Medieval 2: Total War is an utterly classic, so let's enjoy a Grand Campaign with one of the smallest starting factions - Denmark. Total War: MEDIEVAL II - Definitive Edition. All Discussions Screenshots Artwork Broadcasts Videos News Guides Reviews Total War: MEDIEVAL II - Definitive Edition General Discussions Topic Details. May 16, 2018 @ 5:51am.

Battle Strategy

This section is for strategies to employ on the Battle Map either against another human or against the computer in a Custom Battle.

General Strategy and Tactics

Articles in this section concern strategy and tactics on the battle map in general, without applying them to a particular army setup.

This is a guide for facing and using the formidable longbow men of the English faction in M2TW. Hopefully this guide should help you in becoming a master of their use, and knowing what to do when an army of longbows knocks on your door.

It is easy to wonder whether M2TW's pikemen would have been better off armed with the fish rather than long pointy sticks. Scipii provides suggestions on how to make the little perishers work as something more than cannon fodder.

I'm writing this guide for my dad but also for people who have never played a Total War game before and lose huge numbers of soldiers in what should be straight-forward battles. This is purely for campaign battles on open fields but you need to know these basics before you play multiplayer.

Frederick Lanchester (1868 - 1946) was an English engineer, responsible for the founding of the Lanchester Motor Company and many of the basic laws of aerodynamics (including coining the terms 'aerodynamics', 'aerofoil' and the mistranslated 'phugoid'). With respect to medieval warfare though, his main achievement was Lanchester's Power Laws - relationships for determining the strength of military forces. These laws apply to many things as well as warfare, including for example the success of the Japanese electronics industry.

For most people, the picture in their minds is a knight, sitting atop a beautiful charger in full plate armour with a lance lowered towards the helpless enemy infantry. It is an image that survived through the centuries, right until you're sitting in front of your computer trying to get the blasted things to charge properly. This guide will hopefully give you a bit of insight into using these dangerous units, adding a new layer of strategy to your game.

It's all well and good being told how to charge properly, but you can't always get it to work for you. This guide is written mainly for Kingdoms, but everything in it is equally applicable to Medieval 2: Total War and will show you exactly how to get the formed charge to work with video examples, allowing you to see what it looks like when it goes well or badly. This should hopefully allow you to work out what mistakes you are making (if any) and correct them. In Part 1, frontal charges are discussed, concentrating of the choice of target. Experienced players may wish to skip this part, as it is fairly basic.

Missile Cavalry add another dimension of strategic depth on the battlefield, there are several different types each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Many people think javelin cavalry are worthless due to their close range and uncontrollable actions when in skirmishing mode. This guide has been written to show how the opposite is true, and that Javelin Cavalry are perhaps the most formidable missile cavalry of all.

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Multiplayer and Custom Battle Strategies

Articles in this section refer to specific strategies for set open field battles and how to use them to greatest effect in order to annihilate the enemy army or armies.

I write this as a guide for new and inexperienced players mostly. Better players than myself may learn nothing which is fine. The reason I enjoy playing the Turks is because their unit selection appeals to me. Their cavalry can be both hardy and swift. Their infantry does a respectable job, but is by no means spectacular. Their ranged units can pack a punch with bow / gun and sword. And finally the mercenaries for a typical online battle provide me with one of my favourite units, the Alan Light cavalry.

The Portuguese (along with the Spanish) have perhaps one of the best late period armies available due to the powerful and reasonably priced infantry that they possess. On a number of occasions (see below) I have found them to be simply too much for other opponents. The core of Portuguese armies that I have used has centred on musketeers, conquistadores and pike men with cavalry support. I have experimented with using cannons but they generally seem to be less effective than musketeers. The key element of this strategy is to win the missile duel before proceeding to defeat your enemy's cavalry and infantry.

This guide is here to tell people about the constantly overlooked armies of Russia. In fact, Russia has one of the best armies of the game. This strategy is for 20,000 florin game during the late period. This army selection I have created has won me a large amount of battles I have played with it except for one notable ocassion. On that occasion I played against a very cheap player who had an all elephant army. Otherwise this is a very good strategy, but you may not want to use it against the Timurids.

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Siege Battle Strategies

Articles in this section refer to both specific strategies for siege battles and the theory of taking or defending a settlement.

The primary implements in defending against a siege are castles. Hopefully, if you're defending, you'll be inside one, because they are far superior to cities for defense. That is why it is often smart to place your castles on the outside of your empire, and your cities within. This layered approach works well in the early game, when settlements can still be converted. That is one of the cases for an early quick advance.

The scheme relies less on having the right composition of troops and superior castle defences, but more on sound cavalry tactics and superior movement based defence. You must have a superior cavalry force. This is only ever a problem against the Mongols who arrive in hordes. I will list a unique tactic against them.

This article was written to highlight the Pros and Cons of the siege warfare equipment available to the player in Medieval 2: Total War, along with a section detailing the most effective use of the equipment. Siege warfare can be an ugly affair, but this guide should help you master this part of the game.

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Faction and Map Overviews

Medieval 2 total war spain

Articles in this section are overviews of the factions and maps available in Multiplayer and Custom Battles and how to use them to your best advantage.

You may think to yourself, how would I go about conquering the known world with a maximum of bloodshed and a minimum of diplomacy? Your answer: hordes of pillaging vikings!

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Historical Battles

Articles in this section refer to the Historical Battles in Medieval 2: Total War, following a far more scripted battle than the freeform Custom Battles or Multiplayer.

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Spanish Conquest of the New World

By Archdruid

Modern Mexico is a land of many influences. The majority of the populace is descended directly from the natives who inhabited the land long before European contact in the late fifteenth century, but they speak the language and worship the god of their conquerors. The Spanish who defeated the natives were themselves a multi-faceted people, bearing the cultural traits of both the Visigothic warriors who established kingdoms in Spain when Rome fell and the Islamic Moors and Berbers who later controlled the bulk of the Iberian Peninsula. The religion transported across the Atlantic by the Spanish was Christianity, specifically a militant form of Catholicism that developed during the conflict with the Muslims. As a people and culture the Spanish had been at war for seven centuries [1], and once the Muslims were expelled from Granada in 1492, this militaristic heritage had no obvious outlet. The rest of Europe was Christian, and Spain had a weak economy after centuries of warfare; without some economic boost, the Spanish would never compete with the other European powers. The Spanish turned to exploration, and upon the discovery of the Americas, conquest. When the Portuguese first began their colonial expansion in Africa, they encountered peoples whose weapons and methods of warfare were similar to their own. Technologically, there were differences in the quality of their weapons, but not in the types of weapons themselves. African spears were similar to Portuguese spears, and African warfare was similar to Portuguese warfare in that battles were fought primarily to be won, with prisoners an occasional commodity. Because they lacked a decisive technological advantage, suffered from diseases to which they had no biological resistance, and were severely outnumbered, the Portuguese met with only limited success in their military excursions. Not so for the Spanish in the Americas. The earliest Spanish expeditions into Mexico met with dramatic success. Never before had so mighty an Empire as that of the Aztecs been felled by so small a group of men. It took only 600 Spanish and some native allies to demolish one of the greatest empires in the new world. Their successes in Mexico and the rest of Central America led the Spanish to explore further, and soon after they once again achieved the seemingly impossible. Francisco Pizarro successfully led a similarly small group of Spanish soldiers and mercenaries against the even larger and more advanced Inca Empire. The three foremost factors in the Spanish conquest were technology, disease, and the religion of the natives. Since the Spanish success against the Aztecs directly resulted in further expeditions into South America, this essay will focus on the Mexican conquest, with the South American Inca being included where appropriate.
One of the common arguments regarding the Spanish defeat of the Aztecs is that the Aztec ruler, Montezuma, was incompetent. His cautious treatment of the invaders who made their intentions clear from early encounters has been argued to have led directly to the downfall of his empire, but rarely are Montezuma's motives examined. It seems incomprehensible that a ruler of 5 million would allow 600 men [2] to end his reign so abruptly and with such consequences. Several scholarly opinions have been put forth on the topic, but it seems clear that it was his religion that motivated his actions (or lack thereof). Spanish sources consistently place much of the blame on Montezuma, and a somewhat less biased written history by Fray Bernardino de Sahagun, a Spanish monk who wrote in both Nahuatl (the Aztec language) and Spanish, based on interviews with surviving Aztec nobles also indicates that Montezuma was a failure but gives substantially more information regarding his motivations [3]. Montezuma was an exceedingly pious man, and there was a long held legend among the Aztecs that their god Quetzalcoatl would soon return from the east [4]. According to Sahagun, Quetzalcoatl was pale skinned and bearded, and Montezuma almost immediately treated Cortez as the god himself. Montezuma's belief spread among the natives, and the addition of horses and cannons, neither of which had been seen before [5], only added to their terror. The gods were of vital importance to the Aztecs. Popular theory has long held that they waged Flower Wars, so named for their goals of training warriors and capturing victims for sacrifice rather than killing or conquering a rival people, although this theory has of late come under attack [6]. The Spanish, for their part, had no compunction about abusing the native mythology: 'In order to preserve this myth, the Spaniards would bury immediately any man or horse that died so that no knowledge of it would reach the Indians. [7]'
A key aspect of the Spanish success in the Americas was the technological difference between themselves and the natives. Unlike the Portuguese, who encountered African peoples with iron weaponry, the Spanish had every advantage in their excursions. Where the Africans were in some cases capable metalworkers, there is no evidence that the Aztecs were capable of producing bronze in any quantity prior to the Spanish conquest, although they made use of both copper and tin in some quantity [8]. The Spanish, by contrast, were using some of the best steel in Europe. In addition to this, their cannons proved devastating to the natives, doing as much damage psychologically as they did physically. To natives who had never seen such things, the sound and power of these weapons was immense, and there are records of the natives fainting at the mere sight and sound of such weapons [9]. So fearful of the Spanish weapons were the Aztecs that the Emperor Montezuma repeatedly sent wise men and sorcerers to attempt to stop the Spanish advance towards his city, which amounted to the only effort by Montezuma to attack the Spanish. The sorcerers returned to him reporting failure, which only heightened his fears and, by extension, those of his people [10]. Even the lesser projectile weapons of the Spanish, crossbows, proved themselves deadly effective, and Cortez' force is listed by Bernal Diaz, a Spaniard writing after the fact, to have contained 27 cavalry, 80 crossbows, and 80 musketeers [11].
It is well known to most historians that disease played a key role in the European conquest of the Americas. When the Portuguese attempted to establish themselves in Africa, they were seriously afflicted with native diseases such as Malaria. The Spanish, on the other hand, encountered no such disease, but brought several with them from Europe. From the earliest infestation of smallpox in 1520 [12] the fate of the natives was decided. For the following 100 years, the 20 million natives of Mexico died in droves, and by 1618 there were only 1.6 million left [13]. So drastic were the effects of disease that entire villages were depopulated, entire cultures eradicated, and a whole new hemisphere left open for European settlers to establish themselves en masse. Hernando De Soto, a Spanish explorer, in his 1540 march through the American Southwest, encountered numerous villages entirely abandoned due to the onset of disease prior even to the Spanish arrival in the area [14]. Three diseases primarily devastated the Aztecs after the Spanish arrival. The first was smallpox, and then measles, and finally a rather mysterious epidemic often associated with a form of typhus [15]. The third disease is mysterious insomuch as it did not appear until 1576, and while it did not affect Europeans to the same extent as the natives, most forms of typhus would. It has thus been theorized that the third disease (known to the natives as matlazahuatl) may have been of American origin, but of similar nature to diseases known to Europeans [16]. The disease situation was further compounded by native ceremonial traditions. Spanish witnesses report that the corpses of sacrificial victims were sometimes eaten, and while these sources may be regarded as somewhat suspect, there is evidence that certain organs, at the very least, were eaten [17]. If the Spanish sources are taken at their word, human sacrifice and cannibalism were both practiced on a large scale, and this most certainly would have contributed to the spread of a myriad of diseases. Unlike some of the other practices supposedly embraced by the natives (such as sodomy), reports of sacrifice and cannibalism are almost universal among first-hand accounts, and as such are quite likely to have occurred. Regardless of the validity of these accounts, however, the fact remains that disease quickly overtook the continents, and no people suffered so much from disease as did the Inca of South America. Around 1526, smallpox arrived in the Andes, five years ahead of the Spanish themselves. The disease killed both the emperor of the Inca and his successor, which led the empire into a devastating civil war even as the people continued to perish from disease [18]. Francisco Pizarro and 128 Spaniards then conquered the greatest and most populous empire the Americas had yet seen.
After considering the evidence, it can clearly be seen that the three factors most decisive in the conquest of the New World were technology, disease, and the religion of the natives. Native allies also played some role, but not to nearly the extent of the factors examined in this essay. Without a technological advantage, the natives' numerical superiority would have proved an insurmountable obstacle to the Spanish. Without the devastating impact of disease, the Spanish would have faced an Incan empire at the peak of its strength, rather than the diminishing shadow of an empire they eventually conquered. Without the specific myths and legends in their native religion, the Aztecs may have responded to the Spanish hostility with violence rather than fear, and Cortez would have found his small party ambushed and annihilated by superior numbers long before it reached the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan, rather than worshipped and sent gifts by the Aztec emperor himself. Wherever one of these failed, the other two were so drastically influential that the fall of the native empires was assured. The legacy of the New World's brutal subjugation lives on even today. In many areas, particularly among the former Spanish colonies, good government and economic success remain elusive, despite the achievements of their ancestors. In Peru, especially, the native Inca prior to the Spanish colonization were a brilliantly successful developing civilization that, in hindsight, is often compared to that of the Romans for their relative religious tolerance and infrastructure construction. If not for the Spanish arriving when they did, the Inca would almost certainly have continued their rapid development and success, leading to a very different western hemisphere. The descendants of the Spanish colonists today form an elite class within their former colonies, and it is only in very recent years that some non-violent progress has been made. In particular, the election of Evo Morales in Bolivia is a signal of hope. President Morales is the first indigenous leader to win an election in Bolivia, an achievement not yet matched by native peoples even in supposedly more advanced (but more recently colonized) countries such as Canada or the United States. Despite some hopeful progress governmentally, many South and Central American countries still face rebel insurgencies of varying political ideologies, almost all of which have their origin in the racial separation between the wealthy political elite descended mostly from European colonists and the poverty-stricken indigenous populations. In addition to social problems, most Central and South American nations suffer economic difficulties. In Bolivia, for example, the primary source of income is the coca plant, which some major western powers have tried to discourage due to its use in the narcotic cocaine. In Venezuela, on the other hand, oil dominates the economy and makes the elite even more wealthy, while the poor continue to suffer. Until the legacy of the colonial powers can be overcome, these situations are likely to remain at the forefront of Central and South American affairs for many years to come.
1. Eliseo Vivas, The Spanish Heritage, American Sociological Review Vol 10, No 2, 1942, p. 185
2. Diamond, Jared E, Guns, Germs, and Steel (New York, Norton Company, 1999) 210
3. Sara E Cohen, How the Aztecs Appraised Montezuma, The History Teacher Vol 5, No 3, 1972, p. 23
4. T. Esquivel Obregon, Factors in the Historical Evolution of Mexico, The Hispanic American Historical Review Vol 2, No 2, 1919 p. 139
5. Cohen, 26
6. Frederic Hicks, 'Flowery War' in Aztec History, American Ethnologist Vol 6, No 1, 1979, p. 87
7. Cohen, 27
8. George Brinton Phillips, The Metal Industry of the Aztecs, American Anthropologist Vol 27, No 4, 1925 p 551
9. Cohen, 26
10. Cohen, 29
11. George Raudzens, War-Winning Weapons: The Measurement of Technological Determinism in Military History, The Journal of Military History Vol 54, No 4, 1990, p. 412
12. Diamond, 210
13. Diamond, 210
14. Diamond, 211
15. Sherburne F. Cook, The Incidence and Significance of Disease among the Aztecs and Related Tribes, The Hispanic American Historical Review Vol 26, No 3, 1946, p. 321
16. Cook, 321
17. Michael Harner, The Ecological Basis for Aztec Sacrifice, American Ethnologist Vol 4, No 1, 1977, p. 120
18. Diamond, 211

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