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Odrysian Kingdom is not that bad. With video!

Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior MemberPosts: 471Registered Users
edited October 2014 in General Discussion
So, a lot of you have been complaining about the Odrysian Kingdom faction and I've been catching a lot of flak for disagreeing with you. I was asked to post some replays, and so that's what I'm doing.
This is a link to my video where I show and explain why I think Odrysian Kingdom is not an underpowered faction.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NZCcmEybucM


One thing that I forgot to mention in the video is that I think sica are already in the game in spirit, even though there is no sica model in use. This is because Thracian Peltasts have a unique melee weapon in the game that the game files name "balkan sword". It doesn't LOOK like a sica, but it does 35 weapon damage (really high for a missile unit's melee weapon) including 10 armor pen damage. This is insanely high for a missile unit and I think that this was put in with the sica in mind. Also, it's in use in the game in exactly the way that the real world Thracians used the sica. As a secondary weapon by peltasts. So, all I think CA needs to do is change the model for that melee weapon to a sica model.

I also want to link this pdf:

http://cdn.preterhuman.net/texts/history/military_history/Osprey%20-%20MAA%20360%20-%20The%20Thracians%20700%20BC%20-%20AD%2046.pdf

That is a book by an ancient historian who specializes in Thracians. It's only about a 30-35 page read and it describes, in detail, pretty much everything we know about Thracian military history, military organization, armor, weapons, and tactics. It's very interesting for a Balkan fan and I think it could be very helpful in informing us all on what is and isn't a historically accurate representation of Thracians.

Thanks! And feel free to contribute your thoughts.
Post edited by Pinkerton00 on
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Comments

  • DetailedEyesDetailedEyes Senior Member AustraliaPosts: 4,715Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    It's not about whether they're good or whether someone is capable of winning with them, it's the fact they have 2 melee units total, one of which is elite so in campaign you pretty much only have one for the duration of it, no spears and for supposedly having good archers according to the game they only have 125 range bows.
    "We shall have peace. We shall have peace when you answer for the burning of the Westfold, and the children that lie dead there. When the lives of the soldiers, whose bodies were hewn even as they lay dead against the Gates of the Hornburg are avenged! When you hang from a gibbet, for the sport of your own crows, we shall have peace."

    Theoden to Saruman at Orthanc, also my total war philosophy.
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Man, you posted 10 minutes after I posted. So, I know you didn't watch the video and didn't take the time to read the publication that I linked to. Please don't respond without familiarizing yourself with what you're responding to.
  • ErminazErminaz Senior Member Las Vegas, Nevada, USAPosts: 5,559Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Shouldn't this discussion be in the multiplayer section as these are all multiplayer battles and thus a discussion of multiplayer performance?

    The issue many of us have is in campaign, where you have to tech into higher tier units and can't recruit Thracian nobles until much later in the game as well as have to maintain high upkeep on mercenaries if you want to ensure that you have access to spears when you need them.

    Can you win with them in multiplayer and single player, yes. I don't think anyone is saying that they are impossible to win with. What they are saying is that the roster, from a gameplay perspective, leaves much to be desired with limited choices in game.

    Also your link to copyrighted material will be removed and you might get penalized for it.

    Edit: I really need to go to sleep as I can't even type correctly tonight...
    Tacitus Quotes:
    Auferre, trucidare, rapere, falsis nominibus imperium; atque, ubi solitudinem faciunt, pacem appellant.
    They plunder, they slaughter, and they steal: this they falsely name Empire, and where they make a wasteland, they call it peace.

    Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges.
    The more numerous the laws, the more corrupt the government.

    I found Rome a city of filth covered marble and left it a pile of rubble. - Me
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Erminaz wrote: »
    Shouldn't this discussion be in the multiplayer section as these are all multiplayer battles and thus a discussion of multiplayer performance?

    The issue many of us have is in campaign, where you have to tech into higher tier units and can't recruit Thracian nobles until much later in the game as well as have to maintain high upkeep on mercenaries if you want to ensure that you have access to spears when you need them.

    Can you win with them in multiplayer and single player, yes. I don't think anyone is saying that they are impossible to win with. What they are saying is that the roster, from a gameplay perspective, leaves much to be desired with limited choices in game.

    First, a lot of people are saying exactly that.

    Second, read the publication that I linked to. It explains how the roster is actually exactly historically accurate.
  • ErminazErminaz Senior Member Las Vegas, Nevada, USAPosts: 5,559Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    First, a lot of people are saying exactly that.

    Second, read the publication that I linked to. It explains how the roster is actually exactly historically accurate.

    I have already edited my post while you were responding.
    Tacitus Quotes:
    Auferre, trucidare, rapere, falsis nominibus imperium; atque, ubi solitudinem faciunt, pacem appellant.
    They plunder, they slaughter, and they steal: this they falsely name Empire, and where they make a wasteland, they call it peace.

    Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges.
    The more numerous the laws, the more corrupt the government.

    I found Rome a city of filth covered marble and left it a pile of rubble. - Me
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Erminaz wrote: »
    Also your link to copyrighted material will be removed and you might get penalized for it.

    The publication is lawfully included in the relevant database and my link to it does nothing to breech copyright law. Stop trying to divert attention away from the subject matter.
  • Ironside12Ironside12 Senior Member Posts: 6,127Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    The publication is lawfully included in the relevant database and my link to it does nothing to breech copyright law. Stop trying to divert attention away from the subject matter.

    Forum rules. It's not the publication that is breaching any copyright laws, it's you sharing it.
    Sjiriki wrote: »
    Balancing is a far more intricate thing than looking at who wins a 1v1 fight.

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  • stealthnskstealthnsk Senior Member NovosibirskPosts: 1,166Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Well, I really don't see real point for discussion here.

    Yes, OK is totally playable, although it requires significant tactical skill. On the other hand, it has smallest roster from all playable factions, I believe. So adding more units, even if they are just variants of existing units (i.e. middle-tier rhomphalia) would be great.
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    stealthnsk wrote: »
    Well, I really don't see real point for discussion here.

    Yes, OK is totally playable, although it requires significant tactical skill. On the other hand, it has smallest roster from all playable factions, I believe. So adding more units, even if they are just variants of existing units (i.e. middle-tier rhomphalia) would be great.

    It does not require significant tactical skill. If it did, I wouldn't be able to do it with any reliability.
    Yeah, they have the smallest roster, but only because the real Thracians didn't have very varied armies. Also, they only have one fewer unit than a couple other factions. No matter what, there's going to be a faction with the smallest roster. Why can't it be this one?
    Adding a rhomphaia unit between warrior and nobles wouldn't serve a unique tactical purpose. I would advocate giving javelins to their melee infantry for both interesting gameplay as well as historical accuracy, but any new unit would be unnecessary.
  • wealthyempirewealthyempire Senior Member USAPosts: 1,125Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    In all three battles the Odrysians had more soldiers total. You took about the same number of casualties in the first one, more casualties in the second one and your opponent of course took more in his loss. Is that a theme or just coincidence? In multiplayer it's just a battle so you can get away with that as long they can hold long enough to get the victory. In campaign it would take longer to replenish those losses then other factions. Just wondering, haven't tried them since the last patch.
    Guides and other informative threads
    S2, RotS, FotS Economic Quick Reference Guides
    http://www.twcenter.net/forums/showthread.php?t=462317
    Check out post #2 (S2) and post #9 (RotS) for other informative threads
    The Sekigahara Campaign 2012 TWC Modding Awards Winner (Team Member)
    http://www.twcenter.net/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=1841
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    In all three battles the Odrysians had more soldiers total. You took about the same number of casualties in the first one, more casualties in the second one and your opponent of course took more in his loss. Is that a theme or just coincidence? In multiplayer it's just a battle so you can get away with that as long they can hold long enough to get the victory. In campaign it would take longer to replenish those losses then other factions. Just wondering, haven't tried them since the last patch.

    Valid point. I think it's more a coincidence considering mistakes that I made and successes on the part of my opponents. For example, the great engage by the iceni opponent was something that I think was avoidable, but that caused a lot of damage to my army and was, I think, the major reason for the high losses that I suffered.

    As you said, in multiplayer, it doesn't matter how many losses you take as long as you win.
    In the campaign, keep in mind you're dealing with the AI instead of a real person. No matter what faction you're playing, you're probably going to take a lot more losses in online multiplayer battles than you would in a campaign battle against the AI.

    EDIT: And yes, that's one of the advantages of OK. Having more men. A lot of their roster is fairly cheap and it's pretty easy to jumble things around to pad your unit count. And also, if I had more units than my opponent and took the same number of losses as them in one of the matches, then I actually came out ahead in that battle percentage-wise.
  • CSiva13CSiva13 Senior Member Posts: 809Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    no one of the 3 build is actualy a conter to OK , also you use some mercenary dacian spears and mercenary hoplites , you just dont have acess to them on campagn as faction mercenaries only on multyplayer and if you have acess to them you just cant aford to mantein them more tham 1 turn due to balkan traits , also is realy stupid using only 1 melee inf to almost all campgn the nobles come to late , like every one says it they should have a mid tier unit in there , you are the only one ho thinks that OK is good the way they are , they are boring and stupid to use on campagn most factions have to many units to chose from, OK only have 1 they need at least 1 more unit as mid tier melee inf be it a spear or a romphia or sica i dont care i just whant a mid tier melee inf , but i will not continue to argue with you because you will keep sayng that they are good the way they are and the rest of the forum will say they dont and we will not go anyhere .
    Rome 2 finished campaigns .
    GC---Odrysian Kingdom, Lusitani , Cimmeria , Iceni , Baktria , Massagetae , Sparta ,Pergamon , Getae , Athens .
    HATG---Lusitani , Syracuse , Rome .
    IA----Lepidus .
    CIG---Nervii .
    WOS---Boiotian League
  • TempestWolfTempestWolf Senior Member Posts: 803Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Thank you for posting the replays and the source of documentation. One of the things I advocate for is the viability of factions, so if one is to properly show me that a faction is viable and fun to players I am not close minded.

    I'm thinking of starting a fresh balkan thread (hopefully mods are ok with that as the balkan love thread has an unorthodox title and has become a little cluttered) and provide the videos/replays and try to find sources of documentation for all 3 balkan factions (again, I am not considering tylis here). I will add a link to your thread for odrysians and try and have a fresh start on what is needed and what would be nice.

    Also, one question... now, viability proven, are you against some new units for the balkan factions? something to spice them up a bit (and by no means a hoard of units like the suebi received, one or two at max). And, we are also advocating for sicas for the balkan factions... how would you see them implemented?
    We kill-slay all surface-things yes yes? Wait... no no... beard-things are not not surface-things... kill beard-things too... and surface things... yes yes.



    I add this image of Ikit Claw to beak up the monotony that threads can fall into (except the screenshot one). I take no credit for it and the author seems to be watermarked on it.
  • ErminazErminaz Senior Member Las Vegas, Nevada, USAPosts: 5,559Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    As you said, in multiplayer, it doesn't matter how many losses you take as long as you win.
    In the campaign, keep in mind you're dealing with the AI instead of a real person. No matter what faction you're playing, you're probably going to take a lot more losses in online multiplayer battles than you would in a campaign battle against the AI.

    EDIT: And yes, that's one of the advantages of OK. Having more men. A lot of their roster is fairly cheap and it's pretty easy to jumble things around to pad your unit count. And also, if I had more units than my opponent and took the same number of losses as them in one of the matches, then I actually came out ahead in that battle percentage-wise.

    And you are also forgetting Head-to-Head Campaigns where the AI armies are controlled by the other player. The expense of maintaining mercenaries, lack of faction mercenaries to quickly hire to fill in the missing roles within the roster (remember that in campaign they have an trait that increases the cost of mercenary upkeep) and the limit on number of armies makes it harder to ensure that you will always be able to have more than one army to take on an enemy full stack. One other consideration in Campaign is that they also don't get the kind of income a faction like Rome does thus making it harder to maintain multiple armies early on let alone mercenaries.

    My comment on the copyrighted material was just a friendly warning as moderators and administration almost always remove such links, it was not an attempt to deflect way from the subject of the thread, thus why I placed it at the end of my previous comment not at the beginning nor did I make it the only subject of my post.
    Tacitus Quotes:
    Auferre, trucidare, rapere, falsis nominibus imperium; atque, ubi solitudinem faciunt, pacem appellant.
    They plunder, they slaughter, and they steal: this they falsely name Empire, and where they make a wasteland, they call it peace.

    Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges.
    The more numerous the laws, the more corrupt the government.

    I found Rome a city of filth covered marble and left it a pile of rubble. - Me
  • MarijanMarijan Senior Member Posts: 2,001Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    I give your credit for putting that much effort into this, but you still seem to confuse or miss many aspects of the discussion, starting with the fact that this isn't the multiplayer-section of this website and discussion here are therefor mostly either general or focused on campaigns. I just watched your video, but I can only repeat myself and say that your multiplayer-performance is not representative and that there are many more aspects to be considered than multiplayer-battles. Furthermore I highly doubt that a vast majority of people said that the Odrysian Kingdom wouldn't be "viable" (especially in multiplayer) or that their unit roster is "bad" in general - its unit roster is comparably bad and inferior in direct comparison to other factions, which doesn't mean that it can't include some good units or it would be impossible to win a battle with them.

    The Thracian Nobles are the prime example for this, which have been regarded as the "best" melee infantry by many people for a while, although they never were even before their bonus vs. infantry got removed. That they are incredibly powerful doesn't mean they wouldn't be in need of re-balancing on the one hand and on the other hand doesn't mean that their unit roster in general would be fine. The Thracian Nobles for example have ridiculously high offensive capabilities, but in exchange ridiculously low defensive ones. That is one the one hand in some cases just "imbalanced", when their charge bonus for example exceeds that of elite-cavalry of other factions and their bonus vs. mounted & large is as high as that of spears, while pike-infantry receives no bonus at all, and in other cases just plain nonsense, for example when the shield, which is attached to their arm, since they are using a two-handed weapon, which makes holding a shield otherwise impossible and blocking in general very difficult, provides exactly 0 melee defense, despite being designed for blocking, but considerable armor, although it is incredibly difficult to properly block missiles with such a small shield, which is attached to your arm, and in many cases would result in projectiles piercing it (for example the javelins favored by the Thracians or the arrows of their Scythian and Dacian neighbors), which can easily pierce their arms underneath or make the shield entirely useless, for example by getting a javelin stuck in it (and getting rid of a shield attached in that way while wielding a two-handed weapon can be kind of difficult, especially during combat or on a charge). They already increased their base-melee defense by the way, which was even lower beforehand. Adjusting their stats would make them more versatile by the way and less vulnerable in many situations, which you didn't consider in your video at all, for example naval battles or sieges of walled settlements, where "charging" is simply impossible in this game and missile fire often can't be avoided (your charge bonus can also be "wasted" by skilled players by using meatshields, like Eastern Spearmen). The Thracian Nobles would still perform worse than other, more versatile elite melee infantry in such situations, but that is absolutely fine since sieges or naval battles are simply not their intended purpose. You also need to consider that you can't recruit these Thracian Nobles in campaigns initially, basically reducing you to a single unit of melee infantry for a long time, which is bad in terms of variety and diversity, even if it wouldn't be problematic in terms of balance (and the excessive use of mercenaries, as seen for example in your first battle, is not possible in many cases either, because of the very limited recruitment pools of local mercenaries and the fact that keeping them for prolonged amounts of time is barely viable, due to the only negative cultural trait in the whole game, in combination with their laughable factional mercenaries, which are a single unit of comparably bad Dacian Bowmen).

    They are wrongly portrayed on their unit cards as well by the way, but that is a comparably minor issue.

    If you want another example, we can talk about Thracian Peltasts, which do have comparably decent melee stats, but are far from what they are actually supposed to be, since they are basically regular javelin-men and skirmishers in this game, which "peltasts" weren't necessarily. They could and were used in many cases as light melee infantry, carrying 2 javelins, which is by the way similar equipment to other melee infantry, like Roman Legionaries, although with considerably lighter armor. If they were in fact skirmishers like portrayed in the game, which can't hold a line for considerable amounts of time against proper melee infantry, nobody would have deployed Thracian Peltasts to protect the flanks of his Phalanx in reality, because they would either succumb to their enemies rather quickly or in case of actual "skirmishing" not hold the line at all. That is why people were asking for a mid-tier melee infantry version of Peltasts, that do not only perform "surprisingly well for skirmishers", but are actually able to hold a line and engage properly in melee combat (the difference between melee infantry and missile infantry is more than just stat-bonuses, but the unit size is also of great importance, which makes missile infantry always inferior to melee infantry with the exact same stats in a melee engagement, since they are simply considerably less soldiers, therefor inflict less damage and lose morale more quickly).

    You also need to differentiate between balance-issues or cosmetic issues, like the absence of the Sica, although that weapon was very common and kind of iconic for the Balkan states.

    I am currently re-reading the .pdf by the way, which I already partly read before creating my own thread, but I would greatly appreciate it if you could point out what makes you for example consider the absence of spear-infantry as historically accurate, to enable people to reply in detail, which is impossible in case of the entirety of such a .pdf (which most people won't read to begin with). For example what makes you think that it would be justified that both of their cultural traits focus on mercenaries, including the only negative one in the whole game - I could only find few mentions of the use of actual "mercenaries", mostly in combination with "volunteers" of Thracian tribes or Athenian allies, which were aiding one of the Odrysian Kings, which supported them on their campaign beforehand, and afterwards gave his daughter to the Athenian general, whose soldiers continued to be part of the army of the Odrysian Kingdom for a prolonged amount of time, which can hardly be considered as actual use of "mercenaries", while he mentions the use of Thracian mercenaries by other factions numerous times (which would therefor supposedly be more deserving of traits focusing on mercenaries, let alone factions witha mercenary-based military, like Carthage).

    Lastly I want to point out that the Odrysian Kingdom does not equal the general Thracian population, especially during the period of time covered by the game, when they were heavily Hellenized and influenced by the rule of the Diadochi, which barely ended a few years before the game starts, and generally on their knees after an invasion of Celts, which resulted in the foundation of the Kingdoms of Tylis and Galatia (from which Tylis is ironically your only "ally" initially and the Greeks like the Galatians, which just failed to invade them, more than the Odrysians). The more "savage" tribes like the Triballi are even completely excluded as separate factions (unlike the "Thrace"-faction in the Imperator Augustus campaign, which includes them as well).
  • DetailedEyesDetailedEyes Senior Member AustraliaPosts: 4,715Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    I feel that I should mention Marijan that the pike bonus vs cav comes from the active formation not the unit, it's like +20 or something, apart from that it's all bang on.
    "We shall have peace. We shall have peace when you answer for the burning of the Westfold, and the children that lie dead there. When the lives of the soldiers, whose bodies were hewn even as they lay dead against the Gates of the Hornburg are avenged! When you hang from a gibbet, for the sport of your own crows, we shall have peace."

    Theoden to Saruman at Orthanc, also my total war philosophy.
  • MarijanMarijan Senior Member Posts: 2,001Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    I feel that I should mention Marijan that the pike bonus vs cav comes from the active formation not the unit, it's like +20 or something, apart from that it's all bang on.

    That actually makes sense and is one thing less to worry about, I guess, but that the Rhomphaia used by the units in this game receive a bonus vs. cavalry as high as spears (considering that they already have incredibly high stats in all regards, including armor-piercing damage, which can't be ignored when talking about general balancing) is still over the top in my opinion, although they were certainly effective when actually engaging with cavalry in prolonged melee combat.
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Also, one question... now, viability proven, are you against some new units for the balkan factions? something to spice them up a bit (and by no means a hoard of units like the suebi received, one or two at max). And, we are also advocating for sicas for the balkan factions... how would you see them implemented?

    Thanks, I appreciate your supportive response.

    As far as the sica is concerned, as I said, the Thracians only used it as a secondary weapon for skirmishing troops. I would love to see it in game, but I don't think it would require any new units. On the other hand, I think it would be cool to see it given to the Ardiaei by changing the weapon on something like the Illyrian Raiders. I think it would fit better there than an axe. I'm not certain that it would make much sense for the Getae, though.

    As far as new units are concerned, I understand why people want a mid tier melee unit. The thought is that it would make the campaign easier to handle. I get that. The problem is that a spear or sword unit would be historically inaccurate. I think Marijam's idea of a beefier peltast-type unit is interesting, but still doesn't quite fit the history. Thracians were often used to hold flanks because the rain of missiles that they specialized in was great deterrent for an enemy charge. Also, most armies put peltasts on the flanks, so your flank peltasts would be fighting other flank peltasts. The peltast was favored because, while it could harass heavier troops with missile fire, they were light enough to avoid charges from heavier troops but still held a melee advantage against other light troops such as archers or javelinmen. And the number of soldiers that were a bit heavier was so small because that was only nobles. So, I think, if you gave Thracian nobles a couple javelins, that would cover that.
    This leaves the only option as a mid tier rhomphaia unit, which I don't think would be terribly helpful. The problem is that, since any new unit wouldn't be an elite unit, the improvements upon the stats of the warrior wouldn't be very significant, and you would end up with another unit that essentially doesn't feel any different from what you already have, so I don't think it would be worth adding.

    If you want more units, I'm not sure what can be done. But honestly, I'm not convinced that they need more units. Even without nobles for most of the game, I actually had a ton of fun in my Odrysian Kingdom campaign. While the warriors tend to take more casualties in battles than you might like, I was still able to defeat full roman or greek stacks with just one army of my own with nothing but warriors, peltasts, a couple archers, and lots of skirmisher and melee cav.
    I thought it was a lot of fun, as well, to see an army trying to invade, taking a tiny defensive force of yours, fill it to bursting with mercs for very cheap, beat the invader, and then disband the army.
    I did get the Getae to join my confederation, which gave me an army full of ****** Dacian spears and a couple of their second tier spears, which I used. But I still used armies that were entirely Odrysian.
    Basically, I found it to be a lot of fun and thought that it provided a lot of unique gameplay and I honestly didn't get the feeling that I needed anything else. When I play a faction like Rome or the Seleucids, on the other hand, I actually feel kind of overwhelmed by their choices. I get that that's not everybody, but I think it's good for the game to have a faction or two to cater to the players who don't like having endless unit options.
  • MarijanMarijan Senior Member Posts: 2,001Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    As far as the sica is concerned, as I said, the Thracians only used it as a secondary weapon for skirmishing troops. I would love to see it in game, but I don't think it would require any new units. On the other hand, I think it would be cool to see it given to the Ardiaei by changing the weapon on something like the Illyrian Raiders. I think it would fit better there than an axe. I'm not certain that it would make much sense for the Getae, though.

    The categorization of the Sica or swords in general by a single source as "secondary" weapon, does by no means mean that they didn't use it regularly - and they did, a lot. As I already said, Peltasts, unlike regular javelin-men, weren't necessarily "skirmishers" or even missile infantry, but light melee infantry, with only 2 javelins. I don't know how long you expect them to hold on to their "primary weapon", those two javelins, in battles where they are supposed to hold their ground and for example protect a flank of an army, which could last for comparably long periods of time. As other melee infantry, which has 2 javelins in addition to their melee weapons, they didn't simply go home when these were thrown, but engaged in melee combat and did their job (if Thracian mercenaries didn't decide that they actually don't want to and switched sides, which wasn't that rare for these fellows). Whether you consider the 2 javelins or their swords or large daggers as "primary" or "secondary" weapon is completely irrelevant, since both were used by these soldiers extensively. "Primary" could even simply refer to the fact that they were used first, which is in case of javelins is the only thing that actually makes sense, since holding on to them in melee combat is terribly awkward and throwing them while engaged is obviously kind of difficult, so you want to get rid of them beforehand (which is why fire-at-will is greatly appreciated, which is by the way another general improvement the Odrysian Kingdom doesn't benefit from and is therefor put at a disadvantage in comparison to other factions, which can partly make great use of this new feature). A vast majority of sword-armed units used them as "secondary" weapons, simply since there was no disadvantage to bringing a couple of javelins, which could obviously be very useful.
    As far as new units are concerned, I understand why people want a mid tier melee unit. The thought is that it would make the campaign easier to handle. I get that. The problem is that a spear or sword unit would be historically inaccurate. I think Marijam's idea of a beefier peltast-type unit is interesting, but still doesn't quite fit the history. Thracians were often used to hold flanks because the rain of missiles that they specialized in was great deterrent for an enemy charge. Also, most armies put peltasts on the flanks, so your flank peltasts would be fighting other flank peltasts. The peltast was favored because, while it could harass heavier troops with missile fire, they were light enough to avoid charges from heavier troops but still held a melee advantage against other light troops such as archers or javelinmen. And the number of soldiers that were a bit heavier was so small because that was only nobles. So, I think, if you gave Thracian nobles a couple javelins, that would cover that.
    This leaves the only option as a mid tier rhomphaia unit, which I don't think would be terribly helpful. The problem is that, since any new unit wouldn't be an elite unit, the improvements upon the stats of the warrior wouldn't be very significant, and you would end up with another unit that essentially doesn't feel any different from what you already have, so I don't think it would be worth adding.

    Not necessarily "easier" to handle, but rather more interesting to play as, because it adds more diversity, variety and a lot of possibilities to their unit roster and your campaign in general. You can win with nothing but Eastern Spearmen and recruit and waste as many of them as you want, especially since they are really cheap, but it becomes dull and boring really quickly, because of the lack of variety.

    My suggestion isn't really interesting at all, since we already have such Peltasts in this game - the Greek Royal Peltasts. I am still waiting for something that would actually prove or even support that Thracians didn't use spears (I hopefully sorted the issues with swords, or rather the Sica and large daggers, which regular Thracians used much more commonly than actual swords, which were mainly used by the nobility, as in a majority of other Barbarian cultures). That they didn't have organized units of spear-men is hardly relevant, since most "Barbarian" factions didn't really use organized units, which were separated by their equipment (which usually was far from standardized anyway), in general (but the Hellenized Odrysian Kingdom was more likely than any other "Barbarians", except for the Illyrians (ignoring the fact that even the Carthaginians etc. were actually called "Barbarians"), to make use of such organized units, especially during this period of time, which is shortly after the Diadochus ruling over them died).

    If you deploy Thracian Peltasts to secure and most importantly hold your flanks, since a Phalanx is otherwise very vulnerable, you don't favor them, because of their two javelins, but because you expect them to be able to actually hold that flank in melee combat. If you expected whatever they were up against to succumb to missile fire, you would deploy actual missile infantry, like regular javelin-men or archers instead. This kind of missile infantry wouldn't be able to hold a line properly though, since they either have to fall back (and possibly skirmish) once the enemy's melee infantry approaches or would succumb to them rather quickly - like they do in this game, including the Thracian Peltasts, which are currently nothing but missile infantry which can hold out slightly longer due to their stats (and therefor carries way more ammunition than Peltasts are actually supposed to). I didn't say that those Peltasts would need to be heavy infantry or that the Odrysian Kingdom is in need of heavier units by the way (in fact I am kind of certain that I even mentioned in my thread, which I think you read since you replied to it (although that reply was initially only stating that we should stop ruining the game with our suggestions, only because we supposedly don't know how to play this faction) that any additional heavily armored units would be an over-representation of armor for the Odrysian Kingdom), but they should have considerably higher melee defense than the Rhomphaia-carrying units (simply because a one-handed dagger or sword and a separate shield enable you to block much more accurately and successfully), which would allow these Peltasts to do what they were historically frequently used for - holding lines and securing flanks (against actual melee infantry, since the generals that deployed them to secure their flanks weren't afraid that those would succumb to archers in melee combat, which peltasts supposedly have a "melee advantage" against. Why anyone would purposely engage with his archers in melee combat unless it can't be avoided or as meat-shields when out of ammunition is beyond my comprehension anyway, since they are of much greater use when deployed as supporting missile infantry). You also have to take mechanics of this game like unit sizes in consideration when talking about such balancing issues, which obviously were variable in reality - in this game missile infantry units are always (with the rare exception of some ship crews) smaller than melee infantry units, which automatically puts them at a disadvantage in any kind of melee combat.

    A mid-tier Rhomphaia unit is, as you already said, kind of pointless and doesn't add anything new to their roster, which is why I wouldn't recommend it at all (although even this "illusion" of more variety and diversity might help to make this faction less monotonous to play as).
    If you want more units, I'm not sure what can be done. But honestly, I'm not convinced that they need more units. Even without nobles for most of the game, I actually had a ton of fun in my Odrysian Kingdom campaign. While the warriors tend to take more casualties in battles than you might like, I was still able to defeat full roman or greek stacks with just one army of my own with nothing but warriors, peltasts, a couple archers, and lots of skirmisher and melee cav.

    I was able to defeat said stacks of AI armies with basically depleted garrisons. The AI can act semi-braind-dead occasionally and their bad performance is kind of irrelevant when talking about balancing or variety between playable factions, as long as it doesn't relate to something the AI simply can't deal with (for example when the AI blindly rushed towards artillery and completely ignored everything else, which was kind of game-breaking, especially in addition to the former effectiveness of the artillery itself). That you can still win a campaign on legendary with nothing but trash-units, like Eastern Spearmen, is sad, but doesn't mean that a faction with Eastern Spearmen is therefor otherwise completely fine or balanced, let alone interesting to play as.
    I thought it was a lot of fun, as well, to see an army trying to invade, taking a tiny defensive force of yours, fill it to bursting with mercs for very cheap, beat the invader, and then disband the army.
    I did get the Getae to join my confederation, which gave me an army full of ****** Dacian spears and a couple of their second tier spears, which I used. But I still used armies that were entirely Odrysian.
    Basically, I found it to be a lot of fun and thought that it provided a lot of unique gameplay and I honestly didn't get the feeling that I needed anything else. When I play a faction like Rome or the Seleucids, on the other hand, I actually feel kind of overwhelmed by their choices. I get that that's not everybody, but I think it's good for the game to have a faction or two to cater to the players who don't like having endless unit options.

    That is how every other faction usually makes use of mercenaries as well, because their upkeep cost and lack of experience, morale and equipment bonuses makes them rarely worth keeping for prolonged periods of time, with the exception of factions like Carthage, with considerable bonuses (not only for the faction, but for generals as well) and a great variety of foreign mercenaries at their disposal - instead of a single unit of Dacian Bowmen. The Thracians would be ironically due to their lackluster unit roster one of the factions that would benefit the most from levy-recruitment or mercenaries as permanent parts of their armies, but the only negative cultural trait in the whole game basically limits them to the ridiculous instant-emergency-army use of mercenaries. I would prefer "too many" choices and possibilities over too few any time - if I don't want to make use of something, I don't have to, but if I can't make use of something, although I might want to, it gets frustrating rather quickly, especially when I am denied such options and possibilities for reasons I fail to comprehend (best example being the lack of spear-infantry, but you can still convince me of the historical accuracy of said circumstance).

    My thread included suggestions like giving factions that formed a confederation access to at least some of the units of its members (for example Dacian spear-infantry for the Odrysian Kingdom or Thracian Warriors/Peltasts for the Getae, depending on who you are playing as), which would many Barbarian factions greatly benefit from and make up for their inability to subjugate factions and make use of levy-recruitment (which the Odrysian Kingdom as Hellenized Kingdom which united and in many cases subjugated many Thracian tribes (and Greek colonies) should definitely be able to by the way), although none of them as much as the Daco-Thracian Confederation, but you apparently didn't like that suggestion either, judging by your response to it.
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    @Marijan, this section of the forum is for general Rome 2 discussion and I'm trying to talk about the Odrysian Kingdom generally. I think it fits here perfectly.

    Thracian Nobles still have a bonus vs cav. It's not gone. My point about them being ridiculously powerful is that it really makes up for a loss in certain parts of the roster and, as I've said before, a gain in some of those parts of the roster would cause the nobles to be excessive and would require them to be toned down. That's not inherently bad, but I would be disappointed because the strength of the nobles (and even the offensive strength of the warriors) is a really fun, unique aspect to the playstyle of OK and I would hate to see it watered down or lost.
    A lot of factions have pretty excessive units, but all of them, like the nobles, are excessively expensive. Look at Oathsworn, for instance. Or Berserkers. Or elite Celtic cavalry. Or Royal Spartans. Or elephants and chariots. Using them forces your opponent to change their tactics in order to mitigate their effect, and that causes interesting gameplay.

    Regarding the shield, I think 0 melee defense on it makes sense since it's only used by rhomphaia units. When you have that big 2 handed weapon, the kind of agility required to effectively use that shield is simply not possible. Melee defense is really hard with any 2 handed weapon, no matter what Aragorn's choreographer might lead you to believe. That's why most melee soldiers throughout history have almost always used a single handed weapon and a shield. A unit with a 2 handed weapon should rightfully have very poor melee defense and the buckler they might have shouldn't (and wouldn't) be very effective for that purpose. The only practical purpose that that shield would provide in battle would be to defend some of your vitals from missile fire when you're not in melee combat. For a shield that small, I admit, 20 armor might be a little high, but that was CA's attempt to keep the units from being too squishy. I might be ok with reducing it since nobles are so strong as is, but that would ruin the warriors, so I'm not sure it's a good idea.
    And while most thracians used wicker shields that are easily pierced (well accounted for by the skirmishers, peltasts, and slingers), the wealthier soldiers could get solid wooden shields or even metal ones. Since the wealthier soldiers were also the only ones that could afford helmets, I think we can assume that all the warriors and nobles are wealthier Thracians, with the Nobles being the wealthiest.

    Yes, their charge bonus can be wasted on charge soaking lines, but that's true for anything. That's where strategy comes in. No matter what unit you're using, cataphracts, praetorians, or nobles, you would do well to avoid charging into a meat shield unit. And if you're facing a heavy charge, you try to use meat shields to give you an advantage. Of course there are ways to mitigate the effects of powerful units. If there weren't, the game would be broken.

    Regarding sieges, I have a couple points. First, I'm not sure that the Thracians ever really sieged much. I know of one instance in particular where they planned to siege a city, but the Athenians didn't show up, so they decided to just raid the countryside instead.
    Second, Not every faction is good at sieges. I don't know if you've ever played a nomad campaign, but it's next to impossible to win a siege battle as them. If you want to take a walled settlement, you pretty much always siege them out so they have to fight you in the open where your armies do much better. Odrysian Kingdom is much the same way.

    As I said in my previous post, I understand how some people are frustrated by the relative lack of unit diversity, but I personally found their campaign to be uniquely interesting and a lot of fun as it is. And I think it's good for the game and important to have some factions that cater to the players who prefer this type of faction because they can feel overwhelmed by the seemingly endless unit choices offered by factions like Rome or the Seleucids.

    Now peltasts. Peltasts were exactly skirmishers that were slightly better in melee. They were very light because that's what the Thracians liked. And while they were almost always artistically depicted with 2 javelins, as the publication points out, all written historical accounts of them indicate that they carried more than that. As I also said, there were good reasons to use peltasts on a flank. The rain of javelins was great deterrent to an aggressive enemy and, besides, almost all armies put their lightest troops on the flanks, so your peltasts would usually end up fighting skirmishers or peltast-equivalents. If, on the off chance, they did encounter heavy troops, they had that rain of javelins, and they had mobility to avoid charges. But the chances of the enemy putting heavy troops on the flanks was next to nothing. If they ever encountered anything heavier than the lightest troops available, it would be cav. Accounts of how they dealt with cav typically involve opening the ranks to let the cav through and showering them with javelins as they passed by, which was apparently very effective, although not exactly possible in Rome 2. There is talk of some long spears mixed in with the peltasts that some historians believe would help ward off cavalry and support the peltasts, but the last mention of those spears was in the 4th century BC, so historians believe that the Thracians stopped using them roughly a century before the start date of Rome 2. They think this was probably in response to contemporary changes in Greek armies which was, in turn, necessitated by encounters with Thracians.
    There are also accounts of later period Thracian armies intermixing light troops with their heavy cav, but they were armed with daggers and were used to run around the cav fights, hamstringing enemy horses.

    One thing to note is that, in the ancient world, light infantry almost always meant missile infantry. So, if someone talks about light infantry, they're almost definitely talking about skirmishers, javelinmen, archers, and slingers. That's what peltasts would typically be up against when used on flanks, and that's what they were expected to beat in melee. They did, and they can certainly beat any of those in melee in the game. I haven't tested it yet, but looking at the stats, I think they might beat levy freemen in a melee fight. Real peltasts wouldn't have been expected to beat anything much heavier than that in melee without cav support or supporting missile fire or something to give them an edge.

    On the history, I would like to say that anybody who is not willing to read and familiarize themselves with the academic material should probably refrain from the discussions about historical accuracy. Not that that's you, but you mentioned that a lot of people wouldn't be willing to read the whole thing. That's fine, but those people shouldn't be talking about historical accuracy.

    There are only 2 mentions of spears in relation to infantry. Where it says that peltasts were "armed...with javelins and daggers. Some used a thrusting spear or sword instead." This bit is slightly ambiguous, but taking into account the entire publication's emphasis on peltasts using a lot of javelins, it can be assumed that he meant they were armed with those things instead of daggers, but still armed with javelins.
    The other mention discusses long spears that historians believe would be intermixed with peltasts. This is likely talkng about the same spears that he mentioned before. The problem is that he also says that they fell out of use prior to the start of Rome 2.
    "certainly there are no references to separate bodies of spearmen" (pg. 39)
    "[Spears] are last reported in Thracian use...in 322 bc." (pg. 39)

    Rereading that section of the pdf, though, it might be cool to see a reform tech for OK that allows them to update Thracian Peltasts to Late Thracian Peltasts which would have something closer to a Thureos shield and maybe slightly more base armor.

    While the Thracians didn't make extremely heavy use of professional soldiers for hire, the cultural traits, as I've said before, are utilizing the merc system to replicate the feel of instantly raising a large army and seeing it dissolve just as quickly, which has historical basis. Sure, if they could do it in a way that was slightly more historically accurate, that would be cool, but no other system in the game is capable of providing that gameplay incentive and it would be a waste of development efforts to create a whole system just to do something like that for a couple factions. All they need to do, I think, is drastically increase the quantity of available factional mercenaries. The culture traits, themselves, I think are interesting, fun, and do exactly what they were intended to do.

    Tylis is your ally at the beginning because you both hate Macedon. And the Triballi are separate because there are a whole lot of historical references to them independently relative to most other Thracian tribes. At the time of Rome 2's start date, the Odrysian Kingdom was actually at its peak. It had, at the time, united almost all of Thrace.
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    And Marijan, I understand that you think they're boring to play as. But you're not everybody. I actually think they're one of the most interesting factions to play as. Even in campaign. Different players like different sorts of things. I, for instance, find Rome incredibly boring to play, despite their huge variety of units due to auxiliaries. But that doesn't mean that I'm going to complain to CA and beg them to change the faction. Rome was designed for players who like different things than I do. And Odrysian Kingdom was designed for players who like different things than you do. Why is that so hard to accept?
  • CSiva13CSiva13 Senior Member Posts: 809Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Why is that so hard to accept?
    when will you undestant that you are the only one arond heare that think OK is good the way they are ? take a minute to think abaut it .....
    Rome 2 finished campaigns .
    GC---Odrysian Kingdom, Lusitani , Cimmeria , Iceni , Baktria , Massagetae , Sparta ,Pergamon , Getae , Athens .
    HATG---Lusitani , Syracuse , Rome .
    IA----Lepidus .
    CIG---Nervii .
    WOS---Boiotian League
  • RagnarosRagnaros Senior Member Posts: 236Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    And Marijan, I understand that you think they're boring to play as. But you're not everybody. I actually think they're one of the most interesting factions to play as. Even in campaign. Different players like different sorts of things. I, for instance, find Rome incredibly boring to play, despite their huge variety of units due to auxiliaries. But that doesn't mean that I'm going to complain to CA and beg them to change the faction. Rome was designed for players who like different things than I do. And Odrysian Kingdom was designed for players who like different things than you do. Why is that so hard to accept?

    Cause everyone want Odrysian to get more units, I can't see anything else other than you that don't want the change here. Go away
  • CSiva13CSiva13 Senior Member Posts: 809Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Ragnaros wrote: »
    Cause everyone want Odrysian to get more units, I can't see anything else other than you that don't want the change here. Go away
    this dude dont undestand that he is the only one ho dont whants that OK have more units...
    Rome 2 finished campaigns .
    GC---Odrysian Kingdom, Lusitani , Cimmeria , Iceni , Baktria , Massagetae , Sparta ,Pergamon , Getae , Athens .
    HATG---Lusitani , Syracuse , Rome .
    IA----Lepidus .
    CIG---Nervii .
    WOS---Boiotian League
  • MarijanMarijan Senior Member Posts: 2,001Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    And Marijan, I understand that you think they're boring to play as. But you're not everybody. I actually think they're one of the most interesting factions to play as. Even in campaign. Different players like different sorts of things. I, for instance, find Rome incredibly boring to play, despite their huge variety of units due to auxiliaries. But that doesn't mean that I'm going to complain to CA and beg them to change the faction. Rome was designed for players who like different things than I do. And Odrysian Kingdom was designed for players who like different things than you do. Why is that so hard to accept?

    I actually just wrote you a message, asking whether I should wait for you to read my second post, since I apparently posted while you were already typing and you might want to edit yours in response to that, to prevent this thread from getting messy, but your second post here is kind of insulting, since you are once again accusing people of various things, in this case me of a lack of acceptance of different preferences, which couldn't be further from the truth. You need to consider that providing more variety, diversity and possibilities doesn't prevent you from playing the way you want to, since you can simply ignore said possibilities if you don't want to take advantage of them, as I said in my second post which you probably didn't read yet, but denying people those possibilities and reducing variety and diversity can not be ignored by people, who aren't fans of it, whether you happen to like it or not.

    I will wait a while and give you a chance to edit your post, if you really shouldn't have read my second post yet, so you can reply to it properly without messing the order of this thread up, before I will respond to the post addressing me in detail.
  • ErminazErminaz Senior Member Las Vegas, Nevada, USAPosts: 5,559Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    What I don't get is how does a roster expansion hurt someone? If you like the unique way that the faction currently plays and they were to expand the roster, just ignore the other units. In my one Roman Campaign (Pompeius) I had exactly 0 praetorians in my armies, why because I don't like their unhistorical representation in my games. My armies had 1 Eagle Cohort, while Legionaries made up only a fraction of my armies and auxilia the bulk of the forces. With an expanded roster people can chose to limit themselves if they like a more limited playstyle as no one is forcing you to use units you don't agree with.

    Having more options is never a bad thing and in no way dictates how one has to play the game. Limiting rosters or even recruitment does however force particular playstyles.
    Tacitus Quotes:
    Auferre, trucidare, rapere, falsis nominibus imperium; atque, ubi solitudinem faciunt, pacem appellant.
    They plunder, they slaughter, and they steal: this they falsely name Empire, and where they make a wasteland, they call it peace.

    Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges.
    The more numerous the laws, the more corrupt the government.

    I found Rome a city of filth covered marble and left it a pile of rubble. - Me
  • ItharusItharus Senior Member Posts: 7,264Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    Marijan wrote: »
    You need to consider that providing more variety, diversity and possibilities doesn't prevent you from playing the way you want to, since you can simply ignore said possibilities if you don't want to take advantage of them

    This.

    Heck, I enjoy playing Rome pre-Marian style pretty often.

    Also guys, don't let yourselves get frustrated into attacking a poster, mods will come down on you if you shift from the argument to the individual. They already handed out warnings in the last thread.
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    The thing is that, because of the way the faction is balanced now, a roster expansion would necessitate rebalancing of the existing units in order to keep the faction from being totally overpowered. That means toning down the parts of the faction that give it character. If they expanded the roster like you're saying, the rebalancing would make them actually incomplete if you were to ignore the new units, and you would have no choice but to use the new units if you wanted to use the faction to its highest potential. Not to mention that the new units wouldn't fit the historical accuracy goals that CA has.

    And I guarantee you that I'm not the only person in the world who likes them as is. I'm just the only one here. Think about it. The people who come onto forums to talk about something are, the majority of the time, the people who want to complain. The people who don't want to complain usually don't go out of their way to go onto the forums. So, the forums are always going to have disproportionate representation for those against the current state of something in game. That's something that you see again and again in every forum community for every game.

    On the front page, for instance, there are 9 negative threads and one positive thread. The positive thread is mine. The rest of the threads are neutral. Mostly asking clarification questions about game mechanics. My question for you is this: Do you think that 9 out of 10 things that anybody has to say about this game are negative? Obviously not. It's a really good game and a lot of people love it.

    The fact is the people who like the faction aren't coming on the forums to discuss whether or not they're a good faction because they have no reason to do so.

    And even if the majority of players like factions with larger rosters, this is only a tiny minority of factions that doesn't fit your preferences. Why insist that EVERY faction be exactly what you want? I repeat, there are other types of players and it's unfair of anyone to ask CA to cater their entire game to one type.

    It's like, in LoL, I don't really like playing assassin champs and there are plenty of players who feel the same way. But I'm not going to beg Riot to make Akali tankier just because glass cannon champs don't fit my playstyle and don't fit the playstyles of a lot of other players. If they did that, they would have to make her do a lot less damage, or she would be broken. If they did that, she wouldn't be an assassin anymore. If they did that for all the assassins because people like me wouldn't stop complaining, there wouldn't be any assassins anymore. Then the game would be a lot more boring for everyone and players who like assassins wouldn't have any more reason to play the game at all.
  • Pinkerton00Pinkerton00 Senior Member Posts: 471Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    An example to differentiate variety in Rome from variety in OK. Imagine that at the game's release, Rome had only pre-Marian units Then they decided to add later period units into the game. That change wouldn't require any huge rebalancing since all of the new sword units would really just be taking the the exact tactical place of the old sword units, should you choose to use them. That's why, when you play pre-Marian, you don't really use a drastically different army composition. You still have a sword core supported by missiles and cav and maybe spears. Your missiles have lower range, but that's made up for by the drop in price and increase in damage and melee stats. They're still missiles and they fill the same role tactically. You're basically just using different (yet very similar) units to fill the same combat roles. If, however, they suddenly introduced pikes to Rome, that would be a different story. Rome's units are balanced with the assumption in mind that they will not be supporting pikes. If Rome could suddenly field pikes, they would be pretty imbalanced since they'd be able to support the pike flanks way too well. So, the solution would be to either remove the pikes or make Roman infantry weaker. Then it wouldn't feel like Rome anymore.
    That's what it would be like to give OK solid spear infantry. It's a role that is missing and the rest of the faction is currently balanced on the assumption that it will be missing.
    And I'm sorry, but it is currently possible to play differently. In multiplayer, you can choose to supplement yourself with heavy infantry mercs (as the real Thracians sometimes did) or you can choose to do without them, which is plenty effective. In single player, you can do precisely the same thing, the game just incentivizes you to do it less because that incentive is an interesting factor in gameplay that approximates actual historical factors.
  • Ironside12Ironside12 Senior Member Posts: 6,127Registered Users
    edited October 2014
    The thing is that, because of the way the faction is balanced now, a roster expansion would necessitate rebalancing of the existing units in order to keep the faction from being totally overpowered.

    .... I don't even know what to say here.

    OK gets a new Spear unit, for example. "OMG SO OVERPOWERED PLS NERF CA!!!!"

    A new spear unit, which is what everyone seems to want for the OK, at mid-tier, couldn't hurt anyone. It would just stop the OK being a general rush army, and give them more tactical validity, all you've got now is infantry in your main line that have minimal defensive capabilities. With Spears you could hold your center and use your aggressive troops as reserves or flanking forces, missiles would still be one of OK's weaknesses against. Or you could have those aggressive infantry units in the center, and Spears on the flanks to help in a cav fight. I don't see how this would make them OP and require the entire faction to be rebalanced, they're just gaining an option that all other factions have, tactically.
    Sjiriki wrote: »
    Balancing is a far more intricate thing than looking at who wins a 1v1 fight.

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