I mean, in prior games ( the ones on the wii ) archers seemed very good ( sniper/marksmen) Lets just talk Snipers. They seem to have crazy dodge, I'm confused as to how most people complain they die too much, they never get hit? They can't counter attack? Yes, they can't but, if your archers are getting hit often anyways, you're doing something wrong .
They hit like trucks, I'm pretty sure Shinon and Rolf could of solo'ed most the game for me.
Maybe the Wii ones just made them look good, I just see a lot of hate on this board.
I've used archers in all of them I have played (as in, all the ones released on the US), and I still don't get the hate. Maybe due to javelins or magic filling the same role. --- BEHOLD THE POWER OF SARDINES!
As far as I know, most of the hate for Archers simply comes from the fact that they don't have a viable enemy phase, when most combat occurs. It leads to some level of babying those units, which most people don't do when they could easily use any 1-2 range unit more effectively. --- Stop reading my sig, you are wasting time doing so.
They couldn't have solo'd the game very well without being able to attack on enemy phase :P
The idea is that, while archers may be okay in and of themselves, all other classes are so much better that they suck in comparison (since you have a limit of the number of units you can have). And remember, 1-range bows generally don't exist.
They can't counter attack? Yes, they can't but, if your archers are getting hit often anyways, you're doing something wrong .
Most of the damage gets done in the enemy phase, this hampers Archers effectiveness hugely. They also level much slower because of this. There's also the argument that mages can do the 2 range stuff while having way more options.
That's not to say they're bad, just worse than most of the other classes.
EDIT: And the hand axe, javelin, etc thing --- http://www.backloggery.com/sainthegoo https://www.youtube.com/user/VicariousBrian/videos?view=1&flow=grid
I have always liked having an archer around, and see them as a unit that offers a unique way of manipulating enemy units. Even so, they are the weakest class and you can get by without an archer just fine.
Also, another big deal for Archers/Snipers is the entire Magic gameplay.
Magic-unlike Hand Axes or Javelins, or even alot of magical weapons such as the Runeblade- has JUST as high of a Hit/Accuracy rating that bows do, but there are also two other great things going for it:
1. It always has either a 1~2 range or either those 3~10 ranges such as Bolting, Purge, and Eclipse that were in Sacred Stones.
2. Much of the enemy you will face has lower Resistance than Defenses, which also makes Magic inherently powerful, or at least just as powerful as bows are (in general of course-you can't compare Rienfleich or Nidhogg to an Elfire).
Again, it isn't so much that Bow-Users are bad, just that there are other options that are so much more versatile. --- Please make a new LeBlanc skin already!!