As we come around to this festive time of year once again, the Westeros: Total War team would like to present you with a very special preview! This is in part to prove to you that we don't just sit around all day eating mince pies and quaffing glühwein, but also to show you some of the lovely stuff we've been making!
As you've probably guessed from our semi-festive logo, we've got a certain house to reveal, famous for swashbuckling, gold and, erm, incest. We've also got several other treats to sling your way, but why ruin the surprise in the opening sentences when you can scroll down and reveal it for yourselves, one juicy inch at a time!
So, without further ado, the W:TW team would like to present you with a preview of the great house of the West...
House Lannister of Casterly Rock
House Lannister is one of the greatest houses of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. Rich beyond compare, the Lannisters have enjoyed hegemony in the West since Lann the Clever tricked the Casterlys out of their keep.
Their seat is the impressive citadel of Casterly Rock. Perched above the harbour-city of Lannisport, The Rock - as it is commonly known - is shaped roughly in the position of a sitting lion; an imposing reminder of the Lannister family's dominance and might.
The Lannisters were born when Andal adventurers married the daughters of the King of the Rock, descended from Lann the Clever. Not much is known of the history of the house at this time, but their power and majesty was clear for all to see. When Aegon the Conqueror invaded Westeros with his sisters and mighty dragons the King of the Rock, Loren, allied himself with King Mern of the Reach. At the battle that came to be known as The Field of Fire, an intimidating display of Aegon's dragons' power soon had Loren bending the knee to the Targaryens, incinerating Mern in the process. The Lannisters were then raised to Wardens of the West, a position they have held ever since.
Now Lord Tywin Lannister is lord of the West, and Lord Tywin is an ambitious man. Having once already sat as Hand of the King, only to eventually betray the Targaryens and supplant his brood upon the Iron Throne, Tywin will do anything to safeguard his family, and more importantly, its name. Between upstart Northerners marching south, feuding Baratheon brothers and always unpredictable Dornishmen with vengeance on their minds, House Lannister will have its hands full in the days to come. But with limitless gold and heavily armoured soldiers, they certainly stand a good chance.
The new strat map generals in all their glory!
House Lannisters roster has all the standard troops of other Westerosi houses, but with an emphasis on high quality armour, and lots of it!
Peasants are levied men who have been brought in at the word of their lords to fight in battle. They wield the weapons available to them, mainly scythes or pitchforks. They can serve for arrow fodder, but for anything else, they are no good. A gathering of boys so green they piss grass and greybeards theystand no chance against any other forces. They are cheap units, however, and can be effectively used for garrison duty in castles, while the professionals fight wars far away.
Levied from the lands of the lords these spearmen are not professional soldiers who dedicate most of their time to practice to master their weapons, but rather famers, millers and masons who respond when the lords call their banners and eagerly join battle. Their willingness to join in the field might lessen, however, once they experience the fatigue and famine of campaign. They are not sustainable in close combat, as their lack of severe skill in handling the spear will make them loose ground and rout easily when facing more powerful units.
The spears of the spearmen might not have the advantage of length, when compared to pikes, but they are more mobile and carry large shields which allow them to withstand heavy attacks from both infantrymen and cavalrymen. To use horsemen against such a unit is nothing short of foolishness. While they are well suited for holding a line they need to be supported by other units, since they aren`t able to break most formations on their own. Lannister spearmen know their weapons well and when the charge comes they will stand firm or die in the attempt.
Pikemen are heavy infantry who are often the bulwark of a southern army. They are heavily armoured, professional soldiers who utilize the spearwall formation. They must act in cohesion, for that is where their strength lies. When moving in a single body, with pikes strutting, they are nigh impenetrable, but for the flanks and rear. Pikemen are, however, vulnerable to assaults from the rear or when not in proper formation, particularly against heavy cavalry. Lannister pikemen are skilled in their use of the pike, no less so than any other noble House. The men of the west will stand tall against heavy attacks for their homes.
These longbowmen have learnt the craft of archery. Due to their years of professional training they have become quite skilled with the longbow, which is able to outrange any other bow or the crossbow, allowing them to stay ouf of range of the enemy arrows. While the longbow is a weapon favoured by the northmen, the men of the south know well how to use it. They are specialised in slaying men from afar and will not stand in a mêlée fight. The longbow has been in use for centuries by the men of the Westerlands, and Lannisters honour that tradition by sending professional men into the field.
The crossbow is a weapon feared by many knights and nobles. The tremendous force created by the traction of the bow makes the iron-fronted bolts able to penetrate plate armour, chainmail and boiled leather all. It takes little time to become adept with the crossbow, as its design and purpose is simple. Any man could be armed with such a weapon. But these men are not mere farmers; they are professionals, capable of destroying whole units with their massive firepower. While the crossbowmen are skilled at killing from range, they are neither armed nor armoured for close combat and will falter when charged. Casterly Rock cannot suffer to be behind the rest of the Seven Kingdoms in innovation and machinery, and wield crossbows as well as any other House.
Men-at-arms are not knights, but that is just in name. They are armed and armoured in heavy steel and pose a significant advantage when they are on the battlefield. These men are not inconspicuous on the field of battle; they swagger in their heavy armours, afforded only by the patronage of their lords. They wield castle forged swords and regular shields, common but deadly weapons. On the battlefield they are good against infantry, but must be guarded against charges from heavy infantry and cavalry. Lannister lords are the wealthier of the realm, so their men-at-arms lack for nothing when they are called for.
In the valleys of the Westerlands, the sword is a common and well liked weapon. The swordsmen of the Westerlands can afford to wear heavy armour, provided by their lords. Equipped with fine swords and skilled in battle these men are a terrifying sight to behold, and they are well able to break through the lines of common men-at-arms.
Sarsfield Armoured Archers
“True to the Mark” are the words of House Sarsfield of Sarsfield, Bannermen sworn to House Lannister, they have a proud tradition in archery and field a large body of mounted longbowmen, archers who ride to the battlefield and then dismount, which allows them to enter the battle fresh and eager, even after long marches. Not only are they skilful with the bow and arrow, but they have been given heavier armour than regular archers, making them more resilient against other missile units and somewhat better in mêlée. These men are still not to be used for close combat, but they will present some sturdiness when they must. They are especially weak against cavalry.
The men of Crakehall have always been large men, their stature imposing in the presence of other men. The heir to Crakehall, Ser Lyle Crakehall, is called the Strongboar – a testament to his ferocity and physique. Naturally, these men are fighters and good ones too, the House words “None so Fierce” certainly also applies to the Heavy Infantry of House Crakehall. They wield large shields, which are nearly as high as the men who wear them, and are encased in heavy armour, enabling them to withstand the charge of any enemy. Care should be taken to protect the rear and the flanks of this slow moving infantry, or else the advantage their shields grant them is lost.
Lannisport, the greatest city in the Westerlands, dwells beneath the great Casterly Rock. The harbour faces out into the sea, where far away are the Iron Isles. The ruling lord of Lannisport is given the title Shield of Lannisport, as it is his duty to protect the metropolitan from attacks. The Shield of Lannisport cannot do so alone, however, and the citizenry willingly enlist as soldiers whenever the lord requires their service. These men are armed with the spear, deadly in use against cavalry and weaker infantry units. Hiding behind their large shields in a tightly packed spearwall formation, they strike hard with their weapons. They might be equipped like men-at-arms, but their guard duties don`t prepare them for open battle, and they need to be supported by other, professionals, soldiers.
Lannisport, the greatest city in the Westerlands, dwells beneath the great Casterly Rock. The harbour faces out into the sea, where far away are the Iron Isles. The ruling lord of Lannisport is given the title Shield of Lannisport, as it is his duty to protect the metropolitan from attacks. The Shield of Lannisport cannot do so alone, however, and the citizenry willingly enlist as soldiers whenever the lord requires their service. These men are armed with the crossbow, a lethal weapon able to take down even armoured units, as the iron-tipped bolts can easily trash through steel plates. They are used as guardsmen, and should be supported and protected by more professional troops on the battlefield, since their duties don`t prepare them for open battles.
Westerland Mounted Men-at-Arms
These men of the Westerlands are the same as men-at-arms; only these have been given a mount to ride as well, making them heavy cavalry. Their arms and armour as well as steed are being paid for by their lords and they are sworn to serve. Also, they are given the honour of flying the banner of their benefactor, strutting on pennons in the air or emblazoned on their surcoat and shield. Acting as mounted soldiery, the men-at-arms resemble their counterpart, the knights, even more. With deep chests, filled to the bursting with gold, Lannister lords easily afford to patronage men-at-arms. These men are often used in battle by the Lords of Casterly Rock.
Sworn swords are knights gathered from the region. Armed with the long lance, behind which they concentrate the full momentum of the destrier onto the pointy end, mercilessly driving into the enemy. When locked in mêlée, they will draw their swords of castle forged steel and wreak further havoc. Though the unit might seem immensely powerful, it will not steamroll all opponents. Especially, the sworn swords should be guarded against pike and spearmen and if outnumbered by heavy cavalry they should be withdrawn and used elsewhere. Remember, the best use of the sworn swords is hit and run, to utilize the power of their horses.
Above these men fly the pennons emblazoned with the purple unicorn of House Brax. Being one of the larger Houses of the Westerlands, they can field a large force of men for their overlords. They have a long and proud tradition in horsemanship and use their mounted troops skilfully, their men amongst the bravest and most skilled riders north of the reach. They should use their mobility in order to disengage the enemy once they have charge them, for they aren’t suited for fighting in prolonged mêlées.
Noblemen, having the honour of being nobles, do not risk as much when going into battle as smallfolk and regular soldiery. They are protected with the best armour made in the Seven Kingdoms and armed with magnificent weaponry. Should they fall from their destriers, few would kill a noble, knowing the rich ransom he could earn. The noblemen are above the standing of knights by far, there are lords and family members of the ruling House. The lords of the Westerlands are known to be some of the wealthiest of the realm, and in battle they know to show off not only their fighting skills but also their splendour.
Red Cloaks/Guards of the Rock
Centuries, if not millennia, ago House Casterly ruled the great rock known across the realm as Casterly Rock. In time, they were overthrown by a lesser House. The House, now known by every man from Dorne to the Wall, was Lannister. Through centuries they would climb the ladders of political and military authority until they were amongst the most powerful Houses of the Seven Kingdoms. The Household Guard of Casterly Rock has access to the best equipment money can buy, and are selected for skill, valour and loyalty. In battle they can be relied upon to stand firm against all odds.
Units by: Murfmurf
With help from: Emperor of Hell and HannibalExMachina
Map by: Toho
2D art (strat) by: Noobas
Coding by: Mhaedros, Kilic Ali, Inarus, Dux
Thanks to the other mods letting us use their stuff! Rusichi TW, Mare Nostrum, Narf, Dejawolf and others in the M&B community!
We hope you've enjoyed our festive preview! There may be more to come....Muahahha!