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Revenge of the Ronin (Sengoku mod)

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Stories & Tales' started by Sima Qian, Feb 17, 2010.

  1. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    This is an experimental game, just to see what happens when I play the Sword of the Shogun conquest scenario as a hidden civ: the Ronin!

    I can't build any units, but instead have to wait for the game to auto-generate them for me. I can't build cities, nor can I capture or raze them (though I can plunder, which sets back the AIs but doesn't help me in any way -- in fact I lose the unit that enters the city). Practically none of the strategies used for normal games would apply here.

    It's the only conquest scenario that can be "won" by the barbarians because it is regicide (arguably, it's possible in the Middle Ages scenario too but that's quite a bit more involved, since that's mass regicide). Thus, the objective is to get all the daimyos killed, and most of them won't be by my hand.

    Strangely enough, playing this game is probably easiest on Deity or Sid, since at lower difficulties the normal units have combat bonuses against barbarians :lol:.

    I can't guarantee that I'll be able to finish, since there could be all sorts of weird bugs in this game. No idea what to expect.

    Here's a teaser to illustrate my start position:
    Spoiler :
     
  2. Tani Coyote

    Tani Coyote Billions and Billions

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    ..This will be far more challenging than any two-city country in AoI! I wish you luck in somehow holding back the hordes of the Sengoku!
     
  3. DJ Bonebraker

    DJ Bonebraker a.k.a Laura

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    Man, Sima, you definitely gotta be some kind of masochist to play the variants you do! :lol:
     
  4. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    It actually isn't as hard as it looks. There's all sorts of places where I can break the rules with impunity, since I'm pretty sure the game developers aren't trying to make these things actually work when I play as the barbarians.

    All I can say is that the gameplay will be somewhat boring here, since there's no opportunity for meaningful growth, trade, or diplomacy. Even combat is going to be restricted to rare occasions, and it will be rather repetitive and uninteresting when it happens. There's not much of a story to tell, so I'm going to posting game logs rather than anything particularly worth reading.

    Anyway, here goes....
     
  5. BuckyRea

    BuckyRea Boldly Going

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    So a space race victory is out of the picture then, right?

    Well, there's the risk you'll run later in the game when your enemies increase in size and start really coming after you. Without a human civ player in there, there probably won't be as many tribe-to-tribe wars going on, so the ronin "barbs" will be in open season pretty quick. How often do Ronin camps generate a new unit for you to go around fighting with?
     
  6. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    First, I start off in pretty good shape:



    Of course, none of these ashigaru are close enough together to be able to kill a daimyo unit, and the sid level AIs will definitely have more defenders than I can handle by the time I can reach their capital.

    As far as new units being generated, I think I pick up one every couple of turns or so, and if there's enough open space a new barbarian camp pops up with two ashigaru. Then there's the game events - every age there's a "massive barbarian uprising" that will give me a huge number of reinforcements (I'm sure you've been on the receiving end of this before). So most of the bloodshed will probably wait until I reach the first one of those.
     
  7. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    The early part of this game is mainly tactical movements.

    The geography of the Japanese home islands offer me a lot of choke points, which are useful to prevent the Sengoku civs from reaching the ronin camps. The ronin are particularly strong on Kyushu, where a total of 13 ashigaru can block access to 6 camps.


    Nagasaki region, AD 1460


    Kagoshima region, AD 1460

    Five ashigaru are sufficient to deny the Mori easy access to the west end of Honshu. Four would have been enough, but having an extra tile gap between the ronin camp will make it harder for it to get disbanded once the Mori have cultural expansion.


    Shimonoseki region, AD 1460

    Imagawa Yoshimoto sends out an unprotected settler and proceeds to facepalm like the idiot he is. The local ronin, of course, are always welcoming of easy prey.


    If you thought the various daimyo couldn't get any stupider, well, here's Mogami Yoshiakira, who has the nerve to pop a goody hut with an unprotected settler. Since he's not expansionist (none of the Sengoku civs are), it's unsurprising that he gets served with a generous helping of ronin hospitality. OM NOM NOM NOM!


    Further to the east, another roadblock is sufficient to deter the Hojo and the Imagawa from trying to control all of Tokyo Bay.


    Yokohama region, AD 1460​

    The narrow mountain passes around Asama-yama should make it difficult for any settlers to make a landgrab here. More reinforcements are coming in from the north to fill up the remaining plains and forest tiles around here. I'm not sure if I'll be able to hold this position for long, though.


    Gunma region, AD 1460​

    The perennial favorite "cheap trick" used by both humans and AI civs, coastal blocking should prevent landings by the Sengoku on nearby islands.


    Tsushima Island, AD 1460


    Kinkasan Island, AD 1460​

    The early units sent out by the AI don't seem to attack because they tend to be escorting settlers. This can be used to my advantage.

    Additional wandering ashigaru try to prevent the Sengoku leaders from sending out settlers to positions that may ultimately wipe out the barb camps when they have their cultural expansions. If I play this right, I can force them to have to go to their second (or third) cultural expansion before this happens.
     
  8. Tani Coyote

    Tani Coyote Billions and Billions

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    This looks like it will be quite a challenge... but you seem to be doing quite well at keeping your foes at bay. I wish you luck with preventing cultural expansions... May the daimyo crumble one by one. ;)
     
  9. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    The diplomatic situation for the ronin is not very promising at the beginning:


    But nobody would have suspected that it was possible for the various daimyo to make agreements with the "barbarian" hordes in order to have them not harass their settlers and workers. The Miyoshi, for example, were among the early tribes to make peace. One by one, the rest of the daimyo followed suit.


    Only later was it discovered that Oda Nobunaga had declared war on the Miyoshi, forcing them to focus their resources on fighting a "real" enemy. Of course, this could not be learned through diplomatic channels; instead, it was by witnessing them at odds with each other on the battlefield.

    (I have a hunch that the AI's will never redeclare war on barbarian tribes, since they don't even contact them for diplomacy. This means the ronin will be the ones taking the initiative when the conflict is renewed. As an added bonus, the ronin get free passage through all the Sengoku territory (without needing a RoP agreement), since the daimyo leaders wont even bother to boot them out. Next exploit in action: resource denial!)

    By the early 1470s, the ronin have begun to acquire galleys to explore the coast. This is an indicator that the Sengoku civs have become advanced enough to have discovered map making -- now if only they can wrap up the rest of the pre-Sengoku era.

     
  10. DJ Bonebraker

    DJ Bonebraker a.k.a Laura

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    Looks like you're starting to run out of space!
     
  11. BuckyRea

    BuckyRea Boldly Going

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    Bah! It just means it's getting close to time that he sack and plunder one of the daimyo clans into oblivion, thereby freeing up more space for his barb-, um, "ashigaru" to grow another Ronin base.

    I eagerly wait the bloodshed.

    (By the by, Sima, are you able to put your ashigaru on board the galleys that your ronin camps build?) Barbs in Civ3 never use their boats for transportation, but I wonder if it's just an option that the AI doesn't know how to use.
     
  12. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    July 1484 (turn 69): First massive barbarian uprising -- I think I'll be fine:



    Yes, not a lot of land left, but I think Bucky knows what's going to happen :hammer:

    Yes, I do get to load them onto galleys to sail across the waters and pummel the next island. But I think I'll satisfy myself with clearing Kyushu first, since I need some of the AIs to kill each other or else I'll run out of units.

    For the record, I managed to preserve 18 barb camps, which generated 24 ronin each. Ronin are 4.3.1, while most of the daimyo leaders have upgraded up to Shogun-4 (5.5.2), so I can expect them to put up a bit of a fight before they get overwhelmed. Stay tuned....

    EDIT: Forgot to mention that ronin are also hidden nationality. That means I can attack any unit or pillage any improvement without any repercussions. Really, really powerful bonus.
     
  13. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    AD 1485: The ronin attacks begin, but it is unclear what their motives are besides the pure pleasure of disruption. At the start, they simply kidnap peasant workers.


    But it does not take long before they are ravaging the land.

    Spoiler :
     
  14. Tani Coyote

    Tani Coyote Billions and Billions

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    Whoever stands in the middle of the island gets hit by both - or three - sides. :D

    Are you going to mass-attack their capital, by any chance? Or are you just going to be using a professional-sized army for guerrilla-esque tactics? :p :lol:

    I predict the Otomo won't be around much longer...
     
  15. DJ Bonebraker

    DJ Bonebraker a.k.a Laura

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    So, the purge of Kyushu begins....... :evil:
     
  16. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    What a day for the Otomo clan! First, they got presented with a strange trade offer:


    (Yes, the ronin can actually acquire technology. It'll be interesting to see if they can advance a whole era without any research.)

    The Otomo had only explored a small region around Kyushu and were very curious about the rest of Japan, so Otomo Yoshishige was ready to pay the steep price for such knowledge. Of course, the world map was the ronin's most valuable possession, and as such it is arranged to be delivered to the Otomo court by a procession of ronin.

    The map itself was carried by a nameless, lordless warrior, and the daimyo believed that he might have the opportunity to accept the allegiance of this mysterious ronin along with the information he was about to receive. He watched intently as the scroll was unrolled before his eyes, revealing the nearby lands of the Mori, the dwindling fortunes of the Miyoshi, the sprawling territory of the Takeda and the Imagawa. Finally, at the far edge of the map, the domain of Date Masamune capped the end of the island of Honshu.

    Yet the ronin continued to unroll the map, showing another thumb-length of ocean waters before something caught Otomo Yoshishige's eye. It shimmered in the light. When he realized that he was looking at the wakizashi that the ronin had hidden inside the scroll, it was already too late. Several of the bodyguards had already been cut down, and Otomo himself was forced to draw his katana. He put up a good fight, killing several of the ronin that were attacking him, but ultimately it was not enough to prevent an unseen blade from planting itself in his back.


    With the death of the daimyo, the Otomo clan fell into disarray. Retainers once thought to be loyal now seemed more interested in carving out more authority for themselves. Soldiers deserted, taxes went uncollected, and cities rebelled. Within months, nothing of the Otomo ancestral lands remained.

     
  17. need my speed

    need my speed Rex Omnium Imperarium

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    This really is a fun, unique, and great story. Keep it up!
     
  18. BuckyRea

    BuckyRea Boldly Going

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    Oh, you barbs are all alike! It's never your fault. :lol:

    You really burned through your ronin quickly. Did any of your units get promoted out of conscript status or do they stay at two bars the whole game? If this is what your casualties look like, you've got a whale of a task ahead of you if you want to deny everyone their resources. Ugh, you pick the toughest variants!

    PS, I don't understand how the Shimazu were suffered to live. Their every breathe insults your honor. Their throats or your pinky--something must be cut and cut soon.
     
  19. Sparthage

    Sparthage Fighting Tyranny

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    I didn't know that you could play games as the barbarians. But this is awesome! Nearly 600 units:eek: and you don't have to pay anything. Playing normally, I'd love to have that many troops.
     
  20. Sima Qian

    Sima Qian 太史令

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    I lost ~20 ronin taking out the Otomo. And no promotions. I'm pretty sure the barbarians are hard-wired to not promote any unit. Sucks (for me -- you should be glad they don't promote in your normal games).

    Resource denial is not a problem, though. Unless a city is actually built on top of a resource, ronin can pillage without starting a war (hidden nationality bonus). I'm doing this all over Honshu already. Plus, most of the resources start with a barb camp on top of them anyway.

    Meanwhile:


    The Tokugawa started in a pretty cramped location and seemed to get the short end of the stick in terms of expansion. They only have 3 cities, but this does not seem to have stopped them from redirecting their efforts to other worthy endeavors.


    The Saito are going to be the ones to watch out for. Great Wall = bonus against barbs. Hopefully a friendly AI kills Saito Dosan for me....
     

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