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Thread: Why are spears in RC so bad?

  1. #1
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    Default Why are spears in RC so bad?

    A spear is great defensive wepaon alowing the user to attack the enemy while staying out of reach of swords and weapons with simliar reach.Yet ingame they have the same defensive value as daggers...reach is incredible important.And if you have seen any HEMA fights you will know that spear users will dominate fights against sword users.

    Another question why do Skoutatoi ,superior late professional spear unit, have a defense of 2 while Spearmen Sergants an average early Professional unit have 3 and Armored Spearman ,superior late professional spear unit,have 4?
    Elder Scrolls Online :Messing up the Lore since 2007...

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  2. #2

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Good points, this is something that bothered me about RC for a long time. As a HEMA practitioner I can indeed confirm that spears are brutal. IMHO, they are just superior to swords and other short weapons, that should only be backups.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    FYI I am doing some further stats re-work on spears and cav, and updating some animations. Spears are a bit tricky to get ‘right’ because anything with the long_spear or light_spear attribute is hard-coded to have a melee penalty vs swords due to the rock-paper-scissors thing. I will give more detail coming up.

    Will look into the Skoutatoi cheers.
    Last edited by Point Blank; September 04, 2018 at 01:42 PM.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Do you have any idea about the precise effects of light_spear and spear attributes? Are the RTW EDU guide infos still relevant on the matter as far as you know? Thank you very much
    (BTW Real Combat is an awesome piece of modding and I'm very grateful you still put so much effort in it despite your health problems!)

  5. #5

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    As far as we were able to determine by various means (and this was around ten years ago!) spear gives around +8 vs cav and light_spear around +4. Both have penalties vs infantry, but spear has more penalty than light_spear. Bracing vs a charge increases mass and/or defense somewhat. Versus a charge, this is also tied in to the x-radius of both the cavalry and infantry. Animation speed/type also affects combat.

    RC alters the x-rad dependent on infantry weapon type (eg spears have a much closer formation than polearms, so more than one spearman can face a polearm) and cavalry mount type. Highly_trained units have a tighter formation than trained and untrained. Some of the RTW stuff applies but not others.

    So overall you can see its a pretty complex set of interactions.

    I will detail some of the upcoming changes soon, its a bit difficult right now because my graphics card has blown so I have to put the money together for a new one.
    Last edited by Point Blank; September 04, 2018 at 02:24 PM.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Guys please look at the following post, I think you will be pleased:
    http://www.twcenter.net/forums/showt...1#post15656971

  7. #7
    Jurand of Cracow's Avatar History and gameplay!
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    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Well, PB, we are really in awe of your knowledge of the M2TW engine. Thanks and keep it up!
    I've got a question concerning rosters: to what extent have you modified these as compared to the SS6.4? How did you do it - I mean: how much historical knowledge on each faction have you added?
    Same question on the faction starting positions in 1370 - have you made many changes (I don't recall how it was in the SS6.4, to be frank...)

  8. #8

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    There are some new units. To be honest 6.4 was so long ago I can’t really remember what was in it. Otherwise there are quite a few faction-specific ones, and every unit has specific recruitment characteristics based on its RR category eg Feudal, Late Professional, plus AOR ones. Each one becomes available at a similar time to when it did historically, and the units it replaces typically wind down in availability. So depending on what year it is, and which faction, the recruitment strategy varies.

    Each size of castle and city has a unit availability value (UAV) based on its size/tier no matter the number of unit types available. The UAV can also vary by faction. For example lets say the UAV is 6 and there are 3 different unit types available, then there will usually be 2 of each recruitable or counting down to be recruitable at any one time; if there are two unit types available there might be 3 and 2 recruitable. So, the number of units recruitable remains fairly constant at a particular settlement size/tier in all cases, and having less unit types is not a disadvantage. When new unit types become available historically, this is reflected by them being available in limited numbers initially, while at the same time the unit type they are replacing, if any, will decrease. For each unit category, however, there can also be some further variation in availability/recruitability. So there are many factors involved.

    All these values are generated according to a formula with some additional handcrafting to further depict the differences between factions, eg Genoa will tend to have increased availability and recruitability of crossbowmen as compared to archers even if both are available concurrently.

    In the next update following the release I will be pruning some redundant or historically questionnable units and replacing them.

    6.4 had no 1370 campaign. The one I would like to do will have to wait for a later update though because to make it even remotely historical, with new factions etc, would be a lot of work. In the meann time you will be able to get your Late Era fix via the Hundred Years War 1337 and Italian Wars 1494 mini-campaigns
    Last edited by Point Blank; September 05, 2018 at 11:38 PM.

  9. #9
    Jurand of Cracow's Avatar History and gameplay!
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    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Very interesting video about spears: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d86sT3cF1Eo

  10. #10

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Spears dominate in unarmored dueling scenarios.

    Formation fighting with armor and shields is a completely different matter and there the spear does not have much of an advantage at all, it is an excellent choice for a primary weapon because it is dirt cheap yet effective and has the reach advantage that can be used prior to the battle lines closing in, after which the sword is actually a better option.

    This video shows how much trouble a spear has against a closing shield wearer;

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PIoXKbqpJcE&t=3m14s

    mind you, the spearman in the video can dodge and move backwards, something he cannot do in formation.

  11. #11

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Try the new RC, spears have been re-worked, see what you think.

  12. #12
    You know you've played too much Stainless Steel when in every other mod you play you think cavalry is too weak.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    I just watched this video, well the shorter version https://youtu.be/uLLv8E2pWdk My quick comments:
    1. In a fight when both groups are in larger formations and the spearmen can”t run around like in this video (which was frankly silly), they will be FAR more likely to lose.
    2. If the swordsmen are armored, the spearmen will have to kill them before they can close in, an extremely difficult proposition.
    3. In real combat (see what I did there? ), opponents (especially armored ones) don’t die when just tapped in the leg or wherever like in these vids. Aside from the effects of adrenaline, humans are actually quite difficult to make combat ineffective. How many of their hits would really do that? Its a bit like in some ‘sport’ martial arts, where the fight stops or a point is scored when even a weak blow lands - those guys are often a bit surprised when that doesn’t work on the street.

    4. If faced by opponents with missile weapons, the spearmen will be shot down without shields.
    5. When used 1H the spear is less controllable than the sword. For example, lets say the spear is 6’ long. For every foot beyond 3 you have on the fore end (the end with the spear tip on it), it becomes less-balanced, ie 3 fore and 3 rear is balanced, but 5 fore and 1 rear is not. But 3 fore is only about the same length as an average sword. And generally it can only thrust whereas most swords can but as well, so the variety of possibe attacks is far less. It can be easily batted aside, and, unlike hhe sword, the wrist can’t easily control it. It also can’t be used to parry incoming blows as easily, you can’t strike with the pommel etc and...you get the idea.

    Aside from pikemen etc, a completely different matchup (and in every case anti-pike units had swords or polearms), how often were 2H spear units seen? Virtually never. Most elite units were armed with swords, And if the resources and money were available, swords were generally the weapon of choice (I am ignoring the case where the likely opponents would be cavalry, where spears might be preferred). There is a reason that spearmen were seen less and less as time went on - were they ever used on late medieval era or Renaissance battlefields?

    In summary, this video takes almost no account of actual and likely scenarios. Lets see one where they run some tests with a group of 200 armored swordsmen vs the same number of spearmen.

    Otherwise lets rename the video ‘Spears are better than swords if used two-handed, there are no enemy missile weapons about, the opponent doesn’t have a shield and moves in aggressively, its not in a large formation so I can run all over the place, and the opponent isn’t well-armored.’
    Last edited by Point Blank; October 04, 2018 at 05:38 PM.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Spears mainly an early era weapon, at a time when most militias didn't have the money to equip infantry with swords.
    Also effective against relatively weakly armoured cavalry.
    Sitting ducks if unarmoured vs longbows, crossbows.

    Later superceded either by pikes - effective vs cavalry and if armoured reasonably well protected vs longbows, crossbows but not gunpowder weapons.
    Or by halberds or other polearm weapons with more attack options than just a pointed stick.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    @PB

    1. Equally armoured in a large tight formation swordsmen are at disadvantage because of the spear's reach allowing the 2nd rank of spearman to attack the 1st rank of swordsmen aswell
    2. If the spearman is armored then the swordsmen will be in an extremly difficult position too, well armoured soldiers tend not to use shields
    3. Didnt watch the short version but at some point in the video during one of the fights Lindy does say the fight to continue because the hit wasnt strong enouth, it was just a tap as you said so clearly they took that in consideration too
    4. Same for both ?
    5. Agreed, this advandage however will only be active when both sides are in a somewhat loose formation and fighting 1v1
    You know you've played too much Stainless Steel when in every other mod you play you think cavalry is too weak.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Onestly, in this videos some of the spearmen seems quite bad to me. When I spar with a spear usually I have no problem standing my ground and delivering fast and very powerful blows that keep the opponent at bay... Maybe they were concerned they could hurt their partners. It's true nonetheless that 2h spear was uncommon historically so this doesn't mean much. I did a little spear and shield formation fighting but not enough to draw any conclusion, but one thing I noticed is that is actually not that easy to find a good spear replica (because everyone want swords) or people interested in actual spear fighting (again because of sword fanboysm). I suspect a good one-handed spear would be very nimble in the hand, and would make quite easy to adjust its reach and deliver a fast and powerful thrust to the usually unprotected face of the enemy.
    EDIT: Another thing I forgot to add is that IMHO in a real fighting scenario the swordsmen would be MUCH less likely to charge like madmen to close distance because they could, well, die for real
    Last edited by Aper; October 05, 2018 at 10:42 AM.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aper View Post
    Onestly, in this videos some of the spearmen seems quite bad to me.
    they do in fact state that none of the ppl involved have any experience with the spear, all of them were swordsmen

    You know you've played too much Stainless Steel when in every other mod you play you think cavalry is too weak.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    5. When used 1H the spear is less controllable than the sword. For example, lets say the spear is 6í long. For every foot beyond 3 you have on the fore end (the end with the spear tip on it), it becomes less-balanced, ie 3 fore and 3 rear is balanced, but 5 fore and 1 rear is not. But 3 fore is only about the same length as an average sword. And generally it can only thrust whereas most swords can but as well, so the variety of possibe attacks is far less. It can be easily batted aside, and, unlike hhe sword, the wrist canít easily control it. It also canít be used to parry incoming blows as easily, you canít strike with the pommel etc and...you get the idea.
    Valid points, but before late medieval spear and shield combo was ubiquitous and preferred despite the fact that effective, cheap and easy to use close combat weapons were available (I'm thinking about clubs, axes and shortswords/longknives). So I think we are doing something wrong in recostructing spear and shield combat nowadays, it seems clear to me that it was far more effective in actual history than in modern reenactment.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    It's easy to find modern books on Liechtenauer swordfencing, but I wasn't able to find a single one about spears or polearms in general. Might be different in the English speaking world, but it does show a certain tendency.
    How much do we know about actual polearm combat? The Japanese definitely loved their twohanded spears and made good use of them.
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  20. #20

    Default Re: Why are spears in RC so bad?

    Quote Originally Posted by Destin Faroda View Post
    It's easy to find modern books on Liechtenauer swordfencing, but I wasn't able to find a single one about spears or polearms in general. Might be different in the English speaking world, but it does show a certain tendency.
    How much do we know about actual polearm combat? The Japanese definitely loved their twohanded spears and made good use of them.
    In late medieval and renaissance italian treatises there is something about polearms, the problem is that in the Flos Duellatorum spears are covered in a grand total of THREE pages out of one hundred more or less. And is 2 handed spear in heavy armor, so not relevant at all for most of RC/RR units. The only other polearm covered in the book is the 2 handed warhammer (not sure of its actual english name, in italian is "azza"), but the techniques are quite similar to those of the 2 handed sword.
    I know that in the very influential "Opera Nova" of Achille Marozzo from XVI century there is a section about polearms, but I don't own a copy of it.

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