The large maps are a risk because the Map Editor crashes so much when creating them. It took numerous times trying to get the lighting to work properly and not crash the Editor. Glad it was worth the effort to help others enjoy the game. more...
Hi Molski, is there any chance of getting similar map, as you've mentioned 2 years ago? This one was just perfect! Great balance and tactical challenges never before seen in HoMM :D I really loved how I had to calculate all my resources and movement points.
Hi ! Thank you a lot for this map ! Spent like 12 hours of pure fun on this, awesome. I played it only once yet but it's obvious that you can play it different ways ! It's really a map different than the others map i've played .. really fun
I have not defeated any of the red players, but I believe the Inferno castle on the overworld is the first one to be? Is it maybe that simple that I have missed a portal leading me to the legion of arch-angels guarding the angelic alliance? more...
I'm doing this to answer Elodin's accusations that Artificer simply can't be used until the end of the game. Now he wants me to use a normal map that's not resource rich. I've chosen a very common map, Heritage. It's got all the mines, but few stashes in your immediate vicinity. In the center of the map is a Dragon Utopia but by the time you can get there and take out those loose resources mini-artifacts shouldn't be a concern anyway. Also, since this is for the general player, I'm breaking with my long standing tradition and I'm doing this map on Hard difficulty instead of Heroic simply because not many players truthfully play on heroic. If you ARE playing on heroic, you can still pull this off, but the mini-artifact usage will most likely be pushed back one week. On with the show.
Heritage. Hard Difficulty. Yellow starting position. Academy/random hero/random starting artifact.
Day 1: You begin with a tavern already built. My starting artifact was the Far Seeing Crown...durnit. My starting hero was Nathir. The heroes in my tavern were Jhora and Nur. I'm going for Jhora as my main hero and I purchase both heroes and transfer all troops to Jhora (and artifact). Build Gremlin Workshop. Purchase units & add to Jhora.
Jhora then takes out the Ore Mine with no losses. Transfers units to Nur who takes out Sawmill with no losses.
Day 2: Build Gremlin Manufactory. Nur brings troops back to town & upgrades gremlins. Shuttles troops back to Jhora who captures the Arena (archer guards) for +2 attack and 4 gremlin losses. Heading east towards Mercury mine fighting wandering monsters along the way.
Day 3: Build Mage Guild level 1. Continuing east fighting wandering monsters and hitting morale/luck boosters along the way (before and after battles). Multiple fights with no losses. I'm turtling my corner Gremlins with 3 stacks of regular gargoyles and I have one single golem standing separately. He's my lure. He gets sent forward to lure the enemy into gremlin range. At the end of combat I repair the killed lone golem. I also spam MotW with Eldritch Arrow to take out Squires and such.
Day 4: Build Blacksmith. 2 scout heroes are roaming as far as they can to reveal territory. (one is trailing along behind Jhora to pick up loose resources thus saving Jhora's movement points). Jhora takes Mercury Mine with only 8 gremlin losses. Grabs exp. from chests and gets Beginners Wand (+2 spell power). Continues along path towards planetarium (+1 spell power).
Day 5: Build Golem Forge. Jhora takes out Iron Golems guarding planetarium with no losses. I see no point in continuing on this path as I'm only seeing Treants blocking my path (and 2 other fights before them) with no goodies in sight. Heading back home. Scouts continue to hit powerups and pick up loose resources.
Day 6: Build Arcane Forge. Yes, that's right, YOU HEARD ME. Arcane forge in WEEK ONE. On heroic it has to wait until week two due to gold restraints and you must make a more direct path to the capitol. On hard or below, you've got more freedom so take advantage of it. Jhora is still heading home, but hitting all the morale/luck boosters along the way. Scout checks out the thieves den to scope out the competition. We're right on track.
Day 7: Build Town Hall. Jhora plans to spend the night in town to max out her spell points but they're alredy nearly at max. Builds her first mini-arti. A level 1 Armor Crushing orb for the Golem(s) for only 5 ore + 5 sulfur. Heads back out towards Gem Mine/Windmill. There's only on golem currently, but that'll change on....
Day 8: Build City Hall. In tavern I see Havez...*drools*...but I'm short on funds so he'll have to wait. But I plan on purchasing him before the weeks out. Jhora flags the Gem Mine with no losses...again. Windmill is guarded by "lots" of Vamp. Lords...they can wait a bit. Stats are currently at (2/0/9/4) Who says Wizards don't get spell power? :O)
Day 9: Build Altar of Wishes. No plan on buying them anytime soon though. I just want the treasure cave for the extra growth & income. Jhora heads to Sulfur mine but can't quite reach. I've just had 4 consecutive level-ups where Dark Magic was offered to Jhora. 8% my butt. :O) I'm down to 305 gold.
Day 10: Build Marketplace. Low on gold, but I need a cheap build to open up the path to the Treasure Cave for day 11. Jhora flags Sulfur Mine and heads towards Crystal Mine. I've currently got 99 Master Gremlins, 19 Iron Golems (with +1 armor crushing arti), and 24 Stone Gargoyles (in 3 stacks of 8 for turtling).
Day 11: Build Treasure Cave. My goals are to get the Gargoyle & Mage dwellings by the end of the week. Jhora flags Crystal Mine with no losses and finds Titan's Trident. Scouts take gold from treasure chests to compensate for delay on capitol. Jhora's currently at (2/1/10/4) with Expert Artificer, Advanced Sorcery, Arcane Training, Counterspell and all 3 Artificer secondaries. Surprisingly enough, I'm getting low on spell points due to some tough battles, so Jhora's heading home from here.
Day 12: Build Stone Parapet. Jhora hits the movement/morale booster and makes it back home at the end of her turn. She'll spend the night to recharge her batteries. But we're going for the windmill tomorrow. Time to poke some holes in some Vamps. :O)
Day 13: Build Mage Tower. Purchase Havez from Tavern and combine troops to Jhora. Jhora builds her second Mini-arti. Level 1 piercing for 5 ore + 5 crystal and places on Master Gremlin stack. Jhora now has 176 Master Gremlins (+2 attack), 37 Stone Gargoyles, 19 Iron Golems (+1 armor crushing). I can't quite reach the Vampires guarding the windmill, I guess we'll crush 'em tomorrow.
Day 14: Build Library. We're starting to get into the guts of the game so I need to figure out what's in the guild soon so I can plan my hero development. Early on you can get by with low level spells & gremlin/golems. Pretty soon, that won't be the case. Jhora clears the Windmill with ZERO losses (again) and gets offered basic War Machines. Finds Runic War Harness (+2 defense & knowledge). Heads back home.
Day 15: Builds Mage guild level 2. We've got Haste/Fire Trap/Weakness/Slow in level 1 and Endurance/Raise Dead/Vulnerability/Lightning Bolt in level 2. I'm definitely leaning towards Dark Magic now (and kinda kicking myself for not grabbing it earlier). Jhora heads out towards the Treants blocking the path to the west. At the end of my turn, Red's main hero kills the treants and retreats back under the shroud)~Vinrael (4/14/5/10) with multiple stacks including unicorns....I left a scout standing at the thieves den for just such an occasion. :O)
Day 16: Builds Mage Guild level 3. (Righteous Might/Phantom Forces/Confusion/Suffering) Oh yeah, we're going for Dark for sure. If you notice, I've gotten 5 of the 6 total Dark spell available in levels 1-3. And Wizards specialize in WHAT again? :O) Jhora continues along the western path hitting a +1 knowledge crystal along the way. We see Vinrael sneaking around some more...but we're cautiously optimistic that Jhora can crush him in a one-on-one.
Day 17: (Teal is vanquished...I missed who did it). I'm currently 3 sulfur short for building the Silver Pavilion and I start making plans to ship one Iron Golem back to town to shatter his mini arti if I don't find a sulfur cache. No Build...I'm saving for both the Capitol and the Raksashas before the end of the week. Occasionally gold from treasure chests will help me towards that goal.
Day 18: Build Capitol. It's later than I'd hoped, but all things considered it's not bad. I look at the day and I notice that I'll reach my sulfur demands by the mine production alone so I cancel my golem-mini-arti-crushing plans (although the scout/arti are still on route to town). Jhora sees a witch hut (has a scout learn it's contents of course) and sees Advanced War Machines...nice. I also come across a Red Hero. I was hoping for Vinrael, but I got a level 2 Anwen instead. I lost 12 gremlins in the battle. I forgot to purchase a Tent back in town. Doh! (yes, I've got the tent skill too)
Day 19: Builds Fort. Scout heads up towards the dragon utopia in the middle and hits a redwood observatory. Upon the reveal I see a Tome of Dark Magic (guarded by sev. AA's). Jhora hits the witch hut for Advanced War Machines then continues west towards the Merc. Camp and the stairs underground.
Day 20: Builds Silver Pavilion. (Orange is vanquished...yeah, I missed it again. No clue WHO did him in). Jhora hits the Mercenary Camp (+1 attack), picks up Sylanna's Cloak (50% reduction in earth damage) and then peeks underground to see what's up there. I spot Red's Main hero Vinrael underground.
Day 21: Builds Citadel. My scout returns to town and crushes the golem mini-arti (he's just going to be sittng there, so in case I need the funds, they're there...its only a level 1 anyway). Jhora hits the stash underground (multiple chests) with no losses and finds among the chests the Tarot Deck (+1 luck and knowledge) then heads back up towards the Dragon Utopia. Second scout spots Blue's Main Hero Helmar...who's LOADED. Surprisingly, Helmar passes up the scout and heads towards Jhora.
Day 22 (day 1 of week 4): Builds Resource Silo. Scout hero rebuilds the Golem's artifact and re-ships it out (with additional golems and m.gremlins) to Jhora. Jhora meanwhile spots Vinrael very close and decides to go for it. I don't want to stray too far as Helmar is still approaching my territory. The battle commences. Vinrael is Level 16 (4/16/5/13) while Jhora is Level 13 (4/4/11/11). Vinrael has Sprites/Dancers/Elves/Unicorns/M.Gremlins (most are +20, elves are at 9 and unicorns only 3). While Jhora still has only M.Grems (~170), 20+ gargs & 18 golems (shipped one back earlier). Final outcome...Jhora lost 23 Gremlins. That's it. Spoils of battle...
Necklace of the Lion
Armor of Valor
Dragon Scale Shield (WooHoo!)
Jhora is now at 4/7/11/13. Low spell power my butt. And that's with me taking OFF the +2 spell power wand.
I decide not to build for the next couple of days because I'm pretty close to getting the Cloud Collesium.
From here on out, it should be pretty clear how to proceed. Once the basic dwellings are built you let them stockpile until you can no longer succeed with minimal losses with just golems/grems/gargs. Jhora will be heading back to town shortly to learn her level 3 spells (magic insight recieved earlier) and to upgrade her 2 mini-artis now that her knowledge is considerably higher. She'll then explore farther out and only head back after she's gotten a spell school (or two) to advanced. I'll ignore the secondaries for the spell schools for quite a while. MotW can compensate for a lack of mass spells for quite a while. Once you get your guild up to 5, from then on you should have no problem creating mini-artis for ALL your units. When you decide to upgrade a dwelling, break one down if need be, build your dwelling and re-build a lesser mini arti with your remaining funds. It's not that tough folks.
And lastly, to Elodin. If you feel this is a poor example, please feel free to let me know what map or difficulty setting you feel is a more fair example. Personally I think Heritage on Hard is a good middle-ground example. Truthfully I couldn't believe how much easier it was than on Heroic. The enemy stacks are SOOOO much smaller. *grin* But concerning the mini-artifact usage. You'll notice that they're not powerful. But they don't have to be. The -1 defense arti for the golems is all you really need early on. The repair keeps him fully stocked and the defense reduction makes your gremlins that much more potent. Getting some early sulfer piles will allow you to upgrade your Golems early and then the Armor Crushing arti really shines with the unlimited retaliations. All I'm saying is give it a try. Don't wait until you've built everything before you start using Artificer. You'll end up hurting yourself more than you think.
I had to re-start this map 3 times, because in 2 of them my random starting hero was Havez, and in the third one, he was in my tavern. And I certainly don’t want to hear complaints about using Havez. And it sure felt weird automatically passing on him. But to ease his pain….I’ll relent. :O)
Day 1: Build tavern. heroes for hire: Nur and Vladimir. Purchased Nur as my main hero and transferred troops and arti to her. Galib heads for the nearby learning stone and gets resourcefulness (pretty common for first level up with Galib). He’ll now be in charge of picking up ALL resources…loose and from buildings. He heads back towards the sawmill because….Nur heads out for the Sawmill (seeing as how I completely forgot it last time…Doh!) and then back towards the Ore Mine.
Day 2: Build Gremlin Workshop. Nur stops into town on the way to the Ore mine to grab more gremlins. Kills sprites while losing around 15 grems. Unfortunately, I’m one step away from flagging the Ore mine. I’ll hit it tomorrow while heading south to gather golems from the external dwelling there. Galib picks up the wood then a campfire before heading towards the Ore mine to get the loose stuff there.
Day 3: Build Blacksmith. With a nearby golem forge, I want to leverage that dwelling. So we’ll get the in-town dwelling in week one for certain. Nur grabs the ore mine, golem dwelling and heads east. Galib hits the obelisk on his way to the ore stash.
Day 4: Build Golem Forge. Nur hits the fairy ring after bypassing the minotaur guarded sulfur mine. Gets an Elemental Waistband from a chest. The southern pass is blocked by a hoard of Devils. Galib is scooping up stuff that some careless litter’er left behind. Messy, messy heroes. :O)
Day 5: Build Mage Guild level 1. Nur is feelin’ frisky. She gets MotW from that second chest, then says ‘screw it’ and goes for the Sulfur mine. It’s got 40+ Minotaur Guards and she’s got 50+ gremlins, 10 golems and about 15-20 gargs. Well, I lost 1 golem and 8 gargs. :O) She’s now heading east towards the gremlin dwelling. Galib picked up more goodies and spied some vampires guarding the mercury mine to the far south. I’ll be needing that pretty soon, so instead of backtracking the entire map, I’ll grab some spells, upgrade the grems and head south. Galib should start headin’ north for the waterwheel & windmill. I probably can’t reach them this week, but it’ll get me going for a good routine starting next week.
Day 6: Build Town hall. Nur continues east clearing the Garden of the Wee folk and then the Arena (+2 attack chosen). Also learned Basic War Machines. Since she’s out there, the gremlin upgrade can wait. Galib is still south of the town, so I’ll head towards the Garden of the Wee folk to hit it on day one and start my resource gathering run towards the north.
Day 7: Build Stone Parapet. Nur takes out a hoard of P.Zombies at the cost of 2 gargs & 2 golems, but gets a nice prize. Upon leveling up, first aid. Now we’re rolling. She makes her way towards town. Galib swipes the 2 gold stacks the zombies were guarding then heads towards the garden for day 1.
Day 8 (day 1 week 2): Build Gremlin Manufactory. Tavern offers Razzak and Wyngaal. Razzak’s tempting, but I’ve got a good supply of golems coming in. I’ll pass. Besides, I’ll need the gold. Nur makes it to town and decides to stay the night. One, to top off her mana supply and two, to caravan troops from external dwellings for upgrading. After that it’s off to kill some vampires and take the mercury mine. Galib hits the garden and heads north along the eastern mountain range.
Day 9: Build City hall. Galib continues north grabbing goodies and spots a hoard of AA’s guarding the pass to Red’s territory (which we now know is Inferno). Nur upgrades all her gremlins and buys the majority of her available troops. Gold reserves at 0. But so are my gems and mercury. Gems can be dealt with by the silo shortly. Mercury is coming up. Nur heads south for the Vamps.
Day 10: Build Marketplace. Galib takes gold from a chest and flags the gargoyle dwelling (caravans them to town). Also uncovers the crystal mine guarded by a hoard of steel golems. No problem. Nur, meanwhile, came up one step short of attacking the Vamps. Tomorrow, they’re toast!
Day 11: Build Resource Silo. Need that gem income to start coming in. It may be almost a week before I can get north to get the mine. Galib did find it there just past the crystal mine. The gem is guarded by lots of blackbear riders. There’s also a hill fort protected by some inquisitors and some Emerald Dragons guarding a cache…can’t see the goodies yet, but I will soon enough. Galib turns the corner around the small lake and heads south towards the witch hut & the 2 mills. Nur wins losing only 7 gargs, flags the mercury mine and heads north to kill a throng of archers. That battle cost 32 grems and another 4 gargs. The archers are protecting a chest and the 4 leaf clover. I’ll pick them up next turn.
Day 12: Build Arcane Forge. Nur grabs the goods and levels up with the chest. Taking Advanced War Machines. Until you get advanced, the tent really doesn’t do enough. Nur’s heading back home for spells and a tent. I’m sick of losing gremlins…even if it’s just a couple of them. Galib gets dark magic from the witch hut and bypasses several chests (one unguarded) to try to reach both the Waterwheel and Windmill before the end of the week. Yesterday was a good day because I’d been on zero for both gems and mercury for a while now. Got both of them generating yesterday. Yea me. :O)
Day 13: Build Golem Foundry. I’m holding off on the guild so I can reach the mages sooner (and the library). We’ll get a lot of good items rolling in this next upcoming week. Nur reaches town and decides to stay the night. I’ll upgrade my golems tomorrow and maybe something else. Galib hits the waterwheel and nearly makes the windmill. This is timing out very well.
Day 14: Build Obsidian Parapet. We’re close to the mage tower so I’ll hold off from any major purchases. I could go for the Fort, but it won’t help me on the last day of the week. The citadel, yes, not the fort. So Nur has bought troops and upgraded the golems. She’s now got 84 Master Gremlins, 35 Steel Golems, and 21 stone gargoyles. She level 7 with stats of (3 / 0 / 4 / 7). She’s got basic artificer, advanced war machines and advanced sorcery. MotW, Magic Insight, Mana Regeneration and First Aid. I just bought a tent today. Now let’s play. Built an Orb of Armor Crushing (5 ore and 5 sulfur) for my Steel Golems. AND a necklace of luck (5 wood and 5 crystal) for my gremlins. My next major purchase will be for the Mage tower, then library. So I’m still needing 3 gems until then. So for the next 3 days I can use these resources to aid my development. I’ll be heading north to capture the crystal and gem mines (as well as numerous chests). If I, by chance, get the gems early…I can pass the one golem or one gremlin to Galib and he can break it down if he has to. They’re both level one mini’s so he can re-build them to the same specifications if need be. Nur heads out north and hits the learning stone on the way to the crystal mine. Galib stays put near the windmill for day 1 of week 3.
And just so you know, I’ve still got 11 crystal left, 8 sulfur left, 15 wood left and 4 ore left. I’m hardly hurting myself with those 2 mini-artis. The wood and ore stockpile up quickly. So you just need to watch the precious resources. There’s where the beauty of resourcefulness shines through.
Day 15 (day 1 week 3): No build. Tavern offers Faiz & Sinitar. We opened the path to the Capitol with the parapet yesterday, so we might want to grab some gold from the chests to get the capitol quickly, we’ll see how it goes. Galib got 7 ore from the windmill, so that means I’ve got 3 days before I’ll have the gems for the Mage Tower. If I’m short on either wood, ore, crystal or sulfur, I can shuttle the artis back home for destruction and recoup the cost. But it looks like I’ll be fine. Galib is now heading towards the garden after hitting the wind & water mills. Nur goes for the crystal mine…60+ steel golem guardians. Piece of cake. And the armor crushing arti does its work quite nicely. Makes hitting those golems MUCH easier for the gremlins. The golems themselves don’t do much damage because they’re getting decimated by the retaliation attack, so they’re dying pretty quickly, but repair brings them all back at the end. Zero losses and very few spells used. Crystal flagged, on to the gem mine (hitting luck/morale boosters along the way as usual).
Day 16: No build. Yes, two days in a row without a build. Well, I’m one gem short from the Mage tower. I could do the fort here, but that delays the capitol. So I’m going to shoot for the capitol first, then the mage tower & library then guild. That way, by the time I’m finishing up with the Northern corner, I’ll know if I want to take Dark Magic from the Witch hut or not. After that, it’s the gold mine and the large stash just south of that, then it’s on to the dragon pass (or north to red…I haven’t decided yet). Galib continues on towards the garden. Nur takes on the blackbear riders guarding the gem mine. Poor play on my part in that battle. I failed to get off a repair and lost 5 golems and 4 gargs. Definitely should’ve been 0 golems. *shakes head sadly*. Flags mine then spies several green dragons (sorry, I thought they were emerald earlier) and the artifact they’re guarding is the Lion Crown (+2 luck & morale). Decent, but I’m not sure I want to risk it for that reward. She turns south.
Day 17: Build Capitol. I almost bypassed a chest guarded by a hoard of crossbowman. I’d forgotten that I had the tent. Well, unfortunately, they got off a shot first and killed 55 gremlins. After resurrecting them with the tent I ended up losing 30 total. If I’d been at expert war machines I probably would’ve lost none. Oh well. Those should be my last gremlin casualties for a while. While the golem’s arti doesn’t help me versus ranged attackers, the gremlin’s luck arti is coming in VERY handy. Against melee’s…the golems will shine. I see squires coming up. I bypass the witch hut towards more chests (2 guarded by the squires). I’m 37 gold short for the capitol so I trade 2 wood for the 50 gold and build it. Galib is one step from the Garden.
Day 18: Build Mage tower. Nur takes out squires with 1 gargoyle loss. Sword of Might for a reward. Expert Sorcery from chest XP. Continue south to demons guarding knowledge crystal. Galib tags the garden and heads back to windmill for start of week.
Day 19: Build Library. Nur decimates the demons. The Golems reduce their defense to zero in no time flat and the gremlins mop up. Galib should make it back to the windmill with plenty of time to spare for day 1 of next week. Nur heads north towards the witch hut…just in case. :O)
Day 20: Build Mage Guild level 2. Galib stops next to the windmill. Good to go for run next week. Nur stays put until I build the guild. Good idea. Level one was Divine Strength / Fire Trap / Eldritch Arrow (I’d already learned these 3 earlier). Extra level one from library was Slow (dark). Level 2 was Endurance / Wasp Swarm / Decay / Vulnerability. Yeah, I’d say Dark’s worth a shot. :O) While I “could” wait just one more day to find out what level 3 is, considering that I’ve only got Artificer, War Machines and Sorcery right now allows me to take a “bit” of a chance on Dark. Nur takes Dark Magic from Witch Hut. Nur then heads East towards gold mine along the northern edge of her land…hitting all the luck/morale boosts along the way.
Day 21: Builds Fort. Nur continues on path towards gold mine. Galib stays put. Wow, what a boring day that was. *does a little soft shoe number to entertain his fans* Better? No…didn’t think so. NEXT!
Day 22 (day 1 week 4): Build Citadel. Tavern offers Nathir and Faiz. Galib gets 7 ore from windmill and hits the waterwheel then heads towards the garden again. Nice timing because Nur’s heading there to liberate some resources and artifacts. Nur continues towards gold mine. Slow going.
Before anyone asks, the mini-artifacts I purchased back in week 2 have NOT affected my town development. The Silver Pavilion does need crystal and sulfur, but I didn’t have the gems needed to get the mage tower or library first. The Altar of Wishes required 10 mercury that I didn’t have yet either. Now I could’ve chose to not build the library or guild levels and reached the Altar by the end of the week, but without a citadel, that’s only gaining me 3 Djinns extra. I’d rather know how to develop my hero at that time rather than having those few extra Djinns. The 3 upper level units will have to come in week 4. This being a shorter map, I don’t see that as much of a concern. Especially when I’m not losing many purchased troops and I’m leveling up pretty rapidly.
Day 23: Builds Castle. Galib continues on path. Nur bypasses the “lots” of Zealots and heads for the hoard of berserkers guarding the corner stash (includes robe of sar issus)…this could be a tough battle. Let’s find out. :O) 56 berserkers and I’ve got 54 M.Gremlins, 13 S.Gargs. and 29 S.Golems. Lost 17 golems and that’s it. Summoned 5 earth elementals that helped considerably. No matter what people say, that’s an underestimated spell. Especially with the skills to back it up. Leveled up and took expert war machines. Summoning was offered for only the first time…I passed on it.
Day 24: No build. Nur grabbed the 2 chests but left the gems and artifact. Galib will get them tomorrow (arti is blocked in by 2 stacks of gems…I don’t want to sacrifice the extra gems by letting Nur pick them up) Galib reaches Garden but can’t reach gems yet. Nur heads back home to learn spells before taking on Marksmen guarding ore stash and Zealots guarding gold mine.
Day 25: Build Mage Guild level 3. Galib grabs the goods and transfers the robe to Nur. Nur parks it in town. Mage Guild level 3 offers Righteous Might / Earthquake / Fireball / Suffering. Yet another Dark spell. Of the six available in levels 1-3 I just got 4 of them. Specializes in Light & Summoning my butt. Heck I just now got offered summoning for the first time at my last level up. And Light’s been offered once too. Depending upon how you choose your skills, you CAN somewhat control what becomes available when. Somewhat.
I’m running a tad low on ore currently, so I’ll break down my artis so I can build if I need to on day 26. Besides, they’re obsolete now anyway. My Knowledge has reached 11 (along with my spell power…I said getting power wasn’t THAT hard to do with a wizard. Artifacts aren’t THAT difficult to obtain) and that makes my luck arti a +2 now. And it makes the initiative (+11%) & magic protection (+49%) ones much more attractive. A knowledge of 15 is my next stepping stone I’ll be watching for. At 15 I can get a –2 armor crushing, +4 health, and +2 speed artis.
I’m going to call it quits there. As you can plainly see, not only did I use the artis for HALF of the first month, it didn’t slow down my development at all and I didn’t HAVE to break them down at all either. I’m doing so now only because I’m in town AND I’d be rebuilding them stronger anyway. I “may” need some for my next build, but its certainly not required.
While some of you may quibble with the build order, that’s most often dictated by the map and the mine guardians. In this case, the mercury and gems were rather hard to come by. But mini-artis didn’t delay any builds. In fact they assisted in those builds by making it much easier to take mines and resource caches. In month 2 they really come into play. I’ll be building my 3 upper level dwellings shortly but I won’t be upgrading them anytime soon (same with my mage dwelling). Once they’re built, I’ll let them stockpile and focus on buffing my lower level units with mini-artis and spells. This also ensures that you’ve got some dependable units available for town defense while you’re busy exploring and expanding. Once you’re maxed out in your town, THEN buy your upper level troops with matching jewelry. They just love the bling. :O)