High Elf Mounted Archer – Thoughts?

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Home Forums Update v1.5 – Open Beta Balance High Elf Mounted Archer – Thoughts?

This topic contains 48 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by  Gyor 7 years, 2 months ago.

Viewing 19 posts - 31 through 49 (of 49 total)
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  • #175132

    Prodigal Sun
    Member

    How well can High elven mounted archers do against dreadnought machine armies? If its extremely efficient against them too, then it is worth another look at the unit.

    They do a lot better than you’d think, actually. By the time you have a stack of Mounted Archers you have class units mainly consisting of Muskets and Golems, and from my experience from both Dread and WL perspective, it is still hard to win as a Dreadnought. Massing Golems 1:1 ratio versus MA is a bad idea, and keeping a good ratio between Musketeers and Golems still is not a good counter.

    Heck, I remember one time (while Lesser Shadow Stalkers still evolved instantly) where my super early stack of 6 Stalkers merely won against a stack of High Elf Mounted Archers. They were leveled though and with city upgrade and mine were just bronze or silver medal.

    #175145

    Well they are not that effective against dreadnaught machines, but they are certainly more effective than other racial units due to the range at which they fire.

    I understand the notion that the game was balanced for shorter rounds. However, personally I have yet to encounter something which is just flat out better than their racial counterparts as the elven mounted archer. I feel that other than this unit, I have no issues with any other unit. Yes, it was balanced for shorter games, but I think that one has to take these things relatively. I.e, if you say that unit X is better than unit Y, you will be saying it in a specific context, which in this case is the relative power of this unit during long games. If I might add to that, they are very effective in an early game gold mine/site clearing rush as the AI really feels helpless against them. (esp if you start with them)

    I still think that even w/o global assault or mounts, it is still far superior to all mounted archers due to it virtually having an identical role to the Longbowmen. This is not the case with every other mounted archer, which requires the player to get in closer to an enemy unit to deal more damage. Doing so means that they will likely not have 3 shots in the same turn and will also probably actually take damage in the next turn.

    Do I think they have no counter? Absolutely not. The Dreadnaught can easily take down a horde of them using Flame tanks, cannons and juggernauts. The Archdruid can be effective, for example using a shock serpent and letting them retaliate against it, causing multiple MA’s to be stunned. What I do not understand is why one particular racial unit requires such specific counters well all of the others can be defeated in more conventional means. There is no other unit that I know of that is flat out better than the others. Although I should mention that I have never played or fought the Theocrat, since you mentioned Orc crusaders.

    [Off- Topic]
    Since the hellfire spell came up, I have to mention it. I think that instant spells like that are a bit much considering that other spells such as the Mana core have a delay. My friend pointed out that an instant hellfire is frustrating and unfair, and I agreed. This is the only other thing I consider annoying. This is because it is instantaneous, powerful and cannot be disjuncted.

    Overall I feel that long games works well and I have had alot of fun playing it against another player. It is enjoyable to have a game stretch out to days and just chatting about what might be the final outcome of it. It gives a sense of persistence, and as such I cannot imagine myself playing much shorter games. From what I am seeing, the devs seem to be trying to make the game last longer with more meaningful choices. (Vassals, Not being able to buy out cities instantly, Reduction in Tier 4 Spam, Mana reduction, Race governance).

    #175337

    Epaminondas
    Member

    I understand the notion that the game was balanced for shorter rounds. However, personally I have yet to encounter something which is just flat out better than their racial counterparts as the elven mounted archer. I feel that other than this unit, I have no issues with any other unit. Yes, it was balanced for shorter games, but I think that one has to take these things relatively. I.e, if you say that unit X is better than unit Y, you will be saying it in a specific context, which in this case is the relative power of this unit during long games. If I might add to that, they are very effective in an early game gold mine/site clearing rush as the AI really feels helpless against them. (esp if you start with them)

    Forgive me if I am being a bit presumptuous, but I think part of the problem is also that you are a relatively inexperienced player and have not seen all the “OP” race/unit/class/Specialization combinations. (I suspect you are inexperienced because you say you only play MPs with your friend, have only logged 12 posts – which leads me to assume you are a recent buyer – as well as, of course, the content of your posts.) Otherwise you really wouldn’t obssess on the Elf Mounted Archer as being so clear-cut above other units in “OP”-ness. It is indeed a very strong unit largely due to the Warlord spells/Empire Upgrades, but there are other combinations that are arguably more egregious (someone here has already posted about the Orc Crusader). It’s just really odd to me that you are being, to borrow Fen’s words in a different context, so “hyperbolic” about this particular unit beyond reason.

    Really, I’d advise you to play a lot more – preferably online as well – and see some other ridiculous combinations before coming down so hard on this unit. For myself, I’ve logged over 1400-hours now on 2 computers, and I still don’t have a good handle regarding all the nooks and crannies of the game balance. (Though admittedly, my logged hours overstate my experience, since you learn most from MP games, and my only MP games are against 3 college friends – hard to believe but we’ve been playing against each other for some 20 years, since Command & Conquer days).

    Since the hellfire spell came up, I have to mention it. I think that instant spells like that are a bit much considering that other spells such as the Mana core have a delay. My friend pointed out that an instant hellfire is frustrating and unfair, and I agreed. This is the only other thing I consider annoying. This is because it is instantaneous, powerful and cannot be disjuncted.

    Here I actually agree with you; as I’ve said, I can eat 3-4 Hellfires in a row in the same tactical battle in a larger map game – and that is absolutely insane. But again, this problem exists only in longer games with larger maps. So I am not sure if it’s an issue where the devs and the beta testers will accommodate us.

    #175344

    Epaminondas
    Member

    Edit: I’ve been thinking about compiling some of the major game issues that plague those who – like us – play longer games on larger maps in one post and see whether the devs and the community can compromise on some of them. You have persuaded me that I am not alone in my late game frustrations, so perhaps I will get to it sometime this week! 😉

    #175352

    I have around 200 hours, which isn’t amazing but decent. Only 12 posts yes, but I honestly only got involved in the forums because I wanted to help with bug reporting for the Beta. Then I saw some interesting posts so I went ahead and said what I think.

    There are probably more op combos, but the thing is, the High elf MA is extremely obvious, at least it is for me. Its not even really a combo, stock it is still way better than any of the others. Global assault and mounts only helps further their journey into over powered territory

    But with that being said, why not highlight these OP combos, doesn’t forgive the fact that High ELF MA is superior to its counterparts just because there are units/combos which are equal or higher in power

    Either way many people on this thread have agreed that they at least need to be at least less spammable, and I would like to see what the Devs think.

    And for the record I do not intend on winning any form of argument debate or whatever, (I have no emotions :D). I will definitely view your topic on the longer game problems

    Slightly off topic, Do you dislike ‘rushing’ in games like CNC 3? Cause I am in the same situation as my friend. We like long games, and few games, if any at all offer this without feeling artificial. AOW3 offers this in spades in my opinion.

    #175357

    Gloweye
    Member

    Edit: I’ve been thinking about compiling some of the major game issues that plague those who – like us – play longer games on larger maps in one post and see whether the devs and the community can compromise on some of them. You have persuaded me that I am not alone in my late game frustrations, so perhaps I will get to it sometime this week! ;)

    Why I disagree with you frequently, I’m personally a longer game player myself. And yes, practically everyone I know of in the Closed Beta thinks about longer games, but since the patches are so close to each other, it’s hard to play long games on the same patch. If anything, that’s the reason that long games are under-accommodated. Also, I’m sure the Dev’s would love to see that list, and I think I’ll be taking a look myself just the same.

    So even if I might disagree with some of your points you make in some situations, don’t hesitate to make them anyway. At the very least, I’ll agree to disagree.

    #175358

    Epaminondas
    Member

    I have around 200 hours, which isn’t amazing but decent. Only 12 posts yes, but I honestly only got involved in the forums because I wanted to help with bug reporting for the Beta. Then I saw some interesting posts so I went ahead and said what I think.

    200 is really not much compared to what most of the enthusiasts here have complied – especially if they come in SP or MP with 1 opponent. I believe most of the beta testers have over 1k – just like me – for example. And unlike me, most of them play a lot of MP with a great variety of opponents. So even I lend them some initial deference when it comes to discussion of game balance.

    There are probably more op combos, but the thing is, the High elf MA is extremely obvious, at least it is for me. Its not even really a combo, stock it is still way better than any of the others. Global assault and mounts only helps further their journey into over powered territory

    One of the reasons why I – or other posters – found your focus on the High Elf Archer is that the Warlord class has traditionally been considered way “UP” and almost unanimously the weakest MP class in the game. (Two caveats though: The meta balance might change with 1.5 and the expansion; and Warlords were considered UP only in the context of short, blitz-style games, where their late-game economic advantage and things like Global Assault doesn’t come into play.) In fact, the gradual boosting of the Mounted Archer (as well as the Warbreed) was in part a response to this perceived powerlessness. So the charge about anything Warlord being “OP” will be met with incomprehension in many quarters. (Relatedly, this is why I urge you to play more – especially MPs with different folks – and then decide what is truly OP and UP.)

    Either way many people on this thread have agreed that they at least need to be at least less spammable, and I would like to see what the Devs think.

    I don’t mind jacking their costs, but as a general approach, I tend to not think a cost adjustment ever solves a genuine problem – if a genuine problem exists (here I do not believe it exists though). But this may have to do with the fact that I always neglect economics and over-focus on battle tactics in these type of games. This is why I will also likely only use the military upgrades, not economic upgrades, from the Racial Governance upgrades.

    Slightly off topic, Do you dislike ‘rushing’ in games like CNC 3? Cause I am in the same situation as my friend. We like long games, and few games, if any at all offer this without feeling artificial. AOW3 offers this in spades in my opinion.

    No, I don’t like TBS games at all; but the problem is that my friends then all preferred TBS games, and it was also more convenient to play TBS when you are trying to get 4 people available at once. Since then I did get my closest friend into TBS games, but the other 2 don’t enjoy AoW 3 as much, and they both always turn our AoW 3 games into Blitz-fests, which I don’t enjoy.

    #175361

    Epaminondas
    Member

    Why I disagree with you frequently, I’m personally a longer game player myself. And yes, practically everyone I know of in the Closed Beta thinks about longer games, but since the patches are so close to each other, it’s hard to play long games on the same patch. If anything, that’s the reason that long games are under-accommodated. Also, I’m sure the Dev’s would love to see that list, and I think I’ll be taking a look myself just the same.

    So even if I might disagree with some of your points you make in some situations, don’t hesitate to make them anyway. At the very least, I’ll agree to disagree.

    Thanks for the encouragement.

    I also freely concede that part of the blame for our (as in me v. the devs/beta testers) spats lies in my rhetoric or style. Believe it or not, I am trying to moderate my tone these days, and I won’t post this thread until I have enough time to be comprehensive and moderate in my presentation – always a challenge not merely because I am hot-tempered but also because English is a foreign language for me.

    #175363

    Ok thanks =]. And trust me, I have seen far worse… I am looking at you battlefield 4 forum.

    #175368

    Epaminondas
    Member

    No, I don’t like TBS games at all; but the problem is that my friends then all preferred TBS games, and it was also more convenient to play TBS when you are trying to get 4 people available at once. Since then I did get my closest friend into TBS games, but the other 2 don’t enjoy AoW 3 as much, and they both always turn our AoW 3 games into Blitz-fests, which I don’t enjoy.

    Oops; I meant I don’t like RTS games.

    I love TBS games! 😉

    #175406

    Epaminondas
    Member

    http://ageofwonders.com/forums/topic/a-dialogue-larger-map-issues-compiled/

    It is done; I would love to hear your ideas further there!

    #175487

    Gloweye
    Member

    http://ageofwonders.com/forums/topic/a-dialogue-larger-map-issues-compiled/

    It is done; I would love to hear your ideas further there!

    Been there, done that. I must say you’re quite successful at tone moderation.

    #176834

    Agent Fluff
    Member

    Lost a siege battle because of them. It puzzled me how they seemed to disregard my walls completely. I guess it was the no ranged penalty.

    #177002

    Fenraellis
    Member

    Half damage is still half damage… but it’s true that Elven Archers can appear to do lots of damage against enemies behind walls. To be fair, part of that is that enemies behind walls that are not in guard mode due to attacking, are generally of the lower defense rating variety of enemy.

    #179749

    Gyor
    Member

    I’d add Elven Mounted Archers with all the military racial goverance benifits are simply beyond any other archers in the game except Elven Musketeers and possibly Frostling Musketeers (they get freaking Harpoons for immbolizing enemies).

    To me the best race unit combos are Elven Mounted Archers (Longbows, Forestry, +1 resistance, Arcane Arrows, No line of Sight Penalty), Frostling Succubi (Female Frostling, Inflict Chill, 60% Frost Protection, Frost Aura, Melee Frost Damage, Bane Fire with Frost Damage, great unit synergy with other Frostling Units and Shadow Stalkers, Frost Elementals, Magic Academy gives a bigger boost to damage thanks to extra damage channel) seriously a fully kitted out Frostling Succubi hits like a Manticore Rider, but with a ranged attack as well (with magic academy, gold medal, RGM5, she can deals 14 physical 8 Frost melee and 5 spirit, 5 Fire, 5 Blight, 4 Frost damage with Bane Fire, and she deals 5 damage with each hit she recieves), Dwarven Enigeers are the best of they’re kind once they get Meteorite Armour as they have much greater defence and survivablity, a weakness that hurts dreadnaughts.

    Human Heroes are the best by human RGM5 as they get buffed on all kinds of things, the only race that does (except Dwarves get Improve Mountaineering).

    Orc Exalted get Tireless making them way better then any other Exalted, most of which don’t get anything special beyond racial universals.

    High Elf Manticore Riders, with stun, no competition.

    Draconian Apprentices with they’re stunning fire bomb.

    Sorceror Ice Queens, by gold and RGM5 they can freeze and stun people left right and centre.

    Lots of combos that stand out over the other ones, its not unique to Mounted Archers.

    #179809

    Astraflame
    Member

    Orc Exalted get War Cry, the crusader have tireless. Still, they’re probably the best exalted thanks to the +5hp alone IMO, 66hp exalted out of the gate is pretty strong, war cry and +1 melee is just more icing on the cake(Idk the new races Exalted).

    Yet relatively speaking it does not compare to High elf mounted archers, neither does the draconian fire bomb support per se. Both can be considered stronger than their peers but the HE mounted archer is just nuts once fully upgraded(and the always looming reality of Focus chambers on this particular unit for devastating effects) Orc crusaders that are strong indeed doesn’t really compare either.

    Besides. The OP part of the Draconian apprentice is only in combo with School of enchantment(Stun) that IMO turns any support unit a bit OP not just the draconian, while with the HE mounted archer the situation is reversed, it makes the Warlord upgrades OP so it’s obvious in both cases where a nerf needs to be applied(i.e. School of enchantment/HE mounted archer)

    In short, it’s not just the highest physical base 3 x archery attack in the game + the no ranged penalty but that in combination with ALOT of hp, speed(elf version even get forestry) , then sprint on top of it all and martial arts when in combo with their high hp lets them kite melee units and survive the attacks of opportunity made by those. All that for a mere 8 gold upkeep which is ridiculous when i think about it.

    Now that governance have been revealed, there is no doubt in my mind that this unit needs a cost increase, the second best mounted archer Human IMO, is nice as well but still not nearly as good, so those two sharing the same cost of 110 is unbalanced(Despite the human +10 hammers)

    #179813

    Astraflame
    Member

    High Elf Manticore Riders, with stun, no competition.

    Aye indeed, but once again it’s the stun mechanic that has always been OP since release. With the HE mounted archer it’s not one broken ability that is the issue(longbow is just fine), it’s the sum of all abilities and stats on this particular unit that makes it OP.

    #179817

    Astraflame
    Member

    I’m strongly thinking this game could use three new upkeep tiers, certain untis do qualify for a 1.5 , 2.5 , 3.5 tier costs. Example being the High elf hunter / HE mounted archer / orc crusader / ShadowStalkers could receive a 5/10/20 respectively.

    IMO just a higher initial cost is not a flawless system, typically the superior units will quickly pay for themselves in spades and the initial costs seems to be balanced for your average lasting game, the more late game IMO the less solid this system is. Maybe thoughts for a mod.

    #179940

    Gyor
    Member

    In the case of Rogues, they in the sense do have that thanks to the boosted up keep costs of Assassins, Bards, Shadowstalkers, Lesser Shaddow Stalkers, and Succubi, which have the highest upkeep costs of they’re tier.

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