Total War

Troy early army balance discussion

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Hey everyone. I've been trying to find meaningful guides or discussion on troop balance and recommendations for Troy. When I search, most of what comes up are half-baked "guides" that generally gloss over basic game mechanics ("you can trade and you can pray to gods! Yay!") and then end off with basically, "now click these links so we can make money." As far as player discussions, there's no shortage of complaints about the game. But honestly, so far I'm enjoying the game, whatever anyone else's complaints are. I just want a bit more discussion on individual units and how they stack up for a good early army composition.

I've had some mixed results in success and failure so far (I'm still very early in the campaign, but was surprised how long it took me to take Corinth). Anyway, here are some of my thoughts so far. Tell me what you agree with or what you think I have wrong. 🙂

Basic "hold the line" troops:

  • Militia – the game calls these guys "expendable", but despite their shields they just can't hold a line at all, and if they break, that's a liability to your remaining troops. These guys just don't have enough morale, armor, or attack to justify their "cheap" addition to your front line.
  • Young Spears – For your front line, like the Militia, they just don't have enough staying power, even early game
  • Spearmen – basically the bread-and-butter here early on, but in a straight standoff one-on-one against the "light spearmen" of the Corinthians they still lose out without some help
  • Club Warriors – these guys start to get a bit more formidable offensively, but they're softer than the Spearmen and I think aren't a great option for the front line
  • Shielded Spearmen/Clubmen – Both of these units seem pretty comparable. I haven't had a chance to do too much testing on them yet, but while it looks like the club variety are all around just a little better, for the cost difference so far I think my preference leans to the spear variety. These are definitely more expensive in upkeep, so since I'm talking early game, I think a few of these mixed in with the standard spearmen is going to be a good blend.
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Basic "Break the enemy" melee troops:

  • Militia – where these guys fall short in the front line… they also seem to be pretty bland for inflicting wounds. Really I feel like these are "trap" units. Sure, if you mass them in force against a smaller army you'll probably prevail, but I don't think they come out as an economical solution to success for basically any purpose I've found so far
  • Young Spears – While squishy, I think these guys are actually a really strong pick for this purpose. They have a solid charge bonus and damage output. If you wait until the enemy are engaged and run these guys around to charge the backs and sides of the battle line, I think you can get a lot of value out of them. With some micro-management and repeated backing off and re-charging, I think these might be the #1 economical early choice.
  • Spearmen – Pretty tough, but they don't pack a lot of punch and don't have any charge to speak of. I think you definitely want to diversify from these guys for the role of breaking the enemy.
  • Club Warriors – these guys seem like a pretty good choice at first. There's a high upfront cost on bronze, but no ongoing bronze upkeep. Their sustained damage potential certainly beats out the young spears, so if you want to "set and forget", then having a few of these to pummel the flanks of a distracted army seems like a decent option, but if you're willing to do some micro-management I still think the young spears might have stronger potential, at least if you can avoid too much enemy ranged units raining on them.
  • Shielded Spearmen/Clubmen – If you can afford to have these guys as your line-breakers, then great. But if you can, then there's probably better line breakers you could also upgrade to before long.
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As for ranged, I've had a really hard time gauging their effectiveness. The unit of light javelinmen it started me with seem to be great. They seem to really tear into the enemy, but they're pretty expensive to recruit more (and I need to make the building anyway). The other ranged units – slingers and skirmishers – feel like they're just using up space in my army and not pulling their weight. In some prior total war games I recall having good success with loading up on an excess of ranged units with just a few front line troops to keep things still while I rained death on them, but I'm not sure these guys are dealing out death adequately enough to justify such a strategy. Let me know if you've found otherwise.

Anyway, I'd love to hear your thoughts on early army composition.


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