A Way Out

The scenario's full map.

Scenario information
Game Age of Mythology:Tale of the Dragon
Campaign Tale of the Dragon
Civilization Chinese, Nü Wa
Color Blue
Course of campaign
Scenario no. 8
Previous The Water Palace
Next Yin and Yang

A Way Out is the eighth scenario of the Tale of the Dragon campaign in Age of Mythology: Tale of the Dragon. The main objective is to free the Vermilion Birds from the enemy stronghold. 

Summary Edit

On their way to Pangu's altar, Jiao-Long and the others have come to realize that the map provided by Ao Kuang has not been useful to them as they are not familiar with the jungle they're in. Suddenly, they are startled by a cry from above and the Vermilion Bird of the south reveals itself to them. It promises to guide them to Pangu if the heroes can help free its brethren of whom it lost control. 

Objectives Edit

  1. Free the nearby rocs. Kill all enemy forces guarding the rocs, using forest fire to get there if necessary.
  2. Free the captured vermillion birds. Reach the Vermillion birds by using forest fire on bamboo trees that block your path. Kill their captors when you find them.
  3. Destroy the enemy stronghold. Destroy the enemy buildings at their stronghold where the final Vermillion birds are held.

Players Edit

Neutral Edit

  • Mother Nature (Shennong) - Consists of the Rocs and Vermilion Birds trapped by the enemy. They will convert to the player's colors if freed. 

Enemies Edit

  • Rogue Forces (Shennong) - has military buildings scattered across the jungle and the ability to spawn armies made up of nearly every type of Chinese unit and even Kataskopos. Destroying their Towers and the units guarding them will free the captured Vermilion Birds and Rocs. 

Strategy Edit

This guide is applied to hard difficulty. It is, of course, also applicable for the other grades of difficulty. 

Players should immediately have some Peasants build a Town Center while two more wall off both upper passes and the lower right pass. Enemy attacks will be frequent and of considerable size so a choke point must be create to have a better fighting chance. Once the Town Center is complete, additional Peasants should be trained to gather necessary resources and build Gardens. Wood should only be gathered from the larger northern group of trees and players must monitor their Peasants to make sure they do not create more openings. Once the berry bush and ducks run out, players will have to immediately resort to farming for food. A dock can also be built to train fishing ships who will remain out of reach from enemy attacks. 

The enemy will send armies made up of all kinds of human units, as well as Immortals and myth units. Some waves will consist solely of Chinese myth units (except Azure Dragons and Vermilion Birds) which can be countered by training all six available Immortals. A Temple should be built to train Monks and research Elixir of Immortality. The armies consisting of human units will lack upgrades so if the player converts most of them and researches technologies from a War Academy and Stable, players will have the upper hand. Converting the enemy units alone may not suffice as the frequent attack will thin out the player's army before they can be healed. It is therefore advised to build two War Academies and Stables to replenish the army in a pinch. Numerous Towers will also be needed to eliminate any unit that bypasses the player's choke point. As always, the campaign heroes should always stand in front due to their bulk. 

Once the player has a stable defensive stance, they can build a Castle from which they can train a handful of Fire Lances. These can venture out in the jungle and destroy any enemy building encountered while some Monks should accompany them for support. Destroying as many buildings as possible will be required to slow down the attacks but also gain access to additional jade mines as the one at the beginning of the scenario will run out quickly. Some of the other jade mines can only be accessed by burning away the bamboo covering them. After the attacks become less frequent, players can send a fraction of their soldiers to the trapped Rocs. After defeating the guards, they will instantly become available to the player, enabling their units to navigate faster. 

Additional Fire Lances or even War Salamanders can be trained to garrison inside the Rocs along with Mounted Cavalry and Monks and be transported to the location revealed at the south of the map where the first Vermilion Birds are trapped. There are towers guarding that area who deal bonus damage to airborne units so it is advised to evade them by dropping off the units in the path leading up to a bamboo forest which can be burnt down. After destroying all Rogue Forces in the area, the player will be granted four Vermilion Birds. These powerful units can now be sent around the map to destroy the remaining buildings of the Rogue Forces but should regularly fall back to be healed. Once all Vermilion Birds have been freed, the player will be given their final objective. 

Zhi will make note that the enemy stronghold is protected by powerful beams that are lethal to airborne units. Depending on the player's game version, these beams will either instantly kill Rocs and Vermilion Birds, or be harmless to them but will prevent grounded units from passing through. Players can test this by gathering the Bridle of Pegasus Relic and testing them out with the Pegasus it spawns. If the Pegasus dies, players will need to transport their entire army just outside the rays and cast Forest Fire to bypass the bamboo forest before laying siege to the defensive structures and the large army guarding it. If the Pegasus survives, the units will have to be transported over the beams via Rocs as the Castle is too far out of reach for any ranged unit. It will be necessary to destroy some of the Towers using Fire Lances stationed on the other side of the bamboo forest. There are also too many Towers for the Vermilion Birds to fly safely in that area. The enemy army can also pass through the beams with ease so it is recommended to lure them out before using the Rocs to bypass the beams (a second army may need to be created to accomplish that). Regardless of the method used, as long as the player can defeat all the Rogue Forces and destroy the buildings guarding the last Vermilion Birds, they will be rewarded with victory. 

Additional Tips Edit

  • Early on, players should rely on the Sacrifices technology for their Favor income while the Gardens generate other resources necessary to afford defensive structures, units and economical technologies. 
  • Similar to the Trapped scenario, the enemy will send Yak Caravans in an attempt to distract the player's units. 
  • The Forest Fire God Power available in this scenario is a special version that can only burn down bamboo trees and cannot damage units. 
  • If the player does not have access to a safe jade mine for a prolonged period of time, they will need to build a Market and trade wood for gold. 

Closing Cinematic Edit

The original Vermilion Bird thanks the heroes for their services and advises them that Pangu can be reached by following the constellation of Niao Hui. Danzhu is seen hiding in the foliage nearby overhearing the advice and declares to Jiao-Long that he will be waiting there with his army. 

Trivia Edit

  • The enemy may cluster several of their units next to a bamboo forest to the west of the starting Settlement. The Rogue Forces were likely supposed to burn it down with a Forest Fire, creating a fifth pass to the player's base but this never occurs. 
  • Vermilion Birds is misspelled numerous times throughout the scenario. 
  • The Vermilion Birds' speed has been increased to 7.00 feet/second in this scenario. 
  • The Tail of the Cerberus Relic is found in this scenario as it was meant to make Vermilion Birds to use their special attacks more frequently when they originally had one. The other myth units the player can train lack special attacks so this Relic is useless.