Lead Admiral Arkantos is set to regain the favor from Poseidon, God of the Atlantean people. After Poseidon's statue trident is stolen by the minotaur Kamos, Arkantos begins a long journey that leads him to meet many allies and enemies that climaxes in a battle with far larger implications than what first meets the eye.
Individual-levels run on Easy difficulty in 3:10:12:
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|Mission 1: Omens||0:07:09||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 2: Consequences||0:04:28||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 3: Scratching the Surface||0:02:46||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 4: A Fine Plan||0:02:59||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 5: Just Enough Rope||0:03:45||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 6: I Hope This Works||0:09:58||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 7: More Bandits||0:04:34||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 8: Bad News||0:03:53||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 9: Revelations||0:06:10||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 10: Strangers||0:04:58||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 11: The Lost Relic||0:08:04||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 12: Light Sleeper||0:05:54||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 13: Tug of War||0:03:45||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 14: "Isis, Hear My Plea"||0:02:27||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 15: Let's Go||0:03:34||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 16: Good Advice (Part 1)||0:04:21||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 16: Good Advice (Part 2)||0:01:16||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 17: The Jackal's Stronghold||0:01:39||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 18: A Long Way From Home||0:07:08||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 19: Watch That First Step||0:03:12||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 20: Where They Belong||0:05:31||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 21: Old Friends||0:04:49||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 22: North||0:03:52||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 23: The Dwarven Forge||0:10:40||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 24: Not From Around Here||0:07:27||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 25: Welcoming Committee||0:02:01||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 26: Union||0:07:26||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 27: The Well of Urd||0:02:11||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 28: Beneath the Surface||0:02:15||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 29: Unlikely Heroes||0:05:36||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 30: All Is Not Lost||0:32:46||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 31: Welcome Back||0:03:22||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
|Mission 32: A Place in My Dreams||0:10:16||2014-07-27||'UtterNutter'|
I've chosen the Easy difficulty because the player starts off with more upgrades and resources than any other difficulty. This gives me more flexibility in what I could do and therefore allow me to choose the fastest strategies. In some missions, the number of units the AI has placed in their bases is different on higher difficulties as well.
There are a few important strategies that are consistent throughout the run, but I'll explain those as they come up. Otherwise I'll try to break down the thought process going on when working on these strategies.
In many missions, the game loads all objectives but then feeds them to you one at a time. The aim of the speedrun is to ignore all but the last objective in as many missions as possible, and do as little as possible in the middle in the rest of the missions.
Mission 1- Omens
The most important thing in this mission are the two towers built on the end of the continent. It saves so much time if you kill the black ships there rather than when they land. The end objective of this mission is that all the land units are dead, so if you kill all the embarked transports you don't have to deal with the krakens.
Mission 2- Consequences
Early on, the land army should tank damage on the scout if possible. Arkantos if not. The scout is not important in this mission and so can die and Arkantos heals himself over time. Cyclops and hoplites do a lot of damage to buildings, and building the wall just helps confuse the AI into going near the boats and taking more damage. You don't need to finish a wall to have it count as solid, just begin building it.
Mission 3- Scratching the Surface
This mission is all in the split at the start. The ideal split is three hypaspist, three hoplites, ajax and arkantos go to the left. Three Toxotes, three hoplites to the right. One toxote to the town centre in the bottom. From there, you can load the three hoplites and 7 villagers in a transport to get around the wall and finish both docks around the same time.
Mission 4- A Fine Plan
This is a rather simple mission. You need to get the resources to advance an age and build a Pegasus. Hippokins go to the furthest gold site because they are the fastest. Helopolis to the closest because it are resistant to arrows and slow. A major point if attempting this segment is that you have to complete the objective to mine some gold from a dig site to complete the mission. If you don't do this then breaking the gate will not end the mission.
Mission 5- Just Enough Rope
There is something amusing about running straight past the army attacking Ajax. This mission is a somewhat simple case of destroying the fortress, town centre, archery range, stable, temple and academy. You want to avoid losing a unit in the fight outside the base, and then use the cavalry to take out units and the hoplites to kill the town centre. Odysseus is sacrificed to get rid of some guards. As per last mission, you need to send arkantos to Ajax's town centre or you will not win the mission.
Mission 6- I Hope This Works
This is almost an autoscroller sadly. You need fishing boats to get food to buy villagers. Villagers then get enough wood to build the horse and then build it. All simple stuff. All of the tedium of building the horse is then followed with a huge dosage of randomness as you have to get two meteor kills on the fortresses inside of troy. Given the semi-random nature of meteors, it's easy to lose an attempt with no error on your part.
Mission 7- More Bandits
Apparently militia are overpowered. Nothing particularly special happens in this mission. Just grab all the fast units you are given. Get to the fortress level, use the bronze god power to make them almost invincible to arrow fire and go to town.
Mission 8- Bad News
A more surprising mission if you are unfamiliar with the game or RTS speedrunning. The developers did a good job of making underworld passages from start to end tricky, but left just enough of a gap to let my army in. Getting the fortresses to target Ajax is really important as it lets you deal your full damage output. The relic in the bottom middle is very important, but the relic that spawns is completely random. Ideal spawns are either villager hitpoints or hoplite attack increase.
Mission 9- Revelations
You need to get the nemean lion and medusa for their utility. Instantly killing and area of effect damage is rare in this game and really good for keeping you from losing hoplites. This is the first mission where we see me cycling Arkantos' shout ability. It increases the damage of all units around him by a fair amount. In an extended period like this, where I can get many shouts off, it cuts a lot of time off of the run.
Mission 10- Strangers
A classic in any game. Let's restrict the player's view to make it "harder". In the end, all other units are meatshields for the heroes and should be treated as such. They shouldn't be abandoned, but only have limited use which expires when you hit the section with the mummies. A heads up: the two walls at around 1:50 are a pathing nightmare so keep an eye on the heroes there.
Mission 11- The Lost Relic
A shameless bit of fun on my part. This is another autoscrolling mission that I can't improve the time of unless Arkantos suddenly gets the ability to shout and make villagers mine faster.
Mission 12- Light Sleeper
After the last mission, this throws you in at the very deep end of difficulty. You need to micro the units at the beginning well so you gain control of the villagers quickly. You need to kill the mummies quickly and avoid looking at the area where the plague of serpents spawn.
When you reach the village you need to grab the catapults then batter down the two gates, get amanra to lead away the enemy army, escort the sword to the guardian and then teleport them near the army of kemsyt. Building a wall confuses their AI and bunches them up for the guardian to kill them faster.
Mission 13- Tug of War
This mission is short and sweet. Activate god powers on the cart and send a fast moving unit to help escort it back. The fast unit forces the cart to move at faster than its normal speed to catch up with it, meaning I can finish the mission faster.
Mission 14- "Isis, Hear My Plea"
A really fun level to speedrun as it ignores the level completely. This is the first time that Amanra's ability to jump over walls is game breakingly abused. This mission is as easy as it looks and shouldn't take much replicating.
Mission 15- Let's Go
The only mission in the campaign that references another mission. The prison and nearby landmasses are copies from the mission before, which is cool. We use the same strategy as mission 13, but this time with avengers to get the cart out of the city as soon as possible. There is also a chance that the meteors will not land on the gate enough to destroy it, though this is incredibly unlucky.
Mission 16- Good Advice
This mission is segmented into two sections as it has two completely different maps that you play on, and the restart point changes after the end of part one of the mission. Sending troops over to claim the town centre is important in part 2, otherwise the mission will not end when you kill the wonder. This is unfortunate as we'd like arkantos around to kill the wonder.
Mission 17- The Jackal's Stronghold
This is the mission where I get to use the only glitch in the game. The Leviathan's AI tells it that it cannot move to transport the units inside, therefore the units inside are teleported to the closest landmass to the point clicked. This was patched out in a later patch, which is why I use 1.0
Mission 18- A Long Way From Home
Another auto scrolling mission. We get villagers building on queue as quickly as possible and rally them to the tree. Then we kick back and watch the show, protecting the villagers as much as possible. The attacks on the tree vary wildly in size and composition, making this a little inconsistent.
Mission 19- Watch That First Step
It's almost impossible to make Kamos' bodyguards confused in this mission. They do their job of getting in the way very well. That said, we just need to take our men and run them from the beginning to the end using god powers en route. There's little strategy or subtlety in this mission.
Mission 20- Where They Belong
I have learnt a lot about how units change control from this mission. It turns out that watch towers can claim Osiris Carts if there are no allied soldiers around to escort them. This is why I invoke the plague of serpents god power around the tower, otherwise the AI would gain control of my cart.
Mission 21- Old Friends
You would think ignoring the pigs would be fast in this mission, but you get additional troops and villagers based on the number of pigs you save. So we want to get a few groups to get enough troops to kill the fortress.
Mission 22- North
I enjoy watching the micromanagement on display for this mission because fighting three bases at the same time is quite the challenge. If you would like to challenge this segment, practice the bases one at a time so you aren't overwhelmed.
Mission 23- The Dwarven Forge
This mission is equally difficult in it's resource gathering and base destruction elements. The former due to the amount of resources required to reach the Mythic age, and the latter due to the giant base being filled with towers, which are very effective against the heroes of ragnarok. If there is time to be saved on this split, I'd begin working on the economic route first, as there may be a better method of getting the resources I need.
Mission 24- Not From Around Here
This mission can go very well early only to be ruined by an unfortunate walking woods god power. Sometimes that is the way the cookie crumbles.
Mission 25- Welcoming Committee
A fun fact: Skipping the cutscene in this mission means the armies at the start are still fighting each other and not you. Another micro-heavy mission but killing Hersirs was never a particularly difficult task and so it can be done pretty quickly. Remember to hotkey each group and you should be fine.
Mission 26- Union
The hardest part of this mission is getting the resources for the second village. You are somewhat stalled by the fact that you cannot complete the second objective without 1000 wood and 500 gold. How fast you kill the trolls is therefore irrelevant. This said, Amanra continues to be useful and draws away the giants that would murder our army while it killed the gate.
Mission 27- The Well of Urd
This mission requires very little commentary. Make sure you kill all the myth units around the well with Chiron and Amanra and get the army to the well to kill the fire giant.
Mission 28- Beneath the Surface
Landing the frost in this mission is one of the most infuriating parts of the speedrun. If you place it too far to the right, it will catch one of the mission important fire giants, making him have 99% armour for 50ish seconds. If you place it too fat to the left then you miss the more damaging parts of the defending army and cause yourself a world of problems trying to kill the giants. Otherwise, try and keep the heroes alive as much as possible, and losing Chiron/Amanra is more optimum as they have the least damage of the heroes.
Mission 29- Unlikely Heroes
Poor Chiron. This mission is the first of two norse autoscrollers as you have to cut down the same tree as you cut down in mission 18. Clear the route between the pieces and make sure the hammer head is by the tree as it is finished cutting for a good quick time.
Mission 30- All Is Not Lost
Again, not much commentary for this level. It's an enormous autoscroller with only two areas that can speed it up: Rushing to build the town centre and killing Gargarensis. Killing Gargarensis quickly sometimes leads to the game lagging before giving you the "You are Victorious" screen, leading to a slower time than killing him normally.
Mission 31- Welcome Back
We now return to the Greek tech tree for the last two missions. We use pegasi to activate Gargarensis' more powerful god powers before our armies fall into them. Then all we have to do is split our army up to the closest objectives, rescue the villagers in the way the game intended and then underworld passage them to the safety island.
Mission 32- A Place in My Dreams
This mission is not as hard as it sounds, it just requires you to be able to macro fairly well and most of the resources are already provided anyway. The Plenty god power that you cast is stronger than the plenty vaults already on the map. The combined three plenty vaults provide 20 resources per 5, which helps with both villager production and getting the wonder resources.
As a closing statement, I'd like to thank Twisted_Enemy who came up with most of the strategies for this run, Dahun for getting me interested in running the game and Bolddregon for his support. We should hopefully have the two expansions, the Golden Gift and the Titans being submitted in the near future.
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