A New Home is the fifth and final scenario of the Kotyan Khan campaign in Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition. It depicts the arrival of the Cumans in Bulgaria as well as their later return to Hungary.
After we left Hungary weakened and defenseless, the Mongols invaded, defeated King Bela and his army, and devastated the country once more. The kingdom is in such a poor state that refugees say that the church bells in Hungary have been quiet for weeks and wild animals now roam the streets of the cities.
King Bela fled to Austria where Duke Frederick used King Bela's weak position to extort land and make him swear fealty to the Holy Roman Emperor. Just like us, King Bela fell for the treachery of the Austrian duke and the Hungarian nobles.
Our people stand at a crossroads. We received letter from King Bela pleading with us to return to Hungary and help him deal with those who wronged us. Many of our leaders are not convinced and still wish to go to Bulgaria. It is not an easy decision, but it is I who have to make it.
For I am the new great khan of the Cumans, and they depend on my wisdom. I am no Kotyan, but I will follow in his footsteps and ensure the survival of our people and their legacy, something which we had fought so hard for.
- Starting Age: Imperial Age
- Starting resources: 200 food, 100 wood, 100 gold, 50 stone
- Population limit: 150
- Follow the Cuman Chief to the Danube River.
- Go to Bulgaria or stay in Hungary.
- Follow the Bulgarians to their camp.
- Liberate the Bulgarian Villagers.
- Defeat the Latin Empire.
- Defeat the Byzantines.
- Defeat the Byzantines or defend the Bulgarian Wonder
- Defend the Hungarians
- Defeat the Hungarian Nobles
- Defeat the Austrians
- Locate the Ruined Castle (Wonder)
The Cumans are restricted to a population limit of 150 and cannot build docks.
- The Hungarians under King Bela will actively participate in the fighting, so protecting them is in your interests.
- The many Hungarian villages provide resources to whoever controls them. They will produce fewer resources as more buildings within them are destroyed. Either help King Bela conquer them or burn them to the ground to deny your enemies additional resources.
- There are still Cumans in Hungary – if you find them, they will join you.
- The Bulgarians have been weakened by recent rebellions and weak rulers, so do not expect very much help from them. They will occasionally provide you with Konniks, however.
- The city of Nesebar is being supplied by sea, so starving its defenders out is impossible. Only with a full frontal assault can you breach its strong walls.
Your scouts report:
- A large body of Cuman horsemen (2, Cyan) has assembled and is ready to cross into Bulgaria.
- To the west lies Hungary. King Bela (3, Blue) has launched an offensive against Frederick, Duke of Austria (4, Red), and the rebellious Hungarian Nobles (5, Orange). The Austrians field an army Knights, Pikemen, Crossbowmen, and Teutonic Knights, while the rebellious Hungarians will train Crossbowmen, Pikemen, Long Swordsmen, and Light Cavalry.
- Bulgaria lies across the Danube River to the southeast. The Bulgarians (6, Grey) have recently lost the city of Nesebar to the Crusaders of the Latin Empire (7, Yellow), and need your aid to retake the city. The Latin Empire relies on an army of Knights, Skirmishers, Throwing Axemen, and Pikemen.
- Rumour has it that another Cuman khan is roaming the Balkans. Perhaps he is willing to join forces with you.
- The Byzantines (8, Purple) have lost the city of Constantinople to the Latin Empire and remain unable to retake it. Regardless, they seem to have regrouped and are now trying to retake the land that they had previously lost.
- Player (Cumans): The player will start with the Cuman Chief, and follow the fellow Chief to the bank of the Danube, where a sizeable Cuman army awaits them.
- Cumans (Cumans): Will ask the player to board the Transports to reach Bulgaria. Regardless of the player's choice, they will decide that the tribes will go separate ways and give half of their army (consisting of Steppe Lancers, Kipchaks and Light Cavalry) to the player.
- Hungarians (Magyars): Will beg the player to stay in Hungary to exact revenge on the Hungarian Nobles and the Austrians. They will remain an ally even if the player crosses the Danube to Bulgaria. If the Cumans stay, the player will follow the Knights to the Hungarian base. Afterwards they quickly build up their forces and defend themselves from the Austrians. Later, they will actively launch counterattacks towards the Austrian and the Nobles.
- Bulgarians (Bulgarians): will occasionally provide the player with Konniks, and will take control the city of Constantinople once the Latin Empire is defeated.
- Hungarian Nobles (Magyars): Will have their army scattered in the Hungarian villages, which the player will have to destroy in order to receive resources from these villages. Their main base is located in the South.
- Byzantines (Byzantines): The Byzantines will be one of the two enemies of the player should they cross the Danube. They will defend themselves with Cataphracts and Haiberdiers. At the later stage, they will become the main enemy of the player.
- Austrians (Teutons) is the most dangerous enemy if the player chooses to stay in Hungary. They have two bases in the west: one is mainly an economic base and the other is for military purpose. They train Knights, Teutonic Knights, Onagers, Monks, Pikemen and Capped Rams. On hard difficulty, there is an additional Castle in their economic base and they will soon upgrade all their troops to Paladins, Elite Teutonic Knights, Siege Onagers and Halberdiers. Their mixed infantry and cavalry units with Monks and siege units are really a threat. The player has to deal with them carefully.
- Latin Empire (Franks): is the strongest enemy if the player decides to cross the Danube. They have taken control the city of Constantinople and will be guarding some Villagers, which the player has to rescue. After the player destroys their Wonder and their Castles, they will resign and Constantinople will belong to the Bulgarians.
After crossing the river, the player follows the Bulgarian cavalry to their camp. They will tell the player of the failed siege of their city that is currently occupied by the Latin Empire city (yellow) and of Villagers to the south that need rescuing. Take the army to the south and free the Villagers. Next send the Villagers north near the Bulgarian village and build a Town Center near the berries and gold. This will be the main base. Continue training Villagers and send some south to mine all the stone around; this will be needed for building Castles.
The Bulgarian will continue to give the player 10 Konniks every few minutes. The player should plan to have the army consist of Paladins and Elite Kipchaks. After some time has passed, Cuman reinforcements appear near where the player freed the prisoners in the south. Bring these forces up north to the base. With increasing numbers begin the siege of the Latin Empire city. The Latin Empire should have started a Wonder. Break through the gates and head south to destroy the first Castle of the Latin Empire. The Latin Empire will be producing Throwing Axemen and Cavaliers. In the process, destroy all Stables because the AI will continue producing Cavaliers. After destroying both Castles and the enemy Wonder, the city will flip to control to the ally the Bulgarians. Begin to fortify the city because the Bulgarians will start building a Wonder. The image shows a suggested Castle placement. It is also worth building another Castle near the Docks to the north to prevent landings there also. The Byzantines will send forces by land and sea to destroy the Wonder.
Now by this time the player should be producing Paladins and Elite Kipchak with full upgrades from the Blacksmith. Use the Paladins to destroy Byzantine Cataphracts and siege while the Kipchaks will focus on their Halberdier units. Have a defensive Castle and block the way to the now Bulgarian city from land attacks until the Wonder is built. Occasionally, after defeating the Byzantine army, lead counter-attacks and destroy the Byzantine Castle with Trebuchets that are no longer needed in the Bulgarian city. Then wait until the Wonder is built by the Bulgarians to win.
As soon as the player goes west, they will encounter an Ox Wagon in King Bela's northern town that can be brought to the Monument just down the cliff passage to generate a few Villagers. Immediately southwest of the cliffs, there is an Ox Cart and two more Villagers that will help jumpstart the player's economy. The player should build their first Town Center next to the Stone Mine close to the Monument and immediately task five Villagers on the stone; once 50 more stone is gathered, the player can construct a second Town Center and continue booming from there. Be sure to gather the gold to the southeast of the Monument for upgrades and military. It would also be a good idea to build a Town Center next to the Stone and Gold Mines by the ravaged starting point, as this area will be completely safe from Austrian attacks.
The player's first order of business should be defeating the Austrians, as they are the only direct threat to the player and King Bela's survival. Due to their specialty of heavily armored infantry and cavalry, the player should primarily invest their economy in Elite Kipchaks, though they can train some Hussars to deal with Duke Frederick's Monks and Onagers. Hussars can be produced extremely quickly thanks to the Cumans' Steppe Husbandry technology already being researched at the start of the game. Because Elite Kipchaks no longer have 0 frame delay, the player will need to deploy some Halberdiers to protect them against the Austrian Paladins. Meanwhile the Elite Kipchaks should snipe the opponent's Elite Teutonic Knights before they can hit the player's Halberdiers. Additionally, the player should build Trebuchets to deal with the Austrians' thick fortifications. If the player has invested in a robust wood and food economy, they should not have to worry about losing their units anytime soon.
If the player is attempting the scenario's special achievement, "He Won't Be Back" (to defeat the Austrians before 45 minutes have elapsed), it is advised to focus strictly on Elite Kipchaks, Halberdiers, and Trebuchets, as the player will need to constantly generate huge numbers of the former to hold off Duke Frederick's aggressive army in a timely manner. After gathering enough resources, the player should delete most of their farmers, as well as their stone miners once they're finished in order to free up population space.
While preparing their assault on the Austrians' easternmost base, the player should construct multiple Castles on the hill southwest of the cliff passage (where the extra Ox Wagon was). These will serve as both production buildings for the player's army of Elite Kipchaks, as well as a bulwark against the player's and King Bela's northern base. If the Austrians threaten the Castles with Trebuchets and Capped Rams, immediately send Kipchaks and Hussars to destroy them. The Castles can deal with most of the rest, but it would be good to use Kipchaks to cut them off more efficiently. The player should have the Villagers used to build the Castles work on the gold after they're done; if Frederick's soldiers start attacking them, garrison them in one of the Castles.
Once the player has reached their population limit, they should be ready to bring the fight back to Frederick. First, they should use their Trebuchets to knock down the Castle in the eastern Austrian base. The Austrians will retaliate with large numbers; the player should cut them off with their Elite Kipchaks. The player should take advantage of hill attack bonus, taking care not to veer too close to the range-boosted Castle before it is destroyed. The player will need to heavily micromanage their Elite Kipchaks with hit-and-run tactics, being especially careful not to let them get hit by Frederick's Onagers. The player will lose a lot of their soldiers along the way, so they should never forget to continue producing new Elite Kipchaks and setting their gather point to merge with their main army. After razing the easternmost Castle, the player should destroy the two Keeps and Barracks by the gate, as well as the Town Center. After all of the base's military and defensive structures are gone, the player should slay as many of the Villagers as possible to curb the Austrians' economy.
Before launching an assault on the westernmost Austrian base, the player should ensure that their army is fully replenished and that they still have plenty of Trebuchets, as Duke Frederick will still give it his all once his second fortress is under attack. As was the case with the first stronghold, the player should begin by targeting the Castle in the second base so that their army will have more room to micromanage against the final wave of Austrian soldiers. After the Castle is destroyed, the player should use their Trebuchets to snipe the Siege Workshop and Stables. Eventually, the Austrians will resign, allowing the player to focus purely on the Hungarian Nobles.
In stark contrast to the Austrians, Elite Kipchaks fare poorly against the Hungarian Nobles' army, which is primarily comprised of ranged units and melee cavalry. Therefore, the player should begin producing fully-upgraded Paladins instead. After clearing the remainder of the Hungarian Nobles' Guard Tower villages, they should be ready to attack their main base at the bottom of the map. The player should begin by destroying their Keeps with their Trebuchets while using their Paladins to take out enemy soldiers that come out of the gate. After laying waste to the Hungarian Nobles' fortress, the enemy will resign, King Bela will express his deepest gratitude, and the player will be victorious.
It has been years since I last saw the lands of my ancestors. Although I still often find myself awash in fond memories of my younger years on the Eurasian steppes, I do not grieve, for it is fate that has led us here. Our people have spread out to all corners of the world, leaving a strong mark on it.
In Hungary, the daughter of Kotyan married the eldest son of King Bela and many of our people live there in peace now. The Cumans who were enslaved and sold by the Mongols years ago have carved out a new empire in the Middle East. I even heard that these 'Mamluks', as they are now called, have defeated the Mongol army invading Syria, halting their relentless expansion once and for all.
Much blood has been spilled, but I can see a bright future for the people of former Cumania—one where we, like our ancestors before us, will keep on shaping the records of history.
Although in this scenario, the Cumans and Bulgarians remain allies to the end and the Cumans' campaign ends bitter-sweetly, the Cuman refugees to Bulgaria were historically persecuted by the double-crossing Bulgarian tsar Ivan Asen II, who'd earlier promised them safe passage & refuge. Nevertheless, at least some members of Kotyan's clan Terteroba survived the Bulgarians' atrocities and a certain George would seize the opportunity amidst the chaos, caused by Ivaylo's uprising, to proclaim himself Emperor, heralding the ascension of the Terter dynasty.
Despite hostility between the Hungarians and the Cumans in light of the death of Kotyan, King Bela managed to persuade some Cumans to return back to Hungary by offering land and his son's hand in marriage to Elisabeth, the daughter of Kotyan, in 1270, which is long after the Mongol invasions and the Cumans' departure from Hungary. Relations between the two would eventually recover and the Cumans living in Hungary would later assimilate into Magyar society and culture. The Cumans would eventually settle in a region what would later be known as Kunság, literally meaning Cumania, in Eastern Hungary, where they would settle for the remainder of their days.
- The intro of this scenario serves as an epilogue for the Pax Mongolica scenario of the Genghis Khan campaign, where it is revealed that the Mongol invasion of Europe is greatly hindered by Austria's intervention after the fall of Hungary. King Bela would flee in the Mongol campaign and it is revealed in this scenario that he has resurfaced with the intent to take revenge on the Austrians and the Hungarian Nobles, should the the player ally with him instead.
- In this scenario, the player will be given two choices: flee to Bulgaria or stay in Hungary. Regardless of the choice, half of the initial Cuman army can be seen not following the player and going the other way. This reflects historical reality: while a number of Cumans would eventually leave for Bulgaria due to strong distrust of the Magyars, some Cumans stayed behind in Hungary after King Bela had attempted to reconcile with their leaders, an effort in which he would evidently become successful after offering land to the Cumans and his son's hand in marriage with Kotyan's daughter.