Alphabattle Part A (Introduction): 'Allo 'Allo!

Author: BobSmithIV
Published: 2018-04-22, edited: 2018-04-23

Part of the campaign:

Alphabattle

Hello and welcome to the Alphabattle, where 26 civs will battle it out to decide once and for all which is the best letter of the alphabet! This is the first AI game I've ran or commentated, so any feedback is welcome. I've recorded the game to near-completion, and trust me when I say there's a lot to look forward to! Now, without further ado, let's meet our competitors!
A is for Akkad!

Led by Sargon the Great, Light in the East's Akkad has Great Generals that give a +15% combat strength bonus against cities and bonuses to their generation, and two strong early game units: the Onager Wagon, replacing the Chariot Archer with better movement; and the Laputtu, a Spearman replacement which improves the speed of neighbouring units. They start in the center of the eastern half of the island, surrounded by good quality land but also good quality civilizations.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=471590224
B is for Bulgaria!

Simeon I leads DJSHenninger's Bulgaria. Their uniques are the Shtitonostzi, a Spearman replacement with more movement and attack vs infantry, and the Literary School, an Amphitheatre replacement which reduces the culture cost of border expansion. They also have two strong military bonuses, with +25% defence against ranged attacks for most units, and all land units having the ability to move after attacking. They start in the south east of the island, with potential to expand north into competitive but arable lands, or the less competitive but tundra and snow filled lands to the south.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=187323729
C is for Corsica!

DMS's Corisca led by Pasquale Paoli gets the Macchieri, a stronger cheaper Musketman that excels in rough terrain, a Castle replacement which gives land units a chance to spawn Great Generals, and bonuses to these Great Generals providing extra Golden Age Points and tourism from their citadels. They start in the centre of the west half of the island.
The empty desert to their east is not ideal land for building an empire in, but they have plenty other strong options available to them.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=326037690
D is for Dervishes!

DMS' Dervishes' forts and citadels provide extra faith and Great Writer Points, syncing well with their Maraa -weyn, an Anti-Aircraft gun which gets a combat bonus when stacked with a Great Writer, while also benefiting from defensive terrain bonuses. Their Qalcad replaces the Military Base and provides extra XP to all units based on the city's faith output. They start in the far north west of the island, with one of the most secluded capitals, giving the Dervishes plenty of options for expansion, including the Barrier Reef to the north.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=668796212
E is for Eora!

Led by Pemuluy, Gedemo's Eora have -25% unit maintenance and upgrade costs, plus free units on researching certain technologies. Their Bora Ring UI gives food and faith, and later culture based on its age. Their Eora Warrior UU, pictured, is actually an Archer replacement that starts with Accuracy I. They start in the south west of the island in arable if somewhat open land, though that river should help their defences.

Download link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/aboriginal-eora-empire.23824/
F is for Finland!

Hyperion's Finland, with Mannerheim as its leader, gets bonus culture from unimproved forests and unique improvements for their melee units. Their Sissi are Machine Gun replacements with easier movement and +33% strength against armour units, while their Sauna replaces the Shrine, giving extra faith for Lakes and Marshes, though there aren't many of them near Finland's start. They start in the south east of the island surrounded by tundra and snow, but have little competition for the lands near them and on the other side of the bay.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=351729439
G is for Ghaznavid!

TopHat's Ghaznavid Empire, led by Mahmud ibn Sabuktigin, have Great Generals which boost trade route gold and can be airlifted between cities with a Saraparda, their Caravansary replacement. Their trade routes also grant a bonus to military production. They have a particularly strong Medieval Era thanks to the Ghulam, a Longswordsman that gains health and XP when on pillaged tiles. They start in the center of the island, with good space to expand in all directions and the possibility of a very powerful Petra in their capital.

Download link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/tophats-ghaznavids.26656/
H is for Hejaz!

Uighur_Caesar's Kingdom of Hejaz under Sharif Hussein bin Ali are another civ with bonuses to their Great Generals, or Foreign Operatives as their replacements are called. These provide a combat bonus to all nearby friendly units, not just Hejaz's, and debuff nearby enemy units; Hejaz also get points towards generating these when ally civs spawn a Great General, along with XP for all units. Their other UU is the Sharifam Army, a slightly stronger GWI with more movement, especially in desert. They also get a weaker version of Bulgaria's UA, with all gun units able to move after attacking. Hejaz starts in the far east of the island, with several close neighbours making competition for land here stiff.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1126330518
I is for Iberia!

Indibilis leads TarcisioCM's Iberia, who gain Great Artist points and extra gold from their trade routes. They also get the Oppidum UI, which provides +1 culture, +25% defence, and boosts movement and combat strength of any unit which passes through it that turn. They start in the south west of the island, with relatively much largely uncontested land to their south, though it's filled with tundra, so they may prefer to settle towards Eora, if they can claim the space in time.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=354049390
J is for Jomon!

Gedemo's Jomon, led by Jimmu, are a rather unique civ who can't build farms or pastures, but can instead use their Jomon Forager worker replacement (pictured) to build forestry complexes on forest and jungle, which provide extra food, while the civ also gains extra food from fish and plantations. They also get unique luxury resources from cities built near mountains and their Kaizuka UB, a replacement lighthouse. They start on the far east of the island in a very defensible spot, but also one which could prove hard to expand out of.

Download link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/jomon-empire.23609/
K is for Khazaria!

Moriboe's Khazar Khaganate gain extra gold from trade routes and culture for foreign religions in their cities. Their Synagogue UB replaces the temple, instantly growing the city by one, while their Tarkhan UU is a powerful knight replacement which heals completely on pillaging and receives defensive bonuses. They start on the west side of the island with lots of potentially strong city spots all around.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=118552432
L is for Lithuania!

Gediminas leads JFD's Lithuania, providing double movement in forests and the ability to capture defeated enemies for all units built in cities following Lithuania's pantheon. Their Sacred Grove UB is a temple replacement which instantly claims all forest tiles within range of the city and slowly converts the city to Lithuania's pantheon, while their Samogitian Warrior is a Swordsman with bonuses when in forests. They start in the center of the island in a very defensible location, with plenty of forested spots nearby to settle.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=234225686
M is for Minoa!

Minos leads MC's Minoa, whose famously competent AI boosts their otherwise mediocre bonuses for a domination only game. They get extra Golden Age points from population, and bonuses to their trade routes. The Galéa is a Trireme replacement which can enter rival territory and generates gold when near cities with trade routes to them. Their UB is the Anaktoro, a Library replacement which gives extra happiness, plus more science during Golden Ages. They start at the south of the island, with most of the good city spots being eyed keenly by other civs too, though plenty options for tundra cities if they don't fancy the competition.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=382652213
N is for Normandy!

Led by William I, JFD's Normandy gets free castles and courthouses in conquered cities, while their Chevalier UU is a Knight replacement which does better against cities and ranged attacks. They also have access to the Motte and Bailey UI, effectively a weaker citadel which doesn't claim neighbouring tiles but can be built instead of a pasture. They start in the far north east of the island, surrounded by desert, and will have to fight or get lucky to claim some better spots to settle.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=450082516
O is for Ottomans!

Led by Suleiman, this is the vanilla Ottoman Empire which we all know and (presumably) love. They start in the far north of the west half of the island, with good room to expand in all directions.
P is for Poland!

The second and final vanilla civ, Casimir III starts in the center of the west half of the island. They're surrounded by promising city locations, but is there enough land to go around for both him and all the nearby civs? The answer is clearly always no.
Q is for Qocho!

Grant's Khaganate of Qocho, led by Süngülüg Khagan, gets extra production from plains and extra food from desert. Their Xizhou Horsemen are faster, cheaper and stronger than the default Horsemen, while their Manichaeist Temple provides extra faith and culture, but must be built near a mountain. They start on the east side of the island with a very defensible capital location, and plenty of plains and deserts to their north and west for their UA to prove useful, if their AI is smart enough to spot this.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1283686551
R is for Romania!

Carol I leads MC and GE's Romania. Romania gets culture from faith producing buildings and from declarations of friendships, while their Painted Monastery is a Garden replacement which also generates faith. They also get access to the Vinator, a unique Gatling Gun which ignores terrain costs and has improved combat next to a river. Romania's closest river seems to be under the Norman capital however: will this UU therefore come in handy in some future conflict with their closest neighbour? Other than relatively riverless, Romania's got a pretty good start up on the north east of the island, with plenty of nice land to expand into.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=749945853
S is for Scotland!

As a Scot myself, this was one civ I felt obliged to include. James VI leads JFD's Scotland, with bonuses to towards golden age and great person generation. Their UU is the Highlander, a Rifleman replacement with extra movement in hills and extra XP from Great Works of Writing in its home city. Scotland start on the east side of the island, surrounded both by good locations to settle and by plenty of civs looking for good locations to settle, which has the potential to go very well or to go very badly.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=315651436
T is for Taiwan!

Koxinga leads DJSHenninger's Taiwan, whose bonuses provide better and longer naval trade routes, stronger ranged naval units, extra happiness from their Shibazhi Seaport, and the War Junk, a hit and run Privateer replacement which can move after attacking, has extra movement and an attack boost, but a defensive penalty. They start in the north east of the west side of the island, in a fairly strong defensive location, and several choices of expansion routes.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=165704598
U is for Uyghurs!

Bayanchur Khan leads Hiram's Uyghur Khaganate, the third and final Khaganate in the game. The Uyghurs get 50% less unhappiness from the number of cities, while their Grape Arbor UB is a Circus replacement which also provides food. Their Altaic Rider is a faster Horseman with extra line of sight and a combat bonus in rough terrain. The Uyghurs start in the middle of the eastern half of the island, with the power to seriously box in Jomon and Hejaz if they choose to settle aggressively.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=205386469
V is for Vietnam!

The Trung Sisters lead BNW's Vietnam, a familiar pair for all followers of CBR Mark II. Their defensive buildings increase cultural great people generation, and they get extra food and culture for each Honour policy. Their Viet Cong infantry replacement is invisible and powerful in forests, but notably can't capture cities, while their Water Puppet Theatre provides extra culture and defence. They start on west coast of the large central bay, with space to expand in all directions, especially if they clear up the marshlands to their south.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=257018080
W is for Wampanoags!

Massasoit leads TopHat's Wampanoag, whose main bonus allows all units to spend only one movement point to embark or disembark. Their UU is the Pniese, a Pikeman with big healing bonuses, while their UB is the Wetu, a cheaper lighthouse with a Great Work of Writing slot. The Wampanoag start in the center of the island, with plenty of arable land to their north, and two nice rivers for fresh water and defence.

Download link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/tophats-wampanoags.26535/
X is for Xiongnu!

Modu Chanyu leads TarcisioCM's Xiongnu. They have a very powerful early game, with bonuses to settler build time, border growth, and happiness before the Classical Era, and access to the Altaic Rider, a warrior replacement that grants +1 movement to a stacked Settler. Their Yurt Camp is a temporary UI which can be built by any military unit, granting extra production towards military, and providing healing for nearby friendly units. These bonuses will come in very handy in the very competitive area that the Xiongnu find themselves starting in, with five nearby civs all looking to expand.

Download link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=391205141
Y is for Yukagir!

Gedemo's Yukagir is led by Shaman Porotcha. All their military units heal every turn, their Mammoth Graveyard UB gives a Mammoth luxury resource, and their Chuvan Warrior UU is a spearman replacement which starts with the "sky infantry" promotion. The Yukagir start in the south west of the island, with plenty of room to expand in the tundra, but less promising expansion prospects in the more productive lands to the north.

Download link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/the-yukagir-people.24539/
Z is for Zapotecs!

Cosijoeza leads BNW's Zapotecs, who get faith from discovering technologies, while Holy Sites built on hills will spawn Battle Priests, an Inquisitor replacement that has a chance to convert adjacent enemy units with less than 50% health to barbarians. The Pecogo replaces Walls, giving extra science and happiness, and faith during Golden Ages. They start in the center of the eastern half of the island, with a choice between rainforests to the north, grasslands to the south west, or plains to the south east.
And that's the lot! Now that you've learned the alphabet, let's take a look at a couple of the other areas of the battleground. Though all the civs start on one main island, there are two other large islands available to settle, as well as several one tile islands throughout the oceans. This island is off the south east of the main island, and notably is connected by a single strip of coastal water, which currently only Hejaz and Jomon have access to.
On the other hand, this island off the north east coast is entirely inaccessible to all civs until Astronomy, but the Grand Mesa is ready and waiting for whoever makes it. Any suggestions for what to name these two smaller islands are welcomed, leave them in the comments.

Other mods I'm using besides the civs are Historical Religions, InfoAddict, More Great Works, Randomize City Names, and UI - Religion Spread.

I'm doing things a little differently and offering three separate strawpolls for you to think about:
Which civ do you think will win? https://www.strawpoll.me/15557800
Which civ do you think will be eliminated first? https://www.strawpoll.me/15557805
Which civ do you most want to win? https://www.strawpoll.me/15557807

And that's the introduction over! Look out for the first part sometime in the next week!

Next chapter:

Game: Civilization V, Sid Meier's

Alphabattle Part B: Battle Begins!

Images: 68, author: BobSmithIV, published: 2018-04-25, edited: 2018-05-07

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Game: Victoria 2

Perfidious - Though Peace Be Made: 1836-42  (British Union AAR)

Images: 30, author: Discix, published: 2017-05-22