Designer Name: Rakovsky
Scenario Title: Journey to Edessa DE
Scenario Version: 1.0
Date Submitted: 7/16/2021
Single or Multiplayer: Single Player
Put the Mod's Scenario files into the "Scenarios" Folder of your User Directory's AOE:DE folder. For example, the Default path if you have a Steam Account is:
C:\Users\_(Your_Username_on_your_Computer)\Games\Age of Empires DE\Users\(Your_Steam_Username)\Game Content\Scenarios
Edessa, capitol of the Kingdom of Osroene, was a major Christian center in the late 2nd century AD. King Abgar VIII the Great converted to Christianity and a coin from his kingdom minted in 177-192 AD shows a cross on his crown. Abgar ruled from 177 to 212 AD. As was the case during Abgar's rule, Osroene in the first two centuries AD tended to be an autonomous kingdom in fealty to Rome, meaning that it recognized the Roman empire as its superior.
Adiabene was a neighboring kingdom to the east of Osroene, and its capitol was Arbela. In comparison to Osroene, Adiabene's royalty tended to be in fealty to Persia and had an established Jewish history in the 1st century AD.
Information on when Christianity first came to Adiabene and how widespread it was there in this period is sparser than information about Christianity's growth in Edessa. The Chronicle of Arbela records a series of bishops in Adiabene in the 2nd century AD. The famous Gnostic Christian writer Tatian was also from Adiabene. He compiled the Four Gospels into a single narrative called the Diatessaron in 172 AD.
In this scenario, you guide a community of Arbela's Christians traveling from Arbela to Edessa to learn about Christianity. On the way, you are faced with challenges and obstacles that require using AOE:DE's Iron Age Technologies related to Christianity: Monotheism, Sacrifice (called "Martyrdom" in AOE:ROR), the Afterlife, Fanaticism, and Zealotry.
The scenario is challenging because the Player starts with limited resources and requires special tactics to win. One challenge is converting the Orange Player's Zenobia's Tower, one of the few kinds of cases when the Sacrifice ability becomes important in AOE1 DE. The most challenging part is getting your priest to the tower alive so that you can convert it, and then pressing the Delete key on your priest to use the Sacrifice ability before the tower kills your priest.
A second challenge involves using zealous villagers to fight a mix of enemy units before the units destroy a collection of your Town Centers in Hatra. A third challenge is training a mass of legions and priests and using them to fight the Qardu rebels' cavalry army between Nineveh and Edessa.
The scenario is practically the same as my ROR scenario "Journey to Edessa," except that this DE version has a side mission involving Zealotry and the Qardu rebel battle east of Edessa is harder. The scenario has been playtested successfully on the HARD Difficulty. Full Instructions and Hints are in the Readme File. Let me know if you find glitches or if the battles are too hard.
It is part of a series on early Christianity that can be found in the Heaven Games Granary:
1. Gethsemane (30-33 AD)
2. Conversions and Catacombs of Rome (41-62 AD)
3. Thomas' Mission to Indo-Parthia (46-51 AD)
4. Abgar V's Mesopotamian Campaign (49 AD)
5. Nero's Persecution (64-67 AD)
6. Josephus Takes Command of Eastern Galilee (66 AD)
7. Josephus Retakes Tiberias (66 AD)
8. Nero's Killing (68 AD)
9. Domitian's Persecution (93-96 AD)
10. Domitian's Killing (96 AD)
11. Journey to Edessa (177-212 AD)
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Edessa (called Sanliurfa today) and the land of its 1st century kingdom, Osroene, are mysterious, special places in spiritual history. Osroene's territory in the south included the territory that had previously been the kingdom of "Bit Adini" that was apparently the "Land of Eden" for the Biblical writers. The northeast of Osroene on some maps included Mount Karaca, also called Karacadag, which would seems to be the geographic location for the Garden of Eden if one construed the story of the Garden in earthly terms.
Gobekli Tepe is a megalithic site on the northeast edge of Edessa. Its layers run from 9,000 BC to 7,400 BC. The site contains large circles of rectangular stones in a layout resembling Stonehenge. However, unlike Stonehenge, Gobekli Tepe's stones include sculptures of animals and people, so that it has something of a thematic resemblance to Easter Island. In contrast, Stonehenge as a circular site with posts dates to *only* 3400 BC. Mesopomatia already had extensive writing in 3400-3100 BC.
Abraham was from Harran in Aramaea, and Harran and much of Aramaea were in what became the kingdom of Osroene. In the Torah, it says that Abraham's descendants for several generations only took wives from Aramaea instead of from among the Canaanites.
In Jesus' time, Jews typically spoke Aramaic. It came about this way: The Neo-Assyrian Empire originally spoke Akkadian, the language of Babylon. Then the Assyrians conquered Aramaea and took on Aramaic as their language. Then in the 8th century BC, the Assyrians subjugated Israel. This caused them to spread Aramaic as the standard language in Israel eventually.
Saint Thomas, it appears, went to Edessa and was buried there.
Osroene under Abgar VIII may have been the first literal "Christian kingdom" in history. There are some other possibilities. For example, Abgar V could have been a Christian as the story about him goes, but his Christianity is more controversial among scholars than Abgar VIII's Christianity is. There are traditions about other kings like Gondophares in the mid-1st century and Lucius of Britain (c. 173 AD) becoming Christians.
The story and legacy of the Turin shroud seems traceable to Edessa. The shroud seems to have come to Turin from Crusaders who had it in France, and the Crusaders seem to have taken it from Constantinople. It seems that the Byzantines got it from Edessa. It may be the same item as the "Mandylion" (meaning hand-cloth) of Edessa.