Saturday, September 29, 2012

Empires and Generals - Desktops and Scoundrels

Farting around with some odd ideas for game creation... Plugging in some old TV shows into my system might be fun.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Abydos Fortress

Behold the goodness. And it's rare too, so each player can use one.


note #1

very excited to be working on the persians. learning a lot about cyrus. actually, october 29th is cyrus the great day. i am beginning to understand so much about this wonderful country under cyrus. it's really amazing...

note #2

pondering making a mini-expansion featuring "battle" cards. the top 25 or so most decisive battles in the world pre 450 AD. the cards would be played like strategy cards but let's say you played: "battle of thermopylae" or "battle of marathon" and you were greece and your opponent was persia... well... you may just have a better fighting chance than if you played something else. i think i will make it after i finish persia for Christmas. i've set up a pre-order page for persia that you can go to and order it. i hope you do, i think it's going to be just as cool as ancient greece.

note #3

really. ok. i have to watch the hollywood movies "alexander" and "prince of persia" just to root out things NOT to include in the game. no, there were not war elephants everywhere... no this, no that... so confounding. but i DON'T WANT to waste my time watching these crummy movies. ugh, how hollycrud ruins things.

note #4

after watching both movies, i have come to the conclusion that alexander was a little off, while prince of persia had just as much historical accuracy as conan the barbarian... and in case you were unaware: that is around 0% accurate.


DISCLAIMER: Empires and Generals is NOT giving any opinions about ANY governmental power or other power in existence today. Empires and Generals is not FOR or AGAINST any party, political, religious or otherwise in existence today. This article is not written by us and is intended for information only.


For many Iranians the cinematic movie '300' may come as a shocking revelation. But to those of us who came up through America's school system, the 'Battle of Thermopylae,' which is what the movie '300' is based on, is as familiar as George Washington's fabled "cherry tree" episode.

The Battle of Thermopylae was of course written by the classical Greek author, Herodotus, who lived in the Persian city of Halicarnassus. His book, 'The Histories' became part of Western folklore only recently. It was not until about 1850 that America embraced Herodotus as the leading authority on Persian history.

Before 1850, however, the West had a very favorable impression of the Persian Empire. That's because the West's main source for Persian history was the Bible and the 'Cyropaedia,' written by another Greek author named Xenophon.

But the Cyropaedia glorified the monarchy of Cyrus The Great, and in the wake of two bloody revolutions fought by America and France to liberate themselves from their own monarchies, a major campaign began, around the mid 19th century, to promote democracy throughout the rest of Europe, and Herodotus was the perfect propaganda tool.

Herodotus was a democratic groupie and was quickly ushered in as the "Father Of History." Around 1850, his 'Battle Of Thermopylae' came to symbolize the West's struggle for democracy against the powerful forces of Persia's monarchy.

The story is easy to buy into: 300 brave Spartans saved Western democracy from 2.7 million evil Persians. But aside from the fanciful numbers which need decimal-point adjustments, this whimsical tale has far graver consequences than a mere biased account of history.

The 'Battle Of Thermopylae' has been the single most powerful wedge, which has divided East and West for over 2 millennia. In a time when East and West should be reconciling their differences, along comes the movie '300' to drive that wedge even deeper.

What is most disturbing about this movie is not that it lacks historical accuracy. It is not that Xerxes, the Grandson of Cyrus The Great and loving husband of Esther, is shown as an oversized drag queen. It is not even the outdated racist cliché of casting the Persians as Africans and the Spartans as white, blue-eyed 'Chippendale dancers,' when in reality the roles may well have been reversed.

What is so distressing about this movie is the realization of the tremendous power Hollywood wields in determining a people's identity. It is the same nightmare Native Americans endured during the whole 'cowboy-movie' genre.

But for those who are quick to dismiss '300' as a fleeting fantasy flick aimed at the insignificant, 17 to 24 year-old male video-gamer, think again. First there was Alexander, now '300,' next could well be the 'Battle Of Marathon,' another one of Herodotus's glowing accounts of ancient Persia.

Herodotus is accepted blindly by virtually all Western demographics. Even the New York Times is not immune. Here is how it described the Persians in its April 20, 2004 issue about the Battle Of Marathon:

"the defeat of a ruthless state (Persia) that had enslaved much of the known world from the Balkans to the Himalayas."
- William J. Broad,
(NY Times)

"the ancient Greeks defeated the Asian invaders (Persia) and saved Europe in what scholars call one of the first great victories of freedom over tyranny"
- William J. Broad,
(NY Times)

What stretches the limits of hypocrisy is that there isn't a single shred of archeological evidence that the Persians ever owned slaves. Yet we know that slavery was an integral cornerstone of Greek society. Aristotle's manifesto even sanctions it. Persia, which was once a haven for runaway slaves from Egypt, Greece, and later Rome, is today branded as a slave-hungry empire by cultures which were built on slavery!

What makes Herodotus's propaganda so difficult to refute is that it is peppered with facts. But in reality, it is a desperate diatribe. Perhaps his biggest ploy is his attempt to equate democracy with freedom. These two words are used virtually interchangeably throughout his book. And the West has swallowed it hook-line-and-sinker.

But America's founding fathers knew better. They implemented many safeguards to protect freedom from the pitfalls that mired Athenian democracy. Even Winston Churchill said, "Democracy is the worst form of government except for all the others which have been tried."

Democracy may well be the best form of government. But what makes America great is not so much democracy, as it is its Bill Of Rights. And this is exactly what made Persia Great. Democracy can often lead to tyranny by the majority as was the case in democratic Athens, where women, slaves and foreigners did not have the right to vote.

In monarchic Persia, however, women enjoyed a level of gender equality unmatched even to this day, and slavery was not practiced. The fact is, Persia's monarchy was more free than Athens' democracy, all because of Persia's Bill Of Rights.

No one exemplifies Persia's freedom better than Herodotus himself. He describes Athens as the bastion of freedom, yet he chose to live in Persia. Xenophon, on the other hand, who actually lived in Athens, reminisces enviously about the monarchy of Cyrus The Great.

Herodotus claims Persia had enslaved most of the known world, yet we know Herodotus was not a slave. He traveled freely throughout the empire, openly criticizing it.

Why did Herodotus not live in Greece? Because Persia - the empire he is so quick to demonize - afforded him the very freedom to publish his scathing report of it. People want to live where their god-given rights are protected, regardless of whether its democratic or monarchic.

These god-given rights were first drafted into law by the founder of the Persian empire, Cyrus The Great. In fact, ancient Persia may well have served as the blue print for America's Bill Of Rights. Both Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, the architects of America's Constitution, were great admirers and owned several copies of Xenophon's Cyropaedia.

Today, no other country resembles ancient Persia as closely as does the United States. If any country should sympathize with, rather than celebrate, Persia's quagmire in Greece, it is the United States. Few events in history mirror America's war on terror as closely as Persia's war on Greece.

The Greeks had been carrying out terrorist attacks on Persian holdings for years. They had attacked Persian cities, set fire to Persian temples, disrupted key trade routes, and pirated merchant ships crossing the Bosphorus. They incited rebellions inside Persian provinces, but perhaps most abhorrent to the Persians was the ease by which the Greeks broke their treaties and betrayed Persia's trust.

Rather than resort to violence, however, Persia tried to keep the Greeks in check by financially supporting Greek politicians who were "pro-Persian," much the same way America fights its proxy wars. But what finally triggered Persia's wrath was an act rarely mentioned in the West, though well documented, even by Herodotus (7:11).

Persia's 9/11:

In 498 BCE, Athens carried out a terrorist attack on Sardis, a major Persian city, which made 9/11 seem like child's play. Aristagoras, an Athenian, set fire to the "outlying parts" of Sardis trapping most of its population "in a ring of fire." (Herodotus 5:101)

More innocent civilians died at the hands of Aristagoras than Osama bin Laden could ever hope to kill. And just as most of the world supported America's retaliation against Al Qaeda, so did it rally in support of Persia's attack on Athens.

The Spartans were not even targets of Persia's attack, until they violated a universal protocol by killing a Persian messenger who Herodotus claims was asking for Sparta's submission but in reality was probably sent by Persia's king, Xerxes to convey the same message America sent to the entire world after 9/11: "you're either with us, or against us."

The Spartans were Greek Jihadists who lived only to die. They were by all accounts ruthless savages who murdered Greek slaves known as "Helots" just for sport, cultivated a culture of thievery and rape, and practiced infanticide, as the movie '300' rightly points out in its opening scenes. Sparta was not even democratic. It was an oligarchy at best. Despite knowing all this, the West continues to hail the Spartans as the saviors of Western democracy.

Yes, the Spartans died fighting a foreign invader. But so do countless terrorists. Yet few would consider them "good guys." Those who do are then not much different from Westerners who cheer for the Spartans.

Persia was drawn into a protracted war against terror, much the same way the U.S. was. Cheering for the Spartans merely because they were underdogs, is like cheering for Osama bin Laden today.

Cyrus Kar

Friday, September 21, 2012

Ancient Hillock

Ancient Hillock added to the game! Try it out tonight!


Accurate Historical Persia

I am not a historian by trade, but here is one of the more accurate videos that I have found.


working on persia today.

tigermisu has been submitting some really awesome cards on

samson also has an updated pinterest page at

i figured i could get more work done as a general if i got my soldiers to do all of my work.

one day i should make the "game factory" set and have me as a card. i still have room for more generals and soldiers. :)

Persia for Christmas?

Give your loved one a taste of history this Christmas.

Give them an Empire.

Here is the new card from Persia that i am giving away to everyone.

Also, I put ancient greece on sale as well.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Oh how far we've come...

Late Summer 2012 Email sent

I just emailed the late summer newsletter including 4 new cards that you won't see unless you email and request to be put on.

I will be sending this newsletter out again in a couple of days to those of you who sign up now.

Included cards mailed -

Mancala Magician
The Gamer
Liubo Logistics
Xiangqi Students

(I just realized that this is my 200th post. Seems like just yesterday...)

Questions from Alex

I recently received an email about a couple of issues.


Hey Pauly,

We're still having loads of fun playing your game, we have all constructed our own decks. I took your advice in trying to make a full water deck but as of yet I am still reliant on some food cards. However, we do have some questions over a few things:

1. Civil Union's "No tactics cards may be played whilst civil union is in play". Does this mean the owner can't play tactics cards or everybody can't?

2. When an ability such as Prisoner Enlistment's "sacrifice three water and take opponents soldier card" is played, can the card owner then repeat that ability during the same turn?

3. When a general is attached to a crucifixion card, is it possible for the owner of the crucifixion card to sacrifice or discard that general?

Thank you very much for this awesome game!


Let's take a look at those issues one by one.

Question 1 - Civil Union's "No tactics cards may be played whilst civil union is in play". Does this mean the owner can't play tactics cards or everybody can't?

Answer 1 - No tactics cards may be played whilst civil union is in play.

Comment 1 - Yeah, it seems a little odd that you have something that limits you, but it is for the purposes of deck-building. If you build a deck with no tactics in it, this card comes in handy.

Question 2 - When an ability such as Prisoner Enlistment's "sacrifice three water and take opponents soldier card" is played, can the card owner then repeat that ability during the same turn?

Answer 2 - Abilities are used once per turn unless stated.

Comment 2 - Each Ability may be played each turn, Effects only happen when the card is played.

Question 3 - When a general is attached to a crucifixion card, is it possible for the owner of the crucifixion card to sacrifice or discard that general?

Answer 3 - Yes.

Comment 3 - Wow, I actually had to read the card again. Love this idea and I really wanted to say No, but the rules state that you can discard a General at any time during your army phase, and since the tactics card do not change the "general" into a "crucified general" then I guess, yeah, you can throw him away when needed. It would be cool to turn City Walls into a General and then Crucify the Wall. lol.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Lesser Samurai

Previously only released at conventions - Now available to the public!