Posted on 06/10/99 @ 12:00 AM (updated 11/23/05
In 60 B.C., Julius Caesar was preparing to become Consul of Roma. Typically after one year, every retiring Consul was appointed Proconsul of one of the provinces. And it was as Proconsul that the most successful Romans amassed great wealth, armies, and personal glory. By his term's end, Caesar had maneuvered to be appointed Proconsul of not one but three provinces. And his eye fell on greater riches still: Stretching north of the traditional Roman territory on the Mediterranean coast was the vast untamed land of Gallia Superior -- modern day France. As the end of his consulship drew closer, native unrest in this region threatened Roman colonists and Caesar used it as a pretext to invade Gaul with a massive army. His victories there would provide him with the men and gold he needed to conquer the world.
In this scenario, you will build a small military colony, push deep into Transalpine Gaul and found the city of Narbo. In 58 B.C., there will be a massive invasion of Helvetii and in 57 an uprising among the Belgae -- so ready your forces! Trouble in far-flung Britannia will lure you there as well, in 55 and 54 B.C., but the greatest challenge of your career will start with Vercingetorix's uprising in 52 and culminate in the siege of the mountain fortress of Alesia a year later. Caesar had finished with Gaul by 49 B.C., but if you stay on you will go where he never did: into the land of the Nordmanni.
Winning conditions call for a population of 6000, as well as peace, prosperity and culture ratings of 30.
Watch out for your imperial favor. Rome will make no requests of you, so your favor can sink quickly -- triggering Roman Legions to attack from the south. This represents the growing hostility towards Caesar among the power elite of Rome -- even as the common people began to worship him as they had no other Roman before. Good luck, Caesar! May the Gods march with you!
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Note: A newer, slightly modified version of this map was uploaded on 11/23/05. This version will allow the player more room for for conventional city building, but the military challenge has not been altered.
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This is an incredible military-scenario that will push your skills at combat and building to the limit. Note: This review is based on playing the OLD map, not the new one that was put into this campaign in November, 2005.
High enjoyment level coupled with an equally high replayability factor. But NOT for the faint-hearted. :) If you don't like battles in C3, don't attempt this one.
A great challenge for the C3 military buff. It is easy to feel Caesar's dilemma in this scenario. If you fight with the skill and cool-headedness he showed, victory will be yours.
Mr. Farrell used many interesting design tricks in map design and event scripting. To mention them all would be to spoil your fun...just play the scenario! What really amazed me was that even with the spoilers he gave above (dates of important events), nothing was lost in terms of excitement. Just because we know WHEN something will happen in the scenario, does not mean we know HOW it will happen!
Map Design: 5
A gorgeous map that made me feel that I was deep in hostile Gaul. And the map doesn't just contain challenging combat terrain; hard choices must be made about where to place housing blocks and infrastructure, and when to open up new areas on the map for development.
The story and instructions clearly outline the challenges Caesar faced in this campaign. A good readme file is also included in the download.
This scenario makes Julius Caesar's greatest triumph come to life. From playing this scenario, I probably learned more about this game's advanced tricks than from playing any other scenario. Here follows some notes I made while playing this one.
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You start out in Gaul with a big war chest, but it evaporates fast because a) you are forced to import weapons, b) you need to build 6 forts FAST, and c) you need to pay yourself a decent salary in order to have money to send gifts to Rome. This last is due to the fact that no requests for goods are made by Rome. Your favor will begin to drop, and gifts are all you have to slow this. This design decision of Gordon's had an interesting historical basis: during his governorship of Gaul, Caesar's enemies back in Rome actively campaigned against his name. So be careful in Gaul; make an appeasement to the Senate every now and then (I did it when my favor fell below 30) or else you will find some hostile Legions coming your way.
The map in this scenario is fantastic and highly detailed. It has enough farmland, but you will find it difficult to build symetric city blocks due to all the streams and rocks. Also be careful when you clear away forests; one of Gordon's trademark tricks is to place wolves deep inside forests (where you can hardly see them, if at all), where they stay trapped until your unsuspecting excavation party comes along...
The big invasions will come early. Prepare for them or face the consequences ! I built 3 barracks in order to speed up soldier and ballista production. A military academy is a MUST. You cannot survive without towers and ballista. My tactic was to sprinkle them along the frontiers, where I noticed the major invastion routes to be (and there are many, assume NO border is safe).
There are a few of those "surprise" native uprisings, too, so be alert.
Another cool trick of Gordon's is to make invasions on islands. Sure, your city is safe, but the invasion halts immigration until you deal with it. This forces you to build a bridge to the island and either send an expeditionary force or wait for the enemy to charge you. Don't dawdle in dealing with these island invasions, or the other invasions will occur and your foes will "stack up", causing lots of woe.
Use the terrain to your advantage. There are all kinds of excellent nooks and crannies, if you look closely. Be VERY careful removing forests. You could be opening up a new invasion route to your city ! Clear away forests with extreme caution; even the removal of one tree section can open the dike.
Native trade will save you ! Build an abundance of furniture as soon as you can. This is your main trading staple until you can afford to import olives (to sell oil) and clay (to sell pottery). One cautionary note on the natives: be careful with your placement of fortifications and other structures that cause natives to go hostile ! You will probably find, like I did, that there is no recourse but to build alot of mission posts (a waste of good labor, but vital). You really need to manage your land carefully, and alot of the good building areas are around native villages, so be sure you appease them with missionaries before you build anything else.
I farmed nothing except wheat, since the prosperity rating requirement is fairly low. I did decide to import extra wheat too, for one far-flung housing area.
There are a few other interesting design features, like a constant rise and fall of worker wages. Monitor this carefully if you want to keep your people happy ! Tricky Gordon likes to announce one of these just before a barbarian invasion, so don't forget to adjust to it when you get all caught up in the fighting.
I completed the scenario in 25 years; no doubt many of you will do much better than that.
[Edited on 03/07/06 @ 01:32 PM]
Additional Comments: Simply the best. This scenario is the gold standard of military play.