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Thread: Imagawa campaign: "Short Letters to Mariko"

  1. #1
    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default Imagawa campaign: "Short Letters to Mariko"

    Hello folks,
    thanks for the interest in my campaign report. It is Imagawa, Starting in 1530 with difficulty Expert, aiming to Conquer all Japan.
    I will give the report a bit the character of a one-player roleplay game. I hope you don't mind. I will try to balance the battle reports and the decorating story as good as possible. If I am failing at this, feel free to tell me.
    Please note that this is mainly fictional, with some historical influence.
    Enjoy!


    Short Letters to Mariko

    The following letters signed by Hayashi Minoru were found in the house of a Chinese carrier pidgeon breeder in the late 17th century. They draw the subjective picture of Japan during the Epoque of the Warring States.

    Initial letter
    "Beloved Mariko,
    I miss you.
    The pain of loss keeps making me restless. I cannot stay in one place for too long, I can hardly sleep and it must be 3 years ago since I last attempted to read a book. I am even lacking the adequate dedication to Buddha but I do not dare to cleanse my mind of mundane things. Thoughts are quick, quicker than swords. I can dodge blades and arrows that threaten my life, but I cannot avoid the piercing vigor of my troubled mind.
    It took me a while to decide writing this letter and I hope this bird finds its way so you get to read it. I have spent years hardly talking to anyone, trying to absorb my sentiments but I cannot hold them any longer. I have to share them with someone and I have always shared them with you.
    I have seen 3 winters since you died and so much has happened. Our daughter Yoshiko is fine. She is 6 years of age now and really smart. I am afraid you would dissaprove, but I am already teaching her to handle a wooden sword. I am far away from being a good teacher, but she moves faster and smoother than any child of her age I have seen so far.
    It is spring in the 4th year of Go-Nara Tenno and I am in service of Great Imagawa Yoshimoto, Daimy of Hizen in Northern Kysh, Totomi and Suruga in Central Honsh, for 2 years now. I do not know how, but I must have impressed him in some way while I was practising sword fight in the yard of Nagasaki castle in Hizen. Listening to some of my thoughts on castle defense he suddenly chose me to command the garrison of Hizen and to ensure the infrastructural expansion in that province. I am still residing in Nagasaki and grateful for this opportunity. It keeps me busy the whole day with war preparations. The authority of the Ashikaga Bakufu has declined from moon to moon and many local warlords seek to expand their influence.
    You might recall that the Shimazu family has eversince been a decisive political power on this isle. Lord Imagawa expects them to attack us in near future in order to bring whole Kyshu under their control. Therefore I am preparing to defend my borders while considering to take provinces from the minor clans of Kysh. It is a tough mission since for me, a former peasant, it is nearly impossible to execute the necessary authority on the mostly noble unit leaders.
    My past seems to be my most vicious enemy in those days. With one hand I am trying to achieve honour and respect amongst my fellow warmen, while the other is struggling to cope with my loneliness. But the sound of blades is heard on this isle. The minor clans sense the instability threatening their authority and they are becoming aggressive and suspicious.
    The war is about to begin.






    Letter from Summer 1530
    Mariko,
    the pidgeon has returned, without my letter! This means it must have delivered it! I thank Buddha for this wonderful fortune!
    Summer has come, our daughter is now 7 years of age. Though I am feeling a lot of joy in my heart every time I see her, things are getting troublesome. The men are sensing the growing threat and get aggressive. As I already told you I have problems controlling them. We are 360 men in Hizen but to expand I need a lot more.
    Lord Imagawa is in Totomi at the moment, but he already informed me that he might arrive within a year to support the expansion. With his message came additional 120 archers, lead by Inoue Kagemochi, a first rank general. He asks me to be ready to invade Northern Kysh at the time of Lord Yoshimoto's arrival.
    Still, my biggest problem is to not run out of koku. I ordered to build watch towers along our border in order to get a glimpse at the strenth of the surrounding clans. I want to take Chikuzen and Chikugo within two years. From Imagawa Yoshimoto's message I know, that he is behaving similar in Honsh. He also told me to raise tax rates to a maximum. I am reluctant, but I have to give in. I cannot protect the peasants in times like these, although I would like too.
    Imagawa seeks to form an alliance with Lord Takeda. This would secure his Eastern border and he could concentrate on Kysh.
    I will occasionally try to draw you a picture of our current situation, but in this busy times I lack the proper concentration.

    Ogenkide,





    Letter from Autumn 1530
    Mariko,
    not much has happened since my last letter, but again the bird has returned. Construction of border watchtower is still ongoing, but he minor clans remain silent.
    Lord Hj Ujitsuna has attacked and taken Izu. Apart from that, there is nothing new from the East.
    I feel myself getting impatient. Kagemochi is a very able and nice person. He is teaching me the proper use of bow and arrow. I am getting better and might finally have found my weapon of choice.





    Letter from Winter 1530
    Mariko,
    the towers are ready, I visited them today. The guards say that the Kikuchi Clan of Chikugo have several archers and yari ashigaru, some of them apparently already fight the Shimazu army, but lost. Chikuzen is controlled by the Akizuki family and has no archers, as it seems.
    Although the latter might be a lot easier to overwhelm we need to march south to reach the river before the Shimazu do so. I will await spring to come, though. I am expecting support from Yoshimoto as soon as the snow fades.
    Takeda accepted our alliance proposal. Since we now share a common border with Lord Hj I proposed allying to him as well. As far as I know he is becoming a major force in Honsh.

    Ogenkide,





    Letter from Spring 1531
    Mariko!
    Lord Yoshimoto arrived and we are preparing to attack. I will assist the Great Daimy as part of Kagemochi's archer unit while he is staying in Hizen to guard the castle with 120 bowmen. This could be my chance to prove my worth.
    Altough taxes are hardly bearable we are only slowly generating funds. This slows down the process significantly. I hope this will change with acquisition of Chikugo.
    Lord Hj accepted our proposal. As long as they keep their promise we will be safe in Honsh.





    Letter from Summer 1531
    Mariko!
    We won in Chikugo! It was a great battle. Talking with Yoshimoto about the best tactic of advancing, we both agreed in trying to lure the Kikuchi onto the bridge in range of our archers. It worked, they took heavy casualties when trying to push our infantry from the bridge. Seeing this, they withdrew quickly, leaving their dead general behind. And we chased them. Although they turned another time to resist Lord Yoshimoto fought them down with his own hands. I have never seen a fighter like this. He alone must have killed 10 men that day.
    But a lot more has happened: coming back from the battlefield there were two messengers. One arrived from Lord Takeda. He told us that his master and the Hj were at war with each other and they seeked our aid in this conflict. Lord Yoshimoto asked me for my opinion on the matter, and I spoke: "I wish not to insult Lord Takeda, nor do I wish to abandon him in troubled times. But it was Hj Soun-sama who Shinkurō mediated the succession dispute between supporters of Great Imagawa Yoshitada's son Imagawa Ujichika and Yoshitada's cousin, Oshika Norimitsu. I think that we owe the Hj too much to openly offend them by abandoning our alliance. I ask Lord Takeda to forgive me and pray to the Great Buddha for his sake."
    Yoshimoto agreed and the matter was settled.
    The second messenger came from Inoue in Hizen. He told us that he was attacked by 240 men of the Akizuki clan and that he killed 220 of them, only loosing 7 of his 120 formidable archers. As a reward, he was promoted to the Second Rank.
    Despite the good news, our situation is critical. We saw a major Shimazu army in Higo, the defeated Kikuchi rebels fled to Chikuzen merged with the Akizuki, now forming a considerably threat to the small Hizen garrison. We would barely be able to hold our position in Honsh if Takeda would attack now and we still do not have the money to build up considerable armies. In order to avoid a revolt in Chikugo, we had to lower the tax rate to a minimum.
    Reinforcents are expected to arrive Hizen from Totomi until the next full moon. All we else can do, is wait.





    Summary:
    My position is a bit instable, but as long as the Shimazu crushes rebels and Takeda and Hojo fight themselves I can hold it. Still, I need to expand, I not generating enough cash to hold off Shimazu in the long run.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-28-2009 at 11:52.

  2. #2
    Blue Eyed Samurai Senior Member Wishazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Excellent read so far my friend. Much better written than my Oda Campaign. Imagawa are usually a very tough proposition, they are my favourite clan to play as and I was going to do them in my next campaign but you have beaten me to it lol. If I may make a reccomendation, I would suggest taking Mikawa as soon as possible. Its very easily defensible, away from the dangers of most of the other clans and has a reasonable income from farming. I usually take it immediately and build it up as a fall back position if things don`t go to plan in that part of the map.
    "Wishazu does his usual hero thing and slices all the zombies to death, wiping out yet another horde." - Askthepizzaguy, Resident Evil: Dark Falls

    "Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical"
    Sun Tzu the Art of War

    Blue eyes for our samurai
    Red blood for his sword
    Your ronin days are over
    For your home is now the Org
    By Gregoshi

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    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Thanks for your attention. It is quite a lot of text, I must admit.
    I had to perform some updates on the text to ensure the consistency with the story:
    - I removed Minoru's surname Hayashi. Since he is a peasant he is not entitled to carry one.
    - Hj attacked Izu and not Ise. Thanks for telling me, Wishazu.
    - I decreased Minoru's initial authority in Hizen a bit. I think it was way to exagerated. He is now to command the garrison and ensure the infrastructural expansion of Hizen.

    Yeah, the Imagawa are a tough one. Still, you were in a similar position in your Oda campain. I think I should not let Shimazu grow to strong, though this will be a hard piece of work.
    As for Mikawa, I totally agree. By now I did not dare to face the 4 star general there with my busy troops, but I think I will weaken the garrison in Musashi in order to conquer Mikawa before Oda does.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-22-2009 at 18:51.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Great read start so far, good luck with the campaign. I agree with grabbing Mikawa if its feasible.

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    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Letter from Autumn 1531
    Mariko,
    I am still in the camp near Chikugo-kawa. Inoue reports reinforcements from Totomi.
    My Lord Imagawa visited my tent this afternoon. I served him tea and tried hard to show the adequate manners. He observed me with calm interest, but fortunately did not look insulted.
    We spoke:
    "Minoru."
    "Imagawa-sama?"
    "How come, that a peasant like you acquired so much talent for the Art of War?"
    "I do my very best to please you my Lord. I hope my humble services are of some value in your honourable campain."
    "You traded your yari for a bow, I saw?"
    "Yes, my Lord. Inoue-san liberally taught me the proper use of a bow. I think by now my arrows are of better use to your army than my pike was."
    "The Bow is a Samurai weapon, Minoru. There are opinions that I must not grant privileges like that to a mere peasant."
    "If you wish me back in my old unit, my Lord, I will inmediat-"
    "Minoru."
    "My Lord?"
    "I know better than listening to the tongues of envy. You have a good overview on the battlefield. Bowmen suits you better than infantry, I think. I will ask Watanabe Nuotaka to take you into service. Once you returned to Hizen you can then remain with Inoue Kagemochi."
    "I thank you, my Lord."
    "But still... you must work on your comportment, your prestige. There are men in my army that do not respect you. First of all, you need a surname."
    "I beg your pardon, my Lord, I do not understand well."
    "Why did you set up your tent away from the bakuei, among the trees of this grove? There are rumours you are conspiring and avoid being seen."
    "Honestly... I find it... easier to defend."
    "Ahaha! Against which attackers you seek to defend yourself?"
    "Please excuse, Imagawa-sama, but I am afraid that in times like these there is no lack of potential attackers."
    "True."
    "I was able to hear you and your guards approaching sooner than if you had been walking on grass. Additionally I could draw advantage of the trees if I was outnumbered in a fight."
    "So be it then. If you prefer groves to camps, you shall from now on be called Hayashi, Hayashi Minoru-san, a warrior peasant in service of Imagawa Yoshimoto."
    "I cannot thank you enough, my Lord, for the honour that you are granting me."
    Lord Imagawa stood up and left the tent. I felt thunderstruck, as you can imagine. I will now sign the first letter with my new name. I love you, Hayashi Mariko-san.


    林 実



    Letter from Winter 1531
    Mariko,
    Inoue moved into Chikuzen against the Akitsuki and Kikuchi clans with about 230 men before winter came. Imagawa sent him 63 men for support. Though he was succesfull he had losses and is now facing a major army of the Kikuchi that might attack from Buzen.
    Shimazu keeps expanding and apparently has taken Butcho some days ago. He strikes with big armies, bigger than any one I have seen so far. I do not dare to imagine how we could face him if he turns against us. I am hoping for him to expand over Shikoku.
    Imagawa-sama rose taxes a bit because the situation in Chikugo is calming down. Still, it remains unstable and we had a poor harvest, leaving us behind with hardly any money at all. Loyalty to our forces is barely seen. Despite the rather low taxes we have to fear peasant uproars, claiming their independence.
    Surprising news: Katagiri Nobutaka from Totomi has abandoned Suruga and taken Mikawa. Rebels from Shinano have put Suruga under their control. Our position in Honshu is now nearly desperate. We have a border to the Great Oda Clan now, from what I heard they could overrun us in half a year. We have a emissary on the way to propose an alliance. I hope the Oda agree.
    I miss Yoshiko, I hope she is fine.


    林 実



    Letter from Spring 1532
    Mariko,
    the Oda accepted the offer and there was neither a revolt nor another attack from Shinano. If we can make it over this year we might be able to gain some strength.
    I visited Yoshiko in the castle of Nagasaki. She asked a lot of questions, but she is fine. Still I have to remain in Chikugo. Shimazu drew his troops together in Butcho. I wonder whether he is aiming for us, the Buzen rebels or Shikoku.


    林 実



    Letter from Summer 1532
    Mariko,
    everything quite. An amazing silence lies above the fields. The sun warms my troubled heart. Still there is no sign of further aggression.
    Shimazu Takahisa's son has now come of age and is serving in his army.
    I decided to draw you a picture of our current situation, so you can follow my descriptions better. Please excuse that I am such a poor painter, but the constant use of the bowstring makes my fingers numb.





    Loyalty in Mikawa still is reported to be too unstable for a tax raise. Perhaps I demand too much, but could you provide me with some advice? Since the weapons are getting cold I do not have frequent chance to serve my Lord in suficient manner. This might become a severe thread for my further career in this army.


    林 実


    Summary:
    Puh, this campain is a lot of gambling. I could be whiped out completely in no time. I think I have a good position to turtle and be friends with everyone until I have the strength to strike. Taking Mikawa this early without considerable forces was good but risky.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-23-2009 at 12:40.

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    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Letter from Autumn 1532
    Mariko,
    Shimazu Takahisa has attacked and taken Buzen. All rebels were put to the sword. He is now in the position to attack Chikuzen and Hizen without passing Chikugo-kawa. We would thereby loose the tactical advantage of the river.
    Imagawa rose taxes to the common level. The garrison in Mikawa must therefore pay attention to the peoples loyalty.
    Apart from that I am spending my spare time with training bow and arrow.

    Ogenkide,


    林 実



    Letter from Winter 1532
    Mariko,
    night has fallen and I am back in Nagasaki. Lord Yoshimoto and I rode up here to meet the emissary Abe Hanzo, who proved himself being a very able diplomat. He is on his journey to meet Shimazu Takahisa-sama in order to form an alliance and ensure that he directs his highly expandatory potential towards Shikoku.
    He confirmed what was already indicated. The whole country had a good harvest! Mikawa remaint silent and we now have over 1600 koku to spend. I convinced Lord Imagawa to invest in infrastructure as well as in recruiting new Samurai Archers. We are building a castle in Mikawa and support the farmers in Hizen and Chikugo. This will approximately take half a year. By then, the new bowmen should be sufficiently prepared, too.
    I spent the day with our daughter. Despite my absence she has neither neglected her studies nor did she lack physical activity. They say she was running throughout the whole castle, climbin up walls, houses and trees, asking everyone out, but always polite and with her wooden sword, like a little Samurai. It was her teacher Kimura-sensei who looked after her during my time in Chikugo.
    Lord Imagawa granted me another visit this evening. He brought his Go game and asked me to play with him. Do you remember how I loved to play Go, always imagining it to be a real battlefield? You always disapproved of me wanting to become a General, a military genius like Minamoto no Yoshitsune. Well, as you see it must somehow be my destiny. I still recall the first part of our conversation.
    "So Minoru, why didn`t you as well build your house among the trees of a grove?", Yoshimoto-sama said and laughed.
    "My Lord, I probably would have done so if this was my house. I am sharing this little hut with 4 of my fellow ashigaru soldiers. It belongs to the father of Kutoshi. He is a local merchant who travelled to Chgoku two years ago."
    "I understand. And the little girl in the kitchen is your daughter?"
    "Yes, she is helping Kutoshi with the supper."
    "Why isn`t your wife looking after her?"
    "My wife died 5 years ago."
    "How come?"
    "We were accidentally involved in a Ninja assault. It was during a public theater in Suruga. Two Ninjas suddenly came out of nowhere and went for a local nobleman standing next to us. When they threw their daggers at him he quickly pulled my wife in front of him, using her to shield himself against the blades. Before I realized what had happened the nobleman had escaped and the Ninja were slain by his guards. My wife had died instantly."
    As you may imagine, I felt like I was cooked alive. I could not afford not to talk openly to my Lord, but the tension inside me was hardly possible to hide. Still he did not inmediately change the topic and asked me if I would blame the Ninja, their employer or the targeted nobleman for your death. I told him, honestly, that I was unable to figure that out in all these years. He responded that he would make the nobleman responsible and asked me if I knew his name. Again honestly I said that I do not know his name. After that he remained silent.
    Some turns late he told me, "Minoru, if I find out that you are letting me win I will have you executed."
    He was right, at the first glance he had considerable advantages that I granted him on purpose because I could not yet imagine what would offend him more, a defeat or a potentially faked victory.
    "I am sorry, my Lord, but you are not winning.", I told him.
    Two turns later I was equal again, another four and I was dominating the game. Lord Imagawa looked surprised, even a bit amused. Can you remember how your father always got mad at me because I used to turn the tide when he thought he had finally secured his victory? I was always letting my deployment appear weaker than it was. I wish this would as well apply to the Imagawa troops, but I am afraid it does not.
    "This was a very challenging game, Minoru. I thank you."
    Yoshimoto-sama won by performing some well thought moves towards the end of the game. I caught myself not paying enough attention to the match as I was slowly carried away thoughts. In any way I am glad to keep my head well situated on my shoulders.
    He told me that tomorrow he would be heading back to the camp, without me. I would be to go with Abe-san to see Lord Shimazu. Yoshiko wants to come with me but I am not letting her. It is not unusual to execute unlucky emissaries and everyone travelling with them. As Imagawa-sama said, Abe-san is to teach me appropriate manners and the Art of Diplomacy. He is said to be a great swordsmen, too.
    This will be an interesting journey.


    林 実



    Letter from Spring 1533
    Mariko,
    fortunately there was no attack from Shimazu and as far as we know he has returned to Bungo. We are in Chikuzen at the moment and heading south. It is already getting confortably warm on midday, so Abe-san is teaching me advanced techniques in sword fight when we rest. During the journey we talk a lot about manners and diplomacy. He is very wise and must be older than I thought, despite looking still very young and vital.


    林 実



    Summary:
    My situation is still not secured and depends much on the benevolence of the Oda and Shimazu. Diplomacy is a major issue, as it seems. The good thing is that I am now able to generate some cash and build troops without needing to expand. My longterm plan is to either get a grab at Kyushu if Shimazu somehow gets weakened or inattentive or, if not, build up a strong position in Honshu with a Mikawa-Shinano-Suruga border.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-23-2009 at 18:56.

  7. #7

    Default Re: AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Great campaign and write up so far. The format is very original. As I said in the other thread you also may need to employ the services of some of the "men in black pyjamas" to stop your provinces rebelling and allow you to raise taxes.

    I'd say your situation in the east is precarious, though it's early days yet of course. You could bide your time and go for Owari, which has a good farm income, but I'd say your priority is Suruga to use as a buffer zone to protect Totomi which will be one of your major developed provinces. If you do go for Owari, t's best to wait until Lord Oda invades Omi or Ise of course.

    In the west you have more opportunity and you are in posession of fertile lands. I would go after Shimazu as soon as possible and have your warriors and his dishonour, chase him to his grave (sorry couldn't resist that one). With Hizen, Chikuzen and Chikugo already secured you should be getting a half decent income as it is, though if Shimazu gets any ideas of going on tour with his Satsuma No Dachis, your plans in the region could be ruined.

  8. #8
    Mercury Member Thermal's Avatar
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    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    yep, shinobi and embassies will be handy here, maybe you could risk weaking totomi some more to strengthen mikawa, oda are in a terribly good position to strike, same as shimazu, i think you have over reached yourself a little, but if your borders clans dont attack im sure you'll pull through

  9. #9
    Blue Eyed Samurai Senior Member Wishazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    If you can I would reccomend training up a group of 4-5 Shinobi and send them together on a tour of Kyushu. If you can ignite rebellion there then Shimazu will be too distracted to attack you.
    "Wishazu does his usual hero thing and slices all the zombies to death, wiping out yet another horde." - Askthepizzaguy, Resident Evil: Dark Falls

    "Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical"
    Sun Tzu the Art of War

    Blue eyes for our samurai
    Red blood for his sword
    Your ronin days are over
    For your home is now the Org
    By Gregoshi

  10. #10

    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Very interesting write up. I'd get a couple of Shinobi up and running, keep an eye on Shimazu and Oda and look for any potential weaknesses.

  11. #11
    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    At the moment I am working on the next update, "Men of Shadows" already in progress, but thanks for the advice. I wanted to have enough troops to hold my position, so I was a bit short in cash, as you cannot deal with ronin via Shinobi.
    Now the cash situation got a lot better, but I am still undecided what to do first. You'll see.


    Because I forgot to comment on that:
    Quote Originally Posted by Wishazu View Post
    Much better written than my Oda Campaign.
    Don't you dare! Your Oda campain is a masterpiece. My campain lacks a certain thrill at the moment and I'm afraid I'm getting boring. This never happened in your campain, maximum action, from start on.


    Still thanks for the compliment, I'm trying hard.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Senior Member ReluctantSamurai's Avatar
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    Default Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Here is a crazy suggestion, but a strategy I use almost all the time as Imagawa. Withdraw all your southern forces to central Japan with the idea of delivering a knockout blow to Oda and gaining access to the much richer regions of Ise and Omi, and eventually Iga (great for Imagawa with the ninja bonus), Yamashiro and Kawachi. You end up with much richer provinces and more of them have some kind of bonus. You are also concentrating your forces.

    The down side of this is that Shimazu gets a free hand and often forms an alliance with Mori to threaten your southern flank, so a rollback of Mori is needed early.

    To the north you need to decide where to form a defensive line......push out a bit to Suruga (which is much more defensible than Totomi, especially against Takeda cavalry), or Mikawa (and abandon Totomi......scorched earth in order, here).

    In any case, it's a fun and non-conventional way to play Imagawa, and avoids the difficult split-empire problem.
    High Plains Drifter

  13. #13
    Blue Eyed Samurai Senior Member Wishazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: AW: Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Quote Originally Posted by patdj View Post

    Don't you dare! Your Oda campain is a masterpiece. My campain lacks a certain thrill at the moment and I'm afraid I'm getting boring. This never happened in your campain, maximum action, from start on.


    Still thanks for the compliment, I'm trying hard.
    Cheers mate. Though I will 100% agree that my Oda campaign was the most exciting campaign I have played in years, and I`m glad I was able to transmit that excitement onto the pages here, this Imagawa campaign appears to me to be unique in the way you are presenting it. I love it. Keep it up

    P.S Reluctant Samurai makes some good points there. But I would disagree on going for Oda`s lands early on, you will get bogged down by large armies of ronin packed full of Monks.
    Last edited by Wishazu; 01-26-2009 at 03:45.
    "Wishazu does his usual hero thing and slices all the zombies to death, wiping out yet another horde." - Askthepizzaguy, Resident Evil: Dark Falls

    "Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical"
    Sun Tzu the Art of War

    Blue eyes for our samurai
    Red blood for his sword
    Your ronin days are over
    For your home is now the Org
    By Gregoshi

  14. #14
    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    The strategy sounds interesting but daring. I am not sure whether I have the unit and player quality to manage kicking Oda that easily (despite the 2 bridge map of Owari). I'm not at my PC at the moment, but I will calculate that one when I'm home.
    Still:
    - I am afraid giving Shimazu whole Kysh will end up him being my major foe again (see Hojo campain).
    - Additionally, concentrating in Honsh will be very much alike my Hojo campain, too.

    At the moment I'm favouring the turtle&trouble tactic. Means gathering everything I need to defend myself properly, while creating disturbance and irritation by the "Men of Shadows". I hope to apply some handy diplomacy and grab everything thats easy to get and to be hold.

    Still, thank you both very much for your advice and your interest in the campain!

  15. #15
    Senior Member Senior Member ReluctantSamurai's Avatar
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    Default Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    But I would disagree on going for Oda`s lands early on, you will get bogged down by large armies of ronin packed full of Monks.
    Not necessarily the case if you play with patience. The largest contingent of monks usually resides in Kawachi. Ise, Omi, and Iga are cleared fairly easy, Yamashiro places you in close proximity to fairly the large contingent in Kawachi. I wait for Shimazu and/or Mori to bang their heads against that wall until the rebel forces are worn down, then step in and snatch it. My last three Imagawa camps (expert lvl) have all gone that same way If they choose to attack you, they have to leave some kind of contingent in Kawachi. Monks are very vulnerable to archer fire, especially with no armor upgrades. I've had them attack me in Yamashiro before and my archers, both foot and cav whittle 'em down to less than half strength before melee is even joined. The map in Yamashiro contains many tactical possibilities for traps and flanking......even monks will rout when decimated and flanked

    The strategy sounds interesting but daring. I am not sure whether I have the unit and player quality to manage kicking Oda that easily (despite the 2 bridge map of Owari).
    It's really not that tough, especially since the AI usually has Oda running all over the place fighting rebels.

    - I am afraid giving Shimazu whole Kysh will end up him being my major foe again
    This is usually the case, often made more difficult by a Shimazu-Mori alliance. However..............

    ........if you reach the goals of Kawachi/Yamashiro/Wakasa as a defensive front, this is very easy to hold. Shimazu will bleed himself white trying to take Kawachi, and Mori usually tries for Yamashiro which also has excellent defensive possibilities. What usually happens then is they turn on each other.

    Compare the koku income from Owari/Ise/Yamashiro to Hizen/Chikugo/Chikuzen. It's nearly double! Add to that the ninja bonus from Iga (tailor-made for Imagawa, AFAIAC), the Ashi bonus from Owari (great for teppo), and the +1 bonus for any unit trained in Yamashiro, and you have not only have considerable koku at your disposal, but a training edge as well.

    Might I suggest that you make a save-game of your current position, and give this strategy a whirl? If it doesn't work for you, you can always go back and try a different approach. I had similar misgivings when it was first suggested to me. After trying it, I was hooked. Much more exciting than the usual way I was playing Imagawa.
    Last edited by ReluctantSamurai; 01-26-2009 at 21:52.
    High Plains Drifter

  16. #16

    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    I think its a really interesting way its been written, looking forward to the dramatic developments as much as the campaign!!

    i think ReluctantSamurais strategy is an interesting one.

  17. #17
    Blue Eyed Samurai Senior Member Wishazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    I would use this strategy if I have a full stack army spare. However I think your underestimating the number of warrior monks in the area, in my recent Oda campaign(posted here) every rebel force had at least 1 or 2 contingents of monks that when combined(Rebels would abandon province after province then counter attack with a large stack packed full of monks) can be a serious threat. Also came across a large force in Yamashiro. I like the idea though, I definately give it a try in my next Imagawa campaign.
    "Wishazu does his usual hero thing and slices all the zombies to death, wiping out yet another horde." - Askthepizzaguy, Resident Evil: Dark Falls

    "Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical"
    Sun Tzu the Art of War

    Blue eyes for our samurai
    Red blood for his sword
    Your ronin days are over
    For your home is now the Org
    By Gregoshi

  18. #18
    Senior Member Senior Member ReluctantSamurai's Avatar
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    Default Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    The strategy is certainly not without its risks......but I don't find the monks to be all that troublesome. Like I said, they are vulnerable to archer fire and I retain at least three or four in each army (either foot or cav or both). It's a challenge to fight monks early on, but the rewards are very good.

    I would use this strategy if I have a full stack army spare.
    That's the whole idea behind abandoning the south......after razing all your provinces there to the ground, and taking Owari, you have enough koku to get the job done.
    High Plains Drifter

  19. #19

    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    The problem with abandoning one side of a split domain is that you're then presented with - what is essentially - a "quasi Shimazu" campaign involving the same typically linear west to east sweep of the map. I prefer to try and hold both regions and then join them up. This makes for a much more interesting and less predictable campaign. It also means that you're less likely to be facing a massive horde on the other side of the map once you get there.

    -Edit: Another interesting aspect to this is shipping troops from east to west, or vice versa, to reinforce your armies there.

    Last edited by caravel; 01-26-2009 at 23:58.

  20. #20
    Blue Eyed Samurai Senior Member Wishazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    I too prefer the challenge of maintaining both parts of a split empire and only very rarely give one part up. Though I do like Reluctant Samurai`s plan and intend to give it a shot next time I play Imagawa.
    "Wishazu does his usual hero thing and slices all the zombies to death, wiping out yet another horde." - Askthepizzaguy, Resident Evil: Dark Falls

    "Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical"
    Sun Tzu the Art of War

    Blue eyes for our samurai
    Red blood for his sword
    Your ronin days are over
    For your home is now the Org
    By Gregoshi

  21. #21
    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Letter from Summer 1533
    Mariko,
    we are about to leave Shimazu Takahisa's camp. He has finally accepted our proposal, though he hesitated very long in making a clear announcement.
    Before our first meeting, Abe-san intensively told me what to do and what not to do, to speak only if I was asked directly and not to stare at the Daimy.
    Abe-san took over most of the speaking. He introduced me as Hayashi Minoru, his personal assistant and body guard. Then they started talking about the current political situation of the country, about Lord Oda Nobuhide's expansion in Honshu and the ongoing quarrel between the Hj and the Takeda. When Abe-san finally moved on towards the main topic, Takahisa-sama became serious and annoyingly self confident.
    "Are you fearing an invasion of Shimazu troops?", he asked us.
    "We do not doubt that your intentions are the most honourable ones, Lord Shimazu Takahisa-sama."
    "But still the acquisition of your provinces would fortify our position in Kysh."This sudden forthrightness astonished me and I could not avoid seing Takahisa-sama directly into his face. Our eyes met and I quickly looked down again, embarrassed, while Lord Shimazu was smiling autocratically. Abe-san on the other hand did not seem surprised at all.
    "But at what cost, Lord Shimazu? There would be even more bloodshed among the inhabitants of this isle. Instead you could lead your forces eastwards, over Shikoku towards Kyt, to save our Great Emperor from the influence of the minor remaints of the Ashikaga Bakufu. Is this not what the Great Takahisa is aiming for?"
    Lord Shimazu did not speak. He looked serious. Abe-san might have had crossed a line.
    "Lord Shimazu, please forgive me if I talk openly. Our troops could not stand one single wave of your attacks. Still, rest assured that my Lord Yoshimoto will not withdraw his influence in Kysh without a fight. This could become expensive, for both of us. Additionally, there are rumours coming from the Chgoku-jin. Foreigners from far lands are coming by sea and it might only be a matter of time until they reach our shores. A civil war in Kysh would be a perfect opportunity for them to easily gain influence without being supervised. They could bring riches as well as death. Let the Imagawa clan guard your back until you have the Emperor's blessing."
    "You speak true words, Abe. Still, true words are the cloak of false intentions."
    "I would not dare."
    "I shall think about it."
    "And I thank you for your consideration."
    We backed out of the room and awaited to be called again. Abe-san explained me that he had striked the right note and that Lord Shimazu will probably accept. Despite Abe-sans confidence we had to wait 3 more days until being called again. Lord Shimazu seemed as reluctant as during our first meeting. He said he would approve in case we would stop strengthening our garrisons in Chikuzen and Chikugo and give word that we will direct our troops towards Honsh, in order to distract Lord Oda Nobuhide, obviously his most feared rival concerning the benevolence of the Great Emperor.
    Abe-san told me that we can hardly rely on his word, but we probably had won some years time.
    I am looking forward to return to Hizen.





    Letter from Autumn 1533
    Mariko,
    we are passing Chikuzen and met Inoue Kagemochi yesterday. He told us that recruiting of another unit of Totomis Ashigaru had started last winter and that archer reinforcement had arrived in Hizen. Furthermore he received orders from Yoshimoto-sama for Abe-san to see Lord Uesugi in Musashi and that a ship was waiting for him in Hizen.
    Apart from that his scouts had reported that Shimazu Takahisa-sama invaded Iyo on Shikoku and that his son was still supervising the army in Buzen. Looks like Abe-san was right in the end.
    We will probably arive in Hizen in some weeks time. I really enjoyed the year with Abe-san.

    Ogenkide,




    Letter from Winter 1534
    Mariko,
    I arrived in Hizen a week ago. Lord Yoshimoto frankly gave orders to Abe-san before his ship departed. Then he asked me for a secret meeting for yesterday afternoon. I was inducted into Yoshimoto-samas most secret plans and must ask you again to keep my letters secret. They have an ilimitable political explosiveness bound to them.
    We met in a hidden room in Hizen castle. Lord Imagawa had a sort of bodyguard with him. This man, he was introduced as Hattori Yasunaga-san, had a very dark aura despite seeming very young. Lord Yoshimoto told me different things, none of them would really have explained why the meeting was held secretly. It must have had something to do with Hattori-san. From what Lord Imagawa reported, we had another good harvest and he had rosen taxes in autumn. We now had 1842 Koku to spend, all of them already planned. Another unit of archers was being trained in Totomi. Additionally a castle would be build in Chikugo. Then he came to the real topic of this meeting.
    "Do you have financial problems, Minoru?"
    "No, my Lord, you treat me very well.", I contested. "Well" was to be seen rather relative in times like these but as you know I was never very demanding or even lavish.
    "What would you do if someone offered you a bag of gold for betraying me?"
    "Of course I would reject, my Lord!"
    "And if someone threatened your life to force you to do so?"
    "I would defy him if..."
    "If?"
    "...if you would take care of my daughter in return."
    He nodded.
    "Do you know, Minoru, why you are in such high services at my court?"
    "I am very thankful for the responsibilities you grant me, my Lord, but still I must admit that I do not understand how I earned this honour."
    "My father taught me one thing about the difference between peasants and the Samurai. "A Samurai fights best when he is generously rewarded. Compared to that, paid peasants are poor fighters. They do not care about a bag of gold if they loose their head over it. They will turn and run for their lives. They always did. But know one thing: a peasant that traded his scythe for a yari out of free will, in order to stand up against a cruel lord, to defend his what he is believing in or to put an end to violence and exploitation, is one of the most unhesitant enemies as well as one of the most loyal vassals you may have.""
    He paused and I did not know what to say.
    "I have the impression, Minoru, that you are one of those peasants. Someone who left his field to achieve something, to change the flow of history. I trust you, because I think that you are believing in me and my line."
    "My Lord, I certainly-"
    "Apart from that you are an able tactician and showed potential on the battlefield."
    Again he paused and I felt like being stunned.
    "My line is weak, Minoru. I am young and my brother is not old enough to overtake in case I might decease. There are very few men I can trust. One of these is Abe Hanzo, the second is Hattori Yasunaga. The third, Hayashi Minoru, will be you. You will assist me as Secretary of War, while Abe will supervise the economic expansion and diplomacy. Hattori will..."
    Hattori-san nodded slightly into my direction as if to ensure that I knew of whom Lord Imagawa was talking.
    "...yes. This was the other issue I needed to talk to you about. You do know the "Men of Shadows", right?"
    A hot dagger flew straight into my chest and violently rended me out of the trance of disbelieve I had fallen into.
    "Cer... certainly."
    "Hattori is the son of an old friend of my fathers. He came to me with a very useful idea. Now being the head of the Yoshi clan, I minor Samurai family that recently fled from Iga because of Lord Odas pillages, he is the leader of a small squad of Ninja and Shinobi and willing to offer us their services and supervise the training of further agents. In our difficult tactical position we could gain great benefit from this sort of disturbance behind our rival`s lines."
    Mariko, can you imagine how I felt? Until today I suffer from nightmares because of these men, and now I am asked to cooperate with them! I recall how I heard myself speaking carefully of my doubts and the potential thread of such alliances.
    I admit that this was after all rather empty argumentation. Yoshimoto-sama perfectly knew why I was reluctant. Suddenly Hattori-san spoke.
    "A Ninja that fails to kill his target is without honour and will set an end to his life if he is not killed in the first place. What happened to your wife was a tragic accident. But it has nothing to do with the alliance Yoshimoto and I are going to form."
    His words are still vividly in my head. And you did not misread my sentence, he really adressed my Lord merely as "Yoshitomo". I will certainly have problems dealing with this man in near future. He continued:
    "There is a belief which I strongly share and spread across my followers. It says that the Ninja's purpose is to save lives, not to destroy them. The times are full of hatred, full of war and full of blood. But it is not the people, that hate each other, it is their Lords. Kill one of them and everyone putting himself in the position to continue the warmongering and there is peace. Lifes are spared."
    "Minoru, I respect your concerns, but I am determined to draw my advantage of Yasunaga's services, for the sake of my line, for the sake of peace and for the sake of Nihon."
    "And I will follow you, my Lord.", I merely contested, knowing that there was nothing left to discuss.
    "And so do I." was added by the young man in the dark Kimono.
    We three "agreed" on building a hidden training facility in the castle of Hizen and that Hattori would start training Ninja as soon as this was finished.
    Apart from that, there is not much to add. I am Secretary of War now, though I am still unsure how this is to be enforced. I will remain calm, do my duties and wait. I have little time for Yoshiko at the moment and I am feeling guilty about that.


    林 実



    Letter from Spring 1534
    Mariko,
    Abe-san has travelled to Honsh in vain. An emissary of Lord Uesugi arrived today and proposed an alliance. Hattori-san and I agreed that it would be best to apply an open-minded diplomatic policy until we are in the position to strike. Yoshimoto-sama agreed on that and send orders to Abe-san, to give the court of our alliy, the Great Oda clan, a visit. Furthermore I Hattori-san enforced the building of a major tea house as a secret meeting point for his spies in Mikawa. I am still not very enthusiastic about the "Men of Shadows".

    Ogenkide,


    林 実



    Letter from Summer 1534
    Mariko,
    new archers arrived in Hizen 2 weeks ago. Nothing of much interest, but I saw high officials of the Shimazu clan at the market place. They were very curious about the reinforcements we were gathering in Kysh and did not make the impression to have visited us because of commercial reasons.
    A new Ashigaru unit was trained in Totomi. Furthermore the archers brought a report from Abe-san about Lord Oda's troop strength. He describes it as "striking".
    Apart from that I am training myself in melee fight and horseback riding. So does Yoshiko, by the way.


    林 実



    Letter from Autumn 1534
    Mariko,
    Uesugi invaded Shinano and took it! Scouts saw Takeda forces there as well but could not tell whether they were there by coincidence or part of a new and powerful alliance of the two Houses. Abe-san reports Oda-sama mooving a major army into Ise and that the war between Takeda and the Hj has been settled by a peace agreement.
    Hattori-san has stated that the Ninja- as well as the tea house have been completed and that training is starting from now on with the funds Abe-san has approved of. He expects the first Shinobi spies within 3 months, the first Ninja assassins within 5.
    My part of the report was less enjoyable. My scouts report Shimazu troop movements alongside our border. Takahisa-sama might have smelled treachery. In fact, although we are not keeping our word, his suspicion arouse faster than I would have expected.

    Ogenkide,


    林 実



    Letter from Winter 1534
    Mariko,
    Suruga, a province of tactical importance has been taken from the Ronin by a Hj-Takeda-Uesugi alliance. It was granted to the Hj.
    Shimazu Takahisa-sama has returned to Bungo and I am pretty sure that he is not trusting us.
    Due to risen taxes we have now 2346 Koku to spend and the Ninja training is in progress. Abe-san spend a big part of that in infrastructure, enlarging the castle in Totomi.

    Ogenkide,


    林 実



    Letter from Spring 1535
    Mariko,
    Lord Shimazu joined his son in Buzen.
    Abe-san reports that Uesugi and Oda attacked the Ronin garrison in Mino, achieving a great victory and claiming the province to be ruled by Lord Oda. Abe-san abandoned Oda Nobuhide-sama before the battle started and headed to Kai to see Lord Takeda, the head of the last family we are not allied to. Hattori is sending Shinobi to Hizen, they will have to distract the Shimazu forces from launchin an attack on our lands.


    林 実



    Letter from Summer 1535
    Mariko,
    the Shimazu froces remain calm but are growing. So do the forces of the Honsh clans. I am curious against whom the will direct their power once they have got rid of the remaining minor families.Abe-san's infrstructural program is nearly finished now, but ate all our funds. We will have to wait for the next harvest until we launch further expansion.


    林 実



    Letter from Autumn 1535
    Mariko,
    Shinano has been invaded by a joined army of rebel forces but Uesugi Tomosada-sama, heir to the Uesugi Daimy, managed to hold the province. Still more riots are expected to occur. Lord Takeda accepted our proposal. Apart from that, it is all quit. We are waiting for the storm to come.


    林 実



    Letter from Winter 1535
    Mariko,
    our harvest was acceptable, but all our funds are already spend. We are building a port in Chikugo and more archers are trained in Totomi. Furthermore we are enlarging the Archery Dojo there. Hattori-san reported an assasination failure on a Hj emissary. This contributes to my campain of convincing Lord Imagawa of the idleness of this sort of measures.


    林 実



    Letter from Spring 1536
    Mariko,
    nothing of real importance happened. Building is in progress, as well as training. The Shinobi that mooved into Higo reported to Hattori-san that with some further help they could cause peasant riots against their current owners. I am curious if this will work out.
    I heard an interesting opinion of one of my fellow bowmen today, stating that the current circumstances in central Honsh might be adequate for a fast and heavy strike against the Oda clan to acquire the rich provinces aroung Iga. This would imply to leave Kysh to the Shimazu. When I talked about that proposal to Lord Imagawa he was attracted by the keen and daring character of such a moove but feared a terrible disaster in case of a loss.
    Still I have to keep the name of the young Samurai in mind that invented this tactic. He might become a valuable adviser in times when daring moves are inevitable. They called him Reraku Tand.


    林 実



    Letter from Summer 1536
    Mariko,
    Imagawa Ujizane, the younger brother of my Lord has entered the army as a formidable bowman. He is taking over the command of the Totomi garrison.


    林 実



    Letter from Autumn 1536
    Mariko,
    the dead body of the Hj emissary that was once targeted before was found dead in the streets of a village in Totomi. Apparently he was on his way back to report to his Lord. I guess I know who prevented him from doing so. At least we know now that Ninja sometimes DO aim correctly. I hope you can excuse my dark humour at this point.
    I finally found time to spend some days with Yoshiko. She is now 12 years of age and more agile then I am. She climbs and runs like a cat: fast and without making but the tiniest sound. Her sword handling is near to be perfect. She asked me to give her a real one for her next birthday but I doubt this would be a good idea. Still, I am unsure what to do about her further education. She is smart but neither interested in literature nor in young men, except for Hattori Yasunaga-san, whom he evidently likes very much. When I ask her about this topic she replies that she wants to become a fighter, like me.
    She is all I have. I somehow cannot tell her what a poor fighter I am nor what a poor chance she has to succeed in these menmade wars.


    林 実



    Letter from Winter 1536
    Mariko,
    Hattori-san reported another assassination failure in Mikawa. By now I am fed up with spending money into this rediculous projects. We are only drawing attention to ourselves. The harvest was good but again our funds are quickly spend. Lord Shimazu is reorganizing his troops. This might help the Shinobi on their mission. At least these are not found dead on the street every half year.


    林 実


    Summary and comment:
    First of all, I kept a saved game of the earlier status and I will give ReluctantSamurai's advice a try when I am through with this. As for now I am trying to distract Shimazu as good as possible and handle him some serious blows when the opportunity is there. I continued playing and need to post another update, but I am far too tired now.
    Next, I am sorry for masses of text. As I announced it may be more of a single player RPG, which is not much fun for you, cause you can hardly participate. I promise to post less text and more screens (I forgot them again!!! ) when the initial matters are more or less established.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-27-2009 at 19:18.

  22. #22
    Blue Eyed Samurai Senior Member Wishazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    More excellent material to absorb here. Good job Patdj. Could you post a screenshot of the campaign map?
    "Wishazu does his usual hero thing and slices all the zombies to death, wiping out yet another horde." - Askthepizzaguy, Resident Evil: Dark Falls

    "Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical"
    Sun Tzu the Art of War

    Blue eyes for our samurai
    Red blood for his sword
    Your ronin days are over
    For your home is now the Org
    By Gregoshi

  23. #23
    Arrogant Ashigaru Moderator Ludens's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Excellent story, patdj. Please continue.
    Looking for a good read? Visit the Library!

  24. #24

    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Brilliant, really absorbing story. Spot the future Geisha lol.

  25. #25
    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Letter from Spring 1537:
    Mariko,
    from a military point of view there is not much to report. More of our agents are getting into position in Higo. Lord Shimazu keeps shifting his troops from north to south, east to west and vice versa as if he thereby wanted to confuse us.
    My inauguration was held yesterday. I did not think it to become much of an event. Me and my fellow soldiers already got used to the fact that I was now in charge of the overall troop organisation, although I, from time to time, still sense reluctance among them.
    The ceremony, being only a formality, was progressed without much ado. After I had delivered my pledge and Lord Imagawa accepted my services there was a restless muttering among the invited army officials. I saw Hattori-san whispering something to Yoshimoto-sama, who then started to speak:
    "Is there anyone disapproving of this nomination?"
    No one spoke but there was an uncomfortably silence among the people.
    "Saketomo, what do you think?"
    He was speaking to Toshie Saketomo-san, a rough and brave leader of a Yari Samurai unit. The addressed stood up and made his way through the lines of sitting Samurai. From his attitude one could easily tell that he himself was a very proud one. He walked determined like a military drum beat and had a firm grip on his sword. He positioned himself next to me and I stood up and bowed to show my respect. I temporarily forgot that I was his superior. He spoke:
    "My Lord, this is nothing but a scandal. I must refuse to be led by a mere peasant."
    "If your are afraid of loosing your honour, Saketomo, you are free to set an and to your life although I am sure that Minoru will find it as regrettably as I do to loose such an able soldier to his own sword."
    "My Lord, may I propose instead that I take his head right here?"
    He backed up and drew his sword, ready to strike. Before I could even move, a clean and shiny blade of a Samurai sword swiftly flew at him and and stopped inches before cutting his neck.
    "You`d loose yours before even attempting to strike."
    Hattori-san had quickly but silently stepped forward and taken Toshie-san completely by surprise.
    "Hattori-san!", he shouted, "this has nothing to with you! I do not doubt your respectability!"
    "But I doubt yours, Toshie."
    I was still to stunned to move, but relieved seing Toshie-sans sword heading back to his sheath. Hattori-sans did this not until Yoshimoto-sama told him so.
    "Well, be it then.", said Toshie-san and bowed to Lord Imagawa, "I wish to quit my service and commit Seppuku."
    "And I will not grant you this honour because of your rampant behaviour."
    Toshie showed no emotion on his face, he merely nodded and backed out of the room. Four or five of his fellow Samurai followed him after having showed a respectful bow to Imagawa-sama.
    The rest of the evening went on without much happening, but I am still shaken by the incident.


    林 実



    Letter from Summer 1537:
    Mariko,
    apparently Toshie-san and his followers have left the castle on that same evening and headed for the Shimazu lands. I am very worried about this, though Yoshimoto-sama and Hattori-san do not share this preocupation. Still, some tension remains between me and my soldiers.
    Apart from that there is not much to tell. Shimazu-samas troop movements continue, but so does our supply of shadow agents.


    林 実



    Letter from Autumn 1537:
    Mariko,
    there is nothing to report. I still do not see much success of Hattori-sans agents.


    林 実



    Letter from Winter 1537:
    Mariko,
    we had a poor harvest. Two of Hattori-sans Ninja managed to kill an Uesugi emissary in Mikawa. One of them was killed in the incident, but his body got dragged away by his colleague before investigations started. Still we are struggling to keep our face with the growing number of assaults on the diplomats behind our borders.


    林 実



    Letter from Spring 1538:
    Mariko,
    there is a peasant uproar in Higo! The Shinobi are ordered to move into Satsuma, the Shimazu capital. Although I still doubt the overall success of this operation I am glad to see that the money we spend into the training is finally paying off. In order to ensure that the spies remain unseen, Abe-san is travelling their route in advance to secure their way.


    林 実



    Letter from Summer 1538:
    Mariko,
    there is another revolt in Satsuma. Hattori-san brought this message today. Despite this success he remained calm as usual. He wanted to talk to about something serious.
    He told me that now our daughter Yoshiko turned 15 I should think of an appropriate husband. I immediately understood what he was up to and turned cold, nearly as cold as you would have turned. He said he had talked to Yoshiko about this issue and that she had approved. In fact, they were getting along rather well with each other but still I could not imagine giving her away. He argued good, very good indeed. He would take care of her while I, sooner or later, will risk my life on the battlefield. He could provide her with an adequate standard of living and supervise here further studies. I told him that I needed time to think and to talk with my daughter about this.
    He thanked me and left without another word.
    I wish you could send me a sign, stating your opinion about the matter.


    林 実



    Letter from Autumn 1538:
    Mariko,
    I gave Yoshiko and Hattori-san my consent. I desperately was looking for a sign of you, but I found none. But how could I blame you? Weighting all the circumstances I decided that he can look after her better than I can. Still there is one thing I have to worry about. Hattori-san is encouraging her to continue her combat training. I would not have expected that and I do not know out of what reasons he is doing so.
    Lord Shimazu is dealing with the revolts in a very precise manner. He has to divide troops, but he does so very successfully. We need to expand because of rising cost. If we could weaken Shimazu significantly we would gain control of Kysh.


    林 実



    Letter from Winter 1538:
    Mariko,
    we had a good harvest. The brother of our Lord, Imagawa Ujizane sent report from Totomi that Lord Oda is struggling to keep the rebels of central Honsh under control. A peasant uprise was initiated by our men in Tosa, a newly conquered province of the Shimazu. Still we are far away from hindering him sufficiently.


    林 実



    Letter from Spring 1539:
    Mariko,
    Yoshiko confessed to me today that after she has become a member of her future husbands Yoshi clan, she will to enter the order of the "Men of Shadows". She said this has been planned by Hattori-san and her for over a year now and that he thinks that she has the premises to become a highly qualified Ninja.
    I was unable to talk to her about that how you would have done, I merely left the room. I can not even express my feelings to you, I just do not find the appropriate words.
    More rebels have been seen in Tosa, still the Shimazu Clan is commanding large armies and puts the rebellions down with hardly any difficulty. Another thing that worries me is the growing force of the Hj in Suruga. There is hardly another purpose than an attack on our land that could justify this process. These are troubled times and I search for some distraction in drawing. This is our current situation, if you just could provide me with advise how to overthrow the rough Shimazu troops and how to deal with the Hj thread...





    I feel trapped, badly trapped. Or am I just too cautious?


    林 実



    Summary and Comment:
    So, I finally managed to take up to date screens. I am still able to change some things about it. My main problem is how to cause enough distraction among the Shimazu to snatch them. A successful attack on Bungo and Buzen would take their daimy, the only heir is in Tosa, training on rebels. Still the counterattack could be unbearable and I would have to retreat to the original border. Loyality in Hyuga is 30%, don't know if it revolts, my Shinobi in any case moved to Higo.
    The other problem is that the Hj are mass building troops. These are mainly Ashigaru, I think my Totomi garrison, mainly archers, would stand them. Still this paralyzes me because I cannot send them to overthrow the Shimazu. I don't trust the Oda or Uesugi either, the former is already training Yari Cavalry and will soon become a major threat again (he crushed against rebel armies with monks, like Wishazu did ). Finance is more or less stable, but my armies eat a lot by now. +700 a year only atm.
    Looking forward to advise.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-27-2009 at 20:15.

  26. #26
    Senior Member Senior Member ReluctantSamurai's Avatar
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    Default Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    The problem with abandoning one side of a split domain is that you're then presented with - what is essentially - a "quasi Shimazu" campaign involving the same typically linear west to east sweep of the map.
    I respectfully disagree. If anything, the campaign takes on an Oda-like quality as you are occupying lands that are traditionally his. And the campaign is anything but typical. You must subdue the ikko-ikki, which is a daunting task early on, and be prepared for a two-front war.

    The outlook of the whole camp is designed to take advantage of short internal lines to transfer troops quickly from one front to another, generate high levels of koku from farm-rich provinces, and take advantage of bonus provinces, especially the ashi bonus in Owari for teppo. I make the push to get guns as quickly as possible to make Kawachi and Mikawa killing fields for my armies. The guns are not a necessary ingredient for this approach, but are simply my preference.

    It's just an alternative suggestion to the typical split-empire approach, but the camp as being conducted by patdj is still very interesting to watch.

    @patdj: The problem with fighting on Kyushu is that you need a third army. Distilling one out of the two you have leaves you weak to counterattack. Bingo is almost out of the question because Shimazu can send troops from 4 different provinces to counterattack. Buzen will do nothing to ease the koku situation and has no castle. Higo has a castle but is a poor province and once again you will be exposed to counterattack from several provinces. You have a lot of koku invested in shinobi to what gain? I myself love the subterfuge of shinobi, so don't get me wrong there. Rebellions are almost always put down, though, unless you can generate them in adjacent provinces and coordinated with an attack of your own. Then either your advance succeeds, or one of the revolts does as your opponent will have to decide where to move troops. Without a ninja to assassinate the generals you are creating, your subterfuge war is only generating better Shimazu generals, IMHO.

    OTOH, Oda looks awfully thin in Owari..........................
    Last edited by ReluctantSamurai; 01-27-2009 at 22:32.
    High Plains Drifter

  27. #27
    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Jepp, Oda suffered from some rebel monks I guess, but if i recall it right he has some more in Ise and surroundings and his troops are of rather high quality, I will check in that. Eventually it might even be wise to pull troops to Honshu, risking a Shimazu attack in Kyushu but snatching Owari. Problem: it leaves me with 3 provinces to defend afterwards, two of them with river though.
    I am still thinking of a good way to coordinate the rebellions with a good attack on the Shimazu troops. Cutting the way for the Daimyo army by (temporarily) taking Bungo might not be the wrst I could do. It depends on the outcome of the battles.

    My Shinobi were not too expensive as I am playing Imagawa. Still they do not have an overwhelming impact, the general training is a huge drawback, too.


    Thank you very much for your advise, Reluctant Samurai. Same to Wishazu, it is very usefull to have to advisers with opposite opinion, this shows you nearly all the pros and cons of each of the approaches. :)
    Thanks to Adam and Ludens for the interest.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-27-2009 at 23:53.

  28. #28
    Senior Member Senior Member ReluctantSamurai's Avatar
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    Default Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Still they do not have an overwhelming impact, the general training is a huge drawback, too.
    Which is why I made the suggestion to flood adjacent provinces at the same time. I've had much better success when doing it that way......a good percentage of the time, one of the revolts will succeed, but you must be prepared to take advantage. You're Imagawa.........where's your ninjas? Take those up-and-coming generals out

    One thing I learned from playing chess was to have a plan. No matter if you take me up on my other suggestions or not, form a plan and put all your efforts into achieving it. Plans can change depending on the situation, especially when opportunities present themselves.

    My 2cents.
    Last edited by ReluctantSamurai; 01-28-2009 at 00:34.
    High Plains Drifter

  29. #29
    Blue Eyed Samurai Senior Member Wishazu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    I would still continue with the Shinobi though I would stop training more as you appear to have plenty and the money would now be better spent on troops. Divide the shinobi into 2 equal size groups and move them around still, get revolts in multiple provinces at the same time. At the moment I would consider stripping to a bare garrison in Chikugo, there isnt much to attack it as Shimazu should be busy putting down rebellions, you could thenuse all available troops in Kyushu to attack that Shimazu army. With his largest army destroyed and his garrisons stuck dealing with revolution you should be free to gobble up the island as you please.
    Last edited by Wishazu; 01-28-2009 at 08:54.
    "Wishazu does his usual hero thing and slices all the zombies to death, wiping out yet another horde." - Askthepizzaguy, Resident Evil: Dark Falls

    "Move not unless you see an advantage; use not your troops unless there is something to be gained; fight not unless the position is critical"
    Sun Tzu the Art of War

    Blue eyes for our samurai
    Red blood for his sword
    Your ronin days are over
    For your home is now the Org
    By Gregoshi

  30. #30
    General Hayashi Member patdj's Avatar
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    Default AW: Imagawa campain: "Short Letters to the Dead"

    Good points, guys, thank you!

    As for the Ninja, they were too costsy because I am always running on minimum amount of money and faced growing enemy troops among my borders. And they did not have much success either, but I will get back to that once I have my money back. I don't think that they are of much use against Shimazu now.

    Another question: is there an elegant way of abandoning an alliance? I hate this "Are you sure you want to break the alliance?"-question. Makes me feel bad about me not announcing my attack first.

    Talking of diplomacy: I am allied to nearly everyone. Still I do not trust them (Uesugi, Hojo and Oda in my case). Is this stupid because the AI does usually NOT break an alliance unless invited to?


    Lol, I just noted that I spelled campaign wrong.
    Last edited by patdj; 01-28-2009 at 11:42.

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