Part 46: Pangaea - Turns 23-25First off, I just want to share with you guys something I realized on friday night, while I was staring at Russian wikipedia pages thinking about this thread and the four beta clients I have installed and my almost-untouched copy of Armored Core 5: I have reached a point in my life where I feel irresponsible putting off video games to do paying work. It is magical and I could not have done it without you all. Thank you.
Second, this mini-lp is awesome and hilarious and I feel bad interrupting it for more of our not-island bullshit that nobody cares about, but it's been suggested that I should update anyway, so...
Good news! I finally found a fire site and I killed a bunch of TC's stuff and swiping that Arcos province on my way out of his territory went swimmingly. Bad news! TC has busted down the walls of my western fort and will take it immediately. Oh well. Let's dwell on my victory for a moment, shall we?
Here you can see our forces lined up, and a single acid bolt incoming from the expensive cap-only mage he has accompanying this force.
Here you can see a group of revelers who have decided to prove that sometimes, attack rear orders really do work. Off to the right of the rapidly-dying horse arches, you can see the expensive cap-only mage wondering why there are enemy goatmen this close to him.
And here, you can see a red smear on the snow that used to be an expensive cap-only mage while the rest of the revelers turn around to go stab some archers who weren't smart enough to bring horses they could run away on.
That was a pleasing victory, but I elect not to pursue TC's army immediately for a few reasons. First, there are a lot more troops in that province than escaped from the battle which means a new force and possibly new tactics on his part. Second, because getting the defensive first-round advantage is a really big deal in this matchup - I'm counting on it to have that swarm spell I went on about earlier disrupt his archer fire, and buy my maenads time to close. And, finally, because I'm all out of nature gems with that force to cast swarm, so I load up a harpy with a full thirty of them (the maximum number of gems one commander can carry) and send her out to resupply the army. In the south, I order the Arcos-region reveler groups to continue taking territory as they move to join the main army. In the west, I order both mages remaining in that fort to evacuate. Having invisible mages is cool sometimes.
Okay, those arrows were unexpected and unfortunate - both target the dryad who had previously conquered an Arcos province and the second one kills her, leaving her revelers stranded. This is sad but there's nothing I can reasonably do about it. The other reveler group takes their destination province without issue, TC butchers the half-dozen maenads abandoned in the western fort, and TC proves less patient than me, attempting to push back against my main army with the reinforcements I noted last turn. Finally, the turn's random event is hugely significant:
I hate you, universe. This represents 500 gold and an entire turn worth of lost research from all the mages in my cap. This is awful. Let's look at me killing some more of TC's stuff to cheer me up.
Okay, he brought a lot of Wot5E. He hasn't really changed up his positioning at all, though; they're still all concentrated on his south flank, so they're still going to go up against the high def centaurs + maenads I have clustered down there while my own revelers go directly for his archer-heavy northern flank. Additionally, since I'm on defense in this battle, I have some harpies from my pd; this means I get a free batch of arrow decoys and it doesn't matter that I haven't had time to distribute nature gems to my mages yet.
Sure enough, his archers are confused by bird monsters and accomplish nothing before my hordes of insane naked women are (slowly and feebly) tearing them apart. And my revelers have already demolished his northern flank. Hooray revelers.
After all his archers have run away and his Wot5E finally get to join the fight, having been held back presumably to avoid casualties from friendly fire, they kill a ton of maenads and I continue not giving a fuck. It's way too late to matter. His mages also killed a respectable number of maenads earlier in the battle by dropping huge heaps of acid on them - not really any fucks given there either. His losses still cost gold and mine, for the most part, still don't.
A fresh batch of maenads is sent from the heartlands to the front lines, to replace all those tragically melted just now. Reveler group 2 is ordered to continue their movement towards the front. Reveler group 1 is left to die because Arcos has a ton of troops in his cap that are going to stomp anything I could do to try and save them.
Arcos continues violating every law of tact and decency, brutally murdering the leader of reveler group 2 with another seeking arrow. As predicted, he also marches north to slaughter the brave goatmen of reveler group 1. Out of respect for the sensitive members of our audience, we will refrain from examining this barbaric display in any detail. TC also marches on from the western fort he has just stolen, also as predicted - I'm still not sure what I'm going to do about that, as ensuring victory in the southern front continues to demand all of my resources.
There is also a worrying development in the north - Sauro has a huge army of junk on our border again, and there's really no reason I can think of for it to be there other than to fuck with me. But I can't do much about that either, so I choose to pretend he's about to declare war on Mictlan or got lost on the way to Lanka or something. Whatever. I'm winning in the south and the army is now fully stocked with precious, insect-summoning nature gems so I decide to focus on the south and order an assault on the remnants of TC's forces. He may have more income than me, but he's been bleeding forces at a really astonishing rate - he can't have much left in reserve, so I figure if I can break this army for good (and bag the huge number of expensive mages he sent with it), it will turn the tide and/or give me some time to pull together a response in the north. An independent commander is recruited to continue leading reveler group 2 to the safety of the front lines, since Arcos doesn't have an army close enough to demolish them before they can make it.