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The Unit Upgrade

Horse with mountains “Mr. President, we have to talk about the unit.”

“What unit, Minister?”

“Remember the regiment that was forgotten in the Peltarsh Mountains?”

“Right. The unit of horse archers. Did we ever figure out what to do with all those old compound bows? I’ve got one in the armoury — it’s quite ingenious in design, you know, thought it’s primitive. Did you know it uses horn?”

“Yes, sir. We auctioned most of them off on E-Bay. The idea was to help pay for the retraining.”

“Excellent. I like to see our Departments using our resources efficiently. How is the unit shaping up?”

“Well, not as well as it did with our cavalry units. We had a surprising number of troopers who were able to fly the helicopters, and the rest really seem to like the idea of being called air cavalry.”

“And the horse archers?”

“Most of them seem to think the helicopters are some kind of god.”

“I see. Well we had to expect some problems. They were isolated in the mountains for centuries, without any word from us. If I remember the file, the country was still under the control of the ancient dictator Slagothon the Bloody when they last heard from the capital.”

“Yes. We’ve been trying to educate them and bring them into the 21st century. It has, uh, been somewhat costly.”

“How much?”

“About ten times what it takes to upgrade our cavalry units.”

“I see, and the recommendations?”

“Well, we think we can do it, but we may lose the unit cohesion that we were trying to save. The unit has quite a storied history. Did you know they defeated the Horde of Logdor on their own?”

“I see. Naturally, these are their descendants. So how much more do you think it will cost?”

“Estimates are high. Possibly 500 million.”

“And they think the helicopters are gods?”

“Yes. Every time a pilot gets into the cockpit they scream in horror. They think the god is eating them.”

“And when they come out?”

“Well, it’s a miracle to them. They’ve started worshiping the pilots. Or stoning them to death. It has started a small religious disagreement.”

“Could we just send them back to the mountains?”

“Sure. They’ve been guarding that flank of our country from the barbarians for centuries. I say we give them some rifles, a few officers with modern training, and let them do it.”

“So we have a plan.”

“Yes, Mr. President.”



“There’s just one other matter. You know our territories down in the Glotharian jungle? Well it turns out we have a unit of warriors down there.”

“What do you mean, warriors?”

“Well, it’s hard to define.”

“Give it a try Minister.”

“I should probably start by explaining that they’re armed with clubs . . .”

Apologies to my readers who have never played Civilization, a strategy game, which is digital crack. Thanks to Stuck in Customs for photo. Originally published February, 2010.


  1. Hee. That’s excellent. Of course, you never know when you’re playing Civ (especially the older versions) when a phalanx of spearmen is going to surprise you by taking out a battleship.

  2. Yes. Someday also I’ll do a post about how 99.9% chance of victory should mean my modern tank takes out your longbow 999 times out of a thousand, not 1 times out of ten.

  3. Eva Eva

    Wow, this was pretty cool

    I always wondered if the units would settle and have a little village of their own where they would pass their warrior knowledge from generation to generation 😀

    I have had so many scouts that have stayed scouts since the beginning of the game!

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