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H7: Would you prefer 2D or 3D townscreens?
2D
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Celestial Heavens  → Might & Magic: Heroes VI - Haven - Fair is Foul and Foul is Fair

by maltz

INTRODUCTION

Mission 1 felt like a tutorial extension, but mission 2 is the real, cruel world. Unfortunately, this map could be very tough if the AI's scripted large armies turn aggressive too early. Fortunately, there is an easy way to avoid just that. However, there are still plenty of challenges in this mission. Neutral stacks in some areas could grow quite large. An optional mini-boss carries an army larger than those in Necropolis mission 4! The level cap at 17 is way too low.

Our Blood-Might Anton build should be quite complete in mission 2 already, with a bunch of useful passive perks plus Cleave and Resilience. Damages are mostly absorbed by the free reinforcement and avoided through guardian angels. The occasional hits can then be healed back by Vestals.

Dynasty Traits: how about "free first generic hero", +5 morale for a perfect victory, and +3 core creature growth. Some extra Marksmen and Vestals are always nice..

Haven Campaign Mission 2
Level cap: 17
Difficulty Index: 4/6
Last updated: November 24, 2011


WALKTHROUGH

Anton starts in the east side of the map, with one Fort already in possession. However, a fort alone doesn't give anything good. We need some more units and a town quickly. There is a creature building and gold mine in the starting area that you should flag as soon as possible. You can also pick up a few friendly stacks. Skip everything else - we will come back here very soon.

Your urgent goal is to take Town A to the south before the end of Week 1 - the earlier the better. On your way to Town A, you should still flag a Sawmill, an Ore Pit, and pick up some other friendly units including the tier-6 Sun Riders. You can skip the mercenary Griffins to the west as they are too expensive for you right now. The enemy at Town A is quite weak during Week 1, but I read that after Week 1, this battle will turn very difficult.

After taking Town A, don't forget to convert the creature building to the northeast. Your budget will be very tight early on, even if you opt for cash in every chest. Therefore, get the +gold structures (upper level towns, market place) become a high priority. Try to go to Town level 4 in the next few weeks. The Sisters and Vestals will save your precious mana during most neutral encounters.

While you can already see a corner of your next town (Town C), it is really NOT a good time to take it, even if its defense is laughable. Taking Town C gives AI the green light to march scripted armies to you; however, if you leave Town C neutral, these scripted invasions stay dormant. At this early stage, your army is too small to face the invasions. You need some extra to develop first. Now is a good time to go back to the starting area and the township of Town A to kill/pick up everything. There is more than enough time.


When there is nothing left to kill, head down the stairs at (1-1'). Your goal underground is to capture the Necropolis Fort B at the earliest but safest opportunity. This won't be an easy battle. In my game, I lost 20+ Vestals with 3 weeks of creatures. Then I tried this battle again with 4 weeks of creatures, plus a few additional combat boosts on the surface, and was able to pull off a nearly perfect victory. This pretty summarizes the entire Heroes6 campaign strategy. If we fight every mini-boss as soon as we can win (almost) perfectly, we will do just fine.

After taking Fort B, convert the Necropolis creature building to the northeast. Your underground base is completely safe. The gate to the next area at (7) is locked and will remain so until the very end of the mission. For now, we can take our sweet time to fight quite a number of neutral creatures in the caves. More resources!

When you again run out of things to do, load up as much army as you can, return to the surface, and finally take Town C. With all your resources, you should be able to quickly build it up. It is a good idea to build an Advanced Town Portal right here, because the AI has nowhere else to invade. Let's take a look at the grand strategy.

From here Anton has to defeat 3 rebel dukes, each hiding in a Haven town. The closest one to Town C should be Town D to the north, followed by Fort E and Town F to the west. Fort G and Town H sit behind Town D; Fort I, Fort J, and Town K (which houses the optional boss) are behind Town F. In my game, I saw an invasion from Town D just a few days after taking Town C. The alphabetical order of the towns and forts is the order of conquest I recommend, although it largely depends on when and where you are invaded by the next AI army.

After beating an invasion, you can launch a counterattack during the same week to take his/her hometown rather easily. An effective way to have a healthy supply of fresh recruits is to have a secondary hero ready in any Town that has all upgraded creature building. When the new week comes, hire everything and cast basic town portal to the town or fort closest to Anton.

You will have the chance to earn a large number of Blood/Tear points upon capturing a Town. My Anton goes after the Blood path, and he was able to hire a free hero from the tavern for every duke he executed. These heroes don't have any ability points left to assign, unfortunately.

Northwest of Town D at (2), you can trigger a conversation with Anton's ancestor, but nothing else will happen. After taking Town D, F, and H, you can actually keep going west from (2) to finish the mission without fighting the optional boss in Town K.

The optional boss in Town K is all about army strength. While there won't be any additional heroes camped at the gate to negate your one-time combat bonuses, that garrison army is BIG! I looked at its army three weeks in a row and saw 1333, 1500, and 1662 Marksmen. This means that the army's growth is not really exponential, but rather fixed at ~160-170 Marksman per week. Most other stacks grow at a similar rate, too.

It is likely you are not quite ready for Town K yet. While you wait for your army strength to explode, you can visit stats boosts, which are marked by (s) as usual. You can also capture Fort I, Fort J, and their associated creature buildings. The side quest's Dynasty Weapon Heart Tending Song is located at (3), guarded by Celestials.


In my game, I finally mowed down Town K with an army containing 536 Marksman, while I found it still too tough just one week ago. Here are a few tips for winning the Town K fight:

(1) Arache level 4 (constant 15% Life Drain). It is unlikely you have it in mission 2, but if you do, this fight actually qualifies for "just another perfect victory". One exploit to quickly gain EXP with a Dynasty weapon is to save the game without the Dynasty Weapon equipped just before taking the third and final duke's town. Then equip it, use Quick combat earn some massive EXP, and load the game. I got my Arache to level 4 within an hour. You can certainly win without it (just don't expect a perfect victory).

(2) Emerald Yumi Bow and some other top-quality artifacts to fill in your lacking slots. (Set artifacts are mostly of poor quality.) At this point, you should be so rich that you can build an Advanced Market in every town.

By the way, since the hero in Town K is completely passive, you can use some secondary hero to flag a creature building to its north, although I didn't notice any slowing of the garrison's expansion.

Taking Town K also give you a special reward - this is the only town where you can upgrade Glories. However, by now you should be so powerful that you are just going to crush every thing after this anyway.

No matter whether you want to fight the optional boss or not, the story continues. March Anton north, past Town K and enter the mountain path. Fight some creatures, collect artifacts, and enter the cave at (4-4').

Here Anton's mother gives him a series of trials at (5) and a sibling to fight, which are all really easy compared to other neutral stacks (especially if you have beaten Town K). After completing the trials, enter the portal at (6). You are now back to the Fort B region, in a dead-end (6') that at first looks like the developers forgot to put things there. Now you know this isn't gross negligence.

The gate at (7) is finally open! While you can fight more stacks on the way, there is no more set artifact to pick up. You can head straight to Town L to challenge the boss. In my game, the boss actually wondered off with his Trivial army (the biggest stack was 200 Archliches... poor guy) and was easily picked off by Anton seconds after he steps off his first base.
Comments

Sir_Toejam at 2013-08-16 00:38 wrote:
updates on equipment and creatures as of 2.1.1

griffin dive works perfectly.

arachne's life drain works exactly like the mass life drain spell, only at a fixed 15%. Meaning that whatever actual damage a stack does, it recovers 15% of that as health. doesn't sound like a lot, but it does help prevent losses, and of course scales up with bigger stacks.

and, again, even on hard, you CAN beat the hero at town A, so long as you make sure to collect all of the friendly stacks before you start the fight. It's a hard fight, and it's supposed to be, but if you are patient, you will take minimal losses.

Town K is no longer the uber town. It had less creatures than town H did. Also, taking town K allows you to build the upgrade for the glories. Not that you need it at that point, but might as well. ooh shiny.

Edited on Fri, Aug 16 2013, 11:42 by Sir_Toejam

Sir_Toejam at 2013-08-16 00:16 wrote:
if you are taking huge losses in the battle for town A, try being a bit more patient. If you have flagged the mines, and gotten the neutral stacks to join you (it's worth paying for the griffin stack - make sure you are wearing your "diplomacy" hat), you should arrive at the town around day 5.

I don't think the number of creatures you have to fight is affected by whether or not you take the mines, or what day you arrive, so long as you arrive before the end of the week. (day 5 had same number of creatures as listed by doguso on day 2).

play it defensively, sit back and wait for opportunities to attack where you take the least damage. Protect as many troops as you can with your sentinels.

all the diff weapons can work here, but since it's undead, any of them OTHER than arachne would be a better choice. Pirate sword is good for morale, Whistlebone for a good strike on the vamps and ghouls on turn 2. Based on the stats and abilities, I chose Whistlebone. gives you a permanent slow effect, defense against magic (for liches), good might power boost (5), and a strong attack. I only need the strong attack once, when the ghouls and vamps cluster on turn 2. otherwise was casting heroism, anathema, or regeneration the whole battle. Once you thin out his front ranks a bit, move your horse and griffs to engage the ranged units. Once all the non ranged are down, move your sentinels forward to the magic node. once you have removed the liches, whittle the skells down to a small number (like less than 10), and then cluster your griff, sentinels, and horse around the magic node. then just defend while you regen your mana and keep on casting heroism, anathema, and regeneration. cast guardian on your sentinels whenever possible, and you should recover most of your losses, as well as gaining a ton of blood rep points. I ended up only losing the stack of sisters I had (necro AI hates those things), 4 griffs, and 4 marksman. probably could have gained even more back, but ran out of patience at around turn 35.

If you chose the "free first hero", or just have 5k extra, hire a hero BEFORE you convert the town, give them the proper skills, and then you save 20% on converting the town. Since you need an extra hero anyway, might as well save some cash right off.

Edited on Thu, Aug 15 2013, 20:22 by Sir_Toejam
xiilus at 2013-06-23 05:27 wrote:
It seems flagging the mines and dwelling are necessary to make Town A weak. From reading Maltz's advice from the beginning of the previous mission, he mentioned that scripted heroes can be devastating if you rush to areas before the developers want you there.

I don't read walkthroughs until after I've beaten a mission, so I didn't know what to expect on my first attempt. When I saw that I only had a fort, my plan was to 1) rush to take a town immediately and 2) send a secondary hero back to flag the mines/dwelling. But then I saw an unbeatable army at Town A, so I looked to see if there was an easier town elsewhere. I saw there was a town to the west, but it was blocked off, as was the underground passage. I made a valiant attempt to fight the hero. They weren't kidding with the "Deadly" label.

On second attempt, I cleared the whole starting area. Then I went south, and the town was easy. Seems you can't truly rush, but mid to late week 1 is best.
Isaacfirestorm at 2012-04-05 15:06 wrote:
If you follow Maltz instructions, and get the neutral sentries a little past the town on the west, you can take Town A first week. If you don't get the gold mine, ore pit, and sawmill, you won't be able to convert it before the first week is up, so make sure to get these.

Kalah at 2012-03-26 16:56 wrote:
Maybe something to do with the spam, which is deleted from the main page here? Another reason to get the redesign moving. ;)

Pol at 2012-03-25 19:41 wrote:
Why on the Heaven in the Forum is this thread having four pages, including almost three blank?

--
End of OT rant.
Naki at 2012-03-25 17:23 wrote:
* Needs update for patch version 1.2.1!! (Soon to be 1.3)

* Needs info on QUESTS.
sparhawk77 at 2012-02-26 05:53 wrote:
I feel a tad dumb but I don't quite get the Arache thing... I save the game without it being equipped thern equip it, do Quick Combat, and then load the game... If I load the game then don't I lose the EXP? I know the answer will make me look like a fool but it won.t be the first time ... Also, I found town A super hard as well. I managed to beat it but it cost me way too much of my army. At the same time if you don't get A won't you be unable to get your army guys? Thanx for having an excellent site and walkthrough. Been a huge fan since HOMM2!
stachnie at 2012-02-22 11:38 wrote:
With patch 1.2 Imperial Griffins dive works, but AI never uses that.

I managed to get Arachne to level 4 when capturing Town H, even without cheating :) Now I play the next mission and it seems that:
- its effects are random but they grow with the strength of the army
- it is always n*15%, where n is a natural number.

For an army that consisted of 9 griffins I noticed results between 15 and 105%, for 100+ Imperial Griffins usually it is hundreds%, so maybe maximum effect is something like (number of creatures)*15%.

A general comment about Heroes VI campaigns: they are much easier than in Heroes V. I have passed Orc, Sanctuary and Necro at Hard and had no need to look at walkthroughs.

Edit (after some testing): for Arachne life drain is *always* n*15%, where n is the actual number of creatures in a stack. It means that it is calculated for each round and each stack separately. It is like a snowball.
Edited on Thu, Feb 23 2012, 01:33 by stachnie
sylvanllewelyn at 2012-02-07 11:56 wrote:
Stronghold 2 on tears path gives Sword of the Whistlebone, I used that to capture town A. "Quite weak" is a "quite misleading" description though, we're not all as uber as Maltz!
cococooky at 2012-02-05 07:09 wrote:
@Grisinor and the others; Yes this particular walkthrough needs to be revised, it's impossible the way described.

Edit: The enemy out front of town A, far from being weak, is too powerful, even in week 1 on normal difficulty.
Edited on Sun, Feb 05 2012, 08:07 by cococooky
Grisinor at 2012-02-01 19:10 wrote:
I reached Town A on day 6, Week 1. This was the army I faced there: 68 Skeletons, 54 Ghouls, 46 Ghosts, 24 Liches, 22 Vampires, 13 Lamassus!
How could you EVER win this battle!? Impossible!!
RedTyke at 2012-01-22 13:17 wrote:
Having trouble with Arache Level 4 - saved game before final town "unequiped " loaded weapon -quick combat - no increase in exp even tried end turn before reloading no increase in exp. what am i doing wrong
Kelben at 2012-01-17 11:04 wrote:
I have the same issue as Doguso and face the same army composition.
doguso at 2012-01-14 05:53 wrote:
I think there's some kind of stupid hidden condition to making the hero at Town A weak. The first time I didn't realize I was on a timer and made it to Town A shortly after week two. After reading about the first week thing, I timed it to pick up the ore pit, gold mine and the barracks and made it to Town A by day 5 or 6. He was STILL too strong.

In my annoyance, I hightailed it to Town A and made it there by day 2. He was STILL overly powerful (15 vamps, 10 lamarus, 15ish liches, a lot of skeletons and ghouls and about 40 ghosts).

There has to be some kind of catch I'm missing here.... he should NOT be that powerful by day 2.
J4Ks at 2011-12-28 21:42 wrote:
@Bucker; Perhaps you waited to long after capturing Town C.

I had no problem at all, when I took Town C, I headed straight for Town D which kind of neutralize Hide&Seek game, cause those 'bandits' just came from NW bridge out of Town K.

Do a Statue of revelation near that bridge or even on Town K and you got an advance warning, when they are marching towards your Town D.

Bucker at 2011-12-25 11:22 wrote:
After capturing Town C, I suffer from Heaven invading heroes outbreak. Although they're quite weak, they are quite numerous and tend to play hide&seek. Chasing one makes others trying to backstab me by capturing the city previously mentioned. AI in HoMMVI is indeed cheeky and annoying.

aaelgr at 2011-12-18 20:52 wrote:
It seems to be working now that I've started the next mission. How peculiar...

maltz at 2011-12-18 12:06 wrote:
Maybe this works: un-equip the dynasty weapon and equip it again.

aaelgr at 2011-12-17 21:31 wrote:
I've managed to get Arachne to level 4 but there doesn't seem to be any Life Drain. Is anyone else having this?
J4Ks at 2011-12-08 13:55 wrote:
Thanks for your efforts Maltz. I use your info (walkthroughs) if I am stuck somewhere in a campaign and it's been very helpfull.

I just want to add one minor point in this campaign, cause it gave me an incredible headache after restarting it over 4 times.

The crucial part of this campaign are your resources, for your upgrades:
- 1 time I only picked the orepit, cause I didn't noticed the sawmill near the 2nd free army of Griffons.
- 2 time I picked both orepit and sawmill, I had no problem with Djordje to take Town A

Then I noticed a crystal mine, 3rd restart I thought if I could get that in the 1st week b4 Djordje I would have enough crystals to get the Griffons building or Crusaders.
Afterwards I head down to Djordje. His forces are doubled due to getting that crystal mine b4 going after Djordje and am unable to capture town A.

I reran it a couple of times to see if it was a bug or something. But allas we are not suppose to get the crystal mine before Djordje.....arghhh.

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