A Broadside is a ship ability in Empire: Total War. It is term used for an action in naval battles where manual firing of the cannons is employed. Barring the Rocket Ship (as it has no cannons to speak of), the Galley and the Light Galley, any ship can use the broadside ability.

How to use the BroadsideEdit

  1. Determine which side you will fire a broadside.
  2. Click the corresponding side on your fleet maneuver's panel.
  3. Click again to open fire.

General InformationEdit


Heavy First Rate opens fire with a broadside.

A broadside is one of the useful close quarters battle techniques. Its usefulness is questionable and any competent admiral would take full advantage of its tactical value. However, broadsides aren't useful in most scenarios. The goal of using a broadside is to conserve your cannons, and stockpile their loaded status for a situation where firing all the cannons would do maximum damage.

Because of this, they are useful in scenarios such as

  1. Right before boarding occurs.
  2. Right before grappling occurs.
  3. When making a close pass by an enemy warship.
  4. When needing to teamkill an allied warship in a campaign where you will backstab your ally.

On the other hand, broadsides are ineffective for

  1. Long distance shooting.
  2. When raking the enemy's bow or stern.
  3. When going for sail shots.
  4. When turning around for a quick shot.

Because broadsides are manual, it is crucial that the admiral aims carefully.