The Battle of Arcole is a historical battle in Napoleon: Total War.
The Battle of Arcole (15-17 November, 1796) during which Napoleon successfully outflanked the Austrian army and carried the Tricolour across the Alpone river in person. By seizing the bridge the French prevented the escape of the Austrians, and therefore their planned relief of the siege at Mantua.
Austrians annoy me. Their constant attempts to break the siege of Mantua had to be stopped. I had to intercept the Austrians in open battle. Now, even after I have beaten them, more is needed. Here, at Arcole, I will lead the army across the Alpone River and through the Austrian lines.
Napoleon: Today is November 15th, 1796. I have chosen the site of battle to prevent the Austrians from concentrating their superior numbers against my forces.
My plan is to capture the town of Arcole in order to threaten their lines of supply.
The main body of the Austrian army under Alvinczi, to the North-West at Belfiore, will attempt to relieve Arcole.
I know that the marshy ground between the French and Austrian positions will limit the size of force Alvinczi can bring against me.
We must capture Arcole in the East to carry the day. At the same time, I must resist pressure from the Austrians to the West [sic]
Napoleon: A glorious victory! The Austrians are fleeing! More than that: I have their supply line. They must withdraw from Italy! Victory is mine!
Napoleon: Defeat! Disaster! My men have failed me. The Austrians have secured their supply lines and will now surely press forward against my scattered forces. Fate has been cruel, and what awaits, I cannot say. What fate awaits us now, I cannot say.
General InformationEditAchieving victory at the Battle of Lodi is required for unlocking the Battle of Arcole.
In a similar situation to the Battle of Lodi, the Austrian forces outnumber the French, but are spread out over the battlefield. When controlled by the A.I, the Austrian forces to the west gradually make their way to the east to rendezvous. The French have an opportunity to cut off the Austrian route and defeat them before they have a chance to organize. Should they do so, their remaining forces can easily outnumber the small Austrian garrison to the east. Complicating matters is the lack of cavalry for either army. The French have two regiments of highly experienced foot artillery. Their starting position, a hill, is an excellent place to deploy, where they have a clear line of sight on most of the battlefield. The Austrians have one regiment of artillery guarding the bridge to the east, making crossing the bridge a dangerous proposition for the French forces.
Most of the battlefield is swampy, leaving small passageways between bodies of water which can be used as choke points. While the small Austrian force to the east is well-positioned to guard the bridge next to it thanks to a regiment of foot artillery next to the bridge, its position to the north is much less defensible.
- Napoleon Bonaparte's General's Staff: 24 men, 5 experience
- 2x Chasseurs: 120 men each, 4 experience for one, 3 experience for the other
- 3x Grenadiers of the Line: 120 men each, 6 experience each
- 4x Revolutionary Infantry: 160 men each, 4 experience each
- 2x 12-lber Foot Artillery: 24 men each, 4 experience each
In the north-western town:
- Jozef Alvinczi's General's Staff: 24 men, 4 experience
- 3x German Fusiliers: 160 men each, 3 experience each
- 3x Landwehr: 120 men each, 2 experience each
- 2x Grenzers: 120 men each, 3 experience each
In the south-eastern town:
- Peter Quasdanovich's General's Staff: 24 men, 3 experience
- Grenzers: 120 men, 2 experience
- Landwehr: 160 men, 3 experience
- 12-lber Foot Artillery: 24 men, 2 experience
In-between the towns:
- 2x German Fusiliers: 160 men each, 3 experience each
- 2x Landwehr: 160 men each, one with 3 experience, the other with 2 experience
- Grenzers: 120 men, 3 experience
MultiplayerEditThe Battle of Arcole is available for multiplayer. Two Austrian forces face off against one French player, with one controlling the force to the east and one to the west. The French are the attacking team, while the Austrians are on the defending team. While the combined Austrian forces are still inferior to the French forces, they have the advantage of having two players command them.
The map is a larger version of the singleplayer map. It has two more river crossings: one to the south-east of the French position, and another to the west of the second Austrian player's position. Both are useful points of attack for players who have forced their opponents back to their initial positions.
As with the singleplayer version of this battle, chokepoints are numerous throughout the map and give defenders a large advantage. While the defending team is Austria, the French have superior cannons, and can therefore play defensively more effectively. The French cannons are in a superb starting position, allowing them an unobstructed angle at almost half the battlefield.
- Napoleon Bonaparte's General's Staff: 24 men, 2 experience
- 2x Chasseurs: 120 men each, 1 experience each
- 3x Grenadiers of the Line: 120 men each, two with 2 experience, one with 1 experience
- 4x Revolutionary Infantry: 160 men each, 1 experience each
- 2x 12-lber Foot Artillery: 24 men each
- Peter Quasdanovich's General's Staff: 24 men, 1 experience
- 2x German Fusiliers: 160 men each
- 2x Landwehr: 160 men each
- Grenzers: 120 men
- Jägers: 60 men
- 12-lber Foot Artillery: 24 men
- Jozef Alvinczi's General's Staff (3 stars): 24 men, 2 experience
- Chevauxlégers: 45 men
- Hungarian Hussars: 45 men
- 3x German Fusiliers: 160 men each, 1 experience each
- 2x Landwehr: 160 men, one with 1 experience
- Grenzers: 120 men, 1 experience
While it is possible to change unit sizes in the menu, the unit sizes in the Battle of Arcole (as well as all other multiplayer historical battles) are always set to ultra when the battle is loaded, no matter what the player picked.
Historically, the Battle of Arcole played a pivotal role in the French campaign in Italy during the War of the First Coalition. Austrian forces under Józef Alvinczi, who had previously defeated Napoleon twice, were attempting to relieve a siege in Mantua, but were defeated and forced to retreat. Mantua's eventual fall after four failed relief efforts was one of the reasons for Austria to sign a peace favorable to French interests, concluding the war in the region.