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Rome: Total War Discussion
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Total War Heaven » Forums » Rome: Total War Discussion » Defeating Siege Towers and Onager Usage
Topic Subject:Defeating Siege Towers and Onager Usage
posted 16 October 2007 15:06 EDT (US)         
My first question is what is the easiest way to defeat a siege tower approaching your walls? I used to use my flame arrows to set it on fire but a.) it didn't always work and b.) I've gotten to the part of the game where all the siege towers are armor plated. I've been suffering a lot of defeats and I'm losing a lot of the territory I gained from defeating Gaul and Britannia.

My second question is why more people don't talk about using Onagers in this game. I have completely abandoned my archers because of how much success I've been having with the onagers. They have an amazing capacity to kill and they fire from distances far enough away that units don't charge you like they always do when I've used archers.

Plus, with the onagers I've created an awesome strategy to defend my towns. First, I create as many onagers as I can. Then when my town comes under assault I will instantly attack with my onagers. I'll attack until all my ammo runs out and then I speed up the time until the battle comes to an end. I do this on every single turn and can usually defeat a large army in 5 turns or less without leaving my city walls or suffering a single death.
posted 16 October 2007 15:37 EDT (US)     1 / 4       
To your first question, there is not really good way to defeat seige towers other than to set them on fire, with larger walls though your enemy should take so many casualties that it should not be hard to defend your settlement....a unit of heavy infantry should be able to hold the wall, just place them in front of where the tower is going to open and wait for the enemy to come out...the enemy won't have time to defend itself before your men cut them down. Remember that the larger towers fire bolts though so for that reason keep your troops on the ground until the towers are just getting ready to hit the wall and then run your men in place on the walls.

For your second question, you are correct, onagers can be effective and I do like them however, the reason why most people don't talk much about them is because it takes a while to have that technology available to your civ and usually by the time it is available most people have pretty much met all the requirements for victory. I wouldn't abandon archers though, I love my archers. I usually only have onagers in one of my armies. Keep in mind though that they do slow down your army and you don't have as many move points per turn so if your going to fight a lightening war then I wouldn't bring them along.

"Men... must have corrupted nature a little, for they were not born wolves, and they have become wolves. God did not give them twenty-four-pounder cannons or bayonets, and they have made bayonets and cannons to destroy each other."
- Voltaire, Candide, Chapter 4
posted 16 October 2007 19:16 EDT (US)     2 / 4       
I love using onagers when I am attacking. They make sieges so easy. Just knock a hole in the wall directly across from the square, take out the flanking towers so they cannot fire on you, and walk right in. I really missed them my last few campaigns where I have playing barbarian factions who cannot build them.

As far as on the defensive goes, I do my best to avoid the situation of being assaulted. Instead I sally every turn until I break the siege. Just one horse archer is all you need, or failing that a few cavalry units, preferably one a general.
posted 19 October 2007 11:12 EDT (US)     3 / 4       
I've had some bad experiences using siege towers where they've been burnt to a crisp before even making contact with the wall.

I haven't had to defend against them yet but given the time it takes to deploy and then for the unit to climb it (which seems to take ages), I wouldn't be worried. By the time the ramp swings down, I'll have some heavy infantry waiting to hack them to bits. You know the scene out Saving Private Ryan, where the landing craft hit Omaha beach and the GI's are scythed down before they even get off the boat? - kind of a RTW version of that but with a gladius and not an MG42.

When I've used onagers before if on the march, I split them from the main army. The main body goes ahead and the artillery follow up the rear. Once in theatre, I merge them before making contact.

In combat though, although spectacular to watch, I find them too clumsy and slow to be of use against an enemy army. They have a minimum range they can fire in and once an enemy closes to contact, I either have to stop using them or try to withdraw to keep the enemy in range. Better to keep them for smashing distant stationary targets of men or buildings.
posted 19 October 2007 11:31 EDT (US)     4 / 4       
Use onagers as defense to siege towers. If the towers just arrived at the wall and is filling up with unit's fire from a nearby plaza. If they hit the tower, it will collapse with all the unit's in it. If it fails and hits the wall, the tower is now stuck over an impassable pit.
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