The balance changes that we are really missing

Hi all,
I know a lot of us has felt disappointed for the absence of balance changes this month.

This may indicate that we should not expect a lot of changes in the following.

I would like to discuss what we really need to, say, conclude the balance.

"Conclude " means that every following change can be considered just an improvement of the game variety, instead of a need. For example buffing the underused samurais is NOT a need. It would just add variety to the game, which is good, but it is not a priority since Japanese are one of the most balanced civs in the game in every map.

Priority 0: buff the weak civs

With DE and the following patches, several weak civs, originally belonging to the low tier have beef buffed (Teutons, Vietnamese, Khmer, Koreans, Saracens, Goths, Tatars, Lithuanians, Persians…).

This has created a small group of civs resulting pretty underwhelming since they competitors have been put ahead: Italians (whose land buffed seems to be the most asked by the community), Turks (imo the weakest civ), and Portuguese.
Also Koreans do not shine, but at least we agree that they have a superior late game and a solid tower rush.

Imo, this is what is really mandatory to consider the game balance perfect, or even “concluded”.

Priority 1: fix usless non-unique units
(Priority 1 is less important that priority 0)

Currently all the non-unique units have a decent role (even militia line) except hand cannons and steppe lancers. Giving a role to these units would be appreciated despite non-mandatory.

Priority 2: buff some of the unused UUs/update the current bonuses just to improve game variety

This is not necessary, but the majority of us likes to see more UUs, that is why we have a lot of topics on that.

Also some cool ideas to change, for instance, inca team bonus, tatar hill bonus, and hun UT have been proposed. Again, these are not needs but would be appreciated

Priority 3: nerf top civs

There are very few civs considered as “top civs” looking at pro picks, like Aztecs/Mayans/Chinese. Imo, none of theme is really OP, (unless compared to the 3 weak civs), but someone asks for nerfing them (I am not that favorable tbh).

Just curious to see what people feel as balance priorities…


I generally agree, but I would put nerfing the top water civs up there at priority 2.


In general I agree but I think we have top water civs only in pure water maps, like islands. So basically it is just one specific map.

For instance, in hybrid maps italians are very underwhelming since they are too weak on land. Vikings are good, but probably malay, Japanese, and persians are a bit ahead. In maps like 4 lakes/cross even huns are maybe preferred to Vikings.

1 Like

Priority 0 : Fix pathfinding

And yes, terrible pathfinding breaks the game enough that it could be considered a balance change


This is bug fixes, not balance. But clearly pathing is the most annoying thing right now


Honestly nerfing top tier civs should be the same priority as buffing weak civs. Though currently we don’t have any civs that are much better than a mid tier civ luckily (speaking of land maps!!!) so there is not much to do there. So yeah, overall buffing some weak civs is much more important in the current situation, I just wanted to point out there is should be no difference in priority between the two. As you said, portuguese, italians, turks and koreans could get a land buff for sure. Most questonable is koreans (they can actually be really strong and are commonly underrated by the community - in my opinion, with koreans being one of my favourite civs), so I’d only give them a minor buff.

I agree that they are less critical. Top tower rush, top late game. One of the most pop efficiente range unit in the game, top 1 SO, wood discount added in DE. They are ahead to the other three. However a minor buff can work

theoretically this is 100% true. However my feeling is that:

  • it is way more frustrating playing a weak civ vs a normal civ. Say, Italians vs Vietnamese is way more frustrating for the italian player than Vietnamese vs Aztecs for the Vietnamese player
  • people do not react very well to nerf. People having as favorite civ Aztecs may be frustrated by an aztec nerf. While none is frustrated about an Italian buff
1 Like

If aztecs would be as strong as italians are weak, it would be fustraiting for the vietnamese player aswell. For example as a random civ vs vikings on islands is also not that fun.

Agree, but don’t forget that playing against the same strongest civ every time on a certain map can be frustraiting for the players aswell

Sure, but let us say that currently there is a big difference between Vietnamese and Italians, while a smaller one between Aztecs and Vietnamese. I agree with:

Regarding the strength on specific maps, imo it is a smaller priority if it is limited on just specific maps, like Mongols on valley, Aztecs on graveyard, Italians/Vikings on islands. Portuguese are OP in 500+ pop ffa games: who cares? Also the new map system should help to skip, say, islands if you want to avoid a to classic italians vs Vikings, or valley to avoid mongol war…

1 Like

All good points. The Civ and unit balance has improved a lot since the days of AoC so it’s understandable that further improvements are more difficult and happen slower.

Of the Unique units the one that stands out the most to me is the Teutonic Knight, still being rarely built in competitive play yet being the most beloved unit among the fans. Generally good changes has been done to units that was previously weak like the Throwing Axemen or the Tarkans. I agree that this is not so much important for balance but for the identity of the Civ which adds variety to the game as you say.

Let’s also nerf the Khmer because I do suggest balancing the Khmer: Remove their Onager for example as the Khmer looks like a powerhouse without Onagers in my honest opinion considering that their unique unit can destroy trees including being able to do that in the Castle Age. I do think that it’s also a good idea to remove their Parthian Tactics and Cavalry Archers and removing those wouldn’t just be for balancing reasons but also for historical reasons as well since the Khmer didn’t use those. Instead, relied so much on elephants and infantry. Horses were used in combat by the Khmer but just not taken seriously since they trusted elephants more.

Khmer are a borderline civ. If Aztecs, Mayans, and Chinese are nerfed, they may be nerfed as well

1 Like

Khmer are fine, please don’t nerf them even more.

1 Like

This is ludicrously false. Hand cannons are the answer to infantry for civs that have ■■■ archers; or the answer to infantry that is amazing against archers (huskarls, malian champions, celts). They’ve always been a hard supplement for cavalry/knight-heavy civilizations like Franks, Teutons, Persians (you know before they got that ■■■■■■■■ trash crossbow buff) to take out halbs.

YEah, I agree
Steppe lancers shouldn’t even be in the game honestly but now that they are, they need a defined niche aside from just being another stable unit that a few civs get

Very far from it imo
A lot of people complain about them being unflexible because they don’t have good trash units, but they’re one of the most aggression oriented civs in the game. I get the impression that the reason a lot of people don’t like them is because a lot of people like playing safe/passive and boom in their base but you can’t do that with Turks. You need map and gold control as Turks, and they have a very diverse set of options. They’re both a very mobile civ (a la Huns, Aztecs, Mongols, Slavs) but also have access to one of the most unpushable deathballs in the game (Mass janissary and bombards, not even talking about artillery.)
They’re not the easiest civ to play but you have to make use of their aggressive assetts and raid/force your opponent to react with their stable units (and cav archers), THEN push with janissaries and siege.

Have one of the most difficult to fight post imps in the entire game. Way better than turks because they have fully upgraded trash units and arbalest, and when things start going super late game they have feitorias which are not the meme building of pre-DE. Give them a free tech if anything, but they can stay where they are. Like Byzantines, there needs to be some early game weakness to balance how strong they can be later on.

I agree in that I’m not that favorable to this idea either. Buffing bottom civs AND nerfing top civs just flips the meta up too much. The bottom civs were buffed to compete with the top civs, after all. Aztecs, Mayans, and Chinese, however have all been backhandedly nerfed already though. (Maya and Chinese weaker on nomad, plumes more expensive, chinese lose redemption, Aztec military creation slower etc.) and you can’t really nerf them beyond that without completely changing the civ.

Elephant archer really needs this, but other than that I can’t really think of others. Ballista eles are used way more than ele archers, they definitely do not need a buff since theyre practically unkillable past a certain point.
I can’t think of any unique units that currently lack a place in their civ’s meta; and like you said

Even Jaguar warriors have their place and theyre one of the most underused unique units out of the popular civs

1 Like

Their cav archers are useless anyway without thumb ring. And just make their farm drop off at normal numbers instead of the current trickle income and revert the farm rate and BBC nerf

elephant archers are really good in numbers, it would be incredibly hard to buff them without making them overpowered. the reason they don’t see much use in 1v1 games is the same reason you don’t see War Elephants in 1v1 games. They are too expensive. but on the other hand, in team games both units are very good.
at most for Elephant Archers i would give them a reduction in the Elite Upgrade cost.

I think there are some UTs that needs to be more inclusive:

  • Strongholds should extend the effect to Town Centers.
  • Yeomen should extend the extra attack to castles and town centers.
  • Double Crossbow to Foot Archers and Galleons.

none of those civs need anything close to a buff right now. (Celts, Britons, Khmer).


Maybe… but currently they are hevely underused. Protecting cavalry with a such expensive unit is too taxing economically. Just cavaliers + skyrms work better. I would say that HC should be more comparable to arbs with accuracy and rof.

Just as a side note, the three (arguably) weakest civs in the game have a HC bonus.

here I would say that they should try some new mechanics. For instance a unit returning the gold cost. In another topic i proposed this mechanics for condos.

they are the weakest civ to archers and the worst one in trash fights. They are not liked by noobs and pros. The main difficulty is buffing them without trivially giving them e skyrms.

Yes for Portuguese, as for the other weak civs some minor buffs are needed. I can collect the ones I find more appealing in the other discussions

Buffing underused UUs is useful for game variety. But it is not needed for balance. For instance, I love this proposal for condos discussed in another topic, which just improves the game variety without touching the balance:

  • condos get +4 attack vs eagles
  • condos cost 60g and no food
  • silk road (Italian imperial UT) has the additional effect of making italian condos costing 50f and 20g
  • italians loose 2hs and champion

Basically the proposal is limited for game balance, but in TGs push condos with a mercenary theme, while it simply becomes in 1v1 the Italian champion (with upgrade locked behind a castle). This puts more condos in the game, very good thing, but it is clearly something which does not change the balance, so it should have a minor priority.

Yeah, you’re not wrong. I would make them a bit faster, though. Back in the day in big campy diplomacy they wrecked everything (but so did ballista eles)
In my mod they’re a generic unit and theyre great to mix in with armies of archers or other missile units but Indians don’t really do that outside of early castle age since they lack good foot archers, and if you’re making shatagni hand cannons then ele archers don’t have a place.

They’re just one of the few civs where the unique unit doesn’t cover any of their weaknesses.