Originally Posted by thaddeus6th
I've never seen 300, though the mindless violence does look fun.
Alexander gave them a thrashing at various battles. He won passage over the Granicus (where, as someone else pointed out, Memnon could well've stopped him) then won at Arbela and, er, another place whose name eludes me. The Persians also failed to occupy and defend numerous key mountain forts, and when they did (when Darius was fleeing for his life) Alexander managed to defeat them anyway.
The key battle in which Alexander crushed the Persians while being outnumbered 3:1. His forces suffered 4000 casualties, while the Persians suffered 40000.
The key reason in Alexander's victory is how he positioned his troops in a curve, diminishing the numerical superiority of his enemies and to prevent his men from being surrounded. His phalanx formation was very hard to break as they were packed together. The Persians threw infantry, calvary, and chariots at them but all Alexander's men did was hold out their spears.