Times Turn 12

Be productive and strong; explore new land and find a way to survive.

Quests

In the desert of Delon lurks the Evil Mages (443). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the mountain of Mustfolk lurks the Undead (497). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the tunnels of Vatcontlem lurks the Dragon (593). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the swamp of Chenpedeard roams the Clan of Wild Men (205). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
Build a Temple in Baldhanddhan for the glory of the Gods.
Build a Temple in Beastcebick for the glory of the Gods.
In the desert of Baldhanddhan lurks the Sphinx (489). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the forest of Habach roams the Family of Ogres (176). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
Build a Temple in Airghagen for the glory of the Gods.
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the livestock of Liha.
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the furs of Deeland.
Build a Temple in Adoclewn for the glory of the Gods.
Seek a token of the Ancient Ones legacy amongst the rootstone of Charseerpoo.
In the desert of Ba'eld roams the Sphinx (216). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!
In the desert of Ainglen roams the Sandlings (226). Free the world from this menace and be rewarded!

Articles

Richard did not understand how this happened. He expected that socially significant buildings, such as the town hall (yes, the orcs had this proud wooden structure, the only two-level building in the city), a tavern with a horse camp, which could be used as fortifications, all these buildings should have been busy and barricaded by guards. There were several scenarios, exactly how they should capture these strategically important points.
Instead, he watched the rather awkward formation of the guards in the central square, in front of the windows of the neighbor houses, some of which were occupied by his archers and those firework masters whom he did not trust so much, but highly appreciated.
This was not a massacre, in fact, the guards, being under direct fire, quickly broke the line and began to leave in the surrounding streets, suffering rather heavy losses. There they were awaited by desert goblins who had not yet shaken off the dust of the road from their leather armor (the goblins used cow hides to make clothes, underwear, shields and even headdresses, this set they called “armor”).
Not without losses, but surprisingly simply the city was taken.
Richard could have considered this day as the first day of his reign, in the role of at least a baron, if not for a ten-virate. There were 10 of them, leaders of the coup, and although he had a rather serious influence on five of them (who, in fact, worked for him), the city passed into the hands of the council, and not his, sweaty and covered with dust.
In addition, quite pleasant information came from overseas, which means that it was urgent to sail. Two boats formed a "fleet", and its path across the ocean had to begin by the intersection of a small bay.
Desert Eagles (11)
Dear readers,

as the newly hired Head Economist of The Bank, I thought this a perfect opportunity to write a report on our economy, as there are numerous rumours, half-truths and outright lies written. 

I now present my version of the above.

When we talk about Atlantis economy, most of us will really mean wages - as these are the driver of just about everything.
After a detailed research *conducted by* [edit: directed by me while teaching a] a number of PhD *slaves* (redacted to students), I have come to following conclusions:

The wages are driven by three main factors:
- the innate development of the region;
- the connectivity of the region
- any help the region can get from magic, in particular so called "Earth Lore" (EART) and "Clear Skies" (CLEA).

As it behoves a banker, I also investigated, using even larger cohort of undergrad *slaves* [edit: students], what impact can we have on the individual factors.

Magic, if you have it, is easiest. It also turns out to have the strongest effect by far. Even a total novice with one of the spells above can significantly improve region's wages. Two masters of the craft casting both spells would bring a region with wages 1 (should you find such a *lovely cheap workforce* [edit: poor place]) to a fully developed city with wages of 15 or more.

Those who can't, or won't, rely on the fickleness and impermanence of magic, have another solution - transport development. Building roads, especially ones that connect to other settlements can be a significant boon. Our investigation shows that roads to nowhere work too, as long as they are to nowhere outside the settlement. Which should be good news to our friends in Japanese government.

Lastly, if you cannot do either, there is a way to improve the native economic abilities of the region, even if the process is lengthy and requires significant amount of luck. It appears that providing trade luxuries may have impact on some of the more entrepreneurially inclined, and increase the total maximum economic capacity. In time, with some more luck, some of their ventures may even succeed *while we decide which to buy before they are any threat* [delete] and provide some small increase in the overall wellbeing *and our income statement* [delete].

We'd note that our observations and experiments show that the impact is non linear, and the higher the wages, the larger the impact. For example, a novice casting a spell in wage 11 region is expected to increase the wages by a full silver coin.
The same novice, in a region with wages 17, will increase the wages by half a coin.

The conclusion of the report is - use magic, if you can. If you can't, build roads. If you can't do even that, trade and hope.

I hope this will provide you with a sense of the service The Bank can provide to you, and you become a *willing takeover target* [edit: client] in near the future.

Yours truly,
Head Economist, The Bank

Disclaimer: Anyone reading and believing it is doing so at their own risk. Any profit made by using this is a subject of a potential profit sharing, any loss is sole responsibility of the reader. Here come another ten pages of small legal print our lawyers told us we have to have, but they could not be bothered to write yet, so we'll write it only after we decide to sue and apply retrospectively.

The bank (12)
Time to fortify, but where to next? 
Nils Olav (14)
From the diary of Dark Schneider:

Day 308

The centaurs in Puwood are a persistent bunch. They organised a resistance and formed a new militia. There were only 8 of them though. We didn't even get out of bed. Our swordsmen killed 5 of them while Leira just launched a fireball from the window of our room and took care of the remaining 3. That's another 4 swords we can enchant.

Day 312

Our fleet left Puwood. Zodd barbecued some centaur meat and offered us some. The girls declined but I took a slice. Tastes like deer. Old deer.

Day 317

We've seen a longship on the shore as we sailed past a small bay today. Strange banners. Some kind of grey fish. The longship was manned by orcs even though the forest was inhabited by elves. Orcs and elves working together? That's a good sign as I intend to recruit some orcs myself once we arrive to Ecaulgol. I still have to break the news to the girls and the elven swordsmen on board.

Day 321

The girls took some embroidery lessons from a Filcist mage called Alessia. They say it enhances their skills in pattern. If they say so. Well, we needed a few new pillow cases anyway.

Day 325

We have been betrayed! We were in out bunk having fun in bed and didn't notice that we've arrived to Ecaulgol. Our swordsmen led by Zodd and the allied mages jumped to the shore and took the village in a blink of an eye. They killed all the orc guards. By the time we noticed the noise and got dressed it was already over. They had all the fun without us. Well, we had our fireworks in bed but I was looking forward to shoot some fireballs as well. Damn it!

Day 329

The shipbuilders finished another 2 rafts. They became an expert in assembling wooden planks even while sailing. Out fleet consist of 8 rafts now.

Day 333
Word got to us that there were some failed assassination attempts in Kishbank earlier this month. Those stoned farmers of Evil Sunz (73) must have gotten some hashish from somewhere and thought they were real assassins. They forget to hide before attacking our foresters and all 10 attempts failed. The captain of our local militia in Kishbank is asking for instructions. I think it's time to get rid of Evil Sunz (73). I only hope that the miscreants we left behind to guard the town are up to the task.
Silver Eclipse (15)
Some kind of evil strangers have attacked our peaceful taxers. Taxers were not even performing taxing, but moving from one poor neighbourhood to another even more poor.
We suffered heavy losses, ten brave, but low skilled men have fallen in uneven battle, and taxing in some desert willages has been postponed accordingly.
Gray Ones (16)
I stared into the abyss of dark shaft, where my scout descended few months ago. The abyss stared back at me with red eyes of balrog. The old philosopher was right.
The Chosen Few (17)
"The Wood Elf Guards still won't capitulate? Bribe them with Girl Guide cookies."

"They still won't join us? Alright no more playing around. Time for the big guns. Send in the frozen mint flavour cookies."
King of the Penguins (18)
A little help for a neighbor could lead to a strong partnership...
Black Tower (21)
No progress in exploration, no progress in expansion, the only progress was in spending...
Silver Hand (22)
Expansion to other islands is inevitable, new lands, new hopes, new people.
Problem is that many people seem very resistant to welcoming our peaceful explorer troops, we might forced to make an offer they can not refuse...
Skalperians (24)
"Admiral, our scout ship is back" reported the old soldier.
"So quick? Did the found an island so quickly?" asked admiral Lionel.
"Well ... their message seems to be encrypted ... somehow. They say that they discovered that ocean (xx,yy) in Atlantis Ocean is ocean." replied the old soldier.
Scoiatael (25)
Sildoral was decidely unhappy. 
Lady Elthaniel no longer had her wolf pup. She now had two and they were not pups any longer. They were nearly grown wolves. And they still followed her everywhere. No that was definitely not what he had in mind.
And the other lords were not a whole lot better. Everyone of them was pursuing a pet project of his own. He would have to insist on some concerned effort and close cooperation or his plans for the continued improvement of the area would be seriously hindered.
And still those guards were getting ever more out of hand.
And then still no news of any imperial outpost. 
It really was frustrating.
Elves of Lund (26)
"No" the mayor of Nornglen said. "you can't build that there. There are rare honey bees nesting in the trees" 
"The public opinion would turn against you if you cut down the trees" the mayor continued.
"But if you donate 1000 silver into the public servant pension fund, maybe i could manage to alter the public opinion"

Sir Carter sighed. This so called fund had very limited beneficiaries, in fact there were only three: the mayor,  his wife and the city treasurer, who coincidentally is the mayors brother.

"I will see if we can afford this donation, i will give you notice tomorrow" Sir Carter said.
"Time for a change in management" he thought.
Lost Sea Trading Company (27)
(Stories from ancient Darealone family book - Tales from Torsee Darealone - VIII)
The village folks spoke about some evil monster hiding in nearby mountains.
A great way to gain the trust of them, would be to find those monster, kill them, and make surrounding peacefull.
With city safe, trade could be established with other cities and kingdoms. Maybe even building a road for speed travels.
And everyone would be rich and happy.
This is Paradise (29)
Thunder rumbles,
Lightning flashes in the night,
And on the hill stands a madman and shouts:
"I'll catch you in my bag,
And you will Shine in it
I so want you to be mine!".

The guy rushes to the forest,
Now to the field, now to the stream,
Everything is trying to catch
A bolt of lightning!

All rural people,
I went out to watch it,
As on the hill the madman ran and freaked out.
He is evidently in a quarrel with his head,
Apparently, he is his own enemy,
I must invent such a thing-for a fool!

The guy rushes to the forest,
Now to the field, now to the stream,
Everything is trying to catch
A bolt of lightning!

In the morning on a rural road,
The night hero walked slowly,
All shaggy and gray,
And he was smiling...

Then the guy rushes to the forest,
Now to the field, now to the stream,
Everything is trying to catch
A bolt of lightning!

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Gyperboreya (30)
Still looking for a passage to the underworld and expanding our knowledge of the world. Ships will be ready next month. We will block Evil and spread the Light.
Sword & Shield Forever (32)
what next? An island suggests one should think about building boats. 
ClanJaguar (38)
We have definitely found some endangered species!
Will they survive?
Beastmasters (39)
If you ignore diplomacy, expect a hostile reaction.

We took out the following last month:
  - PIRATE CAPTAINS (2379), The Weird Company (52), 2 high elves
    [HELF].
  - PIRATES (1636), The Weird Company (52), 8 high elves [HELF].

Thanks for the raft - let us know where you want us to send it.

THB.
The Hunt Begins (4)
For a change we have to say exciting(instead of miserable) times. Cities falling in all directions, we cant wait to try our luck. Or better jet, we wait for a turn or two, to not have to relay on luck..
Miserable Maniacs (40)
"Give orders to explore the new landscapes", Björn turned to his map again. "Some of the world is already known, but there are still big white spots on the map". He frowned, drank warm wine and gave himself up to his thoughts. 
Greyfish (43)
The Children of the Four Winds prided themselves on their trading prowess, but the local cities had no convenient trade routes. Never mind - there was wood in the forests, and it would make fine spears and spinning wheels! Victory through economic development!
Children of the Four Winds (44)
We built a ship! All that wood had to be good for something, and it was! Now we will take a nice long trip on the open ocean. Maybe drop a few settlers off as well.
Little House on the Prarie (49)
As we are new to this world, we made the mistake of not properly preparing our kindly High Elf sailors for treacherous enemies who would attack without provocation. This mistake will not be made again!
The Weird Company (52)
Still stuck on this **** island! At least the city would fall soon to let the money flowing and the mages training in teleportation!
The Guild (57)
Some known faction banners have been seen, too bad they had no honor previously when we met them.
Semigallians (6)
All the new lands, new opportunities. Ah, I've been isolated for too long. It's been a good month. Except for that incident, where builders suddenly took off to build ANOTHER UNFINISHED STRUCTURE!!! Who would've thought, that they'll do that instead of finishing the first one?! The people I have to work with...
Chaotic Neutral (62)
No time to write these notes! A lot of work in the kingdom! Hope I will write later.... 
Royal Pinguins (69)
- The guards is killed. We are moving to the next city.
- Yes, sir!
Moon Knights (7)
Rumors about Flat World are true.

Yesterday Zombie explorer reached the end of the world.
Ocean goes down into void and nothing lays further.

This world is smaller than we thought but there are shafts to go down...
Eternal Empire (8)
The Nexus. A fantasy frontier. I tried to picture clusters of mages as they moved through the gateways. What did they look like? Bearded, old men? Witches from the frozen north? Were the gateways like portals? I kept dreaming of a world I thought I'd never see. And then, one day I got out...
Ovuna (80)
After leaving the areopagus Sangarios and his companions walked down the street.  Already there was more life in this settlement.  As they passed the north gate even the guards gave them a respectful nod.
The Phrygians (83)
Assassins, rangers, island fortresses and spies are all around the neophyte wizards and their apprentices.  A horde of goblins and lizards amass at the borders and sea scouts find relics of the past all throughout the coastal lands.
Luxadom (86)
Akhorahil issued instructions to the goblins, forming them into several teams based on their skills, some where going to be warriors and scouts, while others were going to be craftsmen, and the less intelligent ones, they would be useful performing manual work. He decided he would need some lieutenants, and went into town to hire two goblin mages that, although young, showed remarkable intelligence (for goblins) and aptitude for magic.  Things were coming along nicely... Until the young mages tried to learn spells he couldn't teach them, and his craftsmen complained they didn't have enough manpower to build even a single raft, not that they even had any wood available to build one!  Akhorahil sighed... This wasn't going to be as easy as he thought.
Riders of the Storm (89)
More fishes! More fishes!

After last month fish deliveries city was in great mood, even wages rised up.
In meantime obstacle appeared. Obsidians - they hide something. They have blocked our way.  Gargoyles.
Fishmongers (9)

Rumors

Bye bye Avalon Empire!
It is rumored that even high powered mages have their weaknesses.
Neutral Evl is chaotic, and plots against the light.