Effective Usage of Siege Weaponry
By: Lord Devon
Last Updated: July 31, 2002
Before I get in-depth about the specific machines strengths and proper tactics, here
are some basic tips:
Tips for using Siege Weaponry:
- They are effective as lures, computer opponents have a tendency to chase down and
destroy siege weapons first during a battle, and much of the time enemy archers will only
fire upon the siege engines.
- Casting fire halo will make them immune to fire, their most hated foe.
- The two latter weapons, the Cannon and the Catapult, may be your only option for
destroying enemy walls (but not gates) if you are playing as a race such as the Humans or
the Dark Elves that dont get any units with wall crushing abilities.
- Try to fill tower tiles and even cities (especially walled) with them, for a group of 8
ballistae guarding a tower will amount to a truckload of pain when enemies (especially
ground based, non floaters) attack.
Tips for attacking Siege Weaponry:
- Units with Fire Bolts or Fire Strike like the Firecat and the Phoenix are good for
taking down them (especially with the patch, Version 1.1, that strengthens the attack
value of Fire Bolts from 5 to 7)
- Attack with a melee unit that will most likely kill the weapon in one blow, or weaken it
with ranged units before sending in the swordsman, because the worst thing in the world is
to have a swordsman or cavalry attack a siege weapon, not kill it on that turn, then have
to stand next to it on the opponents turn. Siege Weapons, especially the Ballista
and Cannon, rarely miss a unit standing right next to it, resulting in a almost sure
injury or death.
- Ballista and Cannons are the ultimate in cheap Lv. 4-unit killers. A group of 8
swordsman, which costs much more than 2 ballista, will less damage against a high level
(Lv. 3 or 4) unit than the group of 2 ballista. Why? Because the swordsman would have a
very low chance of hitting a powerful unit like a titan, and there may be a very low
chance that the Lv. 4 unit would even be hurt at all considering their amazing defense.
However, siege weaponry like the Cannon and Ballista have a high chance of hitting, and
most of the time they are able to badly injure or kill a high level unit.
Now we can get into the specifics of the individual siege weapons. Check out full stats
(with Medal upgrades) in the Units section.
The ballista is the first siege unit available in the game, but it is not the weakest
and it is not without its strengths. It, like the Cannon, is great for killing units.
Requires Builders Hall
Tips and Tactics: The ballista is available early on in the game, all it
requires is the builders hall, making it effective at killing low level units that wander
the map early on in the game. It is a good idea to build at least 1 of these to guard each
Lets think of a situation: Say you had 3 archers and a Ballista, and you were attacked by
a Titan and three legionary. You should use the Ballista to attack the Titan and use the
archers to attack the weaker units. Why? Because the archers would just waste their time
attacking the Titan, because almost all of their attacks would miss. The Ballista should
also not waste time attacking the swordsman, it should attack the Titan, because the Titan
is the units that needs to be killed the quickest, and if it attacked the swordsman, it
would waste precious turns trying to kill the footmen, giving the Titan time to smash the
walls and slaughter the units.
This is a unit that is best suited for attacking walls, and if it needs to attack
units, it can choose between a hurled rock and a flaming canister to attack with.
Requires builders hall and Siege Workshop
Tips and Tactics: The catapult is the first siege weapon with the ability
to break down walls, making it a very effective early and late game help in big sieges.
The unit can switch between a normal rock, which can destroy walls, or a flaming barrel,
effective at setting poor units alight. It is not as accurate (as Ive seen at least)
as the Ballista and Cannon, it can still pack a punch when attacking units, especially low
level ones that are easily killed in one or two blows by its damaging boulders.
The big daddy of them all, the Cannon is a massively powerful unit killer that is also
very adept at smashing down the walls of even the mightiest of fortresses. The best thing
about them is their accuracy, they are able to hit almost anything, and at close range
(not recommended due to the danger) they can almost decimate anything that attacks them.
Tips and Tactics: For one thing, Cannons are the #1 answer to a rampaging
superstack of units. Its accuracy is unparallel, giving it on average a 50% chance of
hitting units with 15+ defense (as opposed to say 5% of archers). The cannon is a mean
damage doer, doing 5- 10 damage on average to basic units, sometimes killing them in a
single blow, however, never get a cannon surrounded, for it is easily killed when it is
encircled by units (unlike steam tanks, which will use steam to attack all the hexes
adjacent to it. A stack of cannons is useful for guarding a gate of a wall, all you have
to do is move a few of them over behind a gate and whenever units attack the gate, the
cannon is right next to them, ready pound them with impunity, especially considering that
they are right next to the Cannon, giving the Cannon no range penalties, allowing for
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