I recently lost a match that I was sure I could have won if I had known the right counter to use.
I was playing at 1300 ELO and usually prefer to use random civilizations, but sometimes I choose Hindustani due to the high number of Franks.
We both sent out scouts in the Feudal Age, and neither of us did any real damage.
We both made it up to the Castle Age relatively unscathed.
I made some camels expecting knights, and saw him walling heavily and making pikes, so I took that as my cue to add some economy and chose Ghulam as my counter.
I knew that Ghulam are more effective against archers, but would be vulnerable to knights.
We had a bit of a cat and mouse game, then moved up to the Imperial Age.
He had lots of halberdiers and cavalry, while I had heavy camels and elite Ghulam.
I thought my economy was better at this point.
The fight came down to a big battle at the end, and I did my best to micro my Ghulam into his halberdiers, but his composition was superior and he easily defeated my camels and Ghulam.
I’m now wondering what I should have done.
Should I have added crossbows to deal with the pikes, even though Hindus have a weak archer line?
Should I have bet on making Heavy Cavalry in the Imperial Age?
Or should I have added siege in the Castle Age, like Scorpions for the pikemen?
I think choosing Ghulam was a major mistake.