https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/arabia-how-the-hell.651921/#post-15598808 Made this thread a while ago but I've nailed down the strategy to consistent at beating the Arabs UHV. This guide describes how to beat the Arabs UHV without cheesing the Turks! It's an easy UHV if you cheese the Turks, but fudge that. I want to win without any bullfeathers. This strategy is easier on maraton, not sure why, but works on normal. Difficult is regent, I doubt it would work on paragon, but I dislike that level of difficulty. So here we go. --- 1. Spawn. Do your workers how you like, I keep two improving Mecca and Yemen, and the other two to connect to Jerusalem. Send units towards Jerusalem. Harbor in Mecca and Yemen. 2. In the turn before Egypt, Mesopotamia and the Levant flip, switch to monarchy, manorialism, vassalage. Honestly I haven't really tried out a despotism strategy, but I think monarchy is still better in the long run, you're surviving for so long you kind of want the pop. 3. Note that you can reload before the flip for Byzantium to declare war on the flip (~10% chance), which gives you an additional group of units. Up to you, it can help but isn't actually needed. 4. Research path is politics, civil service, feudalism, after that is up to you. Politics to access civil service and feudalism, civil service for Ghazis and feudalism for Mobile Guard. Avoid paper and compass, as great scientists will bulb them for you. 5. The flip. You get Egypt, the Levant and Mesopotamia, which all contain good cities. Here's a brief breakdown of them. - Alexandria: Low production, decent pop. The moment it grows a bit put two scientist specialists up. Ideally you should get 2-3 Great Scientists throughout the UHV run with Alexandria which is core to the strategy. - Cairo: Good all round city. Don't found Luxor. - Jerusalem: Takes too long to get off the ground. Up to you whether you go Dome of the Rock, it's not like you're building anything better in it. - Damascus: Great city, good pop and production. Often where I make my Mobile Guards. - Baghdad: Good city, takes a lot of workers to get going. I tend to use farms for that manorialism+vassalage combo, you could try water wheels, idk. Micromanage your units the following: - Egyptian Spearman spread out south of Cairo. Stay the whole game and kill Nubian medjays. - Your "4 unit packs" (2 guard, 2 ghazi) in Egypt and Mecca both towards Baghdad. - Distribute so you have an archer in every city minimum. Send excess archers/crossbowmen towards Baghdad. - Send one settler to Alexandria (don't get free buildings!) and one towards Baghdad. - Workers how you like. Focus on roads, Jerusalem to Mecca and Baghdad to Damascus. - Workers in every city. You need a **** ton of workers, I do 2 per city (maybe only one in Alexandria since its so low pop, then barracks. I haven't tested it but you may prefer barracks -> workers, idk which is better. 6. Foreign policy time. Make sure you get open borders with Byzantium and keep good on them, they can and will attack you if you ungarrison Damascus so don't fudge up there with them. Look at Azerbaijan: did Turks settle Rasht? If Turks settle Rasht, get your 8 good units near Rasht, and attack Turks and take Rasht, distribute gold to keep it good. Your units are top quality and will easily kill Oghuz in hills/cities, mobile guards can kill them ~70% in plains. Consider a restart if you lose too many mobile guards fighting Turkestan. If Rasht was not founded, found Tabriz (one tile to the west of Rasht), and push towards Merv. 7. War with Turks. Whether you take Rasht or found Tabriz, keep pushing. Independent Herat will leave you a gap to move your units towards Merv and Samarkand, but eventually will grow a tile to prevent you from doing so. So make sure you get your units to Merv first. Again your units should easily kill archers/horse archers and it's totally doable to take every city with no casualties. Take Merv and Samarkand always. Raze Urgenc. Up to you whether you want to take Orduqent or leave it to barbarians, I'm 50/50. Once you clear up Transoxiana, you have two options: either vassalise Turks or totally wipe them out. - Vassalise Turks: No further campaign, can focus on infrastructure and not worry about barbarians. Get contact with China for those nice tech trades. - Kill Turks: Get some XP for your units, but leave Transoxiana potentially vulnerable to barbs. Gift cities to China for goodwill if you can, otherwise grant independence/WB to independents. 8. At this point your economy is absolutely ****. You will be at 0% or 10% tech. Hopefully you don't get the dreaded "strike" (where your econ is negative even with 0%), if you do you are gonna have to take the L, disband ghazis so your mobile guards don't get disbanded. Your first batches of workers are getting up though so your econ will slowly scratch back. Once you've got done 2 workers per city (give or take), get barracks going in every city. Rasht, Damascus and Baghdad when improved will be your production powerhouses. Start House of Wisdom in Mecca and Heavy Galley in Yemen once their harbors are done. 9. Hopefully once you start connecting sheep, horses and camels and silk road spreads a bit your econ will be able to put you up to around 10% or even 20%. If you get a great scientist from Alexandria, save it in Mecca until House of Wisdom is done. 10. Once Damascus and Rasht are done get them to build a catapult or two. These will help you take Shiraz and Herat. Shiraz and Herat are coin tosses: they have walls and crossbowmen, so aren't as easy as Transoxiana. You can suicide your units into them to take them - which is a valid strategy, since you may have to be disbanding units anyway to avoid a strike - but I'd just wait for catapults to make it a bit safer. Again, up to you, either works. Any Great Generals should be used to upgrade mobile guards, you can put them in Damascus/Rasht if you want but up to you. 11. By around 950AD all gone well you should have two great scientists sitting around, House of Wisdom either done or nearly done, all of Persia and Transoxiana conquered, a horde of workers improving tiles and hopefully contact with China. Bulb your great scientists to get some great techs, including civil service. 12. Once you have civil service and barracks it's ghazi time. Every city building ghazis. Once you get feudalism either by research or bulbing build some stables and mobile guards, in theory ghazis are enough though. 13. Be ready now! Seljuks spawn IIRC around 1030 or so, you may have to reload if not ready. Here is how they spawn: - They target the following cities: Herat, Shiraz, Rasht. - They spawn with around 2-3 oghuz, 1-2 crossbowmen, 2 trebuchet. What this means is you need to be able to reliably kill 3 stacks of these units. Consider the following also: - In general, the AI will siege down a city before attacking it, if they cannot reliably kill the defender in the first attack. So you also should ideally have crossbowmen in these cities, 2 if you're in a good position (maybe you sold a tech or two to some Asian countries and upgraded some archers). Make sure you have roads up to ensure your army will be able to actually reach the enemy, you don't want to get caught out. One strategy is to distribute your units in the plains near the cities: this forces the Seljuks to spawn in the hills, where they are far easier to kill. Ideally with ~3 ghazis, your starting units and some crossbowmen, you should reliably be able to kill the Seljuks. 14. Second wave of Seljuks spawns around 1080. They will attack Baghdad, Damascus and Al-Quds with similar forces. Remember, keep building units, you basically don't get to stop building units in this game. Your army will be larger and stronger than in the first wave and should easily knock them out this time. Get open borders with Byzantium and help kill their Seljuks!!! You don't want Ottomans spawning and being *******s. 15. Just before you are fighting Seljuks (~1020 or so) complete two city attack II ghazis in Egypt. Start conquering North Africa - they are no-wall archer/spearmen, so two ghazis will be able to take Benghazi and Tripoli. Remember that spare settler you have? Found Tunis. 16. 1100. Seljuks are defeated with no cities taken. If they take a single city, Ottos can spawn and fudge you up, I must stress how important it is to stop the Seljuks. You have started in North Africa. With House of Wisdom and bulbing you have decent science if not best in the world already. Silk road in Transoxiana, Persia and maybe even Mesopotamia means your econ is now doing well. No stopping yet! Get a fort in the suez, and cogs in every coastal city you can (except Shiraz, I guess). You want around 7 cogs. 17. That massive army you killed the Seljuks with? Into North Africa. Start taking out the Moors, they should easily be beaten, though Marrakesh is a tough nut. Ideally you can attack them before Spain gets conquerors, but Spain will get conquerors either way so I wouldn't worry too much. Don't take Marrakesh, if you kill all but their last unit in Marrakesh they should capitulate. If not, don't worry, sit around and keep killing units til they do. If they ABSOLUTELY WON'T capitulate... idk, worldbuilder them as a vassal. 18. Now you have Morroco as a vassal and a fleet of 7 cogs. Excellent. In an ideal world, Morocco will hold a tile in Spain you can land land units in, if not don't worry, you can still land a few ghazis and be safe. You don't even need siege to kill Spain, a good selection of mobile guards and ghazis is enough. 19. Kill Spain. Even with conquerors Spain is laughably easy to kill, you should be able to take Madrid after killing their army and then their other two cities only have one unit each. Ideally vassalise. 20. Aren't we missing something? Yes, in 1200 a big someone comes. The Mongols! Don't ever stop building units, ever. Spam skirmishers and mobile guards, the army you killed the Seljuks with will be enough to beat Morocco and Spain, but you need a new army. By 1200 you should hopefully have a second army that can kill the Mongols. Accept Samarkand/Merv flipping, but be ready to defend around Herat. Note that they DO get conquerors in Persia, so be ready for a similar situation to Seljuks. If you've got this far though the Mongols really aren't an issue: just don't stop building units! No damn buildings in this strat! 21. Finally. Mongols and Spain defeated, and by around 1260 you should have all territory. Trade techs with Vikings/France if you are still behind Byzantium in any way, or run 4 priests in Jerusalem for a few turns for a Great Prophet to bulb, or both to guarantee science. 22. Come 1300, and congratulations, you have beat the real challenge of the Arab UHV. 23. It's easy mode from here, just use your massive army to conquer Europe and get 30% Islam. Run tributaries and vassalise to keep stability and econ good, I've found that the best vassals are Spain, Holy Rome, Byzantium, France. Don't bother with Italy or Portugal since you can give their cities to your other vassals. Other notes: - Once House of Wisdom is done in Mecca, you should absolutely grab Spiral Minaret which can get you from a ****** 20% tech rate to an impressive 40%. This is pretty important to avoid just bulbing. You may also want to run great prophets in Jerusalem earlier so you can get the Islamic holy building for even more cash. Finally, University of Sankore and regulated trade in Mecca means you will be getting enough gold to go run something like 60% cash. - Just because Mongols get Transoxiana for free doesn't mean you shouldn't improve. Silk, camels and horses there means you will be able to get even more silk route profits. - If you want, run despotism for a bit to whip out cogs and military units. Ideally though you don't even need to. - Tech trade! You can often grab some easy techs by trading with Vikings and China. - Don't worry about managing population. High pop core cities plus a huge historical area means you don't have to worry about stability, I have never collapsed in this strategy except after 1300. - Actually capitulating Turks is a good idea. You can direct them not to research feudalism, to ensure they don't get Lancers and stay spawning Oghuz. If they spawn Lancers you may be doomed! EDIT: Doing playtesting and capitulating Turks and managing their research is a god-tier strat. If you make sure they don't get civil service and feudalism by forcing them to research navigation and other useless techs, and don't trade them techs, you can make them spawn with Oghuz, Catapults and Swordsmen rather than Heavy Swordsmen, Lancers, Trebuchet and Crossbowmen. This obviously makes it way easier for you to kill them. I will post some screenshots soon.