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Old July 10th, 2008, 10:16 AM
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Default HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Well, those of you familiar with my other guides know I tend to fall a bit in love with a nation as I write a guide for it. That said, I’m just astounded at the strength that Hinnom can bring to bear. They are absolutely first class early, middle, and late game and have so many really good options that the biggest problem is remembering not to try and spread yourself too thin across strategies. With no chink in their armor that a pretender must fill, I’d suggest going with an imprisoned blood fountain with just enough blood to summon the Lords of Civilization and max out all your scales. Order for income, production for awesome troops, luck for awesome (and plentiful) national heroes, heat because it’s free, magic because you can, and growth because HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING and your population will be dropping wherever your big giants are. You’ll want a decently high dominion score to help spread that glorious dominion, and don’t forget you can blood sacrifice to push it even faster.

Expansion. I can’t think of another nation with expansion potential this good. The troops you *start* with are capable of taking out the vast majority of indies, from heavy cavalry to barbarians. With good scales, by the time you’ve captured a couple provinces around your capital you’re able to field 2 (!) expansion parties a turn from your capital. The chariots in groups of 4 will take out pretty much any non-barbarian human infantry, supplement this with groups of a dozen Dawn Guard to take out almost anything else. Under ideal province neighboring conditions you should be able to land 30+ provinces by the end of year one without even burning through an obscene amount of gold as each expansion party is relatively cheap.

Castles. Most terrain yields a terrible 1400 gold Tel City, but forests give you an 800 gold forest fortress. With your insane expansion you shouldn’t have a problem capturing several forests – this is pretty much the only place you want to build castes. Fortunately with your nitro-charged expansion and frugal spending you should be able to start putting up an 800 gold castle per turn roughly turns 6-12. You should have about 5 castles by the end of year one.

If you’re feeling frisky, feel free to roll over an opponent or two at this point. Between your chariot (size 6, high protection tramplers) and dawn guard (high hp, 16 defense, high strength, magic weapon wielding), 5 castles with production-3 scales should leave you able to steamroll most opponents. If you’re fighting somebody using a fire bless, look at using Rephaite Warrior as their fire resistance pretty much negates the flaming weapons. If you’re opponent refuses to acknowledge his death at the hands of your troops, your Ammi with a tiny bit of research and a few gems can lay down everything from fireballs and thunder strikes to paralyze and destruction. Just research whatever you need to put the hurt down on your opponent. Don’t feel remorse as you scrape your neighbor off the bottom of your boots, just remember HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING.

Research. All those castles going up have a tremendous advantage. Due to the fact that they lack any hard-coded magic paths, you can recruit Ammi without needing either a lab or a temple! That’s right, while other nations are spending anywhere from 1200-2000 gold for the cheapest mage factory they have available, yours cost 800. This is on top of your ridiculous gold income from your ridiculous expansion and ridiculous scales. Recruit them out of your new castles and move them back to your capital (or any lab).

Gems. With national mages and no boosters Hinnom can remote site search Every. Single. Path….except water. They also have pretty good manual site searchers in the Horite Shaman to prime the pump. Use shamans to lead your first few initial expansion parties, then as soon as you can, replace them with indie commanders and have them site search. This will give you earth, death and nature gems along with your capitol’s earth, fire, astral and blood income to start some heavy site searching. You can also do a little bit of manual site searching with the Ammis who get air randoms until you’ve got a few gems for auspex.

So, before hitting mid game you will likely have more provinces, income, gems, and research than any other nation. Potentially a lot more. Hit the construction research and start recruiting a Ba’al every turn from your capital and Kohen/Ammi from the castles you’re now putting labs and temples in (hey, spread that glorious dominion around!). Note, HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING, so you’ll want to designate a sacrificial province to keep your main mages at. As they start piling up the population will all be eaten, it’s a good idea to do this outside of your capital. It’s also a good idea to do this in a castle so that your enemies cannot force a fight on their own terms.

Once you hit construction-4 is when the real fun starts. All your Kohen will crank out sanguine rods and start blood hunting. Remember, keep just three per province because HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING. Your growth scales will help, but if possible you’re gonna want to target slightly higher population provinces for blood hunting than otherwise. Check out my guide to blood hunting as a section of my Mictlan guide, but remember to adjust your spending as you suddenly start massive blood hunting, you’re gonna go from having more gold than you know what to do with to a very frugal budget (and having more blood slaves than you know what to do with)

Do a bit of real quick alteration and enchantment research, and swing up for thau-3 and now those Ba’al are supertroopers indeed. You almost can’t go wrong with equipment, the extra gore attack means you don’t even really need the standard AOE weapons – a sword of sharpness and horned helm (second gore attack!) will often clear a whole tile as well as any frost brand. You’ll want some reinvig, and regen always helps, but in a pinch these guys can be sent out with just a few very cheap items. Earth Ba’als summon earth power, iron will, iron skin (invulnerability) and smash away. Fire Ba’als (the weakest) fire shield and eventually phoenix pyre (you’ve got national healers to fix the inevitable owies). Astral Ba’als can teleport with no boosters and drop luck & body ethereal. Any of these will easily solo anything short of a real army. Put some good equipment on them and they’re top shelf SCs. Heck, in a pinch, con-2 and thau-3 are enough to give you a teleporting thug who can take out plenty of PD! Just equip an astral Ba’al with an amulet of breathing to jump right in and start swiping some water provinces in that lake across the map that doesn’t have a water nation in it before anybody else can get there! Control a huge chunk of land *and* grab a big chunk of water because HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING.

Far from being one trick ponies though, Ba’als are also extremely powerful at home in a lab. Earth Ba’als will leverage your solid earth income and crank out first dwarven hammers, then blood stones. That’s right, as if Hinnom wasn’t already over the top they have probably the best synergy for gem producing items of any nation. Blood slaves are cheap and they’ve already have a strong earth income…doesn’t take much to see where that’s going. Additionally, take those blood stones you’re minting and stick them on Kohen who get an earth random. Now do a very cheap blood empowering (30 slaves) and set him to month casting of summon demon knight. Demon knights are very effective in groups of about 10 (particularly buffed with bloodlust, legions of steel, and weapons of sharpness), so once you get 4-5 of these summoners set up you’ll have a significant supply, and the earth gems will start rolling in.

On the topic of low level demon summons Hinnom also has a very effective national summon in the Shedim. What makes it so effective is the fact that unlike other low level blood summons, you summon 3 per casting so you don’t need too many dedicated casters. A single mage can mass 30 of these lightning throwing uber-archers in under a year, which is enough to absolutely decimate most armies, particularly buffed with wind guide and arrow fend (your opponent will likely be trying to “fire archers” with their own archers). It’s good you don’t need too many mages because getting them can be difficult, but a couple of your national heroes can cast the spell and there are worse investments with your auspex fueled gem income than a single empowering (with a little bit of work you can leverage this into robes of the magi as well). Unless you need flying commanders you can skip the Arch Devils….they’re inferior to the Ba’al you’re recruiting every turn. Instead, extra blood slaves can also be poured into ritual of the five gates, which is in easy reach for your Ba’al. But the real joy of all those blood slaves is....

Oh the Horror. Hinnom has some really nasty horror spam potential. Everyone knows (I guess) that horrors are scary, but I’m continually surprised at how many people scoff when I claim that lesser horrors are even better in most situations for the cost. Every astral Ba’al can send a lesser horror with no boosters, and they only cost 9 slaves (you’ll have plenty). A single lesser horror will, with good regularity (something like 70-90% of the time) take out medium to heavy PD – so long as you target the right PD. Any PD composed of troops dealing 13 or less damage (by and large humans wielding spears, which are hugely represented among PD) will have trouble stopping the lesser horrors. Ethereal + high defense + 15 protection + a life draining attack means they’re usually healing faster than spear infantry can damage them, and the fear aura (against PD’s generally bleh moral) means they don’t have to kill all that many. Use scouts to conquer the freshly cleared province, and I’ll let you in on a little secret. If you have a scout hidden in an enemy province, and you give him orders to attack a different enemy province, then horrors take out the PD in both…magic phase -> you’re the only one left in province A so you gain control, movement phase -> you walk into empty province B and claim it. Note: horrors stack extremely well, so if you need to take out something stronger, just send more lesser horrors.

But wait, there’s more! Lesser horrors are also very, very effective at taking out SCs. Go ahead and scoff, I’m used to it….until I start brining down kitted out angels and tartarians. How this works is like this – use horrors (or anything really) to take all the provinces surrounding the SC in the magic phase, this is usually very easy when the SC is on offense. Now, send 6+ lesser horrors in at the SC. The horrors have an AN attack so who cares about the SCs protection? They’re size 3 with 2 attacks, and are apparently scripted to attack large enemy monsters, so if you sent 16 of them the SC would be surrounded and attacked 32 times before he can buff – good luck with defense. Here’s the dirty little secret though – you don’t need to send 16 lesser horrors, 6 will do regardless of how tough the SC is because of the fear aura. Surrounded by 6 lesser horrors the SC will end up with a negative 10 moral or so and flee, with no place to flee to. Anything not berserking, mindless, or immortal won’t have a chance (and those that are will at most require a few more lesser horrors).

Ah, but the joy of horrors isn’t over yet. Every astral Ba’al can also cast call (greater) horror, blood rain, and teleport, and is tough enough to live through some archer fire. So, your opponent’s large army is marching into a heat 3 strong dominion (starvation, enemy dominion), you can pretty easily cut off escape routes (lesser horrors, teleporting SCs), and you can at will teleport in, reduce their moral by another 4, summon a couple very high fear aura guys (cast a couple horror marks first to make sure that *they* get attacked!), then either cast returning, or if the enemy army is particularly high moral maybe cast a couple bloodlettings before you go. If they retreat, they all die. If you’re particularly evil (like me) you’ll consider casting dark skies to make it practically impossible to invade you with non-mindless troops. SCs get eaten alive by lesser horrors and armies flee every time you fart. Blood sacrifice out of your copious temples and with your strong dominion your opponents will be worried about a dominion loss on top of everything else.

But wait, there’s more! Ba’als are uniquely suited to cast a spell that otherwise is very hard to use effectively – hell power. With enough hps to survive a couple AN hits from a horror, and readily available horror killing body guards (dawn guards – good attack skill, high damage, magic weapons), and enough blood magic to cast it without passing out, they can cast it with a fair amount of imperviousness. Hellpower + phoenix power + 2 boosters = 8F. Or 8E, or 8S. If you want to show off, toss in a crystal shield, robe of the magi, and ring of wizardry and scoff at your opponent pretender’s puny magic paths. Without being showy though, you’re talking aout 6f/e/s with no boosters. I’ll leave the effective use of this as an exercise to the student.

Honestly, I don’t even know how you can get to your best stuff without having already EATEN EVERYTHING, but if you’re just goofing around I guess you can get up to the Lords of Civilization. I think these guys are pretty self explanatory and have gotten enough attention already so I won’t expound on the obvious advantage these guys bring. On top of that, you’ll also now be casting infernal crusade and infernal forces, have the mages to single handedly cast master enslave, army of lead, and firestorm, have a very good gem income (in everything other than possibly water) and are running out of commanders to stick blood stones on. Oh, and you’ve got national healers if anybody gets an owie.
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  #2  
Old July 10th, 2008, 10:37 AM
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Tifone Tifone is offline
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Thanks for another guide, Baalz! Your "But wait, there's more!" always sounds like music in my hears ^_^

Wow this nation seems to get a lot of inbuild magic diversity... even with the obvious difficulty that HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING I think you mentioned a bit somewhere ( ), it could be a good place to start for new players like me, who really like to try every inspiring spell around. ^_^

This time you focused a lot on the Horrors I see, even in my actual SP game playing EA Mictlan I appreciate their potential.
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Old July 10th, 2008, 10:50 AM

calmon calmon is offline
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Fine guide Baalz. While i find all new giant races very good i agree with you hinnom is especially good!

One of the main power of fomoria, hinnom, ashdod and gath is the possibility to cloud trapez/teleport the strong and blessable SCs. Combined with a good combination of magicpathes from your mages. You are able to play a moderate/good bless strategy and have enough points for good/VG scales. Non-Awake pretender and Fire Scale helps much.
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Old July 10th, 2008, 11:06 AM

chrispedersen chrispedersen is offline
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Actually, this guide isn't up to Baalz usual incredible standards. Probably because of an embarrassment of riches.

There's a few other tricks that Hinnom is uniquely capable of pulling off; makes the casting of some other (underused) spells useful.
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Old July 10th, 2008, 11:24 AM

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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

I sense a disturbance: a mixture of disgust, sarcasm and more than a few tongue in cheek comments.

well written in communicating some concerns.
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Old July 10th, 2008, 11:48 AM
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

And let's not forget that each point of PD gets you 1 Avvite Light Infantry & 1/2 Avvite Swordsman...you know, same as those starting troops that are "capable of taking out the vast majority of indies, from heavy cavalry to barbarians." PD=2 gets you $160 worth of defenders.

I'd like to formally reprimand Baalz for making this vastly overpowered nation truly unstoppable with yet another of his fantastic guides.

I'd also like to formally recommend giving all Hinnom commanders a Shattered Soul, for the sake of balance.
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Old July 10th, 2008, 11:52 AM
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Actually, I've just seen the thread about the Lords of Civilization.





I mean:





Well, this nation seems to have everything, strong units, strong PD, strong mages with almost all paths avaible, and 6(!) uniques all-immune full-slots fortune-bringing super-stealth-seducers 5-flying-mapmovement late game SC summons nobody else can even Wish for (and they have inbuilt 17 MR, Fear between +5 and +10, up to 14 points in various magic paths, and one is a very strong healer...).

Mmh.

Even being the n00best here around, I would dare saying, obviously with absolute respect for the overall work of the devs... *maybe* this is a little unbalanced? I think Baalz should have better done a guide about HOW TO SURVIVE IF YOU MEET HINNOM. (and probably the other new nations as well)
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Old July 10th, 2008, 12:04 PM
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Baalz Baalz is offline
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Quote:
cleveland said:
And let's not forget that each point of PD gets you 1 Avvite Light Infantry & 1/2 Avvite Swordsman...you know, same as those starting troops that are "capable of taking out the vast majority of indies, from heavy cavalry to barbarians." PD=2 gets you $160 worth of defenders.

I'd like to formally reprimand Baalz for making this vastly overpowered nation truly unstoppable with yet another of his fantastic guides.

I'd also like to formally recommend giving all Hinnom commanders a Shattered Soul, for the sake of balance.
Doh! I totally meant to have a section on their PD. Using nothing but PD and your obscene income you can stop anything but the toughest raiders. The awesomeness of your PD is such that you hardly even need troops for defense, just moving some of your mages and SC to supplement your PD will be all you need for many situations.

Ps. I didn't want to go on at too much length about all the things they can do. I mean they're giants with practically every path available...what can't they do?
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Old July 10th, 2008, 12:17 PM
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Love.

Jazzepi
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Old July 10th, 2008, 02:11 PM
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Default Re: HINNOM EATS EVERYTHING

Edit: I apparently got things severely mixed up inside my brain. Disregard everything I now erase.

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