The Persian Positions Handbook
Special thanks to Angel Dorantes who prepared this, along with another version, and allowed me to make changes and convert it to the Sparta Handbook.
Understanding the mechanics
A. The most important thing to understand is that you should never expect to actually win anything from Persian Positions, anything you get from them you have to pay for (with troops). All that we will discuss here fortunately requires no money at all. B. Anything you get as a reward, you will need to pay back before you can collect a new reward. Persian Positions work as a loan system, you play then you get a loan, this loan carries some interest with it, so you need to pay your loan plus the interest in order to collect another loan.
Persian positions are great to convert your low cost, fast build troops into high end, high cost, long to build troops.
Loans are based on the resource value of the troops you gain. Let’s suppose that you win 10 troops that cost 1K wood, 1K bronze and 500 grain. And you can build troops that cost 100 wood, 100 Bronze and 50 grain. This means that 1K+1K+500 x 10 represents a total value in resources of 25K resources, therefore you will need to build and kill troops using this formula 25000/(100+100+50)= 100 plus interest, opinions vary in the interest thing from 1% to 12%, before collecting another loan.
Please be aware that not all units give equal contribution to pay your loan. Champion Units, Veteran Units, and Denarii troops will contribute a lower fraction in respect to their general value in comparison to the standard Units. Heroes gives nothing at all to your loan. So, always use in Positions your resource built troops, the higher the value of your troops, the faster you will pay your loan and get a new reward.
Recommendation before you start with the actual battles, secure the Acropolis, all Champions, Denarii built Units, Veterans, and Heroes. It is great to have them, since we can always use them to protect our Cities or Pantheons and to do some raids in the event that we run out of regular troops to continue playing PP. As long as you use the best unit type to fight PP, you will minimize your casualties thus allowing you to go higher in level than if you send random troops.
In order to determine which is the best Unit to fight one particular offense PP, you should first send 1 Macedonian Cavalry, Agema Horseman, Carthaginian Horseman, Spartan Promachos, Sarrissophoros, or whichever other Cavalry or Phalanx offensive Unit you have the most available of.
Read the report, Infantry Units are strongest against Infantry attacks. Heavy Infantry Units are strongest against Heavy Infantry Attacks. Phalanx Units are strongest against Phalanx attacks. Cavalry Units are strongest against Cavalry attacks. Therefore if your report shows that you killed more of one type than the others, that is the strongest defense and the Unit type you don´t want to send to fight. The best option would be to send the type of Units that you killed the least or none at all in the report. For example, your report shows that you killed 2 Cavalry, 34 Phalanx, 45 Heavy inf, and 89 Infantry, so your best choice to kill this PP is Cavalry and your second best choice is Phalanx.
In the above example you can see that the test attack killed 11 Cavalry, 0 light Infantry, 1 Heavy Infantry and 1 Phalanx units.
Therefore this Position is very strong against Cavalry Attacks and very weak against Light Infantry, Heavy Infantry and Phalanx attacks, so the preferred troops to send to this one are Light Infantry, Heavy Infantry or Phalanx Units.
This leads to Rule 1 of PP: When attacking an offensive PP, we attack their weakness.
Defense Persian Positions are very easy to determine, since sending just 1 Javelineer to defend will bring back a report with the exact unit count in the PP.
Based on the same principle we have learned before about which Units are stronger against which Units, we need to setup our defense to be the tightest against the main strength of their attacks, so if they are attacking mostly with Cavalry, we need to defend with Cavalry troops.
This leads to the second rule for PP: When defending a PP, we defend against the main strength of their attack.
In the above example we can easily notice that the strength of Xerxes Attack is Cavalry, therefore Mounted Peltast will be best for this.
In the event where we find similar strength say for example Light Infantry + Cavalry, we will send our Light Infantry first (cheapest), then our Cavalry in a second wave to minimize our loses.
C. Battle results are not in any way similar to regular raid or siege or colonies or Pantheon battles, where a percentage is calculated and you may get a return or not depending on the strength of the force sent and located at target. In a PP the exact same number of Units will die regardless of the number of them you send in a PP, if 10 Agema Horsemen need to die before you win, it doesn’t matter if you send 5, then 6 or if you send 1,000 at the same time. Troops that you kill in there will remain dead until you can clear it.
These are the basics of PP battles, and hopefully the boring part is over now ...
On to the battles
First thing to decide is what your personal objective is from Fighting PP, some options are:
- Gaining Experience, level up.
- Converting your army into a stronger one either defense or offense
- Reducing Grain consumption while gaining a stronger army
- Earning many of the available rewards during Global Quests.
I will explain general tactics that will be used in all cases then individual tactics that should be used for a certain purpose.
Since We will get rewards and we have to pay for them with an interest, it is important that we keep a permanent queue of troops, queues should permanently be of 1,000 Light Infantry, 400 Heavy Inf, 150 Phalanx and 30 Cavalry, every day we log into the game, we need to refill that queue in order to be able to pay for the so called interest.
Naturally, we will queue up only those units that we can build. but proportion should be the similar.
It is very advisable that before going to PP battles, we do as much raiding as possible in order to fill up our storage, this is to avoid as much as possible getting resource rewards, we will aim to get mostly troop rewards since that is what we all want. We want to win many strong and expensive Agema Horsemen.
PP will not give resource rewards that exceed your current storage availability (this was fixed recently, in the old days you could receive 220K Wood even if your storage would only hold 20K.
Most likely the last time we played PP we got a reward, so probably we are starting with a debt that we need to pay before we collect another.
Preparation consists in bringing as many PP as possible to one bar before attempting to kill any. This will allow for our former debts to be paid so that we can start collecting right after we kill our first one, this will provide rewards to keep us going.
If you are short on army then try to weaken top 3 and lowest 3 available at least of each type (offense and Defense) if even shorter then at least the 2 highest of each and the 2 lowest of each type.
Mission Positions are completely independent from regular PP and these are not included in our goals, so for the time being leave those untouched (Mission PP are those that have a guaranteed reward of troops) According to the PP level, there is a max and a min reward that we can expect, logically, the higher the value, the more costly it will be for us to pay, so try not to bite off more than you can chew and stay at a level where you feel comfortable according to your resource production, discovered troops, raid ability and willingness to risk.
When I mention there is a risk, it never means that you will permanently end up without troops, in the event that you get to the point where all your troops are invested in PP, you can always expect to get somewhere between 90 and 97% of them back after you kill 1 or 2 more PP. So there is no chance that you will need to rebuild from scratch, just build enough to break a couple more PP and you will bail out easily. This is also why it is very important to always keep our highest 3 PP weakened as much as possible, so that in the event that we have to build to kill, we don´t have to build much.
If you want to be extremely methodical and reduce that risk to the minimum, then you would need to keep exact track of what you win/lose so that you know the exact amount and type of Units that you need to kill before getting a new reward. I have a spreadsheet that will ease the task of adding and subtracting so that you can easily keep exact track of your loans and payments. (Please ask me for this file if you need it) If you get ambitious and fail to follow all directions, you will certainly get in trouble, you can either build up or revive a few troops if you have the cash for it and keep on going. If you follow all indications you will be safe and will easily bail out of any complicated situation.
The best season to Play PP battles will always be when a Global Quest is active, since the Troop rewards that you get upon Global Quest completion will definitely give you a profit of whatever you have invested in PP. It is the only time when you may actually win some, however, PP can be played at any time provided that you are willing to invest troops to strengthen your army or to gain troops that you can´t build yet.
How to weaken a Defense PP?
- Send a Javelineer (or any defensive Unit you have available) to determine what the strength of the attack is, so you can decide the most suitable defenses to send.
- Send 1 small wave of the selected troops 10 to 50 Units depending on the Position's level and the strength of the selected Units.
- Do some math and determine the approximate number of Units that you need to send to not kill it entirely.
You can be very precise and reduce it to leave only 1 troop alive or you can play it safe to reduce it enough to be able to kill it with 5 to 10 Units.
This is an example of a perfectly weakened defensive PP where all I had left alive was 1 Light Infantry Unit.
How to weaken Offenses?
Send a test attack to determine their weakness. The most important thing once we selected the proper Unit is to send small waves of Units and read the messages in the reports.
First Message: The enemy stands defiant, this will indicate that we have made nearly no damage to the PP troops.
In the example above, I see that a good choice of Units, since I have no more Light Infantry or Heavy Infantry units left, would be Phalanx Units, so I send waves of 20 Sarrissophoroi.
After the first wave I receive a second Message.
Hold the Line.
Hold the line message means we have done a little damage to PP.
On the third wave of 20 Sarrissophoroi I get a new message Cut them Down.
Cut them down message means we are getting there, but still a long way to go.
2 more waves brought a new message
“The enemy is retreating” message means we have killed at least 50% of enemy troops and it will be safe to send 4 more waves without the risk of potentially getting nothing in return.
This is the following wave and you can see that I got the same last message.
If I got 1 Cut them down and 1 Hold the line message means I need to get 2 Enemy retreating messages before killing my enemy.
If I got 2 Hold the line and 2 Cut them down, means it can take 4 Enemy retreating message before breaking them.
It is important that waves have the same force in order to use this method to determine when the PP is weakened. When you are going to kill a PP, use the exact same method, send a few Unit waves until you kill it, if you send more waves than you need, do not worry, after the enemy has been destroyed, any extra waves sent will safely return home.
Why kill in waves? So that all the Units that died in the process of killing it will be added to your bank, thus getting you closer to get a new reward. This killing in waves will also be very helpful in weakening their offense, as the more you do it, the easier it will be for you to calculate the necessary waves to soften without killing and in no time you will be doing this a lot faster.
These are the generals of PP.
Focusing on 1 objective
Objective: Gaining Experience, leveling up and getting as many quest items as possible during a global quest.
Please be aware that the higher the level you reach, the tougher it gets to break and the more expensive the loans are. Once you get to a certain level, there is no going back to lower ones, so be very cautious while leveling up. I would say that for the average player levels 65-75 should be a nice comfortable range to work with but you may go as high as you like.
Note: Do not expect huge rewards when leveling up, since Scrolls of wisdom will take a big chunk of the reward, you will win barely enough to keep on going.
It is important that for every 3 levels we raise, we setup backups in case we get screwed and thus have an easy way out.
- Weaken ALL available PP to the limit if possible.
- Select the type you are going to work with (Offense or Defense) The choice should depend on the strength of your army. If you have more offense, then go for offensive PP, if you have more defense focus on defensive PP.
- After they have been weakened, hit the quest PP. If you get a reward, then kill the lowest you have, see which new one pops up, then kill the next quest (always in small waves). If you don´t get a reward, kill the next one (always test first and select the best army for it to minimize your casualties). No reward kill next, reward, kill the lowest, then weaken the new one, kill the quest and carry on until your troop count is lower than what you started with or you have reached a PP level that you want to stay at.
After you either are comfortable with the PP level you have reached or your army force is considerably lower than what you had when you started, then kill low ones and reduce the force of anything new that pops up. Do this until no more pop up or you feel you don´t have enough army left to weaken new ones.
Then kill your second highest level available to collect a full reward and call it a day. If by any chance you don´t get a reward killing your second highest available level, then reset the game, while you build whatever you can. Weaken as many of the new ones that pop up as possible, both offense and defense, then again kill the second highest. Continue like this until you get a reward.
If you get a reward that you are not happy with, reinvest it. Use it to kill lower ones and weaken new ones. After you have softened all their forces, hit the second highest again.
An Offense and Defense PP’s of the same level will have similar XP’s. So if you know an XP was gained from an offense or defense PP, keep track of it and use it to weaken the PP’s in such a way that it can be cleared with a very small hit. This will be very helpful when you are dealing with high level Offense PP’s so that you get perfectly weakened Offense PP’s.
Objective: Reduce Food consumption and/or convert low-end Units to high-end Units
Up to level 40 you may still get Light Infantry and Heavy inf. Units as rewards, so this won´t get us to that objective, so the first priority would be to follow the exact same steps of the previous objective until we are at level 45 or above. Here, all the rewards are Phalanx and Cavalry only.
If we are looking to get high-end troops, then we should try to use the least of these. So keep your Cavalry army safe in the Acropolis and use Light Infantry and Heavy Infantry Units by the tons and queue a few Thureophoroi and Sarissophoroi.
Once your troop production capacity is high enough and you feel comfortable you can raise a level or 2, whatever you are comfortable with.
- Weaken ALL available PP to the limit if possible.
- Kill your second highest level available.
- If you get a reward, then kill a few lower Units and weaken all the new ones that pop up until you feel you have paid for your loan.
- Continue like this until you are satisfied with your results.
I think that pretty much covers all of it. After practicing for a while you will become PP experts and will be able to amass huge armies.
It is advisable that as you play you keep at least an estimate of what you need to kill to get a new reward. This will determine the number of lower Persian Positions that you need to kill before hitting the second highest again. If you are not getting any new ones, you should stop and wait for the next game reset. Try to always have 20 Persian Position available in your Oracle.
Ambition will lead you to doom
Always leave enough troops in your Acropolis to be able to raid in the event that all your Units are invested in Positions. The possibility of raiding will always let you rebuild faster to recover your investment.