|Default Movement Rate||
|Possible Minerals (Arcanus)||
|Possible Minerals (Myrror)||
Swamp is a type of Terrain in the world of Master of Magic. Swamps are somewhat rare, and may appear either as isolated tiles amongst other terrain types, or in small concentrations. They are more common near the equator of either Plane.
Contrary to the tile yields reported by the Surveyor (F1), Swamp tiles do not contribute to the maximum Food production of a town in their vicinity. They produce nothing at all. This makes settlement near large tracts of Swamp undesirable.
On the other hand, Swamps often contain samples of the Nightshade plant, and more so on the plane of Myrror. Nightshade provides magical protection to towns in its vicinity - though such towns will need to develop slightly down the religious or intellectual development branches before this protection is unlocked.
Movement through Swamp tiles is more difficult for Walking units due to the muddy ground, costing them 3 Movement Points to cross it. Water Walking units may traverse Swamp as normal, though, only spending 1 point. Construction of Roads in Swamp tiles is a long and arduous process, taking many turns.
The Change Terrain spell will turn a Swamp tile into a Grassland tile, gaining a significant bonus to the Maximum Population of nearby towns. This spell cannot turn any tile into a Swamp, but there is no real reason to do so anyway. The Gaia's Blessing spell has no effect on the Swamp tiles adjacent to the affected town.
In most regions, water that rains from the sky or arrives via river will also leave in one way or another. In some regions, water has no means of escape: it cannot penetrate deep enough into the ground, or does not evaporate quickly enough into the air. If the input of water is greater than the output, the region could easily turn into a Swamp.
In a Swamp, the ground is absolutely saturated, and in many cases covered, with a layer of water that can be a few inches to many feet deep. The mud and dense vegetation make it hard to travel through this landscape, but both wildlife and plantlife is abundant - if it can adjust to the competitive conditions.
Swamps are generally inhospitable to humanoids. They present a very unstable soil for construction, and provide little space for any agriculture. Hunting is dangerous and difficult, and most of the plants do not rely on producing edible fruit (and if they do, it is often hard to reach and harvest). Furthermore, difficulty in traveling across the Swamp makes settlement troublesome at best.
Swamps are often sporadic, appearing as solitary tiles in the midst of other Terrain types. You may occasionally encounter larger concentrations of Swamp tiles, but this is rare.
Town Development Edit
There are two reasons to settle a town near Swamp tiles. First, they are prime candidates for Change Terrain, which turns them into highly-useful Grassland. The second reason would be to capitalize on Nightshade growing in the Swamp, but this plant does not exist in every Swamp tile and is relatively rare given the low number of Swamps appearing on the map. A town in the middle of a Swamped region may have trouble growing in size, and will have very poor Production ratings.
Maximum Population Edit
- Main article: Maximum Population
In other words, if a town were to be surrounded entirely by Swamp tiles, its Maximum Population would be exactly 0. This means that not only will the town not grow at all, but will actually lose a few citizens each turn. Fortunately, negative Population Growth cannot destroy a town (it will never drop below 1,000 population due to negative growth), but will likely never grow above 1,000 either. This makes Swamp areas very unfavourable for settlement.
Maximum Population dictates the absolute maximum number of citizens a town can have. Once it reaches this many citizens, it will simply stop growing. Maximum Population also determines the town's Growth Rate: the larger the gap between the town's current population and it's maximum population, the faster the town grows.
Furthermore, Maximum Population also determines how much Food can be produced in a town before inefficiency sets in. Once this limit of Food production is reached, additional citizens assigned to Farmer duty will produce much less Food - thus being inefficient. Higher Maximum Population means a higher Food production efficiency threshold, thus allowing more Farmers to be assigned and still have full efficiency.
As a result, in a town inundated with Swamp, only a very small amount of Food can be produced even if all citizens are set to Farmer duty. It may struggle to produce enough food to feed itself - again resulting in negative Population Growth, and struggling to gain more than a few citizens.
Common Minerals Edit
Swamp tiles have a good chance of containing Nightshade, and are the only location where this Mineral is found by default. On the plane of Myrror, Nightshade is even more abundant - and still found only in Swamps.
Nightshade does not provide an immediate benefit to nearby Towns, but will start to work once a town builds either a Shrine or a Sages' Guild. Once this is accomplished, the town will enjoy the plant's magical protection: it will automatically attempt to dispel any enemy spell cast directly on the town, its garrison troops, or the town's tile. Furthermore, it will keep attempting to dispel enemy Town Curses affecting the town, repeatedly at the start of each and every turn. Towns placed near two or more Nightshade plants can be extremely difficult to affect with negative magic!
Flying units treat Swamp tiles like any other tile. They take only 1 Movement Point to enter it. The same goes for Water Walking units, presumably because they can negotiate the muck far more easily than a normal ground unit.
Units with the Non-Corporeal ability can enter this tile at 0.5 Movement Points.
Roads and Road Construction Edit
Constructing a Road through a Swamp tile is a very difficult endeavour. A single unit of Engineers will take 8 turns to construct a Road on a Swamp tile. Each additional unit of Engineers reduces this by about 50% (rounded up). Therefore, 2 unit will take 4 turns, 3 or 4 units will take 2 turns, and 5 or more units will take only 1 turn to build this road. Additional Engineers (beyond 5) do not speed this up any further.
Dwarf Engineers work twice as fast as other Engineers. This means that a single Dwarf Engineers unit can complete a Road in a Swamp tile in only 4 turns, 2 Dwarf Engineers will take 2 turns, and 3 or more Dwarf Engineers will only take 1 turn to complete construction of a Swamp road.
Once a road has been constructed, the cost to enter this Swamp tile changes to 0.5 for all units, regardless of their movement type. Note however that Sailing units still cannot enter this tile, since they cannot move on land.
If the road was constructed on Myrror, or affected by the Enchant Road spell, movement costs to enter this tile are completely removed for most units. In other words, Walking and Flying units can enter this tile without spending any movement points. Non-Corporeal units cannot use this special road, and will still require 0.5 Movement Points to enter the tile.
Change Terrain Edit
This increases the tile's Maximum Population bonus to any nearby town to +1.5.
Note that the change causes no damage to any Nightshade plant present in the tile. Thus, a town located near Nightshade plants can utilize Change Terrain to make such tiles more productive than they were by default without giving up their magical protection.
Change Tiles into Swamps Edit
The Change Terrain spell cannot turn any type of tile into a Swamp tile. There should be no reason to do so anyway though, as Swamps are some of the least beneficial tiles, and the spell cannot generate any new Nightshade plants (which are the only real benefit of Swamps).
Gaia's Blessing Edit
The Gaia's Blessing spell has no effect on the Swamp tiles near the affected town. It will not alter them in any way.