OPULOUS: THE BEGINNING WALKTHROUGH & STRATEGY GUIDE: PART 1 REVIEWED PCZ #70 SCORE 92% Is your shaman a shambles? Is your mana meagre? If so, Keith Pullin has the remedy INTRO Populous: The Beginning is a complex affair with multiple solutions and strategies - but don't fret. This two-part guide begins by providing a comprehensive walkthrough of the first 12 worlds, and expert advice on making the most of your spells and followers. The road to immortality starts here. PLANET BY PLANET GUIDE 1 The journey begins You start with eight followers. Send three into each hut to start breeding and build another hut with the remaining two. Worship the stone head. Use the land bridge spell to reach the centre island. Worship the Vault of Knowledge to learn about warrior training and then the other stone head to get lightning. Now build a warrior training hut; train about ten warriors. Use the land bridge again and storm the Dakini island. Send your warriors straight towards their shaman while blasting their huts with lightning bolts. //level1-attack.jpg That's it, in you go - dead easy, this level. 2 Night falls Extract your shaman to the totem pole and begin worshipping. Use your followers to build two extra huts and a warrior training hut. Move a follower to the stone head to worship with your shaman once she's finished at the totem pole. Create approximately ten warriors and march past the guard tower into Matak territory. While the shaman heads for the Vault of Knowledge your warriors should make a start on the nearby hut. Cast tornadoes at the Matak huts and send in the warriors to clean up. Use the swarm spell to keep your foes from grouping together. 3 Crisis of faith Get your followers to start building two huts. Send Shammy off to the totem pole. When she's finished there, move her over to the Vault of Knowledge to learn about temples. Now build a temple. Train ten preachers and send them into Matak territory. Spread out and watch the poor impressionable fools sway to your plight. 4 Combined forces Take the shaman over to the Vault of Knowledge followed by the stone head. Set breeders going in three huts and build a warrior hut with the remaining few. Use the shaman to convert about 15 wild men, and then train up 20 warriors in total - they can be the shaman's bodyguards. Move towards the next Vault of Knowledge and use blast to remove any Matak preachers. Worship at the vault, keeping your warriors close by. Wait until you have amassed at least three lightning bolts. Attack the right flank of the village and use blast again to remove any lurking preachers. Use lightning primarily on the Matak temple and warrior hut and throw the remaining bolts at anything that deserves it. 5 Death from above Worship the stone head near the start to gain the convert spell, then head back right to the stretch of coast near the guard tower. Use the convert spell to reach across to the savages on the island. Use these new followers to worship the totem pole. A boat appears; use it to take your shaman and four warriors further right to the land mass where the Angel of Death statue lies. Divert the waiting warriors with a lightning spell, get your braves to guard our mighty shaman and try to squeeze her through to worship the Angel. Use the blast spell for protection. 6 Building bridges Okay, things start getting tricky now. Your shaman should worship the Vault of Knowledge, then start converting wild men pronto. Build up a strong base near the large pool above the reincarnation point and start producing preachers sharpish. Also build guard towers on the hills surrounding your base, and man them with fire warriors and preachers. Worship the stone head in the stone circle. The enemy soon attacks. Soak up these onslaughts and eventually a bridge appears to the stone head across the channel. Worship here. Now you can hypnotise the Chumara warrior by the totem pole on the island. Get those holy knees bending and another bridge forms further up the channel. The Matak and Chumara tribe can now throw bees at each other in a bizarre ritual apparently known as battle. Meanwhile, sneak about ten preachers into each camp and watch them fall like flies. Bring in a dozen or so warriors accompanied by lightning spells. If you're ultra cunning, you'll worship the stone head above the Matak base for the firestorm spell. 7 Unseen enemy The enemy tribe barely appears if you get through this level fast enough - which is in less than 20 minutes, ideally. Begin by converting about 20 savages. Merge them with the rest of your followers and build a temple on the coast opposite the island. Next, build a warrior hut and three normal huts. Create about ten preachers. Cast a land bridge spell to the island and lead five preachers to worship. Watch out for the enemy shaman's lightning spell - she tends to come along while you pray. Once you have the erode spell, cast another land bridge spell to the Chumara side. Infiltrate all your preachers into the right side of their camp and cast offensive spells. Concentrate mainly on destroying the Chumara preachers, temple and the guard tower in the middle. The battle should slowly swing in your favour. Add a few warriors to mix it up a bit... 8 Continental divide Your base should consist of five huts and a temple. Guide your shaman across the world converting simpletons as you go. Guide her towards the Vault of Knowledge, and if she's well protected you'll obtain the fire warrior knowledge. Now head over to a stone head on a ridge by a pool to get a shield spell. Back home create an army of ten fire warriors and ten preachers. With the shaman, march your army north into the Chumara camp covered by shield and invisibility spells. As before, destroy the tower in the middle and the fire warrior hut next to it. Have your shaman lend a hand with lightning. 9 Fire in the mist Usual tactics: convert wild men and raise a base consisting of four huts, a temple and a fire warrior training hut. Send the shaman walkabout to find two stone heads: one containing an earthquake spell, and the other a tornado one. Keep some followers and continue up the island. Before you reach the Chumara base cast invisibility on the braves and send them scurrying along the left coast until they find some boats; steal one and flee. Point your shaman towards the Vault of Knowledge at the end of the peninsula; cause havoc with spells as you try to reach it. Ultimately, worship here to learn about boat building. Send the shaman over to the island teeming with natives and convert a few to worship the head containing the volcano spell. Keep the Chumara shaman well away from your base until the volcano spell has been learnt. Sail the shaman and some protection over to Chumara territory and whop down a volcano. Let fly with lightning too. Don't despair if your shaman is killed - sail back over there with two boats packing invisible fire warriors and preachers. Start the finale with earthquake and tornado spells, then let the infantry clean up. 10 From the depths Don't worry about the frightening start - escape in the boat with your shaman and four preachers. Cruise to the small island with the totem pole; mumble at that for a while and 'Atlantis' rises out of the depths. Convert the wild men and repair the slightly wet base. Sneak some invisible preachers over to pray at the enemy totem pole and half the island sinks. Ha! Revenge... That'll teach them. Finish off their miserable hides with fire warriors. 11 Treacherous souls The main thing here is to keep expanding your base. Once you've disposed of the Matak tribe, a big army's required to stop the Chumara scum. Send your shaman with a boatload of invisible fire warriors around the back of the Chumara base and attack from there. Cause as much mayhem as possible before you're hopelessly slaughtered. Send another two boats in, while simultaneously attacking with a bigger invisible invasion force from the other side. Back this horde up with your shaman and head straight for the temple and fire warrior huts. Lightning these and head for the Vault of Knowledge during the ensuing chaos. Keep adding preachers and fire warriors as back-up. . 12 An easy target This is the first world where you are pitched against three enemy tribes. Luckily, you begin on a separate island while the other conquistadors fight each other on a bigger continent. You don't get much land to build on here so use land bridge to landfill the ocean. Also cast land bridge across the corner hills to wall yourself in and guard against any waterborne attacks. Each tribe guards a Vault of Knowledge; the Chumara - spy training hut; the Matak - erode spell; and the red tribe, the tornado spell. The red and green tribes will try to cripple the yellow tribe, leaving you to finish them off. Keep a look-out for any spies who might try to sabotage your settlement. ART: STARS OR NUMBERS, IT'S UP TO YOU! THEA BUILDING BLOCKS OF LIFE Establish a strong settlement using the following guidelines: 1. Disable all spells apart from convert. Send your shaman into the wilderness and convert as many wild men as you can; you can often found them near water (either small lakes or the ocean). 2. While the shaman is busy recruiting, begin building. Find a flat, spacious area of land near plenty of trees. If this land is away from the reincarnation site, build a guard tower first. 3. Build four or five huts at a time, keeping key huts like temples and fire warrior training huts away from the main settlement - invading forces always hone in on them first. 4. Try to build huts in rows; you can fit more huts into less space that way. To achieve a large population, construct 30 or more huts, but always keep a careful eye on wood supplies. 5. If you are running low on wood, try sending some invisible braves into the enemy settlement to steal some more. Destroying the enemy trees with spells or spies can actually be quite a useful tactic. FOLLOWERS They follow you about like lovesick puppy dogs, but they do other stuff too... Shaman She is the only member of the tribe who can fire spells. Seeing as how spells are the only way you're going to get through the game, your shaman must be well protected at all times. Braves Braves are the foundation of your tribe. They generate four times more mana than any other follower, but only when building or resting in huts. Keep huts populated to keep the mana flowing, man. Warriors Warriors are the toughest of your followers, but lack special abilities. Keep them away from preachers, and use them to back up your attacks. Warriors should be the last line of defence. Preachers Preachers, though weak, are surprisingly powerful if used in groups. A good thing to do is smuggle invisible, shielded preachers into a camp. The effect can be devastating. Unfortunately, the same works in reverse, so watch out! Fire Warriors These guys have quite a long range, so keep them at a distance from the enemy, preferably on higher ground. Once again, this type of follower is highly effective when invisible and shielded. And in a balloon, well... frightening. They can also be used in boats to strafe enemy coastlines. Spies Spies sneak into enemy bases and set fire to huts. They are best used during the early stages of a match when each player is still setting up their settlements. Spies delay the enemy's progress and lower his mana rate. Groups of invisible, shielded spies are fairly formidable foes. SPELLBOUND //Whoever lays this out might want to crop these screenshots - some of them have a lot of open space that's not needed. It's only the actual spell effects that are important here// These are the first eight spells - we'll give you more next month when you can handle them. Blast This is your simplest spell, as well as one of the most powerful in your arsenal. Although it has a short range, the blast spell is more useful for defending the shaman against ambush. Tactically it's brilliant near waterL if any enemy followers are running along the coast, cast the spell to the other side of them so they are blown into the drink. Convert This is only really useful at the start of the level when you have plenty of wild men to convert. Swarm Swarm is only a temporary solution. Often it will just scatter the enemy and, ultimately, cause more problems - although is a good way of stopping your followers from being converted by preachers. It's also worth casting on boats and balloons just to watch the occupants throw themselves over the side in terror. Invisibility Invisibility doesn't last long, so only cast it on your target followers at the very last moment. Preachers become visible again when they start preaching and fire warriors reappear when attacked or ordered to attack. Invisibility and shield make an excellent combination. Land bridge Not only is this good for joining two areas of land separated by water, but it can also level hills and valleys for building on. By placing the shaman on one side of a hill and casting the spell on the other side, you will level the land. You can also cast it next to the coast to give yourself more room. Swamp Swamp can be very useful when placed in the enemy's path, especially in front of your defences. There is little you can do against an enemy swamp except sacrifice ten of your followers to fill it or erode the land underneath so it falls into the water. Remember: your followers are vulnerable to your own swamps. Lightning Lightning is a more powerful version of the blast spell and kills anyone it is directly cast upon. It will also severely damage buildings. Hypnotism When you first attack a settlement, use the hypnotism spell to temporarily convert enemy followers so they begin attacking their own kind. Keep them away from your own followers so they don't start attacking them when the spell wears off. Enemy followers converted by hypnotised preachers will be permanent members of your tribe. NEXT MONTH... Well, that's the end of part one. Hopefully you now have a better idea of what's going on. Join us next month for the final 12 levels, multiplayer deathmatch strategies, and more.
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