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 Rome Total War Strategy Guide

Rome Total War Strategy Guide

Rome Total War Strategy Guide v1.5
for game version 1.0 to 1.5
(for intermediate players)

by: A.H.W. aka Blood Rage

Original submission made June 7 2005
First update June 17 2005
Second update June 28 2005
Third update October 04 2005 
Fourth update 11 August 2006
Fifth update 02 December 2006
Correction for Briton Strategy 04 March 2007
Sixth update 12 September 2007

NOTE: (*) at the end of titles denote changes in version 1.2
and above. Basically the combat aspects doesn't change much 
from 1.2 onwards. All else are version 1.0.

Table of contents

1.0 Author's note
	1.1 Noticeable campaign changes in version 1.2*
	1.2 Noticeable campaign changes in version 1.5*

2.0 Basic Strategies
	2.1 Troops
	2.2 Commands
	2.3 Terrain
	2.4 Buildings
	2.5 Battles

3.0 Advanced Strategies
	3.1 Targets
	3.2 Sieges*
	3.3 Battle Commands

4.0 Misc Strategies
	4.1 Diplomat*
	4.2 Spies*
	4.3 Assassin*
	4.4 Navy
	4.5 Rebels!
	4.6 Mercenaries
	4.7 Happy people = healthy empire
	4.8 Capital
	4.9 'Offensive Fortification'
	4.10 Watchtowers
	4.11 Massacre vs. Enslave
	4.12 What I think of Protectorates

5.0 Factions for this guide
	followed by strategies by factions


A. Julli
A1.0 Author's note*

A2.0 Basic Strategies
	A2.1 Troops*
	A2.2 Commands
	A2.3 Terrain
	A2.4 Buildings

A3.0 Advanced Strategies
	A3.1 Targets*
	A3.2 Sieges*
	A3.3 Battle Commands


B. Brutii
B1.0 Author's note

B2.0 Basic Strategies
	Please see Julii

B3.0 Advanced Strategies
	B3.1 Targets
	B3.2 Sieges
	B3.3 Battle Commands


C. Carthage
C1.0 Author's note

C2.0 Basic Strategies
	C2.1 Troops
	C2.2 Commands
	C2.3 Terrain
	C2.4 Buildings

C3.0 Advanced Strategies
	C3.1 Targets*
	C3.2 Sieges
	C3.3 Battle Commands


D. Seleucids
D1.0 Author's note

D2.0 Basic Strategies
	D2.1 Troops
	D2.2 Commands
	D2.3 Terrain
	D2.4 Buildings

D3.0 Advanced Strategies
	D3.1 Targets*
	D3.2 Sieges
	D3.3 Battle Commands


E. Gauls
E1.0 Author's note

E2.0 Basic Strategies
	E2.1 Troops
	E2.2 Commands
	E2.3 Terrain
	E2.4 Buildings

E3.0 Advanced Strategies
	E3.1 Targets
	E3.2 Sieges
	E3.3 Battle Commands


F. Germans
F1.0 Author's note

F2.0 Basic Strategies
	F2.1 Troops
	F2.2 Commands
	F2.3 Terrain
	F2.4 Buildings

F3.0 Advanced Strategies
	F3.1 Targets
	F3.2 Sieges
	F3.3 Battle Commands


G. Egyptians
G1.0 Author's note

G2.0 Basic Strategies
	G2.1 Troops
	G2.2 Commands
	G2.3 Terrain
	G2.4 Buildings

G3.0 Advanced Strategies
	G3.1 Targets
	G3.2 Sieges
	G3.3 Battle Commands


H. Parthians
H1.0 Author's note

H2.0 Basic Strategies*
	H2.1 Troops
	H2.2 Commands
	H2.3 Terrain
	H2.4 Buildings

H3.0 Advanced Strategies*
	H3.1 Targets
	H3.2 Sieges
	H3.3 Battle Commands


I. Scipii
I1.0 Author's note

I2.0 Basic Strategies
	I2.1 Troops
	I2.2 Commands
	I2.3 Terrain
	I2.4 Buildings

I3.0 Advanced Strategies
	I3.1 Targets
	I3.2 Sieges
	I3.3 Battle Commands


J. Britons
J1.0 Author's note

J2.0 Basic Strategies
	J2.1 Troops
	J2.2 Commands
	J2.3 Terrain
	J2.4 Buildings

J3.0 Advanced Strategies
	J3.1 Targets
	J3.2 Sieges
	J3.3 Battle Commands


6.0 General battle tips against specific factions
	6A. Julli, Brutii, Scipii and SPQR
	6B. Carthage and Seleucids
	6C. Egyptian
	6D. Gauls
	6E. Germania
	6F. Brittania
	6E. Dacia
	6F. Thrace
	6G. Macedon
	6H. Greek Cities
	6I. Parthians and Armenia
	6J. Scythians
	6K. Spain
	6L. Numidia
	6M. Pontus


7.0 Geographical considerations
	7.1 Money pits
	7.2 Trouble Spots
	7.3 Strategic cities
	7.4 Logistic nightmare


8.0 Economy


9.0 Questions


10.0 Credits & Disclaimer


1.0 Author's note
This guide is for slightly experienced players in the single 
player Imperial campaign. I have no experience playing in 
multiplayer. It is not a comprehensive guide detailing 
everything you need to know but rather elaborating more on 
strategies, rather than game bugs, info, cheats. All the 
games here are on 'very hard/very hard'. Therefore, some 
mastery of basic commands are recommended. 

All this strategies here are exactly from my own play. 

I also assume that the readers would be familiar with the 
geography and terms of the game. 

This strategy guide will be structured according to factions 
following the general structure here. I have split the 
strategies into 'Basic Strategies' and 'Advanced Strategies' 
because Basic Strategies apply in any way that you play the 
faction while in Advanced Strategies I explain my own 
strategies as an advancement from the basics; usually based 
on how I interpret the faction strengths and weaknesses, 
their geographical considerations and how, if any extra 
tactics I use. 

Please read through the general non-faction specific part 
before going to the faction specific guide.

Updated 17 June 2005:
I fought against my hatred of using chariots and tried out 
the Egyptians and mastered Parthians. Also posted more 
strategies like 'offensive fortification' and more of 
advanced strategies. Various errors corrected. Grammar 

Updated 28 June 2005:
Added Scipii and also the 'General battle tips against 
specific factions', 'Geographical considerations', 
'Economy' and 'Questions' sections. Also added diagrams of 
Roman and Parthian formations.

Updated 04 October 2005:
Took some time off the game and got a girlfriend. Now back 
with version 1.2. There are obvious changes in version 1.2, 
the most noticeable so far is the enemy AI in the campaign 
map and battle map. 

Updated 11 August 2006:
Replayed Carthage and Seleucids with version 1.5. Also 
played Greeks but decided to stop after destroying the 
Roman factions because they are a very boring faction to 
play battle-wise due to lack of unit variety, and haven't 
got round to fighting missile cavalry yet. So, I won't 
post up the Greek strat as I can't and don't want to 
recall how I played it. I had so much cash but was so damn 

Updated 02 December 2006:
Completed Seleucid 103 province capture. Winning primary 
objective with Britons. The Light Chariots rule! Most 
spelling errors corrected.

Correction for Briton Strategy 04 March 2007:
THe settlement that I meant was Samarobriva but I 
mistakenly put in Batavodrum. 

Updated 12 September 2007:
Replayed Parthia in version 1.5 and implemented new 
strategies for Parthia. 

1.1 Noticeable campaign changes in version 1.2
- it cost much more to bribe
- assassins and spies are a bigger pain
- the factions tend to stick more to their historical or 
geographical boundaries and some factions are simply less 
aggressive as per history
- battle changes are noted in rest of guide
- the AI will use siege weapons in battles more

1.2 Noticeable campaign changes in version 1.5
- the AI is more crappy with diplomacy that it isn't even 
funny any more. I like the part where the Egyptians will 
mention that the pharoah decrees that 'All your bases are 
belong to us' when they asked for me to become a 
protectorate kingdom when I am kicking their behinds. 
- phalanx pikes hold off better against elephants and 
chariot charges resulting in instant kill irrespective 
of the elephants and chariot hit points. 

2.0 Basic strategies
2.1 Troops
Always a good idea to familiarise yourself with the units, 
understand their strengths and weaknesses. Phalanxes are
great for holding a line. Light infantry is easier to 
maneuver. Archers kill from afar and are a must for all 
factions especially if you meet up against elephants. 
Chariots great for breaking lines and kill infantry. 
Elephants just run through lines. You must also get a good 
feel of the combination of units that you will be comfortable 
with. I find that I have to use different combinations for 
different factions. But generally I'm a cavalry kind of 
player, hit from the back, fast, hard and run down 
retreating enemies. 

2.2 Commands
Learn the hotkeys for all the commands. This will help make 
commands appear smoother. It gives you no advantage in 
single player mode as you can click pause any time. But make 
sure you familiarise with all the commands. Manually giving 
specific order to units individually is the best. You get less 
of a lag in response but takes time to master. The preset 
formation orders are terrible and slow to organise. Using 
group commands make them slow to react as well.

2.3 Terrain
Simple basic terrain rules - high ground good, low ground bad. 
If you place archers in the rear on a lower ground, they will 
shoot into the backs of your front lines. If the archers are 
placed on higher ground in the back, they won't kill your own 

Bridges and river crossings are good to defend if the enemy 
only come from one side. 

Use town/city streets for choke points and cover from flanking. 

I find forests the hardest for me to control as the trees 
obstruct the view and placement of troops. 

Try and place your units in the extremes of the open map during 
offensive and defensive battles to avoid getting outflanked.

2.4 Buildings
Buildings give bonuses but not all are useful. You need to look 
at the building browser at the start of the game and plan what 
you are going to aim for early on. 

Always aim to get the economy running first by raising all taxes 
to very high if you are able. This will hinder population growth 
but not to worry because if your population grow too fast, you'll 
have problems with keeping them all contented. The growth of a 
town/city must be controllable and if done right you can predict 
how soon you need to build happiness bonus buildings to keep up. 
Happiness is not a big problem early on, but once you are like 
holding about 30 cities, it will start to creep up on you.

2.5 Battles
Trust me, it's better to fight all battles yourself as the 
computer is very very dumb. At the start of the game, play all 
battles yourself with the target to minimise losses as unit 
training at the start is costly. 

3.0 Advanced strategy
This is where it gets fun. :)
3.1 Targets
Always have a plan to target certain factions from the start and 
aim to disrupt them as much as possible. For example, when I 
played Julii, my main aim is the other 2 Roman faction as like 
it or not they will turn against me when you grow strong. So my 
strategy was to obstruct their growth by securing their growth 
targets and surrounding them. Read on later for faction specific 

3.2 Sieges
I think sieges are a skill itself. Sieges are very fun when you 
are the defender. Even with a small army you can beat considerable 
odds. And it is always better to keep smaller armies, but don't 
depend on weak units. Use archers and units with quite ok defences. 
Another tactic is to use wall defences to kill for you. Sally out 
during sieges and get the enemy to come closer to your walls for 
your towers to kill them. With wooden walls you need to play a 
hide & seek tactic to draw their units to the towers. This only 
works when they outnumber you. 

Attacking in sieges are a good way to expand very fast and make 
plenty of cash by massacre-ing. Attacking during a siege is best 
done using siege towers for stone walled cities. Use crack infantry 
to get up the walls, and then capture all the surrounding towers, 
using their arrow towers to then start shooting against them. This 
also opens the gate for the rest of your troops. This strategy is 
ideal for factios without onagers or if you don't want arrows to 
pour onto your invading forces as you march down the streets. 

With onagers, see the Julii strategy. 

The strategy I love most about sieges is when I siege a city and 
they attack my army with another army leading to a battle in open 
grounds with the city defenders coming out as reinforcements. If you 
kill off all the city defenders and win, you gain the city without 
going through a siege battle.

Always remember that defenders have the advantage in sieges. No 
defender unit will rout in the town centre. Defenders also get 
better morale so even basic peasants will fight better.

Also take note that each region has it's own city layout pattern. 
For example the Roman and Greek cities' route to the city centre 
is more twisted while the African cities are more direct. 

**version 1.2 changes
- the AI is more eager to attack during sieges. My preferred strategy 
when defending sieges is to let the enemy have the wall and 
concentrate my defences around the city center. I always place my 
units to hit from at least 2 directions at choke points. For example, 
place your units at 3 sides of a crossroads and let the enemy engage 

- the AI is cleverer when you sally forth. They don't stand around to 
get killed by my wall defences. Nevertheless, I still sally forth and 
win. The key here is to have at least 3 cavalry, 3 archers and some 
dependable infantry. I place all but 1 archer on the wall. As soon as 
the battle start, I observe for enemy movements. If they move to one 
side, I rush my cavalry out and charge at stragglers. Sometimes I win 
the sally forth all from the first charge. If the enemy is not broken, 
I pull the cavalry back and line up the infantry outside. I then place 
the other archers as close on the side of the wall facing the enemy. 
I get the archer not on the wall to come out and skirmish the enemy 
to draw them near. Everytime they send one unit to chase the archers, 
I charge with the cavalry. Even when the enemy charge all out and 
overwhelm the infantry, the archers on the wall will make short work 
of them. 

- when attacking in a siege, the last enemy troop in the town center 
will not sit still as you pepper projectiles at it. In fact it will 
charge at the projectile unit. Heck, this makes it even easier. I 
place infantries at the front and archers behind. After the up to 2 
arrow barrages, I order a ceasefire and let the enemy charge into my 
infantry while cavalry charge from behind. This will make the unit 
rout and lessen your losses. 

- siege towers' ballistas are much more effective and can wipe out 
more than half the units on the wall. Sometimes I use a few towers 
to kill units only and only climb the walls when they are very weak. 

3.3 Battle commands
In battles, there's a lot of timing involved. The simplest one is to 
stop all your archers firing when the enemy units are very close to 
your front lines to avoid shooting at your own men. You also need to 
experience the perfect timing to move your cavalry out from your 
flanks to outflank the enemy troops. Move them out too early and 
you'll get their infantry trying to chase them instead of clashing 
against your front lines. 

Formation is vital to any battlefield success. Place your units too 
tightly in a group and it becomes easier for the enemy to outflank 
you. A formation must preferable give a strong front, cover for your 
projectiles, flank protection and space to deal with any changes you 
need to make. Each faction has their own ideal formations based on 
units and also terrain. I like to place my onagers right behind the 
frontlines in the middle with archers to the sides so that I don't 
burn my own frontlines by mistake. My cavalry are all in my rear 
until my army gets into position, then they move out to the flanks 
in the rear, a charging distance from the front lines to charge at 
anyone who attack my flanks.

4.0 Misc strategies
4.1 Diplomats
Diplomats are fun to use. Make as many trade right deals as possible 
to make money. Also if you need cash, use diplomats to 'sell' your map 
information for cash. Just offer your map information and ask for 
regular tributes and one time payments. The largest sale I gained was 
for 5400 cash for 12 turns from the Scipii. The usual deal you get is 
about 10,000 cash worth in total. 

Make alliances with everyone early on. Doesn't matter who or how long 
it lasts as everyone will come for you anyway if you are large. 
Alliances are just to buy time. 

So far, I only manage to get the Spanish to become my protectorate and 
I find it gives me no advantage at all. Might as well take their 

I've gained a few settlements on demand as well but beware as they are 
not defended when you receive them and tend to riot. Prefer to conquer 
and massacre to control population size. 

Bribe! Bribe! Bribe! No army is too expensive to bribe. Keep the 
diplomats around your frontline cities in case you have to bribe that 
superior army. Very useful early in the game. 

**version 1.2 changes
- Bribing cost has increased hugely. Therefore bribing has become less 
attractive. Don't be surprised to find bribing crappy rebels to cost 
you over 5k denarii. 
- Enemy AI has changed in regards to diplomacy. They are more willing 
to become protectorates and give out map information. 

4.2 Spies
Spies give advanced information. Learn what the enemy units are and you 
can counter them. Also good to know what units the enemy keep to defend 
their cities so that you can plan your siege. 

Keep spies in front so that you don't get ambushed but I don't really 
mind this as my expeditionary force can handle anything the ambushing 
babarians can throw at me. 

**version 1.2 onwards changes
- the AI uses a lot of spies and seed them in any front line cities. So 
make sure you have spies for counterspying or you will have a headache 
with happiness level

4.3 Assassins
**version 1.2 onwards changes
- the AI uses more assasins and are more successful. You can lose your 
precious generals this time.

4.4 Navy
Don't spend too much on Navy. Their use is limited. Keep up to 3 large 
fleets to kill other ships and few small fleets of up to 4 ships for 
transport. Why? Navy is costly. It can suck your economy dry. If you 
don't concentrate them they are weak as well, especially in Very Hard 
mode. I tend to lose naval battles on even strengths. You need to 
overwhelm the enemy navy to win. 

If you worry that the enemy control the seas, don't panic. The key to 
win control of the sea is to capture the land. Dominance of the sea 
depends on dominance on land. 

**version 1.2 onwards changes
- the AI will not make crazy navies like in 1.0 and will spend more 
cash on troops instead. 

4.5 Rebels!
Rebel units tend to pop up here and there... have no fear! They block 
roads and reduce trade income. 

Using diplomats you can bribe most of them for less than 1300 cash. If 
they have a rebel general, you can recruit him for less than 5000 cash. 

They best way I've dealt with them is to use generals with bad stats, 
get them to hire mercs, then get them to run over rebels. This way they 
become conquering heroes (+6 influence) and can be used to placate 
unhappy towns with their high influence. It's a win-win situation.

4.6 Mercenaries
Mercs are not great. Most of them have poor morale and break off and run 
faster than the rest. The ones I tend to use are Cretan Archers, Samartian 
Mercenaries, Rhodian Slingers, Mercenary War Elephant and Bastarnae 
Mercenaries. Still, I use them sparingly as I can't retrain them. Avoid 
unless they can give you an advantage. 

4.7 Happy people = healthy empire
The toughest part of the game is to avoid rebellions. They are a pain and 
tend to happen in your largest cities which also happen to be your richest. 
Recapturing them are a pain because I tend to leave weaker cheap troops to 
garrison them while the top of my crop go off conquering.
The basics are:
	1. keep a suitably sized garrison, preferable cheap maintainance 
	   units like peasants
	2. build happiness buildings and counter their grievances
	3. maintain a governor with high influence
	4. keep appropriate tax level
The advanced strategies are:
	1. keep population growth under control 
		population control is important. You want your cities to
		grow fast enough to give you tech but also not too fast 
		that it will drain your resources to keep on building 
		happiness buildings. Make sure there's always population
		growth until you pass the 24k mark but also make sure 
		that you have enough time to prevent any rebellions. 
	2. use games and races
		this will cost you but are very effective, making the 
		Romans ideal for total domination. If you are not Roman 
		you might want to let them live a bit longer and build 
		arenas for you before you capture their cities, 
		especially the Scipii in North Africa and Egypt.
	3. plague your own cities
		smaller population = happier population. Great for places 
		where population can grow over 30,000 like Carthage, 
		Alexandria, Memphis, Corduba, etc.. **I don't do this 
		any more as I have managed to fine tune the population 
		control to avoid resorting to plagues and massacres to 
		control happiness levels. 
	4. ideal governor
		must have high influence and management. possible to have 
		management and influence both up to 10 for Romans. High 
		management give high income giving some happiness boost. 
		Remove grain merchant and overseer from governors as 
		they boost population growth; good for income but you 
		don't want a rich unhappy city. 
	5. culture penalty
		culture penalty depends on what structure you have in the 
		city of a different culture compared to your culture. 
		Therefore to reduce it, you need to replace or rebuild 
		buildings from different cultures. Nevertheless, you can 
		still escape without culture penalty even if you have 1 
		or 2 buildings from a different culture. Razing different 
		culture buildings as soon as capturing the city is not 
		always required. Just take your time and replace the 
		buildings and youc an actually keep a few happiness bonus 
		buildings in the process without sustaining any culture 
		penalty. In version 1.5, having the pyramids eliminates 
		Egyptian culture penalties. 

4.8 Capital
Always try to move your capital towards the centre of large cities. Rome 
and the cities around it is good. This keep the big cities happier and the 
distance to capital will lessen with a city in the centre of your empire. 

4.9 'Offensive Fortification'
A fort has wooden walls, cost 500 denarii, can be build at most 
places, and very much worth the money! If you fight against factions that 
have strong infantry which can break your lines in a strong charge, and 
your advancing army uses archers and onagers, try building forts at the 
end of your movement. This way when the marauding enemy decide to siege 
your fort, sally forth and your onagers can rain fireballs and your 
archers will shower arrows in safety behind your walls. So you don't 
have to worry about elephants, pikemen, axemen, falxmen, etc.. 

4.10 Watchtowers
Watchtowers are very useful as advanced warning and also to light up areas 
along the roads where rebel units can appear and block the roads affecting 
trade. To get maximum view from towers, build them in higher elevations. 
No use building it in the middle of the forest.

4.11 Massacre vs. Enslave
After trying out these two options after capturing a city, I personally
would still choose either depending on the campaign need. In the early 
game, where the town population are low, enslaving is better to boost 
population growth while not causing the captured city to rebel. But when 
I captured large cities and huge cities, massacre seems to be the better 
option to quell rebellions early on. The denarii made from massacre is 
also a good incentive, even in version 1.2. Once I have plenty huge 
cities to provide the tech, I simply massacre any city above 10k 
population as I don't need population boost any more and could better 
use the cash. 

4.12 What I think of Protectorates
Crap. If they are weak enough to accept protectorate, might as well 
eradicate them and tax the cities dry. 

5.0 Factions for this FAQ (very hard/very hard)
	A. Julii*
	B. Brutii
	C. Carthagians*
	D. Seleucids*
	E. Gaul
	F. Germans
	G. Egypt
	H. Parthians
	I. Scipii
	J. Britons*


A. Julii

A1.0 Author's note
Julii have the advantage of starting with 2 onagers which is a great 
bonus as it usually takes some time into the game before you are able 
to build them. With catapults, it make attacking walled settlements easy. 
Their Roman units are easy to get into. Easiest to start with as you 
start off with free good units. 

Version 1.2 is more challenging as the Brutii and Scipii expend much 
faster. Not being able to bribe much due to exorbitant cost makes for 
more battles. 

A2.0 Basic Strategies
A2.1 Troops
Infantry to fight infantry and hold enemy cavalry, cavalry to do what 
cavalries are good at, onagers to burn units and break walls, strong navy  
and long ranged archer auxillia. 

Most of their infantry can throw spears before a charge, so make sure you 
make use of this for example, throw your spears at enemy lines before you 
engage or get your troops facing into gaps in the wall and spear the 
defenders within with full confidence that the defenders won't leave the 
city walls.

The gladiators look formidable but in truth they are superseded by cavalry 
as shock troops. As infantry they are useless in holding the line. 

My combo for a typical Roman expeditionary force is to have 3-4 
onagers/heavy onagers, 3-4 archer auxillia, 3-4 heavy cavalry and the rest 
made up of heavy infantry i.e legionary cohorts and above. 

**version 1.2 changes
- The Marius changes comes later in the game, had mine at 202 BC. Therefore 
you have to put up with short ranged archers, equites and precipes much 
longer. Suffered heavy losses to the high tech chosen axemen, chosen 
swordmen and chosen archers. Be wary that equites is light cavalry and will 
die against heavy cavalry in a straight charge.

A2.2 Commands
Use the fire at will command sparingly. Plenty of times I've killed my own 
troops with the pilums, onagers and archers. Manual projectile target 
selection is best but you have to keep tabs on it because you might lose 
track on who's shooting at who. Grouping projectile units sometimes confuse 
the game and make a mess of controlling the units. The best way to keep 
control is to give commands to units individually and use the grouping 
option for mass commands like maneuvering without losing formation of 
ordering all units to stop.

A2.3 Terrain
When fighting on bridges, make sure you have more archers than the enemy. 
This works both attacker and defender. Use archers to push defenders back 
or weaken then so that your troops can easily engage them. 

Onagers cannot enter forests, so best to play in open terrain.

A2.4 Buildings
Keeping your population happy is the main priority. The Italian 
peninsula and Greek peninsula has one of the highest income so cash 
should not be a problem. Aim for early basic archers and heavy infantry 
with the basic cavalry equites. In the early game the equites can 
outflank the Gauls. Precipes are dependable. The Romans are the best 
designed faction for total domination in the game as they have the Arena 
and Hippodrome to help keep happiness in check. 

A3.0 Advanced Strategies
A3.1 Targets
My target for Julii is to make money and more money. For that you will 
need to secure the Italian peninsula and Greece. Use your alliances 
with the other Roman factions for trade and for them to protect the 

Head straight for the cities of Northern Italy and advance to Massila 
in the West. Defend Massila. Massila also has bridges which are ideal 
for defensive play with archers and onagers at the back of your troops. 
Then aim to secure the Western coast of the Greek peninsula at Appolonia, 
Salona, Thermon. 

Appolonia ans Salona are loyal cities which are easy to keep happy and 
therefore don't need a large army presence, which can go on to grab 
Thermon. Your second expeditionary force should quickly land in Sicily 
and capture Lilybeaum and/or Syracuse before the Scipii. You do not 
need onagers here, just plenty of precipes and hastati and wait the 
siege out. 

In the early game, your units do not perform well against solid walled 
cities. Once you have all these cities, spread out in 3 directions up 
to France, the rest of Greece and Carthage. Using this strategy, you 
enlarge in a circle which keeps your unhappiness from distance to 
capital manageable. This also weakens the other Roman factions so that 
by the time they turn on you, they will be easy meat. 

Remember that all the Roman factions will turn on you. It is best if 
you turn on them first before the Senate demand the suicide of your 
leader every few turns. That means keep reserve onagers and troops 
in one of your main cities. Capture the Italian peninsula ASAP and 
then it'll be easy to defend. If you have a city in Sicily, quickly 
grab the rest. They are usually poorly defended by the Scipii. No 
need to rush on Rome as they are the least dangerous of the Romans. 
The Brutii and Scipii can mass units very fast. I normally defend 
from the Brutii at Patavium while the Scipii will try to land in 

**version 1.2 game**

My aim for Julii is to make plenty of money and suppress the ambitions 
of the other roman faction. The other Roman faction AI are more 
aggressive and they will capture cities faster. So, the Scipii and 
Brutii grow very fast as they attack during sieges. Therefore you must 
be faster than them. As usual, I ignore the Senate missions unless it 
befits my overall strategy. 

	(My rationale to avoid invading France and Gaul first is 
	because they are poorer low tech provinces. It's slow progress 
	through forests and not economically viable. That's why I 
	always aim for Greece and Sicily against the senate orders. I 
	also avoid meeting the aggressive Britons early by keeping 
	the Gauls in France.)

My first aim was to capture Segesta ASAP and then quickly capture 
Patavium and Medialonum from the Gauls. This is a little tricky as I 
was preparing an army to capture Lilybeaum at the same time. So I 
had to hire mercenaries. I refrain from training units in my two main 
roman cities as I want them to grow faster to get tech. So I did  
enslaving all the way. My most precious units was the lone archer unit 
which I protected all the way as it's the only unit giving you the 
slight advantage in missile fire when sieging towns. (The lone archer 
unit never dies and lasted till the Marius changes with a gold 

After capturing northern Italy and Lilybeaum, the Brutii was expanding 
quickly through the Greece. I had to stop them and hastily sent a small 
army with lots of mercenaries to get a foothold in Greece. I quickly 
captured Corinth and Larissa. The Brutii attacked the siege at Athens 
before my siege engines were ready. 

While invading Greece, my army in Lilybeaum was preparing to invade 
Carthage and the initial northern Italy army was boarded into a ship 
heading to Masilla. Masilla is vital to the plan. The northern Italy 
army was weak with a few hastatis but had 2 velites and 1 archer and 
remnants of the triarii. The plan was to quickly capture Masilla while 
it wasn't heavily garrisoned and then fill it up with peasants. 
Captured Masilla in 2 turns (needed rams) and sent as many troops as 
available (while keeping the population happy with a large enough 
garrison) to defend at the bridge north of the town. As long as I held 
the bridge, the gaulish threat is extinguished. Once my forces were 
more secure, I then moved this army to the second bridge northwest of 
Masilla and again defended there. Had 5 big battles which I won. This 
effectively castrated the Gauls. They take too long to recover and 
drain all their resources making all their settlements never able to 
grow above 6k population (by the time I removed the Gauls from France, 
there were still 3 cities not expended over 2k population). Holding the 
bridges near Massila also prevent me from warring the Spainish, Germans 
and British, while using only a weak army. 

From Lilybeaum I captured Carthage before the Scipii. The Scipii made 
a big blunder by getting the Numidians to become their protectorate 
whereby halting all Scipii expansion. The Scipii had only Messana, 
Capua, Syracuse, Thapsus and Caralis. Carthage is the more 
strategically important city compared to Thapsus as you will see later. 

In Greece, my army grew stronger as the greek cities are better 
developed providing my first onager at Larissa. I held Larissa, Rhodes, 
Corinth, Sparta and Kydonia while keeping my alliance with Thrace. 

In Italy my cities were training up an army with onagers to capture 

Thrace broke the alliance and I quickly captured Byzantium, 
Thessalonica and Tylis while the Brutii captured Bylazora. 

By now I was preparing to defeat the other Romans. I placed an army on 
a bridge to the northwest of Bylazora cutting off Brutii route back to 
Italy. I prepared 2 armies in Greece to capture the poorly defended 
Athens and Thermon to make a path up to Apppolonia, Salona and 
Segestica. Bylazora is less important as it can be easily cut off and 
be captured at leisure. 

In north Africa, I placed an army on the bridge southwest of Carthage 
to hold off the large Scipii armies in Africa. I also made sure I 
controlled the seas around Siciliy. 

In Italy, I had 2 armies prepared with onagers to sweep onto Rome, 
one from the north and the other from the east. In France, I added 
Lugdunum and Narbo Martius and then pulled the main army back to 
invade Caralis. 

Now, the fight for Rome... 

My north of Rome army attacked a small SPQR army forcing it to 
withdraw next to Rome, to the east. My east army then attacked 
this same small army to force a battle outside of the city killing 
off almost all the city defenders and leaving Rome empty for the 
north army to capture. Rome captured in same move. 

I won 6 big battles at the bridge near Carthage against Scipii 
armies eqiupped with onagers, ballistas and scorpions. I also won 
8 big battles at the bridge northwest of Bylazora against hordes 
of Brutii armies equipped with similar artillery, making my 
general a legendary defender and legendary commader and earning 
the title the Great. The Brutii were unable to reinforce their 
capital as I stopped them near Bylazora and at Patavium. 

I leisurely destroyed the other Roman factions while avoiding 
conflict with the Spanish and Egyptians and stayed away from
Asia Minor as I depend on them for trade. The Germans are weak 
and did not threaten from the north as I avoid warring them. I 
could win at 50 provinces... but chose to let Rome fall to rebels 
to continue capturing the rest of the map.

A3.2 Sieges
Attacking in sieges you need onagers; 3 is ok, 4 is nice, 5 ideal 
against big walls and 6 overkill. If wooden walls, you don't need to 
build any other siege engines. Against stone walls, build either siege 
towers or sap points. Use the onagers to destroy wall defences like 
towers and gatehouses before you advance to minimise losses. Another 
way is to capture towers with infantry. Fire bombing the defenders 
is only practical when they have low wooden walls. For this, you need 
to line up your onagers to face the street where the enemy will mass, 
straight ahead to maximise the spread. No point if they can run 
sideways as your onager shots seem to spread in a more longitudinal 

Archers auxilla are great to give the finishing blow. They are great 
against enemies cowering behind wooden walls. Don't waste too many of 
their arrows against defenders on the walls as your kill ratio is 

Take your time with and plan the sieges. Don't rush. You will notice 
the defenders are more powerful than usual behind walls and most 
powerful around their flag. Once you break the walls, chase the 
enemy away from the walls, march towards their centre and use your 
infantry to block the road. Use your archers to finish off the units 
around the flag first followed by the cavalry. Minimal losses. 

Defending from sieges you will need archers and some heavy infantry 
to block roads. Cavalry is optional if you wanna run down their 
retreating soldiers. Archer auxilla are the best. Sally out to 
attack ASAP. Let them all stand on the wall and shoot the enemy until 
you run out of ammo. Then quit battle and repeat process in same 
turn until the enemy retreats. Do not send any troops out of the 
walls. This is a very good way for archers to gain experience 

If you don't have archers and you are outnumbered, which is usually 
the case in the early game, use the arrow towers to do the job for you. 
The computer AI will chase your troops round the walls if you send 
them out. So, just place infantry units at all the gates and send one 
out at a time and see the enemy chase after them and get shot down by 
the arrow towers. Do this until time runs out and repeat in same turn 
until your forces are almost equal which by then the computer AI won't 
send the troops chasing after you. But with your troops in full 
strength, send them out from a side gate and arrange them like in 
usual attacking in open plains. Of course your units have to be of 
reasonable quality. You can't expect peasants to take out barbarian 
warbands on equal numbers. Precipes in early game is adequate, even 
against phalanxes if you can maneuver your troops to outflank them.

**version 1.2 changes
- the AI is more eager to attack during sieges. My preferred strategy 
when defending sieges is to let the enemy have the wall and 
concentrate my defences around the city center. I always place my 
units to hit from at least 2 directions at choke points. For example, 
place your units at 3 sides of a crossroads and let the enemy engage 

- the AI is cleverer when I sally forth. They don't stand around to 
get killed by my wall defences. Nevertheless, I still sally forth and 
win. The key here is to have at least 3 cavalry, 3 archers and some 
dependable infantry. I place all but 1 archer on the wall. As soon as 
the battle start, I observe for enemy movements. If they move to one 
side, I rush my cavalry out and charge at stragglers. Sometimes I win 
the sally forth all from the first charge. If the enemy is not broken, 
I pull the cavalry back and line up the infantry outside. I then place 
the other archers as close on the side of the wall facing the enemy. 
I get the archer not on the wall to come out and skirmish the enemy 
to draw them near. Everytime they send one unit to chase the archers, 
I charge with the cavalry. Even when the enemy charge all out and 
overwhelm the infantry, the archers on the wall will make short work 
of them. 

- when attacking in a siege, the last enemy troop in the town center 
will not sit still as you pepper projectiles at it. In fact it will 
charge at the projectile unit. Heck, this makes it even easier. I 
place infantries at the front and archers behind. After the up to 2 
arrow barrages, I order a ceasefire and let the enemy charge into my 
infantry while cavalry charge from behind. This will make the unit 
rout and lessen your losses. 

A3.3 Battle Commands
Make sure you keep your frontline troops near the onagers if you are 
using fire projectiles. Fire arrows can make elephants amok but won't 
kill them. Onagers can kill elephants and I always like to look out 
for burnt elephants in battle. Use cavalry to kill retreating 

Outflank all phalanxes with cavalry. Let chariots run at your 
infantry and hit them from the sides or behind with cavalry. Be wary 
that chariots can easily kill your cavalry if faced head on.

Against Egyptians you must not be overwhelemed by the size and speed 
of their army. Axemen are trouble so you have to trim them down with 
arrows and onagers. Axemen will break from flank attacks. Pharoah's 
Bowmen are a pain but again is no big deal once you dispatch their 
infantry. Do not send your cavalry on a solo mission to attack them 
as they may win the fight and rout your cavalry. The chariots are 
irritating as they can cut down cavalry easily but to counter, use 
your infantry to get them into a protracted fight and they will fall 
like flies. What the AI usually do is send the chariots to the flanks 
to pepper arrows on my troops. I counter that by sending boulders at 
them without fire and you'll spare the lives of your cavalry and 
infantry from their charges. 

Against phalanxes, most of them do not have long range archers. So, 
use up all arrows and fire boulders, then get close and throw spears 
at them. Do not engage head on but just keep your troops close facing 
them while you try to get some infantry to their flanks. Legionary 
cohorts can hold against pikemen for a short while and you have to 
take this time to sweep from their flanks. A single heavy cavalry 
charge from behind usually break them straight away and repeat this 
on every phalanx. 

The formation I normally use for all Roman factions is:
-------	------- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------
|H Inf|	|H Inf| |H Inf| |H Inf| |H Inf| |H INf| |H INf| |H Inf|
-------	------- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------
	               ----- ----- ----- 
 --------- ---------   |Ona| |Ona| |Ona|   --------- ---------
 |  Arc  | |  Arc  |   ----- ----- -----   |  Arc  | |  Arc  |
 --------- ---------	     -----	   --------- ---------
------- -------	             |Gen| 		------- -------
|  H  | |  H  |		     |   |		|  H  | |  H  |
| Cal | | Cal |		     -----		| Cal | | Cal |
------- -------					------- -------
H Inf = Heavy Infantry
Ona = Onager
Arc = Archer Auxilla
Gen = General
H Cal = Heavy Cavalry

*Note: putting onager closely behind your front line gives you extra 
range and you won't burn your own troops. 

Once in position, the Heavy Cavalries will spread out to the sides, 
either facing forwards slightly behind the archer rear line, or 
faced 45 degrees angle away from the front again slightly behind 
the archer rear line in anticipation of the enemy attempt for my 


B. Brutii
B1.0 Author's note
Brutii is one of the easiest factions to play. You start off rich. What 
more do you need? In the height of my power, Terentum was making a 
profit of 9000 cash per turn while Croton made 8000 with these 2 cities 
being huge where they actually pay most of my military wages as well 
(wages are spread out to all cities with higher population cities paying 
a larger share). The other rich cities and Mesanna, Lilybeaum, Syracuse, 
Antioch, Sparta, Athens, Corinth, Sidon. I managed to capture ALL 
settlements with the Brutii thanks to their economic superiority and the 
Roman ability to use races and games (did this by capturing Rome and 
then abandoning it to the rebels once I hold 48 cities, and then capture 
everything else with Rome last).

B2.0 Basic Strategies
Pease see Julii

B3.0 Advanced strategies
B3.1 Targets
Aim for Northern Italy first before the Julii. The computer AI takes time 
with the sieges but for yourself capture the city of North Italy from the 
Gauls with 2 turns each. Use 3 battering rams standard. Use precipes and 
hastati to throw spears through the gaps. Rush in with precipes followed 
by the general units to make a breach and from there slowly ride up to 
the town centre. Next target is the island of Sicily to block the Scipii. 
Once you have Sicily, aim for Greece and expand similarly as the Julii 
strategy. And remember the Romans will turn against you as well.

B3.2 Sieges
Please see Julii

B3.3 Battle commands
Please see Julii


C. Carthage
C1.0 Author's note
Carthage is a challenging faction to play. Your cities are far apart 
which makes it a pain to reinforce them. Corduba is more troublesome than 
it is worth but I keep it out of pride more than anything else. Carthage 
and Thapsus are rich. My gripe with Carthage is that the population grows 
too fast from extra harvest and gives me a headache to keep the population 
happy. Therefore my best units tend to be trained in Thapsus as I don't 
have to rush build happiness buildings all the time. 

I tried to capture all settlements but I got bored at 75 provinces as it's 
very very difficult to keep the population happy. Corduba, Dimidi and the 
Egyptian cities are a nightmare. 

C2.0 Basic Strategies
C2.1 Troops
Their early troops are bad. Iberian infantry are easy to control but are 
weak, so are the round shield cavalry. Don't even bother mentioning 
peltasts. The aim is to play by numbers early on and rally around your 
elephant unit in Sicily. Aim to train up elephants early with some 
reasonable infantry. Libyan infantry is ok. Their best is the Sacred 
Band pikemen which are dependable and powerful in defence. Their cavalry 
is not great until you get the Sacred Band Cavalry. Their archers are 
useless in later stages due to their short range. You can offset this 
by recruiting Cretan archers. 

My usual combo for the expeditionary force is 4-6 onagers, 2 war 
elepants and above, 4 heavy cavalry, 2 archers and the rest pikemen. 

*version 1.5 game 
- I can't train up archers! So, I ended up short on the projectile side 
and needed to use war/armoured elephants to provide arrows. I don't see 
how you can get archers on the beasts and not on the ground!

C2.2 Commands
Commanding pikemen is a skill. Beginners will have difficulties with this 
because in phalanx mode, they move very slowly and the pikemen are slow 
to react to attacks from a different direction. This greatly reduce their 
usefulness to relieve weaker parts of your line. Plus you have to keep 
pikemen in a nice line to make them effective. 

The key is to practice pikemen movements switching between standard mode 
and phalanx mode. Also learn to form solid lines of at least 4 ranks deep. 
As long as there are enemies coming at you, do not break the formation. 
Take multiple steps to move the phalanx into the position you want. 

Elephants are easy to control. Only drawback is them running amok with 
fire. Avoid fire arrows but do not fear archers as arrows can't seem to 
kill any elephants. 

C2.3 Terrain
Elepants on bridges is not easy. They can push your other units off the 
bridge. Keep them behind at the start as you don't want them to come 
under fire arrows too soon. Once you decide to rush across the bridge, 
always send the elephants alone first followed by cavalry. 

Trees disrupt phalanx line and chariot mobility, best to keep on open 

C2.4 Buildings
Aim for early archer build as you will be defending early in the game. 
Transport the archers across the Mediterranean to defend Caralis and 
Lilybeaum. Lilybeaum can defend itself early with the elephant sallying 
out of the city from the side gate. Then aim for early elephant build.

C3.0 Advanced Strategies
C3.1 Tragets
Firstly... DEFEND. Don't lose Caralis or Lilybeaum. Caralis is good 
to distract some of the Romans, usually Julii and Scipii. Hold it by 
using the strategy of using your arrow towers to kill the enemy. This 
works very well early in the game. Make sure you build town walls 
early at Caralis, but not stone walls unless you can train archers 
which is much higher up the tech tree. You need ships to transport 
reinforcements. I had to send my lone elephant unit to Caralis to 
break a large siege and then back to Sicily to break a large Scipii 
army. Send elephants from North Africa. 

If you manage to send an elephant early to Caralis, then you can 
easily defend it. The first target is to secure is Sicily (that's 
why you must not lose Lilybeaum). Forget North Africa as the distance 
required to travel will not make it worth the effort. Plus the 
settlements are not loyal. From Sicily aim straight to capture 
all Italy. Use the elephants to defend Carthage and Thapsus. From 
Italy, the world is your oyster...

...or so you thought. Fighting the barbarian armies in the forests 
are some of the toughest batlles for this faction. 

**version 1.5 game**
I started the game on a more aggressive stance as sallying forth 
without cavalry will not work. Again, I decided early on I cannot 
lose Corduba, Lilybeaum and Caralis at the start as these 3 are 
vital cities to prevent the slow destruction of Carthage. Losing 
Corduba will make you lose your foothold in Spain. Losing Lilybeaum 
will result in a platform for the Romans to invade North Africa. 
Caralis' role is as a decoy. Losing Caralis will result in the 
Romans able to concentrate invading Sicily and subsequently Africa. 

Again their starting units are crappy and no match against the 
Romans who are the main enemy from the word go. The only infantry 
able to hold well enough against the Roman infantry is the Sacred 
Band. Peoni infantry can sometimes rout from a frontal charge 
after taking pilas. The Libyan and Iberian infantry get killed 
easily by the precipes. Nevertheless, there is hope against the 
Romans with the long shield cavalry and the elephants. Oh, did I 
mention there are on archers? Projectiles are provided by the 

From the start, I had to go into military build in all the front 
line cities. This is because of the multiple frontlines at Corduba, 
Carthage, Caralis and Lilybeaum. Thankfully, you can have good 
income from the start and can delay economic build for a bit until 
defences are ready. Carthage and Thapsus are designated as unit 
training cities with Carthage providing cavalry while Thapsus 
providing infantry. I didn't even build roads at Carthage for 
quite a while as the military is of greater priority to ship them 
to Sicily. 

Okay, from the start the army under Hanno in Sicily has elephants 
and this particular army needs to kill the Scipii army in Sicily 
first. Just hang close to Messana and they will come. After I 
killed this army, I sieged Messana and captured it on the same 
turn as I used the elephants as rams to take down walls. This is 
to prevent delays as Scipii reinforcements can be tough and I 
don't have time to hang around while the Greeks plot something. 
This time the Greeks refused to ally with me from the start and 
I never trusted them anyway. My key units are the elephants and 
Balearic slingers. The sole elephant unit and infantry support 
with mercs manage to defeat the Greek army on Sicily and then I 
laid siege to Syracuse ad this time I waited it out as my units 
can't face the pikes in narrow city streets. Thankfully they 
still mostly on the level of militia hoplites which fall easily 
to cavalry. 

Control of the sea around Sicily is not necessary but preferable. 
This is because as long as you can avoid getting attacked by the 
enemy ships by ending turns in ports, you can easily move troops 
about. The only problem would be in getting troops to Caralis. 
Therefore I stacked up a fleet specifically for Caralis transport 
while around Sicily I manage to avoid enemy ships. 

Once Sicily is secure then it's time for the countless Roman 
invasion of Sicily by not only the Scipii but the Brutii and 
Julii. Caralis is always under threat from the start but I managed 
to get some Balearic slingers there to give me projectile advantage 
for when I sally forth. In Spain, I ally with the Spanish and they 
didn't bother me much. Nevertheless, I hired loads of Balearic 
Slingers from there and also some Spanish mercs as my infantry 
are no match for the Spanish infantry. 

From Sicily to Italy is easy as I had War elephants by then. Still 
no onagers but I can easily defeat Roman units with elephants and 
Balearic slingers with Libyan infantry and long shield cavalry 
support. I managed to kill off the Romans with the Julii only 
able to capture Segesta. All their units are sent to Sicily and 
Caralis from the start and thus prevented their expansion. 

The next pain is from the Greeks whose armoured hoplites are tough 
to beat even with Sacred Bands. By then I had onagers and always 
try to attack rather than defend against the Greeks. That way their 
hoplites will line up in a line for my onagers to burn before the 
melee. The Spanish are easy to defeat at Corduba. Due to them 
delaying their attack to later, I had onagers in Corduba and never 
upgraded the walls from wooden walls which resulted in sallying 
forths and burning them with onagers. Same as the Gauls and Britons
when I defended at Massila. Had up to 6 onagers defending a city 
at one time. The Numidians are annoying but easily beaten back 
with the use of cavalries and phalanx when I sally forth. My 
attention was pulled instead to Greece. 

After Greece is captured, I finally set out from Carthage my first 
African expeditionary force and defeated the Numidians. From 
Corduba, I train up loads of onagers and sent out an army with 4 
onagers and loads of Balearic slingers and Spanish mercs to 
capture Spain. The Egyptians managed to capture Lepcis Magna from 
the Numidians and I managed to march into Egypt with the aid of 
armoured elephants and Sacred Bands. The Egyptians suck in 
cavalry. I ended the game when I reach 50 provinces as I was bored 
with the Carthage limited units and was eager to play Seleucids 
again (needed to complete one non-Roman faction to enable all 
playable faction as I don't change game codes). 

C3.2 Sieges
As I said above, use the arrow tower trick for early defending. This 
does not work if you have stone walls... so try to refrain from 
building stone walls. The differnce in attacking is that you have 
elephants which can steamroll into the center of the town easily. 
Just make sure you follow up with infantry and cavalry. 

C3.3 Battle commands
In battles my tactics are based around the elephants as line breakers. 
On the attack, advance all units together with elephants slightly 
behind. Set all your infantry in standard mode. Once your front 
lines are under enemy archer fire, run your elephants from both 
sides into their lines followed by one infantry unit each as follow 
up. The elephants are meant to break the line, with your infantry 
mopping up the rest. Do not let your elephants linger. Run through 
the line and then turn around and run along the flank to the other 
side using both elephant units wrecking havoc all along the enemy 
line while your infantry should be facing up to their lines. Once 
the enemy lines are broken use your infantry to charge at their 

Keep your cavalry in the flanks and use them to break resistent 
infantry but more importantly, their role is to take out enemy 
cavalry first. Also be wary of War elepants and Armoured elephants' 
archers. They do tend to shoot at your own troops. Once your troops 
mingle with the enemy, disable fire at will. 

Most of the Carthagian infantry are pansies and tend to break 
after they get soften by enemy archers. If you control elephants 
well, your elephants take the brunt of archer fire and spare your 
infantry. Just get the elephants moving all the time so that the 
arrows miss and they don't go amok. I have not experienced getting 
attacked by the fiery pigs. The AI just don't use them when it 
could make a difference. I end up killing loads of pigs after they 

Phalanx control required. It's not that you don't know what to do 
with the phalanxes, but rather how to make it happen that 's the 
problem with using phalanxes. Practice needed. 


D. Seleucids

D1.0 Author's note
Seleucids is one of my favourites. It's challenging from the word 
go. The egyptians are the biggest threat. Pontus just irritates. 
The lands around Antioch take quite a distance to get to so it's 
offensively slow. Nevertheless their saving grace are their vast 
variety of units like no other. The combination for success is many. 
That's why I like this faction. Some of the best high tech units 

D2.0 Basic strategies
D2.1 Troops
The early troops are BAD. The mid game units are one of the best. 
Elephants, scythe chariots, cataphracts and extra long pike 
infantry. With the longer pikes, you can defeat almost all other 
pikemen. Scythe chariots are medium tanks breaking infantry lines 
easily. They also have extra hit points and are difficult to kill. 
Cataphracts are heavy tanks breaking lines and killing them as well. 
Elephants are like super-tanks! You can even use elephants to rush 
straight into phalanxes but that is not advisable as they are 
costly to replace. 

Their projectile units are much to be desired though but you can 
always make this up with Cretan Archers. 

The weakness of a phalanx army is mobility and maneuverbility. Any 
change in formation in battle takes a long time and will leave you 

My typical troop line up is 4 onagers, 2 archers, 1 elephants with 
2 scythe chariots or three elephants, 4 heavy cavalry and the rest 
phalanx pikemen or silver shield pikemen. 

D2.2 Commands
Please see Carthage on phalanx and elephant commands.

Chariots are not easy to use. Ordering them to attack just one unit
is bad as they tend to linger around that unit making them easy prey. 
The way to use them is to run them right through the enemy and then 
turn up to 90 degrees at a time and run through the next and the next 
non-stop. Just with 2 scythe chariots you can make all the enemy 
infantry line break and run. The chariots are bad at close combat as 
they are not precision killers. This makes them useless for killing 
retreating troops. Phalanx and elephant use are explained in Carthage 
strategies. Also note that the scythe chariot tend to disrupt your 
own lines and therefore should be used for away from the rest of your 

D2.3 Terrain
Scythe chariots are bad on bridges. They tend to fall off bridges 

Trees disrupt phalanx line and chariot mobility, best to keep on open 

D2.4 Buildings
Aim for early elephants. Money is a problem as troop maintainance is 
costly. Fear not as Antioch is one of the richest cities. 

D3.0 Advanced Strategies
D3.1 Targets
Start off needing to buy time and build up your economy. Capture all 
nearby rebel provinces, make alliances everywhere. Build up stone walls 
and train up archers to stand on them. The Egyptians will come no 
matter what. Defend all the way against them first and once you have 
onagers then only can you take the fight to them. Sally out and shoot 
them all before they start training Pharoah Archers and by then you 
should have War elephants and Scythe Chariots that will kill them easy. 

You will need to attack during sieges. This is because they have large 
marauding armies but their cities tend to be poorly defended. You will 
need to take each city quickly using Onagers. If you try to wait out a 
siege, don't be surprised to find yourself getting attacked more than 
once. Another quick way to gain the city is to siege it and hope for 
them to attack you and during that battle you must aim to kill off all 
the reinforcements from the city with your cavalry so that you gain 
the city without fighting a siege. The key point is that every delay 
only makes the Egyptians stronger. You need speed on the offensive. 

Once you capture all the Egyptian cities, then you can aim for Pontus 
and then Greece. 

Against Romans is easy with your superb mid to late game units. 

**version 1.5 game**
This is the most fun campaign yet! Never time to rest and 
always getting me planning. Very challenging compared to version 
1.0. The old trick of defending with sallying forth don't work 
any more and I had to come out with a better sallying forth strat. 

Anyway, I start with 3000 denarii and many factions allied with 
me including Egypt and Parthia. I was making like 10,000 per turn 
with all the trade routes until the Parthians and Egyptians 
attacked one after another. The units available to me are mostly 
militia hoplites. I had some elephants but not enough to deal 
with threats from 2 fronts. The Parthians has a stack with 
cataphracts and horse archers and this is the one dangerous stack 
which must be dealt with early on and I had to use elephants and 
generals to kill this stack and then captured Susa. 

The Egyptians sieged Antioch a few times only to be beaten by 
sallying forth with elephants, militia hoplites and cavalries. 
Again the Egyptians suck in cavalry. As long as they don't have 
loads of generals or chariot archers, then they are easily beaten. 
Their heavy chariots are just lame as they don't know how to use 
them and charge into the pikes. I relaxed a bit after I got Levy 
pikemen because they don't rout as easily as militia hoplites. 

The Armenians of all factions sieged Hattra instead of kicking 
the Parthians in the north. They came with their starting best 
units (cappadocian cavalry) but I managed to defend the siege 
in Hattra with loads of militia hoplites and 1 general by 
defending at the town center. No point defending behind the 
wooden walls as they had my gates open with a spy and have 9 
rams. After the Armenians, Pontus sieged Hattra which was 
beaten back as well. My main army was making its way south 
after capturing Sidon and Jurusalem. My army that captured 
Susa was moving north for Arsakia (had to disable Parthia 
fast before they get Persian cavalry and cataphracts). 
Thankfully the Armenian and Pontic infantry are crappy and I 
manage to create a third army of militia and levy hoplites 
to attack them in the open rather than wait in a city, but 
only did this after the powerful Armenian and Pontic starting 
cavalries were defeated at Hattra. 

The Egyptians are easy to beat using Levy and Phalanx Pikemen. 
I didn't even have onagers yet until I could train them in 
Memphis. I always attack during siege for the Egyptians as the 
pikes are just so good at killing Egyptian units and I needed 
the cash from massacres since all my neighbours declared war 
on me (the Egyptians, Pontus and Greeks demanded I became their 
protectorates and oh, demanded I give back their cities as a 
side clause as well). 

My first army (with basic elephants) went from Antioch to Sidon, 
Jurusalem, Alexandria (which was under rebel control as they 
rebelled from the sad Egyptian control), Memphis and Thebes. 
Then back up to Petra and Palmyra and lastly Bostra (took 
Bostra later than Palmyra because there was a plague in Bostra 
earlier). Then this army went to Salamis then back to Antioch 
for refitting with higher tech units. 

My Second army (no elephants here) was created in Seleusia and 
captured Susa, Arsakia, Phraaspa, Artaxarta, Kotais and then 
Sinope before refitting for battle with the Greeks. 

Sardis is the main Cretan Archer and Rhodian Slingers recruiter
and I managed to send a few to join the first army. The 
defensive garrison in Susa of Levy pikemen with 2 archers waited 
the siege out in Dumatha. A small detachment from Sardis 
captured Helicarnassus which was defended by 2 rebel units. I 
trained up an army made up of onagers, Scythe Chariots, Silver 
Shields and Cataphracts in Memphis and Thebes in preparation to 
fight my allies the Numidians which never happened because the 
Scipii got them first. This would be my strongest army. 

The second phase of the campaign started with the defeat of the 
Egyptians, Parthians, Armenians and Pontus, and consolidating 
the provinces in the southeast corner. I call it the second 
phase because now I needed better tech to fight against the 
Greek Armoured Hoplites and post-Marius Roman units. I needed 
all expeditionary armies to be refitted and crappy infantry 
units like militia hoplites and levy pikemen to be disbanded. 
Greek cavalry will be put into support role and the cataphracts 
elevated to main cavalry. All expeditionary armies will need a 
terror unit either elephants or scythe chariots (the scythe 
chariots actually make a better choice as they are as effective 
as the elephants and can be retrained in almost all cities). 
By this time of the campaign, I had the most provinces, but 
the most powerful armies was the Greeks which have defeated the 
Macedons and held off the Romans in Greece. The Scipii is the 
next most powerful with loads of stacks in Africa. In military
sense I was weaker as I depended on lower tech units earlier on 
and I was only able to support 2 main stacks (1 in Asia Minor
and another in Egypt) plus 2 support armies (made up of mostly  
Levy Pikemen) in Asia Minor. 

Nevertheless, I captured Pergamum from the Greeks after their 
big stack got killed while sieging Sardis leaving Pergamum 
weak enough for the Sardis units to capture using Levy Pikemen. 
Nicomedia was next with my support army that captured Ancyra 
earlier. My refitted first army sailed from Antioch to capture 
Rhodes. I attacked a roaming full stack silver chevron 
pre-Marian Scipii army that was within my Egyptian borders 
signalling the war with Rome. 

The Greeks and the Romans quickly strike back. The Greeks 
landed a total of 6 stacks around Nicomedia (got my first 
famous battle site of the campaign outside Nicomedia attacking 
2 stacks of Greek armies). I then lost nicomedia to the greeks 
who waited out the siege (the first settlement I lost in this 
campaign after all the tense defence against Egypt and Parthia 
as I only had a few Levy Pikemen and merc hoplites defending 
and would die from the attack anyway). But my first army from 
Rhodes came with a vengeance and killed 6 Greek stacks and 3 
and a half Thracian stacks that dared land in Asia Minor, all 
in the vicinity of Nicomedia which I promptly recaptured 
burning the town with onager fires. The reason why they can 
easily land in Asia Minor is because my navy is made up of 
6 triremes from Antioch which eventually got boosted to 
10 ships (cash was a problem) and defended the Bosphorus Strait 
preventing further Greek and Thracian landings. 

The real fun only begins once I set foot on the main continent 
and fighting the Scipii from Egypt westwards. I captured 
Byzantium easily as they only had wooden walls. Pergamum 
provided me with Silver Shields (trust the Greeks to upgrade 
barracks). Then it was Thessalonica which let me train up 
better units again. I had 2 famous battle sites outside 
Thessalonica and another to the western mountains towards 
Appolonia against the Brutii. At Thessalonica I faced large 
stacks of Brutii and Greeks and had to bide my time and chase 
them off. Luckily I had a 10 star ruler there beating and 
wearing them off. 

In Northern Africa my general gained stars killing Scipii units 
and earned a total of 8 famous battle sites (all under 1 
general who became the conqueror, then the mighty and lastly 
the attacker). It's so easy to kill Romans once you have onagers 
and Scythe Chariots. Urban cohorts can't face the chariots while 
praetorian cavalry fall to cataphracts. The Romans tend to go 
into testudo after a hit by onager fire but I love the sound of 
the fireball hitting the testudo as well. The Scipii just 
produce stacks and stacks of armies that I have to have a 
reinforcement army trailing my Egypt army to replenish troops. 

After wearing down the Greeks, I finally defeated them and I 
added Bylazora and Tylis from the Thracian leaving Campus Getae 
as a buffer from the Scythians. I captured Appolonia from the 
Brutii after quite a while of maneuvering due to the Brutii 
having up to 5 big stacks in the vicinity and had to wear them 
down bit by bit. 

Then from Greece to Italy by boat. My Africa army then went up 
to Carthage and into boats for Sicily. I trained up another 
stack in Carthage and Thapsus to capture the rest of Africa. 
From Italy, I had like 4 fully equipped expeditionary stacks 
which went to Spain and up to Britain and Germany capturing 
everything along the way. The last 2 factions I faced were 
Thrace (at their single buffer city), and Scythia that 
controlled the Northeast corner of the map. Finished the 
campaign with every settlement captured. I did not face any 
giant elepants but did kill amazon chariots. 

Playing the Seleucid with version 1.5 is very different from 
version 1.0 in the intensity and difficulty. In 1.0 I can cheaply 
bribe enemy armies and elephants are so much more powerful. This 
is the reason why I invested more into Scythe Chariots and 
truthfully they are awesome, performing even better than war 
elephants. My typical starting formation that easily beat Roman 
stacks in Africa is as follows:

1st Egypt Expeditionary Army:
8 silver shields, 2 cataphracts, 1 Greek cavalry, 2 Scythe 
Chariots, 2 archers, 1 general, 4 onagers.

|         Frontline of 8 silver shield pikemen         |
|                                                      |
---------------- |      4 Onagers     | ----------------
|    Archer    | |                    | |    Archer    |
---------------- ---------------------- ----------------
------------- -------------    ----------- -------------
|           | |   Greek   |    |         | |           |
|Cataphract | |  Cavalry  |    | General | |Cataphract |
|           | |           |    |         | |           |
------------- -------------    ----------- -------------
           ----------------- ----------------
           |               | |              |
           |    Scythe     | |    Scythe    |
           |   Chariots    | |   Chariots   |
           |               | |              |
           ----------------- ----------------

I normally use up my onager ammo first then I ungroup the onagers 
and send them far behind to wait. Then I advance the remaining 
towards the enemy and ungroup the cavalry and chariots as I get 
them into their attack positions. The chariots and cataphracts 
move out to the flanks when I prepare to go into melee or to take 
out enemy flankers. I ungroup the archers once they are into 
firing range. The Greek cavalry is used to mop up routing or near 
routing enemy units and avoid fighting organised units. The silver 
shields will get as close as possible to the enemy front running 
while under enemy archer, ballista and onager fire. I only go into 
phalanx mode when I am close or when the enemy charge at my 
troops. I disengage phalanx mode when not in immediate danger. 

My most memorable battle was attacking 2.5k Brutii units equipped 
with 2 onagers, 2 ballistas and about 15-20 cavalry units led by 
their 4 star faction leader  with my 1.5k troop army which had 1 
war elephant, 1 scythe chariot, 2 cretan archers 8 silver shields, 
2 cataphracts, 1 greek cavalry and a 8 star general at the 
mountains between Thessaolina and Appolonia. It wasn't overly 
massive but I enjoyed the battle as it was intense with lots of 
fast moving enemy cavalries and a few urban + praetorian cohorts, 
and I had to rush the same army to capture Appolonia before any 
more Brutii stack arrive. It was a breakthrough battle after 
waiting and wearing down up to 8 stacks of Brutii armies around 
Appolonia (I fought one battle and then pull back to recharge 
troops by sending relief from Thessalonica while sending some 
units back to retrain). I had to move my units a lot. I had to 
push my onagers forwards to take out the enemy onagers in their 
back lines. Then I target their rear units of archer auxilla 
with onager fires providing constant fire into their second 
lines while my cretan archers target their cavalry auxillas 
(up to like 8 of them) which harrassed my flanks. The silver 
shields absorbed 2 massive infantry charges and 2 flank charges. 
My elephants and scythe chariots worked overtime in the enemy 
lines supported by my cavalries while my general held back as 
reinforcement. The silver Shields charge out close to the end 
to wrap it up. My losses was half of my cavalry and scythe 
chariots (which went amok) while my war elephants only lost 
9 men and didn't go amok. The silver shields were mostly 
intact except for the flanks which lost 2/3 of their numbers. 
The same army then went to siege and capture Appolonia on 
the same turn. 

D3.2 Sieges
Get in there to kill Egyptians and Parthians ASAP. I wait a siege 
out when sieging Greeks. With Romans it depends on their units in 
the city as they can beat the phalanx in narrow street melee after 

D3.3 Battle commands
In battles my tactics are based around the elephants and scythe 
chariots as line breakers. Most of the Seleucid infantry are pansies 
and tend to break after they get soften by enemy archers. Get the 
elephants moving all the time so that the arrows miss and they don't 
go amok. I have not experienced getting attacked by the fiery pigs. 
The AI just don't train them in version 1.0. In version 1.5, the 
fiery pigs go amok instead when i launch fire arrows at them 
causing a drop in morale of their own troops. 

Practice Scythe chariot controls. The smaller the turns the better. 
Again use similar tactics with elephants to break lines by attacking 
from both flanks and run across to the other flank. 

Again need to command phalanx well.


E. Gaul

E1.0 Author's note
Gaul is rather easy to play. Their units are easy to pick up. Their 
infantry behave like how an infantry is suppossed to behave. Their 
cavalry is what a straight forward cavalry should be, powerful on the 
charge compared to the early cavalries of the Romans and Carthage. 
Their Forrester Warband is one of the best archer units you'll find. 
Only gripe is that it's the most expensive archer unit and it takes 
2 turns to train. 

Their later units are all dependable and easy to use. So, hit hard 
with large armies, had up to 5 expeditionary forces attacking all 
a once, 2 in Italy, 1 against Scythia, 1 into England and 1 into Spain. 

Somehow I like War Dogs. I enjoy seeing the dogs chasing after 
retreating enemy units. 

E2.0 Basic Strategies
E2.1 Troops
Easy to learn and use. Basic units are weak and later units are 
better. Forrester Warband is a must have. My whole strategy 
depends on them. Noble cavalry is great too. They take out most 
cavalries. Chosen Swordmen are alright in itself. The biggest 
problem with them is morale. If one unit rout, you can easily 
expect all to rout. 

Typical expeditionary force consists 5-6 cavalry, 4-5 forrester 
warbands, 1 war dog, 1 druid and the rest chosen swordmen. 

E2.2 Commands
Warcry. Practice the timing for a warcry so that your troops finish 
the warcry right before the enemy lands upon them. Druid chanting 
is interesting but I can't see for myself if it makes any difference. 
You will need to master the command of the forrester warband. 
They are the most prized units and difficult to replace due to the 
2 turn training time. 

E2.3 Terrain
The Gauls are easy to use in all terrains. 

E2.4 Buildings
Simple and straightforward, not many to build. Aim for archery 

E3.0 Advanced Strategies
E3.1 Targets
The first priority is to neutralise the Britons and German while 
attacking the Romans. It is vital that you do not lose the 2 cities 
in Northern Italy. These 2 cities are your richest and fastest 
growing. It is here that you will get to train forrester warband 
first. The rest of the towns are slow growing. 

Use Swordmen and Barbarian Cavalry to gain mastery in Northern 
France and Germany. Cross into England at earliest oppurtunity 
as the Britons can amass a large army quickly with their towns 
close to each other on the island. 

The Germans are poor and their attacks are sporadic. You will 
need to command your swordmen to outflank their phalanx spearmen. 
Cavalry is a big help. Attacking their towns without archers 
is slow going if they defend the flag with a spearmen unit in 
phalanx mode. You will have to atatck it from multiple directions. 

Before you kill off the Britons and Germans you should be able to 
take at least 1 Italian city of the Julii. You might want to take 
your own time taking the rest of the Romans as I prefer them to 
build up their cities first while my Forrester Warband picks up 
experience chevrons while sallying during sieges. Waiting also 
make the looting bigger as you can gain up to 30,000 from looting 
a huge city. 

Once you have taken over the Italian peninsula, Sicily, England 
and most of Germania, the game becomes routine for a win. You 
don't get much problem with happiness as your cities tend to be 
of low population in France, Spain and Germany. Lastly, you must 
not lose Numantia. If you do, the Spaniards will attack into 

Southern France earlier. I've defended Numantia with Forrester 
Warbands easily due to Spanish lack of archers. 

E3.2 Sieges
No onagers, therefore depend on battering rams for wooden walls 
and siege towers for stone walls. 

The swordmen are very good in fighting on walls. Once you sieze 
the wall, capture surrounding towers to use them against the 
enemy below, capture the gate and clearing a safe zone for the 
rest of your troops. Use Forrester Warbands to kill of remaining 
enemy in the centre of the city.

E3.3 Battle Commands
Command the Forrester Warbands and cavalry well and you will 
easily win. Use infantry to hold lines and charge en masse when 
the enemy is about to break. In cities, use swordmen to block 
the road and place the archers in rows behind making sure you 
space each unit well before you order them to fire. Can win 
the game even before meeting any elephants or Egyptians. 


F. Germans

F1.0 Author's note
Germans are fun to play. Even though they are said to depend 
on axemen, my strategy depends on their basic spear warband, 
which has the phalanx ability. All the other barbarian type 
factions like Britainia, Gauls, Spain, Dacia and Scythia are 
no match for the pikes. Use the spearmen well, as the chosen 
archers and the heavy cavalries will finish everything off. 

The biggest problem with the Germans is poor economy and growth 
rate. Their lands are poor and their towns grow so slow that 
you'll have trouble reaching a minor city to train chosen 
archers quickly. If you notice, the AI always cream off the 
Germans early, usually by the Britons due to these problems. 

F2.0 Basic Strategies
F2.1 Troops
Spear Warband is great considering how early and how cheaply 
you get them. I've matched them against Spartan Hoplites and 
they won (well, after I pepper the hoplites with arrows). They 
can go against cavalry and chariots. They defend towns easily 
just by holding up in roads and circling around the flag (units 
will not rout around the flag). Chosen Archer Warband is the 
second best archers I've come across as they are quick to train 
up. You can have a horde of them fast. Gothic cavalry is a 
tougher version of the noble cavalry. Chosen Axemen, Night 
Raiders and beserkers are strong too and can break most 
infantry. I love the banshee-like scream of the screechers. 
Lack of onagers. 

Typical expeditionary force consists 4-6 cavalry, 4-5 chosen 
archers, 2 night raiders or berserkers and the rest spear 
warbands. 1 spear warband (120 men) make a long defence line 
and only using 8 will make a line long enough to make is 
difficult for anyone to outflank you, risking dividing their 
army too far apart to reinforce each other.

F2.2 Commands
Must be adapt in phalanx control and warcry. 

F2.3 Terrain
Easy to use in all terrains.

F2.4 Buildings
Simple and straightforward, not many to build. Aim for 
archery range and income boosting buildings. Shrines giving 
troop experience gives an early boost.

F3.0 Advanced Strategies
F3.1 Targets
You have to start the game hungry for money. Make alliances 
everywhere and concentrate on money. You don't need to build 
town walls as your spear warband can defend towns easily. 
This also prevent prolonged sieges which will make you lose 
cash. Wish I could tear down all the other town walls. 

Train sparingly and don't expect to gain a large army fast 
as it will cost you to spend too much on maintainance and 
doesn't spare any for buildings. I typically make 1400 to 
2000 denarii per turn without tributes. I had to sell map 
information till all the way to Egypt to earn cash too. 

Quickly kick the Britons out of France and capture Alesia 
then head south capturing all the way to Massila and then 
turn west to Narbo Martius and finish off north from there. 
This way you don't need large armies. Only one large army 
will do and the rest just sit tight and defend in towns. 
After that capture England. 

Don't worry about the east as Dacia and Scythia are not as 
fast in attacking you as the Britons and Gauls. After 
capturing France, England and Ireland, aim for Italy. Your 
forces at Massila should hold off all Roman attacks with 
chosen archers as Massila is the fastest growing town. You 
can boost population growth with building Shrine to Freyja 
but I prefer to keep Shrine of Woden for +3 experience. My 
Screechers never die and don't need replenishing as they 
usually stand behind. 

Hold off the Spaniards at Narbo Martius and the Brutii from 
Greece at Patavium. Slowly conquer the Dacians and fend off 
the Thracians and Scythian ambition (they usually fight among 
themselves first). Falxmen, axemen, bastarnea infantry and 
thracian infantry fall like flies to spear warband and 
cavalry combo. Only later Scythian chosen archers and noble 
cavalry archers will cause problems. 

Once Italy and Sicily is yours, you're just doing the 
formalities to win the game. 

F3.2 Sieges
No Onagers. Similar to Gauls. Quickly send in the Spearmen to 
form a phalanx once you make a breach and watch infantry and 
cavalry all die to your pikes as they rush at you. Remember 
that the pikes only protect one direction. Then march 1 spear 
warband and block the road. Let the chosen archers finish 
everyone around the flag. 

F3.3 Battle Commands
Phalanx is the key. Work your units around them. Even against 
the greek phalanxes, you can get your cavalry and axemen 
around them. Make sure you don't commit your cavalry and axemen 
too early or else you will face difficulty in trying to get 
your spear warband to assist due to slow mobility in phalanx 
mode and poor defence and morale in standard mode. Can win the 
game even before meeting any elephants or Egyptians.

Most memorable battle with them killing off 2700+ Roman 
legionaires with my 1300 at the vicinity of Rome. Losses at 400 
plus. Big thanks to 8 spear warbands that never broke and 
tireless heavy cavalry. 


G. Egyptians

G1.0 Author's note
Egyptians are rather easy to play. They are very rich. Their 
income can reach 30,000 denarii profit per turn. I had 
450,000 denarii lying about and I can't spend it all. Their 
units are not the easiest to use though. Prepare to suffer 
heavy losses as their units do not have high defence points. 
Plus, I don't like using chariots as I think they are 

G2.0 Basic Strategies
G2.1 Troops
The Egyptian units are made up of chariots, onagers, infantry, 
archers and light cavalry. They are fast in open areas. The 
Pharoah's Bowmen and Pharoah's Guard are the best infantry to 
train up as they take a beating before they rout. Pharoah's 
Bowmen is one of the best archer unit as they can fight well 
in melee and don't rout easily.

Large early archer unit, 120 men which you need less and can 
have more space for other units. 

The chariots require some practice as they are clumsy to use 
in inexperienced hands. Chariots frighten infantry and can be 
relied on to rout enemy infantry, though they are not precision 
killers and need other units to mop up the retreating units.

Do not depend on Egyptian phalanx to hold the line for long. 
Only the Pharoah's Guard are trustworthy enough to stay put. 
The only heavy infantry is the desert axemen which just won't 
stay dead. Desert axemen fall like flies in battle but more 
than once I had full unit recovery. Can't explain the times 
when all 80 of the axemen fell from 'fighting till death', 
the casualties healed after the fight was 80. 

For a leading power their naval strength is much to be desired. 
Their strongest naval unit is a trireme.

My typical expeditionary army consists of 3 onagers, 4 cavalry
(nile cavalry, nubian cavalry or samartian mercenaries), 4 
Pharoah's Bowmen, 2 desert axemen and the rest phalanx, 
preferably Pharoah's Guards. 

Also note that the Egyptians have some of the costliest 
maintainance cost per unit if you wonder where all your denarii
have gone to. All the units are cheap to train though.  

G2.2 Commands
Plenty of opportunities to use phalanx. Chariots are powerful if 
you can control them easily. Be alert for the archers killing 
own men. 

If you have mastered barbarian mass charging style of play, you 
won't have a problem here with axemen. 

G2.3 Terrain
Most of the units have bonuses in fighting in desert terrain. 
A disadvantage for chariots in forests as they get confused 
between trees. 

Beware of sending your chariots rushing across narrow bridges as 
they can fall off themselves. Chariots also get confused between 

G2.4 Buildings
The Egyptian population grows very very fast and therefore 
unhappiness is always on a rise. You should aim to concentrate on 
money generating buildings while keeping the people happy. There 
is no hurry to get the best units as your mid-range units are good 
enough to win battles. Try to avoid building sanitation, upgrading 
farms or temples giving population growth bonus, and you will find 
that you can keep your unhappiness to a manageable level. Train 
loads cheap mass troops in every settlement to keep happiness in 
good shape. 

G3.0 Advanced Strategies
G3.1 Targets
You can start on the offensive from the start. You are given a small
standing army near the capital under the general Kiya. Get his army 
plus some from your nearby cities into your ships and send them all 
the way to Sidon and quickly attack Antioch. Avoid traning any units 
until you capture Antioch as you will earn roughly 3500 denarii per 
turn this way to develop cities. Once you have Antioch, quickly 
attack Tarsus and defend Tarsus with at least 2 Bowmen with 1 or 2 
spearmen. Tarsus will be your defence line against the Asia Minor. 

Then you can slowly capture surrounding areas. I bribed Siwa 
including the defending general and then I bribed Cyrene. Notice that 
I can bribe cities due to the high income. Send an attack force to 
capture the rest of the Seleucid land in the East. You will face 
their elephant corp but I easily took care of them with fire arrows 
from Bowmen. By now, the Parthians should begin to become 
irritating, so kick them out of their lands in the Middle-east and 
Asia Minor. Time will completely destroy them as their Northern lands 
are poor. 

Now is a good time to send a landing force to Rhodes and spread out 
from there. Attacking by land from Tarsus will take too long and it 
will bog you down as the important cities are closer to the vicinity 
of Rhodes. 

Beware of the powerful navies of the Greeks, Thrace and the Romans.
The triremes are no match for the qiunquireme. I made a quick 1 turn 
dash assault over the sea to targets like from Helicarnassus to 
Athens or Appolonia to Terantum or Carthage to Lilybeaum. Get the 
army waiting on the port and build a trireme in one turn. Once the 
trireme is ready, get the army to board and test it's mobility and 
make sure you can land. Sometimes other ships block the most direct 
path and you can hit land in one turn. If unable, disembark army back 
onto port and try next turn. The army must be on the port to maximise 
mobility. Once you capture the Greek cities then hopefully you can 
build quinquireme. 

Once the Numidians are dying to the Scipii, send an expeditionary 
force to the western border of Siwa and wait in a fort for the Scipii 
to attack. I had 3 famous battle sites in that area. Once you blunt 
their eastern ambition, send your army to capture westwards. 

For the end game, 4 armies in Greece and into Italy. Land route to 
Rome from Greece is too long and too many powerful cities in between. 
1 army from Siwa to Carthage to Lilybeaum. 

With the ridiculous amount of cash you earn, you can bribe everything 
that can be bribed, even a large Roman city with a general for 65,000 
denarii. Cheap. Not enough generals at the front? Bribe. Any enemy 
army crossing your boder and you don't have the troops to deal with 
it? Bribe. 

G3.2 Sieges
Use Onagers and siege towers. Beware that chariots don't do well in 
narrow streets. The light cavalry is only of limited help as they 
don't have the shock power of heavy cavalry when trying to break 
through defenders in narrow streets. Depend a lot on axemen and 
pharoah's guards. 

G3.3 Battle Commands
The key to Egyptian military prowess is number and mass frontal 
charges. The units are not designed for defence. The infantry can't 
hold a line long, even the best Pharoah's Guards. The cavalry is 
build for flank attacks and not direct charges. Chariots can rush 
in straight but gets stuck in the muddle. 

Once I get into position for the offence, I normally use up 
pharoah's bowmen or onagers fireballs to soften the enemy and then 
followed by a steady march of the phalanx line and quick flanking 
cavalry attacks. The enemy usually run away after the arrows and 
fireballs though. 

For defence, I use the oangers and arrows first and when their units 
are near, I stop all projectiles. I let my phalanx take a charge and 
then I charge the axemen from the flanks followed by cavalry deeper 
in their flanks. If any of my phalanx looks like breaking, I get the 
Pharoah's Bowmen into the fray just to hold on a bit longer for the 
cavalry to outflank them all. If I have a chariot, it'll be used 
to outflank the enemy. Once the enemy rout, I get ALL the units to 
chase them down. Even used onager men to help hold the center. I love 
to hear all my units shout 'charge' all at once. Desert Axemen make 
good shock troops but if they fail to rout the enemy, then they very 
likely will rout themselves as they can't hold on for long, so keep 
a close eye on them. Keep them in the flanks as they are nimble enough 
to outflank the enemy. 

Be wary of other factions with powerful infantry like falxmen, axemen,
and swordsmen as they beat your infantry easy. Use 'offensive 
fortication' when advancing in the forest regions. 

My most memorable battle is the siege of Rome, with very bloody melee 
in the streets using everything including onager men. 


H. Parthians

H1.0 Author's note:
If you think the Egyptians are rich, wait till you play the 
Parthians! With their silk roads, all your settlements make 
lots and LOTS of cash. I found playing this faction difficult 
initially until I got a better understanding of making money 
after playing the Brutii (good income from start till end), 
Germans (bad early income but steady income midgame onwards) 
and Egyptians (good early income but need to watch out for 

The drawback for the Parthians is that their units are not 
superb. All their unit types are superseded by their neighbours.
Their infantry is rubbish and cannot be depended to hold a line. 
Their cavalry are good but their best cataphracts will be 
superseded by faster moving heavy cavalry like praetorian 
cavalry, companion cavalry and macedonian cavalry. The best 
elephant unit you can have is only the War Elephant which is 
great but the seleucids and carthagians have armoured 
elephants. The archers are short ranged. As for camels, it's 
too high up in the tech tree for an average looking unit.

So, we have a strong mid-game army and very rich faction... 
is that all? No, sir... the trump to this faction is that you 
can have all the best units of this faction quite fast as
all you need is a large city (12,000 population) to get them. 
Plus they don't have sanitation which slows down population 
growth like barbarian standards. This means unhappiness is 
not so much of a problem later in the game. 

H2.0 Basic Strategies
H2.1 Troops
The units are discussed above. The strength of the Parthians 
is speedy cavalry. Persian cavalry is one of the most useful 
unit for this faction for both offence and defence. They are 
very useful to flank your enemies. Though their infantry is 
much to be desired, you will still need to train them to use 
siege engines.

My typical expeditionary force consists of: 4 onagers, 3 
hillmen, 2 archers or cretan archers, 6 persian cavalry or 
8 persian cavalries depending if I use any archers, 2 war 
elephants and 2 cataphracts. 

*version 1.5 game:
I tried out 100% cavalry stacks and it worked wonders. So far 
the most powerful early army I've ever handled as they can 
take out larger armies and assult cities. Don't be shy using 
horse archers for melee. 

H2.2 Commands
Having lots of cavalry archers is not the easiest to command.
I strongly recommend you disable the skirmish mode most of the 
time. Skirmish mode just makes them run about madly in evasive 
action when the enemy approaches. Which means your line of 
cavalry can be here one minute, gone the next. Skirmish mode 
is good only against a smaller army with slower units, which 
usually happen only early in the game. 

You must also keep track of the fire at will command so that 
you can avoid shooting into the backs of your charging 
cavalry. Yes, they do still fire when you order them to charge 
the enemy. 

Parthian units are best suited for mobile warfare. What does 
that mean? It means you keep on moving, harrassing your enemies 
and hit them at their weakest. The projetile cavalry are best 
suited for this. So where do the infantry come in? They don't. 
In mobile warfare you want fast moving units that can get in 
and out quickly. Infantry is not suited for this. There is also 
no need for orderly  battle lines like the other factions which 
rely on infantry as the lines of battle shift all the time. 

**version 1.5 game**
With more experience with horse archers thanks to the Briton 
campaign using light british chariots and also the experience 
of cavalry archers in Medieval 2: Total War, I've refined 
horse archer tactics. I leave units with skirmish modes now as 
I can better predict their behaviour. SKirmish mode is still 
not the brightest but if you don't mess with it, they should do 
fine. The biggest problem with skirmish mode on is that if a 
speedy unit is closing in with the horse archer, you can't 
change the direction of the horse archer so in due time, it 
would run out of map and get slaughtered. Now, I keep a closer 
eye on my horse archers and when a unit is showing signs of 
being chased by a speey unit, I quickly muster other horse 
archers nearby to kill that unit before it push my unit too 
far away. 

The other problem with skirmish mode on is that after you use 
the horse archer to charge at a target, the skirmish mode 
automatically gets disabled so afterwards when I want them to 
go back to harrassing tactics, I sometimes forget to re-activate 
the skirmish mode. This resulted in silly losses of horse 
archers getting mobbed by cheap infantry. So, make sure you 
check the skirmish status if you depend on it. 

Fire at will is still not the brightest in version 1.5. There's 
still plenty of friendly fire deaths. The problem is that when 
I order the horse archers to ceasefire of change projectile 
target, there is a lag in response. The fire icon also 
disappear after i order a ceasefire but the horse archer still 
fire arrows after that. This resulted in loads of troops 
getting shot by my own horse archers when they chase routing 
units. The other drawback with leaving fire at will on is that 
the horse archer will preferably target the nearest non-routing 
target. If you want to hit specific targets, either get the 
horse archer closer to it or manually select the target. Sounds 
easy? Not quite. Whenever the horse archer changes position 
either due to my command or their skirmish mode activating, 
they once again revert to the closest target or if the fire at 
will is disabled, they won't fire. 

H2.3 Terrain
The Parthians are easy to use in most terrains. The quick horse 
archers do not tire easily and can run for extended time. 
Cataphracts on the other hand can only do so few charges so 
save their stamina till you really need it and no pointlessly 
chasing routing units with them. 

H2.4 Buildings
They have silk road upgrades that will make you rich later on 
but for the early stages trade is of less importance as you 
don't get access to the Meditteranean. Farms are vital early 
on for growth because you don't have public health buildings 
to help out. Economy-wise, your first target should be Seleucia 
as it will boost your farm income. Make sure you build up loads 
of stables to spam horse archers and persian cavalry. Don't 
bother much with barracks as their infantry is just not worth 
the time. If you need infantry to push siege engine, hire mercs. 

H3.0 Advanced Strategies
H3.1 Targets
The starting period of this faction is one of the most 
challenging as your units are bad and you are spread out too 
far. So, like most factions that are spread out, you need to 
defend a lot from the start. With their good income, make sure 
you have diplomats near all your frontier cities to bribe the 
enemy armies. 

From the start aim for the closest rich weakly defended city... 
Seleucia. The Seleucids are spread too thinly at the start  
compared to the Armenians, so you should take advantage of this. 
Then it's time for defence. Be warned that war with the Seleucids 
can drag a long time while the Armenians will irritate you. 

So, after capturing Seleucia and Dumatha, I rushed the main army 
all the way back up to capture Phraaspa from the Armenians and 
head straight to kill them off. All this time I've been defending 
Arsakia with only 1 general unit and 1 slinger unit. The Seleucids 
and Egyptians will siege Seleucia a few times while the Egyptians 
will also siege Dumatha (which was the main reason to capture this 
town early to spread the Egyptian armies). Killed the Seleucid 
elephants with sheer stubborness, using up plenty of infantry 
and cavalry. Sad to see my cavalry dying by getting trampled by
falling elephants. Be prepared to lose up to two-thirds of your 
cavalry. Best thing is to End the battle as soon as you're able 
to avoid having to kill the elephants. 

Bribing the Armenian army and local rebels has double benefits 
because if they have the same units that you can train, you can 
bribe them to join your forces. This is also a cheaper way to get 
units and they don't take up your population which I try to get to 
large city ASAP for elephants. 

From Kotias, avoid war with Pontus and Scythia and rush your main 
army back down to capture Hattra, Antioch and Tarsus. From here on, 
simply invade the Egyptians up till Siwa to protect the Western 
front. The Egyptians are easy meat as their cities are usually 
very underdefended. Train up lots of Quinquireme for future naval 
supremacy plan. Take Salamis and then land drop into Rhodes or 
Helicarnassus. From here on, it's similar to Egyptian expansion 
with exception of another front from the north into the Scythian 

Your navies will rule the sea as well with Quinquireme builders 
at the safe harbours of Salamis, Sidon, Jurusalem, Tarsus and 
Alexandria. Antioch is the main elephant training city.

**version 1.5 game**
Since it's a second time playing them, I decided to try it 
differently. Version 1.5 also reduce my bribing options due to 
increased bribery cost. The other change I need to keep in mind is 
that elephants are easily killed in 1.5 compared to 1.0. 

So this time I decide 2 things before I started playing: 
1. to master mobile warfare
2. to start off very very aggressively

So from the word go, I get as many garrison out of Susa and 
Arsakia rushing head on towards Seleucia and Phraaspa. Phraaspa 
fell without much trouble as it didn't have walls. Seleucia I 
needed to build rams. With newer urban mobile warfare, I managed 
to capture Seleucia using mainly my horse archers. Meanwhile I 
transported the sent the horse archers from Campus Sakae by boat 
south as I was not ready to fight the Scythians. 

By turn 3, economy started to decline with trianing up peasant 
garrisons and more horse archers. Economy only improved once 
Seleucia was captured. 

From here, I then attacked Armenia as soon as I reached them even 
though I agreed to an alliance with them the turn before. A very 
short lived alliance. Their larger armies were no match to horse 
archers and I killed them quickly pasuing only to retrain horse 
archers at Artaxarta. In the south, the advance took a pause as the 
Seleucids started sending large stacks towards Seleucia. I needed 
more horse archers and took some time to train them. The horse 
archers from Campus Sakae I sent to Seleucia. 

As soon as Armenia was killed, I sent the army towards Sinope 
killing every Pontus army along the road there. Again, Pontus was 
no match for horse archers. I lost all my starting cataphracts to 
the damn Scythe Chariots but it didn't really matter as I hardly 
ever used them. By the time I captured Sinope, I also captured 
Hattra in the south. Seleucids still have large armies and to make 
matters worse, they became allied with Egypt. Egypt captured Dumatha 
and that signalled me to start training up more horse archers at 
Susa and Seleucia for eventual Egyptian invasion. The Egyptians were 
having trouble capturing Palmyra as they lost 2 attempts assaulting 
the town. That meant that they are not ready to go to war with me. 
But time was still running out as I had to quickly settle with 
Pontus and Seleucids before they get their better tech units. 

Around this time, my watch tower at the border of Campus Sakae 
showed me that Campus Alanni had only 3 unit garrison. So I rushed 
my army and quickly captured it. This brought on a large counter 
offensive by the Scythians and I won a decisive horse archer vs 
horse archer battle on the bridge outside Campus Alanni. 

From Sinope, I captured Mazaka and then Tarsus. That stack was 
then diverted back north to capture Ancyra, Nicomedia, Sardis, 
Helicarnassus. Army from Hattra captured Antioch easily as they 
haven't built up stone walls. After that the army from Antioch 
captured Damascus while I trained up another horse archer army 
from Tarsus and Antioch. 2 turns after capturing Damascus, Egypt 
declared war by sieging Antioch. Horse archer garrison won easily. 
Army from Damascus took Sidon and the new army from Antioch boarded 
1 bireme and captured Salamis. 

Egypt was surprisingly easy to beat. I was worried about their 
chariot archers but they were easily killed by horse archers, even 
in melee. I always struggled fighting Scythia in other campaigns 
even when I used top tech units and discovered that the Parthian 
mobile warfare is suited to deal with them like fight fire with 
fire. This is the first time I beat large stack of Scythia head on 
in the open plains without losing 80-90% of my troops. EVen though 
I lost 50% of my troops, it did not weaken my army and I did not 
need to retrain or wait for reinforcements as I simply hire more 
cavalry mercs from the region. My army that captured Campus 
Sarmatae consisted of half mercs. 

From here, it's smooth sailing as no other faction can face up to 
the horse archer flood. It's not so much as the campaign map (like 
geographical or economical considerations) but more of the battles 
(awesome battlefield advantage with horse archers) that will push 
you to victory. 

H3.2 Sieges
Considering that the Parthian units are poor defensively but strong 
offensively, breaking down gates and walls and let your elephants 
lead the charge is a better option than waiting for enemy 
reinforcements to relieve the siege. Elephants rule in the narrow 
streets. Most of the time the siege can be won with the elephants 
ahead followed by cataphracts and persian cavalry. 

Defending in the early game is eay with your fast cavalry archers. 
Lure the enemy towards your wall defences and run around your outer 
perimeter. The main aim is to kill off all the enemy archers first 
with repeated luring techniques. Once the don't have archers, you 
can send out your cavalry archers from the front gate and shoot at 
them and run when they come near. You will force the enemy to quit 
the siege.

*Version 1.5 game*
There are AI differences with 1.0 and 1.5 namely that the enemy 
units sieging your settlement will avoid coming close to your 
walls when you sally forth. Nevertheless, sally forth is still 
the better option when you use horse archers to break a siege. It 
all comes down to 'Mobile Warfare' (this is not an original term 
and I do not have a refernce for it) of using your units to defeat 
the enemy using your advantage of speed and mobility out in the 

As for attacking during siege, I have successfully implemented a 
kind of Mobile Warfare in the streets to make Parthia a killer 
when assaulting a city. It is usual for other factions to depend 
on reliable infantry to win cities during siege assaults but you 
can't really do this with the Parthian city trained units such as 
hillmen and desert spearmen because they are weak against other 
heavy infantry. 

Anyway, let me explain how I assualt the siege from the walls 
first. The tactics are different when assaulting a wooden walled 
or stoned walled city. This is because horse archers can safely 
fire over wooden walls effectively while they cannot do that with 
stone walls. This time round, I do not use any siege weapons and 
rely solely on rams and/or ladders. 

Wooden walls:
I start with a rectangular formation made up of 1 or more lines 
of horse archers, the width of it depends on the distance 
between 2 wall tower defences on the section of wall 
incorporating the town gate. I use any foot soldier (including 
peasants) to push the rams and these are set behind the horse 
archers. When battle commence, I send the rectangle formation 
of horse archers towards the wall leaving a gap of about 2 rams' 
length between the horse archers and the walls. The width of the 
formation should prevent any deaths from the wall towers. The 
horse archers are left in fire at will and they can decimate 
most units hiding behind the walls. The units behind the walls 
will react by moving to avoid the arrows. I then took my time to 
send the rams up to the walls. Once they enemy stop sending 
units to be slaughtered by the arrows, phase 2 begins when the 
rams have created breaches in the walls. 

Phase 2 is lure and kill where with the original formation of 
horse archers outside the walls, I send in 1 horse archer unit 
to fire upon an enemy unit and then lure it towards the line 
waiting outside, often luring the unit to pass in front of the 
line (left to right or vice versa) rather than run towards the 
waiting horse archers. To maximise kills, I would disable fire 
at will of all units outside the walls and enable it only after 
the target is well within range of multiple horse archers so 
that the unit would not turn around too early. 

As you advance into the settlement, you can always set up new 
firing positions and repeat the lure tactic. 

Stone walls:
The trick with stone walls is to quickly create a breach at a 
position away from the starting position of their defensive 
units on the walls. This can easily be donw by sending the 
ladders far off to the flanks when the battle starts and 
capture the side gates. The AI does not react to your attempt 
to capture side gates. So once, you can open a gate section, 
capture nearby wall defences to create a safe path for your 
units. I then march my horse archers through the side gate. 
The AI's response when my horse archers get into the city is to 
pull back their units from the walls towards the city center.  

I use horse archers in skirmish mode in the streets. I would 
identify a good area to camp my horse archers, usually at 3 
sections of a crossroad leaving the sole section facing where 
the enemy troops are clear. Then I send in one horse archer 
unit (skirmish mode can be enabled or you can manually control 
the skirmish behaviour) and with the arrows, I lure the enemy 
to send units in response to the arrows. I would lure the 
enemy unit into the range of my other horse archers. Once the 
enemy unit formation breaks up as they try to turn back, it is 
then vulnerable for a charge into the rear by the initial horse 

Variations come depending on what units are sent first in 
response to the arrows. If it is another projectile unit, lure it 
far enough to leave it isolated and then charge into the rear as 
they turn back. If it is cavalry, let it follow the initial 
horse archer towards the crossroad and then send horse archers 
from multiple sides to attack it. General units can't survive 
this as they are isolated from the rest of their units.  

H3.3 Battle Commands
The strength of the Parthian army is speed and shock. Trying to 
play defensively is out of the question against a similar strength 
enemy. Always try to keep the battle in the open as short as 
possible. Therefore my battle strategies rely mainly on elephants 
and persian cavalries. 

I place my onagers in the center guard by hillmen or mercenary 
hoplites with archers at both sides. Then followed by 3 persian 
cavalry (or 4 if I don't use archers) and war elephants at both 
ends. 1 cataphracts each behind the war elephants. It is weak 
defensively all around except for the elephants in the flanks. 

Now, in almost all battles, place your units within onager range 
to the enemy before you start. Once battle begins, the onagers 
will rain fire. This will force the enemy army to quickly close 
in. Once they reduce the distance by two-thirds, move the elephants 
and cataphracts forwards in the flanks followed by the persian 
cavalries spreading out to the flanks. Once the elephants and 
cataphracts are in the middle of their column, stop ALL projectiles 
from ALL units and then charge the elephants into their flanks 
followed slightly later by the cataphracts. The main role of the 
cataphracts is to kill enemy heavy cavalry and general units. 
Once the enemy is disorganised, charge all the Persian Cavalry, 
infantry and archers from the front. 

If the enemy has missile cavalry, just let your elephants face 
them and exchange fire because without fire arrows, normal arrows 
can't seem to kill war elephants. Perfect for Scythian Noble 
Archers and Cavalry Auxilla.

In the rout, spare your cataphracts to charge into units which 
are regrouping while your Persian Cavalry mop everything up. 

Therefore most of the battles are fast and furious, one mis-time 
and your front will collapse with all your infantry running away. 
You can still win then as your cavalries can be redirected to hit 
the enemy from behind. Don't be shy to use the Pause button a lot 
to keep up with the battle. Last note: keep your elephants away 
from fire arrows at all cost!

My most memorable battle is the Greek relief of Rhodes. My units 
faced an uphill terrain with armoured hoplites rushing down with 
5 archer support behind them. My front broke and ran, 1 elephant 
went amok, half my cavalries routed but still won with repeated 
charges into the hoplites. 

Typical formation
 ----- ----- ----- ----- ------ ------ ------ ----- ----- ----- -----
 | P | | P | | P | | P | |Inf | |Inf | |Inf | | P | | P | | P | | P |
 |Cal| |Cal| |Cal| |Cal| ------ ------ ------ |Cal| |Cal| |Cal| |Cal|
 ----- ----- ----- ----- -------------------- ----- ----- ----- -----
 ----------		 |Ona||Ona||Ona||Ona|              ----------
 |Elephant|		 --------------------              |Elephant|
 ----------			-----		           ----------
 ------ 			|Gen|                  	       ------
 |Cata| 			|   |			       |Cata|
 |    |  			-----		       	       |    |
 ------ 						       ------

Inf = Infantry
P Cal = Persian Cavalry
Ona = Onager
Gen = General
Elephant = War Elephant
Cata = Cataphract

*Note the line can expand very wide which prevent enemy from 
outflanking but making the need to advance the elephants closer 
before you are fully ready to engage. 

Once I've moved into position, both Elephants move to the side 
along the same line as the Persian Cavalry with the Cataphracts 
behind them. In defensive mode, you can place the elephants in 
the wings before the fight. Another improvision is to substitute 
the 3 infantry with archers. It works just as well, but I got 
tired of always needing to replenish archers as they die much 
faster when charging the front than using infantry and they 
can't take any charge. 

*Version 1.5 game*
I decided to play all out mobile warfare and tried out large stacks 
made up of 100% cavalry. In the past I did not dare use more than 10 
units of horse archers in 1 stack due to problems with micromanagement. 
But with leaving units on skirmish mode and fire at will, it was much 
easier and I do not use the pause button much. All I needed to do was 
to move the horse archers to the desired location and I let them be. 

My tactic with mobile warfare is to start off all horse archers up 
front and then move them to surround the enemy from all sides, 
raining arrows. The computer controlled enemy have trouble dealing 
with mass skirmishing horse archers and they will often break 
formation only to regroup again making them totally ineffective in 
dealing with the horse archers. If they send light cavalry after my 
horse archers, I send a few horse archers to hit the light cavalry 
from multiple sides. This is how I dealt with the Scythians, using 
horse archers to charge from multiple sides to prevent them from 
running away. If I have infantry in the stack, the ai will send 
their troops marching towards my infantry which is something I 
quickly identified as bad for me as I can't contain them very well 
this way. So I decided to do away with any foot soldiers in the 
attack stack. 

And this led on to another strategy. Since Parthia start out in vast 
open lands where many enemy stacks can move about unmolested, I was 
faced with a problem of having to deal with these roaming enemy stacks 
in my newly captured territories before I can move on. So I came up 
with a new strategy of splitting the cavalry and infantry units into 
seperate armies. The cavalry would go around killing enemy troops and 
while the infantry headed for the next invasion target once the way 
ahead is clear. The enemy armies are not always in front and therefore 
sending the army of mixed cavalry and infantry would waste infantry 
travel time. Once the foreign armies are gone, the cavalry with better 
mobility gets to the targeted city first and siege it building up siege 
engines in preparation for the infantry to join in and assault together. 
If the infantry is too far back, I hire mercs instead to push the siege 

In all blitzes I do with other campaigns, I always use siege weapons 
to capture the city the same turn I siege without any siege engines. 
The main reason is that the blitzes are carried out using lesser armies 
than the enemy which is vulnerable to enemy reinforcements. The 
reinforcements depending on their size and unit type can easily defeat 
my blitzing armies so it was vital to get behind the city walls quickly. 
But what I discovered with Parthia is that horse archers can be devils 
in the open. They can easily beat up enemy reinforcements like the 
britons with their light british chariots do as I waited for siege 
engines to be built. This negated the need for siege weapons in the 
blitz plans. The enemy can't pin down my horse archers. 

As for formation using 100% horse archers, there really isn't any. I 
just place them in front and as soon as the battle starts, either 
defending or attacking, I move them out to surround the enemy. Nothing 
to it. 

Another note of great importance is that mobile warfare does not just 
mean running around harrassing the enemy with projectiles. You will 
need to secure victory by switching from projectile to melee. This is 
the final important phase of mobile warfare. The basic horse archers 
are great in melee against numerically and morale-ly depleted enemy 
units. Persian cavalry are better for melee but are slower and lack 
the stamina of horse archers. I would recommend a mix of both units. 
Do not be afraid of using horse archers in melee. They are 
overpowered against infantry just like every cavalry unit in this 

Extra notes:
With the implementation of mobile warfare, I didn't bother with 
cataphracts as they can't fit in the principles of mobile warfare and 
will become the focus of enemy advance. They can be used though as 
extra bodyguards for your general unit though I would rather use 
faster cavalry units like samartian mercs and barbarian cavalry due
to the need to charge, disengage and regroup often or better still 
use elephants as the bodyguard role. 

War Elephants are great supporting units for mobile warfare because 
they provide the line breaking charge when faced against much more 
numerous enemy troops and better armoured enemy units. So charge in 
the elephants and then follow up with horse archers charging in. 
This is great when you have run out of ammo. 


I. Scipii
I1.0 Author's Note:
The Scipii is an exciting faction to play, but preferably played 
after the Julii or Brutii. It's slightly more complex than the 
other Roman factions because the neighbours are tougher and a long 
drawn war in Northern Africa can bankrupt beginners. You will have 
to plan your expansion more wisely, taking into account the economic 
prize and also the logistics involved. The Scipii has the best naval 
unit in the game, the Decere. It is costly, 3 turns to build and 
also redundant because using corvus quinquiremes or quinquiremes is 
enough to control the seas. Like all Roman factions, you have a good 
stable economy but I feel that Brutii makes more money with the 
richer cities of Tarentum, Croton and their Greek expansions. 

The key for a Scipii win is naval power and relentless expansion. 

I2.0 Basic Strategies
I2.1 Troops
Like other Roman units, the Scipii has strong reliable units. At 
the start of the game, your cities of Messana and Capua is all 
that you got and seperated by sea. Your initial army is bad, with 
the strongest non general unit the archer. Don't look down at the 
archer as it is extremely powerful in the very early game. If you 
use the single archer unit well, you can easily defeat early Greek 
and Carthage armies. 

Best naval units in the game. 

My usual expeditionary force is made up of 4 onagers, 4 heavy 
cavalry, 1 general unit, 4 archer auxilla and the rest is made up 
of heavy infantry to hold the line. 

I2.2 Commands
Please see Julii

I2.3 Terrain
Please see Julii

I2.4 Buildings
Please see Julii 

Another bonus is that all Pantheons give weapon and armour bonus. 
Therefore every city has potential to train gold weapon and 
armoured units. 

I3.0 Advanced Strategies
H3.1 Targets
Fron the start the Scipii army is divided at Sicily and the Italian 
peninsula. My first move is to send all available troops to Sicily 
and capture Syracuse. I just waited out the siege as it was suicidal 
to try and send hastati over the stone wall and facing the Greek 
phalanxes in narrow streets. The Julii by then would distract the 
Carthagians at Caralis and by the time I broke the wooden walls of 
Lilybeaum, I didn't face a single elephant unit. 

From Sicily, I faced a big decision of either to continue into North 
Africa (where the Senate was pushing for) or quickly rush to get a 
foothold in Northern Italy and the Greek cities (for riches) in the 
east, knowing full well that I need to prevent the other Roman 
factions from becoming too strong. So what I did was pull my army 
from Sicily and captured Athens (the Brutii has expanded down from 
Salona, Appolonia into Thermon and was sieging Larissa). While this 
was going on, I sent a general with 2 hashati up to northern Italy 
recruting Samnite mercenaries, barbarian cavalry mercenaries and 
barbarian mercenaries and quickly captured Patavium knowing from 
experience that this is one of the most important cities to capture 
for mastery of the whole Italian peninsula. From there that 
mercenary based army captured all the way to Massila which is the 
key city into Italy from the West. This practically made me master 
of Italy though the other Roman factions have not realised this 

From Athens, I watch with amusement the repeated failed sieges of the 
Brutii at Larissa. So I bribed a large Brutii army (don't have time 
to train up that many. I love to bribe Brutii armies as they have high 
experience) and came along 1000 strong to siege Larissa only to face 
2000 strong Macedon (800 from the city and 1200 from the army trying 
to relief the city) which I defeated with 6 equites, 1 archer, 2 
velites, 1 precipes and the rest hastati. Needless to say the battle 
was bloody but with one fell swoop I broke the strength of the 
powerful Macedon army which never recovered. After that it's 
Thessalonica. I added Corinth after the Senate promised to give me 
priority to get posts, followed by Sparta which is the vital guardian 
to the Eastern side of the Mediterranian. 

I let Carthage live a bit longer against the Senate's 'urgings' as 
from previous experience I know that once you set foot into Carthage, 
it's like a bottomless pit as it will cost you a fortune to develop 
Carthage and Thapsus just to keep them happy. So when I got down to 
capture Carthage, with the foolish Carthagian army stuck at Lepcis 
Magna (which is another deep pit), it was already a huge city and 
the Carthagians have developed it so much provided me with my first 
onagers and legionary cavalries (before Marius reforms). Still, 
Carthage proved to be a deep pit as it took me years of traning up 
peasants to keep it fully happy before I moved on to Cirta and Tingi.

Carthage aside, the main western army moved from Massila (now with 
proper Roman troops and less of mercenaries) to Narbo Martius, then 
to Lugdunum, upwards to Alesia, then to the west to Lemonun and 
finally stop at Condate Redonum. This avoids war with the British and 
kill off the Gauls in France. Capturing Massila and Narbo Martius 
earlier forced the Julii to capture Osca.

All this goes on while I trained up my corvus quinquireme and 
quinquireme fleet. Had 3 full fleets. Almost brankrupt me paying 
fleet maintaince when I went to war with the other Roman factions.

Going to war ASAP with the Romans is the course I took as I want to 
secure my center. Having rivals in the center is like the Sword of 
Damocles. By the time I went to war with the other Roman factions, 
I had 27 provinces (added a few in Asia Minor) while the Brutii had 
6, Julii had 5 and SPQR their usual 1. It also happens that when I 
warred the Romans, the Egyptians and Brittania broke their alliances 
with me and sieged my cities at the same turn. I defended at my key 
cities of Patavium (Brutii army trying to get back to Tarentum), 
Narbo Martius (Julii from Osca), Sardis (Egyptian attacks; though 
in truth I would have preferred to hold at Ancyra or at Tarsus which 
are better placed strategically) and Alesia with Condate Redonum 
(from the British). Struck Croton, Thermon and Segesta with 3 
armies specially called back from the fronts for surprise attacks, 
leaving one army in Asia Minor to defend as I took away the Onagers.

From here on, you can play any way you want. Simple Roman might. 

I3.2 Sieges
Please see Julii

I3.3 Battle Commands
If you have mastered most of the other Roman factions' battle 
style, stick to your tried and tested ways. After all, the 
combinations are vast and their units are powerful in all sense. 


J. Britons
J1.0 Author's Note
The Britons are very very easy to play... IF you have some 
charioting skills. If you are crap with chariots, then you 
won't enjoy playing britons. 3 reasons Britons are so easy 
to play:
1. secure rear
2. great income
3. chariots rule over all her neighbours 

With the Britons I have never expended my empire so fast 
in so many directions. Maybe because Creative Assembly is 
an English company. 

J2.0 Basic Strategies
J2.1 Troops
You don't get much choices for troops. There's light to 
heavy infantry, slingers, wardogs and chariots. You also 
get other unique units from temples such as druids, head 
hurlers, and woad warriors. In truth, all you need are 
chosen swordmen, light chariots, and wardogs. woad warriors 
have high attack but die easily from low defences and they 
are superseeded by chosen swordmen which takes shorter 
time to train. 

Swordmen are decent and take easily beat all early units, 
including hastati but will be at 50-50 against precipes. 

J2.2 Commands
I disabled skirmish modes for the light chariots and I had 
to manually control their skirmishes. This is because you 
can't control the direction of the skirmish mode which 

Light chariots have great charge and attack points. Against 
non-phalanx units, I simply order them to charge straight 
into the unit as there are more space for the chariots to 
run around. I try to only charge from the sides or rear plus, 
the infantry unit have to be preferably in a situation where 
they just stopped from a running march as this is when their 
unit is not as tightly packed. Light chariots own cavalry, 
even general units. Charging with 2 light chariots, with one 
into flanks or rear will easily beat the general unit. I 
usually use the chariots as assassination units in battles.

J2.3 Terrain
I strongly advise fighting on wide open spaces for the 
chariots to run around. Deserts and open plains are great. 
Bridges or river crossings on the other hand, need a 
rethink. I had better results with setting up my lines far 
back from the crossing/bridge and let the chariots skirmish 
their units that attempted to cross, than to actually place 
my lines close to the bridge. This is because the infantry 
though said to be strong are no match to general units, pila, 
and any other shock troops. 

Forests can be tricky as it can slow down your chariots 
greatly allowing enemy light cavalry to catch up and charge 
into your rear. 

J2.4 Buildings
There's not many buildings to build so you save a lot of 
money on buildings. The temple of brigantia is great if 
you want to boost population up with their public health 
bonus, but i prefer to build shrine of brittania at all 
coastal cities as the provide more cash from their extra 
tradeable goods. I strongly recommend getting blacksmith 
early for chariots and then aim for the infantry building. 
Stables are a bonus for wardogs. Don't bother building 
archery range unless you like to use slingers. My original 
single slinger unit is still around even after capturing 
54 cities as it seldom see direct combat due to the short 

J3.0 Advanced Strategies
J3.1 Targets
From the start you have a large available army if you take 
all available units from Deva, Eburacum and Londinum (you 
can even just leave your faction leader alone as garrison 
in Londinum). You also have a strong stack around 

My first aim was to beat the Gauls and quickly occupy 
Northern Italy before the Romans get too strong. I 
intended to stay at peace with the Germans as long as 
possible because the Germans would take a long time before 
it could become a threat but the Gauls had Patavium which 
would give them higher tech much sooner. So, I allied with 
the Germans. 

So, straight off, I combined the troops around Samarobriva 
with the troops from Londinum plus every merc i can hire 
and I captured Alesia attacking during siege. Lugdunum was 
still rebel controlled was next, followed by Massila. The 
troops from the Deva and Eburacum plus mercs from England 
went west to capture all the Gaul cities southwards till 
Narbo Martius. Gaul resistance was weak all the way. It 
was the stack that captured Massila that captured Narbo 
Martius then pulled back to Massila to head towards 
Mediolanum and Patavium, capturing both without pause. 
By the time I attack Northern Italy the Gauls had better 
swordmen while I was mainly spear warband but it didn't 
matter much as I had chariots. 

The second army then went into Spain from Narbo Martius. 
Spain proved no resistance at Osca and Carthago Nova 
though their scutarii was proving a problem for the 
spear warband, so the advance slowed down at Carthago 
Nova where I hired Spanish mercs and Balearic slingers. 
Next was Numantia and the remaining Spanish cities. 

I enslave all captured settlements in early game.

All this time, I only train troops at Alesia and Londinum 
while leaving governors at Alesia, Londinum and Samarobriva 
to get all 3 cities to tech up. I will definitely need at 
least swordmen and more chariots to fight the germans. 

The Germans broke the alliance by sieging Alesia but I was 
prepared by sallying forth with light chariots which made 
easy work of the german spearmen. With more swordmen from 
Londinum, chariots from Samarobriva and wardogs from Alesia, 
a third stack went on into German lands taking town after 
town, though I had to wait out the siege many times when 
they have a big stack inside as phalanx will just beat my 
infantry in the streets. In the open field, I easily beat 
the Germans with skirmishing light chariots tactics. 

A fourth stack from Londinum with my first few chosen 
swordmen added with light chariots from Deva and 
Eburacum captured Tara. Then it landed back near Samarobriva 
and went northeastwards to capture more German cities. 
Overall the Germans were easy meat.

By around turn 15, I have beaten the Gauls (which only had 
1 town left at Salona), captured all Spain except Corduba, 
captured about half of the German towns, and was ready to 
attack the Romans. I waited a bit to replace spear warbands 
with swordmen trained at Patavium and Mediolanum. Spear 
Warband don't stand much of a chance against precipes. None 
of the Julii cities hit 12k pop yet and Ariminium was below 

Once I had like 6 swordmen, I went straight to attack the 
large Julii stack and after that sieged Arretium. I waited 
the siege out but the Julii came with reinforcements, I won 
the battle, killed all reinforcements from Arretium and 
captured the city. I sent a smaller stack which made up of 
more swordmen from Patavium and Mediolanum to capture 
Ariminium. The army from Arretium then quickly captured 
Segesta and then pulled back to attack Rome. The large 
SPQR stack had 5 generals in it and it attacked me while I 
was on a river crossing. I played my troops far back and 
harass their crossing units with light chariots. Then the 
light chariots assassinated their 8 star ruler. After that, 
a massive charge of swordmen and 4 chosen swordmen (trained 
at Arretium) crushed the remaining troops. I sieged Rome 
and waited the siege out as even chosen swordmen can't do 
much against general units in narrow streets. The second 
stack in Italy then went to capture Capua. It was a tough 
battle for Capua as the Scipii attacked twice in a turn 
with full 2 stacks. After capturing Capua and Rome, I then 
went on for Tarentum and Croton. Again, I waited the siege 
out. Around this time, I captured Corduba upon seeing that 
they filled the city up (20 units) with crappy iberian 
infantry and peltasts which were no match against swordmen. 
Dacia then declared war by sieging Patavium which I quickly 
beat them by sallying forth with 3 light chariots. 

I was training top tech units at Arretium, Ariminium and 
Patavium soon enough and a new 14 unit stack went on to 
capture Segestica, Salona and then into Greece. The troops 
at southern Italy them went into Greece and Sicily by 
boats (by then I rule the seas with two 6 large boat stacks 
each on either side of the Italian peninsula. I also sent 
the force that captured Corduba across to Africa while a 
minor stack captured Palma. The Brutii had only 2 cities 
in the east at Appolonia and Thessalonica. Most of the 
Greek cities were owned by Scipii. Scipii completely owned 
Sicily. The Numidians held Thapsus and Carthage while 
Carthage only held Lepcis Magna. 

I reach 50 settlements after killing the Germans, Dacia, 
capturing from Tingi eastwards to Carthage, capturing 
whole of Sicily and all of Greece. The Romans never reached 
the Marius Reforms, nor do they have any large cities. 

I'm trying to capture all 103 provinces to see if I can 
manage a barbarian faction controlling so many cities 
without much unhappiness problems. 

J3.2 Sieges
The Light Chariots are powerful units when I sally forth 
repelling loads of invaders, including Dacia, Thrace, 
Gauls, Spain, Romans and Scythia. 

The Britons are rather crap in attacking during siege. 
Even the Chosen Swordmen can't stand a head on charge by 
any general unit, routing quickly. The best way to kill 
the general units is to hit it from two sides in the 
narrow streets but I do not get that chance 100% of the 
time. I would wait out the siege if the defenders have 
decent units as the chariots are not great in the 
streets. Wardogs are cool if you get them to chase 
routing units back into the city. The ai often sally forth 
on the last turn on the siege and often I just win the 
battle with wardogs killing every unit behind the walls 
making me not having to break the gate or walls. 

J3.3 Battle Commands
It's chariots or bust. I recommend you manually control 
the skirmish tactics. 

It can get frustrating as the game controls are not very 
instinctive, so I end up pausing just to click on the 
correct chariot unit as it can become one messed up mess. 

Most memorable battle was the sally forth of Thermon 
where two 20 stack Scipii force combined and waited 
uphill. All my units routed (including my general), 
except the lone cretan archer unit on the wall, when I 
sent my chosen swordmen and swordmen charging uphill. I 
caused the romans to mass rout at first but their extra 
troops in the back then charged down and routed my 
troops. I managed to win the battle when I got my 3 
remaining light chariots and general out again and did 
skirmishing tactics to win. My 1100 troops left 360 
while I killed 2200 out of 2400 enemy troops. Tough win. 


6.0 General battle tips against specific factions
General difficulty rating based on my battle experiences:
A = bloody
B = challenging
C = occasional toughie
D = minnows

6A. Julli, Brutii, Scipii and SPQR
Rating B, due to having most experience fighting them compared 
to any other faction. You just learn to get used to them. 
The Roman factions have a well balanced army; reliable infantry, 
long range archers, strong cavalry and siege weapons. I find 
killing Romans among the most fun battles, and surprisingly much 
less bloody than expected. This is because even though they are 
great killers, their killing rate is slow, and by then, they are 
beginning to rout. Don't ever let them get into pilum position 
so charge your infantry at them head on. Always have cavalry in 
hand to outflank them. My favourite strat is to burn them all 
with onager because of their column formation. All I need to do 
is to aim the onager at the center and the spread of fire will 
do all the damage. 

6B. Carthage and Seleucids
Rating B.
Always have an archer unit in hand to shoot fire arrows to get 
rid of the elephants. Even a single volley may be all that you 
need. Fire arrows work as well against Scythe Chariots. Don't 
ever let them attack you in a siege as facing elephants in narrow 
streets is simply suicidal unless you have phalanx. Always sally 
forth. Heart thumping action against elephants. 

6C. Egyptian
Rating A, so many of the bloodiest battles ever. Facing them 
in the desert only makes thing worse as their units don't fatigue 
as fast. 
Try to avoid getting overwhelmed by their axemen. Keep cavalries 
handy at all times to hit their flanks. Archer fire is not very 
useful against charging axemen as they can move very fast. Get 
your archers to take out the pesky chariot archers which they 
always place in your flanks quite a distant away from their main 
group to prevent shooting into your own men. No point sending 
cavalry after the chariots. Concentrate first on the main attack 
group from the front. Once you dispatch the main part of the 
army, then you can turn your attention to the chariot archers. 
Pharoah Guards and Pharoah Bowmen usually regroup after routing, 
so beware when you send a small force to chase after them as they 
can bite back hard, even against your best units.  

6D. Gauls
Rating C. Tough in early game but with better units they 
become pushovers. 
Beware of their mass frontal charge. All you need to do is to 
keep holding the line during their initial charge. When they 
fail to break you, their low morale will make them break instead. 
But don't depend for that to happen without using some crafty 
cavalry work and using archers to back up your infantry. Get 
your cavalry to charge from their rear and then pull out to deal 
with the next one. You need to be very quick with this. Using 
reliable phalanx makes things so much easier. 

6E. Germania
Rating C.
Again, beware of charging axemen. Treat similar to Gauls. With 
their spearmen, use outflanking maneuvers. Generally easier to 
deal than the Gauls or British as spear warband have slow 
mobility. Their biggest weakness is their economy preventing 
them from reaching their full military potential. 

6F. Brittania
Rating C.
Strong infantry similar to Gauls. Only difference is chariots. 
Their chariots are a pain because they like to use it to charge. 
The chariots kill cavalry by the dozens. Try to get the chariots 
to fight a protracted fight with your infantry. Best way is to 
let the chariots charge at your phalanx. 

6E. Dacia
Rating B. 
The falxmen are a pain. I've lost many battles to charging 
falxmen. The rest of their units are so-so. So, try to kill 
off all falxmen first before dealing with the rest. Always 
suffer heavy losses against falxmen, even when using heavy 
infantry. Weak against phalanx. 

6F. Thrace
Rating B. Not a real power but very irritating. 
Again there's falxmen, this time supported by phalanx! A 
troublesome combination and more difficult than fighting Dacia. 
Use archers to lower phalanx morale and cavalry to dispatch 
falxmen from the flanks. Can turn into a bloody and desperate 
fight even with your highest tech units. Yup, the falxmen 
killed a few war elephants too. But easily beaten if you use 

6G. Macedon
Rating A because I tend to meet them early or not at all. 
Rating will likely drop if I use higher tech units. 
Never never never fight against the Macedon facing uphill. 
Their cavalry charge can break almost anything, even phalanx. 
Their cavalry is so fast that it's a headache to look out for 
them. But look out for them is what you must do. They always 
send their cavalries ahead and mass at your flanks. When their 
phalanx are in position, then they charge en masse. You must 
always pay extra attention to your own flanks against the 
Macedon. Lots of heartstopping action. Thank goodness they 
don't last very long in all the campaigns I've played. 
Everyone just love their lands. 

6H. Greek Cities
Rating B solely due to Armoured Phalanx which are tough to 
beat. Phalanx is a pain to kill. Armoured phalanx is almost 
immune against arrow fire from the front. Must always have 
cavalry, preferably heavy ones as are armoured phalanx are 
tough. The key is flank, rear and flank. 

6I. Parthians and Armenia
Rating C.
Both factions have weak infantry, short range archers and 
plenty of cavalry archers. The difficulty will be in pinning 
their cavalry into a melee. One easy way is to lure their 
cavalry by recalling any units you have used in a charge. By 
showing your backs, the cavalry archers tend to pursue your 
unit, making easy target for your own cavalry from the flank. 
Their cataphracts can break almost all infantry in a charge 
but they themselves fall easy to my heavy cavalry. I've never 
ever lost to them in battle in the campaigns, but they do 
reduce my troops dearly with skirmisher tactics. 

6J. Scythians
Rating A/B.
Once they have their max tech, the Scythians are one of the 
hardest faction to fight against. You just can't pin down 
their archers. Add long range Chosen Archers and it becomes 
a nightmare. I had to use onagers to kill off their cavalry 
archers while my infantry close in their infantry and my 
cavalry on their toes to protect my infantry from a flank 
charge. A real headache as the Scythians are simply too fast. 
Experts at skirmishing. One tactic they like to use is to rain 
arrows from 3 directions. Had one of the most desperate 
battles in the snow against them using a full army with 
preatorian cohorts and preatorian cavalry but still lost 
about 70% of my troops in a long fight. Just can't pin 
down their Scythian Noble Archers. Even though I won, it 
effectively crippled my invading army. 

6K. Spain
Rating D.
You think they are a pushovers? Well, maybe half right. Their 
infantry (Scutarii and Bull Warriors) are superb, just like 
the best Roman infantry. But they have weaknesses aplenty. So, 
don't engage their infantry head on. Otherwise very easy to 
beat them with cavalry, archers and onagers. 

6L. Numidia
Rating B, as they can often throw a few surprises. 
Beware when fighting them in the open desert. With their 
desert bonus, they are powerful on the charge, and they tend 
to charge en masse. Their infantry is quite alright too. Use 
forts on the advance and you'll do fine. Numidian cavalry is 
another irritating unit. 

6M. Pontus
Rating C. Easy. Rubbish infantry and short range archers. 
Potential to have strong cavalry armies. Almost similar to 
Armenians and less irritating than Parthain cavalry archers. 
Never loss to them in battles. 


7.0 Geographical considerations
I add this section to briefly explain about a few interesting 
places on the campaign map. 

7.1 Money pits
Having more settlements does not guarantee more income. What you 
need is rich cities. Almost all rich cities have a port. Yup, 
trade makes rich, not farm income. Rich cities have more products 
to export. The richest cities are located in Italy, Greece, 
western Asia Minor, Salamis, and at the coastal belt from Antioch 
southwards to Alexandria. These are the cities to aim for from 
the start to get a strong economic foothold.

7.2 Trouble spots
These are the cities which are difficult to hold due to 

The cities that grow very fast are the hardest to maintain the 
happiness level. Look for cities with extra grain harvests such 
as Alexandria, Memphis and Carthage. They are a pain to manage 
but they do give you tech very fast if you can afford to build 
them. These cities sometimes can drain your economy trying to 
develop them and also hold your army back for years to keep the 
people happy. I call these 'bottomless pits' and to only capture 
them when I have a good general (with high influence) and cash 
to spare to build up and train peasants so that my army can go 
on to attack other cities. One way around this problem to let 
the enemy develop them and then capture them later. It's always 
good to capture Alexandria with an intact Secret Police HQ. 

The other trouble spots are cities at the extremity of the map. 
These either tend to have a big cultural difference or just 
plain unhappiness from distance to capital. Capture these places 
last if you intend to at all. Or else, just let them be and you'll 
be surprised to find how less of a headache not holding them is. 
Also see logistic nightmare.

7.3 Strategic cities
Some cities are strategically placed to defend or to launch an 
offensive, while others can be a logistical nightmare to capture 
and defend.

Cities like Campus Scythii, Tarsus, Antioch, Jurusalem, Patavium, 
Narbo Martius, Osca, Massila and Siwa are good strategic locations 
to hold. They control the entry-way into regions on the map. When 
conquesting, always prepare your armies to capture all the way 
and only stop after controlling a strategic location. This way 
you can secure your conquest. Sending an inadequate army through 
the desert eastwards from Carthage to Siwa and then barely able 
to capture Alexandria will leave your standing armies at 
Alexandria and Siwa open to attacks. Better to hold at Siwa. To 
quickly capture the three main Egyptian cities, you need at least 
2 expeditionary force, one taking Thebes and Memphis while the 
other go for Alexandria and hold at Jurusalem. 

Spring-board cities are cities with the potential to capture a 
region. These cities develop fast and usually sit at the entrance 
to a region. A good example is Patavium into Italy or Greece, 
Antioch into Egyptian lands or northwards to Asia Minor, and 
Sicily into North Africa or Italy. Capturing these cities prevent 
the enemy from using it against your empire and also set your 
armies up for the eventual invasion. Other spring-boards are cities 
perfectly set to start a naval invasion like Appolonia to Tarentum, 
Athens to Helicarnassus or Byzantium to Nicomedia. 

Naval choke points are narrow places where ship need to pass such 
as the straits of Gibraltar, the narrow straits between Sicily and 
Italy, and the narrow straits into the Black Sea. Controlling 
cities near them ensures that your ships can fight, repair and run 
to when your odds are low. Another important aspect of naval 
location are cities situated at capes whereby ships need to pass 
the tip, such as Sparta and Tarentum. Again holding these cities 
are like having gate keepers.

7.4 Logistic nightmare
Cities at the extremes of the map are a logistical nightmare. 
There take a long time to get to from one city to the other. 
There is no short cut to capturing them but to slog on through 
the desert, forest or icy wastes. Attempting to capture these 
cities require lots of preparation, mainly making sure the region 
you're sending your army from is secure. So, don't try to destroy 
the Scythians from Italy before taking care of the Dacians. The 
best solution to this is to leave them alone. The harder for you 
to get at them, it's also as hard for them to get at you. 

Examples are the Saharan cities, Lepcis Magna, Armenian cities 
from Asia Minor the Scythian cities, Germanic forest cities and 
the Spanish cities. Also take note that these factions almost 
never seem to be able to escape from their geographical prisons 
and tend to be wiped out by others. The key is patience and 
proper preparation. 

7.5 Blind spots
Forests and mountanious regions are blind spots due to the fog of 
war. You may not know that an army is heading your way or get set 
upon by an ambush. These areas just add to the vagaries of war. 
Nevertheless, if you use scout units like spies or diplomats and 
place watchtowers well, you should be able to see through all 

In conclusion, pay careful attention to the geography of the map 
and you will reap the benefits. Planning for an invasion differs 
from region to region. Planning the mode of transport is a big 
factor in how fast you can capture a region and also to hit from 
where they are weakly defended. 


8.0 Economy
I've played this game for months before I finally got a better 
understanding of how it all works. There's 2 main ways of 
obtaining income from taxes; TRADE and NON-TRADE. Simple, eh? 
Well, I'm not going to give numbers here; I'm a world conqueror, 
not a damn mathemathician! I say let those who enjoy bread eat 
their bread, while I'll have the baker's daughter. ;) 

Well, I'll start with non-trade. The most basic way to make 
money in good old pre-Christ days was from farming. Each 
piece of land has it's own base farm tax. Upgrading the farms 
means more food is produced hence more to tax from. 

Then there's the mines. If your land is lucky enough to have 
something worth mining, well, lucky you. 

Now we get to the big money stuff... Trade. Yup, to be able to 
keep your legions going and political leverage, you need trade. 
It makes so much more cash than farming. Heck, you don't even 
need to upgrade farms at all in some instances i.e. the 

Most provinces has something to sell and creating trade routes 
(you see those little carts on the roads?) is most vital. 
Upgrade your markets, certain temples and trade routes for more 
more cash. So, protect your trade routes. Don't let rebels sit 
on your routes. Remove all port blockades. 

Now that you have your base income from taxes. Nevertheless, 
there are more modifiers involved before you get your total 
lump sum. 

Governors with management skills or tax income bonuses add to 

So, make sure you plan well and look up the income information 
in each city to get a good understanding of it. 


9.0 Questions
This is my first question from an e-mail. The gist of it is:
	'I read in the Gamefaqs guide that you post some strats 
	of the Roman factions and factions like Macedon. Can you 
	tell me how to play factions like Macedon?'
My gist of my answer: 
	Dude, you got the wrong guy. I don't do Macedon in my 
	guide. Dunno how and maybe never will, though I would 
	love to play Macedon with their cavalry. 

Next question!

Elephants don't stand up to pikes!
Answer: yes, they can against low tech phalanx in version 1.0. 
but in version 1.5, not a chance if you go head on. my advise 
has always been to use elephants to charge into the sides 
irregardless of phalanx or not. 

City management is a pain!
Answer: it still is but you got to learn it the hard way. 
There is no one formula that works in all cities. You got to 
manage each city individually to optimise income and happiness 
at the same time. If you are bored with it, how'd you expect 
to run a large empire? The best way to learn is by learning 
the basics, read up the settlement details and working around 
these concepts. 


10.0. Credits & Disclaimer

Thank myself for all the months spent playing this wonderful 
life absorbing game. I even dream about it in my sleep. Yes, 
thank you very much to the makers and producers of this game 
which totally disrupt my social life. I love love love this 

Thanks to GameFAQs for all the other games where I'm too 
lazy to figure things out myself. 

Thanks to Sun Tzu who brought us that strategies that can be 
formally learned. 

No lifeforms were hurt or killed during this production. 

Recommended reading: Romance of the Three Kingdoms. 

By the way, I had Conan the Conqueror once. Managed to get 
a few the Greats due to selecting specific generals to 
boost (you need some intrinsic command bonus traits and 
then work up to legendary commander to achieve it). 

This guide omits the Greeks. Played the Greeks and did not 
bother to complete it and can't be bothered to describe it 
as it was the most tedious/boring faction to play. I can't 
recall most of the stuff as I took out so much time in 
between the campaign. I was rich but... BORED. Killed the 
Macedons and Thracian easily. Killed the Romans after 
battles of atrition due to their high numbers and manage 
to kill them off before they get the Marius Reforms. Would 
gladly play Seleucids and Parthia again as they are very 
fun to play. 

I am still refining my phalanx games and I must say that I 
am now more effective in using them in the campaigns after 
refining phalanx control while playing Rome Total War: 
Alexander. This made my replay of Carthage and Seleucids 
so much easier as I never liked phalanx to start with. 

This is an original work. In no way whatsoever have I picked 
up any contribution from anyone to post here, though I have 
picked up certain suggestions to improve my game, which I 
cannot particularly credit to anyone as they are not really 
'original' stratagies per se. I also cannot say my strategies 
are 100% original. You may find me occasionally in Gamefaqs' 
Rome Total War forums in short spurts of heightened game 

I don't play any mods or change game codes. I already spend 
so much time on it as it is and don't need anything else to 
make it any better/worse for now. 

Most of the basic strats are based on previous experience 
with Shogun Total War, Medieval Total War and the wonderful 
translated illustrated abridged version of Sun Tzu's Art of 
War by Asiapac (my first strategy guide for all the strategy 
games played so far). A guide I would recommend to read is 
one by MarekBrutus concerning city build management which 
details all you need to know about city management. It 
should answer all basic questions you will ever have about 
developing a city in the game. If any similarities are 
found, please e-mail me at 

E-mail me if there is any further queries.

Therefore this is my work and any reproduction besides for 
personal playing use will require permission from myself. 
It may not be publicly displayed or distributed without 
prior permission. 

I have given permission to some other sites to display this 
guide but please contact me again to gain updated versions. 
These sites are and


A H Wongso
Updated December 02 2006


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