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Revenge of the Elves - MoM High Elves AAR

Discussion in 'All Other Games' started by Lone Wolf, Dec 18, 2014.

  1. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2006
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    Greetings. This story now leaves the alternative histories of RFC-DoC in order to immerse itself in the fancy magical world of old DOS classic Master of Magic, still considered to be unsurpassed by a lot of people when it comes to fantasy 4x games.

    Like usually with my stories, the game is already finished by the time I write it. My gameplay strength is probably slightly below the average of people who still are a fans of the game.

    For those unfamiliar with the game, or wishing to refresh their memory, this wiki is highly recommended.

    Since I want revenge for my FFH loss in my Ljosalfar The Splintered Court story, I will be playing the High Elves as my master race. I'll be using the latest unofficial Insecticide patch, Extreme difficulty level (added by this patch between Hard and Impossible - it's same as Impossible, but with 25% lower AI bonuses). Medium land size (the land size option in MoM is actually the rough equivalent of Civ islands-continents option - the actual dimensions of the map always stay the same).

    Here is the Elven wizard who seeks to unite Arcanus and Mirror and become the one and the true Master of Magic:

    Spoiler :


    I kept the default name for the portrait. "Oberic" sounds fine.

    The massive bonuses the AI gets are at their most noticeable early in the game. Early survival is always a problem for me, this explains the Warlord pick. I find Alchemy to be very useful. Chaos has an excellent early-game summon (Hell Hounds), and while late-game it isn't that strong, it does have some nice direct damage stuff. Life is always good (I pick Heroism and Star Fires as my starting Life spells).

    Here's Timberland, Oberic's capital. I like the elven housing graphics in MoM (on the contrary, the "American suburbia" housing graphic for non-elven non-primitive races I find quite unimmersive).

    Spoiler :


    Oberic directs almost all of his mana to the pool, and starts casting a Magic Spirit. It finds a tower with a Phantom Beast inside, and two Gnoll kingdoms of Megamoria and Geras to the south of the area where the tower is (their location is circles in red in the minimap in the NE corner).

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Here's the lay of the land:

    Spoiler :


    The Magic Spirit continues to explore Arcanus, eventually meeting death from a Demon in a lair from which it couldn't retreat, while Oberic receives his first news about the other wizards in the form of knowledge that Ariel had casted Just Cause.

    Further times go quite uneventfully, with the city completing the Granary and Marketplace with the help of Oberic's funds, starting on a Farmer's Market, while Hell Hounds act like the defenders of the city and the future assault troops of Oberic.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Hell Hounds are far less cute on the summoning graphic than on the strategic and combat map.
     
  2. DKVM

    DKVM Basileus of the Romaioi

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    subbed
     
  3. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Things go fine in the hamlet of Timberland. Bouncy hellhounds patrol the well-furnished straight streets of graceful treehouses as the Elves start building a sawmill.

    Spoiler :


    The hellhounds, accompanied by a Spirit, take a tour of the countryside sights, specifically, of a dungeon in the fields to the southwest of Timberland.

    Spoiler :


    The poor bears are easily mauled by the hellhounds.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Here's the reward. Mildly underwhelming, but I guess you can't expect an additional wizard retort from a dungeon guarded by War Bears.

    Spoiler :


    From the top of the dungeon, the hellhound tamers spot a horde of ghouls and skeletons, accompanied by regiments of dark-skinned humans.

    Spoiler :


    They turn out to be ruled by a witch called Kali. Her first contact with Oberic is less than friendly.

    Spoiler :


    Even if I had believed it before, Kali, I certainly don't believe it now.

    Oberic manages to divinate the nature of Kali.

    Spoiler :


    The witch Kali stands at the fulcrum between Wizards with academic and material goals in the quest to become Master of Magic. She possesses theoretical knowledge of binding souls and reagents into talismans of great power.

    Presently, Kali can only glimpse the difficulty of this art, not overcome it. True Artifacts could be manifestations of tension between the Magical Realms themselves; certainly no mortal in memory wields the immense power such creations would require. That, at least, could be rearranged...


    The life in Timberland continues to be interesting, as Oberic grants some of his personal funds in order to finish the construction of the sawmill, the city guard is increased by a regiment of Gnoll Spearmen (despite the protests of the Elven guardsmen, who disliked to share their duty with the "lowly hyena-men"), and a bunch of Elven civilians prepare to migrate to a less overcrowded place.

    Spoiler :


    When the settlers left Timberland, they at first moved to the west, however, they found that Kali's army has its camp here, guarding the nature node. Since sharing the neighbourhood with Kali is dangerous, they decide to turn away and go north.

    The hellhounds NE-NE of the neutral Gnoll town are waiting for an additional regiment of hellhounds and for a regiment of longbowmen in order to start the assault.

    Spoiler :


    That's where the settlers ended up founding the new city of Venagreen. Note the bright shiny purple sparkles of Kali's node.

    Spoiler :


    The time has come. The hellhounds and Longbowmen are assaulting Geras.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    The combination of the hellhounds' fire breath and the sharp arrows of the longbowmen ensures Oberic's troops a victory. The formerly neutral kingdom of Geras submits to Oberic, and even though 33% of its hyena-like inhabitants strongly object to the conquest, they don't really have any choice.

    Spoiler :
     
  4. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

    Joined:
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    A new wizard. I like how the screenshot makes him look like he has beaver teeth.

    Spoiler :


    Of course, he's an Aggressive Expansionist.

    Spoiler :


    More Longbowmen are trained in the capital.

    Spoiler :


    Barbarian Tlaloc leads the barbarian Gnolls. Quite fitting.

    Spoiler :


    The army that took Geras, reinforced by local Gnolls, conquers another Gnoll city.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Gnolls are a type of mammalian humanoid, canine in appearance and nature and yet possessing sufficient intelligence on par with early Human development. Ferocious and strong, they can be extremely threatening to behold, and dangerous to fight.

    Gnolls are physically stronger than any other Arcanian races, and fight with teeth and claws as well as various wooden and steel weapons. Gnolls lack the intellectual capacity to create advanced empires, so instead they subjugate their neighbours and force them to do what the Gnolls themselves cannot.

    Gnolls use highly offensive and rapid strategies, putting their strength to good use early on in order to establish themselves as dominant before other empires can match their fighting capabilities. Without the aid of other races, Gnolls will simply be left behind. Fortunately, Gnolls do not generate much antagonism in races they conquer, and themselves are quite docile whenever subjugated by other races. This is part of their canine heritage - the ability to assume a disposition in accord to their standing within any society.


    Tlaloc starts making aggressive moves by ordering his Ghouls to attack a unit of Spearmen.

    Spoiler :


    He fails. Star Fires spell easily deals with single Death units.

    Spoiler :


    Doubtlessly motivated by the advanced state of the Elven civilization (and maybe also by the gold in Oberic's pocket), Shuri the Huntress joins us.

    Spoiler :
     
  5. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Here's Shuri in the capital with the rest of its defenders.

    Spoiler :


    Oberic starts casting Heroism on Shuri.

    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc has a minor army in South Gnollia. But our Gnoll cities are well-defended.

    Spoiler :


    More whipping of Longbowmen.

    Spoiler :


    And building shrines to quell the Gnolls.

    Spoiler :


    Ooh, a single Zombie, dealing with it should be easy.

    Spoiler :


    A Night Stalker? Whoa. Gnoll Spearmen defeat it (a testament to the early power of Gnoll units), but end up very weakened.

    Spoiler :


    When in danger or in doubt,
    Run in circles, scream in shout


    is a perfectly fine advice in MoM when dealing with strong single enemy units. I win the battle after 50 rounds of running away from the Zombies.

    Spoiler :


    Other wizards, seeing Oberic's "running away" tactic, declare war on him.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    However, our capital already has a powerful stack...

    Spoiler :


    which we immediately move towards Tlaloc's possessions.

    Spoiler :
     
  6. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Oberic starts pumping up his skill.

    Spoiler :


    The defence army in Southern Gnollia intercepts and destroys Tlaloc's forces there.

    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc is quite a weak wizard. Trier is defended rather perfunctorily.

    Spoiler :


    The army of fast Shuri, with her pathfinding allowing it to quickly move towards its targets, destroys the garrison of Trier.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc does have some forces to the east, but Oberic is not scared. After rushbuying a garrison, he orders Shuri to move surther east, to conquer another town from Tlaloc.

    Spoiler :


    The Gnoll garrison of Tlaloc's town of Speyer again falls victim to Elven arrows.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    The garrison of Tlaloc's node follows suit. Orc Warrior Orgaak is no danger for our Hellhounds and Longbowmen.

    Spoiler :


    Meanwhile, the scouting Magic Spirit meets another wizard.

    Spoiler :


    Unlike the two other wizards, Ariel speaks gentle words and agrees to the Wizard Pact.

    Spoiler :


    Ariel covers herself in a flavour of benevolence. But there's something not right about her, something that reveals that she's every bit as powermongerish as the rest of the wizards.

    Ariel dreams of victory for her faith and the Life Realm. One might speculate that this would improve the situation on Arcanus and Myrror. But as mortals only rise to their full potential in adversity, not peace, the new terms of existence emerging from such a victory are actually a complete and total mystery.

    Spoiler :


    Kali's small army of Ghouls is defeated by the Southern Gnollia Army, but with huge losses. Only two Gnoll regiments and a regiment of Hell Hounds survive the battle. Note that on the battlefield, my Gnolls have to fight each other - it's because Kali knows not only Black Prayer, but also Possession as well! It's a very nasty spell. It's clear that our realm can't fight a protracted war with a witch who knows that bit of the dark arts.

    Possession warps the very mind of a target enemy Normal Unit or Hero, making them little more than puppets in the hands of Possession's caster. They will fight for this wizard like any of his other units, and will be executed at the end of the battle.

    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc's Wolf Riders, emboldened by Oberic's recent losses in the battle with Kali, attack Trier and its puny garrison (Shuri and her army is in the east), recapturing it.

    Spoiler :


    Meanwhile, two large armies of Kali approach Southern Gnollia...

    Spoiler :


    Second army:

    Spoiler :
     
  7. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

    Joined:
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    In the north, Shuri and her army immediately return from the east to retake Trier. Tlaloc somehow has its own unit of Elven Longbowmen, but it's only one unit.

    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc's Wolf Riders are destroyed just as they come into combat range.

    Spoiler :


    His attempts to assault our capital and a city in Southern Gnollia are likewise smashed. Cockatrices are quite vulnerable to ranged attacks.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    We discover that Kali's armies are supported by the large city of Cannae and the dark rituals she performs on its oppressed citizenry.

    Spoiler :


    These rituals were indeed oppressive, for the city rebelled the following turn.

    Spoiler :


    Kali was sufficiently devastated by the rebellion to sign a peace treaty with Oberic, which was a really lucky turn of events, since she refused peace before and her stacks were advancing on our capital, ignoring Southern Gnollia.

    Spoiler :
     
  8. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    That "dark rituals" graphic, btw... Every time I see it, I am reminded of this:

    Spoiler :


    Another cult classic, just like MoM. Shall I call Kali "Ms. Frost" from now on?


    Oberic is now truly happy,
    He is in a shiny, joyful mood,
    So he jumps all over his fortress,
    Since he knows how to warp the wood!

    Spoiler :


    And stuff like this (Tlaloc's four Gnoll units coming out of nowhere and assaulting my fortress) is the reason why you still pay attention to the defence of your capital.

    Spoiler :


    The Wolf Riders hit very hard, but the defenders still manage to repel the assault.

    Spoiler :


    One Longbowman unit (the one in the screenshot) destroys a small Tlaloc outpost, while the main army prepares to advance south.

    Spoiler :


    What's this, however? Seriously, what all this army was doing in the cold north? Also, took notice of Kali's ghouls next to my capital. I was afraid that she would attack, but she was honest this time and removed them from my capital next turn.

    Spoiler :


    Shuri's army intercepts Tlaloc's forces. This battle is going to be deadly.

    Spoiler :


    Many wolves and their riders are pierced by elven arrows, but the magical bursts of energy coming from the sprites also kill some of our men, while the remaining Wolf Riders get too close to our Longbowmen.

    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc's army is defeated, but with heavy losses on our side.

    Spoiler :


    We need more Hell Hounds to replenish our main army.

    Spoiler :
     
  9. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

    Joined:
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    This is going to be a battle-heavy, but relatively slow update.

    Tlaloc continues to fill the countryside with various armies of his.

    Spoiler :


    Cockatrices are really, really bad versus Longbowmen, even if it's only one unit of the latter.

    Spoiler :


    More piecemeal attacks.

    Spoiler :


    These Wolf Riders came out of Tlaloc's base of Melegok. However, they weakened our southern army enough for the attack on the town to be risky.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    And then Kali appears to deliver a syntax-challenged declaration of war.

    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc, meanwhile, unsuccessfully attacks my capitals with Berserserkers (actually, this got me thinking... Berserkers also exist in civ4 BTS. How many other unit names exist both in MoM and in Civ)?

    Spoiler :


    When Kali declared war, she already regained Cannae, but soon after her declaration, the city was captured by Ariel. (The makers of MoM, for some reason, decided to use real world city names for some races... how must it feel to have a city famous for a notable military defeat?) This results in her being stumped in her efforts against me.

    Spoiler :


    More Tlaloc Gnoll madness:

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    And he has more:

    Spoiler :


    Shuri's army, replenished with newly-recruited Longbowmen, attacks Tlaloc's horde:

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    After this victory, Shuri and her legion attacks Melegok. (I don't know why I didn't immediately scout for Tlaloc's capital. Probably I felt that it was dangerous to go deep into the enemy territory without a supply base).

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    And finally, our scouts do find the name and the location of Tlaloc's capital:

    Spoiler :
     
  10. Sonereal

    Sonereal Call Me Ish Supporter

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    Subbing as well.
     
  11. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Unable to cause any harm to me due to being attacked by Ariel, Kali signs peace with me.

    Spoiler :


    With the countryside reasonably free of Tlaloc's armies, General Shuri assaults Tlaloc's city closest to his capital. Even the City Walls do not protect the Wolf Riders inside. However, Tlaloc, annoyingly, learns Possession (the highlighted Wolf Rider is possessed, although he is immediately shot down the next combat turn).

    Spoiler :


    We still capture the city, of course.

    Spoiler :


    Well, "reasonably free" is a bit of an exaggeration.

    Spoiler :


    This stack attacks Melegok, leading eventually to Gnoll Wolf Riders demonstrating to the Klackon Halberdiers the art of defending cities by running around in circles (actually, that's quite inelegant part of MoM combat system... it makes some sense when fighting monsters, but not when fighting enemy wizards, and imagine the AI doing this to you).

    Spoiler :


    However, in the north, in the second city we took from Tlaloc, he has some veteran Gnolls assaulting it. This, along with Possession, ensures his victory there.

    Spoiler :


    Here is this city:

    Spoiler :


    But our army is already at Creymona, Tlaloc's capital. We catch it when it lacks its complete 9-units garrison, although it does add a Wolf Rider in the turn between this screenshot and the attack.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Shuri and the experienced longbowmen shoot all the defenders inside their walls, with Tlaloc failing to possess anyone this time.

    Spoiler :


    Interesting that in the interturn, during the captured spells announcement, the city is still displayed as belonging to Tlaloc.

    Spoiler :
     
  12. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Since the threat from Tlaloc is more or less gone, Oberic orders libraries to be constructed in the cities across his realm.

    Spoiler :


    Tlaloc's cities are easy to capture with their master being banished. Ozenwall is no exception.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Kali finally learns the syntax rules for marking addresses with commas.

    Spoiler :


    Does "Magic Power" refer to the mana pool or to the skill of the opposing wizard? On MoM wiki, there's a statement in the comments that it's the latter.

    Spoiler :


    Our scouts spy the Nomad city of Mecca. What a random set of city names the Nomads have (Mecca, Cannae, Salamis etc...)

    Spoiler :


    This small dungeon...

    Spoiler :


    gives us a very puny reward.

    Spoiler :


    Peace reigns in Oberic's lands, but Tlaloc's remaining city is still somewhere out there.

    Spoiler :


    We get Healing and Planar Travel in trade from Ariel.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    The attempt of an army made solely of Longbowmen to defeat a Demon Lord ends up badly...

    Spoiler :


    We do, however, find and annex Tlaloc's last city.

    Spoiler :


    On a side note, what's that outfit that Oberic wears when he banishes another wizard? His default portrait features him wearing a simple yellow robe, yet when he banishes an opponent, he puts on some kinky semi-naked outfit.

    Spoiler :


    The cute little imp is here to inform Oberic about the spells found in ruins.

    Spoiler :
     
  13. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Apparently, Ariel had a secret affection for Tlaloc, since almost immediately after his elimination, she declared war.

    Spoiler :


    Since Ariel's troops are nowhere to be seen, my troops amuse myself by the wholesome activity of killing unicorns in their homes...

    Spoiler :


    and by taking the scattered cities of Kali...

    Spoiler :


    whose fate in this game seems to be quite grim.

    Spoiler :


    A large horde of death attacks our second Elven city. We cast True Light and start Star Firing at it.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    It ends in an exciting game of running in circles, which we win.

    Spoiler :


    More lousy rewards from lairs.

    Spoiler :


    Despite its graceful treehouses, Timberland becomes quite an industrial city, with an Armory being completed,

    Spoiler :


    Then we see this fellow. No, it's not a declaration of war from him yet.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    The tower his units came from is almost directly in the centre of the square area highlighted on the minimap.

    Spoiler :


    For a while, the Draconian feigns benevolence.

    Spoiler :
     
  14. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Finally, an item from a lair. We give it to Shuri, who already has an artificed Bow of Flaming.

    Spoiler :


    Sss'ra, for some reason, cancels the Wizard Pact (his words do not yet signify a declaration of war) and blames me on it. Probably he didn't like the scouting Wolf Riders next to his (all Troll, Dwarven or Beastmen) Myrror cities.

    In fact, Halfling, Klackon, Orc, High Men, Draconian and Dark Elven cities are completely absent from the map in this particular game - all units from these races you've seen and will see in this AAR are mercenaries. I like to think about these mercenaries as the last remaining members of once strong and prosperous empires...

    Spoiler :


    Our main army approaches Cannae, the city belonging to Ariel, whom we're still at war with...

    Spoiler :


    and captures it.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :
     
  15. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    That's how one of Sss'ra's Troll cities looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how our capital looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how the city of Cannae looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how one of Ariel's stacklets looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how the "Current Status of Wizards" window looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how Ariel's city of Salamis with a mercenary Doom Drake inside looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how Ariel herself looks with her mouth open:

    Spoiler :


    That's how a stretch of land SSW of Cannae, with a neutral Gnoll town, looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how the reward for clearing out a tower looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how the surroundings of this tower on Myrror look:

    Spoiler :


    That's how our exploring Elven Lords look:

    Spoiler :


    That's how Sss'ra's capital looks:

    Spoiler :


    That's how the land surrounding his capital looks:

    Spoiler :
     
  16. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    We map this area for the first time.

    Spoiler :


    The location of Kali's capital (she has returned from Ariel's banishment, and declared war on me again). She still slowly loses her relevance in this game, however.

    Spoiler :


    Magnificent Elven Lords parade though the streets of Timberland for a secret mission.

    Spoiler :


    Ariel's capital:

    Spoiler :


    Despite the peace treaty, Ariel still makes minor occasional attacks at my troops that are only a minor annoyance. This army of Kali was more difficult to deal with (the hero here is the Black Knight. Note that one of my Wolf Riders is possessed by Kali).

    Spoiler :


    We kill the Black Knight, but are forced to retreat by the Wraiths:

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Another army, however, manages to defeat Kali's wraiths:

    Spoiler :


    Sss'ra casts this. For an enchantment that is so helpful in combat, it sure has a cutesy graphic.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Kali's attack on Timberland is easily repelled.

    Spoiler :


    The secret mission given to the Elven Lords was to be a part of the three stacks that would be positioned to attack Sss'ra's (it's interesting's how's thi's name's ha's two's apostophe's in pos'ses'sive) capital:

    Spoiler :


    The Big Battle of Panjang, unfortunately does not go according to the plan (the next screenshot is an animated gif):

    Spoiler :


    Chimeras and buffed-up heroes with items are more powerful than I thought.

    And now Sss'ra appears in the wizard mirror to complain about the assault on his precious capital. Pffft. You still have your capital, you have nothing to complain about, unless one of the killed Chimeras was your pet.

    Spoiler :
     
  17. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    Recent update features much more compressed screenshots, btw. I was unaware that the png's taken by ScreenshotCaptor are so much larger than properly compressed jpegs. Unfortunately, Photobucket does not have the option to compress already uploaded images.
     
  18. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

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    To add insult to injury, Sss'ra casts this (it heals each and every of his unit to 100% health at the start of each game turn) and occupies Kali's node next to one of her cities that was conquered by me.

    Spoiler :


    Kali fails to do any particular damage with this stacklet of hers.

    Spoiler :


    Kali just can't catch a break.

    Spoiler :


    Surprisingly enough, the game didn't register me at war with Sss'ra after my failed storm of his capital, and he was seemingly too busy fighting Kali and Ariel to pay any attention to me. He did send a small army of centaurs to former Tlaloc lands.

    Spoiler :


    The specially-bred Gnoll wolves found centaur meat to be filling, but bland-tasting.

    Spoiler :


    Here's what exists of the other side of this tower from were the centaurs came from. The just-uncovered town is called Rastenford and is populated by beastmen.

    Spoiler :


    The Wolf Riders are still very effective at this point of the game, especially when dealing with ranged units. They are perfect for taking cities like Blake (belonging to Kali).

    Spoiler :


    I usually sell of the city walls of captured cities, unless I plan to use the "flying unit at the gate" tactic.

    Spoiler :


    My Wolf Rider stack attacks Rastenford.

    Spoiler :


    The Manticores learn what it's like to be fireballed.

    Spoiler :


    Both Oberic and Sss'ra make their prayers to the gods of Life, which is quite an ironic religious commentary, if you get down to it. The beastmen Priests attempt to heal their comrades.

    Spoiler :


    Doesn't matter, though.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    We sign peace with Ariel around that time. Here's what the situation is like, with all other wizards, including Oberic, also being at war with Kali's empire. Note also Sss'ra's Nature's Wrath enchantment. It punishes enemy wizards each time they cast a Death or Chaos spell overland by destroying some of their Town Buildings and units. Mildly bad for me, but even worse for Kali.

    Spoiler :


    Peace with Ariel does not last long.

    Spoiler :


    But Sss'ra agrees to a cease fire. It seems that the collective AI wants to have at least one enemy wizard fighting you, if you're strong enough.

    Spoiler :


    Kali again returns to Arcanus.

    Spoiler :


    But I have an army already going towards Mecca (Blake, and then Mecca? How did the designers choose city names for the Nomads?).

    Spoiler :


    Kali casts Wrack, but it's quite ineffective.

    Spoiler :


    This description doesn't point out the fact that units resist Wrack at a temporary bonus of + 1 resistance.

    Spoiler :


    The Wolf Riders flank Kali's army.

    Spoiler :


    Kali casts Black Sleep at one of the Riders, but the remaining ones easily cut down her Rangers, while Shuri and the Horsebowmen (sounds like a band name) turn her Griffons into pin cushions.

    Spoiler :


    Kali still has a city someplace else.

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :
     
  19. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,833
    The following update will be slightly less detailed, since the game turned to a bit of a slog at this point. Fighting Invulnerable units is rather tedious.

    Kali casts the Spell of Return somewhere, as Ariel tries, but fails to regain Blake.

    Spoiler :


    Ariel has Griffins and Invulnerability. Even small stacklets of them are dangerous to us, requiring tactical acumen and numeric advantage in order to clean them up.

    Spoiler :


    An well-composed army of ours attacked the city of Tiamut, but was forced to retreat, since Ariel casted Raise Dead when we were seemingly winning (by the way, in the latest version of 1.40 patch this spell seems somewhat bugged - immediately after Ariel casted it, there were various unit body parts artifacts on the battlefield that disappeared only after I clicked the spell button).

    In general, I have to fight with only half of my magic books, since Sss'ra's Nature Wrath and Tranquillity (the spell attempting to dispel all Chaos magic casted overland), which Ariel casted soon after the failed assault on Tiamut, did a nice job of neutralizing my Chaos books from now on.

    Spoiler :


    After another temporary peace with Sss'ra, we get the Altar of Battle. Some players characterize the spell as wasteful, but in this long slog of a game it was certainly useful.

    Spoiler :


    A little bit further in the game, Oberic manages to capture Tiamut and an important Nomad city in ex-Kali lands, so that now all three cities in Kali's former Nomadia are controlled by him.

    Spoiler :


    After Fang the Draconian and three Dark Elf Swordsmen mercenaries join us, we do a successful assault on Ariel's major city of Burglitz.

    Ariel casted Raise Dead again, and for some reason, I've lost Fang (you can see his bugged body part nex to the gates). This bug didn't seem to cause any corruption in game data outside itself, so I'll never know whether Fang was killed by this bug or whether he just got unlucky in a fight with an Invulnerable Berserker.

    Spoiler :


    Here's what Burglitz is like. It's surrounded by hostile forces, yet its cash-rushed Bersekers will soon keep it from falling.

    Spoiler :


    But while Burglirz held, horrible things were happening in Nomadia. At first, Ariel's Barbarian cavalry reconquered two of its three towns,

    Spoiler :


    and then, her Barbarian Calvalry troops, supported by an Angel (he was killed in this battle, but he did manage to cause quite a lot of hurt) conquered the third city, also.

    Spoiler :


    The loss of Nomadia was catastrophic. Soon after this, Ariel also razed Tiamut to the ground.

    Spoiler :
     
  20. Lone Wolf

    Lone Wolf Chieftain

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2006
    Messages:
    9,833
    Thankfully, we still had enough troops to hold. Altar of Battle-boosted Elven Lords were immediately sent to reconquer Nomadia, while in Gnoll lands conquered from Tlaloc, Wolf Riders were bred and ships were build to attack Ariel's empire from another direction.

    Here is the battle overview for the reconquest of Blake, the most northern of the Three Jewels of Nomadia - Salamis, Mecca and Blake. We've won this battle with few casualties. Wolf Riders quickly destroyed the catapults on which Ariel had probably wasted so many funds. We manage to conquer one more of the three cities, but Ariel later recaptures Blake, which is reduced to a fraction of its original population and buildings at that point. Fighting Invulnerable units is hard.

    Spoiler :


    It's still important to defend the capital at this point. This troll invasion of Sss'ra was easily repelled since there were Elven Lords on guard in all times.

    Spoiler :


    The lands of Tlalocia continue their military buildup. Earlier on, we've managed to conquer a relatively small Dwarven city of Sss'ra (for some reason, I don't have screenshots of the conquest), and rushed some Hammerhands and Golems there. They and the Manticores from the earlier-conquered Beastman town of Rastenford join the flotilla.

    Spoiler :


    Ariel counter-attacks by razing Tiamut and even recapturing the key town of Cannae, the link between South Gnollia and Nomadia.

    Spoiler :


    But straight after this, our almost fully-equipped (in the latest unofficial patch, the capacity of naval vessels is always 8. The AI, apparently, couldn't use boats otherwise at all. Still, it can also be an advantage for the human) flotilla assaults her capital. As we disembark, large Golems tower over the feral hordes of Wolf Riders, while small detachments of Manticores provide support from the air.

    I don't know how the Neutral Gnoll city on this screenshot survived being in the midst of Ariel's territory. Guess she was just more interested in attacking Kali and me.

    Spoiler :


    That's how the first battle goes. Ariel has three heroes - the Unknown, the Chosen and a third whose identity I don't remember, but all three have been only recently summoned and are weak. We still lose the first assault, of course.

    Spoiler :


    Second battle goes that way:

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    The first two stacks reduced the defences to a Berserker and a Spearman. The third attack is successful:

    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :


    Spoiler :
     

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