I skipped a couple turns because they weren’t too interesting. In that time, I’ve expanded.
Oh, you’ll also notice that my palisade in Lithia is done. It’s now pumping out Stargazers like my capitol.I’ve also taken the chokepoint of Andoria, and I’ve got a fortress underway there in addition to the palisade being constructed in Helmshire. I’ve also got a temple being constructed in Lithia. In other words, it’s domestic infrastructure time.
As for the new expansion, I’ve just taken Dal Kopor. This is an interesting province, because it contains a merman village which will allow me to project power unto the three-province pond to the north, at least theoretically. In practice, Fomoria will probably take it first. Speaking of Fomoria, I ran into one of their expansion parties when expanding into Dal Kopor. It consisted of war elephants, who met my forces an ran away in a panic after exactly one casualty, Unmarked, and a Nemedh champion. The champion was scripted to bless then cast blessing and then uselessly faff about, but even blessed, the Unmarked were heavily outmatched by my slightly more numerous (but still cheaper overall) force of boar warriors. Their bless is W9D9, which has me scratching my head. W9 is by far at its most useful on units with several attacks, and all of Fomoria’s sacreds have exactly one. The defensive skill is great, but it would be as good at W8 and almost as good at W6, for way cheaper. One extra attack every other turn is just not worth it, especially on big units. D9 is defensive, adding undying1 10, as well as offensive, adding Death Weapons. But Undying goes best with the undead, and he only has Morrigans at Conjuration 6, who aren’t super cost effective. And Death Weapons is definitely not needed on them, and on everything else, Fire Weapons from F9 would be way better. None of his units really have a problem of not hitting hard enough though, and for big HP units like those I’d definitely consider N9 the first choice of bless, with B9 as a second choice since it’s good for ensuring continued relevance.
Anyway, he traded 930 gold for 141 gold, despite having double the bless. How embarrassing!
He’s feeling that loss, looks like. He’s also stuck some units in the water, which is annoying because it means that even if I can beat him in a war, I’ll have underwater fomorians being a pain in the neck for the rest of time. He’s still looking like a decent target for a war, but war will be a ways into the future and it’s likely that someone will start a war with me before I start a war with someone else, so it is how it is.
Well, I didn’t actually send that. Memeing at him that hard would come across as hostile.
It’s actually a bit worse for him than it would initially have appeared, since he threw up a palisade in an adjacent province, meaning that by maintaining that province, I’m denying him resources. That’s not my problem though, and if he tries to make it my problem, well, hopefully he won’t do that for a little while, and I’ll be ready.
Is this guy for real?
“NAP” in this context stands for “non-aggression pact”. It’s a diplomatic concept that’s popular in many communities, where they’ll make deals and then stand by them. But it’s not a part of the community that I play in, because the goal of the game is to win, not to lose with bragging rights. So while deals are made, they’re understood to be, by their nature, temporary and subject to betrayal as a natural part of the game. This guy, by asking that, makes it seem like he could be from some other Dominions community. But if that was the case, it’s unlikely that he would have called me rude earlier. It’s more likely that he’s memeing me in an attempt to take advantage of me. That means he’ll likely attack me soon regardless of my response. Luckily, I’ll also have my forts up soon. So as long as I play along and he suspects me of being an idiot, I should be safe for a while yet. I hit Conjuration 4 this turn, but it’ll be at least three turns until I hit that, more likely five, and that’s just to unlock piggies. I’ll still need to summon enough Carnutes to mass them, and research Evocation 5 for Stellar Cascades. Even assuming everything goes well, it’ll take around a year to reach the ideal situation. Of course, I don’t strictly need my ideal situation for the first war. I can fight him off and take his land with just pigs. But it’ll be an attrition battle since he probably has more territory than me. In the interests of discovering if that’s true, I’m sending some of my newly unlocked fish scouts in his direction. For now though, I’ll just go ahead and accede his probably dishonest request.
Let’s look at that battle for the throne. We’ll start with my side, where I have my small horde of sacreds, backed up by loads of javelins, and… It’s not really mage support, with the quantity of them, but anyway there’s two mages. Sent them there mostly because the chieftain didn’t have enough leadership for all those javelins.
On the other side, the AI with a pretty standard complement of human troops. These by themselves would not be a problem, but they are supported by three mages.
The mages start out by buffing themselves (invulnerability, ironskin, and personal luck) and the enemy troops advance while their archers fire arrows. My troops advance, and Ofagion the Sorcerer casts Shadow Blast, which takes out several boar warriors before they can come to meet him. The round after that, my javelineers spend their javelins in militia, and the boars meet units to fight. The militia rout pretty much immediately. My units then get bogged down fighting mediocre units and giving better than they get, but taking some attrition and losing a lot of bodies to magic.
By the time they meet the enemy back line – the units that have actually been causing trouble, for the most part – my biggest group of Javelineers routs. The others follow after. Zelion the Wizard decides to rout, and that’s the only high-value casualty the enemy suffers.
With the troops eliminated that I killed, a next battle will be easier, but it’ll also be easier for Helheim, who shares a border with this province, so I need to move quick. It’s also pretty obvious what I was missing, tactically: Cavalry set to flank and attack rear. Some of the heavy infantry were set to guard commander, which will prevent cavalry from getting the mages, but if nothing else they could cause trouble for the archers. And although half my javelineers ran away, that just means that they can fight another day. The Indies, meanwhile, have no troops except the ones set to guard commander and the archers, so I should close the distance fine and cause a bit more trouble. Well, we’ll see how it goes. I’m sending my capital to pick up more boar warriors at the capital, then he’ll return to Lithia, directly adjacent to Cun Aral, where there will be two turns of cavalry waiting for him. Those’ll supplement the Javelineers he’s already got, and though they’ll be small in number, they’re a lot tougher than barechests. Now that I know what I’m up against, victory should come easy, which will secure my borders and allow me to take Worshin and Chilad at my leisure. Well, I’ll still want to do it somewhat quickly for the benefit of having more provinces, of course.
In minor news, I’ve exceeded five temples, boosting domstrength to 7. Without war, I have access to nine provinces, so I’m one short of bumping it to domstrength 8. That means temples aren’t a priority for the foreseeable future.
And Fomoria wants to talk to me on Steam. It turns out it’s someone I’ve played with before, though I really can’t remember when. But that’s the only reason I know of for him already being my Steam friend. At any rate, I give him a howdy. He’s offline now, so that discussion will come with the next turn.
This turn, two forts completed, bringing me up to five. Those were the last ones under construction for now, though the new forts still need labs before they can become Sequani factories. Besides that, I just moved around units for the usual purposes, site-searching and infrastructure-building, as well as to prepare the attack on the Throne next turn. You might norice that the province previously held by Niefelheim on my border is now held by indies. That’s the result of an event. I won’t take it now, because doing so would be rude and hostile. If he hasn’t claimed it in a few turns, I’ll take it and act surprised if I get an angry message later. Even then though, I won’t invest in it. Easier to just let it be and give it back to him if he complains too much. Although it would be a great staging ground and Niefelheim is a reasonably attractive first war… Or will be, when I hit my research goals. I’ve got two turns until Conjuration 5, and then it’ll be a fair few until Evocation 5, at which point I can utterly wreck him with stellar cascade spam, but until then he would roll over me pretty easily.
Caelum reveals why Fomoria was so eager for peace, which is nice since although I suspected it before, now I know for sure he won’t betray me.
Of course, the reason Caelum’s doing this is obvious. He wants me to take out Fomoria. I’d like that too. Problem is, without some Carnutes ready, I don’t want to make that kind of commitment. So I’ll politely tell Caelum as much while showing as much friendliness as possible. Caelum, being the enemy of my neighbor, is my natural ally and it’s good to cultivate relationships like that, even though he’ll be tough to deal with if he has full access to his battlemagic, because unless I’m mistaken, his thunderbolt spam would only take blood vengeance from the pigs that it does damage to, but not necessarily the ones it spreads fatigue to.
One of my scouts found about 100 chaff and Unmarked marching on Caelum’s capital, so I’ll set a scout to watch that province and see what happens. Fomoria actually only has a pretty little border with Caelum though, despite having quite a lot of land.
In economic news, my upkeep has been growing faster than my income, and after spending basically all of my money last turn, I didn’t have enough this turn to both get a new lab and add a new Sequani recruitment in a new fort. The Sequani matter more, so I did that and with the gold saved, I switched from Sequani recruitment to Elder Druid recruitment in the capital. It’s fall in the year two of the ascension wars, and this is the first non-Sequani mage I’m recruiting this game. I hope to get one with an N random, since that’s what I need to summon Carnutes. Only 52% of Elder Druids have that, but it’s better than using a Gutuater since only 25% of them have an E random to go with their N, and the spell requires both. Plus, I’ll have a lot more use in battle for Elders than for Gutuaters.
- Essentially, extra hitpoints with a catch. Undying lets you go into negative hitpoints without dying, up to the undying value. However, at the end of battle the unit still dies unless it’s undead, or something (usually regeneration) brings you up above 0. ↩