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Age of Empires Heaven » Forums » Age of Empires / Rise of Rome / Definitive Edition » What's your strategy on how you use transports?
Topic Subject:What's your strategy on how you use transports?
posted 04-02-01 06:35 PM ET (US)         
I have a hard time getting people/STs/priests/archers/etc on my transports fast. It seems to take forever. Also landing them in just the right spot is tricky. And then getting them to "take off" and do their thing is sometimes slow.

I notice that often the AI only sends one or two units on their transports. Sometimes they just send a ST and 2 archers and they do their damage fast.

My problem has been that I wait until I fill up a transport to its capacity before embarking. Should I do like the AI and send just a few over to annoy the enemy?

And so often my transports get lost even though I try to number them.

When you play "Small Islands" especially, I think it is crucial to be able to handle transports efficently and fast. Both coming and going.

Sometimes I feel clumsy trying to see which transport is full before it leaves port. And getting those priests onboard. It slows me down.

What are some of your ideas?


The Phoenix
posted 04-02-01 06:44 PM ET (US)     1 / 16       
I notice that often the AI only sends one or two units on their transports. Sometimes they just send a ST and 2 archers and they do their damage fast.

The AI is dumb. Don't be like the AI.

Should I do like the AI and send just a few over to annoy the enemy?

Nope. There's no point in sending 2 or 3 units, unlesss they're scouts.

And so often my transports get lost even though I try to number them.

Load Number 1 first, then send it away from the coast, then load #2, then #3......

I think that the best way to load is:
a) Number the transports.
b)Load them in order
c)Load cavalry/infantry/archers first, then priests/STs/elephants. If you load the priests/etc. first, they will take a long time, and therefore block the others (cavalry/infantry/archers) from loading.

When disembarking,
a)Unload your troops from Transport 1
b)Task transport 1 back to base using the mini-map.

Why? Because you can't afford to be scrolling accross the map while your troops are landing - you might lose half your troops that way. Use the minimap OR send your boats back after unloading ALL your troops.

Hope this helps,
-The Phoenix

HG Alumnus
posted 04-02-01 06:57 PM ET (US)     2 / 16       
Phoenix's hints are rather to the point.
Send only one transport at a time - that makes it easier to keep track of things.
When you land, keep a look on your units.
The comp will send more units on a transport if you play at hard or hardedst - so you're warned.
posted 04-02-01 07:00 PM ET (US)     3 / 16       
You don't really think I am playing at "hard" or "hardest" yet????

Still down with the "easy" crowd.


posted 04-02-01 07:11 PM ET (US)     4 / 16       
I had to use a transport in a 2v2 narrows game on the zone last night.

It was a really weird narrows map where I was stuck alone on an island while the other three were on the mainland.

I built 1 transport and loaded 2 vils and 2 CA's. I sent in a medium sized navy to clear a passage way and keep the shore clear. Once I landed, my two forwards built two archeries and a stable. As army pumped out of these three war buildings and started to harass the enemy the two vils built a TC and then made three siege buildings. The new TC pumped out vils to expand on the enemy's turf. Because I sent vils over I only needed 1 transport and 1 crossing.

Bottom line is: it isn't always necessary to fill that transport but to get it over there fast. Also, send in vils to forward build there because your army can only live for so long on enemy territory - they need reinforcements. Sending in warships first to assure a safe landing is also important.

posted 04-02-01 07:21 PM ET (US)     5 / 16       
Dave, that makes sense to me.

Now tell me. In order to start building other structures on the enemy island, do I have to research (Oh my God, I forget) - Government or something like that? So do I have to build a TC before I can build all the other stuff on the enemy island?


posted 04-02-01 07:24 PM ET (US)     6 / 16       
1. You need to build a government center before you can build other TCs.
2. Building a TC on enemy territory isn't necessary, but if your builders get killed you can train more instead of having to use the transport again...
posted 04-02-01 07:31 PM ET (US)     7 / 16       
OK, wedsaz, I think I see.

I can build other structures without a TC. But if I lose my men, I can't generate more unless I have a TC on the enemy soil.

Am I right?


posted 04-02-01 07:48 PM ET (US)     8 / 16       


If I'm not patient it kick my butts or hit on my nerves. So, I do everything to be patient and let the time it needs to load the transports. I place my ppl near the transport, select all of 'em and click to embark 'em... it helps to avo´d some headaches...!

I don't know if you play more against the computer or on the Zone. As you surely knows, seas are an obstacle and you have to take the control of it.

So, when it's done,(it's just a matter of patience), load the transports, send trimeres with 'em. Secure the place(shores) with your trimeres to have a clean place to landing your troops there. (...or find the quiet spot on the opponent's Island)

I suggest to you to place same units in the same transport, also you can place priest and cats in the same transport.
Use ctrl 1-9 to assign a number to each gang you want.

--> With it, it's more easy to manage your troops after landings(if you have tons of units). Let your priests and cats behind the army during the assault; they needs protection, also you can assign a group to defend 'em.

Remember ctrl 1-9 !!! !!

Don't know if I say something that can help you, as you said that "is crucial to be able to handle transports efficently and fast. Both coming and going." - I suggest to you to rule the seas before making landings.

Also, when you rule on Island maps, place some of your trimeres (or war galley) near the gold of your opponent.
-->Most of the time the patches of gold were near the shores, so you gonna cut gold gathering of your opponent.

see ya!

posted 04-02-01 07:59 PM ET (US)     9 / 16       
Well, at least I am not alone in it trying my patience attempting to situate and load the transport.

And thanks for the suggestion to "rule the seas" before trying any of this.

Problem sometimes is, before I can rule the seas, the transports from the enemy lands so quickly on my soil and sends out it's deputies.


The Phoenix
posted 04-02-01 08:07 PM ET (US)     10 / 16       
I don't agree with you, Sara. There's no point, like I said, of sending in less than maximum capacity.

Dave sent 4 units in the transport. Wouldn't he have built up your forward base faster if you had sent 4 villies and 2 CAs?

Btw, none of you addressed the other question - how to board and disembark efficiently. What do you think of my suggestions on that?

-The Phoenix

[This message has been edited by The Phoenix (edited 04-02-2001 @ 08:07 PM).]

posted 04-02-01 09:05 PM ET (US)     11 / 16       
The Phoenix:

The reason why I only sent over 2 vils and two CA's was because I was in a hurry and couldn't wait to fill the transport to full capacity. I sent two army units with the two vils hoping that they could protect them long enough or at least distract any enemy fire while the vils built the first war building.

Also timing was essential because there was a boat war going on the coast. Since I didn't have any docks nearby my war ships had farther to go. I sent in the transport while my numbers were still high enough to distract any attention from my landing transport.

As for landing, once I send in all the warships I navigate the transport myself as it gets close to the shore to avoid being detected. As soon as it gets close to the shore I right click on the land. The units disembark immediately and I grab those vils and start building right away. Then I concentrate on sending in more warships to the same coast to protect.


Build a TC on enemy turf as soon as you can. Even against the comp it is helpful because you more often than not lose those forward vils and you might not get a second chance to send another transport over. At any rate, sending in a transport is always a tricky and sometimes nail-biting operation - if you can get away with just one crossing you are better off. Making a TC is especially helpful if the enemy has control of the sea because if you can make more vils and war buildings on his turf you can get to his woodies and his sea battle comes to a sudden grinding halt. You then take sea and complete the land battle.

Also, if you eat up his resources he has less to fight with. A lot of tight games come down to being the difference between a few hundred of wood/food/gold. Gl hf!

[This message has been edited by Dave (edited 04-02-2001 @ 09:08 PM).]

posted 04-02-01 09:08 PM ET (US)     12 / 16       

I often tranny 2 (or how many ever is close) vills in a hurry to get to enemy land. I think it is pointless to have it filled. You aren't gonna use trannies effectively to send over a whole army to defeat another army. Sending 2-3 vills is all I ever send and then build the army close.

You would spend all game trying to load 10 units into several trannies and unloading them. Only to run into a bigger army each time you send them.

posted 04-02-01 10:55 PM ET (US)     13 / 16       


about enemies landing on your Island; just remember to protect your area and well manage your ppl. It's the strong foundation(basis) of every strats.

For controlling the seas-->You'll find the "real value" of the wood while playing water maps.

As Dave and the others sayz; try to establish a base on the opponent Island-->You gonna save many transports travels(and time too!!).

See ya!!

HG Alumnus
posted 04-03-01 07:12 AM ET (US)     14 / 16       
Don't send more transport ships than you can manage - that seems to be a good rule. One should do. What use is a transport if you forget where it is? Send over a few war ships as well to protect the transport.
A good way to manage your transport is to send the units you want to send to the enemy island to the place where the transport is so that you avoid the ballet that gives such a headache. If you want to send priests it's better to send the transport to the priest (as close as you can get) and send the priest to the coast. Once you disembarked send it back to your island, but at least out of range of enemy ships and towers.
Defense: you can gather enough resources to build an army -> build it. Don't let your lazy good-for-nothing soldiers hang around in the mess - place them among your villagers so that if you're under attack you have something to protect them with. Collecting them when the enemy is upon you means you're going to suffer many losses before you can kill the enemy. Fast units - cavalry, chariots, chariot archers etc are generally better than infantry. You can also build some walls if nothing else helps. That may keep them out forever.
Building TCs on enemy islands is a good strat against human players but against the comp - you might just as well cheat.
Of course you have you think of what civ you choose and what civs you're fighting. If your enemy has naval bonuses and you don't, you're in problems. This is a matter of common sense of course, you can figure out that bit for yourself.
The Phoenix
posted 04-03-01 05:57 PM ET (US)     15 / 16       
Whoops, whoops, sorry, I forgot: I meant always fill up SMALL transports. I forgot that there were two kinds of transports - shows that I haven't layed AoE for too long.

I still think that under most circumstances it is better to have them almost full, but not always, I suppose.

CoMBaT Villager
posted 04-03-01 06:33 PM ET (US)     16 / 16       
I always make 5 trannys.
line them up on my shore.
group a full load in front of the trannys.(10 infantry in front of 1, 10 archers in front of another)
fill 2 with infantry and archers. fill the other tranny with maybe some more archers or infantry (depending on civ)
stick some villies and a cat or two in the 4th tranny, and leave teh 5th empty.
number them 1-5
scroll over to the enemy shore, send the empty tranny a few seconds before the others.
go thru 1-4 telling each to unload a little next to the other.
Watch them make their way to the other isle, hopfuly the empty will get attacked by whatever enemy ships there are, giving your full ones a chance to unload.

Unload infantry first, attack any enemy stuff on the shore, unload the archers behind them for support.
move that group forward and unload the other 2 trannys. Build a TC and a couple towers.

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