Holy crap! Saladin came demanding gold, which I refused, and he declared war in response! My expected Pleased relations hadn't rematerialized; +7 shared faith was offset by "you declared" and "you razed" and "close borders".
Well, at 3 turns to Rifling, I should have no trouble holding him off, but this does make him start building units sooner.
But crappo crappo crappo, Saladin beelined right to Rifling himself, getting it at the same time I did. No easy redcoats-over-muskets conquest. And crap-squared, Louis beelined right to Democracy, ignoring Gunpowder. So my next-door Protective neighbor beelined right to Rifling while ignoring economy, and my economic antipodal rival ignored guns and went right to Democracy. This stinks. This stinks. This stinks. This stinks.
So this is going to be painful. To decisively win this will take some heavy drafting, and in the meantime I'm also going to lose the naval fight, my caravels won't beat his galleons. But I must do this - I cannot beat Louis's culture with a spaceship just on our badlands territory.
YES, oh holy god, YES. The Golden Age isn't ready yet, but I want drafting NOW NOW NOW.
Dang, these deals are expensive, but I must take them.
And again I say YES.
Been forever since an overview - I've been in rapt concentration since Saladin's war declaration, four hours ago. Coventry is belatedly trying to become a Globe Theater draft camp.
I currently have a stack bombarding Najran, waiting for a group of four redcoats to catch up to attack the city. The RNG swung well in my favor; after four suicide catapults, I won six straight rifle battles in the 60%-80% range, then cleaned up against camels.
However, I left the city uncaptured for a moment. This trick got the AI to bring over more rifles from Basra -- so I could attack them while the city's defenses were still down, and without fortification bonuses!
That battle went in my favor, and slowly but surely I continued with redcoats over Aryan, Khurasan, and Medina. Each battle was brutal - typically I suicided four catapults for collateral, then lost two or three redcoats among a slate of 70% odds battles. But I was surely outproducing my rival, thanks to a strong Heroic Epic in London and draftees coming from Coventry.
But there's another emergency dawning. France is clearly well on path to a culture victory try, already over 10k culture in three cities with four religions. Beating that with a space victory is clearly not possible. I'm going to have to make a culture decapitation on top of winning this war. And how am I going to do that? I'm not even sure I can reach Infantry soon enough to bring enough of them on the attack.
At this point, I stopped playing the game. I was literally losing sleep at night and stressing out at work over how to beat this game. Especially on Epic speed - yes I know Epic means more time for moving an invasion force, but my micromanagement style means I really am working 1.5 times as hard for everything. I also felt time pressure to get Adventure 43 coded, playtested, and debugged. So I walked away. My official Epic result is a retirement in 1645 AD.
But a funny thing happened on report day. I was guessing at a decent chance of no wins being reported, which would let me launch into some rants about the scenario design. :) But darrelljs and zeka recorded solid wins. And pocketbeetle in particular turned in a game that fell farther behind than I did and climbed back up a steeper mountain to victory.
And since my work on Adventure 43 was done before it even opened, now I was out of Civ to play.
Game, I wish I knew how to quit you.
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