You are a God! You are master and ruler of a loyal nation. You have unimaginable powers at your disposal. You have claimed this world as yours. But there are others who stand in your way. You must defeat and destroy these pretenders. Only then can you ascend to godhood and become the new Pantokrator.

When you start the game you decide what kind of god you are and how your DOMINION affects your lands and followers. It is an expression of your divine might and the faith of your followers. If your dominion dies, so do you. Your dominion also inspires your sacred warriors and gives them powers derived from your dominion.

In order to win and become the one true god you have to defeat your enemies one of three different ways: conquer their lands, extinguish their dominion or claim the Thrones of Ascension.

Release version and manual is available now. Manual can be downloaded from Illwinter's web page.

Fomoria - thoughts and advise needed to complete
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kasnavada Nov 12 2013, 2:29pm Anchor

Hello !

Following a very bad defeat in the MP game I'm playing, I'm writing a small "guide" including what I think of the nation. Next, I want to know how to improve myself (it's the second time I lose as Fomoria), and I'm asking for things I have missed.

Both time I got sacred rushed, last time in Dom3 it was with some demons...

First : the unit list.
-  fomorian slinger. It's EA, so basically with their 8 damage they could do something, but with 20 range I feel they are not that useful.
-  both firbolg warriors, one with an axe, the other with a javelin & light lance. They've got similar stats, except the axe hits harder. 
-  fomorians. They look like giant humanoid. I read some guides and was told they'd be too afflicted, running tests I find about 2/3 of scouts are, half of both other variety, and 20% of the warriors. The number of units for this test is fairly small, though.
- unmarked, which is the sacred version of the warriors, for twice the cost and cap-only.
 - Fomorian giant, which are size 5, with attack skill 11.
- nemedian warrior, which is again cap-only, limiting their use by a lot.

In that game I went for firbolg warriors + unmarked, which works of course wonders against indies despite the cost. Their small number failed spectacularly, however, when met with something which could kill them. In my opinion, the unmarked should only be used with a strong bless, however, otherwise they are just marginally better than warriors.

Unit wise, you seem to need to make a choice between all three cap-only troops. With no bless, both fomorians are out, which leaves the nemedian (useful after a few years, but at 22 ressources ?). The giant seems out in any case, other fomorian are size 4 and can accept a Firbolg in their square, whereas the giant is size 6 and therefore unable to fit anything. Which, combined to it's unimpressive defense / protection (12 / 14) stat, make it a huge punching bag. It does counter elephants, not that I met any, but still, it's worth to find a niche use. Also, I "love" the synergy with their Javelin, with -2 precision to their already awful base 8, and they've got the highest range of all javelin users because they have the highest strength...

About the other units, it seems, you have to do either firbolg only or firbog + fomorians. With a bless, unmarked + firbolg warriors seems to work well, otherwise it seems that warrior + firbolg is the better option. That requires very high ressources, however.

About the commanders, basically the same applies.
- both scouts are useless, since it looks like Fomoria cannot waste recruitment time on them. But you have to build them because it's EA and there is very few indy scouts.
- firbolg champion is your standard commander, there is not point using it since an indy commander will work just as well.
-  firbolg druid is a new addition into the game, compared to dom3. It's a good researcher, but it's magic is strange. Without a booster, there is no cross school spell it can cast apart flying shield, which is not that useful to begin with. With a booster you can get around to Freezing mist or healing mist or rain of stone. For "regular" spells, you get the authentic uselessness of E1 without a booster, and the standard for A1 (A2 in a storm, which can be cast). So after Evo5 Conj1 you're sure to be able to use them effectively.
- The Fomorian Champion is a commander version of the warrior. I'm at a loss to what to do with them, they do seem somewhat thuggable, crafting mass of frost brands might work. If you get a decent water income.
- The Unmarked champion. Basically it's the same as the unmarked with the same strength, except recruit-anywhere. With a bless, they might be useful. Without ?... not that much, too expensive at 130 gold each.
- The fomorian druid is a somewhat versatile platform, which with can get to interesting spells... with boosters. Otherwise it's good at Air magic. It's sacred so it doubles as a good undead stopper.
- The fomorian King is an awesome SC chassis which is cap-only, and StR, and come at a massive cost. It's also 1/3 chance of being able to craft air boosters, so basically you may only see air boosters after the start of year 3.
- Nemedian champions seems to be useful to use with nemedian warriors, as it's your only stealthy commander. WIth A1D1 it can summon morrigans. It's also a priest.
- Nemedian Sorceress are also stealthy, but they have a command limit of 10. They are base A2D2 with 110% AWDN random. They are not StR though.

Nemedians are also cap-only.

About specificities, they have 3 national spells worth noting: summon morrigan, Summon Barghest, and dance of the morrigan. Summon Barghest are pretty good in darkness, especially with a bless, morrigans are... morrigans. All require rather high level of research, like 6 in alteration for Darkness, 4 for summon barghest, 6 for the morrigan summon...

If you want to go evocation, you also need about 5 level of magic before coming to storm. The cap-only nemedian synergise well with darkness but none of your other units do. Until then basically your fomorian druid and cap-only mage can spam lightning bolt, but the firbolg is very weak.

So, like the units, you have to choose what to buy, you can't go for all. I'd go for a small amount of each except they don't synergize that well.

That were I'm stopping, in MP I tried unmarked + fir warrior + kings and it fails to perform. Any idea of what would work better ?

Magic schools to obtain seems to be conjuration 8  + alteration 6 + construction 4 then 6 + enchantment 4 (seeking arrow, and also the most important cloud trapeze) + Evo 5 (storm and air spells) . With those you've unlocked most of what the nation can do. Some thraumaturgy along cannot be bad, most needed gems seem to be death and air. But Air requires trauma-4 so it's very, very expensive given druids can site search instead.

Any idea how to make their start and mid-game more effective ? So you can actually get there ?

Edited by: kasnavada

elitesix Nov 12 2013, 2:36pm Anchor

Why not just use Dom6 Imprisoned N9 & Good Scales or Imprisoned N9EX (always good for thugs, shroud is easy to get) and use their Sacreds with Nemedian Warriors (great troops!)...great early game, and good probably need prod3 tho.

I mean, you won't have the same early game as other superb EA bless nations, but you do get many mid and late game goodies with death magic.

Edited by: elitesix

LordTolkien Nov 12 2013, 3:06pm Anchor

1) Fir Bolg are incredibly potent as early expanders (the axe does hit harder, but note its lower length, and the spear Fir Bolg have javelins to toss), and I would probably ditch mixing in giants for just Fir Bolg: they're just that much better. Even without afflictions, Fir Bolg have better defense skill, and are 3 to a square: if its a Giant+Fir Bolg, 2 to a square, with worse defense. With 3 to a square, you're getting more attacks with better Attack Skill (unless you're using hideously expensive unmarked), and are easier to mass.

Seriously, the Spear+Javelin Fir Bolg is extreme cost-effectiveness. Just take in and appreciate the stats (13hp, 12 precision, 11 str, 12 attk, 15 defense), and use them solely for expansion. Elephants may be a problem unless you take them down with Javelins or bring axes, but they'll chew through any other indies easily with very low attrition (courtesy of shields and their 15 defense skill: note, most indies will have 10 attack skill, which means the chances of them getting through that def skill without fatigue or multiple attacks is very low); as they gain experience, both their attrition and their killing potential goes up. Axe Fir Bolg are more situational when you need higher damage output, but the Spear Fir Bolg is your go to, and makes your early game expansion/army both very cost effective and pretty potent by itself.

If the goal is midgame power, you have giant (if expensive) Fomorian Druids whom can all cast Thunderstrike when a Storm is up, and 1/3 Fomorian Kings will be able to cast it (or you can just use a A3 king and give him extra gems to boost him up). If you really need midgame power, go for Evocation first and spam: you can never go wrong with lightning evos, and help significantly against bless rushes (bless troops will probably beat your Fir Bolg, but that's expected and you'll need magic to compensate), and you can start using Giants after the expansion phase.

Alt/Const/Ench are more geared towards thugging/SCing, and thus are important late-mid or late game (note, Seeking Arrow is fairly weak as a spell, so don't use it too much. Much better to use for Cloud Trapezes), and Conj/high Alt is in a similar basket (you want to reach Conj-9 for Tarts given your superb death access, and Morrigans, and major battlefield alterations like Fog Warrior/Darkness are in high Alt).

Basically, if its the expansion that's the problem, mass spear Fir Bolg is usually the answer.

Edited by: LordTolkien

kasnavada Nov 12 2013, 3:14pm Anchor

About the bless, problem is that it's very expensive in points for a meager result, since cap-only. Having regenerating Kings late game is nice though, but you can usually make regen rings by then. I've thought about a E9 bless, which helps your mages a lot. But, in practice it's still very expensive for what it does... unless I missed something along the way. Also, troops are gold and ressource intensive if you want a good number of them. And, you'll need an extra fort to create scouts in most games.

About expansion... it's usually fine.
Problem usually is the encounter with the first enemy other player. Is Evo 5 reliable enough to counter-rush effectively ?

jBrereton Nov 12 2013, 3:17pm Anchor

Screw the N9 bless, get some decent scales, plus some fire magic on your pretender to cast Flaming Arrows on your very respectable slingers (esp with Wind Guide) in the midgame.

Fir Bolg are some of the best medium infantry in the game. MR 13, Att 12/Def 15, and above-average hit points and strength mean they're excellent chaff, as well as being good at indie bashing early on. Axes are always terrible, get the spear/javelin ones. These guys are likely to be your mainstay, even if you dip into getting some Fomorian troops.

The problem with your Fomorians is basically attack density and them often being ruined as fuck. I don't use very many, since the purpose you'd be getting them for (punching big targets) is better-fulfilled by evocation, something your mages are pretty good at.  They can also be surprisingly flaky if a formation gets a lot of Battle Fright afflictions on recruitment, so ehhhh.

Giants - use them to get underwater, that's about it. The Giant Commanders are useful in the same way as Dai Oni, being battlefield buffers, battlemagic casters, and blessers, rather than extremely expensive SC chassis. You might get some mileage out of them, though.

Your medium-late game is going to be similar to Caelum's, just with less flying about firing bows, and more solid medium infantry trying to pressure your opponents while your Fomorian Druids get to work. Storm, Summon Storm Power, Evo Forever. That's what you have going. You can do a little death magic, too, which means getting into astral that way through Spectres, but you can only do so much (you have the slimmest of chances of boosting a Nemedian Sorceress to D5 and getting to the top of Death magic that way, I suppose, so long as they get D4).

Edited by: jBrereton

LordTolkien Nov 12 2013, 3:23pm Anchor
kasnavada wrote:About the bless, problem is that it's very expensive in points for a meager result, since cap-only. Having regenerating Kings late game is nice though, but you can usually make regen rings by then. I've thought about a E9 bless, which helps your mages a lot. But, in practice it's still very expensive for what it does... unless I missed something along the way. Also, troops are gold and ressource intensive if you want a good number of them. And, you'll need an extra fort to create scouts in most games.

I agree, N9 bless is generally fairly weak for giant nations. The regen is nice, but the bonus HP isn't as helpful.

Quote:About expansion... it's usually fine.
Problem usually is the encounter with the first enemy other player. Is Evo 5 reliable enough to counter-rush effectively ?

It'll be a significant help: Thunderstrike will reliably clear a square, plus collateral damage to nearby enemies (or you can use Orb Lightning against Giants). Hitting Evo-5 however takes time.

It really depends on the enemies you're facing though. Lightning Bolts+Orb Lightning are helpful against Elephant rushes, but if that's the problem, just use False Fetters (Alt-1). Very low Research, and you disable 2 Elephants apiece per cast (given Elephants generally have very low MR, and False Fetters forces MR checks to break them, they're sitting ducks).

If its N9B9 Jaguars...well, those are really damn scary now and I would probably not use Lightning (since your mages will take attrition from it, though having an innately high HP pool helps immensely), unless they don't have the B9.

EDIT: or see above, though I disagree about Giants/Yomi not being good as SC chassis. They require large amounts of research to leverage into SCs, but when you do: Air Alts (Mistform)+ Death Alts (Skeletal Body/Stygian Skin and Soul Vortex) with Cloud Trapeze Mobility make them very terrifying SCs. Even before then, some decent equipment and he can take on indies as a thug with moderate research.

Edited by: LordTolkien

kasnavada Nov 12 2013, 3:27pm Anchor

Sorceress starting with D3 (one out of 3) can get to D5 with both the skull staff  and the skullface. Which helps a lot in casting, let's say... dance of the Morrigan.
From there they can probably summon something with base D4.

About underwater, with construction 4 a King can solo most indy / PD with items craftable with your own mages. Basically getting underwater earlier seems like a waste of time and ressource compared to do a bit later. Also, your kings get "free xp" down there with little possibilities of your enemies spying on them. Maybe I underestimate the effect going underwater can do though.

jBrereton Nov 12 2013, 3:28pm Anchor
kasnavada wrote:Sorceress starting with D3 (one out of 3) can get to D5 with both the skull staff  and the skullface. Which helps a lot in casting, let's say... dance of the Morrigan.

Not in Dominions 4, they can't. Skullface is D5, not D4.

LordTolkien Nov 12 2013, 3:33pm Anchor

Depending on the number of UW nations in the game, or the water province location, they're easily defensible territory that generates more income (gem and gold) for you. They also give you vision of the coasts, which allows you to leverage your sailing more effectively. No reason not to snatch free provinces if you feel you can defend them.

Edited by: LordTolkien

kasnavada Nov 12 2013, 3:43pm Anchor

Arg... Ok then about the skullface. 0.625% chance of getting what is needed on a sorceress is just way too low. So, I'll need to go for a pretender with 4 death or with high astral to get to D5... great...

About rushes, I'm not afraid of elephants, rather other blessed units. Except blood bless because IMO time is gonna tell whether it's overpowered or not.

About Giants being SC chassis, I think jBreteton is speaking about the commanders (not the king). Those do require loads of items to get useful. Kings, however, require much less, and as you say are really scary with Alt6. Currently I never reached that. With Alt3 (mistform) and Const 4 they are very good raiders though. They can't take an army but will kill 99% of groups with less than 50 units not geared to kill them.

Edited by: kasnavada

elitesix Nov 12 2013, 3:51pm Anchor

If you're not talking about expansion, but rather "early" combat, I'm not sure Fomoria can compete with some of the hard EA bless nations. And mid-game is all about research targets.

But I think you guys totally underestimating the usefulness of a bless for nations with Recruitable sacred thug chasis. Remember gems are a lot less common in dom4. A N9 or E9 bless for your sacred thugs is going to save you tons of gems. 

And a single bless is not horribly expensive. A single bless is not the same as an all scales pretender, but it's pretty good!

N9 Blessing: Imprisoned Divine Serpent Dom6 N9 >=360 Points left
E9 Blessing: Imprisoned Monolith Dom6 E9 >=240 Points left
E9N9 Blessing: Imprisoned Monolith Dom6 E9N9 -40 Points left (for comparison)

I suggested N9 because E9 is hard to get with your pretender choices for Fomoria. But remember, each blessing saves you easily 10 gems per thug (especially since the 5 gem Boots of the Messenger only gives 2 reinvig now), which is huge imho. You can play Fomoria very strongly without a bless as well, but I think the strongest early game version of Fomoria will have a bless - I don't think there is a way around that.

Edited by: elitesix

DegenerateArt Nov 12 2013, 5:59pm Anchor

It's a great nation, one of the strongest in EA as far as I'm concerned.

Currently an obvious choice is to go for an imprisoned N9B9 Fountain of Blood, making Unmarkeds and your giants who are big cheap sacks of HP into almost uncounterable BV machines. Cap only, yes, but with MM3 and sailing you can spread them around very well. But that's not a terribly fun strategy to play as far as I'm concerned, too straightforward and boring, also there's the issue of it possibly being nerfed in the midst of a long MP game you'd start now.


But outside of that, a Monolith or Oracle capable of making the astral rings, with good scales, is one option. Though it will be a goddamn long time before you'll get to make them, when you need to accumulate all those gems and have no guarantee of anyone capable of sitesearching S besides that immobile pretender. But it's one way to go about it.

A high N low E bless is good though. For your giants and unmarkeds, for your kings to an extent, but also for the Fomorian Druid almost most of all. Who can then be given a frost brand, vine shield, and an armor, and you've got a great trapezing, mistformed, regenerating thug with quickness or barkskin dependent on their random. Possibly add in a reinvig item, also can leave out the brand and just cast shockwave.
Rather leave the Kings to do battle casting for the most part, that's what they excel at, and for thugging duty rather equip the more disposable Druids.
Of course, the bless does also tremendously help the giants who are honestly quite good units, especially when you go underwater.

So you'd be looking at a Lord of The Forest, E4N9, has to be dormant or you'll be waiting ages to get your hands on the earth boots and thistle maces and hammers you want. You get Dom6 and 3 positive scales with that. There's the issue of getting that Skullface still, that I want to solve. I see two ways to deal with it here - either buy up to S5 on that Titan, or go for luck scales in hopes to get either of the two heroes you have with D4, or at least get enough D gems from luck/magic combo to make empowering D3 -> D4 less atrocious. Normally I say that luck is overcosted crap to avoid cause it is, but hey, some food for thought at least. Buying S5 is not cheap either. With the luck scales you'll have less gold but more gems so investing in morrigans more than otherwise is something to consider.

So I'd go with either with
dormant Lord of The Forest E4N9 Dom6 O0P1C1D1L3M1
dormant Lord of The Forest E4S5N9 Dom6 O3P1C1D1misf2D1
give or take a scale switch here or there.

Get thunderstrike first, and aim, then const-4, alt-3, conj-3, sitesearch with pretender when he comes out, possibly using the pretender as an early SC if need be once const-4, and summoning D summons if you must. Recruit a few nemedian sorceresses early for fast research, some turns you can't afford though so buy a firbolg researcher.

For expansion parties use a combo of firbolgs and fomorian arrowcatchers, nemedian champ leading unmarkeds, giants for uw, gotta use your head a bit to make the most of it. P1 gives you super fast expansion, more than that is unnecessary.
Between your sacreds and firbolgs not many nations have outright better troops than you unless they took a more extreme bless than you did, plus you can rain lightning on whatever elites come your way while the sacreds are sturdy and hold the line. Try and conquer a good piece of land off someone, dont sit on your ass, use sailing and your UW capacity. Getting a squad of nemedian raiders, before your mistform thugs come online, can be nice. Fomorian militia is a good hire if you need to bring down walls.

kasnavada Nov 13 2013, 3:00am Anchor

About the B9N9, it's not that much of a "obvious" choice in my opinion.

The  unmarked work much better with the unblessable firbolg in their rank, reducing the point of BV by half at least. Also such a bless is so expensive you cannot buy more than half a dozen a turn (Dom 6 is about as high as I can get without being reduced to buy less than 3 unmarked during half of the first year).

Rushing someone with 20 giants is not going to work that well, because even giants have counter (I personnally got hit by "strength of giant", which requires low research and magic paths, which enables smaller elite player units with some attack skill to gang on them and "shotgun" them to death... as I found painfully in another MP game).

Finally, with 16 protection and 15 defense, and a shield, they barely get hit against most non-elite troops (if not too much out-numbered), reducing further the point of B9. Blood vengeance is great for Mictian jaguars because it counters their counter, and because they're cheap, and rather easy to hit but with Fomoria you cannot really afford being hit on purpose... Your units are too expensive and difficult to replace in my opinion.

About your points with N bless, I'll try that a bit further.

Edited by: kasnavada

LordTolkien Nov 13 2013, 5:36am Anchor

An E bless remains one of the better bless choices for giants, given the +5 prot brings your unmarked up to I believe 19 or 20 prot, and is especially important to keeping their fatigue down (6 enc is not as bad as before, but the reinvig is immensely good for keeping your giants in it for the long haul and to prevent critical hits).

Personally wouldn't go for too large a bless on Fomoria as you aren't quite Mictlan (I'd instead make use of your excellent magic and Fir Bolg troops, with a more minor bless), but N/E bless still works for giants.

Edited by: LordTolkien

jBrereton Nov 13 2013, 6:03am Anchor

I'd get F4E4 on an Arch Mage, get some early Evo (3) and Alt (also 3) and then move onto Ench for a while. 2 reinvig is always nice, and Earth/Fire allows for things like Shields of Gleaming Gold and/or Fire Brands, if and when you can scrape the gems together. The Fire's for Flaming Arrows'd slingers, and the couple of points of attack never hurts, especially since it's a pseudo-defensive buff on your blessed spear troops due to how Repel Works.

Take the Mage asleep and you can get Dom 6, F4E4, O3P1H0G3Mis1Mag0. You could drop a scale somewhere and get A1W1D1N1 on top for research and sitesearching, I suppose, but I'd be hesitant, just because of the potential that gives for the spellcasting AI to fuck you over.

elitesix Nov 13 2013, 3:21pm Anchor
kasnavada wrote:About the B9N9, it's not that much of a "obvious" choice in my opinion.

B9N9 on high hp sacreds is great. If BV isn't being used much, you're winning the battle anyway. If BV is triggering, it does a lot of damage to whatever is attacking it, and unless they alpha strike your hp, your regen turns into more BV damage.

Basically, in the situation you describe about giants getting swarmed, the swarm thins itself out with each and every attack. BV counters swarms; arguably more than earth blessing's reinvig/protection, more than water's defense and partial quickness when we're talking about medicore/poor attack giants. BV fills a hole for both expensive but lower attack giants and for cheap warriors such as JW.

Edited by: elitesix

kasnavada Nov 13 2013, 5:40pm Anchor

Actually, the main problem for Fomoria is that the unmarked are VERY expensive.

Basically, you can buy 3 for the first 2 months, then one more per months until you get to your max dominion "-1" (commanders are sacred too), so basically, 5 with Dom 6. You can get dominions higher but then you have barely enough money to buy them, and if you cut Production, you might not have enough ressources. WIth a Dom6 B9N9 bless on the only commander that can support it (the immobile imprisonned blood fountain), you have -21 (minus 21) points with the obligatory P1. Next step is Dom8 for -70 points, but that means something like M2. With M2, your chances of getting heroes become minimal. If you reduce other scales, you hurt your "low" research (expensive mages) or gold income. If you get more positive scales than, you need to lower scales like growth or order, which you cannot really afford later, because you need loads of mages to be competitive, and lab + temple to build mages, and you need money. A lot of it. Also, you need production. You need P1 to be able to recruit 3 giants for the first 2 months. If you go P0, you can only buy 2. The real count is lower than this because you also need firbolgs, which at first can only be recruited in the capital. If you don't use firbolg with them, you'll lose 1-2 giants in "strong" indies (anything more than militia, archers and light infantry).

So, by the end of the first year, you've got about 40 unmarked, hopefully, in 4 different raiding parties. You will lose 4-5 of them against very strong indies. You will have spend about 200 * 12 + 40 * 55 gold, so that's a bit more than 380 / months just to build Dom6 unmarked and mages. More than your entire cap income goes there. You have to add firbolg in equal numbers, that's 520 more gold. Assuming you do not have bad events that's 70 gold / month more than your capitol income to find in the first year to get 4 expansion parties and some research in a year with a dormant pretender. And... I'm not counting upkeep.

Basically, I'm sacrificing a lot if I go for that build. 

Is BV that awesome, since you're attempting to get 55 gold units to get killed to kill your enemy units, which usually are in the 10-20 gold range at most ? BV would need to kill 3-4 guys before each of your giants dies, excluding indies and PD. I'm sorry, but I've got difficulties seeing this happening. For BV to be effective, you'll need to lose half of your HP in each battle. But, Unmarked ? Only a few units can hit or kill them, but when they do, it's by "critical striking them". For example, mammoths might squish them in 2-3 turns (no effect on them because they've got higher HP). Heavy cavalry, if they got first charge, might get lucky and score 2 hits on a single giant. It's dead, but... the cavalry isn't (generally, they have 20 hp). Or, if it is, it allows for a third heavy cavalry to charge too and finish the job. A few other example exist.

Point is that in my opinion, BV helps you kill units which do not endanger the unmarked anyway. Unmarked eat chaff for breakfast, and chaff does not hit unmarked, so they don't trigger BV. So, it does not take care of what the unmarked can't kill, like enemy cavalry or high hp and high defense units.

N9 with better scales and dominions enables you to have the same survivability, since unmarked, anyway, kill most units in a single turn (if they hit) due to their higher strength. But, with better scales and dominion, you can have more unmarked at the end of year one.

Now, let's assume I'm getting rushed by someone else. If I compare both situations, would I want 40 unmarked which will kill 40 units by themselves, and (might) kill 40 more if they die ? Or 60 unmarked which will kill 60 units, better scales, and earlier pretender ? (maybe I'm overestimating the difference, but the global idea is there).

So, maybe I'm misunderstanding things, overestimating others, but no, B9N9 does seem over-estimated for Fomoria, no matter how I put it, I cannot make it work properly (I've tried a few simulations, but basically it works as I say above...). But, it's only my opinion, which can be wrong. If it is, I would like to be proven wrong, but can't do it myself. I tried and failed. What I've done point to both other options in this thread to be shown superior.

I've actually tried a bit both others ideas in this thread (N9 bless dormant) + no bless, fire arrows and good scales, with both rushing to Evo5, with more of the nemedians in it, and those got me more convinced. I've moved only to Evo2 in my MP games and dispersed to rush to Con4 / alt3 for Fomorian King "raiders". But it was probably too soon for them to be effective, resulting in defeat. I think I'll try an MP later around one of those axis.
Anyway, do you people have other ideas of what "initial contact" with another player might need to be in Fomoria's favor ? 

Edited by: kasnavada

elitesix Nov 13 2013, 6:25pm Anchor

You might be expecting too much kasnavada from a nation that isn't top tier for blessed sacreds. But here's the N9B9 build you can use for great success for low attrition expansion, and for beating up other non-bless nations in early game. 

Imprisoned Fountain of Blood Dom6 N9B9 Order 0, Productivity 3, Cold 2, Growth 0, Misfortune 1, Magic 0.
Income -4%, Resources +45%, Supplies -20%, Events +5%, Luck -15% (You can gain supplies if you replace cold 2 with turmoil 2 if you prefer, but remember you have access to nature and your giants have cold resist)

Prod 3 lets you recruit 3 Fomorian Giants per turn from you capital. First turn make your commander a prophet and recruit 3 FGs.
2nd turn send out first expansion team, and recruit 3 FGs and a Fomorian Druid
3rd turn recruit 3 FGs and some chaff whatever you can afford (not necessary, you can save this, but I like to have people to script as heavy cavalry fodder tho 6 blessed line formation FGs can easily handle 14+ Heavy Cav).
4th send out 2nd expansion of Fomorian Druid, 6 Fomorian Giants+, recruit druid and 3 FGS
5th recruit 3 FGs, etc same above

Fomorian Giants with a nature bless have 72 hp and regen 8 per round. You abuse BV with that regeneration. You suffer almost no losses with expansion this way. You're still going to have an uphill battle against the true EA bless nations: Lanka, Hinnom, Niefel. But there are still plenty of targets you have among the less blessable nations and the non-blessable nations. And the simple fact you're doing a double blessed Fomorian build, if you inform your stronger neighbors, including Lanka, Hinnom, or Niefel, should give them reason to attack an easier target.

Edited by: elitesix

DegenerateArt Nov 13 2013, 8:29pm Anchor

Prod-3 is very much overkill, how can you ever spend all your resources with that beyond first 2 turns? Prod-1 or 0 is all you need to have great expansion. Switch it up for O3 or 2, 1 point in Drain is worth trading in too.

There's no set pattern for what I recruit exactly for expansion, I make the call depending on the surrounding indies and how much resources the provs I take have. t's some mix of Unmarkeds, Giants and spear Firbolgs in any case, usually led by Nemedian Champs. First turn is 2x unmarked, 1 firbolg, a nemedian champ. Then possibly you can split the initial army and take two provinces on the following turn, depending on what you see, but of course not always. Try to get a nemedian sorceress every turn you're not buying a nemedian champ for expansion. Recruit first king around fall/winter to go UW.
Should be getting you 20+ provinces and one or two forts started winter/late winter in an SP test, if you don't run into really bad luck and do it right. There's no real shortcut but you just have to test around to get a feel what can take on what, when you want more unmarkeds or more firbolgs.

When it comes to facing Lanka, Hinnom or Niefel I can't agree with you. Hinnom is not really a bless nation most of the time, even if the Dawn Guards can pose serious trouble. Lanka with the Chaos shenanigans won't be bad to fight in your dominion, though you won't want to invade them either. Niefel, if they're going heavy bless, is a good target for you since Fomorian Giants counter Niefel Giants very well - you outnumber them 2:1 for cost and cold aura means nothing.
And if needed don't hesitate to bring out your kings and A3 sorceresses out when you hit thunderstrike, which should be not too far into year 2. Also don't neglect to buy fir bolgs just because your sacreds have a high bless, they are usually needed regardless (especially against big armies where your giants would risk fatiguing out) and the BV deters the enemy from using evocations against them as well.

Though I will say, this is very close to how I would play early without the blood bless too. The NB bless just helps to reduce the options your enemy has to counter you, it helps the expansion (youre free to go with less firbolgs) but not much. Major E or N or a variety of small blesses, it wouldn't change much. Though if there was no bless the troops would benefit from, expansion parties would all be firbolgs plus 1-2 Fomorian Warrior arrowcatchers. Except giants underwater still, of course.

kasnavada Nov 14 2013, 3:28am Anchor
elitesix wrote:You might be expecting too much kasnavada from a nation that isn't top tier for blessed sacreds. But here's the N9B9 build you can use for great success for low attrition expansion, and for beating up other non-bless nations in early game. 

That's kind of the point of the thread... I'm asking how to resist rushes as Fomoria.
Also, as I was unimpressed with giants, I did not try them fully, going for unmarked + firbolg. I'll try that later. Thanks for the build =) !

For degenerateArt:

Yes, that's what I feel too, that the B9 bless does not really help much. I'll try tonight (going to work) if I can reach the 20 province without a bless at all, which I think I can do, or with just N9?4?4.

Edited by: kasnavada

elitesix Nov 18 2013, 2:24pm Anchor

kas, did you end up trying the n9b9 fomorian giant build I posted? How did you like it?

kasnavada Nov 18 2013, 2:37pm Anchor

Actually, I did not have time for, err, really big health problems with my in-laws (not sure it's the correct word, wife's family).

I'll keep in touch when I do have a bit more time.  :D

elitesix wrote:kas, did you end up trying the n9b9 fomorian giant build I posted? How did you like it?

I tried the giants, and they tend to die a lot. Also, with the morale penalty led by the druids, they kind of... rout. Every time.

I'm using another build in another MP game, I'll keep in touch of how it goes.

Edited by: kasnavada

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