Epic 9, Part II

Taking the War to Russia

Novgorod was captured in 260AD. It still had not a lot of culture, so my experienced swordmen didn't need catapults to support them yet. I now had a beachhead in Russia! Here's an overview shot of my supply lines:

Note also how the borders of Kyoto, expanding quickly thanks to being the Hindu holy city, had spotted Cyrus' borders.

While I was invading, Gandhi, whom I had also met in the meantime, sent over an invasion force. Because sea combat is so unreliable in Civ 4, I was forced to let the galley come through and unload his forces on my home island. My forces trembled in fear...

...not. The two warriors just meant my newly-produced sword reached Russia with some experience already.

As a revenge, I sent over some forces of my own.

This pillage party disconnected his ivory, but did not dare to pillage any tiles near Delhi, as Gandhi had axemen, swords and chariots of his own. I had to wait for a second galley with units to try to pillage his resources at Delhi later.

As usual, moving near a big city caused the AI to attack my stack relentlessly. I actually lost a spear!

I had to move my forces back to the galleys to heal, which took some time. And while Toku and Peter were real push-overs, Gandhi actually fought back (at this point I noticed that "Random Personalities" was switched on!). He landed a sword/chariot pair at Rostov, which I had captured earlier.

Somehow I hadn't seen the galley coming - whoops.

So my attack stack, already on its way back to attack Moscow, had to return to recapture it. That was no big deal though, as I had to wait for my catapults (and more chariots...) to arrive anyway. Moscow fell in 635AD.

Riding on the Economic Edge

A word on my economy: I had prioritized Currency to support the growing number of my cities, but invading Russia was really a drain on my finances. I had to run 10% or even 0% science now, and could only increase it to 100% for some turns after capturing a city. I used binary science so to speak, but not because I like to micromanage a lot (I don't), but because I was forced to. Here's a shot of the GNP graph from around that time.

Note the volatility of my graph...and note how Gandhi's and Peter's GNP were in a similar region as mine since I pillaged their cottages, while China and Persia were considerably stronger, as I had no pillage parties there. This could get interesting later...

Because of my econimical problems, I researched Code of Laws a lot earlier than I usually do, and whipped courthouses in Russia and Japan ASAP. Moscow later built the Forbidden Palace as well, which would save me over 70gpt!

The financial problems partly came from the high number of cities, but also partly because I had so many units. Having to build a chariot for each attacking unit, which otherwise were more or less useless besides serving as the stack's medics, led to a very high unit maintenance cost. This really was the downside of my strategy of attacking as early as possible with swordmen - but a lot of fun, too!

Another thing I did to relieve my treasury a bit was to research Priesthood, build a temple in Kyoto, and hire a priest. The resulting great prophet I used to construct the Hindu shrine, and I also concentrated to spread Hinduism to my cities. Coordinating my attack stacks using galleys and ferrying my missionaries to all the islands I had caused me quite some logistical headaches.

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