Usac’s Civ Crafting Brainstorms Part 9 - Kongolese

I did promise that these regional units would indeed be… regional.

In the Congo an empire that gave the Portuguese invaders a heck of a time and ran them down in a land where their horses could not function! The Kongolese lasted long against them long beyond the medieval era.

Kongolese - An Infantry and Archer civ

  • Savannah Runners (reskinned Eagles) move 10% faster, -5 HP until Feudal

The Kongolese were legendary for their ability to run at speeds that could run down horses. However faster Eagle is apparently broken in Dark Age so a little less HP until then.

  • Foot Archers +1 melee armor per age (+3 total)

The Kongo used defensive formations to defend their archers who used precious poisons. Not sure I want this to effect Hand Cannons?

  • Get 1 free villager every 300 gold mined.

The shell currencies were fantastic! You could buy a slave for 100 shells. So 300 gold… same thing!

Team Bonus: Trade Carts generate wood as well as gold.

The trade was good in this area.

UU: Pombos - Lightning fast movement and attack speed infantry who can beat down cavalry with a tsetse poison. A powerful cavalry replacement who doubles as anti-cavalry.

Pombos Stats Elite
Health 50 65
Attack (melee) 6 (+2 vs Eagles, +18 vs cavalry, +8 vs elephants, +11 vs camels) 7 (+3 vs Eagles, +23 vs cavalry, +10 vs elephants, +17 vs camels)
Range melee
Accuracy 100
RoF 1.6 1.6
LoS 6 6
Movespeed 1.5 1.5
Armor(Infantry, UU, Spearman) 1/2 1/3
Cost 55f/40g
Train Time 18 17
To Elite 950w/800g 65s

Pombos were legendary. Known for speed, agility and the ability to run down zebras and horses alike, the Pombos makes sure you don’t bemoan a lack of the Halberdier replacement.

Regional Unit: Savannah Scout/Runner (Elite). Pretty much reskinned Eagles for a set of civs without Eagles but access to gunpowder. The basic gist of South Africa is “What if Eagle… but gun?”

Regional Unit: Assegi: This unit and it’s elite upgrade is to Pikeman and Halberd what Winged Hussar is to Hussar. It’s a slightly better Pike And Halb sorta. Stats? Not sure this could be a can of worms. I was thinking their raw stats as in base attack and armor could be slightly higher offset by -1 or 2 to bonus damages for comparable units. Not all Southern Africans will get the Elite upgrade. The Kongo do not get the Halb replacement!

Castle UT Cabanzo – Archer Line, Pombos deal +1 damage, +3 vs cavalry.

Cost: 400f/450g

The poison of these people was lethal. With tsetse juice in the mixture, all cavalry commit DIE!

Imperial UT: Renda – Skirmishers, Spears use 33% less pop space

The Kongo administration regarded their land as renda, revenue assignments. The Kongo government exacted a monetary head tax for each villager, which may well have been paid in kind as well, forming the basis for the kingdom’s finances. The king granted titles and income, based on this head tax. Holders reported annually to the court of their superior for evaluation and renewal. This is exactly how you handle a trash pop space discount.

Cost: 400f/550g

Missing Techs

  • Disabled Infantry: Elite Assegi

  • Disabled Cavalry: all

  • Disabled Archery: Thumb Ring, Cavalry Archer, Elephant Archer, Elite Skirmisher

  • Disabled Siege: Siege Onager, Siege Elephant

  • Disabled Dock: Shipwright, Elite Cannon Galley

  • Disabled Blacksmith: Cavalry Armor

  • Disabled Economy: Stone Shaft Mining

  • Disabled University: Keep, Arrow Slits, Siege Engineers

  • Disabled Castle: /

  • Disabled Monastery: Faith, Fervor, Heresy

So the civ lacks Elite Skirmisher but the existence of Speed Eagles will keep all kinds of archers in check. 1.57 speed is nothing to balk at. Full Champion is nice and the lack of Halb, Erm, sorry, Elite Assegi is able to be compensated by the absolute unit of the Pombos. High speed and decent pierce (watch out for Parthian archers) means they’ll be a nuisance to most cavalry and the fast attack speed is legit but beware all archers do bonus damage vs them to offset the high pierce. The low base power for a 40g infantry is not great however. Yes they’ll melt cavalry but this is a civ that struggles against infantry civs that can handle their archers. Civs like Aztecs and Slavs can probably give major late game trouble to these guys and Celts, while their woads are technically slower, hit harder vs their non-horse armies. Kongo Gunpowder units help even the score a little bit.

If you start mining gold, make sure you have room for the free villagers that will start to spawn in. If 300 too easy, then the number can be increased. This is their only eco bonus, well other than the scout speed which technically lets them outrun scout cav too and they’ll need it because they’re a little frail to start out.

Honestly they don’t have a super end game generic power unit. Their eagles are faster but when Inca UT boosted Eagle speed that was considered very weak so this means unlike the other Mesos their eagles are generic but a little speedy. They have extra pop space in the trash wars, but rather trashy trash.

Personally I would save a poison archer as a UU candidate for the future, especially as such an idea will probably get pushback now, but maybe not after another DLC or two. Who knows?

Not a fan of skins, a little bit too cheap for AOE, but I like the idea of a faster moving Eagle (including the HP balance for the Dark Age)

The fact we’ve yet to have this bonus in the game doesn’t really mean we need it. It’s an okay bonus, does it really change something? does it create a strategically usefull/playable powerspike? I’m not a huge fan.

I like this one, allow versatility, I’m not sure where will the vill spawn, how will it work?

Decent. Considering you only have a single eco bonus and a faster moving Eagles- you’re left with barely any relevant bonuses in 1v1s. I hope this one wont end up a generic civ.

So it’s basically an Eagle, Faster one?
Reminds me of Magyars syndrome, the civ has bonus to the Hussar line while also having an UU Hussar.

And just like Magyars, Huszar > Hussar in every parameter.
This Pombos doesnt lack anything, it’s even cheaper in gold. This unit is both strategically and conceptually wrong. How do you counter a Speedy Huskarl that has a Halb bonus as well?
One unit to win them all has no room in AOE II. The least you can do is pricing it absurdly or giving it much lower HP. It’s either too OP (identity less strategically) and too similar to Eagles (just better) which this civ already have access to.
So, doesnt make sense.

Oh no, right when I said that you have a Huskarl-Halb, you also made sure to give this civ a Halb on steroids, cause why not. This one further makes the UU useless conceptually, just redesign it completely imo, the UU doesnt fit AOE, due to its OPness and purposelessness, but also, even if you’d adjust its stats, it won’t fit this civ’s tech tree.

Another Anti-Cav feature?

So they dont have Elite Skirmisher? Interesting. Very similar to Byz eco bonus and Goths extra pop, practically they do the same, however these two dont have fully upgraded Halbs, while you have Halbs on steroids. You tend to make thing too convinient.

I love the eco bonus, the fact it lacks Elite Skirms, the fast moving Eagle and potentially the Halb replacement + the Imperial Unique Tech. (if you manage to sort it out, it’s hard to tell about these last two features since we dont have the stats of the “Assegi”)

I dont like the over-commitment to anti-cav theme (of course the painful UU), and the fact this civ offers no powerspikes.

Thanks for sharing your idea! <3

The Assegi is a southern African regional. Swahili had it too. the Assegi replaces the pikeman. The Elite Assegai upgrade in Imp age replaces the halberdier and this civ does not get that elite upgrade.

Pombos also have that spearman armor tag so other words the Pombos, who also takes extra damage from archers because it has the spearman tag is more like an anti-cav specialist but unlike say Meso Eagles just doesn’t have a UT to help it. Perhaps the poison is too much but despite having 8 PA it should still take +3 from archers meaning enemy Arbs will hit for 5 damage instead of 2 for Eagle/Savannah. It’s also how this civ can get away with not having halberdier regional alternative. It’s mostly for Pierce attacks that don’t do bonus damage vs spearline

In fact the Assegai isn’t much on steroids the way the Winged Hussar is. It’s more like it’s slightly better generic combat stats say 5 base attack over a pike’s 4 but maybe 20 bonus vs cav instead of 22 and the same for the elite Halb replacement which again they don’t get.

In a sense it’s Dravidian Battle elephant syndrome, it’s there even without elite because it just fits thematically.

I also think Crossbows +2 melee armor is a decent power spike against enemy cavalry spammers.

So that’s pretty much 8 extra damage per arrow, against which no armor can shield, plus another 16 bonus damage versus cavalry? So, you made the math a little complex here with every follow-up shot doing half… 7 unupgraded basic feudal archers grouped together one-shot a knight? (Giving it a few seconds to get some evenge damage, except if they choose to shoot it again.) As the castle age UT? And if the shots come in at different moments it only takes 4 of them?

Feels kind of strong maybe.

Edit: also, not sure what this would mean on the engine side of things. Would every unit need to have a permanent stat that indicates wether it’s poisoned, or could this be applied only to the currently affected units?

Fair point the poison is now a basic +1 vs the living and +3 vs cav. It could be put on a charge effect if needed.

If the damage is not cumulative then the bonus should maybe be fine since archers temd to fore on a few targets

The normal poison damage is fine but the cav damage is just way too much

They have enough anti cav options

Also, I dont really like ghat eco bonus but seems fine I guess. Would prefer if you gave them very quickly created gold villagers or something like that

If I was to do a poison archer, it would definitely be a UU, and basically I would just make it that when it hits a unit, the unit is poisoned for X seconds, during which it takes 1 (probably) damage per second, and can’t be healed, or gets healed 90% slower or something. I’m not sure I would go as far as other stat nerfs, like speed, hitspeed, or damage, or being more susceptible to other attacks (receiving a damage multiplier), but depending on the stats of the UU and the civ it’s part of, I might consider it.

I understand now. It was a bit confusing for me, now it all makes sense!

So what’s the point giving them high pierce armor? Building fire resistance?

I still dont get this unit.

It’s decent, worse than the Vietnamese bonus (that doesnt create a powerspike as itself), it’s nothing playable, nothing too iconic. I’d rather have a different bonus, or rather +2 armor per age. (and perhaps take away the last armor upgrade) Idk…

Isn’t renda a Portuguese word?

(Source: am Brazilian)

Personally, I don’t like the idea of the Assegai as a Pikeman replacement. I thought the Assegai was a ranged weapon, would it not make more sense to have it as a regional Cavalry Archer replacement?

I do think having reskinned eagles is a bit unimaginative as well. They’d also be faster than knights when fully upgraded+elite which seems a bit over the top. You could think outside the box a bit when coming up new scouting units. How about a slow, spearman like unit with a massive LOS?

The +1 Villager for every 300 gold is very cool though.

Sorry if I’m being harsh, I hope this comes across as constructive, I always appreciate seeing these civ designs.

The Portuguese didn’t try to invade the Kongo until the XVII century, so that fact doesn’t make much sense to focus on in a Medieval to Early Modern Age game. In fact, they were allies for much of the Early Modern Age and even helped their king, Afonso I Mvemba a Nzinga, in the evangelism of the country.

I kind of like that idea, like a ranged eagle/non-trash skirmisher kind of role.

The eco bonus is technically the scout bonus. I remember when the Mongol TB was all the rage so having a faster scout right out the dark is nice but remember that Incas used to have a UT that granted faster Eagles and that was seen as inferior to the current +1/2 armor the tech provides.

Perhaps invaders wasn’t the best word but while Portugal was ending most of the rest of Africa, these guys lasted far longer. Sure they didn’t attack but if someone sets up a tent outside your house and doesn’t attack you and even mows your lawn or what not, it’s technically a form of encroachment if he has a massive bazooka he could try and attack you with at a moment’s notice. That said the civ doesn’t really reflect invasion as much as regular old Kongo doing Kongo things.

Slow and scouting are an AWFUL mix. I don’t care if the spear can death touch scout cav, it means you can’t catch stolen sheep, you can’t lame or try to prevent a lame of your boars and is a huge disadvantage even if the scout had 12 base LoS.

Also faster Eagles was the Inca UT once you high was seen as really weak.

The Portuguese invaded in 1572

I think the villagers for gold bonus is the real eco bonus

In the long run absolutely. It snowball potential is bigger than most but it starts smaller than most bonuses and as a civ without cavalry, it needs something to bandaid it until the ball can get rolling. A faster scout is more than just finding your resources faster, it’s also about finding your enemy’s resources faster as well. Who cares about finding sheep when you can bolt over to his base, yank his sheep and lame a boar. In fact the laming potential is why they lose some HP considering they now have slightly (.1) more movespeed than a scout cav as well. It means that you aren’t going to kill enemy scouts well but your ability to run from all danger is unmatched until Feudal.

The plan is that just around the time eagles transition from economic to military is when you’ll start to get the gold needed to spawn extra villagers at the TC.

Yep. Starting with Afonso I, the kings of Kongo modernized the country as much as possible along European lines, adopting ideas, clothes, titles, technologies, weapons, religion and languages, etc. They created an educated elite that mastered Portuguese and even Latin, through the foundation of numerous religious schools.

Thinking of a few balance changes but not sure what yet.