The spears, man... Let's just make them viable.

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CaNpoG

Recruit
Hello there, do you have the time to talk about the spears?

Well, it does feel a bit better than in Warband. I'll give you that. But it's still unusable if your opponent knows how to block on a less-than-average level. Let's discuss this.

So this is what happened:
I tried out using the spear in multiplayer, in team deathmatch. Needless to say, it wasn't usable. You could get some kills, but most were stabbed at unsuspecting cavalrymen charging through, and the only times I could kill anyone in a 1v1 scenario was when there were new players who would go for simple up-down feints. Anyone who knew a bit what they were doing, just walked up to me, easily blocking anything and just spammed me to death with a proper weapon until I just couldn't block after an extended period of time, or my spear got stuck somewhere or I tried thrusting from a reasonable distance and it did maybe 9 damage and didn't stun the attacker. When I played with something actually usable like a sword or axe, it was easy to get a lot of kills. This makes it clear it's not about player skill.

What is the problem?
Is it good for some weapon to be completely useless compared to other weapons? Is it good that it's the most used weapon in history before firearms were invented? Ok so here's pinpointed what I feel like the actual issue is:

- The spear bounces off way too easily, and way too far from you. Try to think of it this way. If you were holding a knife in front of you, and you were really close to someone in front of them, would you have to try to swing your arm back and forth relentlessly to make the knife penetrate them? No. It would be enough to just push forward with your body slowly and the blade would sink into them. In swings it's completely reasonable to have the bouncing effect for bad impact. Afterall, you wouldn't be able to cut wood for example, if you didn't put enough motion into your swing. For this reason the distance required for a stab with good damage should be made way shorter. An exception would be extra long pikes. But for short and medium length spears should be reduced. Also the way they get stuck behind you is just dumb and at best useless, fun killing "realism".

- The way you can only stab in two directions. Yes it kinda makes sense, but it just doesn't work in Bannerlord where all other weapons can hit from four directions. What I'm suggesting is side stabs for spears. Left side stab animation when using a spear 1-handed would be as follows:
It'd be similar to a low stab while stabbing two handed. But the character would have his right hand in front and left in back, while holding the spear on the left side of him. And of course he would stab with his right hand, a bit from left to right. The right stab would be pretty similar to the normal low stab, but with the arm a bit more extended out to the right. (I'm probably going to add a very simple picture showing this off as a link at some point).
This would make a big difference as you could actually fight someone with a spear. Other than just try to cheese backstabs on someone.

- They just don't do enough damage and are too slow at the moment. A regular short spear in multiplayer does like 25 pierce damage (as in stats). The maximum amount you can do against a footman with a spear is an absolute maximum of something around 70 damage. That sounds pretty good, but it isn't. And here's why:
You need to run at the enemy while he's running at you, you need to hit him straight in the head with a clean thrust from the exact right distance, and then he needs to be wearing pretty much no armor. Some random 1-handed sword does at least 100+ damage in such perfect scenarios, instakilling people with no armor. Add in that a 1-hander has it much easier hitting someone with force and in the head due to the fact that he's swinging in a wide arc, and you start to see the problem.

So tell me what you think.
 

Firunien

Grandmaster Knight
The bounces are really annoying, but before this was an issue the spears did instantly deal damage with no time to react, a solution could be to change the animation in so far as the spear starts accelerating from further back so you neither have bounces nor instant damage.

But i highly doubt they will go for such a big change.

Sidestabs would be bad to read, therefore I am against it, even though side swings would be something cool.
 

goohu

Regular
Meanwhile long menavlions and greataxes hits for 60 dmg at point blank. Logical. Spear balancing has been suggested numerous times, at this point noone cares anymore. Similar threads will pop up every once in a while for no results.
 

vonbalt

Sergeant Knight
WBNWVCM&B
Spears shouldn't be a weapon for 1v1 but for supporting 2v1.
Change my mind.
Watch experiment videos on youtube, even untrained spearmen usually have the advantage over other shorter weapons simply because they can control distance better and if the oposing guy tries to close in recklessly it'll often led in him being stabed.

If it's a very good swordman against an untrained spearman he usually can deflect or block the spearpoint and close in to control the fight by those videos but that takes lots of training and anymore than 1x1 that guy would stand no chance so i see why polearms dominated the battlegrounds of the world before firearms (and even after that they survived as bayonets to this day)
 

hoonii

Knight
Watch experiment videos on youtube, even untrained spearmen usually have the advantage over other shorter weapons simply because they can control distance better and if the oposing guy tries to close in recklessly it'll often led in him being stabed.

If it's a very good swordman against an untrained spearman he usually can deflect or block the spearpoint and close in to control the fight by those videos but that takes lots of training and anymore than 1x1 that guy would stand no chance so i see why polearms dominated the battlegrounds of the world before firearms (and even after that they survived as bayonets to this day)
In bannerlord, new players may fall for the spears long range, but after a few hours of blocking they will know that its only up and down block and nothing more. If you're trying to stab with the spear and run away from an infantry, oh-ho good luck mate, your only chance is block bashing which is a piece of cake to dodge, and when dodged, bash leaves you very vulnerable, potentially resulting in a high damage hit. And infantry in bannerlord needs to "charge" the spear by moving it backwards and then stabbing, which is quite impossible with long spears because not much space to do so, if you know how it works you will charge the spear to an empty space and then stab by turning and still if you miss the head it will deal only 5-10 damage each stab.

Only tactic I find viable with spears is kick-stab, which works quite good if you can connect the kick ngl, you'll get somewhere around 50-30 damage depending on armour value but you will need to do it constantly to kill an enemy, and kicks are not that easy to connect if enemy is moving a lot. Kick-stab works well with short spears but long spears still suck at close range, they are not able to deal enough damage in face to face to be viable for 1v1. Also kick-stab is heavily dependent on player skill, if you can kick efficiently and then attack or not(duh). Also the longer the spear, the slower the stab and the longer the spear is, the more space it requires to be charged and then stab(if your spear is too long and enemy is in your face there is pretty much nothing to do other than kick-stab. If the "charging" of spears are removed and spears attack with just stabbing forward, not going backwards for a second, then I will reevaluate my review on spears cause thats when they get interesting.

Also I'm pretty sure main usage of spears in medieval ages was to counter cavalry, because cavalry was the strongest soldier a commander could get at that time. Keeping infantry at bay was prolly their second usage and a basic shield and training counters that. Other polearms, like bardiches, glaives or simply billhooks can be different story because you can swing them. With many spears you can't swing because their tip is too small, or its sides are not sharpened, only the tip. There are spears that can be swung too, that's another thing, if TW decides that spears can too be a swing weapon than yeah, spears gonna be a big pain in my bumhole to deal with, but how are you going to implement that? And I think they wouldn't add such a thing, at least now.

Meanwhile long menavlions and greataxes hits for 60 dmg at point blank. Logical. Spear balancing has been suggested numerous times, at this point noone cares anymore. Similar threads will pop up every once in a while for no results.
Menavlions will have to stay away from you to deal damage, if you're point plank to them they will probably only poke you, dealing no damage. 2H axes and maces are, well, "short" and have bigger hitboxes.
Now to my point about spears in 2v1;
They are strong in 2v1, strong enough to be very annoying. 2 infantry vs 1 scenario, you have a spear and your mate has a shield. He goes to face the enemy, keeping him away from you and occupied. You try to stab the enemy by moving around them trying to find a sweet spot to both deal damage and cancel his attack/block. One of the most annoying scenarios to fight against, because spear user will always run away when you try to run for him and when you run the other guy will hit you, you focus on the other guy and spear keeps stabbing you or at least disturbing you and forcing you to block(which might result in you getting kicked).

I admit spears before 1.5 were useless in every melee, but after 1.5 they're strong in 2v1 or more scenarios. I too wanted a buff for spears and we got it, spears are in a better place now especially now they are very very effective against cavalry(being able to rear them from behind and sides, rearing horses with such a low damage). Maybe, maybe a little damage buff would do them good.

(Sorry this became a huge post but spears have a lot of points that needs to be talked about. I tried to highlight important places with bold and italic.)
Peace
 

CaNpoG

Recruit
Hoonii (didn't reply because it was such a long comment), while I agree that the longer spears (long spears and pikes) should be the support weapons against cav and for poking from behing allies, the biggest problem here is that even the shortest spears are unusable in melee when someone walks at you. The short spears should be for fighting in melee with a shield imo. The main point being that they're way too slow (thus predictable with only 2 directions) and they don't damage people who aren't even that close to you. They also get stuck on teammates both in front of and behind you. The technique from Warband of thrusting a bit to the side and moving your mouse toward the enemy doesn't work too well in Bannerlord when I have tested it.

I guess the devs could make the low thrust be a super fast poke for harrassing the enemy (more predictable, but keeping the enemy at bay), and have the overhead thrust be this slower poke (for mixing attacks for less predictability). The only other way would be to make the currently slow stabs push the enemy away from you, even if they're blocking.
 

cadadr

Recruit
Spears not working is not a spear problem but an NPC problem. Normally if someone was shoving a spear into your face or gut you wouldn't just ignore it and charge because organs are kinda hard to replace esp. with medieval medicine. But ingame there's no need to care for your limbs and eyes so you or the NPC can charge despite the damage. You take the damage and get a kill, whereas for the spear to work there should be some actual risk involved.

In general AI warriors should have some sense of self preservation when facing a weapon. The way it is they are like zombies sometimes and chopping them up with 2H swords feels like a chore.
 

Clsy

Squire
WBWF&S
Step:
  1. make a alternating holding style to distict full lenth and half lenth, which full length are longer, can only thrust and have minimal distance, half length is shorter, but can swing horizontially and have no minimal distance

  2. make all direction attackable, only up and down means even if i am blindfolded i still have a 50% change blocking the attack, kind of reminds me warband' shield and spear were it only have down attack so i just facehug downblock just to shame people using it

  3. make all successful attack knockbacks into place where spear can have times AND space to do a follow up attack so theres no scenario where people can just take a hit in the face and still casually walked right through the zone of control

spear is and should be a main armament but consider the era bannerlord on maybe sword and axe too but it is sure spear is not a sidearm, i don't know why taleworlds want it as a "only anti cav weapon"
the problem before numbers is the game mechanics itself and i don't see theres any changes adressing the spear problem any time soon

the recent change is just a slightly improve the bouncing problem of it but the ture core of problem remain the same
it's just boring and unfun playing spear
imo
 

Kwal

Grandmaster Knight
WBWF&S
I agree, at least with part 1. Spears should be so much more fun, one of the most dynamic and powerful weapons.
 

AxiosXiphos

Sergeant Knight
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
Except you were able to swing that thing. You had speed and reach on your side, so I wouldn't call it useless.
Ah well using some of them two handed yes - but this was weird in of itself.

I am really glad they replaced the overhead swing of spears with an overhead thrust though - that helps a lot.
 

Kripaz

Master Knight
M&BWBWF&SNWVC
Ah well using some of them two handed yes - but this was weird in of itself.

I am really glad they replaced the overhead swing of spears with an overhead thrust though - that helps a lot.
Swings were good imo, because it made spears usable in 1v1 scenarios and it's a shame spears are only support weapons in Bannerlord. And weirdly enough, only spear you can swing is menavlion even tho it's the last spear you'd think to be able to do that.

Yea overhead thrust is superior to overhead swing and that's an improvement.
 

Feewix

Recruit
Suggestion for additional spear attacks:

1. If wielded with only one hand + shield, then logically let it stay the way it is now, only two attacks - from above and below.
2. If wielded with both hands, make the left or right side attacks to be as a quick blunt attack with the opposite end of the spear to tackle and mess the opponent. I think that's completely viable and realistic, instead of only relying on the block+E key to push the opponent and be exposed to attack if you miss him completely.
 
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