Surviving a Kingdom vs Kingdom Kill Event in Game of War: Fire Age

Screenshot from the opening page, just before it loads

Screenshot from the opening page, just before it loads

WARNING: Contains coarse language. Reader discretion is advised.

(Yeah, I know, but I am writing about a war game and the phrase “Swear like a trooper” doesn’t exist to sound cool!)

Game of War: Fire Age is an MMO Strategy game by developers Machine Zone. Every few weeks or so, there is a Kingdom vs Kingdom Kill Event, in which members of an opposing kingdom can run rampant in your own kingdom, and vice versa. Points are awarded for holding the Wonder in an opposing kingdom, destroying power of an outlander, and hitting and killing monsters in the opposing kingdom.

Kill event score table

Kill event score table

My kingdom is only a few months old as at the date of this blog post, and we just survived our second Kill Event. I am not going to pull any punches from hereon in – Our kingdom is woefully disorganised, and people’s egos are getting in the way of actually getting anything done. No one was defending the Wonder at one point, and the outlanders just waltzed in and took the Wonder. Well done, Kingdom F. *golf clap*

Oh, hit a sore spot, did we? Instead of trying to find my coordinates and burn my arse, how about you just shut up and listen? Get your ego, put it on your altar, and sacrifice that bitch. It won’t give you your troop health boosts, but it will be for the good of the Kingdom. The Kingdom (and indeed The Wonder) is bigger than the sum of its parts. Read on, and when you’re done, let’s just take from there.

“The art of war is of vital importance to the State. It is a matter of life and death, a road either to safety or to ruin. Hence it is a subject of inquiry which can on no account be neglected.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Right, are you paying attention? Good, now let’s continue…

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

#1. Be Prepared

“He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

For this last Kill Event, I had the following resources at hand, and ultimately ranked #31 on the Leaderboards and my alliance ranked #6. Obviously, to rank higher on the leaderboards, you will need more at hand than what I have listed here:

20   Advanced Teleports
10   Random Teleports
7     25% Pegasus Winged Boots (these reduce your march time)
4     50% Pegasus Winged Boots
7     200% March Boost
16   March Recall
3     8-hour peace shields
9     24 hour peace shields
19   50,000 Hero Energy (granted, my hero’s maximum energy is 13,875 but I didn’t let
that stop me using these.)

#31 on the leaderboard, alliance #6 on the leaderboard. A modest effort indeed.

I also had a 24-hour anti-scout boost. The KvK Kill Event runs for 24 hours, so one 24-hour anti-scout is all you need.

Despite having several attack boosts, I didn’t use any of them. I could imagine how I would have ranked if I did, but by the next Kill Event, I will have enough at my disposal to really do some damage. But then, you can either have an attack boost active or an anti-scout boost active, not both at the same time (the same applies to defence boosts). I chose the latter.

If your stronghold is Level 15 or higher, you should also prepare for the worst case scenario and have a Hero Resurrection on hand. Outlanders won’t be as forgiving as the players in your own kingdom. Make sure your gymnos is upgraded at the same level as your stronghold, because you will be able to retain, on average, up to 85-95% of your hero XP, depending on your gymnos level.

Good reason to have your gymnos upgraded to stronghold level.

Good reason to have your gymnos upgraded to stronghold level.

I recommend having plenty of 8-hour peace shields, say at least 10. I see these as expendable, and it’s not a big loss if you are prepared to prematurely drop your shield and attack an outlander who is attacking your hive, or who is holding heroes from your own kingdom. Know when to attack, and when not to attack. The peace shield is your safety net.

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
― Sun Tzu, The Art of War

#2. Be Organised

“Thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory:
1 He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.
2 He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces.
3 He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks.
4 He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared.
5 He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign.”

“Order or disorder depends on organisation; courage or cowardice on circumstances; strength or weakness on dispositions.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

I am not going to pull any punches here, but this was my biggest observation. There was no organisation, no structured chain of command, and smaller alliances were under the impression that they were not allowed to participate, so they sat under their peace shields for the duration. No wonder the kingdom got its arse kicked. On top of that, there was no one defending the Wonder as stated previously. There was no strategy, no direction, and people were making mistakes, left, right and centre.

“When the common soldiers are too strong and their officers too weak, the result is INSUBORDINATION.”

“When the officers are too strong and the common soldiers too weak, the result is COLLAPSE.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

“Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is noise before defeat.”
– Unknown

The biggest mistakes were:

Posting outlander coordinates in the Kingdom Chat – Good one, champ. Just give away our position. They will be using a random teleport before anyone gets the chance to teleport next to the outlander and go in for the attack. For those unfamiliar, any outlander in a kingdom can chat on the Kingdom Chat. If you post coordinates in the Kingdom Chat, they will see. And they will act.

“Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunderbolt.”

“Conceal your dispositions, and your condition will remain secret, which leads to victory;  show your dispositions, and your condition will become patent, which leads to defeat.”

“If those who are sent to draw water begin by drinking themselves, the army is suffering from thirst. [One may know the condition of a whole army from the behavior of a single man.]”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

When posting coordinates, posting stronghold level instead of power Stronghold level doesn’t mean shit. Power is more important. There are two Level 18 stronghold players in my alliance, and one has double the power of the other. Who do you think is going to do more damage?

“To know your Enemy, you must become your Enemy.”
– Unknown

Not posting the coordinates correctly – Coordinates should be posted as such: 123: 456:789. This way, a player can tap on the comment, which will open a window with a button to take them straight to the coordinates. It is much quicker than going to the map view and tapping the coordinates there, and during a kill event, 10 seconds can mean all the difference between a hit and one that got away. Have a notepad and pen handy if you have to, so that you can write down the coordinates and then post them in the forum to save you going back and forth.

Slow to act on posted outlander coordinates – Many outlanders got hit, but many also got away. Granted, the ones that got away were quick to act, but others remained in the posted coordinates for as long as 5 minutes without anyone making an attempt to attack.

“Once war is declared, he will not waste precious time in waiting for reinforcements, nor will he return his army back for fresh supplies, but crosses the enemy’s frontier without delay.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Now that we’ve got the mistakes identified, let’s debrief and learn from them.

#3. Be structured and disciplined

“Hence a commander who advances without any thought of winning personal fame and withdraws in spite of certain punishment, whose only concern is to protect his people and promote the interests of his ruler, is the nation’s treasure. Because he fusses over his men as if they were infants, they will accompany him into the deepest valleys; because he fusses over his men as if they were his own beloved sons, they will die by his side. If he is generous with them and yet they do not do as he tells them, if he loves them and yet they do not obey his commands, if he is so undisciplined with them that he cannot bring them into proper order, they will be like spoiled children who can be put to no good use at all.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Structure and Chain of Command – just like in a real army, the Kingdom needs a proper rank-and-file, and should be strictly adhered to. The Kingdom must have a war general specifically for KvK Kill Events – preferably from the ruling alliance, but not holding the title of King. You cannot run a Kingdom as you would run an army, and vice versa. The same holds true in Game of War. From my observations, any kingdom requires the following divisions:

  • Defend the Wonder of the Kingdom
  • Attack the Wonder of the Opposing Kingdom
  • Spotters to look for outlanders in the Kingdom
  • Spotters to look out for outlander hero holders in the Opposing Kingdom
  • Guerrillas – Kingdom (to hit the outlanders spotted by the Spotters)
  • Guerrillas – Opposing Kingdom (to hit the hero holders and unshielded players in the opposing Kingdom)
  • Monster hunters

Spotters scan the map view to look out for outlanders in the Kingdom, or to look out for outlanders in their home turf who are holding Kingdom heroes. How many spotters are required, is up to the discretion of the war general. This should not discourage anyone else from posting coordinates, should they spot an outlander – if you know one of your alliance members is a designated spotter, post them in the alliance chat and let the spotter post the coordinates into the forum.

A separate chat room should be set up to post outlander coordinates. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD THE COORDINATES BE POSTED IN THE KINGDOM CHAT. Every alliance leader needs to know this, and make sure that their alliance members know this. Alliance leaders, do your job and lead, and that includes making sure your alliance members know the score. Outlanders roaming the Kingdom have access to the Kingdom Chat. Their posts will appear as white text in a red box, with a demonic avatar. Their kingdom number will also appear next to their name and alliance tag. What you post in the Kingdom Chat, they will see. And the Kingdom doesn’t want the outlanders to know that they’re going after them.

“If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. If his forces are united, separate them. If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Guerrillas should be keeping an eye on the separate forum, and act quick on any coordinates posted there. This is where the importance of posting the correct coordinates and power level are important – if it is an outlander with about 15 million power, a 20-25 million power player can take them on with a decent chance of victory. Don’t waste a 120 million power player on a 10 million power outlander, when a 20 million power player is sufficient to get the job done.

Wonder attack/defence could ideally be assigned to one alliance, with the alliance leader (or a delegate) to be in charge of the contingent. The alliance leader should choose a Rank 4 to act as a deputy to take care of alliance affairs so that they can concentrate on the Wonder. Swap alliances to take your choosing if you have to. It doesn’t have to be permanent – only move alliances for the duration of the kill event, then you can return to your original alliance afterward. Alternatively, players can choose whether they will go for the attack or the defence, then choose a leader and set up a chat room solely for the contingent, and all communications can take place there in the heat of the battle. Once you’ve decided whether to defend your own Wonder or attack the opposing Wonder, whatever you do, DON’T CHANGE YOUR MIND. Once you’ve made the decision which way to go, stick to it. Don’t break the structure. If you get the opportunity to take on an outlander attacking a hive, go for it. If not, get another big alliance to rally the outlander to oblivion. The safety of the Wonder is paramount.

Another thing that should be considered: There are players from all over the world, and speak different languages. Be mindful of your posts – The translator isn’t that great, so avoid slang, and use proper language (including correct spelling and grammar) so that there is no mistranslation from one language to another when giving directions. This goes for ALL languages, not just English. Save the slang and spelling errors for the Kingdom Chat.

“When the general is weak and without authority; when his orders are not clear and distinct; when there are no fixed duties assigned to officers and men, and the ranks are formed in a slovenly haphazard manner, the result is utter disorganization.”

“If words of command are not clear and distinct, if orders are not thoroughly understood, then the general is to blame. But, if orders are clear and the soldiers nevertheless disobey, then it is the fault of their officers.”

“There are three ways in which a ruler can bring misfortune upon his army: By commanding the army to advance or to retreat, being ignorant of the fact that it cannot obey; This is called hobbling the army. By attempting to govern an army in the same way as he administers a kingdom, being ignorant of the conditions which obtain in an army; This causes restlessness in the soldier’s minds. By employing the officers of his army without discrimination, through ignorance of the military principle of adaptation to circumstances. This shakes the confidence of the soldiers.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

#4. Never discourage smaller power players/alliances from participating

“Great results, can be achieved with small forces.”

“When one treats people with benevolence, justice, and righteousness, and reposes confidence in them, the army will be united in mind and all will be happy to serve their leaders.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

“All you small players should just shield up and wait it out.”

If you are a small player (and it wasn’t that long ago when I was one of them), nothing is as disparaging and disheartening as the comment above, or variations thereof.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Smaller players are just as valuable as the 1 billion power arsehole who terrorises the kingdom during a regular purge. If you’re in a leaky boat with your crew, it doesn’t matter if you have a thimble or a bucket. Start bailing.

Smaller power players can shield up and scan the map for outlanders, and post outlander coordinates. They can attack an outlander, if they have reasonable chance of victory. They can hunt monsters in the opposing kingdom. They can steal monster kills from outlanders in their own kingdom. They can harass outlanders by sending troops to a resource tile occupied by an outlander, forcing the outlander to recall those troops and miss out on the , thus cutting their supply lines. A bigger power player should scout the resource tiles, and instruct the smaller players to hit, with the details of the troops . They can hit smaller cities in the opposing kingdom. However, they must also be skilful enough to be able to quickly evade bigger players who are on their trail.

Big power players from smaller alliances can assist the defenders of the Wonder, or the attackers of the opposing Kingdom’s wonder. They can also hit the outlander guerrillas. Again, they should concentrate on one or the other. Not both. “Jack of all trades but master of none” comes to mind.

One other thing that could make or break the Kingdom…

#5 Feuding alliances should cast aside their differences

“It is easy to love your friend, but sometimes the hardest lesson to learn is to love your enemy.”

“Maneuvering with an army is advantageous; with an undisciplined multitude, most dangerous.”

“We become one body ; the enemy being separated into ten parts. We attack the divided ten with the united one. We are many, the enemy is few, and in superiority of numbers there is economy of strength.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Why the hell are feuding alliances still fighting each other during a KvK kill event, when there is a common enemy in their midst? As I said previously – take thy ego to thine altar, and sacrifice it to the Kingdom. No more needs to be said.

#6. D-Day: Surviving the Kill Event

Read up on these blog posts and articles here, here, here, here, here, here and here. There are some great tips there to help maximise the resources you have on hand and plan your strategy. During the kill event, the following tips are helpful to stay safe:

  • When you are away from the game during the kill event, use a peace shield or ghost rally (make sure you include your hero in the rally!)
  • Do not gather on resource tiles. If you need resources, ask your alliance for help. Don’t make yourself an easy target for outlanders! It is also worthy to note that smaller alliances are well off with a member with some decent power and plenty of resources at hand to help out the little guys with resources, so that they need not put themselves at risk. So if you’re from a bigger alliance, you could be doing the kingdom a disservice by trying to recruit a big power player from a smaller alliance.

“He who knows when he can fight and when he can not, will be victorious.”
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

And afterwards…

Outlanders can remain in the kingdom for up to 4 hours after the conclusion of the Kill Event. You will need to remain vigilant until then. Keep shielded or rallied in the four hours following the end of the Kill Event.

It would be wise to enforce a kingdom-wide NAP (non aggression pact) without any exceptions. Hero holders could be holding outlander heroes, and it is not in the kingdom’s best interests if they get sprung free. If possible, use the captive outlander heroes as bargaining chips for the release of kingdom heroes. Chances are, everyone has taken a hit and it would be prudent to allow them to rebuild. If hero release negotiations fail, off with their heads.

Lastly, the ruling alliance (or a delegate) should have the post-kill event Kingdom Rules (if any) posted in the Kingdom Rules forum as soon as possible after the conclusion of the Kill Event. The longer the delay, the greater the chance of some numbskull hitting a player who is holding outlander heroes. It should then be up to every alliance leader, or their delegate, to make sure their alliance is up to date with the rules.

He who wishes to fight must first count the cost. When you engage in actual fighting, if victory is long in coming, then men’s weapons will grow dull and their ardor will be dampened. If you lay siege to a town, you will exhaust your strength. Again, if the campaign is protracted, the resources of the State will not be equal to the strain. Now, when your weapons are dulled, your ardor dampened, your strength exhausted and your treasure spent, other chieftains will spring up to take advantage of your extremity. Then no man, however wise, will be able to avert the consequences that must ensue… In war, then, let your great object be victory, not lengthy campaigns.
– Sun Tzu, The Art of War

Further Reading:
The Art of War by Sun Tzu (you can download a copy here)

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About meganmasters2015

I have been writing for as long as I can remember. Ever since I was a child, I would create characters and write about their adventures. This continued through my teenage years. I am studying Certificate IV in Professional Writing and Editing. After I complete this course, I can become an editor, copywriter and freelance for writing research reports, journals and content for different media. I also have a profile on NaNoWriMo, and I achieved my 50,000 words for 2014.
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