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Adventure Forty-seven: Starfall

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Yikes! OK, I've got a score to settle against Mehmed on Deity difficulty, that's for sure. There's the incoming stack. Not a threat to anything beyond Elephantine, but can I keep even that city? My military consists of cardboard warriors, and two catapults that Heroic Epic Memphis built to keep on hand.

But that stack is little threat. Mehmed lacks any metal, so all he's got is horses and catapults. Notice, too, that all I need is five physical bodies in Elephantine, and the city can't fall against four non-siege attackers. Finally, Pacal researched Feudalism just as my spies reached him, so some Kremwhipped longbow defenders and I was safe.

I held out on defense for a while. The key turning point would be upgrading to macemen, after getting the spies and EP together to steal Machinery.

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... What? I lost my copper? And I stupidly traded the other copper away to Sury for horses? So I can't cancel that deal now? But then Saladin of all people came to my rescue, trading me Iron for a pile of resources. So I cleaned up Mehmed's stack with macemen. But he was researching Engineering, where a Deity AI can build castles at will. No real chance to take the fight to him.

I also took a side on religion now. Hindu, hoping to get Sury to friendly between religion and fave civic. I have enough military now that I can risk an attack by Pericles.

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Presently Pacal reached Education, with my spies right behind him. He showed 4 turns to Liberalism, while I showed 7. But this was just as my third Great Person popped as a Spy from Memphis. With a Golden Age and all the cities building Research, I actually could speed Lib up to 4 turns and win the tie with Pacal. But I decided not to. I don't need Liberalism itself for either civic, and it has no trade value here. With my EP multipliers, it's cheaper to just steal whatever Pacal slingshots than to try to outresearch him. And that means my Great Spy settled instead, for a ridiculous 12 + 150% = 30 EP plus 6 beakers.

Pacal did get Liberalism, taking Astronomy - not Nationalism that I'd been expecting. Astro can wait just about forever for me.

state-property.gif - 5kbI stole Banking next, and in looking over civic options realized with horror what I had missed all game. +1 food from workshops and watermills. I should have been spamming those like crazy, but haven't built a single one. Watermills are strictly superior to farms!

Back to the war game, Mehmed and I were still stalemated. No Tech Trading seriously hurt my options here. Mao and Suryavarman were both willing to declare war on Mehmed, but there was no chance I could offer them enough. I had plenty of stolen technology to offer, but the gods decreed we could not teach it to them.

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Mehmed would not sign peace with me - he insisted on conceding a city of mine. So I just kept my stack right outside his city. Not enough to take it - he's got about 12 units of his own in the city. But enough to invite suicides against the forest (with Commander Horus the Woodsman III defender soaking up experience) and stop him from making any offense.

Then Mehmed reached Gunpowder. Muskets JANISSARIES would put a stop to any thoughts I had of actually taking that city.

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But just in time I figured out how to end this fight. I retreated my stack where you see it. Now Mehmed "knew" his city wasn't in danger, and sent his troops invading my land. But Ankara is in fact still reachable by my army, now with just four units on defense. So I razed it and now Mehmed signed peace. He even agreed to Convert Hinduism as part of the peace deal.

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So I'm alive, but all that dropped me into LAST PLACE on the scoreboard.

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