Silence gripped the court as the narrative evoked fear and awe. The meal had been finished for some time, and the fires were beginning to die low. 'If Tamerlane turned west, he surely would have collided with the mighty Ottoman Empire. Would he even dare to do such a thing?'
For some time, the local Turkoman tribes of the Levant had been requesting aid against Ottoman aggression. With his army rested and his coffers full of Indian riches, Tamerlane was ready for more bloodshed. He knew that there was more than one way to motivate an army. Religious fervor and promises of land and plunder drove his men forward.'
This land was familiar with the terror of previous invasions, but nothing could prepare them for the onslaught that lay ahead. Thirsty for glory, Tamerlane's armies flooded across mountains, plains, and rivers to terrorize Armenia, Georgia, and the Levant.'
- Starting Age: Imperial Age
- Starting resources: 2,000 food, 3,000 wood, 1,000 gold, 500 stone
- Population limit: 200
- Starting units:
- Gaia units:
- 10 Villagers
- Acquire 10,000 gold in plunder, tribute, or any other means.
- Tamerlane's forces can support a population of 200.
- You begin this scenario without any Villagers. Scout for any locals who might be willing to join your cause or, alternatively, use Monks to convert them from your enemies.
- Strike early while many of your adversaries are still weak and unprepared.
- There are only a handful of mineral deposits on the map. You can acquire additional gold by raiding trading posts, sacking enemy towns, or collecting Relics.
- Your enemies are heavily dependent on trade for their gold income. Harass their trade route or, better yet, shut them down entirely.
Your scouts report:
- Tamerlane's army (1, Purple) has camped in the north of the map near the Black Sea. The local fishermen will feed the army for a short time, but expanding early is imperative.
- Directly to the southeast is Georgia (3, Red), a mere shadow of its former glory. Their ill-equipped army is no match for Tamerlane's horde.
- The east of the map is controlled by the city of Baghdad (6, Orange), an enormously wealthy prize defended by camelry and Crossbowmen.
- Far to the west lies the domain of Cilician Armenia (2, Blue). Their army of swordsmen and Light Cavalry is led by a core of Cataphracts.
- Just east of Cilician Armenia is the city of Aleppo (4, Yellow). Aleppo's army of Spearmen and Monks should be little more than a nuisance to Tamerlane.
- The city of Damascus (5, Cyan) lies in the southwest. Their army of camelry and Cavalry Archers may pose a threat initially, but without trade they are helpless.
- The Mamluk Sultanate (7, Green) is your most dangerous foe. Their military base protects and supplies Damascus from the south, and they will meet Tamerlane's horde with an army of Mamelukes, Light Cavalry, and Siege Onagers.
- Some of the local people may be sympathetic to your cause—if you can locate them.
- Player (Tatars)
- Cilician Armenia (Byzantines)
- Georgia (Persians)
- Aleppo (Saracens)
- Damascus (Saracens)
- Baghdad (Saracens)
- Mamluks (Saracens)
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The player starts with an army and some Fishing Ships. Send one Light Cavalry immediately to the Gaia Town Center and task the Fishing Ships to gather food. Once the Town Center is captured, use the Villagers to build an economy. Train a Transport Ship and send the army south, except for one Monk. Once the Transport Ship is trained, transport the Monk to the small island to the west of the dock, and transport its Relic to the Monastery. Use one Light Cavalry to find the to the mining camp with a Relic. Use the starting resources to research some technologies to benefit the army and use the later resources to replenish the army.
Raiding for gold
Similar to the Harbinger of Destruction scenario, the player can get resources by destroying certain buildings. Destroying a Market, Dock, Town Center or Monastery yields the player 500 gold, while Castles yield 1,000 gold and the Mosque and Wonder yield 1,500 gold. In addition, defeating an enemy gives an additional 1,000 gold. On top of this, when the player has killed 50, 100, 250, 500 or 1,000 units 200 gold is received, and similarly when the player has razed 10, 25, 50, 100 or 200 buildings 200 gold is received. Due to the size of these tributes, the player only needs to defeat a few enemies. The easiest player to start with is Georgia, due to their small base and lack of a well developed army. They can be defeated using the initial army with only minor losses, even before the player locates the Gaia Villagers.. After this, shift attention to Aleppo. Gather a bit of stone to afford a Castle, and place it to the south of the player's base next to the river. Make sure that the Castle is not attacked during its construction. The Castle provides support against the mass of Pikemen that Aleppo produces as well as destroying trade carts, and can be used to train a few Trebuchets to destroy their buildings. Combine this with the army to destroy Aleppo. Now that two enemies have been defeated, the player probably has enough gold, after using the market to win the scenario. If this is not the case, attack the north base of Cilician Armenia, as that has several valuable buildings while having little protection. Now the player should have enough resources to win after using the market.
One thing to note is that attacking any of the Trade Carts is going to draw a lot of aggression from Aleppo and Baghdad , so the player should avoid doing so until they're ready to fight a large army. Damascus is likely to attack the player while they build up, but once their Market south of the player's base is destroyed, they'll lose all of their income and eventually run out of resources with which to train units.
If the player finds it too overwhelming to fight the four Saracen AIs at the same, they can also adopt a defensive strategy (provided that they got the Relic near the starting base in the beginning). After taking control of the Gaia village, build a Castle right to the south of it and garrison it with 20 Heavy Cavalry Archers, which should take care of most attacks from the four Saracen AIs (be careful about enemy rams). Build a strong economy to gather as much resources as possible. By the time the player reaches around 7,000 gold (from Relics, mining and enemy units killed by the Castle), they can use the Market (research Guilds) to sell resources until they get 10,000 gold. This strategy may seem time consuming, but it is achievable in less than two in-game hours.
Tamerlane's forces ran rampant, looting and burning as they went. For a land that had only recently experienced the plague, this scourge must have seemed to signal the end of the world.'
Although he was known for his military campaigns, Tamerlane was also a patron of the arts. When a city was sacked, the artisans and scholars were spared and sent to his capital at Samarkand, where they created a vibrant blend of cultures.'
'Populations who resisted him, however, were not so lucky. After his siege had broken the Armenian fortress of Van, Tamerlane ordered its inhabitants hurled from the crags.'
Just like Hulegu roughly a century before, Tamerlane showed particular cruelty to the city of Baghdad. Each man in Tamerlane's army was required to bring him two heads. The warriors slaughtered the population of the city, then slew the prisoners they had brought with them. It is said that to satisfy Tamerlane's command, some even slew their own wives.'
For the survivors of this savagery, it seemed as if the sun would never rise again.'
- In this scenario, the Armenians and Georgians are represented by the Byzantines and Persians, which use the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern architecture sets, respectively, yet medieval Armenian and Georgian architecture strongly resembles the Eastern European architecture style (i.e. the architecture style used Slavs, Lithuanians, Bulgarians, and Magyars) as evident with the Cathedral of Ani and Svetitskhoveli Cathedral, respectively.
- A more fitting civilization for the Armenians and Georgians is possibly the Huns, since both civilizations originated from Eurasia and both Armenians and Georgians utilized heavy cavalry during the medieval times (which the Huns also have in their tech tree). Additionally, the Central European Monastery is somewhat similar to the Georgian abbey.
- The scenario is likely inspired by the third Attila the Hun scenario, as in both, the player must collect the same amount of gold by sacking enemies in order to complete the scenario; although here, the player starts in the Imperial Age, with a much larger army, and even the possibility to build a Market to sell and buy gold.
- While the outro mentions that "Tamerlane showed particular cruelty to the city of Baghdad", players could manage to reach the 10,000 gold mark before attacking Baghdad at all.