Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Immortal Persians in HOTT

This piece was contributed to The Stronghold by Russell Strachan, and also includes input from Luke Ueda-Sarsen, Colin Hagreen and Jim Davis. I edited it.

I thought you might be interested in my take on a HOTT early Achaemenid Persians (my all time favourite historical army).

The sub period of course has to be Cyrus the Great & the wonderful contraptions attributed to him by Xenophon. These include his double mounted camels classed as Riders, although a case for them being Knights due to their anti-cavalry effects could be sustained; the scythed chariots Knights I think. Warband might be better but who needs scythed chariots in woods? And of course the mobile towers, Behemoths of course.

Of course we can't forget about Mithras, the war-god in his golden chariot, true he became a little marginalised by Ahura Mazda but perhaps the soldiery maintained stronger links as in Roman times.
One cannot forget to mention Cyrus the Great himself. He probably should be classed as a Hero general and if Mithras is not taken then that is how I would represent him. However APs are at a premium when trying to represent all the diverse parts of a Persian force, so something has to give!

Other oddities include Flyers represented by various winged lions, ibis and gryphons.

So, to the list...
Cyrus the GreatRider General @ 2AP1
MithrasGod @ 4AP1
Immortals/SparabaraShooters @ 2AP4
CamelryRider @ 2AP1
Scythed chariotKnight @ 2AP1
Mobile towerBehemoth @ 4AP1
Persian cavalryRiders @ 2AP1

Hero General (Cyrus the Great) @4AP, Flyers (Various winged beasties) @2AP, Riders (Subject cavalry) @2AP, Hordes (Levy foot) @1AP, Cleric (Group of Magi) @3AP.

Luke Ueda-Sarson writes: I can't classify siege towers in HotT (a problem when doing Mordor armies too). They are huge things, but don't charge around like Behemoths. They are crammed full of archers, but shoot over the heads of the real archers, so don't really work as shooters - the though of one going into a forest to fight efficiently is a it worrying too. They don't shoot far enough for artillery, and should probably be a bit more resistant in combat that Artillery too...

Colin Hagreen writes: I would have to class them as artillery - despite the range, which you could possibly rationalise as being extended because of the elevation. They can take a stronghold in contact, in fact it is the only element they can move into combat with, which is a point in favour. As to their resistance in combat, the tower itself may be a solid structure, but you could imagine the occupants to be driven off and the tower abandoned under these circumstances.

Jim Davis writes: As an opponent of Cyrus the Great I would propose King Croesus/Kroisos of Lydia:

King MidasMagician @ 4AP1
Mounted ArchersRiders @ 2AP
ChariotsKnights @ 2AP2
King's GuardSpears @ 2AP2
ArchersShooters @ 2AP2
Various FootHordes @ 1AP6


  1. Why not give the towers a designation as to what they are - infantry with cover. They are useless without infantry in them and all they do is protect infantry as they try to get into a castle.

    I'd count them as under heavy cover(?) and leave it at that.

    1. Straight HOTT doesn't have an option for infantry under cover. So the towers could be house-ruled, or one has to work within the troop types available.

      My personal take is the Artillery approach - the longer range is down to height and a relatively unlimited ammo supply, and it gets a decent combat factor whilst being vulnerable if it loses.


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