"While in hot pursuit of Gargarensis, Arkantos is waylaid on an island where he must rescue some old friends from becoming bacon."—Campaign description
Old Friends is the twenty-first scenario of the Fall of the Trident campaign in Age of Mythology. It is the last scenario in the Egyptian part of the campaign. Once completed, players will be able to view the Norse tutorial.
On their way to the Norselands, Arkantos and Ajax find Odysseus' shipwreck on an island and land to investigate. Upon investigating some Pigs, Circe the sorceress turns them both into Wild Boars. They must now find find all of Odysseus' crew that have been turned into pigs and captured by the islanders and take them to a Temple of Zeus to return to their former state. Only after can they attempt to rescue Odysseus.
- Collect and protect as many pigs as you can.
- Get the boars and pigs past the gates to the Temple of Zeus.
- Build up and defeat Circe by destroying the Fortress at the heart of the citadel.
- Arkantos (Zeus) - starts with Arkantos and Ajax in their boar form and a handful of pigs.
- Circe (Poseidon) - consists of the initial villages that have captured the crew of Odysseus as well as the citadel. Once the player made it to the temple of Zeus, the villages will remain inactive for the remainder of the game. However the citadel will periodically train units to attack the player.
- Zeus Temple (Zeus) - Owns the town the player has to get to, in order to transform themselves and the pigs, the town's buildings will become the players once the first units are transformed. Oddly enough, this player is an enemy, but the player's faction cannot attack their buildings.
The first few objectives are simple; players should immediately send Boar (Arkantos) and Boar (Ajax) ahead to kill the Villager before it can attack the pig. Next, they can be sent alone to some villages further down the trail where there will be additional pigs kept in enclosures. Destroying the wooden fences will release the pigs and convert them to the player's colors. The heroes will be attacked by wolves but can easily deal with them as they retain their ability to regenerate HP. Circe's villagers will also attack but will quickly retreat to Sentry Towers when damaged enough. At least 10 pigs must be collected to gain the next objective. These special pigs do not provide food when slaughtered but can instead be converted into human units when brought to a special Temple of Zeus.
Players should not destroy any buildings while the heroes are in boar form as they will spawn Militia that can do greater damage. Besides, the enemy will not attack the player's units while they remain in pig and boar form. Players should send all the swine past the Fortresses and straight to the Temple as soon as possible. Once all units have returned to normal, the Gold Mine near the Temple of Zeus and in other outlying areas can be captured.
The pigs will convert into villagers, Hypaspists or Peltasts. A pig from an enemy Temple will transform into a Priest, which must be protected since the player cannot train a new one. Enemy Hoplites will attack once construction of the nearby Settlement has begun but the Hypaspists can easily dispatch those. Players should immediately focus on their economy by training additional villagers and construct military buildings. Circe will regularly send raids consisting of Toxotes, Hoplites and Petroboli or Hippikons. Players can deal with these by training Hoplites and Hippikons of their own as well as myth units such as Minotaurs. Hoplites will be especially useful as Zeus lets them deal bonus damage vs buildings. To slow down enemy raids, players can breach in enemy gates and wall it off.
More of Circe’s villagers will attempt to gather from other gold mines located North of the Settlement and on the South-West beach but these can be stopped with raids of Hippikons or a Minotaur. Wood gathering should not be a concern as the player is granted a safe forest behind the Settlement. Circe does not produce a navy so building a Dock for fishing is an ideal means of gathering food. There are five Relics scattered around the island that can aid the player. An unoccupied Settlement on the South West beach can be claimed to grant additional population.
As Circe owns several Fortresses and Town Centers, advancing to the Heroic Age is ideal in order to train Petroboli to attack defensive positions. Either minor god is viable but Apollo provides the Temple of Healing technology which makes the player less reliant on the Priest. Once the player’s army is strong enough, they can first take out the buildings West of Circe’s fortress to stop the raids of Hoplites and Toxotes. Afterwards, Circe herself must be dealt with. Attacking the North gate is preferred as it is more lightly defended. Once Circe’s fortress has reached half of its health, the sorceress herself will spawn in front of the Fortress along with two Nemean Lions. The scenario can be won by either killer Circe or destroying her Fortress. Although the easiest method is to save the Bolt god power and cast it on Circe, the player does not need to confront Circe if enough Petroboli is used to take down the Fortress.
- This is the only campaign scenario in the entire game which is not to feature the color red on any players.
- This scenario is based on a chapter of Homer’s Odyssey. Still, it deviates substantially from Homer's version.
- Aeaea (Circe's island) is erroneously depicted as Rhodes in-game. According to ancient sources, it was either situated on the western coast of Italy, or off the coasts of Colchis, in the eastern Black Sea.
- Also, Odysseus was spared from Circe's magic, and rather than being turned into a pig (thanks to Hermes' intervention, who provided him with a herb to negate Circe's magic), he confronted the sorceress, and she eventually helped him with his quest.