With the maritime rivals of the empire crushed, Suryavarman set his sights on the mainland. As the war with the Tambralinga-Srivijaya alliance had progressed, it had not escaped his attention that rivals closer to home had been plotting and wishing for his ruin.
The rules of the various Burmese and Cham kingdoms slunk around in the shadows like disgraced cravens. Instead of recognizing the superiority of their larger neighbor, they deviously plotted its downfall and encouraged rebellion within it!
This behavior was unacceptable. Suryavarman's enemies may have been to intimidated to face the Khmer juggernaut head-on, but Suryavarman had no such reservations. These provocations had provided an optimal casus belli.
It was high time that the empire saw further expansion. The Mekong and Chao Phraya rivers snaked through rich, fertile lands held by decadent, unstable kingdoms ripe for conquest.
Triumph would add yet another achievement to Suryavarman's legendary military record.
Starting Conditions Edit
Neutral to Ally Edit
- Dai Viet (Vietnamese): Yellow player at the northern part of the map. At the beginning this AI is neutral to the player, but after 40 minutes they will offer an alliance (player has to send 1,000 gold to Dai Viet to make it, but if the player acquires all 5 Relics at the beginning of the game gold shouldn't be a problem). It is very important to make this alliance because not only will the yellow player not attack, but they will take care of the Northern Cham almost by themselves.
- Southern Cham (Malay): The magenta player who is the eastern enemy. This player produces a land army of Karambit Warriors, Arbalesters with occasionally Halberdiers or Two-Handed Swordsmen mixed in, and navy consisting primarily of Galleons and sometimes also heavy Demolition Ships or Fast Fire Ships.
- Northern Cham (Vietnamese): This player will send attack forces of Rattan Archers and Skirmishers. As soon as the player makes an alliance with the Dai Viet, they won't be problem at all.
- Khmer Rebels (Khmer): The orange player's army mainly consist of Battle Elephants, Ballista Elephants and Scorpions. Orange player has no villagers during the game, so they are unable to reconstruct or repair their buildings.
- Lavo Kingdom (Burmese): The blue player who is the western enemy. Their army consists of Champions, Halberdiers and Siege Rams. Blue enemy can be frustrating for the players who try to pump out many Elephants (which is not advised at all).
- Hariphunchai (Burmese): The red player who is the north-western enemy. His army consists of Arambai, Cavalry Archers, Hussars and Trebuchets. Because of the Trebuchets, he is the most harassing player, who can destroy the player's defenses if left unattended. Red player has no villagers during the game, so they are unable to reconstruct or repair their buildings.
There are two ways to win this scenario.
One way is to defeat three of the five main opponents, the other way is to build and defend a Wonder.
There are a lot things to do in small amount of time at the start. The player has two bases, the northern one consists of military buildings, two Docks as well as a Monastery, the southern one has the Town Center, another Monastery, a University and one Dock. Between these bases lies an area with gold, stone and some trees, where the player also has control of a few villagers.
The main goal of the game start is to eliminate at last the nearest red's and magenta's base, they are too close to the player and achieve victory without killing them is almost impossible.
First move the player should do is immediately produce three Trebuchets from the two Castles in the north base. One of these trebuchets should be send to the southern base to attack the magenta Malay, the rest two Trebuchets should be used for attacking red player's base.
After Trebuchet production is started, send one Light Cavalry unit to the southern Relic - the blue player will send a Monk immediately to pick it. Start the construction of a Town Center with the villagers between the bases, research the Fast Fire Ship upgrade and pick most or all of the Relics (there is one in the south which should be guarded by the Light Cavalry unit sent before - try to pick this Relic as soon as possible, because the blue player will send an attacking force soon, another is a little bit north from the northern-player's base, two Relics are in the northern base and one is in the southern base). As soon as player has enough stone they should build a Castle between their south base and the southeast magenta base.
Then it will be time for multi-tasking, because it is almost necessary to push both lines and protect the water simultaneously:
Defending the waterways Edit
Because it is not possible to make Cannon Galleons in this scenario, making a big fleet is useless. It should be enough to build 6-8 Fast Fire Ships and send them to the player's southern Docks. It is also very helpful to build one or two Towers (but first the Castle has to be built in the southern base). Along with the Fire Ships, this will take care of any naval attacks.
Because of the fact the player can not produce Cannon Galleons it is impossible to put any pressure to any of enemy bases. But, they can produce a few Galleons and send them to the northern base to defend it against the orange player.
Pushing to the South Edit
The starting army in the southern base along with one Trebuchet and the newly-build Castle should be more than enough to destroy the southern magenta base. Primary targets for the trebuchet are production buildings, because this will stop units' flow and killing the fortification without unit protection is easy with Trebuchets. Just try not to engage in bigger battles anywhere else than under the player's own Castle-fire. After the player razes down this red base, they should wall themselves in by using the forest and red walls - by doing this, the player can stop at least the majority of magenta's harassment.
Pushing to the North Edit
This is by far the most difficult part, which consists of much multitasking. The pushing to the north strategy includes few rounds of back and forth action. When the Monk with the south Relic returns to the Monastery, it might be wise to build walls in the "forest neck" leading to blue player's base - this is the only passage from where blue player's forces can attack - so blue's progress can be slowed down a lot because of this wall.
Alongside walling the player should build one or two Archery Ranges and pump out as many Skirmishers and Pikemen/Halberidiers as possible, because the main threat is the red player, who produces mainly Arambai and Cavalry Archers, escorted by a few Light Cavalry units.
Try to destroy the Archery range and Castle of the red player as soon as possible, do not bother with red's Trebuchets which may destroy the player's own Trebuchets, or vice-versa, just focus on the buildings. If the player is fast enough they can kill the red's Castle with the first two Trebuchets, but if they are killed before the Castle is destroyed, build another two and start the production of Halberdiers, Light Cavalry, Crossbowmen and Monks. Cavalry are needed to take down orange Scorpions, red Trebuchets and blue Rams, crossbowmen can take down blue's infantry as well as red's Cavalry Archers and Arambai (due to having only +1 armor) and Halberdiers can take down all Elephants and Light Cavalry. If the player has enough gold, 6-8 Monks should be placed around the Castles and convert the orange player's Elephants.
After destroying the southern red base and the southern magenta base, it depends on the player if they wish to build a Wonder or if they wish to destroy more enemies. Either option should be a piece of cake after all of the above have been dealt with. No matter the path taken, the second red base with Trebuchets is the hardest to deal with, but destroying this base goes hand to hand with destroying both orange bases, so than there might be no reason to build the Wonder.
Hegemony is a wonderful thing. The power and prestige of the Khmer Empire reached new levels under Suryavarman I, and all prospered.
Despite being known as a great conqueror, Suryavarman was not simply a militaristic aggressor. His reign was marked by vast improvements in the general infrastructure of the empire and an emphasis on religious toleration.
He erected numerous palaces and temple complexes and ruled benevolently. His legacy lives through these structures, the pride of our citizens, and the strength of the Khmer Empire.
This legacy is a cause worth defending, for Suryavarman's image lives on within it. It is this notion of greatness that you must invoke to electrify the minds of the common soldiery.