Home - Epic Twenty-five: This Is Sparta - Page 2

Operation Jumbo

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So here we go with the elephants.

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Cracked it for a city capture! (OK, that wasn't particularly speedy, plenty of other players got a city from Tokugawa earlier than this.)

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And that 103 gold, with a national beaker skew of almost 1.75:1 with Athens's Academy, translates to almost half a tech of research too.

THIS is a problem, though:

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Nine units from Mansa between those two tiles. Well, Pink Dot down there is whipping out military as fast as it can, now with two food resources improved. But I can't hold Mound against that. I allowed Mansa to take it, and fell back to pick my shots on flatland. I polished off that stack at a cost of one suicide cat and one 85% odds phalanx.

That battle spawned my second GG, but in Sparta as far as possible from the front, so it took a few turns to get him there for my medic. (The first GG had been an instructor in Pink Dot. Almost all of my military had 2 promos out of the box.)

On to Cahokia, Tokugawa's capital. The city battle had one heart-stopping moment when my GG spearman had to attack at 85% to knock off an enemy spearman, but he succeeded and my elephants stomped the rest. I fell one unit short on the first round, leaving one damaged archer. And then:

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By pure dumb luck, Shaka got two units into Tokugawa's capital just at this critical moment!

But fortunately, the next turn, those units moved away, and I got my goal.

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But simultaneously developing was another problem:

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Montezuma's stack arrived, and for the second time I abandoned Mound City to recapture. Fortunately, Monty's stack paused in Mound City for just one turn, which was just the time I needed to build roads to bring a fresh catapult from Pink. It took two suicide cats to wipe that stack. Then an elephant knocked off the lone garrison archer and reclaimed the city again.

It's time for another exciting episode of AI Tactics Theater. So after Tokugawa's capital, I pushed my stack to his last remaining city.

Naturally, the endangered AI whipped out a unit. See if you can spot that unit.

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Poverty Point had to be razed, just like its name. It's got zilch economically, and I'm bordering on recession here. But that settler actually escaped and built a city to let Toku live for another few turns.

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Here's an overview. I'm fully competitive now, with military control out to the chokepoints, ivory and all strategic resources improved and secured, and an economy in adequate shape. I was trying HARD not to crash the economy, and I succeeded fairly well. Athens is running about three cottages, Sparta is up to five, Corinth and Thebes are also getting started on some.

The screenshot shows binary science until I figure out what to do next, which was to get on up to Monarchy for more happy cap. +20 gold doesn't sound like much, but Athens' academy skews that to over 30 beakers, a research rate of 15 turns or so per tech which is decent enough on Epic speed.

One minor difficulty is that both border cities do not make good killing zones for incoming stacks, with hills all over the place.

East or west? Well, Montezuma of Rome is to the west, and I don't relish taking on Praetorians just yet. And I already licked incoming stacks from both western enemies, but none from the east. And Darius is ahead of Mansa in score. And there must be incoming stacks there. So east it is.

darius-suicide.gif - 13kbAnd yup, Darius's stack arrived presently. It suicided against elephants in my city in a 5-0 shutout.

So my stack started advancing towards Darius...

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That is a problem. Longbows will be there.

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But I still got to capture a city from Shaka. And I kept it. Why? It makes a good killing zone, with clear land around it. And it comes with a courthouse. That "Look Inside" option does make a serious difference. In BTS 3.17, I would have razed that city. Also, staying in the city stops these units from costing supply.

woodsman-iii.jpg - 23kbI also got my first ever Medic III / Woodsman III uber-healer.

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Back home, Mound City got itself in trouble again. Montezuma and Mansa managed to muster mobs of units at the same time. Well, I whipped at every nearby city, but it wasn't going to be enough. I abandoned Mound City to recapture for a third time, until I could assemble the newly whipped units and choose my battle spot on flatland.

A turn later, it's perfect.

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Three Praets here, three units left in Mound City, Mansa's five swords on another tile. Slice and dice.

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Pasted! One lost catapult to nine dead units!

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Alphabet in, and how's the tech situation?

Not good, but could be worse. I'm down by Feudalism, Currency, Metal Casting, but nothing beyond them. Neither half of Macemen is around, and without Machinery, elephant-slaying pikemen are far away too.

Anyway, I got stupid for a while, splitting off a stack towards Montezuma. It reached and razed one city, but at the cost of too many catapults, and a counterattack from Mansa finished it off.

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