The Giant Falls is the fourth scenario of the reworked Alaric campaign in Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition. It is based on the Visigothic sack of Rome in 410 A.D.

Intro[edit | edit source]

Never had I seen Alaric lose his temper, but Sarus' betrayal infuriated him. He ordered me, his brother-in-law, to commence the siege of Rome. The walls of Rome were huge and had not been breached since Brennus and his Gauls. However years of decline had weakened the city and its walls were badly in need of repairs. Inciting the men to battle, Alaric vowed, 'If the Romans want fire and steel, it is fire and steel that we will give them!'

Scenario instructions[edit | edit source]

Starting conditions[edit | edit source]

Objectives[edit | edit source]

  • Take the city of Rome by destroying all 12 Castles within its city walls.
  • Signal Ataulf to attack.
  • Signal the Gothic army to attack.

Hints[edit | edit source]

  1. Alaric's force can support a population of 210.
  2. Rome is a strong city, but it will be helpless if its walls are breached.
  3. Your allies will offer as much help as they can.

Scouts[edit | edit source]

Your scouts report:

  • The Visigoths are besieging Rome from several directions. Alaric (1, Green) leads the main attack on the southern walls, while Ataulf (5, Cyan) attacks the western walls and another section of the Visigothic army (3, Yellow) attacks the eastern walls. Ataulf and the Visigoth army have sent word that they are ready to breach the enemy walls. All that they await is Alaric's orders.
  • The citizens of Rome (2, Red) care little for the conflict and are only interested in their own survival, so they will not offer any resistance.
  • The City Garrison (6, Blue) and Imperial Legions (4, Purple) are a different matter - their armies of infantry, Archers, and cavalry will defend Rome with their lives.

Players[edit | edit source]

  • Player (Goths): The player begins south of Rome with several infantrymen, villagers, and resources, but no buildings.

Allies[edit | edit source]

  • The Visigoths (Goths) and Ataulf (Goths) have a base east and west of Rome, respectively. Though they have some Battering Rams and Trebuchets in the beginning, they train and attack mostly with infantry.

Neutral[edit | edit source]

  • Rome (Italians): Rome is an inactive player consisting of several buildings in the northeastern section of the map. As the player conquers sections of Rome, it starts tributing resources. There is no penalty for destroying Rome's buildings.

Enemies[edit | edit source]

  • City Garrison (Byzantines): The City Garrison is the main enemy. They control several military buildings within Rome, that turn over to the player's control after destroying a nearby Castle, and some of the twelve Castles as well. They train Cataphracts, Champions, Halberdiers, Cavaliers, Skirmishers, Battering Rams, and Onagers.
  • Imperial Legions (Italians): The Imperial Legions are a defensive player consisting of the remaining Castles and standing Cataphracts, Centurions, Legionaries, Cavaliers, Halberdiers, Skirmishers, and Crossbowmen.

Strategy[edit | edit source]

Build a base west of the starting point and a Castle to defend it in case of being overwhelmed by the southernmost Roman forces and forced to retreat from them. The Romans won't attack the base otherwise. As the first buildings go up, send all forces to destroy the Imperial Legions' line to the east, which separates the player from the Visigothic Army. Visiting the Visigothic Army triggers them to attack Rome.

Return to base, replace losses, and launch another attack on the City Garrison's camp annexed to the south of Rome, which is protected only with Palisade Walls. Killing the Roman soldiers here will open the path to Ataulf, and visiting him will trigger him to attack the Romans just like the Visigothic Army. It is not necessary to defend the Gothic allies because the Romans stay on the defensive.

Afterward, keep pumping soldiers and siege weapons to destroy the Roman Castles. The only difficulty resides in the bonus attack of Cataphracts, Centurions, and Legionaries against infantry, so it is useful to complement them with ranged units or cavalry. Focus on the Castles above other buildings, because most buildings of the City Guard will pass to player control after the nearest Castle is destroyed. It is also not necessary to destroy Rome's buildings, although it can be done to open shorter paths to the Castles or to avoid large concentrations of enemy fortifications and units. It is also a good idea to build additional Barracks and other military buildings within Rome itself that are closer to the remaining Castles, in order to make distances shorter.

Outro[edit | edit source]

During the long weeks spent besieging Rome, Alaric's calm nature returned. He issued an order to the warriors to spare the city when conquered. In his heart, he could not find the will to destroy the empire he had served, though it had betrayed him one too many times.

Our brave soldiers breached the walls and the defenses quickly crumbled before the weight of Visigothic men rushing into the breaches.

Our men looted the city for days. We stripped statues and monuments of their gold, and loaded carts with so many precious goods that the wheels were close to breaking. At the end of the third day, a caravan of ox-drawn wagons carrying plunder could be seen as far as the eye could see.

The Romans would write of that day: 'In one city, the whole world perished.'

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • This is the only scenario in the Definitive Edition's version of the Alaric campaign that retains the layout of its predecessor (The Sack of Rome) instead of being remade from scratch. The gameplay, on the other hand, is completely different:
    • No RPG elements, such as specific units required to survive and visit specific places in Rome. Instead, the only objective within Rome's walls (and only required to win) is destroying Castles (which are more common and accompanied by many more enemy forces).
    • The player (colored green instead of blue) begins south of Rome, in an area occupied by Roman patrols in the HD version, and can build a base from the beginning to attack independently of Alaric's allies.
    • There are no Roman forces outside the city except for a few blocking the path to the Visigothic army (in a place occupied by a cliff in the HD version).
    • The allied player Goths (green) is changed to Visigoths (yellow), and Athaulf is spelled Ataulf.
    • In the first version of the Definitive Edition, a unique hero unit, Alaric the Goth, was controlled by Ataulf, while in the HD version, Alaric (actually a renamed Kushluk) is controlled by the Goths. The former was possibly a mistake, as updates replaced him with Ataulf (a unique Champion, instead of a renamed Sieur Bertrand). Alaric never appears physically in the current Definitive Edition campaign.
    • Any unit can signal Ataulf and the Visigoths to attack, and it can be done at any moment.
    • The Imperial Legion (purple) is renamed City Garrison, changed from Italians to Byzantines, and given control of more units and buildings within Rome's walls.
    • The City Guard is renamed Imperial Legions and changed from yellow to blue. It no longer controls Condottieri and Genoese Crossbowmen, but mostly Elite Cataphracts and Legionaries.
    • Rome is expanded beyond the northern and eastern limits of the map; there are no Gothic Knights to be found on the eastern margin.
    • Galla Placidia and Hadrian's Mausoleum are not featured nor referenced.
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