Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations - Dev Diary 10: Balance Changes

drake546

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QFT. Diplo-annexation was the one area of expansion that had costs that weren't measured only in MPs. Apparently Paradox is so confident that the MP system is a great idea that they decided it has to touch all areas of the game.

Sad, as its my least favorite part of EuIV. Just essentially spin the wheel and see what the game gets you.
 

Novacat

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Don't forget about the Timurids. They also have -coring from the start and an instant reform button (also changing unit groups, which I imagine will effectively give them two unit peak periods).

Timurids are just watered down Ottomans, the Ottos have far superior troops, far superior NIs, and no need to reform or westernize.

Why Ottos, Ming, and North Americans are best ROTW.

Ottos: Janissaries, assuming it has no further adjustments beyond the halving of all discipline, has +10% Discipline, +20% Infantry Power, and +20% Manpower Recovery. Ottos also get +33% Land Force Limit, +15% Cavalry Combat ability, +33% Religious Unity, and -33% Core Creation cost. These are all huge bonuses, and fully kitted out, the Ottomans can take on Western powers, even with their pip advantage.

Ming: This one involves abuse of the faction system. Basically, if you can figure out how to get away from the 'Internal Perfection' malus while keeping the faction system, you get an enormous set of bonuses. Ming is probably the most difficult to pull off, but is also the most rewarding as the factions are extremely powerful. There is a DDRJake AAR that deals with Ming's exploits.

Native Americans: The Native ideas are fairly powerful, especially since they pretty much require no opportunity cost aside from monarch points, so you will get them no matter what. The downside is that Native Americans cannot forge claims, and there is still that -150% Tech penalty to deal with. For this reason, they are likely no where near as strong as Ming or Ottos.

Of course, thats assuming that nothing has been done. Its very possible Janissaries got nerfbatted to hell, and Ming's exploits finally closed up. Only Native Americans I am confident are not likely to change, but if Ottos and Ming had their strengths trashed by Paradox I would see no point in even looking at ROTW anymore.

Balancing isn't done. At first I thought ROTW got a buff in this patch, but they had their money pulled out from under them and their rate of catch-up post westernization neutered, all with a weaker end-game should they actually do so.

Like almost every other patch, ROTW got nerfed down yet again...even more so now with the AdE effect being primarily available in Europe.

The basetax change primarily hurt the hordes and India. China and Ottomans will likely survive just fine due to the high basetax of their provinces. As for the Hordes, well, thats Paradox for you. They have been nerfing hordes since the first patch, and considering EUIV's developers are almost entirely ignoring player feedback in balancing the game, I think we just need to get used to the fact that Hordes are no longer viable.

Even with the 25% neighbor bonus when behind enough, it's still less as you close the gap, so natives + sub-Saharans both have weaker late game units and take longer to catch up than before. I would not consider them serious candidates given that. Ottomans and Ming are the non-horde winners in terms of viability, but given that ROTW just got production nerfed to high hell it's dubious how they'll perform in practice aside from Ottos. Hordes aside from European ones had trash goods to start with though so it'll be less noticeable.

North Americans are possibly viable due to how powerful native ideas are. But it depends heavily on how well you are able to keep up in tech. Native Americans, fully upgraded, still have a 150% tech penalty BUT they make +3 MP per month, so it is probably slightly worse than Nomads.
 

Novacat

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Viking

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You could go up against an aggressive Ottoman/Muscovite player and win.

so, a complete list of viable countries is

1. France
2. Ottomans
3. Russia
 

Novacat

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I would add Ming, Japan, Prussia, and most European majors to that list. Though, I mentioned Russia/Ottomans specifically because those countries are very likely, under competant hands, to expand into the Steppe, while countries like Castille/England generally only have to worry about France which, side from France's strong starting position, is nowhere near as powerful in land warfare as the Ottos/Russians are.
 

Lindorn

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What people seem to be missing by the point of monarch points is that it was never supposed to be a RNG factor to balance skill or whatever. What it's supposed to be is you taking a good or bad situation and making the most of it. Taking the game away from the direction of always constantly conquering, and making you re-evaluate whether you should slow down or keep expanding and risk the loss of all those extra points because of shitty monarch. It makes the game MORE strategic than constant conquest, because you're now evaluating the risks. It turns it more into a country simulation, then a straight up map painter that ends with super unrealistic WC borders every game (EU3).

If you're looking at it as a constant conquest, then yeah the RNG monarchs would seem like a skill hamper. But what its meant for is simulation and strategic choice reasons. Which honestly is much nicer then every single grand strategy being about total conquest, while still being heavy on war and conquest, it at least is trying to give consequence where there wouldn't really be any. So it isn't meant to balance skills, it's meant to use other skills than just war. It's dealing with the limitations you've been given, or using the advantages you've gotten appropriately. So you cant paint the map? Big deal this isn't total war series. Make strategic gains when you can, don't take everything everywhere just because.

You're misusing the word "strategy". The word strategy implies that through careful planning, risk analysis/mitigation, clear goals, and opportunism you can meet your objective regardless of tactics. "slowing down" because you have a shitty monarch isn't a strategic choice. That's a tactical choice based on a game feature you have 0 control over. There is no "strategic" way you could have affected the outcome. Since everything that interfaces with monarch points is directly related to said ruler, it's a reasonable statement that there is less strategy (or no strategy) involved in that system.

You show up to a street brawl. I hand you a knife. I hand your opponent a gun. Your decision to run away is not strategy. It's the only choice you had given the circumstances that I decided for you.
 

Lamahorse

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I think many people just think that there seems to be a scarcity in monarch points when it comes to doing various things. There are points in the game especially when the game rolls you some 0/0/0 monarch would couldn't even rule his way out of a wet paper bag; where you run low on them for a lengthy period. This can be after a period of conquest where you cannot afford the adm to core; the dip to impose a harsh peace (and now annex a large vassal) or enough mil to stay competitive.

I just don't want the devs to railroad everyone into playing a certain way. Honestly, vassal cheesing is a pretty user friendly hands off way of expanding. I'm guessing I'm not alone with the pride in fighting wars with large powerful vassals. You can just kick back as your vassal's attrition machine rolls occupies your enemy's homeland and your breast will swell with pride as some vassal like Hamburg sends her finest men to occupy their deadly foes; Dutch Guyanne.

I'm guessing that this massive sink of diplopoints will come with the corresponding revised ideas/techs to support old style vassal cheesing. Core returning already was quite expensive in terms of dip points invested so hopefully they will assist a player in this playstyle. Hopefully, vassals might become a little more unruly and belligerent. A vassal should rightfully expect their overlord to return their cores, claim lands and even revolt against their liege if they dislike them. A vassal could have a unique personality to their overlord instead of this 'vassal' personality. They could have a personality of 'Seeking Autonomy', 'Lobbying for war against X' (ie. core return) or 'Placated'. etc

There could be a third way to 'incorporate' provinces using Mil points. It's one monarch point that could definitely use a sink and using it to somehow 'core' provinces would be a very nice way to add another method of expansion. 'Hostile Coring' could produce AE and damage relations with members of that same culture group. I'm guessing it would IC involve the dismantling, removal, disenfranchisement and replacement of the indigenous ruling classes with a new elite. Similar to what happened say here in Ireland to the Gaelic nobility.

If there are any devs lurking this thread; perhaps it might be considering handy ninja buffs to certain idea groups. I'd love to see more effects for every single idea. One worth considering would be a 25% to 33% cost reduction for base tax to diplo points or increased 'coring' efficiency.

Perhaps the hoards idea group should start with administrative efficiency as a national idea. They really should be dangerous as hell early game. :)
 

jrgen3

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I just don't want the devs to railroad everyone into playing a certain way. Honestly, vassal cheesing is a pretty user friendly hands off way of expanding. I'm guessing I'm not alone with the pride in fighting wars with large powerful vassals. You can just kick back as your vassal's attrition machine rolls occupies your enemy's homeland and your breast will swell with pride as some vassal like Hamburg sends her finest men to occupy their deadly foes; Dutch Guyanne.
That is one of the things I really like about having vassals. They fight the wars I don't want/care to fight, like the Teutonic Order going all the way to Japan to fight. They always seem to be able to find ways to occupy anything...
 

MathewPerth

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From my understanding, you get +1 per month in each category. I'm going to assume some of your other numbers you meant to say were yearly values, because no nation I know of can attain 30+ monarch points/month.

At a given moment, you have guaranteed 3 base monarch points in a stat. You can get a 4th from power projection AFAIK, and up to 7 with top-tier advisors. Only if you can afford +3 advisor is it even possible to match a lucky monarch draw. At BEST, still just under 50% of your most crucial resource is completely chance based. Most cases, it's more like 75%

But you're still off base here, because unless you're playing against the feeble, they're going to get power projection and advisors also, making the main difference in your incomes chance-based. A +3 advantage in military stat over 10 years will give someone more than a war's worth of time to hit you with a tech lead...or you to hit them. With the gimped neighbor bonus, this advantage is only further exacerbated. Gimping the neighbor bonus was a trash move.

"You should expand slower as it should be" in a grand strategy game with expansion as the primary goal is mentally bankrupt. Make an actual argument please.



Damn right. If you read that paragraph carefully, they're essentially saying that a luck-based outcome is going to have a snowball effect, by design.

Of course, players who need to rely on luck are going to like that a lot; it makes their games more comparable to those that otherwise make more sound decisions. From the perspective of a strategy game emphasizing decisions, however, such a luck-based dependency is trash and I'm not afraid to call them out for it. Bad luck isn't altering the strategic depth at all here; it's literally only generating noise. If ruler stats reasonably depending on tough choices, the game would have more depth and rely more on skill rather than progressively less.
Are you silly? MP = monarch point. 3MP a month = 1 in each category. you can get 39MP a month because 13 in each category maximum.
 

AdmiralPrice

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The more I think about the new changes, the more I'm disappointed. I've always been an expansion type of player. Even when I played a colonization game as Algiers, I loved the expansion game. The new changes are all geared to limiting it, even though 1.5 did quite well at limiting expansion in the first place.

My greatest problem with this patch, however, will be the changes to the westernization system. The old westernization system was brutal, but it also offered a great reward at the end. The new westernization system (with CoP) was really lame, and the benefits waaay out did the costs. The newest, however, will be lamest still. Not only is it ridiculously easy to westernize, it has very little reward as well. Why in heaven's name will non western factions retain their respective unit types? What is the possible thought process behind it. Turning the tide will be nigh impossible. You've already gone on record to say that tech 12 unit differences will be minute in a previous post. Pray tell, then, when will these indian, chinese, nomad, native american and subsaharan troops actually have a time "to shine"? Considering that by the time they get to their "peak," the western nations will already be a few tech ahead of them. In the end, the result becomes clear: a late game western snowball. Whereas a skilled player could previously take a bad situation (like a nomad) and turn it into competition for Europe and actually invade it, the new system will result in players fighting just to keep european nations at bay.
 

AdmiralPrice

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Secondly, the diplo points to annex vassals is beyond ridiculous. You already nerfed vassal feeding hard with only claims/cores for them. I would seriously like an explanation on this one (and the previous one). Diplo anexing and core feeding was not easy. You had to be very good at finding potential targets. You had to be patient or opportunistic. You have to wait and think and plan and connive to actually make it work. Simply dropping an artificial up to 15 diplo point cost to annexing them is crippling to an expansion game, which is what I guess you wanted to do in the first place. Cripple the expansion game.