Now, before people start writing comment saying that I should "find another game to play if I think Shogun 2 is bad", I would like to explain why I consider multiplayer in Shogun 2, mainly between Shogun 2 and Fall of the Samurai users, to be unbalanced.
I've been playing Shogun 2 Total war from the very first day it was released, and I still continue to play it even today. I believe I am quite familiar with how Shogun 2 "works", considering that I literally have played hundreds of online multiplayer battles. Below I shall try to explain why I think Shogun 2 Multiplayer to be unbalanced, and why I believe it needs a patch
Fall of the Samurai vs. Shogun 2: Total War = Unbalanced
It was after the release of the stand-alone-expansion pack Fall of the Samurai, that I began noticing very serious unbalancing-issues in Shogun 2 Total war. I, including many other respective Total War players, had prior to the release worried about how the Creative Assembly guys would balanced the differences between melee and gunpowder weapons. The result was devastating; the Fall of the Samurai-units were "cheaper" (damage per unit-wise), more effective, and most importantly had a far superior technological advantage* (*:not really the problem, though)). Fall of the Samurai also included units such as the Armstrong Gun, Carbine Cavalry and Generals with powerful gunpowder weapons with extraordinary range, all capable of dealing terrible, terrible damage. New maps were also included, but few seemed to have in mind the melee-units such as the traditional samurai and their critical strategic needs in order to successfully overthrow a full Imperial army of rifle-carrying infantry...
Melee units; the samurai
The Fall of the Samurai included a vast and satisfying number of firearms-carrying units. Sadly, very few "good" melee-units came with the expansion pack. Prior to the release, I was hoping there would be a wide and equal numbers of both melee and firearms units. Sadly, (yet, actually quite expected) Fall of the Samurai seemed to favor the use of firearms in-game. The expansion pack 'did' include one fantastic new type of ninja (Kisho Ninja), but no other intriguing melee units, which I found to be rather heart-breaking. The Kachi samurais included are not only expensive, but nearly impossible to use against a player that is using his firearms units smartly. Even so, on an open flat field it is literally almost impossible to fight firearms units with melee units; before engaging in close-combat, the melee units will have to travel across a flat field taking heavy morale punishment as it plunges into a rain of fire. Let's say every samurai battalion loses an average of 2,3/6 of it's men, per enemy riflemen battalion, by enemy fire, that means that a samurai army consisting of 700 men (versus 700 enemy firearms units) would lose 266 men when charging towards the enemy. That means that only 434 samurais (700-266=434 ) would remain to fight the enemy that still has 700men and not lost a single man. With these numbers, the samurais are likely to rout and thus losing the game...
Also, the level of energy would still need to be accounted for, considering that the melee army would have to run towards Dojo's to try capture them, becoming tired even before charging the enemy. While the ranged army on the other hand, can keep a distance because of its ranged ability.
Personally I am more of a close-combat guy and do not like to use firearms AT ALL. With the release of Fall of the Samurai, I found it incredible amusing to fight ranged rifle-infantry using a traditional army consisting of bow, horse, and sword units by using interesting and "awesome" tactics, some based on real-life ones. The sad thing is that I would many times lose versus a gunpowder army when fighting on basic plain grounds and when there was little to no cover for my samurai men.
"Use archers, dude!"
Yes, I have tried using archers versus Fall of the Samurai players, but the archer are NO MATCH for firearms units and even cavalry units with firearms. Especially cavalry with firearms have the ability to "hit & run", slowly decreasing your army size. The damage-per-second and accuracy of traditional bow-units are just terrible and awful compared to firearms units. You are sometimes lucky if you even kill 1 enemy soldier with your first arrow volley...(the accuracy is THAT bad, yes!!!!!!!!) and with the enemy firearms units quickly approaching your, you know you're screwed when the enemy units suddenly stop and take aim at your samurai units and slaughter them with nearly a single volley.
In front-up battles without natural cover, bow samurais are annihilated by firearms units. This is all very, very, VERY frustrating when I very much want to play a melee army versus a firearms army, hence wishing the game was balanced.
I am aware that there is a box I can check which excludes the possibility to meet Fall of the Samurai players, but I WISH to play against firearms units. I am just so much in love with the samurai tradition and its history. I am of course aware that firearms have a much greater advantage, but arrows aren't as useless in real life as they are in Shogun 2 total war. So while guns and bullets have great accuracy in FotS (and Shogun 2), bow and arrows seem to lack these features, even though bows can be extremely accurate in the hands of an experienced wielder.
I have personally experienced a game where I had three bow samurai units together with some melee infantry versus a Fall of the Samurai player who only had 2 Carbine Cavalry units and 3 Yari Cavalry. He fired at my at my archers and ran back for cover even before my first volley of arrow had landed. With his first shots he instantly killed 43 of my 90 bow samurais without losing a SINGLE unit! He continued to slowly kill my units, shooting and running, all the time, until I quit out of frustration. At the end of the game, I had killed 33 of his units, and he 446 of mine... I have tried using Mounted Gunners, a unit that came with the DLC "Rise of the Samurai, to try counter such a tactic, but they cost 1000 Gold and only have a range of 100, compared to the Carbine Cavalry which has a range of 125 and only costs 900 gold.:mad:
What needs to be done?
In conclusion, I am not really sure what balance-work needs to be done, but I am VERY sure there has to be some!
Some ideas I have is giving a regular Shogun 2 player more money to spend due to its obvious disadvantage on many maps, or to either increase the accuracy of Shogun 2 bow units. Having special maps that the Shogun 2 player could take advantage of (such as small "holes" where units can take cover from firearm missiles when playing against FotS players would also be a good feature. Adding a couple of units that Shogun 2 players could use, that specialize versus FotS players is almost a MUST
considering the bow units currently are ridiculous, and the fact that it's suicide for Shogun 2 players to charge head on an army consisting of units with firearms.
Because, as previously states, I am a melee-guy, I now only play Shogun 2, rather than Fall of the Samurai, because of its lack of variety and types of melee and bow infantry. I absolutely dislike the close-combat units in Fall of the Samurai.
Thanks for reading this, and sorry for the long text. But please, fix this issue. It is ruing the fun for a lot of players, including me!