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Overview

After Philip, Alexander's father and king of Macedonia, dies in 336 B.C., the Greek city-states of Thebes, Sparta
Alexander the Great.
and Athens revolt against the unproven prince.  As heir to the throne, Alexander marches on Thebes to re-establish Macedonia hegemony over Greece.  Crushing all resistance, he turns his eye towards the east and the ancient enemy of Greece, the Persian Empire.  Darius III's army is no match for the Macedonians as they capture city after city along the Mediterranean coast.  After besieging the cities of Tyre and Gaza, Syria and Egypt are subdued and removed from the dwindling land controlled by the Persians.  Alexander refuses Darius' offer of half his empire for ceasation of hostilities.  The Macedonia king will not be satiated until he has it all.  Yet again, he defeats another Persian in his march towards the Persian capital of Babylon army during which Darius' is seen ignominiously seen fleeing the battle before the conclusion.  Alexander spends several years consolidating his power over the rest of the Persian Empire, hunts down the remnants of it's army and subduing revolts in what is now the country of Afghanistan.  Around 327 B.C., he heads further east into India, acquiring more territory until his soldiers vowed to revolt if they go any further.  For eleven years,  Alexander and his troops marched over 20,000 miles, conquered 22,000,000 square miles and founded 70 new cities.

Can you match Alexander the Great and conquer the known world?


The six single-player battles included in the game.








Battles

  • Thebes 336 B.C. - After Philip's death the traditional Greek city-states of Thebes, Sparta and Athens, rallied by the orator Demothenes, rose to challenge Macedonia rule.  Alexander quickly marched on Thebes and quell any resistance to his rule and prove his place as the rightful successor to Philip.
 
  • Granicus River 334 B.C. - When Alexander crossed into Persia, he faced Memnon, a Greek mercenary,
    Memnon awaits Alexander.
    commanding the Persians.  Memnon recommended a scorched earth policy and withdrawal of forces until the main Persian army could be mustered.  However, distrustful of his Greek ally, the local Persian governor, Spithridates, insisted Memnon immediately attack with the forces available.  The two armies met at the Granicus River.

  • Issus 334 B.C. - King Darius III of Persia marched to face Alexander.  Using his superior knowledge of the local terrain, Darius was able to maneuver behind Alexander through a coastal mountain pass.  Alexander immediately turned to face the threat.  The two armies met in a narrow valley near the town of Issus.  While strategically outmaneuvered, the narrow terrain actually favored Alexander's smaller army.

  • Gaza 332 B.C. - In all of Egypt, only Gaza dared to stand against Alexander.  The Greeks surrounded the city,
    Assault on Gaza.
    and for three months, Gaza resisted the besieging invaders.  After weakening the city by siege, Alexander order the final assault of the city and Gaza's defenders prepared for their last stand.



  • Gaugemela 331 B.C. - Darius now understood his kingdom lay in the balance.   Rallying his allies and calling in the renowned Persian Immortals -- his elite infantry -- Darius marched a massive force to sweep Alexander from the field.  But, Alexander, had other plans.  The armies met on the plains of Gaugemela near the river Tigris.
  • Hydaspes River 326 B.C. - Alexander's invasion of India was stalled at the Hydaspes River.  The elephants of King Porus decisively blocked passage.  Incredibly, Alexander was able to cross upstream under the nose on Porus' brother Spitaces who was assigned to mirror Alexander's movements.  Porus was forced to abandon his original position and turn to meet Alexander's force.

Design


The look

Alexander at Thebes.
Tabletop miniatures was the inspiration for the graphical style of the game.  Each unit looks hand painted an comes mounted on a stand.  There is even a disembodied hand that reaches down from the top of the screen to remove killed units to enforce that miniatures feeling.

Turns
The game is played using simultaneous turns.  A player does not take turns with his opponents, instead each opponent plans out their strategy and issues orders to their units simultaneously, then presses a play button and the battle rages as all the units execute their orders for that turn in unison.  In addition, there is a reaction system that enables mid-turn adjustments to battle strategy.

The Battles
Each of the six previously mention single-player battles have to be unlocked, in successive order, during the campaign game.  As each battle is unlocked, it becomes available in single-player skirmish mode.  Also, two special multi-player battles, Bactria and Elysium, are included.

Objectives
Each battle has a set of objectives.  Some objectives are dependent on prior objectives and will not be revealed
Only a minor victory at Gaza.
 until that objective is met.  Objectives are denoted on the map by a flag.  Once a battle ends, the player sees a summary of the battle including awards and medals given to especially heroic commanders.  With a victory, the player continues to the next battle; with defeat, the current battle must be replayed.

Winning

Each battle lasts either a set amount of turns, until the player has met a all objectives or one of the armies' will to fight is broken.  After the scenario ends, a degree of victory or loss is determined based upon the relative amount of combat damage the player inflicted, meeting objectives and for each turn prior to the turn the game ends because of the player meeting all objectives or breaking the enemy will to fight.


Campaign

Do you replace your losses and what strategy cards do you buy?
Before each battle, there are cut scenes to explain the history leading up to it.  Then, the player has to deploy his army in troop placement zones.  After the battle is won, gold is added to the treasury which is earned through plunder, taxes and salvage.  That gold is spent in between battles on reinforcing units, recruiting new units, training and what strategy cards to buy.






Playing the Game

Command Phase

Both opponents simultaneously issue orders to all their units during this phase.  The orde given during this phase represents what the player whats the unit to perform for all three phases.  Once the Play button is pressed, the sequence of execution is based on unit's initiatives, sorted from highest to lowest.

Reaction Phase

In certain situations, a unit may be allowed to react to events that occurred during the Command Phase execution of orders.  New orders could be issued to units based on the skill of the unit's commander and training.

Reserve Phase

During the Command or Reserve Phases, a unit may be given a reserve order which holds that unit in place until this phase.  New orders can be issued to these units.

Orders

  • Melee Attack:  The unit moves adjacent to the targeted location and attacks any enemy unit that it at that destination.
  • Missile Attack:  The unit remains in place and attacks any target that is occupying the targeted location.
  • Charge:  A special form of a melee attack where the attacking unit receives charge bonus or penalties when performing its first attack round. thereafter, it will revert to a normal rate.  A unit can only charge directly forward.
  • Move:  Changing the location of an unit.
  • Change Facing:  A unit tuns and faces a different direction.
  • Retreat:  A specialized move that orders the unit to move directly backward and perform a 180-degree facing change.
  • Defend:  Gives defensive bonus but the unit must remain stationary.
  • Counter-charge:  A specialized Defend order in which a unit receives defensive bonuses if charged.
  • Reserve:  Allows the unit to be given a new order during the reserve phase.  This order is used to set a tactical reserve to react to and/or exploit events that have occured during the the earlier parts of the game turn.

Unit Attributes

  • Training:  There are four levels of training: Elite, Veteran, Warrior and Poor.  Training affects combat rolls, resistance to certain battle card effects and the ability to recover morale.  Between each battle, each unit that survived the battle with at least one stand remaining automatically improve one level in training.
  • Morale:  There are four levels of morale: Good, Shaken, Poor and Routed.  Morale affects combat rolls.  Also, routed units automatically move away from the nearest enemy and can not receive orders.  At the end of each turn, every unit has a chance of recovering one level of morale.
  • Weapons:  Units have a weapon that determines their abilities in combat.
  • Armor:  There are four armor levels: Heavy, Medium, Light and None.  Armor modifies the chance of being hit in combat.


Strategy Cards

  • Barrage:  Used on a friendly slinger unit.  It grants improved chance to hit for an entire turn.
  • Berserk:  Played on a friendly melee unit.  It grants a 2 chance to hit and any enemy a 1 chance to hit.
  • Fear:  If played on any non-elite trained enemy unit, there is a chance that enemy unit
    Playing the Fire Arrow strategy card.
    may lose one full step of morale.
  • Fire Arrows:  Double the damage of a friendly archer unit for one turn.  However, there is a -1 to hit penalty.
  • Health:  Replaces 2-3 steps of combat damage.
  • Initiative:  Increases the chance that a friendly unit will peform it's orders before other units.
  • Poison:  Doubles the melee damage for the next round but with a -1 to hit penalty.
  • Rally:  An unit recovers one step of morale. 
  • Scout:  This card reveals an area of the map obscured by the fog of war.
  • Shield Wall:  Played on a friendly unit.  It will grant an extra -1 defensive to hot bonus for the entire turn, regardless of their order or actions.

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