Part 21: Time to light the fuse on this planet and get the hell off it!Let's check out our religions, shall we?
Countdown Club is doing very well, but it's no match for Ethiopia's Christianity, because they took Religious Texts, which ramps up the spread pressure by a mad amount, especially once you research Printing Press. Still, on our own continent, Countdown Club is unmatched and giving us a full 17 Happiness Points (in addition to 6 for the three Pagodas I have). This is why I love Ceremonial Burial. Peace Loving is even crazier, it gives you more happiness, but only for foreign cities.
This is a handy-dandy way to check who's winning and how. Our Apollo Program icon is flashing because we can start the Apollo Program project at any time. The icons to its right are the spaceship components we need to build to blast off into outer space. It looks like we're not the most popular people on the planet (well-liked, to be sure, but not enough to secure a vote for world leader).
"Score" is listed here because, in the event that everyone fails to reach any other victory condition, when we hit the maximum number of turns, the winner will be the one with the highest score, determined by territory, income, extra tech researched and so on.
These are the three closest sources of Uranium: south in Adrianople, and two more deposits by Barcelona and Hastings. If we wanted to go mad with power and build nukes, we would have to take over these cities first because there's no way in hell they'd sell us the uranium. I have a solid relationship with Theodora but a rocky one with Elizabeth, so it seems I'd need to take over Hastings. No, I'm not invading Byzantium, not even for the pearls. I have decided we are not going to be total dicks this session.
Well. That makes our decision a whole lot easier, doesn't it? Alright, bitch. You're going down.
And then I get notified that Theodora wants me to go to war with Spain again. This time THIS time I'm going to actually contribute to the fight. Screw it! I want to see what my guns can do! These primitives will taste the power of Mayan science!
Cape town attacks us because they're allied with the Spanish. So, screw it, I say! It's bad form to conquer a city-state but they're in my way and I have a rocket artillery!
The final Rationalism policy is ours. Time for those free techs!
I'm boosting straight to Lasers. This will unlock the Great Firewall wonder that makes spying impossible in our capital, and MODERN ARMOR!
JETS! SUPER TANKS!
The final era. The future is now.
I find out from my spies that England is launching an attack on Ethiopia and I warn him. Good for us, good for him, bad for our current targets.
Cape Town is ours, and barely a significant hit to our happiness, too. Next: Madrid, to finish this stupid rivalry with the Spanish, and give us a line on attacking Barcelona for its uranium. Theodora's rifle guys are way weaker than our G.I. Joes, so I'll be fully picking up the slack here in this fight. Previously I let her do all the fighting against Spain. Now it's my turn to fight, and I'm doing so with interest!
Turns out Elizabeth is also plotting against Theodora. Sharing this info with Thea will further endear us to the Empress and give us both another reason to blow Hastings and Barcelona away.
I've auto generated another Great Scientist. Only one thing to do with these guys at this late stage in the game: blow 'em on a tech boost, NOW.
With this technology, we can see every single hidden area on the map. On archipelago maps this is a good way to see a few hidden ruins that you never found before. It doesn't grant you direct line of sight to all units, however.
Notice how the next turns are also a very small amount. That's because any leftover research bottles are added to the next researchable techs. The Scientist never goes to waste.
Marines are pretty cool on archipelago maps. They're only slightly weaker than mainline infantry, and more versatile. Medical Labs act just like Aqueducts, they save leftover food during a population level-up.
The recycling center is very important. If we lacked the abundant aluminum sources around our capital, this would let us still build spaceship parts.
Time to show off the power of the main battle tank! This thing is second only to the very most ultimately powerful force in the entire game. It's fast, too, very fast.
In this screenshot you can see my artillery is pounding the crap out of her, but she's fighting back. You can also see she's trying to put out a settler, desperate for another city. That's because right now, her only cities are Madrid
And this little piece of crap city in the middle of nowhere.
Now, troops, capture Madrid!
Alhambra, Colossus, and Himeji Castle, all fine prizes! Good.
Muahahahahahaha! Yes. I love shiny things. New Policy!
Protectionism, +2 Happiness for each Luxury, is one of the best happiness boosters in the entire game. Taking it boosts our happiness from 57 to 77!!!
Mercy is for people who don't insult our headdress the first day they meet us, Isabella! It is not impractical, it is cool!
Shoot, Harun's giant empire is catching up to ours technologically. We aren't gunning for him, but you never know, if you wait too long other nations can complete a space project or Cultural Victory too.
This is really, really important for us because our troops are about to be upgraded again and upgrading is costly as hell.
Mechanized Infantry are the strongest foot soldier in the game, although they are no longer exactly on foot, as they are in Infantry Fighting Vehicles now. Strength 90, they are weaker only than the modern tank and the giant robot. They also get an extra movement point, cool! So now I have tanks and micro-tanks!
I love my modern army!
This lets us build a Spaceship Factory, which speeds construction of spaceship parts (not strictly necessary to do this since we are outproducing everyone else in the game) and the Missile Cruiser, the strongest ranged naval unit in the game. Awesome, huh? I'm going to try to get a Missile Cruiser to destroy the final Spanish city.
Only a few techs left to discover.
Love this thing too! It's usually a clincher for who's going to win the culture victory. For us it just helps us finish off the Commerce policies.
And now, Isabella, time to face the inevitability of your defeat at my tattooed hands!
Don't I know it! There's an asteroid headed for us even as we speak!
Well. I feel refreshed. Let's destroy the other queen who also hates us! Hey, Elizabeth! Want me to show you how big a crater I can make with my artillery? Let's have at it!
I think you'd need to take me down quite a few notches at this point, Liz.
I have finished the first component of my spaceship, the cockpit. You need to bring all components to the capital to blast them into space. So you can build one at a time or build several at once and ship them to your capital.
Barcelona is completely weaksauce compared to Madrid. Two shots from rocket artillery and it's down. The uranium is MINE!
I order my general to build a Citadel right around the uranium, connecting it to my trade network immediately. Next turn:
Just like clockwork, I can now build nukes! I shall build one nuclear missile and ship it to my missile carrier.
If you're feeling less murderous, you can also build a nuclear power plant with uranium, they're probably the best factory in the game (tied with solar power plants, which require desert).
Capturing Hastings and Barcelona also help pay for themselves in happiness, as they both had a luxury we didn't have before: wine and ivory.
Nobody can stop us. Nobody.
-67 Gold per turn? Wiping out her two cities must have put a really big hole in her budget. Heh. Nah, I won't accept peace, yet. I'd like to see what happens when I use the ultimate weapon.
Holy crap. If I had a wealthy friend no way would I ask them for a significant handout like THIS. Jeez. Get bent, Napoleon. Friends don't let friends become bums.
Well, odds are good this will totally piss off everyone in the whole world, but what the hell. This LP is determined to show off everything! Bombs away!
Yikes. They're gone. They're all gone. Damn. And London has many fewer people in it. This was a bit too much, I think.
Aww, man, Al, now you made me feel all guilty!
New policy. Anything we pick at this point would be just for fun, so uh Honor? Maybe I'll show off Honor more next time.
The most powerful unit in the entire game! Giant Death Robots require uranium because these suckers run off a nuclear core, and their only weakness is they do not receive terrain defensive bonuses. They don't need to. That said, they're not indestructible, so you need to use yours as wisely as any tank when deploying them.
Now that I've conquered London, Elizabeth gives me Troyes as a peace offering.
Liberating cities is what you do when you get control of a city that used to belong to someone other than the guy you got it from. You can restore city-states or even destroyed players this way. I might as well let Napoleon have this one, it's a crappy tiny city.
Yep, England sure hates us alright. But it seems everyone else in the world also hates England, so nobody hates us for nuking them! Go us!
Harun invaded Ethiopia and won? Yikes. He's too powerful for us to take on, even with our edge in tech. Good thing we're going for a science victory after all.
This thing is probably the very last wonder in the game you need to build. Doing so totally clinches the science victory.
This is one of the very, very last techs you can research in this game. You can skip a lot of other technology to build it, however. Doing so is a bit of a crap shoot, you never want to build the United Nations unless you're sure you can win a diplomatic victory.
The Helicopter Gunship is the ultimate evolution of the anti-mobile line. First it was spearmen who were good against horses, then lancers, then anti-tank guns, and now this thing. They can hover over mountains, too, so they're pretty mobile themselves.
I get notified that on turn 357, (1937 AD in the Gregorian Calendar) that Harun al-Rashid has completed his own nuclear program.
We are no longer the only ones with nukes! It's time to get the hell off this planet. Launch the final spaceship component!
I like how the planet they're approaching is all covered in red stuff, their little homage to the Alpha Centauri game.
We did it! We escaped the destruction of the earth, many decades ahead of its preordained time in 2012! Woo hoo!
So, let's look at the graphs and stuff.
Score-wise, we were neck and neck with Arabia the whole way, though our technology was way ahead of theirs. They had more points for territory and income, I bet. Byzantium got through this whole thing unscathed, never gaining or losing a city.
Harun got quite hungry for land, he plopped out a couple of lousy colonies in the tundra there beneath me at the end!
Things I'd have done different: Not much, actually. This was close to a totally perfect game. Many people beat us to wonders, but that's to be expected at this difficulty level. Boudicca's early aggression gave us something fun to work against, and our city placement was almost perfect for a "tall" game. No unhappiness issues whatsoever thanks to a combination of our religion and smart policy choices. The only area we did not dominate was keeping our city-state allies satiated, because they were constantly being subverted by spies left and right and left and right. For some reason, not too many people bothered stealing our technology.
So. We have annihilated the competition as Boudicca, using religion as a weapon. We have technologically overpowered the world as Pacal, using religion as a tool to accelerate our growth.
Next up: Empress Theodora uses the power of religion to get everyone to love her and vote her president of the world!!!