Conquest of the New World – Aztecs Strategy (Deity)
Researching for this post I realized how linear Mexican history is and how well the “Aztecs” preserved much of their heritage. Huitzilopochtli’s Arrow is a nice reference to that fact: Huitzilopochtli was the national god of the Mexicas. The Mexicas were the Nahuatl tribe in the valley of Mexico, which was the predominant tribe amongst the “Aztecs”. Parenthesis? Yes, because the term Aztec was “created” by Alexander von Humboldt by combining “Aztlan” (“place of the heron”) and “tec(atl)” (“people of”).
The Mexicas inhabited the Valley of Mexico, a cradle of civilizations featuring mild climate, game and huge agricultural potential. Today the entire basin is consumed by Mexico City, it’s lakes gone and the Capital of Mexico covering many of the ancient city states as one.
Adam Simmons has an interesting Google+ Post on the basin (and the city’s features and the lake: https://plus.google.com/+AdamSimmons/posts/dFGFNgfwp5Y
Unlocked 25 Dec 2017 @ 2:09am
Win the New World Scenario as the Aztecs.
German and French names of this Steam Achievement:
DE: Huitzilopochtlis Pfeil
FR: La flèche d’Huitzilopochtli
Conquest of the New World – Aztecs Deity best attempts (of 23 overall)
Yes, you read correctly: 23 attempts. 23 times I’ve engaged in a game of Conquest of the New World as the Aztecs. Some, like the ones below, took 5-8 hours. Others a mere 10 minutes. Overall the time investment was great, but all of it proves: It is possible to win this scenario also with the Aztecs on Deity difficulty.
Game 1 – A central continent with defensible mountain ranges and a cultured City State
I started with a Cultured City State near me and a nicely defensible position surrounded by hills and mountain ranges. Loads of pastures granting faith from a reformation belief lead to a reasonably good score.
Regarding City States I’ve realized another important thing: On a map like this, it’s likely that Europeans meet “your” City State quite early and become it’s ally. This means we’re losing our culture boost too early and will never get both Horsemen of the Plains and Sacred Land early enough to benefit from it.
Game 2 – One huge wound continent with loads of space for me but too much coast
The second game I’ve played extensively had me started on a gigantic and wound continent with loads of space for me too expand. Unfortunately it’s hard to expand too much in the early game, which is why the Spanish founded a colony in “my land”. Also trade with the other natives was hard, as they’ve simply been too far away.
The most negative aspect about this game was the fact that much of the mainland was very very accessible from the coast. And we all know that native units don’t stand much of a chance against superior Europeans navies. So here, too, after hours of playing I’ve failed reaching only the 2nd place with 6.5k Victory Points.
Game 3 – A southern continent with an exclusive City State and two more native civs
This is the game I eventually won on Deity difficulty, but only in the 2nd attempt. Yes! I’ve replayed most of this game. Here’s why:
To claim most of the fertile land on this arctic continent, I went to war against the Mayans quite early. Spain wanted to found a colony close to my homeland, too, after Portugal had already settled one spot. So what to do? I bribed Spain with all resources and money I had against Portugal, then declared war on Spain myself. This way they are at war with Portugal and it cost me nothing. Intercept their settler and get the spot yourself.
Since I’ve been at war so early on I decided to go for Horsemen of the Plains first. Training them in the war with the Mayans they became an asset in all the wars to come. My war efforts paid of and I gained hegemony on my continent despite being at war with the Europeans.
Unfortunately the Europeans hadn’t been idle as you can see on the map on the right: France, England and the Netherlands dominated the northern continent. No wonder: On a map like this, with 3 natives cramped on a southern continent, there’s just way to much space in the north for Europeans to settle. The Iroquois and Shoshone in the north didn’t stand a chance.
Unfortunately like this France dominates again: With their cultural abilities they gain all social policies quite quickly and just make too much money.
So I had a look at the demographics at the end (after losing the game 🙁 ) and guessed when I went for Horsemen of the Plains. I reloaded the game there and changed course as follows:
Aztecs Deity attempt 23 – Huitzilopochtli’s Arrow on Deity Difficulty
Of course everything that matters for any Native American Civilization is true for the Aztecs as well. You need to get Texcotzingo, because without it your capital can’t support maintaining one or more specialists and occupying all resource tiles and all special Faith tiles (e.g. Tipis). Furthermore with it your Native American enemies will grow stronger themselves. Improve resources and chop some forests and get Texcotzingo!
Again I’ve declared war on Spain after bribing them against Portugal. Only this time I’ve made peace with the Mayans before.
Again I’ve founded one, exactly one city by the sea to get one or the other trade route with Europeans.
Again I collected loads of Faith killing enemy units. Only this time it’s been Europeans.
The main differences in this game: I focused all my efforts on bribing Europeans against each other and mainly against France (score leader) and Spain (colonist on my continent). In the end both of these contributed greatly to gaining the Huitzilopochtli’s Arrow Steam Achievement on Deity difficulty.
Aztec Deity Social Policies
The Social Policy Order is super important any Native American civ on Deity difficulty: You’ll need Republic very early on for the production boost to get Texcotzingo. Getting Collective Rule second for the settler is alright — as long as your workers haven’t improved the luxuries near the capital a 4th city would cause too much unhappiness 🙁
Landed Elite beats Double Pyramid at first: Since you haven’t even built temples in any city yet, growing your capital is more important. Once basic infrastructure is built, you can go for Temple of the Gods (build temples faster) to then only 10 turns later have them yield more Faith with Double Pyramid.
Horsemen of the Plains is more important than Sacred Land, because survival is more important to winning than early Victory Points. However: Head for Sacred Land ASAP after securing your realm with the Comanche.
THIS is the thing you might need to experiment with. This game has taught me that sometimes prioritizing Sacred Land over Horsemen of the plains can work. Find another way to wage war. But get this early Faith boost!
|Tier 1 Social Policies||Tier 2 Social Policies||Tier 3 Social Policies|
1st SP: Turn 3
+1 Production in every City and +15% when constructing buildings.
3rd SP: ~ Turn 13
+10% growth and +2 Food in the Capital.
|Horsemen of the Plains
6th SP: Turn 41
6 units are maintenance free and receive 6 Comanche Riders immediately.
2nd SP: Turn 7
1 Free Settler +50% faster production of Settlers in the Capital.
5th SP: ~ Turn 30
+1 Faith from Shrines and Temples.
Gain a bonus belief.
|Temple of the Gods
4th SP: ~ Turn 20
Builds Temples in half the time, Temples grant +25% Gold output per city.
-33% costs when purchasing buildings, +1 Faith from every special resource building.
|Pyramids of the Gods
+6 Faith from each World Wonder.
+1 🙂 +1 Gold, +1 Faith from Walls.
|Mandate of Heaven
+20% discount on purchases with Faith.
+15% production of melee units, 1 free Great General, +50% generating Great Generals.
Garrisoned units are free of maintenance costs and cities with garrison gain +50% ranged combat strength.
+15% attack bonus when fighting in friendly territory.
+1 🙂 and +1 Faith from National Wonders
+15% when constructing Wonders, +1 Faith per Workshop
Conquest of the New World Aztec Deity Conclusion
Playing Conquest of the New World as the Aztecs on Deity difficulty is super hard. With all relevant prerequisites met there is a chance to win.
Always wanting to play “Crazy Monti”, war waging Montezuma, I wanted to succeed with the Aztecs and did so. However the time invested was immense.
The results of my bribing can clearly be seen in the chronology on the world map: The Europeans capture each other’s cities in North America and the Shoshone resist and survive. This decreases the Europeans score and together with the earlier “Sacred Land”, the Aztecs came out victorious!