M&B V 1.011 - FAQ for POP 3, NOT FOR WARBAND - READ BEFORE POSTING!

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Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

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POP 3 is available for BOTH M&B V 1.132.  PoP 3, Warband is now released for M&B: Warband.  There are now 2 PoPs. 

If you have a question about basic M&B vanilla gameplay, not a PoP-specific question, please search on the main TW forum in the Apprentice Guild rather than posting here.

Many thanks to Achilla for suggestions, organization and raising questions I overlooked while making this FAQ. Thank you, Achilla!

Saxondragon and the Dev Team respectfully request that you read this FAQ before posting questions or starting new topics, as many of the answers to the most likely questions are here. If you post, merely because you couldn't be bothered to read this short FAQ,  your answer will only be a link to this thread, unless Abyss and Noosers get onto you first!  Have a heart - if we can take the time to write it for you, you can take the time to read it before posting! It is categorized for ease in finding your answers.

1.  LEGAL NOTICE - PAY ATTENTION!
   
You may not use PoP 3 music with "_lic.ogg" in its title in any mod but PoP 3 or for any other purpose whatsoever. It is licensed for PoP 3 under paid non-commercial distribution licenses and copyrighted by its composers and Shockwave Sound.

You may not use any non-OSP model or mesh in PoP 3 without explicit written permission from Saxondragon.

Before using any non-Native feature, or something attributed specifically to another modder or mod  found (ie. a great many things!) in PoP 3 in a mod, you'd be very wise to consult Saxondragon for permission.  There are enormous amounts of original voices, artwork, codes, models, writing, meshes and other copyrighted work in PoP 3.

POP 3 Credits:
Thank you to these folks who are part of the Taleworlds community who have stepped up and are donating their time for the betterment of this concept.

POP 3 Dev Team in no particular order:

The Core 3.0 Team:
*Saxondragon - Producer, Coder, Original Pendor Conception, Sage and Paladin of Pendor
*Mordred - Senior Designer, writer, Thought Provoker, marketing, Knightly Order designer, rumor writing and nit-picking
*Archangel2K - Senior Artist (armor, weapons, horses) and teacher
*Fawzia - Project Manager, Writer, Editor, Nemesis, Community Leader, Voice Actor, Music & Ambient Sound Organizer/Producer
*Abyss - Artist, Weapons maker, Thought Provoker. community assister, voice actor
*MadVader - Senior Coder, Designer, Thought Provoker, Voice Actor, Amazing bug fixer/problem solver & much more
*noosers - Designer, Thought Provoker, Qualty Control, Combat/equipment Re-Balancer, Companion Equipment, Voice Actor
*Sysyphe - Artist and Master Architect, LOD maker
*Valorian Endymion - Rumor-writer, Knightly Orders, Thought Provoker and more

The 3.0 Primary Contributors
*Ermine - Director of Voice Acting for many characters
*Rosha - Coder, Designer, Thought Provoker
*Drahau - Thought Provoker, Quality Control, Voice Actor
*TalonAquila - Website companion bio writer, Thought Provoker
*Gerhart - Artist and fixer, Thought Provoker
*Chiksika - Thought Provoker and Bowman
*AlanQSmithee - artist, Ghost-maker, treasure chest maker, Thought Provoker

The 3.0 Contributors
*Runner3434 - Artist
*Wu-long - Thought Provoker
*Twan - Thought Provoker
*Pharoah Llandy - Voice Actor
*Adorno - Voice Actor, ambient sound, Thought Provoker
*Flanged - voice Actor
*Thief_3_Wannabe - Voice Actor
*The Conspiritor - Thought Provoker
*K!inky - Thought Provoker
*VonLowe - Voice Actor, Thought Provoker
*still_standing - Thought Provoker, artwork, splash screen
*Myrkabah - remastering and backgrounds of lord's halls and remastering some other tracks
*LittleMikey - Thought Provoker
*Froggyluv - Thought Provoker
*Achilla - corrections to and aid in organizing the PoP 3 FAQ
*Tuatha - rumor writing
*The Zue - Thought Provoker
*Trueten - Russian Translater, Thought Provoker
*Webspinnre - Thought Provoke


The 2.5 Primary Contributors
*FritZ_FretZ  - Designer, Coder and Responsible for Version 2.5
*SCGavin - Thought Provoker, Community Relations
*Maeglin Dubh - Community Relations, Thought Provoker

The 2.0 Primary Contributors
*Wyndstryker - Thought Provoker.
*Pode - Thought Provoker.
*Kaeldragor - Thought Provoker.
*Chris - Artist
*Yukuai - Thought Provoker
*Hovis - Thought Provoker
*Aristoi - Thought Provoker
*Somnolent - Thought Provoker
*Azrael - Thought Provoker
*Cantor - Thought Provoker
*Tuatha- Thought Provoker
*Elric de Melnibone - Thought Provoker

POP 3 Website:

Thomas English for the website template, and Izual Hellsbane for the hosting
M0rdred
Site  www.stormwind.co.uk



POP 3 Voice credits, with many thanks to:
Sound studio: Recorded at Sonar Sound Studios, Zurich, Switzerland

Sonar Sound
Philipp Erdin
Badenerstr. 571 A
CH-8048 Zürich
Studio Tel.:    +41 43 321 93 56
Studio Fax:    +41 43 321 93 54
Mobile:        +41 79 210 55 16
mailto:        [email protected]
www.sonarsound.ch
Tonmeister VDT

Ermine / Ivan Casale:
Tremendous thanks to Ermine, who organized much of the voice acting and did the recordings.
(Especially thanks, Ermine, for paying voice actors and renting the recording studio on your own dime!)

Ermine's Voice Actors:
Adonja - Zarina Tadjibaeva.
Alistair - Nils Habermacher
Donovan - Raphael Muff
Kaverra - Nadine Julien
Diev - Raphael Muff
Leslie - Miriam Knecht
Riva - Miriam Knecht
Ediz - Remo Kaufmann
Lethaldiran - Nils Habermacher
Women's Battle Voice Pack: Nadine Julien, Madeleine Linder, Miriam Knecht,Fawzia

Additional Voice Acting:

Sir Roland & Sir Rayne - Thief3_Wannabe
Frederick of Mettenheim - Noosers
Ansen - Drahau
Sir Jocelyn - VonLowe
Sigismund - MadVader
Alyssa, Sara, Kassim, Boadice, Althea - Fawzia
Voice giving orders,siege_neutral - Thief_3_Wannabe/background racket
  Native/Rejenorst Media/Assemble tracks Fawzia
Lord Voices, Ravenstern: Flanged
Lord Voices, Sarleon & Fierdsvain: Adorno
Lord Voices, Empire & D'Shar: Fawzia
Wandering knight/adventurer/deserter voices: Thief_3_Wannabe/Drahau/Fawzia/Noosers
Misc. Women's voices - Pharoah Llandy
Misc. Vanskerry Voices - Adorno
File of various battle commands - Thief_3_Wannabe
Misc. voices towns/taverns/siege - Rejenorst Media
Misc. womens voices towns/taverns - Fawzia
Scots lecher in Vaegir Tavern - Flanged
Other voices from Internet Archives - free use
Misc. Voices - Sound Dogs - free use
Additonal female battle sounds - Fawzia
Additional female battle yells - M&B Warband
Additional D'Shar voices - Abyss
Monster Sounds - Adorno

COPYRIGHTED MUSIC: (This means you can't use it in another mod or anywhere but in PoP 3 - please observe copyright laws)
intropop - Bobby Glorian, 7th Horn
ambushed_by_neutral_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
armorer_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
calm_night_2_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound, ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
empty_village_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound, ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
encounter_hostile_boris_the_raven_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
encounter_hostile_jatu_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
encounter_hostile_knights_of_eventide_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound, ambient sound Fawzia
encounter_hostile_mystmountains_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
encounter_hostile_oswald_de_fleur_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
encounter_wulfbode_the_slayer_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
fight_while_mounted_1 - paid license, Shockwave Sound
lords_hall_swadian_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound
mounted_snow_terrain_calm - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Fawzia
outdoor_beautiful_land - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
tavern_khergit_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Rejenorst Media/Adorno & Fawzia
tavern_swadian_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Rejenorst Media/Adorno & Fawzia
town_rhodok_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Rejenorst Media/Adorno & Fawzia
town_vaegir_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Rejenorst Media/Adorno & Fawzia
town_swadian_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Rejenorst Media/Adorno & Fawzia
travel_khergit_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
travel_rhodok_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
uncertain_homestead_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
village_khergit_lic - paid license, Shockwave Sound/Ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia


FREE-USE, CREATIVE COMMON LICENSE AND/OR NON-C0MMERCIAL DISTRIBUTION LICENSES with
Attribution:

achievement_screen_fanfare - free use - Internet Archive
althea_intro_c - Christopher J Escalante, backround to voice, IGN Neverwinter2 Vault,Lover's Theme Dramatic/Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions/voice Fawzia/ambient sound Adorno
ambushed_by_kherghit - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions, Kings and Kingdoms
ambushed_by_nord - Glorian, Knights of Honor
ambushed_by_rhodok - Glorian, Knights of Honor
ambushed_by_swadian - Glorian, 7th Horn
ambushed_by_vaegir - Breizh Partitions, Derobee de Guingamp Bagad, Internet Archive
arena_1 - Rejenorst Media, Final Battle
arena_2 - Egden Productions, Arena, Justin R Durban
bandit_fight - Jones King, Chronicles of Arcus, Adorno & Fawzia ambient sound
bandit_fight_2 - Jones King, Chronicles of Arcus
war_horn - free use, soundogs
capture - Glorian Knights of Honor - cut - Adorno & Fawzia ambient sound
declare_kingdom_theme - free use, Internet ARchive
defeated_by_neutral - Glorian Knights of Honor - cut
defeated_by_neutral_2 - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions - cut
defeated_by_neutral_3 - Glorian Knights of Honor - cut
encounter_hostile_alaric_von_brouhaha - General Union, Lock the Door & Beerdrinker,
http://www.jamendo.com
encounter_hostile_3_seers - Travis A. Richards, Neverwinter2 Vault
encounter_hostile_knights_of_dawn - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Poductions, Kings and Kingdoms, Knights &
free use Gregoran Chant, Internet Archive
encounter_hostile_heretics - Mod Archive - Dawn of Medieval
encounter_hostile_noldor - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions, Kings and KinGdoms, Rise and Fall of
Middle Earth
encounter_hostile_sheik_shalavan - IGN Neverwinter2 Vaults - preface Far Lands, Arkadiusz Begier/bodyof
track is Sandstorm by clarkyCat
encounter_hostile_vankserry - Viking drumming, viking chant, Viking horn - free use, Internet Archive
encounter_hostile_dread_legion - Valor Without Rendown by Manwithnoname, IGN Neverwinter2 Vault
encounter_hostile_snake_cult - Galborarix, free use with attribution, Internet Archive
encounter_hostile_eyegrim - IGN Neverwinter2 Vaults, Valor Without Renown, Manwithnoname
encounter_hostile_buriligi - IGN Neverwinter2 Vaults,Travis A Richards
end_game_victory_screen - Paukenschlag Fanfare, free use
escape - Glorian, Knights of Honor - cut, ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
encounter_hostile_syla_uzas - Celestial Aeon Project, Last Stand
fight_1 - Bobby Glorian, Knights of Honor, First Battle
fight_2 - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions
fight_3 - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions
fight_4 - Bobby Glorian, Knights of Honor, Sword and Faith
fight_5 - Justin R Durban, Edgen Productions
fight_6 - Justin R Durban, Edgen Productions
fight_7 - Glorian, Knights of Honor
fight_8 - Glorian - Knights of Honor
fight_as_khergit - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions, Kings and Kingdoms
right_as_rhodok - Glorian, Knights of Honor
fight_as_nord - Glorian, Knights of Honor
fight_as_swadian - Glorian, Knights of Honor
fight_as_vaegir - Breizh Partitions, Derobee de Guingamp Bagad, Internet Archive
fight_while_mounted_2 - IGN Neverwinter2 Vault, Military Alert, Adam Freschette
infiltration_khergit - Internet Archive, free use, alisonny, Medieval Danse
first_arrive_pendor - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions/ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
killed_1 - Glorian, Knights of Honor, cut
killed_2 - Glorian, Knights of Honor, cut, thunder free-use Soundogs
lords_hall_khergit - free use, Internet Archive, Music from a Leaky Tent, Aimee Dragee
lords_hall_rhodok - Justin R. Durban, Edgen Productions, Kings and Kingdoms
lords_hall_vaegir - General Union, Basse Danse, http:www/jamendo.com
lords_hall_nord - Bernard Kahlen, Drunken Wild Boar, IGN Neverwinter2 Archives
neutral_infiltration - Malefill, Internet Archives, free use
player_marries - Triumphant Return V3 - used for cut for "player_marries" - Travis A Richards
retreat - Glorian, Knights of Honor - cut/Ambient sound Adorno
siege_neutral - Glorian, Knights of Honor/Ambient sound Rejenorst Media/Mount and Blade
Native/Fawzia/Adorno/Thief3_Wannabe orders voice
tavern_2_ambient - ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno/Rejenorst Media/Blackadder from free use Internet
Archive
tavern_rhodok - Jon Sayles, Greensleeves/ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno/Rejenorst Media
tavern_nord - alisonny - Medieval Danse - music free use Internet Archive/ambient sound
Fawzia/Adorno/Rejenorst Media
tavern_vaegir - music free use Internet ARchive/ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno/Rejenorst
Media/Blackadder from free use Internet Archive
town_khergit - Glorian, Knights of Honor/ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno/Rejenorst Media/Azan, Internet
Archives free use
town_nord - music free use Internet ARchive/ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno/Rejenorst Media
town_loop_ambient - ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno/Rejenorst Media
town_night - Celestial Aeon Project, Secret Garden
tournament - Celestial Aeon Project, Lords of the Sky/medieval horns free use Sounddogs/cheers recorded
at Kentucky Derby
travel_rhodok - music free use Internet Archive/ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno
travel_swadian - Internet ARchive - Estampie/ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
travel_neutral - Jon Sayles, Patapan/ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno
travel_neutral_2 - B Kahlen AKA Bahlgren, Neverwinter2 Vaults/ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno
travel_neutral_3 - r0bz0r - Moondance - htp://www.newgrounds.comIstre b'Estorr
travel_neutral_ambient - ambient sound Fawzia/Adorno
travel_vaegir - music Brobdingnagian Bards, Boolavogue Cut 2, ambient sound Fawzia
victorious_evil - Justin R. Durban, Egden Productions, demo
victorious_neutral_1 - Justin R. Durban, Egden Productions, demo
victorious_neutral_2 - Victory Fanfare by Christopher J Escalante, IGN Neverwinter2 Vaults
victorious_neutral_3 - Glorian, Knights of Honor - cut
victorious_vaegir- Glorian, Knights of Honor - cut
victorious_vaegir_2 - Glorian, Knights of Honor - cut
village_rhodok - Ghaz, Neverwinter2 Vaults, Cimmerian Tavern/ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
village_rhodok_ambient - ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
village_nord - music free use Internet Archive/ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
village_nord_ambient - ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
village_vaegir - Moon Dance, r0bz0r - htp://www.newgrounds.comIstre b'Estorr/ambient sound Adorno &
Fawzia
village_vaegir_ambient - ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
village_swadian - music free use Internet Archive/ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia
village_swadian_ambient - ambient sound Adorno & Fawzia

SPECIAL THANKS TO BOBBY GLORIAN FOR HIS DONATION OF 7TH. HORN TO POP!



Thanks to all of them for their time, effort, creativity and patience.

Best,

Saxondragon

Please observe copyright laws.

2. PROPHESY OF PENDOR 3 IS MADE FOR M&B v 1.011.  You cannot play it with Warband, so please don't report that it won't load. (Error message: costumes_a.brf error)

Link to Stability Pack: http://www.filefront.com/17214224/POP3 Stability Pack.rar - this is for users of Windows 7 and Vista.

PoP 3 is designed for experienced M&B players.  If you just began playing Mount and Blade, you may want to develop your fighting skills in Native or easier mods before trying PoP 3, but we welcome all comers!  We hope you will enjoy the mod.

3. MY GAME CRASHED, WON’T LOAD, HAS PROBLEMS . . .!
      (Please also read the Game Breakers list before posting.)

1) Many weapons without them before now have LODs, which has eliminated crashing during battles in our tests.  If you crash during a big battle, before you report the problem, try reducing ragdolls and corpses and set Battle Sizer to a lower level if you're using it, try going back to DX7 instead of DX9.

2) If you still have problems, please report the following in the bug thread:

a) Who you were fighting
b) Number of your troops and of the enemy troops in the siege or battle
c) Location of the battle
d) Specs of your machine and video card, how much memory, etc.

This will help find the problem. Saying "my game crashed" without specific details will not help locate the problem. If you can, keep a save game to send our techies. If you have an older or not very powerful machine, save before battles. If you get the "face of doom" screen, it is an Nvidia issue, not a PoP 3 issue. Other issues may arise from ATI video cards, which have always had issues with M&B, but we have tested POP 3 with both.

3) Make sure POP 3 is installed into the modules folder of a clean, un-modified in any way M&B V 1.011. (NOT Warband!) Make sure you have the correct number of M&B files, as one of the mirrors for Download is incomplete.  Otherwise, you may get a prisoner bug or CTD not caused by POP 3, but caused by an incomplete version of M&B V 1.011.

Your Mount and Blade install is corrupted, if it is 377 MB in size when it should be 381 MB. Please delete your old M&B V 1.011 and install a new one, if this is the case.
This link is for the valid version:
http://games.softpedia.com/progDownload/Mount-Blade-Download-8881.html

Stability Pack included in download for Vista/Windows 7 64 bit users:

Some, but not all (We do not know why), 64 bit users were experiencing crashes.  Mad Vader created a stability pack that changes key files  (The text files) of the game so that performance is optimized over graphics.  We removed many textures and additional scenes from this pack in order to circumvent the 64 bit issues.

We discussed at length this move and realize that it is a bandaid and not a true solution.  But since we do not have the resources or ability to reach into the engine code, then we will have to settle for this solution in the M&B environment.

The Good news is that the engine for Warband does not have these issues... so when we release there for PoP3.0, it will have everything.  That is a few months out however.

To use the Pack:
Back up your text files and folders.
copy the files and folders in this pack OVER the existing POP install.
That is it.

BE SURE TO READ GERHART'S POST ON PAGE 12 OF THIS THREAD: http://forums.taleworlds.com/index.php?topic=127736.new;topicseen#new

GAME CRASHES ON DAY 500:
As per Chiksika's suggestion save in TAVERNS or CASTLES not on the map.  Keep doing your saves that way until the game no longer crashes on a save after battle, etc.




GAME BREAKERS:
1) Do not alter the codes in any way. PoP 3 has been extensively recoded and you will cause many bugs or experience crashes if you combine PoP 3's codes with tweaks designed for Native, or even tweaks which worked in PoP V 2.5, because so much has changed. Bugs caused by your tweaks to the code are not supported.

2) If you fiddle with the items file to make certain items available to you or to increase their stats and hp, remember that all your enemies who use that equipment will benefit from your tweaks, to your detriment. All the armor, horses and weapons are in use in the game, many by your enemies. If your tweaks cause bugs, (which they probably will) those bugs are unsupported.

3) Do not add anyhing to the items file. We are maxed out. Your game won't load or will crash if you do. Please don't report this as a bug.

4) If you use certain cheats and get the Cheater's Achievement Screen, all your other Achievements will be disabled in your current game and you won't get the rewards they bring. This is not a bug.  You may wish to save before you use a cheat.  We are not saying which cheats trigger this, but a variety of them do.

5) Do not add any other mods to PoP 3. (Some which may have been "safe" for PoP V 2.5 may not be safe for PoP 3, due to massive recoding.) Doing so may crash your game. We do not support bugs caused by mod additions which we did not add ourselves.

6) Don’t support a Claimant. We did not change or fix the bug with that.  If you support a Claimant to a faction throne, the Native bug that frequently ruins the game will probably appear in your game. We strongly advise that you not back any Pretender, but instead go with a faction or go independent and avoid this nasty Native bug.
Problems with the Claimant line of play are not supported.

Reminder from MadVader:
Common Native cheats/hacks you don't need because they are in the game:
1. Make cattle follow you
2. Disable companion complaints
3. Talk to village elders from a village menu
4. Change your banner
5. Make more cattle available in late game
6. Allow inventory/party/player hotkeys in menus during sieges and joined battles
7. Prisoner price varies with their level
8. Weekly cost in party screen shows all your costs including garrisons

TIPS FOR A GOOD EARLY GAME (Or how to survive long enough to level up.)
a. Hire cavalry and learn to couch! 
b. If that isn't a bandit you're about to fight, run!
c. Don't expect to win a tournament until you are leveled up higher than in V 2.5.  Use the practice fields or try the arena melee fights!
d. Tackling the Heretics, Snake Cult or the Jatu too early in your game is suicidal.
e. Talk to people a lot, in towns, taverns, to knights and lords on the map (if they are not attacking you.) You will find it interesting.
f. Looting, spotting and pathfinding will be VERY useful skills to have in the early game

PoP 3's lowest-level enemies exceed the levels of a Swadian Knight in Native. The "tough" ones are considerably worse than Native Swadian Knights on steroids. Choose your battles carefully until you have levelled up yourself and your troops sufficiently.

You can choose to help some of the tougher small groups of enemies early in the game so they won't attack you too soon, then join a battle against them later to get back to negative relations with them so you can fight them. If you retreat, some of your companions won't like it, but at least you won't be massacred before you reach level 10.

We suggest that you begin with bandits and looters, then work up to Vanskerry Raiders, Mystmountain Raiders, the Red Brotherhood. You can move on from there to the Renegade Knights, bands of Heretics, Snake Cultists and other new groups like the Questing Knights. All the enemies in PoP 3 are tougher than in PoP V 2.5.

ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS: (Warning – Spoilers!)

1. How do I deal with the Noldor Merchant and where is he?
To deal with Quigfen, the Noldor merchant in Laria (he stays in the Laria tavern only and does not move about), you must have positive relations with the Noldor and a qualis gem to open his store. One gem opens his store for the whole game.

You will need a qualis gem to hire Noldor mercenaries each and every time you hire them. If you talk to him, he will tell you that. Each time you hire Noldor mercenaries, the type of mercenaries you are offered varies randomly, except for Noldor Warriors. Unfortunately, it will cost you a gem to find out what Noldor you can choose from.

Quigfen's Noldor & other equipment as well as Noldor mercenaries are VERY expensive, deliberately so, in order to maintain game balance.

2. How do I found Orders and otherwise recruit or create Knights?
1) Knights are hard to come by, now. They derive only from Noble Recruits, who are spawned periodically by towns, villages and castles owned by you. To find out whether you have Noble Recruits, ask your steward. These Noble Recruits can be leveled up to Knights of their particular faction.  Annoyed Knighthood Orders may spawn Knights who, if you are on bad terms with their Order, will attack you or raid your caravans. If you sufficiently annoy a Knighthood Order in your domain, the Order may also decide to leave. Some Knighthood Orders are not on good terms with the other Knighthood Orders, which can affect you in interesting ways. Orders that don't like you will fight against you, too. You must already have a qualis gem and a training ground, or build one if you don't, before you can have Knights. (Not all the options of what to build will show up initially on your improvement list, so sometimes you have to build a few things before the option to build a training ground will come up.  You need to have trained your steward with the correct skills, as well, to build anything.  Use the “schedule a training session” option.)

Once you have a training ground in a town or castle, talk to the steward there and in the War Room, say "View noble recruits". Each Noble recruit you "accept into your court" (next option if you have them) will cost you 500 denars.  That's 500 denars per
Noble Recruit, not 500 Denars for all.  The Noble recruits can all be recruited from one location from your castle steward.

You should get only one type of recruit, depending on your culture:

- Sarleon: Sarleon Nobleman (upgrades to Sarleon Squire-at-arms -> Sarleon Knight)
- Ravenstern: Ravenstern Nobleman (upgrades to Ravenstern Squire-at-Arms -> Ravenstern Knight)
- D'Shar: D'Shar Nobleman (upgrades to D'Shar Noble Raider -> D'Shar Noble Cavalry)
- Fierdsvain: Fierdsvain Noblewoman (upgrades to Fierdsvain Sword Maiden -> Valkyrie)
- Empire: Empire Nobleman (upgrades to Empire Light Cavalry -> Empire Horseman or Empire Noble Legionnaire Recruit -> Empire Knight)
- Pendor: Pendor Nobleman (upgrades to Pendor Squire-at-Arms -> Pendor Knight -> Pendor Grey Archer or Pendor Foot Knight

2) Order Knights in the taverns cannot be recruited by Player. Talk to them - you can find out what orders their Order dislikes, what the basis was for their founding, what equipment they use and other information. This can be useful in helping you decide what Orders you'd like to form or join. There are also rumors from the travellers about the Orders.
There are now both good and bad Orders.  Order Knights in the tavern can't offer you the option of joining an Order.

3) You can now join a knightly Order, but if you join one Order, you cannot join another, so choose carefully the first time.
When you join an Order, you will receive a full set of their particular armor, but you first have to duel their knights and win
to be accepted into any Order. You can try again, after a while, if you don't win the first time, or try duelling
knights of another Order to join a different Order, so long as you have met the correct conditions to have that Order in your territory. Order Knights can be found in your castles, when you want to try to join an Order, or if a branch of that Order is
already established in your town or castle. The ones in the taverns won't offer these options, just the ones in castles.

3. Are there still maps for Al-Aziz and the chests?
You still need to buy maps for the Mines of Al-Aziz from a traveller, and for the chests in Rane and Valonbray with goodies in them. The same terms for the runed weapons and their upgrades at Al-Aziz from PoP V 2.5 apply.  SD increased the chance a traveller will offer to sell you one.

4. Can I get married in PoP 3? 
No, you can't get married in PoP 3 for V 1.011.  You CAN get married in PoP 3 for Warband and it works  the same as in Warband.

5. I can’t find Ramun!
Ramun has moved from Valonbray to Singal, since Singal is now a slaver's paradise. He is still readily identifiable as Ramun, but he's changed his clothes.

6. What mods and options are included in PoP 3?
a. Death cam is implemented, so if you’re knocked out you can watch the battle.

b. Kill count can be turned on in the camp menu.

It does not improve morale. It simply tells you how many enemies you killed and is an option only. You can also find your kill count by going to "character" and "stats" if you don't want to use this option.

c. Auto-loot – improved version by MadVader.

d. Auto-calc – improved version by MadVader

e. Disable companion complaints - camp menu.

(Disabling the companion complaints does not disable their declining morale if their disliked companions are in your party. You cannot run with all 20! You won't hear their complaints if you use the "disable" option, but all the other conditions causing them to leave remain in place, such as dislike of other companions/player commits objectionable actions.  If you disable complaints, you will also miss their audio comments to each other, to lords, etc. which can be very funny. You can't disable one without disabling the other. To monitor what their level of satisfaction or unhappiness is, you can talk to them and ask how they feel about the company, or just pass your cursor over their faces when you are in "talk" mode. This will show their state of mind and their morale. Buying them drinks in the tavern won't improve individual companion morale, only group morale, if a companion is unhappy.)

You can use Battle Sizer with PoP 3.  If you set it too high, you’ll crash.

Other additions:
1. Make cattle follow you
2. Disable companion complaints
3. Talk to village elders from a village menu
4. Change your banner
5. Make more cattle available in late game
6. Allow inventory/party/player hotkeys in menus during sieges and joined battles
7. Prisoner price varies with their level
8. Weekly cost in party screen shows all your costs including garrisons

7. I can’t recruit high-level troops, Demonics, Snake, Noldor or specialty spawns like Wulfbode!
1) Prisoners at and above level 41 are no longer recruitable, either from your own prisoners or rescued from another enemy you defeat.  If they allow you to recruit them, they are safe to recruit and won't crash your game. Some lords may have, for example, Snake Cult knights in their armies now. This is not a bug.

You may hire Noldor mercenaries from Quigfen in Laria's tavern - that's the only way you'll get them. You can’t recruit Noldor any more.  This is not a bug.

Some lords and kings have special troops. You can recruit any of them under level 41 if you defeat the lord or king.  Prisoners at and above level 40 will not let you recruit them or hire them from rescued prisoners.  This is not a bug.

2) This PoP V 2.5 crash-causer is fixed - If you capture a named Specialty Spawn (Examples, including but not limited to: Maltise, Eyegrim, Zulkar, Wulfbode) you can do one of the following:

a) Release him for a qualis gem or money.
b) Make him promise to retire and not return - he won’t respawn.
c) Kill him - he will not respawn in your current game.

These options are available in your "talk with prisoner" option. If you lock him up, he won't respawn. It is better just to retire, kill or ransom him, depending on your preference.  You get no benefit from locking him up except that he does not respawn, and you won't be able to recruit him, as they all exceed lvl 41.

8. How do I hire top-tier or named mercenaries like Boris the Raven?
1) Kings can (but Player cannot) hire mercenaries like Boris the Raven or Oswald de Fleur. If  you run into a mercenary leader, like Boris, in a castle, you can talk to him and find out about him and his army. Most of them are very nasty. Later in the game, you may have the opportunity to hire some mercenaries yourself, but not in the early game.

2) The number of better-equipped and beefed up mercenaries, including Adventurers, whom you can hire in taverns has increased.  The mercenary cavalry is also beefed up and better, as are the young foreign nobles.  The young nobles still level up to Adventurers/Hero Adventurers and the Adventurer/Hero Adventurer stats remain unchanged, so they are still total tanks.

9. Are there new Quests?
1) In mid to late game, you will be presented with various problems, that you, as a lord  or king , must decide how to solve. Those decisions have consequences, so  think before you choose your answer. The results of your decisions are governed both by your personal skills and those of the steward/village elder who presents you with the problem. Outcomes can also be random – some may accept your decision gracefully one time, and want to murder you the next.  Some of the results of your decisions may be unpleasant.

2) If you solve the murder mystery, you will receive a handsome reward. The report that someone's wife died will appear onscreen BUT to get that quest, you must own about half the map -  9 cities, and be at war with another faction:

a) Be on "friend - relation 50" terms with a lord, in your faction
b) Be able to enter that lord's castle
c) Be at war with another faction
d) Talk to the ghost lady in your buddy lord’s castle
e) Investigate the people she tells you about by talking to them.

To complete the quest, you must confront the guilty party, then inform the other suspects that you find them innocent. Then, go back and talk to the ghost and she’ll reward you. (Make sure you have some room in your inventory.) There is plenty of allowed time for this quest, so don't worry if you can't finish it immediately because the castle is under siege.

10. How do I fix audio conversations that overlap and play all at once?
Lots of people in PoP 3 talk audibly – lords have more to say, companions talk to you, one another, lords and enemies.  Enemies now have more to say. When someone in the game is speaking, DON'T left click on the screen until the speaker has finished talking or the audio of the next speaker will overlap, and play all at once. We can't fix this, so please don't report it as a bug.

11. What do I have to do to win PoP 3?
Victory conditions are clearly listed under "Reports." You can also find out how many specialty spawn armies must be defeated for you to win. As new armies spawn, they are added to the list of armies currently running around the map. Sometimes, the AI lords will eliminate one of these armies, or they may fight each other if two different armies spawn in the same vicinity. .

12. Why did I start the game with negative relations with X faction?
Depending on what background you choose for your starting character, you may begin the game with negative relations with one of the factions. This is not a bug. You can pay a lord of that faction to fix relations (visit his castle, don't talk to him in the field!), or you can help out peasants, caravans, lords of that faction under attack to repair your relations for free. Until you have positive relations with that faction, you will have to sneak into their towns and their lords may attack you.

13. Do the cattle follow you now?
The cattle will always follow you now. MadVader also increased the cattle spawning numbers so that there are more available later in the game.

14. A god just spoke to me!
Some of the Pendor gods may speak to you, and one does more than that under certain conditions. Some merely offer warnings or ask you to do something.  UllrVetr may manifest if you are near Ravenstern when Wulfbode spawns.  After the battle, if you don't give what he gave you to one of your Companions, the game will try to take it away.  After all, you can't expect a god to manifest and then hang around for the rest of the game!  (Mind you don't spill your coffee on the keyboard  - some testers, including SD, were very startled the first time one spoke!)
The Gods of Pendor:

Astraea - goddess of Justice, former patroness of Knights of Dawn, worshipped in Barclay and Pendor

Indar- Battle God of the Jatu

D'Shar:
Vata - manifests as beautiful black stallion who cannot be caught

Ravenstern:
UllrVetr - manifests as bow - god of both Ravenstern and all bowmen of Pendor

Sarleon:
Eunomia Stabilitis - goddess of stable government and law

Empire:
Damia Provideo - goddess of the Harvest

Fierdsvain:
Thallo ver Shures -goddess of fertility, both in people and fields

Secondary Gods:
Jatu - Indar, who shoots those Jatu who run from battle in the back.
Vanskerry - HafSigla, whose winds blow their ships to Pendor
Vejovis - Mystmountain god who manifests as a Mountain cat only to the shamans, to tell them it is time to raid
Snake Cult - Azi Dahaka - manifests as large hooded cobra
Heretics - Erida Occisor, goddess of Hate, who gives them demon troops

15. Why was I massacred by the Snake Cult's/Heretic's/Wulfbode's Army when I only attacked a small band?
Some spawned armies now have advance patrols. Watch out - you may think they are a small band, but they will call in the whole army if it is near enough - and it freqently is near enough!

16. What are Achievement Awards?
When you accomplish or do certain things, you will receive an Achievement Award. They give excellent benefits to Player, based on what the award was for - the greater the accomplishment, the greater the award

You can have a look at your own personal achievement awards any time under "Reports." The poses and equipment shown on the screens are pre-set and only your character's face and gender change to personalize your award. (Please don't report that you were not using a morning star or wearing a certain type of armor, but the screen showed you that way anyhow - this is not a bug!)

Some of the Achievement Awards are funny, at least to the Dev Team.


17. Are there Easter Eggs in PoP 3?  Where are they?
Find them yourself - that's half the fun!

18. Are companion’s likes and dislikes the same as V 2.5 in PoP 3? (Companion chart now posted below and on the Web Page.)
A lot of the likes/dislikes have changed, since we added the new companions and took out some old ones.  You'll have fun mixing them up and finding out. (Abyss is making a very handsome companion chart showing who gets along with whom for the Wiki, but isn't finished yet.  That information will also be available later in the Wiki in the companion bios, along with their costs and main starting talents.)

19.  Typos: 
I have made something of a study of medieval words and used some of them in PoP 3 dialog.  If you don't know what something means, look it up before you report it as a "bug!"  You might learn something interesting!  We have had several reports of "typos" which are not typos, such as "whinging" for "whining" and "alack" for "alas." Both of these are good 12th Century words.

20.  Where is the Web Page/Wiki for PoP 3?  Direct link: http://stormwind.co.uk
      The old PoP Wiki address is: http://popmod.wetpaint.com/thread



21.  Map of Pendor (by Abyss) with Trade Routes shown - there are 106 Trade Routes in Pendor, some of which are VERY profitable.  All have been reworked from Native, so they pay differently than in V 2.5.

22. The map is not the same as in V 2.5.  That is because SD rearranged the map!  THIS IS NOT A BUG!







 













 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
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0
RECOMMENDED COMPANION COMBINATIONS, DEPENDING ON YOUR STYLE OF GAMEPLAY:
Maximum Companion Count option #1

Diev-Siggy-Leslie-Kaverra-Lethaldiran-Julia-Alyssa-Alistair

You can add Ansen+Sir Rayne for versatility or Boadice+Frederic for more asskicking power.

Do not raid villages,steal from peasants or rob merchants,otherwise Leslie,Diev,Boadice are upset.
Do not run from battles,or Sir Alistair,Sir Rayne,Frederick are upset.
Do not fail quests,or Alyssa is upset.
Do not fail to feed or pay the men,do not get slaughtered or Kaverra,Siggy,LethalD,Julia,Ansen are upset.


Maximum Companion Count option #2

Adonja-Donavan-Kassim-Ediz-Riva-Sara-Roland-Jocelyn

You can add ANY combination of the inner circle to this build.ie,Boadice+Ansen,Frederick+Sir Rayne,Ansen+Sir Rayne etc.

Do not raid villages,steal from peasants or rob merchants,otherwise Jocelyn and Roland are upset.
Do not run from battles,or Donavan,Ediz,Sara are upset.
Do not fail to feed or pay the men,do not get slaughtered or Adonja,Kassim,Riva are upset.



So you just don't like Humanitarian characters? Well,these are your cure options;

Alistair-Adonja-Donavan-Kassim-Ediz-Riva-Alyssa-Ansen

The upside to this choice is you get Ansen and Alyssa.

Alistair-Siggy-Donavan-Kassim-Ediz-Riva-Sara-Sir Rayne

The upside to this choice is you get Sigismund and Sir Rayne.


With the above groups,FEEL FREE TO;raid villages,steal from poor miserable peasants,rob merchants and GET AWAY WITH IT.




Oh,you're a Chivalry Hater? This will fix your problems;

Roland-Jocelyn-Diev-Sigismund-Leslie-Kaverra-Lethaldiran-Julia-Boadice

This is probably the most hardcore,kickass warring joint ever. Though you lack a medic with this build.

Feel free to run from battles as much as you like,surrender,pay off bullies and bandits,leave some men behind to cover your escape,and even then everyone is happy!




You simply don't like Egalitarians. It's all survival of the fittest ain't it? Well,here's some food for you;

Leslie-Diev-Donavan-Frederick-Jocelyn-Boadice-Ediz

Upon this seven,you can either add;

Alistair+Alyssa or Roland+Sara.

by choice.

It would appear that Double A's would be a better choice. Unless you're a real big fan of funny moustaches and maneaters.

The upside of this build is,you don't have to feed your men anymore,or pay them.No companions will object.You can get slaughtered like lambs,and everyone's happy.
This build is also quite versatile in skills distribution of companions.
But the downside is,it has all the rest of the package. Can't go raiding stuff or surrendering,or failing quests with this group.


Another possible combination suggested by Ejk Is:
choosing Sigismund-Leslie-Kaverra-Lethaldrian-Julia-Sara-Sir Roland-Sir Jocelyn-Diev-Boadice-Frederick. Four of the companions do have one of their least favorite characters in the party, but all of them also have their preferred one.

Companion Bubble:


Uploaded with ImageShack.us

Many thanks to Abyss for doing all this!
 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
Best answers
0
KNIGHTLY ORDERS AND HOW TO FOUND THEM:
1. Order of the Dragon: Knight of the Dragon (from Ravenstern Knight)
Player is a Ravenstern Lord or in Rane. Existing chapter in Rane.
2. Order of the Lion: Knight of the Lion (from Sarleon Knight)
Sarleon Lord or in Sarleon. Existing chapter in Sarleon.
3. Immortals Chapter: Empire Immortal (from Empire Knight)
Empire Lord or in Janos. Existing chapter in Janos.
4. Windriders Chapter: D'Shar Windrider (from D'Shar Noble Cavalry)
D'Shar Lord or in Torbah. Existing chapter in Torbah.
5. Lady Valkyrie Sisterhood: Lady Valkyrie (from Valkyrie)
Fierdsvain Lord or in Javiksholm. Existing chapter in Javiksholm.
6. Order of the Griffon: Knight of the Griffon (from Pendor Knight)
Sir Darlion of Pendor in party or a Qualis Gem.
7. Order of the Falcon: Knight of the Falcon (from Pendor Knight)
Madame Ursula or Sir Rayne in party.
8. Order of the Raven Spear: Knight of the Raven Spear (from Pendor Knight)
Player owns Poinsbruk. Existing chapter in Poinsbruk.
9. Order of the Radiant Cross: Knight of the Radiant Cross (from Pendor Knight)
Player owns Ethos.
10. Order of the Clarion Call: Ranger of the Clarion Call (from Pendor Knight)
Player owns Laria. Existing chapter in Laria.
11. Order of the Dawn: Knight of the Dawn (from Pendor Knight)
Player owns Valonbray. Existing chapter in Valonbray.
12. Order of the Ebony Gauntlet: Knight of the Ebony Gauntlet (from Pendor Foot Knight)
A Qualis Gem.
13. Order of the Shadow Legion: Shadow Legion Centurion (from Empire Knight)
A Qualis Gem. Existing chapter in Cez.
14. Order of the Silvermist Rangers: Silvermist Ranger (from Pendor Grey Archer)
A Qualis Gem.
15. Order of Eventide: Knight of Eventide (from Pendor Knight)
Sir Alistair in party. Existing chapter in Singal.
 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
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0
From: SCGavin, Grandmaster Knight
Faction: Rhodok
MP nick: IG_Emperor_SCGavin

HOW TO RECRUIT LORDS AND VASSALS
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It has often been asked on this forum how you can recruit lords in Prophesy of Pendor and although a multitude of threads have been written on the subject, I think that a concise thread might be of some use. This thread will explain how to get lords and hopefully help you enjoy Prophesy of Pendor. Should you have more questions, please send me a private message and I will answer them and maybe add more useful information to this thread. As I want this thread to be easy to overview, I will lock it and consequently no questions can be asked directly in this thread.

How to recruit lords?

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
There are two ways to recruit lords. One of them is to befriend them and then take them prisoner, the other is two destroy their faction.

1. Befriend lords and take them prisoner
In order to befriend lords you need to increase your relationship with them. The relationship is shown in points. You can see it when you talk to a lord and move the courser over his face, which can be seen in the upper left corner of the conversation screen.

You need to have a relationship of at least seventeen points with a lord to be able to recruit him. When you take a lord with whom you have 17 relationship-points or more prisoner and talk to him by clicking on "talk" in the party window, he will offer you to swear homage (or something along those lines). Accept this oath and he will be your vassal. Taking him prisoner will see the relationship decrease ten points, but if you give him towns, castles or villages or help him in battle, those points will quickly be back.

Note: You need 17 or more relationship-points with the lord before you take him prisoner, afterwards you will have a relationship of +7, which is the minimum for recruiting a lord.

Note: If you attack a lord to whose faction you have a positive relationship to, your relation with that lord will deteriorate by a huge amount (roughly 30 relationship points). You will also be at war with his faction. If you want to acquire a lord even though you have no negative relations with his faction, you can attack their caravans until your relationship with that faction is below 0.

To gain those 17 relationship-points or more, you can do several things:


•Do quests for the lord.
•Help him in battle.
•Beat him in battle and let him go instead of taking him prisoner.
•Gain honour. (You gain honour by letting lords go free instead of taking them prisoner and by freeing Noldor prisoners from your party (to do this go to the party screen, select a Noldor unit and click on "talk". After you have some honour your relationship with some lords will automatically improve from time to time, without any action on your part).

2. Defeat a faction
When you defeat a faction the lords of that faction will be randomly shared between the remaining factions, so you stand a pretty good chances to get lords this way, although you could have the bad luck to get the worst lords or the lords who hate you (you could of course also have good luck and get the best lords).

 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
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This is Griefer's Guide to Culture-Specific Troops:
(Because of the length of this, I've put it into separate posts for each faction:smile:

Empire:
The Empire - Shield and Spear

Empire specific character - concept is to conquer the Empire without a civil war. Get relations with every single Empire noble in the 50+ range, THEN rebel. Get everyone to join me and just have to depose Marius from Janos. Then re-conquer the whole world under a new, glorious Empire.

Pros:

- With the new, more aggressive Empire, the 20+ noble armies the Empire fields are a force to be reckoned with.
- Empire Armored Crossbowmen are freaking hardcore. They are like the new version of the Silvermist Rangers, you just line them up and watch people die. They also handle sieges very, very well.
- Their infantry line is just crushing. Absolutely crushing. As opposed to the Fierdesvain axe-heavy approach the Empire has a very well balanced combat lineup.
- Empire Knights kick a lot of ass against other cavalry.
- Lots of local 'visitors'. Mettenheim expeditionaries, Persinoe armies, Snake Cultists, Noldor neighbors, always something going on.

Cons:

- No non-noble cavalry. Even the noble cavalry is weak against infantry. This is a big one if you're sticking to just Empire troops - it takes a whole different tactical approach.
- No super-infantry. Their troops are very well mixed but you don't have any infantry/cavalry super-units. Huscarls, heavy-duty knighthood orders, elite mounted archers, etc.
- So many damn nobles. When the Empire is really going to war it can be tough to find the *correct* Lord Legatus to turn your quest in. Also tough to get them together for anything.
- Constant troop-training. Well balanced troops win battles but suffer a steady casualty stream. You're always replacing fallen soldiers.

Tactical Overview:
A healthy mix of crossbowmen, gladiators, Legionaries, and armored pikemen handles everything. Most enemies are either dead or half-dead by the time they get to melee range. Horses either fall to crossbows and javelins or get stopped by pikes. The greater accuracy of crossbows means that the armored crossbowmen absolutely grind enemy foot and horse archer units. With those big shields they are phenomenal in sieges, attack and defense. With the new troop stacking, where higher-placed units come in the first wave, your Legionaries and Knights are able to use those javelins up on the toughest enemies first for maximum effect.

Comparatively fragile troops though. Their strength is in the power of combined ranged and melee units. They are a hold ground or advance steadily force, NOT one that is meant to be divided. Typically you split your infantry and ranged troops - don't do that with an Empire army. Leave them in a single big combined line. Your infantry troops have ranged weapons and your ranged troops are decent fighters. Separate your cavalry - they do not have anti-infantry cavalry! Their cavalry shine against enemy horse, not enemy foot. Keep the cavalry following you and make circling passes, not charges.

Sieges: In the field your Legionaries do the brunt of the killing, them and your crossbowmen. In sieges your Legionaries are going to die a lot. They are there to hold the line for your Gladiators, Crossbowmen and Armored Pikemen. Swords are weak against shields and sieges are full of shield to shield combat. Give your Crossbowmen plenty of time to clear the walls before you advance. Then order 'hold fire' when you approach the wall. When you are on the ladder, let them open fire again - this will get your Legionaries in close to throw javelins and will generally sweep you a gap on the wall to take. Keep a mixed force for sieges! Crossbowmen will find a clear space on the wall to shoot from and with those big shields hold pretty well in melee. Legionaries last a while and draw attention while your armored pikemen and gladiators do the real killing.

Unit Overview:

Crossbow Line: Best ranged foot units in the game in my opinion, bar none. Accurate, with a slower rate of fire but high damage so they can keep killing through several waves of enemies. You can also tell them to hold fire so they turtle up behind their big shields when advancing in sieges. These are in many ways your core units in a pure Empire army. 30-40% of your troops should be crossbowmen.

Infantry - Pikemen: In siege offense and defense they are critical. The bulk of siege kills you'll find end up with these guys and crossbowmen. On the walls though their ability to hit *hard* two or three ranks of soldiers away makes them invaluable. Also with their bash attack they are the only units that will KO enemies instead of killing them. 10% of your soldiers for field battles, 20 to 30% for sieges.

Infantry - Legionaries: Hard to avoid trying to make a pure Legionaries army but it's a bad idea. What they are is very, very well balanced. Their biggest punch is their javelins though which run out quickly. Have a heavy mix of them, 20 to 40% of your troops. They do well against any opponent. They are solid, last well and make a reliable anchor to support every other unit.

Infantry - Gladiators: Faster, harder-hitting but weaker armored. Much like berserkers in application, you want a handful of them in with your troops. They are fast, attack quickly, hit hard and often have ranged weapons. 5-10% of your troops, but don't neglect them! You'll see them scrolling up often on kills notifications. They take advantage of troops engaging your slow, armored Legionaries and big-shield packing crossbowmen.

Cavalry - Horsemen: Mounted crossbowmen. Great chasers, just don't let them get caught up against infantry. Order them way, way back. They'll snipe at people approaching your infantry line. Otherwise order them to follow you and just circle out of melee range and let them do their thing. Awesome for picking off Cobra/Anaconda warriors and Serpent Priestesses.

Cavalry - Knights: Similar to Horsemen but better armored, using javelins instead. Against cavalry troops have them follow you and circle; don't charge! I've got no heavy lancers! Only charge weak infantry. Unarmored horses too. Unless it's Shadow Legionaries keep them on the periphery.

Summary:

Mix your troops and keep them together! Ranged and infantry in one big pile, they support each other.
Your cavalry is for chases and harassing the enemy! Don't treat them like heavy, infantry-chewing cavalry. They do great against enemy cavalry, weak against infantry.
Hold ground and advance slowly! This is not a rush army. Hold ground or make steady advances.
Locusts over the earth! You've got a ton of nobles with noble armies. If you rule the Empire, take advantage of this! 20 noble armies can just grind over the map. Put them to work!

Anyone else want to do something similar for the other cultures?

EDITED TO ADD:

Having completed my run through, here is the Empire vs results:

Noldor:   Not that bad. With everyone packing a strong shield I could take a good mix of 120 units and kill 60 Noldor Rangers with perhaps 20 or 30 losses. Open fire at long range, then hold fire, then advance - then right before melee, open fire again, then charge. BOOM.

Jatu: You will hate them with a deep and abiding passion. They are the Empires toughest enemy. They are fast; they close range before your crossbowmen can do their best work. I only had two successful tactics against them:
          1. taking my cavalry out and luring the bulk of them sideways in front of my crossbowmen. They'd take damage, some would go one way some another and run into each other. Rinse and repeat, keeping the bulk of the horde busy while your troops handled them in a small trickle. Difficult and still bloody.
          2. Lead them to the river either near Ravenstern or Valorshield. Park your troops in the middle of the water not on the other side! They'll slow down, it blunts their charges and levels the playingfield with your infantry.

Snake Cult:  Lambs to the slaughter. Slow moving, largely lacking shields, the crossbow-wielding Armsmen will be more of a threat than Cobra or Anaconda troops.

Heretics: I took 150 mixed Empire troops against the Three Seers and Heretic Armies pretty easily. Same as Snake Cult; just ensure you're dealing with the heavy mounted troops (Demonic Magus!) early. Everyone else just walks up to your line and dies like good little soldiers.

Mystmountain Warriors: Take the high ground or this can end up poorly. It's their charge that's deadly; blunt that and they're weakly armored.

Sarleon: Tougher than you'd expect. Heavy armor all around, they are the strong offense to match your strong defense. Catch them on open ground and at long range so your crossbows and javelins can do their work. If you can't blunt them before they hit melee range you're going to watch your men getting knocked down by warhammers, halberds and horses and then killed before they can stand again. They are a stone ***** in sieges, offense or defense.

Ravenstern: Easy. Your crossbows are more accurate and they lack the short-range punch of your javelin and pike armed troops. Field battles or sieges they are the Empires weakest enemy.

Fierdsvain: Not that bad. The Huscarls are a little tough but otherwise they were nothing near the threat I'd expected. Same tactics that work against everyone else work particularly well against them. Their throwing axes and armored archers just don't lay the smack down like the Empires crossbows and javelins.

D'Shar: Blademasters will kill more of Empire troops than every other D'Shar unit type put together. The D'Shar are quick. They move quick and attack quickly, making them particularly deadly against the powerful but slower Legionaries. They were hands down the most difficult to handle in a siege.

The Empire rules the open field. Distance and line of fire initially, then find a way to limit enemy mobility.



 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
Best answers
0
Sarleon:
Sarleon - Lance and Steed

Caveat - I imported the same character I'd played over the last couple of games, just changed his name. Concept was a Sarleon noble banished in Ulrics rise to power who went to Barclay, rebuilt his finances and returned to Sarleon to take back what he'd lost. As much as I enjoy (prefer even) the early game in PoP I wanted to get right into the army makeup and thus took a shortcut. He walked off the boat into Pendor, so to speak, at a robust Level 43 and a cool 300K+ in his pockets.

Sarleon has the dubious honor of being the weakest faction in PoP 3. It's got to belong to someone and Sarleon is it.  Trying to conquer the world with a pure Sarleon military is a slow, slow, painful process - but not impossible. Expect to spend a lot of time training replacement troops and fighting defensive sieges but there are some very powerful units in the Sarleon lineup - not quite what you'd expect.

Pros:

- Sarleon heavy cavalry is the standard that all heavy cavalry can be measured to. These guys are tanks and should be used that way.
- The castles and cities of Sarleon are some of the most defensible in the game outside of Poinsbruk. You can hold off half the world with a handful of poorly trained peasants - and from time to time you just might have to.
- Brutal siege troops, offense and defense.
- A lot of blunt wielding troops, they tend to take a lot of captives.
- Dirt cheap. Since you want to keep a mix of infantry (though all Armored Longbowmen for archers is great) the bulk of your garrison troops are <20 a week each. You want about 1/3rd of your infantry to be Armored Footmen, which are only 10 a month. Sarleon armies are a cheap date, which leaves plenty of money left over for expensive wine so to speak.
Cons:

- They don't have a troop tree, they have a troop fork. That's right; two, precisely two, short lines of troops all from the initial militia line. One infantry, one archer.
- Weak nobles. They have only a handful of nobles, each fields a relatively tiny army (compared to the 200-300 unit monstrosities of other factions) and a smaller percentage of honor troops. Most factions nobles have armies with 50 or even 60% of their armies as high end or honor units. Most Sarleon nobles are about 20%. Smaller number of inferior troops, they end up on the poor side of most encounters.
- Vulnerable infantry lines. No real shield troops except Knights. Sometimes Man-At-Arms and Armored Footmen spawn with shields, sometimes not.
- Poor location. Right in the middle they generally start out at war with 3 factions. Since most of their enemies have to cross Sarleon even if going to attack someone else their domain is a constant battleground that leaves Sarleon on the losing end.
- Heavy reliance on Nobles. They field a strong cavalry, in fact they pretty much have to in order to make up for their infantry deficiencies. With Nobles now only showing up at a couple a week it means you spend a literal 28 game days trying to squeeze by with a painfully weak army and replacing gruesome casualties all while trying to nurture and grow enough Knights to make a showing on the field.

There in lies the rub - there are some powerful Sarleon tactics, they just require a reasonable number of Knights to be effective. Without that heavy cavalry support they just don't do well. Once you get a dozen or two dozen Knights things change a great deal for a well built Sarleon army but until then what you're going to do the most is train replacements for your constant 20-40% casualty losses.

Tactical Overview:

Sarleon are the Zerg. Their troops, all save Knights, are expendable but heavy-hitting. Your success will depend completely on your ability to get them into melee range with their enemy without getting mowed down by archers. Once they hit melee, you hit F3 and they set to their bloody work - killing any sort of enemy unit (save Blademasters, see later comments) with explosive suddenness. The key is realizing that you don't actually want to upgrade all your infantry. Instead of having different branches in their troop tree their infantry is just one line. Archer line is easy; just upgrade them all to Armored Longbowmen as fast as you can. Infantry though, they have three ranks with three very different focuses. Armored Footmen generally spawn with big two-handed warhammers. These are amazing for knocking enemies down and taking prisoners. The first part, knocking enemies down, is critical to a Sarleon forces success in both offense and defense. The next step, Men-At-Arms, often spawn with sword and shield, making them the only vaguely defensive unit in the Sarleon makeup. They are mediocre at best at it but you again want them scattered in with the main force to serve as damage magnets. Halberders are absolutely deadly - if they can get their swings in.

So you max out your archers and then split your infantry pretty evenly into thirds - Armored Footmen with their hammers, Men-At-Arms with their shields and Halberds with their WHAM! Stand your archers in front but have them spread-out. Their goal is to A) weaken the enemy as much as they can, being further apart means that they have better odds of getting around an enemy shield and B) getting the enemy to spread out. They are not the killing force that archers are in the other factions. In fact they serve great by ordering them to hold fire and charge with the rest, they'll draw enemy attention away from your Halberders and Armored Footmen (who do most your killing) and with their shields last pretty well. What you do NOT want to do is stay at range. Your infantry is fragile and largely unshielded. Keep moving forward, pausing to let your archers inflict what damage they can, but keep moving. Losses with Sarleon troops are inevitable - the goal is to make sure you're killing far more than you're losing.

Move in while keeping formation to limit your vulnerability to cavalry and archers, then charge. Make sure you hit the enemy at a run; your initial pass with your running and swinging Halberd and heavy hammer troops will be your most deadly. It's incredibly satisfying to have had to watch the slow trickle of yellow and red up the screen, then suddenly BOOM! This screen full of green. Your infantry are shock-troops and if you can get them into melee range will slaughter their enemies. Knocking them down and killing them before they get up, the key is to keep them in a horde.

This changes when you have cavalry. The point of the heavily armored Sarleon cavalry is not their killing power; it's their defensive power. You send them in a bit ahead of your infantry, drawing that archer fire that would kill your infantry and scattering the tight groups of otherwise dangerous enemies that would blunt your infantries rush. Keep your cavalry following you so they don't do something stupid - like stop in the middle of 20 Huscarls. Keep them moving! Drag them around and behind the enemy. Your Knights won't make up the bulk of your kills - your infantry will. If you've got a solid cavalry force to scatter enemy archers and break formations and prevent a unified front from blunting your infantry, that ferocious mix of hammers and halberds morningstars (did I mention that Men-At-Arms often spawn with morningstars and shields? Fun for the whole family, that) will butcher any sort of enemy troop mix.

Sieges:

This is where your money is. Yes, you'll take some casualties moving siege towers up or getting to the ladders, but that's fine. You get that thick mix of halberds, hammers and morningstars up to the enemy and it's just a matter of time. Eventually it'll end up with one or two Men-At-Arms in the front, their morningstars chewing up whatever armored troop is holding the line and halberds behind them adding to the carnage and you'll clear a space on the wall. They'll poor onto it and you'll see the ol' Sarleon Magic: the more of them you have in a tighter place the more destructive they are. You squeeze them onto a narrow rampart or doorway and they'll kill enemies so quickly it'll fade out your kill-report scroll.  Same on defense only better. Those armored archers will rain plenty of death on advancing troops; they make very respectable tower defense. When they get up to the wall though you hit '2' to select your infantry and then 'F3' and your infantry will go absolutely nuts. With 116 mixed Sarleon troops I killed over 1600 Fierdsvain in a string of successive sieges. Valdis Huscarls, Lady Valkyries, it just doesn't matter. The core of the Fierdsvain army on day 22 when they were still at 'fresh from the box' strength, all sieging my new keep. Slaughtered to a man. Three days later I'm sprinting back with about 60 fresh recruits to find the Empire doing the same thing - about 1400 attackers total. Killed them all. Two days later the D'Shar showed up, over 800. Guess what? Lambs to the slaughter. Whenever possible fight your enemies in sieges, attacking or defending. Don't stick back with your archers on attack; order hold fire so they pull the shields out and get up on the wall. At one point by day 43 I have defeated probably 40 or 50 different noble armies and have 12 nobles split between my two castles dungeons. I make almost as much money in ransoms as I do battle-loot.

Exception:

Blademasters. Hands down no question the single most powerful unit in game, most D'Shar nobles walk around with about 50 of them. They are just so bloody quick; I've watched them kill 5 or 6 enemies each before they go down. Given that your units are slow but powerful, these guys will effectively 'chain-stagger' your units, hitting them so quickly that they never recover and cut them down in 2 or 3 hits each. Hunt them down and kill them by whatever means necessary, a handful of them will demolish your entire army if you don't stop them.

Unit Overview:


Archers: It's a straight line from skirmishers to Armored Longbowmen. The Armored ones have shields most the time; this gives them good durability in sieges. In sieges they are very useful, on the field their effectiveness is reduced. 20% when outside a siege, 40% for attack or defense.

Armored Footmen: Fragile, inexpensive troops, they fill a vital gap in the troop lineup. Those hammers of theirs knock down enemies regularly, leaving them vulnerable to your other slow-swinging but powerful infantry units. Individually weak they become a vital ingredient to a proper Sarleon rush - mix them about 30% of your infantry troops at all times and you'll be shocked at how deadly a Sarleon infantry rush can be - regardless of the enemy troops.

Men-At-Arms: These are pretty much your shield units - sometimes. Sometimes they spawn with spears. Still, 30% of your infantry because they show up with shield and morningstars a lot and the spears help stop enemy cavalry. Again, keep this metric relatively balanced and your infantry will be far more effective.

Halberders: As tempting as it is, do NOT bump all your infantry to Halberders. As a homogeneous group they are fragile - slow, unprotected, vulnerable. Mix them as a third of your infantry though and magic happens. The enemy, distracted by your Men-At-Arms or knocked down by your Armored Footmen make easy prey for their polearms. These guys devour cavalry too.

Knights: Sarleon Knights and Knights of the Lion (Sarleon Knights +++) effectively fill in for your heavy infantry. Do NOT tell them to 'charge'. Have them follow, lead them ahead of your infantry and soak enemy arrow fire. Plow right through their lines and try to stay on the opposite side of the enemy from your infantry. Keep hitting 'F2' so your incredibly valuable and painfully slow to replace Knights don't just stop right in the middle of the enemy horde. They are NOT for fighting cavalry! They are weak lancers. If enemy cavalry chase your men, lead them back through your infantry. They will dispense with them in short order. Plow through tight knots of enemy infantry, laying them down for your infantry to slaughter or breaking their formations.

Knights of the Clarion Call: These guys do particularly well at drawing enemy attention - especially against the Empire. Quick enough to avoid most the javelins, they draw off enemy cavalry and the attention of enemy archers. While they don't rack up a lot of kills their presence as a extremely durable mobile archer unit that excels at drawing off an inordinate amount of enemy attention considerably improves the effectiveness of your infantry.

Summary:


Mix your infantry! One-third Armored Footmen, one third Men-At-Arms, one third Halberds! It's the magic recipe!
Without cavalry you'll die - a lot.  Use cavalry to distract the enemy so your infantry can get into business range.
Sieges are where you dominate.  Attack or defend, sieges are where your strengths shine through.
It's all you, baby.  Your lords are more or less worthless. Few in number, small armies, you'll be carrying the burden of victory on your own shoulders.

Going to start hunting special spawns so I can get a good feel of the 'vs' results.

EDITED TO ADD:

Not particularly enjoyable, I admit. Not a lot of cultural depth, at such a huge disadvantage and constant bleeding of troops while perpetually waiting for more Nobles, Sarleon wasn't my bag. Here is there vs results:

Noldor: They will rape you until it bores them. Their strengths, speed, accuracy, ranged attack, all play into Sarleons weaknesses. Destructive enough to mow down Knights swiftly, a lack of shields among Sarleon infantry, the only luck I had was hiding behind a ridge and waiting for them, then jumping out to attack. It still went poorly.

Jatu: Pleasantly surprised. The best I've ever had any army do against the Jatu. Wait until they are about to hit, then charge - your men will rush in swinging and kill a ton of horses and Jatu. Wait a few moments as your men start to scatter, then tell them to fall back/advance/whatever to get them back together, rinse and repeat. Even better is to lead the Jatu to water for the battle. Park your troops in a river and wait. I killed a 700 strong Jatu army with a mix of mid-range of 120 Sarleon infantry and archers. ~2000/week worth of troops and absolutely slaughtered the Jatu with them. Most died before they ever got a poke in with their lances. Backed my archers up, who made short work of the Jatu archers (who were poorly armored) and in the water where everyone was moving slowly the Sarleon infantry just slaughtered them. Like Silvermist Rangers killing Outcasts.

Snake Cult: Damn Netherworld Chargers! They just won't DIE! This was an example of Sarleon infantry not doing well against cavalry. Add to that the damned Armsmen and their crossbows. What worked well was making sure my infantry and archers were on the top of a hill, alternating charge and advance to try and catch Cobra and Anaconda troops in a mob while leading my Knights back and forth through the Armsmen to disrupt their crossbow fire.

Heretics: Far easier. Only a handful of Demonic Magnus troops, got them to chase my cavalry. Lead them back and forth through my infantry lines, with a 'charge' command every time we were about to reach them. Nice thick mob of hammers and halberds to greet them at each pass. Went very smooth.

Mystmountain Warriors: Too quick - they rush in, attack, break up what should be my mob of infantry, then ride off before they can be introduced to a well deserved demise. Without a lot of 'charge, advance, charge, backup, charge...' they would have demolished the Sarleon infantry and archers. Too nimble to fall to archer fire as well. Mobbed the Knights, stopping their horses, then brought them down with a group of axe-men. The toughest time I've ever had with Mystmountain Barbarians.

The Empire:  Horrible. Just no good way to close with those javelin-packing infantry without a lot of losses. Once closed I watched about 40 mixed infantry absolutely destroy an equal number of Immortals - same with Legionaries. The problem is that their Knights and their javelins play havoc with the slow Sarleon Knights and just butcher the advancing infantry. Their crossbowmen do a like number on the Sarleon Armored Longbowmen. Toughest regular faction troops for Sarleon.

Ravenstern: Easiest. It's the lighter armor and lightly armored horses I suspect. Their archers don't have a discernible advantage, their Kiergard troops are tough, but sweep through them with Sarleon Knights while your infantry advances, when the armies meet it's terribly one-sided.

Fierdsvain: Easy. Fierdsvain archers are not that tough and their cavalry just doesn't hold up. As strong as their shields are they don't attack particularly quickly and thus get knocked down and slaughtered when everyone is up close and personal. Tougher than Ravenstern troops, but the tactics are the same. Sweep back and forth with the cavalry while your infantry advances. They LOVE to chase your horsemen, scattering over the field, while your pole-swingin' mob of Sarleon infantry chews them up.

D'Shar: Tough. They are quick; Sarleon infantry hit had but are paper tigers in a lot of ways. Especially those damn Blademasters. Toughest infantry in the game under any circumstance, against Sarleon troops they absolutely butcher them. I've been in a 120 vs 64 fight in my favor - I got my horse cut out from under me, ganged up on and slaughtered early in the fight. I still gave commands but really watched how it played out. I watched 8 Blademasters cut through about 40 infantry, only suffering 2 losses. Shield block through the initial attack, step in, whack! Whack! Whack! Dead Halberder. They just destroyed them. Fortunately I had 6 well equipped companions, Sara the Fox and 3 Rangers of the Clarion Call took them down with ranged fire while Freddy and Siggy kept them busy though both of them got taken down in the end. Field or Siege the D'Shar chew Sarleon armies pretty effectively.

Only two troop lines, no flexibility, heavy reliance on noble troops, comparatively shallow culture, weak NPC nobles and the worst starting location make Sarleon a rough go for a pure PC playthrough. Perhaps if you introduced a heavy mercenary contingent? King Ulric, more to the point overthrowing King Ulric, has a lot of cool potential to it. Also the concept of a chivalry-heavy culture. Just a tough one to manage with the slow trickle of nobles. Don't get me wrong - I'm not criticizing their development as an aspect of PoP, just saying they're not a friendly one to play this way.

Next I think I'll do Ravenstern. They seem flexible and with a strong cultural distinction.


 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
Best answers
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Ravenstern:
Tactical Overview:

The Ravenstern troop tree is flat out amazing. The top three levels of archer and infantry troops are amazing. Wardens, Rangers, Mounted Rangers, men-at-arms, Kiergard, Horsemen. You can easily run a whole game with Ravenstern troops and do great without ever bothering with nobles and Knights. Rangers and Kiergard have higher respective combat traits while Mounted Rangers and Horsemen are excellent mounted archers and Knights-lite. I've run a full army of 150 troops, split 75/75 Horsemen and Mounted Rangers and kicked ass everywhere but a siege, where I was NOT foolish enough to take them. The infantry take the field with a healthy mix of axes, morningstars and two styles of unique longsword. Infantry also pack shields, making them solid in any situation. Your Rangers, interestingly enough, pack greatswords - this is great for original M&B because it lets you separate your sword and board troops from your two-handers, sending them up the siege ladder in separate groups.

Just don't mistake them for Legionaries or Huscarls, or Armored Crossbowmen and Armored Longbowmen! They are good archers, but not great. Good infantry, but not great. It's the ability to field a ton of them quickly and cheaply supported by mounted versions of both infantry and archers that makes them killer on the field. Mix in some knights and it really throws them over the top. Measure your army to who you're fighting; do you need more archers or more infantry? Foot or mounted? They have the flexibility to match troop types to situation. Just don't get caught by the Jatu with just cavalry and don't get caught by the Empire with just infantry.

Sieges: You need to leave your mounted troops home. They are expensive and will die quickly here. Exception to this is Knights - all the Ravenstern Knights, from regular to Knight Orders really add that magic ZING! to Ravenstern siegework, offense or defense. They don't last nearly as well with the 'stay at range and rain death' approach to siege work like the Empire and D'Shar can, nor do they shine at the 'rush the wall with shields out' that the Empire and Fierdsvain do. Let your Archers do some killing, empty the walls a bit, but don't linger. Get up there with your Kiergard and order your archers to hold fire so they'll whip out the greatsword and provide good, solid battlefield support. On siege defense Rangers really stand out, great damage and a brutal rate of fire.

Unit Overview:


Archers - Rangers: The Ravenstern archers line is a good one. You'll end up using a lot of them. Rank them right up, keep a lot of Rangers instead of Mounted Rangers though as you'll end up filling your garrisons with them. Don't forget the greatswords on your foot Rangers! Especially against enemy cavalry you hit 'F5' when the enemy horses hit your archers and you'll be pleasantly surprised at how much killing they do. Poor against infantry, but archers typically are. Cavalry though? WHACK! They bring enough love to share with everyone.

Infantry - Kiergard: Kiergard. Huscarl lite. Inexpensive, quick to field, these guys are a solid infantry force. Not amazing; they're not Legionaries with their javelins or Huscarls with their killer stats, but they do a great job. You'll replace no few of them in sieges or serious battles but not too many. You've got no pole-troops really, its your archers who'll handle enemy cavalry, but otherwise Kiergards will serve a Ravenstern army well in any situation.

Mounted Rangers:
  Don't neglect these guys. Their stats are slightly weaker than foot Rangers and they cost almost twice as much to support but if you keep them away from sieges and on the field where they belong they will rack up a LOT of kills. They'll make your enemy turn their shields from your archer line, they'll kill all manner of units and make a great addition to any field army.

Horsemen: Some of the best non-Noble domestic cavalry in the game. Long lances, reliable couchers, fast horses with good endurance, half the price of Knights and quick to train up these guys make another great field asset. Armor is relatively light and when they switch to swords they are considerably weaker but for hunting a lot of the enemies you find in Ravenstern (Mystmountain Barbarians for example) these guys are a solid addition. Just don't treat them like knights - put them against Knights, Heretic Magnus, Adventurers, they'll go down pretty quickly. They also don't last well against strong infantry. Having a half dozen Horsemen and a half dozen Mounted Rangers to support 120 mixed infantry and foot archers though and you'll scatter enemy armies, letting your otherwise slightly above average infantry chew up forces that are otherwise too tough to handle.

Nobles: They show up in clothes and daggers? Seriously? If you EVER want to field actual Knights, take your nobles out on little bandit hunting expeditions and level them up before you take them into real fights. These guys get KO'ed by Outcasts. Treat them like 'levy recruits'. They are fragile and need kept out of harms way.

Knights:  Ravenstern Knights pack lance and shield in addition to greatswords. I find them exceptionally useful in sieges, where their powerful stamina and great armor makes them great tanks for your Kiergard to stick with. They are the only cavalry troops you bring to a siege and expect to bring home again.

Summary:


Bring the right man for the job!  They have a flexible troop tree, just make sure you don't bring a knife to a gun fight!
Great light cavalry.  Don't neglect Horsemen and Mounted Rangers. They buff your infantry and archer troops very effectively.
Manage your Lords.  The lay of the land is a big advantage for Ravenstern. Take a couple off to conquer and order the rest to patrol Ravenstern or Poinsbruk depending on which end your attackers will come from.
Rolling Stones gather no moss. Ravenstern quickly recruits and trains solid troops. When you're at war with a nation, don't stop to regroup. Reload your troop roster and hit the next target before their noble armies recover!

EDITED TO ADD:


Really enjoyed Ravenstern, a fun culture to play and a great military balance. Here's the vs stats:

Noldor:  Wow. I really didn't expect Rangers to do so well against the elves, but they did. Took 120, about 70 of which were Rangers, rest mixed cav and Kiergard, against 60+ Noldor Rangers and Nobles. 8 dead, 20 wounded, wiped them out fast and dirty. I'm finding a solid line of Rangers chews most things pretty well. Their cavalry is quick and put the nobles horses down quick as well.

Jatu:  I wonder if I'll ever NOT hate the Jatu. They show up so quick it really doesn't matter what tactics you CAN use, none of them will have time to do much before they show up. Fortunately if you order your troops to separate, the Jatu tend to plow through the middle. Split your archer and keep your cavalry on the move. Once the initial charge is blunted the Rangers make a solid showing, ranged and melee. Horsemen and mounted archers make great Jatu chase troops. Another tactic that worked well was planting the infantry in a river and the archers and cav on the far side.

Snake Cult:  Too slow, too few shields. Ravenstern Knights really show their stuff against slow tank troops like Cobra and Anaconda Knights. Demolished a 700 strong Snake Cult Army with about 150 mixed troops.

Heretics:  Still slow, but a lot more shields. These guys were everything the Snake Cultists weren't. Trotted right through the hail of arrows and said hello with their Morningstars and crossbows. Use your cavalry to blunt their charge and keep them under the fire of your Ranger as long as possible.

Mystmountain Warriors:  These are people the Ravenstern folks fight the most and are a good reason for why they have so many mounted troops. The army that grinds up snake cultists would get crushed by Mystmountain Armies, bring a healthy mounted mix to run these rednecks down.

Sarleon:  Their infantry dissolve like wet paper in a hurricane but their Knights don't get impressed by archers. Do all the damage you can at range, then order a charge so you scatter their Knights and just bite the bullet on the losses you'll take. The longer you can keep them at range the better.

The Empire:  The Empire plays right into Ravensterns weaknesses. Better ranged troops, also has a nimble cavalry with mounted archers and when they hit javelin range you'd better have told your troops to 'hold fire' so they pull shields out or it's going to be a messy battle. Stronger infantry and tougher ranged troops, this one comes down to stupid AI. Use your cavalry to flank them and draw as much javelin fire at range as possible before the armies hit.

Fierdisvain:  Killing the Green Horde is all about keeping them at range so your archers can deal with them. Use your cavalry to pepper their flanks with arrows and get them to turn their shields away from your Rangers and it'll be an easy fight.

D'Shar:  Interestingly, Ravenstern Ranger are better archers than anything the D'Shar field. Mounted and on foot. It's their infantry that cause Ravenstern troops grief, fortunately their shields don't last like the Fierdisvain do. Avoid cavalry chases, which the D'Shar generally win with their swift little horses and make them come to you.

Ravenstern kicks ass. They are all about adaptability and powerful ranged troops, just remember that your bowmen will run out of arrows painfully quick if you're not managing their rate of fire. Fortunately they make excellent melee troops. Great culture, their nobles speak with a brogue, tons of awesome unique gear, nice location, excellent troop lineup, what's not to love?

 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
Best answers
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Fierdsvain:
Fierdsvain - Axe and Shield

Again, level 44 character from the start to allow for more quickly getting to the review point - though it's worth mentioning that the Fierdsvain path is a particularly long one. Building a Fierdsvain army up from a low level character is a long, long process and not one I'd recommend to start. A rich culture, decently immersive, not for the faint of heart!

Pros:

- Powerful infantry, even at an early stage. Only army I've played with where low and mid level troops are just fine to take killing stuff in the field.
- Shield-heavy army. Almost every single unit type packs a great shield. This makes them absolutely lethal in sieges.
- Most powerful Lords in the game. No question. Especially the king; makes it worth going the 'vassal' route just so you can be Marshal and send the king with his 350+ unit army, mostly elite troops, after objectives.
- No dependency on slowly generated Noble troops. Quite the opposite; the whole Noble line is almost irrelevant. Convenient but in no way required to field your best armies.

Cons:

- No point to nobles. Peasant Women and the various pre-cavalry Maiden units you can recruit in bars can all become Valkyries, who turn into Lady Valkyries.
- Only skirmish cavalry. Oddly the Fierdsvain play host to the Knights of the Dawn - who require Pendor Nobles, which you won't have access to.
- Only 3 cities, like the Empire. Scattered domain, making it slow and cumbersome to recruit armies of your own troops.
- Slow and convoluted troop promotion. Huscarls are brutal; just realize that you'll be at 200 days in the game if you start at level 1 before you're fielding more than a handful of them.

Tactical Overview:
If you want an army of crazed, rush-up-and-kill-stuff warriors, this is your crowd. Even their archers are tough warriors. Heavy chain armor, sword or axe and shield, they also pack a decent bow. They are all about the advancing infantry and their axes are shield-chewers on the field or in sieges. While their troops are slow to product they live a long time in battle. You can take an army of Warrior level troops to the field and easily keep up with any other cultures armies. Armored Axemen and Huscarls are your Knights. While the nobles you create give you a reasonable shortcut to Valkyries, easily turned into Lady Valkyries, they are just skirmish units. Light armor and vulnerable horses compared to other Noble Knighthoods, don't get distracted into cranking them out to buff your line as with all the other cultures Knights and Knighthood orders. Your elite battlefield troops are Huscarls and they are, slowly, created from your standard infantry troops. Throwing axes are inferior to javelins in every single way though. While your infantry may pack throwing weapons like Legionaries, they carry half as many shots that are a tenth as accurate and do a quarter as much damage. It's more just to keep everyone honest I think. Not only do they carry axes, but they can freaking throw them at you.  It's more look and feel than an actual tactical aspect of your troops.

Knights of the Dawn are worth their own mention. They have their base in Valonbray, yet require non-Fierdsvain units to create. If you find Pendor Nobles that you can recruit from prisoner trains elsewhere they'd be useful to turn into KotD. Conversely, you can crank out Lady Valkyries without ever recruiting a single noble of your own.

Sieges: The only people who give you grief in a siege are other Fierdsvain troops - Fierdsvain vs Fierdsvain siege battles are absolutely epic and bloody. Everyone else is just fodder. Don't bother holding back and letting your archers do your work; mix them in with the rest of your troops (heavy archers fight like Warriors, which is no small thing) and plow onto the wall. There is no other sort of battle that plays as much into the absolute slaughter and havoc that fits the Fierdsvain culture like a siege; offense or defense. You've got archers and they're decent, but its the wall of big round shields and lines of glittering axes that hold your line against all comers.

Unit Overview:

Archers: A big early mistake is treating Fierdsvain archers like archers - they are medium infantry who also use a bow. Use them like this and they perform marvelously. You won't be mowing down advancing lines of troops like Ravenstern Rangers, but you'll be peppering enemies, bringing down mounted archers and the like reasonably well. What you won't be doing is having to shelter your archers. These guys can give and take with anything but the heaviest of infantries.

Infantry - Militia to Warriors: Unlike every other culture, Fierdsvain infantry are ready to kill stuff by their second or third promotion. Light Infantry fight very well, make good and cheap garrison troops and don't need sheltered on the field. Warriors are able to hold their own with the heavy infantry of just about every other culture - they'll stand up to Kiergard and even Legionaries with a bit of support. What is important is the promotion to Warriors and not Axemen. Light Infantry are level 15 and train quickly to promotion. They promote to either Warriors, level 20, or Axemen, level 30. Strange, but there is a catch - you take the early path to Axemen and you actually delay your arrival at Huscarl. See, Warriors promote to Berserkers and Armored Axemen. Axemen promote to Armored Axemen as well. Armored Axemen are level 30 and cost just as much to maintain as regular Axemen. They just have better gear and skills. A Warrior promotes almost 4 or 5 times faster than an Axeman, so 20 Warriors will promote to Armored Axemen at the same speed that 4 Axemen will promote to Armored Axemen. Make sense? Armored Axemen create your Huscarls and that is what all good little Fierdsvain youths want to be when they grow up!

Infantry - Berserkers: Don't neglect these guys. Always have a half dozen or dozen on the field. They are quick, hit brutally hard and excel against enemy mounted units. They die a lot though, so just get used to keeping the promotion ladder always cranking out a few. When you need to charge down scattered enemy archers and such these guys will often get the kill before your cav units.

Infantry - Armored Axemen/Huscarls: Forget the whole 'noble' thing when dealing with Fierdsvain. THESE are your Knights. Powerful, fierce, heavily armored, these guys are like foot-knights. Use them like that, always keep a healthy supply of infantry with you getting trained up to become Huscarls. They are the quintessential Fierdsvain killing machine.

Nobles - Valkyries: Oddly the Fierdsvain Noble line is superfluous. I get the intent, make them female to separate them from other cultures, but all they turn into is Valkyries. Same as Peasant Women with enough training. They just take a shorter route. Valkyries fill a vital niche in your army though; they skirmish and chase. Don't neglect this as your army otherwise is pure infantry and archer-weak. They function exceptionally well if you keep them with you, harass the enemy, and then when the armies meet let them scatter to raise hell. Otherwise they'll wander off and get whacked.

Lady Valkyries: Closet thing to a Knight they field. Better armored, better equipped, importantly they also ride a better armored horse which drastically extends their lifespan in the field. An army of 120 troops should include 20 of these if you can manage it. 

Summary:

The generation of Huscarls is slow, so it needs to be steady and constant. You should always have troops training. Always. Generating Huscarls is a slow but steady business.
You have archers for support and cavalry for chases. The Fierdsvain are a powerful infantry army. Just don't forget an adequate number of support troops or you'll lose troops to whittling.
Hold ground until the enemy charge is broken, then charge yourself! Let the enemy break against your shields, then charge in. Don't just stand there and watch stragglers shoot you!
Keep your nobles in the field Fierdsvain Nobles are some of the most powerful Lord armies in the game. Keep them busy, send them in groups of 3 to key points to patrol or raid. This will buy you the time you need to slowly recruit up your armies and garrisons.

Having completed my run through, here is the Fierdsvain vs results:

Noldor:   Bloody and fierce. Terrain mattered the most as it was a matter of time; can you get your axe-swinging, mouth-frothing killers into range before their shields broke under a hail of fine Noldor arrows. If yes, then WHACK! If no, then you're going to die a lot. Don't hold ground, keep using F6 until you're in melee range, THEN charge. 

Jatu: Lacking polearms and horsemen the Fierdsvain have a lot of trouble with Jatu in the open. Against small Jatu forces it was pretty easy, but against large armies they'd weather the first charge and swarm over them like angry ants yet the enemy reinforcements would show up and turn it into a slaughter. Once again, only good way to fight the Jatu is standing in water. Get them into water and you can butcher 700 Jatu with 120 troops.

Snake Cult:  Heavy cavalry and crossbows can make a lot of trouble if not handled correctly. Hold the line and then swarm when the cavalry hit your troops, then advance quickly on the Armsmen before they can get all their licks in with those crossbows. Be aggressive and the Snakes are no big deal.

Heretics: Like fighting the Snake Cult, only easier. Lady Valkyries and Valkyries can easily hit and run the slower Heretic cavalry and scatter the Minions. Against the Demonic Magnus' the heavy axes and berserkers did surprisingly well. An army with 9 of them I only had to couch down 5, the others fell to the brutal axes of my men.

Mystmountain Warriors: This wasn't a fight, it was a brutal rape. My line of heavy Fierdsvain troops killed them so quickly it faded out my kill report for a bit. Pendorian Historians will write of my conquest of the Mystmountain Warriors as 'The Blonding of the North' since we put all their men to the axe and pillaged all their villages, the next generation of Mystmountainers will likely look surprisingly Fierdsvain...

Sarleon: Their polearms give most cultures a lot of trouble but the Fierdsvain have the shields to weather it. Siege battles are still a bit bloody and their archers out perform the Fierdsvain, but it's just a matter of getting close enough fast enough. Just don't get scattered in the field or their knights will suddenly start mowing your troops down.

Ravenstern: Depending on their makeup and tactics they can be hard or easy. If they advance as a group and slowly so their archers have time to pepper you, it's a tougher deal. Draw them out with your cavalry and scatter their attention. If they just charge or you break their line and close fast enough, it's a more one sided battle. Just be quick with them; they hit hard but have relatively soft troops. The real trouble comes when you meet a cavalry-heavy Ravenstern group. Mounted Rangers and Horsemen are quick and will leave your troops scattered and vulnerable if you let them.

The Empire: Fear them and respect them. The initial clash with them and their reinforcements are always bloody, but they lack the Fierdsvain stamina in combat. Same with sieges; getting a clear spot on the wall is painful against them but once you have it and the meat grinder starts up your copious shields, greater strength, axes and heavy armor play out well. Defending against their sieges is one of the most difficult however; their crossbowmen are a mess for the Fierdsvain in large numbers, their javelins will strip your mens shields quickly and their pole weapons can kill your troops before they get into axe range. Don't be afraid to order your men to charge. Your archers are not going to keep them off the walls anyway and the toe to toe combat is where you'll come out ahead.

D'Shar: It's not that they're tough, it's that they're fast. If you don't have enough Valkyries and archers to chase or bring down their mounted archers, they will just run around shooting and charging your men all-day-long. Their Blademasters are the only infantry tougher than your Huscarls too, don't forget that. You'll win against the D'Shar, but it'll be slow and bloody. 

There are two and only two factors in conquering the world as the Fierdsvain. Getting your Warriors/Armored Axemen/Huscarls into axe range and the time it takes you to train up enough Warriors/Armored Axemen/Huscarls to pack those shields and axes to your enemy. When you get a solid system for doing both, the rest is pure semantics.

 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
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D'Shar:
D'Shar - Sabre and Glaive

Notice how the above does not say 'horse and bow'? Let me start, surprisingly, with the following:

The D'Shar are the weakest archers and cavalry in the game.

They are excellent infantry; in fact I'd say they have one of the strongest infantry armies in the game. What they are great at is anti-cavalry and anti-archer units. Fast moving infantry, quick to strike and with long swords, often armed with glaives and polearms to bring down horses. What they are not is decent archers. Quite the opposite; their archers are markedly inferior to every single archer force in the game. Same with their mounted troops - while they are passable skirmishers they are the least cost-effective cavalry in the game.

Pros:

- Bladesmen and Blademasters are unquestionably the most badass infantry in the game. Nothing and no-one compares when it comes to cold-killin' infantry.
- Amazing against cavalry with very little effort. Warriors and Bladesmen, heavy on the Bladesmen, everyone dies.
- Great cultural environment and gear. D'Shar gear is light, protects well and generally looks cool as do their cities and villages.
- Singali gear and neighbors. Local slavers are fun for the whole family!

Cons:

- Pitiful archers. Your infantry will kill more people at range than your Dervishes ever will.
- Feeble cavalry. Even Windriders, your Knight-level units, function at about Mounted Rangers level. Otherwise your cavalry is expensive and excels at one thing - dying.
- Mediocre Lords. They tend to have a lot of D'Shar archer units, which are about as effective as Outcasts - no, seriously.
- Slow troop progression. With 10 training and 150 Bladesmen in the party, you'll generate one Blademaster every couple of days, if that.

Tactical Overview:

Forget everything you think you should do with D'Shar. It's all wrong. Your archers are not in the league of anyone elses archers, most especially Ravenstern Rangers. In fact if the D'Shar Dervish league exploded in a massive plume of nuclear fire, the league that the Rangers are in wouldn't hear about it for several days in the news - as a footnote. D'Shar Raiders, being mounted Dervishes, are slightly more useful. Against anything more than Bandit class enemies, Heretic Minions and the like though, they are more useful as polearm infantry (they tend to pack glaives) than archers. I had a group of 70 Dervishes in a line raining arrows on a group of 20 Vanskerry Raiders - they failed to KO even one of them before melee range, where upon the Vanskerry KOed 22 of them before I largely took them down myself with a Ruby Rune Bow. The top line archers from every other culture would have wiped them up in that situation.

However. Infantry are another story all together. D'Shar Warriors make exceptional polearm infantry; faster and generally more effective than Sarleon Halberders for only 21 a week. D'Shar Bladesmen are absolutely deadly; each one will drop 2 Huscarls, especially in the field. Then they turn into Blademasters, who will mop up Hero Adventurers and Knights of any culture! Gather some Dervish Raiders, a handful of regular archers (to draw fire, accept that their purpose is to die while distracting enemies from your valuable troops) and fill the rest out with 70% Bladesmen and 30% Warriors.

Making friends with Singali Slavers is also a great idea; help them against your enemies and they will provide huge allied armies to patrol your lands. That and Sengali Death Sabers and Noble Sabers are damn sexy weapons and gear.

Use your D'Shar archers as fodder, D'Shar Raiders cost a painful 60 a week and quite simply don't provide that much. Wait until the enemy closes then tell them to 'charge', so they scatter and draw enemy mounted units with them until they die. This will help your Bladesmen keep numerical advantage, which equates to utter slaughter. Keep your Warriors in with them and enemy cavalry will just dissolve when it hits your locust style army. After you've chewed up the enemy foot troops, command your cavalry to 'follow me' so any straggling survivors of your Dervish Raiders will draw enemy cavalry back into your horde, who will drag them down and kill them in stunningly short order.

The D'Shar are a swift, deadly, effective infantry army. Archers and cavalry exist to draw attention to or away from your infantry, nothing else. The slow building up of a core of Blademasters should be the goal as a force of them will destroy anything and everything you encounter - even archer units, who they can literally chase down and kill on foot!

Sieges: Do not do the archer trick. If you line your archers up outside a castle they will die before you have time to realize what a silly, silly thing you just did. Just charge the wall. Fortunately your Bladesmen and Warriors have great weapon range; better than anything but enemy polearm troops who are rare. They will hit first, pushing the enemy back and giving themselves room on the wall. It's like watching an earth-tone flood spilling over a dam. In defense your archers are passable, but any army with decent shields will literally push a siege tower to the wall before 200 Dervishes can bring down more than five or six of them. Fortunately that long weapon reach and incredible attack speed will kill 90% of your attackers before they get a single swing in. Enemy archers will do you most of the damage you take.

Unit Overview:

Archers: The value of D'Shar archers is roughly approximate to, say, a fart in a mitten. I don't know if it's the quality of their bows or their armor or what, but they are just feeble. They serve as fodder to draw enemy attention. They are expendable; utterly and completely expendable and should be viewed as such. Fortunately they tend to carry polearms so that when they are inevitably over-run by enemy cavalry they will whip them out and hopefully do a little damage. In a 50/50 split army of Dervishes and Bladesmen holding position against an advancing enemy the Bladesmen scored more ranged kills with throwing knives.

Archers- Mounted: These guys are skirmishers, which isn't bad. They are also on fast horses, which is good - against cavalry-heavy enemies always have some on hand and order them to 'charge' when the enemy gets close. Being horse-archers they will scatter, plinking otherwise weak arrows at the enemy who will give chase, considerably reducing the number of enemies who actually close at any given time with your infantry.

Infantry - Warriors: Great garrison troops, these guys are solid battlefield additions and should be cultivated and used like polearm troops. They compliment Bladesmen very well and should always be cultivated for a measurable chunk of your army.

Infantry - Bladesmen: Surprisingly easy to train up, fast, shield packing and throwing reasonably deadly assassins throwing knives, these guys are top-tier infantry. Kiergard, Legionaries, Huscarls, they stand up to any infantry without flinching. While not perfect you can even effectively field a pure-bladesmen army. I did and defeated equal sized armies from every single culture with little trouble. 

Infantry - Blademasters: Not to put too fine a point on it, but these guys are it. The top of the list for all infantry armies. Crossbows aside I'd happily throw them against Knights of the Ebon Gauntlet. Stunningly fast I've seen one of them kill 4 Huscarls on the field. In groups it's just absurd; they are stunningly fast and will hit enemies so quickly that most will be chain-staggered and unable to respond before sent to their grave. It takes forever to train them so always have a good sized horde of Bladesmen, constantly moving them towards this exalted rank.

Nobles - Raiders and Windriders: Meh. That's the best I can say. Useful, certainly. They make far better archers and skirmishers. Yet having fought other ones, with damage all the way up a D'Shar Noble Raider will plink arrows at a target that will hit for <10 points at full damage against average armor. Windriders who've been enhanced are more dangerous but still; treat them like Ravenstern Mounted Rangers. That's what they're like, just far more expensive.  While fast all their horses are frail, don't expect them to go the distance on the field.

Assassins: Odd troops. Good, fast, fierce, sometimes mounted sometimes on foot, in small numbers they are great - just not as proficient in the field as Blademasters. I kept a few as bodyguards of sorts though, what D'Shar warlord wouldn't?

Summary:

Everything should drive towards Blademasters Always have troops training towards that. It slowly, painfully slow, but these guys are your ultimate weapon.
Archers and cavalry are expendable and weak Have them, use them, accept they will die a lot, but don't neglect them. They will drive enemies from or too your infantry as needed.
Don't dawdle; get to the melee The D'Shar are an infantry powerhouse. Standing at range getting shot with crossbows is not a good tactic.
Use the Sengali, they compliment you well Their infantry fit very well and their horse archers are more effective than any of your own. Local troops, I'd consider them fair game for a D'Shar army.

Having completed my run through, here is the D'Shar vs results:

Noldor:  Send your Dervish Raiders to scatter, drawing fire. They buy time for your BladesmenNoldor:  Send your Dervish Raiders to scatter, drawing fire. They buy time for your Bladesmen/Blademasters to get in range. Blademasters can easily match Noldor foot troops and your Warriors do a solid job of bringing down their horse troops.

Jatu:  Same tactic as the Noldor and the D'Shar don't need water or hills and trees to beat the Jatu. Hit F9 three times before the Jatu horde hits, then hit F8 four times so your men gank back up on the collapsed Jatu horde. Simple and shockingly effective. 

Snake Cult:  Their heavy cavalry was a big pain to bring down and their crossbow infantry trouble for a culture with feeble archers. Keep moving, advancing, try to use terrain to slow down their cavalry so they can be brought to a halt and laid out. Blademasters can literally get just shy of chasing a Netherworld Charge on foot.

Heretics: Lacking the powerful Netherworld steeds of the Cultists their cavalry melted like butter on a stove when they met my Warriors and Bladesmen. Keep advancing until they hit the Minions, who seemed to just die from proximity to just badass infantry. 

Mystmountain Warriors: The difference between Wolfbodes horde and a peasant army was semantics. I killed all 700 of them with 120 mixed Bladesmen/masters/Warriors and 20 Dervish Raiders and suffered 8 dead Dervishes (which is what they're good for) and 3 wounded Bladesmen. Utter slaughter.

Sarleon: They actually have the only military with a reach-advantage over the D'Shar in most battles, which makes them uncharacteristically difficult. Armored Bowmen need advanced on and killed quickly, and make certain that you're advancing or charging into their attack or you'll get a bloody nose from the encounter. Their cavalry does what all cavalry does when hitting D'Shar Glaives - they get unhorsed and killed.

Ravenstern: Bloody, miserable bastards and their ******** Rangers. Have a good supply of Dervish Raiders to ride around and draw arrow fire, getting killed, while you move your infantry in on them and kill them. Lacking any useful cavalry their Mounted Rangers are going to play hell with you, but in the end it's just a matter of time. Once range is closed your faceless horde of Bladesmen are ten times the match for any of their infantry.

The Empire: Move quickly or their javelins and heavy crossbows will shift the nature of this battle in a bad way, but once closed they are just too slow. Legionaries, generally a difficult enemy, die like common militia in the face of your lightning quick saber-armed horde.

Fierdsvain: Surprisingly easy. Only difficult in sieges, where their axes play a bigger roll in the shield to shield slugging matches, but in the field the D'Shar are everything the Fierdsvain infantry are.... only faster.

A surprisingly powerful force, in the end well balanced just in the opposite direction I expected. They are a very aggressive force, requiring you to constantly move in on the enemy to make up for the weak ranged presence, but once battle is joined they are absolutely ferocious.

 

Fawzia dokhtar-i-Sanjar

Master Knight
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Another possible crash solver from Chiksika:
I've just started a new game a few days ago and have noticed something, maybe  unique to me and my setup, but I suspect not from what I've been reading here. I noticed, that sometimes after starting my computer for the day, Pop loads very slow and when the game finally loads, I'll sometimes have a bit of sound garble or distortion, a crash usually is the inevitable follow up in the very first battle, a runtime error. Several posters have reported the same, and some have mentioned music distortion prior to the crash . I've found that for the first time I power up the computer for the day, load PoP save game, and don't save but simply exit to desk top and then start up M&B, PoP again it loads very quickly without the sound distortions or crashing that would have resulted . This is similar to the problem that occasionally pops up in M&B, any mod, with the music being absent upon your initial load, and has the same solution, i.e, quit to desk top, restart game, play. The initial load seems to strain resources and all seems to smooth out after getting adjusted or something. I remember Gerhart did a bit of investigating in Wedding Dance on sounds and Codecs.

For those getting the crashes or corrupt saves over 500 game days, I think I know what's causing this. I've played many separate games past the 500 day mark and some went out to 900 or more days with no crashes, others constantly had corrupt saves and the C++ error, almost making the mod unplayable past day 550 or so without a lot of fooling around making workable saves. The one thing the error prone and bad save game situations had in common was a huge number of units wandering around at once. I'll give an instance from the last  (test) game to illustrate. There were 4 Mystmountain Armies, and the dozens of small groups spawning off these. There were 3 Snake armies, plus Maltise, and probably 50-100 snake patrols. Add in 3 or 4 Jatu armies and all their patrols and this was a huge amount of units for the memory to handle, in addition to all the normal units and bandit spawns. This was extreme, but earlier corrupt games, while not as overwhelmed with units, still had far too many on the map for the memory to handle easily.Where I actually made a save didn't matter with this many units on screen, the corrupt saves and crashes continued.The area where player saved had no effect in reducing crashes or save corruption.

As I was testing, trying to play as a player normally would, but save scumming every 5 minutes and copying saves to another folder, repeat and repeat tediously, there would be maybe 1 good save out of 50 that allowed me to progress the game another few days. I was puzzled why one save would succeed with all the others being corrupt. The difference was this. I had the all seeing cheat on, and occasionally a lord or group of lords would wipe out a lot of those spawned patrols from the uniques, enough of them that the game's memory could handle it enough to make a good save, and all was well until a short while when new unique patrols were spawned. This could continue for hundreds of game days, even indefinitely as long as these large armies existed and were throwing out spawns. Very few times you will see lords eliminate one of these Snake, Jatu, or Mystmountain armies so the  spawned patrols will be virtually endless. As soon as I took things into hand, knowing what was going on in the world with the see-all cheat, I could end the problem. Elimination of a couple of these excess armies, one way or another, instantly cured all my crash and corruption problems. The main problem seems to be the huge number of patrols the uniques will send out if unmolested.

What I would ask of players having save corruption or crashing problems is: Please turn on Ctrl+T, see if there's a huge number of units on screen such as I've described (maybe poorly), and if you're frustrated with the game go to, one way or another, and eliminate, one way or another, as many excess units as you wish (most especially paying attention to Mystmountain, Snakes and Jatu), save your game, reload and see if this resolves your problem. Please post the results in the cosolidated bug reports thread.


 
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