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Europa Universalis IV - Development Diary 20th of December 2022 - Unit Pips Rebalance

Hello and welcome to another EUIV DD!

Today we will be talking about the rebalance of the Unit Pips we're working on for the upcoming 1.35 update. This task has been led by our QA Team, which was reinforced throughout the year, and that has been key to the release of Lions of the North, as the new members that have joined the Team credit over 5,000 hours of gameplay on EUIV. But apart from testing the game, they are also involved in the game design process, a classic at Paradox, which usually relies on close cooperation between the different teams. Therefore, this is the proposal we'll be testing in the following weeks, taking also into account the feedback we receive in this DD, of course!



Hello everyone, I'm @Pintu , one of the Embedded QA’s working at Tinto.

I want to show you the rework we are doing on the Unit Pips of the different Techgroups, one of the Systems that saw very few changes since the Release of EU4. As we implemented changes to the Combat calculations in the 1.34 update, we think now it’s a good moment to address this rebalance.

First I want to quickly outline what the Unit Pips do in what parts of combat they matter, for those not as experienced in the game. In each combat phase, Strength Damage is dealt depending on the Offensive Damage Pips of the Units, while Morale Damage is dealt based on Offensive Damage and Offensive Morale Pips. Defending works the same way with the Defensive Pips of the Unit, but half of the Defensive Pips (rounded down) of the Backrow Units is added on top of that. That means that over the course of the game, the priority of pips shifts from having a strong Shock Phase to a strong Fire Phase with a focus on defensive Pips, especially for Infantry.

With this rebalance of Unit Pips we mainly want to focus on Infantry Units that are clear strong or weak outliers on their Tech level and the introduction of more choices in Artillery Units beyond the first Technologies when they become available. As always, these are by no means final numbers and will be under close observation during our Testing, apart from the feedback we are receiving in this DD, so there are good chances these will change until the release of the patch.

One of the swiftly explained changes is that related to Aboriginal and Polynesian Units: both got their total amount of pips reduced, to be in line with the American and African Unit Groups. These changes make them preserve some of their strengths, while not being an outlier over other units.

1AboriginalBefore.png
1AboriginalAfter.png
2PolynesianBefore.png
2PolynesianAfter.png

Now onwards to a change that influences other groups as well, which means they have to get adjusted together. The Anatolian group has a very big advantage with their early Units with their Offensive Moral Damage. We decided to tune that down a little in their Unit Options on technologies 5 and 9. Unfortunately, this affects Muslim Unit groups, which should not have an advantage over Anatolians at that point, which in turn affects Indian Units. That's why we had to tune them down as well.

The Anatolian Group will keep one of their big Spikes in Pips on Tech 12, which will let them be a threat to the groups around them. This is also partly because their Unit will stay around until Tech 18, significantly later than other groups get new units.

3AnatolianBefore.png
3AnatolianAfter.png
4IndianBefore.png
4IndianAfter.png

Speaking of the Muslims, let's take a look at the changes the group got independently from other groups. The Muslim Unit on Tech 23 suffered from both very poor Offensive and Defensive Fire Pips. They do have great Morale and Shock Pips to make up for it, but with the importance of Fire Phase in the later stages of the game, we decided to help them out a little by buffing their defensive Fire on the cost of their defensive Shock.

5MuslimBefore.png
5MuslimAfter.png

The Chinese Group has one outlier in their Unit selection, which is situated on Tech 19, with both 3 offensive and 3 defensive Fire Pips, in addition to 3 Offensive Morale. The one drawback with that Unit is that its successor becomes available only on Tech 25, later than most other groups. Since they have an edge with that against most of their neighboring groups, the solution for this is that they lose one offensive Morale.

6ChineseBefore.png
6ChineseAfter.png

On the same Techlevel, the Nomadic Group has a very solid, while not great, Infantry Unit, that would do with a small Nerf to fit their theme of military decline more.

7NomadBefore.png
7NomadAfter.png

The African Groups (this includes Central, East, and West African), got a small reshuffle of Pips, to make their Last Unit on Tech 30 an actual upgrade over the previous version.

8AfricanBefore.png
8AfricanAfter.png

Last but not least a small change to the High American Group, where their Unit from Tech 18 gets a small bump in Pips. Before this Unit had the same amount of total Pips as the previous unit level.

9HighAmericanBefore.png
9HighAmericanAfter.png

Let's now move on to the Changes to Artillery. These mainly focus on the Introduction of one new Alternative per Unit, which focuses more on a defensive style, where Artillery is used to push half of their defensive Pips towards the frontline while sacrificing their damage output with lower Offensive Fire and Morale Pips. There will also be a small Adjustment on Tech 13, with making one of the Options a defensive one.

10ArtyBefore.png
10ArtyAfterHalf1.png
10ArtyAfterHalf2.png

You may notice that for the new types of Artillery we've just named them the 'Defensive' version of each level. This is not definitive, as it's mainly a placeholder; so, we will accept suggestions for naming each of the unit types.

And this will conclude the Dev Diary for this week and this year. Just like the Idea Group rebalance of last week, we are very eager to read your feedback and suggestions on this topic to improve it as much as possible.

See you at the next DD, on January 10th!
 

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The reworks are fascinating as usual.

However, is there really a point to the unit pips system when most tech groups have only one choice? It's quite interesting for European powers, but it seems rather unstrategic as, say, an Asian power that only ever gets one choice of unit.
 
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Interesting changes.

Are changes to cav planned too?
Especially muslim cav has very underwhelming pip distribution towards lategame iirc. A buff would be really nice potentially for persia and and mameluk (to enjoy those camel unit models). Also western cav early game is extremely weak.

Also noticing high american gets adjusted. My tin foil head is tingeling. Is the next reworked region going to be mesoamerica?
 
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Could it be possible to have mutliple different variations of units recruited and not only 1 type?
So in macrobuilder you could have a list to recruit different types of inf units, for example like both Latin Medieval Infantry and Halberd Infantry options, not only one type, thus giving more varierity to battles and even how you take battles and reinforce (or cut off enemy reinforcements).
 
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I wish you would abandon the idea of having 2 different options at some tech levels. I don't think anyone actually changes between the two options to fit the situations. It's a false choice.
 
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the diffence between the yellow and green pips i thought to understand. So am i correct if i want a more defensive oriented army i make units that have more green pips?
can anyone give examples how these things play out, give example of a country where this is useful and how? because when playing bohemia
its even difficult to time you being always the defender meaning the enemy attacks you on a province where your stack is where these pips come into play.
 
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Hi, are you considering further changes to the combat calculations? Currently it appears that the best way to play the late game is to merge your entire army into one single stack to stack wipe everything. This causes rather silly results in which in late game mp the wars consist mostly of running single stacks worth several million men as anything lower than that gets instantly wiped when first row dies.
 
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the diffence between the yellow and green pips i thought to understand. So am i correct if i want a more defensive oriented army i make units that have more green pips?
can anyone give examples how these things play out, give example of a country where this is useful and how? because when playing bohemia
its even difficult to time you being always the defender meaning the enemy attacks you on a province where your stack is where these pips come into play.
There is no real meaningful difference except for some hardcore MP matchups/WC strats.
 
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Hi, are you considering further changes to the combat calculations? Currently it appears that the best way to play the late game is to merge your entire army into one single stack to stack wipe everything. This causes rather silly results in which in late game mp the wars consist mostly of running single stacks worth several million men as anything lower than that gets instantly wiped when first row dies

There is no real meaningful difference except for some hardcore MP matchups/WC strats.

there is no real meaningful difference somehow i instinctively thought all the time about it.

I think the current pip system is a great creative mechanism to calculate combat results (just saying that devs absolutely created something complicated which works somehow). But especially in europe it generates generic armies as most countries are same tech group and differences of morale and discipline are small than like you say quantity matters more.

besides when i quote this sentence from dev diary; its incredibly hard to understand:

Defending works the same way with the Defensive Pips of the Unit, but half of the Defensive Pips (rounded down) of the Backrow Units is added on top of that.

I would appreciate it if a template in game simplifies army composition alway this worry aboutwrong cav to inf ratio and arty and now these pip differences cant understand anymore.
Only when playing ottoman its clear what my clear advantage is from a certain time period onwards. Explain backrow and make it visible.
 
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I don't feel like you should nerf the ottomans that much earlygame. They were a genuine threat and their unit pips being so much stronger early techs helps them be that threat that they were historically. Nerfing them just so they're more on par with western countries when they don't even reach their historical borders half the time ingame feels a bit silly. I don't like the change. It'd be better to nerf them on lategame techs rather than earlygame.
 
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I have two wishes:
-Please give Western Cav to have something around Tech5-6 so building them is not a complete waste of money until tech 10.
-Please revisit Lategame Horde Cav, they are extremly low in pips. Most hordes by that time are dead anyway, so this is more a multiplayer issue.
I'd be fine having their start cav pips reduced in return (like splitting up their two starting units, nerf one and get the normal one back at tech5), but then I guess it will be hard for Oirat to defeat Ming eh. ~

Balancing those is hard. Looking forward how it progresses.
 
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noldorin

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In general, the opinion groups of the countries in the Anatolian geography were not militaristic enough. They were closing this gap with the advantage provided by the Anatolian technology group. If you take this away from them, then the national idea groups of the states in this region need to be renewed again.
 
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MathyM

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Could it be possible to have mutliple different variations of units recruited and not only 1 type?
So in macrobuilder you could have a list to recruit different types of inf units, for example like both Latin Medieval Infantry and Halberd Infantry options, not only one type, thus giving more varierity to battles and even how you take battles and reinforce (or cut off enemy reinforcements).
I actually started reading this Dev Diary expecting this feature to be part of it.

With the introduction of even more alternatives, shouldn't we be allowed to recruit units of different types?
 
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