Jump to content

Jebel Barkal - Illustrated Walkthrough


Recommended Posts

Jebel Barkal - Illustrated Walkthrough

Jebel Barkal is the holy hill at the Kushite city Napata at the Nile river, see release announcement. The procedurally generated Napata city spawns attackers reoccuringly. This article presents some common strategies and tactics to become successful.


9 weeks of development, including 6 weeks of playtesting went into both this map. The guide is the result of the experience made while playteting and most of the screenshots come from these matches.

Time to thank @Skhorn for the creation of the mountain template, @Sundiata for the consultation on the history and geography, and the playtesters:

nani, Hannibal Barca, smiley, bb, temple, fpre, Dizaka, faction02, ValihrAnt,Uran238cz, s0loooy0, FeldFeld, causative, servo, borg-, mapkoc, CAGD_lulofun, ITRELLES1, gaius22, Dunedan, Imarok, santa, tgodtaylor, AlexanderKirck, s0600204, Emperior, d_stan, mord, Vladislav, Cesar, Vick, Retardado, Medrannozz, TYLER1, Angen.


"Jebel Barkal" random map


Procedural Cityscape Generation

(The following screenshots were taken at the lowest quality, because my graphics card is cheap.)

Attacker Waves

The city starts attacks on players about all 5-7 minutes.
Each of the buildings of the city spawns a different set of attackers.
For instance the temples spawn only champions and the elephant stables only elephants.
Players can chose a difficulty level at the gamestart. It will influence the total attackercount and city fortifications proportionally.
However, since the city is randomized each matchstart, the resulting difficulty level can vary tremendously (most importantly the number of elephant stables on a normal map can be between 0 and 9).
In Nomad mode, the first attack is delayed.


Docks and Naval Warfare
 The nile river makes up less than 10% of the map area, yet it is vital to survive and thrive.
 Some players (most famously nani) start building docks in the first two minutes already.
 The dock gives you faster food income than fields.
 Additionally it continues to generate food income while your units on land are either fighting or garrisoned.
 The dock also adds as a dropsite that is far away from gaia as possible. So women have a good chance to gather there without being killed off.
 Even outside of the territory.
 Notice that players sometimes can only win by having some ships around while all enemies wiped out on land.
 So the river is important from the first to the last minute!


Players compete for the final stand on the sea


When gaia was too strong for all players, the winner is decided on the sea. So always keep an eye on your enemies ship activities.


Don't keep the backside of your city unattended.


Once the sea is indisputed, the shoreline can be wiped without great losses.

 Elephants, rhinos and boars are valuable huntable animals, because once attacked, they follow you back to your base where you can easily kill and hunt them.
 Use this trick to boost your economy in the first 5 minutes while already getting some units to defend.

If you start out as Mauryans, use your Worker elephant and immediately start hunting in the desert.


 The players that start in the desert start with much less wood than the players that start in the fertile banks of the nile river.
 To compensate, these players start with treasure that give them an huge boost.
 Deserted players can and should build a dock much sooner.


The roads leading from and to Napata provide some desperately needed trees for deserted players.


In the fertile banks of the river, there are very few mines. Players have to get out into the desert.
 Since it can be more sustainable than fighting for mines in the desert, it is recommended to start trade near the nile soon (which incidentally is historically accurate too :-)).



Few trees but abundance of mines north of the river.


There are few treasures at the pyramids and many treasures on the hilltop. They are guarded by Kushite defenders however.
  Experienced players will find the best opportunity to hunt the treasure at the pyramids.
  After taking out the Kushite units on the hilltop, players have a chance to build a civic center on the hilltop which can be very easy to defend and
  provide a perfect place to remain the Last Man Standing.
  The city contains treasures too, but these are hard to reach due to the Walls and City Patrols.


Not a cakewalk.


The hill is easy to defend once conquered.



A long wonder victory duration ensures that players - or gaia for that matter have chance to break fortifications.

Surviving the first wave
 Gaia attacks all 5-7 minutes and leaves a bit more time between waves in later stages of the game.
 Make sure to have at least 30 ranged units to defend your base then.
 Place  your fields in the back of your base.
 Until the first wave started, keep your units in the back of the base. This way the gaia attackers might be deflected by your enemies encountered on the way.


Don't expose your units to enemy fire unless it is really important, as here


In Nomad mode, players end up with one piece of the fertile land each

 After the first wave, quickly build a palisade, so that gaia units have no chance to reach your units. Pay special attention to elephants.
 Rebuild destroyed palisades as quickly as possible.
 Remember at which places gaia units managed to walk past your walls and fix all holes.
 The irrigation canals act as a natural barrier, so you only need to wall a small area.
 Multiple layers of walls provide additional security and obstacles.
 Do team walls.
 Mauryans benefit from their stone walls that only cost wood and Carthaginians have walls that are three times as strong.



Irrigation canals provide a natural shield


Cheap but effective - wooden walls


Quickwalling - Fixing walls even during an attack


The first line of defense fell


Irrigation Canals can only be crossed at one point each


Close the gate quickly!


double palisade walls to defend an elephant rush


A successful team wall

Attacking The Opponent
 Unless you are playing with custom rules, remember that the goal is to defeat your enemy.
 So in general it is recommended to not invest resources on destroying Napata, but focus your attacks on the enemy players.
 If you wait for a Napata wave to end, you can be sure to have enough units remaining for an attack and your city is not left empty when an attack starts.


Focus on the player opponents first


Only invade the city when overwhelmingly outnumbering the enemies.



This fortress was too close - an easy target for Elephants.

  • Like 8
  • Thanks 2
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • elexis pinned, unpinned and featured this topic
  • elexis unfeatured this topic
  • 4 weeks later...
  • 3 months later...
On 9/15/2018 at 7:31 PM, elexis said:

There is a difficulty setting. Medium is tuned for experienced players!

I was looking for a random normal map 1vs1 Ai and got spammed with endless gaia (when I give up and decide to cheat to see what going on(the map hack cheat I find that AI player was already dead with some tower and 1 TC left....the gaia somehow stop killing the AI and use all unit on me):blink:

edit: should add a option to beat the gaia on this map ...I was hoping for  something pop up after I killed the last one of them lol

Edited by greedisgood500
avoid double post
Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 minutes ago, greedisgood500 said:

edit: should add a option to beat the gaia on this map ...I was hoping for  something pop up after I killed the last one of them lol

Some players already tried to beat gaia on Jebel: it is possible also in very hard setting: you can easily destroy the whole city with 40-50 bolts (in a solitary game this will take like 1-2 hours anyway, if the map is normal)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...