As the title suggests.
This is based on the “real” “historical” role of some earlier units, but not well represented by the old game design at the time they were added, and can now be better represented with the new mechanics.
In real life they functioned as fast raiding troopers. And a short sword countering cavalry is pretty odd. In vanilla all hand infantry were cavalry counters, which is probably the remnant of (according to wiki) the scrapped “swordsman” class. It suits more as an infantry counter like the urumi, or a shock infantry.
Practicality: very little. This unit has a very well-established role in the game, and Spain does not need another infantry counter or a hand cavalry equivalent.
Now that the true charge ability is in the game, they can just get the ability. The main reason why lances did not get obsolete with the introduction of gunpowder is their charge impact, and they do not perform well in prolonged melee (the latter is reflected by the low base stats)
Practicality: maybe unlock it through a card like the Mexicans.
There was a “ranged heavy cavalry” class in the original design, but the concept is scrapped (and re-introduced in DE). Black rider is very likely designed to be a merc version of that class, because it is among the heaviest-looking cavalry in the game, but then re-used as a dragoon.
Practicality: very little, because the harquebusier (which ironically was a lighter cavalry in real life) fulfills that role. I actually think they should be swapped, but people are already very accustomed to them.
Credit to this post on reddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/aoe3/comments/v13q9s/new_civ_ability_for_mantlet/
The purpose of this unit is to cover your units from ranged fire. But it only functions as a super tanky skirmisher. Now with the deflect ability they can fully fulfill that role.
Practicality: quite practical. This unit is underused. But be careful because they benefit from a lot of different cards, which need to be adjusted.
The 1000th time.
Now there are musketeers that can throw grenades, or grenadiers with grenade launchers by default. In real history grenadiers were elite shock infantry with similar equipments as regular line infantry, and rarely threw grenades. In the game however the civs do not need another musketeer, so they could keep the grenade part as their unique feature. Based on these considerations, the grenade launcher (though not used a lot in real history) can well represent their role as both regular ranged infantry and elite shock troopers.
Practicality: quite practical. Grenadiers are still bad. If the heavy tag is not removed, maybe unlock grenade launcher by default, or at least make them an arsenal tech. The card simply does not worth it.
Or maybe give them a decent melee like the giant grenadier.
One way to introduce some of the mechanics in a subtle way would be through changing cards to enable new mechanics for old units.
This should grant the deflection ability to Spanish Pikemen instead of transforming them into Rodelaros.
Tercios were pike and shot formations, and the Pikemen in them were to defend the “shot” part of the army. This would also pair well with Spain’s Imperial level Pikemen.
This should give Longbowmen promotions instead of extra range.
Longbows took a lot of training to master, and a promotion mechanic would reflect that. It would also make more sense for an archaic archer not to outrange every rifle unit in the game.
The British could also follow the Italian template of having their skirmisher unit available in age 4 and a unique archer to hold the line until then. Rangers should be buffed and made available by default in age 4, and Longbows should be toned down by removing their Imperial upgrade and extra range from Yeomen. Longbows could still reach a similar potential with full promotions, but they wouldn’t be as strong freshly trained.
The Lakota Warchief should have promotions enabled with this card.
Each feather in a war bonnet was earned through an act of courage and honour. This could be portrayed as a promotion mechanic.
The other main cards that buff Heros could also grant promotions. Explorers and Warchiefs are pretty tanky and cheap to revive so gating some of their strength behind combat experience could keep them in check.
This should have the deflection ability by default. It is already part of naval combat with the Italian card that gives Battleships the deflect ability.
This isn’t a unit in the game, but if Jivaro ever get added, promotions are something they should have. They believed that they accumulated power from the souls of animals and people that they killed.
I think in general some units could be introduced to diversify roles and avoid a General unit, in the sense that x unit is good vs allot of things.
I would like to see this, lancers thought should be introduced to several civs like France, Germany.
Since “lancers” were knights many of the European used them in one way or another, Uhlan is the polish lancer. Sipahi used lances too.
On that note many Euro had a version of their cuirassier as Saxon one is represented.
I think rodelero are way too reliable for a unit that historically didn’t shine as much, should be unit good vs melee infantry and archaic ranged (crossbow, archers, longbows), with high defense and hit points but not much attack.
Tercios were known for their “invencibility” (yes they did lose battles) but the tercio tactic was very effective. So in general I think each Euro should get a type of rodelero (foot knight) and Spanish tercio to become a unique stronger.
I don’t think they are bad, they are good vs other infantry plus their area damage, although I think it should be a skill like pistol for Malta knights as you comment. also their model could use new ones.