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Onager (Parthia)

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Soldiers: 16

TotalWarParthianOnager 01

Attack: 53

Charge Bonus: 2

Weapon Type: Siege Attack

Total Defense: 2

Armour: 2

Defense Skill: 3

Shield: 0

Hit Points: 1

Recruitment Cost: 740

Upkeep: 120

Morale: 4

Abilities: Area Attack, very long range, can use flaming missiles, can't hide, almost inaccurate against infantry and cavalry troops.

Ammunition: 30


The Onager is a catapult jokingly named for the tremendous kick it has when fired at the enemy (an "onager" is a wild donkey). This war machine of Parthia is powered by a twisted spring of animal sinew ropes, the most elastic substance available. The throwing arm is held in tension by the sinews. When pulled back and held by a catch it can fling a boulder with considerable speed and range. This version can be used for reducing stone fortifications, but it can also be used on the battlefield for destroying enemy artillery and harassing troops (although admittedly by killing them outright). The onager can also be used to launch incendiary missiles such as firepots, making it a versatile piece of artillery to any commander. An onager, unlike a ballista, worked similarly to a catapult. These machines could be used to hurl projectiles up to half a mile (with the larger versions). The Roman used them in many different ways: large boulders were flung at walls to help bring them down; many smaller rocks were used against enemy troops as a sort of shrapnel; various burning projectiles were used to try and spread fire; and diseased animal carcasses were flung into the enemy-held city to spread disease.
TotalWarParthianOnager 02

The Parthian onager and its crew.

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