To make your empire grow, you will want to raid other players. You will do this with two different purposes: battle points and resources. If other players are inactive, you can attack them regularly to get their resources (also called farming). If players have a weak defense, you can attack them to get battle points. Battle points are the most important points in the game. The more battle points you have, the more cities you can make. Even if you lose all your cities and have to restart, it will be worth it if you have more than 1000 battle points because that's worth a lot (enough for you to get your third city).
Initially, you might want to attack players on your own island. I, for instance, have two players who I attacked a few times once I got an army. They went inactive, and now I capture over 15.000 resources from them every day. I have also cleared out all the small cities with around 175 points. Killing the six starting swordsmen gave me some battle points and any time I have some units that are not doing anything, I can send them to attack the small cities to capture at least 600 resources. Some small cities will have built a warehouse, which means that you can capture many more resources if you raid them once a day.
Once you have ships and a decent army, you can start farming decent targets on nearby islands. Small cities with warehouses or inactive players. Any player around 1.500-2.000 points who is inactive can earn you a lot of resources every day. To check if a player is inactive, you can look them up on Grepostats and see whether their points have changed recently (there is a chart that shows point development). If they have not grown in points for a week and don't have any significant defense, it's likely a safe bet to attack them and start farming their city.
One thing that's important if you farm someone regularly is to destroy their city walls. As long as the city walls are up, they will damage your attackers even if there are no units to defend. So, make sure to get a few catapults, since they will destroy the city walls when you attack. If you are attacking an active player, its not cost-effective to use catapults to take down low-level city walls, since they will be cheap for the defender to rebuild. When you use catapults on your own island, it's preferable to attack using shisp, since catapults move very slowly.
Attacking active players
Is it easy to know how many battle points you will gain in an attack since the battle points are always equivalent to the supply of a unit. So, killing an archer will earn you one battle point and killing a chariot will earn you four battle points. When you attack other to kill their defenses and get battle points, you will need to spy on them to see what they have. All you need to be able to spy on someone is a cave. If the person you are spying has a cave as well, they can put silver in the cave and use it to make sure you don't get any information with your spies. Therefore, you need to use more silver to spy than they have stored. Players below 2.000 points might often only store 1000 silver or none. When you spy, always make sure to use at least a single resource above the thousand that you are guessing your target has in his cave. So, if you're guessing that he has 2.000 silver in his cage, use 2.001 silver to spy - thereby, if he has 2.000 silver, you will be able to get the spy information for just 1 silver extra, where you would have failed if you only used 2.000 silver.
When you attack someone, you will want to attack with a single unit type. The reason for this is that you will be able to use whatever weakness the defender might have. A good example of this:
The player attacked didn't have any defensive units. However, his 120 horsemen would have defended much better against another attack-type (see Grepolis unit table for stats on offense and defense values), but only have 1 defense point against sharp attacks. Therefore, the attack was able to get a total of 607 battle points for only the loss of a light ship and 24 chariots, which is extremely cheap. Had the defense had a great majority of swordsmen, the battle points would also have been cheap, since swordsmen also defend badly against sharp attacks.
Since players from all over the world play in this universe, it's impossible to know whether it's morning, evening or night for your target. Of course, once you have attacked or spied on someone several times, you will get a better idea of when they are active. What's otherwise crucial is to be able to complete your attack quickly, before the defender reacts and summons militia. This means that targets close to you are better, but it also means that you should always use fast transport ships instead of the normal transport ships, at least when attacking active targets. Also, don't attack someone several times in a row, since this will greatly increase the chace that they get online and react. Attack once and then wait for a while and attack at another time.
Another crucial point is that you should always have some light ships to escort your attack. If you know that your target has some birimes to defend, you should always have enough light ships to defeat those, but if others are nearby and can help your target, it would be wise to have a few extra light ships. If all your light ships die, the biremes will be able to sink your transport ships, meaning that the troops in those transport ships never actually land, but just die without a fight (unless you sent too many transport ships and enough transport ships are still alive to carry your troops to land). Just because the defender defeats your ships does not mean he will sink all your transports, but the greater his numbers of biremes are compared to your light ships, the greater number of transport ships will be sunk. So, always bring enough light ships to support, even if you cannot see any biremes when you spy.
Simulation (calculate battle results)
Whenever you plan an attack, you might want to use the simulator (city overview → agora → simulator) to see what the result of the battle will be.
When you build up an offensive army, keep in mind that slingers are often the most cost-effective attackers. Early on, many defenders will mostly have swordsmen, so hoplites will be a good option as well.
In terms of mythical units, manticores are really good to attack with since you can make raids without losses. As manticores and harpies fly, they can attack cities on other islands without ships (and they are much quicker than the ships as well). If many flying units attack together with other units, you can make a bigger attack force since you won't need as many ships to transport.
Cheapest attackers - normal units (resources per attack point)
1. Slinger 8,4
2. Horseman 13,1
3. Hoplite 14,1
4. Chariot 17,1
5. Catapult 36
Cheapest attackers - mythical units (resources per attack point)
1. Erinyes 10,3
2. Manticore 11,4
3. Minotaur 12,1
4. Cyclop 12,6
4. Harpy 12,6
6. Centaur 17,5
7. Medusa 17,6
8. Cerberus 27,3
9. Pegasus 32,4
Most effective attackers - normal units (attack points per population)
1. Slinger 23
2. Horseman 18,3
3. Hoplite 16
4. Chariot 14
5. Catapult 6,6
Most effective attackers - mythical units (attack points per population)
1. Medusa 23,6
2. Erinyes 22
3. Manticore 21
4. Harpy 19
5. Cyclop 18
6. Minotaur 14
7. Centaur 13
8. Cerberus 7
9. Pegasus 5
As you can see, slingers are cheap and population-effective offensive power, but keep in mind that they wouldn't be cost-effective against mainly swordsmen, who defend very well against ranged attacks.
Last edited by Asjo; 26.08.11 at 16:42.
This is an old internal alliance guide that I decided to share. I realize that there are other aspects to this and that after a while some people will stop farming active players for battle points all-together, especially with the morale system. This guide, however, gives the idea of how it's done.
i accidentally rated this 2 stars instead of your other building a city from scratch guide
this is actually a pretty decent thread for beginners to read.
I know many players who have played for months who could stand reading this as well
Thanks, I just started this game a few day a go, great guide!
nice guide and I agree with all of it with the exception of one thing the transports boat thing if you send a CS it's going to be slower therefore making speed absolutely useless so why not use some of that stone we all seem to have too much of on some transport boats for CS attacks because the CS is slower than a transport boat anyway so won't make much difference
I just started playing ten minutes ago. Cool game so far, but maybe you can help me. Why can I only attack the one farm? I want to attack more. I have 7 swordsman do I have to have more to attack more than one farm?
Yes!!!! You need to build more soldiers to be able to get more vilages.
Yes Good thread. How many troops do I need to launch an attack?