Might & Fealty Community

Questions, Conduct, & Feedback => Conduct & Design Discussion => Topic started by: Andrew on June 16, 2017, 07:56:06 PM

Title: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andrew on June 16, 2017, 07:56:06 PM
So, I'd like to start working on this as I'll be tinkering with how soldiers handle their equipment in the coming days anyways. This is what I'm thinking things could look like in their next phase:

Melee Items (Weapons):
Ranged Items (Weapons)
Armour (in order of defense provided)
MountsEquipmentI'm open to further suggestions as well, and would like to include an initial rollout of advantages/disadvantages with this, as well as having mounts be separated from general equipment.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: silvershot on June 16, 2017, 08:16:01 PM
Nice to see the "Improvised" or "basic" weapon types I talked about show up here! Not that you need have seen my post, but I think they'd be a useful addition for both flavor and for emergency numbers bolstering.

One other comment at this time: If a pike is intended to be used with a shield, it may make more sense thematically to call it a long spear, and the spear a short spear. Or just "spear" and "short spear." Nothing really important, there. Javelin change will be awesome -- proper skirmishers! (Though not as awesome as in the sense of Classical Peltasts, we'd need a short sword and shield back for that).

I guess that leads to another question... Will Javelins allow for usage of standard shields? If not, the pavise seems a typically poor fit for someone using javelins, while at least a smaller round/wooden shield seems to fit well.

This is generally a change I am very excited for, even in terms of just flavor.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Roran Hawkins on June 16, 2017, 09:25:38 PM
I like the idea, definitely. How will you differentiate between weapons specifically? Will there be a difference between weapon damage and chance to hit, or will things remain at the same flat melee bonus? Will the presence or absence of a shield change a unit's offensive abilities with certain weapons ...? The more we know, the better we can tailor our suggestions to the theme.


What I personally would try to include somehow is that shields would fall out of use at higher grades of armour in favour of more offensive ability while shields would become more of a necessity with lower grades of armour for survival. Perhaps daggers as an off-hand could give more bonuses the better your armour is?


I'd also like to know what you had in mind for differences between the different mount types? Obviously chargers/destriers'd give the ultimate attack and defence bonus amongst them, but how would a courser or a saddle horse come into play here? Is there a planned difference in movement speed for them? Maybe saddle horses could serve primarily as a strategic movement bonus and a bonus for units to suffer less overcrowded bonus/penalties in battle as they have an easier time manoeuvering across the field, but don't necessarily fight on horseback?


Maybe you could even do something with formation weapons. By themselves their bonuses might not be as impressive as smaller weapons like swords, maces or broadswords, but perhaps pikes, spears and halberds should get an increased bonus if at least X friendly units using the same weapons (weapon group even?) are in combat and not routing? This value could be relative to enemy numbers or allied numbers, and should perhaps best be different for each type of formation weapon.

TO be fair, these are just some random ideas I'm putting out there. If there's anything more specific, please do specify.


Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Gustav Kuriga on June 16, 2017, 09:28:18 PM
I would actually reverse the buffs for the halberd and pike, as they were largely defensive weapons, the pike even more so than the halberd.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: silvershot on June 16, 2017, 10:23:52 PM
I would actually reverse the buffs for the halberd and pike, as they were largely defensive weapons, the pike even more so than the halberd.

Which is why I think it fits better as a long/full sized spear -- a good anti cavalry weapon but probably a bit less effective than a shorter spear ultimately in close quarters combat. You probably can't use it effectively to stab without impacting those behind you and it's not a very effective bludgeoning weapon. Halberds can still slash at least. The reach of a long spear is both a boon and a curse; opposite of a shorter spear which doesn't offer much of an advantage versus cavalry but would do better in tighter formations in close combat.

Furthermore, a long spear could be used as an effective cavalry spear.




What I personally would try to include somehow is that shields would fall out of use at higher grades of armour in favour of more offensive ability while shields would become more of a necessity with lower grades of armour for survival. Perhaps daggers as an off-hand could give more bonuses the better your armour is?



Parrying daggers would be much more effective in solo combat, much like where swords themselves would have been most effective (because a sword in a well trained hand was both offensive and defensive) but to that point, even a buckler might make more sense. Daggers are a good emergency weapon; they're easy to hide, and they're good for a coup de grace. I think two handed fighting with offensive weapons is a generally poor idea, but I'm sure it happened at some point. There's not much more reliable than having a good shield strapped to your second arm... it's technically also used as a weapon if you're a well trained man-at-arms or noble.

Really, heavier armor would be great because it could free their second hand to use a hand-and-a-half sword (such as some broad, most long or generally all bastard) or for them to use other supremely martial weapons such as a pollaxe to its full potential. Plus would allow for a powerful Mordhau/Mordstreich/Mordschlag, whichever you prefer, to perform more crushing blows akin to a warhammer or axe which could help against more heavily armored foes. (That's the one where you grip a sword by its blade with both hands and attack with the pommel)

In fact, I think a pollaxe would be a great addition to the game; it was a common weapon among at least Western European nobility, used a quarter-staff like approach to fighting, took a hell of a lot of training to be effective, and was also rather effective even against armored foes. It could be used as a very lethal or non-lethal weapon; the head could be used for slashing, crushing, tripping and blocking blow. Generally, they'd also be able to stab. A rather sophisticated weapon, really. Expensive to produce, expensive to train, but supremely effective.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andre on June 16, 2017, 10:52:48 PM
Shields fell out of use as plate armor got more popular and effective, in favor of two-handed swords and possibly other weapons.


Personally I wouldn't put bandages on soldiers, I'd put them on entourage but make the entourage be able to help during battle aswell to possibly reduce deaths and make some soldiers just wounded instead or save some soldiers from wounds at all (with maybe just a recovery period but little chance of death?).


And about the camels, obviously they should only be trainable in deserts and scrublands, with less food used by the training facility and once horses consume food in the field they should also consume less there aswell. They should also just be less effective in combat than atleast coursers and destriers I believe, with less attack and defence bonuses, but likely more effective than saddle horses (I agree with Roran here about them being mainly for mobility).


And for pikes, I'd probably give them the defensive boost rather than halberds, with both having bonus against mounted troops (higher on the pike), and with the halberd having slightly higher offensive capabilities in general. I'd also make it so that a mace wielding soldier killing a soldier with heavier armor (scale and up maybe) would make it quite likely that the armor is just lost afterwards if the soldier was wounded or killed.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: De-Legro on June 17, 2017, 01:49:30 AM
Why redefine chain as medium rather then just having three types of heavy armour? Will you also change leather/shield to not be "medium". The definitions of light/medium/heavy should be based upon the total protection offered by all equipment anyway, just like leather/shield bumps you up to a medium unit. I also agree that bandages make no sense for troops to carry, I am aware of no evidence that troops of the age carried personal first aid equipment. I like the idea of having some horse types, particularly a category that allows for mounted movement and dismounted combat. I would not bother with camels though. If you want to up the survivability of horses, allow us to have armoured variants.

As discussed on Discord I would refer to splint mail as mail and plate. It is much more descriptive of the actual armour form, and is not so easily confused with the similar splinted armour.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Foxglove on June 17, 2017, 02:49:58 AM
I like the idea of having additional types of mounts such as camels. Elephants would be good too. Plus anything else we can think of that people could reasonably ride. I suppose giant wolves or big cats if we're venturing into light fantasy.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: De-Legro on June 17, 2017, 02:53:34 AM
I like the idea of having additional types of mounts such as camels. Elephants would be good too. Plus anything else we can think of that people could reasonably ride. I suppose giant wolves or big cats if we're venturing into light fantasy.

Why? Beyond "flavour" what are we adding? What end benefit are we trying to derive?
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Foxglove on June 17, 2017, 03:10:55 AM
Well, I think 'flavour' isn't something to discount just for its own ends, as we have the 'flavour' in the culture packs.

However, I think there is something to be gained by having concrete advantages assigned to different kinds of mounts. Camels, for example, could perhaps only be produced in scrubland regions that most people consider to be vastly inferior to grasslands and forests. Give those types of regions something that would make people more interested in them. Camels could also give a greater defensive bonus than unarmoured horses, perhaps reflecting that it's harder to unseat a rider on a camel (I know you could just chop away the legs from under any mount, however).

As far as elephants go (or giant wolves, cats, etc), it would introduce the concept of mounts acting as offensive weapons in themselves. As far as I know, we don't currently have that idea in the game, even though warhorses were often trained to bite and kick an enemy.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: De-Legro on June 17, 2017, 03:39:21 AM
Well, I think 'flavour' isn't something to discount just for its own ends, as we have the 'flavour' in the culture packs.

However, I think there is something to be gained by having concrete advantages assigned to different kinds of mounts. Camels, for example, could perhaps only be produced in scrubland regions that most people consider to be vastly inferior to grasslands and forests. Give those types of regions something that would make people more interested in them. Camels could also give a greater defensive bonus than unarmoured horses, perhaps reflecting that it's harder to unseat a rider on a camel (I know you could just chop away the legs from under any mount, however).

As far as elephants go (or giant wolves, cats, etc), it would introduce the concept of mounts acting as offensive weapons in themselves. As far as I know, we don't currently have that idea in the game, even though warhorses were often trained to bite and kick an enemy.

Camels are fine for dessert warfare, and make decent mounts for archers. They are less useful for lance units or indeed sword cavalry due to their annoying gait, but they make do. Supposedly horses will shy away from their smell, though I did note recently on my way out to a remote sewage treatment plant a property that had both horses and camel in the same paddock. Anyway my point is unless we want to replicate the large scale deserts of North Africa and the Arab states, camels are of limited use compared to horses.

War elephants would be interesting, at least if we implemented the fact that they are almost as likely to demolish your own army as they are that of your enemy.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Foxglove on June 17, 2017, 03:54:03 AM
Talking of different types of terrain there makes me think how useful it could be to the game as a whole if this greatly expanded list of equipment types could confer advantages and disadvantages based on where a battle takes place. For example, cavalry would get their advantages in grasslands but lose them in dense forests. Heavy infantry would be at a severe disadvantage fighting in marshes, where light infantry would get greater bonuses. That sort of thing.

That would force people to put greater thought into where they intended to fight, rather than pumping out the best equipment they can produce all the time. It would also present the interesting possibilty of 'inferior' troops outclassing 'superior' troops if they were clever about where they brought them to battle.

The drawback is whether it would be possible to make terrain count enough across the board for it to have much of an impact. Most of the weapons we have here could comfortably be used in any terrain.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: De-Legro on June 17, 2017, 04:19:25 AM
Talking of different types of terrain there makes me think how useful it could be to the game as a whole if this greatly expanded list of equipment types could confer advantages and disadvantages based on where a battle takes place. For example, cavalry would get their advantages in grasslands but lose them in dense forests. Heavy infantry would be at a severe disadvantage fighting in marshes, where light infantry would get greater bonuses. That sort of thing.

That would force people to put greater thought into where they intended to fight, rather than pumping out the best equipment they can produce all the time. It would also present the interesting possibilty of 'inferior' troops outclassing 'superior' troops if they were clever about where they brought them to battle.

The drawback is whether it would be possible to make terrain count enough across the board for it to have much of an impact. Most of the weapons we have here could comfortably be used in any terrain.

It is also about tactics. You might for instance say, well of course archers are of little use in heavy forest. Yet the infamous Welsh Longbow was developed originally for conflict in the dense forest and hilly terrain of Wales, where it was used at much closer range for ambush attacks. Cavalry can't charge in massed unit in forest, but then again the targets that is useful against are also less prevalent in forest. They are still able to rapidly engage the enemy, and if anything the inability to form dense infantry blocks or long range heavy archery volley actually aids them.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: willy on June 17, 2017, 06:04:47 AM

I like the idea of expanding on equipment but I wouldn't throw too many redundant options at people. A high class shield (metal instead of the low-class wood shield) and cheap slings (as a low-class javelin) would be great additions. I figure most people go with 'what is best' with high investments or 'what will suffice' with less investment, then a bulk of mids. Cheap, middling, and elite gears seem a good spread that shouldn't confuse anyone.


I'd like to see specialty gears available for culture-packs. Maybe orientals get metal-less scale armor, maybe northern European axemen are more frightening. Little quirks that might see a large effect en masse, but are tied with flavor/RP. Mostly swag, but with a small yet noticeable effect they become swaggier.


Talking of different types of terrain there makes me think how useful it could be to the game as a whole if this greatly expanded list of equipment types could confer advantages and disadvantages based on where a battle takes place. For example, cavalry would get their advantages in grasslands but lose them in dense forests. Heavy infantry would be at a severe disadvantage fighting in marshes, where light infantry would get greater bonuses. That sort of thing.

That would force people to put greater thought into where they intended to fight, rather than pumping out the best equipment they can produce all the time. It would also present the interesting possibilty of 'inferior' troops outclassing 'superior' troops if they were clever about where they brought them to battle.

The drawback is whether it would be possible to make terrain count enough across the board for it to have much of an impact. Most of the weapons we have here could comfortably be used in any terrain.


I do like that, equipment/terrain modifiers. Buffs to cavalry in grass/scrub (charging/flanking), buffs to light-inf in forest (where dense growth restricts maneuvering), buffs for archers in marshes/hills (where it's a rougher time for infantry charges). It would at least add an extra dimension to war.



Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: De-Legro on June 17, 2017, 06:23:21 AM
I like the idea of expanding on equipment but I wouldn't throw too many redundant options at people. A high class shield (metal instead of the low-class wood shield) and cheap slings (as a low-class javelin) would be great additions. I figure most people go with 'what is best' with high investments or 'what will suffice' with less investment, then a bulk of mids. Cheap, middling, and elite gears seem a good spread that shouldn't confuse anyone.


I'd like to see specialty gears available for culture-packs. Maybe orientals get metal-less scale armor, maybe northern European axemen are more frightening. Little quirks that might see a large effect en masse, but are tied with flavor/RP. Mostly swag, but with a small yet noticeable effect they become swaggier.



I do like that, equipment/terrain modifiers. Buffs to cavalry in grass/scrub (charging/flanking), buffs to light-inf in forest (where dense growth restricts maneuvering), buffs for archers in marshes/hills (where it's a rougher time for infantry charges). It would at least add an extra dimension to war.

But it is also largely nonsense . Nonsense that every accepts since D&D and games in general have adopted it, but still nonsense. Light infantry has no advantage over heavy in forest. Indeed generally the task of light infantry is skirmishing, moving fast in front of the main battle line, using slings, light bows, javelin what have you to disrupt enemy battle lines (and take down enemy skirmishes before they do the same to your lines. Although we should note here that sometimes light infantry referred to their role rather then the weight of their equipment and armour.

There is certainly some terrain that confers advantage, marsh and rocky terrain hinders cavalry and infantry alike from advancing for example, but in general it is far less then war games would have us believe.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: willy on June 17, 2017, 07:43:25 AM
I'm not gonna say that heavy armor would slow someone down a great deal, 25-60 pounds evenly distributed isn't harsh, but I will say that a narrow vision helm and bulky grieves would probably be a bitch to try and charge an enemy in dense brush/brambles (with trees all around for quicker troops to flank from). I just don't imagine heavy infantry being as effective in forests where they wouldn't be able to form a solid line and engage an orderly pitched battle.


Think of Teutoburg forest. Not an ideal case (experience, familiarity with the grounds, and other things factoring more than Germanic light vs Roman heavy), but if you abstract the battles in your head you get the idea. 60 pounds isn't much if you are hiking or for a short sprint, but climb a tree with it (or try to hide with reflective surfaces on you).


Wouldn't want modifiers to be 'make or break' type things, though. Just little advantages that add up or can be capitalized on.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: De-Legro on June 17, 2017, 08:03:16 AM
I'm not gonna say that heavy armor would slow someone down a great deal, 25-60 pounds evenly distributed isn't harsh, but I will say that a narrow vision helm and bulky grieves would probably be a bitch to try and charge an enemy in dense brush/brambles (with trees all around for quicker troops to flank from). I just don't imagine heavy infantry being as effective in forests where they wouldn't be able to form a solid line and engage an orderly pitched battle.


Think of Teutoburg forest. Not an ideal case (experience, familiarity with the grounds, and other things factoring more than Germanic light vs Roman heavy), but if you abstract the battles in your head you get the idea. 60 pounds isn't much if you are hiking or for a short sprint, but climb a tree with it (or try to hide with reflective surfaces on you).


Wouldn't want modifiers to be 'make or break' type things, though. Just little advantages that add up or can be capitalized on.

Again it is going to depend on tactics. If you have ambushes that can negate the advantage of heavier armour. Of course you are now talking an entirely different form of combat then general battle. Pitched battles within forest are going to favour those with shorter weapons in general. Solid battle lines are less important then you think here, since you aren't fighting against an enemies battle line either. What counts in forest combat (and I am generalising here since my own military training extends to jungle warfare not forest, but many concepts remain) is the ability to fight in loose formations, ie the training and awareness to maintain close proximity to your comrades. Most assuredly narrow visors would limit that, but then narrow visors presented awareness and vision problem in all terrain and by no means were universal among heavy infantry.

Like I said, its not that in certain cases, under certain conditions and certain enemy troop compositions that forest would not confer advantages, simply that it is rubbish to say that light infantry in all circumstances gain some sort of advantage from forest.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: willy on June 17, 2017, 08:17:17 AM
Again it is going to depend on tactics. If you have ambushes that can negate the advantage of heavier armour. Of course you are now talking an entirely different form of combat then general battle. Pitched battles within forest are going to favour those with shorter weapons in general. Solid battle lines are less important then you think here, since you aren't fighting against an enemies battle line either. What counts in forest combat (and I am generalising here since my own military training extends to jungle warfare not forest, but many concepts remain) is the ability to fight in loose formations, ie the training and awareness to maintain close proximity to your comrades. Most assuredly narrow visors would limit that, but then narrow visors presented awareness and vision problem in all terrain and by no means were universal among heavy infantry.

Like I said, its not that in certain cases, under certain conditions and certain enemy troop compositions that forest would not confer advantages, simply that it is rubbish to say that light infantry in all circumstances gain some sort of advantage from forest.


Oh, I agree that lighter gear wouldn't always help in the real world. I'm more talking about a general "what can be helpful" in the real world...then a way to translate that as a minor game mechanic that gives the world flavor. Where the battles are calculated for us (and with some randomization), all the 'tactics and formations' of battle are RP after the fact. A mechanic that gives skirmishers and non-shinies a (minor) boost would simply help promote more flavored variety in how the dice can fall for combat. XP already kind of covers combat awareness/training, but that would be a great modifier for forests.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: De-Legro on June 17, 2017, 08:28:23 AM

Oh, I agree that it helps in the real world all around. I'm more talking about a general "what can be helpful" in the real world...then a way to translate that as a minor game mechanic that gives the world flavor. Where the battles are calculated for us (and with some randomization), all the 'tactics and formations' of battle are RP after the fact. A mechanic that gives skirmishers and non-shinies a (minor) boost would simply help promote more flavored variety in how the dice can fall for combat. XP already kind of covers combat awareness/training, but that would be a great modifier for forests.

In the current combat engine tactics and formations are RP. That is not the plan moving forward though.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andre on June 17, 2017, 09:25:16 AM
Camels are fine for dessert warfare, and make decent mounts for archers. They are less useful for lance units or indeed sword cavalry due to their annoying gait, but they make do. Supposedly horses will shy away from their smell, though I did note recently on my way out to a remote sewage treatment plant a property that had both horses and camel in the same paddock. Anyway my point is unless we want to replicate the large scale deserts of North Africa and the Arab states, camels are of limited use compared to horses.

War elephants would be interesting, at least if we implemented the fact that they are almost as likely to demolish your own army as they are that of your enemy.


I believe that horses are frightened by the smell of camels mainly because they are not used to it, not because it is innately frightening to horses. Also, I don't think camels actually have more durability than horses, I can't remember where but I read that they are actually less durable than Destriers and Coursers. I'd mainly put camels as a cheaper and weaker (offensivly atleast) alternative to horses that you can recruit in scrublands.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andrew on June 17, 2017, 12:39:58 PM
Pikes and Halberds were specifically designed to make it easier to force-dismount mounted units, and halberds were also designed to offer their users some bonuses when fighting against swords in melee, hence their bonuses.

Javelins, and to a lesser degree bows, will be able to destroy shields.

I'd like to work in camels offering an initial bonus against horses, but have it be removed over time, but that would mean I have to either start tracking horses or build it into the soldier's info somehow. As for camels, I'll probably restrict them to desert, at least initially. I'm not against turning generic mount categories (horse, camel, etc.) into resources either. It'd be kind of interesting actually to have a resource that wasn't necessarily tied to a region, but required a starter stock.

Right now people tend to choose things based on what is the best. I'd like to create situations where what is "best" depends entirely on what the enemy is using. Hence pikes and halberds being able to force dismounts, ranged weapons being effective against shields, etc.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andre on June 17, 2017, 01:11:22 PM
Why not just make axes very effective against shields? Would give some additional reason to use axes rather than spears or better even. And as others have said, longbows are definetly usable on horseback, and so are crossbows, but I feel like they should recieve a slight debuff on horses, or shortbows should recieve a bonus maybe. That way people might consider using shortbows aswell.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andrew on June 17, 2017, 02:08:49 PM
I've reordered the weapons listed above to account for relative powers.

I plan on having the higher-end of these restricted to larger settlements (4000 maybe?), which buildings that will very quickly fall apart if population isn't maintained. Mid-tier weaponry will probably be restricted to the 1500 or 2000 pop range.

Swords, of all types, as well as clubs, will also confer a small defense boost, as they can be used to block attacks more easily than other weapons. Not sure if this will result in higher defense power or be part of the hit calculation though. Depending on what weapon they are defending against, it may even result in disarmament of one side or the other.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andre on June 17, 2017, 02:40:20 PM
I don't see the reason to have a Morning star and a mace really.


Also I still don't get why you'd make pikes not have a defensive bonus that is larger than halberd but an offensive one that is lower, with some kind of bonus against horses themselves unlike halberds which have a bonus against dismounting someone on a horse.


I also wouldn't make the axe weaker than a peasant flail. Honestly I'd even go as far as to make the axe stronger than a spear, but with the spear possibly having a small defensive bonus that is smaller than the halberds and pikes.


Also what about a throwing axe that might be more effective against shields than a javelin but less effective against armor and possibly have less reach than a javelin if that is added ever. Potentially we could also add specific battle axes which would be very powerful but possibly less effective against shields than a normal axe. I'd put battle axes somewhere around the swords strength, maybe under or above it.


Flails could possibly also be an alternative to axes, where similarly to battle brothers they gain a bonus to hitting people behind shields, but not the shields themselves.

Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andrew on June 17, 2017, 02:55:54 PM
Pike: a very long thrusting spear. Generally a spear becomes a pike when it is too long to be wielded in one hand.
Halberd: consists of an axe blade topped with a spike mounted on a long shaft. It always has a hook or thorn on the back side of the axe blade for grappling mounted combatants.
(Pulled these definitions straight from wikipedia, if you're curious)

Might even remove the halberd defensive bonus. Pikes and Halberd (and spears) will still get bonuses against cavalry, but Halberd specifically will get a bonus to force cavalry to dismount.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andre on June 17, 2017, 03:44:12 PM
I'd still keep the defensive bonus. Also what of giving spears a small bonus against horses, halberds a medium bonus against horses and a big bonus to dismounting, and pikes a big bonus against horses and a small bonus to dismounting? With pikes having high defense and medium attack, halberds having high attack and little defense, and spears having medium attack and little defense. This way halberds and pikes have about equal amounts of stats, but distributed so that they perform different purposes, with pikes being defensive weapons to kill horses, and halberds being offensive weapons to dismount riders. And spears being a more accesible choice that can combat horses slightly better than other weapons aswell.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Constantine on June 17, 2017, 05:34:54 PM
Instead of weapon bonuses I suggest armour mitigation or special effects on weapons.
For example, spear mitigates the chunk of opponents armour value granted by a horse. Mace mitigates a lot of armour granted by body armour. Halberd mitigates some horse armour and some body armour. Axe has a 50% chance to break an opponent's shield and mitigates a bit of armour too. Javelin has a chance to ruin a shield or instantly kill a horse.
Thiss way broadsword, while offering the most raw power, won't necessarily be top weapon for every situation. Like in real life - swords were great for the general battle but when pummeling each other knights often switched to picks, hammers and flails.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andrew on November 07, 2017, 12:16:09 PM
Melee Items (Weapons):
  • Club - Think "improvised weapons"
  • Axe - Bonus against wood shields
  • Peasant Flail - Purely wooden, more powerful than a club. Cheap, breaks easily.
  • Spear - Bonus against cavalry
  • Pike - Like halberd, but no defense boost
  • Halberd - Mostly offensive, but slight defense boosts, bonus to dismounting targets
  • Mace - Bonus against plated armors
  • Sword
  • Morning Star - A mace with pointy bits, no more bonus, but better overall (even when accounting for the mace's bonus)
  • One-handed Flail - "Ball and chain" weapon, that can harm it's user when it misses. Powerful though.
  • Broadsword
Ranged Items (Weapons)
  • Slings - Super cheap, not very strong at all though.
  • Shortbow - Small bonus on horseback
  • Javelins - Double as a melee weapon in a pinch. No longer single use.
  • Crossbow - Single shot if mounted.
  • Longbow - Small penalty on horseback
Armour (in order of defense provided)
  • Cloth Armor - Light Infantry
  • Leather Armor - Light Infantry
  • Scale Armor - Medium Infantry, no more metal requirement
  • Chain Mail - Medium Infantry
  • Mail and Plate - Heavy Infantry
  • Plate Armor - Heavy Infantry
Mounts
  • Saddle Horses - Really, more intended for work on a farm than part of a military.
  • Coursers
  • War Horses (Destriers) - More likely to survive blows
  • Camels - When we introduce larger scale deserts.
  • ?Elephants? - Very powerful, VERY dangerous.
Equipment
  • Round Shield - Cheap, wood shield.
  • Kite Shield - Standard, wood shield.
  • Heater Shield - Metal shield.
  • Pavise - Bonus against ranged attacks for infantry, no bonus in melee. Infantry only.
  • Dagger - Replaces short swords
  • ?Bandages? - Increases recovery chance[/l][/l][/l][/l]
I'd like to revive discussion on these, in hopes of, so that it can be added in the current system, even if the bonuses for everything probably won't be added at the same time.
Thoughts?
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Demivar on November 07, 2017, 12:34:51 PM
Bonuses vs cavalry, or mounts, or ranged attacks, or armour are all total no-nos in my book. M&F has a battle resolver which tends to be fair most of the time, and how to do better than your enemy is also fairly clear, and there's a bit more depth for if you want think harder about what exactly you're doing. As soon as we add counters and bonuses vs different types of things, the game will become far more rock/paper/scissorsey and it will focus even more on micromanagement.


As for classifying things as heavy and not heavy, it would all depend on what exact time period M&F is based around to determine how people would see heaviness. However, leather/shield troops count as mediums and chainmail armoured troops are classified as heavies, if we changed this it would cause massive impacts.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Andrew on November 07, 2017, 02:11:35 PM
It's based on whichever time period we want it to be based on. I'm more of the type that we should make it loosely based on a time period, but include things we find interesting or contribute to the game.

The goal isn't to make it require micromanagement, it's to make it have depth. Right now, the battle system is barely a puddle. There's not really much to it, and it's kind of boring.

And chaning the troop classification would, realistically, only impact people's egos. I never said I'd change the values of existing weaponry, except maybe the Javelin if we make it multi-use.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Demivar on November 07, 2017, 02:35:32 PM
It's based on whichever time period we want it to be based on. I'm more of the type that we should make it loosely based on a time period, but include things we find interesting or contribute to the game.

The goal isn't to make it require micromanagement, it's to make it have depth. Right now, the battle system is barely a puddle. There's not really much to it, and it's kind of boring.

And chaning the troop classification would, realistically, only impact people's egos. I never said I'd change the values of existing weaponry, except maybe the Javelin if we make it multi-use.
Better boring than unfair. And no, troop classifications affect morale, so the impact would certainly be tangible.

The depth that might be added would simply add to the confusion. The ability to customise troops more? Sure. But effectiveness should be effectiveness.

If I stick my army in a field, enter a battle and go to bed, I can get picked apart and ruined even more because their shield troops fought my archers, my Heavies got maced and my cavalry fought spears.
Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: silvershot on November 07, 2017, 02:58:51 PM
If I stick my army in a field, enter a battle and go to bed, I can get picked apart and ruined even more because their shield troops fought my archers, my Heavies got maced and my cavalry fought spears.


So, not much different than it is for most of the world right now?

I think it's best treated as more of a catchup mechanic. Some weapons are just going to be better than the other weapons -- period. It was even in the description of the weapons. The most powerful realms are going to be able to use the best loadouts, probably with some spearmen since any sort of cavalry not killed by archers is going to be a pain. (I'm fine with that aspect) If a morning star with no bonus does more damage than a mace with a bonus, and you can produce a lot of them, it's no longer really rock-paper-scissors for you. You do more damage to anyone than a mace would do to anyone. It's now rock-paper-scissors-gun.

However, if you're wearing plate, maybe the difference is only 10% instead of 30% (just pulling numbers out of my rear).


Quote
Better boring than unfair. And no, troop classifications affect morale, so the impact would certainly be tangible.
Which just sets the odds even more in the favor of the already powerful realms, anyway, IMO. You just field as many experienced heavies/armored archers as you can and deal a ridiculous amount of damage to the inexperienced leather with some scale and some mail armies you're fighting.

Title: Re: Equipment Overhaul
Post by: Cipheron on November 07, 2017, 05:12:30 PM
So, I'd like to start working on this as I'll be tinkering with how soldiers handle their equipment in the coming days anyways. This is what I'm thinking things could look like in their next phase:
<snip>

From a game design perspective I'd highly recommend against having a big list of item types just because it would be nice to have a plethora of item types.

Look at theory on the concept of choice. Half a dozen choices is manageable, but when it goes even a little beyond that people's ability to make good decision breaks down, even experts. e.g. hypothetical medical scenarios are blown by real doctors if you only add another simple variable or two. They have real-world numbers on this. Just adding one variable - an either/or choice on one decision branch - caused real doctors to go from almost all making the right choice to almost all making the wrong choice in the real study.

Also, I can cite some psychology research that shows when you have Choice A and Choice B, adding a third useless choice that nobody would ever take massively influences which of choice A or choice B people  take (and it was found with college-educated people here not only general public: without the presence of the fake "C" choice, almost all people pick option "A", but when "C" is presented as a choice, almost all people pick "B"). People are just not very good at dealing with scenarios that have more than a handful of "A vs B" choices. Just the presence of "A vs B vs C" causes distorted thinking even if C is a silly choice you immediately ignore.

Just adding a few more weapon types for "flavor" is in fact going to massively screw the balance with how people make decisions on what to build. It's going to require huge "how to" guides to be written and unless you know the "how-to" guide and blindly follow it's min-maxing advice then you'll be left in the dust. That's the problem with padding out choices with "flavor" choices, which are given some nominal nod to different functions or values. Most such "flavor" will be suboptimal, and therefore they will mostly be choices which are always beaten by better choices. The mere presence of so many choices that should be avoided at all costs will in fact just confuse the hell out of everyone.

And this is not likely to be something you can do a bit of mathe-magic to fix up cheaply. AAA games spend millions of dollars on playtesting to get the balance right. It's like cosmetic upgrades here - you might in fact be better off merely making e.g. different types of sword which are purely cosmetic, e.g. "arabian" cultures make scimitars instead of swords, but they're functionally identical. e.g. you don't say "sword or scimitars: you pick" you have the "sword" choice replaced entirely with the scimitars in the arabian-culture settlements.

~~~

Having said that I have some suggestions. Basically it's preferable to have "allowed combinations" rather than to allow everything, then give penalties for making the "wrong combinations". That's not "freedom of choice" it just ends up appearing willfully unhelpful and obtuse.

e.g. for bows, say that only "short bows" and possibly a new "recurve bow*" type can be used on horseback. Mounted crossbow or longbow getting huge penalties is just more useless information for the player to learn. It's simpler to just exclude combinations that don't make any sense then balance the ones that do make sense. Making things "generic" because it allows "choice" then penalizing "wrong choices" is just wrongheaded from a design usability standpoint. If the combination doesn't make much real-world sense, just exclude it at the start, rather than piling on hidden penalties.

As for crossbows, they need to have a clear role-delineation compared to longbows. e.g. when is it now better to have 100 crossbows vs having 100 longbows? I don't think it is, ever. Before even thinking about adding more types of bows, make the current ones all have a purpose. e.g. make crossbows cost more materials, but get a bonus in city battles (e.g. a crossbow user can pick out targets in cover, and fire out of cover more easily), require less training, and get an armor-piercing bonus, relative to the longbow. Longbows would be better off against light troops, open terrain, and against other archers, including crossbowmen, but they require a larger investment in manpower for training. Then, if time and population is your limit, you'd go for crossbows, but if resources were your limit, you'd go for longbows. And if you wanted mobility, you'd go for mounted shortbows. Plus, once you have each of these types then you'd need to see what's best based on who you are fighting. Big barbarian invasion? Send longbows. Attacking "Constantinople?" probably want crossbows there. A mobile hit-and-run unit? Bring mounted shortbows so they don't slow you down.

* the recurve bow would probably fit into the game as an Achery School item, be more expensive in material, harder to train, but the advantage is that it can be use mounted.