Frequently Asked Questions

Table of Contents




Empire Building FAQ

Miscellaneous FAQ


Q: What factions will I be able to play with?
A: The House of Julii, the House of Brutii, the House of Scipii, Britain, Carthage, Egypt, the Seleucids, Germania, Gaul, Parthia, and Greece.

Q: What are the non-playable factions?
A: The Senate, the Numidians (since Numidia was not one political entity), the Iberians, Pontus, the Dacians, Armenia, Thrace, Macedon and Scythia.

Q: Can you choose any of the factions to play as at any time?
A: Not quite. You have to finish the game with one of the Roman Houses before you get access to the others.

Q: What time frame will Rome: Total War take place in?
A: From around 270 BC to 14 AD.

Q: How was the time period for the game’s setting chosen?
A: 264 BC was when the First Punic War, the first conflict in which Roman troops fought outside Italy, began. 14 AD marked the death of Augustus Caesar, the first Emperor.

Q: How will major historical events be made use of in Rome: Total War?
A: We know that at least some of these events will play a part in the game. For example, after the Marian reforms take place, a new set of units is available to Rome.

Q: What are the modes of gameplay?
A: There’s the short mode – where you have to conquer 15 provinces and defeat a specified enemy (the Carthaginians if you’re playing as House Scipii, for example), and the long mode, where you have to conquer 50 provinces including Rome (if you’re non-Roman) or, uh, conquer Rome (if you’re Roman – except here you’ll be fighting against the other families, as opposed to against a united Rome if you play with a non-Roman faction). There are also historical battles, some of which allow you to re-enact the battles of Cynoscephalae, and Trebia. Other than that, you can set up your own custom battle in single player mode (if you are too lazy to pick armies you may want to play a Quick Battle, where the armies, weather conditions, and the map is selected randomly by the game) as well as online.

Q: Is there a multiplayer mode?
A: Yes. Up to 8 players.

Q: Is this a turn-based or real-time game?
A: Rome: Total War has elements of both genres, with a turn-based style at the world map level and real-time fighting at the battle level.

Q: How many units can be on the screen at one time?
A: 10,000.

Q: Is there a map editor to create and change battle maps with?
A: Yes, the editor used to create your own battle maps comes with the 1.2 patch.

Q: What system specifications will I need to play Rome: Total War?
A: The minimum system requirements are 1 GHZ Processor, 64 MB Video card, 2,9 GB hard drive space and 256 MB of RAM.

Q: Is there a game demo?
A: Yes. A list of sites from which you can download it is on Creative Assembly’s Official Rome: Total War site at

Q: What am I able to do in the demo?
A: The demo lets you play a tutorial batte and the Battle of Trebia, one of the historical battles that come with the game.

Q: When was Rome: Total War released?
A: September 22, 2004.


Q: Am I able to attack at night?
A: Yes, in custom battles you are be able to choose any time of the day to attack.

Q: How do naval battles work?
A: They are abstract. You won’t be able to control your ships during battle.

Q: How many battlefields am I able to play on?
A: At this time you might have the change to play on around 10,000 different battlefields.

Q: Dos the weather have an effect on the battlefield?
A: Yes, rain, snow and other conditions effect your units.

Q: What are sieges like?
A: Catapults blowing holes in walls, men using siege towers to swarm over said walls, engineers digging under them, and then close combat in the streets to capture the strategic points of the city – in a word, awesome.

Q: I heard that sieges are also more realistic in terms of physics.
A: Yes. Pieces of flying wall can kill your troops. Isn’t that awesome?

Q: Do buildings actually take damage in Rome: Total War?
A: Yes they do – so if you want to use the buildings of a city that you capture, you need to make sure that they aren’t completely obliterated when you take the city.

Q: Is the player able to command more than one army in battle?
A: If there is an army besides yours located in the area where the battle is taking place, and its commander is related to yours (as many of the Roman aristocrats were), you will be able to bring it into the fight.

Q: Does each army start at one end of the battle map, like they did in earlier games?
A: Nope. The armies will be positioned according to where they are on the world map. So you could theoretically go into battle with your troops already on both sides of the enemy forces.

Q: Is troop movement from province to province as in earlier games, where they could move one province at a time?
A: Not quite. In Rome: Total War, troops can move in a much more flexible manner, even avoiding battle if necessary.

Q: Does the physical map effect the moving of units?
A: Yes, you will not be able to move over mountains and will need to find a pass to go through. This can make defending an area much easier.

Q: How big is the battle map?
A: Four times the size of the Medieval: Total War map.

Q: When attacking a city, how many ways are there in or out of it?
A: Apart from knocking holes in the walls – a city can have multiple gates for entry/exit.

Q: So the geographical features on the world map are more important than in previous Total War games?
A: Yes. You can, for example, use your troops to block a mountain pass, or a river crossing.


Q: Testudo!
A: Yes, you are able to use the testudo formation, in which the Roman legionnaries use their shields to form a near-inpenetrable wall against arrows.

Q: Do generals play a role in battle?
A: They sure do – from giving pre-battle speeches to raising troop morale.

Q: What’s this I hear about generals having personalities?
A: Generals will have both positive and negative character traits that will influence their troops’ morale, discipline, and so on.

Q: How are troops trained?
A: As in earlier games – one unit per city per turn.

Q: Oh yeah, those elephants. What’s that I read about them stampeding?
A: If you throw enough javelins at elephant units (literally), they’ll flee through – or perhaps I should say OVER – their own units.

Q: What is the sapping ability?
A: It determines whether a unit can dig under walls at sap points. Many units can while some can not.

Q: What are impetuous troops?
A: Just what the name suggests – units described as impetuous are more likely to attack without orders.

Q: What’s this about units hiding in woods?
A: Some units are particularly good at hiding in forests. This essentially means that they’re better suited to pulling off an ambush.

Q: What does a unit’s discipline signify?
A: More highly-disciplined units are less likely to break and run when they’re losing a battle.

Q: Is selecting units/giving them orders easier than in previous TW games?
A: Yes; in R:TW, you click (or drag a box) to select, click to order.

Q: Is there any equivalent to the province-specific units of earlier Total War games?
A: Yes. Since there are no provinces in R: TW, there will now be region-specific units (for example, elephants in Africa).

Empire Building FAQ

Q: Where do these Houses start the game? Anywhere in Roman territory?
A: There’s been a little historical fudging to make for better gameplay. The Julii are in Northern Italy, the Brutii in the East, and the Scipii in the South.

Q: How do heirs work?
A: Unlike Medieval: Total War you will be able to choose who succeeds your ruler, your son may not be to happy if you give the title to a general or yours however. You can also look at an extensive family tree that will show generals and blood relations.

Q: Relatives?
A: Yes. Alliances with other noble Roman families, choosing an heir, and so on are all parts of R:TW.

Q: How do I keep track of all these related Roman families?
A: In-game family tree. Unlike in previous games, you can make any member of their family your heir.

Q: What are advisors?
A: Advisors are ‘people’ in the game who give you advice. They can be turned off when you no longer need them.

Q: Can I choose and or change my capitol city?
A: Yes, changing your capitol city can be dangerous though, the location of your capitol has an effect on the contentedness of your people. Provinces near the capitol are more content than ones further away.

Q: Are factions going to have capital cities?
A: Yes. You can move your capital – but the level of discontent in your other cities is substantially affected by their distance from the capital.

Q: Do cities grow like in previous Total War games?
A: Yes. There are five levels of city, from village to “large city”.

Q: The Senate? What does that do?
A: The Senate excercises a great deal of control over Rome, and will give you missions to carry out, the completion of which will increase your reputation, and so on.

Q: What’s this I hear about trade routes?
A: Trade routes will be marked on the world map; you can cut your enemies’ lines of trade off by moving troops to them. And bandits might raid yours.

Q: What is the diplomacy like in Rome: Total War?
A: Complicated. Bribery, alliances, troops getting right-of-way to march through neutral territory… Roman internal politics… even methods as subtle as threatening an enemy (as opposed to actually attacking them, you know) will be available to you.

Q: Threats, eh? Do your diplomatic dealings with one nation affect your relations with others?
A: Most definitely. You have a reputation, you know…and your enemies will hold grudges against you, even if you’re no longer at war.

Q: And how does bribery work?
A: There are a number of options involved. You can pay an ally to attack a particular city after a particular number of turns.

Q: What’s this I hear about gods?
A: Factions are able to choose which gods to build temples to, and this will affect their bonuses and so on.

Q: So if there aren’t provinces… what are there?
A: Units can move to any location on the map – not just from province to province. Think of the game map as one large battlefield… and each individual city or battle as a zoomed-in portion of it. That’s the most accurate description possible; every battle you fight will be on terrain that matches what you see at the world level. Provinces still exist, but they’re geographic regions rather than places you can move your units to.

Q: I don’t really want to deal with this economy stuff… battles are what I enjoy.
A: In Rome: Total War, you can have the AI handle either all the city administration, or all the battles, leaving you free to focus on whatever part of the gameplay you enjoy.

Miscellaneous FAQ

Q: I read that there are wonders in Rome: Total War, just like in the Age games…
A: Indeed there are. They give your men and generals certain bonuses…and they can be seen during battles.

Q: Is Rome: Total War going to be like Shogun: Total War, where buildings were largely ornamental?
A: No. In R:TW, buildings are not only displayed in the location where they’re built on the world map, but are also a part of battle – siege is also an important part of the game.

Q: Are the physics of the game more realistic than previous strategy games?
A: Indeed. Cavalry/elephant charges will not only kill units, but knock those next to them to the ground. Elephants will send men flying through the air. And so on.

Q: What’s the… weather like?
A: Pretty realistic. Storms at sea can blow away your ships… and don’t even ask about the volcanos.

Q: Just out of curiosity, how historically accurate is this game?
A: Speaking as a history nerd… it could be better, but it could be a hell of a lot worse.

Q: Man, this sounds complicated… I feel like the Gauls will kick my ass while I’m still trying to figure out how to train my troops.
A: That’s why there’s a tutorial campaign.