Shogun Total War FAQ Version 1.3 Written by: The Archon (email@example.com) Copyright 2005, Steven Dobirstein (The Archon) Legal Stuff: This may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, private use. This guide should not be sold for profit under any circumstances. This guide should strictly be available on www.gamefaqs.com and if the guide should appear elsewhere (with the exception of a copy for personal use) be it another free website, pay website, or in any publication, that is a violation of copyright law. Changing any of the text in this guide, including this copyright warning, without my personal written consent is also a violation of law. A link from a free (NOT from a paysite) website to the original document on www.gamefaqs.com is acceptable, but the document may not be hosted at any other source. UPDATE: The following websites have e-mailed me and have my permission to also post the guide, so long as it remains in the original state and is offered free of charge: http://dlh.net http://www.neoseeker.com If you see my guide posted on another website, please tell me. I worked hard on this and I have no desire to be ripped off. Those of us who write these do it for free, on our own spare time, and the finished product is the only reward we get. Thank you. GUIDE HISTORY January 4, 2005 - Began work on the guide. Not much beyond a rough skeletal outline of what needed to be done and the introduction. January 5, 2005 - Did "The Seven Clans" section. January 6, 2005 - Began work on the "Buildings and Units" section. January 9, 2005 - Worked on the Map and Combat Mode sections, V 1.0 is achieved and submitted to gamefaqs.com. February 19, 2005 - Added the "Reader Contribution Section" for people who send in advice on the game. This should help to make the guide much more complete. This is guide version 1.1 February 23, 2005 - Very small update to version 1.11. Realized I hadn't included the names of a couple of other websites I gave permission to host the guide on, and also a small update about geisha assassination. March 9, 2005 - Another excellent reader contribution from James Motz, guide version 1.2. January 21, 2006 - It's been a long time! Added another reader contribution to the guide. I also deleted the emails of people who have contributed things to my guide as they aren't mine to show off. TABLE OF CONTENTS (To skip quickly to any section, just copy any of these titles including the number and the dash and use the "find" feature, usually control key + f.) 1 - Introduction and Game Story 2 - The Seven Clans 3 - Buildings and Units 4 - Map Mode 5 - Combat Mode 6 - Reader Contribution Section 7 - Credits =============================== 1 - Introduction and Game Story =============================== First off, before I delve into the story, a brief "why write this guide" bit. Basically, because no one else has done it yet. It's a good game that flew under a lot of radars, and it deserved one. So I've tried to take it upon myself to get together something that can qualify as a FAQ for this game. I don't profess to be the biggest expert to have ever played the game, but I am competent and hopefully you find it useful in some way. Shogun Total War is a historically based game, meaning that the basis of the game is factual. The names of the starting rulers of the seven selectable tribes are accurate (I don't know about their heirs) and this period is actually known in Japanese history as "sendoku jindai" or "the age of the country at war" just as it says in the introductory video. Essentially this is a Japanese version of the classic board game "Axis and Allies" (for those of you not old enough to remember board games that was the definitive World War II strategy game), reliving what is widely viewed as one of the most fascinating periods of their history. The story, in the simplified form that it is presented in this game is as follows. The last Shogunate has collapsed, and Japan no longer has a single military ruler. There are seven main tribes who are now vying for the Shogunate - Hojo, Takeda, Mori, Uesugi, Oda, Shimazu, and Imagawa. Each tribe has it's own unique strengths that can lead them to total victory or failure. Your goal is to take your chosen clan to domination of all Japan and claim the mantle of Shogun for yourself. Essentially, the rest of the story is yours to build and tell, as history is yours to rewrite. =================== 2 - The Seven Clans =================== In this section I will detail each of the seven clans you can choose, their bonus, what land they start with, and whether that land has any exploitable bonuses. SHIMAZU The Shimazu clan starts with the majority of the island of Kyushu already theirs to control. While they are not rich in farmland, gaining total control of the island early can allow them to build in some relative safety from everyone except the Mori clan. If played as the computer they are more willing to convert to Christianity than other clans. Starting Units: 3 Yari Samurai, 3 Samurai Archers, 2 Yari Ashigaru, 1 Emissary Starting Bonus: No-Dachi Samurai can be recruited at a cheaper cost. Starting Land: Satsuma, Osumi, Hyuga, Higo, Bungo, Buzen, Nagato Starting Exploitable Bonuses: No-Dachi Samurai trained in Satsuma gain a +1 Honor bonus. Nagato has iron sand deposits, allowing an armory to be built. MORI The Mori clan's tradition is built around the strength of their warrior monks. They will play as strict Buddhists and will oppose any group that converts to Christianity. Although they control a good amount of land, it is rather spread out which can make defense early on a little difficult. So long as you are not fighting Christians their Warrior Monks can be devastating. Starting Units: 5 Yari Samurai, 5 Samurai Archers, 4 Yari Ashigaru, 1 Emissary Starting Bonus: Warrior Monks can be recruited at a cheaper cost. Starting Land: Mimasaka, Bizen, Harima, Inaba, Hoki, Izumo, Iwami, Suo Starting Exploitable Bonuses: Mimasaka has iron sand deposits, allowing an armory to be built. Bizen allows you to build a port at a discount due to a fine natural harbor. Harima has abundant silver deposits allowing you to build a mine, as well as a natural harbor that gives a discount on building a port. Inaba, Hoki, Izumo, Iwami, and Suo all have iron sand deposits, again allowing an armory. ODA The Oda clan is very aggressive and seems to enjoy warfare. They will wage war with anyone who stands in their way regardless of religion in their quest for power. They have a central position on the map to begin, which depending on your skill level can be very good or if you are not yet good at defending it can be very bad. Their bonus goes towards lowly Ashigaru units, allowing you to build a very large army but perhaps not a particularly powerful one - specializing in one kind of unit with this clan is not advisable. Fortunatly Oda begins with many provinces that provide bonuses to other units. The Emperor's Palace is in the city of Kyoto within Yamashiro, and also starts essentially under your control. Starting units: 10 Yari Ashigaru, 6 Samurai Archers, 1 Emissary Starting Bonus: Yari Ashigaru can be recruited at a cheaper cost. Starting Land: Owari, Mino, Omi, Iga, Yamato, Kawachi, Yamashiro, Tamba, Wakasa, Kii Starting Exploitable Bonuses: Ashigaru recruited in Owari get a +1 Honor bonus. *The Emperor's Palace in Yamashiro grants a +1 Honor bonus to any untit you recruit there. Mino has iron sand deposits allowing you to build an armory. Omi has iron sand deposits allowing you to build an armory. Iga has iron sand which allow the building of an armory, and also Ninja built there start with +1 Honor. Any warrior monks trained in Kii gain +1 Honor. *A note about the Emperor's Palace in Yamashiro. Technically this will always remain neutral, meaning you cannot garrison the castle nor can you move the Emperor. He will always be here, and any ruler that controls Yamashiro will gain the bonus towards troops commissioned there. That's pretty much the only effect the Emperor has in this game. IMAGAWA The Imagawa clan start with their land split at two ends of the country, but connected through ports. They are more passive than the other tribes, relying on both alliances as well as their strength with Ninja and Shinobi to lead them to success. They are perhaps the weakest group in terms of military might and they rely on careful planning and strategy to achieve victory. Starting Units: 6 Samurai Archers, 6 Yari Samurai, 2 Ninja, 1 Emissary Starting Bonus: Both Ninja and Shinobi can be recruited at a lower cost. Starting Land: Totomi, Suruga, Mikawa, Chikugo, Hizen, Chikuzen Starting Exploitable Bonus: Archers trained in Totomi gain +1 Honor. Totomi and Hizen both begin with ports already built. If you should ever need to replace the port in Hizen, it can be rebuilt at reduced cost because of a good natural harbor. TAKEDA The Takeda clan is another aggressive warrior group. They do not make particularly trustworthy allies. Like the Imagawa clan their land is split at two ends of the country and linked by ports. The Takeda clan are famous for the strength of their cavalry and they enjoy exploiting this advantage. If not dealt with quickly the Takeda clan can become a big problem for other groups. Starting Units: 4 Yari Samurai, 1 Samurai Archer, 3 Cavalry Archers, 3 Yari Cavalry, 1 Emissary Starting Bonus: Cavalry units can be recruited at a reduced cost. Starting Land: Kai, Sagami, Izu, Aki, Bingo, Bitchu Starting Exploitable Bonus: Kai has gold which can be mined. Sagami and Aki start with ports already built. Aki also has silver deposits which can be mined, and iron sand deposits that allow the building of an armory. Bingo has iron sand deposits which allow the building of an armory. HOJO The Hojo clan are an ancient and powerful name, and their strength lies in the rich land they control as well as their mastery at building castles. While no one particular military unit is their strength they are still dangerous opponents and should be watched carefully, as they will not hesitate to pounce at the sign of weakness. Their strength at building castles makes it easier for them to defend invasions than the other tribes, so long as their castles are garrisoned properly. Starting Units: 2 Yari Samurai, 4 Samurai Archers, 2 Yari Ashigaru, 1 Emissary Starting Bonus: Castles can be built at a reduced cost. Starting Land: Shimosa, Kazusa, Hitachi, Musashi, Kozuke, Shimotsuke Starting Exploitable Bonus: Emissaries trained in Kazusa gain +1 Honor. Hitachi has iron sand deposits which can be used to build an armory. Shimotsuke has copper which can be mined. UESUGI The Uesugi are cunning, rich in land, and skilled in combat. A truly well balanced and dangerous foe, and a good choice for newcomers to the game. Their clan is famous for their archers and they can be recruited cheaply. They will respect alliances with strong tribes but will not hesitate to invade weaker ones. They possess a good deal of farmland which allows them a bit more freedom to build early on. Starting Units: 3 Yari Samurai, 4 Samurai Archers, 2 Yari Ashigaru Starting Bonus: Archers can be recruited at a reduced cost. Starting Land: Mutsu, Dewa, Suwo, Echigo, Shinano, Hida Starting Exploitable Bonus: Dewa has gold which can be mined. Suwo has iron sands which allow the building of an armory. Echigo has silver which can be mined. Shinano has iron sands which allow the building of an armory, and in addition any cavalry trained in Shinano will start with +1 Honor. The remaining provinces are controlled by rebel or Ronin forces and are not part of any organized group. They can invade anyone and be invaded by anyone, and alliances cannot be formed with them. ======================= 3 - Buildings and Units ======================= BUILDINGS I will detail what the buildings do, their cost, and their building time in seasons (game turns). CASTLES Castles are very important for a few reasons. One, virtually all other buildings have one of the levels of castle as a prerequisite. And two they allow you to store units within them that can be used to defend your province. This is called "garrisoning" the castle. Note that putting any cavalry unit in a garrison counts as two units, which is realistic since they would require twice as much space and food because of the horses. The Hojo clan can build these castles at reduced cost. There are four levels of castle. Each requires you to have the previous version before the next can be built in that province. CASTLE Required: None Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 6 seasons The basic structure. It can hold 4 units. It also grants you almost all the basic options for other structures. In any province you plan to develop, a basic castle will have to be part of the plan. LARGE CASTLE Required: Castle Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons An improved castle, this one can hold up to 8 units. Also more difficult to assault. FORTRESS Required: Large Castle Cost: 1500 Koku Building Time: 10 seasons A fortress is a big jump, and can hold 12 units. It is far more difficult to assault than it's predecessors. CITADEL Required: Fortress Cost: 3000 Koku Building Time: 12 seasons Only the most developed provinces gain citadels. They can hold up to 16 units on their own. There are only a couple of upgrades that require a citadel before they can be built, most importantly the Geisha House. IMPROVED FARM LAND Required: Nothing Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons The farm land improvements are very important to keeping your treasury full. As your army grows you will need more food to feed them. This upgrade increases agricultural production in the province by 20%. Build it in provinces that already have good farmland first, to get the full value. SUPERIOR FARMLAND Required: Improved Farm Land Cost: 700 Koku Building Time: 10 seasons This grants a 40% boost to agricultural production in the province. EXCEPTIONAL FARMLAND Required: Superior Farmland Cost: 900 Koku Building Time: 12 seasons This time, it's a 60% boost to agricultural production. LEGENDARY FARMLAND Required: Exceptional Farmland Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 12 seasons This is as good as farmland can get, granting a 100% boost, thus doubling agricultural production in a region. Save this for provinces that have extensive farmland to begin with to get the full advantage of your investment. MINE Required: Gold, Silver, or Copper deposit in the province Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons Once a mine is built it produces a set income automatically for the rest of the game. Build one in every province that you can, there won't be many chances to do so. BORDER WATCH TOWERS Required: None Cost: 400 Koku Building time: 4 seasons These act as if you had a spy in every province that borders the one with the towers. Can be useful to see what troop movements the enemy is making, and also what they are building. FORTIFIED WATCH TOWERS Cost: 800 Koku Bulding Time: 6 seasons Not only do they spy into all bordering provinces, they also act as a Shinobi within their own province. Overall, you could build 8 Shinobi for the cost of one of these though. ;-) PALACE Requires: Large Castle Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons Palaces are essentially a sign of prestige and building one shows off to everyone the power and wealth of the daimyo that builds it. The palace grants bonus +1 morale to any troops built in that province. GOLDEN PALACE Requires: Palace, Fortress Cost: 2000 Koku Building Time: 10 seasons An improved palace, this gives an even further morale boost, +2, to troops trained within the province. LEGENDARY PALACE Requires: Golden Palace Cost: 3000 Koku Building Time: 12 seasons The highest grade of palace grants warriors incredible +3 morale in battle. I'm not sure how necessary a bonus this is really, I'd rather make a Legendary Armory or Swordsmith first. SPEAR DOJO Requires: Castle Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons The spear dojo produces the two basic infantry types, the Yari Ashigaru and the Yari Samurai. Every army will need at lest one of these to produce basic infantry. You also need one of these to make Yari Cavalry at a Horse Dojo. FAMOUS SPEAR DOJO Requires: Large Castle, Spear Dojo Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons If you also have an armory in the province, building a famous spear dojo will allow you to build Naginata Samurai, who are better than either Yari Ashigaru or Yari Samurai. This also causes Yari Ashigaru and Yari Samurai built in the province to start with +1 honor. LEGENDARY SPEAR DOJO Requires: Fortress, Famous Spear Dojo Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons Yari Ashigaru and Samurai get +2 honor, Nanigata get +1. ARCHERY DOJO Requires: Castle Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons These train Samurai Archers, and all kingdoms will probably need at least a couple of these. Combined with a horse dojo you can produce cavalry archers. FAMOUS ARCHERY DOJO Requires: Archery Dojo, Large Castle Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons This gives a boost to all Samurai Archers you train in the region, giving them a +1 honor bonus. LEGENDARY ARCHERY DOJO Required: Fortress, Famous Archery Dojo Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons Produces Samurai Archers with +2 honor. ARMORY Requires: Large Castle, iron sand deposits in the province Cost: 1200 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons These give every unit trained in the province a +1 bonus to their armor. Build one if you can in a place where you plan to produce a good amount of your units. You also need one in a province to build either Nanigata or Heavy Cavalry so this is a key upgrade. FAMOUS ARMORY Requires: Large castle, Armory Cost: 1200 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons This armory grants a large +2 armor bonus to any units trained in the region. LEGENDARY ARMORY Requires: Fortress, Famous Armory Cost: 1200 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons This grants a large +3 armor bonus to any units built in the province. TRANQUIL GARDEN Requires: Castle Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 4 Seasons The Tranquil Garden is required to build Emissaries which form alliances, and you also need a garden to build a Temple. NINJA HOUSE Required: Castle Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 6 seasons Ninja Houses train your Ninjas of course. They are assassins that can target enemy emessaries and generals. It is definitely a good idea to build one, though probably not more than one is really required. INFAMOUS NINJA HOUSE Required: Ninja House, Fortress Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 6 seasons This building produces ninja that start at a higher effectiveness, by starting them with +1`to their honor right away. PORT Required: Castle, any coastal province Cost: 1500 Koku Building Time: 10 Seasons Although they are expensive and time-consuming to build, ports are important to have. Firstly, they produce 200 Koku every year (4 turns), and will almost certainly pay for themselves many times over. Secondly, any province with a port can send units to any other province you control that also has a port - this allows you to move units from one end of the map to the other very quickly if you need to. You also need a port if you plan on encouraging trade with the Portugese or the Dutch, or to build a trading post. If you can afford it, build it. TEA HOUSE Required: Castle Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons These allow you to build the Shinobi unit, which is useful both as a spy and as a counterspy in your own territories protecting your generals. FAMOUS TEA HOUSE Required: Large Castle, Tea House Cost: 500 Koku Building Time: 4 seasons This produces Shinobi that start with +1 honor, raising their effectiveness. SWORD DOJO Required: Large Castle, someone in your army gains the status of "Legendary Swordsman" Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons You cannot build one of these until a warrior in your army has become a legendary swordsman in battle. Once that happens you will get a little cutscene and these can be built. So send a single army into combat a few times in a row and you should be able to gain the advantage of a sword dojo. These train the No-Dachi Samurai, who have very high attack power but are not so strong on defense. FAMOUS SWORD DOJO Required: Large Castle, Sword Dojo Cost: 1000 koku Building Time: 8 seasons This prodcuces No-Dachi Samurai that start with +1 honor LEGENDARY SWORD DOJO Required: Fortress, Famous Sword Dojo Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons Produces No-Dachi Samurai that start at +2 honor. HORSE DOJO Required: Large Castle Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 6 seasons These allow you to build both Horse Archers (with an archery dojo) and Yari Cavalry (with a spear dojo). You will definitely need one sooner or later, as cavalry are much more effective than foot soldiers. FAMOUS HORSE DOJO Required: Large Castle, Horse Dojo Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 6 seasons In addition to the other cavalry units you will also be able to build the devastating Heavy Cavalry (assuming you have an armory) with a famous horse dojo. Highly recommended, as Heavy Cavalry are the best unit in the game. They als0 produce Horse Archers and Yari Cavalry at +1 honor. LEGENDARY HORSE DOJO Required: Fortress, Famous Horse Dojo Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 6 seasons Yari Cavalry and Samurai archers start at +2 honor, Heavy Cavalry begin at +1 honor. SWORDSMITH Required: Large castle Cost: 1200 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons This is like an armory, but it gives a bonus +1 to weapons (even guns and arrows) for all units built in the region. Definitely advisable if you plan to produce a lot of units in the region. FAMOUS SWORDSMITH Required: Fortress, Swordsmith Cost: 1200 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons Weapons are produced with a +2 bonus. LEGENDARY SWORDSMITH Required: Citadel, Famous Swordsmith Cost: 1200 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons All units built in the province get +3 bonus to their weapons. PORTUGUESE/DUTCH TRADING POST Required: Large Castle, agreement to trade with Portuguese/Dutch Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons You can only have a Portuguese or a Dutch trading post, not both. Accepting the Portuguese means accepting Christianity as well, while such a commitment isn't required to trade with the Dutch. These two also function slightly differently. The Portuguese only gives you access to the Arquebusiers unit, and you have to build a cathedral to gain Musketeers. The Dutch trading post grants access to both units immediately. The catch is you have to wait a lot longer for the Dutch to show up, and for the first few years only the Portuguese are an option. TEMPLE Required: Large Castle Cost: 1500 Koku Time: 8 seasons This allows you to build Warrior Monks. So long as you are not fighting a Christian army they are easily the best infantry unit, but Christians do not fear the Buddhist monks the way fellow Buddhist warriors will. GOLDEN TEMPLE Required: Temple, Fortress Cost: 1500 Koku Time: 8 seasons A more advanced temple that gives warrior monks a +1 honor bonus. TEMPLE COMPLEX Required: Golden Temple, Fortress Cost: 1500 Koku Building Time: 10 seasons The most highly advanced kind of temple you can build gives Warrior Monks built in that province an additional bonus to +2 honor. CHURCH Required: Large Castle, accepting trade offer from Portuguese Cost: 800 Koku Building Time: 6 seasons If you convert to Christianity by agreeing to trade with the Portuguese you will need some of these. Once you become Christian each province that has any Christians in it will add a "Percentage Christian" number to it's right-click description. Churches raise this number highly within that province and also within bordering provinces. They also produce the Jesuit Priest unit. You need six churches before you can build a cathedral. CATHEDRAL Required: A citadel, plus six churches built anywhere in your kingdom Cost: Building Time: If you accept Christianity, this structure helps to spread Christianity throughout your lands and also allows the building of Musketeers at all Portuguese Trading Posts you control. GUN FACTORY Required: Dutch Trading Post, Citadel Cost: Building Time: These allow you to build guns away from the source of your Dutch Trading Post in other provinces. GEISHA HOUSE Required: Citadel, Infamous Ninja House, Famous Tea House Cost: 1000 Koku Building Time: 8 seasons If you can build one of these you are that much closer to winning the game. Only the most advanced provinces can hold one but with good reason as Geisha are ridiculously powerful. UNITS - MILITARY Just as with the buildings I will go over what is required to build these units, their cost, and also an attempt at assessing their combat effectiveness. SAMURAI ARCHERS Required: Archery Dojo Cost: 300 Koku Archers aren't actually all that devastating in combat in terms of casualties inflicted, and if they are rushed into hand-to-hand combat they will be slaughtered badly. But their rain of arrows does have a substantial effect on enemy morale. Build a few, but they are not a game-winner without a lot of help. They can also run out of ammo (unless you turn that feature off). They have an enhanced effect from hilltops or when enemies try and cross bridges. YARI ASHIGARU Required: Spear Dojo Cost 100 Koku These guys are not Samurai warriors, just conscripted peasants. They are not strong in combat and their morale will drop faster than any other unit - they run away very easily, especially if you order them into a full-fledged charge against strong opposition. Their long spears make them more effective against Yari Cavalry than you might suspect, but overall they are quite weak. Build Yari Samurai instead, unless you are running short of cash. YARI SAMURAI Required: Spear Dojo Cost: 200 Koku These guys are not bad for basic Samurai spearmen. They are well balanced against most units. They are not particularly overwhelming but so long as they are not thrown in against Warrior Monks (assuming you are not a Christian army) or Heavy Cavalry they are not bad. They are good for early in the game and their low cost makes them the core of many armies especially early on. CAVALRY ARCHERS Required: Horse Dojo, Archery Dojo Cost: 500 Koku They function very much like basic archers but can move much, much faster. The only unit that can chase them down if they decide to run are Yari Cavalry. Just like Samurai Archers they can run out of ammo, and are better from hills or when enemies are crossing bridges. Because of their speed they can force an enemy to build a horse dojo or he can be left with no means of catching these guys. YARI CAVALRY Required: Horse Dojo, Spear Dojo Cost: 500 Koku They are the basic light cavalry and one of the most effective units overall, except against spearmen who can hold them at bay. They are also the fastest unit, and nothing can escape them if they choose not to let you leave. They are effective against almost everything, but Yari Ashigaru and Yari Samurai can hold them off for a bit with their long spears. WARRIOR MONKS Required: Temple Cost: 500 Koku So long as you are not fighting Christians, these are very powerful, and even then they remain decent. Other Buddhists are hesitant to wage war against monks and even fear them to a degree, but the monks have so such reservations, and are very powerful in combat. Both their attack and defense are very high, and they hold out well against any kind of opposition. Also destroying their morale is virtually impossible, as they have no fear of death. They usually won't run unless defeat is totally obvious. ARQUEBUSIERS Requires: Portuguese (or Dutch) Trading Post Cost: 100 Koku These are a basic gunman, and building the Trading Post will always grant you access to them. Note that these are the most primitive of guns, and they will not function whatsoever in the rain. They can also run out of ammo. They should not enter into hand-to-hand combat with anyone. NAGINATA Required: Armory, Famous Spear Dojo Cost: 400 Koku Their attacks are better than Yari Spearman, and they are much better defensively. A good choice for garrisoning castles and also useful as a support unit in attacking armies. Essentially the best defensive infantry unit, and when combined well with other kinds of unit they are very useful. HEAVY CAVALRY Requires: Famous Horse Dojo, Armory Cost: 600 Koku Simply put, the best unit in the game. Despite being "heavy" (and what the on-disk manual says about them being "slow") they sill move much faster than any non-cavalry unit and the have incredible attack and defense power. One on one, they are the best unit in the game and it doesn't take many of them to cause large amounts of destruction in the enemy ranks. These are very expensive to build but rightly so - even warrior monks have reason to be worried if they decide to charge. NO-DACHI SAMURAI Required: Sword Dojo (Thus requires the "legendary swordsman" event) Cost: 300 Koku Essentially, the opposite of Naginata. They carry long two-handed swords. No-Dachi are very good attackers but do not have much defense. I wouldn't want a whole army of them since they do die if not supported well, but as a secondary unit or in combination with Warrior Monks they can cause severe damage. Basically these guys kill fast but die fast too without armor bonuses. MUSKETEERS Required: Dutch Trading post OR Portuguese Trading Post and a Cathedral Cost: 175 Koku These are much better guns than the Arquebusiers, as they function in all weather and also have slightly better range (I think). Again, remember that they can run out of ammo. Avoid hand-to-hand combat at all costs, unless you like watching your own army die rapidly. TAISHO This is really just your commander in battle. While fighting you will see his unit displayed with a special banner, usually golden or at least some color and shape that is distinct from the other groups. You can't actually "build" these (though every army will have one), but he is worth noting since if you kill the enemy commander almost every time his army will flee and run away. Also, know where your commander is and try not to let him die since your army would probably flee as a result - remember this when choosing what formation to put your army in. If your commander is in a group of No-Dachi Samurai for example, perhaps cavalry should be the front line. UNITS - OTHER Not all units are combat units, there are also other kinds of units you will build and use in the game that still hold important influence. EMISSARY Required: Tranquil Garden Cost: 100 These guys offer alliances to other daimyos and are also very useful as spies, because unlike Shinobi who try and sneak around in the night (and often get captured and killed if used as spies) these guys walk around with a good deal of immunity, and make good spies to let you see who and what is in enemy provinces. Ninjas and later Geisha are the only way to kill one. Not surprisingly they are the easiest unit to assassinate. SHINOBI Required: Tea House Cost: 100 I am a big fan of these. They have two things they can do. One, go into enemy territory and spy. This is actually not a good idea, they will very often be caught and executed by the Shonobi of other players. But if left in your own provinces they work as conuterspies, and will kill enemy Shinobi or Ninja in that province. This is very essential for protecting important generals - and never leave your heir without protection of a Shinobi if you don't have to, especially if you only have one heir. They are very effective at stopping assassination attempts. Other players cannot see your Shinobi on the map. JESUIT PRIEST Required: Church Cost: 50 These are quite cheap and useful if you are Christian. They can function as emissaries, but don't send one to a Buddhist daimyo because I promise his head will come back on a plate. Other Christian rulers will never kill a priest though. Priests also automatically raise the percentage of the population that is Christian in any province that they are stationed in, and this can help to reduce tension within your population who usually react negatively at first to having their religion converted. They can be attacked by ninjas and geisha and make fairly easy targets without shinobi protection. Actually, priests can provide a cheap and effective distraction, since some Buddhist clans will always try and target priests, forsaking some perhaps more important targets, especially if you move priests into their lands. NINJA Required: Ninja House Cost: 200 These are assassins. You send them into enemy territory and target their generals, or emissary. The higher the person's rank, the lower the chance for success. You can also try and kill the daimyo and his heir(s) but this is very difficult. Ninjas gain honor every time they make a successful kill, and I wouldn't try killing an heir or a daimyo with less than 4 honor, which is quite difficult to do. Emissaries make an easy target and if one is just sitting in your provinces spying and you want to be rid of him this is your chance. If you try and assassinate someone in a province where that player has a Shinobi you will probably get captured and executed. You can't see where their Shinobi are hidden either - that would ruin the point. Overall ninjas are not always that effective but every once in a while they are very useful, especially for lowering the morale of troops in Ronin provinces (who will much more rarely have access to shinobi). Note that these are also the only way to get rid of a Geisha - but good luck with that. Other players cannot see your ninja on the map. THE LEGENDARY GEISHA Required: Geisha House Cost: 500 Also Note: Takes 4 turns (one game year) to build These are ridiculously powerful assassins that border on unstoppable. They have a remarkable chance to kill targets (even daimyos are not well protected at all once you get 1 or 2 honor from kills) and unlike ninjas if they fail to kill their target they DO NOT DIE. They are visible on the map to your enemy but it doesn't really matter since the only way to kill one is with a ninja, but the ninjas won't have much of a chance against her. She is an overwhelming unit which is why it is so hard to get and also why it takes a full year to train one - the only unit that can't be trained in one turn. A handful of these = game over for everyone, else plain and simple. You really don't need more than one or two unless you're just being mean. UPDATE: I've been e-mailed by a couple of people pointing out that if one Geisha attempts to assassinate another, both of them always die. I stupidly deleted the e-mails without writing your names down for credit, but thanks for that guys. ============ 4 - Map Mode ============ You'll spend the majority of your time in map mode, and the decisions made here are every bit as critical as combat more to your success or failure. A badly managed kingdom with a large army is just a kingdom that's one bad harvest away from being a sitting duck for (at least) four turns (one game year). The core decisions you'll need to make here are where to station troops, what to build with your resources, plotting what provinces you want to invade next, and what to do with the non- military units. Also you'll be faced with the decision to trade with the Portuguese or Dutch now and again. First, where to station troops. This is probably the easiest decision to make. The only place you need mass numbers at any one time is in all your provinces that border with other kingdoms. You have to protect yourself from invasion before you can ever think about invading anyone else. But don't make the mistake of having nothing behind your front line - the computer does this on lower difficulty, where 95% of their army is on the front line and if you break through that it is over for them. If you have castles not on the front line, garrison them so you have a reserve force behind the front line, yes it increases your upkeep cost but at least it means if your front line should be broken you at least have some sort of army remaining. If you see an enemy province is massing numbers in a province on your border, try and match them or at least keep it close to deter them from choosing you as a target. Also, troops in a province affect the loyalty rating of a province. I try and keep at least one unit (even Yari Ashigaru will do) in every province to keep loyalty high. And in newly conquered provinces that were under the control of other rulers for a long time you probably will need at least 2 units in the province for a while to keep the loyalty above 100% - if it drops below 100% for any stretch of time the province might rebel. Shinobi can also help you boost loyalty if you are in a jam. Second, what to build with your resources, both in terms of buildings and units. There's a common theme that works across most strategy games and this one is no exception - "strong economy = strong army". If all you do is concentrate on building what you need to be the first tribe to get heavy cavalry or warrior monks, sure you'll have some nice units but I doubt you'll have enough annual income to pay the upkeep for your army, and then what good is it? If you have provinces that are described as having "rich farmland" then build the farmland bonuses at every chance up to the 100% Legendary Farmland bonus, if there is something you can mine then build a mine before anything else, if you have a coastal province with a castle you should be building a port there as well for an income boost. These things are vitally important to being able to go anywhere in this game. Remember all units and structures cost something to build, and units in play have an upkeep cost every year, so make sure you have as much annual income as possible to give yourself a decision to make that isn't "what province should I invade because I am broke and need to either kill some of my own troops or get more land". There are places where boosting farmland isn't helpful, like Izu province with it's annual income of 100 koku, where paying 500 Koku to get an annual 20% boost up to 120 koku is probably not very bright. In that case, it would actually be more beneficial long-term to pay to build both a castle and a port for a 200 koku per year bonus. You pay 4 times as much to build those things but you get literally 10 times as much payback (200 koku a year vs. 20). Basically in provinces where it is sensible to do so, when you have the chance to develop the economic upgrades first do it. Choosing where to build military structures and what ones to build are important as well. If you try and develop every province you have into a well balanced mecca of destruction I guarantee you will get blown off the map. Instead I recommend focusing on only a couple of major provinces that you will build up as your military production centers. Ideally you want the option of building an armory in that province (iron sand deposits), and if it can also hold a bonus for a unit that would be swell. If I had to choose between an armory and a +1 honor bonus toward one type of unit, definitely go for the province that can hold an armory. An honor bonus only affects one unit type, an armory affects everyone. You also want to build a swordsmith at some point in that province for a weapons bonus to go with the armory as well. Then after that a palace for a morale boost if you can afford the time and the cost. Really in terms of structures you don't need to develop all of them, just develop the ones you plan on using. For example if you plan on using a lot of cavalry you won't really be needing a Legendary Archery Dojo, will you? Don't develop secondary structures past the point where you need them to be, it's a waste of time and money. Develop the Famous and Legendary Armory and Swordsmith as fast as it's available because those bonuses will greatly help all the troops you produce. Then build up your key structures, such as a Legendary Horse Dojo or a Temple Complex. I would recommend if you have an armory to always make a Famous Spear Dojo though, so you can get the Naginata unit. They are tough guys to kill, and work well in combination with both the Warrior Monks and No-Dachi Samurai. Remember that every unit (well, aside from heavy cavalry) has a weakness. If all your opponent is building is Yari Spearmen I wouldn't go building nothing but Yari Cavalry, since your cavalry will not perform that well then. You'd be better to just match him with spearmen and archers, and use cavalry as a secondary idea solely to attack archers just then. It's important to remember that until you can build the two really top level units, Warrior Monks and Heavy Cavalry. Even then I don't build armies of just those two (first of all the upkeep costs would probably sink you). Always have some archers (either mounted or on foot), or guns if that's what you have. I usually don't have more than 5 of any one kind of unit in an army of 16 units, for the sake of balance. If I see 12 No-Dachi Smaurai coming at me, the solution is simple - lots of cavalry and archers. But If I send 5 Archers, 3 Heavy Cavalry, 3 Warrior Monks, 3 Yari Cavalry, and 2 Naginata at you you're going to have to think hard about what to do next. Thirdly, plotting what province or provinces to invade. This isn't as simple as it might first seem. If you move into a spot that you can take now but can't defend tomorrow, or that taking leaves a gaping hole in another area, it's not a good take. Don't plot to take a province you can't hold, and don't take a province if it leaves your old province exposed to a counter attack. Try and target provinces in a way that the province you invade from will be immune from counter attack because it will only be bordered by friendly provinces. Usually, only attacking these "safer" targets should still leave you with opportunities. Also, in time as you learn the whole map, try not to invade a province that can be re-invaded from something like four separate points. Odds are you won't be able to hold it, unless you have a lot of troops. Also, take land form into consideration. In each province's description it tells you a bit about the terrain such as "Mostly lowland which makes it hard to defend" - those are usually very flat with maybe a few trees, which means not many terrain advantages for the defenders. The one terrain you really have to watch out for is any province that says it has a river running through it. These are by far the toughest provinces to invade as you have to cross the river at the bridge (or bridges) in the province. Here, archers will gut your armies quickly, and morale is a problem for everyone on the attacking team, even Warrior Monks - no one wants to get mowed down on a narrow bridge. Either bring a 2 or 3 to 1 manpower advantage, or a lot of cavalry that can rush across the bridges quickly (and cut the archers to pieces), or both. Be careful with these river provinces, they can leave you pulling your hair out if you're not careful - just as they did to many a real general. Fourth, discussion of the non-military units. Each serves a good purpose that you can take advantage of. Everyone starts with an emissary and you should try and use him to get a couple of quick alliances. Granted, alliances are nothing more in this game than a stalling tactic while you build armies, but it's still a good thing to try, and if you want to spy on activities in a certian province they are the safest bet. By the way, if your emissary is assassinated in the first 7 turns, you know it was the Imagawa clan that did it - they start with two ninjas in play and since it takes 6 turns to build a ninja house and 1 more to build a ninja (never mind moving him) it's pretty obvious who is to blame. The Imagawa seem to have a fetish for killing my emissary early regardless of who I play as for some reason. Next I'll talk about my favourite of these units, the shonobi. In my opinion everyone should be making use of these guys. They only cost 100 koku to build, can't be killed so long as they stay in your territory, and they can catch enemy shinobi or ninja that are in your lands. They don't always succeed at preventing an assassination attempt, but the percentage is good enough to make them worthwhile investment for protecting important generals, and especially the daimyo and his heirs - I absolutely always have a shinobi with every heir in play, since if you have no heirs and the daimyo dies the game is over, and so I protect them carefully. They gain honor for every plot they break up, and then get even better at it. Sadly they can do nothing about The Legendary Geisha. You can also send shinobi into enemy provinces to spy, and they will send back word when that clan is preparing to attack someone, but this isn't really worth it since they can be caught and killed by other shinobi. Also, shinobi boost loyalty in your provinces if you station them there, and help destroy loyalty in other player's provinces that they are stationed in. This can help you prevent rebellion in new provinces you gain by sending in a shinobi with the invading army. Basically I put a shinobi in every border province, as well as one with the daimyo, one with each heir, and one with any general of rank 2 or more (but really most of those guys should be up on the border provinces anyway). In the long run I find I am always happy with the investment. You will need priests if you are going to play as a Christian. Along with Churches they help boost the percentage of Christians in your lands, which helps prevent discontent over conflicting religions. But since building a church in every province (at 800 koku a pop) is not remotely realistic you will need these guys, who are actually the cheapest unit in the game. You can send them out as emissaries as well, but don't bother if the player isn't also a Christian or you'll get to see his head literally come back on a plate - if he isn't assassinated first. Other daimyos do not take well to priests in their lands, as they automatically begin converting people to Christianity and this will anger the Buddhist groups in a hurry. Ninjas seem very cool at first but I barely use them. They do not have the greatest percentage for killing generals with any significant rank, and trying to kill an heir or a daimyo with less than 4 or 5 honor is very difficult - and you will quickly discover getting a ninja to 5 honor through legitimate means is almost impossible. The only real way to do it is keep killing emissaries and (if there are any) priests since they are weak targets, until you have a decent honor level. They are still an okay unit but they have to be used sparingly. If you are about to invade a province try and assassinate a general in that province as long as he doesn't have negative honor (even if he's honor zero), because a successful assassination the same turn as an invasion does bad things for the enemy's morale. This is probably the best use for a ninja. Also, they are the only way to kill a Geisha, so if you can get a ninja to 3 or more honor I'd consider pulling him back and having him sit near your daimyo for the rest of the game, as a security blanket against a Geisha attack. It might seem excessive, but Geisha can get a 34-50% chance to kill a daimyo fairly quickly and I don't consider any defense against that a bad idea. Also there is a very nasty trick you can try with ninja, though it is difficult. When a clan is wiped out, their lands will mostly go to that clan's allies, or if they have no allies degenerate into rebel factions. So if you are allied with someone and want their lands without going to war you could try assassinating all the heirs and the daimyo for that clan, in the hopes of getting their land for being such a "good ally". This CAN work, but it is very risky since sometimes when nijnas are caught (and you will probably need a few to try this trick) they reveal who they are working for, and that could cause some very nasty reactions. It is possible, but very difficult, and I probably wouldn't try it unless there was an heirless daimyo to target. The Legendary Geisha are really too powerful, and they can end games almost single-handedly. Thankfully it is very hard to get them and takes many, many years to develop a province fully enough to allow their construction. They take four turns to build, but once you have one it's big trouble for everyone else. Only ninja can kill them, though they are adept at avoiding assassination. (Note: I actually assume that Geisha can also target other Geisha. I've honestly never played a game where two clans both had access to this unit so I've never seen it tried. The on-disk manual says only ninja can kill them, but it also says heavy cavalry are "slow" so I take it's advice with a grain of salt.) They have an incredible percentage for killing generals and once they have even 2 honor the heirs and daimyo in play are certainly not safe at all. Essentially if you build one just send it into enemy territory and wipe out any targets that are in your path, and you can literally get a unit powerful enough to win the game assuming you can track down the daimyos. Although they are highly useful (that is an understatement) they will take you a long, long time to get to being able to train so don't bank your whole strategy around Geisha-based assassination. Also remember, a failed assassination with a Geisha does not mean death for the Geisha, like it does for a ninja. The ONLY way to kill one of these is to assassinate them. UPDATE: I've been e-mailed by a couple of people pointing out that if one Geisha attempts to assassinate another, both of them always die. I stupidly deleted the e-mails without writing your names down for credit, but thanks for that guys. Fifth, what to do about the Portuguese or the Dutch. The Dutch is an easy decision - when they do finally show up welcome them openly, build a trading post, and you have access to guns, plain and simple. It's a no strings attached deal with the Dutch and you should take the opportunity when it presents itself. Deciding whether to trade with the Portuguese or not (and the Portuguese will always be the only option for the first few years of play) is more complicated. Accepting the Portuguese means converting to Christianity. This will drastically drop loyalty in every province you control at the time (though it will come back in time). You gain the ability to build a Trading Post (though you can't build musketeers with it until you have a cathedral, just the lesser gunman unit), churches and priests, and eventually a cathedral. Buddhist daimyos tend to not want to be your ally anymore as well. I have to admit I don't have much experience playing as a Christian army. I do know this - it's not cheap. You're going to have to build churches, and they cost money. Also a few priests for other provinces as well. Also, you simply cannot build a temple and use Warrior Monks if you become Christian - building a temple forfeits your Christian status. The tradeoff advantage for this handicap is that the Buddhist Warrior Monks no longer have the overwhelming effect on your no longer Buddhist army. They are still decent but they will not overwhelm you the way they will with other clans. I have no idea what happens if you convert to Christianity if you already have warrior monks in your army, I assume they either automatically revolt or kill themselves ("seppuku" was the samurai term for an honorable suicide), one or the other. I've never been stupid enough to try it since I don't need any more angry warrior monks coming after me than you already will have. Basically if you decide to be Christian forget about ever having warrior monks and don't ever build a temple. I also don't know if this is totally true but in my limited experience playing as a Christian (with the Shimazu clan for the record) I found my troops seemed to have lower morale in battle almost by default. That would make some degree of sense, as one of the prime teachings of Christianity is "thou shall not kill" - probably not a good idea in a war simulation. Overall in my experience I didn't find that being Christian was all that good an idea in this game. My advice is to wait for the Dutch. If anyone has more experience playing as Christians and has information to add to this section, my e-mail is at the top of the document. I'd be happy to include additional information. =============== 5 - Combat Mode =============== Right off I'll admit I'm no tactical master at this game, and I've spent the majority of my time on less than the hardest difficulty level. I am simply a fan of the game who is trying my best to put together an FAQ for a game that I was shocked to see didn't have one. So right off I'll say if you are reading this and are confident you have something good to contribute to this section especially, don't hesitate to e-mail it to me. My e-mail is at the top of the guide, and remember to have a relevant subject line. What I can talk about is the affects of terrain and weather. I'll also look at how honor level affects combat results. I'm hopeful that reader contributions will allow this section to develop even more strategies than that in the future. One of the things I enjoy a lot about this game is how terrain and weather have for once been given realistic effects on the outcome of battle. First, weather. Attackers love clear days, or light wind, while attacking troops will not be as confident in rain (though if you have a superior army attacking in light rain should be of no consequence), and attacking in heavy rain is a mistake. Also, I don't think most troops enjoy attacking in winter either. Light wind tends to throw archers off a bit, though it's not overwhelming it is noteworthy. The effect of fog really depends on how good you are. It's easy to get suckered into a trap when you can't see very far, but if you can rush the enemy quickly they can get blown away before they know what happened. Terrain has more drastic an effect, and it was good to play a game where the computer not only sought out high ground, but where such an advantage was exploitable. Basically, up = good. Archers perform better from height, and units tire out having to chase you up hills. If you are defending and you have access to a ridge, try and get the enemy to attack you from that spot. If you are attacking, try and avoid routes that lead to you chasing enemies up large hills since you will tire out faster and it isn't good for morale either, and it improves enemy archer effectiveness. There are other ways to use height to your advantage. Troops move much slower marching uphill than down (what a concept!) and if you can chase footsoldiers up a hill with cavalry, you are going to mow them to pieces very quickly. Also be aware of forests, and know that the enemy enjoys using their cover. Units that stand still in trees for a minute become "concealed", meaning you can't see them until they attack or until you run into them. This is useful as a defender, hide a few units in the trees and they can gain the advantage of surprise which seems present in the game. You can get in a few quick kills and maybe even drop enemy morale a notch as well. Also, from my experience, you cannot get the unit with your Taisho (or Daimyo if you've led him into battle) to become concealed no matter how long they stand around. If you seem to have won a fight but it hasn't ended, perhaps the enemy has more units hiding in a forest - as a defender you can even try and earn a time-limit draw (thus defending the province successfully) by out waiting the enemy this way, though it isn't easy. The other major terrain factor is bridges. They are a nightmare for attackers and a defender's dream. Only provinces with rivers have these and getting across them is a tough challenge. Obviously, they force units to pack very tightly together and this raises the effect of archers significantly. Any units coming across bridges that are under fire and attack will also suffer huge hits to morale. Don't ever waste your time sending Yari Ashigaru as the first line across bridges - 99% of the time they will run away without making it. Really, the only way through is move fast and hit the archers hard as soon as you can. In my experience Heavy Cavalry are the only unit that seems truly regularly effective at breaking bridge defenses, and even then it is not easy. Never attempt to invade a province that has a river (and thus a bridge) without a manpower advantage or you will almost certainly lose. If you are defending a bridge it's fairly simple. Lots of archers (meaning more than you'd normally use) and enough close combat troops to keep the enemy held up on the bridge while the archers crush their morale. Naginata combined with archers (or guns) defending a bridge are very tough to break. Finally I want to assess how an honor rating can affect combat, and the importance of honor level. The custom battle setup helped with this as you can assign a starting honor. Essentially honor is like your character level in an RPG game, and it affects your skill. The test was a very simple one, I performed it with Warrior Monks though it could be done with any unit. One unit on each team, with equal honor obviously it is a 50/50 chance on who wins if both groups just rush each other. But when the attackers are given a +2 honor bonus, it got ugly in a hurry. My +2 monks killed all 60 enemy monks and I still had 42 of my 60 original monks intact. That's the kind of effect a +2 honor bonus has on two units that would otherwise be evenly matched, so be wary of enemy generals with high honor. =============================== 6 - Reader Contribution Section =============================== People who send in tips on strategy and gameplay will have them listed here, and be thanked in the credits. If you have something to contribute, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org. James Motz contributes the following: "I just wanted to let you know that the stall tactic saved my bacon one time - it definitely works if you are absolutely outclassed and desperate! I was in Shinano (I think - important to note that it was very hilly and had tree cover). I had been caught with my pants down somehow (details are sketchy - this was a couple years back), and had only 1 unit of yari samurai facing about 300 enemy troops. But I noticed that the fools attacked in winter, so I decided to try and hold them off. In placing my army, I went for this little thicket of woods on the very top of a hill at the edge of the map, and just sat there. The battle started with snowfall, so visibility was down. I just turned up the gamespeed clock and watched and prayed. It was rather humorous to see the enemy units marching back and forth in the valley below, getting more and more tired, while my samurai just sat waiting. The timer had almost run out when a unit of enemy yari samurai finally found me. I was able to hold them off and the rest of his group couldn't reach me before the time ran out (though it was very close!). Result: I lost something like 10 men, killed about 15 or so, and defeated an army of 300! To sum it up - the stall tactic works best when the weather is working for you (rain is ok, but snow is better), the terrain is to your advantage, and you have almost no other option. Another tactic to note is hitting the enemy in the rear or the flank. In another battle where I was defending, I had all my units except some yari cavalry on a hilltop in the woods. The enemy (who outnumbered me by a lot again) advanced and the battle was nothing out of the ordinary. But he left his taisho's unit (samurai archers I believe) sitting on the valley floor - presumably to keep him out of harm's way. So that's when my cavalry, who had been sitting in the trees on the hill across from the rest of my troops, charged out of the trees and cut him down like the coward he was!" More James Motz wisdom: "Musketteers: These guys work best when in ranks 3 deep. This way the first rank fires while the back 2 reload. Then they'll shift and repeat. It maximizes their firepower. And when a couple of units are cranking it out, nothing can stand up to them. You get high damage and the target units usually flee after only a couple volleys. Arquebusiers: Don't expect much damage from these guys. Their value is in causing other units to break and run. You'll be amazed at how close they need to be before they'll fire a volley - and how long it takes. But if they can get a couple volleys off, most foot soldiers will turn and run. And running units are pretty much free kills for Yari Cavalry. They're too slow to shift their ranks like musketeers, so string them out in a long line (2 deep at the most) and get the most bang out of their volley. Tactically speaking, I don't think it's possible to be defeated if you have 4 units of Musketeers defending a bridge on a nice day. Maybe add one unit of spearmen or naginata just in case. But it's almost impossible for enemies to get across, form up, and charge before they break due to the volleys. This applies to cavalry as well as foot. And blackpowder weapons never seem to run out of ammo in a day. Arquebusiers can be effective here, but it gets trickier. The enemy might recover in between volleys and advance, causing your arquebusiers to retreat - which lengthens further the amount of time before they shoot, which lets even more guys across. You definitely need more soldiers to fight the units that make it across the bridge jn order to survive - naginata are wonderful in this role. From a strategic standpoint, on switching to Christianity: Try to build multiple churches at the same time, in different areas of your territories, so they'll all be done at the same time. Once the first one is complete, your loyalty will drop in *every* province, so its best to start their spread from multiple points and be coordinated. Shinobi are your best bet here - try to have at least one in each province to help the loyalty rise - they should be there before you start building the churches. Then start cranking out priests. They are cheap (only 50 koku), so get groups of 3-4. Keep them in one place until the Christianity level is 100%, then move on. And you should build churches before you build trading posts to help stabilize your population. If you want to convert, you need to plan from the beginning so you are ready and haven't made any Buddhist Shrines (this will be tricky early, but will make your loyalty problems easier later). Make sure you monitor your loyalty and move in fast when it drops. The religious revolts cause armies that are heavy on Warrior Monks - and they're bad news to the newly Christian Daimyo. Even though your army won't rout at being ordered to attack them, they are still very dangerous. Yari Cavalry who charge (at least 2:1 outnumbering the Monks) or lots of spearmen (at least 3:1 outnumbering) are your best bet. If you have Heavy Cavalry, by all means charge! But the best way to dispatch them is to not get into combat with them - use missile troops! And since the whole point of Christianity in this game is to get blackpowder - use it on them! The Christian Daimyo also needs to consider getting a cathedral quickly (which means he needs a citadel) so he can get musketeers. Cathedrals and citadels will cost you a lot of money and time - some players might just want to wait until the dutch show up and trade with them. This takes a long time of game play - don't rely on having those musketeers until you're getting into some big battles at the end of the game." Justin Biggs sends the following: "I'd like to point out the extreme value of the lighter cavalry, in particular Cavalry archers. These guys can do it all (or near enough). Here's an example: Pack them up high on a hill to shower approaching infantry when defending. Occupy the attackers with some good defenders (Naginata are good for this, but Yari Samurai will suit just fine). As the casualties rise for the attackers, throw in some No Dachi to break up the attacker's formations. More often than not, they will begin to run (which usually causes other troops nearby such as archers to run as well). Now have your cavalry archers, who have contributed a great deal to the enemy dead charge. Harry the attackers as they flee. Yari Cavalry are also well suited to this role. Both are fast enough to run down the fleeing attackers with ease, and can even take down plenty of spearmen because they're more occupied trying to flee than to fight. Their honor will usually shoot up after each battle due to the large number of kills they rack up when pursuing the enemy, and the constant harrying keeps the attackers from reforming. The cavalry archers can also do some great hit and fade maneuvers, when called for. My armies are never without them." =========== 7 - Credits =========== Myself, The Archon, for the construction of this guide. James Motz for his additions to the reader contribution section. Justin Biggs for his addition to the reader contribution section. The two people who e-mailed me about how two geishas will both die if one tries to assassinate the other. Sorry guys, I forgot to write down your names but it was appreciated. James Clavell, for writing "Shogun" - a book that has inspired my own imagination to no end. It's highly recommendable reading if the story of this game interests you, and one of the most underrated pieces of historical fiction ever written. All the people who spent their hard time working on building this special game for us to play. Gamefaqs.com, for allowing me and so many others a chance to write and read guides such as this free of charge. Pink Floyd's "The Wall", Rammstein's "Mutter", and Black Sabbath's "Past Lives" for giving me something awesome to listen to while I worked on the guide. If anyone has anything to contribute to this guide, be it corrections or additional strategy I'd be happy to accept it and I'll give you full credit, as well as a thanks down here. Please try and include a relevant subject with your e-mail, something like "Shogun Total War" or "Shogun guide". E-MAILS WITH NO SUBJECT LINE WILL BE DELETED ON SITE as they more often than not are spam, or spam w/viruses. Now go, and let total war begin!