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- "I say, when the next big attack comes, you go and face it. Charlotte will find Marduk eventually, but we got to buy her enough time." – James, The End Days (Intermission)
- ELDRED: James' realm the Glebe had been nearly overrun. Agothera alone remained proud and untouched by the invading forces.
- ZYZYX: That didn't last.
The Last Stand
With the Glebe being almost completely overrun by Stratos' and Marduk's forces, you are tasked to defend James' ultimate altar in Agothera from the invaders. Straight away, James explains to you that Abraxus is here with a large army (though he forgets to mention Hachimen), and that Charlotte is now scouting for Marduk elsewhere. You will also be assisted by Grakkus, who offers to either defend your altars or help banish the enemies. Requesting him to help attack is a much more fruitful option, as otherwise he'll just stand around at the intersection leading to your altars until the enemies arrive there - which is arguably not very useful, as evening the odds on the battlefield is much more beneficial than a little bit of extra security back there.
You have a Rhinok, a Boulderdash and surviving heroes like Gammel to help you; Grakkus starts with 2 Jabberrockies, 2 Boulderdashes and several Earthflings. Together, your armies are pretty strong, but so are the enemies'.
Go on the offensive and start building manaliths on the empty mana founts ahead - there are two to the north and one more to the south, in a small canyon. Usually Grakkus tends to go towards this isolated manalith, so you should concentrate on the ones in the center.
As you approach the Mana Fountain right in the middle of the map, you will get a cinematic. As it turns out, Charlotte got no further than Orgren before getting banished, and now she's back in Agothera without an altar. Jadugarr follows her and kills her with Lightning spells, finishing her off for good. The centaur then declares his intentions to fight you and gathers his army near Abraxus' altar to attack. However, Jadugarr, like Charlotte, has no altar - it's enough to just kill him and he, along with all of his creatures, is gone.
The Mid-game Fighting
Hachimen will approach from the south while Abraxus charges at you from the west. Both of them have powerful armies; Hachimen commands a Phoenix, 5 Pyromaniacs and 2 Bombards while Abraxus has a Silverback, 5 Squalls, 6 Sylphs and Lord Surtur, if alive. In addition, Hachimen tends to summon some Warmongers while Abraxus conjures Flurries and/or Brainiacs.
This is why it's useful to send Grakkus on the offensive. He's quite a good fighter and will serve well to split the opposition. As usual, the first battle is also the most difficult. Your Rhinok cannot do much harm to either the Phoenix or the Silverback, while your Boulderdashes and other ranged units are too few in number to safely do the trick. However, whatever path you took during the campaign you will have either Bovine Intervention or Charm at your disposal; use it to take care of the flying titan while your Rhinok and support units annihilate anything on the ground (that's what a Rhinok does best, after all). If you fight in the middle, Abraxus will likely be your first opponent, but if Grakkus and you are in sync, you might want to go with him and curbstomp Hachimen, as his army hits much harder than Abraxus' and so he's the main threat for now.
Hachimen will sometimes cast Volcano while Abraxus likes to use Tornado. Tornado is easier to defend against: just quickly retreat with all your creatures, possibly letting Abraxus run into her own tornado and wait it out. Volcano causes more devastation, but it's easier to retreat from it as it doesn't toss you around in the air like Tornado does. Either way, interrupting the spell is the easiest way to deal with the threat of these spells.
Once you have some free time, it's best to pay attention to what Grakkus is doing. (Check the minimap.) Sometimes he does great and manages to defeat Hachimen all by himself. At other times, he just slows down Hachimen while the mercenary wizard converts all his souls. If you think he's in trouble, teleport or run to him and help him out. Letting him get back his souls might be all you need to do. Grakkus might sometimes proclaim that he's gaining or losing ground - this reflects how many manaliths he has, and might be a good indicator of when to check up on him.
At one point Jadugarr will also come knocking. He has a small army and focused fire from a Rhinok and some ranged creatures will drop him easily. Good usage of spells can accelerate the process. The few creatures Jadugarr has will not convert to Abraxus' side once the centaur dies, so you can convert them at your leisure. Concentrate on Abraxus' and Hachimen's creatures first. Jadugarr has a shrine near Abraxus' altar where his sac doctors go; it's not worth going out of the way to destroy it, as although he can't replace it, it's much easier to deal with him by killing him quickly.
After a few battles, you may find that your number of souls is growing fast and you're gaining ground. In this case, there is nothing holding you back from attacking. Don't go around hunting for manaliths; it won't help you much in the remaining part of the mission. Just find the two altars and banish the invaders one by one. Hachimen's altar is closer; it's in the second southern canyon from your altar. It doesn't come with any guards other than what Hachimen decides to Guardian during the mission. Therefore, desecration shouldn't be that hard; if there is anything guarding the final manalith it should fall to your army in short order.
Abraxus is next. Her altar is in the west part of the map, where your altar is in other missions set in Agothera. Just like Hachimen, she has no guards to start with, although she is more likely to add her own guards to her final manalith; a few Squalls and Sylphs, specifically. While these should pose little threat (even one Rhinok will pretty much devastate any ground-based defense) these may at least slow you down. Once you've leveled the manalith, desecrate Abraxus' altar as well. That was it - you've weathered the storm and saved James from destruction!
- This is the only mission in the campaign where you have to defend an Ultimate Altar.
- Much unlike the two other Agothera missions, this time there are no traps at all - neither from James nor from the invaders.
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|Missions in Sacrifice|
|Others||Prologue | The Wanderer's Tale | Respite | The Crucible|