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  #11  
Old January 12th, 2009, 10:35 AM
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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

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Originally Posted by Natpy View Post
Nice guide, AoE. But, what you think to do with early ice and lightning immune sc?
That's a good point. Aside from gaining access to Call Spenta, the astral on your god, combined with a little earth magic and clam income, can go a long way to solve this problem. Lucky for Caelum, they have astral randoms on their make-anywhere high seraphs. You can improve their astral with Starstine Skullcaps, Crystal Coins, Crystal Shields, and Banners of the Norther Star. You can probably gather up more astral magic from lizard shamans. Paralyze, Soul Slay, and Enslave Mind work great for those instances where MR has been neglected. Horror Mark and Stellar Cascades for tougher targets.

A death random is all you need to cast Dust to Dust for those troublesome undead SCs. Mix in the high presicion from aim, a race bonus, and air magic and every casting is a guarenteed hit.

Water magic also isn't all cold damage. Ice strike is a great spell when you get around to it. Not so great against an SC though since they will likely have more then enough protection.
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  #12  
Old January 12th, 2009, 02:48 PM
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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

Beautiful guide, lots of useful and even thematic tips! I enjoyed it a lot (and usually don't play cold nations, hey, I'm Italian ). I'm still more an EA guy, I'll see the difference of the mages and see how much of this is viable for early Caelum

You are very proficient lately AoE. Is this a race against Baalz for who takes more nations in one month?
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  #13  
Old January 12th, 2009, 03:23 PM
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AreaOfEffect AreaOfEffect is offline
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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

First, thanks.

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Originally Posted by Tifone View Post
You are very proficient lately AoE. Is this a race against Baalz for who takes more nations in one month?
Not in the slightest. As I said, this guide has been in the making for some time. I'll work with a nation until I get inspired. Its easier to make a guide when the ideas are clicking in your mind. It may also have to do with the season.
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  #14  
Old January 12th, 2009, 04:12 PM

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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

Hmm, a bunch of interesting strategies here, but I think a lot of them somewhat miss the point. Caelum can do the raiding thing pretty well without burning gems into it, so I'm not sure that spamming bottles and frost brands is the best use of gems. The frost-brand-wielding storm general could just as easily be a high seraph spamming thunderstrike for the amount of damage it'll do, and has a much lower chance of getting killed or taking attrition damage to his guards. It's more gold, but less gems, which is usually a deal I'm alright taking.

As Natpy points out CR/SR thugs and SCs are a nightmare for Caelum to deal with, and I'm not convinced about the astral strat. Piling boosters on base S1 mages that also cost 270g a pop is a horrible idea against any nation that can get astral mages, and I'm including stuff you would normally never put into combat like sages and lizard shammies. The pretender chassis you have laid out can at least cloud trapeze and lay some smackdown if need be though once it gets geared.

The False Horror spam idea is also probably pretty good for anything without perfect morale.

Back to the idea of using TS-casting seraphs over storm general thugs: One of the huge perks of MA caelum is that they have excellent battle mages that are non-cap-only and non-sacred. Yes, I just used non-sacred as a positive thing. The reason that this is a "good" thing is that they have normal upkeep costs, and thus 15 turns after one dies you've saved enough money to buy a new one. Now 15 turns isn't exactly short, and you shouldn't go around throwing them away on ill-considered attacks, but it does mean that if a raiding force dies it's hardly the end of the world. Especially if the one raiding force that died was only 1 of 4 raiding forces...if the other 3 of them got 100g worth of provinces between them you'll have your money back in no time, and since your general upkeep costs should pretty rapidly mean you have extra commander slots at your forts it's pretty easy to "recycle" your mages. Gems, on the other hand, once gone, are gone forever.

I would also head straight up Evo til I hit thunderstrike, pretty much without exception. Lightning bolt just doesn't measure up, especially since the absurd encumbrance on high seraphs means that the fatigue costs even out startlingly well...3 lightning bolts from an A3 is 21 encumbrance + 15 spell fatigue, for a total of 36, vs a thunder strike costing 57, which means you get front-loaded damage with AoE. An A4 caster has 32 fatigue TS casts vs 3 lightning bolts at 30. The numbers for TS get even better with magic scales.
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  #15  
Old January 12th, 2009, 05:24 PM

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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

I think one thing worth mentioning is that high seraphs who get the astral magic random are really good buffers. They can cast quickness, luck, body ethereal, flying. A storm general with a frost brand and a seraph to buff him up can be nasty. Bringing along a high seraph with your raiding forces also protects them from mind hunt.
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  #16  
Old January 12th, 2009, 05:51 PM
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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

I've seen people suggest decking out a single mage from head to toe with no comment. Yet 2 gems a piece on five guys costing 35 gold each, that's crazy. I like the storm general squads for two essential reasons. First, their is a much smaller chance of epic failure. A failed raid from a high seraph generally means the seraph is dead. You will likely never lose all of your generals in a single fight. Gold is just as much a limited resource as gems. At least water gems are amoung the more accessable kind for Caelum. The second reason is that generals round out your forces much better.

Thunderstrike always wants to deal the most damage and for that reason you can't direct it at any particular thing. In fact, because the spell can strike anywhere on the field, your opponent has more control over your spell then you do. However, you can direct generals to attack specific unit types, or direct them to attack the rear. I'm not saying that one is actually better, I'm just saying that having only one of these tools is less effective then having both. Also, I suggest you just try out the squads. Five generals plus guards have a lot more sustainability against indies and PD then you might think.

I will agree that cold and shock resist units are harder for Caelum to deal with. I don't seriously suggest you place all that gear on just one unit with a random. I was just cataloging what you have at your disposal. I personally find that lizard shamans and Light of the Norther Star is the more efficient way to cast most of those astral spells. You start with a rather good scout, so you should be able to identify a lizard province and gun for it early with mammoths. If your dying for a broader solution, then you've been told what the bare minimum for the strategy is. There are plenty of points available for devising that solution.
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  #17  
Old January 12th, 2009, 06:17 PM

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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

I just gave it a test run, and I can safely say that I remain unimpressed with Caelum's melee prowess.
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  #18  
Old January 12th, 2009, 06:37 PM

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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

Quote:
Originally Posted by Micah View Post
Back to the idea of using TS-casting seraphs over storm general thugs: One of the huge perks of MA caelum is that they have excellent battle mages that are non-cap-only and non-sacred. Yes, I just used non-sacred as a positive thing. The reason that this is a "good" thing is that they have normal upkeep costs, and thus 15 turns after one dies you've saved enough money to buy a new one.
Word to the wise: this is faulty logic. The idea appears to be, "because their upkeep is higher, their death is less worrisome." However, that is purely psychological; there is no actual advantage. The "extra savings" are the difference between sacred and profane* upkeep- which you would never pay in the first place if they'd been sacred.

Sacreds are certainly more cost-effective in the long run, which makes profanes seem like they should be more cost-effective in the short run. But you cannot create a situation where you have more money because you made profanes- their actual cost is always greater (or equal).


*: A strong-sounding word, but it's much less clunky than "nonsacred", and technically correct!
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  #19  
Old January 12th, 2009, 06:49 PM

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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

Ewierl,

There is an advantage, in the sense that you pay higher up-front cost for sacred units. If they're going to die anyway, why pay the front-loaded sacred cost?

I don't know precisely what the formula is (something like +50% IIRC), and KO probably breaks it on occasion, but examine the units and you'll see a pattern. Micah's point could have been stated merely by observing that Caelian seraphs are relatively cheap for their stats/paths (which also factor into unit cost).

-Max
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  #20  
Old January 12th, 2009, 07:17 PM

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Default Re: MA Caelum - Fear of Flying

It's not faulty logic at all. Having higher proportional upkeep does, in fact, mean that them dying is less worrisome.

To take the extreme cases, if a unit's upkeep were equal to its purchase cost I think it's pretty obvious that if you have free resources (fort-commander slots, in this case) to re-recruit a unit it really doesn't matter much if they die. Likewise, a 0-upkeep unit is not replaceable once dead over any length of time. Obviously 15 turns is not instant, but it's a lot closer than 30.

Because MA Caelum doesn't have any sacreds they are likely to have those fort slots available before too long, since they get hit with much higher upkeep than nations with sacred researchers, so their forts are likely to become idle before too long.

That being said I suppose you could try for the low-end mages for research instead, since they're much more efficient than the high seraphs, but I don't much like that idea for Caelum. They have mobility, mammoths, and blstering evocation ability out of the gate, and I think that should be leveraged early, not traded in for a bean-counting strategy of minimized upkeep by using spire horns for research. Those can be added in later on once the upkeep starts stinging and you've got a solid corps of battle mages.
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