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H7: Would you prefer 2D or 3D townscreens?
2D
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Celestial Heavens  → Might & Magic: Heroes VI - Haven - A Battle Lost and Won

by maltz

INTRODUCTION

You can tell that Blackhole wants to make this final mission more challenging, but unfortunately it does not quite deliver the thrill. You are up against two Inferno enemies, one on the surface and one below. Only the faction on the surface will invade you. The map maker did AI a favor - the invasions will come right to you through a one-way portal, the exit of which is in the dead center of your quarter. Unfortunately, you won't be able to stop the nuisance for a while. The invasions are too small to become a threat anyway.

Once you start pushing into the Infernos' territory during the intermissions, you will find out that most AI towns don't even have walls, and they are again garrisoned by mysteriously small armies. You easily expand and expand, while teleporting back to swat red flies from time to time. Standing out from the mundane works are two mini-bosses (one is optional, probably unintentional as well) and the (finally) action-packed final boss fight.

Dynasty Traits: From hindsight, this is a mission where extra movement points really help - so you can accomplish more while the AI is not invading you, and reliably catch the invading enemy heroes when they try to run away from Anton. The +3 movement bonus is a nice one. Free first generic hero always helps (hire a Might hero so you get +1 Wood and Ore per day right from the beginning. Wood will be short early on.).

Haven Campaign Mission 4
Level cap: 30
Difficulty Index: 2/6
Last updated: November 25, 2011

You start in the northeast corner with the same side-kick hero from mission 3. You can dump to her the Regent's artifact set like before - you already have 4, and you will be find 2 more here to complete the set. MINOR BUG (v1.1.1): If you ended mission 3 with some set artifacts NOT in the first three rows of your artifact slot, you are temporarily unable to access them until you acquire enough artifacts to give you back the scroll bar to see the 4th row and below. When this happened to me, I could go back to the last save of the last mission, move up the set artifacts, and finish that mission again. Another artifact set that you might be able to complete here is the Prophet set. However, in my game, I left one piece of it in a secondary hero when a previous mission finished. It was lost forever.

Go southeast to take over Town A. Like mission 3, it is a good idea to focus on money buildings first. Flag and collect the resources nearby. While you don't have a good army yet, the free Summon Phoenix spell carried over from mission 3 can make things really easy. While the neutral creatures focus their attack on the summoned Phoenix, you can use Anton's regular attack to wear them down.

Soon you will discover the exit of the one-way portal (1'), where the surface Inferno faction conveniently invades you about every two weeks. The entrance of the portal is south from here at (1). However, even if you secure that area later, the invasion will continue. The AI hero will simply walk to you the old-fashioned way.

Grab Fort B and the crystal mine, as well as Fort C and its creature building. There should be some friendly creatures for recruit. Besides, many of the Ruins/Barbarian Camp structures in this scenario give free units, even upgraded Haven units. Next, go west and take over the Inferno Town D and convert it. Part of the main quest is to convert 4 designated Inferno towns, and this is one of them. Now you have your quarter established; the only threat to your home base comes from the one-way portal at (1'). You can build an Advanced Town Portal in Town A ready when Anton goes somewhere far away.

Now you have some freedom to decide where to expand next. If you take the stairs (2-2') down, you can fight the other (orange) Inferno faction, which owns a total of two towns and two forts. You can also push out west or south. By going west, you can grab two towns and two forts, in addition to completing a side quest to receive a group of reinforcements. By going south, you can eventually grab many towns, many forts, and finally put a stop to the demon invasions. Of course, the south is likely too tough for you now.

Let's start with the easiest and most profitable. The underground orange demons have nothing to do with the surface demons. They don't actively invade you early on probably because they are simply too weak. So let's wipe them out and use their resources and towns to fuel our rapid expansion. Once you are in underground (2'), travel west first so you can immediately take Town E for conversion. The underground quest requires you to convert two towns.

From Town E, you can go counter-clockwise to sweep Fort F, Town G, and Fort H in rapid succession. If the red Inferno invasion comes on the surface, simply portal back to the surface. The invading heroes have a tendency to flag Fort B (if you lose it, there is no point to waste the resources to convert it back to Haven.) Since Fort B is close to the stairs (2-2'), it actually makes your return to the underground faster. In my game, the next invasion came right after I took Town E, so I continued my next expansion clockwise from (2') and worked on Fort H, Town G, and finally Fort F. They are all very easy fights. the Arena fight is probably the most difficult before the mini-boss.

Besides stairs (2-2'), there are two additional sets of stairs, (3-3') and (4-4'). The AI will not use these stairs, which don't lead to any valuable artifacts, or bypass any tough enemies. After wiping out the orange demons, the barrier (5) to the middle area is lifted. But you don't want to challenge the mini-boss in front of Town U yet - it is intended for later. Since this is a stationary mini-boss who doesn't care about town management (why hold onto the Tear of Asha when you can easily install it in the neutral town one step away?), she doesn't mind if you flag the gold mine and crystal mine right in front of her. Neat!

Now you have the underground secured, and your army grows a lot every week. It is time to beat down the red demons. I suggest that you go west first, since the demons there are also unimpressive. Cross the bridge west of Fort B and take whatever stands in your way. There could be a roaming hero around, but you should be able to crush it easily. Sweep Fort I, Town J, Town K, and Fort L. Town K joins automatically as part of the side quest's reward.

By the time you convert your second designated Inferno town on the surface, Anton's Great Aunt shows up. As Anton's ally, Sveltana is scripted to attack the southeast Town P no matter who owns it. (So it is possible that she takes it from you, if you opt to go south first.) While you think this may put an end to the demon invasion through the portal, the AI will access it from Town M. So she doesn't really help very much. Sveltana will remain dormant in front of Town P, slowly building it up, but not doing anything else. You can actually attack her and enjoy her town when you are powerful enough.

Let's charge right into the red demons' heart land. Go south from Town A and easily conquer Town M. Now you have basically secured the portal entrance at (1), although the AI will still invade you from the west. Grab Fort N and Fort O nearby. Now you should be powerful enough to... borrow your Great Aunt's Town P. This fight could be a little tough (as Arache's Life Drain does not work on undead). However, since you can heal effectively with Guardian Angels lv 4, it is still possible to score a perfect victory.

Just one more bunch of Inferno towns to crush. March west and take Town Q, Fort R, Town S, and Fort T all together. They are all push-overs. In my game, there is an Emerald Yumi Bow to be picked up in this southwest area. However, none of your subsequent tough battles require you to shoot over a wall, so it is probably better to stay with the Lion's Shield and enjoy the set bonus.

You are now ready to tackle the bosses of the mission. The underground boss in front of Town U is easier, so let's do that first. She is even less powerful than the optional boss back in mission 2, so you should be able to crush her like a bug by now. You get a free Tear of Asha and a... "Haven Town" (what a generic name) from this mini-boss fight. Install the Tear back in your Capital and let the population explode! For your effort, you also receive a Dynasty Weapon Angelic Alliance, a healing Might weapon. It might automatically replace your Arache.

BUG ALERT: To prevent Angelic Alliance from disappearing, it is a good idea to save the game, go back to main menu, and associate this new weapon with a hero in My Dynasty. Under v1.1.1, there is another bug that permanently gives bonuses associated with a currently-equipped Dynasty Weapon whenever you save the game, load the game, and switch to a new Dynasty Weapon. You might not be able to avoid this bug all together, but you can still restrict yourself not to abuse it.

Now we are ready for the campaign's last fight! Make Anton visit all stat boosts (s) you have missed, load him up with all your best untis (let Seraphs in and don't split the Vestals) and walk up the path starting at (6). Break through the easy Fort V and Fort W and receive the last piece of the Guardian's artifact set. Here comes the boss in front of Town X, Falcon Reach!


Ahribban, the demon Prince of Hate, uses a very powerful hit-all Magic Attack (with a terrible Magic Power of 15500), which happens to be Anton's weakness. As a result, his special attack will hit every stack for lots of damage. However, Ahribban only has 80,000 hit points. Even though Anton's units usually can't hit for 5 digits of damage, Ahribban should go down a little more quickly than Uriel. In my game, I even saw Ahribban lost a turn due to low morale (thanks to Arache and Anethema's morale debuff), and Ahribban went down on Turn 2 in a perfect loss during Hour of Judgment. Poor boss.
Comments
darkscis at 2014-12-08 04:44 wrote:
An Inquisitor Anton (Magic/Blood) absolutely breaks this mission. High magic power + Word of Light + 90% of the map being Inferno = difficulty 0.1/6 on hard mode. Admittedly it's a hard slog through map 1 and 2 of the campaign to get here but it's incredible fun. Build straight for glories, give them and only them to Anton and proceed to wipe the map.

Against neutrals and no hero garrisons, Word of Light should wrap it up in a single turn (start with Sunburst, then Word of Light on turn 2 to heal if it looks like WoL won't do it alone).

Against enemy heroes you will notice a single empty spot in their back line when they deploy. Turn 1 summon light elementals there. The light elemental retaliation sunburst seems to scale with your own magic power, in my recent run the ~17 or so elementals I summoned did a sunburst for over 1400 damage which spears their entire lineup due to where you summon them. The first enemy stack that takes its turn will hit them and basically blow up their entire army. Follow it up on turn 2 with WoL and it's game over. (Make sure you line up your glories with that empty spot so that the light elemental retaliation hits them and heals whatever damage the enemy hero did to them). I stuck all my other troops on Valeska (who I had levelled during map 3) and just let her flag mines and teleport around dealing with the roaming enemy heroes.

To start I left 10 sentinels on Anton and gave the rest to Valeska who headed straight for town A. Anton cleared the neutral stacks in the immediate area for resources then headed straight for fort C. Valeska took town A on turn 2 then immediately headed for fort B. Anton took fort C and it's mines then headed straight west for town D -> fort I -> town J -> fort L and then finally town K. Valeska took fort B then cleared mines and resources for another hero to snap up. She then went into passive defense duty.

Anton then town portaled home, grabbed the new blazing glories and headed into the underground, taking E -> F -> G -> H. Once the new week's troops arrived Valeska went and took town U, then up the stairs to take M. Anton headed for N and O. By this stage the map was essentially over, Anton and Valeska took the remaining towns then roamed about getting stat boosts and other stuff.
Edited on Mon, Dec 08 2014, 00:10 by darkscis
jsg at 2014-09-18 15:17 wrote:
I found this level quite challenging. For me, the breakthrough was realizing I had to keep a hero chain in position from the main base to the middle of the board near the portal so I could send troops back to deal with the invading reds. After that, everything fell together and the walkthrough worked. If you try to move your main hero back and forth there just isn't enough time to deal with both the orange and red fronts.

Sir_Toejam at 2013-08-24 00:57 wrote:
"Only the faction on the surface will invade you."

wrong. This mission is quite difficult as of 2.1.1. At least until you take most of orange and red's towns.

Orange invades in week 4 with a sizeable army (about 3 weeks worth) and a high level hero (24) with chain lightning, firestorm, and fireball to smack you around with. Red now releases a mid level hero (22), or even high level (27) every week starting in week 3, and a high level hero (level 27 with a HUGE army, on week 4 that heads due north to cut you off from reaching the Stag army reinforcements. I'm thinking the better strategy (having now done the underground first) is NOT to invade underground first, but to try and meet up with your "reinforcements" first, before red puts his big army between you and them.

This is not a piece of cake any more. hardest mission 4 of all the campaigns, by far IMO (at least through about the end of month 2). I'm actually taking significant losses sometimes, which I can't recall happening in any of the other final campaign maps.

other dynasty traits good for this mission:

-merchant (acts like 2 marketplaces for trade purposes; lets you build up MUCH faster)
-planeswalker (cuts movement costs of casting portal spells in half - VERY useful if you need to bounce around a lot, which u kinda do in this mission!)

weapons: Arachne is nerfed now (patch 2.1.1). Still decent permanent life drain, but it is nerfed down to acting as if you cast a permanent version of the mass life-drain spell (life returned is exactly 15% of the damage - from all sources - that a stack does during its turn); but really its best feature is the aoe slow spell at level 5. Instead, two MUCH better weapons are the pirate king sword (from crag hack's dlc campaign) which essentially makes you unstoppable once you have crusaders (+2 move +10 morale on first turn, automatically!), or especially in the beginning of the mission, the Sword of Whistlebone (again fully upgraded), as it reduces enemy initiative by 10, or the wolf sword (raises your own init by 10). which lets you get your phoenix on top of things like air elementals before they can act. But yeah, if you have the pirate sword at at least level 4, "boarding" will carry you once you have a decent army. Whistlebone is actually also good for the last boss, for the slight magic resist boost, and better might damage. though really, at about 4 months in, your army should be sufficient to take him out in a single turn.

A bit late in the game, but Maltz is definitely right in going blood for Haven might hero; the tears special abilities are nearly useless in and of themselves (though the boosts to tear SKILLS are nothing to sneeze at), while the blood ones are almost always useful, especially anathema, which can reduce morale so much the enemy fails to act at all (seems to depend on stack size - the smaller the stack size, the more likely it seems to fail to act). The boosts to blood skills are almost as good as the equivalent boosts to tears if you went the other way. Full blood rep mass heroism is a match made in heaven for a haven might hero. 15% boost to archery and giant damage, and hopefully you took the boosts (all of them) to might itself, which amount to a hefty boost of 12 might! Frankly, at level 25 i already have 3 skill points left I don't really need.

Hopefully you spent time leveling up your secondary hero on map 3, as they will be useful right off the bat here. chain lightning clears out entire armies at the beginning, allowing you access to easy crystal resources, cash, and other things. Staves that boost init and magic power are useful here. The one you can buy (The Oblivion), is good.

You might be tempted to build angels in the second week at your first town. DON'T. the next town you get (d) only has up to elite units available, and you're better off building a decent upgraded army of elites and core by the end of the second week. if you build angels, you won't be able to afford them OR most of the rest of the units at the start of week 3. wait to build angels until you have a full sized and upgraded core and elite unit army. you will have probably found the banner that will boost their growth so you can have a decent stack when you get around to building them (it's near town d) either at the end of week 3 or 4.

FWIW, I found only a single passive stack of crusaders near the starting town, but at 20 strong, it wouldn't even offer to join my pitifully small army, let alone the fact that I doubt I could have afforded them anyway, even with diplomacy. I saw no other standing friendly stacks anywhere near the first two towns; there are some archliches you can get above town A, and oddly they don't seem to detract much from your morale if you combine them with your army. Quite useful. There is a stack of passive light elementals just north of the second town, but again, they won't join unless you already have a decent sized army. Likewise, at the outmost edge of the area to the west of your starting town, there is a stack (17) of "friendly" water elementals, but AGAIN, even with diplomacy, and the diplomacy hat on, they wouldn't join my army of 8 archliches, 20 xbows, sentinels, and vestals, with even a handful of blazing glories! there are also a couple dozen imperial griffins you can get from a barbarian arena, but you also have to fight over 2 dozen (each!) jaguar warriors, upgraded centaurs, AND upgraded cyclops. can't do that one with 3 phoenixes and a handful of core troops :P
So, my point is, don't be counting on free troops joining you to pad your army out early. you won't be able to get them to join until at least week 3 or 4, when you have a decent sized army to intimidate them with. Frankly, I think I've only found diplomacy as a skill useful exactly ONE time, in all of the campaigns, and that was just to reduce the cost for getting the stacks if you rush the last map of the sanctuary campaign. Diplomacy most definitely needs tweaking.



Edited on Sun, Aug 25 2013, 02:46 by Sir_Toejam
Naki at 2012-11-14 19:53 wrote:
Playing this mission in Oct/Nov 2012, with patch version 1.8.0.

Some notes:
1) My 2nd in command was not a "she", but a "he" - maybe because I played as Might Tears. Maybe you should mention that the 2nd hero is not always a "she".

2) I didn't read the walkthrough at first, but tried to play on my own.
I did not go underground, but tried to push west first.
The Hero in Town J was very powerful, and I was only able to beat her by waiting 1-2-3 weeks to get more troops. She could take my Town K, but just went back to her own town instead.
The town she controlled had a lot of troops in it, so I caught her off guard outside the town, when she tried to flag a gold mine, which I cleared the defenders of (but did not take, because if I did, then the mine would become the enemy's).

Using Basic Town Portal + Traveler's Boots (+8 movement) I was able to attack and take the town where most of the troops were left, then beat her easily, since she left most troops in the town.
NOTE: For some reason, there were at least 2 Traveler's Boots on the map, and I got more from the Adv. Marketplace.

3) As someone else noted, the game did not allow me to attack the Necro allies.

4) A bit after the time when my Anton reached the Level 30 cap, I decided to level up my 2nd hero.
There are two Magic Might/Defense boosting buildings on the map (one is underground), so I thought it is better to level up both Anton and the 2nd hero to at least Level 21 first, so that I can get a +3 stat, and not +2 (which you get if your hero is level 20 or lower).

5) Watching out for good deals on Crystal (and maybe the other resources earlier in the mission) in the Advanced Marketplace helped mid-game, since you are short on Crystal then.

6) If you play as Might, you can only use 4 of the 6 parts of the Prophet set.

7) In the Russian version, the Haven Town Town seems to have a name - "Slantich".
Edited on Thu, Nov 15 2012, 15:45 by Naki
sufficiency at 2012-10-11 07:32 wrote:
I played this mission using a Tear Magic Anton. It's so easy that it's boring. Just summon Light Elemental and kill everything.

gsandro1 at 2012-08-02 20:51 wrote:
great walk through thanks

cjlee at 2012-02-16 16:25 wrote:
In my opinion this was by far the weakest mission boss, relative to the army size/ power that any normal player would have accumulated by the time he arrived at the boss fight.
Thoram at 2012-02-07 00:51 wrote:
One stats booster is missing on the map - south of fort O (Armorsmith).
I'm unable to attack the town P from my ally. Something similar also happened to me during the undead campaign, maybe this was patched - don't kill your allies.

CloudRiderX at 2012-01-13 18:25 wrote:
In my campaign the invasion threats were not small at all, but through attrition and some grinding I eventually got some momentum.

A good strategy in games like these is to have a secondary hero with a decent army sit outside one of the enemy towns, forcing a fight in the open field as opposed to a siege. In this map, that allowed Anton to make his way south and conquer without fear of enemies approaching from the capital in the north.
SvartSol at 2012-01-13 03:19 wrote:
Well I don't know if u realize that "pressed attack" does an even greater attack then the heroes normal damage. All I did in this campaign from the start, was giving her the phoenix "since she is magic". And Anton walking around with mass range units. I split them up, into 3-4 stacks. Then I waited the first round, until someone got good moral. Then "pressed attack" and killed two units straight, three if Im lucky (depending if the range unit got cleave or not (getting the last hit))

maltz at 2011-12-21 15:56 wrote:
Recently I have heard quite a few comments about the difficulty of this mission.

While I still think the order of conquest suggested in the walkthrough is quite optimized, at the time of writing this I did not realize that Arache is bugged and drains a lot more than 15% of the damage dealt. So I must have underestimated the difficulty of this mission for people who did not have Arache (or choose not to use it due to its bugged status).
RollingWave at 2011-12-04 16:43 wrote:
They probably shoulda just given all the neutral forts to the enemy factions, that might have actually made it interesting, this one was setup well but endedup being blah after the early stages, the AI's calculation methods are meh so far in the game, it woulda been epic if they had all the towns and the Necro Faction actually did something.

Also, I did have Orange attack me in this one, if you leave your town empty and stray far enough they will try to come up and attack, and they do try to retake their lost towns . if only Red was given more resource to work with and/or scripted better on judging how large an army to send (relative to your strength better).

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