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Thread: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

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    Member Member Calypze's Avatar
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    Default How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    I was looking at the custom maps, and saw Termopylae among them. And as I recently watched 300, I felt I wanted to recreate the Battle of Termopylae, within what the engine allows.

    And I'm aware that 300 isn't exactly a historical movie. So yes, I want to play the real thing, as it really was in history.

    So, given that EB takes place a few centuries later, with unit types accordingly, which factions and troops should be used for recreating Termopylae?


    Btw, while we're at it, what good sites are there about ancient Sparta?

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    Slixpoitation Member A Very Super Market's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    I don't really know, I doubt that Spartan and Classical Hoplites in EB have changed much from that period. The Greeks like their hoplites....

    For Persia, Archer-Spearmen, and Archers were definitely used, but there are no chariots for them, nor immortals. I doubt it is possible to get a realistic result anyways, since the AI will most likely attack like idiots.
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    Member Member Africanvs's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    I would use spartan hoplites naturally, and some classical hoplites as well to represent sparta's allies that were present. I've never played that map, but make sure you have enough men to completely block the hot gates. Might want to give them some experience chevrons too. For the enemy I would use Pahlava. Throw a whole bunch of persian archer-spearmen, and parthian spearmen at them. Maybe choose some kind of elite infantry to represent immortals. It's not the easiest thing to do the whole battle, because there were so many phases to it. As for web sites, google Sparta and you'll be swimming in them. I couldn't tell you what the best ones are, I'd recommend reading a book though.
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    Member Member seienchin's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    I played the map and it was really dissapointing. Doesnt seem to have any kind of link to the battle. Probably its just the battlemap from the campain, when you fight between athens and demetrias.
    Anyway, 5 Units of spartans. one of it generals unit vs an army composed of archer spearmen, median cavallery, chariots (There are chariots for seleukia or Pontos in EB), maybe heavy babylonian infantry and you can use syrian archers as immortals. Eastern skirmishers are also a good choice to represent persian infantry.

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    Legatvs Member SwissBarbar's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Yes, I've tried it before. There's no gates.
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    Member Member Phalanx300's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Looking at the number of soldiers on the Greek side(considering 300 men is about 1 unit):

    1 Spartiatai Hoplitai, as the Spartan Hippeis(as far as it really might be the Hippeis, if so a chevron is in place ).

    3 Akontistai, as the Spartan Helots who were forced to fight and probably with a big part of them also fighting till death!

    3 Hoplitai, the Periokoi allies of the Spartans.

    2 Hoplitai, the Mantineans.

    2 Hoplitai, the Tegeans.

    1 Hoplitai, Arcadian Orchomenos, Philians, Mycenaeans. (combined to make 1 unit of Hoplitai)

    3 Hoplitai, other Arcadians.

    1 Hoplitai, Corinthians.

    2 Hoplitai, Thespians.

    1 Hoplitai, Thebans.

    3 Hoplitai, Phocians.

    3 Hoplitai, Opuntian Lokrians.

    -------------

    1 Spartiatai Hoplitai
    3 Akontistai
    21 Hoplitai

    Mmm, ok that didn't work out. For a stack the best would prob be: 1 Spartiatai, 3 Akontistai, 16 Hoplitai.

    But that would been thousands of Persian stacks.

    I'm just gonna keep it with the last battle: 1 Spartiatai, 3 Akontistai, 3 Hoplitai (Thespians + Thebans).

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    Legatvs Member SwissBarbar's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    1 x Spartiatai Hoplitai
    (Representing the Spartans)
    2 x Akontistai
    1 x Sphendonetai
    (Representing the Helots)
    5 x Hoplitai
    5 x Hoplitai Haploi
    5 x Ekdromoi Hoplitai
    (Representing the Hoplitai of the other Greek allies, some weaker, some stronger)

    = 19 Units.


    For the Persians you take the Arche Seleukeia:

    Stack 1

    7 x Persian Archers (representing the Persian archers)
    4 x Eastern Skirmishers (representing the Persian skirmishers)
    5 x Different Axe and Hillmen (Representing different light infantrymen)
    4 x Eastern Cavalry and Persian heavy cavalry (Representing Persian Cavalry)

    Stack 2

    4 x eastern slingers (representing the Persian skirmishers)
    5 x Parthian Spearmen (representing the Immortals)
    11 x Several kinds of light and medium Infantry (Representing the Persian infantry)


    Somewhat like that ^^ I'm not referring to Herodot's numbers, but to the opinion, that the Persions were not THAT much outnumbering the Greeks
    Last edited by SwissBarbar; 04-03-2009 at 13:50.
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    Member Member Africanvs's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    I don't know about these troops numbers. I mean sure, if you take into account the entire Greek force, which if you average between Herodotus's and Diodorus's numbers, you get between 6,000 and 7,000 men of various Polis's, 300 of them Spartans, but the Persian forces were said to have numbered in the millions. I think it's pretty obvious that that wasn't the case, but even one tenth of a million is still 100,000 which wouldn't be too unrealistic.

    The fact that light Persian troops had a hell of a time against the Greek heavy infantry in every case they faced them, it is safe to assume that a force of 7,000 could have held the hot gates for a long time if the Persians hadn't gotten behind them. Besides, at the end of the battle Leonidas dismissed all but about 1,400 men, 300 of them spartans (or however many were left at that point) and the rest Thebans, Helots, and Thespians.

    So if he wants to create the final showdown, you figure 1,400 men vs say 100,000 and you get a pretty staggering ratio. Almost 100:1. Unfortunately each side only has 20 units to work with, so 1 unit of spartans, 2 units of classical hoplites for the Thespians, 1 akontistai for the helots, and 1 unit of classical hoplites for the Thebans, and watch them get slaughtered by a full stack of Persians. You don't need hot gates because they were surrounded at that point anyway. Just yell, "come and get them!" and watch your little force of Greeks get slaughtered.

    If you really want to create the entire battle (which was 7 days, with 3 days of fighting), find someone to play the Persian force for you in an online battle who can attack you in phases, as the actual battle was fought. Start with a ratio of say 2:1 at the beginning. He gets 20 units, you get 10. After he spends 1/4 of his army trying to attack you with chariots, immortals, or whatever, then make half of your army withdraw and let him send everything at you from all sides. That is about as close as you will ever come to Thermopylae in RTW.
    Last edited by Africanvs; 04-03-2009 at 14:45. Reason: typo
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    Villiage Idiot Member antisocialmunky's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    We still need a workable map with impassable terrain features.
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    Downgradez :( Member Iskander 3.1's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Remember that the arrows weren't of much use due to the terrain.
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    Member Member Phalanx300's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    And the fact that the Hoplite was heavilly armoured. A frontal arrow attack wouldn't do much harm, there are only small spots unprotected.

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    Vicious Celt Warlord Member Celtic_Punk's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    due to the massive sheild too.


    you'll never get it with RTW engine... you even need cliff faces... perhaps you can do this in medieval total war2
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    EB TRIBVNVS PLEBIS Member MarcusAureliusAntoninus's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    It is impossible to make immpassible battlemap terrain in RTW. Units can walk up any slope, even sheer cliffs. Thermopylae is possible in M2TW since there is immpassible battlemap terrain. People have already made maps for Thermopylae on M2TW, there was even a thread advertising one over at the TWC EBII forum a month or two back.


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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Awesome, one more reason to look forward to EB II!
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    Villiage Idiot Member antisocialmunky's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    In lude of a good map, just use a river map. River Jordan is nice since it has 2 fords if you want to put some Phocians at the pass.
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    Marzbān-ī Jundīshāpūr Member The Persian Cataphract's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    I hate to be the party-pooper, but there is no way to accurately portray the Persian army with the EB unit rosters provided by Pahlava, Hayasdan and Pontos for several reasons: It's not enough, and this is verified by surveying the array of foot units which attended the battle order at Thermopylae, in Herodotus' narration. This would include several hoplite-types, armoured sickle-men, Phrygians, Lycians... The list practically goes on and on.

    The lack of a proper unit to accurately represent the Achaemenid Immortals in campaign apparel and equipment is by itself stopping the prospects of even a "barebones" rendition of the battle and known regiments recorded in combat. Medeans on the other hand could be represented by the Parthian Spearmen and Iranian archer-spearmen. Mountaineers trying to circumvent the pass could be represented by Iranian axemen. Persian heavy-archers and Cardaces hoplites could in combination pass for the platoon-like baivarabam of foot Immortals... The problem is that the Persian heavy-archers are not fit for any type of combat, while the Cardaces are practically hoplites. Uniforms carried by the mentioned troops are anachronistic to the relevant era and time.

    In fact the only three units which would still adhere to Medean uniform would be the aforementioned Parthian spearmen, Iranian archer-spearmen and the Iranian axemen. The Immortals themselves would have required two different units, a larger bodyguard which carried spears with silver-ware "apples" as counter-weights, while a distinguished ceremonial unit dressed in a particularly lavish manner would utilize spears with golden counter-weights. The mod Rise of Persia (RoP) does an excellent job portraying the warrior's hierarchy in the Achaemenid military apparatus.

    And this excludes any cavalry which would have joined the expedition, so... At what point does one intend to capture the battle? The very start, before there was a proper clash? Or to restrict this to purely "Herodotian" parameters? Or to just recreate history as it unfolded proper?

    In any case, EB is not really optimal for this particular battle, notwithstanding that the Spartans in EB are vastly different from the Spartans of the Classical era, especially in attire.


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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Building on what TPC said, remember that none of the EB hoplites carry bronze armor (except maybe the Spartans, I can't remember though), and that leads to them getting slaughtered way too quickly by "Persian" infantry.

    Put a unit of Hoplitai on a bridge and eventually a few units of Pantodapoi will overwhelm it. And that's not to say what will happen if they get into the flanks...
    Last edited by desert; 04-07-2009 at 01:04.

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    iudex thervingiorum Member athanaric's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusAureliusAntoninus View Post
    It is impossible to make immpassible battlemap terrain in RTW. Units can walk up any slope, even sheer cliffs.
    Aha. That explains why my Lonchophoroi Hippeis started climbing the walls of the Imperial Palace (or whatever it was) in Roma.




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    Member Member Calypze's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Thanks for the replies everyone.

    Unfortunately, it seems like both AI, the map and RTW battle rules make it an impossible endeavor.

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    Member Member seienchin's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    There is impossible terain in RTW. first of all there is water, then there are big trees and then there are some stone formations impossible to climb and of course building like houses etc.
    To recreate a Thermopylae like Battlefield you just have to combine things, but of course it seems impossibel to make it historical correct.

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    Default AW: Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Throw yourself from a cliff's edge.

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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    After several times read these posts, I've allready tried that, and well, most of the time, without chevrons... the Lakedaimons and their ally would be easily slaughtered from a cowardly persian general that ordered his troops to wait and attack them with massive missile volleys (the Alex AI actually did it!!!)...

    To made the spartans as a battle turning unit, I wolud give the 2 (or maybe 3) Hitpoints for them...

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    Member Member seienchin's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cute Wolf View Post
    After several times read these posts, I've allready tried that, and well, most of the time, without chevrons... the Lakedaimons and their ally would be easily slaughtered from a cowardly persian general that ordered his troops to wait and attack them with massive missile volleys (the Alex AI actually did it!!!)...

    To made the spartans as a battle turning unit, I wolud give the 2 (or maybe 3) Hitpoints for them...
    I noticed that Live points dont count against arrows. (Thats why in Lotr TW Sauron with 7 Live points easily gets slaughtered by archers ^^) You rather should give the m more shield defense.

  24. #24
    Member Member Callicles's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to recreate the Battle of Termopylae?

    Use a bridge map.

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