Walkthroughs


Create Armageddon’s Blade to win the scenario. If Xeron is defeated in combat the scenario is lost. Xeron will be allowed to advance to 24th level and carry over his experience, skills, and spells to his next scenario CAUTION: you will be playing against your Xeron build in his next scenario.

Starting Bonus: 5 Pit Lords or Loins of Legion or Upgraded Kennels

AB Maker of Sorrows MarkedAB Maker of Sorrows Underworld Marked
Click on a map to see a larger version.

Green - Friendly Town
Red - Enemy Town
Grey - Neutral Town
Yellow - Underground Passage
A# - Allied Towns
O# - Opponent Towns (a,b,c,d,e,f,g indicates which enemy)
N# - Neutral Towns
M# - Mirror Entrances (a) and exits (b). two-way unless stated
E# - Exit (a) entrance and (b) exit
S# - Seer (a) and the location of the item (b)
G# - Guard Tents (a) and the location of the Guard Tower (b)
J - Jail
X - Ambush

Starting Out

The enemy has six cities to your four, but the starting enemy heroes are weaker than your starting heroes and you start with better armies and better built cities. As in the previous scenario your territory is rich in resources and external dwellings. I recommend an aggressive building program followed by a multi-hero assault on enemy territory in late week 2 or early week 3.

All three of the bonuses are useful, but the Loins are significantly slower than the other options. I recommend the Pit Lords if you plan to farm your Hell Hounds into Demons, or the Upgraded Kennels if you prefer to have Cerberi.

In addition to Xeron, you start with Rashka, Calid, and a random Inferno hero all at level 12. It may be worth restarting until you like your 4th hero and your skills. Rashka usually has Expert Scholar and Wisdom, enabling him to pick up Xeron’s L1-4 spells and transfer them to your other heroes.

 All four of your cities have Castle Gates for easy movement of heroes and troops around your area.

 

First Week

Rashka should buy a spellbook, visit Xeron to learn spells, and then visit your other two heroes to distribute them (your 4th hero may also need to purchase a spellbook). This can also be used to rearrange your troops. I recommend building a Marketplace in Scorch (A4) and a Blacksmith in Dagger Peak (A3), and hiring a hero from the Tavern. Have Rashka buy the 2 Efreets in Scorch and visit the other heroes. Xeron should end up with the 2 Efreets, your 4th hero should get the Pit Lords, Demons, Hell Hounds/Cerberi, and Magogs, and Calid should get the Pit Fiends, Gogs, and Imps.

Xeron should gate to Scorch and move along the orange path flagging mines. Your 4th hero should kill the Air Elementals guarding the large pile of resources east of Dagger Peak, then head north to flag mines, take out a Fire Elemental stack guarding some artifacts, and then continue north to flag the Demon Gate, Fire Lake, and Hell Hole. Send your tavern hero to grab the resources and artifacts that the 4th hero opens up, then have them head south towards the unguarded large pile of resources southeast of Dagger Peak.

Calid should move along the yellow path flagging mines. Have him focus on the mines and ignore everything else, and plan to hire another hero from the Tavern to follow behind picking up resources and flagging the Windmill and the various dwellings.

After distributing troops, Rashka should grab the treasure chest near Vandal Hall (A2) and then plan to buy the Devil in Scorch. This purchase may need to wait until day 2. Once he has the Devil, send him back to Vandal Hall and flag the ore pit and sawmill on the red path and grab the nearby wood piles.

If Xeron has Dimension Door or Fly, consider bypassing the big Psychic Elemental stack southwest of Azrael Field and flagging the Forsaken Palace with the help of some spells to take out the Devils. Otherwise, he and Rashka can flag the mines and dwellings between Dagger Peak and Scorch.

These paths are set up to earn you enough wood and gold to build a City Hall in Dagger Peak day 2 along with a Blacksmith in Scorch and a Marketplace in Azrael Field (A1), followed by a City Hall in Scorch on day 3 plus a Blacksmith in Azrael Field so you can finish building City Halls by day 4, giving you a strong economy to fund troop purchases.

To bolster your army you want Citadels in Vandal Hall and Scorch and Fire Lakes in Vandal Hall and Dagger Peak by the end of the week. If possible, also build a Citadel in Dagger Peak and a Castle in Scorch. When you have enough wood get a Marketplace in Vandal Hall, and consider a Kennels in Scorch. Extra gold can be invested into Hell Holes and Cages. When planning, know that you will lose 4 wood, 4 ore, 2 of each of the rare resources, and 2000 gold at the start of day 6.

 

Second Week

Plan to upgrade the Fire Lake and Hell Hole in Vandal Hall. Buy all the Efreets and upgrade them to Efreet Sultans and buy the Devil(s) in Scorch. Pool your armies and artifacts to take out the Psychic Elementals and flag the Forsaken Palace if needed, then prepare to invade enemy territory.

Give Xeron the Devils and Efreet Sultans and send him along the dark blue path. Try to scout to see if the Equestrian Gloves are still available on the southern branch—they’re well worth the slight detour if the AI hasn’t found them yet.

Pick another hero to take the rest of your troops plus whatever reinforcements you can afford along the purple path - O6a starts with a Magic University so this hero will have an easy chance to pick up whatever magic skills you want. O4a and O5a start with L3 Mage Guilds, making them good candidates to search for key level 4 spells.

Once you’ve bought your troops, build priorities are a Fire Lake in Azrael Field and Citadels wherever needed. Try to build a Forsaken Palace in Vandal Hall, and build Castles in Scorch and Vandal Hall. In Conflux towns I recommend only building up the mage guilds, with the exception of O2a which is worth full development since it’s the only town that can build Firebirds.

Week Three and Beyond

Your first two invading armies should be capable of sweeping away any resistance the AI can muster in the first month without reinforcements, so plan to have one of your other high level heroes pick up the third week’s Efreets and Devils and invade along the light blue path. You may need to send a fourth hero with your new Gogs/Pit Lords/Demons to help hold the central territory while your first two heroes push westward. After you take over the six enemy towns, focus on exposing the map and hunting down any stray heroes. You can’t defeat the enemy thanks to the inaccessible O7a, but that city only exists to ensure the guard on S1a sticks around if you take over the other towns. Once the overworld is clear of enemy presence you can relax and take the rest of the map at your leisure.

G1a is needed to access the underground gate. G2a, G3a, G4a, and G5a are all needed to access S1a and G6a. The enemy hero guarding S1a has a very powerful army including 25 Phoenixes, 35 Magic Elementals, and hundreds of lower level troops. S1a will ask for 30000 gold in return for a Sphere of Permanence. Take this along with the Sword of Hellfire, Breastplate of Brimstone, and Shield of the Damned past O6b to S2a to build Armageddon’s Blade and win the map.

 

Alternate Plans

It is possible to sideline Xeron if you want to avoid building him up.  Have Rashka take over Xeron’s role (and his artifacts!), a tavern hero take on Rashka’s role, and use Xeron as one of your side heroes picking up resources. It’s also possible to win with an immediate breakthrough of the mid or south garrisons (the north garrison has a much stronger guard) and invasion of enemy territory, but the lack of strong following heroes can make it difficult to contain the enemy heroes.


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Gather the Sword of Hellfire, Breastplate of Brimstone, and Shield of the Damned to win the scenario. However, if Xeron is defeated in combat the scenario is lost. Xeron will be allowed to advance to 12th level and carry over his experience, skills, and spells to his next scenario.

Starting Bonus: Speculum or Equestrian’s Gloves or Necklace of Swiftness

AB Seeking Armaggeddon MarkedClick on a map to see a larger version.


Green - Friendly Town
Red - Enemy Town
Grey - Neutral Town
Yellow - Underground Passage
A# - Allied Towns
O# - Opponent Towns (a,b,c,d,e,f,g indicates which enemy)
N# - Neutral Towns
M# - Mirror Entrances (a) and exits (b). two-way unless stated
E# - Exit (a) entrance and (b) exit
S# - Seer (a) and the location of the item (b)
G# - Guard Tents (a) and the location of the Guard Tower (b)
J - Jail
X - Ambush

Starting Out

The enemy has four cities to your three, and starts with three heroes that are too strong for your starting army to handle. Fortunately, these heroes are guarding the three artifacts you need to win the scenario (behind the G2b guards underlined in red) and they cannot stray too far from them for at least the first month. Your territory has a wealth of mines and external dwellings that can allow you to keep up with early enemy production.

The bonus choice is a close call between the Equestrian’s Gloves or the Necklace of Swiftness. I recommend the Necklace because it boosts Cerberi to speed 10 on native ground. This is a major tactical advantage against the many swarms of Sprites infesting your territory.

Xeron can be built up in this map to make the next map easier, but it may be worthwhile to avoid building him up since you will fight against your Xeron build in the last two maps of this campaign. If you decide to build him up I recommend trying for Expert Wisdom by level 12 since the map offers 7 chances at good level 5 spells. It may be worth restarting until you like the skills that Xeron and Ash begin with.

Note that your three cities all begin with Castle Gates so you can easily shuttle heroes and troops between the three locations.

First Leg

Start by having your heroes visit the towns to pool their armies and to learn spells from the mage guilds. Upgrade the Kennels in Blackpool (A3), buy all of the Hellhounds and Cerberi in your towns, upgrade these plus your starting Hellhounds to Cerberi, and give all of your Cerberi and Devils to your main hero along with your bonus artifact. This hero should move along the blue path, clearing the way for a scout hero to tag G1a and then claim the gold mine behind the eastern G1b. Have another scout hero depart from Havoc Peak (A2) to pick up the resources behind the western G1b.

Buy a fifth hero in Mourningdale, buy as many Gogs as you can afford, and take the rest of your troops along the purple path to claim two Hell Holes and a Forsaken Palace. Have the last hero follow them to flag the Sawmill then split off on the yellow path to grab the loose gold piles. Have the purple hero move to the yellow hero and hand over the troops to ensure you capture the Fire Lake during the first week. If you kept your losses to a minimum, the purple hero can keep the Pit Fiends, half of the Gogs, and some Imps, and use them to clear the lightly guarded mines circled on the map while leaving enough for the other hero to take the Fire Lake. Your main hero should prioritize at least one Sulfur Mine after finishing the blue path.  

  • Build priorities in week 1: City Halls in Havoc Peak (A2) and Mourningdale (A1), a Citadel and Fire Lake in Blackpool, a Hell Hole and Citadel in Mourningdale, and Cages in all three towns. If you have sufficient resources (mainly Ore) try to build a Fire Lake in Mourningdale and a Citadel in Havoc Peak.
  • Build priorities in week 2: finish building Citadels and Fire Lakes everywhere, plus a Resource Silo, Castle, and Forsaken Palace in Blackpool.

Second Leg

In week 3 (or week 4 at the latest), upgrade the Fire Lake in Blackpool, upgrade all of your Efreets to Efreet Sultans, and give your Gogs, Cerberi, Efreet Sultans, Devils, and whatever other troops you can afford to your main hero. You should be strong enough to take out Fiur and claim O1a and O2a along the green path. Have a secondary hero grab the Shield of the Damned for your main hero. O1a has a Magic University built; I recommend using it to teach Earth Magic to your main hero.

Erdamon hangs out near the Breastplate of Brimstone a little north-west of O2a. If your losses so far have been minimal you can challenge him straight away. Otherwise you can resupply from the Conflux towns and/or have your secondary heroes bring some reinforcements before you attack him. He carries a Tome of Earth Magic that can let you easily resupply with Town Portal if you have Advanced Earth Magic. If necessary you can use G3a to pass G3b to reach G4a so you can access the massive pile of resources behind G4b.

Finishing Up

If you don’t plan to build up Xeron at all, you can strike directly towards the final G2b (guarded by Ciele) and grab the Sword of Hellfire to win the map. It is not necessary to have the artifacts together or to have them on Xeron. As soon as any of your heroes picks up the third artifact the map ends—unless one or more of the artifacts is held by a hero in a town garrison, in which case the scenario ends when you end a turn with all three artifacts on non-garrison heroes. If you do want to build up it is easiest to take out Tan entirely, which gives you 7 mage guilds that can all be built to level 5. Leave an artifact on the ground (or in a garrison) until you are ready to end the map.

Even if you plan to leave Xeron weak it may be worthwhile to build him to Advanced Wisdom and to build L4 mage guilds everywhere. One of the fixed heroes on the next map has excellent chances to start with Expert Scholar and Advanced Wisdom, allowing them to learn the spells from Xeron and teach them to your other starting heroes.


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Defeat all your enemies to win the scenario. However, if Gelu is defeated in combat the scenario is lost.  Gelu will be allowed to advance to 12th level and carry over his experience, skills, and spells into his next scenario.

Starting bonus: 20 Marksmen or 15 Grand Elves or 10 Sharpshooters.

AB Shadows of the Forest MarkedClick on a map to see a larger version.

Green - Friendly Town
Red - Enemy Town
Grey - Neutral Town
Yellow - Underground Passage
A# - Allied Towns
O# - Opponent Towns (a,b,c,d,e,f,g indicates which enemy)
N# - Neutral Towns
M# - Mirror Entrances (a) and exits (b). two-way unless stated
E# - Exit (a) entrance and (b) exit
S# - Seer (a) and the location of the item (b)
G# - Guard Tents (a) and the location of the Guard Tower (b)
J - Jail
X - Ambush

Starting Out

I recommend you take the 10 Sharpshooters.  The other options are weaker until you have enough gold for Gelu to convert them into Sharpshooters (5000 for the Marksmen, 2625 for the Grand Elves), and it is difficult to accumulate that gold without compromise in other areas.  Gold is such a scarce resource on this map that I recommend taking gold from all Treasure Chests.

Try to get Gelu to expert Wisdom since six of the seven towns on this map can build a level 5 Mage Guild.  Gelu can only learn one new skill besides Wisdom if you want to ensure this happens by level 12.

The map has numerous Scholars.  Most of these give extra stats so you should try to visit them with Gelu.  The one north of A1 teaches Luck and the one northwest of O3a teaches Pathfinding.  I recommend avoiding these Scholars with Gelu; neither skill is very valuable in this campaign.

First Leg

You start with one town to the enemy’s four, and your town is more restricted in its max development than any of the enemy towns.  Enemy territory also has more mines, better artifacts, and plenty of loose resources.  Therefore you must make a timely push into enemy territory or you will be overwhelmed by the enemy’s superior production.

To your advantage, your starting town is nicely built up and you have access to a powerful starting army.  Send Gelu directly to town, picking up the 30 Elves.  Move the 60 Elves off of Gelu into the town garrison so you can upgrade them to Grand Elves, buy a Spellbook for Gelu, and recruit another hero.  Upgrade that hero’s troops and have them pick up the Archers, Marksmen, Sharpshooters, and Grand Elves to save Gelu’s movement.

I recommend splitting these troops as follows:  Gelu keeps 20 Silver Pegasi, 10 Sharpshooters, and 60 Grand Elves, and is given the 30 Archers and 20 Sharpshooters picked up on the map.  Gelu should upgrade the 30 Archers to Sharpshooters for 9000 gold.  The 2nd hero keeps 10 Grand Elves, 20 Marksmen, and whatever troops they started with.  This gives Gelu an army strong enough to defeat almost anything on the map with minimal losses (split the Grand Elf and Marksmen stacks for extra flexibility), and the 2nd hero an army strong enough to clear the starting area.

Send Gelu down the blue path through the garrison to pick up the Boots of Speed (blue circle) while the 2nd hero uses the yellow path to flag the Sawmill and Ore Pit.  Gelu’s next objective is to capture O2a while the 2nd hero breaks into the area north of A1.  Hire a 3rd hero in O2a, leave their troops in the city garrison for a little protection, and send them to the nearby Cartographer (green circle) to expose the map.

Building priorities are to get a City Hall in A1 and to build a Citadel, Demon Gate, and Hell Hole or Fire Lake in O2a
 

Second Leg

With full knowledge of enemy hero locations and the movement boost from Boots of Speed, Gelu should be able to capture O1a and O3a while killing off enemy heroes.  Hire some extra heroes to pick up loose resources, flag mines, and defend your towns.  A secondary army assembled from your Inferno towns and/or your initial town can help with cornering any remaining enemy heroes.  Once this is done use the secondary army to trap the enemy in O4a.

Finishing Up

With the map under control you are free to level up Gelu, visit places of learning to increase his stats, and build up your mage guilds to teach him powerful spells.  Be sure to build Orders of Fire in all of your Inferno towns for extra Spell Power.  Have secondary heroes visit the Witch’s Huts to see if any of them teach skills you want to learn with Gelu, and consider building a Magic University in N2 to teach Earth, Air, and/or Water Magic to Gelu.  Once you are satisfied with your Gelu, take O4a to win the map.


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Defeat all your enemies to win the scenario. However, if Catherine is defeated in combat the scenario is lost. Catherine will be allowed to advance to 18th level and carry over her experience, skills, and spells into her next scenario.

Starting bonus: 30 Pikeman or 20 Archers or 8 Griffins.

AB Catherines Charge MarkedClick on a map to see a larger version.

Green - Friendly Town
Red - Enemy Town
Grey - Neutral Town
Yellow - Underground Passage
A# - Allied Towns
O# - Opponent Towns (a,b,c,d,e,f,g indicates which enemy)
N# - Neutral Towns
M# - Mirror Entrances (a) and exits (b). two-way unless stated
E# - Exit (a) entrance and (b) exit
S# - Seer (a) and the location of the item (b)
G# - Guard Tents (a) and the location of the Guard Tower (b)
J - Jail
X - Ambush

Starting Out

Catherine starts at level 12 with 5-8 skills learned. She will always know Archery, Logistics, Diplomacy, and Leadership. Ballistics, Offense, and Estates are common 5th/6th skills and I have occasionally seen her start with various other skills including Wisdom, Armorer, and First Aid. It is probably worth restarting the scenario until you have a Catherine without First Aid and with the capability to have both Wisdom and at least one school of magic. The Conflux towns can build Magic Universities so you can pick up the school of your choice. If possible, try to get Catherine to Expert Wisdom so she can benefit from the L5 mage guilds in the Inferno towns.

Sorsha and Cuthbert start at level 4, but their starting skills are far less important than Catherine’s.

I recommend taking the 20 Archers for your bonus. They offer the strongest contribution to your starting army. Both you and the enemy start with powerful heroes, three moderately developed towns, and substantial numbers of troops. The enemy will almost certainly capture two of the neutral towns on their first turn putting you at a disadvantage until you claim at least one for yourself.

First Leg

All three of your heroes should visit their starting towns. Catherine and Sorsha should buy spellbooks, Sorsha should pick up the 50 Crusaders in Pandathalyn (A3), and Cuthbert should pick up the 100 Marksmen in Marshallston (A1). Now it’s time to invest the rest of your starting gold. I recommend upgrading Catherine’s Archers to Marksmen and having Catherine clear the Familiars to her southwest, the Horned Demons near her starting position, and move towards the Imps to her east. Hire another hero from the Tavern in Defiance (A2), leaving a Castle hero for Cuthbert, and have that hero go where the Familiars were to pick up the three Treasure Chests for gold, the Bow of Elven Cherrywood, and the Bowstring of the Unicorn. If you avoid picking up anything else here (for now) except what is necessary to reach the Chests/artifacts, this hero will be able to deliver the artifacts to Catherine at the start of her second turn.

Sorsha does not need to hire or upgrade any troops. The 50 Crusaders are easily capable of clearing everything in her starting area except the large Efreet stack guarding a treasure horde. In Marshallston, hire the starting Castle hero from the Tavern, give their troops to Cuthbert, and have them visit the Redwood Observatory. If possible (it will depend on the Treasure Chests), buy a City Hall in Pandathalyn and a Marketplace in Marshallston, and then spend any remaining gold on upgrading Cuthbert’s starting archers to Marksmen and hiring additional Marksmen and Griffins from Marshallston. Sorsha and Cuthbert can start clearing their areas while Catherine heads east and south to capture Goldenton (N3) and track down Olema, who has the strongest enemy starting army. Goldenton is a good place to upgrade Catherine’s Swordsmen to Crusaders.

I recommend giving Cuthbert reinforcements because Fiona is likely to invade his area before the end of the first week unless Catherine is able to quickly come north (this depends on what Olema does). His 100 Marksmen alone are too vulnerable to defeat Fiona, but he can win handily if they are supported by the troops you can recruit from Marshallston and the surrounding dwellings. Use his extra hero to help with flagging dwellings and transporting troops around.

If Catherine can quickly defeat Olema she can head north to help capture Endelstadt (N2). Otherwise she should stay in the Goldenton area and Cuthbert should prep to make a push on Endelstadt in early week two after receiving reinforcements from Marshallston. Building priorities are to get City Halls wherever you can and Citadels in Marshallston and Pandathalyn. It is possible to purchase a Portal of Glory in Defiance in week 1, but I recommend waiting until week 2 for that. Instead, build a Castle, Stables, and Training Grounds in Marshallston and save some gold to maximize Cuthbert’s week 2 army.

Second Leg

Once you control all five Castle towns you can relax somewhat: you are out producing the enemy and the two central towns naturally guard the main routes across the map. Send scouts to explore, pick up treasures and flag dwellings, and try to get some visibility on the northern passage so an enemy army can’t sneak across to Marshallston. The southern passage isn’t a problem since enemy heroes going that route have to pass near Goldenton to reach Pandathalyn. Use secondary heroes to shuttle troops from your starting towns to your main heroes and the forward Castles.

If you’ve preserved a decent amount of your starting armies and destroyed the enemy starting armies I recommend hiring reinforcements from Endelstadt and Goldenton and making an immediate push into enemy territory with Catherine and either Cuthbert or Sorsha wielding their combined armies. Two week’s worth of Inferno troops can’t stand up to dozens of Crusaders and Marksmen backed up by substantial numbers of Pikemen/Halberdiers, Cavaliers/Champions, Royal Griffins and maybe Zealots. Otherwise, consolidate your side of the map and work on flagging mines, and consider invading Nothenden (N1), Southerdale (N4), or defeating the Efreets near Pandathalyn to access the substantial treasure horde they are guarding. The combined growth from 3-4 towns over a couple of weeks should build up a strong force you can use to invade by week 3 or 4. All three of the Inferno towns start with the same development so the order you attack them is a matter of convenience.

Finishing Up

To build up Catherine for later maps in this campaign I recommend trapping the enemy in O2a. A hero positioned in front of that town completely blocks enemy heroes from exiting, making it safe for secondary heroes to deliver reinforcements to ensure the enemy stays trapped. Catherine is now free to visit stat boosting buildings (make sure to visit the Library of Enlightenment), pick up Earth Magic from the Conflux towns, and build up and visit all of your Castle and Inferno mage guilds for powerful spells (the Conflux guilds are limited to level 1). If Catherine is still short of level 18 she can visit the Tree of Knowledge and Altar of Sacrifice. When you’re ready, conquer E2 to win the map or, if you’re daring, let an enemy hero out so Catherine can get another +1 Power from the Order of Fire and one more chance at a good level 5 spell before you finish them off.


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You begin in an area with so much stuff lying around that I suggest you take a minute to look it over, before deciding where to go first. There are free armies who will join you, so perhaps seek them out first? There are also several dwellings and boosters. Then there are people around for you to talk to; start by the town and then you can find Lasir to the northeast and Jorgen to the northwest.

Your starting area.

After talking to Jorgen, move underneath the structure you saw in the cutscene and head into the Underground. Don't cross the bridge, though, come back up when the river quest is done. There is also an obelisk to the north of your town. Anastasya is near, and she will join your cause. She should move to the mass grave just north of her position, and click it twice to get free creatures of the death persuation. After this, all you have to do is send her around fighting easy stacks of neutrals, and her army grows (as long as you don't lose too many).

 

Once you got your bearings and started clearing out the area, it's time to have a look at the quests. The main quest is to take the city of Horncrest and defeat Wilhelm there. A couple of turns into the map, a new hero (Andras) joins you, and his mission is basically to flag the 10 mines in the southeastern part of the map. The challenge here is troop conservation, as his armies do not grow like Anastasya's; nor can you get reinforcements from towns. If you waste troops, you won't be able to kill all the neutrals guarding the mines. It's hard, but Andras has lots of defence and pretty good in-combat warcries that you can use to their full potential. The centaurs in particular kick so much butt. I made a bold call and went for one of the hardest battles first - against the hero Cailean, because of the items he is guarding. Those really help. Another trick is the Altar of Arkath nearby; it opens a seal so that you can find creatures willing to join you. After the 10 mines have been flagged, move through the once-sealed passages to fire the catapults. You can take your time with this. Once he's done with that, have him move to the southern area (go west and then around the mountain), to find a big stack of neutrals who will join him. He can use that to punch through the garrison to the west when all the seals are open. Then he can move in on the enemy territories from the south. (Basically, he's so strong that you can use Andras to fight Wilhelm at this point, possibly even win the map, so if you're in a hurry to finish, I guess you can try just attacking Wilhelm with him).

 

In the area to the southeast of your first town, there is another mass grave for Anastasya, and several other boosters and things. Use her to clean up there. The Altar of Elrath is also there, just north of the bridge. Visiting that enables you to pick up several free dragons for your army - one stack north of the northern bridge and one down in the southeastern section. It also allows Andras to punch through the garrison I mentioned.

 

East of your town is another town. Cross the northernmost bridge to find it, and then take it. There is also an obelisk right to the west of it. Once you have two towns, start building them for more creature growth. Do start fortifying too, as heroes will attack your eastern town regularly, popping out of a one-way portal nearby. You can just see it in this image, near the top left corner.

Your second town.

From this town, you can move north across a bridge. When you do, you can see the red pillar controlling the dyke. Move around the mountain and fight your way through neutrals and an enemy fort.

The area north of your second town.

If you keep going north and west, there is another mass grave here for Annie to play with and complete her side quest. Go to the red pillar and manipulate it, lowering the river so you can ford it and get to the other side. This is one way to access the enemy's lands and open up for an attack on his main cities. Another way is that of Andras, and the other two are in the Underground:

 

When you have fortified both towns and have heroes with armies defending the eastern one, send Ivan into the Underground with a big army. Take on those hydras across the bridge. Then visit the Altar of Malassa.

The underground Altar of Malassa.

I was lucky here; there was a random effect this week that prevented any creatures from retaliating in battle (“week of cessation”). If you ever get one of those, act fast and go for the biggest battles you can. At this point I was fighting 3.000 skeletons at once down there, so a really big army was needed. I had Ivan lead the way and Anastasya tag along while another hero defended the eastern city. Take the Dragon Utopia and keep moving east. Follow the path until you meet the “blades”. Go through here and move upstairs, and you will come within striking distance of your enemy. Walk along a loooong windy winter path and you end up in the same place you would if you forded the river: at the gates of your enemy's town. Wilhelm sits right outside Horncrest:

Horncrest

Andras can also access this area since, as you can see from the image above, there are several ways in. You could choose another path (or both) too: instead of going east near the underground utopia building, go west. When you move upstairs, open the seals and move south, getting free creatures and boosters along the way. Moving east, there is a fort you can take, and if you move south from there, you are once again in front of the enemy city of Horncrest. This is where you'll find Wilhelm, so go in and kill him and take the town. You now have three towns, yay. So where is Seamus?

 

Oh, he's around. There is a small gate in the eastern part of the courtyard outside Horncrest, and from there you can access the path north into the mountains.

The seat of your enemy.

Seamus has a decent army and he's level 30 in a fully fortified town, so you can't walse in with just a half-dozen dragons, but at this point, I had 1600 marksmen, 2000 legionnaires, 450 abbots and hundreds and hundreds of other units, so he didn't really stand a chance. Basically, his numbers were in the hundreds and mine were in the thousands. Mr. S had no hope.

Seamus dies.

Once the battle is over, the map - and the game - ends. Ivan's story is one of a self-made man, who makes his own decisions and writes his own story. The councillors all gave their advice and as Ivan at last figured out: it was not up to any other factions or dragons to decide how the story would end. Just him.


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Welcome to the main campaign, the story of Ivan.

 

Ivan is a diplomat.Here's a little about Ivan: he is a typical leader and strategist - he is skilled in Diplomacy, and you should build that skill further and keep an eye out for creatures who will join you. If you run into some creatures who will join for a price you can't afford, just save up money and come back later. Ivan doesn't have much magic to speak of, but you can get some Light or Prime if you need it. Mostly, though, Ivan is about boosting the strength of his army. Keep that in mind when choosing which items to carry. Build Economy and Leadership. Also, in your town, build the Embassy quickly, to get more creatures joining you. Last thing: remember to appoint Ivan as governor of your town if you're getting governor skills (which you should).

 

Remember what I said in the Haven walkthrough: the strength of this faction lies in conserving troops, sustaining low losses by having high defense, using healing or resurrection abilities and the like. You can win quite easily if you use those skills correctly.

 

You start out on level 10, with a slightly built town and some creatures. The mission is to talk to your advisors (as if they haven't spent enough time sitting around that table already); you can start with Anastasya, since she is right next to you. Once you do, a portal is opened north of town. Kente (who can apparently mend bridges simply by having a conversation) is just to the west, so chat with him too. Then clear the area an claim the mines north of your town to get a steady income of wood, ore and gold.

 

Your starting area.

The portal leads to a small area in the Underground, feel free to visit it any time. You get a quest: finding the pieces of an old sword. Another piece lies to the west of your town.

 

When you have cleared out your area, you should bring some creatures and move through the garrison to the north. Clear the area, flagging mines and visiting boosters. To the north is a gold dragon for you to talk to; he gives you a quest: destroy the evil hydras further north. You need a sizeable army to do that, so you may have to go back home. Also, remember that the Dark Hydra has life drain, so it just keeps on fighting … Do several trips if you need to, there's no rush. I'd take the left stack first, since it's guarding an artifact that gives you +8 defense. Afterwards, talk to the dragons again to complete the quest. There's a chance they'll join you, so check if you can talk to them a third time.

 

Just to the west is Murazel, ready for a talk. Once you visit her, you get some free creatures and another piece of the sword. North of her is a stack of neutrals you can only reach if you manipulate the bridge; the prize is a purse giving you +250 gold/day, but if you go for it, remember to swap items in the inventory before each fight, since it occupies the same slot as that all-important shield (and you can't recruit more heroes yet to carry the purse for you). Continue moving northwards and near the river you will find your buddy Lasir. Let's go say hi!

 

Lasir's place

Well, that did a lot of good. Darned elves. Well, I guess his tip of a fishing trip may hold something of value anyway. Oh, who's this? Wilhelm? Here? And he says Seamus is willing to admit defeat? Somehow I don't quite believe him …

 

After you have visited everything in the northern territories, bring a big army, prepare for combat and go through those newly opened doors. Yeah, that marriage deal did sound a little bit too good to be true. Vayaron is the blade Seamus wields here, but if you brought an army worth mentioning, he shouldn't stay in your way for long. Kill him until he dies from it.

Behind the gates.

 

After this whole affair, Anastasya joins your cause as a playable hero. She's a pretty strong hero, so give her a decent Haven army (ditch those necro creatures) and you'll have a real second force at your disposal. Visit the Altar of Sylanna on the hilltop; that can get you into the areas blocked by the green seals. Those Stag duchy heroes roaming around are now no longer allies but enemies. Time to go hunting. Kill all the enemies you come across, take their forts and … you know. Rule your lands. I sent Ivan out with the main army while using Anastasya to keep the home areas secure. With Ivan, I went straight for the jugular: attacking the town of Caer Griobta (it lies to the north of your starting position). Once you have taken it, start building it for more creature growth. Just next to the town is a green seal (which you can open). Go through it and don't listen to Amilcar, keep going. Head across the bridge and flag the dwelling, then take the boat to the small island, where you will find another sword piece. Further north still is a building with a cool illusion around it. Move up to it and Ivan will say that he now understands Tanis' story. Pick up the last sword piece and attack the prison tower. This time, your Dungeon opponents have more of an army to resist you with:

Fighting the dungeon masters.

They're fortified, but vulnerable to low morale, so take out their ranged stacks asap. You have fliers, so use them. The dragons that joined me earlier really come in handy here: I gave it “inner fire” and it took out three stacks in one breath. Dragons rule.

 

When you have won, go back down the hill and talk to Murazel. Then Nolwenn joins your cause too. She's pretty pissed at her dad, guess that'll happen when you try to kill your daughter. I sent her on a trip to gain levels and visit boosters. Ivan needs only go straight into the Underground via the passage right next to Murazel, and once he's down there, the last sword piece is to the south. While Ivan was down there, I moved Anastasya into the Stag lands in the northwest and took the third town. Their forces defeated, that ends the “Stag hunt” quest.

The memorial site.

As Ivan cleared the areas in the Underground, I proceeded to take him to the memorial site: Nice sword. Beware not to continue too far further northwest with the wrong hero, that will take you into the Bull duchy and more strong enemies that may attack you.

 

The quest is to send Nolwenn to see the Bulls. You know, to show she's alive 'n all that. You don't have to move through the garrison, just use the Underground. Move Nolwenn close to the town (leave a slot open in her army if you want the Seraphim to join you), and there's another cutscene.

 

 

At this point you actually get to make a choice in the campaign: who to marry. If you let your heart rule, you choose your concillor Tanis, the one you love. If you want to make the strategic and brainy choice, you choose Nolwenn, who will solidify the relationship between the two strongest duchies and consolidate your power. Whichever choice you make, it does not have any serious gameplay effects; you will still win the map. The one you choose will carry over to the next map.


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