In continuation to the earlier post on Rise of Nations, I realized that rushing strategy changes once you are on a sea map. The complications are there because you need to go Sci1, Mil1 and Com1 (to build a port). That means time management has to be absolutely spot on. The ante of the gamble rises because by the time you have a sizeable army and navy to support the crossing, the opponent has gained significant advantage by booming.
So one of the main decisions you have to take is – do you sacrifice economy or the element of surprise? Sea maps are generally long drawn out battles, and the quick rush at the start can really turn the tables. This is even more applicable against the AI. The moment you are across, the first thing should be to capture a city. That becomes your military base. All military upgrades you do on your home base, all unit production on your military base. Here is how I go about the delayed rush –
- Build two villagers and set them on timber
- Research Sci1, then Civ1 (I try to strike a balance between speed and economy)
- Build a farm, keep churning more villies
- Build the second town and go for Com1 the moment it is feasible (54 food, 54 wood)
- Focus on wood, build one more timber mill
- Build a dock and some fishing ships, one to explore, the other (1-2 to fish)
- By this time you are ready for Mil1, research and build a barracks. Note: Do not stop churning out villies, putting them on wood and farms
- Aim for Classical age and while you are aging start building units at the barracks. I generally squeeze 3HI + 1 archer before I age.
- The moment you age go for the senate. Research Despotism, this gives you 25% cheaper barrack units.
- Now start churning barrack units. Atleast 3HI + 2LI. So you should be having 6HI + 2LI + 1 archer.
- By this time, your fishing ship would have found your opponents shores, take your army (with the patriot), and head towards the shore. This should be around the seventh minute or so of the game, by which not many players have put together a navy. How to tackle with the navy we will deal later.
- Board the shores, and head for the nearest city. Attack mercilessly, and take it down.
- Search for enemy barracks and take it out as well. Wait for the city to assimilate.
- Once the city is yours, then convert this into a military base. Barracks, Stables, Siege … the works.
- A temple and a fort would also be advised. This gives you more space territory. More territory + attrition is a good defensive tactic.
Now use your home base as an economic powerhouse, and the military base as the hammer and nail to drive into your opponents heart.
If you see the screenshot I have attached, I was playing against Americans, had managed to put two cities and launch an attack on the enemy shores. Found the second city, and took it. Then used it to take the capital and then the third city.
I have seen some folks wait for even some more time to research Mil2, and get some siege engines in place. That is also effective, but then to launch an attack you will also need some naval support to engage with the opponent’s navies.