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The Unwashed Crusade: A Bannor Story

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Fall from Heaven' started by Shatner, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. Shatner

    Shatner Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2008
    Messages:
    114
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    I had finished the obligatory .34 game as Auric "Snow White" of the Illians (good times) and I was wondering what to do for my next game. Typically I play a relaxed builder-style game as the Elohim or the Khazak, waiting until my tech lead is so great that a crack squad of elite troops can crush all opposition while I laugh nefariously and twirl my mustache from an angled throne. However, you can only play so many games of tech-zilla before that gets to be old-hat so I decided to play differently; aggressively. Stupidly so. I looked over the usual suspects (Jonas, Tasanke, Mahala) but then I noticed that Sabathiel had been taking night courses in public speaking and was now Charismatic/Organized, a change from the last time I played as him. I also recalled that the Crusade civic had been tweaked so I hopped in the zeal-mobile (bumpersticker "Give Peace a chance... OR ELSE!") with Sabby in the passenger seat and headed off to meet the Bannor. We were gonna tell campfire stories about the exodus from hell, roast marshmallows on the inquisitional pyres and take turns braiding each other's prayer beads. It was gonna be great!


    The Map: Pangea, Low Sea Level, Living World, Raging Barbs, No Tech Trading
    The Difficulty: Emperor
    The Rivals: 9 civs, all random


    It turns out the Bannor had clawed their way out of hell and onto a forsaken hinterland of Erebus. Forests covered most everything (that much oxygen makes my people giddy; a very un-Bannor emotion) but a little hiking found some open land with a river and some incense. We set up shop, got a dog, met the neighbors (Jonas "Mean Green" of Embers, Charadon "Wolfman" of Doviello, and Carditha Lorda "Wyrmling" of the Kuriotates) and repelled wave after wave of slathering barbarians. My expansion was blocked by the clan and it seemed that the world had it in for the Bannor. The adventurer I rescued from Bridigan's Well was caught torturing prisoners and my ONLY option was to disband him (seriously, my only option; I assume because I hadn't spent any of his XP or because of his unit-type), Orthus spawned nearby and lowered the local property value (he didn't have a license to carry a fire armament so I had to confiscate it from him) and it seems the Bannor taste irresistible to giant spiders (you'd think it would be full from the three warriors it ate, but no, it had room to muscle down that settler they were guarding too). By the end of the early phase I had three cities, no copper anywhere in sight and I was at the bottom of the scoreboard. Go, Go, Good Team!


    The Bannor and the Clan don't really get along. I suspected they gave Orthus my address, though I couldn't prove anything, and anytime they sat down those spikes tore up all my throw-covers. Plus they are the twisted descendants of those Bannor who didn't get sucked into hell when the Angel of Fire did a belly-flop on our main temple almost two ages ago. No one wants to see that next door. So we preemptively defended ourselves. Very preemptively. Right in their spikey, upholstery destroying faces. My metal-less axemen led the charge and took (among others) the clan capital... then promptly lost it. It turns out the clan had been busy fighting the Hippus but once their main force got home and found a bunch of pink-skins riffling through their stuff they got a little genocidal. Was it something I said?


    Since the clan were in tight with the barbs they had expanded like crazy and had more than three times the cities I had. Furthermore, their land contained 1) copper, 2) ample floodplains and 3) happy resources (my people were having to make due huffing incense in pagan temples and basking in the warm glow of Sabby's personality). I had researched Iron working in a desperate bid for survival and it seems that Erebus, like the Bannorian Preemptive Defense Force, is anemic. Crap! The Bannor at this time were pagan so we prayed to the three gods whose mana we were using: Junil (God of Law), Kilmorph (Goddess of the Earth) and Sirona (Goddess of Spirit and all things Enya). With the green tide rising it seemed like we had escaped hell only to be paved over by some irrationally angry neighbors (it's not like we razed any of those cities... we just kept a few souvenirs... like all the gold. It's very shiny you see and.... WHAT?!). However, Kilmorph must have been feeling bored since the only dwarves on this map, the Luchirp, had been part of the early die off when the barbs came a-knockin' (something about being three feet tall and prone to playing with toys)... Anyway, Kilmorph got major points for style AND timing when a mine right next to my capital popped copper. Overnight the traditional Bannor weapon of "a really big stick and a sneer" was replaced with a dapper looking ax-and-shield ensemble and the orcs were driven back... in style! It turns out killing the enemy is a viable war-time tactic. Good to know.


    It was awkward but we were only 4 turns away from discovering The Order so I had to return Kilmorph's calls and tell her that, despite her very impressive work saving our civilization and all, I had to let her go. "I'm sorry but the Bannor are a very sensitive people and they need the security and long term commitment that we know Junil will offer. However, before moving in he made us promise we would have no other god before him so the whole 'pagan' thing is out. I'm really sorry. You were great, this isn't about you and feel free to use me as a reference if you apply for any other pantheons." With The Order founded and a temporary peace declared with the orcs we had the time to research Fanaticism and spread the Good Word to all (three) cities of the newly renamed Holy Bannor Empire. We even ordered new stationary AND letterhead; Sabathiel is an old roommate of Kinko, Goddess of Office Supplies, and got us a great deal. Thanks Sabby; you're the best.


    The three turns of anarchy that it costs to enter Crusade mode (unless you're spiritual) marked the revision of the Bannor calender. After order was restored it was year 1 AC (Anno Crusadae) and suddenly every 1st and 2nd son was leaving their towns and joining the ranks of the Demagogues. It was a Jihad for Justice and it wouldn't end until it was Just Us. Sabby liked that slogan so much he was about to order banners printed until I reminded him that our civilization hadn't bothered discovering an alphabet. He went into a sulk until I agreed to play him at a few games of Somnium; I let him win the tie-breaker.


    With the blessings of our confessors we were able to get a lot of mileage out of our eager new recruits. The orcs had a lot of troops but ridiculous orcish breeding is no match for a well spun PR campaign. One by one the Clan's cities were taken and the hordes protecting them were broken. An acolyte would enter the city and paint a really cool mural of Junil pointing at the viewer with the caption "I want YOU for the Bannorian Crusade" (in pictographs). This would quell rebellion and expand the city's borders, then a confessor would come in and gently ease the locals through the transition from worshiping their false nature god to worshiping Junil; by "ease" I mean "brutally inquisition" and by "gently" I mean "with the aid of red hot pokers".


    So, the orcs were laid low by the proud and smelly Bannor and we were just getting ready to call it a Jihad Well Done when we noticed that a rich vein of iron was just laying there, untapped right across our Southern borders in Doviello land. Well, those demagogues were rentals anyway so why not? It's not like we were getting the deposit back at this point...


    It is at this moment I feel I should explain that the hardships initially arrayed against the Bannor (plus that whole "escaping hell" thing) had altered my people's priorities. We had no concept of money (the only currency of REAL value is faith and not some sissy gold disc-thingy), no concept of sanitation (body odor is Junil's way of reminding you to go to church more often and breath in that incense. Clears the sinuses AND the conscience), no concept of the arch (though the lack of bridges did help the aforementioned lack of bathing), no concept of maps (the only place you need to go is "towards the enemy") and no concept of writing (if you ever forget the truth, just ask your local confessor. They have the answers to all the questions your allowed to ask). All cities are taken by mobs and superunits; I have never once bombarded a city, unless you count Sphener's short lived tactic of flying over enemy cities and dropping demagogues on them. Without a single market, our economy was supported by spoils of war, the tithing of the faithful (thank you Holy City) and Sabby's awesome organizational talents (the guy tears through paperwork like a Drowned through moist towelettes). Since this was a crusade we couldn't build courthouses and the Bannor refused to sack a single city (during the Call to Crusade, Sabby said "we should bring the truth of Junil to every city on Erebus" but forgot to mention "except those boondocks that we can't afford". Some orator he turned out to be. I put him in time out for that).


    The doviello put up a good fight for a while but eventually their highly promoted forces were too tired from slaughtering thousands of demagogues to resist our OTHER thousands of demagogues (there's a price break if you buy them in bulk and Sabby insisted... I can't say no to his pouty face). It is at this time that I stood back and looked at my empire. Sprawling, underdeveloped, hemorrhaging money like wounded piggy bank, with more mega-temples of Junil (25 and counting) than workers (2 and dropping... darn enemy calvary). It was glorious and I was finally ready to use that OTHER civic, Social Order, with the hope of someday bringing my research slider above 20%. Then Os-Gabella showed up, that tyrannical she-devil, and ruined everything.


    Having eaten and/or converted all the smaller fish in my pond, I was feeling pretty high on the food chain until Os-Gabella showed up and reminded me of the one good quote from Episode One: there is always a bigger fish. My score had just crested 1000 and her was... 3086?!? It seemed there was a lot more of Erebus to conquer than I'd thought, and furthermore it seemed most of that was purple and full of bad ideas. She declared war and her mithril wielding war-chariots, sorcerers and arquebusiers(!?!) came charging into the recently taken Doviello lands. Yes, the Sheaim had gun powder and we didn't even have alphabet soup. Plus she beat Sabby at Somnium and was a real jerk about it. How petty.


    Presently, the war to the south is a bloody stalemate where I trade two demagogues for every blunderbuss and my crusaders keep getting caught in the tar demons. I have wiped out the doviello, mainly so MY new cities would quit complaining about "yearning for our motherland". I am your motherland now, and Junil is the very strict, authoritarian father who will beat your behind so hard once he gets home young man... Also the Hippus got uppity and declared war; you only get to make one mistake when the other guy is in crusade mode. So I had to take their horses and goods and hear the lamentation of their women; I guess they didn't know "mare riding poofta" was a term of endearment in traditional Bannorian. After centuries of whining I have allowed my adepts to research writing, on the sole condition that they only think holy thoughts while plumbing the depths of the arcane and that they don't accidentally teach my people how to read. Despite the bleakness of the situation, the Bannor are a stoic people who don't know the meaning of the word "defeat". Literally. They haven't since 135ac when Priori Forsinth declared the word a blasphemy unto Junil and had it purged from the vernacular. In fact "retreat", "can't" and "we demand a republic" are all on probationary status.


    I am losing about 18gp per turn at 0% research (with all my cities set to emphasize money) and am only staying afloat financially through periodic golden ages and, of course, the spoils of my every expanding empire. And something like +70gp from my Holy Shrine (Rule of Acquisition #104: Faith can move mountains... of inventory). The Kuriotates keep saying that if I just allowed for the laissez faire exchange of goods and services in an open market economy then I would be able to turn a... what did they call it again? Oh yeah, prah-fitt. Sounds funny. Besides, if I listened to those fancy pants, soap-users I wouldn't be where I was today... Hmm, maybe that's their point.


    "But why don't you end the crusade", I hear you say. Just bite the bullet and toggle your civics. I saved and tried just that, and here's the funny part: I can't. Crusade gives you a -75% war weariness and the Bannor Palace gives an additional -10% to your entire civ. That means that my people use the pine boxes their sons keep coming back in to fuel the fires of all the effigies of our enemies they are burning. However, if I drop that than I am dealing with an 8 to 10 increase in unhappiness in each city. Plus, I have an army that is more than 70% demagogues who will return home and demand veteran benefits/ROTC money once the crusade ends. I don't think Sphener plus my four paladins (Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde) can paddle back the tide by themselves. I am facing the question of "How do I compete against a larger, more developed and many-orders-of-magnitude more advanced, omnicidal evil empire?" My answer is to throw demagogues at it. It's not a good answer, it's not a smart answer but it's the only answer I've got. And finally Os-Gabella doesn't just decline peace talks, she obliterates them. She feeds delegates to her pit beasts while smugly pointing at the ranking board where it shows the Sheaim as being nearly 3x higher in score than the Bannor. I can see why Paul Atreides was reluctant to call off the Jihad; you give the people a long enough break from fighting and they'll wonder why they've been fighting so long in the first place.


    This has been the most fun I have ever had playing FfH and I have been playing since early Fire, back when Sabby was Magic Resistant and Pyre Zombies weren't the explosive stack destroyers of doom they are now. I am looking forward to seeing where and when my empire comes crashing to a glorious and devastating halt. Maybe I'll relinquish a bunch of cities as a separate colony/civ (and get some weird offspring like Svaltfar... I demand a blood test!). Maybe I'll finish building the Mercurian Gate and my tens of thousands of military losses will just fuel the war machine of my angelic battle buddies (it'll be an afterlife exchange program). I only wish I had taken gobs of screen shots so I can transform this into a proper recounting, complete with hackneyed, in-screen MS-Paint arrows and text.


    I have a few observations that I'd like to convey for anyone that is still reading at this point.

    1) Charismatic is a VERY powerful trait. With it every city, once it is grown has one extra tile worked than it would otherwise. On the low end that's +1/1/0 from an unimproved plains and on the high end that's a +2/0/5 from a riverside town (or as I like to call them, Demagogue Nests). Furthermore, promotions are MUCH more powerful in FfH than vanilla civ making that 25% xp cost reduction so much sweeter. Most greenhorn units are just one victory away from combat 1 and shock/cover/whatever.

    2) Crusade is awesome! Since it actually gives free unit support now it allows you to expand like a freshman's waistline. I went from having 3 rather crappy cities around turn 175 to making a respectable bid for world domination. And that's while I was intentionally playing stupidly (seriously, markets, bridges and an additional +1 food from farms would turn my whole empire around). Just make sure you have sufficient workers going into the crusade; I had four, all of whom were destroyed by wolf riders. I've been having to make due with the slaves (former Demagogues) I have been liberating from Os-Gabella. Not pretty.

    3) Order + Law Mana = huge empire. Since I can't stop and build court houses I am having to make due with basilicas and 5 law mana. That's a -65% on city maintenance right there. Of course, where I actually HAVE a courthouse I pay no maintenance. Mmmm... Totalitarianism never tasted so good.

    4) The Archery line still sucks. Training Yards cost the same as Archery ranges. Archers cost the same as Ax/Swordmen. Sure archers make better city defenders but pillaging hurts (as I am well aware from my lack of workers) and mobs of units can overcome all (as I am VERY well aware from the high demagogue diet I have been feeding my enemies). Furthermore, An axeman with copper has 5 attack AND defense (easy enough to come by) while an archer still has 3 attack and 5 defense. Unless your the Ljos it doesn't really make sense to go archery instead of metal.

    5) Don't underestimate Bless or Courage. The former is a free +1 to strength; even more if the enemy is undead (weakness to holy) or demonic (weakness to holy AND bonus vs demon). The latter is the equivalent to a free medic 1 for all your units AND an immunity to fear. Note that fear, which formerly was a fairly minor ability unless you were Acheron, in .34 has teeth. In my previous Illian game I had a hard time getting my otherwise superior forces to face down some scary undead.

    6) Fend for Themselves is NOT worthless. Early on, sure what do you care about one health or none vs. low or medium upkeep. Later on this makes a huge difference (about 25gp/turn for me, with an ORGANIZED leader, which is enough to let my bloated empire dodge the inevitable collapse a little longer).

    7) Unyielding Order must do more than reduce maintenance and unhappiness. I have had cities with no unhappiness problems (happy > unhappy) and a maintenance cost of, let's say, 10gp/turn. A priori casts Unyielding Order and suddenly I am saving 25gp/turn. I don't have more people working tiles and it's not just the maintenance cost of that city... UnOr must remove that city from counting against the total number of cities you possess. Going from 45 to 44 cities can save you a big chunk of change.


    More generally I would like to thank Kael and the entire Dev team for making an inspiring game that has out competed "professional/pay" games for my attention. Consistently. For more than a year. Ditto to you mod-modders who have helped fill in those lulls between the big releases as well as brimming with good ideas that Kael and co. can snipe to everyone's benefit.


    If you wish to run your own version of the Unwashed Crusade(tm) observe the following guidelines:

    1) Play Bannor and crusade both EARLY and OFTEN. You don't have to play as Sabby (though I advise it). If you like unrestricted leaders then maybe Kandros Fir would work well (mmm, agressive. Mmm, financial!).

    2) Never sack a city. Ever. Even if it sucks. Especially if it sucks.

    3) Don't research any non-military tech unless you absolutely have to. And even then, maybe not. This excludes those early resource techs like animal husbandry and calendar. Your people may be illiterate but they aren't (that) stupid.

    4) Convert every city you can to your faith. If you don't go with The Order than go with Runes of Kilmorph; I owe her one.

    5) Inquisition every other religion from your cities. With extreme prejudice.

    6) There is NO rule six.
     
  2. Psycho_Ivan

    Psycho_Ivan Warlord

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    :lol:

    That was surprisingly entertaining.
     
  3. orangelex44

    orangelex44 Partisan

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    Hahaha....

    I've always been a minor detractor of the Bannor; I've never really had a great time playing with them as they are right now. However, that's probably because I'm concerned about little things like economies, foreign policy, and ultimate victory. You have made me see the light.

    Of course, for those people who are stubbornly concerned about such things, I still have to say that the Bannor could use a little sumthin' sumthin' - at least another sweet UU. However, for those who are concerned solely with a lore game or who just want to kill lots of things, the Bannor are probably as fun as any, really.

    Thanks for the entertainment, that was the funniest five minutes I've had on the Internet since I first watched Zero Punctuation. Good job.
     
  4. kenken244

    kenken244 Grammar Nazi

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    Hehe, that made me laugh. (dundundun...)
     
  5. Vigilance

    Vigilance Chieftain

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    I play Bannor a lot, and second the "go for runes of Kilmorph" suggestion.

    First, the religion will boost your economy, second, Bambur, with his enchantment spells helps give an extra boost to your Dems.

    Second, mines of GalDur is a guaranteed source of Iron, which again, is a way to make your Dems tougher.
     
  6. KillerClowns

    KillerClowns Emperor

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    That was the best, funniest game report I ever read. I might actually try out the Bannor now...
    Oh, god, I know that feeling of "wait, there's a whole big world out there?!?" I've taken to calling those "Montezuma moments." In your case, the parallels are eerie. Thinking yourself the warlike master of your lands, until suddenly you find these long metal tubes pointed at you...
     
  7. Shatner

    Shatner Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2008
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    Location:
    Austin, Texas

    When I started this game I envisioned a truly massive empire defying the 2nd law of thermal dynamics by operating at 100% efficiency (suck on THAT entropy). For that you need The Order. Plus, Sabby seems more the "Judge" sort than the "Banker". So what I am really saying is that I intentionally picked a stupid plan to try and play a game I have played innumerable times in a new way.

    What I found so endearing about this particular game was how I had crusaded myself across the point of no-return. Suddenly the game became a race against time. Of course, the answers lay in the shallow end of the tech tree; those poor, vestigial portions I had neglected. But gleefully pouring ever more dogged stupidity on a bonfire of boneheadedness seemed like an entertaining way to conclude this.


    Those are both excellent points (all three of 'em). I had actually forgotten about GalDur, such were my blinders for Junil. Then again I was genuinely surprised that I was so bereft of any metal, let alone one hard enough to inconvenience the orcish physiology.

    I got the event that let me hire an enchanter. As such I have a way-point/boot camp containing three adepts and a confessor that all southbound troops must travel through. While there they get their weapons enchanted, their loins girdled, their jingoism boosted and a lucky charm to hopefully prevent them from getting malaria while traveling through those jungles we are incapable of clearing (lacking both fire mana and sanitation). In fact, we had to stare longingly at the gemstones lying in that inhospitable foliage until we captured the Dragon's Hoard from the Sheaim. Hilariously, we liberated a slave who was then tasked with carrying the hoard away from the killing fields. I named him Nodwick, which beat out Albrecht by a narrow margin.


    I couldn't believe I was that backwater (or that Os-Gabella had gotten to the point where her citizens wore chrome-colored jumpers and drove flying cars to work). Still, this has illustrated that enough ewoks really CAN topple AT-STs. Were I Os-Gabella instead I would be teleporting my military advisers into space for failing to overcome the stinking northern zealots and their primitive, iron poke-sticks.
     
  8. Kael

    Kael Deity

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    That was a hilarious read Shatner, I cant wait to see your take on other civs! :goodjob:
     
  9. Verdian

    Verdian King

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    Hilarious. :lol: Well played, sir. I hope you let us know how it all turns out.
     
  10. Brokenbone

    Brokenbone Prince

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    Very humourous post, and with a lot of useful observations in it too! I've seen the Crusade death spiral once or twice myself... best keep fighting, because otherwise, your whole civ will implode, go broke, wake up to war weariness, etc. Still a great fun ride!
     
  11. Nikis-Knight

    Nikis-Knight Deity

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    Very good write up! And yes, do more.:)
     
  12. Pyr0mancer

    Pyr0mancer Prince

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    I can't help but notice that your crusade was noticeably lacking an important figurehead. Namely, Donal Lugh. The man is a perfect poster boy for your Crusades. He'll slay a single skeleton or zombie and turn it into an epic tale glorious enough to gain dozens if not scores of new recruits. Sure, they may be smelly and stupid, but they get the job done. What's more, should he fall in battle, his good buddy Sphener can bring him back!
     
  13. evil_grin

    evil_grin Chieftain

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    Long time lurker here! This was real funny, congrats!
     
  14. Keeper_GFA

    Keeper_GFA Prince

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    Excellent story, and a good game too. :)
     
  15. Broken Hawk

    Broken Hawk Emperor

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    I see I have been playing the Bannor too conservatively.
     
  16. Tyrs

    Tyrs King

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    haha, this actually made me laugh out loud multiple times. Please write more! You make the awesome list!
     
  17. Shatner

    Shatner Warlord

    Joined:
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    The Unwashed Crusade (Part 2)​

    Far to the North-East, the capital was quiet and solemn. Donal Lugh, golden boy of the Bannor and winner of the MVC (Most Valuable Crusader) award 5 times running, had been slain by a war chariot and was being laid to rest in the Shrine of the Champion. Sabathiel gave a stirring eulogy; we all cried when we heard how Donal had let Sabby go in his place through the portal out of hell and we were rolling in the aisles when Sabby got to the part about how he found a "kick me" sign taped to his back once he made it back to Erebus. When everyone returned to the palace for the wake we found Donal flirting with one of the serving girls and putting a dent in the hors d'oeuvre's. It turns out that man can be the life of every party, including his own funeral. Sphener's resurrection magic certainly helped but you can't contain a character like Donal. What a guy.


    It was on the eve of Donal's third funeral (by this time we had installed a revolving door in the morgue) that a portent came. Up in the night sky twinkled proof that the Bannor were Junil's chosen people and that their victory over Os-Gabella was as inevitable as divine providence. My people called it "The Shield of Law" but I thought of it as a big, celestial thumbs-up from Big-J himself. It even looked like it... a little... if you squinted. The constellation-induced golden age bought my sprawling and mangy empire another dozen turns or so before we'd be forced to commit economic sepuku. This would prove a pivotal time for the Bannor, when the Great Crusade would enter it's final and most glorious stage.


    For a time a line drawn in blood (or in the case of some of the Sheaim's more exotic troops, ichor) marked the division between the Holy Bannor Empire and the Depraved Republic of Sheaim (their actual name; Os-Gabella didn't believe in bad publicity). However, the Sheaim war machine was starting to flag. War chariots were having a hard time reaching the battle because the roads were clogged with slain crusaders, the deadly mithril swords of the Sheaim dragoons were getting badly dulled from cleaving through another hundredth iron breastplate and the Sheaim summoners were starting to suffer from repetitive strain injury conjuring their umpteenth specter. Question: How do the Bannor spell victory? Answer: They don't but if a mage helped them it would be A-T-T-R-I-T-I-O-N. It's simple geometry, really. The surface area of an shape grows quadratically while volume grows cubically. Therefore, my borders were growing much more slowly than the rate at which I was popping demagogues from all the towns surrounding the cities I kept conquering (towards the end I was averaging 7 demagogues per turn; try and keep up with THAT planar gates). From the Military Adviser window, clicking on "demagogue" made the whole map twinkle like the night sky. I also noticed that I was actually paying for Unit Supply for the first time (it seems I had exceeded the +191 free units that Crusade and Military State were getting me). I hadn't seen Sabby in weeks; it seems he had sequestered himself in the treasury with all the abacuses he could carry. Aids would occasionally report hearing the sound of a ledgers crying followed by brief, maniacal laughter. That didn't bode well.


    While the bridling of the Hippus had, militarily-speaking, been an after-thought, it involved three of my paladins, a priori and a fodder of demagogues (fodder being the term for a large assembly of demagogues; like a pride of lions, a murder of crows or a rave of Belseraphs). What's more, those were the demagogues that had actually survived repeated tramplings by the horselords and were very nicely promoted. It was at about this time that my enormous force of pony-kickers had returned from the far West, rejoined my forces at the meat grinder and were ready to see if repeated applications of demagogue (absorbs more abuse quicker than leading brands) could remove the unsightly purple rash on Erebus' southern regions.


    The push outward was violent but the Bannor inexorably ground their way across Southern Erebus, all the while being shot down, blown up and chewed on by horrors that had crawled in from some nightmarish realm of infinite darkness. Cities would be taken at the cost of 20 or more squads of demagogues. In fact we were mainly relying on the enemy accidentally suffering a backfire or stubbing their toe really hard while dispatching our legions. Eventually these self-injuries would accumulate to the point that a bewildered looking demagogue, surprised that it's limbs were all still attached, would blow their "victory whistle" that would signal that it was safe for the champions and confessors to finish the job. We told them they were playing capture-the-flag and the other team just took the game too seriously.


    It was tense back in the capital. Our golden-age had long since ended, our city-sacking-surplus was spent and I was, at that very moment, haggling with a Kuriotate merchant for how much my fillings were worth. The Host of Einherjar Bake Sale had failed to break even, mainly because their summons expired before they could finish frosting the crusade-crunchies. We had introduced a new Vhalin-tines Day tradition of selling plasma but, with the Calabim long since extinct, there were few takers. Then Sabby burst into the throne room, his hair in tangles and his feathers splotched with ink, his arms full of scrolls (writing, my old nemesis; we meet again). Frantically spreading out the scrolls across every available surface, he explained that by dropping the BannorianPlus health care package and switching from a theocracy to an aristocracy, the efficiency of a distributed governance PLUS the additional farm revenue would offset most of our overhead costs. Both the health loss of Fend for Themselves and the food loss of Aristocracy could be recouped by changing from a conquest-based labor market to a more agrarian model. I knew it was crazy but times were desperate, Sabby was desperate and I didn't really want to sell my teeth. Two turns of anarchy later the Bannor civilization reformed and this time the crusade was backed by Junil AND Mammon. Oh Yeaaaaah!


    In hindsight, the Sheaim never really had a chance. Once we were no longer beholden to the inscrutable forces of finance, it was only a matter of time. An odd sort of archaeological tour occurred as we uncovered the remains of numerous other civilizations. Oh, there are the remains of Innsmouth. Take a picture! Great Malenko's ghost, we just liberated Jubilee; 250 turns of Sheaim occupation and the place still had an Insane Clown Posse theme. Os-Gabella fought on to the bitter end but it was all for naught. The hospitals, aqueducts and libraries of the Sheaim were all destroyed; such places were the trappings of avarice and the world was better off without them. Being immortal, we built a dungeon around Os-Gabella and Sabby visits her every once in a while to play Somnium. He says she's a sore loser and a sore winner. Now it's just us, the Kuriotates and a very bored Basium (the Mercurian Gate was finished rather late... sorry buddy). We are sending confessors to weed out those silly false faiths Carditha seems to have forgotten are still practiced in his cities. It's not surprising; those cities are huge. But there is only room enough for Junil...


    So... I won. I had no business winning but I won. It was a big, stupid, glorious fight in which stupidly militaristic beat intelligently arcane. Barbarians should take heart from our example: with determination, brainwashing, a bottomless horde of minions and a complete disdain for hygiene you too can reshape the world despite what those fancy dressin' literatti (literate <--> illuminati) might think. Thank Junil that Kael and Co. souped up Aristocracy, otherwise the crusade would have sputtered and died. In total I spent 361 turns Crusading (so 361 turns constantly at war, suffering casualties that would make the defenders of Stalingrad swear). I can only assume that demagogues, like summoned creatures, don't generate war weariness by their demise. That or a -85% to war weariness really is the last word on unrest. In conclusion, cry havoc and let slip the demagogues of war!
     
  18. KillerClowns

    KillerClowns Emperor

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2007
    Messages:
    1,139
    And Monty takes Madrid. I was not betting on you.
    I'm thinking of disregarding those "Bannor need a boost" threads. They lack shiny-fun-toys, but hoo-wee... that is really impressive.
     
  19. Psycho_Ivan

    Psycho_Ivan Warlord

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2008
    Messages:
    218
    How much of a military were you left with when the Crusade ended? And what was Cardith Lorda up to that entire time?
     
  20. OzzyKP

    OzzyKP Emperor

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2000
    Messages:
    1,729
    Location:
    Washington, DC USA
    :lol:



    ......
     

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