Rhye’s and Fall of Persia

Playing Persia was incredibly much fun! It was one of the last civs I completed Rhye’s and Fall Unique Historic Victories with and I wonder why I kept it for the end (early 2014). I remember having played it before and having had difficulties dealing with Arabia and later with Mongolia… Fundamental mistakes had been made – we’ll get to that.


Persia’s unique historic victory conditions are:

  1. Control 8% of world territory by 600 AD
  2. Control 7 world wonders by 700 AD
  3. Control 2 holy city shrines in 700 AD

None of these are any problem – World Wonders are abundant in Mesopotamia and around, as well as holy cities. Controlling much territory is directly related to overwhelming your nearby opponents (and thus: survival).

Unique Power

Satrapy: +2 additional Stability Points for each city conquered.

This is a brilliant treat for Rhye’s and Fall of Civilization. I managed to survive veeery long with Persia, even researching several Future Techs.

Unique Building – Pharmacy

unique building

Unique Unit – Immortals

Rhye's and Fall Persia Unique Unit Immortals

Persian Immortals have a +100% bonus against axeman and +50% against archers. This gives them 6 combat strength against the early cities West (Babylon) and East (India) of your rising empire. Furthermore Immortals are incredibly cheap and your capital will be able to mass-produce them! All in all a very good unique unit for Rhye’s and Fall Persia.

Persian Strategy

The Persian strategy mainly relies on conquest. Similarly to the Roman Empire you’ll extend your realm and centralize government (and wealth), providing your capital with a never seen number of world wonders!

Here’s as quick summary:

  • DON’T build your capital on the spot! Move to the coast instead – doing so you can fully leverage the Persian Gulf (Fish, 5 water tiles)
  • Build Moai Statues for production on those tiles.
  • 2nd city North of the Horses North of your capital – build pasture ASAP
    (while other guides tell otherwise, the timing is actually alright: By the time you’ll get those horses to finally build more units in your capital, the capital builds a work boat to improve the fish)
  • Mathematics (Catapults!!!) -> Construction (Great Wall, protecting you from Barbarian hordes) -> Currency ($$$)
Rhye's and Fall Persia World Wonders 1550
Sirajis – Persias not quite historical capital and it’s world wonders

Now for the details:

Build more cities as you see fit. Technology is not much of a thing at this stage of the game, mainly because your high number of cities and your big army will drain your economy and thus, science has low priority. Have some of your productive cities pump out Immortals and some catapults – squeeze in one or the other World Wonder in your capital. It’ll still grow, whilst being highly productive, which makes the spot at the coast to important.

For conquest there’s an almost natural order:

Rhye’s and Fall Persia: Conquest of Babylonia

Wait for Shush to flip to you in turn 3 – this will anger Babylonia, they’ll most likely declare war on you, which grants you some extra Immortals. Capture Babili and they will usually collapse. Now when a civilization collapses, the independents get to keep all those units. Don’t go after them immediately – with being fractured, their economy can’t maintain many units, so if you finish them off after India there will only be 1 unit in each city.

Rhye’s and Fall Persia: Conquest of India

In my final game India had also already collapsed – don’t ask me why. Normally they’re around a bit longer, but you can change that. Attacking Delhi from NW, modern day Pakistan, allows you to reach it in one turn and you can easily bring it down. After that resistance is limited. Have workers quickly build roads between India and Babylon so you can move your troops around swiftly.

Get all of their cities and improve for economy, building workers and settlers to get the rest of your empire going. Delhi of course is predestined for Holy Shrines, or at least for producing the required Great Prophets. It’s massive food supplies are great to support some priests working as specialists.

Epic Battles of History: Persia vs. Greece

Greece, pestered by Barbarian hordes from the North normally won’t be very strong. Once you’re done with the independent leftovers of Babylonia, Greece is easy going. Try to avoid stand-offs against well defended Phalanx, or you’ll have your own personal Battle of Thermopylae (hint: lose a lot of troops).

Other than that, Greek resistance is futile and you’ll soon control Athens. With that the next production powerhouse is under your control. Either it comes with some World Wonders already, or you can build some (if you haven’t done so in your capital already).

Either way: With most antique civilizations under your control, getting those World Wonders will be easy. First because you’ll control many production-heavy cities to build them. Second: Well, because there’s almost nobody else around to build them instead! China and Japan won’t match you. Rome will be busy with roaming Barbarians (since you have the Great Wall). As you see in above picture Sirajis built at least 3 World Wonders contributing towards the goal: Great Wall, Parthenon and Moai Statues.

Persian Conquest of Egypt

Integrating Egypt into your empire completes your goal of controlling 8% of the world. Beware though: Conquering it almost requires the Great Wall, as Barbarian hordes from North and Central Africa might overwhelm you. Egypt of course might also contribute to your World Wonder goal. Some luxuries add to Egypt being a welcome extension of your realm.

Surviving Islamic Conquest

If you think now you’ve got your nice and cozy biggest empire in the world (pretty much resembling the real Persian Empire), a new threat emerges: Arabia will spawn anytime soon. By now you should have built some war elephants. Immortals will literally be cannon fodder, but your elephants can put an end to Arabian Camel archers.

Also: If you have built Spiral Minaret before Arabia spawns, their economy will be too weak to pump out even more units. You might decide to keep them happy and give them Jerusalem – if not, better be prepared for war. In the end you’ll success anyways due to the following success factors:

  1. There’s no other enemy to fight, so you can fully focus on Arabia
    (Russia in the North spawns much later, China can’t cross the Jungle and Mongolia won’t come after you just yet).
  2. You’ve got more productive cities, so even after initial losses, they can’t outproduce you.
  3. Sirajis’ (your capital’s) cultural influence will last far into the Arabian peninsula, taking them even the option to build many more cities there.
Rhye's and Fall Persia Ranking
The single highest normalized score of all Rhye’s and Fall UHVs!

Hurry up though! After you’ve reached the Unique Historic Victory, the Turks will spawn and that’s a whole different story compared to Arabia!

The usual official strategy guides are still here:

Conclusion and the Persian Empire from the Middle Ages until the Future

As stated in the introduction, Persia was one of the most fun civs to play in Rhye’s and Fall! Not only because of the warfare, tactical challenges, strong but manageable time pressure with emerging Arabia and Turkey. But also because of the possibility to survive until the future! Here’s how things looked by 1550 AD. I call that setting “Europe shattered”.

As I mentioned in the Ethiopia guide already I challenged myself by playing each civ as long as possible with the goal of making it the single surviving civilization on Earth (call me mad dictator!). With Rhye’s and Fall Persia I almost succeeded!

Unfortunately razing other civilizations cities makes it even more likely that every 10 turns one civilization WITHIN the borders of the Persian Empire declares independence. I shall not have such secessions! This is why in the 2064 world map you won’t see any cities within the Turkish, Greek, Egyptian and Indian spawn area. For (amongst others) economic reasons I kept Mecca and Patna. Overall: I was the last surviving nation! Although with Inca and Spain around it wasn’t as perfect as with Ethiopia.

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