Riderless Persian War Elephants

The new Persian war elephants look quite different in the E3 trailer. They now have heavily armoured heads for instance and look totally badass, IMO. If there’s one thing I’d like to see changed, it would be having a mahout (rider) put on the Persian elephants. This would make logical sense whenever a Persian elephant unit is converted - since monks converting riderless elephants makes no sense, whatsoever.

That is unless medieval ‘holy men’ had a secret ability that allowed them to converse with animals - in which case they should have no trouble converting zebras, lions, wolves, crocodiles, sheep, and GAIA elephants too - unless there’s something about war elephants that makes them special.

I wonder if the developers read these forums occasionally, and if they might be able to consider a request to have the Persian elephants changed so that they are ridden by people in the definitive edition.


Actually trebuchets, onagers and scorpions working without any human operating them does not make sense also. So no need to take all little details so seriously :smiley:


That’s much harder to fix than installing a rider on a Persian elephant! But, yeah, sure whatever, I suppose!

I guess purists would prefer to have unmanned war elephants in the game.

1 Like

Organ Guns. They have humans, so it’s not “much harder” I’d reckon. I’d probably like riders on elephants as in AoE 1. Manned catapults and trebuchets aren’t needed as it’s not necessary to have too much “realism” in these games. It’s not a huge deal though. At least you can tell it’s not an elephant archer ;p


I don’t mind if they would put a mahout on top of WE’s. No problem with that.


In Age of Mythology there are several myth units that are either animal or insect and they do not have any rider. Do you want them to add rider in that game too? I think the game is very very good as it is, but we want more. This is common to ask for more!

It is said " There is always a problem ".

1 Like

@ RealityWords: Progress and improvement are the only ways forward otherwise we wouldn’t have the internet (or have sent a person to the moon) if someone 30 years ago, for instance, had decided to sit back and not ask for change, variation, or improvement.

AoE2 is based on historical events whereas Age of Mythology is completely based on mythology (i.e. fiction), so having unusual units is probably the norm in that case. As such, that game has little bearing on AoE2 apart from the fact that they were made by the same developer.


I agree with everything you typed. Without problems we would live like we are having euphoria at some events of our lives.

euphoria =

extreme happiness, sometimes more than is reasonable in a particular situation: They were in a state of euphoria for days after they won the prize.

1 Like

I definitely agree with you. It would be amazing if they put a lancer on a war elephant. Although it is not a very important issue, they should add humans operating siege equipments. I can understand a 1999 game hadn’t these features, but it wouldn’t be hard to do so today. Neither lancers on war elephants nor engineers operating siege equipments are crucial though. It is just a thing that could make the game a bit realistic. It hasn’t anything to do with gameplay.


Well I believe the War Elephants are more easily recognised in a crowd of elephants without the rider and siege should go without tbh. The feel of the game is nice and keeping it that way means sometimes not adding it! But I wouldnt oppose it if they would :slight_smile:

Having a lancer isn’t necessary since war elephants pack enough of a punch by themselves (this is captured in game by having these elephants do the maximum damage output relative to all other elephant units). Having a rider, however, is important from the perspective of immersion. How else, after all, would the animal know where to go and whom to attack (beyond instinctively attacking any enemy unit that gets close enough)? Also, how does the animal get ‘converted’ by a ‘holy man’? My interpretation is that the animal cannot, and it is the invisible rider who makes the decisions regarding whom to attack, where to go, and when to ‘switch sides’.

All I’d like is to see this rider become visible.

And, yes, having people operate siege weapons would also be preferable (I would have hated to see a self-operated organ gun, for instance), but that’s for another topic. I suppose it might be significantly more difficult to change the entire unit model for things like catapults and scorpions.

1 Like

OK, I understand the point you said. I think a thread should be created, in order to discuss the issue about siege weapons not having operators.

1 Like

Siege weapons almost never move without soldiers escorting in game unless the player is daft.

Point taken, but I’m not sure what that has to do with their in-game models being ‘self-operated’. I’m not certain if advanced mechanical automation and artificial intelligence had been developed during the middle ages!

One can always imagine that someone is inside a ram (even an ungarrisoned one) at all times (they do use up one population-space after all) and that they are killed when the ram is destroyed. It does, however, kill immersion somewhat when scorpions and mangonels are shown to be lacking a human operator (unless the game is trying to imply that such an operator is somewhere inside these machines as well - something that is hard to visually conceive).


I would love to see siege engines and towers operated by crew for sure. But elephants cannot be told to charge at things without someone riding them. A mahout should be on a Persian war elephant for sure.


But then it also should cost 2 population count and requires balancing that civ again.

No, it shouldn’t. It’s the human that takes up the population slot, not the machine - and since each of these machines is operated by only one human, there’s no need for siege weapons to take up more than one population slot!

Essentially, this is a purely visual change that will, nonetheless, greatly enhance the immersive experience of the game - especially for those playing the campaigns/ custom scenarios, and even more so for new players taking in the AoE2 experience for the first time.

No game-play/ balance changes, or any other changes to game-mechanics, are required for this to work!


Agree, the elephant/camels/horses are just tools but the human is the one which should count for population.


I think they try to stay as close to the original as possible because of the recognition. In interviews developers said, that the Units look shouldn’t change making it easy for players to adapt fast to the definitive edition.
And without the rider they are pretty easy to distinguish from the regular battle elephants.

So even though optical changes would be historical correct, the won’t do it.


That would be a nice touch