Some random bits of knowledge of the game that you might not know.
No matter how many Sanctuaries you may have listed on the Mythology tab at the beginning of an episode, you’re only allowed to build a total of 4. Of course, Sanctuaries are just like any other building… they can be demolished. If, for instance, you built Athena’s Arbor in order to summon Achilles to your city (such as in “Open Play Sandbox”), you can demolish it after you no longer need it and build any other Sanctuary on your list – or you can even build the same one again.
In any episode where you have a colony, the Sanctuaries listed for the colony will be the same as those listed for the parent city… and yes, you can build up to 4 in the colony, even if you already have one of that type in the parent city, or vice-versa. You can have Zeus’ Stronghold in the colony and in the parent city, since they are separate cities.
Monsters can be killed without using a Hero… but it takes a very long time and a lot of Rabble or military. Apollo can also kill any Monster.
Athena, Hera and Zeus will defend your city from military invasions if they’re around. Other Gods probably will not, even if they’re standing in the middle of the invasion. Heroes will always try and fight any invaders.
Don’t call upon the Gods for help too often… some of them will make you wait several years before they’re willing to help you again. Other Gods will be willing to help within a few months. Hermes has one of the shortest times, Ares one of the longest.
Just like any other walker in your city, when a God appears at their sanctuary, they will arrive on the nearest road, starting their search in the northeast and working their way around clockwise until they find a close road (within 10 tiles).
Gifts from the Gods – such as Olive Oil from Athena or Wine from Dionysus – do not count towards any production goal.
If a Heroes Hall is destroyed (accidentally or by a Monster) while the Hero is away from the city, just rebuild it – you may have to summon the Hero again, but you’re not lost.
One of the requirements for Perseus is 3,000 drachmas – when you summon him, the 3,000 will disappear from your treasury. One of the requirements for Bellerophon is 10,000 in the treasury – it does not disappear when you summon him (not that you’ll be complaining).
Any conquered city or colony is supposed to pay you an annual tribute, if their respect for you is high enough. This isn’t always the case. In “Open Play Sandbox”, for instance, there are two cities which should be paying tribute to your city, but never do, no matter how high you get in their respect – even if you hit the maximum. They will do all the usual things, such as honor your requests or aid you militarily, but they won’t pay tribute. This is actually a mistake the designers made with this map – they forgot to set the button for these cities on the world map to “Pay Tribute”.
Remember that booty taken by raiding differs according to difficulty level. At Beginner level, if you raid a city for Marble that’s listed as 12 per year, you’ll actually get 24 from the raid; in Olympian mode you’ll only get 6.
If at all possible, raid a city with a decent size force (at least 6 companies) before you send your entire army to try and conquer it – raiding will weaken their forces.
Colony progression in the Editor is something that takes a bit of getting used to. As long as you remember that the upper section is Parent City episodes only, and the lower section is Colony episodes only, you’ll do okay. Each button in the upper section represents a Parent City episode – what’s listed on the button is what comes after the episode… if it says Colony, this means that the next episode will be a Colony episode. After finishing a Colony episode you will always return to the Parent City.
In the map editor, you can use a single-square line of Lava or Tidal Wave in your map while you’re building as a marking tool – use it to draw the outline of a sanctuary to see where it will fit, for example. As long as you don’t put a Disaster Point on that particular bit of Lava or Tidal Wave, the game will never even know it’s there. This comes in very handy for figuring out your shoreline, or your housing.
A Hippodrome 200 sections long will bring in a lot of money… but it also causes unrest, because the citizens think that you care more about the Hippodrome than them.
Every single Sheep and Goat in your map can fit on a single tile of meadow, all at the same time (they don’t mind the crowding).
If you have a mouse with a wheel on it, you can use it to scroll through the tabs on the control panel. The spacebar will bring up the detail screen (the separate buttons, such as “See Industry” or “See Immortals”) for that tab, while your Tab key will switch back and forth from the listing for that tab and the overall city map.
If you’ve explored the CD with Windows Explorer, you know that there are over 670 MP3 files in the game, and over 540 wav files. If you did a full install, then all of these were copied over to your hard drive… if you want, you can replace any of them (make backups first!), making sure that the replacement is approximately the same length and with the same filename. Bugs Bunny instead of the actor in the theater…
For those feeling really brave, you can edit the game text. Check any of the .txt files that came with the game (in the \Model directory), such as “zeus eventmsg.txt” — edit any of the text that normally pops up on the screen during the game, keeping the same formatting in the file (quotes and braces). Backup any files first, of course. For instance, replace the phrase “because [leader_name] thinks you are weak” with “because [leader_name] says you are a coward and a wimp” (or whatever you want). As with the “Text_Template” file, only edit inside the quotes. Anything inside the braces (such as [leader_name]) should not be changed, as these are pointers called up by the program.