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-   -   Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat) (http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showthread.php?t=42315)

JimMorrison February 17th, 2009 08:18 PM

Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Fomoria - The Other Giant Meat

Overview: These guys destroyed the greatest ancient civilization that we know about, the Partholonians. This about sums up how bad these guys are, they're really bad. At least, they were, until the ancient gods got pissed at them, and cursed them with goat heads, limps, and all kinds of hideous deformations. This is fine, if they hadn't been hit so hard by the nerf bat, they'd make Niefelheim look like Arcoscephale, and we want to keep the game sporting, don't we? Now in current terms, Fomorian giants lack the Chill aura of Niefel Giants, and they lack the de facto magical gear and over-the-top stats of the Hinnom Giants. To top it off, all but their elite come riddled with various Afflictions, much like Flagellants. So what makes them so good, you might ask? Magic, my good man, magic is what makes them so good. Fomoria has some of the strongest Death Magic access in the EA, and they are a contender in Microwave Oven race (a la Air Magic), due to how robust their mages are, compared to how fragile most other nations' Air mages are. But wait, there's so much more to know! And now we will break this enigmatic race down point by point, otherwise I will just ramble all day (you know you love it, squeal for me!). :o


Pretender Design: First, the basics. Obviously, this is one nation that has no need for an awake SC. In fact, more on that later, but as this nation has decent Bless options (also more on that later), we should not even entertain an Awake pretender at all, and in fact I strongly suggest that you only look at Imprisoned pretenders. Unlike Niefel and Hinnom, these giants prefer neutral temp scales, and again, it's because these guys don't need the 120 design point training wheels that those other nations get. Some might argue that a Rainbow can be useful for Fomoria. I will not deny that the nation can be plenty powerful with just a couple minor blesses, though I found in SP tests that the AI gets too frisky before your late game develops, if you do not have a strong bless to smash them to bits. Also to note, before I get into any specifics - I almost exclusively play with CBM now - so remember that points may not match up exactly. That's more or less fine, as the build is a general guideline, and everyone has a different playstyle - cater to your own by tweaking this build, and you will do much better than if you try to force yourself to play exactly like me (I'm weird, so always bear that in mind! ;)).

In my eyes, there really is no one for Fomoria but the Lady of Springs. Why? Because with a major Water bless, we are going to sail towards victory. This bless certainly has limitations, but understanding of those limitations can lead your foes to their ruination. Let me list 3 viable variants of this build, each will play a bit differently. #1 is the pretender that I won with as Fomoria, #2 is the CBM version of her, and #3 is a powerful variant I have played around with as well:

(Vanilla) Imprisoned Lady of Springs - W9/N4, Dom6, O3/S1/L1/M1

(CBM) Imprisoned Lady of Springs - W10/N4, Dom7, O3/S1/M1 (Dropping to W9 and Dom6 gains you 2 scales, but wastes 22 points - though those 102 points could be played with as you desire)

(CBM) Imprisoned Lady of Springs - W9/E4/N4, Dom7, T2/S1/L3/M1 (adding E4 offsets the major limitation of Water bless, and these scales have proved quite viable in SP tests, due to the strategies best employed)

Let's break it down. Order: As you can see, depending on your bless and how you use it, I don't think Order is an absolute necessity for Fomoria. However, a large portion of my primary strategy will be pretty gold reliant, so bear this in mind. Productivity: You will not make many troops under my strategy in auxilliary castles, but I value Unmarked very highly. I feel the best compromise is exactly S1, S2 can probably be viable, I do not think S3 is competitive, unless in a rare case where those points go directly into Growth to offset income loss. Heat: Gold, gold, gold, I do not recommend ever sacrificing temp scales for points - but to each his own. Growth: If you aren't going for a major Bless, you need to maximize income. Thus if you can find the points, Growth can be good. 1D could potentially be tolerable in the right build, but I don't recommend it. Luck: I like luck. If you feel lucky, Fomoria can function under a Turmoil/Luck strat. Otherwise, I do like a point in Luck at least, as all of your heroes (at least, with Worthy Heroes mod, you have 3 possible) are quite worth having. Again, I suppose I could see saccing Luck and going Misf 2 -only- if those points are rolled into income gaining scales, but it's a hard choice. Magic: This is how you win the game. M1 seems a no-brainer to me. Drain is a bad idea, as your mid-late game will be -highly- dependant on Air and Death gems, and your mages do not qualify for making M3 cost effective enough.

Bottom line - you are seeking a certain balance between gold income, and bless viability. For me, major Water bless feels right to achieve this end. The alternative should still involve a couple of minors, probably E4/N4 to give you an edge in Evocation power, rather than melee brute force - however taking a weaker bless means you absolutely need to put those points into high scales. I honestly think in most cases, you are hamstringing yourself if your pretender is not Imprisoned, so build accordingly (as I said, the other giant nations get +120 points on you, even going Dormant pushes that to +220, can you really afford that large a disparity?).


Okay, Volume 1 of the epic "Everything you need to know, everything you want to know, and a lot of things you didn't care to know about Fomoria" is complete. Stretch your legs, grab some lemonade, and let's talk about the recruitables!

Firbolg Slingers: Well..... they're better than human Slingers? I guess? Also, significantly more expensive. If you are being rushed by heavily blessed Jaguar Warriors, Hydras, or -a lot- of archers without shields, these guys can come in handy. If not, they won't.

Firbolg Warrior (with Axe): Seriously, I would buy Slingers before I buy these guys. A Length 1 weapon with a malus to Attack AND a Malus to Defense? You're kidding me, right? Buy indie Light Infantry before these guys, really.

Firbolg Warrior (With Spear and Javelin): I used to think the same of these guys as the axe guys. An early game wrestling match with Eriu set me straight, and made me look at their stats with new eyes. Specifically note 3 things - 13hp, 12 Precision, 15 Defense. These guys are so cost effective, it's not even funny (to have to fight them!). You can chew through indies with these guys alone (average attrition = 2 per fight), as their high Defense even can protect them from Heavy Cav charges often enough, if they aren't caught straggling. I tried a test run expanding almost exclusively with these guys, under a "light bless/high scales" strat. They're good. They'll be your best "damage mitigation per gold" chaff for most of the game.

Fomorian Militia: No seriously, go home. These guys are riddled with Afflictions - and their BASE stats are 5Prot, 8Def - no shield. Go hobble around in the fields and make me some money, I'd have to be a fool to pay for the privelige to let you die in combat. These guys are the reason your PD will never amount to anything. Honestly? Worst unit in the game, Markata are more cost effective and versatile, by far.

Fomorian Javelinist: These were tauted as awesome, long ago. Why? I honestly can't comprehend. 8 Precision, 9 Defense, no shield, and random Afflictions. These guys can't hit an Elephant at 20 yards with their Javelins, so will probably cause friendly fire casualties, and then they're useless in melee. Do yourself a favor and buy Slingers before these guys, or really, anything else.

Fomorian Spearman: Really pretty weak. Think human light infantry, with no Javelins, random Afflictions, and 1 per square. 30hp can't even begin to make up for all of that. Again, train human light infantry before these guys, but better yet, just pump out your Firbolgs, they will actually do something useful.

Fomorian Warrior: Your first giant that actually can somewhat compare to other giant units. But at 27 resources, and still with random Afflictions, 3 Firbolgs will be superior in most situations. Of course, there -may- be situations that these guys are useful in, let me know if you figure out what those are. :p

Unmarked: So named because they do not start with Afflictions. These guys are pure gold, especially with a Water bless. Let's look at these numbers - 60g (Sacred! so only 2 upkeep), 27 resources. 35HP, 21Str, 16Prot, 12Att, 14Def, 14Morale, 13MR, Enc6 (their only Achilles Heel). Now, with W9 they are 18Def before they gain exp (and they'll get 1 star almost immediately), or 19Def out of the box with the W10 variant. They do have low-ish MR, but there's a funny thing about that - single target MR check spells, will almost exclusively fall on your Kings, so they're the only ones you have to worry about. I've seen comments that these guys are "vanity items". Call me vain then, because as long as I have Holy and Resources left, I am buying these guys before -anything- else gets money. With the W9/E4/N4 variant, you get a lot of staying power as well, but once you hit critical mass, you don't need it so much. In large battles you can often get a "leapfrog" effect, where the front rank makes kills, and the next rank moves ahead, allowing the first rank a turn to rest. But I'll show you shortly why "stamina" isn't the strength of Fomoria. We are sprinters. We jump in your face, we tear it off, and we feed it to you, and we do it faster than you can cry "OMG HAX".

Fomorian Giant: Okay, for most purposes, these guys ARE vanity items. Honestly, there are only 2 compelling reasons to ever train these guys at all - Poor Amphibian (hey, it's better than nothing!), and 50%CR. The CR is really only useful in certain situations, like fighting Niefelheim, but the PAmph can leverage you into the water, which is usually a good thing. On the other hand, their base Prot and Def are both 2 lower than the Unmarked. Combine this with the significantly higher costs, and you see that really the Giants should only be trained for specific missions, while the Unmarked serve in general operations.

Nemedian Warrior: These guys are pretty sweet. 16Def with Glamour and a magic weapon, what's not to like? Well, I don't like that they compete with Unmarked, that's what. Perspective is mighty funny. Personally, I see these guys as the vanity items. You are not Vanheim. The mighty Fomorian Nation does not skulk around like brigands. See above about face-ripping. When we raid, we still tear off faces, but why Stealth when you can Fly? Still, I can't say never train these guys, but I don't see any special reason to recommend them, other than they are "so cool". ;)

-- Commanders --

Firbolg Scout: You would train him over an indie Scout for why, Javelins? Never train one. Ever. I will come to your house and be mean to you. Really mean, like as mean as if you buy Fomorian Militia. Grrr.

Fir Bolg Champion: See above - replace "indie scout" with "indie commander".

Fomorian Scout: Stealthy +0. Seriously. NEVER. It's just a Fomorian Javelinist who can't actually Sneak anywhere effectively. I'm tired of threatening you, I may come to your house and be mean anyways, just to make sure you understand.

Fomorian Champion: There really is little reason. Maybe once a game you take a castle from someone, and this is the best commander you can train to carry some Firbolgs to reinforce an army in a pinch. Otherwise these guys are better off in the fields, yet again.

Unmarked Champion: Okay, repeat after me, "the Unmarked will carry our great nation to victory". For just 10g more, and 2 more Resources, you get a commander Unmarked. He is Sacred, Holy1, full slots, 15Def unblessed, and basically is like a miniature Chuck Norris clone. It is utterly hilarious what these guys are capable of with the suggested Bless and a little creativity, but that's for the strat section. Here I will just say - you want lots of these guys, they are the Butter, and the regular Unmarked are the Bread.

Fomorian Druid: One of the weak points of this nation. This is your -only- recruitable anywhere Mage. With 1A and 1AWND pick for 150g, you are thanking the fates that they are Sacred, or you'd really be screwed. These bad boys get 5RP apiece with Magic1, and this is hardly impressive. Luckily, they all become quite useful. Even the 1A/1N variant, since most of them can just be dedicated as your Research backbone, as the others start to gain more responsibilities. On the bright side, they all come with 1A at least, so even in the darkest of times, Phantasmal Warrior spam, or Orb Lightning spam, or a Storm + A2 spells can make you glad that you have dozens of these guys coming out your ears (seriously, dozens, you will need a LOT of gold).

Fomorian King: It's good to be the King! 500g and well worth it. These guys get 3A/2D out of the box with 110%AWD pick. 9RP with Magic1, you will want to hold as many of these back Researching in the early-mid game as possible. These are the weakest SC chassis of the 3 major giant nations, out of the box - damn that one eye, it offsets the Prec bonus from Air magic, slightly impacting their casting abilities as well. So, it sounds like I'm talking these guys down. Shhh. Yes, you will always want them supported, either being guarded by Unmarked, or operating in teams - but teamwork is something to be proud of. Look at it this way, you have 3 major variants (ignoring possible 10% picks, which are just incredible). You have 4A/2D, these guys are your Air booster forgers, your heavy Evocationists, and your Air Battlefield Enchant casters. They are indispensible, so you are going to smile every time you get one. You have 3A/3D, these guys will ultimately be your most powerful SC chassis, with Mistform and Soul Vortex. Bear in mind, they must be used solo (can support with non-mistformed units, mostly and especially if they regenerate), as Soul Vortex will kill Mistform in adjacent Kings - MR can mitigate this, but unless we are pushing past 25MR, it's best to avoid this scenario. The 3A/1W/2D Variant is interesting in combat. With a base Def of 13 on the King, +4 from Bless, and +3 from Personal Quickness, we're at 20, throw on a Frost Brand and it hits 24, and add a Weightless Kite, and we hit 27 Def. These guys are your anti-SC patrol. Try to get them a couple stars, and then keep them parked so you can Cloud Trapeze them on anyone silly enough to raid into your lands unsupported.

Nemedian Champion: Again - trophy commander. "I destroyed the Nemedian civilization, and all I got was this Nemedian Champion, and one eye". Okay, base Def18 and self Blessable, they can technically be thugged. They are capital only. You should probably buy a few of these guys at the start of the game, before you can afford Kings. Check this out, they are A1/D1/H1, and Glamoured. Right, you're saying, "I thought I don't build Nemedian Warriors?". Forget those pansies. Think Flying Shoes, and 30 Undead Leadership. Chew on that for a bit, and I'll talk to you later.

Nemedian Sorceress: A2/D2 1AWND pick. The game that I won, I had 7 of these, from the first year when I couldn't reliably buy Kings. I've since determined that since their upkeep (non-sacred!) is actually higher than for a King, that there is actually little to no reason to hire one of these nice ladies. Maybe if you dabble into Blood, and you want a chassis for a Black Heart, I can technically see that. Otherwise you have 2 other capital only options that are more cost effective, and more useful.


Volume 3: The Early Game. Yes, you made it, we're finally on turn 1. Savor this moment.

Turn 1: You want to purchase 2 Unmarked, and a Nemedian Champion. You should have a little Resources left, buy Firbolgs. I suggest Prohetizing your initial commander, it just moves things along. Here you have a choice, first research goal can be either Alt3 for Mistform, or Evo2 for Lightning Bolt. Whichever one you pick, I sternly recommend you take the other as your second goal.
Turn 2: Attach your Unmarked to the Firbolg squad, set your Prophet to Divine Bless + Smitex4 + Spells. Avoid the hard indies with this force, and be amazed. Your Unmarked always rush ahead of the Firbolgs, screwing up incoming archer fire. Between how bad *** Unmarked are, and your Smites, it is entirely likely that this force will be able to proceed through weak-moderate indies until initial expansion is over. I'm serious. Relish it.
Turn 3+: Priority 1 will always be Unmarked. Do not overflow them, use any remainder of Resources for a few Firbolgs to toss in with them. If you can afford a King, do the Dance of Joy, if you cannot, smile because you still get a Nemedian Champion.

When you get 10 Unmarked together, package them with a Champion, set them in the far back field with orders to Hold and Attack Closest. Set Champion to BlessX3, and either Spells, or Fire Closest depending on your confidence level and research. Repeat deployment of these squads until all indies are conquered. 10 Unmarked will devastate 99% of indie spawns without any real chance of a casualty. You can technically launch with 8 but it slightly increases risk factor in favor of expedience.

Now, once your expansion gets nicely underway, you will likely find that you are comfortably maxing your queue with Unmarked + Kings, and generating a healthy surplus. Here is where Fomoria starts to get funny - as much as disposable cash will allow, start dropping castles wherever they look good. Insure a Temple in each, but you should only need Labs in 2-3 of them for the time being. As long as you can avoid even making Firbolg chaff, your cash flow should allow you to easily put out Unmarked, a King, a few Druids, and a large handful of Unmarked Champions every turn. Set the Champions on Preach duty for now, and/or throw them in with your other forces to gain stars - these guys are an investment.

Your initial Research thrust will eventually get you to Alt3+Evo5, this gives you access to Mistform, Orb Lightning, Thunder Strike, Storm, and Personal Quickness. These spells can carry you quite a long way. At this point, you want to grab Thaum2, and Conj3, and have your A2 Druids cast Auspex, and your A1/D1 Druids cast Dark Knowledge until the cows come home. Additionally, depending on potential random Gem events, or N0 sites yielding gems, you may either want to just Empower a Druid to N2 and get him spamming Haruspex, or send an A1/N1 Druid out manually searching. Bear in mind you will have to manually target Auspex on those provinces if you manually search at A1, which can be a hassle. Also, sooner or later you must also decide (partially based on serendipitous supply of free early Water gems) whether to just Empower an A1/W1 Druid to start casting Voice of Apsu, or to wait until you get to Cons6 and build a few Water Bracelets first.

Here I want to pause, and point out one specific thing about this strategy that clashes with something that I complain to people about. The simple fact is, you are looking at a start with absolutely *zero* access to Astral, and I will not kid you, S1 and S2 forgings will be very valuable to you by late game - indispensible in fact. However, unlike any other path in the game (except Blood, but though Blood access is undeniable, it's also undeniably a pain), you are almost guaranteed to at least get Lizard Shaman, or Crystal Amazons in your initial expansion. I've run hundreds of SP tests through at least the first year (not just with Fomoria, eesh :p), and honestly, while it's minorly inconvenient, just keep your eyes peeled, and the first access you get to Astral, jump on it. Also bear in mind, if nothing else, between Gem events, cross-path gem sites, potential S0 gem sites, and the relative efficiency of Alchemy to get starting Pearls, you should be able to put something together by some time in the third year, in time to develop it enough for what you really need out of it. Also it bears mentioning, that even with that, you still also lack any native access to Fire, or to Earth. The Earth hurts, I will admit, and it's one of the benefits of the 9W/4E/4N variant, as you can at least compensate slightly as soon as your pretender is out. But bear in mind also, how relatively common Earth is especially, in conjunction with Nature in magic sites. Not just gems, but recruitables like Gnomes and Witches, not to mention the fairly common Enchantresses, which will give you access to all elements, plus many useful cross-path forging options. Again, you can't count on any of that, and it's entirely possible that you make it to end game with little to no Earth access (most likely, "little", as you should eventually be able to Empower someone and get the boulder rolling).

Now, Tertiary Research Goals:
Conj: 4=Barghests (these guys are pretty effective with the W/N Bless), 6=Morrigans, 8=Dance of the Morrigans, Queens of Air (not entirely necessary, but keep them away from more fragile Air powers) - Manifestation - Well of Misery (as you can see, Conj8 is BIG for Fomoria, getting the Well up is crucial to push from competitive, to dominating), 9=Ghost Riders, Tartarian Gate (A note here, some may argue it's not needed, but you can compete with EA C'tis as premier Tartarian summmoner, and they may not even be in the game, leaving you on top - Tarts may not be necessary, but they add numbers and diversity well worth the expense)
Alt: 6=Soul Vortex - Darkness, 7+Fog Warriors, 8=Disintegrate
Evo: 6=Wrathful Skies - Wind of Death (both, used sparingly, are potent - your HP will allow you to outlast most enemies against Wrathful Skies, and you have 100+ years to spare on Unmarked, 200+ on Kings and Nemedians), 7=Shimmering Fields (not my cup of tea mostly, but has its uses) - Cloud of Death
Cons: Cons4 opens up most of the doors you need for most applications - but beware, getting Cons8 early (I did in the game I won) is a huge boon, even if you don't "need" it, per se, the Scepter of Dark Regency is like a "free Tart a turn" card for you, and there are numerous other goodies that are very nice to monopolize, even before accounting for any magic path diversification.
Ench: 3=Raise Skeletons (come on, sometimes it's the tool for the job, Niefel got you down?), 4=Cloud Trapeze (better sooner than later, I say), 5=Thunder Ward - Foul Vapors (again, you have the HP to suck up a bit of it, do they?), 6=Rigor Mortis (not for use with Quickened melee troops but can be useful in extreme late game), 7=Mass Flight (mixed bag, as most late game encounters you will want a Storm up, we'll find out why shortly), 8=Storm Warriors = Mists of Deception
Thaum: 3=Leeching Darkness, 4=Terror, 6=Wither Bones - Leprosy

JimMorrison February 17th, 2009 08:18 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
--Magic Use--

I have 1 word for you, 1 word to describe the crux of your superiority in late game, over all other elements - Death Gems. No wait, that's 2 words..... oh I've got it - Morrigans. That's what the Death Gems are for. In time, you will want to churn out several Skull Staves, and you will give these to A1/D1 Druids, and set them to (M)onthly cast Summon Morrigan. Beyond that, you need Dance of the Morrigans. It is seriously, undoubtedly, the most powerful Battlefield Enchant in the entire game. The way it operates, is similar to Mists of Deception, in that you get Morrigan spawns at the edges of the battlefield, and they continuously spawn throughout the combat. Well, that's neat, right? Well yes, except Morrigans are like Valkyries on PCP. And they come with Life Draining weapons. Oh, and they can fly in Storms.

Let me explain how you can devastate army after army in the late game, with little likelihood of defeat except by the most contrived of circumstances - For this, you probably want 4 Kings, 2 of them need a Bag of Winds, and a Winged Helmet - the other 2 need Skull Staves and Skull Helms, and don't leave home without your Staff of Storms. Also, if one of your Air casters can carry one of the Holy boosting artifacts, all the better, or bring your Prophet along, as this army is both Hammer and Anvil as one. Another nice trick to throw in, if you can gain access to Crystal/Slave Matrices, is to bring along 4 Druids with Slave Matrices, and your Kings with Crystals, but this is doable without either (and without Divine Bless, it is just the au jous for your sandwich). Your combat will look much like this - Turn 1 - everyone casts Summon Storm Power, except for your 5D casters, who cast Dance of the Morrigans, and Darkness (oh did I forget to mention, since they're Undead, they also have 100% DV). Second round of combat, you cast Fog Warriors, Wrathful Skies, and Storm Warriors. By the time you are in the third round of combat, you really don't have to do anything - though now casting your Divine Bless will leave you with an awful lot of Quickened Morrigans. If you brought some extra Morrigans with you (it's a good idea), say 30-40 of them, have them set to Hold and Attack Closest. Let your Kings rain down whatever they want, it literally doesn't matter at this point. By the end of combat, the last few enemies will be literally engulfed in a sea of Glamoured, Quickened, Life Draining, super high Defense Morrigans. Your opponent will probably set to AI. :p

Now, aside from this, I promised to talk about your Unmarked Champions a bit. Here's the thing, in the early game, especially with a handful of Unmarked set to Guard Commander, to bulk up numbers a bit, squads of these guys can tear up almost anything. Adding in a few Druids to throw down Phantasmal Warriors (Phantasm = size 2, Unmarked = size 4, you do the math), and some supporting Lightning, make these very effective auxilliary forces. Also, as mentioned, throwing in 10-20 Firbolgs will also dramatically enhance staying power in many circumstances. As your research and gem income increase, you will want to look towards giving these guys a Frost Brand, and a Pendant of Luck. If you managed to secure a source of Hammers, that is 6 gems for a very potent thug. Due to potential Fatigue issues, they are not meant for solo use, but they are so cheap to purchase, maintain, and gear, that squads of 6-10 of these become trivial to deploy into multiple weak points, defensively or offensively. Eventually you can mix and match other low cost items to tailor them to specific enemies - 4 of these guys with Dusk Daggers make quick work of any less mobile thugs the enemy employs, to free up Kings for the more high tech challenges. Also with enough Unmarked Champions at your disposal, you can very effectively use them to discourage enemy raiding forces - your PD may suck, but who knows where your thug patrols will be this turn?

Remember those Nemedian Champions? I bet you know what they do, now. 1xFlying Shoes + 10 or more Morrigans + 1 Nemedian Champion = very potent, highly mobile, fully Glamoured raiding force. The Champions can even Bless the Morrigans in combat, it's like a dream come true.


Just remember, with Fomoria, Speed = Brutality. Lightning is great and all, but you can resist Lightning, you cannot resist the Blitzkrieg.

VedalkenBear February 17th, 2009 09:00 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
I must try this. I've tried doing a strategy like this, but it never jelled in the way you describe. Must try again.

chrispedersen February 17th, 2009 10:34 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
The only problem is the research......

P3D February 17th, 2009 10:42 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Fomoria has access and gems for owl quills and skull mentor to help out with research.

chrispedersen February 17th, 2009 10:50 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
I agree, I just think it bears mention, almost criticial.

Skull + poor research is still < skull + good research.

JimMorrison February 17th, 2009 10:51 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by P3D (Post 675073)
Fomoria has access and gems for owl quills and skull mentor to help out with research.

Well as I directly implied, you are best not using your precious Air or Death for Research boosters.

In my experience, 2 castles pumping out Druids, and your capital doing a King per turn, will net you an "average" rate of RP over time, if you can keep most of the Kings at home for the first few years of the game.

The tricky deal is, by supplanting the majority of army upkeep costs through the use of small squads of potent sacreds, your ability to build castles should generally be quite robust. Obviously, as described, you want several castles churning out Unmarked Champions, but you also will find it easier than many other nations, to just say "I like those indie mages", and plop one of your castles on top of them. You should have enough surplus to afford to push out even the less cost effective but more attractive indies, such as Crystal Sorceresses, or Enchantresses. Though if you don't have an available site to mine in this manner, more Druids are always useful to you, especially in any battle that you provide a Storm.

Granted, you have a LOT of great spells, and a LOT of expensive Research goals. This is one nation where you are certainly better off if you can win an early war through swift and brutal application of force, so that your economy can grow faster than others. In the game that I won, I was annoyed by one of my neighbors, who happened to be caught in a very cathartic early war. I was not amused, so I stormed in with guns blazing, and toppled over both empires, thus sitting on 3 capitals by the end of year 3, and building castles like crazy.

JimMorrison February 17th, 2009 10:54 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chrispedersen (Post 675076)
I agree, I just think it bears mention, almost criticial.

Skull + poor research is still < skull + good research.

Just to clarify my position, with Magic1, Kings are netting 9RP, and Druids are fairly cheap (since sacred) for 5RP. You have a very strong base with the Kings, and then with the Druids, it is quantity over quality. And again, it's useful to crush one of your neighbors during year 2 - basically once you have Mistform and Thunder Strike, there are few nations with the tools to stop you if you come with coordinated force.

P3D February 17th, 2009 11:19 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Skull mentors make bigger difference on poor researchers.
1 Skull mentor for 7 gems = 1 Fomori King RP-wise. Or about two druids. 10-15GP maintenance per turn, i.e 5-7 more Unmarked.

JimMorrison February 17th, 2009 11:29 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Well this is true. And Cons4 is definitely a viable place to head as your first tertiary objective. I suppose by that point in your development, you will know whether or not you can just afford more Druids, or if you should bite the bullet and forge some Skulls. Just personally, with that Bless, I'd rather roll those Death gems into Barghests, and go ravage someone to get the gold to perk up my commander accrual rate. ;)

Agema February 18th, 2009 06:11 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
You could forgo Morrigans and just raid with a Nemedian champion leading 10 Nemedians, which should chew through light to middling PD comfortably. Even better, you can seed your enemy's territory with them before you declare war. Losing half a dozen provinces on the first turn of warfare is pretty depressing. For that matter, a Nemedian champion could make a standalone thug with careful item use. The biggest downside is only A1, so they'd need a gem for mistform or some other way of fending off attacks.

Although I do appreciate the point that fighting a stealth war might be more of a niche tactic when you assault your opponent directly with the existing Fomorian troops.

WraithLord February 18th, 2009 11:18 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
I enjoyed reading this guide. Very nice :)

Aezeal February 18th, 2009 12:44 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
hmmm and wouldn't the standard giant bless of E9N6 be nice too?

DonCorazon February 18th, 2009 02:12 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Just a word of warning: I'm in an MP game now leading in provinces, probably around 40, with a non-astral nation that I am playing for the first time and I went with the conventional strategy/pretender for this specific nation that left me with no access to S. From the start of the game, I have searched extensively with what paths I have, hired Dagan the S1 sage for probably around 7 Arcane Probings so far, and I have yet to find a single recruitable Astral caster - Lizard Shaman or otherwise - and my S income from sites I have found with my non-S casters is a whopping +2. Basically my late game chances are slim to none, with no access to amulets of anti-magic, no protection against mind hunts, no RoW/RoS to get those often critical boosts that help bootstrap other key magic paths, etc. Now this might be an outlier and truly bad luck (though I even have luck scales), but I would never play this nation like this again.

I think a national strategy should prepare you for the endgame, not rely on luck or indies to cover a nation's weakness. I think magical diversity is critical as there are so many permutations of who you might end up fighting in the endgame of a competitive MP game, you had better be prepared for anything.

Also, interesting that a big W bless is chosen here. I would have thought an E bless would have been optimal for enhanced evocatory devastation and more late game usage. I'd think having at least E4 would be almost mandatory as otherwise you are really lacking in 2 critical paths. That seems like really rolling the dice on your strategy.

pyg February 18th, 2009 04:31 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Nice guide! Thanks for doing this.

In SP I usually take a E9/10 bless and sometimes N. Even with an E10 bless unmarked will still accumulate fatigue. Anyway I was wondering how you fight battles w/unmarked when you are vastly outnumbered or will otherwise have a long battle? Isn't the success of the W9 bless dependent on short battles where the numbers are more evenly matched? I admit that I have never tried the W9 bless (but will soon!) so I don't have a context of experience, just conjecture. This question also applies to Kings as thugs although you can equip gear on King.

Wrana February 18th, 2009 04:49 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon (Post 675227)
Just a word of warning: I'm in an MP game now leading in provinces, probably around 40, with a non-astral nation that I am playing for the first time and I went with the conventional strategy/pretender for this specific nation that left me with no access to S. From the start of the game, I have searched extensively with what paths I have, hired Dagan the S1 sage for probably around 7 Arcane Probings so far, and I have yet to find a single recruitable Astral caster - Lizard Shaman or otherwise ...

One word - Spectres. They will boost any Death nation into Astral, with other types just contributing to research or raiding enemies.

Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon (Post 675227)
Also, interesting that a big W bless is chosen here. I would have thought an E bless would have been optimal for enhanced evocatory devastation and more late game usage. I'd think having at least E4 would be almost mandatory as otherwise you are really lacking in 2 critical paths. That seems like really rolling the dice on your strategy.

He got E4. But I agree that high Earth bless is VERY good for any nation with large sacred casters. High Water is also very good, though. Personally, I'd prefer Earth, but Morrigans... I wonder whether it's possible to get both without awful scales. Maybe if we take different chassis and drop Nature...

About Nemedians vs Morrigans - yes, Nemedians are good by themselves - but Jim mentioned Winged Boots - which means Flying Squad... ;)

Though, of course, I'm theoretical here: my closest aquintance with Fomoria was when I rushed them in my 2nd MP and they crumbled - they used Fomorians of various ilks, too and by the time they started to use Nemedians the only thing they retained was their capital... :angel

Baalz February 18th, 2009 04:56 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Well, the thing with a W bless is it fatigues you out quicker, but you do still get the same number of attacks as you would otherwise (assuming no reinvig). So, if you've got giants who deal enough damage to reasonably expect to kill their targets every other hit or so they can still chew through 5-10 times their own number before fatigue is a real problem, no different than without the W bless. For the kings, the ratio is much, much higher assuming you equip, say a frost brand and boots of the messenger. Even if the reinvig doesn't match the encumbrance, you can still comfortably chew up scores of PD singlehandledly and hang in big battles for the first dozen turns. True, you're not going to be able to go into those situations which drag into turn 40 of combat, but this doesn't limit you as much as you might think - you just have to make sure your damage outlay is sufficient to keep things from dragging on.

WraithLord February 18th, 2009 05:07 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
My tests and experience indicate that W9 bless on high (say >4) encumb. sacreds is sub optimal at best. Its worse when they auto buff -- even two-three rounds of the usual buffing will have it start the battle at fatigue anywhere between 30-50, and its down hill from there. This means the tougher indies may kill you or afflict you. This means that a human opponent in MP will use the fatigue weakness against you in many a ways.

I have found the W9E4N4 or W9E6 to perform better in cases where high def and double speed on sacred is critical (which is usually not the case for the giant sacreds). That and a plan to quickly equip with reinvig. items like BotM. For Fomoria I'd venture that E>6 + N>6 bless would be more than enough to get a good kick out of the sacreds -- as is the case for all the giant sacreds IMO.

Baalz February 18th, 2009 05:22 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
I have to say I'm not generally a big fan of a major W bless, but I do think it fits well with this strategy. It's justified in no small part by the Morrigans - high defense, glamour, 0 enc, life drain...they're pretty much the ideal candidate for a W bless (and hella nasty if you haven't seen them in action). In this case you're trying to balance a bless against 3 totally different goals - Morrigans, unmarked, and thugs/casters. Sure an E bless helps the thugs/casters and to a lesser extent the unmarked but it doesn't help the Morrigans at all. W blessing is at the other end of the spectrum, though it's far from useless to anti-thugs. I've no doubt a classic E/N giant bless would also be effective (and probably moreso if you only consider the sacred giants), but wouldn't really do much at all for the Morrigans. Morrigans provide an *excellent* diversity when your opponent was gearing up to take down tough giants you're dropping flying, glamoured, uber defense troops all over which require completely different counters.

WraithLord February 18th, 2009 05:27 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Makes perfect sense :)

DonCorazon February 18th, 2009 05:39 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wrana (Post 675252)
One word - Spectres. They will boost any Death nation into Astral, with other types just contributing to research or raiding enemies.

Meh, in theory yes, but:

1. At Conj 6 and D3, Spectres can take a while to get - I usually don't go so far down the Conj path til I have a number of other paths researched. Usually find the need for combat spells 1st (I like to exercise my mages), site searching, then Const for boosters to be able to make use of Conj. So by the time you get them it can be pretty late to be trying to fire up a decent S economy.

2. In line with that, some of the coolest sites I find are Astral and I'd rather get them early on as that will compound your leads in gems and research.

3. At 20D, I don't find Spectres especially cost effective. Lot of valuable death gems to summon them, not all will be Astral, then takes a while to site search with them, etc. Plus they won't get you any Astral boosters - you are still stuck without access to RoS and ROW.

I am not saying I won't summon them, mostly they are useful to intimidate by feebleminding unsuspecting Mind Hunters but I don't find them to be as simple as a solution as portrayed.

And, not relevant to this thread, but I was referring to playing Pan with a Gorgon, and Death magic is not so easy for them, again luck is a factor. In my case, I have a single D1 Pan out of # Pans. Wtf! Its been a pretty unlucky game w/r to sites/randoms, but it happens and I have had other games where I have been amazingly lucky. You never know but as I play more I'd rather minimize dependence on good luck.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Wrana (Post 675252)
He got E4.

I read it as mainly W9 bless (a minor E bless appears in 1 out of 3 builds). W9 feels good when you see things getting motored down but is only beneficial when you use sacreds to fight whereas an E9 bless is useful in battle and magery. Fomoria seems to have such powerful combat mages with Death and Air, getting some reinvigoration / protection on them seems like it would be pretty effective. I admit I haven't messed around with Morrigans though and that sounds fun...

But the other consideration I had was making sure your nation has access to E magic and being able to cast / forge some of the big E ticket items later on. A pure W bless leaves you without easy / near-term access to E or S. That would scare me.

JimMorrison February 18th, 2009 06:06 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Ahh, another beautiful day on the forums, and another chance for point-by-point multi-quoting. <3


Quote:

Originally Posted by Aezeal (Post 675207)
hmmm and wouldn't the standard giant bless of E9N6 be nice too?

Well there is a reason that it is considered the "standard", and it is easier to use in the early-mid game. It's my personal feeling that with Fomoria, an E9 based bless wanes in overall usefulness as the game progresses, whereas, as Baalz mentions, the W9 gains new usefulness in the late game.


Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon
I think a national strategy should prepare you for the endgame, not rely on luck or indies to cover a nation's weakness. I think magical diversity is critical as there are so many permutations of who you might end up fighting in the endgame of a competitive MP game, you had better be prepared for anything.

Also, interesting that a big W bless is chosen here. I would have thought an E bless would have been optimal for enhanced evocatory devastation and more late game usage. I'd think having at least E4 would be almost mandatory as otherwise you are really lacking in 2 critical paths. That seems like really rolling the dice on your strategy.

I get so lost in my own train of thought sometimes, I should have mentioned the Specter in my original body (thank you Wrana!). But also, I really have to say, it is exceedingly unlikely that you have to fall back to summons to get into Astral (but if you do, your Death superiority can handle it nicely). As far as Earth, honestly there is nothing that you can't get by without. The only thing you -really- desire from Earth, is Hammers, which you might find a chance to trade for early on, before people are scared of you. ;) Otherwise, Girdles of Might for your casters, and access to the artifacts would be nice, but the nation as a whole can thrive without those things.


Quote:

Originally Posted by pyg
In SP I usually take a E9/10 bless and sometimes N. Even with an E10 bless unmarked will still accumulate fatigue. Anyway I was wondering how you fight battles w/unmarked when you are vastly outnumbered or will otherwise have a long battle? Isn't the success of the W9 bless dependent on short battles where the numbers are more evenly matched?

Well the key is swift brutality. The combination of Quickened giants, and heavy Air evocation - and the eventual inclusion of Morale damaging spells, and/or a couple Horror Helms if needed, can cause most battles to be far shorter than your opponent would desire. And of course, for the huge late-game army vs army clashes, deploying and scripting as I described will seriously devastate almost anyone. As Baalz (thank you, btw) clarified, Morrigans are Enc0 and have Life Drain anyway, so once they are contributing heavily to your larger battles, your Fatigue issues in melee are largely ameliorated. Also never forget to throw in Firbolgs, when in doubt. They really are surprisingly good at mitigating damage, and boosting the overall staying power of your Blessed troops.


[quote=Baalz]Even if the reinvig doesn't match the encumbrance, you can still comfortably chew up scores of PD singlehandledly and hang in big battles for the first dozen turns. True, you're not going to be able to go into those situations which drag into turn 40 of combat, but this doesn't limit you as much as you might think - you just have to make sure your damage outlay is sufficient to keep things from dragging on.[quote]

I think it's important to note here, that even though you will likely maintain one LARGE army to intimidate the enemy, and to support the use of massive battlefield magics - part of the key is also to have numerous smaller task forces as backup. Do not be afraid to play cat-and-mouse with your main army, while your raiders chop away at your foe's lands, and you organize your reinforcements. Remember, you want a LOT of castles, and of course they are not just for recruiting your cheap Sacred thugs - they are also ubiquitous speed bumps. You can fall back before his main army, and bind him up in your tangled wall of castles, and lose very little of your control over the war. Just as in chess, a war can easily be won by making one option appear to be significantly better to your enemy than all others - and then arranging the rest of your pieces to exploit the inherent weaknesses of that choice. Fomoria has excellent tools for creating just those sorts of situations - and should rarely, if ever, feel forced to engage in "iffy" battles, past the end of the second year. After that, dance around your opponent, and force him to take the risks.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Wraithlord
My tests and experience indicate that W9 bless on high (say >4) encumb. sacreds is sub optimal at best. Its worse when they auto buff -- even two-three rounds of the usual buffing will have it start the battle at fatigue anywhere between 30-50, and its down hill from there. This means the tougher indies may kill you or afflict you. This means that a human opponent in MP will use the fatigue weakness against you in many a ways.

I have found the W9E4N4 or W9E6 to perform better in cases where high def and double speed on sacred is critical (which is usually not the case for the giant sacreds).

W9 can indeed cause you many problems if misapplied, which is one reason I performed a concerted test of the W9/E4/N4 variant before writing this guide, to offer the option to take the edge off. Bear in mind, you have little that you need your Nature gems for, other than gear. An optimal gearset for a King in the late game can easily contain both a Rainbow Armor, and a Boots of the Messenger. Also, while many prefer Vine Shields, with your incredibly high defense you can just use Weightless shields, for the 0Enc on them. Beyond that, as I pointed out, late game you have 2 basic variants of Kings as SCs, the 3A/1W/2D which you will use as surgical strikers against weak points or anti-thug/SC duty, and the A3/D3 variant who will buff with Soul Vortex, and will laugh at Fatigue issues. Just to clarify, while the W9 is in part chosen specifically for the Morrigans, it merely means adjusting your tactics with your other forces - you build your fights around speed and power, not on endurance - your forte is not outlasting your opponent like Fomoria, it's breaking them in two, and scattering them to the winds before they can effectively blunt your charge. As I stated in the guide, Fomorians are physically the least durable of the 3 real giant races (sorry Agartha, you know I love you <3), so you leverage high Defense, with your capacity to deal damage. Played in this way, I feel it gets you further with Fomoria, than the typical "soak the damage and take your time" strategy of an E9++ Blessing.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Baalz
I have to say I'm not generally a big fan of a major W bless, but I do think it fits well with this strategy. It's justified in no small part by the Morrigans - high defense, glamour, 0 enc, life drain...they're pretty much the ideal candidate for a W bless (and hella nasty if you haven't seen them in action). In this case you're trying to balance a bless against 3 totally different goals - Morrigans, unmarked, and thugs/casters. Sure an E bless helps the thugs/casters and to a lesser extent the unmarked but it doesn't help the Morrigans at all. W blessing is at the other end of the spectrum, though it's far from useless to anti-thugs. I've no doubt a classic E/N giant bless would also be effective (and probably moreso if you only consider the sacred giants), but wouldn't really do much at all for the Morrigans.

I just have to say, with your eye for synergy, that it pleases me greatly that you can clearly see what I've been aiming for. In the game I won with Fomoria, I had never even experimented with Morrigans, until I summoned my first one during that game (I really love W9 Bless, and I will admit, choosing it without knowledge of the Morrigan's capabilities, was a somewhat newbie move). I was very impressed with their stats, but when I first used Dance of the Morrigans in combat, I seriously nearly fell out of my chair laughing. I had brought 50 Morrigans with the army (I was moving to finally destroy the Niefel army that had devastated many of my unprepared troops - see my notes about NOT engaging in risky combats if you don't absolutely have to ;)), so I was already prepared to to provide Darkness, and scripted the Divine Bless to go off after the Dance was cast. They will continue to spawn as long as combat continues (I think more spawn the more "blood is shed", it seems to be more than flavor text, but it's hard to say), so they won't all be Blessed, but they are virtually indestructible with a W9 Bless, except -maybe- to Abysia, who in 99% of all cases will simply be obliterated anyway due to sheer numbers, and your heavy Lightning support. Remember, the Morrigans come from all edges of the battlefield, so unprotected mages in the back will just dissolve, and even a few bodyguards are just not likely to be enough to buy more than a couple of rounds of combat.

And I really can't say this enough - 1 Nemedian Champion + Winged Shoes + 10 Morrigans > 5 Nemedian Champions + 50 Nemedians on foot. There simply is no comparison. Sure it costs you some gems, but like I said, you can get by on short (and in some cases, no) supplies of just about anything, except Air and Death. They are your lifeblood.

JimMorrison February 18th, 2009 06:34 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Sneaky Don. :p


Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon (Post 675271)
1. At Conj 6 and D3, Spectres can take a while to get - I usually don't go so far down the Conj path til I have a number of other paths researched. Usually find the need for combat spells 1st (I like to exercise my mages), site searching, then Const for boosters to be able to make use of Conj. So by the time you get them it can be pretty late to be trying to fire up a decent S economy.

Conj is one of your most vital tertiary Research objectives. Conj6 is certainly no stretch for early-mid or mid-mid game. As Fomoria, the only things you really need from Astral are your quintessential Luck Itemâ„¢ and Antimagic Ammy. And only some of your Kings need the Ammy, your casting Kings should all have Rainbow Armor on, and not be the focus of enemy mages, so you only need one big angry guy in front to soak the Astral spam, and then any Kings out on their own need one. Mostly you just want as many Luck Pendants as you can get your hands on. :p


Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon (Post 675271)
2. In line with that, some of the coolest sites I find are Astral and I'd rather get them early on as that will compound your leads in gems and research.

There are excellent Astral sites with recruitables. But this is where arguing about Astral breaks down. You lose all of the bite of your giants if you do not have an Imprisoned pretender, to get the Bless you need without -3/all scales. So Astral on your pretender isn't going to expedite things, and so this is why my suggestion was to suck it up, and take fringe options like the Specter as your last resort, if nothing else pans out. You absolutely want your Astral searching ASAP, but remember, the "P" stands for "Possible", not "You Can If You Are Willing To Sacrifice Everything Else". ;)


Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon (Post 675271)
3. At 20D, I don't find Spectres especially cost effective. Lot of valuable death gems to summon them, not all will be Astral, then takes a while to site search with them, etc. Plus they won't get you any Astral boosters - you are still stuck without access to RoS and ROW.

Well they aren't "particularly" cost effective, sure. But in a pinch, they will do the job - and seriously, you are in no great need of a RoW as Fomoria. Certainly not every nation in the game has to insure access to high level Astral, and this is a sterling example, IMO.


Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon (Post 675271)
I read it as mainly W9 bless (a minor E bless appears in 1 out of 3 builds). W9 feels good when you see things getting motored down but is only beneficial when you use sacreds to fight whereas an E9 bless is useful in battle and magery. Fomoria seems to have such powerful combat mages with Death and Air, getting some reinvigoration / protection on them seems like it would be pretty effective. I admit I haven't messed around with Morrigans though and that sounds fun...

But the other consideration I had was making sure your nation has access to E magic and being able to cast / forge some of the big E ticket items later on. A pure W bless leaves you without easy / near-term access to E or S. That would scare me.

Again, you really do not -need- those things on the scale that you are talking about. You -need- minor access to Astral, and the rest really is just gravy. If you can allow yourself to focus on the overt strengths (and some hidden strengths) of Fomoria, without getting too caught up trying to shore up their weaknesses, you will do very well.

vfb February 18th, 2009 07:18 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
EA has pretty good indy diversity, so the chances of getting S from lizards or crystal amazons are pretty good. Also site frequency is higher in EA, giving you a better chance of getting Astral through Wizards of the Crescent Moon or whatever.

One thing the guide does not mention is Air Domes. It really really sucks to have a disabled capitol as Fomoria, and Kings can get an Air Dome up pretty easily. A contingent of Firbolg slingers should patrol your capitol if you are in a mixed-age game. (Are there national recruitable spies in EA? I can't think of any.)

DonCorazon February 18th, 2009 07:24 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Alright, I am sold. I am just bitter about no Astral in one of my games :)
And I am kind of infatuated with the enchantress...

JimMorrison February 18th, 2009 07:27 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by vfb (Post 675292)
One thing the guide does not mention is Air Domes. It really really sucks to have a disabled capitol as Fomoria, and Kings can get an Air Dome up pretty easily. A contingent of Firbolg slingers should patrol your capitol if you are in a mixed-age game. (Are there national recruitable spies in EA? I can't think of any.)

Good point, though I tend to keep some "reserves" at my capital anyways, whether it be the last few turns of Unmarked production waiting for assignment, or just some summons intentionally held on the back burner. If you throw some of these on an Umarked Champion (you should always have a number in "reserve" as well, they are potent defensively and in quick deployment), then you can forgo paying for Firbolgs to do the job.

As far as Air domes go, I guess I shouldn't have cut corners, as I tried to make this guide as friendly to new players as possible, while still appealing to the more experienced.

I have a few edits planned, I will include mention of Air Domes, certainly. <3

Redeyes February 18th, 2009 07:45 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
I recall being disappointed by Morrigan when they were unable to even faze a generic marble armor thug. Is there an effective way in the Fomoria arsenal to make them competitive against foes with decent protection?
Their baseline damage is just 19.

I haven't tried them in the CBM though.

JimMorrison February 18th, 2009 08:41 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Redeyes (Post 675307)
I recall being disappointed by Morrigan when they were unable to even faze a generic marble armor thug. Is there an effective way in the Fomoria arsenal to make them competitive against foes with decent protection?
Their baseline damage is just 19.

I haven't tried them in the CBM though.

Well bear in mind, this isn't really their intended application. Obviously someone can always toss a few well geared thugs in with their larger armies. This will do them no good as if it's a "large vs large" confrontation, a few thugs won't be able to bind up enough Morrigans to keep them from ravaging the rest of the army. It's highly unlikely that we could consider it a "large" enemy force, with those thugs making up more than 25% of the HP of the force, meaning you will force them to route by destroying the rest.

If it IS more than 25% of the HP of the force, either it's not a "large" army, in which case you deploy your own anti-thug squads, whether Unmarked Champions, or Kings as applicable - or he has essentially placed all of his eggs in one basket, in which case your strategy is to lead him around and play tag while your raiding forces ravage the landscape. Tactically in that scenario, it's very much going to come down to a game specific plan where you're really going to need to analyze your exact capabilities, and his exact gearbuilds. If he can't manage to get 100% Shock Resist for example, a couple casts of Living Clouds will likely do the trick. If he has the SR, he likely will be vulnerable to Poison, or to Frozen Heart from your N and W randoms. And when all else fails, push MR by spamming Disintegrate.

Again, if he wants to build his meat so as to be relatively impervious to your national capabilities, say a Tartarian with a Ring of Tamed Lightning, Antimagic Ammy and whatever to get to MR 25+, this is when your W random Kings are the weapon of choice. 2 Kings can Cloud Trapeze onto a Tartarian, in such an anti-SC scenario, the -only- buff that they will need is Personal Quickness. Give them both a Flambeau, or 2 Swords of Swiftness, or 2 Dusk Daggers, etc, and that Tart should be dead by the end of round 3 (assuming you also wear Flying Shoes so you are on him on the second round).

Obviously your opponent will try to counter what you are showing him that you are capable of. For this reason I tend to suggest that you keep secrets. For example if you get Enchantresses, don't spread around Fire forged items unless you feel it doesn't matter. When out of nowhere you are wielding Flambeaus, or you have FR gear, it can cripple what your opponent thought of as his "best weapon" against you. But I still feel that with a little creativity, the key is that anything that Fomoria cannot do with magic (and they certainly can do almost anything with it, even lacking 4! paths), they can do with swift application of brute force.

Also remember that you should always have Unmarked Champions just hanging around your empire. When a Tart drops into your territory and you Cloud Trapeze an anti-SC unit onto it, plant a trap for your opponent. Move several Unmarked into the province that turn as well, and perhaps a few scripted Druids for backup. This will spread out any retaliatory Mind Hunt attempts (oh no, you Mind Hunted a 70g, expendable random guy!), but if he chooses to Teleport in an anti-SC-SC, the extra forces can easily throw a wrench in his intended scripts. Also of course, if you have more than minimal Astral magic, a couple mages tossed in will totally shield you from Mind Hunts altogether.

Renojustin February 18th, 2009 08:51 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Hi Jim! Nice guide.

I have a few concerns: When you describe Formoria as a strong contender for Death, you're exaggerating there. They aren't even close to some others in EA. Sauromatia and C'tis both have the non-capital mages to drown the world in bones. Fomoria doesn't. They're competent in Death and must certainly include it in any winning strategy, but to ascribe them more power than that I think would be misleading.

The Water bless seems like a clever thing for the Morrigans but I think the low-Attack, high-Encumbrance Unmarked are just asking to be stymied by anything with high Defense. Maybe something like 9E/4N/4F to leverage your Unmarked to the point that you have a chance at researching up to the Morrigans to begin with.

I mean... I shudder to think of those waterbless Unmarked going up against just your standard dual-blessed Jaguar Warriors. You have to have run into some problems with them; it's just such a glaring weakness that if anything is exacerbated by the Water bless. Even with E4 you're picking up 10! Encumbrance a turn... the song Candle in the Wind comes to mind.

Baalz February 18th, 2009 09:41 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Yep, what Jim said. I don't think "how can I make the morrigans do enough damage to punch through serious armor", I tend to think "what gems do I have laying around to forge cheap magic weapons for my very strong quickened giants." Slap almost anything armor piercing (preferably two one handed weapons) on an unmarked champion and he'll chew up most anything while the morrigans keep them tied up. If thugs are a pretty regular problem, just make it a habit of equipping those Nemedian champions with something nasty, set the morrigans to guard commander and him to attack large enemies. If you give him the right weapon his 13 strength is plenty to lay some hurt down. Demon bane, moon blade, and serpent kryss are darn cost effective if you've got a good idea what you're facing, while a frost brand lays out plenty enough damage to chop up anybody even if they're frost immune.

Tolkien February 18th, 2009 09:51 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
I'll have to look into Fomoria. The Morrigans sound practically imba.

vfb February 19th, 2009 01:03 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Renojustin (Post 675316)
Hi Jim! Nice guide.

...

I mean... I shudder to think of those waterbless Unmarked going up against just your standard dual-blessed Jaguar Warriors. You have to have run into some problems with them; it's just such a glaring weakness that if anything is exacerbated by the Water bless. Even with E4 you're picking up 10! Encumbrance a turn... the song Candle in the Wind comes to mind.

Yeah, that's a bad matchup for Unmarked with any bless. Firbolg slingers are cheap and quick to mass, so use those instead. You can make many more slingers than Mictlan can hire Jag warriors.

If Mictlan has gone light on commanders, or has broken his army into several raiding groups, hit his commanders with a few seeking arrows, and have fun slaughtering his unblessed jags.

JimMorrison February 19th, 2009 03:33 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Renojustin (Post 675316)
Hi Jim! Nice guide.

I have a few concerns: When you describe Formoria as a strong contender for Death, you're exaggerating there. They aren't even close to some others in EA. Sauromatia and C'tis both have the non-capital mages to drown the world in bones. Fomoria doesn't. They're competent in Death and must certainly include it in any winning strategy, but to ascribe them more power than that I think would be misleading.

Sauromatia only gets 2D outside of their capital. Yes, they are powerful in Death, but not overwhelmingly more so than Fomoria. They will be pushing into Blood, and will be diluting their potency somewhat - compared to Fomoria who needs to focus on Death as a primary leg of their strategy. And I did say C'tis are the only ones that can beat Fomoria hands down at Death - but that you have the opportunity to compete, as far as seizing the Well of Misery, forging artifacts, and potentially even thriving in a Darkened environment. Also bear in mind that while you will likely compete against Sauromatia in Death, C'tis is less commonly present, and more likely to be eliminated or marginalized early in the game.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Renojustin (Post 675316)
The Water bless seems like a clever thing for the Morrigans but I think the low-Attack, high-Encumbrance Unmarked are just asking to be stymied by anything with high Defense. Maybe something like 9E/4N/4F to leverage your Unmarked to the point that you have a chance at researching up to the Morrigans to begin with.

Well ultimately the third build I offered up really just comes down to 9W/4N/4?. I really can't say this enough - with Fomoria, you can play in a manner that allows you comparable early game performance with W9 over E9, but that as the game develops, you can leverage the W9 Bless more effectively in the late game. You aren't here to run a marathon, there are others who are just simply better at that than Fomoria is. Your strength is shock value (haha), and the goal is to fashion your strike forces around simply breaking opposing forces in the first 10 turns or so. I guess my whole point is, that there are a plethora of ways to play Fomoria that will get you to the late game, these guys are awesome - I simply feel that once you are there, this build is more competitive, if you play to its strengths.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Renojustin (Post 675316)
I mean... I shudder to think of those waterbless Unmarked going up against just your standard dual-blessed Jaguar Warriors. You have to have run into some problems with them; it's just such a glaring weakness that if anything is exacerbated by the Water bless. Even with E4 you're picking up 10! Encumbrance a turn... the song Candle in the Wind comes to mind.

As vfb was kind enough to point out, I did specifically state in the description of the Firbolg Slingers, that this was just about their only purpose in the world. I also wouldn't hesitate to say that more often than not, finding yourself neighboring Mictlan, both of you are going to breathe a sigh of relief if you manage to coexist. Obviously it becomes a Cold War, but still, I am quite confident, that it's one that Fomoria can win. Still, finding yourself thrown into early conflict with Mictlan, my best suggestion would be Firbolg Warriors in front with accurate Javelins, Firbolg Slingers behind them (they are cheap, you will vastly outproduce him), and Unmarked as flankers. It's a battle best avoided though, neither side is likely to achieve victory without bleeding like a stuck pig.

And remember, W9 Bless is only 50% Quickness, the additional Fatigue is -never- as bad as it sounds like it could be, except when utilizing small squads of troops. When you have 30 Unmarked in one place, for example, you can watch them gradually shuffle ranks, allowing some men to rest while fresh troops push into holes in the enemy line to make attacks. Your entire goal in warfare is to push your opponent into allowing you to strike surgically decisive blows with your primary army, while auxiliary forces clean up PD and stragglers. When I describe Fomoria as "brute force", it is not the Niefel style of plodding along and letting some silly Chill aura do the hard work. Fomoria is the One Inch Punch, the Five Point Exploding Heart Technique, the Eagle Claw. Your goal is to deploy such devastating firepower in such a short amount of time, that your enemy flees from the field, screaming like a little girl, while your Quickened Sacreds devour the runners.

When Fomoria mobilizes for war, they don't act like pussies and bring 2 of their "super expensive, nigh irreplaceable capital only mage/SCs". They bring 10. They rain down such cruel punishment on an unsuspecting foe, to make that enemy wonder why 1 more level of research, was worth watching his entire army get turned into Pork Rinds, and then gobbled up while they're still sizzling. When the giants of Fomoria go to war, there are no holds barred, no regrets, and no limits. Through victory alone can this doomed race survive and thrive - once you have hung the enemy god from a pike in front of the city they once called a "capital", you can redouble your research, pumping out more and more Druids from taxing the tens of thousands of people whom you have just brought under the thumb of the unbridled tyranny of the Cursed Ones.

Whew, sorry, whenever I think of my sweet lovely Morrigans turning the skies red with their unholy war chants, weaving the entrails of the fallen into grotesque victory quilts, and plucking out the eyeballs of the mercilessly slain..... I just feel so..... energized, so aroused. :shock: :happy: :re:

Agema February 19th, 2009 07:09 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by DonCorazon (Post 675271)
1. At Conj 6 and D3, Spectres can take a while to get - I usually don't go so far down the Conj path til I have a number of other paths researched. Usually find the need for combat spells 1st (I like to exercise my mages), site searching, then Const for boosters to be able to make use of Conj. So by the time you get them it can be pretty late to be trying to fire up a decent S economy.

...

Send out priests early searching for holy sites. If you've got a good mage priest even better, as they can search for their magic paths too. Holy sites are rare (under 1 in 10 provinces) but in my experience almost always give you at least one astral pearl income. They can hugely reduce the costs you might otherwise incur from having to alchemise other gems.

Gokufan1988 February 19th, 2009 09:46 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Agema (Post 675400)
Send out priests early searching for holy sites. If you've got a good mage priest even better, as they can search for their magic paths too. Holy sites are rare (under 1 in 10 provinces) but in my experience almost always give you at least one astral pearl income. They can hugely reduce the costs you might otherwise incur from having to alchemise other gems.

This works out well for Fomoria because their only non-priest mage is the Nemedian Sorceress who you'll probably never buy since she is cap only and competing with Fomorian Kings and Nemedian Champions.

chrispedersen February 19th, 2009 11:51 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
[quote=JimMorrison;675376]
Quote:

Originally Posted by Renojustin (Post 675316)
Hi Jim! Nice guide.
As vfb was kind enough to point out, I did specifically state in the description of the Firbolg Slingers, that this was just about their only purpose in the world. I also wouldn't hesitate to say that more often than not, finding yourself neighboring Mictlan, both of you are going to breathe a sigh of relief if you manage to coexist. Obviously it becomes a Cold War, but still, I am quite confident, that it's one that Fomoria can win. Still, finding yourself thrown into early conflict with Mictlan, my best suggestion would be Firbolg Warriors in front with accurate Javelins, Firbolg Slingers behind them (they are cheap, you will vastly outproduce him), and Unmarked as flankers. It's a battle best avoided though, neither side is likely to achieve victory without bleeding like a stuck pig.

Mictlan slingers are 7/2 in CBM and not much more in vanilla.
Either way, you are *not* going to out *vastly* outproduce him, even with his negative scales.

The whole idea, as you correctly note, is who is going to force whom off their game plan. Mictlan is going to continue to build 7 jag warriors a turn plus chaff, and race towards flame arrows.
Who is forcing whom off plan? I do believe formoria can win - I don't think its quite as cut and dried as you think. Shall we game a few tests?

People scoff at air blesses. But if I was in a game something like:

Sauromatia, Mictlan, Formoria, Man, Ulm, C,Tis. You'd bet your *** that rather than a F9W9Sx bless you'd be seeing a F9W9Ax.

Wrana February 19th, 2009 04:53 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Right now, Air bless doesn't help against Sauromatia. :( But it will probably help against Mictlan.
Also, there are 2 more nations with strong enough Death in EA: the little ones called Helheim and Yomi. ;)

chrispedersen February 19th, 2009 05:38 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wrana (Post 675476)
Right now, Air bless doesn't help against Sauromatia. :( But it will probably help against Mictlan.
Also, there are 2 more nations with strong enough Death in EA: the little ones called Helheim and Yomi. ;)

Well, I've had good results empirically but I've never actually watched, so you might be right - I'll have to watch.

But currently I believe, If it doesn't hit in the square, its not hit by the secondary effect. So this is more effective for small units (which is what mictlan fields) rather than huge honking armies.

JimMorrison February 19th, 2009 10:37 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chrispedersen (Post 675436)
Mictlan slingers are 7/2 in CBM and not much more in vanilla.
Either way, you are *not* going to out *vastly* outproduce him, even with his negative scales.

Well that's kind of silly. :p I meant that your missile troops will far outnumber his Jaguars. The difference being that his Blessed troops are hideously vulnerable (unless high Air Blessed, which erodes the danger they present to Unmarked) to missiles, whilst Unmarked are hardly phased by missile fire - least of all from Slings.

If you can convince your opponent to array Slingers against Unmarked, you've probably already won. ;)

However, I still maintain that if you are attacked that early by Mictlan, that they are either inexperienced, or insane - in which case, using Fomoria as described (especially if you practiced in SP, first!), you should win. :happy: If they're crazy AND highly experienced, then at the least, there's no reason, with the tools provided, that you should end up just rolling over, and if he wins, he'll be left thinking "was that really worth it?" - hence the experience factor.

Just as an example there, I went for a second win with Fomoria, and just as initial expansion was ending, Hinnom attacked me. Hinnom. He won (I was bringing it to a devastatingly costly stalemate when TC's Cyclops came knocking at the back door), but it ruined his game. His reasoning was sound, that he'd better deal with me sooner than later, but ultimately he just did a favor for all of my other neighbors, to his own detriment.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Wrana
Also, there are 2 more nations with strong enough Death in EA: the little ones called Helheim and Yomi.

You got me there. ;) And Helheim is quite popular, as well. :p Yomi, not so much either popular, or successful to late game, sadly. Death can be hard to compete in, yes, but working hard to come out on top of that, can mean the difference between being a contender, and being the front-runner.

Executor May 11th, 2009 02:58 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fomorians

It's pretty interesting how the developers come up with nations like this, I'd never guess Fomorians were from Irish mythology.

Baalz February 9th, 2010 03:07 AM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
A couple extra things I've dug up on this nation playing around with it.

Conj 6 is such a huge game changer that it can be well worth making it a very early target even at the expense of some of the other stuff that is nice to have. You've got plenty of muscle to carry you through the early game with no magic support. Get some N1 druids out site searching to drum up a small N income, it doesn't have to be much.

Conj 2 - dark knowledge. Work it like you mean it and hope you've lined up a solid D income by the time you hit conj-6.

Conj 4 - Summon Niad. If you've managed to squeeze in a sleeping lady of rivers (who generates W gems) you can probably pump one out the turn its researched. Send the niad out site searching (just be careful to bring her back to her home province every so often) and you'll fairly rapidly build up a decent N/W income. Your W income is pretty much going to all go into more niads because you've got a bunch of regenerating giants and undead love to play in foul vapors, relief takes a lot of the sting from not having an E bless, and later on quickening just folds extremely nicely on the who tear your face off strategy.

Conj - 5. Air elementals. Can be a tremendous surprise and have won an important battle or two for me.

Conj - 6. Morrigans, yeah, of course. They're the primary justification, but you already knew that. You also get:

Summon valkyrie which is damn nice with your bless, it's like swarm on unbelievable steroids, if you can bless them they've got 20D, along with regen and modest protection, and of course fly so for big fights they tie up the enemy extremely well while you presumably pound the crap out of them with lightning. They make a great way to stretch your Morrigans out for raiding squads as just a couple Morrigans will generate that nice fear aura so even if you don't kill the PD fast enough they'll probably route being unable to hit anybody.

Summon specter. This has already been mentioned, but there's another angle which wasn't - Specters get you S/E, which is something you have to otherwise get very luck to land. S/E gives you crystal/slave matrixes which Jim lays out some suggestions for, but even better it gives you crystal shields. Crystal shields get you a couple nice things, but maybe the biggest is an easy way to get H3 guys to reasonably bless all the stuff you've got zooming around. It also turns A/D druids into valkyrie casters, so no need to have your kings doing that.

Enchanted forest. Hey, your pretender can cast that! Now, this isn't the strongest global around, but if you've pushed up to conj-6 early it can be a substantial boost, particularly in an area Fomoria can struggle with - sieging castles. Oh, vinemen like foul vapors. Just sayin... Your niads probably haven't had time to contribute much to your N gems, but this global only costs 35 so it's pretty likely a N1 druid or two site searching can build that up over 20 turns pretty easily. If you took a growth scale (instead of order), it may even be worthwhile recasting it later with more gems as your N income kicks in, its nice to have upkeep free chaff. And of course, you're headed to fog warriors...

Llamia queen. A 50D empowerment of your pretender (plus a staff) puts this into your pretender's reach. 50D is expensive, no doubt, but at that point you're using N gems which you don't have too much else competing for (hopefully those niads have lined you up a supply). Llamia queens get you - among other things, into blood. Not heavily into blood, to be sure, but enough that you should be able to mint a steady supply of flesheater axes and warrior rings to help outfit those unmarked champions you're pumping out (which seem likely to be constantly short of forged gear). Pulling into late game you should be able to pile up slaves for awhile and empower your way up to robes of the magi - which may be well worth it since you're gonna have a tough time making your way into rings of wizardry. Tarts are pretty hard with no rings. You could also get into vamps, which seem like they'd fit your whole flying, stealthy, undead thing. Finally they give you more foul vapors casters, along with more heavy D mages to take some of the load off the kings.

Streams from hades. Well, as long as you're empowering your pretender, these chicks also open up. I don't have anything particularly sneaky in mind, but strong D mages are always welcome.

Foodstamp February 11th, 2010 07:21 PM

Re: Fomoria - Where is your God now? (AKA - The Other Giant Meat)
 
I've really been enjoying this guide. I have been using it in single player and I am at a phase now where I can summon Morrigans in combat. I don't like the Lady of the springs with water/nature. The next time I try it I am going to shoot for high water/earth with bad scales. I've made a bit more use out of the Nemedians than this guide suggests using the Kings a bit more sparingly.


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