if you're looking for a really in-depth guide to warring, i would suggest that you check out nymphsong's thread entitled protips on war. there's a lot of great information in there, some of which i will be repeating here in condensed form.
there is also a thread on building that you can consult, but i believe at some point we'll condense it to make it more user-friendly!
the general theme of many of these tips is turn efficiency. turns are the most basic resource of the game. turns generate income, build structures, allow you to war, sorc and scum. being good at this game is partially about being efficient with your turns. try not to waste them!
1. thieves: you should always have 100 G scum (e.g., thieves, changelings, aswang, drow, faeries, tricksters, shakes, etc.) on hand, from the moment you leave New Player Protection (NPP). do not train them! green troops die faster than elite troops. having 100 G scum on hand will allow you to detect scouts and sabotaged caravans. 100 E scum will not!
preparing for war
2. you should always know when your next war is, whether the game is domination or guilds. this especially goes for GMs. the moment you hit that peace button, your next guild strike should already be up on the banner, even if it's 8 days away (4 turnsets). this helps you and your players plan out their turn usage (turn efficiency) and what they're going to build.
3. when you go to war, your kingdom should have full turns and approximately 2.5mil cash on hand per 1k acres if you have a complement of offensive troops (plus maybe some scum). that means
-a 12.5k kingdom should have 30mil in the bank;
-a 25k kingdom should have 62.5mil in the bank;
-a 40k kingdom should have 100mil in the bank;
if you're going into the war with a defensive + scum fort (in other words, you have zero offensive troops), that number should be more like 4mil to 4.5mil per 1k acres.
to generate this amount of cash, it usually means you'll need to spend about 30-60 turns doing Calming Chant and/or looting to build up your warchest. plan your turn usage accordingly!
4. if you're going to war and you're going in with an offensive fluff, if you intend to hold anything less than 6k-7k scum, just go with 110 G to 150 G scum (don't train them). any scummer is going to get in unseen against 6k-7k scum. all you want to know is whether someone has scouted you, and whether your caravans have been sabotaged.
5. be turn-efficient in your attacks: attack your enemy's weakness! if they've got a boatload of defensive troops, but no scum, don't try to bash your way through their army - go in with scum/sorc! if they're scum-heavy, go in with war.
6. on a parallel note, if it takes your summon spell in order to get "good fight" on a controlled strike for 1 acre, you shouldn't be warring that kingdom.
and in general, you should try to avoid situations in which you have to do "good fight" controlled strikes for 1 acre. use sorc instead to destroy that kingdom's buildings (top spell - parkinglotting, etc.).
7. sabotage ALL of the enemy's carvans during your first strike, and subsequently as well. sending caravans is a key mechanic for redistributing funds and maximizing war potential!
8. nymphsong suggests sorcing kingdoms down to 5k built land. the only caveat i'd place on that is that you not do that to sorc-heavy races like sidhe, vamp, fae, elemental and even humans: by pushing down their built land that low, they can downsize to 6k land and with 40 turns or so build enough temples to regain the top sorc spell and become effective parkinglotters.
my observation is that the sweet spot for races like sidhe, vamp, fae, elemental and even humans is leaving them with about 8k-9k built. it nearly doubles the amount of temples they need to rebuild from 600 to about 1100, which is a much bigger drain on turns.
9. reforting is incredibly important. this is a very general rule, but you should stop attacking with about 55-60 turns remaining, assuming you have anything less than 500k cash per 1k acres. you're going to need to spend about 30 turns doing calming chant and/or looting in order to build up the cash to refort! you may have some cash left over, but that's good - you'll need it for your follow-up strike.
10. always hire and train scum first. scum has lower expenses than all other troop types, so it saves you money by hiring/training them first. i know most of the people who've played this game for a long time already know this, but it's a good tip for new players!
11. any kingdom can be taken down with enough turns. your objective when you refort is to force the other player (domination) or guild (guilds) to spend as many turns as possible to take down each of your or your guild's kingdoms on an individual basis. this means that you need to balance scum and troops. my general rule of thumb is that i aim to hold enough defensive troops to force them to get, at best, "good fight" on a summon + cs for 1 with a hefty quad (fully anchored), and hold enough scum to force them to burn seen (because the enemy will burn structures about half as fast if they're burning seen - forces them to use a lot more turns that way).
there are situations where you may be so large that it's feasible to hold enough troops while being able to avoid them being able to scout/burn you at all! fantastic, go for it.
additionally, there are likely to be situations where you're not be able to hold enough troops & scum to do both ("good fight" on a cs for 1, and seen burning). in this case, the best course of action is so situation-dependant that i can't provide a general suggestion on what you should do! you'll learn with experience :)
12. do not sabotage caravans if you're not at war with the person/guild that you're targeting. it can be tracked!
Oh and I am guessing that "100 G" means 100 troops at level one(?). I will go with that.
(I am playing a vampire at the moment)
"do not train them! green troops die faster than elite troops. having 100 G scum on hand will allow you to detect scouts and sabotaged caravans. 100 E scum will not!" - This is confusing. I can understand why a elite( E = elite?) troop might not die as quick as a green troop. But why can't a elite(?) troop do better at detecting and etc?
Btw to other new players - my gold cost per turn jumped 10,000 gold after I hired my 100 1st level thieves.
edit 2: If i am understanding correctly you do not train troops if u intend to attack others but you do train if you want to go defense mode? Caravans? I see I will have to look up that somewhere. I assume that destroying their routes to a kingdom greatly reduces the kingdoms ability to produce gold per turn..?
final edit - what exactly is a good amount of land to win from another? Is there a max percentage you can take? Lol I look for answers and receive more questions. (But isn't that the way of a text game? Too simple = no fun.)
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Your right, in this context 'G' (Green) means 100 level 1 troops and 'E' (Elite) means level 5 troops. In game, it's slightly more complicated, because G/Green reflects that the "average" for the collection of troops is level 1, E/Elite means the "average" of the troops is level 5, and V/Veteran is in between. But on the boards, when people are talking green, they mean untrained, and when they are talking elite, they mean fully trained.
Regarding the questions in your edits.
1. The scum system has two different levels of success, Seen and Unseen. When an "unseen" scum action occurs, the defending player will only receive news if there has been changes to the kingdom. e.g. Gold missing from the treasury, dead peasants, dead scum troops etc. Successful scum activities kill a small percentage of enemy scum troops, green troops obviously dying in greater numbers than elite ones. Now these rates depend on your race, but the death rate of elite scum currently ranges from 0.0088 to 0.0094. Deaths are rounded down, so 100 elite scum troops will not suffer any casualties, and therefore will not cause Unseen scouts to leave any news behind. The rate of death for green troops on the other hand, ranges from 0.01 to 0.025 meaning that anything above around 40 green troops ought to lose at least 1 per unseen scum attack, and therefore would receive some news about it. 100 is a good number because it allows you to be scouted 'unseen' several times before you stop getting and news about it. You'd need 150 elite scum troops to get the same effect, simply because they are harder to kill.
2. You should always endeavour to train your troops. There is a maximum number of troops that your kingdom can hold (referring to as the troop cap). This is a gold value that equates to the number that you can purchase at once and uses the purchase price as the value being calculated towards 'Maximum'. That means, that if your troop cap allows you to purchase 1000 type 4 troops (the fourth in the list, Wampyr in your case) then you could have 1000 untrained Wampyr, or 1000 level 5 Wampyr. From an offensive and defensive point of view, the trained troops are much better than untrained. The only scenario where untrained troops have any benefit at all, is to detect scum when you are forted fully for military action. The enemy will still get your scout information, but it's better to have the knowledge that you've been scouted, than it is to never know. The knowledge of being scouted can mean the difference between being 'prepared' for an incoming attack, and being caught unaware. Yes, you could get the same information by having 150 elite scum, but then you've wasted some of the troop cap on 50 extra scum, when they could have been used for offensive or defensive troops.
2b. Caravans are how we refer to the action of sending gold to an ally. With exception of Humans (who can send them twice as often), each kingdom can generally send 1 caravan of gold per 24 hours (this duration does differ per game). There is a scum option that allows the scummer to intercept the gold, and instead of sending gold to help out an ally, it gets sent to the scummer. If it interests you to know, the news that a player receives when their caravans are being "hunted" depends on whether the scummer was seen or unseen. If they are unseen, it'll look no different than if the kingdom was scouted. However, if it was "seen" the news will refer to "Poisoned Daggers".
3. Military attacks have 7 different levels of success or failure. Each of the 3 levels of "success" takes a different amount land and kills a different percentage of attacker and defender troops. The 4 levels of Failure just kill attacker and defender troops, and no land gets taken. A Full Strike (which takes the largest amount of land), takes between 6.79% and 7.35% of the target kingdoms total land depending on level of success. When you're taking land from another kingdom you can keep going until you kill them, or stop when you chose to stop. There is no 'good' amount so to speak, it all depends on what your aiming for. If your aiming to kill them, then you need to take enough land from them that they drop below 300 acres. This is generally something that is hard to do on your own because as you gain land and they lose it, the difference in networth between your two kingdoms, starts to cause the number of turns for the attack to increase. Generally speaking, the best point to stop attacking for land, is when you have reached the number of turns that you need to downsize your offensive troops, and purchase and fully train defensive troops to replace them. If you don't switch from offence to defence, you'll just lose all the lovely land that you've taken.
So I will assume these scum troops (thieves) don't help much in regular land taking attacks. (I guess I can try to find that page which states what troop types does what in game. - I think you really need to fix that sometime - so many pages to scroll in/needle in a haystack:(
A troop cap max huh? Is it guess work in knowing your max troop capacity? Rated on land amount I would assume? Although one can only afford to move so much with a costly troop base...
So a alliance (real player) member can send a trade of gold or whatever? That might be a little confusing to me. Wouldn't that said player know beforehand not to send such a trade if the enemy messed up the caravans routes? And couldn't it be fixed by the damaged player before said allied trade? Maybe this isn't happened how I assume it would go;
1. Enemy attacks allied player and screws up his caravans.
2. Player logs on to see his damage. PMs allies to wait to send a trade. Repairs and then asks for trade.
3. Enemy has wasted his turns by destroying a fixable caravans.
Yes I must be missing some game knowledge to that strategy.
Yes I had forgotten that it takes many more turns to attack someone much lower in score than you. Perhaps not a bad code overall BUT in a small player base area the bigger guys would have no worries by wasting turns attacking lowly kingdoms. (Big player base everyone would need to worry about everyone close to their scores and so not waste turns on small fry.)
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Troop Cap is based on a variety of things. The amount of land you have is the largest factor, but the amount of troop buildings (Great Halls for Vampire) also has an effect. The new layout actually made it easier to see the effects of the troop cap. Previously you'd know you hit it when you received an error trying to hire troops. The top of the `Hire` screen now lists the cap, how much you've used and also how much you have left. The recent layout changes added additional information below troop prices, so now you know how much a troop costs, how many you can afford (based on the gold you have), and how many of that type you could fit in your cap.
There is no option to 'fix' caravans. The pattern followed when you realise that your caravans are being hunted is:
1. Enemy attacks allied player and screws up his caravans.
2. Player logs on to see his damage. PMs allies to let them know that he wont be able to send them cash after all.
3. Player sends the smallest amount of gold possible, knowing that it will be intercepted.
The size of the player-base is irrelevant when it comes to how many turns it'll take to attack a smaller kingdom. The difference is not based on the different between you in 'rank' (e.g. player ranked #1 vs player ranked #5), it's based on Networth.
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