It's not like the last start was terrible. However, we were learning the hard way what happens to the bad guys and I just did not like the idea of being out of 100gpt for the entire world condemning us as the bad guys. In this restart, we are partly bad guys and it is only showing up in diplomacy. It is a fun start, but I needed a two week break from the game.
There is, of course, some shameless RNG and save shopping. Part of it is to conserve the original Sanguine Pact start. Part of it is the pursuit of perfection, even if we have some positions that leave us very open to attack.
Part 1A - Turns 1 to 25- 3040BC - The Blood Pact and Road to War
Turn 1 4000BC - We pretended as well as we could to start with no information and moved the Warrior in the only direction he could move a couple of tiles, 1W. Then we moved the Settler to see more space and once again, we found what we thought was the best spot to found a city - an Orange Tile on a River. Then we moved the Warrior and Settler one more time to seal the deal.
Turn 2 3960BC - We founded Pasargadae on the Orange River Tile and started work on establishing Code of Laws, researching Animal Husbandry, and building a Slinger.
T4 3880BC - Moving our Warrior northwards, we discovered a boundary that is the Mediterranean Sea. Quite a few years pass as we aimlessly explore our boundaries.
T10 3640BC - We invested 50g to buy a 2f2h forest tile and get some production into our capital city. At least it has some growth. It is already size 3.
This is, of course, bad news if we encounter somebody in the next five turns. However, we have some map knowledge and an insane plan for an early ancient war.
T11 3600BC - Sure enough, Gilgamash is right where he always is. We have no money to send a delegation. We spent it all on some undeveloped forest property.
T13 3520BC A Barbarian Camp materialized at 7NW. Also, a Barbarian Scout showed up on our border at 1W2N.
T14 3480BC We are already busted by the Barbarian Scout!
T15 3440BC With Code of Laws, we established our very first government. We went with Discipline for very obvious reasons. We are already busted by the Barbarians. We also have no Scouts and that policy will do no good for us. For economy, we went with God-King. We have no source of Faith and we would like to establish some sort of Pantheon. Basically, we will be investing 25h to get 25g and a Pantheon.
A dust storm made some desert hills tile more farmable.
T19 3280BC Our Slinger got a kill on a Scout and we have Eureka on Archery. It is not a turn too soon!
T21 3200BC Our forces have finally arrived at the Barbarian Encampment and reading from the works of Sargon the Great, we pulled a trick that works every time. We moved a Slinger close enough to the encampment to threaten the Spearman fortified inside and that is enough to come out and play.
The RNG said the best way to achieve our objective and join the Sanguine Pact was to sack the Barbarian Camp right away and that is what our Warrior did. The Slingers then attacked the Spearman, only to be counterattacked at the end of the turn. This was enough to win a promotion and undo the damage - and as a bonus we have a promoted Slinger unit.
T22 3160BC - Meanwhile on the home front, we have only a single Vampire defender and we are exploring a little bit as the Sumerians gather their forces to take our one and only city and wipe us from the game. They got distracted by a Barbarian Scout which they effortlessly wasted.
T25 3040BC - Apparently a lone Vampire wandering at night is an irresistible target for the Sumerians, even if their primitive civilization has not yet invested Wooden Stake Technology. Still, they were able to waste it, forcing it into gaseous form and escape to a coffin specially prepared in Pasargadae.
Part 1B Turn 38 2520BC - Gilgamesh Meets Ekindu
The foulest stench is in the air
The funk of forty thousand years
And grizzly ghouls from every tomb
Are closing in to seal your doom
-Michael Jackson's Thriller
T26 3000BC - The sudden attack on our Vampire did no real harm to us. The Vampire is effectively immortal. However it did win us an Inspiration for Defensive Tactics for the time we finally develop it. We do have a starting war situation to ponder.
There is some work cut out for us and we start at it. We start with something that can be killed, which is the Warrior which is already wounded. There is, of course a consequence - and that is the War Cart will counterattack something, which is our Warrior fortified in the Forest. Over the next few turns, we accumulate a body count and a blood count.
T31 2800BC - We beat back the initial wave of Sumerians and caught visibility of a War Cart escorting a Settler. At the sight of our advancing army, they retreated to Uruk. We got visibility of Uruk the following turn.
T34 2680BC - With a Sumerian War Cart and Settler in full retreat, we recklessly advanced on Uruk and put it under siege. As a bonus, the city is left nearly completely defenseless.
T37 2560BC With no real units to defend it, Uruk fell pretty quickly.
This is actually one of the fastest times we captured a capital city. I'm not sure this is the best result we can achieve. I played this save quite a few times. Sometimes we got the city and a Settler and a Builder. This time we got the Capital very early.
T38 2520BC - The Sumerians sued for peace and since we already have their capital, we figured it is just easy gold for us. We get 12gpt and Uruk, which has a couple of Orange tiles we can develop and sell to other AI we meet for even more gold.
Part 1C Turn 51 2000BC - Dark Days are Coming
T40 2440BC - We finally got around to finishing our second civic, Foreign Trade, just in time to found our Pantheon.
For Civics, we shifted to Discipline and Urban Planning. We now have 2 cities to benefit from it and Urban Planning is our gold standard for policy cards.
For Pantheon, once again, we went with Lady of Reeds and Marshes. Apparently she gets a lot of hate from the YouTube experts. However, this looked like a situation where we can pick up some very early and very quick gains.
This also got us the Inspiration for Mysticism.
Elsewhere in the world, the Netherlands conquered Jerusalem and robbed Sumeria of its vassal.
T41 2400BC - We found another Barbarian Camp and established contact with Perikles.
T44 2280BC - Quarry in Pasargadae and Eureka in Masonry
T44 2280BC - Flood Plain Farm in Pasargadae for a builder charge that does very little for us
T47 2160BC - Trade route established between Pasargadae and Uruk. It generates 1f1h2g1c. It also gets us Eureka for Currency.
T48 2120BC - We unloaded our final builder charge on a Rice Farm that we are unlikely to use in the near future. However, it does get us an Inspiration in Craftsmanship and Eureka in Irrigation. Our first investment in a builder looks like this:
50h - Builder
16c - Inspiration Craftsmanship
20s - Eureka Irrigation
28.8s - Eureka Masonry
1h/t - Quarry
0.25f/t - Farm
So maybe it's like a free builder if we assume the culture and science are equivalent to the hammers. For yield so far, we did not get much.
We also hired Mags to Pasargadae. He established on T53, but it is unlikely we make use of any of his talents until later. Maybe we will be able to use him to chop out Settlers quickly.
T10 3640BC 60g for 2f2h forest tile
T40 2440BC 60g for 3f2h marsh tile
T40 24440BC 60g for 2f2h flood plain tile
T47 2160BC 60g for Encampment site
T50 2040BC 215g for Builder in Uruk
T11 3600BC Slinger 35h
T17 3360BC Slinger 35h
T24 3080BC Archer 60g
T25 3040BC Archer 60g
T27 2960BC Warrior 40h
T32 2760BC Warrior 40h
T39 2480BC Monument 60h
T44 2280BC Builder 50h
T47 2160BC Trader 46h
T49 2080BC Monument Uruk 60h
T11 3600BC Animal Husbandry 25s
T20 3240BC Archery 30/50s
T26 3000BC Mining 25s
T37 2560BC Pottery 25s
T45 2240BC Writing 30/50s
T47 2160BC Bronze Working 48/80s
T15 3440BC Code of Laws 20c
T40 2440BC Foreign Trade 40c
T48 2120BC Early Empire 42/70c
T49 2080BC Craftsmanship 24/40c
T33 2720BC 63g Ziggurat
T35 2640BC 63g Ziggurat
T37 2560BC 72g Ziggurat
T22 3160BC Slinger L1 Volley
T28 2920BC Archer L1 Volley
T31 2800BC Warrior L1 Battlecry
T36 2600BC Archer L2 Arrow Storm
T50 2040BC Archer L2 Arrow Storm
Religion and World News
T33 2720BC Sumeria established the Earth Goddess Pantheon
T44 2280BC Greeks established the Sacred Path
T47 2160BC Somebody built Etemenanki - This is too bad, because we would have some very powerful marsh and flood plain tiles. However, there was little we could do about it, because we got involved in an early war.
1. T19 3280BC Slinger K Barbarian Scout
2. T22 3160BC Warrior K Barbarian Spear
3. T26 3000BC Archer K Sumerian Warrior - 1 Pint
4. T27 2960BC Archer K Sumerian War Cart - 2 Pints
5. T29 2880BC Warrior K Sumerian Slinger - 3 Pints
6. T30 2840BC Warrior K Sumerian Warrior - 4 Pints
7. T31 2800BC Archer K Sumerian Warrior - 5 Pints
8. T38 2520BC Warrior K Sumerian Warrior - 6 Pints
9. T44 2280BC Warrior K Barbarian Horse
10. T49 2080BC Archer K Barbarian Spear - 6+1 Pints
11. T50 2040BC Warrior K Barbarian Scout
T51 2000 BC - The Classical Era started. We deliberately chose to be in a Dark Age and there were quite a few opportunities to prevent that. The reasons we can think of are:
Heroic Age Slingshot
Maybe we manage to use a Dark Age card
Vampires like darkness