Medieval Total War Demo

Just wanted to know if anybody else won the last tutorial in the demo? I did after about 5 or 6 tries. It was awesome! I had my soldiers hold the line and engage at will and then used two foot knight brigades at about the right time to counterattack the Persian cavalry. And then they retreated and I won! I felt like Richard the Lion! It was a tough battle but really really engaging.

This game might really really be awesome. The controls are the same as Shogun and the view is the same (which I didn’t like at first) but after awhile I found it fine … and I like the addition of artillery… cant wait for this game. The demo just put it at the top of my list for most wanted, with Age of Mythology second now!


I played through all the tutorials except that one last night. If the demo is any indication I’ll probably buy this game.

One thing that annoyed me though is that it seems that you can’t pan the camera left/right, you can only move forward/backward and turn which I do not like. In any 3d RTS camera control is extremely important, and I can’t see why a simple panning feature could not be implemented.

Another thing that slightly bothered me in the demo was the AI. In the second last mission where you are set up to knock down the walls of a keep and butcher the defendants I saw the AI act stupid for so long. First, After I had knocked down the wooden pallissade why didn’t the AI move back their peasants so that their archers would have had more time to engage as my spearmen moved in? I sent one unit of spearmen up to act as a bait. Just inside the pallisade they engaged two peasant units, and were beating them up soundly as the third peasant unit engaged, I managed to kill all of them pretty easily… My spearmen suffered light casualties to archers, but since they were in the middle of combat it meant little. Instead of sending in the last unit of peasants to get butchered, why didn’t they move it back so that their archers could have gotten a clear shot at my spearmen? Why not move all the peasants back and move their cavalry to the gate so that it could engage my single unit of spearmen in the flank/rear if it tried to charge the peasants?

The AI was plain stupid at making tactical decisions.

Even more stupid. After breaching the entire southern stone wall around the keep with my trebuchet (what is the plural english form of trebuchet BTW?) and catapults, I moved up my archers with spearmen in front. They proceeded to shoot at the 35+ strong unit of cavalry that was positioned just inside the breached wall. My intention was to either provoke the AI to charge my spearmen/archers, or to force him to move his cavalry back. Neither happened. His cavalry just stood around, in close formation I might add, while I shot them full of arrows. I ran out of ammo when his cavalry unit was down to 11 men. I very much hope that this incident does not repeat itself. No unit should ever stand around while I reduce them to a third of their numbers with bowfire.

Both these issues might simple be issues with the tutorial where the enemy is supposed to be beaten and is acting stupid because the designers put some restrictions in on the AI in that mission. I sincerily hope this is the case, as a bad AI kills just about any game for me. I primarily play single-player so the availabilty of human opponents in multiplayer is no excuse IMO.

Played the last mission after coming home from work. I won it on my first attempt. I wouldn’t credit it to my skills as a commander though, it was plain and utter chaos on that battlefield.

Basicly I got lucky. I didn’t move any from the initial setup, I just waited for the enemy. The Saracens charged with Saladin in the lead. He and his bodyguard of knights charged into my front spearmen. I countercharged a unit of foot knights in and they managed to kill Saladin in the first minute of combat. His bodyguard broke soon after.

While I had focused on the combat with Saladin a unit of cavalry and a unit of spearmen (i think) appeared on my left flank which I had not paid any attention too. They killed a unit of spearmen and my archers, teaching me that I need to have a bit tighter deployment and that I should keep an eye on the flanks.

Since Saladin was dead I won every combat after that, but I had suffered heavy losses

I loved that last battle in the demo. Talk of the vastly improved strategic game already had me comitted to buying this one but the final demo scenario sold me. I too managed to beat it the first time but only because I had some experience with the timing in Shogun and there’s a hint in the intro text mentioning that picking a time to strike was crucial.

I set up defenses to stall any attacks on Richard’s heavy knights and used my archers and Genoan sailors to harry Saladin’s skirmishing cavalry. When he came over that dune with his elites and the Arab army began to coalesce around him - I knew it was now or never - and sent my knights to finish off the heathens! Close fight, even after Saladin had been defeated, but - man - that has to have been one of the most cinematic unscripted experiences I’ve ever encountered in a game. The movement of the bedouins and other mounted Arabian troops was just hypnotic and I gasped out loud when I realized just how many were coming over those dunes…

As I’ve commented elsewhere, it felt like a scene from an old French Foreign Legion film with the crumbling castle at our backs and a highly mobile enemy just billowing around the dunes like sand in a storm.

How exactly have they changed the strategic game? The battles in Shogun were great, too, but once I played through the scripted battles I was stuck with a crummy strategy game to get to new ones. How will Medieval fix this?

I’m also curious about how they’re going to implement the strategic portion. I actually enjoyed the strategy map part of Shogun because it reminded me so much of the Shogun board game. Of course, my play style also included using a ton of strategic units, so I’m a bit biased that way.

  • Alan

Alan, it reminded me a little of the Shogun board game (which is really a lot of fun with drunk college boys speaking in lousy Japanese accents), but it was still, fundmentally, Risk with funny pieces and I expect a bit more from a computer game.

And, even though I’m no zealot on the computer cheating thing, the computer cheating drove me up the wall in this one.

But if you were to ask me what to put in its place, I’ll be damned if I know. The AI was not bright enough to succeed on the strategic map without a huge advantage in manpower, and Risk is a classic game for a reason - despite the inevitably prolonged endgame.