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Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes- Sidegrades, not Downgrades

Ol_NessieOl_Nessie Posts: 3,185Registered Users
edited February 1 in General Discussion
I debated making this topic as I've done a similar one before, but it was in a different part of the forum and it was a year and a half ago to boot. I guess I'm bringing it up now as a sort of (late) reaction to how the units of other races which are similar in role or quality were adapted more faithfully than these 3.

Anyways, there's been a number of topics recently where I've expressed the opinion that Dwarf Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes are poorly implemented in TW in comparison to their roles in the fluff and TT and how I'd like to see them changed, so I thought I'd coalesce all of that into one topic.

I'm of the opinion that the campaign should encourage army builds that make use of a race's entire roster, even into the late game. It would take some reworking of the current supply-lines mechanic in my estimation, but I'd want all of a race's units to remain somewhat viable choices regardless of their tier or role. In these 3 cases though, I think CA got the tier's and/or roles wrong. With that in mind, everything I'm about to say is from the perspective of a SP campaign player; I recognize that this would shake up the MP meta and whether that's for better or worse is kind of irrelevant, to me at least.

Miners:
What they are now- Currently, Miners are basically treated as if they're the "civilian levy" of the Dwarfs which runs counter to everything we know about Dwarfs and Miners. The bulk of a Dwarf army, the Warriors, Quarrelers, Thunderers, and Longbeards are the Hold's citizen militia and Miners are supposed to basically be the Warriors of a mining Clan. In TW they're basically filling the role of the "Peasant Mob" from Rome 2, or WH's Bretonnia. Their combat stats are worse than Goblins and that's saying something.

What they should be- Pure and simple, Miner's should be a "sidegrade" to Great Weapon Warriors and have the same or similar stats. Miners were a Special choice on TT and as such had a specialized role in the army. I'd like to see that replicated in TW. Though by no means should a sidegrade cost the same as the "parent" unit; Warrior stats combined with Vanguard and blasting charges are worth more than the sum of their parts. I'd say something like 650-750 as they'd be similar in cost to Longbeards. This would be in order to price them out of replacing Warriors in your front line since for the same price you could get a better straight-up combat unit in LBs. Instead they should open up more tactical options for you on the battlefield, something that I feel the Dwarfs are sorely lacking at the moment.

Rangers:
What they are now- Basically, they're "Quarrelers-Lite" since they have poorer combat stats and less ammo which they traded for Stalk and a bit more speed, neither of which in my opinion pays for themselves. Rangers are now in the same role as Shadow Warriors and Shades with the difference being that those two units were done justice in their move from TT to TW and now outclass Rangers in nearly every way.

What they should be- Bugman's Rangers. Well maybe not quite the same, but it's not hyperbole. Bugman's Rangers in TW are closer to how Rangers operated on the TT than the current incarnation of Rangers. Rangers were a Rare choice on TT and to reflect that, they should be a sidegrade to Quarrelers, perhaps with a bit better melee stats to make up for their lack of armor. I don't think I'd want to rob them of their Stalk or speed since I recognize that CA had to do something to distinguish them from Quarrelers (apart from nerfing them).

Oh and this part's really important, they should be 1 unit, not divided into standard and great weapon variants. TT Rangers were a walking arsenal with great weapons, crossbows, and throwing axes and it shouldn't be too hard to reconcile the two different missile types, the Eagle Claw and Reaper Bolt Throwers already do that. In terms of cost, similar to the Miners, Rangers should be expensive enough so that they can't outright replace Quarrelers as your back line; that shouldn't be their role. I'd say 800-900 would be fair and, just like Miners, should enable them to provide more tactical options to the Dwarfs.

Irondrakes:
What they are now- Functionally, Irondrakes fill the same role as Warpfire throwers which were taken as weapon teams on TT . Irondrakes on TT operated as independent unit blocks much like Quarrelers, Thunderers, or even their kin the Ironbreakers. They weren't detachments, they were a completely independent unit with all the works such as a command element and the option to take magic banners. In TW, they fall far short of the role they had from their army book and, compared to other races' elite missile infantry such as Sisters of Avelorn or Waywatchers, were done a disservice in the transition from TT.

What they should be- If Irondrakes were to Ironbreakers what Quarrelers are to Warriors, they'd probably be prohibitively expensive but at a minimum their unit size needs to increase to 48 (on ultra) at the very least since as a supposed rank and file unit they currently have fewer entities (28) than the Warpfire thrower (32), an actual crew-served weapon detachment. I landed on 48 since it's the same size as Grenadier Outriders and Death Globe Bombardiers who both fill similar roles as "heavy" missile units.

Irondrakes' melee stats could use a boost too; these guys are basically specialized Ironbreakers after all, albeit without the axe and shield, so their stats should reflect that. Off the top of my head, I'd say 30 MA, 38 MD, 32 WS. As for cost, I think somewhere in the range of 1200-1400 is a good place to start for the two variants. Dwarfs place a huge emphasis on both infantry and missiles and Irondrakes are essentially the pinnacle of Dwarfen crafting and engineering; they should feel elite.

This conversation could probably be extended to some other units in different races, but since I'm a Dwarf fanboy I focused on my favorite race. Off the top of my head, I think a case could be made for White Lions and Lothern Sea Guard. The former got knocked down a tier whereas on TT they were Special choice competition for Swordmasters and the latter I always viewed as an infantry unit with bows as opposed to a straight upgrade for archers (though I hardly think they're suffering for it). Let me know if you think there's other units out there that got the shaft.
Build a Slayer Hero and make Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes great again! Thorek Ironbrow 2020

Post edited by Ol_Nessie on
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Comments

  • DraxynnicDraxynnic Posts: 5,853Registered Users
    Speaking of the High Elf examples:

    I think the LSG have been given justice. Sure, they've got archer-level entity numbers, but unlike on the tabletop, they have superior stats to regular spearmen that mean that they perform about as well in melee despite the smaller unit size. I have no qualms about using them as an infantry unit with bows (something which should be broadly true for dwarf missile troops in general as well).

    White Lions... are in an interesting position. I think there is a degree to which in the TWW balance regime, there is a need for the High Elves to have something in between Spearmen and Swordmasters/PG, which wasn't really the case on the tabletop, and the High Elves are generally lacking in low to mid tier melee infantry candidates. White Lions have since 6E been generally presented as the least impressive of the trio of High Elf elite infantry options, so it's not surprising that they're the ones that got demoted.

    If they were to be... undemoted, they'd probably have anti-large and be essentially a more offensive-oriented counterpart to Phoenix Guard.
  • Ol_NessieOl_Nessie Posts: 3,185Registered Users
    As always Drax, you're a pleasure to have in the thread, sincerely.

    For LSG, I wouldn't recommend a huge change. Instead of middle-weight missile infantry numbers (90) I'd go for elite melee infantry numbers (100) and pull their range in a bit. They were armed with standard bows on TT after all. At 165 m and with silver shields, they'll win a shootout with just about any other missile troops outside of Quarrelers (I agree that Dwarf missile troops should be in a similar boat). They should at least give Longbows and Crossbows the opening volley, just to be sporting.

    As far as WLs go, I'm not sure I'd go with anti-large. In my opinion, BvL and BvI are too widespread as it is. Perhaps more raw damage with a higher AP ratio than SMs to make them more of an "all-comers" unit, but ultimately their role was as bodyguards if I remember correctly. I guess CA reserves the Guardian trait for the RoRs (which should be retroactively applied where appropriate) but I'm sure they could think of something else for generic WLs.

    Ultimately though, this topic seems like it applies more to WH1 races than it does to WH2. For some reason or another, the later races' units seem to have been translated more faithfully which is a bit counter-intuitive if you think about it.
    Build a Slayer Hero and make Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes great again! Thorek Ironbrow 2020

  • DraxynnicDraxynnic Posts: 5,853Registered Users
    edited February 1
    Yeah, I have to admit I was a bit surprised that LSG had such long range. I'd be a bit scared about what the volume of fire from a full-strength unit might be able to do even with a shorter range, but that could be covered by making each arrow individually less dangerous. After all, while the tabletop treated longbows as hitting just as hard as regular bows, TWW does have that extra level of fine-tuning available.

    So you could end up with a unit that basically has Spearmen stats in melee, and slightly less impressive ranged stats than Archers, but apart from the shorter range, they make up for reduced ranged damage individually through numbers.

    With White Lions, the thinking is that while they are a bodyguard unit (and yeah, they probably should have Guardian), history, fluff, and TT rules all point towards them being anti-large. Crunch-wise, S6 hits are useful for punching through the high Toughness and/or armour of monsters and heavy cavalry, and in earlier editions they had a Multiple Wounds rule, which has typically been translated into anti-large for game purposes. Fluff-wise... the test for worthiness of a White Lion was killing a wild white lion, which indicates skill at fighting beasts.

    So I think anti-large is appropriate. They're still good at fighting infantry (albeit not Swordmasters-good), but taking down monsters is where they really excel.

    If we were to look for other abilities to give them, one could keep looking at their 5E rules. 5E White Lions had three different fighting styles (similar to Wardancers, Dryads, and so on back then), but the only one they could always use was the one that gave them a D3 wound multiplier. The other two essentially boiled down to "harder to hit when charging" and "harder to hit when charged", so they could be given rules that make them particularly good at charging (for infantry) and receiving charges.

    You could possibly compensate for this by reducing the offensive capability of Phoenix Guard and making them (even) more of a tarpit. Maybe give them the wardsave they're supposed to have according to the fluff (the fluff explicitly says that it's hard for hostile magic to stick on Phoenix Guard)
  • TennisgolfbollTennisgolfboll Posts: 7,686Registered Users
    I agree. Want to add this


    Miners could have gotten underground advance (from the tt) as ability to activate. Unit cant be in melee, it vanishes over 3 seconds (digging). Then appear 5 secs later upto 100 away. So a slow teleport. Used for flanking, rear charging etc. A pretty long cooldown.
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  • RazmirthRazmirth Posts: 2,168Registered Users
    I didn’t read miners and ranged since I never use them (prob never will).

    But irondrakes, I do use. I agree in melee they should be a bit better. I mean they still wear gromril armour, which means awesome armour. Just give them a hand axe and let them hold their own.

    I don’t know if increasing unit size will be a good thing tho. It would make them fair better in melee, however if used as ranged they will be slightly overpowered I think. Since they already obliterate light armoured units in one volley. Granted there are MANY units that are much more over powered than iron Drake and have more mobility as well.

    I personally find a place for them in most of my armies. They are great mixed in with battle lines to maneuver into flanking posistions. Even with no armour piercing, they melt (pun intended) enemy leadership. Combined with quarrelers, there isn’t much an enemy main line can do to hang in too long.

    Although they usually only get 100 kills or so a battle at most late game. Makes me wanna trade them up for more artillery or slayers/hammerers, but I can help that I like them so much.
  • mightygloinmightygloin Posts: 1,376Registered Users
    edited February 1
    Great post, liked it only after reading the first paragraph and agree with every point. I was contemplating to open a similar post myself but didn't bother since i doubt anyone takes player feedback around these parts. Honor to your clan!

    Unfortunately it looks like CA twisted the source a bit to fit some units better into their own balancing scheme. Miners having so abysmal melee stats that they even lose to non-AP goblins makes no sense otherwise. Lore aside, they had the exact same stats as dwarf warriors in TT. Dwarfs shouldn't have such cheap meat-shields like skavenslaves or something.

    Similarly While Lions are kings guard in the lore and costed as much as Swordmasters in TT, but HE lacks mid tier AP infantry so they are magically degraded.

    Irondrakes also are just ironbreakers who showed aptitude with irondrake guns, and in 8edTT they had the same stats as i remember. So losing huge -40 MD or so seems like too great a penalty. But then again if TT stats were taken into consideration, i doubt Ungrim would have 35 MD and 3.8k hp, Giant Slayers wouldn't seem just like Slayers with GW etc. Sometimes i wish dwarfs were a 2nd game race.
    Ol_Nessie said:

    What they should be- Bugman's Rangers. Well maybe not quite the same, but it's not hyperbole. Bugman's Rangers in TW are closer to how Rangers operated on the TT than the current incarnation of Rangers. Rangers were a Rare choice on TT and to reflect that, they should be a sidegrade to Quarrelers, perhaps with a bit better melee stats to make up for their lack of armor.

    Rangers also had heavy armor in 8ed TT.
    Post edited by mightygloin on
  • ItharusItharus Senior Member Posts: 7,047Registered Users
    Sure, if you want to absolutely nerf Dwarf's growth and replenishment rates and make all their units more expensive across the board to also better represent their TT and lore experience.
  • TennisgolfbollTennisgolfboll Posts: 7,686Registered Users
    edited February 1
    Itharus said:

    Sure, if you want to absolutely nerf Dwarf's growth and replenishment rates and make all their units more expensive across the board to also better represent their TT and lore experience.

    Their growth is fine as it represents higher tech and they are great at tech. They should able to recruit hammerers and cannons as fast as other races get their access to elites.

    I wouldnt mind slow replenishment or long recruitment as it fits the dwarfs.
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  • LennoxPoodleLennoxPoodle Posts: 420Registered Users
    Couldn't they also give the White Lions a higher charge bonus and armor piercing damage (resulting in higher overall damage) but lower MA/MD compared to swordmasters? Maybe throw in a small (not role defining) bonus vs large and you have ideal reserve/reinforcement elite infantry for the frontline with the swordmasters and killer shock infantry to mop up enemy weakspots (but not do so well on their own).

    Regarding the topic in general I'm a bit in at odds with the general focus of hybrid ranged and close combat tropps in general. Quarrelers and Thunderers should be as good as warriors, making them true 50/50 Hybrids - balanced out by smaller unit size - and Sea Guard should be comparable to spearmen in the way @Draxynnic proposed.

    My biggest problems in that regard are propably with the Empire. Pistoliers totally need to be rebalanced. Imho they should be decent/passable melee fighters, since a brace of pistols is far from useless in melee, especially in combination with a cavalry sabre by wielded by someone training to become a Knight. It might get them out of the useless corner and not interfere with the role of outriders as dedicated ranged infantry.
    I also feel a strong redundancy between Reiksguard/Knights/KoBS and Demigryphs being all shock cavalry. Both the Lore and physiology of theses beasts (agile body, beak and claws as natural weapons vs massy build and hooves on horses) indicate that they are better suited as melee cav, with maybe the lance variant having an relatively high charge bonus (for melee - not shock - cav).
    My largest problem however lies with Free Company in particular and pistol/handbow and sword people in general. Usually these guys are primarily handled as ranged troops which also have some melee capabilities as B-purpose. Frankly I'm all for inverting that and make them more effective in CC than ranged, alongside giving all of them move and fire (so they don't have to stop for their - now secondary - ranged attack). A brace of pistol (or handbows) would be the opposite for me: primarily good for ranged but still a decent melee combo. Pistols easily be fired in close quartes and were specifically made to work as clubs back in the day after all.
  • psychoakpsychoak Posts: 2,342Registered Users
    Miners big problem as implemented is that one shot blasting charge on their upgrade, they still aren't a particularly viable unit. Unlike Vampire Coast, which have very nice bomb throwers, too nice now that they got an ammo upgrade...

    I wouldn't mind them being more durable though, but it would change their implementation to make them what they are on TT. They're super cheap AP, cost wise there's nothing wrong with them as they are. They just royally suck in SP because you're rolling in money and need to invest it in troops that don't lose to basic infantry.

    They shouldn't actually be dwarf warrior equivalent though. There was a difference between their defensive capabilities, miners lacked the shieldwall rule. I'd make the basic version a slightly more expensive great weapon warrior, with a couple points down on MD, and give the blasting charges version two ammo. The ROR actually works really well as a unit even into the late game, with 3 ammo.
  • rymeintrinsecarymeintrinseca Posts: 552Registered Users
    Rangers are very solid for a low tier unit, and an equally valid choice to quarrellers. Stalk and the extra speed give you a lot of utility in terms of setting up enfilading fire, and even kiting against slower enemies.

    I ran a 1 v 1 missile test a while back. It's worth noting that, while Quarrellers outperformed Rangers as you'd expect in a largely static test, they still traded very competitively, coming 9th out of 31 (just ahead of Shadow Warriors and Sisters of Avelorn).

    So I think they're fine as they are, and I especially don't think they should be buffed to make them like Bugman's, which are an ultra elite unit (no. 1 in the test).

    https://forums.totalwar.com/discussion/223785/missile-infantry-test-bows
  • mightygloinmightygloin Posts: 1,376Registered Users

    Rangers are very solid for a low tier unit, and an equally valid choice to quarrellers. Stalk and the extra speed give you a lot of utility in terms of setting up enfilading fire, and even kiting against slower enemies.

    I ran a 1 v 1 missile test a while back. It's worth noting that, while Quarrellers outperformed Rangers as you'd expect in a largely static test, they still traded very competitively, coming 9th out of 31 (just ahead of Shadow Warriors and Sisters of Avelorn).

    So I think they're fine as they are, and I especially don't think they should be buffed to make them like Bugman's, which are an ultra elite unit (no. 1 in the test).

    https://forums.totalwar.com/discussion/223785/missile-infantry-test-bows

    What you say is true, especially in artificial 1v1 scene but i think you haven't grasped the premise of this thread. This is about their implementation and whether if they should be a low tier unit rather than their cost/performance ratio compared to other skirmishers.
  • rymeintrinsecarymeintrinseca Posts: 552Registered Users
    ^ OP said "they should be a sidegrade to Quarrelers." My point is that they're already a sidegrade to Quarrelers, so the current implementation is appropriate.
  • psychoakpsychoak Posts: 2,342Registered Users
    Yeah, I ignored the other two because they're already really good units.

    If we boosted Irondrakes to the OP's suggestions, they would literally be able to walk up to anything short of a massive ranged AP army, and kill it. They would be utterly unassailable to any melee infantry. Trollhammer's and firedrakes would be godlike units. As they are now, one of them melts low armor infantry, and breaks even heavily armored elites in short order, and the other can pretty much one shot a cavalry charge out of commission.

    Rangers being bugman's strength? You can already kill anything the AI sends at you with an all ranger army. It's one of those moohoo cheese builds that people use because they like being bored with their video games. That one on one unit test wouldn't be true at just one on one. They'd out shoot literally everything, and kill what made it to them in melee with ease.
  • Wyvern2Wyvern2 Posts: 1,358Registered Users
    Without intending to sound too harsh, I don't agree with most of the OP here for balance reasons. I'm fully aware that a lot of units got downgraded relative to their TT iteration(chaos warriors, white lions, witch elves etc) but TT had 1)No progression system and 2)Its balance was not the same, as in, completely, incomparably different.

    Most of the suggestions I'm seeing here seem to be oriented more toward making units more viable in campaign, which is nice and all, but the way campaign is designed, there is always a bunch of shoddy, suboptimal unit choices that aren't as good.

    Irondrakes are straight up inferior to a flame cannon(cost doesnt really matter, lets be honest, and melee stats are irrelevant in a campaign where AI cant actually threaten a backline properly) and are competing for literally the same slot. Buff them and either A)They still arent good enough, or B)They now completely out-match the flame cannon. Given the cannons splash and range, my money is on the former.

    Make miners a vanguarding great weapon, and it changes little, either its better than its peers and overrules them, or more likely than not it just isnt that good for the mass dakka stunty style and gets shunted aside.

    On the topic of rangers, shove them up to bugmans tier and you have well, bugmans rangers and no lower tier rangers, plus making them a walking arsenal just sounds troublesome, especially since if handled in the same style as the bolt throwers, ammunition would be shared, meaning you either get a decent crossbow and stupid OP throwing axes, oooor a garbage crossbow and normal throwing axes.

    From an MP perspective, I think a lot of the recommendations are god awful, bumping miners up to being a GW sidegrade would be disastrous since it takes away the stunties only cheap zoning tool(Without miners, I daresay nearly every other faction would find the MU laughably easy). Boosting rangers to bugman tier does nothing except take away an option. Only the irondrakes model count increase I think would be decent, since it could resolve their issue vs spread out infantry lines, though probably a drop in per-model damage would then be warranted(and an equivalent change to skaven weapon teams)
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  • TennisgolfbollTennisgolfboll Posts: 7,686Registered Users

    Rangers are very solid for a low tier unit, and an equally valid choice to quarrellers. Stalk and the extra speed give you a lot of utility in terms of setting up enfilading fire, and even kiting against slower enemies.

    I ran a 1 v 1 missile test a while back. It's worth noting that, while Quarrellers outperformed Rangers as you'd expect in a largely static test, they still traded very competitively, coming 9th out of 31 (just ahead of Shadow Warriors and Sisters of Avelorn).

    So I think they're fine as they are, and I especially don't think they should be buffed to make them like Bugman's, which are an ultra elite unit (no. 1 in the test).

    https://forums.totalwar.com/discussion/223785/missile-infantry-test-bows

    I liked your test. But you need to get it says very very very little avout how good a ranged unit is. Bugmans rangers is far from being a top tier missile unit for example.
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  • Ol_NessieOl_Nessie Posts: 3,185Registered Users
    I see I have a lot to respond to.

    Rangers are very solid for a low tier unit, and an equally valid choice to quarrellers. Stalk and the extra speed give you a lot of utility in terms of setting up enfilading fire, and even kiting against slower enemies.

    I ran a 1 v 1 missile test a while back. It's worth noting that, while Quarrellers outperformed Rangers as you'd expect in a largely static test, they still traded very competitively, coming 9th out of 31 (just ahead of Shadow Warriors and Sisters of Avelorn).

    So I think they're fine as they are, and I especially don't think they should be buffed to make them like Bugman's, which are an ultra elite unit (no. 1 in the test).

    https://forums.totalwar.com/discussion/223785/missile-infantry-test-bows

    In terms of when you get them, Rangers aren't a low tier unit. They're tier 3, but only in name since they're outperformed by a tier 2 unit. The stalk and speed aren't that useful because without Snipe, Rangers automatically reveal themselves when they shoot and while they can outrun Quarrelers, they can't outrun much of anything else and when they get caught, there's not much that they can hold against without support which makes their Vanguard nearly pointless. So no, in practice they're not already a side grade to Quarrelers since Quarrelers can at least hold their own against a few enemies in melee. Rangers are currently a far cry from the Rare unit they were in TT.
    psychoak said:

    They shouldn't actually be dwarf warrior equivalent though. There was a difference between their defensive capabilities, miners lacked the shieldwall rule. I'd make the basic version a slightly more expensive great weapon warrior, with a couple points down on MD, and give the blasting charges version two ammo. The ROR actually works really well as a unit even into the late game, with 3 ammo.

    Technically, any unit armed with great weapons did not get the benefits of the shieldwall rule since that rule only applied when a unit is fighting with hand weapon and shield. So even though technically Hammerers, great weapon Warriors, and great weapon Lonbeards could take shields, they couldn't benefit from the rule because their primary weapon wasn't compatible. Miners having the same MD as GW Warriors would be appropriate.
    psychoak said:

    If we boosted Irondrakes to the OP's suggestions, they would literally be able to walk up to anything short of a massive ranged AP army, and kill it. They would be utterly unassailable to any melee infantry. Trollhammer's and firedrakes would be godlike units. As they are now, one of them melts low armor infantry, and breaks even heavily armored elites in short order, and the other can pretty much one shot a cavalry charge out of commission.

    I'm not sure where you're getting this from. The stats I suggested are on par with great weapon Longbeards (minus the AP) and similar to the stats of Sisters of Avelorn, another Elite missile infantry unit. Those stats are good, but they're not elite stats which is more than fair for a unit of essentially ranged Ironbreakers. And at 48 models (on ultra) they'd still be a unit that's less than half the size of elite infantry. Any AP, Bonus vs infantry, or high charge bonus unit will still chew them up in melee. And even if the Irondrakes just merely get tied down in melee, you wouldn't be getting your money's worth from them because that's not what you brought them to the battle for. I'd also be totally fine with scaling their missile damage back to compensate
    psychoak said:

    Rangers being bugman's strength? You can already kill anything the AI sends at you with an all ranger army. It's one of those moohoo cheese builds that people use because they like being bored with their video games. That one on one unit test wouldn't be true at just one on one. They'd out shoot literally everything, and kill what made it to them in melee with ease.

    I made a point in the OP about turning them into Bugman's Rangers not being entirely accurate. It was more that Bugman's Rangers are closer (though not 100% accurate) to how Rangers functioned on TT.

    Why are we talking about cheese builds? I said in the OP that I'd want the campaign to encourage balanced armies and part of that is making earlier units stay relevant into the late game. If a player wants to cheese an all Ranger army, that's on them and nothing is stopping them from doing it now. At least with the commensurate price hike it'd be a bit more costly to do.
    Wyvern2 said:

    Without intending to sound too harsh, I don't agree with most of the OP here for balance reasons. I'm fully aware that a lot of units got downgraded relative to their TT iteration(chaos warriors, white lions, witch elves etc) but TT had 1)No progression system and 2)Its balance was not the same, as in, completely, incomparably different.

    Most of the suggestions I'm seeing here seem to be oriented more toward making units more viable in campaign, which is nice and all, but the way campaign is designed, there is always a bunch of shoddy, suboptimal unit choices that aren't as good.

    And I don't like that half of the roster becomes irrelevant in the late game. It's what leads to Doomstacking which in turn leads to steamrolling which is what makes the late game boring. If battles remained as competitive in the late game as they are in the early game, I'd wager players would play deeper into the campaign than they do now.
    Wyvern2 said:

    Irondrakes are straight up inferior to a flame cannon(cost doesnt really matter, lets be honest, and melee stats are irrelevant in a campaign where AI cant actually threaten a backline properly) and are competing for literally the same slot. Buff them and either A)They still arent good enough, or B)They now completely out-match the flame cannon. Given the cannons splash and range, my money is on the former.

    Make miners a vanguarding great weapon, and it changes little, either its better than its peers and overrules them, or more likely than not it just isnt that good for the mass dakka stunty style and gets shunted aside.

    So if you're saying the Flame Cannon would likely still be the better choice, then what exactly is wrong with making the Irondrakes at least more competitive?

    The "mass dakka stunty style" is kind of the only real viable way to play them in campaign at the moment. Nearly every battle with them is the same; deploy on the highest ground you can, setup your army into front line and back line, and shoot the enemy with artillery until they come to you, then rinse and repeat for the next one. Making the Dwarf Vanguard units decent would at least add another dimension and some room to get creative.
    Wyvern2 said:

    On the topic of rangers, shove them up to bugmans tier and you have well, bugmans rangers and no lower tier rangers, plus making them a walking arsenal just sounds troublesome, especially since if handled in the same style as the bolt throwers, ammunition would be shared, meaning you either get a decent crossbow and stupid OP throwing axes, oooor a garbage crossbow and normal throwing axes.

    So why is the ammo ok for the bolt throwers then? Ranger crossbows already have less ammo (18) than Quarrelers so there is at least that mitigating factor. And since crossbows have a much longer range than throwing axes, they'd probably spend half the ammo before the enemy was even in range of the throwing axes, especially if they're doing hit and run; half their ammo is 9 which is a whole 1 more than what the throwing axe Rangers currently have. If it's such a huge issue, I'm sure there'd be a way to program 2 different ammo limits but ultimately the issue is arbitrary the way I see it.
    Wyvern2 said:

    From an MP perspective, I think a lot of the recommendations are god awful, bumping miners up to being a GW sidegrade would be disastrous since it takes away the stunties only cheap zoning tool(Without miners, I daresay nearly every other faction would find the MU laughably easy). Boosting rangers to bugman tier does nothing except take away an option. Only the irondrakes model count increase I think would be decent, since it could resolve their issue vs spread out infantry lines, though probably a drop in per-model damage would then be warranted(and an equivalent change to skaven weapon teams)

    I said from the jump that I really don't care about MP. That's not meant to be harsh either, just an honest truth. The primary draw of the game for 95% of the players is the campaign and I'd sacrifice MP viability for better campaigns any day of the week. And who knows, shaking it up like this would certainly change the meta but depending on the specific changes it could enable new and different MP builds.

    What specifically do you mean should apply to Skaven weapon teams? The unit size increase? Because I disagree. Those units are based on crew-served weapon detachments from TT, something that Irondrakes certainly weren't. It makes sense that there'd be fewer actual weapons in a unit like that than in a rank and file unit block.
    Build a Slayer Hero and make Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes great again! Thorek Ironbrow 2020

  • AmonkhetAmonkhet Posts: 1,369Registered Users
    I think these sorts of changes can only come if balance for Greenskins and Vampire Counts are looked at, at the same time as its gonna shake up things and may cause a return of Dwarfball.
  • Ol_NessieOl_Nessie Posts: 3,185Registered Users
    Amonkhet said:

    I think these sorts of changes can only come if balance for Greenskins and Vampire Counts are looked at, at the same time as its gonna shake up things and may cause a return of Dwarfball.

    Ideally all races should be fixed so that they're as good as they can be, but I don't think the Dawi-tide was due to stronger units and I don't think buffing these 3 units would lead to that again. Maybe in a roundabout way they were responsible for higher AR values, but I seem to remember the late game Dwarf empires were caused more by campaign features such as ease of confederation and the aggressiveness of Dwarf AI factions. After all, actual battle performance (as opposed to AR) only comes into play when the player himself is actually involved.

    Though if you've got thoughts on specific Greenskin or Vampire Counts units, by all means share them.
    Build a Slayer Hero and make Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes great again! Thorek Ironbrow 2020

  • CanuoveaCanuovea Posts: 13,134Registered Users, Moderators
    Remember that Belegar gets rangers at tier 1. Both basic types and Bugman's at tier 3.
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  • psychoakpsychoak Posts: 2,342Registered Users
    Look, the problem with these units isn't a real problem.

    CA ruined Total War when they went to free garrisons and card stack based army limits, and threw upkeep modifiers for extra stacks in as a means of slowing down increasingly large empires. It's an artifact of **** poor game design. Unit cost basically doesn't factor anymore.

    By the time you get up to legendary, your costs finally start to matter, but you're paying so much more for an extra army that it's even less relevant that something costs less. It's insane to take miners for screens because you just need too many extra unit cards to accomplish the same level of defense that you'd get with longbeards. It's insane to take irondrakes because it doesn't matter that a flame cannon is 50% more expensive, it shoots further and does about the same amount of damage. The extra great weapon warrior you can afford to take doesn't exist, it's a 20 card stack and you've already filled it up.

    Iron drakes are already epic. It just doesn't matter because their price points would all have to be identical for single player to actually work in this atrocity. A more expensive, more powerful unit, that can cover the lesser's role, will always be the better option. Those of us who use them anyway, are playing sub optimally on purpose.

    It's a game design problem, not a unit design problem. The card system is ****.
  • rymeintrinsecarymeintrinseca Posts: 552Registered Users
    edited February 3


    I liked your test. But you need to get it says very very very little avout how good a ranged unit is.

    It tests what it tests, which is largely DPS, range and survivability. As those are also very useful in actual battles there is good (≠perfect) correlation between test performance and battle performance. That's why Waywatchers, Shades, Ushabti (great bows), and Shadow-walkers, all generally considered strong units, are the rest of the top five. Bugman's are a little overrated in the test, mostly because it doesn't punish low AP that much, but they're still clearly one of the better bow units.
  • Ol_NessieOl_Nessie Posts: 3,185Registered Users


    I liked your test. But you need to get it says very very very little avout how good a ranged unit is.

    It tests what it tests, which is largely DPS, range and survivability. As those are also very useful in actual battles there is good (≠perfect) correlation between test performance and battle performance. That's why Waywatchers, Shades, Ushabti (great bows), and Shadow-walkers, all generally considered strong units, are the rest of the top five. Bugman's are a little overrated in the test, mostly because it doesn't punish low AP that much, but they're still clearly one of the better bow units.
    It tests which bow units are best against other bow units in a shootout, that's about it. It doesn't show us how those units do against each other in melee or how they shoot against any other target in the game such as AP missile infantry, melee infantry, cavalry, chariots, flyers, and monsters and it doesn't show us how well those units stand up to those targets in melee if they do have to fight in close combat. It doesn't show us how attributes like Stalk, Snipe, 360, Fire on the Move, or Vanguard factor into their value and it doesn't show us which of those units are best able to escape from chasing infantry. If I'm having trouble with enemy bow units, I'll look to this list to see who trades well against other bow units but for other answers, I'm looking elsewhere.
    Canuovea said:

    Remember that Belegar gets rangers at tier 1. Both basic types and Bugman's at tier 3.

    That's a perk for his faction only though. For Karaz-a-Karak, Karak Kadrin, and every other AI faction, all Rangers are tier 3.
    Build a Slayer Hero and make Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes great again! Thorek Ironbrow 2020

  • TennisgolfbollTennisgolfboll Posts: 7,686Registered Users


    I liked your test. But you need to get it says very very very little avout how good a ranged unit is.

    It tests what it tests, which is largely DPS, range and survivability. As those are also very useful in actual battles there is good (≠perfect) correlation between test performance and battle performance. That's why Waywatchers, Shades, Ushabti (great bows), and Shadow-walkers, all generally considered strong units, are the rest of the top five. Bugman's are a little overrated in the test, mostly because it doesn't punish low AP that much, but they're still clearly one of the better bow units.
    Nonsense. Ap dmg is greatly underestimsted in your test. As is stalk, vanguard and movement speed. Value of shields and regen overestimated. I could go on.

    You test shows nothing of actual value of ranged units.

    It is like testing them in melee and ranking them and then saying it means actual battlefield performance.
    Read all my replies as if we are having a pint and a good old time. I will always read your reply like that.
  • TennisgolfbollTennisgolfboll Posts: 7,686Registered Users
    edited February 3
    If we let a monkey randomly rank the ranged units it would get a list that would be as accurate as your list for actual battlefield performance. (Like your list some units decently ranked some completely wrong)
    Read all my replies as if we are having a pint and a good old time. I will always read your reply like that.
  • rymeintrinsecarymeintrinseca Posts: 552Registered Users

    If we let a monkey randomly rank the ranged units it would get a list that would be as accurate as your list for actual battlefield performance.

    So by your logic the best performers in the test will be no better in an actual battle than the worst performers:

    Best performers
    1. Bugman’s rangers
    =2. Waywatchers
    =2. Shades
    4. Ushabti (great bows)
    5. Shadow-walkers

    Worst performers
    =26. Peasant bowmen (fire)
    =26. Peasant bowmen (pox)
    =26. Ungor raiders
    =26. Goblin archers
    30. Black arc corsairs (handbows)
    31. Peasant bowmen

    Surely any sensible person can see that there's a strong (but not perfect) correlation with battle performance here.
  • Ol_NessieOl_Nessie Posts: 3,185Registered Users
    psychoak said:

    By the time you get up to legendary, your costs finally start to matter, but you're paying so much more for an extra army that it's even less relevant that something costs less.

    I can't wrap my head around this sentence, probably because it contradicts itself. So when the consequences of a decision are accentuated, the effects of the options on either side of said decision become less relevant? That's nonsense.

    Regarding the rest of what you said; what, we should just write off half the roster because of bad game design? No thanks. If unit cost, and by extension unit upkeep, doesn't factor well then that should be changed, no? But if we're stuck with these units the way the are because game design is having adverse secondary and tertiary effects on other areas, that's not a reason to apathetically accept those consequences; you make fixes where you can. I even made a point in the OP of expressing my disillusionment in the game's current emphasis on elite-builds. As to how to fix that, well, that's more a topic for another thread ultimately.

    I also think that just because one unit does an objectively better job than another at a specific task that it doesn't mean that the second unit shouldn't have other things going for it. For example, one Flame Cannon can do more damage than a unit of Irondrakes but if the changes I recommended were applied, the Irondrakes would still be competitive because they could defend themselves better AND reposition faster. This means you can be more aggressive with them which might make them a better fit for your strategy than the Flame Cannon. It's a similar story for the Organ Gun and Torpedo-Drakes.
    Build a Slayer Hero and make Miners, Rangers, and Irondrakes great again! Thorek Ironbrow 2020

  • TennisgolfbollTennisgolfboll Posts: 7,686Registered Users

    If we let a monkey randomly rank the ranged units it would get a list that would be as accurate as your list for actual battlefield performance.

    So by your logic the best performers in the test will be no better in an actual battle than the worst performers:

    Best performers
    1. Bugman’s rangers
    =2. Waywatchers
    =2. Shades
    4. Ushabti (great bows)
    5. Shadow-walkers

    Worst performers
    =26. Peasant bowmen (fire)
    =26. Peasant bowmen (pox)
    =26. Ungor raiders
    =26. Goblin archers
    30. Black arc corsairs (handbows)
    31. Peasant bowmen

    Surely any sensible person can see that there's a strong (but not perfect) correlation with battle performance here.
    Any sensible person can see your list does not show battle performance.

    I mean the fact you list bugmans rangers as nr 1 and then claim the list shows battle performance is absurd!
    Read all my replies as if we are having a pint and a good old time. I will always read your reply like that.
  • mightygloinmightygloin Posts: 1,376Registered Users
    edited February 3

    If we let a monkey randomly rank the ranged units it would get a list that would be as accurate as your list for actual battlefield performance.

    So by your logic the best performers in the test will be no better in an actual battle than the worst performers:

    Best performers
    1. Bugman’s rangers
    =2. Waywatchers
    =2. Shades
    4. Ushabti (great bows)
    5. Shadow-walkers

    Worst performers
    =26. Peasant bowmen (fire)
    =26. Peasant bowmen (pox)
    =26. Ungor raiders
    =26. Goblin archers
    30. Black arc corsairs (handbows)
    31. Peasant bowmen

    Surely any sensible person can see that there's a strong (but not perfect) correlation with battle performance here.
    Just to name a few examples about why this test is artificial; massed fire from cheap - and last on this list - archers like goblins and peasants "can" be really strong and more cost efficient than those top tier units. On top of that, unlike dwarfs, their faction have cavalry/monsters which can better protect and squeeze more value out of them. Also shields only work for frontal attacks and i doubt this test takes that into consideration..
  • rymeintrinsecarymeintrinseca Posts: 552Registered Users

    If we let a monkey randomly rank the ranged units it would get a list that would be as accurate as your list for actual battlefield performance.

    So by your logic the best performers in the test will be no better in an actual battle than the worst performers:

    Best performers
    1. Bugman’s rangers
    =2. Waywatchers
    =2. Shades
    4. Ushabti (great bows)
    5. Shadow-walkers

    Worst performers
    =26. Peasant bowmen (fire)
    =26. Peasant bowmen (pox)
    =26. Ungor raiders
    =26. Goblin archers
    30. Black arc corsairs (handbows)
    31. Peasant bowmen

    Surely any sensible person can see that there's a strong (but not perfect) correlation with battle performance here.
    Any sensible person can see your list does not show battle performance.

    I mean the fact you list bugmans rangers as nr 1 and then claim the list shows battle performance is absurd!
    Learn what correlation is, then we can talk.
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