Sirhatter’s White Guide

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Originally Written by Sirhatter

  • This guide was written during the Era of Archmage and some content may not be fully applicable to The Reincarnation


Contents

Preface

So, as I forever leave Terra as a white. I come to offer a few thoughts that hopefully you all can use, and to dispel a few myths that are running around here. This will take some time to read, but it is worth it if you are not in the top ranks, and are not doing as well as you'd like.

I didn't come to white totally as a new player. I had fooled around with it before for part of a reset to test the effects of love and peace and a few other spells (largely bless and a few others)

I also had been able to get some white strategy off of my mentor Bale, who is truly an awesome player, and could hall with nearly any color, any server, any time. (and he's almost as cocky as me :P)

Myths Regarding Ascendants

The first myth I want to dispel, is that white cant play offense, and is purely a defensive color only. To some degree, this is true, and perhaps for a new player, he will find defense easier than offense. However, just as the best defense is an unbeatable offense, i think the reverse has some truth to it too. BECAUSE of its defensive capabilities, white is a superior color to play with for offense, ESPECIALLY on apprentice.

I, however, have always been of the opinion that unless you want to get really good, you need a Kickbutt offense before anything else. You don't learn great defense by playing in the 2500 range all reset. You don't learn good turn management, and you wont hall if you cant gain acres rapidly.

That being said, this will teach you how to reach that level, and hopefully, as you learn, and read from others, your defense will develop too.

One last word of advice. This is what worked for me. Don't necessarily be a copycat. There are dozens of mages who tried to copycat orpheus, and to this day i can think of only one mage who does an ok job of being orpheus aside from orpheus. To some degree you need to find what works for you and stick with it. If you are failing at what youre doing, change it. This is what i was finding to work for me, and it isn't "THE" way to play Archmage per se. It is my way, and it was effective for me. I do think, it will be effective for a lot of players tho. While a pure whatever strategy sounds simple, in reality it isn't, and requires perfect resource management to pull off well.

At the same time, i think this can work well for many players.

My strategy has some turn management difficulties, but after that it is relatively easy, versatile and forgiving, making it suit even a newbie well i would hope.

Good luck to you in your attempts to restore white to its place on this server.

Land Allocation

Right now, there are a sad lack of whites high up, because it is supposedly a weak color. This is also untrue. let us begin and assume you have about 2000 acres, and are not set up for any type of offensive strategy.

The first thing you will want to do is reallocate your land. I play with 35-40% nodes, 2.5% bars (yes that is full). 10 forts or fewer (sometimes too few =P), at LEAST 10% barracks, a few guilds to hopefully make an item or two, and then a farm-town ratio of around 2.2-1.

this would leave you about... lets say:
800 nodes
50 bars
10 forts
220 barracks
20 guilds
660 farms
260 towns

try to rearrange your kingdom into something kind of close to those ratios. balance your geld and mana appropriately. ALWAYS keep on concentration, and protection from evil. higher up weather summoning is very good, and so is mindbar past 5k land.

once you are done, set up an army however you like. try to keep at least 30k troops or more tho. log off until you're at least at 110 turns. Anything less you're playing with fire, and will slow down your climb considerably. Always being able to play in around 120 turns and not wasting turns is the first step to dominating this game. If you don't know that by now, learn it. If you still don't understand that concept, then you'll never be good.

Now you are logged back in. maybe taken a hit or 3. first thing to do is check your Status Report. hopefully you have some mana to play with, and some troops to attack with. if you are attacking, now is a good time to decide what color you will want to primarily hit... for now lets say you will hit everything that moves (which low down is fine). start recruiting either high priests or paladins. recruit about 30 turns worth. They come kind of slowly, but thats fine.

LOW DOWN STRATEGY... Your first true run

Start attacking. find a ranklister (yes i know thats supposedly against the Decalogue), or do random arena archmages of 2-3 letter strings or if you want to take turns and gradually open rank windows thats fine. do whatever it takes. I've used all 3 tactics, and if you're lazy the best way to go is to make/find a ranklister. The other two work just as well tho. Get a list, and hit the following:

Whites (only if you know they are troopless or over 3.5% forts)

Greens (only if you know their stackings or they are over 3% forts or troopless or REALLY FAT)

Fat Blues

Moderate-fat Blacks, and the occasional thin one with hi forts

middle of the road Reds.

In all cases, a person with over 2% forts is really stupid, and asking to be hit, unless they are in geddon. Aside from the massive geld upkeep, forts are 20k np. 50 forts is a million net power. Power is good right? WRONG!

heres a question. would you rather defend a country with: 1050 archangels and 10 forts? or 500 archangels and 30 forts?

Both carry the same amount of netpower more or less, but in your first case, you have considerably more archangels, and no fort bonus, where in the 2nd case, you probably get a 30% hp bonus or something crappy, and can only deal out half the damage and only have to lose half as many aa to lose the battle.

mages with over 2% forts are... in a word, FOOD! (btw it pains me to say I was allied with TKA. they had more of these dummies than anyone i saw, and i couldn't touch any of em ={ )

Once you understand this power calculation, given that you are about 2k land, you can see that mages with over 30 forts and your land or higher, probably have almost no troops, or may in fact have none if they have lots of heroes/geld. These should be your primary targets, regardless of color. Some quick math dictates each acre is 1k land, and each fort is 20k land. assume a million power for geld bars and stuff like that. If you see mages that are at 2800 land, 25 forts, and under 4.3 mil power, they almost surely are troopless. Doing this math quickly will give you winners in battle everytime.

So start hitting. You have 119 turns to play with.

Importance of Efficiency

YOU MUST KNOW EFFICIENCY. If nothing else, learn what efficiency is, and how it applies to archmage. for me, this means attacking at the START of my turns. In fact, i think for most mages it means this. The 3 biggest complaints i hear about this are:

1) if i hit alot of mages ill give out alot of counters..

2) im not ready to hit alot of mages right away... my kingdom isn't set up for this!

3) im always exploring and dont have alot of power till the end.

In reply to each

1) no you wont, not unless you are smart or targeted for a bbq by a guild far stronger than any ive seen here. not if you powerup well at the end anyway.

2) your stacks dont mean that much. if you ahve troops and 20k mana, you can make attacks! you didnt deliberately cast bad units the last time u spent your turns did you?

3) to quote alex trebek, are you english or are you retarted? (with apologies to absolution)

Your first few sieges this low will be really really easy wins. here is a good place to burn your staffs of illusions. Spells? Bless/sleep/phantasm magic/blaze. They all work this low. If you are at 2k land, it doesnt hurt even to start your run at 5mil power or less. Then you are hitting mages at under 4 mil power. These are, without a doubt, the poor sisters of archmage. They are truly the newbies, and the people that are learning the game, or inactive, or just playing for fun/gelding. If they are in war, kick em while they are down. At least their enemies arent getting the land. Win your first four or 5 sieges... This shouldnt be hard. You may get unlucky once, it is ok. Keep going and you will soon be at 2500 land and around 5 mil power, hititng targets at 80% of you.

Now you will have to start halfway playing. Your stack, still shouldnt matter too much. If you have those kickass barrack units, and some good gate stuff or spirit warriors, you are fine. Even lowly knights are better than most of the junk people run. At the end of this document ive put in an appendix on offensive capabilities of all units.

As you go, and gain forts. everytime you hit 20 forts, drop 10. This will drop you 200k in power, so you can hit targets lower, and weaker. Especially if you arent experienced up top, you arent going to dominate in this game by taking on jez and orpheus and iuz and winning. You are going to only do well by dropping down to hit the weaklings.

At this point, i like to primarily prey on blacks. A veteran black is an even match for a veteran white, but a neophyte black will lose even to a neophyte white, and a neophyte black will die horribly to a skilled white.

First, you need to understand that almost no native black units have good resistance to holy attack. And guess what, white has lots of units with holy attack!. Furthermore, units like liches and vamps, dont really dent white units too well. The natural advantage is almost always to white... the math ill explain later ifyoure not familiar with it. for now you only intiutively need to know that white has natural advantages over black that can easily be exploited.

White has an awesome set of weapons against black. Most low blacks dont run shroud or bars (or only 1 or not at a high spell level or something else stupid!). For this reason, the spell holy word has like a 60% chance of getting thru. if it does, you win the battle.

Holy word, will kill about (with some considerable degree of variation)

35 vamps 35 liches 200 wraith 150 hd 500 ghoul 1k zombie 1k skeletons 750 shadows

the beautiful thing is, the more black stacks they have, the better off you are. none of these units resists holy word at all (except hd some small fraction of the time), and you can do about 50k in net power damage to each stack. Stupid blacks stack lots of these things, and you will pretty much win the battle on this spell alone low down a good fraction of the time. Truly wonderful. Blues will also run 1-2 of these stacks often.

The spell costs 10k, which is kind of pricey, but hey, its cheaper than a magic compass =P.

Start whacking every black you can find that doesnt have a good guild next to their name. Presumably good guilds will know to run shroud and barriers. Even the good guild blacks will do in a pinch. Keep your item assignment defensively oriented. You dont want to lose too many troops. The only people you may lose to are pure ghoulers. They are not a good matchup for white (but oh they are for blue/green =P)

Keep whacking people over and over. This is sooo easy. If you do dip below about 14k troops, spend a few turns building. If you need to waste 2-3 turns, build farms, if you need to waste 10 turns, build lots of towns/nodes and a barrier or two. Meanwhile your barracks are giving you more troops each and every turn. I've taken land off of people with high priests top in this circumstance. If your net power also dips to less than 1.7 * your land, you also need to run this tactic, and possibly summon some stuff. This means if you're at 3k land and under 5.1 mil power, you are probably too fat. You could drop that ratio lower, but unless you're an expert or incredibly courageous (read: stupid and greedy like me), 1.7 is a pretty safe ratio.

At this point i sort of assume you have made it to 2800 land, won 9 out of 11 or 12 sieges and maybe burned a few turns building. if you cant get here, please find me in irc (often I'm in #gotr), or icq me 15173465 and i will see what i can do for you to fix whatever you're doing wrong (and it is something drastic or else u are just uniquely unlucky)

if you recruited hp at this point, recruit either a few more or switch to kt now. If you recruited paladins, switch to hp now, just 20-30 turns worth.

You are probably at around 90-100 turns left. You will want to make 5-10 more attacks on this first run before you are done, but by now you are kind of fat, and will find it harder to win battles. If you have confidence in your defense, keep using holy word, and hope to win on that. If you want to switch to just the fattest targets you can find, that is good well. at this point tho you may find yourself losing some battles because of not dealing enough damage, or getting outhit. Its better tho to go for 7 more hits and only win 3 than to go for 0 more hits and win 0. 300 land is always good in my mind.

You will, however, need to eventually stop all of this fun, and picking off lowbies. If you have more than 500 land to build on at 80 turns, or really any land to build on at 70 turns or less. its best to stop. That is cutting it razor thin as well. You could stop 5-10 turns earlier and play safer, but I have never been about playing it safe unless i am on top. There are a few times, if you somehow run into a mage who has 2 allies in the top 5 (like pokey did for a while) that you will lose your whole army almost and have to stop real early, but again this doesn't happen often.

Build quickly. If you cant get the bars up right away, get em up on your next run and attack less. They wont be full if you were really successful, but try to build at least 5 every day. If you intend to build more workshops (i virtually never build ws only take what people give me thru sieges). build nodes first, and then farms and towns, then barracks and whatnot, and try to build to take advantage of the decimal places in turn building. (ie better to spend just under 2 turns then just over 2 turns which is rounded to 3 turns) This way your enjoying the benefit of the extra mana for a few extra turns, and extra geld, and not paying the upkeep until the end (i even charge before building bars for this reason).

as you're building, as SOON as you run out of whatever you recruited, you will have 40-70 turns left. recruit 75 turns worth of kt or more. knight templars come pretty quickly, they are moderately priced, and are a very capable unit that has some weaknesses but overall is nice to use for defense. The stuff you recruit early will get killed as you recruit it.... Thus you will have less of it, and more of the kt

The theory behind this order of recruiting, is that knight templars are going to be your most highly stacked unit. But your cheapest on the geld as well. Its better to have more of these an less of the other two barrack units than the other way around. Thus recruit the kt at the end, as i stated above rather repetitively.

You are now done building, and only have 55 turns left, and sirhatter, you have left me with 3200 land and only 5 mil power! I can never forgive you, you son of a *****! I made 1200 land today (if i was good/lucky id make 1800), but will lose 2200 tonight!!! Heh sorry. but if you follow me for 55 more turns, i promise you can get out of this, honestly, I do =P

You will need to disband your angels and knights, dropping you even lower in power. save 1 angel and 1 knight. Mana charge now. You will want to get between 2.5 and 3.5 times your land power. So if lets say in theory you run from 2000 land to 3200, you will want to be between 8 mil and 11 mil power. I tended to play on the low end of this #, but you can play it how you like. Save any forts you gained from your last sieges. You should have between 10-20 if you're not stupid/greedy (see, death of #591 sirhatter yesterday).

You will need to have this number in your mind, and know how to hit it. So lets do some math. Lets say you want to hit 8 mil power, and you have 5.5 now.

You have 50 turns. You need 3 million power, that much is obvious. Lets say you have enough barracks for 150 kt a turn (i don't have handy how many kt you make per barrack sorry). That will yield you just under 10k in net power a turn. meaning over 55 turns you will make about half a million in net power. You have 2 million in power then you need to summon. You will need to bear in mind 2 things. Your mana, and your turns. The rest is easy. Gate, will, on average, give you about 150k in np. The other spells, can all be calculated, but the other biggie for me was spirit warriors, which gave me 62.5k in power per turn, or 250k over 4 turns on average.

So, you could just go with 12-15 castings of gate (a fetish of mine is to cast gate's in 3's, i don't think it means much tho), or to cast 32 turns worth of spirit warriors, or some combination in between. For me here id run probably 9 gates and 2 spirit warrior castings and maybe one fodder cast. Meaning i could charge for 36 out of 55 turns. I then would visit the black market and buy any webs i saw, or cheap items. Then id summon as mentioned. You are done, and safely at 8 milpower.

Whites big 4 units are:

AA, Uni, Spirit warrior, Knight templar...

all 4 are good units. the reason you disband angels and knights before mp charging is to make sure aa and uni stay ahead of knights and regular angels. still this doesn't always happen. Higher up, you will have time to goof around, and cast unis and aa first to make sure you get what you want. once in a while you will roll snake eyes tho, and that is just unavoidable.

The order of casting is critical.... ALWAYS CAST: Off color stuff first (one casting of dryads for defense to fatigue, ditto for soul speakers, if you choose to run this strategy), opening items (i often ran 1 coffin at the bottom, grew it to 80 vamps =P), do all the really cheap stuff and off color stuff early. you get fewer off color stuff, and this will help your mana/geld management.

Once you do that, summon your spirit warriors if you are using them (i *highly* recommend them). even if its just one cast. Then cast gate however many times you need.

Part of the key is to move thru your last 70 turns damn quick. You are woefully undersummoned. 2-3 times this reset i got hit while madly undersummoned. only once i blocked. its not healthy to stay there for long.

BUT... if you are afraid of counters, remember you were hitting chumps and knuckleheads at 4 mil power for the most part. You are now at 8 mil power. if they hit you, they wont win. If htey even do any damage at all, rebound counter if they have gay rules, after all free land is free land =P

As for defense, and assignments, you will need to read my defense post. Let us hope you havent lost too much land and are ready to go at it again the next day...

The next part of this post is coming in a little bit. This is pretty long already. But Im trying to make this detailed and compact at the same time, not an easy task

Succeeding Run

so we can now assume you can start a day logging on at 3k turns or more... and perhaps even over the explore limit. feeding on newbies is no longer an option. well, there is good news. feeding on mediocre players who aren't quite new is almost as easy!

You will start your cycle again. Unlike last time though, where the natural defensive capabilities of white were more than enough to let you support 15 attacks without losing too much power, you will have to be a smidge more careful...

start attacking with 119 turns (mp charge for 1 turn, this will ensure that all hero abilities are in place (and plant growth is in place if you are green)

Target selection will kind of remain the same. I still favor blacks and Holy Word here, but blues become a bit more desirable, as do reds... When hitting reds i use scroll of protection of fire often times... and use sleep. Sleep lowers resistances of one enemy stack, much like a candle would. IT rocks for nailing hydra and chims and salamanders.

I usually try to keep either item or spell defensively oriented when hitting reds.

Some good items to consider in this low-mid range of 6-8 mil.

  • Powder Keg: Lowers enemy ap by some percentage, and deals fire damage according to ravashack
  • Cosmetics: Adds beauty to all human units, which effectively makes them 11% harder to kill.
  • Missile Shield: I am THE KING of missile shields! This is seriously my all time favorite cheap item... And it is my all time favorite anti-blue item, cheap or otherwise. Missile shield halves all ranged damage effectively. Blues have... mind rippers, ranged, all their ultimate units (other servers) are... ranged! They also like to run alot of... liches... range, psychic wisps/soul speakers/nymphs for their monkey brains... ranged! Blues have a ton of ranged units, and I've seen stacks with nothing but ranged stuff. And missile shield nerfs them all...

Combine this with some resistance and the natural large shield of knight templars, you yield this... totally kena!
Mind Ripper attacked sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar.
Mind Ripper's attack failed.
)'s Mind Ripper was too distant, sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar was unable to counter strike.
's Mind Ripper attacked sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar.
Mind Ripper's attack failed.
sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar attacked 's Mind Ripper.
sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar units slew 's 6 Mind Ripper units.
sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar attacked 's Mind Ripper.
sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar units slew 's 14 Mind Ripper units.
)'s Mind Ripper struck back sirhatter (#591)'s Knight Templar .
Mind Ripper's counter strike failed.

That shows just how powerful the missile shield is. Even without the large shield ability, a missile shield is still a kickass item. That was always my biggest secret, and one thing bale and i shared in common. We don't use expensive items on offense, too much money. There are too many super cheap items that are incredible. I always jumped on the missile shields en masse...

Also good and kind of cheap:

  • Potion of Valor. I use this more high up, but it ROCKS on offense and defense. if 40% of your army is human or more (and mine usually was), you have just boosted those humans by 25% across the board!
  • Vial of Venom. Kind of pricey, but good for knocking off blues...
  • Bubble Wine. Good for hitting blacks... When you know you are going to deal enough damage and only worried about not losing too much, the extra 25% hp is nice

i think thats about it. ill edit this and put in more as i think of em... but never use expensive items until you are about to break 7k on offense. not worth it.

Always know what your spell and item do... Some good combinations

  • anti blue: missile shield/SoL (oh how i love thee), missile shield/holy word, missile shield/anything, potion/sol (for mad killer werebears, knights and knight templars), and some other setups I'm forgetting...
  • Black: flasks of water over 8k/holy word, holy word/cheap item/ carpet SoL if i was absolutely desperate to beat a major enemy, or call candle as mentioned earlier.
  • white *gulp*: first let me say my success rate anti white sucked, i prolly lost 8 of my last 9 against even the fat ones... what was best tho was call/vial, and a prayer.

Again start hitting mages hard and often. You probably should start regular attacking blues/reds now... The enhanced accuracy for your unis/sw's is well worth it. If your troops dip below 15k, mp charge, build, do SOMETHING. If your mana is low, charge for a turn or two, attack, charge etc.

You shouldn't finish attack runs until you either have a hugely positive mp/geld income, or you've been SOOOOO good, that after 30 attacks you are at 60 turns and need to build. The latter will not happen. Somewhere you will lose a ton of troops in a win or loss, then you will get fat, and lose more and more each battle. Thats fine. My euphimism for lots and lots of attacks is known as Darwinian disbanding. Only your tough troops survive. The angels and knights from gate die quicker than your sturdy aa usually.

Now you understand why you need to take turns in big chunks. Taking them 70 at a time is worthless. I need 60 to rebuild my kingdom. So attacking for 6 turns, building for 2 and shopping for 2 wont cut it. Not efficient. Better to attack for 30-40, you'll have to disband most of the stuff anyways at the end so why not kill it?

The more land you can take everyday, the more quickly you stay ahead of the pack and leave yourself only hittable by the top. Thus always think offense as a white. Your defense is so good you can get away with being fat. Your defense is so good you can make 20 attacks a day, and keep half your aa if you get lucky. Its just nice like that.

Rest to come a bit later... again this is long

White Offensive Theory

Ok, if you have followed everything I have said so far, and your defense has held up with some degree of success, you are easily in the top 5% of all archmage players in apprentice. Unfortunately, if your goal is to finish in the hall of fame, you need to be in the top 10th of 1% of all archmage players roughly speaking. There are roughly 7000 mages on apprentice, and only 10 hall. So being able to consistently hold a rank of 350 or better wont cut it.

By now one of these days you will log on, with 120 turns, 100k mana or more, and over 4000 land with upwards of 10 million power or so. You are now on the threshold of breaking through and being a threat to finish highly, but you can?t quite cut it there. If this describes you, I may have some ideas and things you haven?t thought of yet. Remember, especially at this level land, white and green, more than any other color, can continue to stay aggressive and think offense first. Though it doesn?t matter that much what your stack is, it does matter that you know what it is, and pick targets accordingly. You have reached the stage where wins do not come easily, and you will have to win through a bit of quality now as well, in addition to your usual dose of a large quantity of sieges/regulars. You already know HOW to take your turns now when in an attack mode? It?s a matter now of making sure that use is rewarded with land on your attacks, and a well spent army that can be built up again quickly on defense.

We are going to discuss 3 key things the rest of the way. Unit match-ups (which everyone has a theory on), resource use, and target selection. The third topic, is most critical in my mind, and will in the end separate the best players from merely the very good players.

At this point it is not easy to play your 120 turns in less than 45 minutes. I may have 6 windows open merely to play one server. I kept a rank list (and thus some would say cheated, but the devs have all but allowed it by now.). In addition, I kept an arena archmage window open to confirm my rank list findings and make sure I wasn't hitting allies (by the way, TKA, you NEED to put your guild on the top line. So many times I wanted to hit you because you had 4 paragraphs before TKA? very gay of you to make me scroll down. I kept an irc window open always to ask people what they knew, and to shoot the breeze. I also kept my playing window open obviously, and a guild homepage window, and lastly sometimes I would keep a chron-terra window separately open in addition to my own library of battle reports in a separate folder with easy access.

SIX windows you say for one stupid game! Yes. You understand the use of a rank list and separate arena archmage window, but why keep that other junk.

First, IRC is a good resource. It is a good place to trade information and a good place to coordinate your guild. Use it, even if it is dorky. It is safe to say that for the apprentice server, #Gotr in galaxynet is the premier place to chat, usually having about 20 mages in there at any one time.

More importantly, you need to start using chron terra. I didn't do it nearly enough in apprentice, and it cost me my life. I think had I been more diligent, the last few days before I was supposed to hit 7k, I wouldn?t have languished in the mid 6k?s unable to win a battle for the life of me. Had I used it more, I would have reached 7k, and been safely running some purely defensive stack and safe from everyone. I learned to use this from Lazzarus, a tarakian, and a mage who has more hall of fames than anyone will know (its hard to get him to admit which mage he is playing, since he is going for/already has hall in all 5 colors I think. Last reset he finished #1 on s2 as some black mage) He taught me 2 resets ago the importance of using this window, and it made me a smarter player. The chronterra window is critical to target selection. Confused? Let me first put something simpler to you.

You as an attacker need to sort of guess what the defender is running. They can sort of guess what they are going to have attack them, and they stack against it. You need to do the same, but do better.

Target Selection

If you see a white at 4k land and 7 mil power with 41 forts. You not only know that they are almost surely pure archangel, but with 41 forts, 4 mil power, and roughly 500k power in miscellaneous stuff, (ie some number of bars, in addition to items geld), you can estimate that they have 4mil power in land alone, an additional 820k power in forts, and 500k additional power. This leaves them with an extra 1.68 mil power out of 7 mil power that consists of their army. You almost surely know (80%) that this is going to be pure archangel (or else they just got raped simply or are mid attack run). Since archangels have a power rank of 750 (memorize the power rank of important units if you are going to continue playing this game after p2p), you know they have 1.68 mil power worth of them, or are running 2200 archangel. As an attacker of any color, you have to ask yourself if you have a pretty good chance bring down 220, after resurrection and their spell? If the answer is no, move on to a better target. IF the answer is yes, you hit.

So if you are logging on at that hypothetical 10 mil power window, you might see a variety of mages. You have just started, and you are psyched to take it to the house today and break 5k. First thing you should do, is the one turn mana charge. Now you are at 119 turns.

You will see fat whites and anorexic whites (neither I particularly recommend unless if they have a retarded number of forts). You have really thin and over summoned greens, and you have fat greens. The fat greens, especially right around 3500 land, are almost always pure tree, or 95% tree or more. They explore for their land? and move verrrry slowly. The thin greens could just have been whacked hard, or they could not understand the game, not understand plant growth or even how to research, and power up entirely on faerie dragons (ironically dangerous to white) and druids and militia. HERE is where you check the chron terra. Keep that window open separate, and tag in the white at 2100 land and 8 mil power. You KNOW he cant support trees on that kind of land. Has he been hit a lot or making a lot of hits, or has he not done anything in the last 24 hours. If the answer is on the side of the latter, you know this knucklehead has explored for his land, and summoned dryads and recruited barrack units. HIT HIM! But, do a reg. In spite of the crappiness of his troops, he has so many (more army power than you), that you may not do enough damage otherwise. Set your item and spell to the most destructive thing you can (if you have lots of melee troops go sword of light here). Set the item to something that will enhance your damage dealing capabilities. If you didn't check the chron terra, you wouldn't know if this guy was a crafty veteran, or a raw newbie. The veterans don't explore for their land. The newbies do.

Really any target under about 2250 land and over 7 mil power with an inactive chronterra (or one spaced out over 7 hours or more meaning the mage is defending not attacking), means that they are usually newbies. These are your easiest targets to hit. Take them. You will only gain 45-50 land, and lose some number of troops, but it is very high percentage. Your second high percentage, and I've already mentioned it, is the people with over 2% forts, regardless of color. I fleeced tomwolf earlier this reset (heh tommy I still have that battle report if you like), even though he was a green with tree top and I was white. The HP bonus gained from 2% forts is insignificant compared to the extra amount of fake power it gives you. These are also good targets

Of course, juicy targets like these aren't so easy to find. The chron terra will continue to remain useful.

Here is a guide to picking targets and figuring out stackings.. I'm assuming a level of forts around 1% for fat mages, and .5% for nonfat mages for all targets. This is before you think to use the chron terra.

Mind you, there will be exceptions to these rules, but this is generally going to be pretty safe for you. I have listed the colors in order of mages that generally need the least army on up. Ie a fat white is fatter than a fat black, and about the same size as a moderate black.

Fat whites: Pure flyer, very fat whites are probably pure aa. Fat greens: Tree dominated. Fat blues: Mostly using complex units, but it gets tricky Fat reds: Pure efreeti, or they have been hit hard Fat blacks: Unknown, could be heavy demon knight, or anything really. Moderate whites: Flyer dominated? Maybe 1 ground stack Moderate greens: Tree top (50% or so), diverse stacking after that Moderate blues: Anyones guess? Often heavy ripper tho... Moderate reds: Anyones guess? Moderate blacks: Anyones guess?

Thin Whites: lots of ground troops (greens take note these are easier targets than fatties) Thin greens: Cant support too many trees or gryphs. Lots of fodder, watch for animals Thin blues: Running lots of crap somewhere?. Thin reds: Really thin ones like to run lizzies? The rest will have fodder lower Thin blacks: Other servers its zombies? Here it?s a mix of pop eaters and red troops This is your first guide to picking a target. White has some obvious strengths and weaknesses. To summarize:

Strengths: Very nice attack type in general (holy), Melee troops can easily be modified? Many troops can benefit from attack enhancing items/spells? good solid defenders.

Weaknesses: LOW attack power in general for their power rank. Vulnerability to some types of attacks. Generally not of a quick speed to attack? Fatigue easily.

What does this mean for you? Well two things. First, While your better troops will still kick militia square in the pants, your low attack power means that you wont attack some fodder quite as well as it should. For example, knights are generally considered poorer attackers than unicorns. However, since militia have 0% resistance against anything, the knights, with a higher attack power ratio for its power rank, will deal MORE damage than unicorns! (assuming you have 100k worth of knights and 100k np worth of unis)

You need to find units that are weak to what you do well. You want to hit units that are weak to holy, and want units with low hp/low resistances in general.

The obvious place to look is black. Even the demon knight doesn?t truly have good holy resistance. Archangels, angels, spirit warriors and the like will win almost all of their matchups against their nether enemies. Yet? you are now at the level where there aren?t many bad blacks around, even at 80% of yoru power. You need to pick a black you can beat. How do you do that?

The Importance of the Chronicle Terra

CHECK THE CHRONICLE TERRA!

White have an intimate fear of hitting pure ghoulers. The one hero I held all reset as a white (lasted me 3 days) died when I hit a red ghouler with flight. I could have saved that life easily had I checked the chron terra. By checking the chron terra, you will now know exactly what type of enemy you are facing. If the chron terra is idle over his last 48 hours, or only with attacks spaced out over a long time, he is probably playing defensively, making 1 attack a day or so. However, more than likely, there will be a long string of attacks one 5 minutes after another. This is when this mage is playing offense (or being barbequeued by an enemy guild once in a while, in which case youll get the ?so and so has taken a crapload of damage, try again in 24 hours?)

The key to checking his run, is to find out what type of food he eats. If in that run, you see whites and blues galore? Look out! This guy is some evil person either ghouling it o wraithing it. If you want to feel adventurous, and take a chance hitting him, go ahead. It?s your call. I recommend either call hurricane (to at least ground those ghouls), or some sort of slowing device. I tend to stay away from these mages (at least I do if im not lazy and actually check the chron terra). By keeping a separate chron terra window, you can write down the #?s, then enter them on your arena archmage quickly, by entering and hitting back to check color, and move more quickly, keeping you vulnerable for a much shorter time.

A black hitting whites is obviously not an ideal target. A black hitting reds however, is more often than not stacked full of liches, vamps, and mind rippers? Yummy! These are talented blacks, that know how to play offense, but they have left themselves vulnerable to you. Punish their weakness by taking 380 acres of their hard earned land. Go on a full out siege here.

A green doesn?t really need his chron terra checked too closely. Only hit if you are stacked anti green. How do you stack anti green? First, web of the spider woman/brooch or some defensive item is a must. Then stack with aa top (these are weaklings when it comes to killing fodder, so you might as well have them hit trees), then kt/uni/sw (whatever it is pray item or spell gets thru or youre screwed anyway), and then below pack a vicious punch with high priests and knights. Knights, as mentioned, have a high attack power/power rank ratio. They aren?t horrible offensive units, and will often win matchups versus dryads and nymphs. More importantly though, you NEED to stack evenly. The aa?s will be top, but wont be the bulk of your army.

Something like:

15% aa
21% kt
20% sw
19% uni
15% hp
10% other?
is ideal?

Archangels are top, but where you will really beat this mage, if you do beat him, is by killing 3 or 4 of his bottom stacks. If he is mono tree, you can almost forget it. If he has tree/bear/nymph/dryad/elven archer, you are in business. The unicorns and spirit warriors will lead you to victory here. You will only kill 20 trees, and may lose a lot of knight templars for your troubles, but you will win the battle. It will be close though, and you will need to do a regular so you don't get hit with the accuracy penalty.

Picking Whites for whacking is never recommended? never never never? Can I get this thru any more clearly?

Picking reds? an intriguing option? Dangerous, and intriguing. Check their chron terra. If they are massively hitting whites, stay away, Either pure ghouls, lots of wyverns, you really don't know. If, however, they are hitting greens, you are in business. They then have fire units. Fire units suck defensively, except for the efreeti, which can also lose. Fat reds are often pure efreeti. Think carefully about how you will do enough damage. Take a chance on sleep breaking their resistances, and you should win. (efreeti have solid resistances for the most part, and you don't have access to flameblade)

Chims/sals/hell hounds, as nice as they may be on offense, kind of suck on defense. Your units will get hurt. You will need to regular, and you still may lose more power. You will need to set your item here possibly to ointment of healing (red has lots of access to poisonous units). Risk = reward sometimes. You will drop once in a while 1k chims, which isn't a lot, but its more than enough to win. Here is another worthwhile place to check the chron terra to see target selection. (and no red high up explores, since their defensive capabilities are so weak they'd get hammered)

Your last color to check up on is blue. This is THE BEST color to chron terra, and it makes ALL the difference in the world. I didn't do this nearly enough, and again it cost me?
If a blue is hitting whites he is running? Wraith/ghoul/mr? look out!
If a blue is hitting mostly greens? he is lich top? almost every time. Nothing else blocks treants.
If you have a holy unit top, this is a win ¾.
If a blue is hitting other blues? Spin a wheel, print out all of the units, and throw darts. God knows what hes stacking.
If a blue is hitting blacks, he is running gate units heavy, with mr and maybe a few liches/fodder.
This will be a tough win, but is worth a try.
If a blue is hitting reds, he is lich/mr/night of living dead stuff usually?. SOOOOOO EASY!!!!
If a blue is defensively oriented? Think all-flier (aa/djinni) or a balanced stacking.

If he is hitting a mix of colors, look at the mix and sort of combine what I put up here. For example a blue can hit reds and greens at the same time kind of easily if he keeps lich top. He can hit blacks and blues easily if hes mind ripper 2nd.

The chronicle of terra gives you so much information about your target, just by looking at the people he hit. Combined with the guide I put up earlier, you have a great idea of what you're going to run into. Guilds often share information about enemy mages or just even random mages (kindred does and others). If you're worried about the legality or ethicality? tough! Nothing will be done about it, and I think its legal to share information about enemies in guild servers (though not guild servers). Since enemy can be broadly defined, lots of good guilds have this information readily available. Check your guild to see if you have some sort of library. If not, or if there haven't been attacks on that mage recently, this guide I put up here will tell you what the mage is stacking, without knowing what he is stacking. Even those guild lists, are not trustworthy. While some mages will stack the same thing every time (either because they are damn good with it or because it?s the only thing they know), there are others that will have stacks rearranged either through battle or design. You need to be able to pick targets and plan your battle ahead quickly in your mind without such crutches. This game gives you exactly what you put in. Its not like everquest where playing 24-7 is all you really need along with a few brains and some friends. Yet the game as you get better takes more and more time, and something like checking chron terras isn't necessarily fun (and why when I'm lazy I don't do it), but it makes a big difference. I hear mages ***** about how Unlucky they are all the time. That's bull**** 9 times out of 10. That mage doesn?t know how to pick targets, and he wants a shoulder to cry on is what hes really saying. At the highest level, the calculations the very best mages go thru mentally are absurd? I won?t even discuss them here because it isn't relevant to anyone, and few would believe it. Yet it is how mages win 33 out of 35 times in a days attacks on other servers. You want to make as many attacks as possible, but you also want to win as many as possible, for obvious reasons. The best way I can think of, is by picking opponents that are suited to you and your stacks. Now that you know what opponents are stacking, as we approach the end of this offensive treatise, I will next discuss matchups between units in a relatively simplistic, but effective manner, that makes the game easy, and doesn't depend on the wisdom (or foolhardiness) of the random mage that posts here with advice.

Closing Note

We were all newbies once. And the idea is to turn into a skilled veteran rather than an unskilled one. Good luck to you in your maging

Cheers, Sirhatter


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