Part 62: Turn 52Okay I'm just going to post here for now until we see how Jeffery's bid goes.
Right let's not waste too much time with setup we know why we're here. Joaquin Phoenix's Oscar teleports right into the biggest enemy force. It's time for payoff.
There's two Elemental Queens here, the Ether Lord, and a whole lot of big guns. There's also two people holding a Staff of Storms which very helpfully makes sure that the eagles and gargoyles can't fly and instead have to hobble along the ground slowly.
From the first turn an incredible hail of bullets and shells fly across the map.
They mostly miss thanks to storm of course.
After casting Resist Lightning to get an incredible 5 shock resist, it's time to d-d-d-d-duel! I don't really know how the targeting works but the Ether Lord is targeted first, I'm not sure if it's because he's the highest astral caster or just one with a chunky amount of HP. Let's see how it goes!
YES! YES! GET FUCKED! And it's not even a draw! This plan worked perfectly, I'm ecstatic. Time to mop up the other two astral mages and then get out of here!
Wait, that wasn't an astral mage? What? Magic dueling a troop, let alone a commander without any astral is not going to do anything.
It happens again too. What is going on, magic duel is 100 precision and can't miss! Well in any case things are starting to look a bit hairy since air elementals can fly in a storm and our 5 shock res isn't going to let us survive too many thunder strikes.
And we're out! I'm going to call that a resounding success, even if there are 2 weak astral mages left. It's probably a bit too risky to do this again exactly the same since it's likely that Atlier would adapt to e.g. send in the air elementals on turn 1 but still, getting rid of what was by far the most dangerous mage in that stack was absolutely worth it.
As an aside, I check the patch notes a week later and what do I see? Well then.
You can see how the Ether Lord had been commanding the Ether Warriors and they all got left behind, and in my dominion at that! This is going to be a great opportunity to either force the big fight that I've been craving or just polish off the remains of those 90 pearls that was spent on these guys, avenging our Ancient Clown while we're at it. The Ether Lord also had 75 gems of equipment on him but some of that was probably recovered.
I'm not entirely sure why those draconians aren't moving, did the commanders die somehow? I haven't even started mind hunting yet! Anyway given that there's a lab in that province, Joaquin Phoenix's Oscar is just going to teleport there. There's no need to cast Returning this time since he can just cast the teleport ritual next turn. It's perhaps a bit overkill to use my pretender to finish off a random raiding force but I'm having too much fun jumping on people with this extremely powerful mage.
Our forces arrive to retake Fenno's old throne and they're uncontested. We don't break the walls this turn but we will next turn. Maybe we'll find out where Bongo has gotten to.
Over in Karanaac's lands we see Anglia's new raiding force come in. It's pretty reliant on the King of Mountains who is backed up by some cav.
However there are no astral mages, and I just unlocked evocation 6 i.e. Mind Hunt this turn and we immediately fire 3 into this stack. Time to find out that Anglia has galaxy brained us and has a sneaky hidden astral mage! We don't yet have too good of a supply of magic penetration items but we have a LOT of S2 bearded ladies so with enough gear (forged by the steel ovens of course) we're going to be able to swiftly increase the number of hunts we can do each turn.
Up in the far far north we go stand on top of the mantis fort there, encountering only a token amount of mantis PD. Finally, this war that I didn't even want to fight might be over!
Except that it turns out that U had exactly the same idea and sent one of their freespawn thugs.
They would have easily beaten the mantis forces here but against the might that is clowns, they don't really stand a chance.
Honk. Too bad they're immortal and our clowns troops killed them so quickly our mages didn't have time to start casting soul slay.
Mantis mercs make mincemeat out of a mini military in a meaningless meadow. Meh.
At this point I've basically stopped showing inconsequential events but this one gives us a Cool Dude who is a slightly more powerful fire caster than anybody we've got (except our god of course). Should help us spend our fire gems better and it's a small amount of extra research. The lab doesn't matter.
I'm suddenly feeling increasingly positive about how this is going! Anglia don't really have much of an answer to Joaquin Phoenix's Oscar, mind hunt will allow me to punish any raiding, and we should be able to start sending our own thugs into their lands again.
The ancient compact between clowns and illusions!