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Thread: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

  1. #1

    Default Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    How do you guys use these units in battle? I'm talking about units like the Junior Druzhina, Iqtadar, etc. Those that are not fast-moving, have pretty good defense/melee attack and long range. They don't really feel at home with the typica HA duty (close-in fast, shoot, get out fast) but at the same time, they don't really feel at home in melee-oriented roles either, Javy Cavys' got that spot already. I find their potential shines in HA vs HA battles, but then again, foot missiliers will outperform them by a mile when fighting enemy HA. When it comes to fighting melee cav (especially heavies), Skirmish HAs do a much better job then these guys. Their strong point seems to be massed arrow showers but every long range foot archer unit can let loose deadlier volleys. At this point all i ever use them for is to support long-range foot archers when fighting Mongol HAs (line of foot archers do most of the killing and after the arrow barrages dies down, a couple of Heavy HAs charge out and cleanup the survivors), I also use them to provide cover for Skirmish HA but this isn't really a necessity; i only do it when i feel fancy. Maybe they don't fit in with the way I approach battles in general but i feel like i can learn more from other players on how to employ this type of unit..

  2. #2

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Played recently as Hungary (although in SS 6.4), and the Hungarian Nobles were by far my best assets. I actually prefer them as HA due to their superior range. In usual HA role I find the micro much less tiring with them, compared to the standard HA - especially as I play in Huge unit size, so the short range HAs got very easily caught by enemy cav. Also, as you pointed out, due to their range they are great against enemy HA or even against lower quality archers. As I was fighting the Byz and Turks, that came very handy. In melee I do no not use them at all, only to charge foot archers or charge to the back of infantry when it is likely they will flee immediately. So my rule is to have as many heavy HA as I can afford, but eventually I cant fill a whole army with them for a long time, so I combine them with light HA and a few heavy cav. In the end it depends on your play style anyway. If you dont have problems beating the enemy, you shall be fine

  3. #3
    Jurand of Cracow's Avatar History and gameplay!
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    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    @Orkmann: can you make a short AAR? I've played Hungary in 2013 in SS6.4 so I'd be interested to read about your campaing :-)
    I used a lot my bodyguards against the Byzantine heavy troops.
    Besides, I recall having heavy loses among my Hungarian Nobles during battles. And they're very expensive, iirc (I've played with BGR IV)

  4. #4

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    @Orkmann I can see the Huge unit size hampering movements. I play at Large where it's a little bit forgiving. I find Skirmish HA can get away more easily when caught by enemy cav, with the exception of a direct charge though. Micro-ing them can be intense, especially when the AI brings fast-movimg light cavs. Speaking of light cav, the fast moving light cavs like Stratiotae are legit dangerous for heavy HA, unless you can mass them (3 or 4 vs 1 or 2)

  5. #5

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Jurand, that campaign is probly not worth an AAR. While I played Hungary (my RL country) many times , I can never get to a long campaign. My issue is that every neighbour declares on me, and usually I lose interest around t50. I did not find it difficult tó beat the AI, but Hungary sucks in auto combat, and fighting 3-4 full stack army battles each and every turn is just taking too much time.

    In regards to the campaign, I played High and my goal was to Byz and the Turks to face the Mongols.I wanted to keep the pope happy, so took just 1-1 city every 7 turn from HRE and Venice. But they armies were just butcher work for my HAs. Kiev was easy As well, but Byzantium is a pain. They outclass your infantry, archers, and they are ön similar levél with HA. Feudal Knights are better thanthey light cav, but the Generals are monster with they Uber armor. Anyway, had some fun battles with them amd the Turks As well. I abandoned the campaign around t40 when I was about to Clash with the mongols around Bagdad. Played VH, but not used BG, so in a way I played on easy

  6. #6

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    @anonymous, yep I just try to lure their cav away from the main army, and use the general or a rain of arrows to negate them.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    You will find in the new RC and especially the upcoming patch that HA are not quite as powerful, though its only a bunch of minor changes:
    Missile weapon accuracy vs cavalry has been slightly improved, but overall combat rate has been reduced which probably penalizes archers etc more than melee units
    Cavalry armor is now a percentage combination of rider and mount armors, rather than simply additive
    All archer shields have been reduced by 1 to reflect not really being able to shoot and hold the shield as well
    All cavalry now have -1 to their secondary weapon attack value
    Foot units have +1 to shield value because it is easier to move the shield around on foor than on horseback
    Starting in the High Era, heavier units now wear a light Gambeson under their heavier armor rather than just a simple padded jack
    Most Islamic factions/units now get the Improved/Advanced Metallurgy events somewhat later than before. They also suffer a -1 penalty on metal armors to reflect their generally lower standard of metallurgy
    Missile and skirmish units are now more likely to have lower discipline than previously. This extends to lower-quality units
    In general many such Islamic units now have lower discipline

    If it sems like I am punishing Islamic units in general that is not the case, the changes are not precipitous but rather quite specific, and also are more likely to take effect in the Early and High eras. All this has come about through quite a bit of further research - I don’t play favorites.

    So overall, all these changes combine to make missile units in general and HA in particular somewhat less effective.

    Note that Missile HA, though having longer range, also tend to use lighter arrows so have a -1 attack penalty and are less accurate at that distance and somewhat in general. They also melee at 2 quality levels less than they shoot at rather than 1 for skirmishers and have slightly less morale, and a little less collision mass for foot units.
    Last edited by Point Blank; October 09, 2018 at 03:36 PM.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    @PB, that would explain why Pechenegs are so much more effective against melee cav compared to Junior Druzhina. Speaking of druzhina, why does Novgorod's junior druzhina units have such higher replenishment rate compared to Kiev? Iirc, The Kievan JDs replenish at 4 turns (same as Senior Rus Militia, four turns less than Senior Mounted Militia) while for Novgorod it jumps to 8 turns... I get that Kiev was more populous and all. If it was a mini-campaign centering on the Rus, then it's all cool but for the main campaign, i felt it's too huge a jump.. may i recommend increasing Kiev's replemishment rate of the JDs to 6 and retaining the 8 turns for Novgorod or lowering Novgorod JDs to 6 turns and retaining Kiev's 4 turns?
    Last edited by anonymous_(\)008; October 09, 2018 at 03:26 PM.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    That is a bit odd, will look into it thanks.

    Yes everything is a balance, where all units are better at some things and worse at others. It makes gameplay more tactical and more down to player skill.

    Something I am doing more often now is, once missile/skirmisher HA have completed their initial orders, especially if I don’t have time to micro them or the battlefield is confused, is putting them under AI control. That way they independivkctively find new targets and move around instead of just sitting there and moving only as a skirmish reaction. In general the AI does a reasonable job with them and you can always take control back. Its also a good house rule to use when those units get far away from the general because he could not easily issue orders to them in that case. It might even to be possible to set this automatically if using the RBAI Hardcore submod, maybe to make it right from the start of the battle if you only have a captain commanding the army rather a general. What do you think?
    Last edited by Point Blank; October 09, 2018 at 03:48 PM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Just want to make sure the numbers regarding replenishment rates i mention maybe slightly off but still in the same ball park

    Regarding HA, i usually deploy my main army further back to buy the HA more time to work their stuff (assuming the rnemy army marches towards yours), this will give you more time to micro them but when the main armies eventually clash i usually just march them out of danger and only bring them back for end-game hammer-and-anvil sometimes i leave them to melee foot archers and artillery that are left in the back

  11. #11

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Sounds good, and another thing you can do is take them off Skirmish and park them behing the enemy’s main line and shoot his units in the back, where shield values don’t count.

    Regarding all the minor changes to cavalry and missile units specified above, its good to be able to put these sorts of things in now the major RC mechanics are in place (after a mere 11 years lol). They do all add up to providing more faction and unit flavor to the battles.
    Last edited by Point Blank; October 09, 2018 at 04:07 PM.

  12. #12
    Jurand of Cracow's Avatar History and gameplay!
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    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Orkmann View Post
    Jurand, that campaign is probly not worth an AAR. While I played Hungary (my RL country) many times , I can never get to a long campaign. My issue is that every neighbour declares on me, and usually I lose interest around t50. I did not find it difficult tó beat the AI, but Hungary sucks in auto combat, and fighting 3-4 full stack army battles each and every turn is just taking too much time.
    If you're from Hungary, you may actually help me with my modding - have a look here and tell there if it does seem ok.
    Yep, this is something that made me not playing SS6.4 (actually, SS6.4-BGRIV, SS-BtfB, and HURB) in the past - the stack spam. In the SSHIP and Titanium it's been seriously reduced, in my experience (plus it was made difficult to control the newly acquired territories - my ideal is described here).

    Quote Originally Posted by Orkmann View Post
    In regards to the campaign, I played High and my goal was to Byz and the Turks to face the Mongols.I wanted to keep the pope happy, so took just 1-1 city every 7 turn from HRE and Venice. But they armies were just butcher work for my HAs. Kiev was easy As well, but Byzantium is a pain. They outclass your infantry, archers, and they are ön similar levél with HA. Feudal Knights are better thanthey light cav, but the Generals are monster with they Uber armor. Anyway, had some fun battles with them amd the Turks As well. I abandoned the campaign around t40 when I was about to Clash with the mongols around Bagdad. Played VH, but not used BG, so in a way I played on easy
    1-1 every 7 turns - this is almost steamrolling... Yes, fighting Venice was a butcher work - with all the militias they'd send. And yes, the Byzantines provided a good challenge. But with the BGR it was longer game indeed - on turn 100 I took the whole Dalmatia up to Zara, and the whole Greece up to Salonika and Serdica. I recall being surprised by the possibility to recruit Armenian troops there :-)


    @PB: I've got 3 questions:
    - how to recognize if a unit does have the "Powerful Charge"? It's not only an attribute "can_formed_charge" - as I've seen units that have it, but "Powerful Charge" doesn't' show up in their cards.
    - how to discern if a unit is "Fast" - it's shown on the card in-game, but is it an attribute? or it's the mount "fast pony"?
    - what do you think about the best approach to the javelins: should they have "armor piercing" attribute, or "area attack"?
    Last edited by Jurand of Cracow; October 09, 2018 at 04:52 PM.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    The attribute power_charge doesn’t do anything. Otherwise Powerful Charge appears on the unit card if the unit’s charge or attack + charge, never checked which (maybe it factors in mount mass too) exceeds some threshold.
    So can_formed_charge doesn’t really link to Powerful Charge.
    Fast is not an attribute or anything to do with the mount name, just to do with its move_speed_mod and maybe other factors exceeding some threshold.
    No missile weapon in RC has area attack, they all just deliver a certain number of joules of impact energy to the target point. Firearms have it somewhat reduced because the impact of their ball ammunition is spread over a larger area, which was calculated and allowed for. On the other hand it is also raised a bit to represent the shock effect of a hit by something so fast moving, an effect which other medieval missile weapons lack.
    The area attribute is there for all missile weapons because it seems to increase the realism when they hit formations of closely packed men.

    In M2TW, if you want to maximize the effect of your archery at longer range where we are talking about a rain of arrows plunging down, you want to have the shooters mimic the shape and orientation of the target formation because the distribution of the arrows falling is an oval shape that combines those of both the shooter and the target. So, matched formations maximize the number of your arrows falling amongst the enemy. This is highly realistic and a pretty impressive part of the engine.

    As the range draws closer, depending on the defined projectile velocity, archers shift into a kind of ‘direct shooting mode’ where arrows are shot straight into the bodies of the targets, with increased accuracy and I suspect a bit more damage due to the more perpendicular angle of incidence of the arrows with their targets. Again, pretty impressive stuff really.
    Last edited by Point Blank; October 10, 2018 at 01:34 AM.

  14. #14
    Jurand of Cracow's Avatar History and gameplay!
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    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Thanks, PB.
    Yeah, indeed it seems very impressive. I wish the CA goes in the direction of making the combat similarly realistic in the newer TW games...

    So: is there a special difference between a heavy cavalry hitting with a charge and a light cavalry hitting with a charge - other than what's coming from "attack+charge" numbers? I thought that you add that "power_charge" to a unit and it gets a special ability to inflict much higher loses while hitting with a charge...

    This I don't understand:
    Quote Originally Posted by Point Blank View Post
    TNo missile weapon in RC has area attack,
    ...
    The area attribute is there for all missile weapons because it seems to increase the realism when they hit formations of closely packed men.
    So is it there or not?

    I'm asking just because I recall that in the SSHIP the developer(s) switched from "ap" attribute for the crossbows to "ar" - claiming that it would be "more realistic" - but I don't know ins and out of it, so it's just a recollection.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    @PB, regarding fast-moving cav, i believe Ghulam cavs have fast-moving mentioned in their unit card while still being heavy cavalry (they do seem to catch my pechenegs more easily than other heavy cavs. Haven'nt seen them outrun Junir Druzhinas, who didn't have the trait, since i rarely use them). Is this an oversight or the way they are meant to be?

  16. #16

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Jurand of Cracow View Post
    Thanks, PB.
    Yeah, indeed it seems very impressive. I wish the CA goes in the direction of making the combat similarly realistic in the newer TW games...

    So: is there a special difference between a heavy cavalry hitting with a charge and a light cavalry hitting with a charge - other than what's coming from "attack+charge" numbers? I thought that you add that "power_charge" to a unit and it gets a special ability to inflict much higher loses while hitting with a charge...

    This I don't understand:
    So is it there or not?

    I'm asking just because I recall that in the SSHIP the developer(s) switched from "ap" attribute for the crossbows to "ar" - claiming that it would be "more realistic" - but I don't know ins and out of it, so it's just a recollection.
    What is the 'ar' attribribute, do you mean area? If so then I don't know why they would switch from AP to area, because the two have totally different functions.
    power_charge is non-functional, it has zero effect.
    Heavy Cavalry is just a designation for use by the AI when constructing formations, and as a cue to the developer when deciding on which voice_type to use.
    The charge effect for all cavalry is derived from a combination of their attack, charge value, mount mass, whether they are running, if they are in a 'proper' charge, their x-radius, the global melee_hit_rate as defined in Battle_config.xml, and to some degree their animation, which is different for couched and non-couched lances for example.
    Every missile weapon is RC has area attack, including javelins. AP is never used for missiles, only for percussive melee weapons.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Quote Originally Posted by anonymous_(\)008 View Post
    @PB, regarding fast-moving cav, i believe Ghulam cavs have fast-moving mentioned in their unit card while still being heavy cavalry (they do seem to catch my pechenegs more easily than other heavy cavs. Haven'nt seen them outrun Junir Druzhinas, who didn't have the trait, since i rarely use them). Is this an oversight or the way they are meant to be?
    They are a bit quicker than other heavy cavalry because they are unarmored. Their mov_speed_mod is 1 and they just use the 'horse' animation, so not sure why the game would regard them as 'fast moving'. But as I said its just a label the game applies for display on their unit card, there is no such designation in their EDU entry or descr_mount for their 'early heavy horse'.

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Quote Originally Posted by Point Blank View Post
    What is the 'ar' attribribute, do you mean area? If so then I don't know why they would switch from AP to area, because the two have totally different functions.
    power_charge is non-functional, it has zero effect.
    Heavy Cavalry is just a designation for use by the AI when constructing formations, and as a cue to the developer when deciding on which voice_type to use.
    The charge effect for all cavalry is derived from a combination of their attack, charge value, mount mass, whether they are running, if they are in a 'proper' charge, their x-radius, the global melee_hit_rate as defined in Battle_config.xml, and to some degree their animation, which is different for couched and non-couched lances for example.
    Every missile weapon is RC has area attack, including javelins. AP is never used for missiles, only for percussive melee weapons.
    Thanks for the info, PB - yes, I've meant area attack. I believe it's the same in the SSHIP. I think in the past the javelins had AP attribute and the switch was to area.

    BTW - if a unit has "lock_morale" (that means it never routs), is there any difference how much morale it has? eg. 4 or 18 ?

  19. #19

    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Yes, they can still withdraw from combat in bad situations, get confused when hit in the flanks etc. They just never break is all. For example the Forlorn Hope behave quite differently than Dismounted Templars, but both have locked morale.

  20. #20
    Jurand of Cracow's Avatar History and gameplay!
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    Default Re: Regarding Armored/Heavy Horse Archers

    Err, I don't understand, perhaps maybe because of my limited knowledge of the behavior on the battlefield . What does it mean they can "withdraw"? Is it possible without being routed? And that "getting confused" - what do they do in such a situation?
    (BTW - good, PB, that you're back from the hospital :-)

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