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Features → Walkthroughs  → Tribes of the East → Will of Asha → Heart of Darkness

by maltz

Will of Asha
M5: Heart of Darkness

  • Map Size: Large
  • Level Cap: None
  • Difficulty Index: 3/5
  • Last Updated: October 31, 2007, Patch v3.0

    The final chapter of the new Necro campaign is as exciting as Markal's M5:Lord of Heresh. There will be huge neutral stacks, plenty of towns, a map full of AI heroes and a network of two way portals connecting the world. Your Necromancer's "raise as you go" ability is utilized to the extreme. The final boss can be as difficult as Godric... well maybe not that difficult, because the AI picked the skills for him - no Light Magic!

    None of the bonuses are significant, and I took 25 Mercury. Even though resources are abundant in the mission, later on you are likely to use up mercury on the tier-7 dragons.

    You start in the SE corner, in front of town (A) and right in the middle of your swampy rotten paradise. There is a Stable (S) right below that should be visited at the beginning of a week. There are not a lot of mines to be flagged in your area, but plenty of resource-holding structures (such as Elemental Stockpiles and Treant Thickets), so you can easily accumulate dozens of everything within the first 2 weeks. (In fact, you will be still short of Ore soon.) Loot as many treasures as possible early on will give you a very healthy town growth.

    You are up against two AI players. The Blue AI owns 4 towns (B-E) at the moment, and as you can expect they will outgrow you if you don't start taking their towns fast. The Red AI owns the town to the far northeast (F), and there are scripted Red hero spawns to give you headaches.

    You have almost no army, so you have to rely on your Avatar of Death and Phoenix. Spread out the 1-unit skeleton stacks to buy you time. The Mummy can help reviving them, too. Use your Dark Energy points to raise durable creatures (tier-6 or tier-3) for Arantir and Vampires for Ornella.

    Just collect everything (including the resource buildings) as soon as possible with both Arantir and Ornella. I recommend sending Arantir to the east and Ornella to the west. Just east of the Sawmill Ornella can pick up a medium stack of Poltergeists (tier-3). Ignore the couple of two-way portals ((a), (f)). You can't use them yet and there is no enemy coming this way.

    Around the first week in my game, a familiar Renegade (Blue) hero visits from the north east - Andreas. He is nothing to be afraid of. A couple of Curse of Netherworld will scare him back.

    Just south of town (A) stands a stack of Champions. These Champions are not enemies, though. When you visit them, Arantir is automatically teleported to this spot (and he is not going to get teleported back), to receive a side quest about defeating an Inferno hero at (2). Looks like this hero just came out of the Volcano, or is about to jump.

    Defeat the Demon hero with Arantir (who is more powerful than Ornella), and make Ornella visit the Champions. You receive quite a large stack of Death Knights. This is an awesome boost to Ornella's army. By the way, there will be a very tiny weekly reinforcement arriving from this spot (1 Lich + 1 Mummy for me).

    After handling Andreas it is time to take the Blue towns. Each town is preceeded by an Outpost, which is essentially a low-level town wall harboring neutral creatures without a hero - very easy. The Blue towns are garrisoned by pretty-high-level Haven heroes, but they are nothing extraordinary, either. Just be aware of the new "Elemental Balance" skill possessed by some of the Haven heroes, though. When you summon a Phoenix, they get one at the same time! Fortunately the AIs don't really know how to use their free Phoenix.

    I suggest you take down the Blue towns in a Blitz since there aren't a lot of resistance anyways. You don't need any good army to start with as each week you can gather a lot more from Dark Energy, and your power comes from the Avatar and Phoenix, or plus the Vampires for Ornella. Since Arantir is more efficient, you can give him more work. This is what I did in my game. You should be able to take all blue towns before the end of Month 2.

    Arantir: Town (B)-(C)-(D)
    Ornella: Town (E)

    The river passage (3) from town (B) to (C) is not very obvious. Build a Stable in your new Haven town if it is not already there to boost movement at the beginning of a week. Hire a low level hero to pick resources up after your main heroes. You will be short of Ore (again!) so try to flag the Ore Pit NE of town (E) quickly.

    Other than the decorative Outposts, each Blue town comes with two features. First, there are two 2-way portals outside each town. I have marked the connections with matching lower-case letters (a-a, b-b, etc.). The great thing about these portals is that you can quickly access any other towns for defense or troop transfer. However, you cannot pass through a portal unless the neutral stacks (Elementals) are cleared from the other exit, and the AI heros will not do that for you although this is clearly to their advantage. Therefore, after taking each town, clear the blocking Elemental stacks. The second feature is a large Inferno symbol. You can't do anything about it yet.

    You can find a Purple Keymaster (purple (K)) just west of town (D). Visit it as it might be useful for you at the end of the mission. A Memory Mentor is hidden at (4) that you should eventually come with Arantir. I highly recommend giving up Master of Mind and aim for the ultimate Howl of Terror, because you are powerful enough not to cast Mass Slow, and the extra -6 morale will make a huge difference in the final battle. You can also trade away mana-friendly feats under Sorcery because your Knowledge point should be already very high (~20 or more) by now. I picked Luck as my 6th skill and was able to fully develop it by the end of the mission. You can use my Arantir's skill & feat selection (on the left) as a reference.

    New spells in the expansion are finally available in this mission. It is likely that you can pick some up from the mage guilds. Let's take a look at the two new Dark magics:

  • Vampirism - This is my favorite spell back in HoMM4. With it my chaos campaign heroin alone could solo 50+ dragons, and so can you here. You can actually cast it on the Vampires or Avatar to double the draining effect! Combined with Arcane Armor the stack just becomes invincible. Use this spell to replace Raise Dead.

  • Sorrow - The melee attack of Ghost Dragons (tier 7 alternative upgrade) and a high-level Avatar has the same effect. Your hero has better things to do.

    What you should worry is the Red heroes spawned from (5). The portal is operated by a stack of Succubus Mistress, which cannot be destroyed for now. The Red hereos are much more powerful than the Blue ones, and they might be able to cause major damage to your army if you cannot raise them back before the battle is over. These Demon Lords spawn roughly every week, and one after one they get stronger. Fortunately, in my game (3.0 heroic) they eventually stopped coming after the famous multi-player favorite Deleb. Oh you know what's coming with Deleb, right? (A nasty Ballista.)

    The Red heroes will either go after an undefended town, or actively engage Arantir and Ornella because they usually have a much bigger army. You can't use Curse of Netherworld, so you have to fight the battle square. They are fast and their attack is powerful. They gate in a lot of units. You want to conserve army as much as possible - so what do you do?

    My approach is to deploy as little but durable as possible. For Ornella, deploy only the Vampires (hopefully you have a good stack by now). Dock them in a corner and throw them an Arcane Armor. If you have learned Vampirism there is no better time to use it. This way, you don't have to take hits from multiple sides even if you are overpowered 10 to 1, and can still maintain head counts through retaliation. For Arantir dock with something very durable and deploy multiple ghosts to buy you more time, and kill everything with your Avatar.

    If you need a larger army to handle the Red heroes, as soon as a new week arrives, use the convenient portal network to deliver Haven creatures to town (A) and convert them to Necro units. Your income is so high that you can usually afford to hire all available Haven creatures (skip tier 2, I will explain why). Invest your resources and money into Vampire Lords first. They are the only units needed before the final battle. With 100+ of them you should be able to suck Deleb dry!

    When the Red heroes stop coming you are free to explore the map. Huge neutral stacks are everywhere, giving you juicy EXP points and great treasures. Do use a Phoenix (not the Avatar) against the Godzillas and their upgrades - or you can wave goodbye to the Avatar! (Their fire shields bites back.) There is a Dragon Utopia at (6). If you missed Vampirism, there is one more chance to pick it up here. While the artifact selection used to be awesome, now there are hardly anything useful.

    Make Arantir visit as many stat boosts as you can, and progress the quest with either him or Orenall to the garrison at (7). This garrison is blocked unless you follow the ghost's instructions. First he asks you to kill a group of Assassins who claimed his live. The Assassins's hideout (8) can be reached through the two-way portal (g).

    You should listen to this cutscene yourself! ...with Ornella alone visiting the Den.

    The Assassins beg for mercy, and offer an alternative. If you spare their lives, they will help you destroy the demon's portal at (5) to stop red heroes from coming. I heard that you still have to kill the Succubus Mistress stack yourself, though. In my game, I got here around middle Month 2 and there hasn't been any sighting of Red heroes for 2 weeks already. So I don't see the point of the Assassins' offer - just click Cancel and kill them.

    The only situation that you can use the Assassins' service is if you access this area (8) directly from your swampy HQ very early on, before touching any Blue town. You can rush to the Ghost (7) through portal (g), and come back here to use the Assassins to block Red hero spawns. No more Demon Lords, no more Deleb. You will make conquering the Blue territory somewhat easier if not all of the Red heroes have spawned already.

    But I won't recommend that as the Ghost's reward is way better if you do kill the Assassins. Now you can choose one of the three rewards, marked with different colors of one-way portals here at (8). Each portal takes you to an isolated area. You can only pick ONE portal to enter (the other two will be sealed forever). Whichever portal you choose, though, you gain unlimited access to it.

  • R1 (green): 3 Sylanna's Ancients, our beloved level up tree.
  • R2 (yellow): A lot of resources.
  • R3 (blue): Rescue a familiar Renegade Haven hero from a prison. You can convert her troops in town (A).
  • I suggest the Sylanna Ancients (green portal). Velaria is really weak compared to what she was back in Hammers of Fate C2M3, and her army is just about one extra week of growth from the 4 Haven towns - not good enough to make any difference (see the picture on the left). I don't see why you should give up three levels for her - since the majority of your army is actually the Avatar of Death! And needless to say all of the towns have been developed by now, so you have no use of the resources.

    You are almost done! Go broke on army recruitment and upgrade, pass everything to Arantir (including everything that Ornella has, artifacts too), and march each of your scout hereos AND Ornella (not Arantir, Ornella plus three others) right on top of the demon symbols outside the four Blue towns (B-E). The story progresses and... Asha uses all! (We saw that coming from mission one, didn't we?!) Even better, the game developers make a timely sunset to create a heroic atmosphere. Arantir marches alone to meet his Destiny!

    Let me briefly discuss my artifacts of choices for the final battle.

  • Death's Embrace Set: Too good to pass!
  • Urgash's Set: The ring (-2 morale) is very useful and the extra +5 Attack isn't bad at all.
  • Dragon Scale Armor & Dragon Bone Greaves: I picked up the armor in M3 and the greaves somewhere in this mission. They make Avatar and other melee units slightly faster. For equipping two you get one extra stats points in all 4 categories.
  • Shield of Crystal Ice: for fire protection. I picked it up just east of Town (E). This artifact was useful against Deleb, and the final boss also has a flaming Ballista.
  • I was trying to buy a Golden Horseshoe from the artifact merchant for the holding slot, but nothing good came up.

    Just before you go, convert a few hundreds of skeletons into Skeleton Warriors to fill the 7th stack slot. They have the wonderful ability to shield nearby troops from ranged attacks - you will need them badly for the first round of the battle!

    If you don't have a good Armor artifact (Dragon's Scale Armor is good enough), consider a little detour if it won't cost you an extra week. Go north after the bridge, and climb the mountain to unlock the Purple Gate (purple G). Pass through the last set of two-way portal (h) to reach another isolated area (9). A neutral stack offers to join (but it is unlikely you have the space for them), and here lies the best Armor artifact of the game - Armor of the Forgotten Hero (+2 for all attributes).

    It is finally time for the final battle at Town (F)! Don't miss out FOUR morale/luck bonuses on the way. Your opponent is again Orlando, who is very different from M3. He is no longer a defensive chicken! His Attack stat is very high now. And don't be fooled by the numbers of his stacks - take a look at the crazy Morale and +9 Luck! They can deal a ton of damage! AND WATCH OUT FOR THAT BALLISTA!

    First, deploy the most important stacks (Liches, Ghost Dragons, Vampires) around your Skeleton Warriors to receive the shield bonus. Believe or not, that Ballista made 4 lucky shots and killed my 30 Ghost Dragons before they could act when I didn't use the Skeleton Warriors to protect them! And after I adopted this strategy the Ballista shot at my Ghosts instead and missed 3 out of 4 shots!! Use your Liches to get rid off that FREAK BALLISTA in round one no matter what. This is probably the most important step to victory.

    Use Arantir's first action to scream Howl of Terror. With the help of other artifacts I was able to bring Orlando's creature morale down to -5. (The creatures come with +7 morale, then -2 from our Ring, -2 from our Cloak, and -8 from the Howl to make it -5.) According to the manual, the effect of morale and luck are still capped at +5 ~ -5, even if they can appear to be more than +5 or less than-5. So -5 morale is as good as -100 morale! The creatures' luck is also reduced from the cloak artifact and the Howl, down from +9 to +4, which is essentially 50% chance rainbow to 40%. If Orlando's creatures do move, you can expect a huge rainbow 40% of the time.

    Don't rush in. Orlando's melee units and their clones will come out fast. Summon your Avatar of Death, but don't fly the Avatar inside the wall - it can get killed by a lucky hit - even the Avatar does not have that much HP. Or at least do it after casting Arcane Armor on the nasty creature. Use your Liches' area attack to unsummon the Phantoms (aim on the real stack and the splash is a sure hit), so Arantir can cast these useful spells on the most useful stack (Avatar). It is a very fast-paced battle and the first stack who strikes usually wipes the other out! In my game the battle was over before Arantir's fourth action!

    The victory is finally yours! Have fun watching the explosion and you now realize why Orlando is soooo tough. He has the entire Lion's artifact set. This artifact set actually allows the hero to move up 10% of the ATB every time a high-morale eagle is triggered among his creatures. Now you know why every professional recommends Howl of Terror on TV!

    Congratulations for winning the campaign!

    Comments

    Maciek at 2013-07-24 10:56 wrote:
    It is possible to get to level 40 in this map without any fighting or sacrificing troops after level 30, like this:
    1. Get a secondary hero (can be Ornella) to level 30. There's a Sacrificial Altar near town (E) which may help you do that.
    2. Visit Memory Mentor to get a level from Dark Revelation. The hero is now level 31.
    3. Visit Memory Mentor again to get Mentoring instead.
    4. Visit the 3 Trees to get the hero to level 34.
    5. Meet another secondary hero to get him to level 31.
    6. Repeat steps 2-4 to get a level 35 mentor.
    7. Meet third secondary hero to get him to level 33, then repeat 2-4 to get a level 37 mentor.
    8. Meet fourth secondary hero to get him to level 35, then repeat 2-4 to get a level 39 mentor.
    9. Meet Arantir to get him to level 37, then visit the 3 Trees to get him to level 40.
    Now, Arantir could even get Mentoring and meet the first 3 secondary heroes to get them to level 38.

    You only need 8 Trees to get from level 1 to level 40 if you have access to a Memory Mentor and enough evil heroes (good heroes don't get Dark Revelation). If there are only 7 Trees, you will get stuck at level 16.

    Number of Trees | Max level
    ---------------------------
    8 | 40
    7 | 16
    6 | 13
    5 | 11
    4 | 9
    3 | 8
    2 | 4
    1 | 2
    0 | 1
    Danneskjold at 2011-12-17 10:57 wrote:
    ShadowLiberal, I had the same problem as you but I found the 'bug' (not sure if it's a bug or it works as planned, but if it's not a bug it makes no sense). I have two theories:

    1) On the way to the ghost do not kill the air elementals that guard the gateway leading to the assasins. After talking with him, kill them, go through the portal and let Arantir do what he does best. That's what what fixed my problem.

    2) You can probably kill the air elementals previously, but first thing you do after talking to the ghost go through the portal. Perhaps this works too.

    One thing I am sure of: wandering around to wait the weekly points refresh before killing the soon-to-be skeletons will block the quest. If you have a saved game you can try to replay the final part of the campaign.

    ShadowLiberal at 2011-12-02 23:50 wrote:
    For some reason I never got the quest to kill the assassins, yet I did talk to the ghost who asked me to kill the assassins. Whenever I walked over to the assassins I just got a message from them to stay away if I wanted to live. So I just sacrificed my necromancers and finished the mission without doing the sidequest.
    Kardszy at 2011-11-23 21:22 wrote:
    This campaign was awsome :)
    For the last battle I swiched Log for Light (yes Light, twilight gives nice bonus and you can learn divine vengeance), I had the skills up to howl of terror, sorcery:arc training/excellence/boneward, Light:abjuration/wrath/twilight,
    my power was over 50 :P so with all the skill bonuses word of light (you are immune thanks to ring) did nearly 900 dmg, and pupper master had --68% initiative, hmmm, guess it can increase the controlled creature's in. too. Think you have pretty high lvl and all skill by now so the +3 won't make that much of a difference... soo with the knight (you can't recruit any so only way to get training skill) you can train haven units to have a huge lich of banshee stack ;P

    Oh and Markal's skull is just noth after you pass the gate to Flammschrein
    Edited on Wed, Nov 23 2011, 16:47 by Kardszy
    mistyDream at 2011-09-07 06:33 wrote:
    M5:Lord of Heresh-my game freezes after I attack the last garison at point 7(magical barrier) I chose to kill the assasins. When I reach the barrier at 7 after this, I just c the screen of the ghost saying: bla bla..I will stick to my word etc. I can't move passed that dam gate to attack town F!!! If spent an hole day clearing the hole map!??!! I even placed my four heroes at each castles demon post, they get consumed. Yet I still can't pass the last gate!!!!! Dam I'm pissed off! Anyone know of a bug with in this regard or any advice?

    gimmyboy at 2011-08-09 07:27 wrote:
    Your fourth sacrificed hero should be Ornella. Just make sure you don't leave some precious artifacts or army with her before she's gone. I think, after you defeat all blue castles, she is dispensable.
    raadsheer at 2011-04-04 22:25 wrote:
    I have some problems too, I have only 3 necronamers, exept my own 2 hero's who must survive.
    I can't get a fourth, cause the tavern doesn't come with a hero anymore. What do I have to do now? I don't want to start this mission again.

    Thanks a lot! Gr. René
    xiilus at 2011-02-12 06:08 wrote:
    Ngabi, to finish the ghost's quest, kill the assassins, then walk back to him. The portal makes this quick. Importantly, do not do the ritual that kills the four necromancers until after you finish this quest.

    The first time I encountered Orlando, his gated stacks posed serious problems for me. I got through it, but took massive casualties. I've found that the best counter is actually Corrupted Soil. Phantom Nightmares and Cerberi die instantly as soon as they move. They were a key force driving Orlando's Lion's set bonus. If he phantoms Devils or Succubi, their relatively lower initiative usually gives you an opportunity to kill them before they attack.
    ngabi_1999 at 2011-02-01 17:03 wrote:
    Hi,
    I reached the end, I need only to attack Orlando and the quest of avenging the ghost. This last task trubbles me a lot, I don't know how to get through one of the passages, I killed assasins but nothing happens, not even the message of accomplishing the task..

    Silverblade at 2011-01-12 11:09 wrote:
    Like Dstr says, Puppet Master. If you have it and use it well you can defeat almost anyone with Arantir or Ornella. If your opponent is immune to mind control spells the Avatar of Death or Phoenix and Vampirism/Raise Dead are your friends!
    Dstr at 2010-06-25 15:40 wrote:
    you have to restart the campaign man... you heroes are not strong enough then ;) do you have frenzy and puppet master? use them, they are the best spells here.
    Edited on Fri, Jun 25 2010, 11:41 by Dstr
    vc at 2010-06-24 21:54 wrote:
    The garrisons that protect the blue town before you even get to the inferno/castle whatever its called, pretty much destorys my armies to bare minimum
    vc at 2010-06-24 21:42 wrote:
    I am screwed. I just can't win this one, the Heart of Darkness. I didn't get the Avatar of Death or anything like that at the start. I went to fight the battle against the blue teams and although I won the first two, it made my army very weak and by the time I got them built back up, the red and blue were far too hard to beat. I don't know what to do. Whatever armies I build, they are never enough. I re attempted the scenario 5 times and still can't win it :( Please help.
    Dstr at 2010-06-15 19:57 wrote:
    excellent walkthrough as allways :)
    i was playing on heroic, but i sent Arantir at the left and Ornella at the North. Arantir could get rid of any red hero without problem... I gave all troops to Ornella including the ones trained in towns and then using the dark energy with Arantir.
    In the final battle I killed ballista first and my ballista had to take care of summoned units ;) I always get expert war machines :)))
    with 24 ghost dragons, 36 death nights , 30 wraights, 200 vampires the battle was very easy ;) I ended the mission after 2 months and 2 weeks. with both Arantir and Ornella having taken all stats bonuses. if i knew Ornella would die ... I could have finished a lot faster :))) I lost time with her leveling up and taking bonuses.
    now Tsubaki:
    if you kill assassins you cannot destroy anymore the demon portal! you may take experience, resources and troops as Maltz stated.

    take a look at wheeler dealer post:

    Wheeler Dealer at 2009-09-02 16:46 wrote:
    When you think you are ready, send Ornella and the three other necromancers (not Arnatir) to the sacred sites near each of the haven cities. once they are in place have Arantir approach the ghost. It's explained in the game, press Q to display your quests and then click on the quest "Remove the magical barrier" and it will be explained in the text box to the right.

    Shimdra at 2010-06-10 19:54 wrote:
    I was quite surprised when I noticed the power of this army (less so the numbers than the damage per unit.) I was even more surprised when the ballista took its first shot... then second... then third and fourth. Each with a luck strike.

    In the end, I found that the firehounds had a conveniently timed initiative in relation to my hero, allowing me to puppet master them and do incredible damage to surrounding units (the ballista included.) Since Orlando was usually more concerned with absorbing mana from dead stacks than casting cleansing, I only had to refresh puppet master a few times.

    The hardest part was damage control, since gated stacks were often placed outside the gate and spread out enough that PM'd firehounds can't smash gated and phantomed stacks fast enough. With a sufficient army, however I could pressure them into gating behind thier walls allowing even a single fireball to do enough damage and defense debuffing to make my job easier. Phoenix cleaned up what was left.

    It didn't take long for units to start rushing, though, and even a large stack of wights blocking the gate eventually got overpowered. Even with the best skills, this battle is about numbers. Your army needs to survive long enough for your hero to get their firepower under control.
    Edited on Thu, Jun 10 2010, 15:56 by Shimdra
    Tsubaki at 2010-03-03 12:02 wrote:
    Please help me someone!
    I killed the assassins, chose Valeria, but later I couldn't destroy the demon portal! I don' t know what should I do. When I tried to sent my heroes to the demon symbols it didn' t worked, they even were lvl 7! I've got really big army now and I cleared whole map, but still I can't move forward because of the stupid portal! Please help me someone!
    Harijs200 at 2010-01-29 17:58 wrote:
    I destroy the assassins, but I can't to move across bridge. Please help me!!!

    Maciek at 2009-11-14 17:26 wrote:
    Well, you can't save Ornella, but (if you ever felt like makeing more sacrifices) I think you can sacrifice Valeria - just have her do a suicide run (or a couple hit&runs maybe?) against Orlando!

    I also took my time here (actually cleared the whole map) and noticed that (especially with diplomacy and a crown of leadership) some of those huge neutral stacks will join you. (got hundreds of extra wights, liches, vamps and possibly others this way)

    Oh, one detail: I read in the sacrifice quest description, that the nacromancers you sacrifice must have a spellpower of 9 or higher. Didn't try with lower sp though - Arantir's mentoring skill took care of that.
    masterlin at 2009-11-14 11:13 wrote:
    Someone PLEASE tell me that I could use the rescued hero for sacrifice - I love Ornella and concentrated on leveling her up throughout the compaign. I hate it when they do kill your favorite character for story and drama!
    Wheeler Dealer at 2009-09-02 20:55 wrote:
    Whoo hooo!!!! First time I ever got one of the ultimate skills. I must have spent 60,000 gold juggling skills at the memory mentor! Last battle was pretty easy, but I was only on hard and I took my time exploring the map. Finished on day one, week one , month four. I blew off a week right at the end collecting luck boosters while waiting for the "Week of Light" to expire.
    Wheeler Dealer at 2009-09-02 20:46 wrote:
    When you think you are ready, send Ornella and the three other necromancers (not Arnatir) to the sacred sites near each of the haven cities. once they are in place have Arantir approach the ghost. It's explained in the game, press Q to display your quests and then click on the quest "Remove the magical barrier" and it will be explained in the text box to the right.
    F_I_X_E_R at 2009-08-28 21:45 wrote:
    Ahh... The barrier to flamshrein won't go down! I did what the ghost asked. I used the ancients, got ready to storm the castle and I couldn't go through the barrier! Any ideas people?

    Grail Quest at 2009-08-18 08:23 wrote:
    I wonder if this could work: Rush the final garrison to get the instructions on how to lower the barrier. Drop the barrier and trigger Orlando. If his army is calculated at that time based on your army and/or date, then you are set. Clear the rest of the map at your leisure because Orlando is in a Haven town and cannot bring reinforcements for his inferno units. ??
    Negativland at 2009-06-16 18:17 wrote:
    This is the mission where I could actually gather the hugest army I've ever had in H5 (the 1k vampire princes + spells did all the work, the others just stood there), thanks to those 4 haven towns that provided me weekly with fresh undead :) The armies mostly piled up in my main castle, while Arantir was raising more than enough units from battles, and Ornella was pretty much playing scout
    The red hereos only spawned twice... and I was already pretty strong so I got rid of them with almost no losses. I've build my Arantir with Summoning (life, conjuring, banish)- Dark (all 3 masteries)- Sorcery (arcane training, boneward) - Attack (cold steel, battle frenzy, power of speed) - Destructive (master of ice, cold death), and it worked perfectly. I recommend destructive/summoning combo for fun and nasty battles with any wizard and necromancer ;) Btw Cold death is very useful vs nasty ballistas: just throw a circle of winter and it's gone (and will chop nearby army pretty good too) It's like having vorpal sword with a spell.
    VAMPSVSZOUNDS at 2009-06-02 16:11 wrote:
    I roughly had a little less army than Maltz and I found the mission,on Hard quite easy because of Triple Flame Ballista.2 lucky shots=20 Archdemons less!!!!!!!Orlando had something like:50 Archdemons,100 Pitspawns,150 Hell Stallions,250 Succubi,500 Firehounds@1000 Leapers.Only about 150 Archlichs left actually I also spammed PM twice on Pitspawns to kill Sucubbi(stronger than Ballista,which was easily wiped out by Archlichs).Only other spell=P-force 2 or 3 times on Archlichs.Anyway,Triple flame with a lev 25-30 hero=min 2000 Dmg!!!!!(0 luck;I had 4 Luck from Fountain/idol/Blessed Sandals).
    Ed_Marley at 2008-10-16 16:47 wrote:
    I can't go true point 7,entrance is sealed,what should I do? I already discovered full map ...help me please!
    Emodemon at 2008-06-15 09:04 wrote:
    second time i did this, i found the Skull of Markal beside a shield of cryst ice guarded by a throng of water eles. it was pretty nice indeed as i think this is the best artefact to necro besides deaths embrace set.

    Edited on Sun, Jun 15 2008, 05:06 by Emodemon
    lead341 at 2008-04-29 05:55 wrote:
    Hi,
    I am somewhat amazed about the walkthrough: because here it appears way more challenging than in my experience. I played the whole necro-campaign (inclusive this level) at "heroic" (in this scenario each week comes 1 mummy, one lich, you start with 10.000 gold etc.) and I didnīt have any difficulty at all. I had only my two heroes (Arantir and Ornella) and conquered all the towns effortlessly. A red hero only spawned twice (!!) and I could defeat him with my avatar alone. So I start wondering whether I really played on heroic - maybe there is something wrong with my installation or the config?

    Ok, letīs try to make a comparison: on heroic, how many enemy units are involved in the final battle (against Orlando?)
    Edited on Tue, Apr 29 2008, 01:57 by lead341

    Pave at 2008-04-19 14:43 wrote:
    Great walkthrough, Maltz. I just have one thing. In my game the red heroes always spawned after I took one of the blue towns. I tried saving the game, taking a town and one red hero spawned. Then I loaded and ended the turn without taking the town. No red hero appeared.
    So I got Ornella in front of one blue town, Arantir in front of another one and took them bot in one turn. Two red heroes spawned immediately.
    I don't think this was a coincidence...
    EDIT: I've done some more checking and the spawning of red heroes is really connected with taking the blue towns. So the best strategy for me was to take the SW castle with Ornella (I gave her only the dead-knights and mummies) and go quickly to the north. Kill the red in the midway. As soon as Ornella reached the portal, I used Arantir to take the E town. After Ornela killed the second red hero I had her go to the N town and kill the elementals guarding the two-way portal and go through it. Arantir went through the two-way portal near the middle town in the opposite direction and ran for the red-spawning-portal. Meanwhile Ornella took the middle town. After Arantir killed the third red hero I had Ornella take the N town while Arantir waited for Deleb. With Arantir's avatar and both Ornella and Arantir using phoenix, curse of the netherworld, mass confusion and raise dead I didn't even need to build troops.
    Edited on Sat, Apr 19 2008, 14:41 by Pave

    Angelspit at 2008-02-04 15:04 wrote:
    Orlando's ballista qualifies as a weapon of mass destruction. Mister Bush would be happy.

    Metathron at 2008-01-29 17:03 wrote:
    I had the same problem as you, matheus, but could not solve it, nor did anyone else know the solution (?!?), and now you come along and provide the answer just like that.

    Thanks and welcome!
    matheus at 2008-01-29 16:16 wrote:
    Uops... sorry, I've just found my 5th necromancer inside the 1st castle I captured =/
    Now it worked!
    matheus at 2008-01-29 01:05 wrote:
    Hi!
    I have Arantir, Ornella and more 2 Necromancer heroes... and I cant recruit nomore Heroes... how will I put 4 Necromancers except Arantir if I have only more 3 and I cant buy nomore?
    I have the knight that was in the prison, but it seens that she doesnt help in this case.
    Thank you!

    aaelgr at 2008-01-26 17:38 wrote:
    Have you visited the ghost? You have to see him on the bridge with the blocked garrison before anything will happen.
    Ravingoofy at 2008-01-26 16:03 wrote:
    Ok, so I've placed all my necros in their proper place. How to I sacrifice them to move on. I'm had them in place for about 3 weeks and this is getting rather old.

    Guarderman at 2008-01-20 17:17 wrote:
    If you lose one, it think you can't get them another time, but else, i don't know

    Metathron at 2008-01-20 12:23 wrote:
    I have recruited the two heroes and the tavern has remained empty ever since, which makes me think this really is some kind of bug instead of an oversight of mine. But no worries, I have used the mod for unlocking all campaigns and moved on to the next one, thankfully. :rolleyes:

    Guarderman at 2008-01-20 06:44 wrote:
    you can by only two heroes at a tavern every day. So try to buy two heroes, next day, buy another

    Metathron at 2008-01-19 23:19 wrote:
    I only have two necromancers, not counting Ornella and Arantir.

    aaelgr at 2008-01-19 22:52 wrote:
    You should be able to get 3 Necromancers from the Tavern. You have to sacrifice Ornella to make the 4 (just don't forget to give Arantir her artifacts like I did).

    Metathron at 2008-01-19 22:41 wrote:
    Where am I supposed to get 4 necro heroes, or 4 heroes of ANY alignment at all for that matter? My taverns run dry after hiring only TWO necro heroes. I'm really getting fed up with this campaign (something I've gotten quite used to with HoMM V :rolleyes:), and would like to continue with the barbarian campaign already, so any help would be much appreciated. If not, I'll be looking for a cheat, I sure as hell ain't restarting this load of bull!

    Wulfstan8182 at 2007-12-08 01:40 wrote:
    wow! these stacks are big!

    Koni at 2007-11-26 19:06 wrote:
    Thanks, Maltz!! I only can agree to all, what is said about your excellent and helpful work. A little thing, which you forgot mentioning (?): The hut of mage near town C reveals an island in the lake. There you can find a respectable artifact: Markal's Skull.

    maltz at 2007-11-14 20:21 wrote:
    Hey no problem. Actually I got that idea from another forum as well.
    Bartacus at 2007-11-14 19:23 wrote:
    Thanks Maltz! Hope I didn't come off as if I was slagging your walkthrough. Its incredibly well done! I blame Nival for not even putting a hint in that map! If it wasn't for you and Google, I'd still be stuck, and probably would have destroyed my PC or LCD in a drunken rage by now. :-)

    maltz at 2007-11-14 15:52 wrote:
    Ok thanks for the inputs. I have made a little more clarification on this Ornella + 3.
    Bartacus at 2007-11-14 15:42 wrote:
    A-HAH!! Found the answer on another forum. FYI, for the other stuck guy (tackaberry), you need to place 4 necromancers OTHER THAN ARANTIR on the demon circles. Thats the trick. Ornella and 3 necro scouts. Re-reading the walkthrough, it kinda says that, just not clearly. Not sure how the heck I was supposed to figure that out without help though!! P.S. sorry for the double post; accidental browser refresh. :-)
    Bartacus at 2007-11-14 15:11 wrote:
    Great walkthrough, but for the first time ever (playing these since HOMM2), I'm stuck!! I can't advance. Walking in those demon circles doesn't so squat for me. Am I missing something obvious here? Or is there a patch/bug-fix? Help!!

    aaelgr at 2007-11-07 17:30 wrote:
    Thanks Maltz for yet another useful walkthrough. On Normal the weekly caravan is one week's worth of unupgraded Necropolis units.
    I used the tried and tested Necropolis strategy of strength in numbers. Having killed the succubae to stop more Demon Lords going around I was able to caravan and convert a few weeks worth of Haven units, which combined with the creatures generated by my Necropolis and the aforementioned caravan gave me a huge advantage (we're talking in the order of 3k Skeleton Archers and almost 500 Vampire Lords!). The ballista kept attacking the Archers, and Mass Confusion/Slow worked wonders...

    Infiltrator at 2007-11-07 15:11 wrote:
    Ah the dreaded ballista.. I lost quite a bit to it when I played the final showdown. All in all the battle wasn't too exciting.. The Avatar and Phoenix just moped the floor with everyone.

    maltz at 2007-11-07 06:52 wrote:
    Please be more specific. In terms of the walkthrough what's your progress? Is there anything that you have done differently? Who do you put on the symbols and which quests have you completed to earn a check mark? The game is very picky sometimes.
    Edited on Wed, Nov 07 2007, 04:30 by maltz
    tackaberry at 2007-11-07 05:46 wrote:
    I have heroes standing on the red demon crystal thingies, and I still can't cross the bridge.
    ywhtptgtfo at 2007-11-06 17:48 wrote:
    Oh, I never got Howl of Terror.

    maltz at 2007-11-06 13:50 wrote:
    Yeah, Orlando has no magic resistance feat anymore, so he is subject to Frenzy & Puppet Master. It should be a good alternative to this battle. I was afraid that his low morale would prevent PMed troop from moving.
    ywhtptgtfo at 2007-11-06 01:50 wrote:
    Avatar of Death isn't the top in my priority list for this siege. I leaned back and used Puppet Master on the Nightmares which proceeded to block the Succubi and kill the Ballista. At my next turn, I casted Frenzy on the Arch Demons. After that, I summoned the Avatar and went on a Puppet Master - Cleansing tug-of-war with Orlando.

    I really hate those Leaping Demons though.
    Edited on Mon, Nov 05 2007, 20:51 by ywhtptgtfo
    plindhag at 2007-11-05 21:06 wrote:
    You are very correct about the ballista in the final battle; you must get rid of it as it is extremely damaging. An excellent walkthrough!

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