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Mission 15 - Carving a Path (by Sulis)

Base map
Start date: January 1220

Objectives

All difficulty choices
Eliminate all Enemy Units

Fight your way through the Pig's home county and escape into the fenlands on the other side. You will need to strike hard and fast before the Pig returns with his main force. Storm the Gatehouse of the Pig's castle with a ram, dispatch the garrison and hide in the fenlands beyond.

Resources

no gold
Troops
43 archers
132 spearmen
35 macemen
13 crossbowmen
1 ram
8 engineers (manning the ram)
10 laddermen
10 tunnelers

No trade options are available in this mission

Notes

Okay, let's have a go at this. Looking at the walkthrough already on the site, it doesn't differ a huge amount.

I immediately moved all of my units to the bottom of the map, as far away from the castle as possible. This ensures none of my units were picked off by the Pig's archers, as I also moved them to the western side. I quickly moved my tunnellers up towards the area of mid plain terrain which forms the natural boundary between the castle and the fenlands. Placing three tunnellers at a time, all of which were out of archer range, I attempted to bring down a section of wall. It seems that the tunnellers were able to dig underneath the moat at this stage, but it's probably more likely that they utilised the almost invisible area of land between moat and mid plain terrain. You have to be quick here, as time is severely limited. Once they had broken through, I grouped my macemen and all archers/crossbowmen together and prepared for an initial assault. Move them to the foot of the mid plain area which runs across the map, still at the western side of the castle.

Playing normal difficulty, you don't have a huge amount of archers to play around with. Use them carefully, but effectively. Losses will be high, something you really can't avoid in this mission. I concentrated my archer attack on specific units in the tower, rather than placing them in range but letting them fire randomly. I found that by concentrating their firepower on one unit rather than spreading their attack, I could reduce the number of Pig's archers, essential when the main body of your force is weaker spearmen. The crossbowmen joined in the attack but they were used to wipe out the crossbowmen in the next tower down. The theory here is this: until you get your units up on the walls and into the towers of the Pig's castle, you still have to face an aerial assault which can be damaging. Better to have fewer archers on full strength than more archers, but weakened by your attacks?

In the meantime, keep an eye on your macemen. You need to select three to four of these and carefully control them, asking them to fill in the moat area at the foot of the mid plain terrain leading up to the breach in the wall. Too many units and they will run around everywhere filling in areas of moat that aren't needed. By the time my archers and crossbowmen had been wiped out, I had made significant progress in filling in a strip of moat. As soon as you have a clear entrance to the castle, use all of your macemen and pikemen in a frenzied attack. I concentrated the macemen on the Pig's crossbowmen (better attacking strength, better defended than spearmen) and the spearmen on the archers. Use the laddermen to access areas of wall if you wish. The ram was immediately sent to the small gatehouse dividing the inner castle from the outer castle (or bailey area). You need to keep careful control on all of your spearmen here, to ensure they are both used effectively, but that they don't stand around getting shot at.

My losses were something like 80% on normal difficulty... not bad for a very average tactician like myself!

IN SUMMARY

-move all units to the west of the castle
-tunnellers will bring down an area of wall before you need to fill in the moat
-archers and crossbowmen concentrated on the Pig's units in towers. Pick on individual units to attack.
-small groups of macemen filling in moat at the same time as above
-rush the castle: macemen to crossbowmen, spearmen to archers & ram to small gatehouse.


I do hope this helps. Please feel free to ask any further questions, or if you find a better way to beat this mission, let us know.

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