So you want to play Dominions 4, but you have no idea what to do. That's understandable! Dominions 4 has front-loaded complexity, meaning there are a lot of concepts you'll encounter just initially starting the game. However, once you get an understanding of these concepts you'll be well on your way to becoming a Dominions 4 expert! This guide is for introducing the basics of Dominions 4 concepts and strategies; more in-depth details and strategies will be linked on separate pages.

A good starting point is playing the In Game Tutorial.

A valuable Beginner's Guide video series by Maerlande is available here (thanks Maerlande!)

An excellent online reference to bookmark is the Dom4 Mod Inspector (thanks larzm42!)

Beginner's Overview Edit

In Dominions 4 you'll:

Game Setup Edit

Dominions 4 allows you to make a lot of choices for greater game variety every time you start a new game. These range from change game rules to choosing the map of your world and designing your Pretender God. The setup for a new game of Dominions 4 includes the following:

Choose a Map Edit

Dominions 4 has a number of different worlds for the gods to fight over. Maps are divided into a number of different provinces that have different terrains, including both land provinces and sea (underwater) provinces. Maps can wraparound at the north-south axis and the east-west access meaning they won't end at an edge in those directions (represented by arrows next to the map name). Maps can also be Scenarios with a specific setup (represented by a yellow burst symbol next to the map name. You can also create your own maps.


Dawn of Dominions is a Scenario map, indicated by the yellow burst symbol. The Desert Eye map wraps around at the north-south axis and the east-west axis, indicated by the arrows.

Beginner's Tips:

  • Different types of terrain matter for different nations. Underwater nations like Atlantis require sea provinces. Some nations have troops that can only be recruited in certain terrain, such as Man and Pangaea's forest recruits. Also some spells can only be cast in a specific terrain, for example Hidden in the Snow can only be cast in Mountains and Hinnom's national spell Summon Se'irim can only be cast in Wastelands.
  • Typically a good map size is around 15 provinces per player. Smaller maps will make players encounter each other sooner which can result in early wars and quicker games, whereas larger maps will give players more space to expand against independents and cause longer games.

Select an Era Edit

Main article: Eras

Troops across the ages. The Enkidu of EA Ur wear animal fur and use clubs. MA Pangaea's War Minotaurs are outfitted in bronze armor. Lastly, LA Marignon's Crossbowmen don iron armor and wield armor-piercing crossbows.

Dominions 4 has three different Eras. Early Ages (EA) have abundant magic resources but low technology. Middle Ages (MA) have more focused magic and more developed technology. Finally, the Late Ages (LA) have the highest level of technology but the lowest level of magic.

Nations change in different ages, sometimes drastically (for example, EA Ermor is very different than MA Ermor). Some nations are only available in certain ages, such as Therodos which is only available in the Early Ages. In addition, different ages have different independents, different rates of magic sites, and other differences as well.

Choose your Nation Edit

Main article: Nations Overview

Nations in Dominions 4 are very diverse, ranging from human nations such as Arcoscephale to nations of sentient apes like Bandar Log, plus nations with demons like Caelum's Daevas and nations even more inhuman with R'lyeh.

Dominions 4 contains many different nations that you can lead to victory over your opponents. Each game consists of a number of different players, either Human or AI, and nations for them can be chosen specifically or assigned randomly (choosing <<None>> for a nation removes that player from the game). A Disciple Game is a team game where each team has one Pretender God and the other players are Disciples. The majority of nations are based on land, but some nations such as Atlantis and R'lyeh start underwater. Nations can also vary in many other different ways:

  • Each nation has it's own unique national troops and commanders. You might lead an army of human soldiers like MA Arcoscephale against a legion of giants like MA Jotunheim, or pit EA Pangaea's centaur cavalry against EA Machaka's spider riders, or see if a nation of monkeys and nagas (LA Patala) can triumph over a nation of ghosts (LA Lemuria).
  • The mages of different nations have different magic paths, which determine the spells those mages can cast. A nation with Earth mages like MA Ulm's Master Smiths might destroy enemy armies with earthquakes, whereas a nation with Death mages like MA Ermor's Dusk Elders might overwhelm their opponents with skeletons and other undead warriors. Nations may also have unique national spells, such as Tir na n’Og's Spellsongs or Xibalba's Four Souls spells.
  • Each nation has different priests to lead the faith. The game categories each nation as having Weak Priests, Moderate Priest, or Strong Priests based on the maximum level of the holy magic path available to recruitable priests of that nation. Weak means the nation can only recruit 1H Priests, Moderate is 2H, and Strong is 3H.
  • Nations can have Dominion effects that affect the provinces where their faith spreads. The most common type is an effect that kills the population ("popkill" for short). Examples include MA Asphodel whose dominion kills population and turns them into undead troops, and LA R'lyeh whose dominion drives the population insane. An example of a non-domkill dominion effect is MA C'tis, whose dominion turns the land into a swamp increasing their income and causing disease for non-swamp survival units.
  • There are various other ways nations can differ. Nations can have different levels of building technology and spend different amounts on forts, labs and temples. EA Berytos gets bonus income in coastal forts. Some nations have the ability to blood sacrifice to spread their dominion like EA Mictlan. Check out any nation you're interested in to see what makes it unique!

Beginner's Tips

  • Human nations without complicated troops or effects are likely good nations for new players. Examples include EA Ermor, MA Man, and LA Arcoscephale.
  • When trying a nation for the first time, you can make a quick game as them against one AI player. This lets you check out their troops and mages, and practice using them against independents and the AI.
  • If your nation does not have mages with a certain magic path you want, you can try recruiting independent mages or using spells to summon mages with that path.
  • The Weak/Moderate/Strong rating for Priests are not indicative of how effective a nation's priests can be in the hands of a good player. A nation rated Weak may have more useful Priests than a nation rated Strong!

Pretender Design Edit

Main Page: Pretender

Pretender God Examples - A Dragon is powerful in combat so it can be a good Super Combatant Pretender, while an Arch Mage can get many magic paths and thus can be a good Rainbow Pretender.

Each player will create a pretender god to be the head of their nation. These can range from a Golden Idol to an ancient Titan or fire breathing Dragon to even just an exceptionally powerful mage. When you create your Pretender you're given a number of design points you can spend on a physical form, magic paths, and scales for your dominion. A good starting point when creating a Pretender is to decide on what purpose you want your Pretender to fulfill. Common types of Pretenders are:

  • Super Combatants (SCs) - Super Combatants are pretender gods built to destroy everything in their way. They are strong during the early game and good for nations that have trouble expanding.
  • Bless Builds - A Pretender's magic paths determine what effects a blessing will have on their nation's sacred troops. If a nation has effective sacred troops, a Pretender can focus on a powerful bless for them.
  • Rainbow Pretenders - A Pretender can have a wide variety of magic paths to increase magic diversity for their nation and to be an effective site-searcher. This can be useful for nations with low magical diversity or national spells their mages can't natively cast.
  • Scales Builds - Scales can have positive effects on any province in your dominion. Pretenders focusing on good scales can be useful for nations with abilities complimented by certain scales.

No matter which kind of Pretender you want to create, there are multiple choices available for different physical forms, magic paths, scales for your dominion, and Imprisonment options. These can either cost design points or earn you more design points depending on what you choose. Below is a brief look at how it all works:

Physical Forms Edit

A physical form is the body your Pretender will incarnate as, also informally called a chassis. Each physical form costs a different number of design points, has a default dominion value and default magic paths, and may have a variety of different abilities. Some nations get design point discounts for certain physical forms. Although the different abilities of physical forms can vary widely, there are some general categories:

  • Immobile (e.g: Monolith or Fountain of Blood) – Immobile Pretenders have the highest starting dominion value at 4. They generally also have good default magic paths. However, these physical forms typically cannot move under normal circumstances. An Immobile physical form is a popular choice for Bless strategies.
  • Titan (e.g: Titan of Heaven (Zeus) or Neter of the Sun (Ra) ) – Titan pretenders have the next best starting dominion value at 3. Likewise, they generally also have good default magic paths. However, these physical forms are typically some of the most expensive and have a high cost for obtaining any magic path they don't have by default. A Titan physical form can be adapted to a variety of strategies.
  • Monster (e.g: Dragon or Phoenix) - Monster physical forms are generally powerful with good stats, attacks or other abilities. However they have the second lowest starting dominion value at 2 and only moderate magic. A Monster physical form is usually a good choice for Super Combatants.
  • Mortal (e.g: Arch Mage or Crone) – Mortal physical forms are generally the cheapest physical forms and they have the lowest cost for obtaining new magic paths. However, they have the lowest starting dominion value at 1 and low starting magic with typically only one path. A Mortal physical form can be useful for a broad Rainbow strategy.

Magic Paths Edit

In addition to your Pretender's default magic paths, you can use design points to buy higher magic in those paths or even entirely new magic paths. Just like with any mage your Pretender's magic paths determine the spells they will be able to cast. On top of that, any magic paths of at least level 4 with add a Minor Bless effect that will grow more powerful with higher levels. At level 9 in a magic path a Major Bless effect is added. However, the cost in design points for levels of a magic path increases on a curve so it can be very expensive to get high magic levels.

In addition to improving your bless, magic paths on your pretender can be useful in other ways. You can give your Pretender a magic path your nation doesn't otherwise have access to. High magic paths let your pretender easily cast big spells that otherwise might require costly magic boosters on a mage to cast. Whatever magically strategy you have for your nation you can build your Pretender to facilitate it.

Dominion Edit

Your Pretender has a dominion value represented by candles that indicates how strongly his divine power will affect the world. The higher your dominion value the more your dominion will spread to other provinces and transform them to match your scales. Your dominion can reduce enemy dominion, but enemies can reduce yours as well. Importantly, if you ever have zero dominion in all provinces you'll lose the game!

Your dominion has other effects as well. Your Pretender and Prophet will have higher HP in provinces where you have high dominion. If you have a Dominion of 9 or 10, your Pretender will get an Awe ability (or improve an existing Awe ability) that makes enemies have to pass a morale check to attack. Your troops get +1 morale in your dominion but -1 morale in enemy dominion. Speaking of troops, each province can only recruit as many Sacred troops as you have dominion each turn. Finally, some spells and abilities can have different effects in and on your dominion.

Rule of thumb for dominion:

  • 5 or below: Low Dominion
  • 6 – 8: Moderate Dominion
  • 9 – 10: High Dominion

Scales Edit

As your dominion spreads across the land, it will transform provinces to match your scales. Scales comes in pairs of effects with 3 levels, typically one positive and one negative like Growth and Death. One level of the positive effect (left-click) costs 40 design points, while one level of the negative effect (right-click) earns you 40 extra design points. Some nations and units get a bonus from certain scales, for instance units with the Chaos Power ability are more powerful in provinces with Turmoil scales. Below is a brief summary of the scales:

  • Order/Turmoil - Order increases income and reduces unrest and random events, while Turmoil does the opposite. Order's unrest reduction is good for nations that cause unrest with actions like bloodhunting, while some nations get bonuses that help mitigate Turmoil's unrest reduction like EA Pangaea's free Maenads.
  • Productivity/Sloth - Productivity increases income and resources while Sloth does the opposite. Productivity's resources are good for nations that have troops in expensive armor, while nations with less resource intensive troops can take Sloth for the extra design points.
  • Heat/Cold - This scale is an exception to the others. Each nation has a temperature they prefer, like the fiery Abyssians prefer Heat 3 and the frost giants of Jotunheim prefer Cold 3. Each step away from your nation's preference causes a penalty to income and supplies, but earns extra design points. Temperature changes naturally by one level of Heat during Summer and one level of Cold during winter.
  • Growth/Death - Growth increase income, supplies and population growth, while Death does the opposite. Growth is the best long-term income increase since more population means more taxes. Some popkill nations may benefit from the additional design points of Death since their population is going to die anyway.
  • Luck/Misfortune - Luck and Misfortune both increase the chance of random events, but Luck makes them more likely to be beneficial and Misfortune does the opposite. Although bad events can still happen with Luck scales and good events can still happen in Misfortune scales, high Luck will unlock better events and high Misfortune will unlock worse ones.
  • Magic/Drain - Magic increases Research and decreases spellcasting fatigue, while Drain does the opposite. At Drain 2 your troops get bonus resistance against enemy magic, while Magic 2 makes your troops more easily affected by enemy magic. The research bonus from high Magic is proportionally better for nations with many small research value mages, while Drain can be useful for nations with researchers not affected by the Drain scale like MA Ulm.

Imprisonment Edit

You have three options of Imprisonment for your Pretender: Awake, Dormant, or Imprisoned. Awake means your Pretender is active on the first turn of the game. Dormant earns you 150 extra design points, but means your Pretender will take around an in-game year (12 turns) to awaken. Finally, Imprisoned earns you 250 extra design points, but your pretender will take an average of three in-game years to awaken.

Awake is the typical choice for Super Combatant pretenders, and Imprisoned is the typical choice for Bless strategies. Dormant is generally a good choice for other pretenders. Dormant gives a better bonus for the time cost than Imprisoned since it's 150 points for one year, whereas Imprisoned only gets you 100 more points for two more years.

Game Settings Edit

Main Page Game Settings

Dominions 4 lets you customize a number of different game rules. Many of these will let you make the pace of the game faster or slower by increasing or decreasing research, money and other resources. You can increase or decrease the strength of independent forces; the AI tends to struggle expanding against stronger independents. Also you can turn story events on or off; story events are more involved random events and event chains including some nation specific events.

Clicking on Thrones of Ascension lets you change the Victory Condition. The default Victory Condition is Thrones of Ascension, where to win you have to conquer provinces that hold powerful magic thrones and claim them with your Pretender or a level 3 or higher priest. Thrones can have a variety of effects, including generating magic gems, expanding your dominion, adding effects to your Bless and allowing you to recruit new units.

Other Victory Conditions are described on the Game Mechanics page.

Beginner's Tips:

  • Be careful trying to make a Pretender that can do everything. Typically it's more effective to have a Pretender that excels at one or two purposes, rather than one that's spread too thin.
  • When creating a Pretender for a nation you haven't played before, it's a good idea to know more about the nation first. You can start a quick game as that nation against one AI player to check out their troops, mages and playstyle to come up with good ideas for a Pretender.
  • If your Pretender dies, don't fret - your priests can use the Call God command to bring them back. However, your god will lose one level of all of their magic paths unless you have an ability to mitigate it like EA Ur.
  • Super Combatant Pretenders will frequently be victims of afflictions. It's a good idea to have a plan for them when they can no longer fight.
  • Although Immobile Pretenders cannot move under normal circumstances, they can use spells like Teleport to appear in a new province.
  • For a healthy dominion try to have at least a moderate starting value (6-8 Dominion). This will help spread your scales and hopefully prevent you from getting domkilled.
  • During gameplay your dominion value increases by 1 for every 5 temples you build.
  • If you're playing with Thrones of Ascension, Thrones are on a type of terrain called "manysites," which means it's more likely to have magic sites. It's a good idea to site search Thrones.

Common Pretender Builds


ErfSnake. High protection doesn't stop it from being totally broken.

  • The Earth Serpent is a popular Super Combatant because it's a cheap chassis with high protection, Fear and Recuperation. That means it can sit there like a big dumb lump while enemies fail to damage it until they get scared and run away. Plus with Recuperation if it ever does get injured it can heal afflictions unlike most Pretenders.
  • Popular blesses for plentiful sacred troops are Fire, Water and Blood since they make those troops attack more effectively and do more damage. Popular blesses for more costly sacred troops are Earth and Nature because they make those troops more resilient.
  • Common Scales combinations include Order/Misfortune and Turmoil/Luck because Order reduces the number of bad events caused by Misfortune and Turmoil increases the number of good effects caused by Luck.
  • For temperature scales if your nation's preference is neutral 0 the penalty from taking one point in either direction will be negated part of the year by the seasonal temperature shift, and depending on the map can provide a mobility advantage by making it easier to cross frozen rivers (Cold) or mountain passes (Heat). If your nation's preference is 2 in either direction it can be worthwhile to take 3 since seasons and various other effects can reduce it to 2.

Early Game (Expansion) Edit

When you start a new game of Dominions 4, you'll have only a sole province - your Capital (unless you added more starting provinces in the Game Settings), your starting commanders and army, and your Pretender if you made them awake. With your leadership by the year's end your nation could be well on the way to taking over the world! The early game will focus on establishing your nation's territory by conquering independent provinces, starting to build up your nation's power, and any other early goals you want to set for yourself.

The First Turn Edit

Even with the limited amount you start with, there are still a good number of decisions to make on your first turn. Here are some things you may want to do or consider doing on your first turn:

  • Survey your surroundings and decide on a plan for conquest. Conquering provinces connected to your Capital will bring more resources to your capital province, allowing you to recruit more units.
  • Choose to Prophetize your starting commander or plan for a future Prophet. Prophetizing your starting commander makes them spread your dominion and gives them an H3 path so they can support an expansion army with spells like Sermon of Courage to increase morale and Smite to damage enemies.
  • Recruit units from your capital. Depending on your nation, you may want to recruit troops to make your starting army stronger or recruit a mage and start researching. If you are going to start researching, check your Research and make sure you're researching the school you want.
  • Check Mercenaries. Mercenaries are armies you can hire for three turns and they can be helpful in the early game for faster expansion. Even if you don't want to hire them checking back to see if anyone else did can give you valuable intel on your opponents.
  • If you have a Super Combatant Pretender, decide if you want to expansion blind. Waiting a turn to get intel on the surrounding provinces is safer, but some SCs can semi-reliably expand blindly. If you have an awake Pretender and don't blindly expand, they can Research or do something else valuable instead of just defending.

Basic Expansion Guidelines Edit

Every nation has different tools available for defeating independents in Combat and expanding your empire. However, there are some general guidelines for expansion that are applicable to most nations. Good troops for expanding typically have one or more of the following:

  • ExampleExpansionTroops

    Example Expansion Troops. MA Pelagia's Coral Clan Hoplite has good armor and a long spear. EA Machaka's War Elephant is good at trampling independents. Finally, Mictlan's Jaguar Warriors are Sacred troops that can conquer many provinces with a good bless.

    Good Defense - Features like high Protection (16+) will reduce damage your expansion army takes, high defense will let them avoid attacks, and long weapons will repel enemy attacks (length greater than a spear's 4 is good).
  • Tramplers - Units with the Trample ability can crush units smaller than them. Since most independents are around human size, when used well larger tramplers can be very effective. Typically units like chariots or large animals like elephants can trample.
  • Sacred - If your nation has good Sacred units and you chose a good bless, your Sacred units can take independent provinces even when outnumbered.

Nuclearmonkee has a good video tutorial on how to use tramplers here (thanks Nuclearmonkee!)

In addition to your starting army, you should recruit units to make additional expansion armies during the first year so that you can eventually conquer two or three indie provinces per turn. Each turn you can check for Mercenaries to see if there's a mercenary army you can hire to help your expansion. Whenever you conquer a province, add at least one point of Province Defense, which will prevent enemies from just walking in and taking it unopposed. You may also want to check recruitment in that province to see if it has a recruitable Scout or other units you might be interested in.

Beginner Tips:

  • It's better to retreat a weakened expansion army to a Fort to restock it with more troops than to let the weakened army get massacred trying to take more provinces.
  • When your dominion spreads to provinces, you can see their income and resources. If your dominion spreads to indie provinces you can use that to prioritize which ones to conquer first.
  • You can modify your expansion army to counter specific independents, for instance using arrows against lightly armored troops like Barbarians.
  • Super Combatants relying on an Awe ability should be wary of attacking Undead or high-morale indies like Knights because Awe will be ineffective and less effective respectfully.
  • Super Combatants should never attack a lizard province, because Lizard Shamans can cast Curse which will permanently make a unit more susceptible to afflictions. There's no way to cure Curse.

First Year Goals Edit

Goals for the first year can include anything you want to accomplish, and goals can vary from nation to nation. Below is just a general guideline for typical goals to achieve in the first year:

  • Around 15 provinces conquered by the end of the first year is a good benchmark. Since you have 12 turns, this requires at least a few turns of conquering more than one province a turn.
  • Having a second Fort with a Lab and a Temple by the end of the first year is good progress for increasing your nation's power. That will allow you to recruit additional troops, and more importantly additional mages.
  • You may want to set an early Research goal. An early buff like Ironskin or Personal Regeneration might be good for an applicable SC, or if you might want to capitalize on your national mages like going for Construction as MA Ulm if a Master Smith gets an Air random to forge a Dwarven Hammer and Owl Quills to improve your Research.
  • Start site searching to improve your gem economy. You'll have to balance which mages to dedicate to site search or casting site searching rituals and which ones to keep researching.
  • By the end of the first year you'll likely encounter other nations. You can use any Scouts you can recruit to gather intel and start deciding who you want to ally and who you want to target.

Mid Game Edit

The Mid Game of Dominions 4 generally comprises the bulk of most games. During this time nations use troops, spells and strategy to triumph over one another. Alliances are made (and possibly broken!), the world itself may be changed by Global enchantments, and some nations may be wiped off the map. Here are some things to keep in mind during the Mid Game:

Mid Game Magic Edit

Troops ruled the Early Game when Research was low, but as research progresses in the Mid Game spells become more important. Mass troop killing spells like Blade Wind, Earthquake and Rain of Stones mean a small number of mages can wipe out a large number of troops. Each of these can be countered though; try to discover which tactics your opponents are using so you can develop counter tactics. You might want to set Mid Game research goals, either to execute your own strategy or to counter your opponent's. Things to look at include:

  • Spell Combos - Many spells work well together and different nations can take advantage of different combinations. A nation with Air magic might create a battlefield Storm and have mages spam Thunderstrike. Troops of an Earth nation may be buffed by spells like Iron Warriors and Strength of Giants. An Undead nation can use spells like Rigor Mortis to cripple their living opponents.
  • Globals - There are a limited number of slots for Global enchantments, which can have powerful worldwide effects. It's worthwhile to look into putting up a Global you can take advantage of, but be warned that your opponents can take it down. You may want to research Thaumaturgy for Dispel if your opponent has a global up you need to get rid of.
  • Communions - If your nation has Astral or Blood mages they can use a Communion/Sabbath to cast more powerful spells. Communions can be difficult to manage since mishandled they can kill your mages, but if you can pull them off they can be a powerful tool in your arsenal.
  • Magic Boosters - Another way for your mages to cast more powerful spells is to forge Magic Boosters, which are magic items that boost their magic paths. In some cases it might be worthwhile to use Empowerment to increase a mage's magic paths, but that tends to be more costly.

Another aspect of magic to look at is magic diversity. You may be able to catch your opponent off guard by casting spells they didn't expect if you can diversify beyond your nations default magic paths. Now that you've conquered a number of provinces you may have different recruitment options to diversify your magic. Low level Nature is the easiest path to get into thanks to the plethora of indie tribe shamans. Different kinds of Amazons can also provide access to different kinds of magic. Certain sites and Thrones allow you to recruit a variety of mages as well. Finally, a number of spells can summon mages that have multiple magic paths.

Mid Game Strategy Edit

The Mid Game is where many different nations' strengths and weaknesses against each other come into play. Knowing both what your nation is capable of and what your opponent's nation is capable of will help you come up with nation-specific strategies. If you use Scouts well to spy on your opponents you can see what specific tactics they're using and develop a counter to them.

One important concept is as Research progresses nations will have different peaks of strength, where they are relatively more powerful due to a spell or ability that can't be easily countered yet. For example, a Fire nation with archers can make excellent use of the spell Flaming Arrows at Enchantment 4. However, spells like Storm at Evocation 5 and Arrow Fend at Enchantment 6 can counter that strategy. Therefore, if you want to use Flaming Arrows you should be prepared to attack with it before your opponent can research counters. You should capitalize on your peaks when you have the advantage over your opponent.

Another strategy some nations can use during the Mid Game is creating Thugs. Thug is just a general term for any unit powerful enough to serve a purpose like defeating small armies to capture provinces by itself or in small groups, but typically not as powerful as a Super Combatant (though thugs can be built specifically to counter an SC). Typical thugs are units like summoned creatures such as Wights and physically strong mages outfitted with magic items. Common magic items for thugs include armaments like a Vine Shield and a Frost Brand or Fire Brand.

Finally, in multiplayer games just like any multiplayer strategy game diplomacy is perhaps even more important than any in game mechanic. Defeating an opponent of about equal strength on your own can drain a lot of your resources and leave you easy prey for any remaining players. Teaming up to outnumber an opponent might not be fair but it's a good way to avoid critical loses. In addition to alliances for Combat, Dominions 4 also allows players to transfer magic gems and magic items, so some clever diplomacy can get you items you can't forge yourself or lots of gems to Dispel a mutually hated global like Utterdark or Burden of Time.

Beginner's Tips:

  • Make alliances early and choose a target to attack early as well. Don't overextend yourself though, try to time your attack when you have the advantage over your opponent.
  • Nations with Blood Magic are powerful in the late game when they can summon Horrors and cast other powerful spells. Stopping blood nations early might be a good idea.
  • Similarly, popkill nations like MA Ermor will wipe out the population of provinces and reduce their income to 0. These are other good nations to stop early if you plan on conquering their provinces.
  • Fort your Thrones! It takes time to siege a fort, while a province without a fort can be conquered in a turn. Without forts an opponent could swipe your Thrones and claim them for victory before you could stop them.
  • In the Mid Game you should finish site searching all of your provinces either with mages using the Search action or casting spells that reveal sites.

Late Game Edit

The Late Game of Dominions 4 is defined by powerful spells that can summon giant monsters or wipe out entire armies. However, not all games will last all the way to a late game. Don't plan from the start strategies based around having multiple level 9 research or similar, because you may never get to use them. If the game reaches this point it's a race to the Victory Condition - even if a nation isn't the most powerful in the world if it claims all the required Thrones it still wins!

Late Game Magic Edit

Late Game magic often affects the entire battlefield or has another powerful effect. Some common magic you might see used in the late game includes:

  • Army of Foo spells - There are a number spells that affect an entire army on the battlefield. They often follow the naming convention Army of Something, such as Army of Lead, Army of Gold, and Army of Rats. However, not all army-wide spells follow this naming; Fog Warriors and Marble Warriors are also powerful friendly army buffs.
  • Mass Control Spells - A handful of high-level spells can allow mages to take control of an entire army. Arcane Domination attempts to take control of all Magical Beings on the battlefield, Beast Mastery attempts to take control of all animals, Undead Mastery attempts to take control of all Undead, and Master Enslave attempts to take control of all units. Arcane Domination and Master Enslave are Astral and therefore prime targets for a large Communion.
  • Powerful Summons - The Conjuration school of magic has spells that can summon powerful late game units like the Elemental Royalty or entire armies like Legion of Wights and Ghost Riders. The spell Tartarian Gate can summon ancient undead gods, but they may be insane and suffer afflictions. The Global Enchantment Gift of Health can heal them though.

Turn Checklist Edit

As the game continues and you conquer more provinces, you'll have more and more to manage each turn. A simple turn checklist can help keep everything under control and prevent you from missing out on any opportunities. Here's one basic example:

  1. Combat - What was the outcome of all your battles last turn? Do you need to adjust any tactics? Did you buy Province Defense for any province you conquered?
  2. Recruitment - Are all your forts recruiting a mage or something else you want? Do you have any non-forted labs recruiting mages?
  3. Mercenaries - Are there any Mercenaries you want, either to use them yourself or just steal them from an opponent? Do you need to renew any mercenaries you have or suicide them so no one else can have them?
  4. Commanders - Are all your mages and commanders doing what you want? You can use the keyboard shortcuts n (next commander) and j (previous commander) to go through commanders without orders.
  5. Research - Do you need to adjust your Research? Checking Research after handling your commanders is good because you don't want to miss a research milestone by deciding a mage has something more important to do than research after planning your research for the turn.

What Next? Edit

Experiment with different nations and strategies! Design your own maps! Have a great idea for the game? Mod it in!