But anyway. I spent my downtime on Civilization III.
The good news: I am in a position where if things go right, I will have absolutely crushed the Persians, removing their capacity to fight back--they'll be crippled, and while they might be able to have plenty of grunts scattered about, being all annoying and such, their backbone will be broken. Their central force defeated. Their spearhead shattered.
Yeah, I'll still have to coordinate actions to the point where I can keep them from gaining too large of an edge. But if things go my way. It really won't matter; Persia will have lost. And they'd probably know it. (Right now they refuse peace; after a bad turn they still refuse peace. But I have a suspicion that after a good turn, they would accept peace...were I merciful enough to offer it to them, as I'd no longer have an incentive for it, given I'm going to win a domination victory in a few turns anyway as I'm just 1% of world area away and that's literally a single boarder expansion from culture away.)
The bad news?
While I only need to win once...I, uh. Actually do need to win. The problem being, Persia can Zerg Rush me right now. Rather. You tend to think of Zerg Rush as being weak units attacking en masse. This? This is just a full-on assault. One wounded archer (2/3 health, 2 attack), 12 regular Immortals (3 health, 4 attack), and on top of all that, 12 veteran Immortals (4 health, same 4 attack).
On my side?
A wounded Elite Heavy Cavalry outside the city we're defending (so, he can retreat), health 4/5, 2 defense.
Inside the city proper, two armies. One army, 13/14 health, has two different unit types in it. Normally something I avoid but I made an exception because their attack values were the same and I wasn't exactly planning on using them for anything other than attack, so it's a bit iffy what their defense value is. It's one archer (defense 1) and two Numidian Mercenaries (defense 3), so average of 2 defense.
The second army, 10/14 health, is all swordsmen (so, 3): defense of 2. Grand total? 7 units (armies don't count), all at a distinct disadvantage on the defensive, which is what I'm on right now. As in. I literally threw everything I had at them and they still have that many clumped together.
So right now, we're playing a game of 'beat the impossible odds'.
Literally anything happening with me keeping the city, I could accept--even the death of one of the two defending armies with the remaining army at 1 health. Even literally the whole world through a chain of alliances being signed into a war pact against me. I don't care what happens. I've got this turn so thoroughly memorized that I know every predetermined action.
If the city holds, then I'm under no threat. No civilization can touch me. I'd welcome warring the Celts. The Goths/Scynthians would be little more than inconveniences. I'd be sad about the Egyptians or Macedonians (both are down to 1 city, so I'd have to annihilate them), and I also would be sad to see the Macedonians suicidally sign a declaration of war against any of the Barbarian civilizations since literally any of them could utterly crush them.
I would be saddened if my army died, especially the Hannibal army I started with. I also would prefer to keep my Heavy Cavalry unit on the southern front which I placed in a position knowing full good and well I was essentially writing it off as cannon fodder to die, and me not doing so would sadden me.
But, dangit! If I hold that city.
There is no scenario which would not be worth it. (Aside from maybe one of my cities on an island defecting to Persia, but even that'd be lolworthy since said islands have my units stationed on them to prevent any invasion since this scenario doesn't have aquatic invasions.)
It's just that it'll be a longshot among longshots for me to actually pull that off.
Because do the math.
That's 25 units I have to hold off.
Against 7 defenders.
Admittedly the Archer is cannon fodder. (Which adds insult to injury if said archer wins against the heavy cavalry, which did happen at least once so far.)
But that's still 24 immortals--each with the advantage in attack--against 9 defenders.
It's not impossible. I know it's not. Another way of thinking about it, after all, is "their 86 health" (should they literally go all-in) versus "my 27 (plus chance for two extra, via unit promotion)".
...Okay that still doesn't look too favorable. 7/25 is .28 odds; 27/86 is .31 odds; 29/86 is .34 odds. And this is in the health/unit count alone. The fact that on average you can expect Immortals to deal 2 damage for every damage received (or thereabouts)...well that means that my odds of pulling through are nothing if not slim. Yet they're not nothing!
Basically right now I need luck of the gods. Or patience thereof to meet the equivalent. 'Cause, uh. Yeah.
And I have to win.
Thermopylae aint got nothin' on Thessalonika. (The city I'm stuck defending.)
I have hope that my wall bonus of 50% makes my odds be less terrible than they otherwise would be.
Because right now I need to hope I can win.
I really really really really don't want to rewind something like 5 turns in order to change the odds.
Nor do I want to go back and undo the war altogether. For a start, it was almost unavoidable; it arguably needed to happen. That'd also be going back even further.
But I need to hold on.
And keep trying.
And trying, until I win.
Because I am so freakin' close to having a final victory over the world. As Carthage. And I'm pretty sure my score is higher than it was as either the Romans or the Persians. (I could be wrong, of course.)
I only need to win once.
But I'm going to keep losing...and losing...and losing...and losing. All. over. and over. and over. again and again.
Evil only needs to win once, as the saying goes. (I of course love to see myself as a 'villain with good publicity' when I play Civ games: I'm almost never the aggressor, but when I enter war, BOY do I ever decimate those in the war.)