[S] Pike and Blade 3.5: Riders on the Storm!

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Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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FOR USE WITH M&B WARBAND V 1.13
THE NEW VERSION WILL NOT BREAK SAVES MADE WITH THE OLD VERSION


Download link: http://www.mbrepository.com/file.php?id=1829
Contents: Zip folder that contains pike&blade readme, party_templates.txt, troops.txt

Short Description:

The primary goal, more important than anything else, is to develop infantry into a more versatile and interesting arm of the various faction armies without ditching the faction themes. In other words, Rhodoks are still Rhodoks, just more so!

While each of the factions has received new units, the number has been kept low. Units have only been added if they remained true to the faction's theme (like the Rhodok Pikemen and Boardmen, who jointly fill separate elements of the old Rhodok Spearman's role) while filling a new and interesting niche (like the light infantry skirmishers of the Nords, or the offensively potent but poorly armored Rhodok Macemen), or if they provided an essential balacing element (like the Sarranid and Swadian Squires, offensively potent t5 2h sword footmen who are now the only path on the road to the t6 Swadian Knights and Mamelukes). No fluff units, new textures or scripts have been added.

This mod is intended for players who like using lots of cav and wish the other factions were a legitimate threat as opposed to a speed bump, or for players who enjoy fighting with infantry armies, but dislike how under-developed, weak and tactically uninteresting they feel in Vanilla -- in other words, people who think "hide on a hill and fire arrows at them" shouldn't be the last word in infantry tactics.

Feel free to download, try, and tell me it's ****!

V3.5 (5/01/2010)

How to install:

1. Navigate to your Mount and Blade Warband directory
2. Open the folder that says Modules
3. Copy the folder that says Native
4. Paste it into the Module folder with a different name (like Pike and Blade, or Random Stupid Mod)
5. Copy all the files in the Pike&Blade zip
6. Paste them into the folder you created and named in steps 3 and 4
7. Open Mount and Blade Warband's launcher
8. Select the folder you pasted the Pike&Blade files into
9. Launch and enjoy

Forum Thread: http://forums.taleworlds.com/index.php/topic,110114.0.html
Download Page: http://www.mbrepository.com/file.php?id=1829

Includes (see forum thread for more details):

Rhodok tree end units:
t5: Sgt. Pike (slow/heavy armor/pike), Sgt. Xbow, Sgt. Glaive (t4 pike branch; assault infantry, glaive/heavy armor)
t4: Mace (t3 pike branch; assault infantry, morningstar or mace/light armor), Cleaver (t3 board branch, 2h cleaver/mod armor/good speed), Vet. Board (pick or 1h cleaver/board/good armor), Vet. Skirmisher (javs/mace/boardshield)

Rhodok Tree:
Recruit ---> Militia Crossbow ---> Crossbow ---> Vet. Crossbow ---> Sgt. Crossbow
Recruit ---> Militia Crossbow ---> Skirmisher ---> Vet. Skirmisher
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Pike ---> Vet. Pike ---> Sgt. Pike
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Pike ---> Vet. Pike ---> Sgt. Glaive
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Pike ---> Vet. Mace
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Board ---> Vet. Board
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Board ---> Vet. Cleaver

Vaegir tree end units:
t6: Champion (bardiche using infantry madman)
t5: Guard, Guard Archer, Guard Skirmisher (t4-t5 branch from t3 archer; spear/bow/shield)
t4: Horseman (t3 inf branch; now uses bardiche and javs)
t3: Pike, Polemace (t2 pike branch; assault infantry, long mace/med armor/good speed)

Vaegir Tree:
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Footman ---> Vet. Footman---> Guard Footman ---> Champion
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Footman ---> Horseman
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Archer ---> Vet. Archer ---> Guard Archer
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Archer ---> Vet. Skirmisher ---> Guard Skirmisher
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Pike
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Polemace


Swadian tree end units:
t6: Knight (now upgrades from squire, slightly stronger))
t5: Sergeant at Arms (top tier inf rename), Sgt. Xbow, Squire (t4 inf branch; 2h sword/med armor/good speed ONLY UNIT THAT UPGRADES TO KNIGHT)
t4: Man at Arms (t3 infantry branch; slower than other faction t4 horse/heavy armor/lance/sword&board), Vet. Axe (t4-t3 branch from t2 Pike; assault infantry, poleaxe/med armor/quick)
t3: Pike

Swadian Tree:
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Footman ---> Vet. Footman ---> Sgt. Footman
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Footman ---> Vet. Footman ---> Squire ---> Knight
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Footman ---> Man at Arms
Recruit ---> Militia Footman ---> Crossbow ---> Vet. Crossbow ---> Sgt. Crossbow
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Pike
Recruit ---> Militia Pike ---> Poleaxe ---> Vet Poleaxe

Sarranid tree end units:
t6: Mameluke (now upgrades from squire, stronger but no more warhorse)
t5: Guard Spearman, Guard Archer, Guard Skirmisher (t4-t5 branch from t3 archer/javs/shield/1h axe), Squire (t4 inf branch; 2h sword/med armor/good speed ONLY UNIT THAT UPGRADES TO MAMELUKE)
t4: Horseman (t3 infantry branch; fast/light armor/javs/sword&board)
t3: Axe (assault infantry; 2h axe/med armor/high speed)

Sarranid Tree:
Recruit ---> Militia Spear ---> Spear ---> Vet. Spear ---> Guard Spear
Recruit ---> Militia Spear ---> Spear ---> Vet. Spear ---> Squire ---> Cataphract
Recruit ---> Militia Spear ---> Spear ---> Horseman
Recruit ---> Militia Spear ---> Archer ---> Vet. Archer ---> Guard Archer
Recruit ---> Militia Spear ---> Archer ---> Vet. Skirmisher ---> Guard Skirmisher
Recruit ---> Militia Axe ---> Axe

Khergit tree end units:
t5: War Lancer, Master Horse Archer
t4: Armored Horseman (similar to Swadian Man at Arms)
t3: Jarid Cavalry (similar to Sarranid Horseman), Bardiche Cavalry (similar to Vaegir Horseman)

Khergit Tree:
Tribesman ---> Horseman ---> Lancer ---> Vet. Lancer ---> Guard Lancer
Tribesman ---> Horseman ---> Lancer ---> Armored Horseman
Tribesman ---> Horseman ---> Bardiche Horseman
Tribesman ---> Skirmisher ---> Horse Archer ---> Vet. Horse Archer ---> Guard Horse Archer
Tribesman ---> Skirmisher ---> Jarid Horseman

Nords:
t6: Thegn*
t4: Nord Vet. Archer, Nord Vet. Skirmisher (anti-cav, extremely fast/spear/shield/javs)
t3: Nord Axeman (overpowered for tier, 2h axe/fast/heavy armor)

Nord Tree:
Recruit ---> Novice Fyrdman---> Fyrdman---> Vet. Fyrdman---> Huscarl ---> Thegn
Recruit ---> Novice Fyrdman---> Axeman
Recruit ---> Novice Bowman ---> Bowman---> Vet. Bowman
Recruit ---> Novice Bowman ---> Skirmisher ---> Vet. Skirmisher

*Thegn, or Thane, was a Scandinavian aristocratic rank equivalent to a Knight in Medieval Continental Europe, and thus more appropriate for a t6 unit in this mod. Huscarl is a term indicating a household guard, and thus more in line with t5 naming conventions than t6. It's still the same Huscarl you know and love though!

Mercenaries:
t5: Mercenary Cavalry, Veteran Mercenary Mounted Crossbowman
t4: Hired Blade, Veteran Mercenary Crossbow, Mercenary Warrior (t3 merc infantry branch; heavy armor/fast/xbow/2h sword), Mercenary Pikebow (t3 merc xbow branch; heavy armor/slow/xbow/pike)

Mercenary Tree:
Townsman/Farmer ---> Militia ---> Merc. Swordsman --> Hired Blade
T/F ---> Militia ---> Merc. Swordsman ---> Merc. Warrior
T/F ---> Militia ---> Caravan Guard ---> Merc. Horseman ---> Merc Cavalry
T/F ---> Militia ---> Caravan Guard ---> Merc. Mounted Xbow ---> Vet. Merc. Mounted Xbow
T/F ---> Watchman ---> Merc Xbow ---> Vet. Merc Xbow
T/F ---> Watchman ---> Merc Xbow ---> Merc Pikebow

HORSE CHANGES:


Armor Based Horses

Warhorse:
Base AL of 30 (from 40)
Base Speed of 40 (from 39)
Base Maneuverability of 30 (from 41)
Base Charge of 50 (from 2:cool:
Base HP of 160 (from 165)
*Base Abundance of 40
*Base Price of 2000

Charger:
Base AL of 25 (from 5:cool:
Base Speed of 45 (from 39)
Base Maneuverability of 25 (from 44)
Base Charge of 60 (from 32)
Base HP of 160 (from 165)
*Base Abundance of 40
*Base Price of 2000

Courser:
Base AL of 20 (from 10)
Base Speed of 55 (from 42)
Base Maneuverability of 40 (from 50)
Base Charge of 40 (from 12)
Base HP of 140 (from 110)
*Base Abundance of 40
*Base Price of 2000


Speed Based Horses

Hunter:
Base AL of 25 (from 1:cool:
Base Speed of 45 (from 43)
Base Maneuverability of 35 (from 44)
Base Charge of 30 (from 24)
Base HP of 120 (from 160)
*Base Abundance of 70
*Base Price of 1000

Sarranid Horse:
Base AL of 20 (from 10)
Base Speed of 50 (from 43)
Base Maneuverability of 30 (from 43)
Base Charge of 40 (from 16)
Base HP of 120 (from 120)
*Base Abundance of 70
*Base Price of 1000

Steppe Horse:
Base AL of 15 (from 10)
Base Speed of 60 (from 40)
Base Maneuverability of 45 (from 51)
Base Charge of 20 (from 8 )
Base HP of 100 (from 120)
*Base Abundance of 70
*Base Price of 1000


Bad Horses

Saddle/Sumpter/Desert
Base AL of 5 (from 10)
Base Speed of 35 (from 43)
Base Maneuverability of 25 (from 43)
Base Charge of 5 (from 16)
Base HP of 80 (from 120)
*Base Abundance of 100
*Base Price of 100

It should work with any mod that doesn't add new troops or items -- just ask the modder if they've changed anything in the troops.txt, item-kinds1.txt or party-template.txt files if you want to be certain, and if they say no you should be fine. Even if it does add new troops, if you prefer the units in my mod it will still work with any mod that does not add new factions (because it'll break their ability to recruit if you add my mod). Just overwrite (after you've made backup copies in case it doesn't work!) the troops.txt and party-template.txt in their mod, and you'll be good to go. The only thing I've done in item-kinds1.txt is change the stats of horses, which you can easily duplicate with some copy-pasta to merge the mods. As always, feel free to PM or post any questions you might have!

These mods have been tested with Pike&Blade and are confirmed compatible (and also confirmed cool!):
Arena Retexture: http://www.mbrepository.com/file.php?id=1760
Reworked Armor: http://www.mbrepository.com/file.php?id=1841

They're not included in Pike&Blade, but it takes ten seconds to download and add them in without any effects on your save.

These mods are confirmed cool and tested by some awesome posters, but require some tweaking to the mod folder:
http://www.mbrepository.com/file.php?id=1887 (Diplomacy Mod)


Here's how you merge P&B and Diplo!

Step 1: Follow all the instructions for installing the Diplomacy mod
Step 2: Download this file: http://rapidshare.com/files/392873196/Merged_PnB_and_Diplo.zip
Step 3: Copy the item_kinds1.txt, party_templates.txt and troops.txt files from the Merged_PnB_and_Diplo.zip file to the Diplomacy mod folder.
Step 4: Play!

If you have an existing Pike&Blade save, you will need to start a new game to use the merged files -- but this shouldn't impact your existing stuff, which you shouldn't even be able to access!

If you have an existing Diplomacy save, you should be fine continuing from where you are.

If you have an existing personally merged P&B+Diplo save, one of two things will happen. Either you did it right, in which case this won't even be necessary, or you did it wrong and need these files, in which case you'll have to start a new game.

If the game starts but '**** be broke!!' check this post for more detailed merge info for Diplomacy: http://forums.taleworlds.com/index.php/topic,116434.0.html
v3.5 (5.04.2010)
-rebalanced horses to be faster, chargier, less maneuverable and less armored
-made a few small alterations to unit equipment related to horses

v3.2 (5.01.2010)
-altered high tier reinforcements for some factions
-improved t5/t6 reinforcements for nords to help them in autoresolves

v3.15 (5.01.20100
-minor bug fix
-balancing changes

v3.1 (5.01.20100
-hotfix
-cleans up serious errors
-removes ability to recruit high end mercenaries in taverns

v3.0 (5.01.20100
-Finalized and implemented mercenary trees (see readme for details)
-Tweaked some unit stats
-Changed Man-At-Arms to use 2h morningstar instead of 1h kit (see readme for details)

v2.5 (4.25.2010)
-Finalized and implemented faction trees for Swads/Vaegs/Rhods/Sarras (see readme for version 2.5 for the details!)
-Corrected a few minor typos
-Updated party-template to propagate the new units

v2.0 (4.25.2010) (93 downloads including Rapidshare and MBRepository)
-Altered Swadian and Sarranid mounted lines (see 2.0 readme for details), added t5 Squires to both
-Swapped Sarranid Skirmisher to a light bow unit (makes more sense from a tree perspective, gonna add it back later)
-Added t3 Nord 2h axemen, removed throwing weapons bigger than light/med throwing axes from Nord main line infantry
-Drastically changed Khergits (see 2.0 readme for details)
-Changed Vaegir Knight to Vaegir Bardicheman, moved to t6 infantry position, changed Vaegir horse to specialize in bardiche as well
-Updated party-templates file to reflect new units

v1.22 (4.24.2010) (77 downloads)
-Changed a couple of values in the party-templates file (only a few slight tweaks to reinforcement, might not even be noticeable)

v1.21 (4.23.2010) (26 downloads)
-Fixed a crashing bug

v1.2 (4.23.2010)
-Added Skirmishers to Nord and Rhodok armies
-Switched to .zip compression, since it's windows native and the file is miniscule

v1.1 (4.23.2010):
-Switched Rhodok Veteran Maceman to upgrade from Rhodok Cleaverman rather than a pike (found a free upgrade slot woo)
-Raised RVMace strength to 14 so that he can actually use his weapons
-Switched host to Rapidshare (slightly less terrible and gives me ability to track downloads)

Vaegir:
The Vaegirs got the most complaints -- too bland, don't feel right -- so I brainstormed up some changes. The Vaegirs are known for archery, right? So I want them to always be capable of firing off arrows! Their skirmisher line will feel slightly different from other skirmisher lines (much better melee, bows as usual but their archery stats are getting hit with a nerf for balance, slightly more armor and an impressive shield skill). Their main infantry line is being capped at t4, with lots of variety in upgrade options to keep things fresh there. I want them to feel expendable and easily replaced, because 2h weapons units tend to take some serious losses! The pike line will be dropped entirely. It's both vestigial and made redundant by the long bardiche of the infantry.

Their primary weapons will be the sword/scimitar/shortbow in their skirmisher line (t6), the long bardiche in their infantry line (t4), the polemace in their assault line (t4), and the "longbow"/bardiche in their archer line (t5). They'll keep their horseman (t4) as a second assault option, since he's pretty fun.  Finally, a t5 skirmisher (t4 split) who uses a mace in place of a scimitar -- mostly to give players a choice between blunt and slashing damage.

I want the Vaegir player to split their troops up! Skirmishers up front and in the line of march, firing short ranged stuff and dropping back in the face of enemy advances. The slower and longer ranged archers to the side and back, providing heavy fire and supported by cav. Finally, the various polearm troopers either with the archers for a flanking attack, or behind the skirmishers to provide a final defensive line. To make that sort of approach easier the Vaegirs will be quick and lightly equipped, but with excellent athletics and ironflesh.

In sieges, the player will probably have a little bit of trouble due to the lack of monster infantry, so mercenaries might be a good idea for them! I imagine either skirmishers being ordered to charge in while holding fire in support of infantry, or everyone with a bow being ordered to provide fire while the infantry charges. I think it'll be just about as miserable as sieges usually are, and that's all I have to say about that.


Sarranids:

Currently checking how they play in game. Axemen are brilliant in battle, they really clean up and I'm extremely satisfied with how they came out. Skirmishers are also very effective, but I haven't had the chance to use them as much as I'd like. Their horsemen also work very well, seem to focus on throwing the jarids before they close and engage in melee, so they do pretty well. Main infantry line is still weak, but as their only functions are (1) protect the other units with their shields and (2) upgrade to good units, that's all I want from them.

Cataphracts (the new name for Mamlukes) still seem overwhelming, but now that they're more of a pain for the player to acquire it's not as bad. On foot, they're still as vulnerable as ever, so I'm still looking at that.

Swadians:

They just need a balance checkup. Worried about their poor performance in autoresolve in my game, but in actual battles they're still a sturdy foe with a hell of a punch.

Khergits:

Khergits will need a close eye in terms of balancing, as I've changed them significantly. Might add a dude with a hafted blade and a bow at t4, give the khergits another strange and dangerous driveby unit with ranged capacity.

For those who are wondering, the Armored Horseman (Swad derived) is intended to fight mostly on foot, generally as a shock trooper in castle sieges.
The Bardiche Horseman (Vaegir derived) is intended to provide heavy driveby damage and backline support in sieges.
And the Jarid Horseman (Sarranid derived) is intended to provide close range anti-cav support.
They all dead-end to keep things from getting really weird. Idea was to flesh out the concept of the Khergits as an invading horde that is using enemy fighting techniques (and citizens, check the faces on the derived units) to supplement their own lines. They're not as potent as the originals, but they are intended to still fight pretty well. 

Again, balance is key here, so definitely feel free to speak out against any of the changes.


Rhodoks:

I've kept up my Rhodok game, and it's still impressive just how doughty these guys are. I'm finding that I'll generally take a beating -- and possibly lose -- with even numbers against an army of 1/3rd or more heavy cav, which is a bad sign. However, if I can get the enemy to fight in a situation where their knights/catties are dismounted, I can generally win against 1.5 or 2 to 1, which is a good sign. I'm looking at ways to lower the reinforce rates of higher tier Rhodok troops on lords (to weaken them in autoresolve) without assboning them against the player. I'd also love it if someone with some coding skills was available to write custom AIs for each of the factions -- I don't know ass from elbow when it comes to code, so any help here would be a plus.

Nords:

Might add a t4 2h Axeman to round that tree out, but the existing t3 version is already about as strong as a t4 unit. It's overpowered for its tier, but still significantly less powerful when compared to t5. Not really anywhere else to go with the Nords.


Mercenaries:

Tree has been implemented, they just need watching for balance now.

Mounted xbows were handy with skirmish stuff, but can't justify taking them over more specialized units in battles. Pikebows performed poorly in siege, but who knows. Gonna need more of them on the field to really make a call either way.

I'm seriously considering requiring the player to have positive non-zero relations with villages before he recruits, to make the mercs a little more important in the early game. Gonna need to raise the number available in any given group for recruitment to make that viable.


Future Goals:

To be honest, I didn't expect to get this far, so I'm not really sure where to go for version 4. I've done an overhaul of all the factions, and I doubt people would really care if I redid the female tree or something. Maybe the bandits? Meh.

A version with some TweakMB and script changes might be fun, but I'd probably do that as a separate download and give it a different name. Pike&Script? Ideally the two would be complementary modular mods that could be used separately or together without the users needing to do anything other than stick them in the folder and play. I mean, not everyone shares my vision of how the game should be, so why not make it as easy as possible for them to mix and match the parts they like, and ditch the ones they don't!

Some things I don't know how to do, but would really like to include:
-Lords that rebel and start their own factions
-Wandering mercs that fight bandits and can be recruited
-Configurable autoloot function for heroes
-More serious repercussions for lordly intrigue (exile, fighting between two lords of same faction who hate one another, maybe even assassination)
-Faster development of lordly factions in player kingdom
-Ability for lords to come from "across the sea" or something to replace ones that die or are exiled
-Generally more information about what the hell is going on

I'd also like to improve the script that runs when a companion is made into a lord, so that they're not so freaking terrible and in constant need of player assistance.

But I'd need someone with similar interests and coding experience to pull all that off, and those people don't just fall out of trees and into your lap!

We'll see what I've got time to learn how to do myself, anyway.



Tools to do it yourself:
Troop Editor: http://forums.taleworlds.com/index.php/topic,34154.0.html
TXT Tools: http://forums.taleworlds.com/index.php/topic,105928.0.html
TweakMB: http://forums.taleworlds.com/index.php/topic,101731.0.html
The full freakin list: http://forums.taleworlds.com/index.php/topic,108292.0.html
I use these myself, but they can be irritating as hell. Give em a shot if you want, but I'm not going to claim they're the best or anything.

Party Eat Frequency: from 14 to 8 (Your troops eat 3x per day instead of once or twice)
Prisoner Management: increased from 5 to 10 (Convenience)
Mounted Unit Wage Multiplier: increased from 166 to 200 (slight mounted unit nerf)
Mercenary Wage Multiplier: reduced from 166 to 100 (Mercenaries are fun, but overpriced, this makes them cheaper)
Companion Wage Multiplier: increased from 2 to 4 (Companions are too cheap, this makes them more expensive)
Party Size Per Renown: increased from 25 to 50 (renown nerf, Leadership buff)
Party Size Per Leadership Point: increased from 5 to 15 (Leadership buff, makes large infantry armies viable)
Leadership Wage Decrease: increased from 5 to 7 (Leadership buff, helps with bigger party cost)
Improvement Build Times: increased from 100 to 50 (things take twice as long/cost twice as much to build, MAJOR Engineering buff when coupled with next one)
Percent Engineering Build Time/Cost Reduction: increased from 50 to 95 (With these changes Eng5 is now about as good as Eng9 in Vanilla. Huge buff!)

The changes here are focused on making morale, rather than denars or an arbitrary numbers cap, the primary limiting factor for a party. There was an additional shift in the cost of supporting soldiers from wages to food, which (when coupled with the garrison cost multiplier fix) makes fiefs much more capable of supporting their castle. In my current new game, my castle+village are able to support ~180 Rhodok infantry soldiers (half garrisoned) from t2-t5 while leaving me to pay around 400-500 denars a month in wages (and a ****eload more in food). Peanuts, compared to Vanilla. Most of the changes have to do with limiting possible sources of morale buffs (like food or leadership, which now provides more troopers per point than morale to support them), but they're also focused on making large infantry armies viable at a much earlier point in the player career, and for far less cash wages. With much of the cost of running a party shifted out of cash and into food, the vagabond bandit play style is also now viable -- just force villages to give you supplies to get food, and sell what you don't need to towns to support your thieving band!     

Renown and cavalry wages were nerfed because they are traditional tools by which players build uberforces of 50-60 mounted units on a combat focused character that sweep through the map and dominate all enemies near and far. When combined with omnipresent pikes (and the threat of Khergit horsebows), these changes should seriously weaken this style of play, while rewarding the more methodical plodding of the infantry.

The changes to Engineering are intended to solve a long running irritant -- the 2000 denar mill that takes two months to build and provides a 5% income increase. Although someone with low engineering will find this terrible, a specialist Engineer (like, say, one of the companions) will eventually be able to produce buildings like the mill for three hundred denars, and in less than a week. Handy!

Again, these changes are OPTIONAL, and can be added BY YOU, THE READER, if you choose to download TweakMB (see the tools section of this post) and DO IT YOURSELF. I'm always happy to explain away any curiosities, so feel free to ask either in this thread or by PM!

1. Hold the F1 key to give a remote Move to and Hold Position order
a. When coupled with Shift selection of multiple groups and the F1-F3 Charge commands, allows for simultaneous attacks on enemy flanks without player presence at either location
b. By placing a flag for a cavalry unit on the opposite side of an enemy formation from that unit, cavalry will attempt to charge through the enemy rather than stop and engage them in melee

2. Hold the Shift key to select multiple groups
a. Great for uniting groups (like archers/pikes or skirmishers/infantry) that you normally want divided
b. Shift clicking a number again does NOT remove it from the grouped pool

3. Each use of the F2-F4 Close Ranks command adds an additional rank to a formation
a. In a group with two or more ranks, the F2-F3 Open Ranks command will remove a single rank
b. Pikes cannot effectively attack beyond the fourth rank, but a fifth and sixth makes it easier to prevent cav jogging through
c. Ranged units will not fire from the third rank, with the exception of throwing units
d. Skirmishers defend well against infantry in a two or three ranked formation

4. Each use of the F2-F3 Open Ranks command on a formation with one rank will put one additional file between each trooper
a. In a group with 1 or more additional files, the F2-F4 Close Ranks order will remove one file
b. Skirmishers intercept cavalry more effectively in an open formation, as they are better able to support one another with javelins

5. Use the F3-F1 Hold Fire command to force archers/xbows to ignore targets and move to their destination
a. Without this command, archers/xbows will fire at targets of opportunity en route to their destination, which can leave them isolated and vulnerable
b. The F3-F2 Fire At Will command reverses this  order

6. The F2-F1 Advance Ten Paces command allows formed pikemen to "charge" enemies directly ahead without losing group cohesion

7. The F2-F2 Retreat Ten Paces command allows for tight control of skirmishing units
a. Units given the F2-F2 Retreat Ten Paces will about face, march ten paces and maintain group cohesion, then revert to their previous command (charge, hold position, etc)
b. Couple with F3-F1 Hold Fire command to ensure fire discipline and group movement in ranged units
c. As skirmishers are faster than all comparable foot units, consecutive F2-F2 Retreat Ten Paces commands will cause them to "kite" enemy foot units while continuing to launch throwing weapons

8. The Backspace key activates the following
a. A minimap, with color coding for troop groups and Hold Position flags where applicable
b. Casualty reports for player (presented both as a total and broken down by group), allies and enemies
c. Ability to select and give Hold Position orders to groups by clicking them, then clicking a position on the minimap
d. Shows active order (charge, hold, run away!) for each group

A note to other modders:
STEAL THIS MOD!

Steal the ideas, steal the concepts, heck, steal the unit names and entries and even the text on this page (especially the command guide, I'm proud of that).

No, really, I'm not even kidding. I'm far more interested in seeing other mods with well developed infantry lines than getting internets fame for my decade old handle.

So, in closing, steal this mod!
 

Lueii

Grandmaster Knight
M&BWBVC
Best answers
0
Good job!  A pleasure to have someone appear with a finished mod.
 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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It's not a major mod, and includes no retextures, scripts, or anything other than some units I made. I might add a few more troop lines at some point -- for instance, I'd like to see some serious throwing weapon lines up to tier 3/4 instead of the vestigial skirmisher units we have now -- but as there are only two upgrade lines per unit it's a tad difficult to really spread things out. 

But yeah, other than some potential new units in the future, it's complete.



RETROSPECTIVE EDIT: Wrongest post I have ever made.
 

FNSaver

Squire
WBNW
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don't worry, friend. I'm downloading this right now and I'll play it tomorrow, and you know, the warband mods are few in numbers but as you are this dedicated in modding the warband, I'm sure more people like me will come.
 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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Mod updated to 1.2, the Skirmisher Edition! Yes, it is totally over the top in here!

Skirmishers are intended to fulfill the anti-cav role for the Nord without relying on pikes. They come equipped with spear and shield and a huge supply of throwing weapons, which have themselves been updated, so that you get a whole lot more bang per slot. These troopers have incredibly high athletic skills and lighter armor than footmen of their class, allowing them to move across the battlefield faster than any other infantry soldier. While they can handle fighting in the front lines, their inferior shields and lack of any shield skill ensure that they will not stand up in sustained fighting. The ideal use for these soldiers is the flanks, where they can fend off cavalry and rain axes and javelins upon the backs of their foes.

The Rhodoks also share in this skirmisher delight, being the only other faction without a cavalry option. These brave warriors fight with sword, shield and javelin against the ever present spectre of Swadian tyranny and Sarranid oppression. Though not as agile or proficient in the art of throwing weapons as their Nordic fellows, they embody the Rhodok trait of hardiness in the face of enemy attack, being better armored and more skilled in the use of shields. They are best employed to protect the flanks of the pike square from enemy infantry, or to grab and hold promising terrain, enabling the rest of the army to form up in safety.

Be sure to check the OP for a link to the new download!
 

Cassial

Veteran
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I'd like to warn you. Your new update causes the game to crash on startup, or at least when starting a new game.

And "unexpected end" of the troops.txt file. Perhaps you accidentally made a mistake in the file somewhere?
 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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Yeah, the new one fixes it. You can fix it yourself if you want to save a download by going to the top and changing the number 945 to 944. Boneheaded error, but it happens sometimes >.>

As an AAR, I just used this to play an older save and fight against the Sarranids. Javelins everywhere! The pikes helped a lot against the Mamelukes, but whenever they got in amongst my Cleavers/Macemen, it caused havok! Skirmishers were actually able to keep up with enemy horse on the slopes of the hills, which was a huge help in keeping the Sarranids from plowing me hard.

edit: I think I might make the Sarranids a throwing weapon light cavalry line. Horse archers are definitely a Khergit thing, but the Sarranids already have their base archer unit with throwing weapons, a serious dearth of light cav and tons of empty desert to mess about in.

editx2:

Alright, a few more battles against the Sarranids, some in the desert and some in the highlands, and they still pack a ferocious punch. It seems that the faction balance is still pretty good, despite my changes, as I find that terrain seems to have a greater impact on battles than any other single factor; if it's hilly, I'll win with minimal casualties, but if it's flat land, it's a fight for my life.

The AI seems to consistently attempt to push behind my infantry on the left to hit my bowmen with their Mamelukes. I initially tried stationing pikes in front of their likely position, with skirmishers in a supporting role, but the pikes (by design) are too slow to get between the Mamelukes and their destination. So I've been experimenting with skirmishers in a spread out screening line on the left, while the pikes are mixed in with the bows. The Cleavers and Macemen tend to have a good back and forth with the enemy infantry, based on the casualty readout, but I tend to be too distracted with damage control in the rear to really pay attention to things up front.

Skirmishers are easily my favorite addition, despite being something I really had no intention of using when I first put them in -- even with my intentionally defensive build, they seemed too light and quick (on paper) to be truly efficient Rhodoks. I first employed them as defenders in a siege, where I was pleasantly surprised by their ability to rapidly transition between devastating short range fire and vicious melees. The short swords I equipped them with, though low in damage, seem extremely efficient for the back and forth fighting of the AI. In field battles, they tend to get smacked around by enemy infantry (most often by pikemen, oddly enough), but I've found them utterly invaluable in dealing with any emergency situation -- they're the only Rhodok unit light enough to get on the scene quickly, and cheap enough that I'm not too concerned if a few die.

The macemen are another unexpected delight. I've found them invaluable in small numbers for supporting both Cleavermen (these guys need a new name, since they use cleaver, pick and glaive, but I'm totally out of ideas)  in the main melee and Pikes in dealing with dismounted Mamelukes. My only gripe is that they're too expensive to use regularly with Skirmishers -- but I could easily see them becoming either overpowered or worthless if they were a lower tier unit.

I'm still thinking about a light cav line for the Sarranids. I'm hesitant to aid that powerhouse of a faction, but it's definitely the case that they're in serious need of some more unit diversity. I think I'll wait til some other people weigh in before making a decision either way.

I've also added some suggested TweakMB settings to the OP which I really enjoy, but are definitely a matter of personal taste.

As of this edit, v1.21 has been downloaded 14 times. Thanks!
 

Shimmmy

Recruit
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I will definitely try this one. By your mod description i can say that you know what you're talking about, so it's not another "MOAR stuff" mod and I approve that.

I will post some feelings later.
 

androsh

Recruit
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I'm all for more unit diversity, especially for them Nords and Rhodoks, the proverbial last slice of bread in the bag. A simple mod that adds much needed anti-cavalry units is what we need, that's for sure. If only we also had spear bracing  :eek:

I haven't tried the mod yet, mainly because I want to first try the 81-new units one that should be updated soon. If you found a way to combine your mod with that one I would definitely try it right away.
 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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androsh said:
I'm all for more unit diversity, especially for them Nords and Rhodoks, the proverbial last slice of bread in the bag. A simple mod that adds much needed anti-cavalry units is what we need, that's for sure. If only we also had spear bracing  :eek:

I haven't tried the mod yet, mainly because I want to first try the 81-new units one that should be updated soon. If you found a way to combine your mod with that one I would definitely try it right away.
I'm not in the least interested in doing so, as the design philosophies are totally different. It'd be like asking me to improve my ham sandwich by adding a layered cake!

But it's incredibly easy to do it yourself. Just download both mods, go to the bottom of my troops.txt and copy/paste the new units into the bottom of their troops.txt -- it has to be the bottom, due to the way the files work. Some of my others are in the middle, so it might be easier for you to just duplicate them than  Save it, then use one of the two editors I've linked in the OP (Troop Editor or TXT Tools) to give them upgrade paths. Since they've added a ton of units, it's likely that you'll be hard pressed to find any open upgrade slots at the right tiers, but you might get lucky. And if not, you could always do some funky stuff.

Then, using either of the two editors I mentioned above, open their party-templates.txt and ensure that some of the units I created are added to the proper kingdom reinforcement parties. You want, at the very least, for the militia pikes to enter the lord/town parties. Don't worry about the lack of top tier units, lords develop their units over time.

You'll have to repeat this every time they release a new troops.txt or party-templates.txt, but them's the breaks. If you've got any specific questions, I'd be happy to help!
 
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Hey mate, looks nice!

Gonna download this in a few days but i'm on holiday with only a laptop without M&B Warband..

Anyways good job and also thanks for the links to the troop editor ect. :wink:
 

androsh

Recruit
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Aeon221 - Thanks for the suggestion and instructions, but I'll probably stick with doing both mods separately. Heck, while I wait for 81 units to be released, I might just try Pike and Blade. I've always wanted to try a Rhodok knight  :smile:
 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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I've been considering giving the Vaegirs a t3-t4 high athletics bow footman line (shortbow/sword/shield/light armor) , whose primary purpose would be, basically, long ranged skirmishers/archer support. In other words, the kind of easily replaced unit who you can order hither and yon across the battlefield to secure good firing positions, or just stick with your main archers to keep them safe from enemy attackers.

I'm not a frequent Vaegir player, so I'm less sure of what would be appropriate/is lacking with that faction. Feel free to shout out ideas!

androsh said:
Aeon221 - Thanks for the suggestion and instructions, but I'll probably stick with doing both mods separately. Heck, while I wait for 81 units to be released, I might just try Pike and Blade. I've always wanted to try a Rhodok knight  :smile:
The Nords should also be an interesting pick, what with their new and improved skirmishers. I've been meaning to test them, but it's hard to tear myself away from the Rhodok on Sarranid action!

Also be sure to give the TweakMB suggestions a shot, they really change the entire feel of the game. If you happen to give Swadians a shot with that setup, I'd love to hear how it goes!

 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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I'm looking for After Action Reports, especially from people doing any of the following:

-Using all-cav armies
-Using the Nords
-Using the Rhodoks
-Using the Suggested TweakMB settings

Thanks a bunch to those of you who take the time to do this! Feel free -- in fact, feel encouraged -- to include any thoughts you might have about which factions/units/combos suck/are OP/feel pretty balanced. Also be sure to mention if the whole thing sucks more than a Hoover!

As of this post, v1.2 has been downloaded 50 times. Thanks again!
 

Cassial

Veteran
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You want to rename Cleavermen? Could always call 'em Butchers.

Also, for those who are looking into the mod, why not put up some screenshots of the new units?

As for Swadians, how about a unit line that specializes solely in two-handed swords? They don't have one of those.
 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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I've added a short guide on how I use the command interface with troops to set up complex battlefield maneuvers rapidly. Hope this helps other players, who may not realize just how flexible and intuitive this tool is.

Cassial said:
You want to rename Cleavermen? Could always call 'em Butchers.

Also, for those who are looking into the mod, why not put up some screenshots of the new units?

As for Swadians, how about a unit line that specializes solely in two-handed swords? They don't have one of those.
@Butchers: Doesn't really work either, since they're equipped with a variety of weapons. I might just go with the same names the Swadian infantry line uses.

@Screenshots: They all use skins, equipment and faces included in vanilla -- hence the 35kb download size. Besides, screenshots take up valuable space that I could be filling with ever more spoiler'd text!

@2h Swadian Melee Infantry: I'm shocked to report that none of the Swadian infantry is even equipped with anything bigger than a Heavy Bastard Sword. I had assumed that all of them were packing big ol' 2handers in there somewhere! A line of fast moving two handed swordsman might be just the thing for the Swadian light infantry line! Great suggestion, I'll implement it tonight.
 

DemonicMuskrat

Recruit
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I have to say, this mod impressed me. Not just another "Heres more units for the sake of them" which adds variety and absolutely butchers balance, you seem to have actually put some coherent thought into the units and what role they play.  So i for one am going to start using this  :smile:
Will this work with save games?
 

Khannus

Recruit
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what about Flesh-Rippers for the cleaver-men...a bit horror-esque yes,  but when i think cleaver I think brain splitting, bone ripping, muscle tearing; hence the gory name. :twisted:
 

Aeon221

Sergeant at Arms
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I'm doubleposting because this is probably going to end up being a long one. Anyway, I'm the only one in this thread, I can do what I want!

Having now fought a ton of battles against the Sarranids as the Rhodoks, I have to say that I really like the feeling of terror I get from those Mamelukes. They fundamentally rewrite the battlefield around them, and that is very cool.

But there are a couple of issues:
1. They're trivially easy for the player to acquire,
2. Once acquired, they're incredibly simple to maintain and replace, because of their potent battlefield presence
3. This enables the player to build an overwhelming single unit army (tactically trivial, BAD) rather than a combined arms force (tactically complex, GOOD)
4. The only current balancing mechanism is based around cost which, as anyone who knows anything knows, isn't really any sort of balancing mechanism at all

Consider instead the Nord Huscarl whose use does not confer strategic map movement advantages, has a higher base (before mounted) cost and, as a t6 unit, requires a significantly greater expenditure of effort to replace. While still too effective en masse, the limiting factors are more significant and their ability to dominate the battle map is less blatant.

I'm thinking that I'd like to transition all the Knight style units to t6, as with the Huscarl. More importantly, I think I'm going to tie them all to the light infantry/skirmisher lines, rather than the traditional heavy infantry lines, and then end with a bifurcation at the t4-t5 transition, with one t5 acting as a final skirmisher, and the other t5 branch would be a a fairly weak transition unit into the t6 variant. 

This forces the player to used a combined arms force to develop their superior heavy cavalry/infantry, as they can no longer rely on simply brute forcing the enemy with line infantry until the superior unit line emerges at the t3-t4 transition.

The end result should be players using richer tactics to play through the game, and carefully hoarding their t6 units as precious resources rather than easily replaced pwnies.

One major risk of this approach is that the light infantry chain is hijacked into the t6 line, changing them from expendable shock troopers into dangerously exposed steps on the road to a better tomorrow. On the one hand, this might be a good thing. But on the other, it'd simply mean that some players would just stick light infantry in the rear and ignore it while fighting with the rest of their army. On the other hand, it might not.


I'd avoid having the AI deal with all this through manipulation of the AI replacement parties, as I doubt they'd attempt to protect the t5 units waiting to transition to t6!

Feedback, as always, is appreciated!