__________________ | | | AGE OF EMPIRES | | | | The Age | | of Kings | | =DS= | ------------------ [I] Introduction ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Welcome to my Age of Empires-Age of Kings guide for the Nintendo DS. I'm a big fan of the series personally, and compared to the rest of the series, which is RTS (real time strategy), this quirky turn-based combater is a different taste. But, in the same light as Super Mario Bros. 2 was, as compared to the rest of the series, different, but in a good way, so too is this game. It was like drugs for me after a while, and the addicting gameplay had me hooked for the longest time. As I've seen on the boards, so too is the situation with many others. Two things before we start. First of all, if you want a particular section of this guide, use Ctrl+F to open up the Find application. It will quickly take you to whatever numerical section you want without scrolling and searching. Also, be sure to check the other guides here too. They all provide a unique perspective, and my guide isn't necessarily the best in all of the missions, although I do try. Read all of them to see what strategies work for you. [II] Version History ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Version 0.90 7/26/09 I've been working on this for the longest time. It's still incomplete, with a chunk of the maps, all of Saladin’s and one of Richard's missions still incomplete, but its pretty close. This is easily my longest FAQ so far, and my 3rd. Expect me to finish it soon. Version 1.00 7/28/09 Whoo, finally finished! It took me two days, but the guide is (basically) finished. I believe I will come back later to improve upon some of the mission guides, but this is basically it. In retrospect I also added a section on The Library. Version 1.10 8/2/09 Between the many minor edits intertwining, this is my first major update for the guide. Adding a full-er guide for Khan mission Mongol Invasion, a few information changes and a spell-check. Also added the sections "Glitches," "User Profile," and "The AI." I added these after scanning over my game, and now this guide covers every dimension of the game 100%! Version 1.11 1/21/10 Spellcheck for grammatical correctness. Spurred by an e-mail I got over the issue. Version 1.20 (CURRENT) 6/21/10 Update to include the info that James sent me via email (thanks!) [III] Contact Information ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- a_bilogur at yahoo dot com. I don't want to put it in ordinary format because I've already received several rounds of spam asking for the use of my guides. How annoying. If you have any questions or comments send them to me! [IV] Table of Contents ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [I] Introduction [II] Version History [III] Contact Information [IV] Table of Contents  The Basics [1.01] Resources [1.02] Buildings [1.03] Your Military [1.04] Terrain [1.05] The Civs [1.06] Ages [1.07] Researching and Technology [1.08] How To Start [1.09] The Empire View  Advanced Concepts [2.01] Heroes [2.02] Special Objects and Random Events [2.03] Goals, Scoring, and Empire Points [2.04] The Library [2.05] User Profile [2.06] The AI  Your Military [3.01] Strategic Tips [3.02] Unit Tree [3.03] Unit Guide [3.04] Special Abilities [3.05] Bonus Units  Campaign Mode [4.01] Joan of Arc (tutorial) [4.02] Minamoto (Easy) [4.03] Genghis Khan (Medium) [4.04] Saladin (Hard) [4.05] Richard the Lionhearted (Very Hard)  Skirmish Mode [5.01] Options [5.02] Maps  Multiplayer  Glitches [A] Appendix [A1] List of Technologies [A2] List of Units [A3] "Best" Units [C] Credit [V] Legal Bit  The Basics ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.01] Resources The basic building blocks of your dominance are resources. It all boils down to that. There are two resources in this game-food and gold. Food can be acquired by building mills on spots with wheat on them, while gold can be acquired by building mines on spots with gold on them. Mills are cheaper to build, and always appear on Plains squares. After building a mill you can build up to four farms around it, each of which produces more food per turn. Fully developed mills offer a sanctuary to heal battle-damaged military units, but also note that farms are easily destroyed by almost any unit. Mines are more expensive to produce, and also a rarer resource in general. They always appear on mountain and hill squares, which can be difficult to get to due to their high move cost. however it is worth the effort, as each mine produces gold on a nice scale. Although they are smaller than large mill complexes, mines offer +1 range and a 20-40% defense bonus to the units they house. You can capture enemy resources by destroying them, and if possible replacing them with yours. Mills can also be captured by destroying the main mill whilst leaving the surrounding farmland intact. A passing villager can build a new mill and in this way capture both the mill and the surrounding farmland. Everything in the game ultimately stems back to how many resources you have. Things that require mostly food are units and buildings, while things that require mostly gold are technology and siege units. An advanced function in the game is the ability to trade food for gold and vice versa. By building a Market, you can trade resources at a small loss. This is useful when you have an overabundance of one or a lack of another, usually a lot of wheat but little gold. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.02] Buildings Buildings are the workhorses of your efforts. They produce the units and tech that make it happen, and are an integral part of the game. Building have several functions. They start towns (Town Center), allow you to build certain units, generate techs for you to research, hold and have military significance, reinforce surrounding structures (Towers), or generate resources (Wonder). Units that rest for a day one of your buildings recover 20 HP. The basic building is the Town Center. This building makes up the center of your town complexes, and should be defended to the last man. They can build villagers, and if the town center is destroyed, the entire town forfeits. You can capture a town and its surrounding buildings by building a new one on a destroyed town center square. The amount of Town Centers you can build is limited by the Town Center cap, which varies from map to map. The next buildings are the mills, farms, and mines that make your economy work. They are covered in the section above, Economy, but basically they are the life line of your efforts, as without an economy you can't have everything else. After you build a town center you start to surround it with other buildings in the four adjacent squares. These come in two flavors-military or tech buildings. Military buildings produce certain units-Barracks produce infantry, Stables cavalry, Archery Ranges missile troops, etc. etc. They also come with a few corresponding techs. The other kind of building is a research building. There are two in this game, the Blacksmith and the University. The Blacksmith unlocks techs related to armory and weaponry, which basically give your military units a attack or defense boost. The University meanwhile is of varied tastes, allowing advanced techs that reinforce buildings (adding to their defense), allow you to build new siege engines, etc. The last kind of town building goes in the squares diagonal from the town center and across from the surrounding building. It is the tower. The tower basically functions as a reinforcement building, reinforcing the surrounding buildings by adding a handy defense bonus to them. they are unlocked once you reach the Feudal Age. The projection of your military might comes in the form of the castle. These 4x4 military buildings can be built on a wide range of terrains, even the mountains, and provide a way to reinforce an area besides the town center. They can also produce a few military units-one civ-specific Special unit (covered later), the Longswordsman or later the Two-Handed Swordsman (and, if you unlocked it, the Dopplehander), and, if you researched Siege Engineers, the Trebuchet. The Castle also boasts a huge defense, a nifty defense bonus, and a few corresponding techs. The final and most mighty building in the game is the Wonder. Although it takes a king's grant to build, the wonder is the ultimate projection of your power. Every turn it generates 125 food and gold from worshipers' grants, so it will eventually pay you back and gives you a huge boost to your economy. You can only build one wonder per game. Certain units, that is infantry and siege engines, get a 33% bonus when attacking buildings, and one, the Battering/Siege Ram, is specially designed to take buildings down. Even with towers and reinforcing techs buildings are vulnerable to invading armies late in the game. Note also that Cavalry and Archers get a 50% damage reduction when attacking buildings. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.03] Your Military There are many, many units in this game, and the all-important military aspect is covered in section 3 of this guide. But basically, units can be organized into four categories: Infantry, Cavalry, Ranged, and Siege. Infantry units all get a 33% boost when fighting buildings and siege units. However, they are generally extremely vulnerable to cavalry (expect for the Pikemen). They excel at demolishing buildings. Cavalry are units on horses. They get a 33% boost against infantry and ranged, but suffer a 50% damage reduction when attacking buildings. Although they are the bane of infantry and archer existence, Pikemen easily slice through them. With one exception, cavalry all have an enhanced 10-point movement range. Also, they cannot enter swamps Ranged units are the most vulnerable but strategically powerful of the classes. They all have a reduced defense but make up for it with extended range. When behind a solid wall of your troops they are potent indeed. Ranged units suffer a 50% damage reduction vs. buildings however, and are easily killed by all other units, even other ranged units. Siege Engines appear relatively late in the game. They are like bigger, slower, and less mobile version of the ranged units-but they also have a huge attack that can decimate whole armies. They get a 33% bonus vs. buildings, but cannot cross fords, swamps, or mountains unless there is a road. Note that infantry are very good at killing lone Siege Engines, and that they all have to take some time to set up. One more unit worth covering by itself is the monk. The monk is a unique unit because it possess two unique abilities-Heal and Covert. They can heal damaged units, and attempt to convert enemy units (the latter works within two squares but is more effective within one). These abilities are enhanced by certain techs. A unique part of the game is the mercenary. These are advanced soldiers, purchasable from Markets, which vary day by day. They have a high cost, but it is worth it because mercenaries are always stronger than ordinary units and come with unique abilities, making them potent killers. Each unit has some basic stats. These are health, movement range, attack, defense, sight, range, unit bonuses, and abilities. Health is how much health the unit has left; if it is reduced to 0 the unit is destroyed. Units resting on friendly buildings restore 20 health per turn. Movement is, simply, how far the unit can move. This ranges from 7 to 10. In certain game scenarios units get a reduced move range, and some Hero Abilities (covered later) can enhance the move range. Infantry and most units have a 7 move range, Cavalry have 10, while certain special infantry, like the Samurai, Monks, and Woad Raiders, have 9. Each terrain type requires a certain amount of move points, which ranges from 1 (roads) to 4 (mountains). Attack is basically how much attack the unit has. Also note that the less health the unit has, the weaker its attacks and the more damage it takes in battle. Attack is enhanced by certain techs, hero abilities, veteran statuses, unit bonuses and abilities. Defense is similar to attack, but it dictates how much damage the unit takes in battle. A high defense makes a unit hard to kill permanently. Defense can be enhanced by terrain, techs, hero abilities, veteran status, unit bonuses, abilities, or standing on a friendly building. Sight Range dictates how far a unit can see into blackmap or fog of war. A longer sight range equals more sight. All units have a sight range of 7, except for the Scout Cavalry which has a sight range of 10. Sight range can be enhanced by being on higher terrain, which consequently also requires a higher sight range to see. Range is how far way a unit can attack. Ranged units and most siege engines have a range of 2-3, while everyone else can only attack one square in front. Range is enhanced by hills or mountains and dulled by forests and swamps. Note that you can't hit a unit if you can't see it. The highest possible range in the game is 5, which can achieved with a 3-range unit on high terrain under the influence of King Richard's Firing Line ability. Unit bonuses, which are influenced by the unit type, give a unit a bonus or reduction when fighting certain other types of units. Special Abilities are abilities present in certain units that can give it added uses, increase its combat capacity, or reduce their effectiveness. It is covered in more detail in section 3.4. The amount of units you have on the map is limited to your Unit Limit. The unit is your total production divided by 100. (Not counting bonuses) The max unit limit varies from map to map and mission to mission. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.04] Terrain Terrain can have a huge effect on the battle, and it comes with its own stats. These are the move cost, the sight cost, the sight bonus, the range bonus, Buildings Allowed, and Specials. The move cost is the most basic. It's just how much you pay from your move range to go over the terrain. It ranges between 1 and 4. The Sight cost is how much you need to see the terrain. The sight bonus is the bonus you get to your sight range when you are on the terrain, which appears when you are on high terrain like a mountain. Buildings Allows shows which buildings can be built there, and Specials is for any special properties, like how Fords do not allow Siege to pass. There are two types of strategic "cover" in this game-blackmap and fog of war. Blackmap is when the terrain is totally unexplored, whilst Fog of War is when you have explored the terrain, but do not see the square itself so cannot perceive enemy movement on it, if any. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.05] The Civs There are 5 civs in this game-the Britons, Franks, Saracens, Mongols, and the Japanese. Each one has a civ bonus, a special civ-specific trainable unit, discounted and high-cost units, and its own hero. They all also have a distinct play style, so read on! -Franks The Franks, in contrast, are cavalry-heavy. In the 100 Year's War, unruly knights were almost their downfall. However, their special unit, the Throwing Axmen, is infantry. These guys are essentially the "Newbie" race. Joan of Arc's campaign is the game tutorial and the Franks are well balanced as a whole. Their cavalry- swayed game isn't so dramatic that they can't use infantry to the fullest. The Throwing Axmen are a very forgiving unit, as their Skirmish Ability can save them from being tactically misplaced. Joan’s best ability by far is her massive healing power. She can heal 20 diagonally or give 5 hp to ALL of your units on the map. Civ Bonus: Farming Discounted Units and Buildings: Stable, Castle, Knight, Caviler, Paladin, Knight High-priced Units and Buildings: Camel, Horse Archer, Scorpion Hero(ine): Joan of Arc -Britons The Britons are historically archery-heavy; there used to be a law that reserved Sundays for archery practice. AOE mimics this, along with the mainstay Briton special unit, the Longbowman. The Britons are essentially a fantastic Ranged civ. They usually pair up high powered missile troops with well-balanced infantry, making them a well-balanced attacking force. However, because of their reliance on Archery and that their siege equipment is more costly, they are ever so slightly weaker at sieging then the other civs, at least until you research Flaming Arrow. Their hero, Richard the Lionhearted, is a multitasker, though his best ability is Firing Line, which adds 1 range to all archers in sight. Civ Bonus: Mining Discounted Units and Buildings: Archery Range, Church, Crossbow, Arbalest, Longswordsmen, Two-Handed Swordsmen, Champion High-priced Units and Buildings: Camel, Horse Archer, Onager, Bombard Hero: Richard the Lionhearted -Mongols The pride of the Mongols lie in their fast moving and deadly horse archers. Their special, the Mangudai, conform to this. The Mongols are designed to always have a slight inherent edge. Their early Scout and Light cav discounts are early-attacker style, and later in the game their tech bonuses give them a technological edge. Their most useful ability is Patron of the Arts, which cheapens tech even more. Civ Bonus: Tech Discount Discounted Units and Buildings: Stable, Blacksmith, Scout Cavalry, Light Cavalry, Horse Archers High-priced Units and Buildings: Knight, Caviler, Paladin, Crossbowman, Hand Cannondeer Hero: Genghis Khan -Saracens The Saracens are a desert people, so they mount Camels instead of the usual Horses of their foes. This gives them a huge advantage in mounted cavalry battles. Their special unit, the Mameluke, is devastating a cavalry battles. The Saracens are very resource and cavalry heavy. This gives them a massive weakness to pikes, one made more difficult to overcome by their special being Mamelukes. However if you can overcome this you have their great economy to your advantage. The biggest early-game changer is the Benefactor ability, which puts 100 gold directly into the treasury, a powerful economy-booster. Civ Bonus: Mining Discounted Units and Buildings: Stable, Market, Horse Archer, Onager, Bombard, Light Cavalry, High-priced Units and Buildings: Knight, Caviler, Paladin, Longswordsman, 2-handed Swordsman, Champion Hero: Saladin -Japanese If you ask me the Japanese are the "odd one" in this game, but they’d developed an independent warrior code that stresses warriorship, similar to the Feudal Code of Europe. Their high point is their superb infantry, most especially the Samurai, although their Archers aren't weak either. The Japanese stress strategic defense and well-organized offense. Their hero has great support ability as well as a heal power. But they also have a tremendous siege potential, as the Pillage ability gives ALL of your forces +50% vs. Buildings. Civ Bonus: Farming Discounted Units and Buildings: Mills, Mines, Spearmen, Pikemen, Crossbowmen, Arbalest, Hand Cannondeer High-priced Units and Buildings: Camel, Knight, Caviler, Paladin Hero: Minomoto ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.06] Ages There are four ages in this game. These are the Dark Age, the Feudal Age, the Castle Age and the Imperial Age. The first age, the Dark Age, is short-lived, and that's good thing because you don't have much to do. There are only two building types and two military units which makes for a bland combat situation. You should concentrate on resource building and once you have established a basic economy, research the required 3 techs and advance. The second age, the Feudal Age, is probably the age of opportunities. Keep your teaching consistent and build up your military age. Finish your economy and begin military operations. The key here is to end up with a strong strategic position for the next age, and to have a good economy. The Feudal age is much expanded from the Dark Age, but it's still only mushrooming. The Castle Age is where the fighting really takes off. Now you commandeer a full sized fighting force. The Castle Age is really important, as it establishes Castles, siege equipment, and mercenaries. This is probably the age when you fight the hardest and the most. The Imperial Age is basically the endgame, and the pinnacle of medieval force. At this stage the technology becomes MUCH more potent, and the Wonder comes on line. In the Imperial Age the technology basically amplifies. Potentially game-changing techs, like Sappers, Flaming Arrows, and Spies, come on line. You also get to see the Champion and the Paladin. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.07] Research and Technology Researching technology unlocks special bonuses for your units, buildings, and economy. Although resource-consuming, there is no alternative to tech if you want to become stronger. The bonuses range from attack increases to sight bonuses to new units and economic boosts. Technology is what dictates advancing ages. Some techs have game-changing properties; for example, Spies allows you to see enemy town centers, while Flaming Arrows remove the 50% damage reduction on Archery units. Regardless, they are one of the most important aspects of the game. Researching tech requires food and gold, and the cost differs from age to age and even tech to tech (some are unusually expensive because of their power). When you collect a certain amount of technologies, and have sufficient funds, you are given the opportunity to advance an age. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.08] How To Start When you start you have a couple of units and a villager. Use him to build a town center wherever you can fit a town center with four buildings around it. Meanwhile, use your preliminary units to scout out your "area." On turn two, start building a villager at your town center while your first one builds on a resource, preferably a mill. on turn three your other villager should go and help your first one in starting your economy. Once you have a mill and a mine running, or something of that nature, start expanding your town center and researching techs. Beyond this basic start, do whatever you think will win you the game. It depends on the map and of course there is no template of action, if there was there would be no fun. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [1.09] The Empire View The Empire View gives you an overview of your status in the game. It gives you your food production, gold production, a breakdown of the above, your unit cap, your town center cap (and how much of it is fulfilled), and your castle cap (and how much of it is used). To access it press X to access the minimenu, and then select Empire View. Simple, but it neededs its own little section.  Advanced Concepts ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [2.01] Heroes Each civ has a hero. These are devastatingly powerful historical persons who can change the battle just by being there. In missions though if the hero dies you die, so beware. however they all have extremely high stats. Each hero comes with unique hero abilities, four of them. They range greatly- from healing the attack/defense boosters to movement bonuses-but are useful when applied correctly. However remember that using them requires you to forfeit an attack turn, so often it's a debate between attacking and bringing their high stats online and using the abilities. Each of the heroes is of a different type, so are most effectively killed with different units. In Mission mode the heroes are key to the storyline, but in general, whenever you're putting him on the front lines in battle expect him to take damage- heroes are like arrow magnets. So be careful with him. Joan of Arc (Franks) This hero is very well-rounded. Although she suffers in concentrations with infantry, She has varied talents (like the ability to heal 20 hp) that make her useful. Highest stat is defense, which is good for beginners. Weak to cavalry. Hero Powers: Inspiration condition: none effect: Joan and adjacent units recover 20 health Divine Purpose condition: none effect: All friendly units recover 5 health Blinding Faith condition: enemy units are within Joan's sight. effect: Those units suffer -25% DEF Weakened Resolve condition: enemies are adjacent or diagonal to Joan effect: Those units lose 25 health Richard the Lionhearted (Britons) This one is definitely a multi-tasker. Richard can do many things-cheapen units, bolster attack and defense, add range to your archers-but also makes for a powerful attacking platform. His Cavalry type leaves a huge hole to pikemen however. Hero Powers: Reckless and Fierce condition: Enemies are adjacent or diagonal to Richard effect: those units lose 20 health Superb Leader condition: Friendly units are within Richard's sight effect: These units gain +25% ATK Recruit for the Cause condition: Richard is on a town center effect: Today, units cost -20g/20f Firing Line condition: Friendly RGD units within Richard's sight effect: These RGD units gain +1 range Genghis Khan (Mongols) Khan is the only ranged hero in the game. This makes him vulnerable to attacks, but if you set him up right he can be devastatingly powerful. Plus, Khan has the first Strike ability, which ensures that whoever he fights is going to take some bad casualties. His abilities are designed to give you a constant edge in battle, and Patron of the Arts makes tech so much cheaper, AS WELL as their technological discount bonus. Hero Powers; Patron of the Arts condition: Genghis Kahn is on a town center effect: Today's research is discounted by -50g/-50f Nomadic Travel condition: Friendly units are adjacent or diagonal to Genghis effect: Those units gain +5 move Overwhelming Siege condition: Friendly units are within Genghis' sight effect: Friendly units in sight gain +33% ATK vs. buildings Mongol Terror condition: Enemy units are within Genghis' sight effect: Those units suffer -25% DEF Saladin (Saracens) Saladin is a great hero. His most useful asset is definitely the Benefactor ability, which adds 100 gold to your treasury every turn that he is on a town center. Although highly mobile, he is weak however to pikemen. Hero Powers: Benefactor condition: Saladin is on a town center effect: Adds 100g to the treasury Rain of Arrows condition: Friendly ranged units are within Saladin's sight effect: Those units gain +33% ATK Aura of Invincibility condition: Friendly units are within Saladin's sight effect: Those units gain +33% DEF Hit and Run condition: Friendly units are adjacent to Saladin. effect: Those units gain +2 move and +25% ATK Minamoto (Japanese) This guy is essentially a super-pikemen. Minamoto is the only hero without any real weakness, and boy can he slice up cavalry. Minamoto has several extremely useful abilities, like Pillage, which raises ATK vs. buildings 50%, and is one of only two heroes with a healing ability. However, he's not very offensive, and his main attribute is defense. Hero Powers: Pillage condition: none effect: All friendly units gain +50% ATK vs. Mills, Mines, and Farms Warrior Code condition: Minamoto is on a town center effect: Today, all units cost -20g/-20f less Minamoto's Guard condition: Friendly units adjacent to Minamoto effect: Those units gain +33% ATK/DEF Inspiring General condition: none effect: Minamoto and adjacent units recover 15 health [2.02] Special Objects and Random Events ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- When you play in skirmish mode, you'll notice certain objects lying around on the ground. These are goats, bags of gold, and ruins. They're not just scenery however, and if you rest for a turn on one of these objects, you claim a albeit small reward. Resting on a goat gives you 100 food, and on a bag of gold, obviously, 100 gold. However, the ruins are more tricky, and potentially more dangerous. Stepping onto a ruins will give you a random effect. It can be gold, food, a mercenary, Wisdom of the Ancients (one free tech), or your unit could disappear. One early game tactic, especially on blackmap maps, is to send out a Scout Cav to scout out the map and collect any bonuses. NEVER put an important unit, like your hero, to rest on a ruin, as it may kill him. If you attack from the square however you won't claim the prize. There is one more special object in this game, the relic. This is a holy item that can only be picked up by a monk. The relic appears in both missions (where it is usually either an objective or goal) and skirmish mode. Once you pick it up, carry it to a church and deposit it there. Once the relic is in the church, it starts generating a small amount of food and gold; if your monk is killed before he can deposit it, the relic is dropped where he died and can be picked up by another monk. If the church is destroyed the relic is dropped on the ruins. A church containing a relic, or a monk carrying it, is glittering. Capturing a relic or depositing it is counted as the move for the turn. The relic is not that tactically important, and should be a possible side quest to your main objective-defeating your enemies. Random events is another skirmish-only feature. At the beginning of each turn there is a chance that a random event will occur. these range from a Gold Rush (gold) to Bounty Harvest (food) to Population Boom (each TC spawns a villager). There's even one that damages all of your units by 5. These effects are totally random, so you have to just go with it. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [2.03] Goals, Scoring, and Empire Points Goals are another mission in-game function. On each mission you can achieve up to 3 stars by completing certain secondary objectives. Each secondary counts towards 25 Empire Points. They range from difficult to cursory. Try to get all 3 stars on each mission, if you can; this guide will help you in this. Each goal generates 25 Empire Points. Empire Points can be used to buy new maps and new (extended) units. Finishing missions generates 100 points; finishing Skirmish mode games generates 50 points. There's a cheap trick in Skirmish mode to generate Empire Points. Make a 3 on 1 game against a weak AI, no blackmap or fog of war, and it will finish quick. Scoring is an important gauge of how you're doing. The Scoring area is basically a chart of your progress. There's an overall gauge, a military gauge, a economic gauge, a tech gauge, and an exploration gauge. The Scoring system tells you who's in front and who's behind, quite simply. [2.04] The Library ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I love the library. It turns this game into a mini-history lesson, which in fact it already is. You could spend half an hour just reading all of the material they have on Civilizations, heroes, Units, Buildings, Technologies, Ages, Missinculous (which is basically broad topics like military overviews), and Great Conquests. Literally 50% of what I know about the Middle Ages comes from here, and the articles are well-written and expansive, though not TOO long so as to be boring. This is a big plus for the game, and, gasp, actually makes you smarter! Who said games don't have educational value? [2.05] User Profile ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The user profile basically tracks the progress of the game's user. When you first start the game, you have to choose your name and your insignia. Make sure your name is over 3 letters long; see section 7, glitches, for why. Your emblem is basically the symbol that represents your empire; it appears besides your name in skirmish mode. You can choose from 21 prefabricated emblems. Another thing you start with is your empire rank. Determined by the total amount of empire points you have, you can advance from the measly starting Pheasant all the way up to Emperor. You can visit your profile at any time from the main menu. This is where you can see your name, current insignia, Emperor rank, amount of empire points earned, amount of empire points available, and campaign progress. You can edit your profile at any time, and even erase it, which basically resets the game. Check the campaigns to see which missions you have cleared and how many starts you have earned on each one. This is an excellent indicator of your in-game progress. Although you won't be visiting this one often, you will at some time to admire your handiwork. [2.06] The AI ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- To those of you who don't know, "AI" stands for Artificial Intelligence, and is basically the computer you are playing against most of the time. It helps to learn the AI tricks and trades so that you can use them against them or do them yourself. Learning the way of the AI is integral to winning in difficult matchups. First of all, there are 3 types of AI in the game, subdivided into 3 difficulty levels. These are the Turtle (defensive) AI, Attila (offensive) AI, and Ave (balanced) AI. the first will tend to focus on defense and research, the second on military and scouting, and the third is a balance of both. Ave is arguably the hardest of the three AIs because he neither shells up, allowing you to seize resources, nor attacks recklessly, allowing you to rush to their town center and attack them practically before the game has even began. These AIs come in three flavors - easy, medium, and hard. There are many things that AIs do; I will attempt to list most of them here. - Sometimes, AIs "skip" their turns. They don't move any units, or move only villagers or a few units. This trend, which happens occasionally, lasts even on the Hard AI difficulty. - Sometimes AI will over concentrate on a single unit or unit type. I've seen many AI "Onagar armies," the most famous variant, as well as large Battering Ram crops, Monk herds, and Pikeman armies. This is beneficial, at least to you, as you can expose their unit weakness to quicken the pace of their destruction. - AIs usually tend to gravitate towards Pikemen over swordsmen. This is a very understandable thing, and you should do so as well. Take this trick from the AI book early on, because although weaker, Pikemen are naturally "immune" to all other units, or rather they are not weak to any other units. - AIs utilize Scout Cavalry. This is another AI trick you should learn because Scout Cav are VERY useful for scouting and for running around enemy lines and maiming Archers. - AIs make a rush for resources, and even send villagers into your territory to try and steal your resources. When the enemy does this is annoying, but when your friend does so it is dire because you cannot attack the resource building and thus it will remain theirs until your enemy destroys it, if they destroy it. - AIs clog up units. Literally. You're trying to advance and they clog up your straights with their own units. This is very annoying but cannot be helped. - You cannot go on top of AI buildings. Although your monks can heal their units and their monks can heal yours, though they usually don't, you cannot go on top of AI buildings, only pass through them. You can't even pass through them if they are your enemy's, just burn them down. - AI are not as smart as you are. You know exactly where to build the castles, the towns, and the wonders, and what units work best on the map. AI don't. They frequently place Castles in deep forest and towns in spaces without enough room, and units that are totally wrong for the map and situation. - AI build to their type. Turtle builds towns in cover and castles besides them while Attila boldly puts up castles and towns at your front door, and Ave will put his towns and castles behind his army. The same holds true for unit production; Turtle likes Pikemen and Ranged units and Siege units, Attila likes Infantry and Cavalry and fast-moving Ranged units, while Ave is, again, a balance of both. This can often lead to an underbalanced or oversaturated force, all the easier to exploit. - AIs like relics. They like them a lot. Frequently they will boldly send monks out into the unknown just to retrieve them. - AIs have a "Panic" mode. If you start attacking their core towns, or approach their territory, they will start building units like mad, on every square, even not-so-combat-useful villagers. - AIs use a lot of villagers. Where you can make due with 4 or so, AIs will build 7 and send them out across the world. They die very easily as the AI is bold in stealing your territory and resources. - AIs glitch. They have a trick in which they can place a unit on a building and build on it in the same turn, which basically results in two units on a single square. There is nothing you can do to stop this, and you can't replicate it, so you just have to with it (see section 7-glitches) - AIs tend to over concentrate their forces on certain units. This ranges from what they should be doing to stupid; for example, attacking Archers and missile troops as the opportunity allows is right, but concentrating half their army to destroy a certain unit is not. AIs are extremely wary against Siege and Battering Rams and Heroes, and will send everything they have against them. You can exploit this by keeping two monks on hand and heeling the unit every turn. They will continue concentrating on killing it no matter what it takes, allowing you to focus on them; this works especially well with the hardy First Strike-capable Khan. - AIs like to use badly damaged units for raids and econ damage. If you nearly kill a unit but it survives, it will either fall back and heal, commit suicide against your unit, or fall back and attack your econ buildings. This is exploitable but most especially allows you to saturate their unit production with 10-20 hp units. - AIs sometimes take a turn to build something. For example, they will move a villager to a mill space, wait a turn, and only THEN build on it. - AIs use certain units to glut you up and slow you down. Most notably they will blockade you with villagers or the much more problematic Battering rams. - AIs do not respect unit range. They do not care if moving a unit somewhere will put it in the direct attacking range of one of your units, and they will not adjust their position so as to avoid that unit. For example, they will attack your units while ignoring a bunch of Areblasts planted in your mountain mines. On the next turn you can rip their units to shreds. - AIs research at intervals. They research for a few turns and then pause, research again and pause. This means you can overtake them in tech over extended periods of time, no matter how far behind you are. This is by no way a full list of AI quirks, but it gives you a basic idea of how they work, as well as some idea of what you can exploit for your use. On very difficult matchups, like 3 hard AIs and you free-for-all, you have to learn and exploit these quirks to bring them to their knees without them killing you.  Your Military ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [3.01] Strategic Tips 1. "Good" Formation The basic formational unit of the game is what wolfmanphd calls "Good Formation." Borrowing his terminology, this formation is basically a wall of pikes, with cavalry protecting the flanks, archers within, and support units like the monk in the rear. This formation works on any scale, from grand to micro. It's not particularly offensive, and it looks basically like this: PPP PAAAP CISIC MSM P = Pikemen A = Archers and other missile troops C = Cavalry I = Infantry and/or siege and archers M = Monks S = Siege Durable pikemen lead the front for a reason, and that is that they have no gaping weakness. They can rebuff cavalry charges, survive missile troop salvos, and hold their own in battle with other infantry. If you can afford it and are playing as the Franks, you can also use the Throwing Axmen, whose Skirmish ability to inflict heavy casualties, even against charging cavalry, the traditional infantry weakness. When two of these formations meet, it basically becomes a battle of attraction, with both sides basically grinding down against the other. In battle the victor is usually the one who can force a hole in the front line and then chomp down into the vulnerable belly, which contains your valuable and irreplaceable missile troops. That is why I recommend tying down the first rank of missile troops with Skirmishers, which are more resilient to assault then anything else due to their skirmish ability. The monks and siege engines lead the back, but if you're daring you can put them in the front. This exposes them to enemy breakthroughs but also makes them more useful in battle, allowing front-line healing and conversion and devastating anti-archer and anti-breakthrough fire. In battle, the attacker inflicts severe damage to the front line, while the defender gets an extended run as his crossbowmen and siege engines get to attack along with the usual archers. 2. Force concentration Related to the above, this game really rewards defense in depth. One of the key features of a formation is that it doesn't allow a single unit to be flanked on all sides and thus destroyed, only for front-line action, or attraction. Make a mob of units and just go with it; taking a turn or two to do this is usually a key thing. Sending a few separated units into enemy territory is asking for it, but sending a concentrated force makes all the difference. 3. Resource Harassment Basically, kill the farms before the town centers. Whenever you get the opportunity, fan units out and start blowing up the farms and mines. This has a huge effect on your opponent's economy. This makes all the difference between a gristly well-occupied town and a deserted one. If you make the mistake of concentrating on the town centers first it will take a long time to destroy them, or at least longer then it should. 4. Build behind your army Extending on the above, as your army advances into enemy territory and destroys their resources, send a couple of villagers on their flank to secure the new resource channels. Cut your supply line by building castles and towns within enemy territory in strategic positions. This will give you a huge boost and 90% of the time can be a game ender, even if your assault ultimately fails. 5. Hold the bridges and roads On almost any map, there are only two ways into your territory - across a bridge or road or by going down the grueling backterrain. Hold to roads and oh lord, ESPECIALLY the bridges. Bridges act as force concentrator, forcing a large amount of units onto a single one-square piece of land. No piece of land is more important, and holding, or seizing, the bridge and the area around it is key. Generally you should build a town center or castle next to or near the bridge. 6. Kill the monks When AI run low on cash, they build monks. They form squads of monks and these go around healing their guys and converting yours. They act as force multipliers and are a gigantic pain in battle. Execute them quickly. 7. Kill the archers In any strategic position archers are key, so to ruin the position you have to kill them. A mass of front-line infantry works, but without archer support they are like an old man with no legs. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [3.02] Unit Tree TECH 1 TECH 2 TECH 3 TECH 4 Barracks Militia -> Men-At-Arms -> Longswordmen -> Two-Handed Swordsmen ~> Dopplehanders ~> Champions Spearmen -> Pikemen -> Elite Pikemen Stables Scout Cavalry # Light Cavalry -> Knights -> Cavilers ~> Knights of ~> Paladins the Round Camel -> Elite Camel Archery Range Archers -> Archers --> Elite Archers Welsh Bowmen ~> Welsh Bowmen / Skirmishers -> Elite Skirm. -> Expert Skirmishers Horse Archers -> Elite Horse Archers Crossbowman -> Areblasts Church Monks -> Elite Monks Siege Workshop Battering Ram -> Siege Ram ~> Dark Ram Scorpions -> Heavy Scorpions Onagers # Bombard Market Mercenaries Castle Civ Specific Units >Trebuchet ~War Wolf ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [3.03] Unit Guide Militia Militia aren't that useful of a unit. Considering that the only other Dark Age unit in the game is the Scout Cavalry, which will rip militia to shreds, militia are only useful against other militia and for wrecking buildings, more the former then the latter because their low stats hamper building destruction. Very little significant things happen in the Dark Age, as you are just starting your economy, likely don't know your enemy's headings, and can quickly advance to the Feudal Age. Scout Cavalry Scout Cavalry are a powerful force for a Tech 1 unit. The only other unit at Tech 1 is the militia, so they have a huge edge in battle. In addition Scout Cavalry carry a worth far greater then it appears to early players. Scout Cavalry are, as their name suggests, scouts. They are a unique unit, with 10 sight range, 12 movement, and the unique "Scout" ability, which allows them to run across mountains and hills with only a two-level movement cost. In other words, they are ridiculously far-ranging and mobile and highly observant. This makes them excellent beyond comparison at exploring blackmap. Scout Cavalry also prove their worth in combat. Their extreme mobility and cavalry-type unit bonuses means that they can wreck archers and missile units by exploiting gaps in enemy formations and by flanking. However, pikemen are the bane of their existence, and their low stats ensure they aren't returning. Men-at-Arms Men-at-Arms are the tech two evolution of the militia. Generally you should keep a small forte of them. Men-at-Arms are strong against other infantry and missile troops (bar the skirmisher), but are highly weak to cavalry, which is why they often cast a support role. Spearmen Ah, spearmen. One of the most tactically elicit units in the game. Although weaker than Men-at-Arms, they more than make up for it with their Anti-Cavalry ability, which means that they can pulverize cavalry AND other infantry. This is one of the key ideas of the game. Plus, they come very cheap. Light Cavalry Light Cavalry are a powerful choice, able to bear down on all other tech 2 units, but they have one major dysfunction-their weakness to Spearmen. Other then that the Light Cavalry can bear down on any other Feudal Age unit. Archers At tech 2 the game really expands, and one of those reasons is the addition of archers and other missile troops. Archers have great offensive capability, but they're also one of the primary reasons that the Feudal Age is when you have to start thinking about keeping your formation together. Although very strong when utilized correctly, Archers are extremely vulnerable to attack due to their very low DEF. This problem is compounded in the Castle Age by the fact that the Tier 3 archer is the same as the Tier 2 one, making it even more vulnerable. Still, Archers are powerful units that can damage front-line soldiers before your own go into front-line combat with them, enlarging the chances of your success. Skirmisher Skirmishers counteract the problem with archers. How? Simple; with their skirmish ability. Although they have lower stats (150/100 vs. 110/110) then Archers, and a shorter range, they are not nearly as vulnerable to attack, because bite back-hard. The game treats every hand-to-hand attack on the skirmisher as if it was the skirmishers that initiated the attack. That basically means that no matter the odds, this guy will leave a mark. Still, skirmishers simply lack the tactical prowess and killing power of archers. You should still have a few, but they're more useful for guerrilla warfare or when the enemy breaks into your archer lines. Longswordsmen Longswordsmen are the Castle Age evolution of Men-at-Arms, and they're just as vulnerable to cavalry. But their higher attack means that they're actually very good at destroying buildings. Pikemen Pikemen are a lot cooler looking then Spearmen, with big, oversize pikes. They're also better at taking down buildings and more durable in general. Knight When someone thinks Medieval age they think Knight. Knights are a far cry from the lightly armed and armored Scout and light cavs of before, but they still have the same role. Camel Camels add another dimension to the cavalry game. Camels are the desert adaptation of Knights, so they come with the Plains Rush equivalent, Desert Rush, as well as an awesome new ability - Scares Horses. This gives them 33% ATK bonus vs. horse units, making Camels a anti-cavalry of sorts. Great for desert maps. Archers The strength of archers is the same as from Age 2. They're still tactically important, but their strength has weakened significantly. Aw well... Elite skirmishers Due to the massive variety of units introduced in this age, Elite Skirmishers are ever so slightly weaker, especially with the new siege units on line. Horse Archers Horse Archers are a new Castle Age unit that adds cavalry-inert flexibility to your ranged lineup. They're not especially powerful, and are just as weak to direct attack as archers, but boy are they mobile. Remember that they have a two square range however. Crossbowman Another tactical addition to the crew is Crossbowmen. Along with the new siege units, Crossbowmen are the stand-and-fire units of the Castle Age. Their ability, No Move & Attack, basically means that they cannot attack on the same turn they move, so obviously Crossbowmen are meant as emplaced archers. They have a very high attack and defense, for ranged units, but are still fairly vulnerable to cavalry. If they are well-placed and supported by other units, like on a Mountain mine, Crossbowmen can literally rain hell down on enemy troops from long distance. However, Siege units can do the same, and with greater effect. So which to choose? crossbowmen are FAR more mobile, and can go into mountains and fords, places Siege units cannot go. However the tradeoff is that they are less powerful. Crossbowmen are also cheaper. Scorpions Scorpions are punishing machines. They have a huge attack, and as siege units, their only limitation is that they are tactically inflexible. Set up a Scorpion and it will rain down massive casualties on any enemy foe. Plus, their heavy defense staves off attacks, especially from missile troops. Scorpions have the same one-turn set-up as Crossbowmen, but as a check to their power they can only target units. Onagers Onagers are a weaker but multi-purpose siege unit as compared to the Scorpion. They're weaker (but still fearsome), but can target buildings as well. AIs seem to love these, and you should too...though don't build whole armies of them, as AIs sometimes do... Battering Ram The Battering Ram is the tour de force in anti-building siege power. It can smash whole Town Centers to rubble in just 2 turns. Just don't expect it to last long-it's an arrow magnet, and will get beat up pretty badly pretty quickly. Still, this has its uses, as it distracts enemy missile troops from your main force with its high defense. if you're ever stuck in a long-winded siege, archer the defenders and then smash this baby into the building in a suicide strike to degrade the building's hitpoints quickly. Monks Monks add another dimension to the battle. They act as troop multipliers in force, healing their guys when they get low and converting yours. When AIs get strapped for cash, they send a squad of these guys to go crazy on you. You should always keep a small forte of Monks in the back of your army, they act like mobile healers. Monks are unusually mobile at 9 paces a punch. Knights Templar Knights Templers are the ultimate Castle Age knight, which makes sense as they are a mercenary unit. Templers are exceptionally strong due to their unique Zeal ability. What that basically means is that after every battle, Templers automatically heal back 20 hp. This makes them a lot harder to take down, and renders them immune to weak attacks. Note however that it doesn't carry over to buildings. Woad Raiders Whoo! I love these guys. They are truly mobile guerrilla platforms, with an unusually high move rate, 9 squares. Anyway, these guys rock, because of their extreme mobility and their "Causes Fear" ability, which cuts 33% ATK and DEF from anything they're fighting, be it Archers, Cavalry, or even buildings. Persian War Elephant Persian War Elephants are immense, hulking beasts of unnatural strength. Even Pikemen have trouble taking them down. Their high stats and Causes Fear ability makes them a tour de force, but at the cost of a low mobility score. Cavalry has never been this sweet. Berserkers The Vikings appear in this game under the guise of this unit. They're basically giant men with a giant pole arm and ridiculous strength to boot. What makes Berserkers so impressive is their frenzy ability, which means that they always fight at 100% no matter what their actual HP level is. So a 5% Berserker can wreck Archers like 20 of him. Get it while you can. Turkish Janissaries Janissaries are basically a stronger version of Crossbowmen. Very cool, but there's nothing else to say about them. Throwing Axmen France has forever been a deeply forested place, which explains the prevalence of the axe over the bow in combat. Historical notes aside, the Throwing Axmen is just plain awesome. It's got great stats, but the big part is the Skirmish ability, which punishes anyone who engages it. It's a bad idea to engage in hand to hand combat with a Throwing Axmen at full, or heck, even half health. If you can, build them instead of the far weaker Longswordsmen. Their Skirmish ability basically means that they are mostly immune to the highly damaging cavalry strikes that so plague Longswordsmen. The Woodsman ability, giving them a bonus in woods, is a nice touch too. Longbowmen Longbowmen are basically the ultimate range unit. While at first they don't look like much, just stronger bowmen, that's all changed by their great Volley ability. This adds 50% to their ATK when over 50 Health. Longbowmen can single handedly lake down heavy units, but one must remember that because of their archer nature, they are also the most vulnerable. Britons never need to build normal Archers. Mangudai In my opinion the mangudai are the weakest civ-specific unit. They boost a unimpressive score and just 2 range. The First Strike is useful, but just makes them a stronger version of the Horse Archers, still extremely weak to cavalry runs. However, if you research the right techs, easy for the Mongols, it will become a potent and highly effective killing platform, useful due to its high mobility. Mamelukes Mamelukes are a great unit, like a super-camel, but the fact that they are the special unit of an already cav-heavy Saracen civ is not a great thing. There's not much to say about them that can't be said about the Camels, they're basically camels with a cooler look and +50 to all stats, but boy are they though. They can absolutely destroy everything bar the Pikeman. If you're the Saracens, you'll never need to build any other cavalry. Samurai Samurai are an awesome unit. They have +50 stats and a hell of a lot of fighting potential. Samurai move 9 squares instead of the ordinary 7, and level up a lot faster too due to their "seasoned Veteran" ability, which subtracts one fight from each level (2,4,6) Samurai are just so powerful, it's likely that they'll quickly accumulate all 3. If you're the Japanese, you need not any other infantry. Cavilers The creme of the Knights crop, the cavaliers. Though the ages have advanced, his usage has not. Heavy Camels Heavy Camels are more heavily armed and armored then Camels, but have the same role and perks. Paladins Paladins are the ultimate Cavalry. They have the highest stats in the game (300 ATK 300 DEF), and are in a way Tech 5 units. Very strong, and harder to rebuff even with Elite Pikemen. Note that you need Squires to raise these. Two-Handed Swordsmen The final evolution of the swordsman. Absolutely colossal at destroying buildings, but still very weak to cav, especially with the "Tech 5" Paladins running around. Champion Where there's a tech 5 Cavalry, there's a tech 5 Infantry. The foot equivalent of the Paladin, the Champion boasts amazing stats (300/300), which basically means if you bother to research Arena, you basically get a free Infantry upgrade. Elite Archers These upgraded archers have been modernized from the Feudal Age Castle Age predecessors. Although they haven't changed in appearance, their stats are stronger. but the new prevalence of alternate missile troops and siege units mean that archers are no longer the one choice, so expect a relative decline. Elite Skirmishers The Skirmishers brought into the Imperial era. Lacking in power with such big alternatives like Scorpions available, but still deadly in hand-to-hand combat - to a point. Heavy Horse Archers Horse Archers, barded in armor. Upgraded for the modern era, they are still exceptionably mobile. Areblasts The evolution of Crossbowmen, these steel-equipped units still have the basic function. Heavy Scorpions The absolute pinnacle in unit-destroying technology. Heavy Scorpions drive Archers into the ground and grind swordsmen to dust. Get it while you can! Siege Ram The absolute pinnacle in building-destroying technology. If you're ever stuck, just roll one in and watch your problems evaporate. An arrow magnet, also great for suicide strikes against big targets, like wonders. Bombard Cannon A great gunpowder unit, can do the work of both Scorpions and Siege Rams, though not as powerfully. Trebuchet To me the Trebuchet repress the pinnacle in siege technology, period. It can churn castles to dust and render enemy formations broken with a single chuck of it throwing arm. Trainable at castles, their only limitation is that they can't attack units right next to it - in other words, attacking it. Still, what's a big, heavy siege unit doing out there in the direct line of fire anyway? Elite Monks Elite monks are even more forceful than their predecessors. Their healing power has been upgraded significantly; they can heal an extensively battle-damaged unit in two turns. Their converts work more often. Kill them before they turn your units upon you. Elite Knights Templar In a world of high-end units, Knight Templar rise above due to their Zeal ability. Even more potent now than before. Elite War Elephant This is the most overpowered unit in the game. It can grind infantry, even pikemen to dust. The only effective counter is heavy siege weaponry, and these don't last long, as your opponent correctly realizes how potent this one is. Elite Woad Raider Amazingly, guerrilla still works in the Imperial battlefield. Elite Berserker The Imperial battlefield is a high-damage place, and this guy is here to ensure that he makes him mark with his frenzy ability. Elite Janissary The Janissary is a great unit, and this one is too, but the siege shop Hand Cannondeer is so much easier to access. Elite Throwing Axmen Skirmish is potentially even more dangerous now that so many units are on the grid. Elite Longbowmen Longbowmen still carry the special punch that they had in the Castle Age. Elite Mamelukes Besides being perhaps the coolest-looking cavalry in the game, Elite Mamelukes are a hard-hitting foe. Elite Mangudai Upgrade these a bit and you have a potent unit, but it starts of a bit... underpowered. Elite Samurai The hottest looking Infantry unit EVER is also the hardest-hitting infantry unit EVER. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [3.04] Special Abilities This section lists each of the special abilities in the game and their function. For a more complete guide to the unit skills go to the unit skill guide. Anti-Cavalry - When fighting cavalry, gets 83% ATK and DEF bonus and "First Strike." Anti-Personnel - May not attack buildings. Build - May build and repair buildings. Buildings Only - May only attack buildings. Causes Fear - Opponents always suffer -25% ATK and DEF. Convert - May attempt to convert enemy units. Desert Charge - Gain +33% ATK when attacking units on Desert that don't have "Desert Charge." First Strike - Always strike first, even when defending (unless fighting another First Strike unit). Frenzy - Attack and counterattack at full health (100) until completely dead. Heal - May heal units; 20% per use (increased by certain techs) Hero Powers - Has Hero Powers (see section 2.1 - Heroes) Improved Convert - May attempt to convert enemies with an improved chance of success. Improved Heal - Heals unit; 30% per use. No Counterattacks - May not counterattack when attacked. No Move & Attack - May not attack in the turn that it moves. Plains Charge - Gains +33% ATK when attacking units on Plains that don't have "Plains Charge." Rapid Fire - When attacking, gets additional attack after opponent's counter- attack. Scares Horses - +33% ATK and DEF when fighting horse units. Scout - Mountains, forests, hills, and swamps only cost 2 move points. Seasoned Veteran - Achieves Veteran Status more quickly: 2 battles, 4, and 6. Skirmish - Gains First Strike against all units with a range of 1. volley - When health greater than 50% +33% ATK. Woodsman - +33% ATK and DEF when fighting in the forest. Zeal - Automatically heals 20 Health after any battle against another unit (but not buildings) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [3.05] Bonus Units These units can be bought from the Empire Store for a certain amount of Empire Points. Dopplehanders (100 EP) - Stronger versions of the Two-Handed Swordsman. Get them quickly, they are an easy +25/+25 upgrade to your units. Welsh Bowmen (100 EP) - Welsh Bowmen are probably the best special unit because they last 2 ages (Archers don't advance in the Castle Age). Mons Meg (150 EP) - Mons Meg is basically a stronger version of the Bombard Cannon. Pretty darn powerful. Knights of the Round (200 EP) - This is an expensive acquisition, and there seems to be a glitch in the game that prevents this unit from advancing ages. So don't get it. Genoese Crossbowmen (100 EP) - A great, cheap Crossbowmen advance. Get it now! Swiss Pikemen (100 EP) - Another great unit. +25/+25 for an awesome unit lets it stand up to Longswordmen with greater ease. Dark Ram (250 EP) - Not particularly useful, but really, really strong! War Wolf (150 EP) - This is the best siege unit in the game. If you have a few points to spare, buy it!  Campaign ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [4.01] Joan of Arc (tutorial) 1. Escort to Chinon (impossible to lose) This mission is impossible to lose. Simply follow Jean de Mertz's instructions and go down the road. A Militia comes out to kill you, pathetic, kill him and them arrive at the castle to finish the mission. 2. Sword of the Saint (very easy) Easy. Follow Jean's set instructions, do them well to please him and get a star towards your goals, and then you are given a small army, and the British come after you with a small army. Use your Knight on the Archer. Use your own Archer on the Longswordsman, then attack him with Joan. Move your Pikemen closer behind. In all likelihood the Longswordsmen will suicide into Joan, and then the Knight will attack her. Archer the Knight from behind, move Joan in to attack the Battering Ram. Pikeman the Knights, then Knight the Battering Ram. Use your Archers to finish off the Knight. Combine your Knight and Joan to finally dispose of the Battering Ram. Move Joan onto the church to finish with 3 stars. 3. From Pheasant to General (very easy) At the start of the mission you are given this small area to build a town and your army, with a bridge blocked off by Jean. The English general is to the North. Move Joan to the side and build a Town Center on the indicated spot. Next turn, move the villager to one of the two mills. Build a new one on the town center. Don't forget to research, Leather Soles is best because it adds to your Villager’s movement. With your first villager, head for the other wheat resource (or the mine if it's closer), with your other villager heading for the other. Research another tech. On the next turn, start expanding your mills with farms. You can now tech up, do so. On the next turn, go and build a Stables or Barracks while the other of your villagers continues expanding the mills. After that, start building up your army. Once you've reached your unit cap, go up the road and attack. Keep your villagers expanding the mills, once the attack begins move them up while reclaiming all of the resources, this is required for 3 stars. When you get to the town, use the appropriate units, but save Joan for the main guy. Once he's running, destroy the town center and wait. If you want to finish quickly, just capture it, but if you want 3 stars, build another villager, or two, and go around reclaiming the resources. once they are all yours capture the TC to win with all three stars. If you haven't yet, send the north-most villager to the gold and build a mine. With the other one, go to one of the spaces adjacent to the town center and build a stable and then a barracks the next turn, or vice versa. By now, you should have researched enough to move on to Age 2. If not, do so. Also begin building units for your attack force. Once Jean says so, begin moving forces towards the British town. But keep on building units (light cavalry) to follow them. Fight your way to their town, and destroy the TC (town center), but not any of the other buildings. Once the TC is gone, a villager can go in and build another town center in its place to capture the surrounding buildings and win. 4. Breakthrough to Orleans (very easy) As soon as you start you are surrounded by a bunch of underpowered units, use Joan's abilities and then kill them easy. Another Skirmisher and Scout Cav come out. Use the mountains and hills to archer them. As you go down further there is a Spearman, and a Light Cavalry. Reach Blois, get the Crossbowmen and heal. You have to defend a Trade Cart from this point forward. Once you reach the bridge, you get 2 monks. Instead of merging them, let them heal each other to get double healing. Very early on you meet a junction in the road. The top one leads to the besieged Orleans, while the bottom one leads to...3 Archers! They are converted to you. You also get detailed knowledge of all of the terrain. As soon as you retrieve them get ready for a really big one. As soon as you do you're going to get run into by a large amount of units. Get to the town and drive the Trade Cart in, BUT NOT JOAN. If you want 3 stars, you have to bypass it and destroy the enemy Battering Rams, which means killing their guards. They recede into the area right of Orleans when you approach. Also, you have to retrieve the relic, so send one of your monks into the swamps in the northwest corner to retrieve it. Support him with an Infantry, it's guarded by another monk. Monks can wreck havoc here, converting units like mad. 5. Lifting the Siege of Orleans To finish the mission you have to wreck the three castles. You start out at the town of Orleans, located on a small island. To the Northwest are a couple of critically under defended British mills, and to the northeast is the castle Bastille St. Loup., which is extremely lightly defended and the easiest target. Directly south, on a small island, is the Bastille des Tourelles. It's also relatively lightly defended. Across from it is a small area from which units can arrive, be mindful of that. Down to the southwest is the 'final" area, the bridge in is defended by siege an Onagar and Scorpion, and it contains the last castle, Olivet Castle, as well as Earl Talbot himself. On your first turn build a unit in every available facility, including a villager. You're initially surrounded by enemy units, use yours to smash them away. Your initial treasury will quickly whittle away, so you'll have to capture the mills to survive. The first attacks only come from the northern forces, after a few turns the coast will be clear. Be picky, but not too picky, and try to wait out so you have a decent squad of elite mercenary army units. Use your units to destroy the mills and then capture them with your villagers. Now here's a trick for you. Instead of destroying any of the castles, reduce their hp so that they would fall in one turn. As soon as possible siege each castle with a small amount of units while your villagers capture the mills. Use your villagers to secure the two gold resources. Use Archers and whatever you want to route Sir Talbot. Once you've claimed 2 stars, and you have to do this in 20 turns or less, destroy the castles. 6. Crowning of Prince Charles Now, to deal the final blow to the British claims to the French crown, you endeavor to crown the Dauphin king of his lands. Before you can do this, however you must advance to the Imperial Age, build a Wonder, and find a missing relic, all within a time limit. To pass the mission, and especially to pass it well, you have to do these quickly. Because of this mission is the only tutorial mission with a truly large degree of difficulty. You start out in a relatively large blackmap-eschewed map. Your Town Center is the center-north. The relic is located somewhere in the swamps on the map, either in the northwest corner or somewhere else in the deep south. You have to dispatch units to search for it, but it's made more difficult by the many British "leftovers" lurking around in the blackmap. In the meantime, expand your resources aggressively, and get an army off the ground. Don't waste unnecessary resources, and research if you can every day. The Wonder is no small task to build, requiring quite a few resources. Also build on the mills square to the south of your main TC, it will come in handy later. You have to do this quickly, but if you can't find the relic fast enough it will throw everything off, which is the degree of failure in the mission. Once you've found the relic, send a monk to claim it. Build the Wonder and put the relic there. Once you've satisfied all of the conditions, the Dauphin appears in the southwest corner of the map. Go fetch him; his stats suck, and he's foolishly traveling alone. Send in cavalry to escort him. He is quickly followed by British armies - one to the west of your town center, and one to the southeast. Move him quickly and hold off enemy units. He's actually pretty funny - his unit is just a bunch of look-alikes on horses, and your enemies have to attack them until they get to the real one. Anyway, holding off the armies can't be too hard. Just move him onto the Wonder to win the mission. If you ask me you should also have to defeat the English forces, but oh well, this is tutorial after all. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [4.02] Minamoto (Easy) 1. Battle of the River Crossings You start out with a small army. There are two bridges leading to your enemy, both are blocked off by his units but one on the right is more lightly defended by 6 units instead of 5. You can attack either side, but once you start denting A, B will invade you. I usually choose the left side, because for some reason they always get into this stupid formation that exposes their Archers to attack. Anyway, whichever side you choose, maintain a detachment on the other. Don't use Minamoto for battle, but to heal up badly damaged units, and then send them back into the fighting. After a handful of turns all of their bridge forces will have been vanquished. If you want 3 stars, leave 2 badly damaged units (or Scout Cav) behind on the bridges. Also leave another unit to go up the opposite side of the rest of units, to secure the other bridge (there are 4 of them) Rush up to the next section. The two bridges to your guy are defended by Areblasts. Attack one, preferably with Light Cavalry. They will instantly retract, giving you access to Yoshitsune and his little Samurai army. Destroy all of the other units before you kill the coward Yoshitsune, and leave one unit on the bridge behind your army. The other one you sent should secure the other bridge. If you do this correctly, and quickly, victory will be yours, with all 3 stars, the last for finishing under 12 turns. 2. Tiara Conquest The thing with this mission is that if you are too passive, you will have a hard time winning, because the Tiara would have taken all of the resources. In this mission the Tiara are very aggressive, as soon as they see something of yours they will attack. However, if they take damage from this, they will usually instantly retreat. Where you start out, dispatch your villagers to start building your economy. Send your Scout up the far left of the map, and glut the bridge on the right with Minamoto, supported by an archer or whatever else you want to use. Your Scout will find two bridges-one right next to your settlement, and one far up the map. The mistake I made when I first played was stopping at the first bridge; pretty early on, send a villager up the left and build a Town Center right on the bridge. With your other villager, capture the resources on this new land. Remember, on this map you shouldn't be too aggressive on resources, because the Tiara will attack very quickly. The Tiara usually do 4 things when you do this - attack Minamoto (shouldn't be a problem as he can heal himself), attack your northwestern town center (spend the unit boost you get from those new resources on a bit of protection there), attack Minamoto and your first town center through the mountains (easily repelled by missile troops, usually), or attack your North town center through the mountains/build a castle in the mountains. You should build one too to rebuff their attacks and discourage them from building one. Now here's a trick I learned. Once you have a significant force, rebuff one of their attacks and then counterattack. This will bring all of their attention on your first force, while your second force can slip in almost unremitted. Once your first force starts taking bad damage, recede to your settlements and heal up. They will rush to your second force, which is hopefully pillaging mills and burning fields. Continue this pattern to weaken them significantly. Once you get siege units on line and near the TCs, knocking them down should be a breeze. For the island castle, move your siege units into range. The castle is defended by two Areblasts. After they attack, heal up and counter with your Siege units, Ranged units, and Samurai. Kill them and then blow up the castle; fairly easy. Don't destroy the final TC before you can collect the 3 relics scattered across the map. The last star is the most difficult; but even fighting at Castle Age vs. Imperial, it doesn't matter, numbers shall prevail. 3. The Battle of Ichi No Tami I got stuck on this mission the first time I played it, but once you know what you're doing, it 's a breeze. This is what I found to be the easiest way. There are 3 paths to take. The central path leads right to the castle, but it's chock full of enemies. The right path leads to a Elite Monk and is only sparsely populated, a good choice. The right one is the worst, densely populated by units. Don't take it. Get into a solid formation, Samurai leading and Siege units way in the back, and inch forward. First send a Scout Cav into the edge of the right mountain chain. You'll discover two units on the far right road, a Samurai and an Elite Skirmisher, as well as a small packet of units on the main road. Set up your units just out of their sight range, then attack the Samurai with your Horse Archers. Finish him off with your own samurai, and you'll have to kill the Skirmishers the old-fashioned way. Heal up any damage with Minamoto, and then send a Samurai or 2 up the swamps to reclaim the monk. You can skip him though if you want. Again, heal up and then snipe the units on the main road with your Horse Archers. As soon as they come close use your samurai. If you don't kill them, the badly damaged units will recede towards the castle. Get your entire army over the mountains, and then get on the main road, finishing off the remaining stragglers (Yes, this means that you have to pretty much leave your Siege units behind), but you skip a nice bit of fighting this way. You've shortcut right to the castle. Throw your Samurai against it, it'll be lightly guarded initially. Don't even bother with the grunt rush, it'll come too late as if you surround the castle with Samurai as I did, It’ll fall in 2 turns flat. If you want the 3 stars, you'll probably want to complete the "kill all enemy units" thing separately. Just move your archers slowly around the map, supported by all of your other units, to finish them off. Be patient, this will take quite a while. 4. Yashima Wow, this mission is WAY too hard for Easy mode. It's also really long, should take you around 50 turns when all's said and done. The two opponents are the Tiara and the Emperor’s Army. The Tiara are aggressive, but start out Feudal Age just like you, with two town centers your one. The Emperor’s Army doesn't do anything until you become a significant threat or attack them, which is great, cause they're freaking IMPERIAL age. Anyway, blockade the bridge with Minamoto to stop grunt-rush. don't attack them with him, just heal him every turn with his Minamoto's Guard ability, letting your ranged units (initially Archer) to finish them off. Once your reach Castle Age, focus on getting resources and getting tech. Pretty early on, while you're finishing up the top segment of the map, take a villager and go through the mountain pass to the southern section. Build a new Town Center there, and use your surplus units from above to defend it (as in the bridge). Gather up all of the resources on your quadrant of the map, and then I built two castles-one at the northern bridge and one at the southern. I used these as the staging points for my attack. Attack once you're tech 4. On the southern part of the map, I attacked a mine belonging to the Emperor’s Army and brought them into my force. I then retreated, and used my extra siege engines to wreck havoc on them while my Northern force attacked and destroyed Tiara north. I'm not sure why, but for a long time the Emperor ignored my north assault. Once he did, and brought that huge mesh of pikemen, monks, and samurai on me, it was too late. As his forces began attacking mine I retreated to my castle. Now the Emperor grows more diligent. My badly tattered Southern force healed and recharged at the castle before attacking again. This time he sent units in to counter me ASAP, besides the Tiara resistance already there. When he does this, break the remaining units holding you in at the castle and make a rush for the bridge. In all likelihood the Tiara are trying to rebuild the North, kill them again. in the meantime your southern force will be suffering, just try to keep a net on your siege equipment and heal badly damaged units quickly. Your fast moving Elite Samurai from the north should be able to link up with your south force. Combined, they can repel the assault and defeat the Southern Tiara. Use your cavalry to mop up any remaining Tiara, especially Villagers. Wipe out all of their resources-this is important as an extra star. Use your monks to heal your units, blockade the bridge with un-convertible Elite Samurai, and get ready for the final push, on the Emperor himself. The Emperor uses a mixed-infantry army - Samurai, Pikemen, and Monks. The Monks are a huge pain, and the main reason you should keep an oversize amount of Sam. as they are inconvertible. when you're ready, cross the bridge and onto his territory. Be sure to bring a lot of siege with you. He will send everything he has at you, deal with them. Get right up to the TC, ignore the Wonder for now, and shred it for effect. Leave the Town Center alive, though, until you finish with other matters. Destroy all Tiara resources, build upon as many mine squares as you can with your Villagers (you need 8), and concentrate on the Wonder. Undefended, it should fall quickly. The turn after it falls a humorous thing insures. The child Emperor’s mother insists that he run to his ship, which is across from a strip of land in the north. An Elite Samurai morph (named Emperor’s Guard) emerges, kill him before he reaches the ship. Whoo, it shows the captured kid say that "with my last breath, I curse the house of Minamoto forever!" and he jumps into the water and drowns himself. Your advisor seems sour to lose the prize, but his mother is in tears... 5. Mongol Invasion This one is fun. There's a million ways to play, so I'll leave you to your own devices. Just remember to lure Khan out of his area before you kill him, once he hits 50% he starts to run. [4.03] Genghis Khan (Medium) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. The Tatars In this battle you and your friend have to defeat two Tatar encampments. You are on the "main section, an reverse-L shaped middle part on which you and your friend start out. one of the encampments is to the north of you, and to the east of your friend, and another is to your far southeast. The north Tatar is easily killed. Send in Khan, with a few other units, to kill them, but focus on the main threat-the other Tatars. These are the guys who will hold your attention the entire battle. Do everything you can to make sure the north falls quickly, but your friend attacks it too (even if he does it dumbly) so you have to deal with the south. To do so you have to blockade the main bridge into their territory, on the southwest side of them. As soon as possible petition units, especially Archers, to hold up the pass. Also send a villager to claim the open resources and especially to build the nearby mine, which will act as your healing space for the rest of the game. By the time you hit Castle Age you should be able to glut the enemy and to build a castle in their face. Reclaim as many of the resources as possible, but leave a few for your friend. Don't worry about him, he can handle himself. The next part is to siege the enemy himself. Your friend does some trial-and- error fighting, typical of AI. Start the real deal from the south (by this time, you should have established a second TC there). He should fall, but only after some extended fighting. Getting 3 stars here is a breeze. Finish quickly to get 1. Build 3 Town Centers to get another, and the Build a Castle thing should be something you are fulfilling ordinarily anyway. 2. Uniting the Tribes This is a very unique mission. You start out with a small force, the most important part of which is the two monks, and must either kill or convert each of the four chieftains in the area. Each one is confined to his own little area and covered in blackmap and fog of war, but they all have pretty significant forces. As to complete you have to amass a force larger than your starting one and convert as many chieftains as possible, a technique called monk spamming is very useful here. Basically, when you are in range of a unit you would really like to convert, and then save your game. Attempt to convert them. If it fails, quit without saving, return to the mission, and try again, until you succeed. This guarantees you conversion, but may take some time, as it is never a 100% thing. Each of the chieftains have pretty significant forces which can challenge your own. Keeping your forces united and not letting them to your ranged units is pretty vital. Use the terrain to spam them with missile troops from some range, like, say, across a separating river. Once you've converted or killed the main troop, use the monk spam on the Chieftain to try and get his sway. This will take a few tries because they're a tough cookie, but you have a guaranteed 100% success rate with monk spamming. Or, you could kill them, but not if you want 3 stars. For some reason the first one falls the easiest. He also leaves his Mangudai for your disposal, which is quite useful. I recommend starting in the Northeast and heading down, then to the west, because the western chiefs also have siege equipment in their sway (by the way, capture these). The other chieftains try to resist a lot more, but should fall quickly too. Between conquering, heal your units up with your two monks. 3. Supreme Ruler Basically, in this mission you have to fight three other nations while you build up your economy. Eventually, you have to build the Mongol Wonder, the Great Tent, and defend it against huge reinforced numbers. You start in a large open, arid area. The other three nation, the Merkits, Higher, and Burials, are all fighting you, but luckily they are one age behind and also completely preoccupied with fighting each other. To cut the long story short, build up a town center (and later 2, plus castles) while sniping the fighting in the north with Khan and your ranged units. Build a large army, with significant forces, and advance into the Imperial Age. Once you are ready, build the Wonder. As soon as you do, they seemed unimpressed-so unimpressed they attack you. Giving up internal strife, they attack you united. Only thing is, they also get high-level reinforcements to the southwest and northeast of your position. At first it may look like a big problem, but building the Wonder gives you a large production boost and a very large unit cap boost. Hold down the top with minimal forces, as best you can, as it's not the big problem. Don't be fearful of retreating from the massive forces that they propel at you from the reinforcements, just as long as the Wonder doesn't fall. To go to 3 stars, you have to build 4 mines (including one in enemy territory, just build it but don't expect it last long). Also you have to build the Wonder in 30 days, which simply means you have to do it quickly. Also you have to scout enemy territory, just build a triple squad of Scouts and send them straight into enemy territory. Easy. 4. Empire Expansion This is a very large, empire-style map. You have free access to a huge wealth of scattered resources, but they're also very distant from one another. Your foes are the Kievens and the Khwarazm Shah, some Turkish dude. This is a very large map, and contains you and your two foes, the Kievans and the KS. You start out in the far north, I recommend scouting out directions to your enemies (there's a road down and then to the east directly into their territory) before establishing your first TC. At the moment neither of them realizes you are there, so build your Town Center quickly, best somewhere west of the junction in the roads. Meanwhile, your Scout Cavalry should finally give you a grasp of where things sit. You command a large area to the east of the map. The Kievan and KS are fighting one another in the west, the Kievan to the north and KS to the south. Build an army of 4-5 Villagers and concentrate on expanding your economy. After about a dozen turns, you should have conquered most of your resources, and your economy will be expanding at a nice clip. Also while doing this, build a Town Center directly in front of the bridge into Kiev territory. If you want, send Khan south to strafe the enemy resources. In my game, I also built a "tech" and church town, behind your lines, to help with keeping everything else military. That's churches, blacksmith, university, and whatever else you want. There is a notable spit-resource section to the south. although you have to cross a mountain chain to get there, it contains a very juicy amount of resources. unfortunately, the line between you and them is not very clear here, but still go and capture them resources because they try to do the same. Once you have a significant force, attack down the road into the Kievans. They turn from their conflict with the KS to repelling you. Use your Scouts to probe out their exact size and the location of their nerve centre, their Town Center. Attack it and clear the remaining military units to win them. The KS are obviously far weaker then the Kievans, and are always an age behind everyone else, so they'll fall in short order. The Kievens are harder to take down then you’re already-defeated ones. In all likelihood, you'll be holding off attacking Kievans and attacking K-dudes at the same time, but concentrate on holding off the aggressors while suppressing the K-dudes. The large boost you get from all of those new resources certainly makes your job easier. Now, getting 3 stars is pretty easy here. Build a Scout early on, and explore the map. Go for whatever ruin you see, and get all of them for a star. Remember, there's a chance they will die, so I recommend keeping a squad of 2, and then rebuilding any that are lost. Once you explore your own territory, and are attacking the Kievan/KS, do so with them. The last star is for reaching Imperial Age first. which is actually not that hard, just research a lot, especially with the Mongol tech bonuses. Getting 3 stars is not hard, again, but time-consuming. 5. Mongol Invasion Oh, this is a really fun mission. You basically invade Japan with your Mongol hoards, and the Japanese are intent upon driving you away, especially from their sacred temple. You land with a relatively large force to the northwest, near the town center of Dazaifu. First, use the monk-spamming technique from before to convert the Crossbow there. Move khan behind your Cross and attack the samurai. Now use one of the Champions to attack the Crossbow in the mill to the north and a Camel to assault the Crossbow in the mines. Use the other Camel to attack the Scorpion in the town and then finish it off with two Mangudai. Move all of your other forces closer to the TC; next turn you get to burn it with Siege Rams, Champions, and Trebuchet. Finish off one of the Crossbowmen with your last Mangudai and finish your turn. The Japanese immediately move all of their forces on you. This is a serious problem because of the Elite Samurai composing its majority. Also, they build a castle in the north. For the next few turns concentrate on surviving. The next boat is not far off. Take out the northern mill with your Champion and start moving him towards the battle; use any badly damaged units to raid villagers and resources. In just two turns another boatload of reinforcements join your current force and help ease the battle. In mine I used Genghis Khan as a massive bullet magnet; he can take a lot of damage due to First Strike and I kept healing him with my monk. Once the reinforcements come you can surmount the first assault. The Town Center should fall now, as will the mine. Use your mangudai to attack any lone Elite Samurai that overextend themselves out of friendly range, but really spend this time cleaning up, holding it down, and completely destroying the TC. Use your Mangudai to snipe the mine to your west, and destroy it. Move west slowly. You have one big advantage over the Japanese-your many Mangudai. These mobile sniping platforms are extremely useful here because they can snipe enemy units and buildings ahead of your lines without taking too much damage, as their first Strike ability allows them to survive a turn out in the open (except against Elite Samurai). Also, the Japs use only Areblasts for some reason, and H. Archers are rare, giving you ever the more of an advantage. use it to greatly weaken the foe before breaking them with your Camels and Champions. Also, remember that the forces occupying the Wonder will not attack you, even if you are in range, unless you come REALLY close and attack the Palace. After a few turns the next reinforcements come. they are in not one, but 2 boats. One lands as usual and reinforces your already large force, and one lands to the east of it, across from your usually landing area. They are both pretty small. by now you should have begun seiging the castle, so pull both of these to the road and to the castle to attack. With your western force, use the Camels and then the Mangudai to damage the Areblasts, and then the Trebuchet on the villager. You now have two options; to finish quickly, blow up the castle. The other option is to concentrate on 3 stars by going up the map and defeating everything there. [4.04] Saladin (Hard) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. Rising To Power, Part 1 This is actually an easy mission, if you take into account that there are 6 relics, but you only need 4, and 2 are easy grabs in your territory. The biggest problem is that your Town Center limit is 2, exactly how many towns you have right now, and one of them is a mosque town. When you start, build a Pikeman for your empty slot. Send your Scout Cavalry onto that hill on the edge of his range to reveal the scene-Damietta. Don't worry, the Longswordsman doesn't see you. Move your force in, but out of his sight range, with Saladin leading. Start building farms with your Villager, and research your first tech, preferably the gold-raising one as you have a critical lack of it right now. This is so as to advance to age 4 in 18 days and claim a star. On the next turn, attack. Use Saladin to run down the Longswordsmen, and the Scout to kill whatever he's training on his Archery Range, usually an Archer. Move your Longswordsman in and get close to the TC. Next turn, Saladin the second Longsword and start attacking the TC with your own. Use your Scout Cav to attack the villagers and Saladin to burn the mine, alongside the Pikemen who arrives from your training. Bibles, and the surrounding resources, should fall quickly, but unfortunately one of the villagers escapes as soon as the attack begins. Oh well, they no longer pose a threat. As your Town Center limit is all used up, you can't reclaim the Town Center, so don't be afraid to burn it all down. Using the unit cap boost you get from your farming with the villager, build another one and capture the mine and mill outside Bibles. On your next unit limit expansion, build a monk and send him to claim the easy to get relic near your mill. By now you should have wrapped up with Bibles. Your other villager should be concentrating on the mills outside the mosque town. Begin training your army. You might have to skip a few turns of tech due to resource gathering costs, but that's ok, you have 18 Days to research 11 techs, so you have a little bit of time. Your army will really begin to kick off now. Send a Scout cav to explore the gaping black hole that is the western part of your "area" and start claiming resources there. Train lots of, ok train like 3, monks. Use monks, ranged units, one Camel, and a few Pikemen, that's the best mix for the mission. Now attack! Punch through Damietta’s punch-card units and capture the easily taken relic on the strip of land just above. That's 2 down so far. Damietta is very weak, and all they really control is a pathetically tiny strip of land with barely enough room for a Town Center, a mill, and a mine. Plus, you'll soon be rocking at imperial Age, and they are backwardly at Feudal Age. Easy pickings. Kill them and then move onto the next civ. Meanwhile, use a villager to build a couple of Castles in the far right, before Alexandria, and strafe it. The next relic is located in a swampy area that takes a long time to get there, just send one of your monks down there to get it. The last one is on the strip of land you are attacking right now. Go up and get it. This new area is also where your escapes from Belbies start a new TC, destroy it if you want. It’s really hard to get three stars in finishing in 26 days. I always get stuck wading through the mud in getting the second to last relic, and the amount of time needed to conquer the Blue guys and snag that one is also unacceptable. I'm open to hints, but for now it remains 2 stars. 2. Rising to Power, Part 2 Saladin has outgrown his master, and now their ambitions clash in open conflict. The map is shaped basically like a giant L. You start at the southwestern corner of the map. The castle is to the east, just past those mines, and your ultimate objective, Damascus, is to the far northeast, on the other end of the map. Using your 2 spare unit caps, build a Villager and an Archer. Using the Scout, stand on the nearby mountain to see the local terrain. The castle isn't as close as you might presume, out past those two mines (you can send a Scout there to see its outskirts). Taking it is not going to be easy. Wait a little before you strike to raise your unit cap; the place is fortified in the mountains, and besides the two men-at-Arms and Crossbowmen, it is also receiving reinforcements from the north. Expand your resource gathering with your two villagers. If you want grab the ruins in your territory with a scout while you wait. Put Saladin at the juncture that is the small lake. This will put him in range of Archers, but also a Men-at-Arms will wade out to fight. Kill him, it makes your job easier. Now the rest of them, except the crossbow, wades out to attack you. You may take some losses, but ultimately this is to your advantage as you can kill them now. This map has a VERY harsh unit limit. Once you have killed them, advance on the castle and attack the Crossbows. Meanwhile, send your Villagers and build upon the two mine and one mill resource in the nook northwest of the castle. These will also serve to heal you. Once the Crossbows are dead, assault the castle. Use Archers and whatever you can spare to hold off the reinforcements from the north. Now you recharge your army. Build a castle to train Mamelukes to replace the Knights you have, because Mamelukes slay on desert. Once you are ready, attack Bastra. It's a bit of a ways down the southern road. Build a town center on the opposite end to cut your supply line, and use it to train siege units and the all-holy Battering Ram. Bastra is actually harder then it appears, but it still falls quickly, in about 5 days-2 to break their army and 3 to destroy the TC itself. Meanwhile, your northern force should be pressuring the other guys. Don't attack them, yet anyway, just move into their territory. This will distract them from the invasion you're staging down the road from Bastra to Damietta. Once it starts, move in with them too to help. Also, where you built the TC, turn it into a siege/monastery. Build 3 or 2 monks and send them out to collect the relics. One is in the swamps north of your original Town Center; one is very close to where your monastery town is, in the hills north or where Bastra was; and one is in the hills on the edge of the map near where Damascus is. The first 2 turns of battle now will be about taking losses but holding your line. Once you get to the TC itself, you'll have an easy way to victory. Also, build a castle somewhere nearby for healing and reinforcements. 3. Reynolds’s Raiders This is a fun, if ridiculous, mission. Basically, some angry Crusader named Reynold is attack Muslim pilgrims - basically, Trade Carts - heading between the four "holy cities." You must defeat his constant raids and let the carts come through. You don't get to choose your units, except for the ones you can build from the small grants you get for every successful caravan, but it's mostly Camels, Pikemen, and Horse Archers, which is ok because Camels and Pikemen can burn a hole straight through any Templar. Notably, Reynold completely forgot to bring missile troops with him. The first few turns make or break your game. Reynold has invaded, and his forces are scattered against the peninsula. There is also a castle in the south. Start by pulling your Camels from the north town, Bibles, and attacking the Templar across the ford. Your Damascus forces, which includes Saladin, should form a sort of "wall of units" and smash against the Templers. The problem here is that there are two Knights to your flank, which can attack you from behind, but luckily all of your units there are Knight-killing Camels and Pikemen, so they shouldn't be TOO much of a problem. Use to Horse Archer to soften up the Templar across the ford, the one you hit with your Camel from the north forces. In the south, there is castle with a Templar and a few units in the middle. Use your southern Camels to attack the Castle and draw the Templar's attention, but keep your Horse Archer out of range to keep it from being massacred. Be sure to stay out of the range of the Pikeman to the north! your southeastern medina forces should form up and advance slightly into the mountains. They stand to take the most damage here because the forces here are nearly as strong as them, but luckily you can pull units from the south if you get in a pickle-and you probably will. Keep aggressing against them on the next turn. Blast Reynold with Saladin and watch him flee. Kill the rest of the Templers. In the south, pull your two forces together and attack the Templers. They should fall quickly to your brute might ;) After they are gone, siege the castle and destroy it to claim a star. Rest all of your units and get them back to full health. Now that the Templar raiders are gone, locamote the cart from its start point to its destination. A few turns after you finish this, Reynold comes again. Shock! Expecting this, form a wall of Pikes and Camels to blockade their main entry point. There are also two other points they occasionally use, in the south, these are covered by your southern army. Surround the carts with units, are wait for the Templar army to attack and then destroy them, and don't let any of them get destroyed to finish with 3 stars (the other one is Less the 2 Carts destroyed, but if none are destroyed obviously 0 < 2). 4. The Horns of Hattin It's that Reynold guy again. This time, Saladin has had enough of him, and you have to destroy his army and then rush into him and kill him. The rat tries to run away. Split your fast-moving troops, Mamelukes and Camels, from your main force and catch up to him. The army itself is quite conquerable. He flees with some Templers, a Trade Cart, and a fast-moving Monk carrying a relic. You have to kill all of them, and all of the military units, to win. For some reason, on my game, this one glitches, and no matter what happens to your mamelukes, You get the "Keep both of them alive" star right at the beginning. Dunno if this happens for everyone, but it makes the job easier. Take a turn to organize your forces and find what direction he's fleeing in. I found a trick to get rid of the Crossbowmen; flank all the way to the left and right with your 4 Light Cav, and then run straight into them. For the rest, just split a few fast units out while the main army clashes. The Light Cavalry, if used quickly, can easily get to him and wreck the Trade Cart and/or monk before his Templar guards kill you. The difficulty of this mission is based on what direction he flees in; it's harder to do to the west, and easier to the east, due to the terrain and how he leaves his units behind. However, he flees to the east only rarely. 5. Reclaiming Jerusalem Um...yeah. Jerusalem. This is actually the reason I came here to GameFAQs in the first place, for help beating this mission. It's...hard. Really, freakishly ridiculously hard. I've actually seen two tactics for beating this one. One is to build castles and to train Mamelukes every turn. Another is to build two markets ate each TC and leave the castle for later, getting up a super-elite Mercenary army. But both of them have point, you'll get shredded if you use normal units. The best guide for this mission is from wolfmanphd, at http://www.gamefaqs.com/portable/ds/file/927039/43618. There's also a very detailed guide to the second approach, by bling56789, at http://www.gamefaqs.com/portable/ds/qna/927039.html?qid=37052. 6. The Battle of Arsuf This isn't all that climatic for a finale to mission 5. You have to avoid the dammed Templers and kill 3 water carts. just close up your formation for 2 turns, then use Hit and Run to run up to them and engage. The water carts are hidden behind the Templers, honestly they are scary, you have all the wrong units to kill them Templers. You should win about Day 5; use Pikemen and your missile troops to bop the Templers, punch a hole through to the carts and then blow them up. [4.05] Richard the Lionhearted (Very Hard) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. All In The Family, Part 1 In a classic English royal feud, Richard's younger brother has raised a Frankish rebellion to try and coup the throne. You and your father, King Henry, must defeat the two Frankish forces. Similar to Genghis Khan 1, eh? Well, not really. The thing is that very early on your father, who makes a crappy fight, quits when he hears your younger brother, the rebel, was injured. Quitter. You are positioned in the northwestern part of the map. Your dad is to the east and the first Frank, the weaker one, is to the south. The other one, who decimates King Henry, your dad, is to the far southwest. In the middle is a big crossroads leading to and from every section of the map. As your friend is busy handling the southwest enemy, concentrate on dispatching of the southwestern force as soon as possible. Don’t bother trying to help King Henry, it's no good and you have stretched units and resources as is. Militia make crappy fighters but are far better (still horrid) at seiging then Scout Cav, who are combat units mostly. Richard is above-par on both, for Dark Age standards. Be sure to get rid of the TC AND the villagers. They can be a great pain later on. As you wrap up and jump-start your economy, heading into the Feudal Age, your King quits. When he does so all units and economic structures disappear, and his Town Center disappears too, allowing you - or your foe - to capture it. This is good because this guy is an economic hog, going around the map with an army of villagers and building on every economic plot he sees, even on those clearly in your or enemy territory. So build aggressively to stymie this obstacle. Once you dispatch of the southern town center, capture it and the surrounding resources. The front will basically look like this: you controlling the entire west section of the map, with two town centers, and two bridges in (north in south, both in the area of your TCs), and him controlling the entire east section, well the large island constituting most of it as well as a theoretical militaristic grasp in the north. The large central crossroads links the two of you together. As you go into the Castle Age focus on getting rich and getting tech. At first your opponent has an advantage over you, but you should be able to equalize. It's recommended that you build a castle in either the north or south, or both. The AI usually attacks one end of your settlement or the other, and makes the mistake of doing this with ALL his available forces. So to attack, counter his attack and then invade. Rush for the bridges on his side and build a castle or town center there to solidify it. Now you're literally at his doorstep, and you can attack. The AI concentrates a huge amount of settlement in his "island," so it looks a bit like a fortress-in other words, daunting. I recommend Battering Rams or Imperial Siege units for this. He's a tough cookie, and trains units almost everywhere, but if you even out him in battle, and attack his resource generation, he'll quickly weaken. Destroy his fortifications to win the mission. 2. All In The Family, Part 2 Well, King Henry has gotten mad at Richard's insolence and is threatening to disinherit him. This is unacceptable to the Lionheart, and once again as part of the family feud you have to battle a family member in combat. You start out with a town center in the dead middle of the map. King Henry has 3 TCs, all surrounding you. The map is smothered in blackmap, so at first you don't know exactly where the attacks are coming from, just from the bridge below, the bridge above, and the roads to the east. Just across from the bridge to your south is the first Town Center, it's the nearest and also the easiest to take. A bit up the road to the north of the northern bridge is the next closest one, and what appears to be the main one as it also establishes a secondary Town Center. The last TC is quite far away, down the road east of the main one. Your first order of business is just to survive. Use your Unit Abilities to their fullest and counter the attacks coming from every side. There is a short respite between skirmishes, so use it to heal. Be sure to keep your Ranged units protected, as they can die easily. You have one more unit slot availed, use it to build a Spearman as you don't have any Anti-Cavalry at the time. Pretty early on a Scout Cavalry emerges from the blackmap. He informs you that King Phillip, Richard's French kingly friend, is funneling reinforcements in. So obviously you'll constantly be working above your unit limit, so use your resources to research tech every turn, it's necessary as your opp and your reinforcements go from Dark to Imperial by the end of the brawl. The second (or rather first) reinforcements consist of Archers and cavalry. Rush them to your lines. With these reinforcements your burgeoning army should be able to easily withhold their attacks. The next reinforcements are infantry. They say that the siege units are proving more difficult to handle than expected, and a group of monks and infantry have stayed behind to defend it. Get these reinforcements to the lines. Now, you should easily be able to defend against attacks, and even go on the offensive. Split a small amount of units and go south, to the first TC. Break through the defensive Tower and attack his Town Center. Use your Archers to disable anything he's building. It should fall easily enough. Once it does go in and capture it, then the surrounding resources. The final reinforcements are the heaviest-Two-Handed, Elite Throwing Axmen, Elite Monks, and a Trebuchet. With this you can easily smash through the remaining enemy centers. Detach your army into two parts-one to hold the Town Center from attack and one to attack their Town Center to the north. Cavalry aren't very useful in this one because there's a lot of swamp at the TC. Be sure to leave a nice little bit of units at the TC, there's a sudden influx of units suddenly when you attack. The last Town Center is pretty far away. Just head down the narrow road east and you will find it. it’s not they well defended, and should fall to your goliath forces quickly. Before it does, make sure you've completed the 3 stars - 4 Town Centers (yours, 2 captured, one built), a Wonder, and the relic. Once you've done so destroy it and victory is yours. 3. Cyprus Ok, so now we get to the fun part of Richard's missions, the Crusades. Only problem is, one of your ships, containing a large chunk of your funds, was captured by King Isaac of Cyprus, who refuses to give it back. So what do you do? Invade of course. You come with a large army, complete with a Battering Ram. Siege the first town, it's pretty lightly defended by down-aged units. Defeat them and capture it with your villager. Now destroy their resources and claim them for yourself. So you've captured the first Town Center. The map looks like a crescent. Your Town center is in the lower southwest. A road down a bridge has mine situated in the mountain range, protected by a Crossbowman, and another town as well as a mill. Now the path bends, and you reach another TC, encamped in the mountains. Destroy it to reach the final TC, in the far northwest. Oh god that's a tough cookie to crack, and looks like a fortress with all of the units. You can't take a path from your first TC to the last one because of a huge mountain range separating the whole map. There's a starred castle in the mountains, near your first TC, destroy it and its Elite Axmen guard to claim a star. To do so just place Archers on your side of the mountain and wear him, and the castle, down. Ok, back to the main thing. Once you have nice little force and good resources, attack the second TC. It will be defended similarly to the first one, but there's also a Crossbowman in the mountains mine to deal with, use a Knight on him. This town should fall quickly, and concentrate on destroying the mill center to the south so that your villager can capture it after he captures the Town Center. Now, the next-to-last town center is pathetic, really. Instead of reinforcing this easily defended mountain-encrusted town, Isaac pulls all of his remaining forces in unto himself at the last town. So it's a cinch to destroy this one. Break through and render the Town Center rubble, before reclaiming it for your own. Now, you are ready for the final one, and whoo, it's a dozy. You've captured a siege engineer shop in the last TC, and you'll definitely need it. Build a few Battering Rams or even better, Siege Rams, you'll need them. The only way into the last TC is by a bridge directly in. However, it's no easy pickings punching into it because the area is smothered in units. The layout looks like this: ____________ M ______ \\ f | | ||^ f fmf| Town | //^ fmf f |__ __| ||^ f ][ ||^ ^ = Mountain m = Mill f = Farm ][= Bridge  Empire Map M = Mine First, destroy the mill to the east and capture it if you like. Then set up Archers on the mountains, utilizing Richard's Firing Line ability to increase their range. Snipe the units inside. Keep your siege engines nearby, and don't even think of a front-line assault by infantry, it'll be too bloody. The main units of the occasion are archers you have encamped in the mountains. Use them to open up a hole in the defense of the building guarding the southern entrance. then ram it with a Battering Ram or Siege Ram. It's highly unlikely the ram will survive, but oh well, that's what they're for. As to get 3 stars you have to lure out Isaac, just blowing up the Town center is quite out of question for now. Concentrate on coming around with your archer-equipped siege rams and battering the buildings to shreds. Also use your Archers to reduce the siege equipment he has there. After a few rounds Isaac will reveal himself and attack you. Bad choice; kill him, and then wreck the TC. If you want 3 stars you'll also need to collect all of the relics. Build a church in one of your conquered spot and collect them all. 4. The Siege of Acre Bloody hell, the Siege of Acre! This is a freakishly hard one, and don't be discouraged if you lose a few times. Even experts have immense trouble, including seizing the mines, routing Saladin, and winning in a mere 15 DAYS. Now that's a hardcore mission. Luckily I found a user-friendly, if lengthy, way to conquer it with 2 stars (15 days? Well...read on). Basically, you start out with a nice, large army, but this counts for nearly nothing compared to the bristling hornets’ nest that is Acre. Trust me, it's impossible to beat it with just the forces you have right now. Just be docile and hold back. Luckily, reinforcements come on days 7. 10, and 15, so by that end you have the brute power needed to force Acre out. Also, enemy reinforcements arrive at similar intervals, and days 7, 10, and 15. The first is simply an extra garrison for the Acre troops, but the other two are much more dangerous. They consist of Elite units, and spawn to the right of your column. The Mamelukes are especially, immensely dangerous, as they can wipe your Templers out completely in hand to hand 100-100 combat. My best advice is to position a bit of Longbowmen on the right with Templers, and to attack first. use your Longbowmen and then run them down with Templers. Then retreat. By the time the first column is knocked out a new one comes, which is even more dangerous, so that is why you retreat. As they come in, do the same thing again, and use Longswordsmen on the Pikemen. Also, you have to defeat Saladin and destroy the two mines he is near. To do this set up a bunch of Longbowmen, Templers, and King Richard himself, split them from the main group, and then encamp upon the mountains with 5-range archers and attack the mines/Saladin’s guards. Once you do so he will head for you, and he, the two Camels, and the two Mamelukes are deadly, so fall back quickly while taking pock shots at him. Weaken his force with the Longbowmen, the only truly effective kick-all weapon you have, and then counter with your Templers. After a few battles you will emerge victorious, and Saladin will be routed. Now you can freehandedly destroy the two mines. OK, now for the big thing, the siege itself. I've found an AI trick that will totally make the battle easier. Instead of attacking, stay behind and augment your archer's range with Richard's Firing Line ability. For some reason they will not charge past a certain extent, and the line for this is 4 spaces to the north of the town center, except for one exception in the center for which it is 5. But really, you'll find the exact line through trial and error. Richard can boost all archer's range by 1, which basically means that you can reach beyond this "line" with your Longbowmen, doing punishing damage whilst receiving nothing in return. Also, if you do enough damage, the AI finally runs out of his near-infinite economy and can't build any new units. be advised this will take a while! But if you are very docile or are having severe difficulty, this will work. Otherwise, use Firing Line, use them Longbowmen to shoot the defenders to pieces. actually, just use them at max range to shoot a straight path directly to the TC, which is the ultimate objective-nothing else matters. Now that you have cleared a path, attack the Archery Range with a Battering Ram (suicide strike) and then counter the threat to your overexposed Archers by moving your Templar line forward. The AI will undoubted counterattack, but also concentrating on the Battering Ram. Now, use your Archers again to clear a path, hurt the aggressors, and then counterattack the attackers with your Templers. Flank the Scorpions if at all possible, they present an immense threat, and kill them. Now, ram your badly damaged Battering ram into the Archery Range, and then finish it off with your Archers. Clear the TC and then ram your Imperial Ram into it, badly damaging it to 49%. After another turn of counterattacking, which should be weaker, open up with the archers again and then ram your final, still undamaged Battering Ram into home on the Town Center. Finish it with Longbowmen. Victory! Whoo, that one was a dozy wasn't it? UPDATE: James says: Leave all long swordsman and siege weapons where they spawn and go after the mine with everything else. Destroy the mine before pissing off saladin and his guards. Once they are after you, use bowman to weaken the mamelukes first and foremost, and use templars and Richard to finish off the weakened units. Sometimes a camel or mama will drift towards acre, just ignore it and rush the other mine with ALL remaining templars. The first time, I only used two templars and they were unable to take the mine down before the reinforcements showed up (you can also use one of your bowman to help out, recognizing it will be dead as soon as the reinforcements arrive. When the first wave of reinforcements appear, finish off the mine if it still stands, and then FIGHT these troops with anything you have left (even Richard, although be careful because I didn’t get him out of harm’s way until he was quite weak.) Once these troops are dead or crippled, bring all remaining archers to the mountains in range of acre, Richard behind your troops (using firing line or superb leader… I suggest SL because you need to do as much damage as possible). Ok, up to this point I actually still had templars hitting acre from the south east, but they will eventually get slaughtered by the second wave of reinforcements, however this will delay them long enough to keep communication broken between them and acre. Now as you outlined, clear a path, hit the archery with the ram and any extra archers you have, and then bring your other ram in behind it, in range of the TC. Of course they counter your ram hard so next day, withdraw one ram, clear the path/TC and then hit it with the other ram and any other missles you can get in, and if you are as efficient as possible with your movements/attacks, and probably with a little luck, you should bring acre down on or before day 15… Thanks James! Creds for you :) Anyone else want to email me something? 5. The Battle of Arsuf You're traveling towards Jerusalem, and are ambushed by Saladin’s Light Cavalry. What starts out as the stirring of the hornet's nest ends in a very big, but very quaky, fight. The key here is to reduce your surface area. So, as fast as you can, contract your water carts into a ball. Then, around them, put scorpions and crossbows. Use your Templers to blow open the swordsmen, and your own swords to kill the pikes. The Mamelukes are a tough cookie. Use your ranged units and then strike them down with cavalry. It might look like quite a strong show, but after a while, like turn 8 or so, Saladin just quits and goes home. To get 3 stars, rout Saladin by attacking him and keep your Trade Carts safe, parallel to this is to keep your powerful Scorpions intact. Easy. This is actually a pretty fun mission. But, then again, if Saladin hadn't quit, he would have annihilated my badly damaged, underpowered forces. 6. The Taking of Jerusalem This one is a dozy. As in, it's a mad rush in which you lose a lot of units but win because, well, you fulfilled the objectives, didn't you? This is #2 on my list of hardest missions, right up there with Saladin’s Jerusalem, The Siege of Acre, and Yashima (though the latter isn't actually THAT hard). Build a Town Center north of where you start. At the same time send your units up to Jaffa and annihilate it. Now, capture it and the nearby mill. Two things happen: they advance to the Imperial Age, and start sending super-elite units like mad at you from Jerusalem and from Ascelon. Capture Jaffa, and expand as well as you can. Build a castle on the bridge to Ascelon and as a buffer to Jerusalem, and defeat the first hoard they send at you from Jerusalem. Take a large chunk of your forces and attack Ascelon. This is a critical supply juncture to Saladin-in fact, all they ever do is resupply Jerusalem. But the biggest threat by far is the Mameluke armies they send north at you from Jerusalem, OWWW. Each one can wipe your ticker clean of any unit, even Pikemen and oh, especially your charismic Templers. Longbowmen them and advance on them with Templers. A full strength one can knock your unit out completely without any sort of effort, so keep a lot of Longbowmen for your split there. Just use brute strength to burn down Ascelon as fast as humanly possible and return to your overextended, malpowered, horribly wounded Jaffa army. Reinforce it so that it can stand fight again (and if your castle was burned down, rebuild it). This is the stretch-point of this mission; it may take several tries, but if you can achieve it, well you've finished the hardest part of the mission. Saladin usually attack into Jaffa. Bullet into Imperial as soon as possible. Establish a garrison at Ascalon using your new resources. Build several Markets and Churches, they are critical to this mission, and use a lot of Siege Engines. Once you are established, reach your unit limit, and attack with your Jaffa guys. At the same time, advance with your smaller Ascalon garrison upon your foe. Now the going gets gritty. They have immense pure power, with 2 castles, a Wonder, and a fully cocked Town Center that you are under orders not to totally decimate. Crap. Attack Saladin first and push him away, not having him around to debase your efforts is awesome. By far the biggest threat is the Elite Mamelukes they've got. KILL THEM WITH BOWMEN BEFORE THEY CAN FULLY SPAWN. Ignore a more standard unit like Archers just to kill these guys, they're absolutely brutal. Kill anything that comes from the castle and do heavy econ damage as you can. Equalize with the Town Center and then batter it into the next dimension. Use your Siege Rams to crunch the buildings into rubble and open up as many holes as you can. From here, Archer anything they train, use your Templers to hold off their stuff, and blast a clear to the Town Center. Now, BLOW IT UP. Also take the castles and Rock thing with you, if you can. This is HARD!!!  Empire Map ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Empire Map is another fun mode in this game, the free play mode. You select your civ, color, team (if any), and options, and start playing. Section 1 covers the many options that make skirmish play varied and interesting. Something worth mentioning-in skirmish mode you will have an "Emperor Rank." This is determined by the total amount of Empire Points you have collected (including those you spent). Since every victorious skirmish match gives you points, you will advance from Peasant all the way to Emperor! [5.01] Options ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Age - Select your starting age. If you select an age other then the first one, you start with all the technologies of the previous ages. Black Map – Standard, you will start your campaign with the entire map covered in darkness. If you turn this off, the entire map can be seen and you will see all of the squares. Fog of War - Areas you have uncovered will still allow enemy movement to go unseen unless the square is illumined by the sight range of one of your units. Turning this off means that all explored squares are always illuminated, turning this and Black Map off lets every player see every other player's actions across the whole of the map. A very nifty feature depending on what kind of game you want to play. Civilization Specials - Toggling off will turn off all of the civ specials (see sec. 1.5) making them all completely equal. One interesting effect of this is that now castles can train any and all civ-special units, so you’d see Saracens with Throwing Axmen and Britons with Mamelukes, and etc. Heroes - Usually you start the game with your civ's hero, a swordsman (Militia, Men-at-Arms, Longswordsman, Two-Handed, depends on starting age) a villager, and your hero. Toggling this off replaces the hero with another swordsman. Random Events - Random Events, described in section 2.2, are random events that can have a good or bad effect on your empire. Turning them off negates them. See 2.2 for details. [5.2] Maps ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The following is a list of maps in the game. Agincourt (250 Empire Points) *2 Players* Overview: Set Piece Battle! Play as either side in this legendary battle of the Hundred Years' War. Best played as Britons (Player 1) against Franks (Player 2). Details: This is one of the few Set Piece Battle skirmish maps, in which both players start with a large army and most outfight one another. Player 1 starts with 3 Pikes, 6 Swords, 6 Longbowmen, and a Knight. Player 2 starts with 5 Swords, 4 Light Cav, 3 Crossbowmen/Areblasts, 4 Heavy Cav, and a Caviler/Paladin. This one is the reliving of the Battle of Agincourt, and similar to the real one, the British must use their Longbowmen to crunch the enemy lines, while the Franks must use their Cavalry to effectively burgeon into the Briton lines (the Britons won this epic battle in real life, by the way). The map itself is a kind of plain with a + road in it, either side containing forests and swamps scattered throughout. Assuming that neither side sees the other, there's going to be a lot of careful movement down the road. Arabia *4 Players* Overview: The vast, arid lands of the Arabian kingdom. Details: This is a very large, desert map. The island is absolutely covered in resources and blanketed in Special Objects, you'll need a large team of villagers to claim it all. fighting is probably going to be sporadic, but there are several bridges and a few fords that distinguish one's territory from another, so expect heavy fighting over these. The Saracens have a definitive advantage here, and the Mongols aren't bad for it either. As the map is almost completely desert, expect no Knights. You have space for 4 Town Centers, and ranged units help because there are many mountain and hills cutting into the desert. Overall expect some long-distance fighting! Archipelago *4 Players* Overview: A tight gathering of many grassy islands linked by short bridges. Details: Archipelago is a large map that is basically a huge collection of closely linked but water separated islands. They range from tiny 4x4s to some more respectably sized islands. The terrain is plains with sparsely populated forests, and a few mountains and hills housing gold resources scattered about. This game is all about options-there are a million ways to get to your opponent, some more roundabout then others. There are also a million chokepoints-no fighting to the last breath over a single bridge, if your army is broken you can retreat a bit and blockade the next one. This makes for a very interesting blackmap game. Each island contains a few (usually 1 to 2) resources, so you have to go around, claiming them for yourself, faster than your opponent. Archipelago Large (200 Empire Points) *4 Players* Overview: A massive complex of interconnected islands ranging from tiny to huge, and featuring a variety of terrain. Details: This map is basically a larger, more varied version of Archipelago. It's one of the largest maps in the game, but the cut-out roads are very helpful for getting where you need to be. Though the principal is the same, the islands are bigger, the terrain is more developed (there are 2 desert and a few mountain and forest islands), and the fights are more long distance. Archipelago Small *4 Players* Overview: An intensely compact set of linked islands. Details: Unlike the other Archi maps, this one has a distinct shape-an O. That means there are two ways to your opponent. The four relatively large islands are very intensely resource-bourn, with 2 Mines, 2 Mills, and 3 Special Objects compacted onto the island, and that's not even counting your TC! Because of this you should make a mad rush to blockade as many islands as you can. Try a 4-player game on this map-it's intense! Asia Major (300 Empire Points) *4 Players* Overview: A colossal map representing all of Asia. Radically divergent terrains and wide open areas present a unique conquest challenge. Details: The best way to classify this map is absolutely, amazingly, colossally huge. The map is intensely varied. There's no real thing to say, it varies by the game. Black Forest *4 Players* Overview: An immense forest with a spidery network of roads - the perfect place for an ambush! Details: This map is dominated by a spidery network of roads and an immense forest. Resources are cut into slots in the forest. This map is big on keeping a caste of scouts to survey the enemy, because it's true, it's really ambushable. The map is separated by a long winding river down the center of the map, but again there's the problem with surveillance - there are 2 bridges and 7 fords connecting the two sides. The best civ on this map is the Franks, specifically for their Woodsman ability on their Throwing Axmen. Bridge *2 Players* Overview: A single bridge provides the only link between two small islands. Details: You start in the north corner of either the west or east damage. The most important square in the game is the single bridge connecting the two islands, and controlling it is key. Most of the map is plains, but for some reason, near the bridge there is a lot of deserts, so Camels and Mamelukes are pretty useful. Bridges *4 Players* Overview: A wide waterway splits two forested grasslands. These are connected by long bridges placed at opposite ends. Details: Two bridges connect two widely spaced (at points they almost touch however) islands, connected by roads that form a ring. Each side has easy access to two relics, which means you won't have any gold problems in this map. The islands have quite a few resources, enough for a thriving economy. If you're playing 4 player each side has access to a single relic, still helpful. Bridges Large (100 Empire Points) *4 Players* Overview: Enormous plots of land split by a massive body of water. Long bridges and a small network of islands provide the link. Details: This is a very large map, but it's actually smaller then it looks due to the large water gutter space in between the two islands, East and West. The islands are connected by three large buildings, and actually have a bridge segment separating the north and south part of each island (the two spawn areas). The middle bridge actually has a small island complex, and this is interesting as it contains four relics! If you build a church town and stuff each church with these babies, it'll be producing 200 gold/turn. Overall the elongated bridges and great size provide a unique conquest opportunity. Britannia *4 Players* Overview: The island empire of the Britons, stretching from Cornwall to Scotland. Details: Well, it doesn't actually look like Britain, but this map is very large like it. This map is very confusing to navigate, and is a gigantic stew of all sorts of terrain. The basic shape between the four player positions is a sort of square, connected by badly broken roads. Still, each player is close to one another. Most of the resources ring the outside. Canals *3 Players* Long stretches of interconnected rivers subdivide the grass and swamplands of this medium-sized map. Details: The basic shape of this map is a ring-the civs start on the outside of the ring, and a road network connects them all (again, with bridges), but instead of the usual water in the center, there's treacherous, but resource rich, swamp terrain. If you can capture the entire swamp, you've basically won economically but it's a tall task to do so. Fights here tend to develop into bogged-down Villager fights in the swamplands with skirmishes around the sides. Castles (150 Empire Points) *4 Players* Overview: A staged-conquest map heavy on mountains and carved up by a dense road network. Custom built for unbridled castle-building! Details: This is a military-heavy map. There's an incredibly dense road network and some truly great town and castle spots, all carved into slots in the mountains. Archer paradise. Corner Kingdoms *4 Players* Overview: A large, unclaimed central landmass bordered by satellite island territories. Details: The point of this one is to reclaim as many small islands as possible while holding onto your chunk of the main island. Wow, another fight-to-the-center map. You'll have no trouble getting to your opponent thanks to the large road network, but the off-terrain can be treacherous. There is a mountain of resources here, so keep a team of villagers on hand. Crossroads *4 Players* Overview: Twisting roadways zig and zag over and around mountain peaks, all colliding into a central junction on this medium-sized map. Details: Just as the title says, there's lots of zigzags, mountains, and a central road "pinwheel" here. Because of this the fighting will gravitate towards the center. You're not as far as you think from your enemies... France (100 Empire Points) *4 Players* Overview: The long-disputed plains, forests, and mountains of medieval France. Details: Another O-shaped map, it actually looks like France, unlike Britannia. The fighting will be on the outside, and the villagers will be on the inside, because resources tend to gravitate to the treacherous terrain towards the center of the map. Germania *4 Players* Overview: A medium-sized map of the German countryside from Bavaria to the North Atlantic. Details: An irregular crisscross of roads with resources scattered throughout. Lots of bridges, Viligence is key here. Follow the main road to your enemies, but be sure to be on the lookout for ambushes. Hannibal's Crossing (250 Empire Points) *2 Players* Overview: Player 1 must cross the Alps and pillage the Roman settlement. Play as Mongols (Player 1) versus Britons (Player 2), with fog and Blackmap ON. Details: This is perhaps not the most accurate Set Piece battle depiction. The Middle Ages started shortly after Rome collapsed, and it was not the Mongols and Britons but the Carthaginians and Romans. Still, this is an epic. You start out with 8 Persian War Elephants, a Two-Handed, and Elite Skirmisher. Your opp starts with a small army of more "normal" units. Player 1's goal is to destroy the town center, Player 2's to defend it. You are separated by a large mountain range, difficult to navigate, and a bit of terrain. Obviously you have no choice but to ram through the mountains as you can to reach the other side. Hasting (250 Empire Points) *2 Players* Overview: set Piece Battle! Play as the Norman invaders or Anglo-Saxon defenders in this historic battle that shaped the course of England's history. Best played a Franks (Player 1) against Britons (Player 2). Details: This one is actually very similar to the Agincourt, except there are no roads, and a more varied unit repertoire. Franks should concentrate on using their Axmen to counter the pikes and Cavalry on everything else. Britons should use their Longbowmen to hurt the opposition and then finish it with everything else. The map is also of a very varied terrain. High Pass *2 Players* overview: A small concentrated road with grassy fields and a coveted central path through the large dividing range of highlands. Details: This is a very small map, as evident by the 2-player limit. To tell you the truth, this map is very strange to me. There is a central path between the two spawn points, but everything else is treacherous hillbilly-type land that contains all the resources. So you should be splitting your time between fighting on the intensely contested main road and raiding your foes economic establishments. It's a total of a 5-day trip from side A to side B, so expect to fight all of the time. Khyber Pass (250 Empire Points) *2 Players* Overview: Set Piece Battle! Fight to control this strategic route through the mountains of Afghanistan. Best played as Saracens (Player 1) against Mongols (Player 2). Details: This is, like, the Jerusalem of the Skirmish mode. It's very hard, and if your looking for a challenge, you've found one. Player 1 has the advantage of heavy siege equipment and Elite Mamelukes, but minimal numbers, but Player 2...well, they have a lot of Ranged units. it's a fight to control the long winding path through the mountains, which basically makes it ranger heaven-so really Player 2 has the upper hand. Plus, the Heavy scorps are easy to kill from extended range. A true challenge. King of the Mountain (300 Empire Points) *4 Players* Overview: A resource-reach, mountainous island is the central link between several neighboring isles. Details: Hmm, haven't we seen this before? That's right, another fight-to-the-center map. I actually like this one the most among the group. The map isn't big at all, and there are 4 skinny, long islands. In the middle is a not large, but resource filled island. It contains 4 critically important mines, and a relic. Capturing and holding this island is freaking hard!!! Still, the unique and challenging perspective is well worth the huge point cost you have to boot. Moats *2 Players* Overview: Small, symmetrical grasslands are divided by a wide lake. Ideal locations abound for moated towns and castles. Details: This is a small map, but one dissected by a lot of rivers, so it has more bridges then most other maps have in total. You start out in the perfect Town Center spot-totally surrounded by a river, with space for a full TC. There are also some 2x2 shaped islands, obviously made for castles. All in all, this one makes for an interesting, if tailored, game. Mongol Steppes *4 Players* Overview: Long rivers divide the large, wide-open flatlands and deserts of medieval Mongolia. Details: A large, wide open area with lots of resources. There is a single road leading down the map. The catch? You start out really, ridiculously, astoundingly close to one another. You can literally engage on Day 1, and kill their villager by Day 2! The map is very pretty when looked at, and the resources are all over. The one road means that battling will be heavily contested. This one is best played as a team because you can beat the crap out of your enemy if he's this close. Nippon *2 Players* Overview: The narrow and mountainous Japanese isles. Details: Narrow and mountainous, indeed. This is basically an island, shaped like Japan, in a massive sea, with one road connecting the whole segmented beauty together. There are a few different islands at the ends besides the main one, and the positioning of your spawns, around the edge of the bend, gives you a lot of space behind from which to grab for resources. This is a fun, action-filled, and especially hilly map, and you can actually see the Asian mainland-at least, the edge of it-as a chunk of land in the northwest corner. Oasis *4 Players* Overview: A fertile, green sanctuary lies in the center of this small desert wasteland. Details: Yes, this is a small map, but it looks nothing like the "oasis" pictured in the small preview screen. There are no forests, for starters, and the "oasis" is actually a small, thin strip of green land in the center, harboring two mill spaces and a relic. Each player starts in a corner, and the central resources are actually very important as each spawn point has access to just one mill. Interestingly, there are no roads in this map, so movement is harder then you would think by its size. Still, the central vertex is in my opinion entirely missable. Outreamer (150 Empire Points) *4 Players* Overview: The Crusader Kingdoms, etched out of the turbulent, sand-swept Holy Lands. Details: Another large, desert map. Interestingly, it's divided into two long, thin parallel strips of land, separated by water, each with its own road and connected only at the ends by the two crossings, a bridge and a ford. Resources are high, but locomotion between the two strips is a huge problem, as the two main crossings, and the many mountainous secondary ones, are intensely mountain-encrusted. Siege units are useless here, except for defense, as they cannot pass over. There are two relics here, in the center of the map, on those secondary mountainous crossings. Ring Overview: A medium-sized ring-shaped island with varying terrain and a direction dilemma. Details: Ah, another ring map. This is an intensely varied map, and for some reason, the road sort of goes out where it's supposed to connect with the north, so the northern spawned has his own little special thing, with his "own" road. This map is actually very lopsided; north and east are placed very close, whereas south and west are very far from one another. Hmm, so here where you spawn has a big effect on how the battle goes. Anyway, it's a totally resource-laden map, so have fun on this one. Riverlands *4 Players* Overview: A landscape strewn with a myriad of wide, impassable rivers. The risk of entrapment is always present. Details: Wow, what a huge, bewilderingly disorganized map. The road network is the only thing solid here is the road network, which looks like an o with a + through it. There's an absolutely colossal amount of resources, and a core directional dilemma, with quite a few ways to get where you want to be, so each battle will be unique in its own way. There are lots and lots of oxbows, which are, as I learned from science class, are cut-off ring-shaped river sections that develop over a long period of time due to the gradual curving of a river. However, there's a long distance to cover between you and them, so get cracking. Scar *2 Players* Overview: A small map featuring a geography-dividing and resource-laden central mountain range. Details: A big, twisting central road juncture marks the cortex of a greatly varied map. This one has a mountain-and-water center, grass and forests in the median, and a few deserts skirting the outskirts. It's quite a varied map, as you might first grasp by the name and description. It's pretty large for a two-player battle, and it kind of looks if you just took a way a small amount of water on either side, you could stretch it to 4 players, easy. The resources are quite random too, but yes, they do have a center in the mountains. Skirmish ~ Desert (250 Empire Points) *2 Players* Overview: Set Piece Battle! Face off against an opponent in this balanced desert encounter. Details: Fun! If you want a nice, short, challenging battle against your buddy, this map, or its Skirmish Plains counterpart, is for you. You start out with a large army on one side, opposed by an equal army on your opp's side. Winning lies in using the terrain to your advantage, and the ability to poke and exploit holes and gaps in enemy lines. The thing that makes this one unique is that it has a Castle on either side. Yes, Castle! Although your unit limit is 7 and you start with 27 units, if the fighting gets intense, you have a place to pull fresh troops from. Each player starts with 3500 food/3500 gold, that'll last quite a few rounds of recruiting, so the fight won't end until someone's castle is destroyed! Skirmish ~ Plains (250 Empire Points) *2 Players* Overview: Set Piece Battle! Face off against an opponent in this balanced open-field encounter. Details: Wow, what a huge army. each side starts with a large army, and most battle each other out. This is like Desert Skirmish, but with a few differences. First of all, this time it's on a large Plains map. Second of all, the battle is Imperial, no matter what age you choose. The "big point" of your army is the Champion and Paladin relegated to each army. Third of all, TWO castles! How cool is that? There is one difference between the two armies, south has a Heavy Scorpion and a Siege Ram while north has an extra Caviler and no Scorp. Swamplands *4 Players* Overview: Fiercely contested roadways meander around this endless stretch of swampy wasteland. Details: Ugh, brow, muddy swamps. There is very little dry land on this map, but the road network IS extensive, though I can't say fiercely-contested. Resources are scattered within the little "squares" made by the 3x3 "boxes" meandering road (check the map to see what I mean). Cavalry are of limited usefulness here, a they can't cross the ugly swamps, then again so are siege units and ranged units, but less so. Twin Peaks *4 Players* Overview: A medium-sized map with a circular road system that cuts through a central band of mountains. Details: Despite the name, there's only a thin band of mountains down the center. But they do restrict movement so that only the two passes through by the square-shaped road are a viable travelling option. The rest is mostly hills, plains, and forest, with a few scattered desert areas. Valley *2 Players* Overview: A small, fast-paced map featuring a vital central path as well as two very different side-routes. Details: A very, very large map for 2-players. A lot of the resources are through the mountains and forests in the median besides the main road and out past, on the deserts and plains there. A very resource-heavy map, but the central road is the thing that you'll be ducking out on, plus resource raids on the margin.  Multiplayer ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- This section is basically meant to cover the nicks of this game's multiplayer. Because of its turn-based nature, this game is one of the few games that allows player to vs. each other on a single DS, though the "Hotseat" game. There is also a Wireless Multiplayer, but unfortunately no Wi-Fi :( The options in the multiplayer are the same as in skirmish - choose your map, civ, team, starting age, and any of the various options, and begin. You'll find that competing against fellow humans with experience of the game is much tougher then Hard AI, even. Expect Hotseat with experienced players to last a long, LONG time. A big problem, and one of the biggest problems with the game, is that multiplayer cannot be saved and requires you to play it through fully.  Glitches ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- If you've played this game, you'll notice the huge variety of bugs in it. The biggest problem with this game is that it has a tendency of freezing up. The most common one happens when you battle an Onagar and occasionally some other siege unit. in the middle of the battle animation the game will freeze and you cannot unfreeze it. To avoid this problem you have to turn battle animations off. The other major one is a pain in the ass. Often, if you drop the DS, move it suddenly, or otherwise disjoin the game cartridge, it will freeze up with static over all or some of the units on the screen. This is a big pain in the ass and means you have to turn your DS on and off again, making you lose your unsaved work. There are two other common problems, these are non-killer. Whenever you click on a unit and tell it to move, a sound plays. For example, if you move a Caviler it will sound hooves (some units like Yoshimaro have no sound at all). If you hurry through and click End Day or go to battle with a horse unit before the sound finishes playing, it may get stuck and keep looping. This is is annoying but won't break anything so don't worry. It will go away soon enough. The other common non-killer bug is when the AI places a unit and builds a unit on the same building, resulting in 2 units on a single square. There is nothing you can do about this but kill them both. One bug that gave a lot of attention was when certain DSs were especially vulnerable to random crashes, breakdowns and glitches. After complains were brought in, Majesco found a workaround-the problems stemmed from using a username 3 characters or less. So when you play make sure your profile name is 4 characters or more. The last and most serious problem is when your game bugs out while you are saving. This is extremely dangerous, as if it does you will lose ALL data. Trust me, it happened to me once and I had to start from scratch. make sure you are secure when the DS is saving, this is far more serious than just losing a mission or skirmish because you forgot to save! Also it sometimes turns totally off when the DS card is moved. The general work-around to these problems is to save often, which you should be doing anyway. That way you are less susceptible to the problems. Even with these major glitches, the game is an amazing one, but they force you to save often; be ready for them and let the fun continue! [A] Appendix ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [A1] List of Technologies --------- Dark Age: --------- * Loom Requires: Town Center Cost: 50f 150g All Villagers get +25 DEF * Town Scouts Requires: Town Center Cost: 50f 150g Town Centers gain +4 Sight * Leather Soles Prereqs: Town Center Cost: 50f 150g Villagers gain +1 Move * Weaponsmith Requires: Barracks Cost: 50f 150g Militia gain +25 ATT ============ -Feudal Age: ============ * Town Watch Requires: Town Center Cost: 95f 280g Improves Town Center DEF by +20% and Sight by +2 * Wheelbarrow Requires: Town Center Cost: 125f 375g Cost of buildings is reduced by 10% * Advanced Mining Requires: Mine Cost: 95f 280g +15% to Mine income * Horse Collar Requires: Mill Cost: 95f 280g +15% to food income * Scale Mail Armor Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 95f 280g +25% DEF for Infantry * Scale Barding Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 95f 280g +25% DEF for Cavalry * Fletching Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 95f 280g +25% ATT for Ranged Units * Padded Armor Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 95f 280g +25% DEF for Ranged Units * Forging Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 155f 470g +25% ATT for Infantry and Cavalry * Tracking Requires: Barracks Cost: 95f 280g +2 Sight for Infantry * Cartography Requires: Market Cost: 95f 280g +1 Sight for all units ++++++++++++ -Castle Age: ++++++++++++ * Town Patrol Requires: Town Center Cost: 150f 450g +2 Sight and +20% DEF for Town Center * Hand Cart Requires: Town Center Cost: 150f 450g Cost of Building is reduced by 10% * Shaft Mining Requires: Mine Cost: 150f 450g +15% to Mine income * Heavy Plow Requires: Mill Cost: 150f 450g +15% to food income * Chain Mail Armor Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 150f 450g +25% DEF to Age 3 infantry * Chain Barding Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 150f 450g +25% DEF to Age 3 Cavalry * Bodkin Arrow Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 150f 450g +25% ATT to Age 3 Ranged Units * Leather Armor Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 150f 450g +25% DEF to Age 3 Ranged Units * Iron Casting Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 250f 750g +25% ATT to Age 3 Infantry and Cavalry * Conscription Requires: Barracks Cost: 150f 450g Cost of Infantry is reduced by 15 food and 15 gold * Husbandry Requires: Stable Cost: 150f 450g Cost of Cavalry is reduced by 15 food and 15 gold * Archery Tournaments Requires: Archery Range Cost: 150f 450g Cost of Ranged Units is reduced by 15 food and 15 gold * Mechanics Guild Requires: Siege Workshop Cost: 150f 450g Cost of Siege Units is reduced by 15 food and 15 gold * Banking Requires: Market Cost: 200f 600g + 5% gold Income and improved Trade Rate * Merchant Network Requires: Market Cost: 150f 450g Price for Mercenaries is reduced by 25% * Redemption Requires: Church Cost: 150f 450g Improves Heal ability of Monks and Elite Monks * Fervor Requires: Church Cost: 150f 450g Improves Convert ability of Monks and Elite Monks * Sanctity Requires: Church Cost: 150f 450g +25% DEF for Monks and Elite Monks * Murder Holes Requires: University Cost: 95f 280g +25% DEF for Towers * Masonry Requires: University Cost: 150f 450g +5% DEF for all buildings ///////////// Imperial Age: \\\\\\\\\\\\\ * Crop Rotation Requires: Mill Cost: 250f 750g +10% to food income * Plate Mail Armor Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 250f 750g Age 4 Infantry units gain +25% DEF * Plate Barding Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 250f 750g Age 4 Cavalry units gain +25% DEF * Bracers Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 250f 750g Age 4 Ranged units gain +25% ATK * Ring Archer Armor Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 250f 750g Age 4 Ranged units gain +25% DEF * Blast Furnace Requires: Blacksmith Cost: 625f 975g Age 4 INF and CAV units gain +25% ATK * Arena Requires: Barracks Cost: 250f 750g Allows Champions * Squires Requires: Stables Cost: 250f 750g Allows Paladins * Flaming Arrows Requires: Archery Range Cost: 300f 900g RNG units no longer suffer penalty vs. BLDGS * Sappers Requires: Castle Cost: 300f 900g All INF units improve in +50% ATK vs. buildings * Hoardings Requires: Castle Cost: 250f 750g Improves Castle DEF by +35% * Spies Requires: Castles Cost: 300f 900g All enemy Town Complexes are now sighted * Guilds Requires: Market Cost: 300f 900g +5% gold income and improves Trade rate * Atonement Requires: Church Cost: 250f 750g Improves Heal ability of Monks or Elite Monks * Block Printing Requires: Church Cost: 250f 750g Improves Convert ability of Monks or Elite Monks * Illumination Requires: Church Cost: 250f 750g +505 gold income from all relics * Faith Requires: Church Cost: 250f 750g Monks and Elite Monks gain +25% DEF * Treadmill Crane Requires: University Cost: 250f 750g Cost of buildings is reduced by 10% * Siege Engineers Requires: University Cost: 250f 750g Allows Imperial Age Siege units to be built * Architecture Requires: University Cost: 250f 750g +5% DEF for all buildings * Chemistry Requires: University Cost: 250f 750g Allows Hand Cannondeers and Bombard Cannons * Ballistics Requires: University Cost: 300f 900g +25% ATK for Siege units with Range above 1 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- [A2] List of Units Unit name: Militia Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 100 Defense: 100 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: None Unit name: Villagers Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 50 Defense: 50 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Build Unit name: Scout Cavalry Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry +33% vs. Ranged -50% Vs. Building Move: 12 Attack: 100 Defense: 100 Sight: 10 Range: 1 Specials: Scout Age 2: Unit name: Archers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 150 Defense: 100 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: None Unit name: Skirmishers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 110 Defense: 110 Sight: 7 Range: 2 Specials: Skirmish Unit name: Light Cavalry Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry +33% vs. Ranged -50% vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 150 Defense: 150 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Plains Charge Unit name: Men-at-Arms Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 150 Defense: 150 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: None Unit name: Spearmen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 100 Defense: 150 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Anti-Cavalry Age 3: Unit name: Knights Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry +33% vs. Ranged -50% Vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Plains Charge Unit name: Camels Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry +33% vs. Ranged -50% Vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Desert Charge, Scares Horses. Unit name: Longswordmen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: None Unit name: Pikemen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 150 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Anti-Cavalry Unit name: Viking Berserkers Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Frenzy Unit name: Crossbowmen Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 175 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: No Move & Attack. Unit name: Elite Skirmishers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 150 Defense: 150 Sight: 7 Range: 2 Specials: Skirmish Unit name: Horse Archers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 150 Defense: 150 Sight: 7 Range: 2 Specials: None Unit name: Throwing Axmen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: 33% vs. Siege 33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 225 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Skirmish, Woodsman Unit name: Persian War Elephants Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: 33% vs. Infantry 33% vs. Ranged -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Causes Fear Unit name: Celtic Woad Raiders Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: 33% vs. Siege 33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Causes Fear Unit name: Knights Templar Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: 33% vs. Infantry 33% vs. Ranged -50% vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Plains Charge, Zeal Unit name: Scorpions Unit type: Siege Bonuses: 50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 350 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: Units only, No Counter, No Move & Attack Unit name: Battering Rams Unit type: Siege Bonuses: 50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 400 Defense: 325 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: Buildings only, No Counter. Unit name: Onagers Unit type: Siege Bonuses: 50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 275 Defense: 275 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: No Counter, No Move & Attack Age 4: Unit name: Two Handed Swordsmen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: None Unit name: Elite Pikemen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Anti-Cavalry Unit name: Archers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: None Unit name: Arbalests Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 250 Defense: 225 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: No Move & Attack. Unit name: Expert Skirmishers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 190 Defense: 190 Sight: 7 Range: 2 Specials: Skirmish Unit name: Hvy Horse Archers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 2 Specials: None Unit name: Cavaliers Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry +33% vs. Ranged -50% Vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Plains Charge Unit name: Heavy Camels Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry +33% vs. Ranged -50% Vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Desert Charge, Scares Horses. Unit name: Elite Berserkers Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Frenzy Unit name: Elite Woad Raiders Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: 33% vs. Siege 33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Causes Fear Unit name: Trebuchets Unit type: Siege Bonuses: 50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 370 Defense: 350 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: Min Range 2, No Counter, No Move & Attack Unit name: Bombard Cannons Unit type: Siege Bonuses: 50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 325 Defense: 325 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: No Counter, No Move & Attack (Notes: You need to research 'Chemistry' To raise these.) Unit name: Hand Cannoneers Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 300 Defense: 225 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: No Move & Attack (Notes: You need to research 'Chemistry' To raise these.) Unit name: Champions Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege +33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 300 Defense: 300 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: None (Notes: You need to research 'Arena' To raise these.) Unit name: Paladins Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry +33% vs. Ranged -50% Vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 300 Defense: 300 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Plains Charge (Note: You need to research 'Squire' to create Paladins) Unit name: Heavy Scorpions Unit type: Siege Bonuses: 50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 400 Defense: 300 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: Units only, No Counter, No Move & Attack (Note: You need to Research Siege Engineers to raise these.) Unit name: Siege Rams Unit type: Siege Bonuses: 50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 500 Defense: 375 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: Buildings only, No Counter. Unit name: Elite Monks Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: 33% vs. Siege 33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 50 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Improved Heal, Improved Convert Unit name: Elite Knights Templar Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: 33% vs. Infantry 33% vs. Ranged -50% vs. Building Move: 10 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Plains Charge, Zeal Unit name: Elite Janissaries Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 300 Defense: 225 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: No Move & Attack Civ Specific Units: -Franks Unit name: Throwing Axmen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: 33% vs. Siege 33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 250 Defense: 275 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Skirmish, Woodsman Unit name: Elite Throwing Axmen Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: 33% vs. Siege 33% vs. Building Move: 7 Attack: 275 Defense: 300 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Skirmish, Woodsman -Britons Unit name: Longbowmen Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Buildings Move: 7 Attack: 250 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: Volley Unit name: Elite Longbowmen Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Buildings Move: 7 Attack: 275 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 3 Specials: Volley -Mongols Unit name: Mangudai Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Buildings Move: 7 Attack: 150 Defense: 150 Sight: 7 Range: 2 Specials: First Strike Unit name: Elite Mangudai Unit type: Ranged Bonuses: -50% vs. Buildings Move: 7 Attack: 200 Defense: 200 Sight: 7 Range: 2 Specials: First Strike -Saracens Unit name: Mamelukes Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry & Ranged, -50% vs. Buildings Move: 7 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Desert Charge, Scares Horses Unit name: Elite Mamelukes Unit type: Cavalry Bonuses: +33% vs. Infantry & Ranged, -50% vs. Buildings Move: 7 Attack: 300 Defense: 300 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Desert Charge, Scares Horses -Japanese Unit name: Samurai Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege & Buildings Move: 9 Attack: 250 Defense: 250 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Seasoned Veteran Unit name: Elite Samurai Unit type: Infantry Bonuses: +33% vs. Siege & Buildings Move: 9 Attack: 300 Defense: 300 Sight: 7 Range: 1 Specials: Seasoned Veteran [A3] "Best" Units ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Just a little extra feature. Infantry: 1. Elite Samurai (Elite Stats, High Move, Fast Upgrading) 1. Elite Throwing Axmen (High Stats, Skirmish ability) 2. Elite Woad Raiders (High Move, Causes Fear) 3. Elite Berserkers (Frenzy!) Cavalry: 1. Elite War Elephant (Elite Stats+Causes Fear=Absolute Pwnage) 2. Elite Mamelukes (Elite Stats, Desert Charge, Scares Horses) 2. Knight Templers (Zeal) 3. Paladins (Elite Stats) Ranged 1. Elite Longbowen (High Stats, Volley) 2. Elite Mangudai (Fast, First Strike) 3. Hand Cannondeer (Elite Stats) Siege 1. Trebuchet (High Damage, Units and Buildings!) 2. Heavy Scorpion (Massive anti-personnel damage) 3. Siege Ram (Building Crusher) [C]. Credit ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- - Me of course from writing this guide. - James for emailing me his solutions to Lioheart's Seige mission. - <your name here> for <your contribution> - And readers like you. Thank you! [V]. Legal Bit ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- This guide is (C) 2009 jimmythesnowman. This may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, private use. It may not be placed on any web site or otherwise distributed publicly without advance written permission.