Burmese Campaign map#5 (Bayinnaung - Old Tiger)

right, so i’m by no means a professional player at all, but i’ve beaten most campaigns on hard so far and while some maps are clearly easier than others, most of them are pretty hard yet doable on hard mode.

that being said, this map (Old Tiger) leaves me at a loss for words and options. i have to throw in the towel and ask for help;

Player starts at the easternmost region of the map and gets an extra base located on an island in the west/northwest.

the eastern base starts you off with your 2 main hero units, 3 monks, 14 two-handed swordsmen, 20 Arambai, 10 battle elephants, 2 trebuchets, 3 villagers and 8 knights (on easier difficulties you also get 3 bombard cannons but not on hard). the base has a bunch of buildings that the player gets control of later in the game after completing the first primary objective.

the western island base starts you off with a bunch of fireships, galleons and garrisoned transport ships along with a hero cavalry unit. like the eastern base there’s a bunch of buildings you gain control of after completing the first primary objective.

enemies consist of 3 different “Rakhine” (yellow AI) and their allied Portuguese mercenaries (purple AI).

here’s how this plays out for me;

  1. first i send my navy southwest to land all my garrisoned units and take out the enemy warships guarding the cost.

  2. i send my eastern force south to the first wonder, i smash the enemy castle there with my trebs, i use monks to convert elephants, i use arambais and knights to deal with the (quite pesky) Rattan Archers, i use my swordsmen to deal with enemy infantry/buildings and to guard my trebs.

  3. at this point i send my western force towards the westmost wonder, use the bombard cannons to take out the castle near it and clear the wonder of enemy troops and buildings.

  4. at this point i send my eastern force to the next wonder which is close to the previous one, slightly northwest of my eastern force’s position, and send my western force southeast to clear the last wonder.

  5. the enemy AI in this map has unlimited resources as explained in the campaign map hints, and thus become more and more aggressive the more wonders Bayinnaung visits.

  6. after i have visited all 4 wonders and joined my east and west armies, i get control of the buildings in both bases (i upgrade units and produce more units and ships)

  7. at this point the AI loses its cool and starts producing units at an insane rate, especially ranged units like handguns, rattan archers, crossbowmen, skirmishers, cav archers and organ guns, but also pikemen, 2H swordsmen, battle elephants, cavaliers and tons of fireships, bombard ships and galleons on the sea.

  8. i garrison my coastline towers with crossbows to repel the constant ship attacks to the west.

  9. i produce counters to enemy units like halbardiers, skirmishers, arambai, monks along with elite battle elephants to soak enemy ranged units, along with bombard cannons to take out enemy fortifications

  10. i lose the game because each and every enemy ranged unit individually kites my units to death even if i literally constantly micro my units individually to kill each an every enemy ranged unit which is terribly frustrating and leads to a lot of my units dying as they wander off after killing their target or (thanks to the bad pathfinding in this game) ends up dying before even killing its target and with the constant stream of units coming at me i have no room to breathe and reorganize my forces.

for some reason when i make an attack move, instead of attacking the closest enemy unit target my units usually chooses to chase just 1 target in a massive blob, which is highly frustrating as well, seeing as this move is meant to deal with enemy units trying to individually kite my entire army to death, aka instead of my blob of swordsmen, knights or skirmishers spreading out to attack different targets which are encircling them, they will all b-line it to the nearest target and get stuck on each other on their way to it as a result which leads to unnecessary casualties almost constantly - but it doesn’t stop there, if this blob of retardation manages to take out their target, they will repeat the same blob b-line to the next target despite the fact there’s plenty of other targets to go for… whats the point in attack-move if it behaves the exact same way as simply right clicking an enemy unit??? a question for the philosophers i guess.

this map also happens to be really cluttered with buildings, trees and other obstacles that makes moving around masses of units an absolute pain in the *** (especially elephants because they are fat).
the amount of chokepoints on this map is just ridiculous even after you’ve taken out most of the enemy bases.

these chokepoints in combination with constant streams of enemy units which are free of cost makes it nigh on impossible to gain any ground, and once i DO manage to gain some ground, its usually too late as my army has now been whittled down to only a few survivors and then i gotta rebuild and start over again from scratch while the enemy forces at that point will be constantly pushing into my eastern base and gaining an advantage since there’s a bridge (thats right, another chokepoint) that i need to cross to get in and out of my base.
this bridge is constantly clogged by enemy units backed up by trebuchets that conveniently enough is able to hit my castle and towers from inside their own base, while my bombard cannons can’t reach them due to foliage blocking them, which means i need to take control of the bridge and get all my non-siege units up to their gate before i can even use my bombards to take out those trebuchets.

to avoid this becoming too moany and whining of a post (which is probably already too late) i’ll end my complaints here and ask; how in the world did you deal with this when you completed this map?

EDIT: i forgot to add that you get a total of 5 villagers in this map and once completing the first primary objective and you gain around 26000 of each resource (save for stone) however with the AI having free units, you could give me 100.000 of each resource and the end result would likely be the same since no cost > cost combined with AI APM > any human APM.
my villagers also can’t build anything other than docks and towers and repair units, which makes them next to useless, like if i could at least build a market or a even a lumber mill i MIGHT be fine, but nope, nothing. if i want buildings i need to convert enemy buildings and since the diplomacy screen is locked i can’t take any markets, mills or anything that might help my villagers produce some semblance of income.

This is a painful one indeed. So first and foremost your best friend for this scenario is the F3 key, that allows you to pause the game and imput commands that will take effect as soon as you resume the game. It is very useful to manage your armies in this scenario and even the field out compared to the AI’s multi tasking.

For the meditations, the most important is to raze production buildings as you go to limit the unit spam you will be subjected to later in the scenario. One neat thing is that your western army can raze several yellow castles with the BBC without even needing to engage the enemy. The delicate part is when you finish the meditations, as the enemy armies will really get pissed at your army. What I did was to sacrifice the main army to let Nanda and the siege weapons come back to the eastern base. having the villagers for repairs is neat too.

As soon as you get control over your building hit F3, and use the buildings on your island base to research upgrades. Chemistry and architecture, conscription, all blacksmith upgrades, infantry upgrades and elite battle elephant upgrades are a must. Don’t bother with your navy, it’s not useful enough to be worth managing at all, just leave it hanging near your island. My strat was to spam eles, infantry and skirms and use F3 to circumvent the AI spamming making my units random agro stuff when I didn’t want them to. Note: I did it before howdah was buffed, now arbs should be less frustrating to deal with. I went for the Vietnamese Rakhine, then the Portuguese, then the Malay Rakhine, which can be saved for last because they should have been considerably weakened during the first part of the scenario and their army is quite bad, so even if you spent all ur food you can just make a bunch of xbows and beat them anyway.

Best of luck!

Hello there!

Really appreciate the tips m8 and yes i am already abusing the schronjoolies out of the pause button to deal with units individually but it just doesn’t seem to be enough.

i’ll try not to focus on my navy too much on my next attempt and raze all the military buildings in sight (problem with this is that if you linger too long to destroy the buildings you’ll be slowly whittled down by incoming enemy forces)

how did you go from the vietnamese rhakine to the portuguese without a navy? their base is tucked away behind the primary rhakine base so reaching it with ground units is next to impossible without first taking out the yellow ai.

Well that’s precisely what I did: raze the first yellow AI to access their base. Yes it’s a slog, but I think that it’s less of a slog than trying to beat the superior Portuguese navy while managing your land army and trying to not let your ships slip in range of their defenses.

Okay, if you are having trouble with literally any scenario in the game, just use the AoE2 wiki to help you beat it: The Old Tiger | Age of Empires Series Wiki | Fandom you could also use either T-Wests or Ornlus channel on YouTube if you prefer videos. That would be my advice for any scenario, because it saves you having to ask here.

bro, i have completed 86% of the campaigns on hard. this particular map is the only one that forced me to come here due to the absurdities of its design and the downright unfair handicap put on the player.

there seems to be a common trend going on with both “The Forgotten” and “Rise of Rajas” campaigns, and that is the fact that unit pathing is beyond screwed on all the maps and that the AI seemingly gets to produce everything for free at a crazy pace on every map. honestly, it seems like these campaign maps are designed by somewhat clueless fans and at this point in time just completely outdated. like some of them (like this particular map) will be insanely hard and merciless on the player, while the previous map can be won in a few minutes by building a wonder (LOL).

the very first map in the Burmese campaign (the one that is suppose to be the easiest) gives you 5 minutes to kill a king as a secondary objective - not only is this really hard to do in time (due to the fact that its not actually 5 minutes, but more like 3 minutes due to the increased speed on the clock on hard) but it only rewards a measly 500 gold.
guess what, if you ignore this secondary objective and instead just send all your villagers on gold mining, using market to gain even more gold, and just send your starting Arambai to the portuguese you can win that map within 5-10 minutes (real time, not game time).

if i wanted to have a terribly unfair experience with no chance to win i’d play 1v7 AI on its hardest difficulty with max population.

im currently in the process of winning it though… the key seemed to be taking out the vietnamese yellow AI at the start of the game while clearing the westmost wonder at the same time, but good luck doing that without constantly pausing to micromanage your armies on both fronts.

i mean honestly, if you can pull this map off without pausing even once that is damn impressive because the creator of this particular map obviously got carried away when it comes to its difficulty.

like “you need to keep these 2 guys alive, you also can’t build anything, you also have no resources, you also can’t produce new units, you also need to fight on 2 fronts simultaneously, you also have to be fast because the enemy produces more units the longer it takes for you to complete the first objective, you also have to deal with chokepoints and the nature of the AI which besides mass production also kites better than any human can, you also also ALSO have to get by with only 2 trebs and 2 bombards against at least 4 castles, you also have to defend against the enemy navy which will constantly attack you, you also have to deal with enemy land units constantly attacking you, you also have to deal with the fact that you have no ranged units to counter enemy ranged units except for the Arambai which are the definition of hit-and-miss and on top of that are weak against an abundance of ranged units, which are the primary units you need to defend against” etc. etc.

its just a tad much if you ask me.

Have you tried Le Loi? It only get’s harder.

i did Le Loi without much trouble and it was nowhere near as hard as the final map of the Burmese.

just got done with it btw… 1000/23000 gold left :o


The Old Tiger is definitely harder than any Le Loi scenario tbh

Its been a while, since I did this, however what I remember is, I tried to go for the portuguese first and convert their feitorias, so I got a steady income, which made me be able to replenish my losses and eventually push forward.
I think the top rightmost feitoria is out of reach of their ships, so as long as you can fend off their land armies, you’ll eventually be good, because I think I took that way before being able to beat their navy.