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Thread: Improving vanilla archers

  1. #1
    Camel Lord Senior Member Capture The Flag Champion Martok's Avatar
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    Default Improving vanilla archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    Just checked the projectile stats, and unusually only the Longbow, Mounted Longbow, Catapult, Trebuchet, Mangonel and Mortar have the "try high" option enabled and not the Shortbow? The Shortbow is the regular bow wielded by all foot archers except the Longbowmen. The Mounted Longbow (ignore the unusual "Longbow" naming, it is not a longbow) is exactly the same as the Shortbow but less accurate and used only by Horse/Camel Archers. I have no idea why "try high" was omitted from the foot archer Shortbow and added to the horse archers' Mounted Longbow.
    Hmm, that is odd.

    Is it possible to mod this at all? Anything that can potentially improve the lethality of MTW's vanilla archers would be welcome, as they've been underpowered from the beginning.
    "MTW is not a game, it's a way of life." -- drone

  2. #2

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    This can be modded, but I won't go into that here, I'll cover it in the pocket mod forum instead. I'm consciously trying not to turn every thread in the main hall into a thread about modding.

  3. #3
    Camel Lord Senior Member Capture The Flag Champion Martok's Avatar
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    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Good point. We'll discuss it over there.

    Edit: Split off from the thread in the Main Hall and moved it here (so as not to derail the original topic).
    Last edited by Martok; 05-17-2007 at 00:08.
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    I also feel archers are underpowered in MTW, though only vs lightly armoured and unarmoured units. Vs armoured units they are realistically less effective. The Samurai Archers in STW always seemed to do a lot more damage to me. I often find that during battle I can find a good vantage point for my archers but rarely feel that they've done enough damage when their quivers are empty. I also feel that the AI archers are less than effective unless they're in ridiculous numbers. I can usually charge them down with light cavalry and take only a few losses from the volleys they let off. In reality cavalry charging straight at a unit of archers would take many more losses before closing with them, unless they were suitably well armoured.

    Perhaps lethality could be increased slightly and the armour piercing decreased a bit?

    Horse archers are worse. I have no idea why their "mounted longbow" has worse accuracy than the shortbow, when throughout history horse archers were some of the best archers ever. Also in this game they can only fire when stationary so it's not as if the lack of accuracy can be put down to them being on the move.

    This shouldn't be a problem for much longer however, as I intend to equip them with the compound bow. The question is though, should they use the same compound bow as foot units (such as JI, Futuwwas, [Eastern] Archers and Psiloi use) or should a less accurate version be made for horse archers (though I can't see the sense in this)?

    Another issue is, which horse archer units should use the compound bow? All or only certain units?

    With the horse archers previous bow out of use, we have a free weapon. I remember someone mentioning differences between the mongol bow and the eastern compound bow? If this is the case the old mounted longbow slot could be used for this, as a mongol bow. I am no expert on this though and would need some info on the differences between the two.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    I also feel archers are underpowered in MTW, though only vs lightly armoured and unarmoured units. Vs armoured units they are realistically less effective. The Samurai Archers in STW always seemed to do a lot more damage to me.
    The shortbow and mounted archer stats in MTW are exactly the same as they were in STW. The effectiveness of a volley is exactly the same in both games against a target of the same armor level under the same conditions. There is a difference in how unused ammo is treated. In STW, unused ammo was retrieved from dead men in the unit. In MTW, the unused ammo of dead men is lost. That's why we increased the ammo for archers from 28 to 36 in Samurai Warlords. We also gave mounted archers the same bow as foot archers. The mounted unit will still loose a shootout with a foot archer because the horse is a larger target and therfore easier to hit.

    I think the main reason archers seemed more effective in STW is that the average armor level was lower. It ranges from 1 to 5. The valuable WM and cheaper ND sword units only have armor = 1, there are no shields and even the spearmen are only armor = 3. Only two units, HC and NI, have armor = 5. Everything else is armor = 3 or less.

    On a stationary, 60 man infantry unit of armor = 1, 60 archers will get 3.3 kills per volley. In 40 seconds they will reduce that unit to half strength, and still have more than half of their ammo. That will drop off to between 0.8 kills per volley on an armor = 5 infantry unit. Kills per volley on similarly armored cavalry units is somewhat higher, but I don't remember the numbers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    I often find that during battle I can find a good vantage point for my archers but rarely feel that they've done enough damage when their quivers are empty. I also feel that the AI archers are less than effective unless they're in ridiculous numbers. I can usually charge them down with light cavalry and take only a few losses from the volleys they let off. In reality cavalry charging straight at a unit of archers would take many more losses before closing with them, unless they were suitably well armoured.
    The arrow's arc carries it over charging cavalry. This is actually a designed feature of the engine to contribute to combined arms gameplay. If the cavalry is made to retreat by a supporting unit, you'll see the archers get many kills on them as they move away. Killing AI archers with cav in STW or Samurai Wars isn't so easy because they are samurai and have some melee capability. That delay in their collapse gives the AI time to bring a spear unit into the melee, and since spear units are very effective vs cav, it's bad news for the cav which is very expensive compared to either archers or spears.

    This is where the design decision in MTW to turn spears into defensive unit hurt the AI because the AI thinks that spears kill cav. I can see in Samurai Warlords that the AI is using spears exactly the same way it used them in STW. It's very prompt with sending them after cavalry that's within a certain range, and it does keep spears within a proximity close enough to protect archers. If you want the AI to play a stronger game, then change the spears so that they can dispatch cavalry in a more timely fashion.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    Perhaps lethality could be increased slightly and the armour piercing decreased a bit?
    Those would be the parameters to change because effectiveness is linearly related to them. It's much harder to get a predictable result by changing the accuracy.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    Horse archers are worse. I have no idea why their "mounted longbow" has worse accuracy than the shortbow, when throughout history horse archers were some of the best archers ever. Also in this game they can only fire when stationary so it's not as if the lack of accuracy can be put down to them being on the move.
    A hold over from STW. It's one thing we didn't keep in Samurai Wars, but we only ended up giving the mounted archers the shortbow after extensive testing.

    I actually never noticed that the shortbow can't use high trajectory. This might be a mistake in the projectile stat, but it's not clear to me that it would be an advantage for them to use a high trajectory or if they would ever use it. They can already shoot over the heads of a unit with the low trajectory.

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  6. #6
    Camel Lord Senior Member Capture The Flag Champion Martok's Avatar
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    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    I also feel archers are underpowered in MTW, though only vs lightly armoured and unarmoured units. Vs armoured units they are realistically less effective. The Samurai Archers in STW always seemed to do a lot more damage to me. I often find that during battle I can find a good vantage point for my archers but rarely feel that they've done enough damage when their quivers are empty. I also feel that the AI archers are less than effective unless they're in ridiculous numbers. I can usually charge them down with light cavalry and take only a few losses from the volleys they let off. In reality cavalry charging straight at a unit of archers would take many more losses before closing with them, unless they were suitably well armoured.

    Perhaps lethality could be increased slightly and the armour piercing decreased a bit?
    To be honest, I'm not sure I would reduce *any* of their stats, period -- after all, they're not like Sumurai Archers, who (as Puzz just pointed out) at least possess a limited melee capability. Not that we want to make vanilla archers overpowered and turn them into a bunch of Legolas clones, but they should at least have a better kill rate against lower-grade troops than they do.

    Still, you should do what you think best, mate. I'm not really familiar with the armor/defense stats for spear/militia units (especially since I don't know what changes you may have made to them) and how they'd be affected by improved archers, so you know far better than I as to how to best tweak them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    Horse archers are worse. I have no idea why their "mounted longbow" has worse accuracy than the shortbow, when throughout history horse archers were some of the best archers ever. Also in this game they can only fire when stationary so it's not as if the lack of accuracy can be put down to them being on the move.

    This shouldn't be a problem for much longer however, as I intend to equip them with the compound bow. The question is though, should they use the same compound bow as foot units (such as JI, Futuwwas, [Eastern] Archers and Psiloi use) or should a less accurate version be made for horse archers (though I can't see the sense in this)?
    Well my understand is that most HA units used a smaller version than their foot-based counterparts, as full-sized bows were too cumbersome on horseback. I don't know that they would be less accurate, however. I *do* seem to recall reading they had lesser range (because of their bows' smaller size), but don't quote me on that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    Another issue is, which horse archer units should use the compound bow? All or only certain units?
    To be honest, I would say pretty much all of them should have compound bows. My impression is that just about every group that developed cavalry archers as a part of their battle tactics adopted the compound bow fairly quickly, less they be outclassed and defeated by their enemies. However, I'm definitely no historian in this respect.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    With the horse archers previous bow out of use, we have a free weapon. I remember someone mentioning differences between the mongol bow and the eastern compound bow? If this is the case the old mounted longbow slot could be used for this, as a mongol bow. I am no expert on this though and would need some info on the differences between the two.
    I didn't realize there *was* a difference, to be honest. I'd always thought the main difference between the Mongols and other peoples with horse archers was that the Mongols were generally better at concentrating their fire (from their missile cav). I don't know.
    "MTW is not a game, it's a way of life." -- drone

  7. #7

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    The shortbow and mounted archer stats in MTW are exactly the same as they were in STW. The effectiveness of a volley is exactly the same in both games against a target of the same armor level under the same conditions. There is a difference in how unused ammo is treated. In STW, unused ammo was retrieved from dead men in the unit. In MTW, the unused ammo of dead men is lost. That's why we increased the ammo for archers from 28 to 36 in Samurai Warlords. We also gave mounted archers the same bow as foot archers. The mounted unit will still loose a shootout with a foot archer because the horse is a larger target and therfore easier to hit.

    I think the main reason archers seemed more effective in STW is that the average armor level was lower. It ranges from 1 to 5. The valuable WM and cheaper ND sword units only have armor = 1, there are no shields and even the spearmen are only armor = 3. Only two units, HC and NI, have armor = 5. Everything else is armor = 3 or less.

    On a stationary, 60 man infantry unit of armor = 1, 60 archers will get 3.3 kills per volley. In 40 seconds they will reduce that unit to half strength, and still have more than half of their ammo. That will drop off to between 0.8 kills per volley on an armor = 5 infantry unit. Kills per volley on similarly armored cavalry units is somewhat higher, but I don't remember the numbers.
    That actually makes a lot of sense and I can see why it would make a vast difference. I wasn't aware that the there was, effectively, per unit ammunition in STW and per man ammunition in MTW either, you learn something new every day.
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    The arrow's arc carries it over charging cavalry. This is actually a designed feature of the engine to contribute to combined arms gameplay. If the cavalry is made to retreat by a supporting unit, you'll see the archers get many kills on them as they move away. Killing AI archers with cav in STW or Samurai Wars isn't so easy because they are samurai and have some melee capability. That delay in their collapse gives the AI time to bring a spear unit into the melee, and since spear units are very effective vs cav, it's bad news for the cav which is very expensive compared to either archers or spears.

    This is where the design decision in MTW to turn spears into defensive unit hurt the AI because the AI thinks that spears kill cav. I can see in Samurai Warlords that the AI is using spears exactly the same way it used them in STW. It's very prompt with sending them after cavalry that's within a certain range, and it does keep spears within a proximity close enough to protect archers. If you want the AI to play a stronger game, then change the spears so that they can dispatch cavalry in a more timely fashion.
    I remember stats were changed for spears in MTW v1.1 from v1.0 and spears were rendered useless in MP. What exactly was changed stat wise, I have always wondered about that? Would reversing this overall for all spears be a positive move?
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    Those would be the parameters to change because effectiveness is linearly related to them. It's much harder to get a predictable result by changing the accuracy.
    This is what I was thinking. I would prefer arrows that are slightly more lethal, but not ridiculously overpowered and less effective against armour.
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    A hold over from STW. It's one thing we didn't keep in Samurai Wars, but we only ended up giving the mounted archers the shortbow after extensive testing.
    Well I could possibly use the MTLG projectile for something else as the difference is only in the accuracy and nothing more.
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    I actually never noticed that the shortbow can't use high trajectory. This might be a mistake in the projectile stat, but it's not clear to me that it would be an advantage for them to use a high trajectory or if they would ever use it. They can already shoot over the heads of a unit with the low trajectory.
    I may add the high trajectory to the foot archers and remove it from horse archers, which would be one reason to keep both types of projectile I suppose.

    Last edited by caravel; 06-06-2007 at 22:29.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Martok
    To be honest, I'm not sure I would reduce *any* of their stats, period -- after all, they're not like Sumurai Archers, who (as Puzz just pointed out) at least possess a limited melee capability. Not that we want to make vanilla archers overpowered and turn them into a bunch of Legolas clones, but they should at least have a better kill rate against lower-grade troops than they do.
    I'm not speaking of reducing any of the stats of vanilla archers here. Vanilla archers are the unit itself and their only stats are their melee one. The stats I'm referring to are the shortbow projectile stats. This is the actual missile that the archer "fires" at the target. Any edits to this projectile would effect all units using the shortbow, which are Genoese Sailors and vanilla Archers. These are the standard western european archers. Most other foot archer units are now using the compound bow which is much more deadly. The problem with the Vanilla Archers as I see it is that they are only moderately effective against unarmoured units and a waste of time against armoured ones unless you have three or four units all firing at the same unit in unison. My aim is to make them even more useless against armoured units forcing the use of basic crossbows which are now available in early, but the bane of unarmoured units. If possible I would like to tweak their lethality until they are quite devastating against armour level 1 units (no armour / light armour), but virtually worthless against well armoured units such as CMAA who would have walked through a storm of these taking few casualties due to their superior armour and shields. This would make the longbow much more worthwhile, and not merely an "uber unit".
    Quote Originally Posted by Martok
    Still, you should do what you think best, mate. I'm not really familiar with the armor/defense stats for spear/militia units (especially since I don't know what changes you may have made to them) and how they'd be affected by improved archers, so you know far better than I as to how to best tweak them.
    All changes are documented in the summary. If you (or anyone) is not sure of the current Pocket Mod 1.0.6b stats of a unit, they can ask and I can post them up.


    Quote Originally Posted by Martok
    Well my understand is that most HA units used a smaller version than their foot-based counterparts, as full-sized bows were too cumbersome on horseback. I don't know that they would be less accurate, however. I *do* seem to recall reading they had lesser range (because of their bows' smaller size), but don't quote me on that.
    I have heard this also, but I'm not sure as to whether the foot units used the same bow. I'm also unsure as to which used the compound and which used the recurve. The terms seem to be used interchangeably quite a lot but I'm sure that they weren't the same thing. I'm almost sure that the the eastern bows were usually composite recurve bows and not compound bows. I'm not sure where this term has crept in.
    Quote Originally Posted by Martok
    To be honest, I would say pretty much all of them should have compound bows. My impression is that just about every group that developed cavalry archers as a part of their battle tactics adopted the compound bow fairly quickly, less they be outclassed and defeated by their enemies. However, I'm definitely no historian in this respect.
    That is what I'm thinking, but we really need to work on the various bow's stats to ensure that each is a reasonably accurate representation, and that they are balanced against each other.
    Quote Originally Posted by Martok
    I didn't realize there *was* a difference, to be honest. I'd always thought the main difference between the Mongols and other peoples with horse archers was that the Mongols were generally better at concentrating their fire (from their missile cav). I don't know.
    A big difference, the Mongol recurve bow would be the best bow in the game IMHO, and arguably better than the English longbow, with a longer range. The Turks would also qualify to use this bow, as the Turkish bow was on a par if not better later on (certainly after the Il-Khanate had absorbed the Seljuks (yes there should be two Mongol factions in MTW, but it can't really be done - and have them both emerge. The only alternative would be to rename the Golden Horde as simply "The Mongol (Successor) Khanates")).

    The way I see it, there probably need to be two types of composite/recurve bows. A standard one for most eastern factions that use them such as the Hungarians as well as for the Steppe cavalry units, Desert Archers/Horse Archers, Futuwwa, Nizari units and [Eastern] Archers, and a specific one for the Mongols and Turks.
    Last edited by caravel; 05-18-2007 at 10:23.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    I remember stats were changed for spears in MTW v1.1 from v1.0 and spears were rendered useless in MP. What exactly was changed stat wise, I have always wondered about that? Would reversing this overall for all spears be a positive move?
    The changes can't be reversed because they were made within the main exe. The changes were that cav gets pushbacks (+6 attack on the next combat cycle) on spears, and that swords get a hidden +1 attack vs spears. The spears were also increased in cost which had a minimal effect on SP, but a big effect on MP. In Samurai Warlords, we don't use the spear classification, so we don't have the hidden +1 attack that was given to swords. We also had to increase the anti-cav bonus of spear infantry to offset the pushback effect based on multiplayer battle results.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    I would prefer arrows that are slightly more lethal, but not ridiculously overpowered and less effective against armour.
    Increasing the ammo will increase the difference in castualties inflicted on lightly armored units compared to heavily armored units. In Samurai Wars, we went to 60 man cav units as they were in STW. This increased the firepower of cav archers up to the level of foot archers, and it made the heavy cav knights better able to absorb casualties from archers. You'll get about 1 kill per 60 man volley on a chiv knight of armor = 5, and about 4 kills per volley on a cav unit of armor = 1 when the target is stationary and on flat ground. That's a big difference, but it will drop off when the target is moving. The weakness of archers is that they can't stop a charge. We also don't have any 100 man infantry units. So, we don't have that problem of trying to make archers be relatively effective vs 100 man units while also being relatively ineffective vs 40 man units.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    Well I could possibly use the MTLG projectile for something else as the difference is only in the accuracy and nothing more.

    I may add the high trajectory to the foot archers and remove it from horse archers, which would be one reason to keep both types of projectile I suppose.
    We will use an adjusted MTLG for the compound bow when we introduve Mongols to Samurai Warlords.
    Last edited by Puzz3D; 05-18-2007 at 13:01.

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  10. #10

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    The changes can't be reversed because they were made within the main exe. The changes were that cav gets pushbacks (+6 attack on the next combat cycle) on spears, and that swords get a hidden +1 attack vs spears. The spears were also increased in cost which had a minimal effect on SP, but a big effect on MP. In Samurai Warlords, we don't use the spear classification, so we don't have the hidden +1 attack that was given to swords. We also had to increase the anti-cav bonus of spear infantry to offset the pushback effect based on multiplayer battle results.
    That's something else I wasn't aware of. I'd always assumed it was simple stat changes, having never looked at the stats much when I started playing the game. Not using the spear classification makes a lot of sense also, to get rid of the swords hidden +1 attack bonus, but how does this affect the way the AI uses it's spears? Do they still deploy as a default on hold formation? Or is this dictated by the weapon type?

    How much was the anti-cav increase? That sounds like an interesting counter to the pushback.
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    Increasing the ammo will increase the difference in castualties inflicted on lightly armored units compared to heavily armored units. In Samurai Wars, we went to 60 man cav units as they were in STW. This increased the firepower of cav archers up to the level of foot archers, and it made the heavy cav knights better able to absorb casualties from archers. You'll get about 1 kill per 60 man volley on a chiv knight of armor = 5, and about 4 kills per volley on a cav unit of armor = 1 when the target is stationary and on flat ground. That's a big difference, but it will drop off when the target is moving. The weakness of archers is that they can't stop a charge. We also don't have any 100 man infantry units. So, we don't have that problem of trying to make archers be relatively effective vs 100 man units while also being relatively ineffective vs 40 man units.
    Increasing the ammo is also an interesting idea. I had not really thought of changing that. Perhaps an increase in ammo combined with a small increase in lethality and lower AP might have the desired effect. I'll have to do some testing.
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    We will use an adjusted MTLG for the compound bow when we introduve Mongols to Samurai Warlords.
    Last edited by caravel; 05-18-2007 at 13:20.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    One parameter that hasn't been brought up in the discussion is re-load time. It might as well affect effectiveness of the unit in being overall a more competitive choice versus bolt missiles that generally dominate after they are available in vanilla.

    Many Thanks

    Noir

  12. #12

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    That's something else I wasn't aware of. I'd always assumed it was simple stat changes, having never looked at the stats much when I started playing the game. Not using the spear classification makes a lot of sense also, to get rid of the swords hidden +1 attack bonus, but how does this affect the way the AI uses it's spears? Do they still deploy as a default on hold formation? Or is this dictated by the weapon type?
    There is no rank bonus, and our spears deploy in engage-at-will which is fine because spears are more effective vs cavalry that way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    How much was the anti-cav increase? That sounds like an interesting counter to the pushback.
    The anti-cav bonus for yari samurai (0/2) vs cav in STW is +4/+4 (att/def). We had to increase that to +5/+5 which is a 40% increase. Yari cavalry (2/2) also has an anti-cav bonus of +4/0. We tried a bonus of +5/0 for a while, but it was too much because the yari cav was killing other cav too fast which didn't allow enough time for supporting units to arrive. Contrast that with the highly defensive and less lethal +1/+4 anti-cav bonus of spears in MTW which are already defensive in nature.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    Increasing the ammo is also an interesting idea. I had not really thought of changing that. Perhaps an increase in ammo combined with a small increase in lethality and lower AP might have the desired effect. I'll have to do some testing.
    The SBOW doesn't have any AP. I don't know if you can use an AP value greater than 1 to get a reduced armor penetration characteristic. If you increase lethality, that will increase the effectiveness against all units because the chance to kill calculation is done after the calculation that determines if a hit is a penetrating hit.

    _________Designed to match Original STW gameplay.


    Beta 8 + Beta 8.1 patch + New Maps + Sound add-on + Castles 2

  13. #13

    Default Re: Castle Assault Defence Battles

    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    There is no rank bonus, and our spears deploy in engage-at-will which is fine because spears are more effective vs cavalry that way.

    The anti-cav bonus for yari samurai (0/2) vs cav in STW is +4/+4 (att/def). We had to increase that to +5/+5 which is a 40% increase. Yari cavalry (2/2) also has an anti-cav bonus of +4/0. We tried a bonus of +5/0 for a while, but it was too much because the yari cav was killing other cav too fast which didn't allow enough time for supporting units to arrive. Contrast that with the highly defensive and less lethal +1/+4 anti-cav bonus of spears in MTW which are already defensive in nature.
    So effectively spears would be more like Halberdiers? But with better vs cavalry defense and not as good vs cavalry attack?
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    The SBOW doesn't have any AP. I don't know if you can use an AP value greater than 1 to get a reduced armor penetration characteristic. If you increase lethality, that will increase the effectiveness against all units because the chance to kill calculation is done after the calculation that determines if a hit is a penetrating hit.
    I hadn't thought of that, of course it's armour mod 1. I'm not sure what to do about it then apart from increasing the ammo. I wouldn't want to increase it's lethality without reducing the effectiveness against armour.

    @Noir: A decrease in load times for the sbow?


  14. #14

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Yes,
    in MedMod IV this has been implemented and as far as i am concerned it works. Wes did it after realising from MP players comments that archers were effectively nil in MP games, but i am sure that Puzz can give a much more valid comment as to whether that is a really good idea or not, particularly in perspective with a potential increase in ammo.

    Wes also has nerfed the xbows and arbalests aiming to make all missiles comparable. It certainly plays better than vanilla for missiles IMO.

    Many Thanks

    Noir

  15. #15

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Noir
    Yes,
    in MedMod IV this has been implemented and as far as i am concerned it works. Wes did it after realising from MP players comments that archers were effectively nil in MP games, but i am sure that Puzz can give a much more valid comment as to whether that is a really good idea or not, particularly in perspective with a potential increase in ammo.
    The decrease in load time for archers is not a bad idea so long as it doesn't become too fast and too unrealistic. I would say this would be a difficult stat to balance correctly. You could easily end up with archers that blow all of their ammo quickly but are still not being any more effective as far as hitting the target and doing damage. The only advantage they have is that they can wear down a target faster, but not any more effectively.
    Quote Originally Posted by Noir
    Wes also has nerfed the xbows and arbalests aiming to make all missiles comparable. It certainly plays better than vanilla for missiles IMO.

    Many Thanks

    Noir
    I'm not familiar with how missiles were altered in medmod, as I haven't played it for long enough, but nerfing crossbows and arbalests to be comparable to shortbows seems wrong, unless I'm reading you incorrectly? The main handicap with bolt weapons is the slow reload, so when they do eventually fire you probably want them to be effective and not go off like a damp squib.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Yes, i don't mean directly comparable but worthy to take on in the field after bolts are available. In essence to make sure that one type of weapon does not render the other redundant gameplay wise. This has been achieved in SWs as well IMO - not that archers can totally substitute for guns but they can complement wonderfully and in that respect they hardly feel redundant IMO.

    I guess their effectiveness relative to re-load times would be relative to the overall movement speed of the other units around. This y kills per z seconds that Puzz states indicates a particular re-load speed that was chosen for when units are stationary on flat ground but also i would guess that testing has been performed on how that is dropped versus moving targets; re-load speed (ie kills per 2 volleys in ? seconds) coupled with the lethality of the SBOW towards various targets, range and melee stats of the archers relative to guns IMO defines the missile effectiveness. It is certainly a gamplay element because a commander with missiles wants to make sure that they are used during battle - if they are not and the archers die or rout without having taken out enough enemy units then they haven't been effectively used.

    Archers in SWs work (to my understanding) both as effective missiles and as second class melee units that can make a difference if used correctly when the melee is joined or at the finishings with their remaining ammo and melee strength. They need support though and usually opposition tries to make sure that they fire as little volleys as possible particularly to crucial units (such as WMs for example). Re-load time comes greatly into it then as the monks and other units such as cavalry won't be staying stationary to be shot. *edit for clarity*So re-load practically dictates the No. of kills you can get in a short time that is probably what will be happening in a battle. In some cases the missiles might not have any other chance to draw than a few volleys before the melee is joined *edit for clarity*

    The (tactical/gameplay) balance of archers relative to teppo units is admirable in SWs IMO and i think that something similar could be applied in principle between bow units and bolt units in MTW.

    Many Thanks

    Noir
    Last edited by Noir; 05-18-2007 at 17:15.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    A point: Europeans can build Vanilla archers wherever they want. Other factions are limited to their homelands...
    Iš Cthulhu!

  18. #18

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    I'm not sure that arrows units become obsolete when bolts come on the scene. Personally I've always preferred arrows due to the faster recycle. It is worth looking into though.

    Homelands for the western archers are something i haven't finalised as yet. The list of homelands will be very large, and I think i did try a similarly large list of homelands for another unit in the past and it caused a crash. I'll have to try it and see if I can get it to work.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Maybe with several "clone" archer units, with a few homelands each, for each faction?
    Iš Cthulhu!

  20. #20

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    The Unknown Guy's idea is good, feasible, simple and it will make a difference. They might need to be grouped in pairs to come around the 256 unit limit though.

    *edit* : on second thoughts perhaps pairs will not do, depending on the number of catholic factions you eventually introduced. Maybe triplets or above. *edit*

    Many Thanks

    Noir
    Last edited by Noir; 05-19-2007 at 17:43.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    I can see this being very confusing as to what can be retrained where. The clone units would be indistinguishable and it would not be easy to find a unit's region for retraining. It may be better to try and regionalise the units giving them different names, such as European Archers, Scandinavian Archers, British Archers, Italian Archers and Iberian Archers. We're currently up to unit 192 at present so we have a few to play with. Before I do that I'll try adding archer homelands again and report back if I'm successful.

    -Edit: Working homelands for western and eastern archers.

    Eastern Archers: "ID_NOVGOROD, ID_MUSCOVY, ID_LIVONIA, ID_SMOLENSK, ID_RYAZAN, ID_CHERNIGOV, ID_LITHUANIA, ID_PEREYASLAVL, ID_VOLGA_BULGARIA, ID_KHAZAR, ID_KIEV, ID_CRIMEA, ID_VOLHYNIA, ID_MOLDAVIA, ID_CARPATHIA, ID_WALLACHIA, ID_BULGARIA, ID_HUNGARY, ID_CROATIA, ID_SERBIA, ID_GREECE, ID_CONSTANTINOPLE, ID_GEORGIA, ID_ARMENIA"

    Western Archers: "ID_SCOTLAND,ID_NORTH_UMBRIA,ID_MERCIA,ID_WALES, ID_WESSEX, ID_IRELAND, ID_NORWAY, ID_SWEDEN, ID_DENMARK, ID_PRUSSIA, ID_POLAND, ID_BRANDENBURG, ID_SILESIA, ID_BOHEMIA, ID_SAXONY, ID_FREISLAND,ID_FLANDERS,ID_NORMANDY, ID_BRITTANY, ID_FRANCONIA, ID_LORRAINE, ID_CHAMPAGNE, ID_ILE_DE_FRANCE, ID_ANJOU, ID_AQUITAINE, ID_TOULOUSE, ID_PROVENCE, ID_BURGUNDY, ID_SWABIA, ID_BAVARIA, ID_SWITZERLAND, ID_TYROLIA, ID_AUSTRIA, ID_GRANADA, ID_CORDOBA, ID_PORTUGAL,ID_LEON, ID_CASTILE, ID_VALENCIA, ID_NAVARRE, ID_ARAGON, ID_CORSICA, ID_SARDINIA, ID_GENOA, ID_MILAN, ID_VENICE, ID_TUSCANY, ID_PAPAL_STATES, ID_ROME, ID_NAPLES, ID_MALTA, ID_SICILY"

    Other regions are covered by either Turcoman Foot, Desert Archers or Psiloi.

    Last edited by caravel; 05-20-2007 at 00:22.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    It may be better to try and regionalise the units giving them different names, such as European Archers, Scandinavian Archers, British Archers, Italian Archers and Iberian Archers.
    (That'd be neater, yes) BTW: maybe Genovese sailors could be generalized as the standard Italian archer, and made more widespread in building places?
    Iš Cthulhu!

  23. #23

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Well that is now a moot point as I've got the western and eastern homelands working correctly.

    As to the Genovese Sailors I'm not so sure what to do with them as yet, but the Italian AI faction does train them in preference to Archers anyway, so it may not be a problem to leave it as it is. I could extend their homelands and remove archers from the Italian roster but that would leave the Italians somewhat restricted.

    Instead I may increase the stats of the Genoese Sailors and turn them into a decent skirmisher unit in line with Psiloi, which is how they would have been historically. Their dependencies seem fine as they are.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    The decrease in load time for archers is not a bad idea so long as it doesn't become too fast and too unrealistic. I would say this would be a difficult stat to balance correctly. You could easily end up with archers that blow all of their ammo quickly but are still not being any more effective as far as hitting the target and doing damage. The only advantage they have is that they can wear down a target faster, but not any more effectively.
    I would leave the archer reload at 4 seconds. If you go to 36 arrows as we did in Samurai Warlords, that provides 2.5 minutes of shooting.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    I'm not familiar with how missiles were altered in medmod, as I haven't played it for long enough, but nerfing crossbows and arbalests to be comparable to shortbows seems wrong, unless I'm reading you incorrectly? The main handicap with bolt weapons is the slow reload, so when they do eventually fire you probably want them to be effective and not go off like a damp squib.
    In Samurai Warlords, crossbows are an entry level unit. They are not trainable after guns become available in the campaign. This works out well since both weapons are flat trajectory, slow reload and have armor piercing capability, so guns are the tactical substitute for crossbows. We did have to substantially reduce the kills per volley of crossbows for playbalance, and reduced the reload time slightly.

    Xbows: range velocity accuracy power AP reload

    MTW...5000 250 0.7 1.00 2 0.4 15
    SW.....5000 240 0.5 0.68 2 0.4 12

    We didn't alter the SBOW because the same parameters worked well in STW.

    SBOW 5000 150 0.6 0.68 1 1.0 4
    Last edited by Puzz3D; 05-21-2007 at 04:01.

    _________Designed to match Original STW gameplay.


    Beta 8 + Beta 8.1 patch + New Maps + Sound add-on + Castles 2

  25. #25

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    I would leave the archer reload at 4 seconds. If you go to 36 arrows as we did in Samurai Warlords, that provides 2.5 minutes of shooting.
    I believe I will go for the ammo increase, as per your recommendations and see how it goes.
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    In Samurai Warlords, crossbows are an entry level unit. They are not trainable after guns become available in the campaign. This works out well since both weapons are flat trajectory, slow reload and have armor piercing capability, so guns are the tactical substitute for crossbows. We did have to substantially reduce the kills per volley of crossbows for playbalance, and reduced the reload time slightly.

    Xbows: range velocity accuracy power AP reload

    MTW...5000 250 0.7 1.00 2 0.4 15
    SW.....5000 240 0.5 0.68 2 0.4 12

    We didn't alter the SBOW because the same parameters worked well in STW.

    SBOW 5000 150 0.6 0.68 1 1.0 4
    That seems like a good idea and will work well in SW. However for this mod, I'm not so sure. I currently have the crossbows available from early, the Arbalest and the Pavise shield is introduced from the High era.

    MTW has both the primitive "touch hole" hand guns and the later match lock arquebuses. I am not so sure that the arquebus belongs to the 15th century, I have always thought of it as a 16th century weapon? I'm probably wrong however, not being an expert in these things. AFAIK the early hand guns were as ineffective as they are in the game, the noise and the smoke being their main effect, whereas the aquebuses were more musket-like, more accurate and less likely to blow up.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Cambyses II
    MTW has both the primitive "touch hole" hand guns and the later match lock arquebuses. I am not so sure that the arquebus belongs to the 15th century, I have always thought of it as a 16th century weapon? I'm probably wrong however, not being an expert in these things. AFAIK the early hand guns were as ineffective as they are in the game, the noise and the smoke being their main effect, whereas the aquebuses were more musket-like, more accurate and less likely to blow up.
    The matchlock was invented around 1450 which is when MTW ends. While more primitive guns would be available in late era, the problem is they are less effective than the arbalest or even the crossbow. Therefore, it's difficult to incorporate guns in MTW in a way that makes them useful. Some advantages are that guns do impart a large, short term, morale penalty each time the target unit suffers at least one casualty, and they could carry more ammo. However, if shooting time is extended too much, fatigue will make them useless. This can happen with crossbows as well which is why we went to 12 second reload. In SW, guns have enough ammo to shoot for 7 minutes.

    _________Designed to match Original STW gameplay.


    Beta 8 + Beta 8.1 patch + New Maps + Sound add-on + Castles 2

  27. #27

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Puzz3D
    The matchlock was invented around 1450 which is when MTW ends. While more primitive guns would be available in late era, the problem is they are less effective than the arbalest or even the crossbow. Therefore, it's difficult to incorporate guns in MTW in a way that makes them useful. Some advantages are that guns do impart a large, short term, morale penalty each time the target unit suffers at least one casualty, and they could carry more ammo. However, if shooting time is extended too much, fatigue will make them useless. This can happen with crossbows as well which is why we went to 12 second reload. In SW, guns have enough ammo to shoot for 7 minutes.
    That makes sense. I suppose Arquebuses could be justified by increasing the build requirements and extending the game until 1500.

  28. #28
    Cthonic God of Deception Member ULC's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    The only Problem I see with that is it would make a mess of GA mode, something that seems to be preference to many players.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    I'm not sure about that as I never play GA, but if it does then we'll have to forget that idea.


  30. #30
    Cthonic God of Deception Member ULC's Avatar
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    Default Re: Improving vanilla archers

    I could be wrong though, and it could be when the game starts. Either way, points are still counted, just no one has any Idea when.

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