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Medieval 2: Total War (Cont.)

Discussion in 'Total War Series' started by Taluntain, Mar 12, 2007.

  1. JSBB Gems: 31/31
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    It could be coincidence but in my current game the calling of crusades stopped as soon as I conquered Rome (which was the only Papal States settlement).

    Alternatively it could be that Catholic nations were too busy with other things to be bothered calling a crusade. Milan (until I eliminated them), Sicily, the HRE, and Denmark have all been fighting (and losing) against me. France, Spain and Portugal were all eliminated by the time I took Rome. England and Scotland were stranded on their Island fighting deadlocked against each other until I sent an army over and tipped the balance of power by taking out England's main settlements. Poland has its hands full with the Mongols and Venice and Hungary have been fighting each other.

    In the next couple turns I will finish off England. I really have the HRE on the ropes too so they will probably go a few turns after that. Beyond that I am not sure whether or not I should attack Denmark or Sicily.

    Denmark has really started to annoy me - in both this game and my previous game I have had them regularly sending armies to attack Antwerp but due to their geographical location I have not sent anyone to attack their settlements. This game they have built a bloody huge navy that controls the northern waters. My main navy is too busy trying to control the Mediteranian to go and do anything about it.

    On the other hand, going after Sicily makes more geographical sense.
     
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    I think you have the same situation I have experienced:

    You killed the Pope, and there's no cardinals around. With a bit luck, it will take a long time before someone gets good enough priests to be promoted cardinals.
     
  3. JSBB Gems: 31/31
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    No there is still a Pope, he has been standing next to Rome looking like a slack jawed idiot ever since I captured the city. He is the general of one of two Papal States armies that have just been sitting there waiting for God only knows what. Actually, I think I am on my third Pope since I took Rome - I assassinated the first two.
     
  4. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    JSSB,

    I, too, have noticed that the Danes have a hard-on for Antwerp in all my games. For some reason, there is something about Antwerp that really appeals to them. In all of my games in which I have controlled Antwerp, it has faced one major Danish assault after another. The strange thing is, even when I control other territories nearby Denmark, they ONLY attack Antwerp.

    If taking out Rome lessens the chance of further Crusades being called, then Rome is GONE. I probably would have won the game by this point if it weren't for repeated Crusades. As soon as Crusading armies start showing up, I really don't have any choice about pulling back and using my offensive armies to take on the Crusaders.

    Edit: I do not think there is any shortage of Cardinals in my game either. While several Catholic factions have been eliminated, both Sicily and Spain have significant empires, and I imagine that each of them has a few Cardinals. /edit

    Yes, assassins are helpful, and yes, I can usually eliminate half of the Crusading armies before they do any damage by taking out the general, but I can't see throwing the life of my well-trained assassin away by sending him on a suicide mission with a 7% success rate. I do not know if this is true or not, but it also appears that the lower the chance of success, the higher chance of your assassin dying in the attempt. It seems like if you go after a target with a 50% chance of success, even if you fail to take out your target the assassin usually escapes. The chance of dying seems much higher if you go after a target with a low chance of success. However, now that I think about it, the assassin can only be killed if you fail. It's not possible to succeed but die in the attempt (which should be a possibility). So perhaps the reason your assassin doesn't die as much when the percent is higher is simply because he must fail in order to be killed, and he won't fail as often against the easier targets. I don't care if my assassin misses, but I do care if my assassin dies in action.

    I'm still thinking about 16 settlements, and it is not an easy number. Durrazo is definitely going down, as the only reason it remains in Byzantine hands is that I am currently dealing with a Crusade. Rome is going down, and that is the only territory controlled by the Papal States. However, by taking Rome, I'm definitely getting into a war with Sicily, which is usually not a problem, except that Sicily is actually a world power in this game. I'm not sure who between Spain and Sicily is stronger, but after me and the Mongols, they have to be #3 and #4 on the power list.

    The other thing that I may be able to do is use my humongous treasury to purchase a victory. As I said, with well over 400,000 florins in the treasury, money is certainly NOT an issue. However, purchasing 16 settlements, even with the amount of cash I have at my disposal is simply not practical. Maybe I'll send a diplomat over to the Moors and see what they would be willing to part with. Conquest via purchase would work better there, as the Muslim populations will accept my rule much more easily compared to the non-Muslim, European settlements.

    The other thing that is strange is I'm in the mid 1300s, and no plague yet. I always thought it hit in the mid 1300s. That means that it should only be a few turns away, but it's strange that it hasn't started yet. The armies I plan on using are still in training anyway, so having the plague hit how won't be too bad. It will hurt my garrison at Antioch that is the current Crusade target, but presumably the plague will affect the Crusading armies as much as it affects me. I will undoubtedly lose many family members, but my family tree is so big that even if I lose 1/3 of them it shouldn't affect my ability to properly command my armies.

    [ March 15, 2007, 17:40: Message edited by: Aldeth the Foppish Idiot ]
     
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    Keep assassinating. They run out of cardinals after a while.
     
  6. Dalveen

    Dalveen Rimmer gone Bald Veteran

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    Really? Ive only taken two games far enough for the plague, and i only lost 1 famly member out of both of them, and that was with Milan.
     
  7. JSBB Gems: 31/31
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    That sounds like a great idea to me. Actually they shouldn't have too many cardinals given that I have killed three popes (one in the battle for Rome plus two assassinated) and assassinated all of the priests and cardinals that my assassins have come across while mauling Denmark, the HRE, and Sicily.

    It is kind of a pity that a priest can't denounce an Imam (and vice versa) like you would a heratic - that would really speed the process up given that I have a large number of Imams that I use to convert captured settlements.
     
  8. Gnarfflinger

    Gnarfflinger Wiseguy in Training

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    I'm still working the early game strat with France. I find that their economy will thrive as long as I don't go hog wild with military production, but once i need the armies, I only grow on the blood of my enemies. By sacking settlements I can get some production...

    I'm also getting more specialization of my settlements. Paris builds my siege weapons, Rhiems builds spies and assassins, Bordeaux will be for cavalry, Toulouse will build archers and Angers will build infantry units. Other settlements may be able to provide other units as needed for garrison duties.

    I'm tempted to try to get armies into England to conquer it and get merchants there for economic benefits (They'll get killed if I use them on the mainland).

    I think that this will be a difficult campaign...
     
  9. JSBB Gems: 31/31
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    I took out a couple more Popes and a cardinal who was wandering around Sicily and it looks like they have run out of cardinal. The Papal States generals that are left have very low loyalty scores so I am going to see if I can actually bribe them with one of my thus far virtually useless diplomats.

    In a period of two turns I eliminated England (my conquest), the HRE (by assassination), and Denmark (again by assassination). That leaves me with a ton of rebel setlements to scoop up.

    The only problem being that it also leaves me with a very slim buffer (Poland) between me and the Mongols. From the looks of it the Polish army has been pretty much wiped out by the Mongols.

    Oh well, I sent off four maxed out assassins to assist the Poles.
     
  10. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    Oh, I certainly don't expect to lose 1/3 of my family members to the plague - I was more looking at a "worst case scenario". However, it is amazing that you have only lost one family member to plague over two games. In a typical game, I will lose about 10% of my generals/family members, so usually two, or three at the most in a single game.

    Specialization is absolutely necessary, especially if, like me, you rely on having many more cities than castles. Just do it logically. For example, all of your cities are going to have the capabilities of producing units for garrison duties, because you're going to build those structures everywhere for the bonus to public order and law. Likewise, you are going to build brothels and inns a bunch of places too, so you'll have ability of making spies and assassins everywhere too (although obviously, building them where a guild is located is generally a much better option).

    That having been said, you already seem to have figured out which buildings are smart to specialize. Specifically, they are the buildings that don't do anything other than allow for the recruitment or upgrade of a specific units. So I agree that it is smart to have one castle for cavalry, one for missile, etc. I usually assign a castle two duties, especially if they are located fairly close together. Castle A will build all the structures for cavalry and missile recruitment, while Castle B will produce siege equipment and the various buildings for upgrading armor. Generally speaking I do not like producing seige equipment of armor upgrade buildings in my cities, simply because cities have so many more things to build than castles. It is not uncommon for me to build everything I want at a given castle level before the castle is capable of upgrading to the next level. However, the opposite is usually true for cities - they usually reach the stage where they are ready to upgrade long before I have built everything at their current level of development.
     
  11. joacqin

    joacqin Confused Jerk Veteran

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    Italian states can get cavalry in cities, nothing fancy but good enough. From what I have read on totalwar.org the best tactic with Milan is to run without any castles at all as you dont need them for troop production and you get lots more money. Have yet to try them myself to verify it.
     
  12. Dalveen

    Dalveen Rimmer gone Bald Veteran

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    Its what i did with Milan, they have awesome Militia, the only castles i got were the ones i conquered later, but i had 7 cities before i took the Sicilian fortress.
     
  13. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    What cavalry does Milan produce in cities? I only tried them once, briefly, and the thing I didn't like was no cavalry production, and less than stellar infantry. Being able to produce pavaise crossbowmen in the cities was nice though.
     
  14. Dalveen

    Dalveen Rimmer gone Bald Veteran

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    Cavalry Militia/Merchant Cavalry Militia, Italian Militia and Italian Spear Militia isnt that bad. And latter you get gun powder units and Dismounted Broken Lances. Late game cavalry are produced in cities aswell, Broken Lances and Famigalia Ducale.
     
  15. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    I don't remember the cavalry militia, but as I recall merchant cavalry militia was pretty bad. However, if Broken Lances and Famigalia Ducale can both be produced in cities, those are probably the two best mounted units you have available to you.
     
  16. Gnarfflinger

    Gnarfflinger Wiseguy in Training

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    Naturally, the successful establishment of a thieves guild will change where my spies and assassins get built. Usually Paris only needs a few Siege weapons available anyway. My most recent attempt, I'm not at war yet, but I am getting a couple stacks ready to move on the first target (thinking Milan for economic reasons).

    Also, if I take a castle where I don't think I want one, is it wise to convert it to another city?
     
  17. iLLusioN' Gems: 16/31
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    Yes it's perfectly acceptable gnarf. I do it quite often. My general rule of thumb is 4 cities per castle, otherwise I tend to run out of money too fast.
     
  18. Gnarfflinger

    Gnarfflinger Wiseguy in Training

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    When Ajiacco converts, the ratio will be 9 cities and 4 castles. I'm thinking that next time Denmark gets testy about my assassins, I'll go after Bruges and Antwerp (Maybe pressing the attack if I am really pissed off, Hamburg will make a good city).

    I tried to buy the strategy guide today, but the store said that they no longer order them in after the game's about 6 months old...

    May have to look online to see what I can find...
     
  19. Aldeth the Foppish Idiot

    Aldeth the Foppish Idiot Armed with My Mallet O' Thinking Veteran

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    If anything, I would say that you have the ratio to high in the direction of castles. I'll use my current game as an example. After finishing my game with the Egyptians, I started another game with England - it's one of the many nations that I have played breifly, but never stuck to it until the end. In Britain, the only castle on the entire island is Nottingham - all the other ones are cities. There is absolutely no need to have more than one castle on the island, because you only have to deal with the Scots. I have now eliminated the Scots, but since it's already a Fortress, converting now would be a waste.

    As for the mainland of Europe, I just eliminated France, and the only castle on the mainland is Caen. Toulouse will become my third castle. The French did have posession of it, but it is now in rebel hands. As it turned out, I eliminated all of the French family members except the king, who was ultra-paranoid, but also quite old. So I just made sure no other family members came of age, and waited for nature to take its course with the king, at which point, the four remaining French settlements turned rebel.

    To summarize, I think Illusion's startegy of four cities to one castle is acceptable. In general, I would say unless there's a really good reason to have a castle located somewhere, you're better off converting them to cities, as cities are much better for your economy.

    I actually have a funny story to relate concerning my current game. I had an alliance with the Milanese, which of course they broke by laying seige to one of my settlements. The city was well garrisoned, but only with archers and spearmen. So I decided that I would let them attack the following turn, confident that I would take fewer casaulties by fending off their attack than by sallying forth to drive them off. Sally battles are difficult if you don't have some cavalry in the city, which I typically do not.

    On the Milanese turn, instead of attacking, they first sent a diplomat to one of my settlements asking for a ceasefire. This happened BEFORE they attempted to take the city. I counter offered, asking them for Dijon to take the ceasefire, which they accepted. Then they broke the seige on my city and pulled their army back. So to recap, they declared war on me, then, before a single casaulty was taken on either side, they ended up handing over one of their cities to get a ceasefire. Talk about realizing you have an ill-conceived plan for war.

    Speaking of the Milanese, before starting my game with England, I did briefly attempt the Milanese, seeing if it really was possible to play the Milanese without castles. My answer is that while it may be true that higher level cities produce good cavalry and infantry, they do not do so well until you get to city level 4. What this means is that unless you get a merchant guildhouse your army is completely bereft of cavalry beyond the bodyguard units of your family members and generals. I kind of like being able to produce mailed and feudal knights in the early game. While it is true that they are the weakest of heavy cavalry units, something is better than nothing. So I will still contend it would be nice to have a castle or two for the Milanese in the early going of the game.
     
  20. JSBB Gems: 31/31
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    My game as the Moors is getting very interesting towards the end. Right now there are only three Catholic countries left - Venice which has been reduced to their one island settlement, the Papal States which gobbled up an available rebel settlement after I eliminated the Milanese royal family, and Hungary.

    The Mongols overextended themselves trying to grab up the rebel settlements that used to belong to Denmark. I tried to race them to get to the settlement North of Hamburg but they got there first. It was at this time that Timur the Lame and his pals decided that the Mongols would be easy pickings and declared war. As luck would have it both the Mongols and Timuriads took the northern route.

    Seeing that I turned my army around, brought another army up from the south and that very turn I took Hamburg and the next settlement east of there from the Mongols. The Mongol army that was North of Hamburg took off back east like a bat out of hell so I assume that they are trying to consolidate to make a stand. It won't make a difference though, they are totally caught between a hammer and anvil and they are going to be crushed. I control over 50 settlements now and I am generating income of something like 75,000 florins per turn. I have an army on its way to Jerusalem to end the game but I think I am going to play on and see just how tough Timur's army is.

    Edit: One thing that I have found interesting is that despite the fact that I would say I have played much better this game and have a much much stronger empire compared to my first long game as England, I have taken a LOT longer to get to 45 settlements let alone the winning conditions. I didn't even get to the black death in my long game as England, let alone the Timuriads. The difference is that I expanded almost too quickly in my first long game - I managed to get my 45 settlements and ended the game but my empire was badly overextended and vulnerable. This time around my empire is rock solid.

    [ March 19, 2007, 15:20: Message edited by: JSBB ]
     
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