The White Elephant is the fourth scenario of the Bayinnaung campaign in Age of Empires II HD: Rise of the Rajas. It is based on the Burmese-Siamese War as well as the Toungoo Empire's conquest of Lan Na and Lan Xang.
Intro[edit | edit source]
The tiger rules with the forest but he is always hungry. It is the same with me as I look to the Thai kingdoms of the East. I have ruled for thirteen years but how I am Cakkavatti if I am only King of Burma?
Ayutthaya is the strongest of the Thai kingdoms. Her king, Chakkraphat, has defied me for too long! He encourages the rebellion of one of my vassals, the King of Lan Na. Even now, he sends his daughter to marry the ruler of the kingdom of Lan Xang, in exchange for an alliance against me! But these schemes alone do not drive me into war.
I know that Chakkraphat has seven white elephants, a symbol of luck and divine favor. Already, I hear the murmurs in the court. People with more spirit than sense whisper that if I am truly a Cakkavatti, why would the nats have blessed Chakkraphat with the elephants?
I cannot allow this Thai king nor the nats themselves to defy me! I will send my armies east but they will not just bring war. I will send Buddhist monks with them to carry the word of my blessed Buddhist rule.
Objectives[edit | edit source]
Main objectives[edit | edit source]
- Place a Relic in each of the four flagged Monasteries before the season ends.
Secondary objectives[edit | edit source]
- Recover Princess Thepkasattri's dowry
- Defeat the Nats
- Convert Prince Ramesuan and King Mekuti
Players[edit | edit source]
Ally[edit | edit source]
- Mountain Thai (Khmer) are villages solely existing for immersive reasons and for paying tributes.
Neutral[edit | edit source]
- Ayutthaya (Khmer) is the first city to be conquered by Bayinnung, located in the southeast. The city isn't very well garrisoned, its defenders consist of a few Crossbowmen, 2 Pikemen, 2 Battle Elephants, 2 Ballista Elephants, a Monk and their prince, Ramesuan (Elephant Archer). When their prince is converted, all of the remaining defenders will join the player and when a Relic is placed inside their Monastery all the city's buildings, as well as a small outpost across the river, are taken over by the player.
- Lan Na (Khmer) has control over two cities, one in the center of the map and one in the north. They are defended by Monks and Battle Elephants, as well as the king Mekuti (Elite Battle Elephant) himself in case of the center city. While the center city's western entrance over a bridge is well defended by a Castle, there's another entrance in the northeast, which can be accessed after conquring the northern city. Like blue, each city is taken over by placing a Relic in the respective Monanstery and the garrison join the player, when the king is converted.
- Lan Xang (Khmer) is a city in the very east. Like Lan Na's one, it is well defended at the main entrance, but there's a secret path into the city in the southwest, accessible by Transport Ship. The city is defended by Battle Elephants and Rattan Archers, as well as king Setthhatirath himself (unlike the other kings, he cannot be converted, being a renamed Jayavarman Hero instead.)
- Hill tribes (Malay) roam the countryside. Their numerous but unupgraded forces include Karambit Warriors, Arambai, and Rattan Archers
Enemy[edit | edit source]
- Nats (Burmese) are mythical spirits. They appear at three locations in the form of Nat Enchantresses, (renamed Scythian Wild Woman), who get more attack, armor, and health for each unit they kill, so they should be killed as quickly as possible when encountering them. [Although it is listed as a secondary objective, there is no particular reward for killing them].
Neither player produces any units.
Strategy[edit | edit source]
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Setting[edit | edit source]
The goal is to bring one Relic to each of four Monasteries before 700 years (roughly 1 hour ingame time) pass. It is important not to garrison more than one Relic in each Monastery, as they are automatically ungarrisoned and might get irretrievably stuck in the surrounding rocks.
The player starts with a small army and no initial possibility of replenishing it, however there are numerous Gaia units to be found and cities are taken over when a relic is placed in their flagged monastery. But even after taking over Villagers, the player can't construct any buildings, except for Palisade Walls.
The population limit is also very low, being at 40, but it can be surpassed by finding Gaia units.
Around the map, several bandit caches (gold piles) are to be found, each netting 100 gold on hard difficulty.
Tigers in this scenario are beefed up, having 55 instead of the standard 25 hitpoints.
Ayutthaya[edit | edit source]
Ayutthaya should be the first city to be conquered. Directly west of the player's starting point, three Imperial Skirmishers can be found, as well as a Battle Elephant, a villager, and a Mill further southeast. East of the Mill, the first bandit treasure is hidden, guarded by two Tigers. When advancing on the city, the path directly south of the Mill should be taken, in order not to have to deal with Palisade Walls in front of a Guard Tower. Battle Elephants can tank the tower (especially when healed by Monks) and the Crossbowmen guarding it. Directly southwest of Ayutthaya's gate, two Gaia Toungoo Warriors can be found. They are exceptionally useful throuout the scenario, as their fast speed and complete conversion immunity (being Heroes) makes them perfect for luring enemy units, for example the Mangonel guarding Ayutthaya's gate. When Ayutthaya's Ballista Elephants or Battle Elephants approach, they should be converted instead of killed. Once the gate is breached, Monks can be sent into the city to convert prince Ramesuan (Elephant Archer), located directly south of the gate, but the path he has to walk goes southeast. When the prince is converted, all of his remaining units join Bayinnaung's cause, so now it is safe to bring a Relic to the city's Monastery, upon which all the building, as well as a small outpost across the river are taken over by the player. The Trade Cog can be sent north to trade with Lan Na.
The sneaky gorge path[edit | edit source]
In preparation, the player should use the newly acquired Dock in the east to produce two or more Transport Ships as soon as afordable and before the population limit of 40 is surpassed by gathering further Gaia units. While the most obvious path further would be southeast of the city, then taking a corner northwest, this is ill-advised, as there are numerous Hill Tribe forces (however two Gaia Crossbowmen can and should be picked up in the southern corner of the map).
Instead, the player should backtrack to where the Guard Tower once stood and take a small path north. The path is blocked by one row of trees, but these trees can easily be removed using either one of the newly acquired Ballista Elephants or by tasking the Mill Villager to slightly chop a tree and then placing a Palisade Wall foundation on it, then deleting said foundation (the Villager should be guarded, as two Tigers jump him, once the trees are removed). Directly behind the trees, a Gaia Mill, a Villager, and two Arambai can be taken over, but they are immediately attacked by Hill Tribes. The next sneaky path is directly across the path to the gorge, where three Tribe Rattan Archers sit atop a cliff (this allows the player to avoid nearly all Hill Tribe forces). This norrow path northeast directly leads to princess Thepkasattri's camp, however she and her bodyguards can be avoided by heading straight north, if the player doesn't need her 150 gold dowry. The princess and her dowry are very well defended by three Champion Heroes, but her bodyguards might be lureable using ranged units. While at it, the player can also collect some Gaia Crossbowmen shortly southeast of the camp.
In any case, the player should head northwest, the path being free until reaching two Nat Enchantresses (renamed Scythian Wild Woman), who get more attack, armor, and health for each unit they kill, so they should be tanked using battle Elephants and then be killed as quickly as possible.
To go east you must go north[edit | edit source]
East of the Nats' camp lies Lat Nam's center city, but it is not advised to attack from this angle, as this entrance to the city is guarded by a Castle (the two Toungoo Warriors east of the Nats' camp should be picked up though). Instead, it is better to head north, towards Lan Na's minor city, which also contains a Monastery. West of the narrow path leading to said city, two Gaia Cavaliers can be found. The easiest way to conquer the northern city is to lure out their Battle Elephants using Toungoo Warriors and the converting them once they approach. The Gate can also be taken down using Toungoo Warriors and ranged units (this avoids their Monks converting melee units) and once the Gate it destroyed, the Toungoo Warriors can swarm in and kill their Monks. They can also tank the Fire Tower, while a Monk sneaks in a Relic and places it inside their Monastery, upon which all buildings of the town are taken over by the player.
Northern invasion[edit | edit source]
Like mentioned before, Lan Na's central city is way more accessible from the northeast. After grabbing the bandit loot shortly north of the city's southeastern exit, the player should take the path directly south. After a few meters, there is another Nats camp, the occupants of which should be dispatched as quickly as possible (see above). Before doing so however, the patrolling group of Battle Elephants should be killed (or converted as far as possible), so the player doesn't have to deal with both threats simultaneously. Once both the nats and the patrol are defeated, the path to the city lies open. Like with the previous city, Toungoo Warriors are perfect for luring out the Battle Elephants without running the risk of being converted. When king Mekuti (Elite Battle Elephant) pokes his head out, he should be converted immediately, but the player has to be careful not to lose Monks to the Watch Tower. With the king converted, his men are taken over by the player and the way to the Monastery is free. Like with the other settlements, the city's buildings also fork over to the player when a Relic is placed in their Monastery.
Smugglers' Transport (Lan Xang)[edit | edit source]
Like mentioned before, by now the player should have built some Transport Ships (and researched Careening to provide more space in the transports) in order to avoid Lan Xang's heavily fortified main entrance. To board the Transport Ships comfortably, the former Lan Na Dock, as well as the Walls and Houses by the water should be deleted. The landing spot for the transports is directly northeast of the player's initial Dock. Once the entire army is shipped across the river, the invasion of Lat Xang can commence (directly east another bandit cache can be found). Ploughing through the city shouldn't be too much of a problem and once the final Relic is placed inside their Monastery, the scenario is won.
Outro[edit | edit source]
I have conquered my enemies and made them bow before me. I have purged the land of the nats, building stupas and monasteries where once the spirits ruled.
I am the Conqueror of the Ten Directions. I am master of all between the foothils of Tibet and the waters of Malacca, between the plains of India and the mountain jungle of Vietnam. The Kings of Sri Lanka and Portugal send me gifts from across the ocean. The Emperors of India and China call me their equal. My life will be written in the legends of three nations for centuries.
I am Bayinnaung. I am the Cakkavatti.
Trivia[edit | edit source]
- Historically, Bayinnaung and his Toungoo Empire conquered the Lan Na Kingdom (which at that time was a vassal of Ayutthaya) before waging a war against the Ayutthaya Kingdom in "the White Elephant's War" (which were partially mentioned in the scenario's cutscene). after King Chakkaphat of Ayutthaya had passed away, Bayinnaung launched a final attack on a weakened Ayutthaya and finally conquered the Ayutthaya along with her vassals (including the Lan Xang Kingdom).
- The layout of this scenario is almost identical to the layout of the second scenario of "Memories of the Gupta Dynasty", an Age of Empires I fan campaign.