Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

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fredbobsmith2
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Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by fredbobsmith2 »

I've been playing Battle for Wesnoth for a while now, and I find that I prefer Loyalists, which brings me to the question: What are cavalrymen good for? Aside from light blade damage (along with fencers they are the main blade units), scouting, village grabbing, and I suppose maybe getting an extra hit or two in when nobody else can, what are they good for?

I use them pretty much the same way I would use a Footpad, but Footpads can hold villages better, have ranged attacks, and are cheaper. The cavarlyman seems, to me, to be too much of a mix when there's often someone else who can do its job better.

Additionally, I have yet to find, in a campaign, a time when a dragoon would serve better than a knight. Knights also have blade damage, and can deal stronger damage. Knights have slightly more hp in return for lower resistances, but not to pierce which is what cavalry are weakest to anyways. Dragoons have the small pro that they have a weak ranged attack, not to mention one that is heavily reliant on luck.

So...how do other players use cavalrymen in multiplayer and campaign?

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Sapient
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by Sapient »

This guy might disagree with you:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w2Aa7EiGP8c

Also, strong cavs during daytime do a very respectable amount of damage (9-3).

Note: they did get an HP nerf in Version 1.9.6
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Lord-Knightmare
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by Lord-Knightmare »

In regards to campaigns, Mostly a campaign I made, I remember spamming an orc force with them. Supported by two horseman, I took out the archers, and then the grunts were prey to cavalrymen. Their high resistance to blade makes them a bane to grunts...
I believe the version was 1.9.9, when I played that scenario.

fredbobsmith2
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by fredbobsmith2 »

I notice that he points out that Cavalrymen have high resistances to most types of damage besides pierce, and good hp, although as good as their damage is, it's inferior to a spearman's or a horseman's. Additionally, I find that there is ALOT of pierce damage in Wesnoth. The majority of basic units, like spearmen, elvish archers, skeleton archers, etc have rather strong pierce attacks, that I always find end up mowing down my calvalrymen. Horsemen on the other hand often don't have to worry about that, as they can kill the unit then flee.

Even for defensive purposes I would only use them on plains, otherwise the defence that a spearman would have is superior.

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Dixie
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by Dixie »

In regards to your comparison with footpads: units are not balanced vs units, factions are balanced vs factions.

Cavalrymen may not have the lasting power or the raw damage output of spearmen, but they have mobility. And they may not have the raw damage output of horsmen, but they have resistances and are MUCH cheaper. It is especially valuable in MP, where every bucks count. IIRC, a cavalryman is almost half a spearman cheaper than an horseman. Worth considering.

And pierce might not be exactly rare, but the cavalryman can outrun most pierce units. And it's not as frequent as blades.

So in general, cavalrymen are regarded as affordable scouts that can delve a bit in battle, as opposed to Gryphons (not affordable) or wolf riders/bats (not really able to go into battle)
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Sapient
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by Sapient »

fredbobsmith2 wrote: Horsemen on the other hand often don't have to worry about that, as they can kill the unit then flee.
I have a theory that most of the people who are so fond of using horsemen in campaigns are also doing save/reloads. In multiplayer you can charge that enemy in the water but when it misses and you take max double damage retaliation there's no reloading. When that happens instead you are very likely to lose the horseman, and that is a lot of gold to be gambling with.

Another thing I noticed is that you don't realize how extremely valuable an extra point of movement can be. For example, you didn't mention it in your footpad comparison. In a competitive game, the difference between getting to a village on turn X and getting to a village on turn Y can be huge. Little things like that can turn the tide of the entire battle, due to the principle of accumulating advantage. If you're playing campagins on easy/normal mode it doesn't mean nearly as much though.

Finally your statement that the spearman does more damage than the calvaryman is not entirely accurate. A strong cav does the same damage as a regular spearman. And against pierce resistant foes such as the pikeman, it would actually do more damage (although you'd be kinda crazy to attack a pikeman with a cav). Lightly armored units such as the fencer are often slightly more vulnerable to blade than pierce as well.
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fredbobsmith2
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by fredbobsmith2 »

Hmm, I never imagined the calvalryman is being so tanky. I still hold to that it doesn't do quite as much damage as it sounds, something like 1 more than a wolf rider while having less mobility, but I do see that it is rather durable as a scouting unit. I guess that I always had the impression that ALL scouts are fragile and included the cavalryman in that without looking at the numbers.

And yes, I do use horsemen quite a bit in campaigns, though if they miss I make sure to cover them, and make sure beforehand that I can cover them. A horseman is as tanky as a cavalryman, but much pricier.

Umm, as for the last point...well then it'd have to be a strong cavalryman in the first place, and at such low levels, there are few situations where that 10% difference in resistance will actually change the numbers.



So now that I've been convinced that cavalrymen are indeed relatively powerful, how are they supposed to be used? I can't imagine someone using cavalrymen to hold a line instead of spearmen, unless there is alot of flat, though I can imagine them being used to take villages and attack flanks.



And what was the end result of the nerf to the cavalryman? I'm still playing 1.8.6, but I'd just like some insight.

MRDNRA
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by MRDNRA »

In one of the add on campaigns there is at least one level where all you have available for recruit is cavalrymen and horsemen. I usually go for a 5 cavalrymen to 1 horseman recruit on the first turn. Horsemen attacks entail too much risk whereas cavalrymen can wear down enemies possibly setting up a horseman for a 1 hit kill, plus as has been said before have good resistances to most damage types.

AlexanderK
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by AlexanderK »

on small 2 vs 2 MP maps (for example Isar Cross) if your partner is drake sometimes it is useful to go all fast (cavarly or gryphon) units recruits :twisted:

monochromatic
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by monochromatic »

In 1.9.x I believe the Cavalryman got a nerf in hitpoints. So it is less tanky, but it certainly still has the capability to do so in certain situations.

One could say pierce is common. But that is only because the game features archers, instead of say, slingers (except for the Footpad line, of course). The only main pierce melee units in multiplayer are Spearmen and Drake Clashers. Popular units, true, but they only exist in two factions: Loyalists and Drakes. And they are the two match-ups where you would rather not use Calvarymen.

Cavalry are primarily an offensive power. One should take advantage of the many movement points and use the unit to strike first. That's why the cavalry should be killing the archers instead of the other way around.
They are also a great flanking power! Two cavalrymen supported by a fencer is a great village-stealing force, and they can wreak havoc behind your opponent's lines.
Defensively they're useful against certain factions. Undead have mostly blade/arcane/cold, and the cavalryman is resistant to all three. True there are skeleton archers, but at day they only do 6-3 (iirc) and cavalry rip them apart. At night, one should be retreating anyways. Northerners have mostly blade and impact, which cavalry are also resistant to. Just watch out for goblin spearmen.

teamleader
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by teamleader »

MRDNRA wrote:In one of the add on campaigns there is at least one level where all you have available for recruit is cavalrymen and horsemen. I usually go for a 5 cavalrymen to 1 horseman recruit on the first turn. Horsemen attacks entail too much risk whereas cavalrymen can wear down enemies possibly setting up a horseman for a 1 hit kill, plus as has been said before have good resistances to most damage types.
Fate of a princess, every unit has its uses, cavalry might not have the damage of a spearman but they are faster and have resistence instead of defences etc.

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tr0ll
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by tr0ll »

also in one of chak_abkhi's campaigns a few scenarios have only cavaliers and horsemen available to recruit

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Raket
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Re: Use of Cavalrymen and Their Advancements

Post by Raket »

The scouts of every faction are unique in some way.

Elvish Scouts are fast in forests and can use bows.
Wolf Riders are fast on hills and have 3 strikes, making it a good support unit for the Orcs aswell as scouting work.
Gryphons have extremely high damage and can fly, but in turn it's very expensive.
Glider has marksman ability, to serve as a scout and to remove pesky elusivefoots.
Bats don't require upkeep, and is a great cheap annoyance unit with its drain.

Where does that put Cavalry?
Cavalry is surprisingly tough and can hold its ground well compared to other scouts,
dealing good melee damage in retaliation, especially in daylight.
Cavalry can be considered a hybrid between a scout and fighter.

Horsemen, while it can be used for scouting, serves more as a fragile offensive cannon whereas the Cavalry is defensive and can hold lines and screen injured units.

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