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I love archers. I think they're great utility units. Like others have said, they're not going to dominate the battlefield for you unless you send them into a nest of other archers, but they're usually great at dodging, have decent attack, great speed, and acceptable defenses. It's not my favorite, but I've always been a fan of the class.
It's like every topic you post in becomes filled with either sensual energy or "pent up sexual frustration". ~ SurfingVaporeon, on DoctorPiranha3
With the dual system I kinda got the feeling that archers became more useful during enemy phase(than in previous versions) since now you have a way to increase the amount of attack they'll get. I'm not particularly a big fan of pair up and use it only as needed so it may just be me.
I love Archers/Snipers! They're totally awesome! I like them better than Bow Knights(I know Bow Knights get swords and a horse, but eh). I'm making an MU based off of the 3-13 Sniper, and naming him after a variation of my name.
I like them for a more reliable way of finishing off an enemy unit upon whose demise your strategy rests. This also happens to be the best way to level them up. They tend to be especially useful in the early chapters when your army is small (eg. Leonardo in RD, Shinon in PoR, Will/Rebeca in Blazing Sword). After the first few chapters I generally stop using them.
Of course, with reclassing, you can continue using the character without using the archer/sniper class, but that's kind of irrelevant I guess to whether or not archers are hated and why.
Or, you could always pair up your archers and only switch them to active positions when in a position to counterattack enemy archers, or mages that are only just in range.
I guess the main point in favour of having at least one archer->sniper was to equip the inevitably OP legendary bow.