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Archer Balance [371]

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by allknowingfrog, May 3, 2012.


The archer...

  1. is already well-balanced.

  2. is over-powered.

  3. needs adjustment, but is not over-powered.

  1. allknowingfrog

    allknowingfrog Bison Rider

    Murmurs float around the KAG community that something is off about the archer. Whether it's arrow spam, blind distance shots, or the exponentially lethal power of multiple archers, everyone seems to have a gripe. However, I don't think that the archer is simply OP. Instead, I think that the archer has specific quarks that sometimes seem unfair.

    A simple nerf won't help. Some really good archers only get a 1:1 K/D because they play at the front and actually help their team advance. Some really mediocre archers have great K/D because they hang back, sniping and spamming. In an unlimited-tickets game, K/D doesn't matter. Unfortunately, cowardly archers have a significant advantage in limited-ticket games. Ticket-depletion often finishes a CTF match, partially due to these cowardly archers, who gradually wear down the enemy without really getting involved in the action. The archer is not inherently flawed, but it can be played in a way that diminishes the overall fun of the game. Since we can't change the players, the only way to fix this would be to change the game.

    What, if anything, could be adjusted to eliminate the unsporting elements of the archer, without harming it's overall playability?

    The beauty of an indie game like KAG is that the devs genuinely consider community feedback. If we find an answer to this question, there's a good chance it will be incorporated into the game.

    (FYI: This suggestion was pretty terrible, but the ensuing discussion prompted me to start a more general thread.)

    EDIT (5-14-2012): To help us stay on topic, here is a basic summary of the ideas so far. The first list contains simple nerfs for the archer. The second list contains simple buffs for other classes. The third list contains give-and-take adjustments.

    • Reduce archer's fire rate (no spam).
    • Reduce archer's fire power (less damage per shot).
    • Reduce archer's effective range (nerf long-range arrows).
    • Cap the number of arrows an archer can carry.
    • Make arrows more expensive (and/or take longer to harvest).
    • Reduce or remove charged arrow stun.
    • Increase attacks against building, i.e. with siege weapons.
    • Let knights climb ladders while shielding up.
    • Sword jab to block charged shots.
    • Glass cannon (make archers powerful, but fragile).
    • Give archers the ability to one-hit-kill each other.
    • Increase mobility, but decrease fire rate and/or power.
    • Add a curve to fire power (i.e. a fully charged shot takes twice as long as a half charged shot; curved, it might take three times as long).
    CoughDrop, Harold7, aaaaaa50 and 6 others like this.
  2. Ghozt

    Ghozt Haxor

    I think this is a great way of thinking, but what would be a good way to implement an idea like this.

    Changing the distance/power?
    Putting a limit on arrows?
    Only being able to shoot when standing on dirt blocks and trees?
    Only being able to shoot 5 blocks from ground level?

    I am just throwing some ideas around, some of these are stupid.
    But great thought frog.
    fishfinger73 likes this.
  3. cmblast

    cmblast Shopkeep Stealer

    There does need to be a (better) way for a team to take to take out an archer in an entrenched position, especially when he has a knight shielding him. Maybe something like a ballista, that essentially shoots a big honking arrow? I play archer a lot, and it is super boring having long distance archer duels when you are both in high quality archer towers with quarters, but if you don't make the other archer focus on you, your team gets decimated.
  4. ShnitzelKiller

    ShnitzelKiller Haxor

    I would be fine with archers if their fire rate was significantly reduced. A single archer behind a knight basically makes attacks impossible as he can spam arrows far faster than a single jab and then shield takes, making it impossible for even a skilled player to time his attacks properly.

    I also notice that while charging arrows does slow down jump and movement speed, it does not slow down climbing speed at all, and with archers being able to climb trees like ladders, this means they are invulnerable as long as they keep moving from tree to tree.
    Regular archer arrows already act like ballistas. They do damage to multiple players at once, sometimes registering double damage and taking full health.
  5. Contrary

    Contrary The Audacious Paramount of Explosive Flight Donator Tester

    As much as I hate archers, nerfing its power would make it even less fun to play, and it's already pretty low on the fun scale. IMO the way to go is to nerf it indirectly, ie. buff its counters. I mean a small nerf wouldn't go amiss, but checking the archers power by direct nerf alone would make it a complete snoozefest.

    The only really counter to archers, IMO, is knight spam and more archers. I think you can see why "more archers" is a problematic counter, so let's look at knight spam. Knight spam happens all the time, why aren't archers getting countered? Sorry to sound like a broken record, but it's buildings.

    Archers get countered by knight pushes

    Knight Pushes get countered by buildings

    Buildings get countered by workers and catapults

    Workers and Catapults get countered by archers

    Give us more archer counters (anti arrow hats or something) and/or directly and/or indirectly nerf buildings by buffing buffing terrain destruction.
  6. Fellere825

    Fellere825 KAG Guard Tester

    Make archers mobile again. You used to be able to ninja and parkour everywhere like a boss. Being an archer was all about confusing your opponent. Goading them to attack you and then taking advantage of that opening. Just make it like that again, hell you can make them glass cannons with only one heart for all I care. They just need to be able to jump all over the place and do those head stomps like before without being stunned from everything then they will be more fun. Balanced though... I doubt it... but fun? yes.
    Ghozt likes this.
  7. BlueLuigi

    BlueLuigi :^) Forum Moderator Donator Tester

    Problem 1 - Add mobility
    Problem 2 - According to various sources down the line the archer are meant to be support, not main attack units, however they seem more and more to be main attack, in this case what I mean is that you get a few up in the tower and they get the most kills, the knights just being stall material while the archers shoot shit.
    Problem 3 - Lack of fun, for all involved.
    Archers in towers are boring to fight as a knight, they are annoying and can quickly whittle down your HP with a single mistake,
    Archers in towers are boring to fight as archers, they are annoying and you take a big risk going out to fight them, they an also easily heal when they take a hit. Perhaps give archers less HP so that they 1hko each other?
    Archers in towers are annoying overall, the only way I find to go around them is to roof yourself or dig, this is slow and boring but is the only way to totally avoid an archer in tower.
    sj67 likes this.
  8. Ghozt

    Ghozt Haxor

    Contrary made me think, he said they can spam faster than jabs, what if they made spamming, the exact speed to go:

    Shield --> Jab --> Shield
    This way it could become a duel of both wits and timing, making it fair and keeping it even.
    (That said then all archers will say that knights are OP IMO?)
    JacKD likes this.
  9. cmblast

    cmblast Shopkeep Stealer

    I think making archers able to 1hko eachother would help solve the problem. Is there a way to buff arrow damage just to archers? Also, I would be totally okay with an hp nerf if I could tree hop and stomp on peoples heads. Glass cannon ftw.
  10. Kouji

    Kouji Cold, Uncaring, Sadistic, Evil and Cruel Meanie Administrator Global Moderator Forum Moderator Tester
    1. MOLEing Over Large Estates - [MOLE]
    2. REKINS OF SEAS: Super Crew of Ultimate Havoking 2: Return of King of KAG: Chapter 420blazeit - REKIN

    How about this, boost mobility, but lower damage and have a slightly longer time before you can start to fire rate.

    For example, a small animation could be added that has the archer pull an arrow out of the quiver and notching the arrow, about 2-4 frames that lasts about .5 to .7 seconds. Short enough that you can still fire arrows fast, but not to the extent that you can spam them like a machine gun.

    However, because it'd make it slightly more difficult to escape/move around because you wouldn't be able to spam arrows for wall climbing, you allow archers slightly faster moving speed (about 10%-15% faster than a knight) and slight increase in jump height (1 additional block). This would allow for archers to get over things rather easily and it's not too overpowered if they can't spam arrows.

    If it does turn out that higher mobility is a tad overpowered, then have arrow damage for the lowest charge do .25 damage and have the highest charged arrows do 1 damage (but they still break shield).

    If that is too much of a nerf, then lower the time it takes an archer to fire a fully charged arrow by a bit.

    I think the added mobility would allow archers to be more fun, but the changing the firing rate would enable it so that people don't really complain about them being too op. (also some of these are already available server variables, but allowing all of them to be server variables would allow for later balancing)
    CoughDrop, Yihka, GhostyS and 2 others like this.
  11. Beelzebub

    Beelzebub Ballista Bolt Thrower

    Remove the stun from charged arrows. Keep the push-back, but lose the shield drop from a charged hit. Archers can still pin knights, but not rape-train them from a distance.

    Also, reduce their firing rate slightly and/or make grey-charged arrows do no damage.
  12. Contrary

    Contrary The Audacious Paramount of Explosive Flight Donator Tester

    Man I argued so hard and raged so much when they gimped archer mobility. I had played the game for about half a year at that point, and the nerf completely destroyed the only way I played the game for most of those six months.

    As much as I would like to see it back as well, it's never going to happen. There is no gameplay reason it was taken out, Geti said he just doesn't want "archers hopping around". He also said he doesn't want knights to be able to jump over each other, but thankfully that hasn't happened yet. Didn't want a serverside option either. I'm hopeful we might be able to change it with the incoming mod options, though an option for it hasn't appeared yet I don't think.
  13. cykalu

    cykalu Shopkeep Stealer

    You may as well just remove archers from the game then. Not only would that make archers sit back even more, as they'll have no offensive capability left, or even defensive at that.
    In return, I propose to remove bombs from knights, the ability to stack on each other, gliding with shield, jump-shielding against arrows.
    Ghozt likes this.
  14. Beelzebub

    Beelzebub Ballista Bolt Thrower

    That's a completely ridiculous comparison.
  15. FuzzyBlueBaron

    FuzzyBlueBaron Warm, Caring, Benign, Good and Kind Philanthrope Global Moderator Forum Moderator Donator Tester
    1. The Young Blood Collective - [YB]

    I like Kouji's thoughts on fiddling with archers a bit more; but for me the major stand-out issue is still archer spam. You'd have to be careful, as slowing archers' rof too much would result in their climbing abilities being borked, but I really feel that archers having to take even just a fraction longer to charge a spam shot would allow knights some leeway. As it currently stands, a knight being ultra careful (which he has to be if he wants to not die!) is still unable to catch/hurt an archer who doesn't make a stupid, nooby mistake.

    I really feel that the key is to balance things between knights & archers such that even though each class will inevitably have circumstances that favour them (archers --> lots of trees, knights --> more open terrain) on the whole, given a hypothetical 1v1, both knight and archer have a reasonable chance of coming out on top!

    That is all.

    Also, just as a friendly reminder to Beelzebub and cykalu:

    Play nice.
    cmblast and cykalu like this.
  16. Fellere825

    Fellere825 KAG Guard Tester

    Shielding effect is also delayed. You used to be able to shield a split second before an arrow impacted you. Now you have to shield indefinitely and inch forward if you want to even move anywhere safely.
    GhostyS likes this.
  17. AnRK

    AnRK Shark Slayer

    I think the stun is the major fuck up when it comes to why it's broken, not that it was intended to be broken of course. I personally reckon that a few small tweaks should be made:


    1) Most importantly, increase the time to charge a fully powered shot
    2) Make the distance that a knight is immune to being stunned a little closer
    3) Increase minimum charge time a little since raining arrows is still a little too silly


    1) Reduce the time to get to the mid powered shot slightly, thus making mid range combat a little more viable
    2) Give them a wank kicking ability that deals .5 hearts or something already


    1) Make the way that damage is taken from arrows a bit more dynamic, so at longest range a high power shot will do 1 heart, then 1.5 hearts then 2 if your only a few tiles away. Maybe do the same for mid power shots too, so at point blank they'll do 1.5 hearts, that'll also help promote mid/close range archer use as a knight will be more wary of rushing an archer, and as an archer if you time everything well you can take half the health off a knight.
    2) Do a similar thing with stunning/knockback

    I know all that together sounds a little extreme, but especially for the nerf list I'd imagine those as a collection of small tweaks, like adding half a second to the full charge time, taking a quarter of a second off the stun, taking a few tiles to the stun range etc. Also I'm knackered and only just out out of bed and just made up of a couple of those changes before so haven't really thought them through properly.
  18. GhostyS

    GhostyS Shopkeep Stealer

    Honestly, the only thing wrong with archers at the moment is spam. Spam used to be tolerable but when it is mixed up with the new shield penetration bug/glitch, I can't stand it. if you just maybe disable grey arrows, or better yet decrease their range, so they are less of a threat to us knights who are in close quarters with an archer.

    I also think that a knights jab should stun an archer.

    Little bit off-topic; I also think the knight is a lot less fun to play since shield-bashing was scrapped.
    I warn you not to take notice of the poll at the top of the screen, since most archers will say it's balanced, and most knights will say it is over-powered, and people who multi-role will go neutral.
  19. fishfinger73

    fishfinger73 Haxor

    That's the only thing that saves me most of the time :>:(:. I think knights can deal with that.
  20. AnRK

    AnRK Shark Slayer

    Or perhaps we could trust people to be more grown up then that? I play offensive builder (or "hammerer" as it would seem) or archer 95% of the time and I think it needs changing. Have to be pretty pathetic not to want the game to be balanced and challenging.
    Wixmef and cmblast like this.