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#1
Old 07-22-2012, 09:13 PM
Charter Jays Fan
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Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Oakville, Canada
Posts: 38,504
I Can't Beat Shogun 2

No way, no how. It cannot be done.

I play on moderate difficultly and I just can't seem to pull it off. Things always start out great; I develop my economy and begin defeating my neighbours. I rush the trade posts, which gets money pouring in, and soon my coffers swell with money.

At the point I've captured about a third to two fifths of the map everything goes to hell. Everyone allies against me except maybe one fast friend, rallied by the Shogun to stop my rise to power. The result is economic collapse; without trading relationships I have little income. I cut my army and navy back to just the forces I need to hold my borders and that barely keeps me afloat. If things look especially bad, I loot a province or two but that just prolongs the doom; pretty soon my cash-strapped, tradeless dominion is simply beaten up by sheer numbers of the enemies arrayed against me.

I try cutting back on troops garrisoned behind the front lines, not that I have many at this point anyway but I'm scraping for money. Then the bad guys launch an amphibious invasion and all hell breaks loose.

I am nearly invincible in any even battle on the tactical map and win even uneven battles, but sooner or later I just run out of healthy troops.

How in the hell do YOU win this game, if you have?
#2
Old 07-22-2012, 11:20 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: The tropics
Posts: 6,739
Congratulations on making it as far as Realm Divide! As you've learned, it triggers when you've conquered a certain percentage of the map. Go back to a save from before the event. (You do have one, right?) Stop conquering and start saving up. Save up a lot - 20,000 koku should be right. Also, make sure you have all the trade nodes covered with multiple trade ships. When you're ready, trigger Realm Divide by conquering a couple more provinces.

Now everyone hates your guts and no will trade with you. But your giant nest egg should get you through the worst of it. If given the option of liberating a province and making them your vassal, do so. Your new vassal will NOT get the Realm Divide penalty; you don't have to got through the hassle of administering the province yourself, the vassal will count to your victory condition, and most importantly you can trade with them.

After creating a few vassals, your economy should be back on track. Conquer Kyoto and whatever more provinces you need to win. Savor victory.
#3
Old 07-23-2012, 05:08 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 3,177
Quote:
Originally Posted by Terminus Est View Post
Congratulations on making it as far as Realm Divide! As you've learned, it triggers when you've conquered a certain percentage of the map. Go back to a save from before the event. (You do have one, right?) Stop conquering and start saving up. Save up a lot - 20,000 koku should be right. Also, make sure you have all the trade nodes covered with multiple trade ships. When you're ready, trigger Realm Divide by conquering a couple more provinces.

Now everyone hates your guts and no will trade with you. But your giant nest egg should get you through the worst of it. If given the option of liberating a province and making them your vassal, do so. Your new vassal will NOT get the Realm Divide penalty; you don't have to got through the hassle of administering the province yourself, the vassal will count to your victory condition, and most importantly you can trade with them.

After creating a few vassals, your economy should be back on track. Conquer Kyoto and whatever more provinces you need to win. Savor victory.
Disclaimer, I've never played the game. This is great as a solution, but it feels like a cheat. Once cataclysmic X event is triggered, go back in time and protect yourself against it.
Does the game at least give you warning that X will happen and some clues to what would trigger it, so you could (at least theoretically) factor it into your strategy and play the game in such a way that you wouldn't have to reload?
#4
Old 07-23-2012, 07:06 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: The Netherlands
Posts: 79
Well, the other option is to start all over again.
No matter what happens, the event will happen. This is the premise of the game.
The current shogun will feel threatened by you at some point (when you reach a certain status of fame) and thus order other loyal provinces to attack you. So there's no shame in using a saved game if you have it.

My advice would be to make use of your agents. Use them every turn, as even failed actions can get them experience.
First you build up your own provinces, create a trade empire and while you do that, you train your monks, ninjas and spies.
Your main weapon are your monks, who can go into other provinces and incite riots and rebellions.
If the army is stops the rebellion, they'll be weakened (keeps your enemy weak)
If they fail and it's now a 'free province' you don't get a penalty when you do conquer it.
Use assassins to sabotage or even better..kill enemy leaders. Even when they are not yet your enemies.
The less generals/daimyos the other clans have, the less effective they are.
Always go after other clan's agents.

The method of creating vassals never worked for me. At some point, due to my aggressive nature maybe, they'd still turn against me. So I concquered all.
I also used a lot of fleets, as this got me around the map pretty easily.
Just make sure the fleets are strong. You don't want your 1000 man army sinking

Good luck!
#5
Old 07-23-2012, 07:23 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
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You want to have your territory as self-sufficient as you can get, since most of the trade will dry up until you can liberate eradicated clans. The single most important part of income is to have as much of a food surplus as you can get, as early as you can get it, since any surplus adds directly to growth in all your provinces. Expand castles only in provinces that absolutely need it, because their food cost is rarely worth it. The same goes for the higher end of the Market chain.

Get your hands on at least one of the gold mines, and develop it fully. Stick 3 metsuke specialized in overseeing towns on it, and give it the best market, temple & sake den you can get. Pulling down 6000 a turn from one province goes a long way.

Realm Divide also doesn't necessarily mean the end of every alliance. It's possible, though expensive, to gift enough money to an ally to counteract the negative modifier of Realm Divide. If you're getting more trade income from them than it takes to pay them off, then it's a net gain. Even if you're not, it might be worth it just to have a secure flank and/or military assistance.

I've never found the naval trade routes to be worth it, but that may be because I play on the higher difficulties and typically play one of the more centrally-positioned clans. Ships have very high upkeep costs, and just securing the trade ports isn't enough, because the AI will constantly send raiders to cut off the route to home. You have to have a strong blockade on both coasts to keep them out, and it's really hard to pull down enough income from a few ports to make up for their upkeep. The Shimazu or Mori might be able to pull it off, by virtue of starting near the best trade ports (and the Mori are naval specialized, to boot) but with everyone else I tend to just ignore the seas as much as I can get away with.
#6
Old 07-23-2012, 09:40 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: The tropics
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bldysabba View Post
Disclaimer, I've never played the game. This is great as a solution, but it feels like a cheat. Once cataclysmic X event is triggered, go back in time and protect yourself against it.
Does the game at least give you warning that X will happen and some clues to what would trigger it, so you could (at least theoretically) factor it into your strategy and play the game in such a way that you wouldn't have to reload?
Yes, you have a reputation meter. The Shogun always informs you when it goes up and will start to warn you if he feels you've been getting too uppity. You can always check the status of the meter in your clan page if you've somehow managed to forget.

Last edited by Terminus Est; 07-23-2012 at 09:43 AM. Reason: grammar
#7
Old 07-23-2012, 01:22 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Edmonton, AB, Canada
Posts: 3,991
I concur with the others. Before Realm Divide, take a few years of peace to consolidate your economy and organize your army. Then unleash hell.

Remember to try to run as much of a food surplus as possible. I recommend having most provinces limited to three construction slots: Rank 1 market, maxed stealth and religious buildings. Max out your farms as soon as is practical. Once you have enough territory, restrict your dojos to provinces that give appropriate bonuses to recruits; only build up the castles in those provinces. The growth bonus from surplus food may not seem like a lot at first blush, but it really adds up. Having more territory amplifies the effect; +15 food over 15 provinces is an extra 225 taxable wealth per turn, but +20 food over 20 provinces is an extra 400 taxable wealth per turn. Spend a few years looking after your peasants and you won't be nearly as reliant on trade income.
#8
Old 07-23-2012, 07:11 PM
XT XT is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: The Great South West
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Generally what I do is pretty much the consensus here...I keep an eye on the number of provinces I have and how close I am to Realm Divide, then just before it triggers I consolidate, entrench, build up the castles and garrisons on the frontier, save money, build out at least 2-3 field army stacks, and when I've got everything positioned I go full out. I do this knowing that basically everyone is going to turn against me, even vassals and allies, so if I have any of those inside my borders there is a stack or two for them as well. Also, make sure you know which provinces you need to meet your victory conditions...nothing more frustrating than finding out you need some province that you don't have when time is ticking down.

Basically, these days I don't worry about winning any more, or the time limit. Since you can play past it, I generally just play the game until I've conquered all of Japan, and if I win then that's fine, and if not then I don't really care. To me setting silly artificial limits takes away the enjoyment, once I've managed to beat it once on a given difficulty level, so I ignore it and just play. If you do that, then once you trigger Realm Divided (let it be a surprise), you have to shore up defenses, rush troops to critical spots and everything else. It's more fun, to me, to frantically have to reinforce or relieve a besieged garrison, to try and play with a sudden cut in my taxes, and to have to halt an offensive and bring a field army back because some previous ally has stabbed me in the back and is raging in my interior. THAT is fun, to me anyway.
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That's what happens when you let rednecks play with anti-matter!
#9
Old 07-23-2012, 08:14 PM
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This is also one reason I favor Christianity: it makes Realm divided much easier to manage. If you go Christian early, you can:

* Build ships which demolish everything else on the board. Just one can generally wipe out an entire enemy force, and they move farthr than Japanese-style vessels, so it's easier to ferry troops.

* Get early access to gunpowder. Not as useful, but gunpwder troops are relentlessly cost-effective. You can basically have they roll up and outlast most any army, and they're almost as gruesome in defense as Samurai warriors.

* Make a ton of cash. Churches == bucketloads of cash.

* Control the board. This is the most impressive and important function. It's harder to get going as Christian, but you become nearly unstoppable once you do. Every province, period, should have a church and pump out a priest. Convert your provinces, and then send them off to provinces you want to target. If it doesn't rebel, and it likely will in a few good turns, it will hurt their income. And when you do invade, the province will suddenly become easily loyal to you. Other Christian factions are good, too: if they have a port, they will often upgrade to Nanban trade ports, too, so you invade and get even more cash (you can only build onen such port yourself). If not, you can ally withn them more easily, and they're less likely to obey the Shogun when Realm divided triggers.

* Nanban ships make it easy to dominate the foreign trade spots in the sea. Plus, most of the factions get access to Christian early are close by these spots, so you can grab them quickly.
#10
Old 07-24-2012, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smiling bandit View Post
* Control the board. This is the most impressive and important function. It's harder to get going as Christian, but you become nearly unstoppable once you do. Every province, period, should have a church and pump out a priest. Convert your provinces, and then send them off to provinces you want to target.
Most important in this part of the strategy: have your agents remove every last bit of fog of war. Doesn't really matter which type of agents you're using to do this (although priests of either stripe are probably the easiest/most useful besides their scouting role). Otherwise the game cheats its unfair little ass off, spawning gigantic (and experienced) stacks wherever you're not looking like it found two thousand veterans under the sofa cushions.

At least, that's how it is unmodded (or was at release). I quit the game then and there when I learned about that. Realm Divide I can take or leave, at least the concept makes some sense and provides some tension in the late game instead of the usual TW mopping up of rabble ; but making every last strategic effort and sabotage entirely meaningless ? Fuck you, game.
I haven't been following up on the game since - there might be a mod out there to remove that "feature" from the game now. If so, that's where I'd start.
#11
Old 01-05-2013, 11:41 PM
Charter Jays Fan
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Location: Oakville, Canada
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Bump.

I finally beat this goddamned game. To hell with the Oda and the Takeda. Long live Shimazu!

I went with Shimazu and zerg-rushed the trade posts, eventually building up 100,000 gold and some goodly stacks. Maxed out agriculture, limited my dojos. I stomped out Christianity, though. To hell with them.

And still it was a tough go at the end, and required a series of brilliant military victories to pull it off. The gold burned through and I was sacking every province I captured at the end, sometimes capturing a province just to steal all the gold and then retreating and giving it back up. I didn't care about honor at that point. I actually said out loud, sitting in my office my myself, "I will rule Japan, or I will burn it." I ended up ruling it and still burning a lot of it.

The realm is mine.
#12
Old 01-09-2013, 01:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smiling bandit View Post
* Nanban ships make it easy to dominate the foreign trade spots in the sea. Plus, most of the factions get access to Christian early are close by these spots, so you can grab them quickly.
The Nanban ships have been nerfed. I had an (ahem) evaluation version of the game that didn't have the latest patches. My Nanbans wrecked face everywhere they went. I finally bought the game on Steam when they had a super sale on it. Now my Nanbans take about eight or nine shots to wreck a single sengoku bune which is some bullshit.

The other good way to make money after realm divide is by raiding trade lines. You can make thousands upon thousands doing this and if you have tough ships like Nanbans, no one can stop you. Enemy clans won't stop trading with each other just because you raid the lines so it's an endless source of cash. I had it happen once (although I'm sure it was a glitch) where there was so much trade going on I started pulling in millions from raiding. I literally couldn't spend it all. If you find yourself in that situation, you can definitely win the campaign with ease!

Other general ways would be to always level up your provincial specialty buildings as much as possible, build your infrastructure up with an economic focus during peaceful times and always use agents. Agents agents agents. Get a ninja and put one skill point in to each item on the left side of his tree (and use the left over skill points for increasing his escape chance, etc). By the time he's six stars, he's incredibly skilled at doing everything and he has no cost at all. You can kill half of feudal Japan with one of these guys.

Edit on preview: honor stops mattering after Realm Divide and you can restore honor when your Daimyo dies off. His heir's loyalty becomes his honor. But after realm divide you only need it for dealing with vassals and even if you don't have any honor at all they stay pretty loyal unless you do specific things to piss them off.
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