Part 16: Turn 11Turn 11
Last turn we gained access to the peninsula in the lake and so we're going to take advantage of that. The first province in it is a pushover, our only real loss was an enormous clown who had picked up a disease from somewhere - he started the battle on just 3 hp. Also a human but who gives a fuck about them.
We also got to see U make their first foray into Karanaac, heroically wiping out a smattering of PD. They brought two of the Gavagai Chieftains with them which turn into a mason at 70 XP. Currently one is at 30, one is at 40, and they're both actually in the hall of fame too. It sure would suck if they lost these guys!
Next up they're going right into the cap I assume so I move my scout there to ensure I get a good view.
Our fort finished this turn and we have four options for our main spammable mage:
1) Fire Eaters. 80 gold for 8rp, F1.25. These have the most efficient gold to research ratio but their paths are fairly bad honestly. If I got into a war with Eljudnir I'd pick some up until then but while I don't have massive amounts of gold I have enough to spend a bit more on my mages than this. The 25% chance of F2 is nice though I suppose since clowns don't get that - maybe it's worth recruiting enough of these to get a few more powerful fire mages around.
2) Twirlers. 130g for 10rp, F1A1. I don't really understand these guys unless you have a real need for patrolling. Their cost ratio isn't great, their paths are just not good, and clowns aren't short on air magic. They seem to sit in an uncomfortable middle ground and I probably won't recruit any of these ever.
3) Bearded Ladies. 105g for 10rp, S1 + S/W/A. These ladies are where it's at. A pretty good gold ratio and they give more research per commander point than the Fire Eaters. One third of them have astral 2 which is real nice for plenty of things later and the other ones being astral/water and astral/air means they can spend a pearl on Power Of The Spheres to boost their paths and still be a presence in combat. Failing all else they can always cast Communion Slave and power up the clown's (or lizard shaman's) spells. Them not being sacred means a higher upkeep but honestly they're cheap enough that it doesn't matter too much (at least until I have a huge number). Finally they have a modest Fortune Teller ability which is pretty nice on your massable research mages.
4) Armless Women. 165g for 10rp, D1 + S/D. The priciest of my noncap mages but they're definitely worth the gold. Death 2 unlocks Horde of Skeletons - one of the better low level battle spells - and astral 1 death 1 unlocks some killer communions later. Being sacred means that they get the health boosts from larger and also their upkeep is lower than the other options - it's basically the same as the Fire Eater's. They can act as stealthy preachers but I can't see too many situations where I'd need them to do this. Since they're sacred they benefit from the larger bless and tower over most humans which I feel only increases their dark clowning power.
I pick up an Armless Woman immediately for sitesearching purposes and will keep recruiting them while I can afford it. I should start getting gold events any turn soon I'm sure.
I also start recruiting some regular clowns from this fort which we haven't seen before. They can't all be enormous size 5 clowns unfortunately but these guys are still really good. You get about 2.5 of these for the same gold cost as an enormous clown and these are actually nearly as strong - 20 vs 23. The downsides are that they have a lot less HP and so will attrition more, and being only size 3 their comically large kick won't be triggering its double damage nearly as often. However one big factor in me taking the larger bless was that most humans are size 2 so the kick still triggers then.
One real nice thing about having luck scales is that we get to see lots of heroes! Diana is pretty good, a step up (if you will) from an Armless Woman. Aside from having an incredible description she is an immediate boost to our research which we sorely need. She'll also be able to cast one of our national spells later but is immobile so won't be participating in too many battles. Just bear in mind that her enlarged torso is the same size as an adult human standing upright.
Back to the map though, over on the east we can see that Fennoscandia is well and truly pinned to their cap circle with Anglia even building a fort directly outside it. They're totally screwed, whether we attack them or not, just from having no income.
In the north we continue to take the rest of the peninsula provinces. The one with 40 horse tribe looks a little scary so another force is moving to assist. Plus that's 60 wraiths hanging out there which is making me pretty nervous despite the agreed upon peace. My dominion strength is okay here BUT Eljudnir spreads cold and death regardless so all these provinces are cold 3, it's really quite annoying.