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Downloads Home » Campaigns » A Xia's Diary IV - Singleplayer Campaign

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A Xia's Diary IV - Singleplayer Campaign

Author File Description
File Details
Age: Steel
# of Episodes: 10
# of Cities: 5
Difficulty: Very Hard
Custom Maps: Yes
"He is honest in words, effective in action, faithful in keeping promises, and fearless in offering his own life to free the righteous from bondage." ~ the historian Sima Qian, describing a Xia.

"He treasures the state, friendship, duty, promises, kindness, vengeance, honor, and righteousness more than his own life." ~ the historian Liang Qichao, describing a Xia.

"For ten years I have been polishing this sword;
Its frosty edge has never been put to the test.
Now I am holding it and showing it to you, sir:
Is there anyone suffering from injustice?" ~ from "The Swordsman", by Jia Dao - a 9th century poem about the Xia.

Who were the Xia? The Xia (pronounced 'see-ya' in English) can be thought of as the Chinese equivalent of Europe's Knight-errants. However, they were more than that. They were administrators, scholars, and soldiers-of-fortune. They came from both noble and humble origins. They lived their lives by a code and measured themselves by a strict set of values. They were men of intelligence, as well as men of action, and they played important roles throughout the history of the Middle Kingdom.

This 4th installment in the Xia Diary series takes you south, into the warm seas and steaming jungles of Annam (ancient Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos). The setting is the 13th century CE, when the Tran Dynasty first came to power in Dai Viet (ancient Vietnam). This dynasty faced many challenges in the 13th century. This campaign recreates those same challenges, and offers you the opportunity to use your unique skills as a Xia to solve them. Actual historic events such as rebellions, pirate attacks, and Mongol invasions are included in this campaign. Once again, your own diary entries will chronicle your adventures as an active participant in these events.

This campaign includes the maximum scope of ten missions. A player will interact with 11 cities (10 historically accurate). Resources, commodities, and available structures follow the Emperor model for the steel age.

Five new custom maps have been designed for this campaign. They are all of 'enormous' size, and feature unique concepts, such as an offshore island and destroyed cities that require rebuilding. Four of these maps were adapted from the actual topography of the historic city they represent.

This campaign uses a customized pricing scheme for commodities (designed by Shaun), which replaces the game's default Imperial Standard Prices. These customized prices ripple into several aspects of gameplay, and the overall impact adds an additional level of challenge.

Sabotage by spies has been disallowed in this campaign, although spies may still be used for information gathering.

An extra file is included in this download. It is a text file named 'AXDIV_Readme.txt', and contains installation instructions, background information, campaign design notes, general play tips, and mission hints (warning: contains spoilers). Additionally, other hints are available by viewing the album of playtest screenshots in the Emperor Heaven gallery.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This campaign is rated 'Very Hard', and will provide a solid challenge for advanced players. For the best play experience, a player should possess an advanced understanding of the game's military aspect, time-constrained missions, money management, trading, labor allocation, production output, monument construction, summoning and using the Heroes, and empire-map diplomacy.

Missions Teasers: (Note - all missions except 10 use a 'time limit' or 'survival' goal)

M1 - Adventure on Steel Island - 6 years, from 1221 CE to the end of 1226 CE.

M2 - To Quell a Rebellion - 3 years, from 1227 CE to the end of 1229 CE.

M3 - A Quest for Spice - 5 years, from 1230 CE to the end of 1234 CE.

M4 - A Xia's Wrath - 6 years, from 1235 CE to the end of 1240 CE.

M5 - Old Bones Resurrected - 7 years, from 1241 CE to the end of 1247 CE.

M6 - The Threat of Champa - 5 years, from 1248 CE to the end of 1252 CE.

M7 - The Two Treasures of Tamralipti - 5 years, from 1253 CE to the end of 1257 CE.

M8 - Escape to Steel Island - 2 years, from 1258 CE to the end of 1259 CE.

M9 - The Mongol's Yoke - 10 years, from 1260 CE to the end of 1269 CE.

M10 - Grand Xia of Dai Viet - no time limit, starts in 1270 CE.
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Mazeppa Wow, what a beautiful map!
File Author
Hello again zhoudynasty, and thank you for the review!

Congratulations on completing one of the hardest campaigns I have built. Well done!

My memories of building this campaign are good ones, especially how the maps adapted from the actual locations turned out (Hanoi, Hue, Siem Reap, Weizhou Island). I also felt the scripting of the historical events came together nicely, especially in the final mission.

I will share with you my personal opinion on comparing the difficulties of the Xia Diary campaign series. I rate them in the following order (from easiest to most difficult):

1. "A Xia's Diary" - the biggest reason I rate this one as the easiest is that sabotage by spies is allowed, whereas it is disallowed in the other campaigns in the series. I had originally wanted to only allow sabotage by spies in mission 3, but I discovered a bug in the Campaign Creator software that forced me to choose between allowing sabotage for all the missions, or none of them. I chose the former, to maintain historical accuracy and continuity with the storyline.

2. "A Xia's Diary II" - this one's difficulty is almost a toss-up with "A Xia's Diary IV", but I rate this one slightly easier since the campaign has 6 missions where a small city is all that is necessary to win.

3. "A Xia's Diary IV" - Half of the missions in this campaign are "continuation missions" from a previous map, so players must be very careful to win the earlier mission with a solid foundation to achieve victory when they return to that map later in the campaign. Also, some missions in this campaign have very tight time limits, which require players to use options they might not normally use (such as enlisting the armies of allied cities to capture rival cities).

4. "A Xia's Diary III" - I rate this one as the hardest for several reasons, but mostly due to all the military action. Eight of the missions involve fighting (sometimes multiple, big invasions), and require players to exercise an advanced understanding of the military aspect of this game, even down to nuances like how completely walling off your city affects where invasions will spawn on the maps with rivers. Some of the time limits on the missions are also very tight. For example, I believe mission 8 of this campaign is the hardest single mission that I have ever designed. To my mind, the military challenges of this campaign push it to the top slot for difficulty - even though the final mission of the campaign uses a different design approach.

If you have played all four campaigns in this series, how would you rate them in terms of difficulty?

[Edited on 10/27/20 @ 03:22 PM]

zhoudynasty Hi Gweilo2. I haven't try "A Xia's Diary II" and "A Xia's Diary III" yet.

I am playing "A Xia's Diary", but cant seem to get past Mission 5. I do not see that I can sabotage Xianyang's military? It's grey off. I managed to win in the first scripted attack but it already takes a toll on half of my army especially with their attack on catapult. I have 4 cavalry, left with 2 after the first scripted attack.

[Edited on 10/27/20 @ 07:54 AM]

File Author
zhoudynasty, let's take the discussion to email. I sent you an email to the address listed in your profile here, let me know if you get it.

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