The Battle of the Pyramids is a historical battle in Napoleon: Total War.


The Battle of the Pyramids (21 July, 1798) where Napoleon deployed his lethal divisional squares in the shadow of the Great Pyramids of Giza, defeating a fearless Mameluke cavalry force.


Victory in Italy! Now Egypt. Alexandria fell as I expected. I knew that Murad Bey would send his Mamelukes to stop me before Cairo. And, almost in the shadows of the Pyramids, the battle has come! My men will conquer for me, just as Alexander’s warriors did in ages past!

Pre-Battle TextEdit

July 21st, 1798. The Mameluke army is old fashioned, but their cavalry is swift and deadly. Our cavalry reserves are limited. Our only hope of defeating the enemy is to adopt square formations and hope to survive the coming charge.

The villages of Embabeh and Biktil will be key to success. Embabeh, to the east, is held by Mameluke artillery, and overlooks our flank. I must take this quickly to prevent serious losses. 

The Ottoman army consists of a large number of Mamelukes. Square formation will be key to our success on the battlefield. 

Biktil, to the west, is held by our forces. I should use this as a foothold to push into the Mameluke ranks.

Using the French army's superior weaponry, technology and training to their fullest extent will be the best way to secure my victory. 

Victory TextEdit

The glories and treasures of Egypt will soon be mine! To walk in the footsteps of Caesar! 

Defeat TextEdit

The desert is a harsh teacher. I have learned, and next time, I will apply the lesson in full! They will be defeated!

General InformationEdit


Screen Shot 2017-04-20 at 10.10.33 PM

Initial deployment. The French forces are blue, and the Ottoman-Mameluke forces are red. The map does not show the three hidden Azzar regiments, two of which are integrated into the main allied army, with one guarding the Ottoman artillery in the eastern village.

Winning the Battle of Arcole is required to unlock the Battle of the Pyramids.

The player controls a French force consisting of line infantry, grenadiers, foot artillery, howitzer artillery, and a cavalry wing comprised mostly of Dragoons. As the only historical battle fought in a desert climate, French troops tire from heat fatigue very quickly if forced to run or fight in a melee, even in a short span of time. The French army faces a joint Ottoman and Mameluke army, comprised mostly of light cavalry, militia, and irregular infantry. In contrast to the previous land battles of Lodi and Arcole, the French forces are on the defensive. 

The Ottoman-Mameluke force holds Embabeh, the village to the east. It has an artillery unit with a good angle on the French army, but silencing the guns can be difficult as the area is guarded by some hidden Azzars who are quick to deploy stakes. The French hold the town to the west with two regiments of Grenadiers of the Line, which are attacked by cavalry shortly after the battle starts.

The French have the advantage of defending from a pretty strong position, as well as having qualitatively superior infantry and artillery; the Ottoman-Mameluke force has a strong advantage in cavalry, a large numerical advantage in both infantry and cavalry, as well as the advantage of being resistant to heat fatigue. Judiciously choosing artillery targets, as well as good use of Square Formation, are key to winning this battle. 

The Ottoman-Mameluke force begins the battle unlimbering its artillery and sending Mameluke cavalry to attack both French flanks, while advancing all of its infantry down the center of the map toward the French line. Each individual Mameluke regiment has more men than the French dragoons, and are also resistant to heat fatigue to boot, making them a match despite their inferior statistics. The Ottoman-Mameluke infantry are also more numerous than the French infantry, though the French infantry are superior statistically and are also aided by artillery. The Ottoman and Mameluke armies unleash the rest of their cavalry reserves after this. Should the French succeed in holding off this attack, all that remains to defeat are the artillery regiments and the two generals of the opposing army. Killing just one general is usually enough to convince the remainder to retreat.

Winning the Battle of the Pyramids (or the Battle of the Nile) unlocks the Battle of Austerlitz and the Battle of Trafalgar.


French Army

Mameluke Army

Ottoman Army

  • Murad Bey's General's Bodyguard: 24 men, 3 experience
  • 4x Mamelukes: 60 men each, 2 experience for two, 3 experience for the other two
  • 2x 18-lber Foot Artillery: 24 men each, 2 experience each


The Battle of the Pyramids is available for 1v1 and 2v2 multiplayer. The French player(s) are defending, while the Mameluke (and, in 2v2, Ottoman) player(s) are attacking.

Screen Shot 2017-04-21 at 10.06.24 AM

Initial deployment of the 1v1 multiplayer battle. French forces are blue, and Mameluke forces are red.

The map is slightly different from the singleplayer version, with the French having less of an elevation advantage. This means that the French artillery have a poorer angle on the Mameluke army, which can mostly take advantage of the hilly terrain to advance in relative safety. 

The 1v1 version of the battle is very similar to the singleplayer version of the battle. The only significant differences are that the Ottoman units in the singleplayer version are now under Mameluke control, and the Mamelukes now have many more Azzars under their command.


French Army

Mameluke Army

Screen Shot 2017-04-20 at 9.57.46 PM

Initial deployment of the 2v2 variant of the battle. Napoleon's forces are in the north-west; his ally's forces are in the north-east. The Ottoman forces are in the south-east, and the Mameluke forces are in the south-west.

In contrast to the two previous multiplayer battles of Lodi and Arcole, which more or less have similar unit composition to their singleplayer counterparts, the unit composition of the 2v2 multiplayer version of this battle is radically different from the singleplayer version. The French have Dromedary Cavalry instead of dragoons, which are resistant to heat fatigue, can fire their muskets in the saddle, and scare horses. The Ottomans have Cemaat Janissaries, highly deadly melee troops. The map is the same as the 1v1 version, but this time no troops occupy either of the villages.

The French, being on the defending team, have the luxury of waiting for the Ottoman-Mameluke force to come to them while whittling away the numbers with their large number of artillery (although the hilly terrain provides good hiding places to shelter careful Ottoman and Mameluke commanders). However, the Ottoman and Mameluke armies have some advantages: their cavalry are numerically superior and are resistant to heat fatigue, and they have light infantry. Should the French guns be disabled in some way, then the French are at a severe advantage, as they have no way of countering the light infantry short of chasing after them with infantry and cavalry. The melee troops fielded by the Ottoman force can prove deadly if they can close the gap without taking too many casualties--particularly if the French forces are tired out beforehand by the desert heat.


French Army

Both players controlling the French have near-identical armies (as shown below); the only difference is that one has Napoleon as a general and the other has a generic general's staff.

Mameluke Army

Ottoman Army


While it is possible to change unit sizes in the menu, the unit sizes in the Battle of the Pyramids (as well as all other multiplayer historical battles) are always set to ultra when the battle is loaded, no matter what the player picked. 


The game version of this battle has some inaccuracies. The historical Battle of the Pyramids was fought between Napoleon and only Murad Bey's forces, while the forces under Ibrahim Bey was trapped on the east side of the Nile and unable to participate in the battle. Additionally, the game lists Murad Bey as an Ottoman commander. In reality, he was a Georgian slave who was purchased by a Mamluk emir. After the death of his master, Murad Bey rose to prominence in Egypt and became de facto Mamluk co-rulers with Ibrahim Bey, staving off numerous Ottoman attempts to bring them to heel. 

The battle was a decisive loss for the Mameluk forces. Losing thousands of irreplacable cavalrymen, the Mamluks were unable to fight Napoleon again in open battle, instead using guerrilla warfare for the remainder of the French campaign in Egypt. However, the French lost most of their fleet just ten days later at the Battle of the Nile, which gave Great Britain naval dominance in the Mediterranean for the remainder of the war, and cut Napoleon and his troops off from reinforcements or supplies. This effectively ended hopes for French success, and Napoleon returned to France after a failed siege of Acre.

Napoleon: Total War Historical Battles
Land Battles Battle of LodiBattle of ArcoleBattle of the PyramidsBattle of AusterlitzBattle of BorodinoBattle of DresdenBattle of LignyBattle of WaterlooBattle of Friedland*
Sea Battles Battle of the NileBattle of Trafalgar

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