‘sheep’ if a enemy unit is near without the presence of own military units… they’ll switch allegiance and can be converted into villagers at other civilizations town centers (required for use).

[War Camp] → Constructed by Norsemen units, a cheap barracks, often considered temporarily in nature.
While the common warrior brought their own equipment, often inherited from father to son, it comes it’s worth sharing spoils or offer equipment to their warriors

The Norse War Camp is a hastily crafted camp, where existing Norsemen may convert into different specialized roles, based the type of weapons they have researched.

Norse Spearmen Common equipment, a shield and a spear… with the ability to form a unique shieldwall formation… in this formation the units form a defensive row with their shields… while they lose the ability to move, the units form a strong defensive line, increasing both defence and attack considerably …however it takes a moment to form, and to break formation.

Norse Warrior A classic setup of shield and sword… these warriors resemble the common men at arms of the other civilizations… their faster and more lightly armoured, but retain a high damage potential.

Dane Axe Warrior Equipping a Norseman with a Danes axe makes for a fierce opponent, while they lose the extra protection from losing the shield, a chainmail dressed warrior with a powerful axe is a fearsome foe to face… high damage but take bonus damage from archery.

[Hunters cabin] → Archery range/mill variant

Hunter The Norsemen can be converted into hunters, the hunter gets a 15% gather rate bonus for animals, while also serving as the Norse Archer variant. The Hunter can be toggled to fight in meele as a alternative to the standard range… changing their damage bonus.

[Raiding encampment] → replaces stable
This building allows for recruitment of light cavalry, and unique raiding technologies

[Insert raiding technology ideas here]

Raider Spear and shield cavalry, these raiders are quick on their feet and serve as both scouts and raiders… their speed and flexibility allows them to quickly engage in surprise attacks.
They possess a sprint ability, which increases their movement speed for a short time, on a average cd.
They have bonus damage against buildings, siege equipment and villagers.

[Dock]

Longship A hybrid Ship that can both transport units and attack, with a unique technology can enable disembarked units a attack and movement buff for a short time immediately after the disembarkment… has a cooldown per individual unit for how often it can be reapplied.
The unit can be upgraded three times, Snekke, Drekkar, and Skeid variants.

Knarr The Norse Heavy Freight merchant ship, this behaves as the classic tradeship.

Faering Norse fishing boat, behaves as normal.

[Siege Factory] → Not available, all siege tech is researched in the War Camp, and they can only construct it on-site

[Wooden walls, tower, gate and keep] - Variants of Stone wall, Tower, gate, and keep
The norsemen can craft proper defences, but build these in wood rather than stone… they have lower hit points than the classic stone variants… but they can be upgraded using stone to improve section upgraded (not global) to match the other civilization in endurance… takes bonus fire damage.

[[Unique traits]]

Seafaring Mastery Norse Ships (both fishing and longships) have increased health, damage, and speed. Fishing Ships collect food from deep-sea fish faster and Villagers collect food from shore-fish faster.

Vikingr (To go viking) Both Norse docks and tradepost can activate a vikingr expedition, it requires sending a number of troops into the building (like garrison), which is then temporarily made unavailable while they leave the map to go onto a raiding/trading expedition, after a short while they may return (or not) based on a random x, technology and the quality of the troops deployed… returning with random resources, “Spoils” and thralls… the units that manage to return also gain a one-time Vikingr buff, boosting their stats across the board.

Spoils a unique resource gained through capturing thralls from the enemy civilization, successfully destroying civilian buildings, trading and Unique Vikingr expeditions. This resource is used to train new thralls from the town center, research unique technologies… or grant temporarily buffs.

It passively increases or decreases the strength of your average norseman unit based on the current retrained number.


So this is the idea i’ve come up with… landmarks should probably enable the production of housecarls, and perhaps the Church building should enable the mythical Berserker ?

Give your suggestions, feedback… all is welcome and desired… hopefully we can spark some ideas for the developers too.

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Inspiration for Architecture

house

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Make them like sea mongols you have to move from place to place with ships, something like longboats unpacking in to a dock/tc and killing enemy villagers generates gold.

What if there’s no water in the map?

It would be really inaccurate, Vikings while often resettling new territories did so by normal methods… they were not nomadic, just adventurous… often seasoned vikings would form their own expedition, and they would both trade and raid … and if they found particularly good area they’d return there later to settle, often these settlements would be trading outposts, initially or just people wanting something more as back home they’d unlikely find more farmland. Norway is quite rocky and the good farmland is very limited, which is one of the causes why they developed a trading and raiding culture.

They did however build their boats to be carried across land… which is what they often did… they sailed down canals, then picked up their boats and carried it along to the next river… its one of the methods they did to travel across europe down to the middle-east.

I mean game play vise,you have to move around and be aggressive like the mongol gameplay.

I think actually a strong focus on aggressive actions indeed, but not based around water (only, just better transport ships to enable it as a good method) but around capturing spoils and thralls.

Scandinavia (I know mostly of norway)'s was quite surprisingly economical, raiding and their aggressive expansion was all for the purpose of building a stronger economy back home… and i hope to reflect thus in the civilization.

By aggressively attacking and capturing villagers (turned into thralls) the norse civilization would be able to quickly strengthen their own economy… to future enchant their ability to strike hard.
Coupled with a strong focus on unique trade and building up a unique resource “spoils” which slowly boosts your overall power… the norse would be a civilization that keeps up the pressure on the opponent which boosts their economy until they can overwhelm them.

Their buildings should still be a solid base, but if you look on my latest suggestion, since their base warriors are also villagers… they’d be able to construct and expand actively near the opponent, even without mobile buildings (that’s kinda the mongols unique part).

I think they will be Danes instead of Norse. they are already present in the Norman Campaign.

Would be preferable to make a Norse, to make it inclusive.

Considering the Norwegians were extremely active in that period too…in england (not sure of sweden).
That way you applease both danes, swedes, and Norwegians.

So i hope they make a combined “Norse” representing all three countries.

2 Likes

I really like the Idea of Spoils as a unique mechanic/resource. I think It could perhaps behave similarly to the Rus bounty system + Mongol Raid system. Hear me out:

Burning down religious buildings, TC’s, and houses (specifically houses) will give a trickle of gold as Spoils. This will then add up and the more Spoils you have taken, the more damage Norse/Dane units do. (similarly to how the more Rus bounty they have, the more eco they get). Perhaps a unique upgrade that can increase the amount of gold gained from Spoils. So perhaps rename the civ unique trait to “Go a Viking” and name the unique tech “Vikingr”.

The part about the Thralls is a bit hard in my opinion, since taking control of enemy villagers with the risk of them revolting is kind of difficult to balance( in the sense of having potential enemy units right under your base). Perhaps an alternative to the Thralls, is that your Longhouse creates more Norseman/women if you kill villagers (so lets say the Longhouse can produce up to 4 Norsemen/women each, killing villagers makes a new Norseman spawn from the TC instead, kind of like capturing them and bringing them for judgement to the Jarl)

Also, the Longhouse could potentially spawn the Norsemen/women like the Sheep do from Mongol Pastures. Perhaps the civ could have an influence system where Longhouses built either by a dock or TC spawn Norseman faster.

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