By PF2K on Nov 16, 2019 at 9:30 AM
  1. PF2K

    PF2K Lead Artist | PvP Balance Team Lead
    Staff Member Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2017
    Messages:
    248
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Header_-_Week_21.png
    As we develop the Romans, each week are revealing them to you building by building, unit by unit, and technology by technology. We are not just showing you what the Romans will be, but showing you how we are building them, who is building them, and also why we are building them the way that we are.

    We have six units remaining, and today we are revealing the Eques, which is an Age 3 Cavalry unit and the final true Roman Cavalry unit. We are also going to reveal our Age 4 Town Center and Age 3 Walls.

    Eques
    ======
    Eques_Closeup.png

    Roman Eques with Epic Gear

    Early in the Roman Republic, Rome's wealthy soldiers comprised the Cavalry. But as the Romans began to expand, they found their horses to be outmatched. So they emphasized their elite Legionaries and while they never totally abandoned their own cavalry, their strongest units were outside cavalry hired from neighboring provinces, most notably Gallic Horsemen (from the Celtic parts of Europe) and Numidian Horsemen (from Northern Africa in modern day Algeria and Tunisia -- neighbors to Carthage). Since historic Roman cavalry is a complicated subject, it was fitting that it was particularly difficult for us to navigate these design decisions. And the road for the Eques (plural: Equites) to make our roster was fraught with peril. He almost didn't make it, and in doing so, we had to sacrifice. Let’s drill into it.
    The original Roman plans called for at least 4 different Cavalry units: the anti-archer Eques (in Age 2, from the Castellum), the Officer unit Decurion (Age 3, Praetorium), the anti-archer Numidian Horseman (Age 3, Auxilia Camp) and the basic (all-around) Gallic Horseman (Age 4, Auxilia Camp). Meanwhile, the Castellum was set to have four units -- Spearman (Age 1), Legionary (Age 2), Eques (Age 2), and Veles (Age 2). Again, recall that Roman military buildings are categorized based on their military rank and historical origin of their units and not by what category of unit they train. So while most civs train Infantry from their Barracks, the Romans will train their homegrown units in theirs, which is called the Castellum.

    The Auxilia Camp was to also have four units: the Cretan Bowman (Age 2), Balearic Slinger (Age 3), Numidian Horseman (Age 3), and Gallic Horseman (Age 4). Again, this building trains Roman’s hired mercenaries.

    Finally, the Praetorium, which trains Romans unique Officer Units, was set to have either four or five units: the Centurion, Decurion, and three more possible Officers we will discuss later.

    We have analyzed Rome’s Age 2 at great length, but briefly, there was simply no room for the Eques in Age 2. The Legionary had to be in Age 2, so with the Age 1 Spearman the Castellum was pretty full. And while we still needed an Age 2 Cav, putting that unit in the Castellum would have then left the Praetorium empty. (We could have slid a different Officer unit into Age 2, but then Rome would have had five Age 2 military units plus the special Age 2 unit we haven't shown you yet. That would have given Rome the largest and easily the most powerful Age 2 roster in the game. Our hands were tied: we needed our Age 2 Cavalry unit to also be our Age 2 officer. Therefore, the Decurion forced his way into Age 2, and the Eques was homeless.

    We then turned our attention to Age 3 to see if there was room for the Eques. Generally, Age 3 is pretty open. Since Age 2 covers the major unit types and counters, civs can go in many directions in Age 3, which is when civs gain the most new units. (On average, civs gain four or five military units in Age 2, at least five or six in Age 3 and about four in Age 4. However, we cannot afford to add dead weight. If we create a single unit that serves no function then we have failed. Every unit in the civ needs to earn its spot, and the Eques is no different. And Rome's Age 3 will end up with nine units, so the burden is on us to justify everybody.

    Of those nine units, we have already announced five: the Cretan Bowman (Auxilia Camp), the Centurion (Praetorium), the Battering Ram, the Pontifex, and the Enneris.

    Age 3 was filling up fast and we had multiple Cavalry competing for a spot. Meanwhile, both the Eques and the Numidian Horseman were slotted as anti-archer Cavalry. We could have plausibly modified one of them, but there was no obvious solution. In Age of Empires, Cavalry is the customary counter to Ranged units. Since the Roman homegrown Cavalry was fairly pretty standard, if not a touch weak particularly to other cavalry, being a standard anti-archer unit fits perfect. Similarly, Numidian Horsemen was light Cavalry that rode a small breed of horse that excelled in stamina and harassment (similar to the modern day Berber horse) but fell easily (and at times famously) to Gallic Horsemen who road larger and sturdier breeds (closer to modern day Andalusians). So they are classic anti-archer units, too.


    Even if we considered both Ages 3 and 4, we had room for at most two of these three units. The large, horse Gallic Horseman practically screams Age 4, especially with the added context that historically, they countered the two other units we were considering for Age 3. That left one slot in Age 3. The Castellum had no Age 3 unit, and the Auxilia Camp was occupied then (Cretan Bowman). We considered scratching the Gallic Horseman, but that still would not solve the fact that both the Equites and the Numidians were essentially the same unit. And we don't need two anti-archer Cav at the expense of losing an anti-Cav Cav. Meanwhile, a light Cav just doesn't feel like an Age 4 unit, and slotting the Numidians in Age 3 would double up the Auxilia in Age 3 and leave it empty in Age 4. So the Equites, who were squeezed out of Age 2, somehow managed to squeeze the Numidian Horsemen out of their job in Age 3. So we had no choice but to honorably discharge the illustrious Numidian Horseman. That’s a tough pill to swallow. Around the Mediterranean, Numidian Horsemen are perhaps the most famous of all ancient cavalry, and there is no question that they were far superior to the Roman Equites. It is always upsetting to cut a unit. It hurt to cut the Veles, and it hurts to cut the Numidian Horsemen.

    But just look at those Equites. They are absolutely stunning. We had some concept art, but Chaos and Happy Smurf took it in an even better direction. The concept art gave our horse those handsome braids on his mane. But the rider's helmet, armor, and shield are all ours. By the way, take note of his gear, and keep him in mind before Halloween goes away.

    Eques_Spotlight.png
    (Andy's note that PF2K absolutely does not want to publish but is doing so as a favor: We love the Numidian Horseman and are just gutted to see him go. If we ever visit another civilization in North Africa, you can be sure that we will look these guys up. While we do not have any plans to make the Phoenicians/Carthaginians, it would be a lie to say that we didn't consider leaving them some room when we cut some of these Roman units. Not only were the Carthaginians famous for their Numidian Horsemen, but they were also famous for their navy. For that matter, they famously had light, javelin-throwing Velites-like units. Again, we have no plans to build the Phoenicians, and the last thing we want is to over promise or inflate expectations. But were someone to one day expand in that direction, we hope they find we left them plenty of room to grow in some very fitting directions that would give that kind of a civ a nice head start. Just like some earlier Roman units that the original Devs discarded found their way into the Babylonians and Norse, it would be lovely if some units that we discarded could find their way to another, arguably more appropriate, home. Again, we aren’t sure we can pull off an 8th civ, let alone that we would consider the Phoenicians, but just as the original Devs left room for later growth, so should we. And here we are leaving a nice little package of different units just perfect for another civ to use. Now do Andy a favor and don’t let PF2K hear you ask about this ever again. He’s got enough to worry about.)

    Now that we have shown you every Unit and Technology in the Castellum and the Auxilia Camp, let's have a summarized view on these two Buildings, shall we?
    Castellum_Wrapup.png
    AuxiCamp_Wrapup.png

    Age 4 Town Center
    =================
    Age4_TC_Closeup.png
    We are cleaning out our closet and haven't yet shown you the final levels of some buildings. Of any building model in an entire civ, the Age 4 Town Center is arguably the single most important.

    Revised_TC.png

    Getting to Age 4 must look and feel grand. We had concept art for the Roman Town Centers, but Happy Smurf and Chaos quickly agreed that what they had for Age 4 simply was not grand enough and looked more Age 3.

    Age4_TC_Lineup.png
    In all, our four TCs went through countless design changes over the months. They were some of the first buildings to break ground and still seem to always get tweaked a little every few weeks. Compared to the concept art, you can see our guys bulked it up and added a second level. We love this design and think it perfectly captures the essence of the Romans.

    Now that every Roman Town Center has been revealed, let's look at all of them together!
    TC_Progression.png
    (PF2K's Personal Note: Don't get startled by the different colors in the Town Centers, they are only Player Colors and the one on the right is what you will see on all Town Centers, given you are Player 1. Yes, yes... I see the Red one too.)

    Age 3 Wall
    ==========

    Age_3_Walls.png
    The Romans are going to have 2 wall upgrades, similar to Persians, Norse and Greeks. As stated in Week 9's Blog, we had to create all unique Roman wall models from scratch. You have already seen the Age II Walls, now we are showing you the Age III model, which was created by HappySmurf and Chaos and textured by PF2K.

    Looking back, these Walls have been in the pipeline for months. Happy, Chaos and PF2K started on these back in February and were putting the finishing touches a couple of days before we announced the Romans in May. But like a lot of things, Chaos was still fidgeting with them the other week.

    Here are both Age II and Age III wall models (next to Towers of the same Age) for the Roman civilization:

    Wall_and_Tower_Lineup.png

    With this week in the books, we are now down to the last five Roman Units. Legitimately, looking over the entire Roman roster, they read like a Top 5. (Well, maybe the Centurion cracks the Top 5, but you know what we mean.) These remaining units are in various stages of design, and two of them haven't been started yet. So we don't know which, if any, of them will be ready next week. But you can be certain as soon as they are cooked, you will see them. In fact, it wasn't until a few hours ago that we finally agreed to show you the Eques. That's how hot out of the oven we are serving up units.

    Thanks so much for your patience and support, and we will see you soon!

    Project Celeste Development Team

    What do you think about this week's blog? Let us know in the comments below!

    ========
    Missed the Roman Civilization's announcement? Find out about it HERE.

    Project Celeste is completely free and always will be. However, we gladly accept donations for our overhead costs, which are larger than we have budgeted. If you want to support us, you can do so HERE.

    Read every Romans related blog HERE.

    Tell your friends! Join our Discord HERE.
    =========
     
    Robcore, solar, Alzerus and 12 others like this.
  2. Loading...


Comments

Discussion in 'Romans' started by PF2K, Nov 16, 2019.

    1. Andy P XIII

      Andy P XIII Moderator
      Moderator

      Joined:
      Nov 14, 2017
      Messages:
      214
      Likes Received:
      348
      Trophy Points:
      63
      We also suspect the infantry construction mechanic was originally Roman. Roman Legionaries were famous for their construction. There are accounts of Gallic cities going to sleep with Caesar’s army camped outside the gates and waking up the next morning to Caesar’s army waving at them from atop towers and forts.

      I take solace knowing that there were so many features originally intended to be Roman that there’s no way they could have all made it in. So had the Roman infantry constructed buildings, then they likely would have ended up with features missing from what our Romans will have. So at least we are getting a game with as many of the original Devs’ ideas as possible.
       
      #21 Andy P XIII, Nov 19, 2019 at 3:13 PM
      Last edited: Nov 19, 2019
      Exclusive0r and TheSpaniard like this.
    2. TheSpaniard

      TheSpaniard Champion

      Joined:
      Jan 15, 2019
      Messages:
      95
      Likes Received:
      167
      Trophy Points:
      33
      Indeed.

      At least give the legionaries a building animation so we can see them building things in some of the Roman regions! ;P
       
      bbgambini and Andy P XIII like this.
    3. Alzerus

      Alzerus Champion

      Joined:
      May 4, 2019
      Messages:
      63
      Likes Received:
      73
      Trophy Points:
      18
      Nice work, the Town Centers look absolutely great right through all the ages but Age 4 looks incredible. Love the new unit Eques and the braided manes are a great touch and glad you kept them there.

      Now the Walls, what can I say, they're truly great work and the detail, they look fantastic. I think Venus had a hand in building these walls.

      I'm not sure if I come up against these walls in game, that I'll be able to destroy them, I'd rather drop my sword, take out a paint easel and paint them. I mean how the hell do you guys make walls look that good... :)
       
      Andy P XIII likes this.
    4. bbgambini

      bbgambini Champion

      Joined:
      Nov 25, 2017
      Messages:
      58
      Likes Received:
      24
      Trophy Points:
      8
      Roman and Babylon have the best looking architecture from what we've seen.

      Are we going to get an update/glimpse of their Milestones?? or saving it for release?
       
    5. Andy P XIII

      Andy P XIII Moderator
      Moderator

      Joined:
      Nov 14, 2017
      Messages:
      214
      Likes Received:
      348
      Trophy Points:
      63
      We will announce them before release. I believe they are all done but will likely get balanced.
       
      Exclusive0r likes this.
    6. Exclusive0r

      Exclusive0r Immortal

      Joined:
      Nov 5, 2018
      Messages:
      255
      Likes Received:
      115
      Trophy Points:
      43
      So they will be like Norse ??? That sounds fantastic ... so fantastic I need to check ;);),
       
    7. MechSmith

      MechSmith Spearman

      Joined:
      Nov 24, 2017
      Messages:
      13
      Likes Received:
      24
      Trophy Points:
      3
      Even if the romans don't get the full list of building options like the norse, I at least hope the legionaries themselves can build the basic roman barracks. I get the need to avoid the romans feeling like they're copying other factions but there's some things so roman that it would be just odd to see them not get them.
       
    8. Andy P XIII

      Andy P XIII Moderator
      Moderator

      Joined:
      Nov 14, 2017
      Messages:
      214
      Likes Received:
      348
      Trophy Points:
      63
      The problem we run into by giving any Roman military the ability to construct Buildings is that it would both (1) step on the toes of the Norse by making one of the Norse's most defining features less unique and (2) further provide the Romans with an additional strength, which will make it even more powerful compared to the other civs.

      So we have instead looked at other planned features the Romans would have had or new features that we can justify that they should have. Our Legionaries arrive in Age 2 and have upgrades in both Ages 3 and 4, making them the only civ in the game for which that is true. They also get a charge attack later in the game. Even if we wanted to, I am not sure we would be able to also give them the ability to build things and still keep them balanced.

      We have run into this kind of problem in a number of places and need to be very careful. For instance, there will always be an argument to give more civs both ranged and melee attack, but doing so would crowd out what makes the Immortal so special. We ended up dealing with this by giving the Centurion a very limited range attack. If we continue to make more civs, this issue will arise more and more frequently. But for now, the plan is to give the Romans their own ways to shine and be Roman.
       
      Exclusive0r likes this.
    9. Robcore

      Robcore Spearman

      Joined:
      Mar 4, 2018
      Messages:
      8
      Likes Received:
      1
      Trophy Points:
      3
      No I gonna play romans just for the stone wall! I always hated the thin look of the greek stone wall... Just does not look right. So I am happy romans get a stone wall like this! Great job as always!

      As for the romans to build things with military:

      Actually the military raised an encampment and the most thing they did was to build a wall.
      So if they get anything as builders then it is a wall and tower?
      Or just wall sounds good enough. But is an advantage as well. It must be built like super slowly.
       
    10. TheSpaniard

      TheSpaniard Champion

      Joined:
      Jan 15, 2019
      Messages:
      95
      Likes Received:
      167
      Trophy Points:
      33
      Apologies for opening a can of worms... I was simply lamenting and whining about the fact that the Norse stole a lot of Roman stuff, but alas, the Romans shall still be Roman and we love the Norse!
       
    11. MechSmith

      MechSmith Spearman

      Joined:
      Nov 24, 2017
      Messages:
      13
      Likes Received:
      24
      Trophy Points:
      3
      Likewise, I try not to come across as too critical, i'm just a little sad that the iconic legionary, instead of getting a pilum or the ability to build buildings, gets a charge attack like the norse berserker, babylonian lancer, and celtic woad raider. the one last thing i would say is that if charge attacks may be shared between those units, would it really be so bad for the legionary to have a ranged attack, shared with the immortal? i don't think you'd reasonably expect to see anyone criticise the deicision to give the legionary their javelin, given how well it matches actual documented historical evidence.

      With that, I shall try to resist the urge to comment about this further- I suspect the decision has been set in stone, and the devs are tired of hearing about it. no doubt it was the subject of a great amount of internal debate, and I certainly see the gameplay merit of having the legionary run out ahead of accompanying centurions... I just had to give one last empassioned plea (and reasoned argument) before resolving to sit quietly.
       
      Andy P XIII likes this.
    12. Exclusive0r

      Exclusive0r Immortal

      Joined:
      Nov 5, 2018
      Messages:
      255
      Likes Received:
      115
      Trophy Points:
      43
      'hmm seems I got it wrong ... np ... I will be getting my Romans to 40 come what fail :):):)
      I really cannot wait !!!! They seem so cool
       
      Andy P XIII likes this.
    13. Andy P XIII

      Andy P XIII Moderator
      Moderator

      Joined:
      Nov 14, 2017
      Messages:
      214
      Likes Received:
      348
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Reasonable minds can disagree. All we can do is show you how we arrived at our decisions and invite everyone else to show us how they see it.

      Roman legions famously threw their pila and then charged the enemy’s line. You don’t have to like us giving Centurions the pila and the Legionaries the charge and leave it up to the player to micro the entire thing to make it as real as possible. You may want us to give a civ in this game an Age 2 unit who has Melee, Ranged, and charge attacks that can also forward build buildings and have upgrades through Age 4. I suppose that would definitely pay realistic tribute to the legendary Legionary. I don’t think loading up all those features into a single unit and still preserve balance is possible, let alone leave room for the Centurion to stand out on his own.
       
    14. MechSmith

      MechSmith Spearman

      Joined:
      Nov 24, 2017
      Messages:
      13
      Likes Received:
      24
      Trophy Points:
      3
      Ehehe... i wasn't suggesting they needed *all* those things, that's for sure, even if it were spread out across multiple upgrades. That would be more powerful representation than even the legionary deserves.

      I certainly understand that the building mechanic is well and truly claimed by the norse now. i just feel the javelin fits them better than the charge attack, as the legions were known for being heavy infantry that won battles by attrition, not as shock infantry that won battles by sudden ambushes, which is a thing far more fitting for lancers, raiders and berserkers. i fear the desire to keep the immortal unique has pushed the legionary into using a special feature that's already less unique- and this is obivously just personal opinion but i don't feel that if, say, the legionary elite upgrade gave them pila instead of a charge, that that would step on the immortal's toes too much. It's what people would expect to see from the romans' most famous unit.
       
    15. Andy P XIII

      Andy P XIII Moderator
      Moderator

      Joined:
      Nov 14, 2017
      Messages:
      214
      Likes Received:
      348
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Sure, but then what would we do with the Centurion, who was essentially a very powerful Legionary?
       
    16. MechSmith

      MechSmith Spearman

      Joined:
      Nov 24, 2017
      Messages:
      13
      Likes Received:
      24
      Trophy Points:
      3
      In truth, i had forgotten that the centurion isn't (as far as i know) planned to have an AoE health buff for allied troops, as again that would tread on the norse chief's toes- but perhaps a small speed buff could work instead, to represent the discipline instilled by a nearby officer? That would make them unique, and incentivise people to add a light scattering of them here and there. Maneuvering and mobility were important things to the roman army, wether from the adoption of the maniple during the republic, the building of roads in the empire's golden age, or the Limitanei/Comitatenses system of the declining roman empire.

      As i say this, I know that I've little chance of convincing anyone to change anything- to ask for the alteration of one unit is a long shot, but to ask for two looks like beginning to redesign the whole roster, so what i said about the centurion is just a thematically consistent suggestion, though i'm sure this subject has also been thought about and discussed much by the dev team.
       
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice