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Bohemond in the East is the fourth scenario of the The Hautevilles campaign in Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition - Lords of the West.

Intro[]

"Bohemond never forgave Count Roger for siding with his younger brother, but other events would draw Bohemond away before he could threaten Norman unity."

"As bands of knights and foot soldiers passed through Sicily on their way to the Holy Land, Roger arranged for Bohemond to linger amongst them."

"Lured by the promises of lands and eternal glory on Crusade, Bohemond, too, set out for the east."

"Bohemond re-traced the path through the Byzantine Empire that he had taken only a few years before while warring against the Emperor Alexios Komnenos. Now, however, he came to Constantinople as an honored guest, kneeling before his old adversary and promising to restore the Empire's territories in the Holy Land."

"Bohemond, of course, shared his father's cunning, and had no intention of following through with such a promise. When the Crusaders besieged the ancient city of Antioch, Bohemond resolved that it should be his."

"Mustering the cunning of his heritage, Bohemond told the emperor's men that the other Crusaders planned to assassinate them, causing them to return home."

"He then bribed a local garrison commander to open Antioch's gates, but only after he had secured the sworn promises of the other Crusader princes that the first among them to enter the city would rule it."

"Unfortunately for Bohemond and the Crusaders, a great Turkish army was on its way. Already worn down by eight long months of siege, Bohemond would need every ounce of his courage and his skill to survive."

Scenario instructions[]

Starting conditions[]

Differences between difficulty levels[]

Objectives[]

  • Ensure that there is always at least one Castle standing within the city walls of Antioch.
  • Defend Antioch until Alexios Komnenos arrives.
  • (subsequently) Choose one of the following objectives:
    • Defend Antioch until Kerbogha retreats.
    • Kill Kerbogha.
  • (secondary) Defeat Ahmed ibn-Marwan's garrison.
  • (secondary) Research Faith to temporarily inspire the Crusaders.

Hints[]

  1. You have a population limit of 300 and can research both Castle and Imperial Age technologies. You will not be able to train new Villagers, however.
  2. There is a rhythm to the siege. Use the breaks in the fighting to rebuild your defenses, gather resources, and improve your army for the next assault.
  3. The Relics in the Monasteries are your only source of gold. Stone can be found among the city's ancient ruins.
  4. As the siege continues, you will run low on available resources. Use the Market to trade for what you need, but know that price of inflation is inevitable during a prolonged siege.
  5. By taking the citadel from Ahmed ibn-Marwan, you gain access to the resources in the southeastern hills.
  6. Researching Faith and finding the Holy Lance provides a one-time temporary bonus to all of your units. Use it wisely.

Scouts[]

Your scouts report:

  • Bohemond de Hauteville (1, Blue) and the Crusaders have taken the ancient city of Antioch after a lengthy siege. They have found the city's stockpiles depleted.
  • Unfortunately for the Crusaders, the Seljuk Turk warlord Kerbogha (4, Cyan) has arrived with a massive army to retake the city. He has divided his army into several wings surrounding the city's walls and six gates. His armies will attack in repeating waves of mixed troops. Despite his strength, Kerbogha is hesitant to press his advantage, as too many casualties may break his diverse army pulled from competing warlords. He will instead withdraw and reorganize for subsequent attacks on a predictable schedule.
  • Because Kerbogha arrived before the Crusaders could defeat the garrison entirely, Antioch's citadel in the east is still held by the Muslim garrison led by Ahmed ibn-Marwan (3, Green). This force consists of Mamelukes, Camel Riders, and archers and is protected by a Castle. While this garrison is unlikely to leave its position, making it less of a threat, it blocks access to additional resources in the hills behind the city.
  • Finally, a relieving army led by the Byzantine Emperor Alexios Komnenos is rumored to be on its way - likely to claim the city for the Empire. Bohemond is determined to push back the Turks before his old adversary arrives.

Players[]

Player[]

  • Player (Sicilians - Normans): The player controls the City of Antioch with a sizeable defence force. The Normans will immediately be attacked from many wings by Kerbogha's detachments.

Ally[]

  • Antioch (Byzantines): They play no role in this scenario except for a few economic buildings in the city.

Enemies[]

  • Ahmed ibn-Marwan (Saracens): They are the remaining garrison force of the said general, consisting of Mamelukes, Cavalry Archers, and Eastern Swordsmen. The player has to defeat the garrison to reach the hill plentiful of resources.
  • Kerbogha's Guard (Turks): They are the Elite Guards of Kerbogha and their base is situated in the west.
  • Seljuk Cavalry (Turks): They will attack the western side of Antioch with Steppe Lancers, Light Cavalry, and Cavalry Archers.
  • Moslawi Conscripts (Turks): They are the weakest detachment of the Seljuks, attacking from the north with an array of Eastern Swordsmen and Light Cavalry.
  • Damascene Army (Turks): They are the third army to besiege Antioch, consisting of siege weapons, Camel Riders, and Cavalry Archers.
  • Kerbogha's Pillagers (Turks): They will attack Antioch from the northwest with Camel Riders, infantry, and Light Cavalry.

Strategy[]

Defending the city[]

The player will win as long as they have at least one Castle standing for the entire one-hour scenario. The enemy AI will always retreat after the 10-minute timer has expired, no matter how many of their units have survived. Of the three starting Castles, the westernmost one, in the middle of the city (from now on mentioned as "western inner Castle"), is the easiest to protect, and so the player should avoid losing that one.

The enemy will attack the two westernmost gates, and those attacks can be repelled with one Castle on each of those gates. The player's main concern should be the attacks on the eastern gates, which will be way more aggressive. For this, the player should assign most Villagers on stone while using a few of them to build Castles (Sicilian Villagers build Castles twice as fast). Researching all upgrades that benefit Castles is very useful, and so can be garrisoning them with archer units. The player should also research Guilds to optimize the use of the Markets.

Before the attack starts, bring all Villagers to safety (as the player cannot train new ones) and focus on taking down enemy Mangonels first (since Mangonels are ranged, the Castles will automatically target other units first). After ten minutes, all enemy units will retreat and so the player should repair, rebuild, and train new units as long as their resources allow it.

After 25 minutes (between the first two attacks), a new alternative main objective appears: to kill Kerbogha. For this, read the next subsection. After 28 minutes, a new secondary objective appears: to research Faith to temporarily inspire the crusaders. Doing this will strongly improve the stats of the player's units, but this can be left for the third and final attack.

For the second attack, a similar strategy can be taken, though the enemy units will be more aggressive now. For the interval between the second and the final attack, the player should again focus on repairing, rebuilding, and training new units. When there is one minute before the final attack, research Faith, which will take one minute to research and whose effects will last for the entire ten minutes of the final attack.

The final attack will be way more aggressive than the first two ones, as the enemies now also bring Trebuchets. Now the player's main focus should be in not letting the enemy units getting too much inside the city by using the Castles and the Faith-inspired units. As long as the western inner Castle is standing, the player will be victorious.

Killing Kerbogha[]

After 25 minutes (between the first two attacks), a new alternative main objective appears: to kill Kerbogha. The player can easily finish the scenario by making a sneak attack: gather as many fully upgraded Cavaliers as possible (research Hauberk as well if resources are available), make them exit through the western gate (which is not under siege during the intervals between attacks) and bring them to the left corner of the map. Then bring the units to where Kerbogha is, using one of the units to lure the enemy units away from Kerbogha and the other ones to kill him.

Alternatively, the player can kill Kerbogha by following that same strategy in the first 10 minutes of the scenario and win it before the first attack even started (assign the Villagers to sheep and use the gold generated from the Relics and the Market to ensure there are enough resources to upgrade the starting Knights to Cavaliers and research the Blacksmith cavalry upgrades). Even though killing Kerbogha is not listed in the objectives yet, it will trigger victory.

Achievement[]

To get the achievement "Italy Jones and the First Crusade", the player must not lose a single hero. For this, any of the two strategies above will work and, to ensure none of the heroes dies (they are six and are all cavalry units), the player can either garrison them in the western inner Castle or send them to the southern corner of the map, where the enemy AI will never find them (as it is exclusively focused on the city).

Outro[]

"While Bohemond did not inherit his father's lands, he did inherit his attributes and these won him a princedom."

"But Bohemond was not done after conquering Antioch. He sought every opportunity to conquer new lands, but his fearless aggression led to him being ambushed and captured by the Turks."

"His old enemy, the emperor Alexios Komnenos, even offered to pay Bohemond's ransom if the Norman prince was brought to Constantinople in chains. Once again, Bohemond bested his old enemy, tricking his Turkish captors into releasing him for a smaller ransom."

"Years later, Bohemond again fought against the emperor, but was surrounded by the emperor's armies. He agreed to become a vassal of Emperor Alexios, but Bohemond's cunning had one last triumph."

"So that the treaty binding Bohemond to the emperor would not include Antioch, Bohemond never again set foot in the city. He died in Sicily, leaving his son to succeed him in his hard-won eastern princedom."

Trivia[]

  • When Lords of the West was released, there was no losing condition in the objectives and so the player would always win, even if they had been away from the keyboard for the entire one-hour scenario. With update 50292, now the player needs to have at least one Castle standing for the entire scenario (they can lose the three starting Castles provided that they build at least one more before that happens).
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