Why are horse archers better than mangudai?

This seems weird and wrong. Except for being able to move and shoot and being available earlier, mangudai get absolutely destroyed by rus horse archers - they’re significantly cheaper, do nearly double the damage, and have longer range (with an additional range upgrade). Horse archers are supposed to be the Mongols’ whole thing…the Rus adopted it from them…what gives?

IMO Veteran mangudai and rus horse archers should be about identical stat-wise with Mangudai able to move and shoot. In the current meta no one builds mangudai and horse archers seem a bit too strong so maybe meet somewhere in the middle?


Horse archers are not that strong. They’re ok, Horsemen destroy them And they can’t shoot while moving like mangudai


You really undervalue the moving shot ability


Sadly, mangudai are the only Mongol unit I would never build. If someone only makes spearmen, then sure they’ll work at kiting. But regular archers would do just as well for a fraction of the price. They’re easily the worst gold cost unit in the game imo. Their range and damage is just too low for what they cost. They will just delay your tech to castle and I think a horseman/archer build has so much more value and flexibility.


I actually think rus horse archers are in a good place. They are squishy but with good range and decent price.
Mangudai on the other hand are pretty bad imo. You can build 2 archers in the same time with less resources. You can build a lancer for not a lot more resources which is way more useful.
Sure they can shoot while move but the low range kind makes this not as good as it should. Even raiding with them gets shut down so easily by a few units, walls or a tower. And then they just die incredibly fast.

They really need a buff especially after the next patch were springalds get nerfed and probably also the movespeed for infantry.

I made an in depth analysis about this a week ago if you want some details:

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They are the best units before age4 and still great in age4.

They even trade well vs archer and able to kill heavy units with thier high base damage.

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They have great mobility and shooting while moving around, if used right they can be deadly.

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The main problem is price, Rus horse archer is too cheap and Mangudai is too expensive. As for strength I think it make sense, Rus version cannot fire on the move, it’s more of a “mounted bowman” rather than “horse archer”, that’s what it is, a strong version of bowman. Mangudai is the real “horse archer”, but in order to fire on the move they use weak bows. Rus horse archer can get countered by horseman but Mangudai do not, that’s a big difference.

Mangudai start to shine in mass with upgrades and the Khan among them. The moment they can kill heavy armor in reasonable time, they will be always a winning trade except against other ranged units.
Before that, they are great for drive bys against eco.

Therefore, I would say they are the micro heaviest unit in the game, worth their own control group, but if pulled correctly, extremely devastating and annoying.

That’s also the reason why I think they should lose ranged encounters, because if not, you get a jack of all trades. I won’t argue against buffing them, I just think they are horrible to balance, as the margin of a “good spot” is narrow and they are quite fast in either a worthless or game breaking state.


Are too expensive. And a simple tower with villagers inside counter them.
Simple and cheap archers obliterate them by just be placed there (come close if you dare! XD)
Just place some spearmen in front of them to avoid lances and done

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Yep. They are too expensive for what they can do. They at least need a range buff to the same range as regular archers and should be cheaper. In history the mongols barely had infantry (only some meatshield-units they conquered before) and mangudai actually had a superior range with their recurve composite bows.

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Horse archer is right where it should be I think. Mangudai should get slight dmg buff but it has potential to become very OP very fast so some caution is advised.

Their problem is being countered by simple towers and archers. No mention French crossbow, camel archers and such.
Aaand are super expensive

The only reason they are countered by archers is because they are more expensive. They actually do a lot more damage (although in large numbers range potentially plays a factor). The issue with the unit is that it is very easy to make super op if they can fight well. I agree they could use small buffs (if mongols get nerfs elsewhere as they are S tier civ right now), but caution needs to be used with this unit.

Archer horse Damage so high Move bot important
Heavy horse wait to tier3 but So hard to that

That’s just a design flaw, this is like making the panzer IV tank better than a tiger tank in company of heroes, mangudai shouldn’t be allowed to fire in the move if they allow that then they need to nerf them hard.

In game yes.
But in reality, Mongol bows were as strong if not stronger than a longbow pound for pound.

Because of the geometry of the bow, and the materials from which it is made, the Mongolian bow is more efficient that the Longbow. What does this mean? A Mongolian bow with a hundred (100) pound draw weight can shoot the same arrow as an English Longbow of the same draw weight farther and faster. The limbs of the Mongolian bow store and release energy more efficiently. They travel faster, and spring back to position quicker when the archer releases the string as compared to the longbow. The English Longbow requires more of the energy it has stored to overcome the inertia of it’s own limbs. The longbows of old were cut and carved from a single branch of the Yew tree.

There is a reason why Mongol Horsearchers quite often outrange the opponents archers.
They literally made tactics based on this knowledge, making their own but almost identical tactic known as the Cantabarian Circle.

Where they would run in a circle formation and keep on shooting arrows into the enemie ranks, and whenever the enemie moved up, they would just move the circle further away keeping the max distance and literally kiting the enemie armies.

So the very notion that Mongolian Bows were weak is very misleasing and wrong.

What mongolian, or in general, composite bows major weakness was moisture.

Moisture would quite often cause severe damage and weaknesses to the bow over prolonged exposure.
It is also one of the main reason why Mongols struggled t conquering south-asia were the is dense rainforest that does not favor Cavalry tactics but with rainforests also comes great Humidity, which would saturize the bows and cause their composite materials to seperate, by ruining the bonding material and string.

The Mangudai first of all need a fix to their Shia Bow upgrades.
As this is currently bugged and only gives +1 damage.

While imo.upgrade only gives you the non upgrade, or no upgrade at all if the first upgrade is already researched.

Once this has been fixed we will have to wait and see how they perform.

If they still underperform, they need to either 1 of 2 things.

  1. Generic buffs to the unit to make it more on par. And increase its performance.
  2. Make it more unique giving it special roles.

The latter could be in form of Bonus damage vs Buildings or pay homage to AoE2 mongols, give them bonus damage vs Siege.

I’d prefer id they gave bonus damage Vs buildings as this would also allow them to play on the Mongol Bounty bonus, and thus make them able to be more cost effective by raiding squishy buildings such as camps, houses, farms and undefended/unupgraded towers.