July 17, 2024

Armchair Empire – A Shadow Empire AAR, Ep 1

UnderCoverGeek, 14 May 2020


click images to enlarge

This will be the story of the planet Lacarus Tertia, a 4 billion year old planet revolving round an orange K0 star. Its a moderately dry planet with a thin, toxic atmosphere of mainly Sulphur Dioxide with 238 milibars of pressure. Across the plains there are 760,000 survivors of the Dissolution War, roughly 29% are working in the mining industry and 71% in the service industry. The planet has very evolved lifeforms including a hostile land carnivore roughly 3m tall which feeds on a docile indiginous herbivore approximately 4m tall and we will expect to meet both of these on the surface. Including our fledgling empire there are 4 major regimes vying for control of the planet and 38 minor that could be anything from scattered warlords, slave traders or desperate miners and farmers that have formed groups.



As we take over the empire after the death of the old leader we can establish a new political profile. With three simple questions we can push our leadership characteristics in a number of ways. Will we be a democracy, a police state or a trading empire



These choices are not set in stone and many, many decisions will be made that will push these levels in different directions. Our leaders and directors on various councils will also have their own political preferences and agendas and occasionally principles will have to be sacrificed in order to make a leader happy. Will we value strength, education and wisdom or compassion?



Would we prefer a democratic society, a society based on merit or an autocracy that rules the land?



Fate has dealt us this deck to steer our empire. These are big play cards that really effect the direction or choices of the empire and use up rare, valuable Fate Points. 3 are bonus cards and will improve the happiness of our people, the strength of our military or give us access to valuable resource deposits or rare artifacts, and there is 1 free card with an equal negative impact on the empire, but its use gets us more Fate Points to play the bigger cards that will come later



And this is our opening strategem deck. Cards with a much smaller local effect but just as important. 3 of these cards are to be used diplomatically, protect a regime, ask for protection from a regime, insult a regime or hire a military leader if our current stock is poor (it is!!) – some of these cards are automatically played with no risk of failure and some are rolled against various leaders skills with a given difficulty value. Send a spy for instance will be rolled against our ministers Covert Skills value, if the difficulty of the action is 75, we need to roll a 75 on a D100, but we can add the ministers score to the roll. 



And here we are, smack bang in the middle of the map. Good news, we can expand everywhere, bad news we can be expanded into from everywhere.



Lets zoom in a bit, thats our capital Tirania and our starting forces, two brigades of infantry and 1 brigade of motorised militia – ill expand later. The 2 surrounding towns Monroe, and Varzay are the equivalent of tribal huts in the Civ franchise, when you absorb them into your regime they may or may not give you bonuses – this ranges from nothing, through credits and resources upto units bearing long forgotten technology from before the war – some of the most powerful units in the game can be yours very early in the game to give you an advantage – so the initial strategy is to spread out and find as many small towns as possible. These small towns can also be used to expand the infrastructure of our empire, each town or city can only have 1 building type of each kind – once an agridome for food is built in Tirania we cant have another one, it can only be improved upon – so if we are still suffering a food shortage we can build another dome in one of these outlying towns.



Our very first decision is do we want to create a new council? Research and advancement cannot happen without the various councils, they are not compulsory but eventually the other regimes will advance past us. The game is essentially a military conquest game, and theres no shame in that so this will eventually be the focus of our attention but without money and a stable financial network we cant afford the tools of conquest – so our first focus will be the pennies. Thats Guy our Secretary – more on him later



The next decision is our ascension speech. What will be the drive behind our throne, what effects on society will we initiate – the 3 choices will be enforcement, commerce or government and how we change that – lets see how……………


plenty more to come in this Armchair Empire saga >>

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