Total War: ROME II – Palmyra Guide (Empire Divided)

Ideas and opinions for taking part in as Palmyra within the Empire Divided marketing campaign.

Why play Palmyra?

Principally, after saving the Roman Empire from catastrophe after the Sassanid Persians captured the Emperor Valerian in battle, the Palmyran king Odaenathus (or Septimius Udhayna) determined to be a rise up chap, defend Rome and kick the Persians the place it harm. Which he did. I totally advise you seek for Further Historical past: Ghosts of the Desert on Youtube if you happen to’re .

Anyway, after usually being a bamf and stopping catastrophe single handedly, Odaenathus and his inheritor are assassinated.
That is the place Empire Divided kicks off. Odaenathus’ younger son takes the throne, the regent being his widow Zenobia, who even the Romans needed to admit was nearly as badass as her late husband. Odaenathus saved the empire from shedding the east to the Sassanids – why shouldn’t his inheritor be in line for the Imperial throne?

Palmyra’s burgeoning empire stood at a crossroads – a part of the Roman Empire, jammed between Persian, Arabic, and Egyptian cultures, with Galatians to the north and a historical past of Greek tradition because of Alexander and the later Seleucids. The empire was multilingual, multicultural, and basically a hodgepodge of all the pieces within the space.

Remeber how one of the best factor about Rome within the grand Marketing campaign is the auxiliary barracks, permitting you to flesh out armies with models from different races? Nicely Palmyra will get that, AND its primary unit chains have a few of that range as nicely. Take a Roman legion, greek phalanxes, jap spearmen and ranged firepower, and ram all of them collectively. Palmyra has choices for days, and doesn’t actually battle towards anybody. To not say that they’re straightforward – however that’s the purpose of this information, to focus on the strengths.

Unit Overview

Palmyrene Spearmen
Palmyran armies are closely depending on the spear. Even their Cohors and Legionary models have them, quite than the normal Roman gladius.
Stated Cohors and Legionaries are improbable models that you will need: and, for my part, ought to keep away from for some time. I’m going to debate the problems you face as a faction within the subsequent chapter, however suffice to say for now that you will want a couple of military. I’m usually all for having few elite troops, however for Palmyra you will have to economise at the least a little bit.

Enter Palmyrene Spearmen. These fellows have weaker stats than the senior Cohors, most notably much less armour – nonetheless, they value a lot much less. In addition they value far much less maintenance, which is simply as essential if no more so for permitting you to maintain increase your settlements regardless of the near-constant warfare.
One other key factor to notice is that whereas Palmyrene Cohors and Legionaries have Defensive Testudo, the usual Spearmen have Hoplite Phalanx. Thus their formation is much less proof against missiles, however within the early recreation there hopefully received’t be rather more than slingers and skirmishers to take care of. The phalanx additionally gives higher melee buffs than a testudo, and permits them to maintain shifting slowly.
Oh, and did I point out that close by factions will likely be counting on Vigiles, Jap Spearmen, or Levies at this level, all of that are fairly inferior to Palmyrene Spearmen in a straight up struggle?

Not that Palmyrene Cohors and Legionaries are dangerous models, however for approaching double the fee they don’t actually convey double the effectiveness. By all means, as soon as your borders are stabilised and your revenue stable transfer over to the legionaries, particularly if you happen to’re coping with a lot of archers or missile cav.

Pikemen

Pikemen are superb. Easy as. They’re weak out of formation or when flanked, however when used correctly they’ll beat up even elite models by simply retaining them at arms size. Farther than arm’s size, actually. About 15 ft away.
Though Pike Phalanx does grant some protect power, they’re nonetheless fairly weak to missiles, nonetheless. You’ll need them close to the center to scale back flanking, and backed up by your personal missile troops.

Common’s Bodyguards

Scythed Chariots
Ah, chariots, how I each love and detest you. I’ve performed lots of Iceni out of sympathy for the underdog and my homeland, so I’m very conscious of Chariots on this recreation, and the Palmyran chariots are that turned as much as eleven.

On the plus aspect, chariots can pretty simply rack up 300+ kills if micro’d appropriately in battle. They may actually flatten complete models, like elephants however quick. Zenobia begins with a chariot, and I discover it fairly appropriate for feminine generals to make use of the chariot because it depends much less upon the non-public fight talent that queens would not often prepare in.

On the minus aspect, Chariot models die in auto resolve. At all times. Could possibly be a twenty stack towards 3 garrison models, and you’ll nonetheless lose 2 of your 12 chariots. Not less than. For no matter cause, autoresolve HATES chariots with a ardour and slaughters them, so that you’d finest be ready to guide EVERY battle with a chariot-featuring military, or wait round to replenish earlier than one other struggle. It’s INFURIATING. I nonetheless do it although, as a result of having 500 kills on the Queen Mom is hilarious.
Additionally, chariots may be fragile. Simply the opposite day I misplaced certainly one of my finest and oldest generals as a result of a primary spear unit I assumed wasn’t braced managed to show and put together simply earlier than I hit it. Bam, half the unit lifeless, together with Mr Zabbai Septimius (RIP). They’re extremely micro-heavy, which could be alright as you’ll wish to be micro-aware of your normal more often than not anyway, however it’s nonetheless a problem.

Palmyrene Palace Guard
The essential normal unit: your ordinary infantry, however prime tier. Excellent, closely armoured spearmen. Fundamental, stable, boring, dependable. Take your choose of adjectives. That mentioned, their unit card appears to be like a good bit like that of Vigiles, a really a lot NOT good unit, which at all times barely confuses me. However when one thing superficial like that’s the most notable factor I’ve to say…

Royal Pikemen
A tough one. I really feel like I ought to love these guys as a result of I really like pikes, and these are very expert, closely armoured pikes. Nevertheless, pikes are nice in a sluggish advance, gently murdering everybody in entrance of them function. Not solely am I unsure about having my normal that near the entrance line, I additionally fairly just like the Common’s unit to be extra versatile. Transfer across the line to provide management boosts, use skills, perhaps cost in if a piece is about to break down. Royal pikes are undoubtedly an incredible unit, and could be price taking for that alone, however I do really feel that it reduces the worth of a great normal by retaining them pinned down.

Royal Cataphracts
Heavy shock cavalry. Need chariots with out all of the fuss, and prepared to have a barely decrease kill depend? Cataphracts are for you. Powerful, extra cellular than infantry, killer cost and good stats. Most likely a great commonplace selection, though beware spears and missile cav.

Skirmishers
I don’t like Slingers right here. They get outshot by Jap factions, and may’t get by the armour of Roman factions.
The Skirmishers, although. Skirmishers are a improbable flanking unit, performing as a mini hammer to the spearmen’s anvil. In addition they counter jav cav completely by advantage of simply throwing extra pointy sticks, and may climate enemy sling-fire lengthy sufficient to homicide them. Plus, when you improve to the slighter higher Skirmishers, they’ve ok morale and melee stats to cost right into a flank as soon as they’ve expended all of their javelins.

Cavalry
Palmyra will get so many choices that it’s exhausting to interrupt down. Melee cav, archer cav, camel riders to scare enemy cav.
Early recreation my explicit favorite is Lanciarii. They’ve worse stats than your commonplace horsemen, save one: cost bonus. In addition they value far much less. Once you’re msotly combating smaller armies, and weak ranged models, one heavy cost from the lanciarii (spoiler: they’ve lances) will break your opponent earlier than they’ve an opportunity to hit your cavalry again, so the decrease melee defence is much less of an choice.
If the enemy tends to make use of a good quantity of melee cavalry themselves, nonetheless, Camel Spearmen are an incredible substitute for not rather more cash. A lot worse on the cost, however with increased melee defence to maintain them from being slaughtered, and scare horses to ship the enemy working.
Camel Archers are additionally price a shout. Beware Jav cav, nonetheless – skirmish mode received’t maintain you out of their vary, and their javelins do much better burst harm.

Marketing campaign Overview

That which makes Palmyrene tradition so attention-grabbing can also be their greatest weak point. They’re surrounded by different cultures.

West, Egypt. South, Arabia. East, Persians. North, Galatia, Lydia, and Armenia, the primary two being Aurelian’s shoppers and the latter that of the Persians.
Not solely are you surrounded, however the borders are fairly stretched. For this reason I emphasised worth for cash within the unit part: until you’re very fortunate, you’ll have to struggle on a couple of entrance, and your armies will be unable to cross your empire in a rush. Even if you’re solely combating on one entrance, mentioned entrance is often too giant for one military to cowl. If you happen to take a settlement, solely to lose the one you simply left, you will get caught taking part in musical chairs with the AI. That’s a improbable option to stagnate and lose the marketing campaign.

It is best to begin at battle with Egypt, with an goal to beat them as nicely. That is beautiful: the Nile crossing is slender sufficient which you can simply defend it. Whereas Egypt is big, the settlements fairly a way aside and thus exhausting to maintain a maintain of, it’s only a single province. Ambush, besiege, or in any other case catch their predominant military and run it down, and it is possible for you to to stomp the remainder of the province briefly succession. The target gives you a cash increase, and Egypt itself is a really wealthy area to construct up when you stabilise it.

Now you’re within the hazard zone. My recommendation is to construct up the economic system, and annoy Galatia.
Emphasis on ANNOY. If you happen to declare battle on Galatia your self, additionally, you will declare battle on Aurelian’s Rome, which holds Greece and Libya, and Lydia, which is the opposite shopper state. It will cut up you between two states marching down by Galatia, and having to carry BOTH roads from Libya into Egypt, or else your model new breadbasket goes to get sacked and burned. Nevertheless, evidently if you happen to can encourage Galatia to declare battle on you their allies received’t essentially get entangled, that means you solely have the one faction to take care of. Whereas Galatia does have two routes into Syria, that’s nonetheless far simpler to take care of.

I additionally suggest a little bit of appeasement with the Sassanids. Paying them for a non-aggression pact is sort of worht giving up on a little bit of building, on the very least for the advantage of giving them some optimistic opinion of you so that they’re much less more likely to assault early. There’s a minor goal to turn out to be allied to the Sassanids, however I’m unsure that’s actually possible – however you must endeavour, by cash or politics, to cease them hating you at the least.
It’s price noting that the Sassnids are opportunistic, heartless. In the event that they assume you’re outclassed, struggling, or weak, they may declare battle and attempt to crush you. I had a 16 stack sitting on their border for the whole thing of my present marketing campaign simply to dissuade them – “this land is defended. Keep out”

As soon as Galatia is lifeless, stabilise. Get public order regular. Now you’ve got a barrier, you’ll be able to afford to improve provinces like Syria and Judea with higher financial buildings.
For minor settlements with not a lot squalor, the brand new City constructing gives some garrison, some sanitation and reduces banditry. Virtually all main settlements will need a sanitation chain, and since they provide development it could be price constructing them early. Typically, Tradition penalties are much less of a problem as Palmyra, most individuals fairly blissful to share tradition. One various is the Christians – their cult reduces public order for each different cult or temple within the province, and all it gives is a few unit replenishment. Helpful, maybe, in a border province that you simply don’t anticipate to carry or don’t wish to pour cash into whereas it’s nonetheless being fought over, however in any other case fairly detrimental.
Typically talking, I want the blue sanitation chain to temples as Palmyra. They supply higher sanitation, and whereas excessive Imperium within the late recreation will increase public order penalties from presence of various tradition, Palmyra has a late recreation tech that fully removes these penalties, so actually totally different tradition public order penalties ought to by no means be a lot of a problem for you. Multicultural empire! Rome however with out the prevalence complicated. A lot.

In most of my campaigns, the Latin Households faction has spawned with god-awful traits. Someplace within the early recreation, whereas they solely maintain one, settlement, if you happen to ever get a interval of peace it could be price scary a civil battle simply to get them out of the way in which, in order that they don’t insurgent whenever you’re doing one thing necessary.

Getting contact and commerce agreements is nice. You’ll develop into lots of assets, and taking Egypt permits you commerce entry throughout each main oceans. If you happen to take over Lydia’s territory you will get entry to the Bosphorus and Pontic sea for much more commerce – and the Gothi will in all probability such as you for kicking Balthasar Gelt Aurelian within the bottom.

Get some archers!

Archers are good. You’re going to must take care of armoured dudes from Rome, and missile spam from African and Jap Kingdoms. Archers will slaughter slingers, missile cav, and also will take care of enemy javelins if they’ve correct safety in entrance of them.

Palmyra will get what are, for my part, among the finest archers within the recreation. They’re known as Hamian archers, they usually have good vary, good harm, and nice armour. They appear to hold spears too?
The one draw back is, you want a Tier 3 barracks to recruit them, which itself requires a corresponding tech. So what do you do within the early recreation?

Bear in mind I discussed that you simply get auxiliaries, very similar to different Roman factions? Nicely, auxiliary archers are improbable.
Cretan archers are one of the best, however you’re not more likely to get there very quick. Nevertheless, auxiliary barracks in Egypt (which needs to be the primary place you’re taking) let you get Egyptian archers, low-cost and simple. Garbage armour, garbage survivability, however they’ve bows, they’ve ammo selection, they usually can shoot. Whether or not you’re ploughing by African skirmishers or Aurelian’s Vigiles, these lads will do the trick – and from behind the consolation of your spear wall!

A Pattern Military

Common, of your most well-liked sort.
4 Palmyrene Spearmen
2 Pikemen
4 Archers
2 Skirmishers
2 Missile cav
2 Melee cavThis is my primary template.

Skirmisher – Spear – Spear – Pike – Pike – Spear – Spear – Skirmisher
Archer – Archer – Archer – Archer
Common

Cav in reserve, missile cav roaming.

You’ll notice it involves 17 models – the remaining three slots may be full of no matter you need. It’s price noting, additionally, that you must differ primarily based on opponent.

if you happen to don’t have entry to archers, double up on the flanking skirmishers and missile cav. In case your opponent depends on slingers or skirmishers, take extra melee cav.
If you happen to’re going to be attacking into lots of cities or melee unit spam, add extra melee models. I fairly like sticking a few armoured swordsmen models in subsequent to the pikes, simply to make sure that their flanks are sturdy.

As Palmyra, your primary battle tactic is as follows: maintain enemy with stable line of spears, beat their flanks off, encircle them. Slaughter their skirmishers, both along with your flanking forces or with archers firing over the traces. Your spears and pikes ought to maintain if in phalanx (Spear Cohors and Armoured Swordsmen ought to maintain regardless by advantage of being nice models). Then javelins and cavalry cost to the again.
It’s basic hammer and anvil, taking inspiration from the outdated Macedonian ways, with the additional flavour of chariots, cataphracts, and missile firepower.

Your roster is versatile, however your enemies are quite a few and various. Chariots will slaughter legionaries, if they’re engaged and can’t throw pilae. Lighter melee cav will run by the evenly armoured ranged models of Africa and the East. Archers may also slaughter them, however could must flank towards heavy armour. Missile cav will snicker at enemy melee cav, however will likely be nigh ineffective towards missile-heavy enemies. Your Palmyrene spears will maintain something off, however don’t anticipate them to beat gladius-armed legionaries or Immortals. They’re the Anvil – they’re rattling good at it, however they want your assist to crush the enemy.

The one unit you need a lengthy grind with is the pikes. Particularly in settlements – attacking or defending, get some archers behind a phalanx after which buildings on both aspect, and simply slowly stab the whole garrison/attacker to dying. Your later armoured pikemen will likely be even more durable, however even the early ones can get loads performed in the event that they aren’t being shot to dying.

Bear in mind to analyse the enemy, and adapt to them. Bear in mind that you’ve entry to the models of a lot of totally different cultures – use them collectively and no one will have the ability to cease you.

Why You Shouldn’t get Concerned with a Land Struggle in Asia

See this?

That was a great battle. Word how horrendously outnumbered I used to be?
In my present marketing campaign, Aurelian is lifeless. The Senate is just about gone too, and Tetricus nonetheless considerably likes me so I received’t must invade Italy instantly. And because the victory situations require holding Parthia, and I’ll quickly wish to invade the west, I assumed let’s kill the massive Persian thorn in my aspect.
This form of battle is the BEST case state of affairs. I’ve managed to struggle off an analogous 20 stack with a 5-unit garrison. And that was additionally a great battle. Not proven are the dozen terrible, shock matchups I needed to autoresolve.

Struggle isn’t a horrible concept. You would possibly wish to take away the Sassanids earlier than they gobble up all of Arabia and outflank you on ANOTHER aspect.

The issue is, your border province is Mesopotamia. Mesopotamia is lengthy. Very lengthy. Not solely will the Sassanids assault you with their many armies, ALL of their Satraps apparently don’t have anything higher to do than march throughout Asia to assault you. And what with the border being so giant, I assure that in some unspecified time in the future an enormous stack of trash Persians will emerge from the fog of battle to take a settlement that you simply left undefended whereas combating off the massive, cataphract-laden really scary enemy. So that you’ll must both increase new armies or flip again, stalling your advance. And since Whole Struggle permits even garbage AI states to have a full stack, the hordes WILL NOT STOP.

Did I point out Armenia is a Satrapy as nicely? So your ENTIRE jap flank will likely be bombarded by Persians, and also you’ll have extra stacks coming from the North. In about twenty [20] turns, I’ve nearly managed to take Mesopotamia, having needed to run again to slap some silly levy armies which razed my houses.

It’s not which you can’t beat the Sassanids: they’re only a colossal ache.
That mentioned, it’s extremely satisfying to slaughter them by their hundreds. Other than the Shahanshah, who likes to run round with really good models, lots of the armies thrown towards you’re a sizzling load of rubbish. They even have individuals who can afford swords, however not shields in some way, which can die by the droves to even your worst models.

I strongly recommend you get Hamian archers earlier than making an attempt something towards the Sassanids, nonetheless. Pikemen (supported by others models on the flanks) counter all of their melee models, however you’ll want missile superiority to cease your pikemen from being shot to items.

You have to to kill them ultimately, until you in some way handle an alliance. Make no mistake – for my part, the Sassanids are the true enemy. Positive, you need Rome, however it’s not the centre of your world, not like when taking part in as Tetricus or Aurelian. The Sassanids are the massive dangerous, the Empire looming over you. Even if you happen to do the marketing campaign course set out for you and do the entire ‘Empire Divided, one should stand’ factor, the Sassanids will likely be ready for you as your ultimate check. Even if you wish to create a brand new Roman dynasty, centred within the East a couple of hundred years sooner than historical past, you’ll have to stay as much as Odaenathus’ legacy ultimately.

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