Mission 21 - Final Vengeance (by Sulis)
Start date: Jan 1340
|Kill the Wolf|
Put an end to the Wolf using the combined forces of Sir Longarm and the king. You have vanquished the majority of his main army but the Wolf still has many men left and his stronghold is rumoured to be impenetrable. He has discovered the secret of boiling oil so do not approach too quickly. Instead make use of the new trebuchet to weaken him from afar.
|4 siege shields|
|1 siege tower|
In this final mission of the Military Campaign, we face a daunting task: laying siege to the Wolf's castle and the defences therein. This proved to be a troublesome map to beat, but if you approach the map with care and plan out your assault, you shouldn't have too many problems. And this is exactly what I did!
First of all, I gathered my starting troops together, moving them away from the castle slightly, as some of the spearmen were in range of the ballista of the Wolf. I also grouped my archers and crossbowmen together at the front of my army. The Wolf will send macemen and knights to thwart your plans early on, and these units will kill off the early attacks without them causing you any harm. Once this has passed, I scanned the castle for signs of a weak spot... and found one. The eastern side of the castle wasn't as well defended as the west, and therefore I carefully moved all of my troops and siege equipment, staying out of range of the Wolf's ballista once more. Refer to the minimap above for details.
The main problem I faced early on was trying to work out just how close my siege equipment could get to the castle before it came under fire. I moved one of my catapults steadily closer to find out, knowing that a trebuchet has greater range. This worked well, as I discovered I could place my siege engines on top of the hill (see loop area of the arrow drawn on minimap) and gain some height advantage. From here, I could pick off many of the round towers and the gatehouse, destroying the ballista in the process. In fact, with the ballista gone, I could move my catapults in much closer and wreak havoc to the defences. By the time I'd run out of gold and my starting catapults had used up their stone, I had pummelled the outer bailey area, including the inner gatehouse and the large square tower that sits in front of it.
With this done, it was time to use the shields. I also built a few additional shields with the remaining gold. Then, I carefully moved my archers and the shields closer to the castle, taking out the Wolf's archers and his hot oil engineers wherever possible. I also used the 'attack here' function when I wasn't 100% sure if I could safely move my troops close enough. The shields took a little damage, but not much. At this point, it is worth noting that I had only a small area of moat between me and the outer bailey, now almost devoid of any signs of life, and with no losses of my own. Pretty successful so far!
However, it is at this point that you will probably have to sacrifice some of your units. In order to give you a good start for the remainder of the assault, there remained one armed ballista and a few archers on the far side of the outer bailey area. The shields helped to protect 3-4 macemen as they filled in a small section of moat, and then with a couple of knights (no more than 3), I set off the pitch ditches. Once done, I could move 5 macemen swiftly up into the large square tower and take out the ballista and the crossbowmen. I then moved my crossbowmen into the same tower, along with the archers. The idea here is to get them to target any remaining siege engines the Wolf has in the two flanking round towers (the ones built on high plain, and only accessible once you are in the third and final level of the castle).
Things were still looking good. So, in a brave and bold move for me, I ordered the knights to attack the pikemen and swordsmen just inside the inner bailey area (where the quarry is located). This cleared a path allowing the two rams to be moved in for the next stage of the attack. I decided to sacrifice them by making a start on the small gatehouse that leads to the Wolf's keep. The rams were able to take out the gatehouse as well as make significant damage to one of the round towers guarding the entrance. All the while, my archers and crossbowmen are picking away at anything 'black' and doing a pretty good job, albeit slowly. As towers fall and the Wolf's troops are killed, the battle swings heavily in my favour. The remaining macemen were used to rush into the towers and set off the pitch ditches, and to trigger the hot oil engineer on top of the keep. From previous attempts at this mission, this one unit alone had caused me more problems than any other. If you can get all the pitch ignited and this engineer to pour his oil, there is very little defence remaining to the Wolf's castle.
With this done, it was time to take stock of my remaining units. One tower, a handful of engineers, ALL of my 90 spearmen and ALL of my 22 swordsmen. Sensing a quick finish, I rushed my spearmen on top of the keep, the swordsmen following on behind at a slower pace. The spearmen finished off the Wolf and any remaining units within a minute or two, a fitting end to humble beginnings way back at the first mission! No use for swordsmen here, but it was a comforting feeling to know that I'd beaten the mission with troops to spare.
I'm sure that my progress here was made easier by taking a steady, tactical approach and looking for weak spots in the Wolf's castle early on in the siege.
Total losses: -
My Score: -