Theoretical study of a Mangonel rework with 7 main Projectiles hitting in a hexagonal Pattern

Deriving from the Design of the Dromon I asked myself what would happen if the Mangonels would be changed similarly. The main Critique for the Mangonel always was that it showed several projectiles but only one of them did the vast majority of the damage. Whilst the Dromono shoots 4 Projectiles for the Mangonel I would rather prefer 7, as they can be layed out in a hexagonal Pattern which leads to more consistancy and continuity in the Damage output. The main Reason for that is that in a hexagonal pattern there is almost no overlap when you draw circles around a point through the other points surrounding it.

Here is a graph of the hitting spots of the 7 different Projectiles:

Please regard that one unit in the Graph represents half a tile in the game. This will be consistant for all following Graphs i will show here. The reason for that is that I started this way and as the amount of analysis piled up I don’t feel comfortable in now changing it because I might oversee one necessary change at some point which would compromise the results. I hope this isn’t too much inconvenience.

The idea is that each of these projectiles will behave basically the same as the current main Mangonel projectile. But with a lower Damage ofc. This implicitely means that there will be a lot of overlap. Just for example in the middle: At (0,0) a unit will take 100 % damage of the center projectile and 50 % damage (.5/1 tile blast radius) of all the other 6 projectiles. Resulting in a total of 4 units of base damage (after armor is substracted). For Onagers this is increased to 4.6 and for SO even to 5 units. Because with the higher Blast Radius of their projectiles the middle at .5 distance to the outer Projectiles is RELATIVELY closer to them in comparison to the blast Radius. In the example of the SO each outer projectiel will deal 2/3 units of the base damage to the middle.

Here are 3 graphs showing the expected damage distribution of the 3 different mangonel line units:

The red and blue graphs are representative for 2 different paths from the center to the outside. The blue represents a horizontal path whilst the red a vertical one.

In grey shown is a comparison to the current distribution of the main Projectile. With assuming that each projectile of the new Mangonel deals 10 melee, each of the new onager 12 melee and each of the new SO 15 melee damage.

This would already have a lot of changes in interactions. Most importatnly, Mangonels wouldn’t be able to one-shot xbows and elite skirms with +2 armor anymore. Whilst without armor the area of them being one-shot would even increase - already with 1 armor only the units very close to the center would be killed. But with +2 armor the maximum the xbows could take would be 32. Which is lower than their 35 HP. Onagers and SO still would flatten arbs regardless.

But in general this already shows a new principle of melee armor being able to reduce the damage taken from Mangonel hits way more than it used to. As an example here is how a high melee armor unit like the Serjeant would be affected:

Whilst it is definitely noticably lower damage output (when compared to the grey baseline), it’s by no means a “immunity”. But this would rapidly change when these units would just have a bit more melee armor. Teutonic Knights eg would be almost immune (only taking max 5 damage from a SO hit). The same for Elite Boyars with armor.

But it opens up some interesting tweak options, as units with higher melee armor would be more resistant to mangonel fire, there could be UUs or changes to already existing units to get more melee armor and therefore be mire resistant to mangonel attacks.

Finally I want also have a look on Torsion Engines and what would happen if there was an extra projectile added in the center (so 2 center projectiles).

The current Torsion Engines would result in this damage distribution:

Which is for my taste way too much. The issue is that the multi-projectile design makes increasing the blast radius also increase the highest damage output in the center, as explained in the beginning. So Torsion Engines would need to be tuned down just a bit to compensate tor that effect. But it will still result in a higher damage output in the center, even when it’s not that big as shown in the graph above.

Above the distribution when there is an added 8 projectile in the middle. This could be a Bonus for the Armenians which already have similar bonusses to their galleys and dromons - and help them a lot against their current weakness against archer + siege. With this Bonus Armenians would be the only civ able to one-shot xbows with armor with mangonels which would ofc be a huge advantage.

Here the same graph for Mangonels in Castle age:

What all these graphs have in common is the differences around the middle are way lower than currently. Meaning the damage output there is more consitant and less depending on small distance differences.
They also deal a small amount of damage in areas that formerly didn’t damage anything. It’s not much, but enough that it will be very hard to completely evade mangonel/ onager shots then. Leading again to more consistancy in the matchup between ranged units and Mangonels. It still would be revarding to dodge the mangonel shots, But there will be some amount of consistant minimal damage to the ranged units.
What I personally support. Imo the matchup is currently too volatile and could use a little bit more consistancy.