Part 92: Lanka - Final TurnsFinal Turns
not really a spoiler
I'm not actually going to bother with the endgame killcount. When you win or lose a castle you don't get a full battle report, and I can't be bothered to count the kills.
Schneeble is using these two as casters, going by the gems they hold. That's probably the right move.
This guy is kitted as a nasty supercombatant, but as you'll see he's scripted as a caster. That's a safe move, but I would have used him as the first guy into the castle gate. He can mow down every one of my units in 1 hit.
When you're holding a castle against a storm attempt there's a few things to do:
1. Stop fliers. I was counting on Perpetual Storm to do this, but it got overwritten this very turn. Storm on round 1 also good, as is Staff of Storms. Fortunately, Sauro didn't bring any fliers.
2. Block the gate. You need very sturdy units with an emphasis on Not Getting Hit. Ethereal is probably the best buff here. Do NOT use units that are really good attackers, unless you have a lot of them, because the moment you pour out of the gate you get eaten from all sides.
I actually don't really have ideal blockers for this. My demons are high damage, low prot. But behind them are Spirits, who are eth, and the demons regen through poison clouds. Just have to work with what I have.
3. Have casters that Keep Going. (And prevent enemy casters from doing the same.) I actually don't really have this, but my W8 pretender wakes up every second or third round or so to cast a massive Falling Frost. Once the gate is blocked your casters' jobs are to cause attrition for as long as possible. You'll need to think about how they'll act off script, because you have 45 rounds of off script to look forward to.
4. Cut retreats. Gate battles are nasty, attritional fights, and if you want to win strategically you cannot let routed forces survive. Teleporting thugs are your friend here. Again, I don't have the resources for this.
The gate defence forces are a bit depleted, because some of the demons have decided to go chase down some wolves that were summoned on the edge of the battlefield. This is actually a good thing, provided they can get back to the gate before Sauro breaks through.
Cleansing Water is a very nasty anti-undead and demon spell, but it misses the guys holding the gate more often than not. Darkness (25% precision) also helps, but the Wendigo is undead and therefore unaffected. If Perpetual Storm had stayed up, that would have been another (50% precision)... oh well.
The orange effect is Healing Mists, a generally useless cloud spell that heals friendly units in it. It's best in, you guessed it, castle gate battles. Any cloud spell that your casters default to off script is awesome here. My particular favorite is a W9 A1+ pretender's Freezing Mists, which locks down an undead-held gate to anything but other undead.
The first wave of Hydra Hatchlings rout.
The gate is now held by Disposessed Spirits, an ethereal chaff summon. They're 15 for 4 death gems at conj 5, and useless except to hold up enemies and draw anti-undead spells. But in this case, anything that plugs the gate is useful, and the "good" units are quickly becoming scarce. On the other hand, what you see in the shot is all the Hydras left on the field, and Peak Theorycrafting has been doing a real number on them with Falling Frost spam.
Victory is all but assured.
The final entry, scrawled on a scroll of human skin, in inks of monkey blood and other... more questionable materials, describes what must have been the battle of Armageddon. At the gates of God's Chosen City, Lanka, the once dead but now arisen God King Peak Theorycrafting himself tirelessly slayed an endless horde of terrible monsters. Accompanied by his faithful but disposable guard of ghosts, beasts of the forests, and lesser demons, he stood like a rock as wave upon wave of horrible abominations from the swamps of Sauromatia broke against him.
But this humble archaeologist wonders why this scroll of what must surely have been Peak Theorycrafting's finest victory... was found among the skeletons of his subjects, in these dusty, crumbling, overgrown ruins. Just one more record of the arrogant pretenders, who dared struggle against the inevitable.
What saved Sauro from a rout here were his caster commanders Skroob and the Wendigo, as they have most of his hitpoints in casters that never got hit. Hydras contribute only 6 hp to the initial hp count, so even if I kill all of them the ~200 hp from his commanders probably is enough to keep him over the 75% rout threshold.
My berserk demons stage a heroic last stand, chopping down 2 more hydras before being eaten in turn.
I did, in fact, trigger gemuse.