The Sergeant at Arms, an all-new unit for the Crusader forces, makes his debut in Stronghold Crusader 2 as one of many troop types with a unique ability. Say you’re surrounded and without hope, stuck on the open battlefield with fewer numbers than your opponent and no time to call for reinforcements. In situations like this the Sergeant at Arms would be just the unit you need, with his ability to boost morale and overcome help your squad overcome greater numbers.
Like the Slave Driver, who is in many ways his Arabic counterpart, the Sergeant provides a passive defensive bonus to nearby units under his area of effect. Although the bonus given by the Slave Driver is slightly better the Sergeant is able to buff all unit types around him, as opposed to just Slave units. This results in a more versatile troop. Not only can he be used boost the armour of expensive attacking units like Templar Knights and Crusader Swordsmen, but he can also defend Archers and Crossbowmen in ranged or defensive battles. You can even stack the Sergeant’s defensive buff with that of a nearby Slave Driver and send out a squad of Slaves with two sets of defensive bonuses. The only drawback being that the Sergeant’s slower movement speed will prevent you from performing a traditional Slave rush or hit-and-run.
Careful thought must be given to the deployment of Sergeant units, not least because they are the second most expensive unit in the game. Backed up with an army they are a formidable support unit that can turn the tide of battle. Leave them exposed however and their low attacking strength can leave the Sergeant quite vulnerable. They have hefty armour that is almost comparable to Pikemen or Templar Knights, but this is balanced with their high cost and moderate attacking power. The relatively high investment required to recruit a squad of Sergeants means you will want to protect them near the rear of an attacking force, to be healed if a battle turns sour. Keep a keen eye out for Sassanid Knights, who will cut them down quickly and mercilessly.
Perhaps the safest use of Sergeant at Arms is on walls and towers to bolster your defending Archers. Here they can help keep your castle secure with no risk of being isolated and taken out in the open desert. Play too conservatively however and your enemies will take any unclaimed resources without a fight. The Crusader 2 team is excited to see the clever and unpredictable ways our fans will put the Sergeant at Arms to use. We are already finding out ways he can sway the tide of a battle in our own games and can’t wait to share these with you come September!