What Is the Reason for the Obsession with Making Longswordsmen “Useful”?

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    What is the reason behind the widespread need to make Longswordsmen valuable or important?


    They are pretty useless right now.

    There shouldn’t be a useless unit in the game.

    In aoe4 arrows bounce off them so they have that use but in 2 they do nothing well


    I thinks it’s pretty simple, it should be a unit that is at least decent when played by appropriate civs.

    I think having Vikings, celts, and a few other have a good non castle gold unit is fair.

    Doesn’t mean franks or britains should pump them out and be OP but at least have them be viable for a handful of civs


    Because they are a mainline unit and they’re completely ineffective against knights/xbows.

    The entire meta is knight, xbow, monk/siege, or uu


    Most of the logic I’ve seen goes something like this:


    Every civ can make them.

    Therefore it must be intended as a core unit of your army.

    It currently sucks in almost every situation.

    Therefore it needs to be fixed.

    I personally don’t agree with point 2.

    To me it’s a similar argument to saying every civ should gravitate towards their unique unit.

    Right now longswords counter eagle/pike play pretty well, that’s enough of a role for me. 2HS and champion are late-late game power units, that’s enough of a role for me.


    Because champions and 2HS are sometimes useful, and MAA is often worth teaching into for a window in feudal, but longswordsman kinda sucks.

    So there’s a situation where your MAA investment doesn’t have anywhere further to go in castle, but there’s still a couple techs to get through for no benefit if you decide champion could be appropriate in imperial.


    It is also a matter of balance: if only cavalry and archers are viable, civs with strong answers to them will always be overpowered, see Gurjara and Hindustanis.

    Civs with good infantry bonuses would still be weak instead at least on land maps, like Dravidians.

    A stronger militia line solves these problems, or at least addresses them


    bc the only time you would realistically want to use them is against eagles

    castle age is largely dominated by xbow/kts


    Because they are underpowered due to a decision by the original developers to nerf infantry because of how good Legions and Centurions in AoE1.

    Unfortunately it was a massive overcorrection.

    Thats how I see it anyway.

    And ever since they have been trying to fix that overcorrection.


    I think everyone has a bit of an obsession with the Militia line because it feels like it’s a unit that is *so close* to being good enough to see normal play, but it’s held back by it’s niche and the nature of infantry versus archers and cav.

    The real problem in my opinion is that it’s a gold unit that falls outside of the traditional counters triangle most 1990’s RTSs were primarily balanced around.

    Archers counter militia, knights counter archers, and hypothetically militia should counter knights, but they don’t knights are better than militia in every conceivable way.

    Instead the knight counter role went to Spearman, which makes historical sense, but kinda leaves militia in the lurch.

    They’re a gold unit in a game where gold is a huge limiting factor without a solid balance niche, and I think a lot of people are tired of seeing Cav and archers every game, even from civs that are “supposed to be” infantry civs.


    Examine why the question you’re asking is “why make a main unit in the game useful?” and not “why is a main unit in the game useless?”


    Because the Devs place it as core line of Infantry.

    Otherwise no one ask about making Skirmishers useful.

    The simple solution would being making Spear the main line and Swords a counter unit.



    The way he talks sounds like he was part of the first aoe2 dev team in the 90s, he talks about how things accidentally became game mechanics, such as luring boar and using onagers to cut down trees




    because they put flavour over gameplay

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