Not to say they dont look cool (they absolutely do) and I get that they are necessary for Bulgarians and Malay, but beyond that they are kind of pointless? Unlike Cavaliers who are often more viable than paladins, THS dont have a niche in which you would rather not research the champion upgrade and unlike light cavalry when compared to hussars THS are not viable and also the champion upgrade is not even that expensive compared to the hussar upgrade and its avaible at the same age as the THS.
Not to say that I want it changed (probably too late for that lol) but its just weird that theres an imperial tecnically FU unit that you only want to use in one or two cases (against eagles and maybe against trash or huskarls).
It’s not meant to be a stopping point. That is to say you’re almost always going to want to research champion at a later point. But in the meantime THS is a much cheaper upgrade that lets you take on select imperial units without spending the 750 food and 350 gold. I mean you’re already spending 500f and 165g upgrading from M@A.
E.g. THS will still win against camels hard, even without pikes.
I just dont think that the upgrade really adds anything interesting to the game.
There’s a lot of ways to look at this though. At the end of the day your observation is (appropriately) that the units aren’t very different. But instead of viewing it as “THS are useless” or “The upgrade is uninteresting” the more, lets say objective, way to look at it is:
- “These upgrades are very similar: Should they be? What does it say about the game that these two units are so close stat-wise?”
I haven’t looked too closely at analyzing these two units so IDK. But I just want to point out you’re framing the problem in a very specific way when there’s a more general way to look at the issue.
Two handed swordsmen allow more design possibilities for different civilizations. Stuff like Malay, Bulgarians (or heck Persians too when you think about it, design is also at work when deciding what a civ should lack) wouldn’t be possible. We also already have the cavalier vs paladin and onager vs siege onager in the “base upgrade is good but the next upgrade is super good” department so the THS/champion duo has a different place.
What if THS were available in castle age
Then you wouldnt need long swordsman.