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Age of Empires III Heaven » Forums » General Discussions » The real measuring stick - civ gameplay capacities/abilities:
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Topic Subject:The real measuring stick - civ gameplay capacities/abilities:
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Ender_Ward
Skirmisher
posted 04-24-07 10:23 PM EDT (US)         
I started thinking, and it dawned on me that most of the "problem" civs are those that can do too much, too well, and not those with one particular overpowered unit or three. Those are still factors, but not primary ones. Instead of speaking in generalities, let me simply show you what I mean by looking at each civ specifically.

(Note #1: maximum economic capacity means what is the absolute maximum this civ can expand it's economy to by using gather rate techs and cards)

(Note #2: economic growth speed refers to how quickly a civ can expand it's economy both early and mid game)

(Note #3: I should've specified this right away, "mid game" military strength is actually everything from about 9 minutes in till the rest of the game, including going way into Imperial)

~~~British~~~
Boom: strong
Economic early growth speed potential: very fast
Economic mid game growth speed potential: moderate
Rush: weak
Turtle: weak
Fast Fortress: weak
Military strength early game: average
Military strength mid game: strong
Max economic capacity: very strong


~~~Spanish~~~
Boom: moderate
Economic early growth speed potential: fast
Economic mid game growth speed potential: moderate
Rush: strong
Turtle: weak
Fast Fortress: extremely strong
Military strength early game: extremely strong
Military strength mid game: strong
Max economic capacity: very strong


~~~Germans~~~
Boom: moderate
Economic early growth speed potential: moderate
Economic mid game growth speed potential: moderate
Rush: weak
Turtle: weak
Fast Fortress: moderate
Military strength early game: weak
Military strength mid game: strong
Max economic capacity: very strong


~~~Ottomans~~~
Boom: weak
Economic early growth speed potential: very fast
Economic mid game growth speed potential: weak
Rush: very strong
Turtle: weak
Fast Fortress: strong
Military strength early game: strong
Military strength mid game: strong
Max economic capacity: strong


~~~Sioux~~~
Boom: moderate
Economic early growth speed potential: moderate
Economic mid game growth speed potential: weak
Rush: strong
Turtle: weak
Fast Fortress: strong
Military strength early game: very strong
Military strength mid game: very strong
Max economic capacity: weak


~~~Russians~~~
Boom: strong
Economic early growth speed potential: moderate
Economic mid game growth speed potential: strong
Rush: moderate
Turtle: moderate
Fast Fortress: weak
Military strength early game: average
Military strength mid game: strong
Max economic capacity: very strong


~~~French~~~
Boom: strong
Economic early growth speed potential: moderate
Economic mid game growth speed potential: very strong
Rush: moderate
Turtle: weak
Fast Fortress: strong
Military strength early game: average
Military strength mid game: extreme
Max economic capacity: very strong


~~~Dutch~~~
Boom: strong
Economic early growth speed potential: extreme
Economic mid game growth speed potential: moderate
Rush: moderate
Turtle: extreme
Fast Fortress: strong
Military strength early game: strong
Military strength mid game: very strong
Max economic capacity: weak


~~~Aztec~~~
Boom: very strong
Economic early growth speed potential: fast
Economic mid game growth speed potential: extreme
Rush: moderate
Turtle: strong
Fast Fortress: moderate
Military strength early game: average
Military strength mid game: extreme
Max economic capacity: very strong


~~~Portuguese~~~
Boom: strong
Economic early growth speed potential: slow
Economic mid game growth speed potential: very fast
Rush: weak
Turtle: strong
Fast Fortress: moderate
Military strength early game: weak
Military strength mid game: strong
Max economic capacity: very strong


~~~Iroquois~~~
Boom: extreme
Economic early growth speed potential: moderate
Economic mid game growth speed potential: extreme
Rush: strong
Turtle: extreme
Fast Fortress: extremely strong
Military strength early game: strong
Military strength mid game: extreme
Max economic capacity: very strong


Now, you might say that these evaluations are highly subjective, and they are, since they are based on how I view those civs. If you agree with my assessments, see if you can notice the problems. See if you can correlate how the civs with few or no weaknesses, and/or too many strengths perform overall.
See if you agree that perhaps ES should be thinking in broader terms. Instead of giving a small cut or boost to a unit here and there, they should be evaluating civ abilities, capacities as a whole. By taking a holistic approach to civ balance, they can achieve better results. Not just extend the never ending game of musical civs.

By which I mean, identify what are the important abilities that are required for a civ to be competitive in TWC. Make sure that no civ is left behind so completely as to have no chance, in that ability. Identify what combination of abilities leads to too much strength. Identify which combination leads to too much strength too quickly. Etc. Address those major issues.

For example, say you've identified that the Spanish combination of early economy growth speed, their early game military strength and their FF strength combine into a force that most other civs have a very hard time dealing with at the time it comes together. Evaluate how, perhaps, if you toned down any one of these three abilities, what kind of effect it would have on the overall matchup between Spanish and other civs.

By looking at these civ abilities, you can note confluences that lead to too much advantage. It isn't hard to notice how a civ that is very strong at too many things too early is going to dominate so much, early on, that it'll never actually give other civs the opportunity to get to the point where they have some strengths.

At the same time, if you see a civ that has too many very strong abilities/capacities mid/later game, would become impossible to compete with if not defeated early on. It would follow then, that the matchup would be simply impossible for a civ that doesn't have that many (or any) strengths early on to capitalize upon, and hopefully defeat the late game monster.

Anyway, enough rambling. Hopefully you get my drift.


"One wants to be loved, failing that admired, failing that feared, failing that hated and despised. One wants to instill in other people some form of emotion. The soul shudders before emptiness and wants contact, no matter the cost."

[This message has been edited by Ender_Ward (edited 04-25-2007 @ 01:56 AM).]

AuthorReplies:
Adam42
Skirmisher
posted 04-30-07 05:16 PM EDT (US)     101 / 117       
How many Aztec rushes have you fended off, as Ottoman, in 1.03?

As Many as Dopple, here, I'm fairly certain (read: none).

A few, not that many, but not that much less than yourself.

The starting wood is already used up before you're in Colonial. In a 400 wood start you've used 300 of it on two ATPs and 100 of it on a house. In a 33% likelyhood of a 500 wood start, you've used 450 on 3 ATPs and chopped another 50 for a house. Or you've only built 2 ATPs, 2 houses and did not chop at all. Either way, that wood is spent.
Yes it was worded a bit weirdly tbh, i know that all wood is used up before you reach colonial, you have to chop 200 woodby 5:10-20ish.

You wanna chop 200 wood in time, you'll need a minimum of 5 of them on wood. That leaves you with a whopping 5-6 villagers to get your required food and gold. Good luck with that.
Assuming you need the 200 wood by 5:10 and start aging up at 2:35: that gives you 155 seconds with which to gather 200 wood - which means you need at most 3 on wood once you start aging, which means you can put 2-3 on food and 5 on gold. You can get 4 or 5 abus out, and they can hit and run around your TC with help from tc fire and minutemen.

No wood is lost. Read, please, what I'm actually writing. You don't fully collect the crates. You leave them partially gathered until Silk Road takes effect and THEN you finish collecting them. I even do that with the 400 age up wood sometimes when I FF, so it becomes 520 wood instead.
You do write quite a lot ender.. your last post I reckon was in the region of 1000 words. :\

It is not the massive effort you think it is for an Aztec player to get his Pumas out. Ship 6, train 5. Easy as hell.
I don't know what Oi vey means (heh) but those trained pumas means he has to get 250 gold and send a shipment, i'm sure you know this but it's a big aztec disadvantage that pumas cost gold and mace/coyo cost wood. It's not particularly hard.. but 11 pumas are easy to deal with compared to 10 coyotes if you see what I mean.

Trained with what resources?
You're not Spanish, your shipments aren't pouring in and you don't even have a trade route anymore to switch to XP mode. And the first food or gold crate is already your 4th shipment. Your villagers are spending half their time garrisoned and not generating resources.
You only get, at best, 1700 food out of your two food crates, which will take a while to come. You get, at best, 1700 gold out of your two crates that will also take an eternity to arrive. These shipments are nice and all, but they'll never keep up with the Aztec economic growth. Especially when you've lost your equalizer, the trade route.

Those "super shipments" require XP first and time second. And you're short on both.

Well, you will have a trade route from 5:15-30 to 6:00-30 when he takes down your first TP, and after that you still have more tps gathering. It takes a very long time to walk around the map taking down tps, especially when they have 4500 HP and shoot back. Really it does take a long time, even with pumas. while he's taking them down they're all still gathering.

And really once you got 15 jans and 5-10 abus out you can start pushing back after he's taken most/all your trade route, when you can rebuild them.

Now this is, ofcourse, if the Aztec player leads with Pumas and Macehualtin, attacking your base. This doesn't actually happen often. What does happen is he goes for your base with Macehualtin and with the Pumas after the trade route. Are you going to tell me you can somehow split your 5 Abus and maybe 5 Jans to go protect both? Or are you gonna let your villagers sit in the TC not gathering a thing as you take your measly force to protect your trade route?
5 abus can force mace back... and he doesn't have anything to go after your abus with either, you can just hit and run killing 2 mace each shot if he's stupid enough to chase you. And like mentioned earlier, the atps give you a nice cushion with which to build jan/abus.

Do you realize that 9/10 of my games don't show up on those stats because they never actually finish (or in the case of most, even get off the ground)? The games you see on my ELO page are the ones that actually go to the "You Are Victorious" or "You Abandon Your Colony" screen.

I have more experience barely fighting off (with the standard Ottoman military), breezing through them with native LI, or losing to Aztec rushes, in 1.03, than I'd like.

And games that go OOS before the game is even decided gives you experience? Like you said, most games never even get off the ground - if this is true, then how does a 5 minutes game give you an idea of how to fight off rushes?
LoH_Numa1
Skirmisher
posted 04-30-07 06:10 PM EDT (US)     102 / 117       
Any way to empirically test these?

Check out my Blog at www.lohcenter.net
Garlef
Skirmisher
posted 04-30-07 06:20 PM EDT (US)     103 / 117       
Do you realize that 9/10 of my games don't show up on those stats because they never actually finish ...

I hope that you don't mean that only 10% of your games end normally.
As you have played 400+ games in TWC...
I'd hate to learn that you have particpated in over 4000 games in TWC and only a mere ~400 were finished properly.

I know I'd have quit TWC and all ES games long ago if 90% of my games died a faulty death.

Ender_Ward
Skirmisher
posted 04-30-07 06:54 PM EDT (US)     104 / 117       
I have beaten one player who is and was back then higher rated than you ever were before: "König_Ludwig".

He played exclusively Aztecs back then and the patch was 1.03.


You do know I can check this stuff, right?

König_Ludwig, for the vast majority of his games in 1.03 has played Iroquois. Some Sioux and a very tiny minority of his games have been with Aztec.
Back in 1.02, König_Ludwig was in the 1900s and like 32-33 PR while playing Germans and French. I remember this because I downloaded his recs from AS (I always loved his unique play style). Now, shock of shocks, he's 2100 with ... Iroquois.

So for your information, my dear Dopple, König_Ludwig has only recently surpassed me in rating (not by much), while playing the most broken civ in the game. Guess what, I'm stil 2100 with 1.03 Ottomans.
Not that it really matters, actually, since I consider him the better player anyway (which goes to show how inaccurately ELO or PR can be). It takes quite a bit of skill to be even in the high 1900s with 1.02 Germany playing against the likes of Iroquois and Spanish.

But that is all beside the point. You played and won one game against an Aztec rusher. Guess what, I won some too! Do you think this proves the ease of the matchup? Hell no. I win against Iroquois, Spanish and Dutch lamers too. More than once!
Does this mean these are easy matchups?

If it's so bloody easy, why don't you play 10 and win at least 8 against somebody that's actually on your level (which neither me nor König_Ludwig are)? After all, it's so easy, right?

A few, not that many, but not that much less than yourself.

I doubt you've seen even a fifth of the Aztec rushes I have in 1.03.
In fact, in your last 150 games (as far as I bothered to look), there are two Ottoman vs Aztec games.

Yes it was worded a bit weirdly tbh, i know that all wood is used up before you reach colonial, you have to chop 200 woodby 5:10-20ish.

In order not to get housed on a 400 wood start, you'll have to chop 200 wood by 4:30, or you're late on stagecoach. You might as well send 700 wood first, my way, and achieve the same results.

Assuming you need the 200 wood by 5:10 and start aging up at 2:35: that gives you 155 seconds with which to gather 200 wood - which means you need at most 3 on wood once you start aging, which means you can put 2-3 on food and 5 on gold. You can get 4 or 5 abus out, and they can hit and run around your TC with help from tc fire and minutemen.

A 2:35 age up actually happens a minority of the time due to a variety of circumstances (hunts, crates, etc). You'll be aging at 4:00 or later most of the time.
You're being seriously generous with how much you can gather with so few villagers. And again, where is the gold for Minutemen (or the food for that matter) coming from?

You can't do everything under the sun with 11 villagers.

It's not particularly hard.. but 11 pumas are easy to deal with compared to 10 coyotes if you see what I mean.

Not when you don't have anything to deal with them because you're busy dealing with the troops in your base.

And we're going round and round and round in circles ...

Really it does take a long time, even with pumas. while he's taking them down they're all still gathering.

Not every map is Great Lakes/Auracania, you know. Take New England, Sonora, Yukon, etc. On most maps the TPs are half a step away.

5 abus can force mace back... and he doesn't have anything to go after your abus with either, you can just hit and run killing 2 mace each shot if he's stupid enough to chase you. And like mentioned earlier, the atps give you a nice cushion with which to build jan/abus.

Welcome to 1.03. Macehualtin will focus fire 5 Abus Guns and win the engagement.

then how does a 5 minutes game give you an idea of how to fight off rushes?

It doesn't. The games that last to 10, 15 or 20+ minutes do.

And now I'm seriously bored. More than that, I'm bleeding tired of paper wars.


"One wants to be loved, failing that admired, failing that feared, failing that hated and despised. One wants to instill in other people some form of emotion. The soul shudders before emptiness and wants contact, no matter the cost."
Ender_Ward
Skirmisher
posted 04-30-07 07:05 PM EDT (US)     105 / 117       
I hope that you don't mean that only 10% of your games end normally.
As you have played 400+ games in TWC...
I'd hate to learn that you have particpated in over 4000 games in TWC and only a mere ~400 were finished properly.

Dear god no. I've only had the problem start about two months ago (I did finally figure out it's my ISP, after tearing out my hair for weeks and even going as far as to do a complete system reformat). Ever since Rogers started screwing around with their packet streams.
I've only attempted to play about 50-60 games since then (I stopped counting after a while). Perhaps 20 have actually finished normally.

I know I'd have quit TWC and all ES games long ago if 90% of my games died a faulty death.

Oh you have no idea how close I am to doing that. Only my love (more like addiction) for the game keeps me trying to play. That and the hope that any day now Bell DSL will become available in this (newly built) area and I can switch to them.

But I've been trying to play fewer and fewer days, lately. It's just too frustrating most of the time. Just in the last few hours I only had two games finish normally out of 7 attempted.


"One wants to be loved, failing that admired, failing that feared, failing that hated and despised. One wants to instill in other people some form of emotion. The soul shudders before emptiness and wants contact, no matter the cost."
Ossian
Skirmisher
posted 04-30-07 07:20 PM EDT (US)     106 / 117       
Oh you have no idea how close I am to doing that. Only my love (more like addiction) for the game keeps me trying to play. That and the hope that any day now Bell DSL will become available in this (newly built) area and I can switch to them.

Oh that the wish of wishes, only I have dial up rather then a cheap high speed like you


*WINDOWS CRITICAL ERROR 19891126*
Product ID: Ossian Discontinued
Contact your network admin for more details
about this special edition of player...

Allthough cetans are darker, did you know that if you read the word 'cetan' as a dutch word, that you get the same sound as when reading 'satan' in english.-Furby Killer
Adam42
Skirmisher
posted 05-01-07 04:43 PM EDT (US)     107 / 117       
I doubt you've seen even a fifth of the Aztec rushes I have in 1.03.
In fact, in your last 150 games (as far as I bothered to look), there are two Ottoman vs Aztec games.
I have played on __requiem__ as otto as well, and remember playing a few aztec.

In order not to get housed on a 400 wood start, you'll have to chop 200 wood by 4:30, or you're late on stagecoach. You might as well send 700 wood first, my way, and achieve the same results.
Well, you start aging up at say 2:35, finish aging at 4:05, get a foundry up by 4:30. You need 100 wood+the 400 wood quartermaster to get a foundry and stagecoach. Once you finish building a foundry you queue 1 abus, around when they finish training at 5:20ish you have ANOTHER 100 wood from chopping, you quickly build a house which allows you to go to 21/2 pop.

A 2:35 age up actually happens a minority of the time due to a variety of circumstances (hunts, crates, etc). You'll be aging at 4:00 or later most of the time.
2:35 is 4:00 or later... is that a typing error? I find as otto most of the time I start aging at 2:30-40, that's also true on otto recs, most of em age up at 4:00-10.

Not when you don't have anything to deal with them because you're busy dealing with the troops in your base.
I'm talking about once he HAS your TPs down and you HAVE a decent army. I'm talking about the confrontation that happens after he's taken most/all your TPs.

Not every map is Great Lakes/Auracania, you know. Take New England, Sonora, Yukon, etc. On most maps the TPs are half a step away.
I'd say the average map is sonora... granted, not miles away, but it still takes a lot of time clearing 3 TPs, thats all I was saying.

Welcome to 1.03. Macehualtin will focus fire 5 Abus Guns and win the engagement.
Macehualtin that take 21 hits to kill abus, abus take 2. He shouldn't be beating your 4/5 abus with 19 mace, you kill 2 in one shot, he kills one abus every 2 shots. Factor in hit and run as well...
Ender_Ward
Skirmisher
posted 05-01-07 07:06 PM EDT (US)     108 / 117       
"__requiem__" has two 1v1 Ottoman vs Aztec games in the last 150 (as far as I looked). One won against a 1700 player. One lost to a 1900 player (Flammifer).
Nothing more needs be said on this subject ...

Yeah I mistyped there, I meant you don't age at the same time as a rushing Aztec (before 4:00), most of the time. In 1.02, usually the Ottoman aged first. In 1.03, the rushing Aztec ages 20-30 seconds earlier.

Again, from my experience, chopping wood in transition or early Colonial is a death sentence against rushers if ATP was my first card. It it was 3 villagers or Capitalism, then it's doable. But those cards only get sent on 2 TP maps (where you're in trouble anyway, as two TPs aren't nearly enough).

On Sonora/Yukon type maps 2 out of your 3 possible TPs are right next to each other. That's 66% of your trade route that can be down in slightly over a minute under Puma spearmen attack. Oh noes! They then have to spend 15-20 seconds walking to the next one. Well I'm safe now!
Even on Auracania half the TPs are right next to another. On New England they're all right next to each other.

I have rarely won a game against a competent opponent (not just Aztec) that took down my trade route. I've won only a handfull of games where my trade post was then replaced by my opponent's own TPs.

And lastly, again, welcome to 1.03. Macehualtin focus fire owns the early Abus numbers. You can say what you want, but I see it happening in game (and the numbers support me). The extra range would've made a much bigger difference if Macehualtin weren't faster than Abus Guns. You'll kill two Macehualtin before they're on you, and the focus fire removes an Abus Gun from your group of 5 every 3 seconds. All your Abus will be gone before you kill even half the Macehualtin.

Indeed, the same thing now happens against Strelets as well, because the weaker and more numerous the units are, the higher the micro requirement from the Ottoman player and the worse Abus Guns perform against them. Hell Abus Guns can't even stand toe to toe with Muskets/Tomahawks anymore, but are forced to hit and run. The only other LI forced to do that are the Cetans. Yet they don't take 2 pop and are a hell of a lot cheaper.


"One wants to be loved, failing that admired, failing that feared, failing that hated and despised. One wants to instill in other people some form of emotion. The soul shudders before emptiness and wants contact, no matter the cost."
Voltiguer
Skirmisher
posted 05-01-07 07:37 PM EDT (US)     109 / 117       
One reason why I tend to spam hussars vs Aztecs...
Garlef
Skirmisher
posted 05-01-07 08:22 PM EDT (US)     110 / 117       
Ender & Adam42,
Why are you comparing 20 Maces to 5 Abus?
20 Maces are nearly twice the amount of resources (or VS) of 5 Abus.
I'd really hope that 2X more resources of troop type X will beat anything but direct counters, otherwise you have some truly flawed units.

If your point is that Otto can't have more than 5 Abus (and no supporting forces) out at time of 20 Maces.. well that's a more interesting discussion.

Beatnik Joe
Skirmisher
posted 05-01-07 08:52 PM EDT (US)     111 / 117       
And lastly, again, welcome to 1.03. Macehualtin focus fire owns the early Abus numbers. You can say what you want, but I see it happening in game (and the numbers support me).
I agree with Garlef. I don't see why 5 abus should completely destroy 20 macehualtin when there's such a cost disparity.

I'd really like to see a recorded game demonstrating what happens when. You're describing a few different things they can do to you, and it kind of blends together for me. Your opponent winds up sounding like some rare breed of super-Aztec that starts with 3 extra wood crates, 6 extra vills, and one long, winding mean streak.

I see it this way -- the Aztec can either go after your base with his army or he can go after your trade route with pumas while putting maces in your base. If he goes after your base with just 20 macehualtin, I see no real way you can lose this confrontation. You've got TC fire, minutemen, line of sight advantage, range advantage, and units that kill his in 2 shots (while he needs more than 20 shots to get one of yours.) At the very least, there's no way he'll keep a critical mass of troops, and those initial shipped maces are valuable. After that, any new maces are still just as wimpy, but this time they're paid for out of pocket.

A final thought and suggestion -- you are spending several eco cards while the Aztec player invests purely in military cards and cards with immediate benefit. ATP is great, but you chose to forego 3 vills. Silk Road is also great, but you chose it over a military or resource shipment. Given this, it seems completely appropriate that you'd have to suffer some slight ramp-up time before you can simply steamroll his base.

Before Silk Road, the style I (and probably most other Ottoman players) always liked to use was to ship 3 vills in discovery, grab one TP, and then just start shipping crates in colonial, starting with 700 wood and 700 gold, etc. Then you just pump from the barracks and the foundry. Nowhere near as sexy as Silk Road, but rush defense is always strengthened when you invest in cards that benefit you right now. Would it not make sense to reconsider the pre-Silk Road thug Ottoman rush (or some such variation)?


Strategies:
- BWKiC - A British Fast Fortress strategy
- The Aztec Scout Slam- An Envoy Rush, Native-Style
Ender_Ward
Skirmisher
posted 05-01-07 10:38 PM EDT (US)     112 / 117       
Joe/Garlef.
You both see what I'm talking about. The disparity in early numbers between Abus Guns and Macehualtin, that has inferior in quality, but much more numerous units, overwhelming the highly superior in quality units.

It's Shermans against Panzers. Remember the old WW2 saying how a Panzer could take on four Shermans and win, but that there always seemed to be a 5th Sherman around? This is the same situation.

If I had even a 3 Abus Gun shipment in Colonial to add to the 5 that are coming out of my Foundry, there would be a lot less problems. But you're simply getting outmassed early on. The only military shipments available to me in Colonial are 5 Jans that get owned by Macehualtin faster than I can blink, and the 3 Hussars that can't do anything useful before they die to ... well, everything. And these shipments are precious.

This is why I use minor native LI whenever possible instead of Abus Guns. Because I can mass them just as quickly as the Aztec player can mass his Macehualtin!

As I said before, in 1.02, I had 20-25 more seconds to get Abus out and a batch of Jans out, before the rush came. With the 100 food boost and more Aztec players realizing that the earlier they age and hit an Ottoman, the better, the Abus are just not coming out fast enough.

~~~

Joe,
I'll post up the first replay of me getting owned by an Aztec player. It's kinda hard to get 'em at the moment since a minority of my games go beyond a few minutes, and a further minority of those are even recorded.
I've had some replays, I watched them to see what my opponent was doing that worked so well against me. But I didn't save them at the time and now they've been long since overridden.

But I'm not describing an all-powerful Aztec player. I'm describing the many variations of the early rush that I've seen. And they do not require any super-civ abilities. It isn't hard to see even for somebody like me who doesn't play the civ that it's not a problem at all to set the Warrior Priest on XP from the moment the Firepit is built. To get as much as possible XP from treasure hunting so that you have 2 shipments upon arrival in Colonial.
Aging at sub 4:00, shipping 10 Macehualtin, training 5-10 more and sending these to the Ottoman's base to disrupt villagers and kill any early troops. Followed by 6 Pumas while training 5 more Pumas and sending these after the two-three ATPs the Ottoman has up by that point in time. This is the most difficult to deal with version.

You're telling me that the military disparity is my own fault for sending ATP and Silk Road? Joe, my friend, this point has occurred to me a long time ago. I've tried combinations where my first shipments are military, and I don't use ATP but establish the trade route very gradually. That doesn't work.
It didn't even work in 1.02. You simply got outboomed. Warrior Priests and Fertility Dance meant you could have won every battle but lost the war as you couldn't keep up in the boom and eventually could on longer win against the unit flood. When I lost to Aztecs in 1.02 (not that often), this was how it happened.

I even went as far, once, as to nearly kill an Aztec player in 1.03 by annihilating his entire army on a couple normal stagecoach TPs (no Silk Road), using 5 Jans, every Colonial crate and eventually even sending a Discovery card (Economic Theory) as I ran out of Colonial ones. But the Warrior Priests and villagers on the firepit stopped me with those infinite "Warrior" things. I had never seen them used to a large extent before, but this guy did. They just kept coming and coming and coming.
I'd keep trying to get through to the Firepit and stop their spawning by killing the Priests, but I never had a large enough force make it, as this wall of Warriors + TC fire was just too much. After three waves of Jans and Abus, I couldn't continue. My crates were gone, I had half his villagers (~30) and only 2 SRTPs (I ended up sending Silk Road anyway much later). As I was gathering the forces for one last try, the guy went to Fortress. From that point on it was GG.

An old style, sans-Silk Road rush may have been viable in 1.02, when Abus could take a good deal of fire before going down, but that's no longer the case. Your "awesome" army is a hell of a lot less cost effective now. You need the economy to back it up.

So I've taken to using SRTPs, all 6 crates and livestock (7 Cows card rocks!) in order to work around the slow villager spawn time and have a little short term boom of my own. That's how I can keep up in 1.03, especially against the FF civs who give me 4-5 minutes to get this stuff rolling.
But not bleeding Aztec! These bastards hit you at 5 minutes into the game! Even the Iroquois arseholes give you until ~6:45 before their Prowlers unstealth in your base and start sniping villagers.

So like I said, I now pray for a map with decent native LI. It's such a good fealing of "**** you!" when the 20 Macehualtin come, thinking they're gonna wreak some havock, and there are 10 Cherokee Riflemen waiting for 'em.



"One wants to be loved, failing that admired, failing that feared, failing that hated and despised. One wants to instill in other people some form of emotion. The soul shudders before emptiness and wants contact, no matter the cost."
TheRomans
Skirmisher
posted 05-01-07 11:50 PM EDT (US)     113 / 117       
I am probably putting my reputation on the line by saying that I think Abus Guns are THE most micro-intensive unit in the game. More than cannons, more than bigfoot cavalry, more than cassidores.

Abus were always fragile in melee and now somewhat fragile in ranged. They have 2 less range than a skirm, only do .75x damage to RC, and worst thing of all, 4 minimum range.

Skirms shoot, turn around, walk away, be within 2 range away and use RANGED attack again. Do abus guns? No, they run up and try to take out some teeth with their little cannons. You ultimately lose your abus because they can't use ranged attack when HI are getting close. This makes them inferior to countering HI like skirms or Xbows can. Abus also stand much less of a chance against Hand cav for the same reason, Jans suckage against cav never helps....

When fighting Ottoman, how often do you try and kill his jans first? How about his Hussars when he makes them? No, anyone with half a brain goes for Abus first. And when you take an Abus out, you are owning an ottoman's crotch while an Xbow is just a flick in the ear to french, spanish, ect.

People have been wanting an Abus nerf forever, they got it. People wanted Abus to be more on cost with other LI, they got it. So if Abus is sooooo LI, why does it still have 4 minimum range? That is a straight characteristic of artillery. If you want Abus to be LI and not a pseudo-artillery unit, then take its artillery characteristics, 4 minimum range, away.


+----------+
| PLEASE |
| DO NOT |
| FEED THE |
| TROLLS |
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exc4libulz1022
Skirmisher
posted 05-02-07 00:16 AM EDT (US)     114 / 117       
high-speed internet OP.

"he will have a hard getting banks up"
~rel4xed

"I accidently drop kicked someone once"
~george_uk

DonOFCassador
Banned
posted 05-02-07 00:17 AM EDT (US)     115 / 117       
Skirms shoot, turn around, walk away, be within 2 range away and use RANGED attack again. Do abus guns? No, they run up and try to take out some teeth with their little cannons.

"Take out some teeth with there little cannons"
Well no... Abus guns may need a crazy micro but there well worth it because, They can do some major damage before being destroyed. I know Cav slaugther them and they don't do that great against Skirms, but Take all close range HI &LI and Abus mow them down even since the nerf plus they do well against cannons. And, Abus(not upgraded) can take out FU Strelets.

Even the Iroquois arseholes give you until

Yay somebody finnaly sais it.

You ultimately lose your abus because they can't use ranged attack when HI are getting close. This makes them inferior to countering HI like skirms or Xbows can. Abus also stand much less of a chance against Hand cav for the same reason, Jans suckage against cav never helps....

No Xbows suck against Abus gun and Skirms don't do that much better. Your right about the hand Cav part but they tear apart ranged cav like there butter.

Ben Smith
Skirmisher
posted 05-02-07 00:17 AM EDT (US)     116 / 117       
I too vote to sticky this thread!

That was quite interesting to read. I usually play Portuguese and I find their ability to dominate the map is quite astonishing, however their military is lacking, I won't deny that.

I would say if anything was to happen to change the Ports, enable Grenadiers, but only let them be upgraded to Veteran.

(EDIT) how can a civ not have a viable turtle? They all get 7 Outposts, and in Russia's case, it should be extremely strong...shouldn't it?

[This message has been edited by Ben Smith (edited 05-02-2007 @ 00:19 AM).]

TheRomans
Skirmisher
posted 05-02-07 03:54 AM EDT (US)     117 / 117       
"Take out some teeth with there little cannons"
Well no... Abus guns may need a crazy micro but there well worth it because, They can do some major damage before being destroyed. I know Cav slaugther them and they don't do that great against Skirms, but Take all close range HI &LI and Abus mow them down even since the nerf plus they do well against cannons. And, Abus(not upgraded) can take out FU Strelets.
They used to do crazy damage, now they die too easily for their cost to LI and ranged HI. What doesn't take out strelets?

No Xbows suck against Abus gun and Skirms don't do that much better. Your right about the hand Cav part but they tear apart ranged cav like there butter.
Please reread. I said Xbows and Skirms counter fast melee infantry better than abus because Xbows and Skirms will turn around and shoot HI in the face with the RANGED attack while abus will bonzi-charge because of minimum range. And, yea, abus do great vs ranged cav, thats why aztec is just a push-over for ottoman late game....

+----------+
| PLEASE |
| DO NOT |
| FEED THE |
| TROLLS |
+----------+

[This message has been edited by TheRomans (edited 05-02-2007 @ 03:56 AM).]

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