Dev Blog #130: Southern Arms


Dev Blog #130: Southern Arms

Naturally, the southern city states of the ‘Blazing Deserts’ DLC also have their own arsenal of weapons. Some are southern variants of weapons you already know, while others are entirely new and come with unique skills. You’ll be able to buy them in the city states and loot them from southern opponents. Let’s take a look at a selection of them!

The Saif

If you’ve been playing Battle Brothers for a while, you may already know of the Scimitar and the Shamshir, both introduced with the ‘Warriors of the North’ DLC. They were a teaser of a southern culture with their own arms to come – which now is about to arrive. As we’re adding the Saif, we’re also doing some work on the existing Scimitar and Shamshir.

A curved sword, the Saif is excellent for cutting deep wounds. It’s less suited for thrusting than straight swords, however, and therefore has a harder time penetrating armor. The Saif is a southern variant of the northern shortsword and at the lowest tier in the line of curved swords. The Scimitar has been buffed to be a middle tier weapon now, while the Shamshir remains the highest tier. All of those weapons share the ‘Slash’ skill with northern swords, but also have the unique ‘Gash’ Skill, which is much more likely to inflict serious injuries with adverse secondary effects than regular attacks are.

Not all injuries are equally useful against opponents, and many of the cutting injuries inflicted by the ‘Gash’ skill were previously among the weaker ones. We’ve combed through all cutting injuries to rectify this. Inflicting a ‘Deep Chest Cut’, for example, will now always reduce an opponent’s hitpoints by a percentage of their maximum hitpoints in addition to any damage your attack caused. It may not make much of a difference against Brigand Thugs who don’t have a lot of hitpoints to begin with, but it can mean a lot against barbarians, orcs and many beasts. As cutting injuries become more worthwhile to inflict, the ‘Crippling Strikes’ perk also becomes a more worthwhile pick – particularly if used together with the Saif, Scimitar or Shamshir to basically guarantee an injury..

The Shields

Identical in function to other shields already in the game, but with somewhat different stats, southerners also have their own shield designs that show well how their arms are inspired by those of historical Arabian and Persian cultures.

The Polemace

Southern armies are rather fond of maces, and so you’ll find a variety of southern maces with stats slightly different from their northern cousins while in the city states. In fact, they also mounted a mace on a long pole and aptly called it a Polemace. It offers the advantages of a regular mace combined with the range of a polearm.

The Polemace inflicts additional damage to fatigue with every blow. Using its secondary skill, a target can be stunned for one turn over a distance of two tiles.

The Nomad Sling

The south is no less plagued by banditry and pillaging than the north is. While the north has brigands lying in ambush along the road, the south has desert raiders descending upon trade caravans. These desert raiders – or nomads, as they’re sometimes called – have some equipment not otherwise available, including one particular weapon: the Nomad Sling.

A simple weapon used since ancient times, and the favorite of many a shepherd, a sling is used to hurl stones towards the enemy. The Nomad Sling is a higher tier variant of the existing Staff Sling with similar strengths and weaknesses, but better suited for the later parts of a campaign. It’s not particularly accurate or damaging, but with stones abundant everywhere, it will never run out of ammunition. Two stones can be hurled each turn, and on hitting a target in the head it will inflict the ‘Dazed’ status effect.

The Qatal Dagger

The Qatal Dagger is a short curved blade notoriously used by assassins of the southern deserts. Like northern daggers, it’s intended for quick attacks. Unlike northern daggers, it’s not meant to puncture weak points of armor, but to cut throats of debilitated opponents.

Using its ‘Deathblow’ skill, this dagger inflicts significantly increased damage to targets which have the Dazed, Stunned or Sleeping status effects. It’s much less fatiguing to use than the ‘Puncture’ skill of other daggers, and it can be used three times a turn with the ‘Dagger Mastery’ perk. It works best, of course, in a combo with other equipment used to debilitate opponents – such as the new Flash Pot available from alchemists, or that Nomad Sling shown above.

The Swordlance

As you’ve already learned, the city states were built atop the ruins of the Ancient Empire. It’s no surprise, then, that they also inherited some of their weapons. The Swordlance is a sharp curved blade attached to a long pole and used to deliver deep sweeping strikes over a distance of two tiles. It’s effectively a Warscythe that performs slightly worse against armor, but is much more durable because it wasn’t lying in some sealed crypt for hundreds of years.

Like all polearms, the Swordlance can be used to strike a single target over a distance of two tiles. Its unique feature is the ability to perform sweeping strikes in a wide arc that hit three adjacent tiles in counter-clockwise order over some distance, which can cause mayhem in the opponent’s backline. 

There’s more new weapons coming with unique mechanics, and we’ll take a look at those as well over the coming weeks!

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About Jaysen


  • Avatar photo
    Mar 13, 2020 @ 16:06 pm

    No_daze polemace is nice.
    What weapon type is assigned to a swordlance?

  • Avatar photo
    Mar 13, 2020 @ 17:34 pm

    It’s cool that sling will get a new tier, what do you think about additional using of sling “to throw” Pots farther? Just add extra range to “throw pot” skill if man is equiped by sling?

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    Mar 13, 2020 @ 18:28 pm

    I miss a good pack of eastern bows ;)

    • Avatar photo
      Mar 13, 2020 @ 19:09 pm

      Yeah and maybe a throwing weapon like the Jarids…

  • Avatar photo
    Mar 16, 2020 @ 19:56 pm

    I would suggest the low tier sling to just be a hand sling and the high tier to be a sling staff, for easy quick visual identification.

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