Results 1 to 26 of 26

Thread: Mercenaries, any thoughts or tips?

  1. #1
    Member Member Crash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    449

    Default

    I tend to use mercenaries quite a bit, especially if I have the cash flow to hire and maintain them, and they are available in an emergency. I guess this is fairly obvious, but what do you do with them when the emergency has past?

    Should you keep them because you have already paid for them? If the units are down to a few men I sometimes keep them around for garrison duty. I also use leftover mercenary units to make harrassing suicide attacks on the enemy rather than just disbanding them? Is there any negative consequence to that?

    Any and all opinions, experiences or tips on using mercenaries are welcome.

  2. #2
    Member Member Brother Derfel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Corinium
    Posts
    669

    Default

    I have a few tips for mercanaries, although i have started to use them less than I once did.

    I only use them for these circumstances:

    1. I need alot of troops in an area fast (i.e that year or the year after). Used to either quash a rebellion or to warn off invaders.

    2. There are good troops available in the Inn during the early period that I can not yet build. I only use this if perhaps I need some horse archers or a special unit.


    In both circumstances I never keep the Mercanaries for longer than they are needed. In the first case, i will disband them all as soon a i have enough ordinary troops in the area. and for the second case as soon as I can build the unit or an equivalent or better one.

    Mercenaries drain too much support to keep them around for long if you can replace them.
    'Odi et ammo, excrucior' - I love and I hate, it hurts.

    'Excretus est ex altitudine' - Shat upon from a great hight.


  3. #3
    smell the glove Senior Member Major Robert Dump's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    OKRAHOMER
    Posts
    7,424

    Default

    They are generally only found in provinces that historically had a lot of action or have had a lot of action in your campaign...

    They have lower loyalty, in general, and you cant give them titles...if you use them as garrisons make sure a good general is nearby. I only keep them around if they are near full, or half full for cav, as the added cost is sometimes too much.

    Plus, if I'm not mistaken, dont they sometimes combine with other depleted merc units that have been disbanded? I swear once I disbanded a unit of 10, and a few turns later I checked and it was still 10, then I disbanded another and the next turn they were 45 or something. It was wierd.

    When I do hire them I usually get them for emergence defense or use them for shock troops in a territory where I am not concerned about incurring losses. The good things about intentionally wearing down yourr own army is that it saves yopu money while damaging the enemy. A bunch of units just sitting around serves no purpose but bankruptcy.

    Good luck.
    Baby Quit Your Cryin' Put Your Clown Britches On!!!

  4. #4
    Member Member Dr_No's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    somewhere over the rainbow
    Posts
    99

    Default

    i think the combining of merc groups stopped after the last patch....

    if i do hire them i normally go for shock troops or units i can't train- gets expensive if i use them as line troops, and seems a bit out of character.

    also - mercs have low loyalty but has anyone ever noticed a merc army being bribed or rebelling?

    dr_no

  5. #5

    Default

    Using them as garrison troops seems unwise - expensive and an invitation to bribery.

    Does the AI actually try to bribe your units? I have noticed sometimes my generals acquire man of honour/ unbribable virtues but not clear why.

    I generally use them as necessary for attacks in the early game when there are not enought units around and later to make up specific weaknesses eg playing almos hiring any Italian inf I can get, or seige engines. Also tend to use them in the front in battle so they take most casualties reducing costs.

    btw if mercs are taken prisoner do they get ransomed back?

  6. #6

    Default

    you can purchase a mercenary army and use it as a raiding party, buy them, attack a few provinces asap. Pillage everything and hope you get your money's wrth .

    I also like to buy units which normally wouldnt be available.
    Abandon all hope.

  7. #7

    Default

    The armies with which a prince defends his state are made up of his own people, or of mercenaries, or auxillaries, or of mixed troops. Mercenaries and auxillaries are useless and dangerous. And if a Prince holds on to his state by means of mercenary armies, he will never be stable or secure; for they are disunited, ambitious, without discipline, disloyal; they are brave among friends; among enemies they are cowards; they have no fear of God, they keep no faith with men; and your downfall is deferred only so long as the attack is deferred; and i peace you are plundered by them, in war by your enemies. The reason for this is that they have no other love nor other motive to keep them in the field than a meagre wage, which is not enough to make them want to die for you. They love being your soldiers when you are not making war, but when war comes they either flee or desert

    Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince, p.41-42, 1513

  8. #8
    Member Member Nowake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Bucharest
    Posts
    2,126

    Default

    Really, don't keep mercenaries if you can't find a quick use for them.


  9. #9
    Typing from the Saddle Senior Member Doug-Thompson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Fayetteville, AR
    Posts
    2,455

    Default

    I like to use them early for shock troops, but that's risky. It's perfectly possible to build an inn and have nothing to hire for a turn or two, depending on the province.
    "In war, then, let your great object be victory, not lengthy campaigns."

  10. #10
    Member Member Portuguese Rebel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Portugal
    Posts
    1,401

    Talking

    There are 4 times in wich i consider hiring mercs:

    1- Emergency defence;

    2- Fast unexpected backstabbing atack (my favourite )

    3- High quality troops that i can't produce right now

    4- Siege engines (way too expensive in time to produce).


    There are some factors that control the amount of mercs you have in your inns. Some buildings increase the amount others decrease it. As a thumbs rule: Merchant houses and ports increase mercs, Law related buildings decrease amoutn of mercs (castles, militia...)
    Legacy for the airwaves.

  11. #11
    Member Member ziphnor's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    67

    Default

    I use them in tricky attacks where i dont want to loose my own troops. They are cheap to buy, but expensive to maintain, that leads me to believe the most efficient use of them is as cannon fodder/shock troops in attacks against well equipped major armies. Whatever remains the next turn i sack

  12. #12
    Member Member Simovek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Massachusetts, USA
    Posts
    104

    Default

    Sometimes I create total mercanary armies. Like in one campaign as English, I was fighting just about all of Europe. The Almohads were attacking and had large armies. So I raised an entire stack of mercenaries and reconquered Spain with them, they only got a little help from some cheap urban milita and militia sergeants I could send to them.

    They are good to hold the line if you are in desperate need of troops and can't get troops there fast enough. Don't keep them for too long though. They are insanely expensive to keep. Hire them, conquer, disband and replace with your own troops.

  13. #13
    Freedom Fighters Clan LadyAnn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Somewhere unexpected
    Posts
    1,310

    Default

    The AI does keep track of how much troops you have, and react to that. You can't see AI troops, but AI knows about you.

    Building Inns and save cash, then hire a lot of Merc., and then swarm the neighbor with them is one of the usage.

    However, there is some caveat already mentioned. Mercenary would not come to a particular Inn if for a long time, there is nobody hired there for a while. So you better hire a couple of unit, use them and disband them, etc. Then the Merc. will come to your Inns.

    Annie
    AggonyJade of the Brotherhood of Aggony, [FF]ladyAn or [FF]Jade of the Freedom Fighters

  14. #14
    Member Member Crash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    449

    Default

    I think that I have seen mercs get ransomed back, I'll check and see the next time I have mercs in army that lost a battle.

    I have to check out the effect of buildings on merc availability, I never realized that before.

    Looks like the general rule of thumbs are to buy only merc units of types you don't already have, then burn them up as soon as you can to increase your return on investment.

  15. #15
    Barbarian of the north Member Magraev's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    929

    Default

    As mentioned above the exception is siege engines. They aren't too expensive since there are only few men in the unit, and you can get them immediately - even mangonels.
    Nope - no sig what so ever.

  16. #16
    AKA Leif 3000 TURBO Senior Member Leet Eriksson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    n0rg3
    Posts
    3,510

    Default

    yeah you can spout mangonels and trebuchets to seige a castle in no time(since seige is more important in VI).rather than waiting 2-3 turns to build one.
    Texas is Gods country! - SFTS
    SFTS = The rest =


  17. #17
    For TosaInu and the Org Senior Member The_Emperor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    The United Kingdom of Great Britain
    Posts
    4,354

    Default

    My most common use of mercs is to create diversion when I am invading a key province.

    I send in my Main attack force after the primary target province, then I'd quickly raise a stack or two of Mercs and attack nearby provinces. (or to attack and raid well developed provinces deep in enemy territory via a naval assault)

    The cool thing about Mercs is that they are so expendable

    This way the enemy has to keep forces around to engage the merc forces. Hell even if the battle the Mercs are fighting is Lost they still managed to weaken the enemy army with my own professional troops busy winning elsewhere.



    "Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it."

  18. #18
    Member Member Hamhock2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Panama
    Posts
    14

    Wink

    I heard Krast likes to put a little butter and oregano on them, put them in the oven at 350 degrees for about an hour, and serve them with warm bread and a bowl of soup

    Edit: I deleted your double post Hamhock. - Gregoshi




  19. #19
    Member Member Crash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    449

    Default

    The AI does ransom back mercenaries. I attacked the Byzantines and the Mongols with all merc armies. I knew they would lose, but mercs are dispensable, right? After the battle I was asked if I wanted to pay ransom for the captured mercs. My answer? Well, you use mercs because they are dispensable...

    My merc army of Italian Infantry and Pavise Arbalesters and crossbowmen set up a defensive position on top of a tall hill and cut down many brave Mongolian warriors who were trying to shoot and charge uphill. The mercs finally routed in end, but only because the Mongolians could bring wave after wave of units.

  20. #20

    Default

    I like them early on when I cant train anything better. Mercenaries hold the front lines also....because if they die I dont have to pay them. Just be carefull not to have all mercs in a province or they might decide to rule it themselves.
    Croaker

  21. #21
    Member Member swifticus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Manchester
    Posts
    14

    Default

    I,ve found very useful to buy mercs to use as shock troops then follow up with regulars with better loyalty

    Keep the few mercs with decent loyalty and throw the rest into the nearest meat grinder ASAP Assaulting castles etc...

    You have paid for them make them earn their pay

  22. #22

    Default

    Yeah, I find that my mercs die a lot in Castle attacks

    Like everyone says, they are expendable and they make very effective cannon fodder.

    Some people have said they like to use them for suicide attacks on enemy provinces...just be careful doing that, it might increase an enemy generals ratings or give him a good Virtue...
    "I request permanent reassignment to the Gallic frontier. Nay, I demand reassignment. Perhaps it is improper to say so, but I refuse to fight against the Greeks or Macedonians any more. Give my command to another, for I cannot, I will not, lead an army into battle against a civilized nation so long as the Gauls survive. I am not the young man I once was, but I swear before Jupiter Optimus Maximus that I shall see a world without Gauls before I take my final breath."

    Senator Augustus Verginius

  23. #23
    Member Member Crash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    449

    Default

    That's a good point, the opposing general will gain a command rating when they win the battle against the merc suicide attack. Fortunately, my Pavise Arbalesters killed the Mongol general in the battle. One of the reasons you always want arbalesters shooting at the enemy general

  24. #24
    Member Member Mamushi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    West Palm Beach, FL
    Posts
    146

    Default

    Two words.. Meat Shields... They are great for softening up a providence that is chock full of enemy,and has been said,do a great job in castle assaults and siege sitting,while my regular troops move on the the conquering buisness...

    I am a disciple The master has noticed me :P


    Diplomacy is the art of saying nice doggy until you can find a rock.
    Will Rogers

  25. #25
    Moderator Moderator Gregoshi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Central Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    12,969

    Default

    ..Meat Shields...

    That has my vote for the New Term of the Month.
    This space intentionally left blank

  26. #26

    Default

    I think that hiring mercenaries is iuseful if you can hire siege artillery, cause this ones take too much time to train. But they are also useful in desperate defense.

    >>----> Z0eL

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Single Sign On provided by vBSSO