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Pearl of the East is the first scenario of the Babur campaign in Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition - Dynasties of India. It is based on the Siege of Samarkand in 1497.

Intro[]

Allah gives and Allah takes.

I fear that I do not have much time left in this world, yet I cannot complain. My life has been an adventure and, for all my humility, I believe that it has been extraordinary enough to be written about. You may accuse me of vanity, but I have decided to write the book myself – it should be good literature after all!

I dined with fine amirs and caroused with simple peasants on moonlit steppes; I waged wars and sat on thrones only to lose them again...

...and it all began in the maelstrom of intrigue and bloody skirmishes that was my beloved Transoxiana – the melting pot of Persian high culture and nomadic traditions!

To the east of Samarkand, my father ruled the fertile slopes of the Ferghana Valley. Like all heirs of Tamerlane, he was a proud Timurid who sought to imitate his great ancestor.

Unfortunately, Allah had not blessed him with a knack for warfare. After a few humiliating defeats, he decided to devote himself to his other passions: eating, drinking, and rearing pigeons.

One day, as my father was climbing the stairs to check on his birds, Allah, in his infinite wisdom, decided that this model of gluttony had waffled on the earth for long enough. Halfway up to the dovecote, the stairs collapsed under him and he fell to his death; and that is how I, Babur, came to be lord of the Ferghana Valley.

Yet, like all transitions of power in our culture, it was not to be a peaceful one. Thanks to my dear mother, Qutlugh, my begs agreed not to abandon what surely appeared to be a dynasty in shambles – but my devious uncles were another matter.

At that time, I was just a fourteen-year-old boy with nothing to my name, and my uncles, who had long desired the Ferghana Valley, thought that my inheritance was ripe for the taking...

Scenario instructions[]

Starting conditions[]

Objectives[]

Main objectives[]

  • Hold off the enemy Timurids until morning breaks and the sun rises.
    • Capture Samarkand district by district by destroying all hostile Timurid Castles within the city walls.
  • The Fortified Tower in Babur's camp must not be destroyed.
  • Defeat the Uzbek army.
  • Babur and his mother, Qutlugh, must survive.

Secondary objectives[]

  • Find and visit neutral Timurid nobles to find out under what conditions they would join you.
    • Kilan will join you if you place a Relic in his Monastery.
    • Targhai will join you if you bring 10 white horses to the pen next to his Town Center.
    • Capture the Trebuchets by destroying the Uzbek soldiers and the tower guarding them.

Hints[]

  1. Babur and his followers are restricted to a population limit of 150. You can construct Docks and Siege Workshops, but you do not yet have the means to train war vessels, gunpowder units, or Trebuchets.
  2. Your cowardly opponents have gathered around your town to attack you under cover of darkness. Hold on until the night is over. As soon as the morning dawns, your enemies will withdraw and you can start establishing an economy.
  3. The residents of Samarkand are not your enemies. Focus on defeating the hostile Timurids who rule the city instead of harassing the peaceful townspeople.
  4. Rumor has it that the Uzbeks have also cast an eye on Samarkand. It can be assumed that their impressive army will not behave peacefully for very long, but it would not be wise to provoke them prematurely.
  5. Several indecisive Timurid princes may possibly be persuaded to join Babur. Visit these amirs in their camps when the time is right.

Scouts[]

Your scouts report:

  • Babur (1, Orange) has inherited the Ferghana Valley from his late father. The principality is fertile and wealthy, but poorly secured and could quickly fall victim to an enemy attack.
  • In the center of the map is the time-honored Timurid capital, Samarkand, the 'Pearl of the East' (2, Purple), which is currently under the control of a Timurid amir who is no friend of Babur's.
  • The camps of several opposing Timurids (4, Red) are located within the city walls of Samarkand. These opponents mainly train infantry and Crossbowmen.
  • Three indecisive Timurid princes (6, Grey) camp in the vicinity of Samarkand. Babur may be able to win them over to his cause and make powerful allies this way
  • In the northern steppes, the Uzbek clans have banded together under their leader Shaybani Khan (3, Cyan). He commands a huge army of Steppe Lancers, mounted archers, and siege weapons such as Trebuchets.

Players[]

Player[]

  • Player (Tatars): Starts at a base camp around a Fortified Tower at night and must defend it from enemy Timurid raids till the morn, then retaliate in the daytime.

Allies[]

  • Timurid Nobles (Tatars): Three passive nobles have their settlements in the region. Two of them, Kilan and Targhai, are in the southwest and south of the map respectively, while Qasim is in the east corner.
  • Babur's Allies (Tatars): The nobles who have been convinced to throw in their lot with Babur become his allies.

Neutral[]

  • Samarkand (Persians): The Timurid capital lies in the center-west and is under the influence of hostile Timurids, but does not go on a direct offensive against the player. Any district where the enemy influence is removed by destroying their Castles comes under control of the player.

Neutral → Enemy[]

Enemies[]

  • Hostile Timurids (Tatars): The relatives of Babur who make raids in the night and send troops periodically in the daytime to dethrone him.

Strategy[]

At the beginning, the player must hold off the Hostile Timurid attacks for two minutes before they can start to build their base.

The player starts in the Imperial Age, but they cannot build Trebuchets in this scenario (except for capturing them from Uzbek patrols), but Siege Rams will make a great alternative. The player must start by sending their Villagers to gather resources, and build a Town Center when they have at least 100 stone and 275 wood. It is also important to wall off every pass, as the Hostile Timurids will attack relentlessly.

Babur's Allies will offer to help the player in return for tasks that they must fulfill. Once they are all fulfilled, the Allies will assist the player in defeating the Hostile Timurids in Samarkand. One of the towns will ask the player to recover three Trebuchets controlled by the Uzbek scouts, and they are the only ones available in this scenario, so the player must protect them at all costs.

Cavalry Archers, Camels, and Siege Rams should be the main core of the player's army. Once a Castle in Samarkand goes down, the player controls the surrounding district. If the player has good micromanagement skills, they can attack all three Castles simultaneously and the entire city will belong to the player.

Unfortunately, the Uzbek Army will turn aggressive and will start attacking the player with many mounted units backed by Trebuchets. The initial wave is rather large, so the player must be on the lookout, but they will send smaller attack parties as time goes by. The Uzbeks will resign after their Castles and Town Centers are all destroyed, so they should be the target of the Siege Rams and Trebuchets (if the player manages to protect them). While the siege weapons are battering the enemy buildings, the player should use their cavalry to take care of the Uzbek Army. Once the Uzbeks are defeated, the scenario is won.

Outro[]

On a moonless autumn night, we overcame the walls of Samarkand. The city's merchants and dignitaries were thrilled to receive me and praised my sense of justice – as they had heard that I did not tolerate looting among my soldiers.

Yet when Shaybani Khan returned in the spring and Uzbek soldiers blocked the trade routes, their enthusiasm quickly evaporated. Before long, a famine broke out in the city.

As the weeks wore on, more and more of my men left Samarkand under the pretext that they might catch a few sheep outside of the walls. None of them were ever seen again.

In the end, I realized that I had to gamble for my survival. With my last loyal followers, I snuck past the besiegers during the night and sped towards the Ferghana Valley to procure provisions and reinforcements.

When we reached the valley at dawn, two riders came bringing terrible news. In my absence, one of Shaybani's generals had made himself the new master of Ferghana.

I felt like my father must have when the stairs gave way under him. I had stretched my luck too thin and lost the land of my forefathers to the invaders.

Trivia[]

  • This is the only Dynasties of India campaign scenario in which the player can create rams, Knights, and Steppe Lancers, and cannot create any elephant unit.
  • The city of Samarkand has a similar layout to its appearance in the The Horde Rides West scenario.
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