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Total War Heaven » Forums » Rome Strategy Discussion » Onagers in siege defense
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Topic Subject:Onagers in siege defense
Kcalehc
Legionary
posted 06 February 2012 12:03 EDT (US)         
Greetings, have been lurking a while reading the strategies and something I've been doing hasn't been mentioned (that I saw) so I thought I'd share.

Most recently I fought as Pontus, and conquered the entire map before taking Rome (you know, just because I could) and was frequently under seige in cities I took in the rather fluid battlefronts in eastern Europe, against the Romans. Often with a full army inside the town having just captured it, the computer seemed quite keen to assault me after 2 or 3 turns of building seige towers and ladders. (V 1.2 I think)

I discovered that while my onagers aren't terribly accurate at hitting those towers while they move, they are very good at hitting my own stone walls (as they tend to stay rather still). At 21% damage the outside layer of the wall will fall off, and handily destroy any seige tower immediately infront of it; killing all the attackers inside. So I began shooting my own walls on a more regular basis...

This also works against ladders... Some ladders will fall off with the outer layer of the wall, killing all the men on the ladder as they go. At 41% another layer falls off, taking yet more ladders and men with it, and at 61% the parapet collapses taking all the men on top of it and some on ladders. However if the attackers have 5 ladders, they may still have 1 or two of them up against the wall. But they are now fighting on a divided front (that big gap in the wall splitting their unit) and only one man at a time can get up the ladders on each side - making the defenders job much easier.

Of course if the enemy has onagers then shooting your own walls is not recommended unless you can take them out first. And of course, be very careful not to let your onagers destroy your walls if you don't want them to.


I also tried a much riskier tactic that I found really amusing:

With the seige towers collapsed, and only 1 ladder up against my walls, waiting to finish the rest of the enemies army as they come up one at a time would get a bit dull... So, I moved my onagers around to the far wall, on the corner opposite where the enemy were attacking from; along with archers on the walls and pikemen as defense.

Then I knocked a hole in my own wall. No really. The enemy army then all charged around the side of the town, being shot to pieces by towers as they go, only to enter the killing zone in between all my archers and onto the points of my phalanxes. Some low armor units didn't even make it to the spears before routing or being destroyed.

The computer really does appear to be suckered in by a hole in the wall, even if it is running a gauntlet of missile fire to get to it.

Shooting my own walls for defensive purposes has become somewhat of a staple tactic for me now. Though Large and Epic sized walls don't seem to allow this (can't get my onagers to shoot at them); only the regular Stone Walls.
AuthorReplies:
Punic Hebil
Centurion
(id: Punic Hoplite)
posted 06 February 2012 15:15 EDT (US)     1 / 5       
This is also my staple tactic Though I prefer to simply slaughter the enemy through force of arms rather than the lowly bow, even if it is more effective. I much rather like seeing men fall to their deaths as their unit routs, and they lose their grip on the wooden ladders.

I would prefer not to shoot at your walls if you only are facing ladders though, it costs too much time to simply knock down one ladder. As their unit comes off the ladder, you should have enough men there to kill them as they come up one by one.

I am the Carthaginian who became an angel, and surrendered his wings for a life on the sea of battle.

My magic screen is constantly bombarded with nubile young things eager to please these old eyes. This truly is a wonderful period in which to exist! - Terikel the Deflowerer
Thompsoncs
Legionary
posted 06 February 2012 16:13 EDT (US)     2 / 5       
Repairing the walls does cost quite a bit of money I think. I am quite content with letting them getting on my walls with ladders. Unless they have a much better unit they will suffer greatly when trying to get up the walls with ladders. Siege towers are a bit more difficult, because they can fire missiles and allow the enemy to get more than 1 unit at a time on the walls.
Terikel Grayhair
Imperator
(id: Terikel706)
posted 07 February 2012 02:02 EDT (US)     3 / 5       
I find that an amazingly simple yet effective method of dealing with towers, not to mention giving those otherwise-useless rockhurlers something to do when besieged other than cirty around ona road blocking egress and entrance.

Me likes!

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Xingjianma
Legionary
posted 07 February 2012 10:57 EDT (US)     4 / 5       
Wow, that's some tactics right there! I never knew about layers of walls falling off before, thanks for sharing!

Now, if only I could stop expanding long enough to actually get onagers...

.\/
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Agrippa 271
Legionary
posted 11 February 2012 13:33 EDT (US)     5 / 5       
Very clever tactics, but like Xingjianma, I never use onagers, so...

Death is a (vastly) preferable alternative to communism.
"Idiocy knows no national or cultural borders. Stupidity can strike anyone, anywhere." -- Terikel
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