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I guys I made a quick mod to make these cavalry more interesting. Currently, they are basically bad, with much less dps and armor than swordcav. firstly: All axecav get +1 pierce, swordcav hack dps, a little less crush dps, and slower repeat time for differentiation (could be better for quickly dealing damage) This mod makes the hyrcanian cav a unique raiding unit, with a cost profile similar to skiritai commandos, only instead of the armor increase of training at rank 3, they receive a speed increase. They also drop more loot, have more hp. I kept acceleration the same as all melee cav. hyrcanian stats in the mod and patch: 160hp, 3 hack armor, 2 pierce armor, 100 food, 40 wood, 35 metal, 18.7 hack, 5 crush per 1.5 seconds, 20 m/s walk speed. also 22 second train time. To apply this mod, add it to your mods folder in application support (Application\ Support/0ad/mods/ ). I would love it if balancing people gave me feedback, preferably with some in game testing. axecav_overhaul_mod_v0.1.3.zip
Since A24 is out there has been much discussion about the balancing, not only between factions but also between different strategies. But as @ValihrAntexplained it here: Because of the Citizen Solider concept the best strategy is (in most cases) just to boom as fast as you can. As most units fulfill economic as well as defensive/aggressive roles at the same time you cannot separate strategies. This is not in line with the vision of 0 A.D: " Single path to victory - It seems to be a trend that games cater to a specific strategy that is frequently used to attain a victory. That could be rushing, turtling, booming, etc. We recognize these are valid ways to win a game, but we will attempt to not favor one over another. Players should be able to successfully use (and adapt/change) any strategy to achieve a victory. " (citing from here: https://trac.wildfiregames.com/wiki/0AD_The_Vision) Another problem is that this "booming is the best" gameplay leads to a huge snowball effect. So If a player is slower at the beginning, it is very likely that he cannot recover and will lose the game. This makes the game less dynamic and interesting. Being able to turn the situation around after some bad losses is much more fun than slowly losing to your opponent just because he has more units, because he was able to click faster in the first five minutes. The question is, how can this be balanced? In Delenda Est this is done by removing the Citizen Solider concept and using a wide technology tree with many pairwise techs, which forces the player to choose a strategy or to find a good balance between them. But this is also my main critique point with DE. While I like mostly all of the stuff in DE: new factions, better graphics, new features ect, the game feels slower to me. With 0 A.D being the only RTS I play it feels very frustrating to me not being able to use units for eco and it just "feels" slower when some units just stand around. The wide technology tree on the other hand is very interesting and let you do complex decisions, but I actually need to pause the game and read what each tech does and then decide what I want to do. This makes the game slower paced and more strategic (which is not necessarily bad, just personal preference), but it takes away from the fast pace and action, which is for me one of the key features of the main game. So how can Empires Ascendant balance this without removing the Citizen Solider concept and while keeping its fast pace? What if the player had with each phase the opportunity to specifically choose one of the three strategies? So a decision to upgrade your CC or research a technology which gives you either an economic, an aggressive or a defensive boost just for this phase. Possible improvements from this mechanic: This would allow that each strategy is a legitimate choice in each phase, so a p1 turtle or a p2 push would be possible with all factions. It creates a a true "balanced" rock-paper-scissor system This would also acknowledge the importance of scouting (in all phases): if you have the information about the strategy of you opponent, you will be able to counter it. It removes the huge snowball effect that is present at the moment and could allow a player to comeback after a bad start It is easy enough to not make the game "slower" but enforces the ability to choose specific strategies. Here is a mod as a proof of concept:empires-extended.zip Note that this is only a very basic implementation of the idea. It only features positive auras which give you faster unit production and better gather rates for the economic strategy, quicker build times and more arrows for defensive buildings for the defensive strategy and more attack, movement speed and loot for the aggressive strategy. But this idea could be coupled with different art for the CCs, different options to produce units or even unlock new buildings ect. Note 2: the mod is a suggestion/concept for the future balance of 0 A.D is therefore for A25 / SVN So what do you all think? Besides the obvious: don't change anything about the gameplay. I have took some inspiration by the following threads and ideas: Scouting should play an important role, gathering information should be rewarded by being able to make better decisions: https://wildfiregames.com/forum/topic/36928-special-unit-scouts/ There should be different strategies a player can use (i.e boom, rush, turtle) which works as the classic counter system with no strategy being preferred: https://wildfiregames.com/forum/topic/39874-rushing-early-game/ & https://wildfiregames.com/forum/topic/39901-what-do-we-do-with-the-defenses-of-phase-1/ https://wildfiregames.com/forum/topic/39669-proposal-for-a-new-behavior-of-civic-center-reaction-to-farmfields/?do=findComment&comment=427486