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Alex0080
May 3, 2013
Last time on T'ien Ch'annel: Bogus attacked on one turn, died the next turn, then attacked again the turn after.

T'ien Ch'i Turn 20




I finish researching Enchantment 5, which lets me cast Horde of Skeletons in battle with any Death 2 or better mage, and summon Skeletal Horsemen out of battle. I have no Death 3 mages to do that, though, and I don't remember to research more Construction to let me make a magic item to rectify that this turn.





Minor bad events, Shun lost 2 research points and his destiny of doing nothing but research has not changed. Now he just does it blind and mute, he can still use an Owl Quill too (magical pen that writes whatever the user says) somehow.



I move my units across my entire empire to go kill Bogus again.


T'ien Ch'i Turn 21



I do a lot of site searching and find a lot of nothing. Conjuration 3 gives me Summon Earthpower to turn my Earth 2 mages into Earth 3 mages for the rest of a battle, and Dark Knowledge, which will let me find a Well of Pestilence I've known about for around 15 turns due to Purple's scout being diseased and talking about it on Discord, without the chance of getting my own guy diseased.



I gain some gems, nice.



I continue to move my units to fight Bogus. If Bogus had not shown up the second time, I would be fighting Mictlan right now.

T'ien Ch'i Turn 22




Evocation 3 will let me cast Arcane Probing, because I'm bad at searching for Astral Pearls, but I don't want to be. Then I realize I need Construction 4 to make a Skull Staff which I need to do before I can use the ritual to create Skeleman Horsebros.




I find the Well, a Micltan scout was diseased in a province with Death scales adjacent to someone else's capital, I had marked that province as a likely location for a Well just from seeing the Death scales there, but Purple was kind enough to confirm that for me.



10 pearls is a nice event, those things are useful.




Bogus Must Die. This is not a battle to merely kill him, he must be fully demoralized, broken down and made to beg for death before I grant him sweet release, otherwise he'll just come back literally next turn.



So, as seen in Purple's discord chat log, I had been telling everyone I was going to attack Mictlan, but before this, I had neglected to mention that Purple had contacted me many turns ago, and had promised to pile on anyone I attacked if they were also adjacent to Mictlan. I had been deciding whether to do that or just attack Mictlan for a while now, since, as this is a game that is going to be let's played, I know Purple is going to be aiming to backstab someone. I allow Purple to convince me not to just declare war on the fursuiters for now. I am still on high alert, however because... well:

PurpleXVI posted:


I politely convince TC that it's in his benefit to help me backstab Utgard. Diplomacy!

Then I start wondering how I'm going to manage to pack backstabbing TC into this.

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PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!
Being an honest and reliable alliance partner did very briefly cross my mind.

But only briefly.

Generally extorting people is more profitable than actually fighting them since you get stuff for free, so that's my usual MO.

titty_baby_
Nov 11, 2015

I desire more lp

Cobra Lionfist
Jun 4, 2013
There's a new newbad game sitting on the discord waiting for one more person to join. This one doesn't even feature grandfathered in former winners. It's pure newbad. Join and experience the thrills, excitement and badness firsthand.

SirPhoebos
Dec 10, 2007

WELL THAT JUST HAPPENED!
Naming gimmicks are always my favorite part of dom LPs.

Ramc
May 4, 2008

SirPhoebos posted:

Naming gimmicks are always my favorite part of dom LPs.

It's absolutely the most important part of Dominions

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!
Mictlan
Turn 23



Turn 23 is primarily a holding pattern turn, where I prepare for backstabbing TC after using him to help me backstab Utgard. It want to make sure that TC has committed to the attack first, so Utgard will believe my claims due to the groupings of TC forces, and also so that TC can't easily turn around and hit me instead when he eventually finds out about it. Ideally it'll take him long enough to find out that he actually goes and attacks Utgard himself, thus starting up the war proper, but since not everyone is as virtuous as me, I expect that Utgard will probably tell TC that I told him and then I'll have to fend off TC myself after having gained whatever I could extort from Utgard.





If I didn't already have a plot ready to ward off TC, I'd feel worried about these force assemblages. Because the very smart thing for TC to do would be to attack me, a struggling nation with Blood, before I become a booming nation with Blood.

Pythium doesn't really have a wide enough border with me for me to be worried, if he comes for me, I'll have an easy time bringing him to a fight and I'm not terribly afraid of LA Pyth. MA Pyth is pretty scary because while their generic troops are supremely forgettable, they can very easily bring some super nasty communions to bear once you hit the midgame. LA Pyth hydras SHOULD be real scary? But for some reason they always seem to fall flat in every game I see them in.

Pangaea would mostly spooky me if he attacked at the same time as Pythium, but I ask politely and he confirms he's not going to attack me, which is usually believable since while backstabbing is just part and parcel of Dominions, outright lies are very rare.

]

More reports from the Patala/Agarthan war do not seem good for Agartha, which surprises me, since everyone talks down LA Patala and my own experiences with LA Agartha is that their sacred Blindfighters very easily become sacred Blenders.

Still, maybe Lotham is just the chosen one who commands the monkeys well. He should have the practice by now, anyway.

Turn 24



There's a bit more happening on Turn 24.



The Silver Throne is one of my favourite thrones, because it gives you a notable income boost, and lets you recruit A2S2 casters. More S casters is always great in case there are a bunch of mind hunting fuckers around, Air is a great combat path, and if your nation doesn't have good native access to those two paths, it's more path variety. It also doesn't unleash any lovely events on the world, which is a nice bonus.




The events are... less than good. Two random indie attacks.



Thankfully one happens in the province I just moved some commanders to, to build a new fort-temple-lab combo.



And the other got chunked by unsupported PD on account of just being angry dogs.

Turn 25



Aside from what happens in-game, Turn 25 is also the turn where I tell Utgard what's coming and how he can avoid my wrath. He seems a bit reluctant, and since I don't want him telling on me to TC and having both of them turn on me, I settle for a lighter settlement than I originally wanted. I'm just going to be getting one province and 20 Water gems, but a province and gems all for the price of some words? That's a bargain.

The main sticking point was that our border is at this point three of his provinces: A lake I can't easily take, a fort and a non-fort. And he wasn't willing to budge on the fort, and taking one more province would leave him with a vulnerable and untenable salient or exclave.



The Iron Throne is like a worse version of the Silver Throne, 100 Resources rather than 100 Income generated, and it makes E2S2 mages instead. Though that does open up the vast comedy of spamming Gifts From Heaven, which is clearly one of the best spells in Dominions.



Turn 26



Really, the biggest lesson I've learned from repeatedly getting paid off not to attack people is that you should never accept blackmail unless you're in a multi-front war and need to limit the amount of fronts you're fighting on, or you're a few turns off from a really nasty advantage(due to research, forging, etc.). Instead, your response to attempted blackmail should almost always be, no matter how untenable it seems: "Fine, we're at war now." Because if you're at an apparent disadvantage now, you'll be at even more of a disadvantage 10 turns down the line with him having paid no resources to secure two or three of your provinces.




The Throne of Knowledge is another good one. It has no passive effects beyond the usual throne dominion spread, but it lets you recruit Lore Masters and Sages. Sages are EXTREMELY cheap old wizards, something like 10 gold for 15 points of research and S1(so in a pinch you could use them as communion fodder), while Lore Masters are expensive slow-to-recruit old mages that get three points of wizard randomly spread among all paths. If nothing else, a couple of lucky rolls you break you into paths you had no reasonable expectation of using previously, thus giving you some very nice strategic flexibility that your opponents may well not see coming.



Though it's notably worrying that Gath has 3 out of the 7 thrones needed to win. We could end up seeing a repeat of the first Newbad with an early-game lunge here, and people start muttering about maybe coalitioning against him, though most of them are too focused on securing their personal advantages for now(see, the dogpile against Bogarus, Patala vs Agartha, etc.), and no one wants to give up that to do something for the good of everyone(i.e. someone not winning the game just yet). The psychology behind alliances and coalitions in Dominions 5 makes the Prisoner's Dilemma seem like a simple choice between whether to buy chocolate or strawberry flavour ice cream.



As agreed, Utgard's province only has a bit of fragile PD to deal with.





It also turns out that the province Utgard left us has both a Nature site and a Death site! We have little use for death, but gems are gems, especially in the Late Age where there's general dearth of the drat things.

At this point TC has left my borders, but I can only convince him that I'm totally, honestly attacking Utgard for so long(he almost certainly has scouts in the area watching my advance). Sooner or later he's gonna figure out that the jig is up and by then I better have a nice new distraction, defensive measures or a real good excuse.

I'm sure it'll all work out.

Donkringel
Apr 22, 2008
Has this game finished yet?

OOrochi
Jan 19, 2017

Donkringel posted:

Has this game finished yet?

Nope. Weíre currently at about turn 60.

DivineCoffeeBinge
Mar 3, 2011

Spider-Man's Amazing Construction Company
I mean, I'm sure it's finished for SOME people...

Tuna-Fish
Sep 13, 2017

Gath
Turn 22



So I've been a little lazy taking screenshots. What happened since last time was my god took Elkland, the province with jade amazons and the Inner Throne, but got a chest wound for his troubles, and so he's been healing with the help of 3 abbas for a few turns. I combined all my tiny giant squads into a big one in the east, and took Panuonia, which has the Throne of Earth. That is really good, as not only does it give you a bunch of E gems, which are imho among the most useful ones, it also adds reinvigoration 1 to my bless. That's pretty great to have on a nation where I expect drat near everyone in a fight to be blessed. Other than that, I've cleared out the few indies left inside my borders. The only provinces left that I'll get without having to fight actual players for are the northwest throne, and the two lakes, one of which has the throne of death. Getting jade amazons was really great for me, because Gath has decent access to 6 of the 8 magic paths, only lacking air and water, coincidentally the two paths that let you go below the waves. Jade amazons have water, so I already hired one and have her forging a ring of water breathing for my god.

For a few turns now, Bogarus has been fighting for their life against 3 opponents. Unlike the vivid depiction of their fate a few posts up, I did in fact not jump on them. Mostly because with 3 neighboring armies heading for their cap, it seemed like I'd most likely get just one province, or end up fighting multiple opponents for anything more. So instead, I went to practice the strongest magic in the game: Diplomancy.



Note that I am not really offering all that much: If you badly wound one of my neighbors, I will jump on them and take their stuff. All I am offering you is a secure border. On the other hand, when I get jumped in dominions, this is pretty much exactly what I most want -- the opportunity to concentrate on just one of them at a time, without having to fight to secure all my territory. Biggs doesn't immediately respond, but afaict, does concentrate forces on Erytheia. I start moving everything except the big giant squad in Panuonia over to the west in case he succeeds.

Turn 24



Two turns later Erytheia did not lose the fight:




I, however, won big without really having to risk anything. Other things that happened was that my god bounced twice from the Throne at Citala, not because the defenders can hurt him, but because there are a lot of skelespammers there that can spam skeletons faster than he can kill them, so he gets bogged down until he routs due to timer. He did clear everything but the commanders. For the next attempt I'm trying to be sneaky and have chaff in front with my god on the flank with attack rear orders, maybe he can sneak past the skellies and get to the juicy mages in the rear?

Turn 25

Flanking succeeded.

So at this point, I'm honestly feeling really good about myself. Including the two lakes, I'm going to have 29 provinces, which is probably the most. I also have taken very few losses of any kind, and am pumping out forts and researchers out of those forts instead of spending money on troops and fighting. I'm actually sort of hitting the brakes here a little, because doing too good too early is just inviting a coalition, and having just hit construction 6 and loaded up on horror lanterns, I decide that I'm just going to build up internally and chill until I hit evo 7 for firestorm. I also start setting up blood hunting sites.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!
I will always respect Biggs for his spite finishers, those gems and items always end up somewhere to gently caress up his killers. It adds spice to the game.

OOrochi
Jan 19, 2017

PurpleXVI posted:

I will always respect Biggs for his spite finishers, those gems and items always end up somewhere to gently caress up his killers. It adds spice to the game.

For sure. Spite is always such a wonderful part of the game if you start going down.

Atlantis Turns 23-26

Turn 23



A pretty quiet turn as I consolidate a bit before moving in on Bogarus itself.



Erytheia beats up some basic troops from Bogarus.



I take revenge on the dogs who killed by hero last turn.



And then see Bogarus fight off some wolves as well. That looks like a pretty big chunk of PD theyíve invested in. Though itís still just basic Bogarus troops and the fight will be in cold 3, so Iím not that worried.



Hereís the situation around Bogarus. Everyone nearby has agreed to leave the cap to me, so Iíll be taking my time with it. And despite what this picture says, I decided to wait 1 turn and bring one more Angakok with troops up from Atlantis this turn instead of attacking.



Also, this turn I found a very neat site in one of my lake provinces. Earth and water gems are very appreciated, but what makes it interesting are the recruitables.




Lore-wise, these are some of the last descendants of EA Theredoros, and their stats reflect it. Theyíre generally slightly worse all around than their sacred troop and basic mage. However, they are still amphibious sacreds recruitable. The Strategis also reduce unrest wherever they are, and the Saos go berserk when blessed. If I had any type of useful bless for a troop, I would gladly recruit as many of these as I could. Sadly, Iím already amphibious and donít have a strong bless so Iíll basically ignore these for about 30 turns. Still, Iím always glad to find unique or rare sites like the Isle of the Saoi.

Turn 24



Just about as quiet as last turn. I do claim the Silver Throne, which is a pretty nice one to get. It allows me to get Adepts of the Silver Order, which are A2 S2 mages that get a random from AFWS. While Iím never going to have them in huge concentrations, their cross paths are really nice for unlocking things and I might be able to use them to cast some big spells later on.



The only fight was a basic kraken that my PD drove off.



This turn Iím actually heading in to Bogarus. Three of the Angakoks are set to spam elementals and the Forgiving Fathers are communioned up to kill people with acid spells.



Iím continuing to have Angakoks ferry troops up north and am also having my prophet follow the group with a refill of water gems since the AI loves to blow as many of them as it can in any single battle.
I have a fort and lab that are both going to finish over the tick in Mag and the fort on the throne is only a bit behind that. The one in Mag will be especially nice because it will have quite high resources so I can make it another hub for troop production.

Turn 25



2 battles this time!



The first one is vs. Bogarusís PD and goes quite well. My only 2 real casualties are actually due to friendly fire from one of my Forgiving Fathers. The PD itself only managed to kill some skeletons summoned by off-script Angakoks.



And then over in the western lake I continue to have trouble with the Ichtyids. I really have no idea what I was thinking with this fight



But to finally clear the lake Iím sending a small party from Atlantis to avenge my moments of stupidity.



And then up north Iím preparing for the long haul on Bogarusís fort. One notable thing is that I transferred all of the troops off of my Angakoks and onto basic leader. Thatís so that I can have the Angakoks preach Bogarusís dominion down. Itís not strictly necessary, but itíd be nice to have their god weakened if it does come back before I take the fort.

Turn 26



And now, to wrap this update up, we have the quietest turn of the set.



Iím doing decent damage to Bogarusís walls, but 750 defense is a lot to work through, especially with human sized units.



In the west my lake clearing party continues advancing. Itíll also be nice to have them in the lake as a deterrent to Marignon. They might not be able to beat a real army, but Iíll be able to threaten 2 cap circle provinces from UW and Marignon wonít really have any way to stop me from at least harassing them if/when we start fighting again.



And in the east, I notice something a little disconcerting, namely that itís hot in Tirannea.



Because my nation has stupid ice forts, that means that my fort will start to melt. If Iím not careful and donít cool it down semi-quickly then this can result in permanent damage.



To that end, Iíll change my research priorities a bit. I was originally going to rush down evocation for the nice death and acid spells, but instead Iíll be taking a detour down alteration.



Specifically to get this spell. Itís 5 water gems a pop, but it reduces the temperature in a province by 3 points and kills a small amount of the population. While itís obviously not ideal to cast it on my own provinces, it will let me save the fort and will be very important when I fight someone who went with a heat dominion instead of cold (i.e. basically everyone but me and Bogarus).



And finally, thanks to my abundance of fire gems, I empower one of the F random Forgiving Fathers in fire. The big thing this lets me do is forge Rune Smashers, which require F2 W2 and give a pretty large bonus for the wielderís spells vs an enemyís magic resistance. While Iím not going to be a massive Mind Hunt nation, there are still quite a few nasty spells I do have access to that will benefit from it.

Technowolf
Nov 4, 2009




Agartha


Turn 23

Not a very active turn. The walls are "critically damages", which means that next turn they should fall.


Gath's throne claim. It's about now that people start noticing that Tuna is a bit too large for comfort.


+1D. Not getting as many death sites as I would really want.


It also turns out that Iron Corpses aren't that good against longbowapes.

Turn 24

Apparently I lost a diet of hamberders about 6 turns ago. Oh well, it's not like turn 1 commanders are meant to be prophets for long. I'll get a more appropriate one appointed sooner or later. (Spoilers: It's later)
Oh and I also lost or abandoned the siege on Konburg for some reason that I can't remember.


This is a fairly large army that Patala's got. They could easily siege down my cap, especially since my pretender hasn't awoken yet.


I move up more forces to hopefully ward them off.

Turn 25

PLAYER 2 HAS ENTERED THE FIGHT!


Patala went for the mountains on our border instead of straight for my cap, thankfully. I move out some forces to retake the woods.


Most of Erythia's attacks failed. The only one was taking the province to the south of my throne. I begin summoning more chaff to protect it.

Turn 26

As you can tell from the messages, Erythia's further attacks didn't go as well for them.


It turns out grubs and macho men aren't good against heavy cav.


Patala, however, hired one of the best merc troops around: the Eternal Knights. Wearing heavy armor and wielding two-handed fire swords, they are also sacred, so they can take a bless if you're nation's got one. They'll chew through light PD and probably most indies.


I put in a bid to take them away from the evil monkeys and let the work for the more virtuous cave people.


I also notice a worrying development on my eastern border with Utgard. Erythia's not doing too hot in this war, and I could probably fight Patala off once I get some good evocations, but three opponents is definitely too much for me to handle. Maybe diplomacy can work?


Thankfully Khisanth was told that Purple was going to traitorbribe TC into attacking them so is going to fake-attack my fort to lure MictlanTC into a false sense of security. Of course we know that Pruple is going to backstab TC after a few turns. More people should realize that whenever they talk to Purple it means he's already decided to traitor them, and should really just traitor him first.

Technowolf fucked around with this message at 19:04 on Mar 5, 2020

Arcvasti
Jun 12, 2019

Never trust a bird.
Loving this comical descent into backstabbing. Someone should totally take a break and deal with goat giants and blood shippers before they start to spiral out of control though.

OOrochi
Jan 19, 2017

Technowolf posted:

More people should realize that whenever they talk to Purple it means he's already decided to traitor them, and should really just traitor him first.

Truer words have rarely been written

Lord Koth
Jan 8, 2012

Technowolf posted:



Thankfully Khisanth was told that Purple was going to traitor them so is going to fake-attack my fort to lure Mictlan into a false sense of security. More people should realize that whenever they talk to Purple it means he's already decided to traitor them, and should really just traitor him first.

Purple's chronic backstabbery is getting quite confusing, but isn't Khisanth playing Utgard, and thus that addendum in error? Because at this time isn't it TC that Mictlan is going to backstab (after being bribed off by Khisanth) after agreeing to attack Utgard with them? Or did Purple decide between turns to backstab the person he just blackmailed?

Technowolf
Nov 4, 2009




Lord Koth posted:

Purple's chronic backstabbery is getting quite confusing, but isn't Khisanth playing Utgard, and thus that addendum in error? Because at this time isn't it TC that Mictlan is going to backstab (after being bribed off by Khisanth) after agreeing to attack Utgard with them? Or did Purple decide between turns to backstab the person he just blackmailed?

Fixed my post. Thanks for reminding me of the tangled webs that Purple weaves.

Khisanth Magus
Mar 30, 2011

Vae Victus
I will try and catch up my turns in the next couple days, but want to talk about what is going on and how dumb I'm being:

I have been pretty open about my intention to join the dogpiling on Argatha. I will admit that my inexperience in playing with Purple makes me a bit naive about him at this point, but I figured that what I paid him was worthwhile for 18 turns of having a secure northern border while I could kill Argatha. As part of my NAP with Purple, however, I also get the info(which turned out to be 100% a lie) that TC is going to attack me. This was where I was dumb and trusted Purple, however I was also sending scouts to TCs forts near our border and was finding them heavily patrolled, which seemed to collaborate the info from the trecherous snake up north. If I had been smart my play here would have been to talk with TC and try and work out some kind of peace so I could attack Argatha in peace. Instead I start a series of really dumb stuff starting here that continues in a Trainwreck for quite a while.

Alex0080
May 3, 2013

Khisanth Magus posted:

I will try and catch up my turns in the next couple days, but want to talk about what is going on and how dumb I'm being:

I have been pretty open about my intention to join the dogpiling on Argatha. I will admit that my inexperience in playing with Purple makes me a bit naive about him at this point, but I figured that what I paid him was worthwhile for 18 turns of having a secure northern border while I could kill Argatha. As part of my NAP with Purple, however, I also get the info(which turned out to be 100% a lie) that TC is going to attack me. This was where I was dumb and trusted Purple, however I was also sending scouts to TCs forts near our border and was finding them heavily patrolled, which seemed to collaborate the info from the trecherous snake up north. If I had been smart my play here would have been to talk with TC and try and work out some kind of peace so I could attack Argatha in peace. Instead I start a series of really dumb stuff starting here that continues in a Trainwreck for quite a while.

I'll cover this more when I get around to my turns, but I had agreed to declare war on you with Purple, but my intention was to catch Purple in a backstab and actually fight Purple 1v1. My thought process was, what's the point of starting next to Purple if there are no shenanigans going on? So yes, you 200% should have spoken with me first when Purple contacted you, haha.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!

Technowolf posted:

More people should realize that whenever they talk to Purple it means he's already decided to traitor them, and should really just traitor him first.

I'd like to correct this and point out that sometimes when I talk to people in these games it's just to outright extort them for gold, gems or territory, which isn't technically backstabbing since I'm up front about my motivations.

Khisanth Magus posted:

As part of my NAP with Purple, however, I also get the info(which turned out to be 100% a lie) that TC is going to attack me.

Hey, as far as I knew, he was going to attack you. It's not my fault that he was planning to backstab me while I was planning to backstab him.

Technowolf
Nov 4, 2009




If you see the BuddhaPurpleXVI on the road, hit him with your shoebackstab him before he backstabs you.

Alex0080
May 3, 2013
T'ien Ch'i Turn 23




The Empire of T'ien Ch'i is whole once again.



I let more Barbarian Horsemen die to save Ancestor Vessel lives, worth it, the Wessels are harder to come by. I also have 2 copies of the otherwise truly unique Precious and Greenstone Armor artifacts. This is not a big deal, the Greenstone Armor is pretty bad and Precious is good, but not anything amazing when you have a single commander that wants more accuracy and melee damage, which I don't.

The threat of Bogus has been dealt with, but for how long? Parents begin to tell naughty children that Bogus will kidnap them in their sleep if they do not change their ways.



Research is plugging along, once I have construction 4 I will be able to summon Skeleton Men on Skeleton Horses and take those lakes I'm touching, I'm glad Purple never made enough sacred frog soldiers that can breathe underwater and are available from turn 1 to take the throne on our border.



+1 Death Gem per turn, I'll take every one of these I can find.





Events happen, very minor stuff.

T'ien Ch'i Turn 24






I lose a site searching Celestial Master to a combination of a random wolf attack and forgetting to set the man to retreat should he find himself in combat. I make sure not to forget that, at least until I forget to again.




Free stuff, the dead Master still stings though.



I researched Construction 4, then pivoted and finished Thaumaturgy 1 in the same turn, entirely for access to the Communion Master and Communion Slave spells. As mentioned in the previous update, I had agreed to fight Utgard alongside the most trustworthy Dom 5 player, Purple. I'm moving troops up to the fort I have near Utgard, but will be ready to sweep them back down the plains as soon as I see a knife there rather than just expect one. to that end, I am keeping very close track of all my neighbors, as evidenced by all the battles I'm watching.

T'ien Ch'i Turn 25



The Empire of T'ien Ch'i is whole once again.



I sell a pair of Earth Boots to Marignon for 25 death gems. That's 50 Skeletal Horsemen worth. My 20 gold Barbarian Heavy Horsemen are much stronger cavalry, but there are some things you just need tons of warm self propelled bodies skeletal remains for. I also continue to climb the Alteration spell school.




Lots of site searching, little site finding, LA Dominions.txt, the mine is 100 gold per turn rather than any gems, and the corpse candles give 1 death and one water gem, the death are more appreciated but I'll take anything.



I kill some wolves. They are fast enough to close the gap after two volleys of arrows, but after two rounds in melee, they're all either dead or running.




Bad events, two pikemen I got from an event are cursed, and the drain scales only matter if I get a bad Drain Misfortune combo event before they go away, and seeing as my scales already removed all the drain (started at 2 magic, went to -1 from the event, then 0 from the normal spread this turn), that does not happen.



It's hard to scout Mictlan's forts, as Purple is patrolling them quite hard, but I get a free scout report on the two forts adjacent to my territory, and I have eyes on Utgard's main army. Also, there are still two neutral thrones in this screenshot, and one underwater just off screen. Everyone around here are virtuous players who wish to enjoy playing Dominions rather than rush thrones for wins.

T'ien Ch'i Turn 26



Look at all those scout report battles, just look at them. I see that Mictlan did in fact attack Utgard this turn, but I've been planning on sitting back, committing little, and being ready to send a real force right back to Mictlan, so one province taken won't send me rushing in, and good thing, as I find out in the next few turns that this wasn't even a war, just a province Purple extorted from Utgard.


Pictured, the very moment Purple remembered that LA Mictlan has frogs and should have tried demanding a lake. Turn 26 was on January 10, so this message is from the future! Or the less distant past, depending on if I'm talking as me from turn 26, or me from today.

I also switch to looking for pearls with Arcane Probing rather than walking an Astral 2 Celestial Master around, as I believe I don't have one since the last one died to wolves. I find no sites this turn, but resolve to continue.



I also get a minor bad event, pretty much nothing went on this turn besides me waiting to see what everyone around me was doing.



My empire is almost entirely the same as last turn, but I check out Mictlan's border fort and see a King of Rain sitting there. Nothing I can prove anything with, but I decide to watch this fort very closely, it's clear that this is where inevitable betrayal will come from.

PurpleXVI posted:

Mictlan Turn 26

At this point TC has left my borders, but I can only convince him that I'm totally, honestly attacking Utgard for so long (he almost certainly has scouts in the area watching my advance). Sooner or later he's gonna figure out that the jig is up and by then I better have a nice new distraction, defensive measures or a real good excuse.

I'm sure it'll all work out.

I'm onto you already, Purple, the eyes of T'ien Ch'i are second to none! Really, I'm pretty sure I've had more of my scouts die in other people's updates, not even my own, than everyone else combined has managed to see other people's fights. I won't blame anyone that found little to no indy scout provinces, though, having three in my cap circle was a huge benefit.

Ramc
May 4, 2008
Really appreciating the 13 dimensional chess inception backstab wargaming.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!

Alex0080 posted:

My empire is almost entirely the same as last turn, but I check out Mictlan's border fort and see a King of Rain sitting there. Nothing I can prove anything with, but I decide to watch this fort very closely, it's clear that this is where inevitable betrayal will come from.

He was actually part of a very innocent site-searching crew. The fact that said sites' gem production would have been used for something non-innocent, on the other hand, you should just ignore.

Xarn
Jun 26, 2015
All this backstabbing and plans within plans are great, this is what we needed :v:

anilEhilated
Feb 17, 2014

But I say fuck the rain.

Grimey Drawer

Xarn posted:

All this backstabbing and plans within plans are great, this is what we needed :v:
Seriously. I have no idea how anything in Dominions works but keep reading LPs for the diplomancy.

e: Well, that and naming gimmicks.

gonadic io
Feb 16, 2011

>>=
I should have kept Purple alive in my game just for the LP's sake

Buller
Nov 6, 2010
How often do you guys meet to play, and are you playing blitz in the beginning?

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!

Buller posted:

How often do you guys meet to play, and are you playing blitz in the beginning?

We don't meet to play. Basically there's a service on the SA Dominions Discord, the Snek, which allows us to play asynchronously by being always up and managing the whole "hosting the game"-aspect more or less hands off unless the game start needs to reset or change the timer. Most games start off on a 24-hour turn-timer, then advance to a 36 and late game it's a 48 since the nations that aren't fighting brave last stands may well have a lot of armies to coordinate and troops to program, especially if they're making use of sabbaths or communions.

Sulla Faex
May 14, 2010

No man ever did me so much good, or enemy so much harm, but I repaid him with ENDLESS SHITPOSTING

PurpleXVI posted:

We don't meet to play.

I'm picturing 4 people sitting around a D&D table, waiting patiently as each player takes turns to describe their action: "I breathe in. I lift my left leg by the knee and lean forward, as if to fall. I place my left foot a pace forward and step into it, so that my centre of gravity shifts towards the distant mountain. Meanwhile, my heart continues to pump blood through my body. My stomach begins the next stage of digestion of the two pieces of plain bread I ate two hours ago."

Inexplicable Humblebrag
Sep 20, 2003

it's time for combat. you square up against the colossal stone head, and yet are unarmed. first, let's determine your attack modifier...

DivineCoffeeBinge
Mar 3, 2011

Spider-Man's Amazing Construction Company
"The enemy makes a Seduction attempt--"

"QUIT PUTTING YOUR GODDAMN FETISHES INTO THE GAME, MARK"

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!
Mictlan
Turn 27



Despite having four or five quite huntable provinces, my blood income is crippled by my poor research decisions, as I'm sure I've mentioned earlier and still lament. Without those SDR's online, I'm just plain going to have a hell of a time pulling in a meaningful amount of blood slaves. My site searchers are also not having anything resembling luck, though at least my patrolling slave herds are having a fun time mangling dissenters.

At this point I believe we're still a turn or two off TC figuring out I've betrayed him to Utgard.



All troop movements during this turn are me reshuffling site searchers and patrollers in an attempt to have a vaguely functioning economy, while pumping out as many sacreds as my poor gold income can permit.

Turn 28



Another quiet turn, and Luck 3 is really failing to pay off in the way it's done for me in some other games.



On the other hand, Luck is exponentially more powerful with more territory and dominion, since as far as I can tell the boosted event rate is per province, and a real lucky Luck 3 roll from one province can easily provide as much as income as 20 provinces' worth would provide in one turn.



At this point, note, I've still yet to figure out how much of a difference upgrading my B1's to effective B2's would make. This is basically the game where I figure out effective blood hunting mechanics for the first time.



Still no sign of TC on my borders, so I'm assuming Utgard hasn't yet tipped him off. What wonderfully virtuous giants.

Turn 29



I'm still not sure whether I'm just in an exceptionally gem-dry part of the map or whether every site inside my borders is just Air/Earth.




More Dominion is fine since it's something I have a hard time coming by without splattering blood everywhere and +15 free PD is nothing to sneeze at, even though Mictlan's default PD is hot dogshit that could get flattened by children with sticks.



But wait, what's this? Mictlan's armies are on the move...?

Yes, it finally happened, TC figured out that I backstabbed him and was somewhat cross about it. However, somehow, I literally do not understand how or why, I convinced him not to take revenge on me, and instead to join me in attacking Marignon, this time with the iron-clad agreement of "I won't betray you until I've taken at least three provinces from him, and this deal comes with a 15-turn NAP." I, of course, plan to betray him to Marignon in exchange for 3 provinces at the first possible opportunity.

I mean, why wouldn't I?

I just need to both run down the NAP timer and convince TC I have a legitimate reason to bail on the war. The gears start grinding away in my brain as Pan asks me whether I'm planning to attack him and I curtly tell him that no, his hippie forest is safe for the time being.

Turn 30



I start casting Bind Beast Bats to get some more sacreds online, which is theoretically a good idea except that I can't think of many blesses that make Beast Bats worth having unless you're getting them as free side-effects of Onaqui. Summoning them directly is a pretty egregrious waste of blood slaves and caster turns.

Oh and there's the problem that since they're demons, I'll also need to allocate a decent blood mage or two to lead them, which I had forgotten to do and they're all being summoned in a province with lame B1 Mictlan Priests. Whoops.



Beast bats' bite also cause 50 points' worth of fatigue from poison if it goes through. So my theory is that they're great against small numbers of big targets, like giants, but suck rear end against normal troops unless someone forgets to guard their commander while fighting Mictlan which is the opposite of a pro gamer move.



Of course being on-damage rather than on-hit, a 10-damage attack is gonna bounce off a lot of armor ratings without a good roll. A strength bless of some kind of course helps them get around this limitation, or being present in the Early Ages, where people have yet to invent protecting themselves, and where giants and the like are also a lot more common.



I'm sure Eyes of God has been discussed before, but it basically gives you a scout in every province on the map, making it great for keeping track of enemy movements, seeing what provinces of theirs are worth snapping up, and if you're fighting elves or the like I believe it also defuses their Glamour inside your Dominion(where you get extra-accurate reports). It also boosts patrolling, so great for blood nations and catching enemy scouts/assassins.

On top of that it lets you see the game's graphs. Usually EoG going up will start some wars because either A) someone goes "oh gently caress someone can see my plans, GOTTA TAKE HIM OUT" or B) whoever puts up EoG starts posting graphs and going "uhhhh, hey guys, this fella's running away with the game." and you get some coalition-forming or people realizing that some of their neighbours are paper tigers and going to clown town on them.

It's also the only Global that has a specific counter-ritual, Fate of Oedipus, that takes down EoG for a fixed cost of 75 fire gems while also exploding the global-holder's eyes out of his head.



There's good friend TC, I'm sure he wouldn't backstab me, since he knows how reliable I am.

Turn 31





Gath claims another throne. Should we be worried? Probably not. I'm sure that a blood nation in a vanilla game with giants is no problem at all.

I also summon some Jaguars, which are pretty good. Double attacks means they double up on any weapon/strength bless that Mictlan rolls with, their main weakness is that they're somewhat fragile, being completely unarmoured animals, though they're usually beefy enough to eat one hit before going down even so. They'd combo well with a Barkskin/weapons/strength bless sort of setup. In general Barkskin benefits Mictlan's naked or near-naked sacreds a lot in all eras.



This is also the worst luck I've ever had in a game with positive Luck scales. Goddammit. Though it should be noted that I believe the JBBM mod also buffs Luck slightly, to defuse the otherwise-reigning Misfortune meta.



And a hero shows up! Mictlan doesn't have a lot, and most of them are pretty lame, but Mictlipoctli is great.



He has Mictlan's only Death access that isn't the occasional one-in-forty or so D1 Nahualli, and at D3 at that, as well as being Blood 3, he improves Mictlan's path variety a lot and he can also re-animate corpses as soulless, and the endless blood nation cycle of blood hunting to unrest to patrolling to dead people produces a lot of corpses, so he can do a lot to benefit your chaff economy as well.

There are also a few Blood/Death crosspath spells that are very worth casting, especially in vanilla Dominions 5. JBBM takes the steam out of making an infinite vampire engine somewhat.




The turn's two sites are also a bit unusual, one because it passively lowers unrest, the other because it allows you to waste a priest's turn to recruit one of the worst potential troops in the game. I mean, if you have a "pure" priest with nothing but H paths, maybe an H1 or something, you'll often have no better use for him, but for nations like Mictlan where all our priests are also mages, we'd basically never want to do this.

Foulspawn are randomly generated and have a few quite strong outcomes and a lot that are practically worse than slaves and soulless, so it's nothing you really want to gamble on.



My troops near Marignon's border and next turn he'll see them. That's when negotiations will start in earnest, ideally after I've snagged a province or two of his already and can negotiate from a position of strength, though I don't want to hit him up too late, either, because if he gets chunked too hard, he won't believe that me letting off pressure will let him handle TC and he'll flip us both off and do a spiteful last stand rather than dedicating everything to loving up my neighbour, which I'd really prefer.

Donkringel
Apr 22, 2008
Purple, at any point did you consider buying TC dinner before doing all this fuckery to them?

Technowolf
Nov 4, 2009




Agartha

Turn 27


The war continues.


Erythia bounces off of my throne province.


The Eternal Knights don't live up to their name.


It turns out that goblins aren't really the best troops.


And I brush aside some PD.


Turn 28


Just summoning some chaff. I forget what the magic site is, but rest assured it's probably extremely basic.


More PD gets crushed underfoot.


My luck continues to be bad.


But not as bad as Patala's. Demon Knights are like regular knights, but better in just about every way except that as demons they can be banished.


Turn 29


The only battles here are scouts being found out, and...
Wait, what?


My communications with Utgard continue to be the best. It was a perfect DM. I want nothing. I want nothing.



Purple already discussed EoG.


A look at my research. I'm still not sure if my priorities were good or not in this game.


Movement. I reinforce my throne and move to retake my cap circle province.


Turn 30


Apparently I lost my prophet some time ago. Time to appoint a new one. Also, Gath claims a throne and Bogarus is wiped out.


The Throne of Death is a mixed bag. Sure, 5D a turn is great, and two dom spread chances are nice, but -1 Growth, especially on a blood nation like Gath can slow your blood economy, even if you have Growth 3.


A quick look at the throne count. Gath has 4 of the 7 needed to win. It's about this time that my war against Patala is (a)going nowhere fast and (b) probably helping Gath by keeping both their northern and southern borders safe. I shoot Lotham a peace deal through DMs so we can both concentrate on Gath and keep them from winning the game.


Since I don't receive a reply, I still consider myself at war with Patala. I probably shouldn't have done this, to show my good intentions, but I don't know if Patala and Gath have made an alliance or something like that.

OOrochi
Jan 19, 2017
Atlantis Turns 27-31

Turn 27



Not too much going on this turn. I get my Forgiving Father up to F2, research more alteration, and nearly crack Bogarusís cap.



I do get a pretty nice boost of gold from a luck event though.



On Bogarusís cap, I keep preaching down the dominion as I siege and bring in a few mournful for reinforcements.




And to demonstrate my need to get Wolven Winter, I see that both my throne and adjacent fort are waaaay too hot. I canít even upgrade the basic palisade on the throne until it cools down.



I also see Marignonís god and a decent army sitting on a nearby fort of Pythiumís. Interested to see how the hellblessed Hydras do vs a bunch of solid troops.

Turn 28



One more quiet turn. I summon some cave grubs, which are super useful siege chaff. Their main issues are that they require a cave to summon and are quite slow. However, with sailing I can negate that 2nd weakness pretty easily and get them to wherever I need. I also finally research Alteration 4 for Wolven Winter so I can save my forts.



The only notable movement is that I try to once again clear out the indies in the lake. Hopefully 3rd timeís the charm.

In diplomacy news, since Marignon looks to be busy fighting Pythium, I reach out Pan, Erytheia, and TC to see if theyíd be interested in fighting them once my NAP ends. Pan sounds pretty noncommittal, but Ery is very interested, and TC sounds like they could go for it too.

Turn 29



I get some evocation magic, working my way up to my big death spells and finally crack Bogarusís cap.



I also take 1 of the remaining lake provinces. Much easier when I have more than 3 guys.




And here are the results from Wolven Winter. It kills some of your population, so itís not something youíd want to cast a lot on your own provinces, but itís not cripplingly bad. And now my forts arenít melting!



I ping the fort, just in case Bogarus has something hidden up their sleeve.



And then move one of my Angakokís back home to help protect me against Marignon.

Turn 30

No battle/event screenshots this turn, but not too much happened. Bogarus was pretty sparsely defended, so Iím pretty confident Iíll be able to take it this turn. I also did finally kill the indies in the lake.



However, one big event of the turn is that I get my 2nd and final hero! As a unit, Mother Hydra is nothing too crazy, just a big blob of HP. Her real use for Atlantis is that sheís another unit that can claim thrones. Her H4 is notable in that itís tied with only a few other units as the highest in the game, but it doesnít do anything too notable otherwise.

Turn 31



I keep going up evocation, with a quick beeline through construction to get access to some magic items. Also see Gath claim another throne.





The storming of Bogarus goes quite well. I take a few casualties from friendly fire from my mages, but overall a pretty great result. RIP Biggs/Valhelmethead and his horrendous luck in newbads.



Most of the events are pretty negligible, but the luck lottery happens again! This time itís an absolute ton of gold, some gems, and a very nice item that I wouldnít be able to make for quite a while. The Banner of the Northern Star auto-casts a spell that makes all astral mages (both sides) 1 level stronger in astral magic. Itíll be a nice boost for when I run around with more Forgiving Fathers in battle.

In diplomacy I start talking to a lot of people. Mostly about Gath, and seeing that they currently hold 4 thrones out of 7 needed to win, I cast around and see if Erytheia and/or TC would be interested in going after them instead of Marignon. However, Erytheia has a much smaller border with Gath than I thought and TC, through the chaos that is diplomacy nearby Purple, has just NAPíd Gath and is going to fight Mari with Mictlan. So, it looks like killing Marignon is the order of the day.



To that end, I start making moves on Marignon. I was originally going to siege down Glade Woods because itís already cold. However, thanks to info from Erytheia that Marignonís expecting me to do that, I make a different decision. Instead of what the screenshot says, I move my big army to take Ebys. Iím expecting Marignon to attempt to harass me with the army from Glade Woods, so hopefully this will catch them and cut them off.



And then I bring some reinforcements up including a set of cave grubs from across the lake. Theyíll most likely meet up with my main army in the Mountains of Mist.



Over in the west, I move my guys to maybe harass some of Marignonís forts. I also have a group of Forgiving Fathers entering the lake from the north so theyíll be safe and available for future fights.

OOrochi fucked around with this message at 17:25 on Mar 15, 2020

Arcvasti
Jun 12, 2019

Never trust a bird.
Consequences of global warming vanquishing late stage capitalism is a bit on the nose.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!

OOrochi posted:

However, Erytheia has a much smaller border with Gath than I thought and TC, through the chaos that is diplomacy nearby Purple, has just NAPíd Gath and is going to fight Mari with Mictlan. So, it looks like killing Marignon is the order of the day.

Donkringel posted:

Purple, at any point did you consider buying TC dinner before doing all this fuckery to them?

It's good to be appreciated for what I do. :)

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Elite
Oct 30, 2010

DivineCoffeeBinge posted:

"The enemy makes a Seduction attempt--"

"QUIT PUTTING YOUR GODDAMN FETISHES INTO THE GAME, MARK"

*rolls*

*sighs*

"Devourax the Terrible - The Blighted One, Eater of Hope, Hatebringer, Keeper of Vileness and Lord of Despair - is smitten by your flirting attempt and pledges his dire brood to support your cause"

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