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Topic Subject: AAR Sarmatian Campaign
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posted 26 August 2007 17:42 EDT (US)   
I decided to try my hand at documenting an entire campaign. I first got the idea about halfway through my last campaign, playing the Sarmatians in BI. Of course being halfway through it was a little late to start an AAR. So after finishing that game, I decided to give it another go and try the campaign using a different strategy. I must also confess that I was partially inspired by Severous' latest AAR on another forum too.

The last time out I went east across the plains, then swung south to ravage the Sassanids, then headed west through Asia Minor and settled in Ephesus. From there I expanded in both directions to achieve my victory conditions. This time I plan to build up as best I can before the Huns come to wipe me out, then horde and head west to ravage Eastern Europe before swinging south to Greece. I intend to settle there and then expand outwards again.

So here we go. This campaign will be on Hard/Hard difficulty, with no mods (except to make some of the unlockable and unplayable factions playable), game version 1.6, scale of Huge.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 09-11-2007 @ 04:03 PM).]

posted 26 August 2007 17:44 EDT (US)     1 / 176  
Good luck with this, I'll be keeping tabs

lol im jumby
posted 26 August 2007 22:56 EDT (US)     2 / 176  
Thanks Jumbalaya. Not counting the SWAP game we did a while ago, this is my first foray into documenting an entire campaign.

I am immediately greeted by this daunting message. I have played the Sarmatians twice now. My first try the Huns literally wiped me out early on and I abandoned the game. The second (most recent) time they did the same, but I was ready and had already moved onward. I expect this time to be no different.

This is also one of the things about BI that makes it look unfinished. The picture is so washed out that the messenger looks like a Klingon.

The first turn I send my single assassin north. He finds the vanguard of the Hun army.

Moments later the Huns were short one captain.

Next turn I move my assassin further north, and he discovers the rest of the Hun horde. There sure are a lot of them!

Here is a closer look at the horde. I would later discover two more stacks of Huns a little further north, one commanded by a stellar general. They have nine stacks in total.

Back in my capital I have started building the second level archery structure. I want to start pumping out Virgin Horse Archers as soon as possible because they are cheap and fast (hmmm, that could be construed in a way I had not intended!). In the meantime I am recruiting the better, but slower to create, Sarmatian Armored Archers (that 2 turns to build is rough in the early game).

Also, I have sent my diplomat east to make trade agreements with the Roxoloni and sell them my map info. My spy has gone west to scout out the Goth lands there. Once we horde that is where we will be going.

It seems rebels have popped up. My faction leader Boz goes to deal with them. He is a night fighter, and the rebels are heavy in archers (I am under the impression that night battles reduce the range of missile weapons), so I decide to duke it out in the dark.

There was not much to it. The rebels were crushed like beetles beneath our heels.

Same turn, Boz leaves the spearmen and herdsmen behind to garrison our capital Vicus Sarmatae (and only city), and heads north with one unit of Armored Archers and Virgin Foot Archers apiece (all I have of either). Once again this will be a night battle. Again there is another sign of incompleteness. Here we see a picture of a Christian Roman army, yet I am fighting nomad rebels whom I presume are Pagan.

It was not long before the rebels were broken and on the run. Here Boz' bodyguard runs down the fleeing Steppe Raiders. They should have tried raiding someone else's steppe...

My first Heroic Victory of the campaign. In only the second battle. Methinks this is a good omen.

After my turn was over, a diplomat from the Eastern Romans came to me and offered a ceasefire. I agreed, and also struck trade agreements with them as well. I tried to go for an alliance, but they were not interested. Too bad, that would have made it much easier to penetrate their territory before actually attacking any settlements.

The next turn begins. It appears the Huns were not pleased with my assassin's handiwork.

My faction leader started out with the Night Fighter trait. Now I see he has gained Likes the Dark. I like a man who is comfortable when the lights are out.

I also noticed he has a Dancer as a retinue member. I thought only a spy or assassin could have one of those, not generals? How does the +2 to agent's skill affect my general? Or does it benefit all my rogues through him?

Not good news. The Vandals are somewhere in my lands off to the west, beyond the range of any of my agents or towers.

Things do not improve next summer. I keep building military units, and keep taxes on very high.

It seems the Western Roman Empire wants to stop the bloodshed. That sounds fine with me, I have enough enemies already.

Huns to one side, Vandals to the other. This happens exactly the same way every Sarmatian campaign I have played. If the hordes remain true to form the Vandals will head due south and miss me. While the Huns will follow the road directly to my capital. I am running out of time...

I know I cannot defeat the Huns this early in the game. I have too few units, too weak an economy, and no natural barriers I can use to funnel their movements. There is a ford in the Dneiper to the north-east of my capital, but it is too far away to make a stand and be able to send units back to the city to retrain and return to the front in any reasonable amount of time. So I did not try to fight them there, as the Huns would simply swamp me with numbers.

In the meantime, my spy in the west has investigated Campus Iazyges. It is a rebel capital? I did not think grey rebels had capitals? I am guessing this is a bug in the game.

The Huns are breathing down my neck, time to give up the civilized life. I destroy every building I can in my city for the cash, and then horde.

The Yellow Horde has come!

Apparently, it was such an instructive experience that one of my generals improved his leadership skills.

My diplomat makes peace with the Vandals. For whatever good that will do.

Maybe more tomorrow. It is almost bedtime for this warlord (warlady?).

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 10-10-2007 @ 06:58 PM).]

posted 27 August 2007 22:34 EDT (US)     3 / 176  
Update. The turn after I horde the Huns sack my former capital. I have evacuated just in time.

I went back and forth over my next move. Should I head straight west towards the Goths? Or should I stand here at the bridge over the Dneister and have a go at the Huns? The smart thing would probably be to avoid battle and head west. Hordes should never battle just for the sake of a fight, because their losses can never be recouped. Every life spent ought to at least purchase some much needed loot for when we eventually settle down. Every denarii will count then.

On the other hand if I headed west and laid siege to the Goth capital, then the Huns would probably run into me while I was building siege equipment, and I would end up in a series of pitched battles with them in the open. That would be disastrous for me. The river was the ideal place to make a stand. I knew that I could trounce wave after wave of Huns there.

This is the thing I like about RTW's single player game. You are forced to make these decisions in strategy which will have profound effects on the rest of the campaign. Make the right choice and you win, the wrong one and you are wiped out.

Ultimately I decide to stand and fight. I really wanted to kick some Hun tail anyhow. I hire all the mercenaries I can (one unit of Sarmatian and one of Alan horse archers), and wait. On the computer's turn the First Battle of the Dneister begins. The odds are deceptive. I have another army adjacent that could come in to help, but I will not allow the computer to command it. So it will spend the entire battle sitting outside of the map doing nothing. Unless some of my units rout of course.

Here we go. The Huns are a horse archer nation like me, so I hang back a little from the river. I do not want to get in a long and costly archery duel with them. I want them to come across that bridge where I can hit them with the hammer of overwhelming numbers. I have 4 generals in this army, every family member I have. That is quite a hammer.

It ends with Hun defeat.

Immediately following comes the next attack. The Second Battle of the Dneister begins. I must have forgotten to take a screen shot of the odds scroll, because I did not find it in my pics afterward. However, here is a pic of what the Huns had to look forward to:

One more Hun army down.

Same turn, the next Hun army comes at me.

I have learned from my previous two battles that the Hun horse archers seem to have longer range than my own horse archers. I think they have the same range as my Virgin Foot Archers. That makes them very dangerous to my own horse archers. I also have noticed that at full strength the Huns have more men per unit then I do, 132 per horse archer unit compared to 108 for mine. They are the ultimate horde. Scary stuff. I might play them next.

I put my mercenary horse archers furthest forward to soak up most of their arrows. I do not want to waste any of my precious hordlings. However, the more mercs who die the less they cost me. So I will let them be arrow fodder. There are always more of their kind to hire later.

Yes, I am a ruthless bitch.

So I hang back a little further than before. The river prevents the Hun archers from getting close enough to shower my army with arrows. It also entices the Hun heavy cavalry into immediately charging across the bridge without the support of their archers and heavy infantry. They will have the same success that the French did at Waterloo.

My Faction Leader has developed a liking for the smell of dead Hun.

Here comes the first wave.

We greet them with Sarmatian hospitality.

Scratch a third Hun army.

There were no more attacks after that. After nearly 7,000 dead I guess the Huns had enough for one turn.

Next turn I merged some of my depleted units and sent the leftover scraps to one of my reinforcement armies. Then I brought up fresh troops to keep my first-line stack up to full strength. I am ready for another 3 battle-turn.

But where are the Huns? My assassin moves north and finds them. They are skirting around me. They might be headed to the ford across the Dneister to my north-west. I cannot get there in time to head them off. Clearly they moved most of the army to the north while I fought the three stacks at the bridge of the Dneister. Sneaky Huns. I have been out-maneuvered.

Now the question is what will the Huns do, and how will I counter them? Even after destroying 3 stacks they still have me heavily outnumbered. If they cross the river they can mass in the open against me. I do not think they can get their entire horde across the river in one turn. So I could probably get there to hit the half that does. That would bring it down to an even 4 stacks against 4 stacks or so. But it would not really be even, since half my stacks are made up of low-quality spearmen, and their horse archers are superiour to mine. Even if I won it would still cost me heavily. The next turn the remainder of the Hun horde would probably overwhelm me.

I will hold at the bridge. If the Huns come south of the Dneister, I will move east across it and force them to attack me at the bridge again. If they do not come at me, but head for the Goths, I will nip at their heels and see if I can pick off a stack or two. Hitting them at the same time they are in it with the Goths would be the best timing in that situation. Once again, I love having to make these decisions.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 08-28-2007 @ 11:03 PM).]

posted 28 August 2007 18:32 EDT (US)     4 / 176  
Hello SubRosa the Ruthless

Nice campaign you have going.

My favourite picture is where you horde.
- Ive never done that horde thing (Huns started already horded). So did you keep all your built units when you horded...looks like you had quite a few non horde units in the bridge battles. And what gives with the experience gained for just hording?
- Then to see three horde factions on map almost side by side. Nice picture.

An interesting decision ahead. what to do. I would be tempted to assault the nearby unwalled town, not settle, then move close to the huns and turn into a fort. Should they attack your fort you can sally. If they dont attack the fort you can attack them on the next turn.

Will be watching....


[This message has been edited by Severous (edited 08-29-2007 @ 02:01 AM).]

posted 28 August 2007 20:53 EDT (US)     5 / 176  
Hey there Severous. 'Rosa the Ruthless? Hmmm, I rather like that. But if I am going to have a cognomen, then other people need one too. How about yourself? Severous the Sly? That might make for an interesting topic to start...

I do like that picture of where I horded. I remember looking up at the beginning of that turn and seeing the Vandal horde to one side and the Hun horde to the other. That was chilling. Hordes are one of the things I really like about BI. On one hand they are so ominous and powerful, you would think everything would be a walkover if you played one. But the reality is quite different, for they have a very real fragility to them as well. You really have to use them wisely if you are going to be successful with them. Kind of like elephants.

I did keep all my permanent units after I horded. Those will be the only ones I retain after de-hording. Deciding what to build before you horde is one of those things that makes playing a horde tough. I wanted to get as many permanent units as I could before I horded, so I will have something left after I settle. That is why I waited so long to horde. Literally until the last moment.

Still, I wish I could have gotten a few more units. I wonder if maybe I should have not bothered with the Virgin Archers - since they are rather fragile - and gone with one more Armored Archer instead? The trouble is the Armored Archers are slow, and cannot catch horse archers in a chase once they rout. The Virgins can catch anything. That is what makes them an important unit even in the late game when you have the most powerful units at your disposal.

The reason so many Huns survived in those bridge battles is that most of their horse archers were able to escape. My warlords and Armored Archers are too slow to catch them when they flee. My Virgins were in no position to do so because I cannot get them to go across the bridge. They always insist on swimming the river instead, and that takes forever to do. If there had been a regular ford I could have used to get my Virgins across, I would have probably completely annihilated all three Hun stacks. So I suppose it probably was a good call to build them.

I thought about attacking that town. But it is my former capital. After I abandoned it and the Huns sacked it I doubt there is anything left to loot. I also took a look at its garrison. Lots of Steppe Raiders. They have better range than my horde horse archers, so they will hurt me unless I use only generals (hmmm... that is a thought). I do not think I want to lose the men to take it.

It did occur to me that I might take it back and settle there. That would make for a very tough game, having to start over from scratch like that. I think after this AAR is done I will go back to the save and try that for the challenge.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 08-29-2007 @ 11:12 PM).]

posted 28 August 2007 23:00 EDT (US)     6 / 176  
Minor Update.

My scouts show the Huns are moving due west. They are not coming south across the Dneister after me.

My assassin has been busy. The Hun horde is a target-rich environment. He has killed one family member, several captains, plus their only spy and assassin.

He is getting good at this.

A few turns later and the Huns have moved around the top of the Carpathians. It looks like they are going due west from here. I have set my own course. Through the mountains and directly to Colonia Dacia, the capital of the Goths. My spy tells me it is unwalled, however, there are six Goth generals in there. This will not be an easy nut to crack.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 08-29-2007 @ 11:56 AM).]

posted 29 August 2007 02:09 EDT (US)     7 / 176  
So you plan to attack the Goths? If they horde....?

I might have gone south to Constantinople. Leaving a stack in a fort next to a bridge to fight any hostile hordes that follow. Looting the rich Greek cities before deciding where to settle....which might not be too far from there given the three regions needed for victory.
posted 29 August 2007 03:53 EDT (US)     8 / 176  
Gl hf SubRosa. I wanted to do an Sarmatian AAR too, but well... you beat me to it

Reading these things sure is fun, and I've learned a lot from them. I'm definitely following this one.

I might do try a Greek AAR, since you took Sarmatians

Proud Member of TWH since 2007 and AoKH since 2004
Seleucid AAR|Sarmatian AAR | Spain AAR
posted 29 August 2007 12:13 EDT (US)     9 / 176  
Hi Severous. Yes, my current plan is to sack the Goth city. I know a horde will pop up afterward, but I am hoping it will be off to the west, and that it might give the Huns something to keep them busy. Hordes are supposed to form at least one full turn away from where their last city was destroyed (although I think if you horde voluntarily you show up right outside your last settlement). In the very least I am hoping they move on and do not trouble me. However, if I have to fight them I can either fall back to the mountain pass I came through or head south to one of the crossings of the Danube to fight them.

My plan is to sack Colonia Dacia, then if possible Campus Iazyges. After that I will swing south and pick off Salona and the Greek cities. Once I have sacked all three Greek cities I intend to settle first in Athens, then Thessalonica, and then finally Constantinople. First I want to make sure I have plenty of money for when I settle. The last time I did this I almost went bankrupt twice. I also want to lay waste to my future neighbors so they are not strong enough to come after me when I am weak from de-hording.

Hey there Xingjianma. I am sorry to spoil your plans. I think it would be interesting if you still did a Sarmatian AAR. That way we could see where different players take the same campaign. These Sarmatians are a tough faction to play, because early on you are in a very tight spot. The decisions you make in the first half-dozen turns influence the entire course of the campaign.

I read through Severous' Hun AAR before I played my first Sarmatian campaign. It was very helpful in learning the ins and outs of playing a horde. Although I made the same mistake he did in settling down when I really should have sacked, and then later gone back and settled in the same city. Still, I survived it just as he did, and it made the game all the more challenging.

I like these AARs. They are fun to read (and look at), and you pick up so much in tactics. I often imagine myself learning the arts of war sitting on uncle Severous The Cunning's knee. Perhaps sort of like Julius Caesar may have picked up a few things from uncle Marius (I think Gaius Marius was an uncle, I know he was some relation).

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 10-10-2007 @ 07:16 PM).]

posted 29 August 2007 20:55 EDT (US)     10 / 176  
Ok, then I've decided. I'm putting my Greek one on hold and starting a new Sarmatian one I'll see if I can aviod hording.

Yes, Sarmatians are quite difficult, but also very fun. Looking forward to the comparison

Proud Member of TWH since 2007 and AoKH since 2004
Seleucid AAR|Sarmatian AAR | Spain AAR
posted 29 August 2007 21:21 EDT (US)     11 / 176  
Another update.

I hired another unit of mercenaries. Alan Nobles. These guys are tough. Eventually I will be able to recruit them, but that is a long time away.

Now the reason I hired them. The assault on Colonia Dacia, capital of the Goths. I knew I would need some extra weight to take on those 6 Goth generals. I make this a night battle, since my faction leader gains two stars for them, bringing his Command up to 8. I am hoping that if I do more night battles with him he might get another positive night fighting trait.

The computer does not seem to understand the lack of walls when defending. It makes its initial deployments as if the walls were there. So many of the Goths start outside the city, away from the major roads in. These lancers are one such group. Here a Goth is shot from his mount by my horse archers.

The battle went in three distinct phases. First I overpowered the outnumbered and unsupported Goths outside the city itself. Then I moved in along the winding roads, more impeded by the city layout then the defenders. Then finally the endgame near the town square.

The majority of my force took the shortest route, while a general some infantry, and horse archers took a longer route along the flank. Finally a pair of horse archers made a quick ride along the back of the settlement to come in from a third direction. The first column was meant to fight the main battle, the other two were only meant to dash in from behind once the Goth generals were drawn into battle with my heavies.

Well, naturally it did not work out that way. My main body was bogged down taking the short route, and my two secondary thrusts naturally got to the town square very quickly by taking the longer route. The second column triggered a massive Goth counterattack, including 5 of their 6 generals. This began the endgame. The infantry and one of the horse archers fled. All that was left was a single general and my Virgin Archers firing flaming arrows to hold them all.

Hold them they did, until finally my first column overran the town square and charged the Goth generals from the rear. Here you see the frightful slaughter in the streets. There are four Goth generals there and one unit of spearmen. In the foreground is the single Sarmatian general who held back all the Goths nearly single-handed. The thin yellow line.

I mentioned a third column. Well they drew out the sixth and last Goth general from the town square before all this, and led him on a merry chase outside the walls. In the far distance you see one of the horse archers in that column receive an experience upgrade as they pelt the chasing Goths.

All six generals dead, the Goths are completely annihilated.

I sack the city, and immediately after the Goths horde. Here you can see two of their stacks off to the west. There are two more that you cannot see in this pic, making a total of 4 stacks in the Goth horde. My spy took a look at them. They have basically the same units I do, but I think with more horse-archers. I was not expecting the Goths to be a horse archer faction!

Then as soon as the Goths have their turn they take Campus Iazyges and settle there. That has to be the shortest hording ever. 1 turn.

Here is the situation. The Goths are situated in Tribus Iazyges. The Huns are moving a bit south and ever west. It looks like they are going to be the WRE's problem now. I have decided to leave the Goths alone and head south for easier pickings in the Eastern Roman Empire.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 08-29-2007 @ 11:14 PM).]

posted 30 August 2007 00:23 EDT (US)     12 / 176  
Ouch, 6 generals in 1 town. That's like... 350 bodyguards? gj with that..

Wait, didn't you kill all their generals? Shouldn't you have destroyed them? Or did you miss some?

Proud Member of TWH since 2007 and AoKH since 2004
Seleucid AAR|Sarmatian AAR | Spain AAR
posted 30 August 2007 01:22 EDT (US)     13 / 176  
Good stuff, SubRosa,

I've gotten one general to be a "noctophiliac" 3 stars at night. I don't think I've ever had to face that many generals in one battle. whew. I guess they must have had at least one other general somewhere otherwise the Goths should have been destroyed.

Veni, Vidi, well... you know.

Extended Cultures, A modification of RTW.

Si hoc legere posses, Latinam linguam scis.
ɪf ju kŠn ɹid ­ɪs, ju noʊ liŋgwɪstɪks.

[This message has been edited by CaesarVincens (edited 08-30-2007 @ 01:23 AM).]

posted 30 August 2007 18:13 EDT (US)     14 / 176  
I killed every general, every soldier, that the Goths had. You can see on the side of the screen the 6 dead general messages, and in the battle results scroll it shows 0 survivors.

I think the way BI works it does not matter that I killed all their generals. I wiped out their faction by taking the city anyhow, and because the Goths are hordable they turned into a horde. When my spy looked at them afterward they had several new generals in their stacks. So they apparently just spawn a new ruling family along with the horde.

A noctophiliac eh Caeser? I will be looking for that, if my faction leader lives long enough. Actually, there are things about the night battles I do not like. Mainly the torches seem to really drag my performance to a crawl. Especially in a city battle like this one. I wish I could take the torches out. I am sure it can be done, I know RTR Platinum 1.9 has an option for torchless night battles. I guess I will have to research and experiment some more to figure out how to do it.
posted 30 August 2007 22:32 EDT (US)     15 / 176  
Hi everyone. More news from the frontlines.

The Goths have retaken Colonia Dacia. It is funny, they now have two cities where before I sacked them they only had one. They have doubled their territory because I thrashed them and forced them to horde. Though I doubt Colonia Dacia is as productive as it was before I sacked it...

The messenger Klingon informs me that I am fabulously wealthy. So obviously the sack was good for me too.

There is little my diplomat can do while I am a horde, so I have been using him as a spy. Since I only have the one spy I started the game with, I have to use everything at my disposal. Likewise, my assassin has been doing double duty as a killer and just as a simple pair of eyes as well. They have found no sizeable ERE force this side of the Hellespont. Not yet at least.

With that in mind my next targets are in my sights. Sirmium and Salona. I have divided my horde into two parts to take them simultaneously. Where before against the Goths and Huns I wanted to keep all my generals and best troops together in the one stack I was fighting with, here I do not see the need to concentrate that much force. I should do just fine with two separate armies, each with one first class stack, plus a second stack of lower quality spearmen for backup.

As I am moving deeper into Eastern Roman Empire territory, I learn that the Huns are at war with the Western Roman Empire. It looks like my prediction on their route was correct. It does not appear that I will be seeing much more of them this campaign.

I took a look at my faction leader again. He has acquired the Night Owl trait, giving him an extra +2 Command to night battles. He now has a Command of 10 when fighting at night.

So the assault upon Sirmium was to be a night battle. My first battle with the Romans this campaign, and their fine infantry. Fighting in the city will play to their strengths. I definitely wanted that Command of 10 on my side.

I deploy part of my force along one wall as a diversion. I have no intention of attacking here, I just want to make the computer deploy men there to counter me.

This leaves my true target empty of defenders.

Soon we are into the city and in the streets. The fighting was furious. Those Legio Lanciarii are tough. Here we were counterattacked by the Roman general. My faction leader is in the thick of it. Soon the Roman general is dead and the dregs of his bodyguard flee to the town square.

After that the Romans were done, it was just a matter of mopping up in the square.

The sack of Sirmium brings me plenty of cash.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 08-30-2007 @ 10:37 PM).]

posted 30 August 2007 22:55 EDT (US)     16 / 176  
Great job SubRosa, having to carry that much money around when you are a horde must be a pain eh? "D

Any idea when and where you plan to settle?

Proud Member of TWH since 2007 and AoKH since 2004
Seleucid AAR|Sarmatian AAR | Spain AAR
posted 31 August 2007 00:49 EDT (US)     17 / 176  
Yes, more pack mules than war horses, I should imagine.

I've found Legio Lanciarii to be the toughest roman troops there are, in BI. They have such morale and such armor that one cannot simply mass charge to rout them. If I were you, I'd settle in Salona, Sirmium, and either Thessilonica or Byzantium, after you'd sacked all the Greek regions of course.

Veni, Vidi, well... you know.

Extended Cultures, A modification of RTW.

Si hoc legere posses, Latinam linguam scis.
ɪf ju kŠn ɹid ­ɪs, ju noʊ liŋgwɪstɪks.
posted 31 August 2007 02:34 EDT (US)     18 / 176  

Did you notice your mercenaries took a share of the loot when you sacked the town? Looking at your army that captured the town Id say you didnt really need them in the line up. Could have held them back perhaps?

Diversion tactics when assaulting towns. Like it.
posted 31 August 2007 04:37 EDT (US)     19 / 176  
Great story! Hope you can keep it up.

I like the way you distracted part of the Romans by putting an army where you didn't attack.
Yes, more pack mules than war horses, I should imagine.
Just like in my Hun campaign. I moved the Huns to the Middle East, straight trough the Sassanid Empire. Lots of money.

posted 31 August 2007 16:12 EDT (US)     20 / 176  
ny idea when and where you plan to settle?
My current plan is to sack Salona and the three cities of Greece. Then I will retake the Greek cities and settle there. My thoughts are to start with Athens and work my way north, that way the peninsula will protect my rear as I advance.
Did you notice your mercenaries took a share of the loot when you sacked the town? Looking at your army that captured the town Id say you did not really need them in the line up. Could have held them back perhaps?
Yes, I saw that that mercenaries take a share of the spoils. That is something I remember from your Hun campaign. But for that city at least it was a rather meager number compared to my total haul, roughly 250 denarii against my 10k, so I really do not mind. I think in your Hun campaign they were taking a lot more, something in the thousands? I wonder what determines how much they take? Probably something to do with their numbers perhaps? Either total or according to the percentage of your forces they comprise?

Hmmm, I was going to click on your Hun campaign link, but it is not in your sig. I noticed that happening several times now. How come sometimes your sig is there and sometimes not?

I actually hired more mercenaries, some Roman infantry. That last battle cost me more casualities than it should have. I lost both a spearman and horse archer unit entirely. The first was chewed up by the Legio Lanciarii, and the second was hit by cavalry (Sarmatian Auxiliaries no less!), and they decided to skirmish away by going directly into the Romans. That seems to happen a lot, especially in city fighting.

My army is big, but it really is not made for fighting in the streets and on the walls. I could use more of my chosen swordsmen, but I do not think even they are truly an equal to the Roman Comitantenses or Lanciarii. That is why I just hired the Veteranii. They can look the Roman infantry in the eye without blinking. Plus they can soak up all the losses from doing so.

I think they will be a good short-term investment. I do not plan to keep them forever. Probably just long enough to sack all the Greek cities. In any case, if they start costing me too much I will either disband them or thin out their ranks enough that they are less expensive.
Diversion tactics when assaulting towns. Like it.
I like the way you distracted part of the Romans by putting an army where you didn't attack.
Guess where I learned that move from? None other than Severous the Cunning. I believe you did that a few times in your Hun campaign Sev.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 08-31-2007 @ 05:31 PM).]

posted 31 August 2007 21:57 EDT (US)     21 / 176  
Hi all, back from the war. I have a three-day weekend starting tonight, so I ought to be able to get quite a bit of conquering done in the next few days.

The assault upon Salona begins.

This is the first time I have ever had a siege battle so close to the sea. The beach is literally within my deployment zone. I had a picture of that but accidentally deleted it. In this pic I do have you see most of my army is deployed alongside the left-side wall, that faces the water. This is ruse, my true attack is meant to be upon the gatehouse in the foreground. Once the battle starts I will walk all my units around the wall to the other gate.

It feels strange to be fighting in the daylight. The battle begins and I move most of my siege towers to the walls. I need to secure a long stretch of wall along my route to the city center so the towers do not shoot me to bits. So while I only intend to use one tower to take the gatehouse, the other two are simply meant for wall-runners.

Here is the unit meant to take the gate. They are having trouble getting into the tower.

Finally, some manage to get inside. Here is a rare picture of the innards of a BI siege tower. No wonder my spearmen are having trouble, there is nothing to climb!

That unit never did get out of the tower and on to the wall, and it was a long battle. Not the first time that has happened in RTW. I had to divert one of my wall-runners to take the gatehouse so my army could get in the city.

One of my other wall-runners did not fare so well. They ran into a unit of Comitatenses that came from the gatehouse facing the sea. They completely destroyed one of my spearman units without breaking a sweat. Now they do something perplexing. They leave the walls and head down to the street. If they had continued along the wall they would have easily slaughtered the other spearmen I had up there and set the towers to firing upon me.

Ah, here is what they are up to. They are attacking my troops advancing toward the town square. I counterattacked them with my swordsmen, general, and alan mercenaries and obliterated them.

While my faction heir took the main force along the direct route to the town square, here you see a force of cavalry has been sent around to the side entrance. I sent out one unit of horse archers to shoot at the Roman general. He takes the bait and pursues them into the streets. My other general and Alans are laying in wait for him...

The Roman general is killed, and his men go with him to the last. Note the square-shaped image around the general's shield. It looks like there is no alpha channel around the shield to make the surrounding area transparent.

Now the remaining Roman infantry get tired of being shot at by my faction heir's archers. They attack him. Once they are engaged I bring my second general and his cavalry into the square behind them and charge. It was over shortly.

Once again we are victorious. However, at a higher butcher's bill than I would have liked. I need to use better infantry for my wall-running.

Salona is sacked for a decent pile of denarii.

In the meantime, my assassin heads east to poke around Constantinople. He finds a big ERE field army. I knew they had to have something big here in the west. I am glad I found them before they found me.

Looks like a lot of infantry. The two eastern archers and two cavalry are the real threats. I can beat this in the open field with my horse archers.

Also on this turn a new Sarmatian general came of age and was sent to kill some brigands outside of Thessalonica. My faction leader will lay siege to the city this turn.

Edited to add:
More action from Greece.

Somewhere out there the Huns and Vandals are having fun with one another.

The assault upon Thessalonica begins. Once again, a night battle.

I brought a significantly higher amount of infantry with me this time, including two units of mercenary veteranii. I entered the city from three sides at once, quickly overwhelming the defenders in the streets. Then it was on to the town square, where the remaining Roman Lanciarii counter-attack. My own infantry would absorb their charge, and my generals charge in to break them.

One of my roman mercenaries has entered the town square from the opposite side, and is engaged with the Roman general. The Lanciarii dealt with, my own generals charge.

Here you see my smaller general receive an experience upgrade.

It was a walkover. Note the difference in casualties I suffered. Clearly I have not been using enough infantry in these sieges. I sack the city of course.

After that battle I transferred my faction leader's retinue members to my faction heir. My leader is getting long in the tooth now, and my heir can use all the help he can get stat-wise. Moving on now, my faction heir heads south toward Athens and my faction leader east to Constantinople.

I have inserted my spy into the latter city itself. He points out the Roman general to my assassin.

Moments later the Romans are short one family member.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 10-10-2007 @ 07:30 PM).]

posted 01 September 2007 01:17 EDT (US)     22 / 176  
Looking good. After you settle in Greece what are you gonna do? Head to turkey, to italy, or north?

The opposite of a correct statement is a false statement. But the opposite of a profound truth may well be another profound truth. ~Niels Bohr
No matter how hard you try, you cannot outwit stupid people. ~Anonymous
Romano British AAR ~Defunct.
Kingdom of Albion AAR ~Finished 1/26/08.
WRE Migration/Defensive AAR ~Defunct.
Numidian Defensive AAR ~Ongoing
posted 01 September 2007 01:44 EDT (US)     23 / 176  
I've seen the problems with horde spears (on huge scale) and large siege towers; it really hurts, because most Roman cites have at least large walls, so you can't use ladders (my favorite wall scaling equipment, it's the speed they scale.)
I recommend using mercenaries (which fits with using better infantry), since they are less than 240.


Yeah, it's nice to have 10k, but it disappears very quickly after settling.

Veni, Vidi, well... you know.

Extended Cultures, A modification of RTW.

Si hoc legere posses, Latinam linguam scis.
ɪf ju kŠn ɹid ­ɪs, ju noʊ liŋgwɪstɪks.
posted 01 September 2007 03:24 EDT (US)     24 / 176  
Looking great SubRosa. So that leaves Constantinople and Athens to be sacked right?

Good job with the multi-pronged sieges. I always seem to lose a lot of units when sieging, even more when I divide my forces. I should probably start using Siege Towers more

Proud Member of TWH since 2007 and AoKH since 2004
Seleucid AAR|Sarmatian AAR | Spain AAR
posted 01 September 2007 09:36 EDT (US)     25 / 176  
I've noticed the same shield bug, with the black around it. I believe it happens to British Legionaries, as well.

But anyways, good work, I probably would've settled in Salona and/or Thessalonica, they're both pretty good sized cities. But I guess I'm a Roman at heart, so

C13H18O2 <-- IBUPROFEN - ruining your life since 1969!

Hey, check out my AAR here!
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