Over the coming days/weeks I will be posting ideas for campaigns for civs that don’t yet have them. I will begin with Taizong, for the Chinese.
The campaign is centred on Li Shimin of the Tang Dynasty’s rise to power as Emperor Taizong, and the various conquests and wars that his Tang China partook in, all while overseeing a golden age of Chinese history, during which the empire expanded to its furthest borders, and China became a cultural, artistic, economic and militaristic powerhouse.
Emperor Taizong of the Tang Dynasty ushers in a golden age of Chinese history. But this is not achieved without conflict against neighbouring kingdoms, empires, and even his own brothers. Just how far will his glorious empire expand, and will his ambition come at a cost? In this campaign you will play as the Chinese.
1. Heirs of Tang
The opening scenario is based on the Xuanwu Gate incident, during which Li Shimin exacted revenge on his brothers Li Jiancheng and Li Yuanji who plotted to have him killed as he was first in line to their father Emperor Gaozong’s throne. You start off with just Li Shimin at the pagoda in the capital of Chang’an, where you are briefed by your brothers on a mission to take out a nearby Gokturk camp. You are met with a small army outside the city gates, and once you have destroyed the Gokturk camp with relative ease, you return to the pagoda, only for Li Yuanji and Li Jiancheng to switch stance to enemy and attack you. You then have flee with Li Shimin to an encampment which has a barracks, a stable, an archery range, a castle and a market, but no town center. You rely on tributes, or resources gained by taking out small Gokturk camps. Your objective now is to return to Chang’an, to kill both Li Yuanji and Li Jiancheng.
2. Peace at a Price
As a mark of respect for Li Shimin’s actions and strength, Gaozong has resigned as emperor, and Li Shimin is now Emperor Taizong of Tang. Almost immediately, the newly crowned emperor has to deal with an outside threat, the Eastern Turkic Khaganate who keep mercilessly attacking China’s borders. At the start of the scenario, you have Taizong with a number of knights, pikemen and chu-ko-nus, and you have to fight your way through a number of Turkic units to meet their leader, the Illig Khan to discuss a peace treaty. Once he taunts the “once fearsome Li Shimin” about being “soft, like his father”, he demands a tribute of 20,000 gold, which is the main objective of the game. You are suddenly teleported to your own town, and you have a number of options to meet the objective. You can mine as much gold on the map, you can trade with your allies, the cities of Yunzhou or Shuozu, or you can take out a Western Turks encampment who are protecting a large pile of gold. All throughout, you will be frequently attacked by the Eastern Turkic Khaganate.
3. Khan of Heaven
The peace that Taizong essentially bought only lasted for a while, and before long the Eastern Turkic Khaganate resumed their attacks on China. Because the Eastern Turkic Khaganate is not a singular, unified entity like China is, but rather a large confederation of steppe tribes, it is decided by Taizong to gain the advantage over the Illig Khan by winning over a number of Turkic tribes to his cause, and ultimately be absorbed into China. You begin this scenario with a sizeable army, and six monks, and your objectives are to convert the three khans of the Seyanto, Uighurs and Bayegu, and kill the Illig Khan, to gain control over all Turkic ruled land. Once each khan is converted, their towns fall under your control. Elsewhere on the map are your allies Khitan, who are useful for trade.
4. Love or War
With the Chinese empire extended to a size not seen before, a golden age of science, art, economy and military is ushered in and overseen. Emperor Songsten Gampo of the Tibetan Empire wants a piece of this glory, but when Taizong rejects his offer of a marriage alliance, a furious Songsten Gampo attacks China. In this scenario your objective is to ensure that the city of Songzhou (your ally) is not destroyed by the Tibetan Army, while having to defeat the Tibetan Empire. You begin with a town centre and a number of villagers and buildings, but right at the start your men are attacked at Songzhou’s gates as the Tibetan Army beseige the city.
The final scenario is based on Taizong’s attempt at capturing Korea, the focus being the city of Ansi. You start with a fairly large camp, and you have to cross the sea and land in Korea to destroy six towers owned by the Ansi Guard, with the rest of the city being owned by the player called Ansi, who wield tough defences. All the while fending off ships and troops owned by the player named Gorguryeo, who have a number of units dotted around the map. Your allies include the Tang Army, who provide markets to trade with, or the Turkic ######## who you can send units to, so they can give you steppe lancers and keshiks. representing how tribes of the Eastern Turkic Khaganate supported Taizong’s invasion in real life. The epilogue details how out of sheer respect for the resilience of Ansi’s defenders, Taizong withdrew, hence why the objective is to just destroy their towers and nothing else.