Age of Empires Series Wiki
Advertisement

A Barbarian Betrothal is the fourth scenario in the Attila the Hun campaign in Age of Empires II: The Conquerors. It is based on Attila's invasion of Gaul in 451 A.D.

Intro[]

The Western Roman emperor had a sister named Honoria, who after weary years of confinement to her parlor, made the preposterous decision to send a letter to Attila the Hun. She asked him to marry her. One suspects Honoria did not know what she was getting into.

Attila was plentifully supplied with wives, but he immediately saw the advantage that such a union could put him in. Suddenly, his plans changed. He would not invade the Eastern Roman Empire at Constantinople, but the Western Empire, at Rome. Indeed, he claimed half of the Western Empire as his dowry.

Attila sent the Huns to march across the Rhine River, and made alliances with the other barbarian chieftains. Some, namely the Burgundians and the Ostrogoths, joined the Hunnic confederation, while others, such as the Visigoths, sought to seek Roman favor by opposing the Huns.

When Attila entered the Roman province of Gaul, he could claim that he merely sought by force what was his by right of betrothal to Honoria.

The Western Roman emperor had a sister named Honoria, who after weary years of confinement to her parlor, made the preposterous decision to send a letter to Attila the Hun. She asked him to marry her. One suspects Honoria did not know what she was getting into.

Attila was plentifully supplied with wives, but he immediately saw the advantage that such a union could put him in. Suddenly, his plans changed. He would not invade the Eastern Roman Empire at Constantinople, but the Western Empire, at Rome. Indeed, he claimed half of the Western Empire as his dowry.

Attila sent the Huns to march across the Rhine River, and made alliances with the other barbarian chieftains. Some, namely the Burgundians and the Ostrogoths, joined the Hun confederation, while others, such as the Visigoths, sought to seek Roman favor by opposing the Huns.

When Attila entered Gaul, what we now call France, he could claim that he merely sought by force what was his by right of betrothal to Honoria.

Scenario instructions[]

Starting conditions[]

Differences between difficulty levels[]

  • On standard difficulty, the player starts with Murder Holes researched and Orléans does not attack unprovoked.
  • The size of the Western Roman Empire's army depends on the difficulty level (around 50/100/200 on standard/moderate/hard).

Objectives[]

  • Defeat Orléans.
  • Defeat Metz.
  • Defeat Burgundy.
    • OPTIONAL: Burgundy is willing to join you, if you can convince them you are trustworthy. First they want a tribute of 500 gold.
    • OPTIONAL: Burgundy will join you if you build a Castle within the flagged area of their town within 10 minutes.
  • (Once Orléans loses its Town Center) Defeat the Roman Army.

Hints[]

  1. The Huns are restricted to a population limit of 150 but can finally advance to the Imperial Age.
  2. Your forces begin scattered. Look for a good place for an initial camp while avoiding wolves. In the dead of winter, forage sites are hard to come by, but there are hungry deer to be found.
  3. You cannot match the Frankish technology, but you do have the strength of numbers. Unleash the horde upon the cities of Gaul!

Scouts[]

  • After invading Gaul, the Huns (1, Yellow) begin scattered. They must regroup while avoiding stumbling too close to Burgundy (2, Purple) in the south, Metz (3, Red) to the north or the great city of Orléans (4, Cyan) to the northwest.
  • Burgundy trains archers, rams, and infantry, but is not well-defended and might fall to an early attack. The Burgundians are easily intimidated and might even be persuaded to join the Hunnic cause.
  • Metz makes up for Burgundy's weakness with an army of Knights and Throwing Axemen. Their Castle and proximity to Orléans offers them some defense.
  • Orléans is a walled city protected by Towers and Castles. Its army of Spearmen, Knights, and Monks may prove a challenge for the Huns.
  • Scouts also report that the Western Roman Empire is sending Aetius' army to reinforce Gaul. The Romans have no town in the area, but their legions and cavalry could strike at any time.

  1. Your forces begin scattered. Look for a good place for an initial camp while avoiding wolves. In the dead of winter, forage sites are hard to come by, but there are hungry deer to be found.
  2. You cannot match the Frankish technology, but you do have the strength of numbers. Unleash the horde upon the cities of Gaul!

Scouts[]

  • After invading Gaul, the Huns begin scattered. They must regroup while avoiding stumbling too close to Burgundy (purple) in the south, Metz (red) to the north or the great city of Orléans (cyan) to the northwest.
  • Burgundy trains archers, rams, and infantry, but is not well-defended and might fall to an early attack. The Burgundians are easily intimidated and might even be persuaded to join the Hunnic cause.
  • Metz makes up for Burgundy's weakness with an army of Knights and Throwing Axemen. Their Castle and proximity to Orléans offers them some defense.
  • Orléans is a walled city protected by Towers and Castles. Its army of Spearmen, Knights, and Monks may prove a challenge for the Huns.
  • Scouts also report that the Western Roman Empire is sending Aetius' army to reinforce Gaul. The Romans have no town in the area, but their legions and Cataphracts could strike at any time.

Players[]

Player[]

  • Player (Huns AoE2 Huns): Starts with the some Villagers and Scout Cavalry units scattered in the southeastern corner of the map, as well as moderate resources but no buildings of their own.

Enemy → Potential Ally[]

  • Burgundy (Burgundians AoE2 Burgundians (Franks AoE2 Franks before Lords of the West)): An unfortified town in the south. They mostly train Crossbowmen, and later on also a few swordsmen and Battering Rams. They don't advance beyond the Castle Age and are not much of a threat, but if they switch sides, they are not much of help either.

Enemies[]

  • Orléans (Franks AoE2 Franks): A large, fortified city to the north, with a extramural Castle in a plateau south of the city and a Monastery in a hill east of it. They will attack the latest but field the largest and most powerful army, consisting of Paladins, Trebuchets, Elite Throwing Axemen, Scorpions, Halberdiers, and Monks.
  • Western Roman Empire (Romans AoE2 Romans (Byzantines AoE2 Byzantines before Return of Rome)): has no base in this area, but its army is spawned in the northwest after Orléans' Town Center is razed. Their army consists of Legionaries (Champions in The Conquerors) and Elite Centurions (Elite Cataphracts in The Conquerors), and marches into Orléans. In the Definitive Edition they will then march on the players base if undefeated, while in The Conquerors they become largely inactive instead.

Strategy[]

The first task is to find a place to build a base and make use of the Huns' no House bonus to create as many Villagers and boom as fast as possible. One of the best options is north of the starting place but still south of the river, because it contains Gold and Stone Mines, is close to two Wild Boars, and has irregular terrain that can be exploited to maximize the attack of fortifications. A Castle should be constructed north or northwest of the Town Center, and upgraded as soon as possible to protect against incoming Frankish attacks, which will only become stronger and more frequent with time. This will require a University and Blacksmith built soon. Use Palisade Walls to patch up spaces between the woods and direct enemies towards Castle fire, because the AI has trouble identifying them as something to destroy, and wood is plentiful in comparison to stone. Next build a Market for the incoming Burgundian request, Barracks, Archery Range, and Stable for a diverse trash army of Spearmen, Skirmishers, and Scout Cavalry to finish the Frankish armies that might threaten the Castle, plus a second Castle to support the first after the Burgundians are sorted out. Scouts can also be used to raid Burgundy's archers and Villagers before they mount an attack, though this is difficult and micro-intensive.

Orleans, 451 AD

The city of Orléans is the player's main enemy.

Though the starting objectives are to defeat Burgundy, Orléans, and Metz, it is possible to intimidate Burgundy into offering an alliance by destroying its Town Center, or simply waiting out until they make their offer. They demand a tribute of 500 gold, and then for the player to build a Castle within the flagged area in their town before 10 minutes. The real benefits of this are getting rid of an enemy and gaining a few more resources by exploiting the mines west of Burgundy and trading with it. Though Burgundy will send forces against Metz and Orléans from then on, they are no match to them. In consequence, make sure to never lose the starting base, because while it is possible to regroup behind Burgundy, this will most likely result in Metz and Orléans sweeping through it and destroying the new base before it is strong again.

With Burgundy controlled, it is time to build and upgrade an army to the fullest and go on a proper offensive against Metz and then Orléans, using the Huns' powerful Cavalry Archers, Siege Rams, and Trebuchets. Orléans' Monks are particularly obnoxious, so be sure to build a Monastery and research Faith and Heresy to reduce their power. Once Orléans' Town Center has been destroyed, the Western Roman Empire will spawn west of Orléans, so it is advised to destroy other buildings before, and to strategically build walls, towers and Castles before the Romans arrive to decimate their forces, since they have no siege weapons. The latest version of Atheism, which reduces the gold generated by Relics, is useful in this scenario, due to four being held in a Monastery near Orléans' Town Center and used to pay for Monks, Paladins, and Trebuchets. Alternatively, since the scenario starts with those four Relics to the west of the city (Orléans will pick them up one by one right in the beginning), the player can anticipate themselves by sending the starting Scout Cavalry to guard three of the four Relics (the other one is in a Tower's range) and then pick them up with Monks.

Roman Army in Gaul AoE2DE nuRoR

The Roman army marching to defend Orléans.

Since the Western Roman Empire brings an army consisting of around 200 units (50/100 on standard/moderate difficulty), it may be a good idea to save before destroying Orléans' Town Center.

Note that in The Conquerors, it is possible that the scenario doesn't finish even after seemingly defeating the Western Roman Army, because of rogue Western Roman units escaping to the countryside and running all over the map. The player needs to find such units and kill them in order to completely defeat the Western Roman army. In many cases, the rogue unit will be an Elite Cataphract, and it can only be chased and killed with a Scout Cavalry or Cavalry Archer, as it prefers to run away rather than fight back. This problem is fixed in the Definitive Edition, because the Western Roman Army will resign when most of its units are killed.

Outro[]

The old priest hung his head as he related what happened next, and I could tell the weight of the memories caused him great sorrow.

Attila would stop at nothing until he reached his fiancée, Honoria, and his goal of ruling the Roman Empire. The ravaging of Gaul was unprecedented.

People were tortured, their bodies torn asunder by wild horses, or their bones crushed under the weight of rolling wagons. Their unburied limbs were abandoned on the public roads as prey to dogs.

Heads on stakes stretched from Gaul clear back to the Danube River, from whence the Huns had come. They lay siege to Orléans, for Attila had learned much of siegecraft since he had faced the walls of Constantinople.

But as the Huns set to their fell task, a great cloud of dust appeared on the horizon. Aetius and the Roman army had come.

Trivia[]

  • It is possible to kill the Western Roman Empire's placeholder unit (a Samurai) located behind the forest at the very top of the map before defeating Burgundy, Orléans and Metz, the Western Roman Empire will be defeated prematurely; their army will still spawn, but because they were already counted as "defeated" beforehand, the player only needs to defeat the final Frankish town before they cause any significant damage to their forces.
  • In the Definitive Edition, it is possible to walk over the ice to reach the river island from the north without using the bridges.

Historical comparison[]

  • Though this is a fully snowed winter map, the real campaign took place in spring, with Metz falling on April 7 and Orléans being besieged in May. The change is probably due to avoiding making the scenario a retread of the Joan of Arc campaign's second scenario, which takes place in the same general area.
  • The possible alliance with the Burgundians is probably inspired by the fact that some Burgundians fought for the Huns and others for the Romans.
    • The name of the scenario makes it also a reference to the epic German poem The Nibelungenlied in which Attila weds the sister of the Burgundian King.
    • Coincidentally, the Burgundians are represented by Franks (as in the Joan of Arc and Barbarossa campaigns), and while not referenced, the Franks were also divided between two claimants to the crown: one supported by Attila, and another by Aetius.
    • As of the Western Europe update in January 2021, Burgundy is represented by the Burgundians, a new civilization designed to highlight the deep Frankish divisions of the time; although similar to the Franks, they have a different focus and slightly different strengths and weaknesses.
    • The original Burgundians were an Eastern Germanic tribe that disappeared shortly after this scenario. Burgundy would be more accurately represented by the Goths instead of the Franks or the Burgundians.
  • Though represented by the Franks, Orléans was ruled at the time by the Alans, who appear as Vikings in the following scenario (Huns in the Definitive Edition). Coincidentally, both players use the cyan color. In the same vein, Metz was still under Roman control in 451 and passed into the hands of the Franks about the end of the 5th century.
  • Historically, the Huns failed to enter Orléans, but the siege drew long enough for the Alans to negotiate surrendering the city. The arrival of Aetius's army prevented this, and Attila withdrew north while his Gepid vassals covered his retreat. Aetius destroyed the Gepids and pursued Attila until they fought at the Catalaunian Fields.

Gallery[]

Campaigns in Age of Empires II
AoE2-DLCicon-0 The Age of Kings
CampaignIcon-WilliamDE William Wallace Difficulty easy PC: Marching and Fighting · Feeding the Army · Training the Troops · Research and Technology · The Battle of Stirling · Forge an Alliance · The Battle of Falkirk
Xbox: Preparing for Battle · The Battle of Stirling · Forge an Alliance · The Battle of Falkirk
CampaignIcon-JoanDE Joan of Arc Difficulty easy An Unlikely Messiah · The Maid of Orleans · The Cleansing of the Loire · The Rising · The Siege of Paris · A Perfect Martyr
CampaignIcon-SaladinDE Saladin Difficulty medium An Arabian Knight · Lord of Arabia · The Horns of Hattin · The Siege of Jerusalem · Jihad! · The Lion and the Demon
CampaignIcon-KhanDE Genghis Khan Difficulty easy Crucible · A Life of Revenge · Into China · The Horde Rides West · The Promise · Pax Mongolica
CampaignIcon-BarbarossaDE Barbarossa Difficulty easy Holy Roman Emperor · Henry the Lion · Pope and Antipope · The Lombard League · Barbarossa's March · The Emperor Sleeping
AoE2-DLCicon-1 The Conquerors
CampaignIcon-AttilaDE Attila the Hun Difficulty easy The Scourge of God · The Great Ride · The Walls of Constantinople · A Barbarian Betrothal · The Catalaunian Fields · The Fall of Rome
CampaignIcon-ElCidDE El Cid Difficulty easy Brother against Brother · The Enemy of my Enemy · The Exile of the Cid · Black Guards · King of Valencia · Reconquista
CampaignIcon-MontezumaDE Montezuma Difficulty easy Reign of Blood · The Triple Alliance · Quetzalcoatl · La Noche Triste · The Boiling Lake · Broken Spears
Battles of the Conquerors Icon Battles of the Conquerors Tours · Vinlandsaga · Hastings · Manzikert · Agincourt · Lepanto · Kyoto · Noryang Point
Hidden scenario The Saxon Revolt
AoE2-DLCicon-2 The Forgotten
CampaignIcon-AlaricDE Alaric Difficulty hard HD: All Roads Lead to a Besieged City · Legionaries on the Horizon! · Emperor of the West · The Sack of Rome
DE: The Battle of the Frigidus · Razing Hellas · The Belly of the Beast · The Giant Falls · A Kingdom of Our Own
CampaignIcon-DraculaDE Vlad Dracula Difficulty medium The Dragon Spreads His Wings · The Return of the Dragon · The Breath of the Dragon · The Moon Rises · The Night Falls
CampaignIcon-BariDE Bari Difficulty medium HD: Arrival at Bari · The Rebellion of Melus · The Great Siege
DE: Arrival at Bari · The Rebellion of Melus · Loose Ends · The Best Laid Plans · The Onrushing Tide
CampaignIcon-SforzaDE Sforza Difficulty medium HD: An End and a Beginning · O Fortuna · The Hand of a Daughter · The Ambrosian Republic · A New Duke of Milan
DE: Mercenaries and Masters · His Own Man · Prodigal Son · Blood and Betrayal · Viva Sforza!
El Dorado Icon El Dorado (removed) Tales of La Canela · The Split · The Amazones · The Cannibals
CampaignIcon-PrithvirajDE Prithviraj Difficulty medium HD: A Promising Warrior · The Digvijaya · The Elopement · Battles of Tarain
DE: Born of Fire · The Digvijaya · Hand of a Princess · The Fate of India · The Legend of Prithviraj
Battles of the Forgotten Icon Battles of the Forgotten Bukhara · Dos Pilas · York · Honfoglalás · Langshan Jiang · Kurikara · Cyprus · Bapheus · Kaesong (cut)
AoE2-DLCicon-3 The African Kingdoms
CampaignIcon-TariqIbnZiyadDE Tariq ibn Ziyad Difficulty medium The Battle of Guadalete · Consolidation and Subjugation · Divide and Conquer · Crossing the Pyrenees · Razzia
CampaignIcon-SundjataDE Sundjata Difficulty medium Hunted · The Sting of the Scorpion · Djeriba Gold · Blood on the River Bank · The Lion's Den
CampaignIcon-FranciscoDE Francisco de Almeida Difficulty hard The Old World · Lion of Africa · Ruins of Empires · Estado da India · A Son's Blood
CampaignIcon-YoditDE Yodit Difficulty hard Path of Exile · The Right Partner · A Fallen Crown · Broken Stelae · Welcome Home
AoE2-DLCicon-4 Rise of the Rajas
CampaignIcon-GajahMadaDE Gajah Mada Difficulty medium The Story of Our Founders · Unconditional Loyalty · The Oath to Unify Nusantara · Serving the New King · The Pasunda Bubat Tragedy
CampaignIcon-SuryavarmanIDE Suryavarman I Difficulty easy Usurpation · Quelling the Rebellion · A Dangerous Mission · Challenging a Thalassocracy · Nirvanapada
CampaignIcon-BayinnaungDE Bayinnaung Difficulty hard The Burmese Tigers · The Mandalay Cobra · The Royal Peacock · The White Elephant · The Old Tiger
CampaignIcon-LeLoiDE Le Loi Difficulty hard The Dai Viet Uprising · The Mountain Siege · The Battle at Hanoi · Reaching South · A Three-Pronged Attack · The Final Fortress
AoEIIDE icon Definitive Edition
CampaignIcon-TheArtOfWar The Art of War Difficulty easy Early Economy · Booming · Rushing the Enemy · Fast Castle Age · Defending Against A Rush · Land Battle · Destroying a Castle · Naval Battle · Battle Formations
CampaignIcon-Pachacuti Pachacuti Difficulty medium A New Power Arises · The Field of Blood · War of Brothers · The Falcon's Tent · Like Father, Like Son
00 historical battles normal Historical Battles Difficulty easy Scn 09 bukhara normal Bukhara · Scn 10 dos pilas normal Dos Pilas · Scn 01 tours normal Tours · Scn 11 york normal York · Scn 12 honfoglalas normal Honfoglalás · Scn 02 vinlandsaga normal Vinlandsaga · Scn 03 hastings normal Hastings · Scn 04 manzikert normal Manzikert · Scn 13 kurikara normal Kurikara · Scn 14 cyprus normal Cyprus · Scn 15 bapheus normal Bapheus · Scn 16 lake poyang normal Lake Poyang · Scn 05 agincourt normal Agincourt · Scn 06 lepanto normal Lepanto · Scn 07 kyoto normal Kyoto · Scn 08 noryang point normal Noryang Point
Event scenarios E3 2019 Demo · Mongol Raiders · Barbarossa Brawl · Mangudai Madness · The Siege (co-op)
AoE2-DLCicon-5 The Last Khans
CampaignIcon-Tamerlane Tamerlane Difficulty easy Amir of Transoxiana · Gurkhan of Persia · Harbinger of Destruction · Sultan of Hindustan · Scourge of the Levant · A Titan Amongst Mortals
CampaignIcon-Ivaylo Ivaylo Difficulty hard A Most Unlikely Man · An Unlikely Alliance · Tsar of the Bulgars · Echoes of Heroes · Where the One-Eyed Man is King
CampaignIcon-Kotyan Kotyan Khan Difficulty hard Raising the Banners · The Battle at the Kalka River · Saving the Huts · Blood for Blood · A New Home
AoE2Icon-LordsWest Lords of the West
CampaignIcon-EdwardDE Edward Longshanks Difficulty easy Vain Ambition · A Man of God · Of Castles and Kings · Toom Tabard · Hammer of the Scots
CampaignIcon-DukesDE Grand Dukes Difficulty medium A Kingdom Divided · The Wolf and the Lion · The Cleansing of Paris · Unholy Marriage · The Hook and Cod Wars · The Maid Falls
CampaignIcon-HautevillesDE The Hautevilles Difficulty hard Guiscard Arrives · Roger in Sicily · Bohemond and the Emperor · Bohemond in the East · Wonder of the World
Dawn of the Dukes icon Dawn of the Dukes
Algirdas icon Algirdas and Kestutis Difficulty easy Family Affairs · No Man's Land · The Tatar Yoke · A Worthy Opponent · In the Shadow of the Throne
32 jadwiga normal Jadwiga Difficulty hard The Matter of the Crown · Star of the Poles · Duel of the Dukes · The Siege of Vilnius · Vytautas' Crusade · The Fruits of Her Labor
Jan Zizka icon Jan Zizka Difficulty medium The One-Eyed Wanderer · Courage and Coin · The Iron Lords · The Golden City · The Emperor's Fury · Warrior of God
AoE2Icon-DynastiesIndia Dynasties of India
Babur Icon Babur Difficulty easy Pearl of the East · The Last Timurids · Into India · The Battle of Panipat · The Rajputs
Rajendra Icon Rajendra Difficulty hard The Successor · Deeds of the Father · Rising Star · Sacred Waters · Slaying the Vritra
Devapala Icon Devapala Difficulty easy Dissatisfaction · Desire · Renunciation · Liberation? · Enlightenment
AoE2Icon-MountainRoyals The Mountain Royals
Ismail Icon Ismail Difficulty medium The Red Hats · Road to Royalty · Alexander Safavi · The Fallen Amir · Khata'i
Thoros Icon Thoros II Difficulty easy Outlawed · The Emperor's Revenge · Caught in the Crossfire · Bloody Crestwaves · Of Turncoats and Traitors
Tamar Icon Tamar Difficulty hard Takeover · Yury's Revenge · The Protectorate · Tamar the Builder · The Queen in the Panther's Skin
Aoe2 hb Victors and Vanquished
VictorsAndVanquished Campaign Icon
Victors and Vanquished
Difficulty easy Scn 23 charlemagne Charlemagne · Scn 39 drake Drake · Scn 26 finehair Finehair · Scn 25 ironside Ironside · Scn 38 nobunaga Nobunaga
Difficulty medium Scn 36 fetih Fetih · Scn 21 gaiseric Gaiseric · Scn 24 ragnar Ragnar · Scn 27 robert Robert · Scn 37 shimazu Shimazu · Scn 32 stephen Stephen · Scn 33 temujin Temujin · Scn 22 vortigern Vortigern
Difficulty hard Scn 35 constantine Constantine XI · Scn 30 karlsefni Karlsefni · Scn 31 komnenos Komnenos · Scn 34 mstislav Mstislav · Scn 28 otto Otto · Scn 29 seljuk Seljuk
Advertisement