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Topic Subject:Iron Age Multitasking
Thorfinn
Clubman
posted 06-07-99 09:29 AM ET (US)         
I find that my start game is good, and can usually even salvage a bad starting position. My tool, bronze and iron attacking is good. It is not unusual for me to help cripple an opponent in Tool and decimate another in Bronze. Things are going well. Until the game goes over 60 minutes. I don't know what happens to me at that point, whether loss of interest, skill, fatigue or what. My econ is booming, but my Iron Age army goes soft.

I forget to queue up more military, and find myself looking at 30k+ resources in the bank. I quickly work to get the military cranked out, but get distracted when one of my work centers gets hit. By the time I deal with that, I notice that my forward military camps have been decimated, and I never even noticed that they were under attack. I pop up a bunch more buildings, but continue to give ground throughout the rest of the game.

On the positive side, my peons leave a scorched earth in their wake, but it bothers me that at that point, I am basically doing a fighting retreat the rest of the game. By the time I have retreated into my original camp, I may have 50-75k just sitting there. I usually just end up wussing out and building a wonder to bring the game to some denouement, win or lose.

If I have an ally who runs troops well in Iron, trib is an answer, but what do I do to get myself out of the 60-minute-mark funk? Has my empire just exceeded my multitasking skills? Am I simply unable to fight on three fronts and keep the homefires burning?

Keep your stick on the ice.

AuthorReplies:
joecho
Clubman
posted 06-07-99 11:32 AM ET (US)     1 / 17       
I've been trying some DM to address the same problem that plagues me (although, my res bank prob would not even go that high, even if I was 100% efficient ). And since at least 3/4 of the games that I play seems to go into post-iron, the DM part of an RM game seems to be a necessary portion to master. Can't say that my post-iron econ skills have improved much though, due to this DM dabbling. However, I can say that my military tactics have.

-joecho

fangr
Inactive
posted 06-07-99 02:10 PM ET (US)     2 / 17       
I agree that DM is one solution... But what really needs to be learned is to build as many military buildings as possible and pump strong iron units out of them like mad. If you're sitting on that many resources, as you say, you're not doing everything you can to win... Next time you have huge amounts of wood try building a mass fleet and building a mass of military buildings (ie b-a-shift-click-click-click-click-etc-etc-etc) like maybe 50 of them and then ctrl-a-click-click (repeat a buncha times) and you should get a fairly overwhelming number of archery units pretty quickly... or seige (replace a with k) or stable (replace l with k) or whatever suits your need. And be sure to attack and raid your opponent. Even better is to play hit and run when your force can easily be overcome by a couple of cats (massed compies for instance) run into one section and kill a few vills and then run to another part and kill a few and repeat this running... first it distracts your opponent's attention from the attack as they have to defend too and second it hurts their econ which is always good. If you always let the enemy bring the battle to you, you're in trouble... these are all things which quickly become obvious in DM that help out the iron game. If I'm having an average game in iron I will have about 1200 of wood and gold and no food or something like that in the bank. A good game in iron I have about 500 of each resource in the bank as a protective measure and the rest is going into an attack. Occasionally with a gold dependant civ (minoan) I stockpile lots of gold (ever mined 40,000 in a game before ) but that's only because you're dead without gold as minoan... and my immediate military suffers, but my future military abilities improve... Anyways I ramble on too much.
CLAI44
Inactive
posted 06-07-99 02:48 PM ET (US)     3 / 17       
Yeah, that's happened to me more often than I'd like Thorfinn.

I think it stems from what you pointed out, fatigue. After all the fighting in tool and bronze by the time you get to late iron you usually feel depleted and drained mentally. I've had a game where my opponents just quit. It wasn't necessarily because I was beating them, but because the game was going on for sooo long; they ended up giving up because of fatigue.

What I try to do other than play DM is mentally prepare myself beforehand. I tell myself not to get sucked into listlessness and be fully aware throughout the whole game. For me, this helps. Usually whenever this state of apathy occurs I have a hell of a time pulling myself out of it. But by preparing myself before the game starts I usually ensure that it won't happen.

And eat more fish- it's brain food ya know!

Good luck


SimMayor
Clubman
posted 06-08-99 07:33 AM ET (US)     4 / 17       
Thorfinn,

you wrote about forward military bases being decimated.

Something that I have usually found useful, is building a few strong bases. Around your military buildings make TC, build walls, put villagers working there. Having several walled in strong bases makes the life a lot easier.

The enemies can't run straigth to the camp, but they have to gather a big enough force to bombard the walls. They can't be certain what they'll face inside the walls.
What is your choise then?
Instead of trying to defend all the bases, I usually concentrate on the camps that have been left alone, or the ones that are easy to defend.

Some towers and maybe scouts around the map makes it easy to see what the enemies are up to. Walls are good for scouting too. Often the enemies only make a hole, which lets you see them passing the wall.

These were just some ideas I have been trying lately. Simply set: trying to avoid having real battles at several fronts

------------------
SimMayor - zone name APC_SIM
If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.(Sun Tzu)
www.geocities.com/~realsimmayor/aoeindex.html


Boneser again
Clubman
posted 06-27-99 10:38 PM ET (US)     5 / 17       
You know Thorfinn, I think this just might be a strategy unto itself, kind of like the" rope a dope" technique. Just lull your opponent into that false sense of complacency and then gradually grind him down in the 12th round.

I think what happens is that on some of these large maps in RoR an opponent who is skilled at hit and run and has the perseverance, can stay alive an awful long time. Particularly with help from a partner. Sometimes we lack that killer instinct as well and the ability to truly annihilate your enemy when you have the upper hand.

As some have stated already, DM is really what its all about. Most of the games you play don't get to the DM stage, therefore you are unequipped to take on a good DM player. Let's face it guys, it seems most of us have been here. We should be playing more DM,s against each other.

The problem though is that at this point the game becomes much more fatiguing. You have been working patiently for an hour and then all of a sudden the pace is fast and furious. Your hands now need to move faster and your brain has to work harder. It's become a marathon race now.

At this point you have to bring out all your kill or be killed instincts and go crazy. Kill Kill Kill !!!!!! And don't take this personally but I don't think you have it in you. You are are more interested in the cerebral, strategic elements of the game. If you don't believe me then try playing some serious Deathmatches against some of the better players here. I'd be willing to bet you are ready to resign by 45 mins. And not from a military standpoint but from a fatigue standpoint. (But maybe both).

I don't think its your multi tasking that needs work in other words. I think its your attitude towards DM style of play. Because that is what late Iron age is. And if you can't cut it, then make sure you are playing a standard game. At least then you have some control over the game ending.

Hope this doesn't sound too harsh, buddy.

neilkaz
Clubman
posted 06-28-99 02:06 PM ET (US)     6 / 17       
OK a few comments directed mostly at Thorfinn.

30K+ extra unused resources by the 60 min mark. I know you're a well educated man that knows that 30K mean 30,000 not 3,000. I would be trying to fight so hard if the game were going on that I'd be unlikely to have 3K extra resources.

Seriously, with 30K resources you could have just about every super unit in the game and be near the pop limit with them !! Later on you have 50-75 K ??

Wow !! I know your game is like mine..very economic.. but the purpose of a huge economy is to produce a more pwerful army the the enemies and wipe them out. I abhor standard victory (much preferring a military war). However, I know you guys play lots of standard.

Their is no shame in winning with a wonder. Slap up one or several and defend the hell out of them. Use all that extra wood to make a several TC wide wall around them. Use stone walls.. use towers and win by your wonder.

Now since I play mostly conquest and my style (most of the time) is to be after someone during my bronze transition. I don't get too many late iron games. Sometimes they do occur and I have to tell you that a 2 or 3 hour war is exhausting.

I have seen the enemy just give up thru exhaustion. One game two weeks ago when my back was out, it was hurting me so badly that I could sit no more and finally tributed and resigned what looked like a losing battle as I simply could no longer play and sit w/out lots of pain.. ie my play was suffering ,too.

Sim has the right idea about walling/towering you forward bases. Walls may impede your allies too. But many place they will keep scythes off you. Hcats have to at least take towers down before they can comfortably move past them and get at you.

50-75K res later ?? OMG... nothing should stop you now.. (assuming conquest)delete almost all vils/FB and non essential war ships and get just over the pop limit w/your best combo of super units. You have built maybe 50-100 war buildings before doing this. Now Q up two superunits in ALL buildings and delete your last couple of vils to bring you just below the pop limit !.. BANG.. production starts and now you have 50-100 superunits above the pop limit and still many resources and 50-100 units in Q to do it again.

When this 200+ unit attach finishes nothing will be alive on the map but you and your allies.

I have never gotten close to that point because I will just keep fighting as I can. If I stop it is only to build up a larger force since a small one will get wasted.

Keep playing better players and practicing and you'll get better at multitasking. Put the forward war building you want to produce from on hot keys if that helps.

Multitasking is why a guy like blank owns me.. he can simply keep growing economically while attacking more efficiently than I can...neilkaz...

SaTaMaS
Clubman
posted 06-28-99 03:07 PM ET (US)     7 / 17       
Some things I do are:
1. Turn off the game music and crank up the sound effects to hear every hoo-hah and horn call
2. Que units so that you have an army waiting for you when you finish an attack
3. Click on the map in the bottom right corner to move around and look for blinking lights. I usually look at that map just as much or more than the big one.

Ok most of this stuff was pretty obvious but just my $.02

apocalypse77
Clubman
posted 06-28-99 04:49 PM ET (US)     8 / 17       
Well yeah neil, but what if you have 30K+ in the bank and are at the pop limit? I guess you should attack, and rebuild, eh?
Thorfinn
Clubman
posted 06-28-99 06:34 PM ET (US)     9 / 17       
I guess my problem is that I understand what I'm supposed to do, sometimes I just don't do it.

For instance, in a 4v4 the other night, I tooled APC_disciple, who it turned out was just fleeing the ravages of Red_Karen. I stayed in tool quite a while, because suddenly I was in the pocket and Red_Karen was scaling up for a good Bronze attack. I fed her to Bronze, then fed her to a decent military, all the while increasing my economy as much as I could. About the time I Bronzed APC_armagedn announced that S_Hemlock had Ironed. I fed Red_Karen to Iron, and to scythes, and whatever else she needed for battle, and finally Ironed myself at like 34. I sent in a few waves of HA to liberate APC_armagedn, who was getting hit hard by Kurtiebird, but shortly after pushing him from 'gednland, 'gedn got dropped. I continued 50 HA (2 full groups of 25, the max you can group) into Kurtiebird's camp, but was outplayed, and possibly outgunned. My game then quite literally died.

From then on, my entire contribution to the game was 40 jihad/seigecraft villies to take down S_Hemlock's walls and Wonder, then to build a gazillion towers and scads of walls for Red_Karen's wonder. As the clock was ticking down to 800 or so, and Kurtiebird's phalanxes found my towns, I didn't run, and sometimes didn't even attack back. I even kind of detachedly watched his phalanxes stab my woodies in the back. I did, however, send my woodies after S_Hemlock's cats.

I was out of gold, but I had 30,000 wood, 20,000 food and 10,000 stone, not to mention the 50 or so b-towers and 15 odd priests around the wonder, and the scads of military buildings, but I did nothing but wait. Sarmis_Leander had taken the wind out of Kurtiebird's sails, and S_Hemlock lost everything but his navy defending his wonder, so I was not too concerned about losing our wonder. In this case, I can tell you I did feel burned out, and it was 2:00 AM, but still...

The problem is that this is not too unusual for me. I can only keep the energy going about 3 out of 4 games. The other I really have to seriously consider the Wonder game early.

Thanks for the suggestions, all. I'll keep them in mind, and try to actually implement them, rather than just think about doing them...

Keep your stick on the ice.

[This message has been edited by Thorfinn (edited 06-28-99).]

neilkaz
Clubman
posted 06-29-99 10:44 AM ET (US)     10 / 17       
Thorfinn what civ were you in that last game ? Assy ? Anyhow 50 HA's could take out Kurtie.. WOW !! What did he fight you of with ? I must stress that you want to kill ALL his vils with that many HA's. Dodge his flying boulders as best as you can. If you're short gold bring in some chariots to go after his cats while you run your HA's around. You had 30K res.. don't be shy about killing most of your vils to make room for a decisively large military. If you have 10 TC's you can then after the battle spend 3000 food and have 60 new vils in 2 minutes. ..Short gold for more HA's ?... OK make a bunch of CA's.. toss in some chariots. Trade some of your huge wood or food stores for gold and start early once you see a gold shortage coming on.

50 Ball towers plus walls plus l0K stone ? Is there that much stone on an entire giga map ? WOW !!.

My whole point is that you know how to gather resources masterfully. Once you have 30K stockpiled in a conquest game..delete all vils/FB weak units and make a winning army of 150-200 superunits w/reserves sitting in Q.

If it is your normal standard game you could have probably wondered and defended it much earlier.

Phalanx stabbing your woodies ? They'd stab alot less with 10 B'towers guarding those woodies.

I wish I had you on my side to have 30K res to feed me because I don't honestly know too many who'd want to face the attack I'd then pull off.

Make a HUGE army...neilkaz...

Thorfinn
Clubman
posted 06-29-99 12:03 PM ET (US)     11 / 17       
I was babs.

Re: why my HA did so poorly, I got caught in two fights at the same time, and when I got back to my HAs (who I assumed could handle themselves) I found they got stalled out in a shallows by a few of Kurtie's yammie cav and phalanx, backed up by HA (or HHA, I didn't notice), 'remes, and stoners. I managed to regroup about 20, but only about 6 actually got into his underbelly, and I believe got only 1 villager kill. The whole charge went past his archery ranges (6 or so, Kurtie?) each with 2-3 HA just produced. I think, though, I must have hurt his military machine greatly. It might have been that he used up all his gold, and we controlled about 70% of the map at that point. In retrospect, a couple dozen CA might have finished him off at that point. I don't know. It cost us both a lot of gold. He did not mount an effective attack until after our wonder went up, and then he had to charge across a narrow shallows and then uphill while under fire from Leander's massed compie/HCat/Hele horde on the hill.

And, yes, you are right about the chariots. I think I only produced about 3 scythes that whole game. From like 9 stables. And the part that is really embarassing is that I realized after the game that I had never researched a single storage pit upgrade! I am amazed my military did as well as they did!

Re: stone, very few others were using any stone at all. I'm trying to remember, but before we bagan our wonder, the only walls I saw were were small chokepoint and shallows walls. Maybe 100 sections total. After taking out S_Hemlock's wonder, I left a few villies behind to steal his stone. He may have used up another pile, but I got 2 full quarries off his land. I don't recall seeing more than about 20 towers other than mine, but since I didn't really see Kurtieville, he may have had some. If Hemmie had any towers, they were defending his northern border, and we came in from the south, which was defended by walls backed up by mobile defenses.

It would take 9 stone piles to upgrade to B-tower, have 50 towers, and have 10k left over. I just got back from SB, and on a 6 player gig narrows map saw 15, 16, 15, 15 and 16 for my first 5 tries. I can think of 8 piles I used right off the top of my head. My 2, Hemmie's 2, disciple's 2, 'gedn's 1.5, and 1/2 of one from yellow, whoever that was. And I know I finished off one for Red_Karen. Don't remember whether she had mined much of it or not, but since I had to trib for her 1000 for the wonder, and then trib so she could wall off, I'm betting she didn't use too much of it...

I hope I didn't sound defensive here, because I certainly don't want to turn you off from helping me improve.

And as for trading, you are right. Both Red and I were kicking ourselves later for not doing that. We had a completely safe route the entire side of the gig map. We could have been trading for tons of gold from the time disciple was gone, like 15 minutes into the game. Heaven knows the water had no fish in it. Might as well use it for trading.

FWIW, I think Hemmie may have been counting a little too much on his navy, which was quite impressive, until they got caught in a crossfire between leander's Minoan 'remes and his HCats and Heles. That and the stupid AI had Hemmie's 'remes pounding on my fishing boat diversion while leander made mincemeat out of him.

Thanks again for the comments, and I will still try to remember to implement them.

Keep your stick on the ice.

[This message has been edited by Thorfinn (edited 06-29-99).]

neilkaz
Clubman
posted 06-29-99 12:44 PM ET (US)     12 / 17       
Thx for your replies and research into the ammount of stone. Now that you controlled 70% of the map I can see how you had that much. Bab's huh !!..OK take that 30,000 wood and 20,000 food and make 500 scythes over the course of your ironage and see who is still alive and well .. I know it wouldn't be me if I was on the receiving end of several 100 unit scythe rushes .

I hope I don't sound overbearing here but I am just so utterly amazed that anyone can have that many unused resources that fast !! Your gathering is superb but don't neglect your military. I am an economic maximization expert like you in ROR, but at the risk of sounding like a braggart, when I learned to become more and more aggressive I started winning more and more games quicker and quicker.

I know many of you have played quite a bit with Highlander and one reason he is so good is that he is VERY aggressive..neilkaz..

Hemlock
Clubman
(id: S_Hemlock)
posted 06-29-99 06:23 PM ET (US)     13 / 17       
Since you brought up that game, I thought I'd throw in my remarks... even though they have nothing to do with Iron Age Multitasking.

I find that I usually don't use towers in zone games, and when I do, I have never made the Ballista Tower upgrade. In that game, I put 1 or 2 villies on stone early but never bothered collecting it aggressively.

Before I put up our wonder, we had battled back and forth on the shallows between yellow (Dark_Wizard) and leander with neither side able to make much progress. My HA's and Cats kept getting pummelled by someone's heavy cats and Compies(?). Even bringing in my ships for support wasn't enough to break the stalemate. It wasn't until the game was nearly over that I realized Palmy gets heavy cats too. (Normally I play Phoe, which gets no stone thrower upgrades.)

After our wonder went up, leander's army crossed the shallows and slowly pushed Wizard back. I tried to help him defend, but I didn't have a counter for those heavy cats. His HC's beat my cats and HA's, and there wasn't enough room for scythes. Wizard soon resigned. (Too soon imo.)

There was only one shallows they could cross to get to my continent, and since I controlled the sea in that area, I decided to make my stand there. I didn't think towers would stand up well to the HC's, so I didn't bother making or researching any. Yes, I was depending on my navy to hold the ground simply because I didn't have any units that I felt would stand up to Minoan HC's and HA's. I had somewhere on the order of 40 or 50 fully upgraded triremes protecting the shallows, but they died horribly to that advancing army, seemingly without making a dent in it. (Incidentally, I never saw your fishing boat diversion. Very clever.) Once my fleet was gone, I didn't have much in the way of defense or resources.

When Karen's wonder went up right after mine fell, I pretty much figured we were done for. It took me at least 15 minutes before I was able to mount any sort of counter attack, and it was just too little, too late.

In response to Thorfinn's comment in another thread about his team being outplayed because of the score differential: Bah! Who looks at score anyway? Your team played better as a team. Except for some tribbing, we played extremely poorly as a team. Jim was eliminated early with no help from us. (Positioning played a major part of that.) I tried to coordinate some defense with Wizard, but he was unresponsive to my messages. Except for some brief naval battles, Kurtie and I pretty much carried on independently for the whole game. IMO, the better team won that game.

------------------
No other success can compensate for failure in the home.

apocalypse77
Clubman
posted 06-29-99 08:18 PM ET (US)     14 / 17       
The way I look at it, if you don't use your stone in a long game, that is really stupid. It's like just leaving a gold pile sitting around, not using. It's another resource you can exploit, to tower or wall, often it's not expected, and can really mess up an attack or, at the very least, will always slow it down. I often found that I would have just maybe a couple HA sneak in, and I would lose villies. I realized that walls would help me SOOOOO much, and towers behind then would stop anything but Cats (or Heles), but if he has Cats, your villies run like hell! So it's a win-win situation, rather than, and allows you to exploit a resource, if you have lots of all other resources in the bank, grab some stone. Conversely, if you have towered and walled more than you need to (always go for more), then use it to trade, it won't recede like wood, doesn't need refreshed pits, and doesn't need to be used to make units, therefore it is better than trading either food or wood.
cn
Inactive
posted 06-29-99 08:29 PM ET (US)     15 / 17       
Hi, If you're using this Iron Multitasking, how long it would take to finish your enemy in DM game on 1vs1 with huge map? anyidea?

CN

borgboy12
Clubman
posted 07-13-99 05:31 PM ET (US)     16 / 17       
Bringing strategy threads to the top.
Tenaciti
Clubman
posted 03-25-00 03:11 PM ET (US)     17 / 17       
to the top!!
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