yeah, there's no need to give upkeep costs a whack when an easy to do solution is right in front of you. Start with that, and then move to more complicated items if it's not helping.
sxyz123 has a couple idea's that are complimentary to my list, but a few might not work too well:
- give mounted melee a bonus for flanking an enemy adjacent to a friendly infantry unit. Encourages unit mix.
So basically boost mounted with the double swarm bonus, but only if there's infantry there? Seems a bit of a push/force to have mixed units, but does make a little sense.
- give mounted melee a penalty for attacking infantry units holding melee weapons stacked two rows deep. Calvary doesn't like to charge direclty into formation.
I'd disagree with this thought line. Cavalry will charge where I tell it to, and that's right into a formation (as all units are formations). Plus, it's metagaming exploitable.
- give mounted ranged weapons a 25% penalty to accuracy; its harder to fire a well aimed shot from a horse or worg. Besides ranged should be slow; gives infantry something to protect and calvary something to mow down. Plate and chain should effect both accuracy and initiative of ranged weapons.
This I can agree with, given that there's traits and commanders to boost accuracy. Though, I don't know anyone that plate armours (or any actually) an already slow ranged unit (bow has the big initiative penalty).
- give maces a chance to dismount. Currently all mounted units are 100% immune to prone, and currently everything is mounted by mid game, denying maces a chance to use their passive effect. If dismounted, unit should suffers large initiative penalty until next turn, in addition to being prone and losing mount for remainder of battle.
This I don't like as it's not really true in any sense. Ie, If I swing a hammer at someone on horseback, I'm more likely to kill them than dismount them (or kill them while dismounting them). If anything, the mounted unit should count as an easier target to hit for hammer units ->give them increased accuracy vs. mounted.
But maybe to keep it simple, hammer units can 'daze' mounted units, instead of making them prone.
Keeping in mind that not every single weapon type needs to work vs. mounted and vice versa. I'd be ok if spears are the pro anti-mounted units while maces are the pro anti-infantry units. Swords get counter attacks (vs. anything but spears and special attacks) and axes get splash/multi-target hits.
Also keep in mind when talking about mounts that they aren't all the exact same. There are Horses, WAR Horses and Wargs. WAR Horses should be better than either horses or wargs, given that it's a trait choice to have them. We need to balance out the actual mounts as well, which can bring them in-line with infantry types at the same time (but they should ALWAYS be better, just in different ways).