TURN COMMENTARY

This is a commentary on a typical turn, written by one of our most experienced players. Names and places have been changed to protect the innocent (and the guilty). It aims to show you how a typical player deals with a typical turn.

BACKGROUND

I'm Arthur, King of Wessex. I command all the land areas in the south-west peninsula, and as far east as Somerset and Dorset.

I don't consider myself a major power. For one thing, I only have one city and my small total population generates a meagre income. For another thing, I don't have a lot of armies "on the map". However, I do have a sizeable household army which I hope will discourage my stronger neighbours from launching attacks on my areas (because they don't know where it is).

Over the next few turns, I aim to regain control over Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and the New Forest, so that my core areas will be protected by a line of "sticky" areas from possible overrun attacks by my large-army neighbours (sticky areas are forest, westlands and mountains etc, where an army on the move has to stop and wait for the next turn - which means if an attacker comes that way I've got time to react).

PLANS FOR THIS TURN

This turn, I need to do something about the following:
(a) 21 Essex armies in Gloucestershire
(b) 10 Kentish armies in New Forest
(c) 1 East Angles army in Wiltshire.

The 21 Essex armies in Gloucestershire could attack me in Somerset and then quickly wreak havoc through the rest of my areas. Fortunately, I've already got 12 armies in Somerset and had previously set up an ambush. Therefore, by calling up 3 armies from reserve, I can defend it against an Essex attack. This must be my first action and, because of the order of play, I know I get my first action in before Essex.

My second action will also be defensive. I will move 4 armies from Devon into Dorset, where I already have 10 armies, giving me 14 armies there. This will enable me to hold Dorset against a 10-army attack from New Forest.

My third action will be to use 4 of my armies in Dorset to attack Wiltshire. I need Wiltshire as part of the defensive line of "sticky" areas referred to above. The only thing that will scupper my plans is if the East Angles move in armies from Hampshire before my third action.

My next few actions will be tax actions to generate build points (BP's). I will then grow my population in Devon and levy armies there and in Exeter.

I calculate that I'll have one BP left at the end of the turn and this will help preserve my place in the running order of kingdoms for the following turn.

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

I own most of the sea areas that surround the south-west peninsular. The Irish hold the Severn, but I have a long-standing alliance with them, so I feel safe to discount the possibility of a sea-borne attack.

I've got a few ambushes set in areas susceptible to attack.

I've got a couple of allies. My alliance with the Irish so far has been in the form of a non-aggression pact rather than an active alliance. I'm also allied with Mercia. He is not a near neighbour, but we exchange information on possible enemies and I've declared him as my overlord. This arrangement gives me a regular income into my treasury and gives Mercia enough victory points (VP's) to give him a chance of winning the game.

I've got a few enemies. I attacked Kent early in the game and so there's no love lost there. I had an alliance with Essex, but he turned on me and I won't forgive him for that. Essex is strong and ruthless and is the kingdom I fear most.

I don't have a large population and so my income each turn is low. I therefore waste quite a few actions each turn on doing TAX actions to give me enough BP's to do active things "on the map". My income position is made worse by the supply costs of keeping large armies in the areas on my eastern borders. This is another reason why I'm trying to regain control of the "sticky" areas in my east.

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