Monday, April 8, 2013

Through The Ages - Card - Joan of Arc

This is a series of blogs written about each card in Through The Ages.  To find more, simply click on "Cards" label.
Joan of Arc
France and England haée tactics had devastated the French economy and strong French leadership was missing.  This was the state of affairs in France when Jehanne D'Arc (Joan of Arc), an illiterate farm girl of no particular fame, began receiving visions from God.
d been waging war since 1337, with some truces within that time.  Over this time England slowly had gained the upper hand.  By 1427 France was badly mauled.  Morale was low, English chevauch

In 1428 the English besieged the city of Orleans.  So desperate was the situation when Joan approached the heir to the French throne, the Dauphin of France Charles VII, he did more than listen to her.  He let her travel with his army and, after they were donated to her, let her wear the equipment of a knight.  Joan's presence transformed the French view of the war from a simple fight against the English, to one of religious fervor.  The French army's vigor was renewed with her speeches and her sermons of success by the will of god.  When they met the English army outside Orleans in 1429, the English were defeated.

Joan's actual role in the battle is not known.  It can be confirmed she at least bore a standard, but whether she commanded any troops is not known.  Just her mere presence, however, was enough to inspire the French to fight with renewed strength.

After Orleans Joan convinced the Dauphin to give her co-command of an army.  Furthermore, she proposed a bold move to take a series of bridges deep within enemy territory to reclaim the city of Reims, where she said Charles VII would be crowned King.  From the 12th of June to the 16th of July the French recaptured town after town, most of it without bloodshed.  The battles which did occur were completely one-sided in the favor of the French, and Charles VII became King of France at Reims.  By December of that much of France, including the capital city of Paris, were back under French control.

In one short year, Joan's visions had come true.  France was a nation again.  However, in 1430 she was captured by the English.  She was tried as a heretic and, despite displays of incredible oratory talent, she was condemned.  Evidence suggests her English captors put her in a position where she was forced to break the law.  In any case, she was sentenced to death and burned at the stake.

She was 'retried' for her crimes in 1455, and found not guilty in 1456.  She became a symbol of the Catholic church.  In 1920, nearly 500 years after her death at the age of 19, Joan of Arc was canonized to sainthood.  
Game Stats
Joan of Arc seems like a good leader to permit a player to continue building culture while maintaining military strength.  Unfortunately, her statistic indicate she may have saved France, but at best she is more likely to result in costing the player the game in Through The Ages.
Joan of Arc suffers, like almost all Age I Leaders, suffers from "Not Good Enough" syndrome.  Basically, there lacks a compelling reason to 'upgrade' to an Age I leaders.  Perhaps Joan's best use is as a deterrent.  Her play at least gives compensation for a player who is being attacked by all the other players.  She therefore buys some breathing room for the player to rebuild their economy.  Otherwise, far better leaders exist than Joan of Arc.
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