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Your Strategies

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Level 8 Human Student
Alignment: Chaotic
Posted on June 6, 2010 at 4:25 pm

I've been playing the game for a while now and was wondering how others were playing it, seeing as it gives you the freedom to manage your empire pretty much how you want. So, I've got a few questions for the community to see how you all play, and hopefully we can share successful strategies and tactics (especially considering that the game can get quite difficult).

1. How far have you managed to expand your empire so far? Have you expanded in a linear fashion or have you captured towns deep in enemy territory?

2. Which faction or factions have given you the most trouble? Have you found any strategy which you find works well against them?

3. How do you spend each season of the year? Do you dedicate part of the year to defending or exploring, for example? Or do you campaign all year round?

4. When you capture a major city (e.g. Pherae, Olynthus) do you leave it with walls to prevent easy capture and protect it as an asset, or without to deter rebellion?

5. What's your most effective way of capturing cities?

6. How do you defend against sea raids and land raids?

7. Do you plan your expansion or does it just "happen"?

8. What troops are your invasion armies composed of?

9. What has your high point been so far?

10. What has your low/most frustrating point been so far?


1. So far I've reached Amphipolis and Eion in the east; Edomene in the north; Tymphia and Diabolis in the west; all of Thessaly in the south, including all the coastal Athenian towns. I expand in a linear way.

2. Athens without a doubt has given me the most trouble, although Illyria, Western Odrysia and the Paeonians also cause me difficulty on a regular basis. I found that stationing strong forces on my north and western borders deters raids by the tribal peoples, but the Athenians are tenacious. They can afford many more triremes than me (not to mention of better quality), and sometimes land 15 units at a time. I've tried cutting them off but they just seem to send more every year!

3. I tend to focus on defensive actions in Spring; counter-attacks in Summer; invasions in Autumn and continued invasions in Winter until I run short of food. If I'm not too hard-pressed then I send the Companion Cavalry and triremes off exploring.

4. I tear down the walls (unless the city is on the border) because keeping a large enough garrison is costly. However this leaves the towns as very vulnerable high value targets. The AI factions know this and attack them relentlessly, so I may change my strategy.

5. Firstly I move two units of high morale heavy infantry just out of the city's range, then open up with a unit or two of catapults. I have companion cavalry on standby to plug any gaps in my line which threaten the catapults, but generally my infantry are able to rout the defenders repeatedly until the town runs out of food. The cavalry also defends against relief forces sent from nearby cities. Once the town is reduced to 0, I just send in the troops to capture it.

6. Ineffectually, especially against sea raids. I never seem to have strong enough garrisons and end up sending units into the meat grinder again and again until I wear the attackers out. The problem is there are so many places the Athenians can land it's difficult to defend them all.

7. Sometimes I'll have a plan to take a certain city in a certain year, but often I find that my plans end up modified by opportunity - a counter-attack might lead me to defeat a weakened garrison or I might find that my army has the momentum to keep on expanding in a certain direction even after securing its objectives.

8. Hypaspists, Companion Cavalry, Catapults and one or two other infantry units (usually the Amphyctions or some Phlangites).

9. Wiping out the Thessalians and Pheraeans in one year, then turning my army northwest and finally taking revenge on the damned Illyrians until they haven't dared to attack me since.

10. Losing Olynthus and Pherae to a coordinated Athenian attack and at the same time losing two coastal towns to revolts (while I was dismantling their walls!). That's the only time I've reloaded I was so annoyed.

The AI can be brutal.

Level 21 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Location: Toronto
Posted on June 6, 2010 at 5:48 pm

One suggestion when planning strategy.

Pay attention to Quest rewards and "faction resistance" when deciding whether or not to tear down the walls of a city or make it one of your stongholds (regional capitals).

The obvious cities to make into regional capitals are those that convert to native Macedonian when Philip enters them: Pydna, Amphipolis, Lychnidos, Crenides, Eulmopia (north of the Rhodope Mountains) and the cities that drop to zero revolt risk after Philip visits: Olooson, Larissa, Corinth, Argos, Agrianes, Cardia.

In addition to those obvious choices to be walled, choice others based on faction resistance. Those factional cities with a mild resistance: Paeonian, Thessalian, Argolid, Corinthian, Aetolian and Kingdom of Epirus will require much smaller garrisons to prevent them from revolting than those factional cities with extreme resistance: Illyrians, Phocians, Lacadaemonians (Sparta) and the Danube and Balkan tribes.

I suggest tearing down the walls of all cities with extreme resistance, and camp a mobile field army near any strategically attractive locations.

You may want to leave some port cities with moderate to high resistance walled to act as shipyards and defend against those relentless Athenian amphibious forces.

-Jim

Level 8 Human gamer
Alignment: Chaotic good
Posted on June 6, 2010 at 7:24 pm

I've been playing the game for a while now and was wondering how others were playing it, seeing as it gives you the freedom to manage your empire pretty much how you want. So, I've got a few questions for the community to see how you all play, and hopefully we can share successful strategies and tactics (especially considering that the game can get quite difficult).

1. How far have you managed to expand your empire so far? Have you expanded in a linear fashion or have you captured towns deep in enemy territory?


Most eastern reach of my empire was the gold cities(neapolis) right from Amphipolis, western reach Diabolis & Pydna, northern reach stropsko (all of paeonia) and most southern reach metropolis and pharsalus and all of caldiche.

This is where I am right now. In another game I am running besides this one I decided that after defeating bardylis a campaign to take revenge on Illyria and remove them once and for all, so I am currently in the far north struggling a bit to get enough food for my campaign

What I did first is decided that the kingdom of macedon would have to retake all its prior cities first before starting to seek greater goals thats why my decision was very easy to attack into calchidian territory first in my current game.
(Did you see how far phillipopolus is into the east? xD that really is a drawback in terms of expandation capabilities if you decided to retake ancient macedonia prior to starting huge campaigns ^^)

2. Which faction or factions have given you the most trouble? Have you found any strategy which you find works well against them?

The illyrians are very tough defender when it comes to defend their coreland while they are quite easy to deal with as invaders if you have city walls.

It worked very good against the Illyrian to do the Western Frontier Objective as well as fortifying Heraklea Lyncestis, Pelagonia and Tymphia. They do invade about seasonly but with a spearman stationated in each city they mostly will either run out of food of flee before they can take the city because of losses (they never attack with their hoplites that probably because of food supply reasons only defend their coreland however).
When you don't have them fortified then their raiders and even more their invasions can be quite annoying.
Other than that I have to say the Tyrants of Pharae are a really aggressive faction, especially if you hold the Fort at Gryton and the Ossa mine. They still remain aggressive in that area even if you take Larissa. Athens ofcourse is quite nasty with their continious sea attacks =]

3. How do you spend each season of the year? Do you dedicate part of the year to defending or exploring, for example? Or do you campaign all year round?

I campaign when there is opportunity or when my troops are ready with sufficient food. I don't really watch the seasons too closely.

4. When you capture a major city (e.g. Pherae, Olynthus) do you leave it with walls to prevent easy capture and protect it as an asset, or without to deter rebellion?

It depends. My stragety is to keep one "stronghold" for a region in which I will stack 1or2 spearman depending on city size as well as at least one hoplite or phalangite if its an area that is in danger of getting sea raided by athens for example. That kept me from having any bigger trouble from athen's sealandings mostly.
So if I find that Pheae for instance would make a good stronghold to keep the surrounding region safe (since I tear down most of the walls except for mentioned strongholds) then I will fortify it. If I have another city for that job I would tear the walls down for instance.

5. What's your most effective way of capturing cities?

The most effecient strategy if you have enough food for it is for me about the same as you mentioned...
Let 1or2 catapults "siege" the city while my hoplite/phalangite stand infront of them to provice protection against the troops that WILL fall out of the city in the face of catapults as well as either my campagnion cavalry or tribal cavalry to ensure nothing hurts my precious catapults ^^

Other than that I found the Amphictyons- and Hepaspist extremely usefuly for sieges and for most small to medium cities will be able to help capture cities without catapults. They hardly ever surrender and defeat many enemy units even if outnumbered greatly.

6. How do you defend against sea raids and land raids?

Same stragy as mentioned earlier. I keep strongholds to keep their surrounding cities safe with an additional phalangite/hoplite(besides 1or2spearman to keep the city garrisoned at all time) to deal with threads if they start burning down too much

7. Do you plan your expansion or does it just "happen"?

I do plan in which direction I want to go or I decide I have to invade invade a certain territory for instance Paeonia because of chronical gold shortage I had at a time, but often my goals get adjusted or some opportunities open so it is a mix of both. But mostly I plan for the best possible border defenswise.

8. What troops are your invasion armies composed of?

My ideal invasion army would consist of hoplites, phalangite,hepasptis/amphi, campanion cav or tribal cav to pillage and deal with raiders as well as maybe some ranged mercs if available. Catapult ofcouse is ofcourse always helpful

9. What has your high point been so far?

see 1. ^^

Level 8 Human gamer
Alignment: Evil
Posted on June 6, 2010 at 8:20 pm

1. How far have you managed to expand your empire so far? Have you expanded in a linear fashion or have you captured towns deep in enemy territory?
I've taken the entire left side of mainland Greece except for Sparta and the 3 other factions on that little part with her. I'm also working on stamping out the tribal factions in the mountains of whom I've destroyed about 3 so far. I expand in a way that secures me something to have my back against so that I don't fight on all sides if i can help it.

2. Which faction or factions have given you the most trouble? Have you found any strategy which you find works well against them?
Athens, my god those guys are a pain! Taking over Athens itself was a long drawn out process involving my troops being better supplied and just better. The only strategy i've found to work against them is to starve them out and then take their island fortress'.

3. How do you spend each season of the year? Do you dedicate part of the year to defending or exploring, for example? Or do you campaign all year round?
I always get ready for campaigning in the summer loading up my workers and slaves with food and then start campaigns in the winter when everyone else is starving. Often these drag on past that though and i'll end up spending several years campaigning until whoever i'm attacking is defeated.

4. When you capture a major city (e.g. Pherae, Olynthus) do you leave it with walls to prevent easy capture and protect it as an asset, or without to deter rebellion?
Tear those suckers down.

5. What's your most effective way of capturing cities?
Send in my troops who're trained up in engineering and for big cities i'll bring in a large amount of catapults.

6. How do you defend against sea raids and land raids?
Large quantities of roving cavalry and each city on the coast having a unit of spearmen.

7. Do you plan your expansion or does it just "happen"?
I plan it very meticulously.

8. What troops are your invasion armies composed of?
My invasion armies are entirely composed of native Macedonian troops each with a general in their unit except for my 2 elite hoplite units which each have 3 generals attached.

9. What has your high point been so far?
The taking of Corinth without a person lost.

10. What has your low/most frustrating point been so far?
When I didn't notice Athens had taken Mythos and Pydna and had to march my entire army back there while attempting to hold them in them in with spearmen and 2 units of merc hoplite. Took a full 30 mins to retake the two cities because there had been so damned many Athenian troops landed.

Level 10 Extraplanar Awesome Sauce!
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on June 9, 2010 at 1:22 am

1. How far have you managed to expand your empire so far? Have you expanded in a linear fashion or have you captured towns deep in enemy territory?
I've managed to expand from the South-Sparta, NW-Lychnidos (Illyria), North- Paeonian area, West-Molossis and East passed the Chalcidice towards Byzantium (edge of the map). I would say it started as a pocket of territory than tried to go for each region rather than per/city.

2. Which faction or factions have given you the most trouble? Have you found any strategy which you find works well against them?
Athens hands down!! My best strategy against them is to station troops outside their docking zones/sea raid, (i.e Pydna and Near Aegaea). Also, making sure to stock my troops with sheep or some slaves/workers that hold food. Figuring out where they are going to dock and raid is trail and error. This lead to a few rollbacks to previ-savegames. I save often so it wasnt a problem for me.

3. How do you spend each season of the year? Do you dedicate part of the year to defending or exploring, for example? Or do you campaign all year round?
I've spent the earlier part of my campaign building up and trying to defend during the summer and keeping my troops fed until the winter to invade territories that have been harassing my farms earlier that year. Later on in the game, I've mainly been going after factions and completely abolishing them to they can't bug me. :)

I've been playing this game for a long time, so exploring wasn't high on my list. My main goal was to see if I could beat the game on Expert. Mission accomplished!!

4. When you capture a major city (e.g. Pherae, Olynthus) do you leave it with walls to prevent easy capture and protect it as an asset, or without to deter rebellion?
I definately kept the walls and cities guarded with troops. I tried to stock my sheep in places where I knew I had the most troops or that was more prone to being attacked.

5. What's your most effective way of capturing cities?
I'd usually go after a region rather than just ONE city. A few catapults, hoplites/hypaspist/companion cavalry for seiging. Phalangites for outside units backed with peltasts.

6. How do you defend against sea raids and land raids?
Question 2

7. Do you plan your expansion or does it just "happen"?
I planned my expansion based on the Hegemony Objectives. Sometimes, I would go towards the faction that annoyed me the most (during winter was best).

8. What troops are your invasion armies composed of?
Small unwalled: anything I had available
Medium Walled: Hoplites (2)
Large Walled: (3) catapults, (2) hoplites, Companions, (1) Phalangite and a backup of peltasts just infront of the city out of range of hte wall catapults.

9. What has your high point been so far?

I would say defeating the game. (All the Hegemony Objectives) and...dont want to spoil anything else that happens after it.

10. What has your low/most frustrating point been so far?
Having to take back some cities I have lost to sea raids that were new to me. (i.e Persia triremes)

I would also like to hear who has completed Hegemony!
-The completion of all the 29 Hegemony objectives results in the final cutscene. This means you have won the game, but there are TONS more objectives and places to discover after that!

Stats thus far :)
Level of completion: Expert ;)
109 hours in the game and counting!

-Clarissa

Level 8 Human gamer
Alignment: Evil
Posted on June 9, 2010 at 4:01 am

Well I just beat it on Normal after about 40 hours played, great fun, but wow those Persians have a lot of troops! I'm having to keep a huge army stationed near the land crossing between Persia and Greece just to stop the 'light' Persian raids.