Probably the most important part of the game is be the military. A strong economy is vital to allow you all sorts of possibilities, including a good army, but ultimately the army is the mean to assure your success, even if your strategy is a defensive/trader one, because even if you don’t need an army to conquer your neighbor you will need one to prevent/dissuade your neighbor from conquering you!
You will be able to recruit contingents. An army is a military unit formed by any number of contingents. It’s simply a container of contingents, and all contingents must belong to an army. If you access Military => Armies, you will see the list of armies you have. This list contains some information about each army the armies name and thus entering each specific army’s page.
Here you can see:
- Army. This column shows the name of each of your armies, and you can see further details regarding each specific army by clicking on it’s name;
- Location. This is the coordinate in the map where your army is. By clicking in the coordinate you will access that territory’s information, as per Land => Territories => Territory X, and if you click on the symbol before the coordinate the map will center on that territory;
- Infantry. This displays the total number of infantry troops your army has;
- Cavalry. This displays the total number of cavalry troops your army has. The concept of cavalry means troops that are mounted on an animal;
- Exp. This is the weighted average experience of the contingents the army has. The value is displayed by circles and half-circles, where 5 circles is the best possible level and 0 is the worst possible situation;
- Status. This is the weighted average status of the contingents the army has. The value is displayed by small squares and half-squares, where 5 squares is the best level and 0 is the worst possible situation. This display is also color coded from dark red for a very bad status to solid green for good operating conditions;
- Order. This shows the current order your army has. If it has no order, the troops will be simply resting;
- Next. Here you will see the next order the army has queued to do. Orders will be explained in Military => Orders and Movement.
In the bottom of the list you will have the total numbers of infantry, cavalry, and monthly maintenance (total expenses in gold and food) of your armies. To the left of each army there is a select box, and in the bottom of the list a select/unselect all box that will allow you to use, for the selected armies, the options of:
- Join armies. Using this option will join the selected armies into the biggest one of those selected, in number of men. All the contingents the previous armies had will be inside the joined army. For this to be done, armies must be stopped in the same location (not marching there/from there);
- Disband army. This will disband the selected armies. When you disband a army, all it’s soldiers will join the population of the territory where they are if it is friendly. If not, they will simply disband;
- Cancel next order. This option allows you to cancel the previously queued following orders of the selected armies;
- Select a new order. This allows you to queue new order to the selected army/armies, using the “new order” segment. Orders will be explained in Military => Orders and Movement.
Army Details Page
When you enter an army’s details page, you will have a bit more information about it, namely:
- The information about the army’s name and location (with links working in the same manner has those in the army list);
- Upkeep. This shows the monthly value in gold needed to pay the soldiers salaries, which vary according to the contingent type and are halved for garrisoning armies, and the amount of food needed to feed them. Each soldier will need one plus the number of horses required to recruit him pound of food per day. So for example in a 30 days per turn game 1000 spearmen will require 30 food (remember that food is in tones) per turn and 1000 light cavalry in the same game will require 60 food per turn;
- Power. This is an indication of the armies fighting capacity. It takes into account the contingent types and it’s current characteristics (status, armor and experience) to calculate the armies value (the higher the better), which is an indicator for the players and is used to determine the rankings;
- Recruit. This allows you to recruit more soldiers to this army, as long as it is currently located in a territory where you have available recruits;
- A list of contingents that compose the army with a select box to the left of each one, to allow you to use the options bellow the list to join contingents (only for contingents of the same type and race, which will add their numbers and retain a weighted average of their armor, experience and status), split a contingent into two (using this option will open a text box to allow you to determine how many soldiers are to be splited of the previous contingent), disband/colonize with the contingent (same procedure of a disband army, but only for selected contingents) and divide army (to separate the select contingent(s) into a new army).
- Total. This shows the added total numbers of infantry and cavalry of the current army;
- A “Orders” segment where you can queue orders for your army. See Military => Orders and Movement for details. To the left of this title is a green arrow that allows you to hide/unhide the segment;
- A “Past Orders” segment that displays the list of previously concluded and canceled orders up until the one currently being executed, with the dates when the orders where given and executed, marching speeds and target territories. To the left of this title is a green arrow that allows you to hide/unhide the segment;
- A “Army Reports” segment where all reports previously created by this army are listed. Every thing the army has ever done creates a report, from movement to battles and assaults. To the left of this title is a green arrow that allows you to hide/unhide the segment.
List of Contingents
For each contingent there will be the following information:
- Type. This represents a type of equipment and fighting manner that all it’s soldiers have;
- Size. This shows the number of soldiers of the contingent, which, of course, are all of the same type;
- Armor. This is the level of protection against enemy attempts to harm them. It usually represents the protective equipment of the contingent (shields, body armor and such), but it also represents their ability to dodge attacks and/or the toughness to sustain them. So for example an elfish archer will have a good armor level due to its dodging skills, a Legionnaire will also have a good armor level, but due to the large shield and good body armor, and a Uruk-Hai will have a good armor due to his toughness and natural physical capacity to sustain damage. The value is presented by a number of shields and half-shields, where 5 is the best possible value and 0 the worst;
- Experience. This represents the amount of training and battle experience of the soldiers. When a contingent is recruited, it has 0 experience (or maybe a bit more thanks to being recruited in a recruitment center). You then need to train them in order to increase their ability to conduct military operations (with no training/experience they don’t even know how to march properly!). After a while of training, you will see that your soldiers will not gain more experience. This is because you can only go beyond a certain level with battle experience. The amount of experience you can gain though training depends on the contingent type. Militias won’t be able to gain much, and the better the unit the more experience it can gain through training (so for example a Heavy Cavalry will be able to train a lot). Naturally experience affects all sort of military operations, from marching to battle performance. The effects on battle performance are always relevant, but are more so for contingents that use more complex weapons or equipment, such has long bows or cavalry troops. Fighting battles, especially against worthy opponents, is a good way of gaining experience, more so if your troops are on the winning side. Each contingent’s experience is presented by a number of circles and half-circles, where 5 is the best possible value and 0 the worst;
- Status. This represents the battle readiness of the contingent. If your army is fatigued due to marching (the faster the pace the more fatigued they get) the status goes down, if you fight a battle the status goes down (because there are some soldiers recovering from wounds and they are fatigued), if your armies stops to rest the status goes up (both from resting and from recovering injured and stranded men). The value is displayed by small squares and half-squares, where 5 squares is the best level and 0 is the worst possible situation. This display is also color coded from dark red for a very bad status to solid green for good operating conditions.
- Loyalty. This shows how loyal your soldiers are. The starting value depends upon the loyalty of the population where they are recruited from, and then it varies according to your ability or lack of capacity to properly maintain them, in gold and food. If it drops to much, you’ll have desertions.