Ballistics is a secondary skill, that gives the player manual control over the catapult in a siege, increases the chances of hitting an intended wall and increases the chance of doing double damage. The castle walls as well as Drawbridge, Keep and Arrow Towers have 2 hitpoints (upon building castle standard walls are upgraded to fortified walls, which have 3 hitpoints). Additionally, at advanced and expert level of Ballistics catapults fire twice instead of just once.
|Chance to hit Keep (before all walls destroyed)||5%||7%||7%||10%|
|Chance to hit Arrow Towers (before all walls destroyed)||10%||15%||15%||20%|
|Chance to hit Drawbridge (before all walls destroyed)||25%||30%||30%||40%|
|Chance to hit intended wall||50%||60%||60%||75%|
|Chance for no damage||10%||0%||0%||0%|
|Chance for 1 damage||60%||50%||50%||0%|
|Chance for 2 damage||30%||50%||50%||100%|
Heroes with Ballistics as a starting skill:
- Olema the Heretic (basic)
- Theodorus the Wizard (basic)
- Uland the Druid (basic)
- Yog the Barbarian (basic)
Chance to get
|Town||Class||Chance to learn|
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Ballistics is not something essential to everyone, but it's really useful when sieging towns, and if a map has many towns you should capture, consider using a hero with Ballistics as your starting hero, eventually improving the skill to Expert. It will make sieging a town way easier, reducing your losses, as you will destroy the drawbridge on an early stage of the battle, and the enemy's defense will worsen significantly. However, the most crucial when sieging a town is properly using your flyers, ranged units, and magic, so as to win as soon as possible and avoid major losses.
Quite useful, since it gives you first chance to cast spells in sieges (provided that the defending hero doesn't have Artillery).
Recommended for: Heroes with walker-heavy armies
While useful for breaking open the gate quickly, one also has to care to consider that it is the only battle-skill that in non-siege battle situations has absolutely no impact. Therefore, in a multiplayer game it may be better to select a more multi-situation skill upon which to invest. In single-player games, more useful, but also situational, as the AI tends to charge out of the castle if an army demonstrates any significant long-range damage abilities. It is very rare that the AI stays in the castle entirely, and that this skill is entirely necessary. I would take this if I had walker armies, and were offered an alternative skill considerably less useful (ie. eagle eye, learning).