In this scenario, Yodit has to disrupt the army of the king of Aksum, Dagnajan, while simultaneously dealing with his allies, the Begemder, and a civil war in the region. In the end, Dagnajan has to be stopped from passing through by killing him.
- 1 Intro
- 2 Scenario instructions
- 3 Players
- 4 Strategy/Tactics
- 5 Outro
- 6 Trivia
- 7 Bugs and changes
The trade mission in Aksum was quite successful. I sold my grain and bought some casks of wine, olive oil and spices. Those goods would be sure to fetch a good price at home. Perhaps I will even be able to afford another cow? The door opened with a loud creak as Daniel returned from checking on the camels.
I looked up from the accounts and rubbed my eyes, tired from reading by the light of a single candle. 'Everything alright with the camels?' I said to greet the boy. He only nodded, so I continued 'Perhaps we should go to bed. The caravan will leave early tomorrow and we have a long way back home.' Daniel barely suppressed a yawn before answering, 'I am not really tired, father, but since you said you would tell a bedtime story about Yodit, I had might as well go to sleep early.'
The room was decent and clean, but small. There was only one bed for both of us, as renting two rooms in the city would have been expensive. I took my shirt off and lay down next to Daniel before resuming the story: 'After marrying Prince Zanobis, Yodit had to be patient for her vengeance. Her husband had to become king and build a larger army if they ever were to defeat the mighty Aksumite Empire.'
The boy suppressed another yawn, but then turned his head to listen closely, 'Five years have passed since Zanobis taken the throne when Yodit learned that the Aksumite king, Dagnajan, was planning a military expedition to the east. If she could send an elite force to ambush and kill Dagnajan, the Aksumite empire would be severely crippled. A daring, but promising plan.'
- Starting Age: Feudal Age
- Starting resources: 500 food, 500 wood, 200 gold, 200 stone
- Population limit: 150
- Weaken Dagnajan's army.
- (subsequently) Defend Darginda's Castle.
- Kill Dagnajan.
- Destroy Dagnajan's Docks.
- Destroy Begemder's Castle.
- Destroy either Alodian Traders or Alodian Rebels.
- (if Alodian Traders are destroyed) Tribute 300 gold to Alodian Rebels.
- Defeat the Orthodox Monks.
- Yodit's army can support a population of 150 and cannon construct walls due to the lack of stone in the region. It can, however, advance to the Imperial Age.
- There are several enemy military camps on the riverbanks. Attacking them could be costly, but it will weaken Dagnajan's army.
- The rebellion in the neighbouring Nubian kingdom of Alodia is spilling into this region. Whatever side you take, the benefits may come in handy.
- Try not to waste any time. Dagnajan's army will be here soon, and the more that you do early on, the easier it will be to stop his mighty army.
- Explore the region well. There will be several opportunities for Yodit to exploit.
Your scouts report:
- Yodit's army has arrived to the north in a more arid region. It will not be easy to obtain sufficient supplies here, so they will need to be spent wisely.
- The Begemder kingdom (3, Cyan) lies to the east of Yodit's army and is allied with Dagnajan. They will try to delay Yodit while Dagnajan prepares his army. It would be a good idea to deal with them so that they can no longer help him. Their army consists of swordsmen, Crossbowmen, and Camel Riders.
- Slightly to the south, Darginda (5, Orange) has fortified the pass leading to their kingdom. Helping them to secure the pass when the enemy army is on the move is a priority.
- The Kingdom of Alodia is tormented by rebellions. It has no diplomatic relations with Yodit, but it would be wise to support either its rulers or the rebels to further Yodit's interests in the region. Alodian traders (4, Yellow) have set up a trade post to the west, and a bit further north, the Alodian rebels (6, Purple) have made their camp.
- Dagnajan (2, Red) is the king of the mighty Aksumite Empire. He has several outposts along the river where he is gathering his army for an attack on the kingdom of Darginda. It will take him some time to prepare his army, but once he is ready he will be difficult to stop. War Elephants and Monks form the core of his fearsome force.
- Darginda (Ethiopians) is the object of Dagnajan's desire. They have fortified the pass to their kingdom with a Castle, but their unupgraded army of Light Cavalry, Spearmen and Skirmishers is no match for Dagnajan.
Neutral, potential allies
- Alodian Traders (Ethiopians) have a trade outpost in the west of the map, only lightly defended by a few Eastern Swordsmen, Pikemen, Archers and two Watch Towers. When approached, they want the Alodian Rebels defeated, after which they "provide their Market for trading".
Enemy, potential allies
- Alodian Rebels (Saracens) are a ragtag band of rebels, but their army is considerably larger than the one of the Alodian Traders. If the Alodian Traders outpost is destroyed, they ally with the player and help with raids on 3 of Dagnajan's military camps whenever they are paid a tribute of 300 gold (for further details see below).
- Dagnajan (Ethiopians) is the final adversary in this scenario. He has a large and diverse army divided among several military camps and a city but will only attack 50 minutes into the game, so he can be weakened beforehand.
- Begemder kingdom (Ethiopians) are the major annoyance in the first part of the scenario. They attack with mostly Archers and Men-at-Arms (later upgraded), with a few Camels and Scorpions thrown in later, but can easily be raided to greatly diminish their threat. If left unattended they can even advance to the Imperial Age. The kingdom is located in the east.
- Orthodox Monks (Ethiopians) is a group of Monks allied to Dagnajan in the east. When their Wonder is destroyed, the Monks of Dagnajan's army are removed from the game.
The scenario starts with but a few Archers, Shotel Warriors and Villagers. Immediately starting to build Houses can save some time. Directly southeast of the starting location where a few Begemder Archers and Spearmen are located is a sound place for a first Town Center, as there are all necessary resources nearby. Additional resources can be found north and south, but to the south lies the Begemder kingdom. The player has to deal with the attacking Begemder kingdom while simultaneously trying to cut the size of Dagnajan's army which will become active at the 50 minute mark (on standard/moderate difficulty, the timer is extended by 30/15 minutes), when they will advance towards the pass at Darginda's Castle. If Dagnajan reaches the pass the scenario is lost.
For the first few minutes the focus should be on building up an economy to advance to the Castle Age and construct a Castle, but at the same time defense may not be neglected, as Begemder Archers and Men-at-Arms continuously swarm the base. To counter them Skirmishers or Archers (in order not to strain the food supply) are a good idea. A very gold efficient way is to build a Dock and a few Galleys. The Galleys only take 1 damage from Archers so they can deal with a great number of them. In addition, once Bodkin Arrow is researched, the Galleys can outrange the nearby Begemder Town Center. A navy shouldn't be too heavily invested in though, a few Galleys are enough.
Once in the Castle Age, a Castle can be built to stall the Begemder onslaught infinitely, as they have no siege weapons to speak of. The Ethiopian unique unit, the Shotel Warrior, is excellent for raiding the Begemder kingdom and their economy can be utterly destroyed by sending a few Shotel Warriors, but this is not mandatory as like mentioned before, a Castle is enough to stop them.
There are a few task that can be done to make the final fight against Dagnajan easier.
- In the northeast of the map on a mountain is a Monastery of Orthodox Monks. They try to convert any unit approaching them, so it might be best to deal with them using ranged units like Skirmishers or Arbalesters. Another option is to use the 3 Light Cavalry that the player should still have (the original plus two that they find on the way), as they are nearly impossible to convert, especially if the player can get each Monk focused on a different unit. If their Wonder is destroyed, all the Monks of Dagnajan's army are removed.
- In the south of the Begemder kingdom a Castle overseeing Dagnajan's elephant pens can be found. If it is destroyed, the War Elephants are removed from Dagnajan's army. The Castle can either be destroyed using siege weapons or Arson empowered Shotel Warriors as they most likely will not yet have researched Murder Holes.
- The Alodian civil war spills into this region and either the Alodian Traders or the Alodian Rebels can be supported, however this is optional, given the limited time until Dagnajan attacks. This secondary objective is unlocked by sending a unit to the Alodian Traders outpost, upon which the player is given the choice of either defeating the Traders outpost or the Rebels camp north of it. Helping the Traders "gives access" to their Market, with no additional benefits. If the Rebels are supported, they offer to raid Dagnajan's army along a set route, on which three of his camps are located. Each time they are paid a tribute of 300 gold they attack with 1 Imperial Camel, 2 Heavy Camels and 3 Camel Archers. As these units are unupgraded however they are not very effective and should only be used if the player has excess gold or time is running low. Once the 3 camps on the route are wiped out, they will no longer conduct raids. For either choice the gain is minimal, but supporting the Rebels might be more advantageous, as their army is significantly larger and the Traders' Market can be traded with even if they are enemies, as long as it is left standing (but given the limited time until Dagnajan attacks trading doesn't really pay off).
- The last way to diminish Dagnajan's army is to attack his 6 military camps on the shore of the river and east of it. Each camp consists of a different army composition, in most cases two types of units. To avoid dealing with the Alodian Rebels when attacking from the west of the river, the tiny river can be crossed south of Yodit's base (the ford is hard to notice).
At the 50 minute mark, Dagnajan starts gathering his army and heads for the pass leading to Darginda. His core army which cannot be diminished beforehand consists of Shotel Warriors, Siege Rams and Trebuchets. To better monitor his advance, Cartography can be researched to give vision of Darginda villages. The best place to intercept him is at Darginda's Castle as said Castle and Darginda's army distract the attention of Dagnajan's army. It should be remembered that the objective is to kill Dagnajan himself, not to defeat his entire army, so all available units should be ordered to attack him. The easily spotted Elephant Archer hero is best attacked using Elite Skirmishers, Arbalests, Halberdiers and/or (Elite) Shotel Warriors. Sometimes Dagnajan's army doesn't show up at Darginda's Castle but gets stuck at one of the camps by the river, upon which the player can further build up an army and then strike at him in full force.
With Dagnajan dead the scenario is won.
In the Definitive Edition, this scenario becomes way easier, since the Begemder Kingdom only attacks once, and that attack is easy to repeal with the player's starting units. Use the starting units to kill any Begemder units that are near the player's starting area. Task one Villager with building four Houses and the other four with building a Town Center near the Forage Bushes and the Gold Mines. Now the player should focus on booming and getting a strong economy. Scout the map and bring the foot units north to where there are Forage Bushes and an Elephant (the Begemder Kingdom will attack there). When in the Castle Age, build a Castle and research Royal Heirs, as it will speed up the production of Shotel Warriors. Now the player should focus on completing as many secondary objectives as possible, and spamming fully upgraded Elite Shotel Warriors is the best way of doing this. However, when spamming Shotel Warriors, the player should take some aspects into account:
- The Orthodox Monks will attempt to convert the player's units, so the player can circumvent this by sending a garrisoned Ram to destroy their Monastery (the Orthodox Monks do not have Redemption).
- The Alodian Traders/Rebels have a Scorpion/Mangonel, so the player should have their units on staggered formation before attacking them.
- 4 of the 6 Dagnajan's bases are easy to deal with, but the other two have Scorpions and Onagers, respectively, so the player should be prepared to have lots of casualties. Alternatively, the player can train some cavalry units to deal with that problem.
On standard/moderate, there should be enough time to complete all secondary objectives and destroy all of Dagnajan's bases (and therefore get the achievement "An Army Marches on Its Stomach"). On hard, there is less time and so, if the player has to leave some of Dagnajan's bases untouched, those should be the ones with Scorpions and Onagers.
Do not forget to train as many Shotel Warriors as the population limit allows and keep them queued up at the Castle to compensate casualties. When the timer expires, Dagnajan will start his march, and as soon as the player spots him (a hero Elephant Archer) attacking one of Darginda's bases, the player can send all their Shotel Warriors and quickly kill Dagnajan as well as any military units surrounding him.
'When the news of Dagnajan's death reached the city of Aksum, both of his sons tried to seize the throne for themselves. A civil war broke out and the once so mighty empire began to crumble. Of course, Yodit...', a soft snoring drew my attention to Daniel. The lad was already sleeping.
- This scenario is highly similar to the Light Sleeper scenario of Age of Mythology. Both are a race against time and involve holding on against enemies while booming, amassing forces and facing an enemy army that rampages through a weaker ally.
- Of course, Light Sleeper involves reaching a unit that can face that army, while A Fallen Crown is a regicide, as Yodit's army must kill Dagnajan.
- In both scenarios, the player's starting position is in the north part of the map.
- The player may not build stone walls or gates in this scenario. This is to prevent the player from walling off the extraction point, making the scenario too easy. Yet, the useless Fortified Wall technology is still available for research.
- In the Definitive Edition, the "An Army Marches on Its Stomach" achievement can be earned by completing all secondary objectives and destroying all of Dagnajan's smaller bases before Dagnajan and his army march.
Bugs and changes
- When Dagnajan reaches the pass the player is now correctly defeated.
- Begemder kingdom AI difficulty has been decreased.
- Missing ending dialogue has been added.
- There is a possibility that a bug may occur if the player assaults Dagnajan's base (the area walled off with fortified walls). Doing so would result the countdown to immediately end and a warning will announce Dagnajan's march has started. However, doing so will not result in Dagnajan continuing on and he will remain in the base with his army. To remedy this, continuously assault the base with some cheap units until he begins to move forward or eliminate him in the base.