Why are Persians so bad?

Persians look like a civ that on paper should be at least A tier if not S tier, yet they are ranked in the bottom 20% consistently almost regardless of game mode. I wanna go over why, and give some inspiration perhaps:

  1. on paper, +50f and +50w seems a very good bonus, comparable to that of Lithuanians (+150f).

  2. their faster TCs bonus actually works somewhat against them in Feudal because it’s a bit harder to hit a competitive Castle Age time. Sure you could idle the TC to compensate for this but it doesn’t really make sense, either.

  3. lack of Bracer, actually I have a mini-theory where all civs that lack Bracer need to have something else very OP because this is a very big deal as it affects both Archer-line (best unit in the game) as Skirmishers (common anti-Archer counter by cavalry/infantry civs). Persians seem to struggle here the most because Kamandaran Crossbows aren’t actually all that great in Imperial Age, they are slightly better than Skirms and annoying but they are far from an Arbalest in power because they miss 2 upgrades (Arbalest AND Bracer)

  4. lack of 2-handed Swordsmen/Champion: not sure how relevant this is, both Champions and 2-handed Swordsmen are rarely used, nevertheless it’s an option they don’t have.

  5. Unique Unit is perhaps the most troll unit in the game, good only in team games on Black Forest, basically, and bad in any other situation. I guess on maps like Arabia or even Arena, you want to make at least a few UUs after you go through the difficulty of getting up a Castle, and while most civs have UUs whose threat at least in principle deters the opponent from 1 unit type (if you do an early Castle as Teutons, the opponent will never go full Longswords, just to give 1 example), War Elephants deter nothing. The opponent is always happy to see a War Elephant on the field because it means you put a ton of resources into a slow unit and also they can convert it and use it to defend (and if you are booming as the defender, getting 1 free War Elephant is actually quite good). Anyway, UU = bad, so less incentives to get a Castle up, so more predictable play I guess?

Really though, the faster TCs bonus should shine in early Castle Age, allowing for a powerful boom. The problem is also that their Monks (most common defensive tool when you boom) lack both Sanctity and Redemption (especially Redemption would allow to counter Mangonels, too). In the end, Persians are rarely picked, in spite of having an excellent Stable (FU Hussar and +2 attack vs Archers Knight-line), a respectable Barracks (FU Halberdier is all you need from here, arguably).

So what holds Persians back? Lack of good Siege Workshop? No Siege Engineers? UU being too underwhelming? 2 UTs being very situational as opposed to more generically great ones such as Tower Shields or First Crusade that are good vs any enemy, in any case?


Not all civs ‘should’ or even ‘can’ be S-Tier on every map. They aren’t the best on arabia, but Persians are not Bad on arabia either. They’re great on nomad or BF as you mentioned.

I think the civs are in a pretty good spot balance wise considering the number of civs and the number of maps. Persians have an identity and a little identity is worth a lot imo.

Also Persian Douche ftw!


The balance is so good that Franks/Britons/Mayans rule TGs, Mayans and Chinese are OP on arabia and Bohemians, Poles and Turks are OP on Arena.
At this point we need more nerfs than buffs.

As for Persians balance wise, they are fine, if they don’t see much action in TGs is because Franks are still there. Nerfing Franks means there will be a chance to see Persians in TGs again.


Nah. Making civs fun to play matters way more. The problem for most underwhelming civs isnt that theres too many strong civs but that even compared to average civs like Bulgarians they just have way too little going on for them

Sure, Chinese, Mayans, Aztecs, Britons and Bohemians could be nerfed, but that wont make Burmese, Goths and Spanish playable. It will maybe improve tournaments, but most civs can still compete with the top tier civs rn.

Persians arent fine, they feel underwhelming to play and are never picked for anything outside of hybrid maps and it isnt just because theres better cav civs, they are just weak.

Burmese, Portuguese, Italians and Vietnamese were all buffed to be more fun yet then why noone pick them despite having options and wide military units to use?, because even with all those advantages, noone can compete with the ones that can do everything better, plus buffing non stop makes the civs OP in some areas (Khmer once buffed only received nerfs because were OP at TGs).

Their tech tree is garbage and their economy bonus is not so great anymore after the nerf. I hate the fact devs always brainlessly nerf the 4-5th best civs while Mayans, Franks and Chinese are still untouched.

I agree with the fact that not every civ should be top tier, else we would have an endless cycle of buffs and nerfs. But Persians feels weak AND bland. What is their identity anyway? Kamandaran Crossbows? It’s really not much or not a particularly great strat, even in 1v1 it being locked behind a Castle is a huge burden and Wood until late Imp is a very valuable resource anyway.

Douche… as the name implies, it’s really not a strat that is particularly well-received, or particularly strong, anyway. I hope this is not the “civ identity”, either.

Because most of these civs are still bad

Portuguese got a bonus that is the most useful at late game andthe Burmese buff was a joke.

Them two are the only ones I would say that got buffed properly and Vietnamese see a lot of pro level play. Italians are still a boring civ with a mediocre eco bonus that is the only thing you have until castle age.

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I think Spanish is the victim of power creep in DE. They were kind of Okay-ish before DE and at least A-tier in Arena. They are like vanilla civ with have no eco bonus but have very strong UU and very good tech tree.
But now most of civ have decent eco bonus, or huge discount of important tech or free tech. Civ like Spanish become so fall behind. They aren’t that good even in Arena.

give that civ eco bonus, they need free tech etc… Then “average” or Okayish civ fall behind, and we need another buff to other civ. endless cycle.

Thats good. Back before DE we had a ton of civs that literally never saw any play.

And Spain didnt die because the old civs becoming stronger, that doesnt matter at all qhen those civs werent picked at all. The problem is that between the changes on the meta and the conquistador nerf Spain has just become a bad civ.

Conq nerf is even partially made up for with the gunpowder projectile speed buff (still no idea why they didn’t just apply it to HC)

I think it is because Conqs, Jannies and HC share the same projectile

whatever you are complaining about, even the “most OP civ” Franks only has a winrate of 53.7%, the weakest, Portuguese, has 45.1%, Persians is a middle of the road civ with 48.7%, just between Spanish and Mongols.

Edit: 45% win rate is equivalent to -35 elo, 53.7% to +26 elo

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The thread is about Persians. Much as we all like to say that Spanish are bottom tier, it’s more clear why they are a “bad” civ. In the case of Persians, on paper they should be a rly solid civ. Minor eco bonus in Dark Age (that allows to comfortably do for example a 19 pop Scout rush), can play Crossbow or Knights (with +2 attack vs archers) in Castle age, TC resilient vs Mangonel assault… they should be good ON PAPER. But, after the hard losers of nearly every map, like Goths, Burmese, Spanish, Persians rly are not far behind but it’s unclear why.

My theory is that as the game goes on, in Imp they are pigeonholed into VERY specific unit comps, for example Halb + Siege is not very viable with Persians because you don’t have SO, SR or Siege Engineers, so all the late-game power siege units (BBC, SO etc.) aren’t an option. Hell, even Heavy Scorpions are below average, lacking SE. Fitting Handcannons into their techtree seems a haphazardly-made decision after the devs realized that without Militia-line being viable, the whole Persian tech tree gets demolished HARD by any infantry civ really (not only S-tier ones like Goths or Slavs or Burmese but also “weaker” ones like Malians).

I guess you could make a case for late Imp being good for Persians because they have Hussar + Trashbow comp, yet mid-Imp is where I see them struggle the hardest (no Siege Engineers so BBC and Trebs are very “meh”, you are 1 tricked into mass Paladin or Heavy Camel basically and that’s easy to counter generally).

Maybe the biggest problem for Persians is that the big boom that you are supposed to have in Castle Age and around which pretty much the whole civ revolves doesn’t result in an actually viable composition in Imperial Age, because you will basically flood Cavalier and can’t do much else so you will always go vs full walls + Halbs.

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Biggest hit to the Persians was when they lost the dark age workrate, before that they, since the game started, could be quite ahead, getting one extra villager before age up, and that only continued to grow in feudal age and castle age, leading basically to a snowbally economy and villager count, also, Kamandaran was cheaper and the effect was to 50w crossbows.
I was against the nerf but was for the major good, Persians became too OP in any sort of Hybrid map, even on arena was hard to stop them at that point. Viper rated them at S tier then.


Honestly the problem was just the extra res.

Either way we can just increase the effect from feudal onwards

Persian are (supposed to be) in a similar spot as Lituanians, namely top tier on hybrid maps and good on nomad maps, and average elsewhere.

When DE came, the workrate extended to the 5% in dark age, and Persians became S-tier for every pro player, due to the +1 villager at the end of dark age (which is a strong eco bonus). Before the buff they were below average, and after this buff getting reverted, they became below average again.

But I think people are exagerating how bad Persians are. Compared to Lituanians, they get -50 starting resources and do not get the skirms/pike movespeed bonus, but they get the dock and TC work rate bonus, which is a more than fair tradeoff.

Moreover, having “good paladins” (namely paladins that are not celts or byzantines), they are already a top 10 pocket civ in team games, which is a very good spot. They are weaker in 1v1, but that’s fine considering how “dominant” they are in team games (dominants, but not at the level of Franks of course).
Recently, I saw Persians getting used in a competitive team game best of 5 (a brazilian team against suomi on Membtv’s channel).

I do not think that Persian TC work rate work against them, it would be like saying that Malays age up speed work against them. Worst case, you get some idle time (which you can do). And you have to remember you start with +100 resources, which “corresponds” to 2 villagers building resources, so compared to a virtual civ without eco bonus (potentially Magyars and Byzantines), the +10% TCs work rate in feudal is not too fast to force idle time while doing the same (army and upgrades) as other civs.So end of feudal age in open maps, you still get +1 villager and are a few seconds esrlier in castle age, In closed maps it is ever better with the 3 TCs boom at +15% work rate, so +3 villagers every 3 minutes.

Obviously, this bonus is not top tier, but more than fine in both open and closed land maps. In hybrid and water maps, Persians are way above average thanks to the dock work rate (in addition to TC rate). And this is for one of the few civs that get fully upgraded cavaliers, crossbows, and halberdiers, plus BBC and siege rams and all eco techs. So decent flexibility.

Some may ask “Why pick Persians when I can pick XXX (Franks? Lituanians?) ?” But you can ask the same for most cavalry civs with regard to Franks on open maps and to lituanians on hybrid maps. It is good that Persian are probably top 5 or top 10 on hybrid maps. And then again, it is not nearly as “bad” as incas, where poeple ask “Why pick Incas when I can pick Mayans or Aztecs?” on every single map. And this is with Incas being an average civ or slightly below average civ (so not underpowered at all).

So TL/DR: civ is not that bad, quite underrated. Eco bonus makes it top tier in hybrid maps and below average (but not trash tier) in land maps, which is a fine state in my opitnal.

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Lithuanians are much better in most other Maps than Persians, WWC showed how strong is the +150f

I personally think Persians arw just way too niche. They are a civ that is only good on hybrid maps, and mediocre in everything else. Italians are way more versatile and I still think should be buffed a bit on land.

because people see the map before they pick the civ

flexible civs that can do a little bit of everything don’t really matter in this system. play real RM and persia is fine. they can hold their own in 1v1, they can contribute in TG, they have game in all ages, and can handle all map types

but when you can cheat by reverse-engineering the map and just picking the civ with the most broken eco + easiest unit to spam, they won’t be great except on fishing nomad maps

they were actually considered one of the best civs in the early days, by both the developers and players. but they power crept everyone else and started dumbing down the maps, so their lead eroded a lot. the new game maintainers actually nerfed persia and buffed like 30 other civs with some pretty ridiculous bonuses

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