Part 81: Turn 70: Spreading Our Astral Wings
No immediate plans for that, but they'll end up plowed into our final global, most likely.
Yes, that's what their mage names look like.
I'm pretty happy about 2/3. Mages tend to have enough magic resistance that a successful Mind Hunt is by no means a sure thing. And, of course, we do not plan to slow down mind hunting in the future.
It's important to realize just how bad this is for Mictlan. As I'm writing this, Mictlan has ten forts. I'm sieging two of them, and Ulm is sieging a third. That means they can generate at most seven mages per turn, and that's if they're not planning to generate any war commanders. If I can nuke three mages per turn - and once I can spool up my mind hunting with a few more Skullcaps, I might be able to - then I can cut their mage output literally in half. That's not even counting the sheer logistical issues I'm giving them with regards to blood hunting.
Meanwhile, I've got 14 forts, all of which are dumping out mages at top speed, with another three on the way.
Yeah that's pretty boring. Here's what it looks like from the other side, as built in a test game.
In any case, this also means Arcane Nexus displaced another enchant successfully. Let's check it out.
Excellent. That just nailed the absolute ideal target - Man's Mother Oak. Atlantis's enchants will theoretically go down on their own, and also aren't all that powerful. Gift of Health and Well of Misery we plan to steal. If Man gets around to actually killing that damn monolith, we won't have to dispel a thing.
Of course I don't know if they will ever succeed in killing that damn monolith.
Silvania contained minimal province defense, for a brief period of time, and then that PD was a smoking hole in the ground. Merely casting the communion master/slave spells takes a minute and a half without fastforwarding.
Shamballac involves Phylaides nuking some more cheap PD.
Tiash is me versus PD and a few Jaguar Warriors. The AI doesn't bother using gems, and the PD goes down rapidly.
Storn Woods is a Mictlan/Ulm skirmish - a King of Rain (named "Mixabeerbottle", I'm going to assume that's a custom name) and a bunch of Rain Warriors beating up a few mages and troops.
Nifel has a bunch of Jomon pirates beating up minimal Ulm PD.
Seriously. Pirates. Pirates and Samurai. That's apparently Jomon. I'm fighting an Internet meme.
In The Mirks, Barathrus instarouts a commanderless group of Mictlan troops. He then defeats an Ulm army sent to break out. Whoops. Sorry Ulm.
In Akesta, a bunch of Ulmish troglodytes storm Mictlan's army. Troglodytes are weak and flimsy, but Trample, and manage to take down the majority of Mictlan's army before dying. Mictlan routs, probably barely before Ulm would have, and Ulm wins, sieging another of Mictlan's castles.
In Dagor, we attack Atlantis's army.
Atlantis still hasn't recruited a new commander. First, everyone who can move flees. Second, the magically-animated troops fall apart. We win before Thalassa finishes buffing herself.
Atlantis does attempt to break out of their fort, and succeeds, in fact. My tiny little Shambler army just isn't enough.
That's pretty good. I wonder how much I can roughly expect per turn? I should get a ton from my own castings as well.
Our mega-army has instantly broken a castle's siege. I'm going to clean it out and claim it for our own.
Despite my best efforts, I've failed to break through at both Midgard and Mictlan's northeastern castles. With Mictlan's army bearing down on me there's not much I can do about that. I'll evac every important unit this turn, leaving a pair of scouts to siege.
Unsurprisingly, Ulm is successfully repairing their castle that is being sieged by a single unit.
And finally, Dragon Pointe has proven a somewhat dubious staging ground, but we'll be evacuating some of them this turn as well.
Off in our expansion force, I move Phyleides to another province to avoid any sort of a Mictlan counterattack. Ha ha, did I say I moved her? No, I watch as she Reanimates. Awesome. She's literally adjacent to Mictlan's capital - if Mictlan has a bunch of mages there and decides to attack her, she may very well die.
Now, I could fix this by just setting her orders to retreat. But I'm going to risk it. She is a powerful combatant and should be able to take down a truly surprising number of jaguar warriors - and Mictlan doesn't even seem to have jaguar warriors, it's all Eagle Warriors, which are nowhere near as dangerous. Flying, but that's not really an issue for her.
Plus, if I set her to retreat this turn, it's near-guaranteed I'll forget to set her back next turn.
My Strategos tosses his Gate Stone back in the magic armory, drops half his troops in the province for a future commander to take, and troops west with the remainder. My Sibyl, meanwhile, builds a temple.
I think I've mentioned Mictlan's unfortunately fragile Dominion. If I can get a serious Dominion push going, he'll be forced to burn blood slaves (and mage turns) just to avoid losing instantly. And once he's dead, all those temples will spread out influence in a very powerful fashion. Even now, our temples are actually pushing Dominion into Midgard's old territory that Mictlan technically owns.
Back to our actual territory. One month until our first two castles go up. I've got a kind of uncomfortable little spike of land between Man and Ulm, but we'll just live with that.
Barathrus would love to kick some more Mictlan provinces down, but everything nearby is Ulm. He heads south to hit some remnants of Jomon - he'll use that area to get back to Mictlan.
Mictlan's army is in striking distance of both forts, and I evacuate both of them. My mages move west back into my territory. Polypoites, my Tartarian Spirit, moves southeast into Mictlan territory. We'll use him to kick around Mictlan's PD some more.
Keep in mind that we're overtaxing every territory that we get. That way we get the money and Mictlan ends up starved for cash. He does have three capitals - Mictlan, Abysia, and Midgard - so we'll just have to get those from him ASAP.
It turns out we accidentally left our hoplites in Stone Grave Mountains. Whoops. We can't easily retrieve them, so we just leave them there - we'll recombine forces in a turn or two. I gate a group of 50 more Hoplites over to Robber Home, and we'll reform that army next turn and start its conquering.
Philetor, also hanging out in Stone Grave Mountains, moves to join Polypoites. They'll both have some fun rampaging.
I split my megacommunion up a little. 20 mages and 30 Hoplites attempt to break the siege of Silvania, while the rest of the army beelines for Midgard. I say "split up" but it takes like twenty minutes to redesign orders.
Five Sibyls barrage Mictlan provinces with Mind Hunt, hoping to slay mages.
We also start hammering his big army with Seeking Arrow. It's nowhere near a guaranteed kill, as it simply does a small amount of damage versus a random commander, but we don't have much better use for Air gems and it will severely piss him off while attritioning his mages further. As far as I'm concerned, that's a productive use of gems.
Speaking of gems, our global for next turn is Well of Misery. By default it's 80 gems. We're putting 239 in. I'm pretty sure we'll beat Ulm's casting strength.
And speaking further of gems, I forge four Starshine Skullcaps and four Spell Focuses. It's time to kick Mind Hunting into high gear. And by "high gear", I mean "ridiculous gear", because by now you know what the chance of me doing something halfassed is.
(Future Me: fuck you, forge some Eyes of the Void)
mage road mage road
I'm building three temples this turn, and a bunch of my Priests are heading east to construct even more. We're really pushing fast up the Dominion chart.
We're expecting to capture several more territories from Mictlan this turn, as well as, obviously, get another global up. The war machine ain't stopping anytime soon.
Three cheers for war!
Next: The gems really start flowing in.