With its redbrick walls in striking contrast to the surrounding swamplands, Riverlands Castle has the look of a place that’s been transported from elsewhere rather than built to dominate its impoverished landscape. However, as out of place as it looks, it’s nonetheless an imposing fortification that is as notable for its gardened courtyards as for its expensive clay tiles - requiring tactics suited as much to open battle as to close-quarter siege.
The current construction of Riverlands Castle is actually the fourth iteration of a fortress that has enjoyed something of a tragicomic history. The first two are only remembered because they both stood for only a few years before they sank into the swamp on which they were built. The third met the same ignominious end after it was set ablaze before toppling into its own foundations. Not to be deterred, the subsequent so-called King of Swamp Castle erected a fourth, the rather more stable construction that survives today. Whether it does so due to improved planning or building methods, or simply because the surrounding swamp has no more capacity, is something that only time can reveal.
PLAN OF ATTACK
- The broad battlements allow the defenders to set up deep positions and reinforce their lines quickly. However, there is a ladder to the north of the main gate that’s easy to overlook, as well as a rapid route to Capture Point B if you assault the wall via the southernmost ladder - one or both are worth considering.
- You don’t need to capture A and B to be able to assault C and while the extra time can be useful if you do, you may be able to deliver a more decisive blow by surging towards the final objective.
- If it’s well-defended the inner wall will be hard to breach. The gates are open but are easy to defend. Try using ladders instead.
- The final control point will be a tempting target as it sits on open terrain, but there are a number of areas from which the defenders can quickly take it back - not least the steps that lead down from the defender’s main resupply area. Try to remove the defenders from their positions around the control point before taking the control point itself.
- Because the attackers are forced to use one of three crossings to assault the outer wall, you should be able to thin their numbers early on with the right artillery pieces in place.
- The attackers don’t gain a huge advantage by holding the outer battlements, which makes organising your defence around the initial control points much more viable. It’s important however to hold both for as long as possible, for if one is poorly defended and falls quickly, the attackers could move rapidly to take the final objective.
- Riverside Castle has some great defensive positions around each control point, especially for ranged units. A high wall overlooking the final objective is particularly effective for long-ranged archers and personal siege weapons to whittle the enemy down.