In 1425 Lê Lợi wrote to Wang Tong: 'In the past, we had few weapons, now our warships line up like clouds, armors shine against the sun, firearms pile up and our gunpowder storage are full. Compared to the past, our transition to a position of strength has become apparent.'
But despite the successes and increasing military power Lê Lợi soon found himself in another predicament. He needed to consolidate his gains in the south fast, before the Ming had a chance to react. Certainly with Wang Tong so closely on his tail, waiting for him to make a mistake. To achieve his goals Lê Lợi sent his commanders out to three different locations.
Dinh Le, commander of the cavalry, would move on to the Ming citadel of Đông Đô to keep Wang Tong occupied.
The expert swordsman Le Trien, would move north and try to intercept the reinforcements under the leadership of Liu Sheng who had broken through the northern defenses and were on their way south.
Only if all three plans succeeded Tran Tri and his Ming forces could be prevented from striking back. Lê Lợi's plans hung by a thread. A very thin thread.
The player starts with three bases, which will be referred to as left, center, right. The player also owns the 3 heroes from the previous scenarios.
- Vietnamese Rebels (Vietnamese) This player is only relevant to the story's advancement.
- Nghe An (Vietnamese) - They have a big base in the south, and will send patrols of 5-10 troops (crossbows, Halberdiers, cavalry) to the right base at regular intervals, they have a fort between the player's right base and their main base.
- Dong Do (Chinese) This player is only relevant to the story's advancement.
- Liu Sheng (Chinese) Located north across the bridge from the player's center base. They will send patrols of Chu Ko Nus, Halberdiers, Cavaliers and Scorpions across the top of the center base to Wang Tong. A secondary objective is to stop these patrols, which reinforce Wang Tong. They will also attack the center base.
- Wang Tong (Chinese) Located between the center and right bases, they have a large mixed army (that consists mostly of Chu Ko Nus and Halberdiers) which will attack both bases. Their base is only lightly fortified but does have a Castle. They will also use Trebuchets.
Neutral to Enemy
- Ai Lao (Khmer) Located to south of the left base, they will not cause many problems although it will be needed to defeat them in order to get to the Nghe An base. They are neutral to the player and will only attack if provoked.
The first thing to be done once the scenario starts is to get the Villagers to work as well as to continue producing Villagers until the player has between 60 and 80 of them (keep in mind that the population limit is 200). There are plenty of resources available around the map but make sure that the Villagers are defended if they move far from the Town Centers.
Also, make a few troops to defend the eastern base in particular. Castle and Towers are always a good idea, however there are only average amounts of stone in this map. When the bases are secured, build an army at the player's center base to attack Lui Sheng. Two Trebuchets, twenty Rattan Archers and a few Cavaliers, along with Le Trien himself, should be enough. Proceed to destroy Lui Sheng's buildings and take care to not allow any supplies to go to Wang Tong.
Once Lui Sheng is defeated there is no other urgent target and as such it is up to the player's choice to choose the next enemy to be beaten. Ai Lao or Wang Tong are good candidates. Finally, proceed to Nghe An with a sizeable army. Once this faction's buildings are destroyed the player will beat this scenario.
Definitive Edition hard
The player starts again with three bases. A northwestern water/farming base, a southeastern woodcutting base, and a northern military base. The player should put their first 12+ Villagers on food, and then start working on wood and gold. From the southeastern base, there are two Water Buffaloes that the player can see to the northeast, and then there are another six further to the north/northwest by the shallow water. From the northwestern base, there are two roughly southeast and two roughly southwest. The player might want to grab most/all of these to reduce wood needs in the beginning of the scenario.
After a few minutes, the player will get a prompt about the next Ming supply caravan. They seem to defend the cart with Cavaliers/Halberdiers/Chu Ko Nu, so create 2-4 extra Pikemen to counter the Cavaliers, and the player should make short work of them - just make sure to fight far enough down the road so that the player don't trigger any extra enemies that they're not ready for. Another Cart will follow shortly, so make sure to replenish the defenses. On the third or fourth wave, they will start sending Scorpions with the Carts, and eventually the player's southeastern base will start being attacked from both the northern and the southern enemies.
The chances were stacked against the Vietnamese but somehow they still won. Liu Sheng and his Ming reinforcements were ambushed and killed while Wang Tong war marooned in the citadel of Đông Đô. Nghệ An remained in Ming hands due to the gunpowder weapons the defenders possessed, still the Ming were on the losing side of the war and it was doubtful that even an able general like Wang Tong would be able to turn the tide.
- This scenario's layout might be inspired from the Age of Mythology Bad News and Where They Belong scenarios, both featuring bases that are separated from each other, with the player trying to destroy the enemies between them in order to connect them and proceed with their objective.
- Dong Do has one single Cavalier in the dense forest, right in the middle of the map. Killing or converting that Cavalier would immediately defeat Dong Do.