The closest descendants of the Yazatas are still around and rule Caelum as the Eagle Kings. Seraphs haven't yet become the dominating clan and Raptors haven't been banished yet.
Almost all EA Caelum's units are partially cold resistant and partially shock resistant. The vast majority of Caelian units come with special Ice equipment. Ice weapons are considered magic, letting them strike Ethereal targets with ease. Ice armor gets bonuses for being in cold territory. Caelum's archers have above-average precision. Similarly, Caelian units (almost) all fly and (almost) all have a mapmove of 3 or 2, making the typical Caelian army very mobile. Sadly, they pay for this mobility with fragility: the size-3 Caelian trooper is in danger of being swarmed by smaller heavy infantry.
Caelum has access to very powerful Air magic in the form of cap-only sacred Eagle Kings (Air 4, E1, W1, H2) and a large natural air gem income of 5, but Eagle Kings are old, so they can accumulate afflictions quite soon. Caelum also has trampling mammoths, cap-only sacred non-flying infantry and 2 National Summons spells (Yazatas and some quasi-elemental royalty).
Magic: Powerful Air; weak Earth, Water, Death also with 10% random chance in each; 10% weak Fire randoms. Medium (H2) priests.
Caelum's sacred troops are cap-only, expensive, and otherwise lack-lustre map-move 1 size-2 heavy infantry. It is difficult to see how they can be integrated in a meaningful way into the central strategy for Caelum, even with a bless. Their non-sacred light troops and archers all have flying mapmove of 3, while the heavy troops have flying mapmove of 2. These size-3 melee troops generally do not fare well against masses of smaller opponents, but they should be adequate enough when acting as bodyguards and have resistance against many of the evocation spells your mages will be casting in battle. Thus mobility, combined with shock and cold resistance, should be the hallmark of any Caelum troop strategy.
Mammoths can be recruited in any castle and are an excellent early-game answer to indy-clearing and most small-sized enemy armies. But they are costly to upkeep in large numbers and can't fly, so they might not be able to keep up with the action of your more mobile forces. Any use of Mammoths should be combined with Seraphines to keep their morale up and consider the consequences of them routing and trampling over friendly troops if they flee combat.
Caelum has powerful mages and a variety of chaff mages, which can generally maul most enemy army formations if given the time. So operationally Caelum armies should be centered around their mages, with their troops acting as blockers or guards to buy time for the mages to inflict the heavy casualties.
Caelum's archers have increased accuracy, and when combined with Wind Guide can become quite deadly when used in large numbers. This use however stands in conflict with the Air magic buff Summon Storm Power, which requires a storm to be cast that subsequently represses missile accuracy. Thus your chaff A1 Spire Horn Seraphs are much less useful when combined with archers, unless they can be buffed another way.
This tends to lead to a strategy using 4 types of Caelian armies:
- Flying 3-move chaff mage Seraph communions lead by Eagle Kings, meant to be the core army for both attack and defense.
- Flying 3-move mobile massed archer armies lead by Eagle Kings and supported by Caelium Seraphs or Harab Seraphs, meant for sieges.
- Flying 2-move armies of melee "blockers" meant to combine with the previous two types for tougher fights.
- Non-flying mobile armies centered around Mammoths, meant for taking indies and adding an extra surprise factor in later battles.
Caelum has enough Earth, Death and Water magic to pull off a successful side-strategy and keep the enemy off-balance as to what to expect.
|Spire Horn Warrior||10||6||10||6||10||11||5||10||10||8||11||3/8|
|Spire Horn Warrior||10||8||10||6||10||11||6||10||10||11||11||3/7|
|Spire Horn Archer||10||5||9||5||10||11||4||9||10||9||12||3/9|
|Caelian Light Infantry||10||11||9||7||10||11||6||9||10||11||11||3/8|
Shock and Cold Resistant Flying Troops
- Spire Horn Warrior
- Gold 10, Resources 6
- Ye basic 3-move flying infantryman with 50% shock and cold resist. Easily overlooked in favor of his brother with a shield.
- Spire Horn Warrior (+shield)
- Gold 10, Resources 8
- Adds a shield, 50/50 vs shock/cold. A crucial upgrade for these all-too-fragile troops.
- Spire Horn Archer
- Gold 10, Resources 5
- 3-move flying Short Bows on the cheap. 50/50 vs shock/cold. Precision 12 is nice and can be improved further using Wind Guide (Alt 4).
- Tempest Warrior
- Gold 15, Resources 12
- 2-move flying medium infantry. Same Ice Lance as the Spire Horn Warrior, but backed by significantly stronger armor and improved resistance. 75/50 vs shock/cold.
Cold Resistant Flying Troops with Magical Armors
- Blizzard Warrior
- Gold 10, Resources 9
- 3-move flying Short Bows with Ice Studded Armor, 100% cold resist. Useful if for some reason your archer corps is getting shot at or fighting a water nation.
- Caelian Light Infantry
- Gold 10, Resources 11
- Icy! Still uses an Ice Lance but better (magical) Ice Armor than their Spire Horn brethren. 100% cold resist.
- Caelian Infantry
- Gold 10, Resources 16
- Adds an improved weapon and shield with an Ice Cap helmet and an Ice Blade sword. 100% cold resist. Probably your best 3-move answer for heavy flying troopers.
- Gold 15, Resources 26
- Heavier armor decreases flying mapmove to 2. Icicle Mail instead of Ice Studded Armor. 100% cold resist.
Flying, Non-Magic Troops
- Gold 10, Resources 4
- 3-move flyer, otherwise conventional light troops. No resistances, but 11 hp. Your cheapest unit.
- Raptorian Warrior
- Gold 10, Resources 12
- 3-move flyer, armed with Short Swords, Shields and Hauberk. No resistances, 11 hp. Your cheapest medium infantry.
- Iron Crow
- Gold 15, Resources 16
- Caelum's answer to conventionall heavy infantry. 3-move flyer armed with Short Sword, Hauberk and Shield. No resistances, 12 hp. Decent but expensive.
- Gold 120, Resources 20
- 'Cuz conventional Elephants aren't 100% cold-resistant. Mapmove 3!
- Temple Guard
- Gold 20, Resources 26
- Caelum's only sacred troop is also the most expensive, these are the only Caelum troops with mapmove 1. Capital-only. Even with a bless, they are still going to be slow, expensive and too few to make a big impact. Maybe use them as bodyguards vs assassin attacks for castle garrison commanders.
- Caelian Scout
- Gold 20, Resources 13
- Ye basic stealthy scout-commander, with the Caelian flying 3 mapmove thrown in for free!
- Tempest Lord
- Gold 35, Resources 14
- 3-move flyer with Ice Blade + conventional armor. 75/50 vs shock/cold. Useful for ferrying large formations of troops between your Eagle Kings. The cheap price makes him a prime candidate for kitting out as a battlefield thug to sown mayhem wherever the enemy is weak.
- Spire Horn Seraph
- Gold 60, Resources 1
- Magic: A1
- Ye budget magic-slinger. As an A1 mage, the unscripted AI will mostly cast Phantasmal Warrior in battle. But they can self-buff to A2 using Summon Storm Power after an Eagle King has cast the Storm spell, or use a Staff of Storms, after which the AI will also cast Shock Wave or Lighning Bolt. Ultimately you want to equip as many as you can with a Slave Matrix, while a Communion Master carrying a Crystal Shield buffs them to A3 using Summon Storm Power. Adding a second Communion Master with Astral should technically be able to buff them further to A4 by casting Power of the Spheres.
- Gold 90, Resources 1
- Magic: H2
- A solid, non-cap sacred flying stealthy priest! With a minor bless, lots of stealthy thug abuse potential here! Even though Eagle Kings also have H2, they rarely cast non-scripted divine spells in battle. Thus the Seraphines are your goto chassis for casting Sermon of Courage during long fights. With every Seraphine able to cast SoC out of the box, if your armies are fleeing combat, it's your own fault!
- Caelian Seraph
- Gold 140, Resources 1
- Magic: A2W1
- Middle-of-the-line spell-slinger. Since they are A2 already, the AI will cast Shockwaves and Lightning bolts without any further buffing needed. Thus Caelian Seraphs can be used as support magi in archer armies when Storm casting is not desired. Forging Water Bracelets makes it easy to field W2 magic as well.
- Harab Seraph
- Gold 80, Resources 6
- Magic: A1D1 +10% random (D)
- Death magic for diversity, plus a surprisingly strong equipment set for a mage. This is another mage whose power benefits enormously when joining a communion using Slave/Crystal Matrices. If you summon enough of them, eventually you will get a D2 random that will enable you to forge a Skull Staff. It will be slow going getting a real death economy up and running without some help from your pretender though.
- Eagle King
- Gold 400, Resources 25
- Magic: A4W1E1H2 + 10% random (FAWE)
- Sacred, awe+2, powerful Air magic with a dip in 3 other paths, leadership 80 and a strong basic equipment set... these guys outshine everybody... but oh gods the cost! And it's capital-only. The only must-have equipment these guys need are Boots of Youth, which is the main reason Caelum wants to get into Blood magic asap. While they will be an integral part of your strategy leading your armies and doing early research, ultimately the Eagle Kings will likely be outnumbered 5:1 by your lesser mages. With adequate body-guards and self-buffs, each one should prove very tough to kill in battle. A long-term goal should be trying to harness their magic-buffing potential to turn large communions of mage-chaff into deadly spell-spammers. Add a Crystal Matrix and accompanied by no less than 4 Seraph communion slaves, they will be a formidable force that can carry you into the late game.
Isvat the Unwinged
Isvat the Unwinged is a Yazad warrior who stayed behind when his kin left this world. While the Eagle Kings hid in the mountains, Isvat cut his wings to remind himself that he was a being of this world. He then and traveled far and wide as a lesser being and learned much of the world. After centuries, he returned to Caelum and found the descendants of the Yazatas under attack and their temples destroyed by lesser beings of the empire of Spring and Autumn. Isvat rallied the Caelians and fought to defend the temples and led them to victory. Those who followed him cut their wings in his image and formed the sacred Temple Guard.
HP:17 Prot:13 Mor:16 MR:14 Enc:5 Str:13 Att:14 Def:15 Prec:13 Mov:2/12 LDR:120 Sacred, Awe+1, Standard 15, Shock Resist +100%, Cold Resist +50%, Magic Being
An odd admixture of Eagle King and Temple Guard, Isvat loses the spellcasting abilities of the former in exchange for the combat capabilities of the latter. Unfortunately, melee combat is decidedly not a Caelian specialty, and Isvat doesn't buck the trend. His leadership is quite high, and he does manage to have a mapmove of 2, so he can play commander instead of swordsman with some effectiveness.
- Palace of the Eagle Kings
- Produces 5 Air gems and 1 Water gem per turn, and allows the recruitment of Eagle Kings and Temple Guards.
- Summon Yazatas
- 18 Astral pearls, Conjuration 5, S2
- Summons six sacred Yazatas. These "Yazad" troops are sacred, Awe +1, Shock Resistant 100, Cold Resistant 50, Magic Beings, and can fly. Their stats and equipment are unimpressive, given the high non-native Astral cost of the spell, but nonetheless can be used to bolster Caelian melee combat.
- Call Amesha Spenta
- 60 Astral pearls, Conjuration 8, S5
- Summons one of the six Amesha Spentas. All pack high statistics, are sacred, Awe +4, Shock Resistant 100, a Magic Being, do not eat, and fly. While they have the usual set of equipment slots, by default they only come equipped with a Magic Staff. Each one represents a different aspect of their lord:
- Fire: Asha Vahishta has F5H3 and Fire Resistant 100.
- Sky and Metals: Khshathra Vairya has A4E3H4.
- Water: Haurvatat has W4H3, regenerates, and can Heal (100).
- Earth: Spenta Armaiti has E4N2H4, and a supply bonus (100 before the Nature magic bonus).
- Plants: Ameretat has E2N3H3 and is Immortal.
- Animals: Vohu Manah has N5H3 and Animal Awe +7.
Take and hold a solid swath of territory in the early game to establish the financial means to hire large quantities of our diverse mage-types. Locate and hold useful indie sites (especially mages with S picks) and establish a healthy gem income. Go for the long-term oriented goal of maintaining a strong economy while boosting the magic power of all our flying armies to the max through Communions. But we will need an aptly designed pretender to help enable this.
Caelum needs money to pay for expensive Eagle Kings, a breakout Mammoth expansion army and starting construction on extra castles and laboratories asap (500 gold each!). Caelum's size-3 melee troops are generally out-classed and swarmed by other nations, but our flying archers can be quite useful. Thus taking high Sloth is acceptable. Growth will be nice to give the Eagle Kings a bit more longevity before old age kicks in, as well as the long-term benefits on gold income (for even more Eagle kings). Magic makes all our mages more effective in battle, as well as bestows them with a useful research bonus. While not as extreme as Niefelheim, Caelum still gets to take advantage of bonus points from preferring Cold+2. We want to establish a strong dominion in our own territory so as to benefit from our excellent scales.
(order scales) Dominion 6: Order 3, Sloth 3, Cold 2, Growth 2, Magic 1
There is something to be said for high turmoil + high luck outweighing order scales. You can get many more random events, some that bring as much as 2000 extra gold or many extra gems. While the start will be slower, the following scales can work for EA Caelum as well:
(chaos/luck scales) Dominion 6: Turmoil 3, Sloth 3, Cold 2, Luck 3, Growth 3, Magic 1
Because we have Mammoths, Caelum doesn't need an awake SC pretender. Once our research kicks in, our Eagle Kings supported by the lesser non-cap magi can take the brunt of the fighting. This allows us to take a less combat oriented pretender and instead concentrate on access to useful magic paths, a bless, site-searching and forging. Until we find some indie-mages, our pretender offers our only access to Astral and Nature magic. We want to be able to use Communions to boost our mages on steroids, but this is only possible through forging Crystal/Slave Matrices (E1 + S1 required) and Crystal Shields (E2 + S3), thus we need a strong gem income in both those areas. Our National Summons require tons of astral pearls, so we need to get into clams (W3 + N1) if we plan on using them widely. We need an established blood economy in about the third year so as to forge Boots of Youth for all our Eagle Kings (B2).
(with order scales) Dormant Master Druid: F2, W2, E4, S4, D2, N4, B2
(with chaos/luck scales) same pretender, increase Magic scale from 1 to 3
- ie. stealthy site-searching and/or dominion-push, minor bless useful for mages, excellent forger.
(with chaos/luck scales) Dormant Nataraja: F2, W2, E4, S4, N4
- ie. don't like to hide? Use this guy instead.
Year 1: Day 1 - Prophetize your scout and order your small army to "patrol province". Set taxes to about 170 and keep them there till you have mustered 10 Mammoths. Now set taxes back to 100 and split your forces, making 2 expansion armies centered around 5 Mammoths each. With proper scripting these guys should be able to clear just about any small fry they meet. Send them and your Prophet to grab gold-rich indie provinces till our mages have completed enough research to fight on their own. Use Eagle Kings to get our research going, only switching to the cheaper Seraphs when you need to save on gold for a new castle. Strive to build 2 more castles all within mutually supporting distance of one another (ie. within flight-distance) up within the first year and have an income of 1000+ gold/turn.
Year 2: Build 3rd castle. Try and train 1 Eagle King, 1 Scout and 2 Spire Horn Seraphs in your castles per turn, plus as many Spire Horn Archers and/or Blizzard Warriors as you can afford. Send the scouts to blood hunt in a friendly 5000-6000 pop province with taxes set to 0 (needs about 15 scouts to become effective without help from a blood mage). Start site-searching with your now-awakened-pretender and an Eagle King. Save your Air gems for battle casting, other gems for forging. Once you have enough slaves, emmpower an Eagle King to B1. You should now be able to field an aggressive offense or powerful defense using flying magi and archers vectored in from anywhere within flying distance of your castles. Use Air gems with an Eagle King to cast Storm in battle and have swarms of lesser Seraphs then scripted to Summon Storm Power then Cast Spells.
Year 3: Research to Construction 6. Begin forging using your pretender, starting with Dwarven Hammers, then produce a steady stream of Staff of Storms, Crystal Matrices and Slave Matrices (4 Slave / 1 Crystal), Clam of Pearls, Crystal Shields and Blood Stones. Your magi can forge Water Bracelets, Girdles of Might, Wall Shakers, Bags of Wind and Owl Quills. Empower your B1 Eagle King to B2 and start producing Boots of Youth. Organize armies of 8 Spire Horn Seraphs lead by 2 Eagle Kings in a reversed communion, with the masters summoning a Storm and self-buffing (ie. the slaves automatically receive the master's buffs as well) before casting their Evocation spells.