Posted on 09/08/22 @ 01:32 PM
THE RAIN OF MARBLE HALL
|Made with version:
A map by LegionHero
*Brief disclaimer: I used to play this game like ten years ago, but lately I have been wanting to play with it again and I remembered this forum. I hope the map is balanced, but any suggestions are welcome.*
2nd era, year 1102
In all the kingdom of Penester no land was more fertile than that of the plains of the High Duchy of Marble Hall. Since the beginning of the second era, the lords of these lands had experienced a period of incredible prosperity. Trade had flourished, foreign merchants increased every spring, and local artisans were renowned throughout the kingdom. The Marble Hall fortress had developed from a military camp guarding one of the few crossings on the Gela River. Over the centuries it had grown dramatically, until it occupied the entire promontory that dominated the valley of Gela. The river, carrying nutrients along its course, gave life to the surrounding land. Apple orchards and cornfields stretched as far as the eye could see, and the slopes were covered with hops, which was then turned into a renowned beer. Night and day the mills shook their blades, grinding the grain and giving work to the bakers of the village. The fertile soil also guaranteed the proliferation of herbs and medicinal plants, and many scholars and doctors of the kingdom settled in the city to devote themselves to studies and cultivation. North of the castle, the Cervo mountains occupied the horizon. From there came the material that had made those lands famous: marble. Huge quantities were mined every day, to be transported and resold throughout the kingdom. Never before had such a fine and delicate stone been seen, and Marble Hall Castle made abundant use of it.
During the year 1102 of the second era, a furious natural disaster forever changed the fate of these lands. No one knows if it was a curse or the will of the Gods, but, after twenty days of rain, the locks of the Gela river gave way. An incredible amount of water poured into the valley, overwhelming everything in its path. The fields and the lower city disappeared overnight, including the inhabitants. No one imagined that the river, which had given so many gifts to its neighbors, had decided it was time to ask for the bill. Marble Hall was abandoned. During the evacuation, the rain continued to fall, making rescue activities even more complicated. Nothing can resist the will of nature, which knows how to be generous, but also wild.
For centuries no one set foot on the streets of Marble Hall again. The whole territory continued to be subject to dangerous atmospheric phenomena, and regaining what was lost was considered impossible.
3rd era, year 241
Prince Phenios used to spend the morning riding on the moor just outside the kingdom's capital, accompanied by the few men of his escort. Phenios was a young man, full of virtues and hopes for the future, respected by his subjects despite not having a beard yet.
That particular morning, as the prince was considering whether or not to return to the palace, a man emerged from the moor. His clothes were frayed, and he wore no shoes. '' My Lord! '' He yelled as he glimpsed the group of knights and recognized the banner. Keeping a safe distance, the soldiers brought the man closer to Phenios.
'' I bring great news, my Lord! The Endless Rain has stopped! ''
Obviously the prince had read about Marble Hall's fate in the history books. The man said he was a doctor, and that he had spent the last few years in the hills outside the ruins of the city, studying and collecting the herbs that grew in the swamp that the rains had formed. He was mounted on horseback, and the group left for the castle.
'' May I be damned if I allow you to embark on such a dangerous mission! ''
King Vulis was an old man, but with a solid figure and bright eyes. The news brought by the Marble Hall doctor had shaken the entire court. Opinions were mixed at the small council table. The prince was convinced that immediate action was needed to regain what the kingdom had long lost. His opinion was supported by the army captain and the court economist. The lands of the Gela valley were incredibly rich, and the marble deposits made them a treasure waiting to be discovered. Furthermore, regaining the High Duchy would have guaranteed the kingdom a safe border in the territories of the West, too often victims of raids by neighboring kingdoms.
For Phenios it was natural, almost obvious, that an expedition should be organized, and that he should lead it, given the old king's health conditions. At the end of a long session of discussions, the exhausted king agreed. Men and wagons were soon gathered, and a column of men was ready to leave at the first light of dawn.
The view was impressive: the manor stood on the horizon, just after the bridge, hidden from the vapors of the swamp, but huge in its dark shadow. The prince had detailed maps of the fortress at his disposal: the castle was divided into three main sections, two higher and one lower, bundled with the previous ones. Here stood the shops of merchants and artisans, weaponsmiths and bakers, as well as their homes. The fortified citadel to the south served as a military zone, with barracks, stables and training camps, while the one to the north, which dominated the valley, protected the Duke's castle.
Once prosperous and populated, the area was now a pile of rubble, except for a few marble structures that had withstood the elements, and the doctor's hut outside the ancient walls. For this reason, when Prince Phenios saw some figures moving at the base of the fortress, which must have been uninhabited for centuries, he was surprised. He galloped the horse, followed by his men, to meet them, but as he approached he began to notice the spears and armor of the men of Reggion, a neighboring kingdom. It must have been an exploration party, they must have gotten the news too!
After a brief survey of the territory, you learn that the Count of Sempricenis is also preparing a raid. Faithful to his reputation as a corrupt man, he promises you that, for a fair fee, he will not get in the way of your mission.
There is no time to waste ...
You must restore Marble Hall to its former glory, and secure its borders:
- 10.000 Gold
- 250 Stone
- 250 Bread
- 150 Ale
- Fear factor +3
- Ale and Faith coverage 50%
- Defeat the enemy armies
Tips and Info:
The swamp is a treacherous place, use it to your advantage.
Send 100 Ale to the Count of Sempricenis to stop his invasions. His men will attack you every two years, from a certain point forward.
As these are abandoned territories, there are very few trade routes to purchase resources. However, it will be possible to sell more resources to finance your army. The king will grant you access to his armory, in exchange for specific goods.
Most of the plains are flooded, so they will need to be cleared before you have room for your crops. You may initially be dependent on your hunters or cow keepers, but you will need to devote yourself to plantations in order to have bargaining chips and keep your people's spirits up.
The marble deposit is located in the mountains to the north. It's not close to the castle, so you'll need to make sure you protect your workers from enemy raids.
In the quagmire to the south it will be possible to mine pitch to improve your defenses. Use strategic places like the bridge to get the most benefit from your traps, but remember: the enemy may decide to clear the swamp to create new access routes!