Catapults are the only unit capable of destroying Stone Towers, making them critical for the success of most attacks.
They are incapable of defending themselves so it’s important to protect them from enemy Sally Knights and Armed Peasants which may emerge from a Tunnel.
|Gold Cost||200 each|
|Rank Required||Squire (15)|
|Weapons Required||1 Catapult each|
|Research Required||Level 1 – Military
Level 5 – Command
Level 1 – Catapult
Catapults aren’t available for use as a castle garrison, see Bombard for similar defensive function.
Catapults are primary used offensively to clear a path to the keep by destroying the enemy’s castle. For most capture/raze attacks you will assault the front (south) of the keep or either of the sides (east, west). Good players anticipate this and often place 6 ballistae in front corners(SE, SW) of their castle. Such predictability can be used to your advantage when doing pillages or ransack attacks, your catapults may last longer when attacking the rear.
When placing your catapults for an attack, keep in mind the 3 dangers to catapults; Sally Forth Knights, Ballista Towers, and Tunneling Armed Peasants. Sally forth can be defended against by barricading the castle’s Sally exit or two corners of the map if the enemy’s castle exit is not on the side you are attacking or there is than one sally exit. You cannot do much to prevent causalities due to enemy ballista towers but if you know which side of the castle has fewer ballistae it can make your attack last longer if you exploit that weakness. All ballistae will target the nearest catapult first, so if you stagger your catapults it will force the enemy ballista towers to waste more than one bolt per catapult. Tunnel Peasants are weak but if unhindered they can easily kill 100+ catapults. Tunnels do not appear on your scout report so you have play minesweeper to find them. If you don’t have time for this just make sure you put 25+ archers in the corner of the map behind your catapults.
If your troops are within range, catapults can and will inflict friendly-fire damage to them potentially decimating your own army. The damage you may do to your troops with poorly placed catapults can outweigh the damage done by the defender.. You should always take the time to aim your catapults, forcing them to target critical towers and avoid having them firing at the ground unnecessarily where your troops will walk during the attack.