Why 'Total War Saga: Troy' Is About the Wrong War

Total War Saga: Troy presents itself as a depiction of a loosely-plausible history behind the legends and myths that make up the stories of the Trojan War. That's tricky, because any realism about a mythical Bronze Age conflict that maybe-happened around 1200 BCE, and whose details were documented in a poem recorded 500 years later, is going to be pretty speculative. Troy doesn't really seem like it has an historically plausible vision of warfare in the late Bronze Age when the war supposedly happened, nor the the Archaic Age from which the myths themselves largely date. It's a mashup of out of context historical inspiration and literary reference, which ends up being pretty damned fun because of it. 


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/akzq55/why-total-war-saga-troy-is-about-the-wrong-war

I’m curious if the Hittites are in this game at all. The Homeric story sees this as an epic clash between Greeks and Trojans, and a few allies. But it seems the war really was part of the bigger story of a geopolitical battle to control Western Anatolia between the Hittite Empire and the Mycenaean Greek ancestors.

The Hittite records are pretty shitty. It’s like half a dozen letters written by the Hittite kings to the king of “Ahhiyawa” (thought to mean "Archeans, one of Homer’s names for the Greeks.) But these documents are about the only historical evidence we have contemporary with the time the Illiad was supposed to happen. It implies Troy was a city a called “Wilusa” whose control seems to have shifted back and forth between Mycenaean and Hittite control.

I think they might have gone more fantasy with this, and I wish they had abandoned any pretense of realism at all. If I’m doing the Trojan War, I want to be Diomedes and throw a spear at Ares, making the War God scream with the voice of 10,000 men and run away.

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I mean, you can turn Odysseus into this

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I am pretty sure there are currently no references to the Hittites, although I wouldn’t be totally surprised to see some kind of expansion that adds them. The map basically ends a little east of Troy - there is quite a bit of the coast and southern part of that landmass (Anatolia/Turkey?) but it doesn’t go inland except kind of at the southern end to give the Lycians room to expand I assume, and I don’t think the Black Sea is part of the map. Depending on what they do though I could envision a map expansion that adds Hittites. Just a question of whether a “smaller scale” title like this gets that kind of extra content.