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/qst/ - Quests

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The Elements - A NRP Game

Players and their nations/civilizations RP in a fantasy themed world.

*this game will be going on hiatus until further notice on December 1st (or around that date), join at your own discretion*
Previous Threads
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/3887644/ ( >>3887644 )
If you wish to join please contact me on discord through this link, the attached discord is also a server dedicated to nrp games in general and through it several games have been organized smoothly.
Discord: https://discord.gg/v8DCrWu
A small team of soldiers, primarily made up of veterans and strong willed newcomers is formed who train under the influence of the empowering little sun. It is found that over time exposure can increase how long the energy retained can last with some managing to burn bright for long enough without exposure to be able to take the trip from the expedition site to Tumar to Satturnico and back 10 times before loosing brightness over the course of another 2 full round trips until the brightness has faded to normal levels thus the absorption clock has reset back so that he will need to retrain under exposure in order to regain his former power retainment levels.

After several failed preliminary expeditions one of them manages to come back with usable information. They tell of the ruins to the south of satturnico, of those strange ruins whose appearance is jagged and foreboding for the ruins are outwardly seen to be a circle of thorny protrusions which curve inward as spikes covered in spikes. The inside of the ruin is lightly scouted and within the circle there is revealed to be an area of dense meaty foliage of an unknown variety whose flesh was unable to be preserved on the trip back due to the necessity of leaving. At the center of this foliage lies a great structure which closely resembles a great cooking pot, the beings of the beyond are seen to have lit a fire bellow it and into the pot they have dumped seemingly random assortments of things including the husks of previous expedition teams (including one which was seemingly still alive when he was dumped in), the meaty foliage, what seem to be spices, rocks, metals and even a live bear cub which they mix together over the great flames bellow the pot in order to produce some sort of gooey broth of an unknown composition. After seeing these sights the team rushes back for they feared for their lives and most agree that such a decision was the right one to make, hopefully once the pylons are expanded into these ruins the issue of the beings of beyond will disappear just as they do in the other areas which fall under the pylons normally.
With the harvest of the first phosphate boosted crop in a long time the army finds its supplies not only just at the level they need in order to simply get by but beyond that to the point where they can feel comfortable in how much they get to eat. This is contrasted by their new adversary, the Pirate Coalition which has taken root in the city of Kuro. It is a collection of raiders, smugglers and corrupt lords who took advantage of the chaos and through that formed their own power base which they seek to maintain, while the general civilian population of their domain doesn't like the pirates all that much they do however resent the government in Koza for losing the mines for so long and thus have major elements who work alongside the Pirate Coalition in order to resist what they see as a government which has failed them, although that is not to discredit the sizable portion of their civilian population which still holds its loyalty to the true tarnish empire of the north.

The only proper entryway the northern tarnish army has to go is through southern waters and their journey is denied by the southern tarn, as compensation the southern tarn offer a decent professional force drawn from their own army to help with defending the mine and clearing out rebels along with the promise of giving the rights to the salt mines north of Kohai along with the fishing rights around the salt mine to the northern tarn once the rebels have been crushed and the region is secured.

The southern tarn have built 2 fortresses, fort Kalt (east of the Kohai salt mines) and fort Koav (near Kuro) in order to act as a defensive zone so that pirates will be deterred from raiding southern waters. Further major minotaur raiding is halted in the north of the phosphate mines, though the salt mine up there is still under heavy minotaur occupation, with even a cease and desist order being sent by the minotaur king arguing against tarnish siege of the local salt mine from their occupation due to how the tarn have bigger issues to attend to, he threatens the tarn with the idea that he will be "forced" to reinforce the mine with an army which is fully capable of going on the offensive against the tarn since unlike the generic raiders his forces are much more organized and thus something to be feared and reckoned with.
After much time of tarnish long ranged superiority the fewer long distance heavy weaponry utilized by the oni can finally outrange the many tarn pieces. Though without more totu/tizta reinforcements the oni will never be able to match or exceed the pure quantity of fire the tarn can preform the more pinpoint and individually heavier weapons the oni use for this can make up for this by focusing more on taking out artillery and dense packs of infantry instead of using just heavy, less pinpoint bombardments as the tarn do. With this information known it can be seen that the oni's bombardments are more to be used as strategic battle weapons than as massed fire siege ready weapons as the tarn do. The first ever full implementation of this brand new theory of artillery shows itself to work well as the previous constant bombardment of the area just inside of and outside of the walls of tonglo is repelled as the tarn find their positions compromised by emplacements they themselves cannot bombard, thus they are forced back to out of range areas.

More plants from across the known world are brought for study, among them are a few which were previously overlooked are brought over and successfully grown in oni soil. Although none of these new plants have any strategic or major economic value besides being another luxury crop for consumption by the upper classes.

Many of the lightweight and efficient chest plate and under armor designs employed by the burned men and metal men are adapted for the oni and made to resist the foes these newly equipped oni are set to face. The reinforcements from the other nations arrives. (please give a full list of all sent reinforcements when you wish to use them so that this process can be streamlined on my end)
Among the lesser kings a small battlefield - just outside of the remains of a larger battle - is dug out and examined by the oni. (the other presented areas did not yield anything greatly useful) Within this site are discovered the remains of many small to medium sized mechanical things whose internal workings are both to complicated and not intact enough to be replicated, along with this discovery within what seems to have been an explosive barrel utilized by these things which did not fully explode is found a fine black dust which burns with a special kind of explosiveness. The composition of this material is unknown and replication is thought to be currently impossible but the potential of such a substance cannot be fully understated. Other weaponry which cannot be replicated is also uncovered as well, no truly unique alloys are discovered among the wretchage.
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After a hasty train ride the soldiers manage to get into haze but a few hours before the track into the city was compromised by invading metal men forces. ( >>3915521 ) Much loot is already in the possession of the ogres involved although those who consume metallic flesh (much to the chagrin of some) only really find an increase in the toughness of their skin and bones but not any very useful abilities to be gained besides that. The local culinary dishes are also found to be lacking as the regional diet consists mostly of vegetables and pork while the only interesting food item discovered to yield newly discovered effects from the region would have to be silver water (a kind of drug produced in the misty mountain) which gives ogres a much greater sense of patience, active thought, calmness and a far increased level of spatial awareness at the cost of slightly slower reaction times and a slower perception of time. (to an ogre under its effects 5 seconds seems more like 6)

(already responded to by the mycete creep)

The armies are at a standstill as the volters are figuring out what to make of their proposal but everybody is in position and are ready to fight at the sound of the horn.
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The Iron Empire continues pushing into the hills but have stopped themselves just short of the current zone of sonarii control at least for the time being The Iron Empire themselves has sent a message proposing cooperation between the two empires in order to move all undesired haze born iron men to sonarii owned domains from newly conquered areas so that the sonarii can not carry the burden of thinking they have neglected a people they like and so that the iron empire can streamline its reintegration process. Reports of anti-air weaponry being set up outside of the city of haze reaches the leadership of the sonarii.

Sonarii and Iron men clash in the contested zone, over time it can be seen that the iron men are going to be a much more difficult to crack enemy than the lightly armored totu as their troops wear armor which is heavy and even have a few machines among them which are interestingly very similar to the tankettes used by the burned men, except they are larger and seem to be powered by metal bending. Metal men are also found to be very deadly in melee combat as their short ranged projectile technique of accelerating metal flechette can fairly easily shred through the relatively fragile wings of the sonarii along with penetrating the lighter areas of armor on the soldiers. The concept of armoring sonarii with more metal armor is turned down due to how this could very easily be used against them.

The Tizta Queen herself shows her cognitive prowess when she designs a fairly strong cannon system which does not involve metal and instead uses hollowed out tree trunks made from the legendarily strong cedars of the necrotic tundra
The biggest problem found with the countless tizta is not a lack of food shipments nor the enemy itself but instead the blistering cold of the tundra which is encouraged by the vile sorcery of the Ice Giants. Already several tizta regiments who went to fight in more isolated groupings are rediscovered as frozen corpses stuck in the death throes of an ended in the cold.
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With the introduction of better cold weather equipment and training the volters can now confidently brave the growing blizzard around Balora.

It is found that flashbangs are best used during the night as the blinding white landscape of many parts of the tundra has made the ice giants used to blinding lights during the day. Using them during the night also allows for better troop coordination over fairly long distances as the bangs can be seen from a great distance.
Resources meant to go towards kazval are partially redirected in order to raise an army to go south in order to aid haze, this action has formed a new divide so soon after the focus of all volters had been put towards war as most do not see the iron empire as something worth fighting at least when compared to the vile Ice Giants, this sentiment even exists amongst the soldiers as they were expecting to "go and take down the icy menace" instead of what they have been ordered to do, that is to go down and face a foe they have only recently learned about... but if it is the will of Thuna that these nutritious looking fiends must be taken down then so be it...

*Transmission from the Iron Empire*
>The citizens of the false nation of haze are under no real threat, they are rightful members of the Second Iron Empire and their stay under the degenerate leadership of that vile misty mountain has only caused them to stagnate as a nation. The march of progress cannot be halted and will especially never be stopped by a bunch of angry relics from a dead world, we will never wish for full out war and will refrain from attacking your coasts until the city of Haze has fallen, if by then you have regained your sanity we are fully open to making amends to each other and entering into a pact of mutual respect... or at the very least mutual apathy. We hope, for the sake of all our citizens both static and metallic alike that your nation stops this madness before it makes a mistake it will truly regret. Hail to the Iron Guide and glory to the empire, may fate's hand handle you gently.

As a show of strength the Iron Empire reveals its fortress Mithrilshield which was made from an ancient ruined fortress, upon it the Iron men have implemented mighty kinetic guns with a claimed range of the horizon, they also claim to have implemented many seabed rods designed to ground the fortress against electric attacks.
With the opening of a large portion of sea in and around Salmencero sea bound trade taking advantage of the regional winds begins in order to ferry trade to and fro the region in a way much faster during certain times of the year when compared to traditional land routes. This brings wealth and ships to the fledgling hive of Salmancero.

With the exception of a fairly large tract of land in the former north western region of the swamp which has been reserved for swamp sheep ranching (swamp sheep meat is pretty popular among the upper classes) the swamp has finally been drained, although the water saturation of the soil is still making hive building a bit difficult in the region, thus it remains an easily controlled area from the seats of Hinga perhaps forever bound to simply provide food for its master hive.

To the west of Salmencero it seems that the the pylons expand far beyond what was expected, but in these waters wasps are not alone for great metal islands float about in this sea, already one Hingashi ship has gone missing in the region. Perhaps sending a ship designed for diplomacy from Salmencero could help to establish a good first contact if these islands do hold any sort of sentience within them... and gaining some uncontested fishing rights could be nice as well.
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Besides a few stubborn vestiges which may be considering joining with the tizta the entire continent is now clear of purebred totu. But these new migrants along with all the new totu who are being born at a constant rate are probably going to desire more land to call their own, and what is really the difference to them between settling in a strange new uncolonized land and settling in a strange new colonized land?

Using a system of springs and gears a way to generate the force necessary to move wheels along is discovered, this can be used to move along artillery when crystals are not available to provide lift. Along with this a locking mechanism is developed so that pieces don't get pushed around by the force of their own rounds being fired.
The Iron Guide sends a counter message stating that Haze was born out of heresy and traitorism and that a nation cannot ever be righteous if it does not have a noble birth. He also states that a separation even one which instead involves puppetry will not suffice and that they cannot trust the "sickly goatmen" with the responsibility of raising new generations of people not of their own which previously they had hardly even known existed.
To the east another mind, the mind of the older eastern forest which has refused to join its prickled brethren. It speaks of where the creep may be able to find the creatures they seek, to find them the creep must go far south past the spirit benders and a great desert or through the mountains where the creep will find the creatures it craves. It also mentions how now all around the creep the land has been taken by other races and thus the only way it can hope to expand is through land already taken by other peoples. To grow the land needs fertilizer, and to get it blood must be shed, and since that mind is content it wishes for the mycete creep to figure out where it wants to slay.
The ogres find much work around them, to the south they find the minotaurs who are quick to forget about former feuds when it comes to hiring for raids, near to them they find the oni who readily hire the versitile ogre mercenaries. They also discover the tumar and the tarn who between them may soon be in mutual conflict...

The prayers to the maw give the butcher strength, and in their mission they seem to be much more lucky than when they don't. The ogres in haze are technically trapped at the moment but the loot to be found helps to sooth fears of being overrun.

To the south the pylons expand, this is thought to be due to a minotaur expansion.
Along with moving them to the island the far north also finds itself to be a ready haven for refugees. With more hunting proportionally available to them the stockpiles in balora can be more effectively tapped in the long term.

The cryomancers are ready, at the command of the jarl they will ride to wherever he wishes a wall to be built.

In the thinning blizzard in balora the jarl fights off sonarii and tizta raids.

The southern waters have been lost to joint volter forces, the coast is now where most of the skirmishes are taking place.
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No resources have been diverted from kazval, instead the nation has taken in debt and work longer hours in order to raise an army for haze. The soldiers for this army are not as resentful for not being able to fight ice giants but among the general population that seed of discontent grows nonetheless
>Diplomacy: Iron Empire
Princess Sylvia and a portion of her retinue fly to the Iron Empire on her luxury skyacht. The princess, sixth in line to the throne of Salmancero and eternally ambitious, has decided that perhaps she should make her home on the newly discovered continent. While the retinue with her is a small, only a few dozen, those with her are her most trusted confidants. They are picked so because Sylvia has a plan. If the rumors are true and these metal men be sentient, she could make use of them to gain the land to build her own hive and exploit a new continent for her future brood. The queen-aspirant wants to be an Empress, to rule eternal in the way the Queen-Mother once had, and she would not be content merely being the Queen of Salmancero.

To this end when she arrived in the Iron Empire she immediately went about establishing two things. First, that she was the rightful speaker of all Osuzu. Second, to establish a degree of mastery and grace. She needed to look the part of the Queen she aspired to be, and so pomp and ceremony were prized on her yacht. Visitors were expected to adhere to a complex series of rites. She aimed to present herself as the highest royalty come to negotiate for herself with the iron men. She offered trade in exchange for land or rare goods that pleased her. The question comes, what did they want from her?
1. Military Improvements
The first generation of airships were slow, lumbering beasts made for cargo transport. The secondary breed comes for the Hingashi's second greatest love - interhive warfare. Conflicts between Hives are a constant, simmering affair of violence between landless unmarried males looking to plunder wealth or women from other hives. They are often led by females looking for a similar level of glory. A prized fighter may be elevated to Hiver, or even accepted into the Queen's Guard where she may tend directly to the brood. Such honor is worth killing for. Possibly even dying for. And so the violence continued unabated. Mercenary wasps often looked for new methods of achieving victory and a new airship design that could both shuttle large numbers of warrior wasps as well as be robust enough to resist a counterattack by outflyers was crucial. The airships would not just need to be protected, their wings would need to be armored. Instead of stone skin around the gondola it would need to be metal, as that was more difficult for raiders to chew through to breach the vulnerable engine components. It would also need to be fast. Faster than the slow freighters common in Hingashi. It had to be able to outfly its wasp pursuers or a fatal boarding action was all but certain. To do this, the wings that provided a degree of motion were supplemented by a series of propellers on the rear of the airship. This provided the greater speed that would leave Osuzu in the proverbial dust.

The second development came in weapon systems. The Hingashi warriors had made use of largely the came caliber of weaponry for thousands of years, and combat frequently devolved into a melee where gravity enhanced blunt weapons could be used to break armor and carapace alike. The tough carapace of an Osuzu was difficult to penetrate. It was rounded, slick, and Osuzu themselves were wily. When blunt weapons failed, jaws and stingers finished the opponent off. Their natural weapons were as adapted to hunting jungle spiders as they were for murdering one another. These tools had served them well. The development of the grav-piston opened a new line of warfare. It was the first time that legitimate projectile weapons were a threat outside of simply lobbing giant rocks into the air and hoping it hit something. A spike projected out the end of a pneumatic tube was a simple solution to an age old problem. How the fuck do Osuzu kill one another past literal biting distances. With short range, but terrible killing power, these weapon provided osuzu warriors with a few killing shots before battle was joined with stinger and mandible. It evened the battleground between males and females. Males were no longer mere cannon fodder. Their use as gunners brought them into viability as a force as deadly as their feminine counterparts. Most importantly, the weapon could be used while airborne. The introduction of the weapon, was slow. It was a trade secret of Galiveron, but it spread.
Action 1: Realize the ring
For now, the Tarns choose to avoid the mines(see Diplo) , focusing instead on consolidating control over the contested areas of the Mino fort and the adjacent province. There, together with the areas of Tonglos pass, the commanders dream is finally realized. A ring of interconnected, multilayered fortifications are finally completed, covering 6 provinces as a whole. Mountain springs, snowmelt, and rainstorms provide ample water for even an entire army. Channels are cut through the stone and dirt, serving as reservoirs and canals connecting Koza and the ring forts. The walls are built with tiny holes, the Tarns leveraging their previous experience with siege defense to build walls that can be protected by sheets of water. The forts are designed with Tarnish principles of attrition in mind, so that even if one wall falls, there is another behind it for the Oni to break through all over again.
The crowning achievement is the implementation of false gaps into the wall. These gaps are disguised with loose rubble, intended to “collapse” after any serious bombardment. The Oni, baited by what they think is the enemy’s wall collapsing, will funnel into the gap. On the other side, however, there are only higher, stronger walls and a waiting reservoir of water ready to be released on their heads. The invaders will be trapped and drowned, and the water can be left to wash down the steep mountain slopes, bowling over enemies and helping the Tarns even further. In this way, the Oni arrogance will be used against them.
>Note that ive already spent a couple turns on building the ring fort last thread, this is mostly completing it’s construction and strengthening the whole thing even further

Action 2: Formalize the police force
The Tarnish Council realizes that many of the newly released soldiers would be best used training their fellow civilians in fighting as a squadron. After all, the problems in the Koza area are a result of insufficient manpower, rather than the danger of the pirates themselves. A great volume of moderately trained peacekeepers will have more of an impact than a few highly trained veterans. In order to train the necessary peacekeepers, the military academy at Hamet is expanded and reformed. Now, veterans train groups of civilians in basic offensive waterbending and group formations. These civilians are deployed around the still chaotic areas, helping to kill raiders and protect trade routes from pirates. They are paid in phosphate, thus helping to distribute the precious fertilizer throughout the nation.
War Action: Flatter the Minos
During the retaking of the land, a number of Mino prisoners are captured by the advancing Tarnish forces. Far from being mistreated, however, the Minos are treated well, regaled with feasts of fish and that fatty land-meat dryfaces enjoy so much. A number of career diplomats are tasked solely with flattering them with compliments and gifts. After a few days of this sort of treatment, the minos subtly overhear that the Oni are soon to campaign again, leaving their land even more vulnerable than it was before. They are told that the Tarns will arm them, that this is their chance to become the kings of their own land, that all they have to do is gather their soldiers and command them. In this way, some Minos are persuaded to stand at the ready to raid the Oni when the time comes.

>Diplo: Mino king
The Tarns acknowledge the Minos strength and their own issues, but subtly make clear that even so, the Tarnish army far dwarfs any army the Minos could pull together, weakened as they are by their constant losses of land. Still, the Tarns assert that they have no wish for hostility with Minos, and thus will respect the king's wishes. During this period, the king is informed that the Oni are soon to leave with their army again, leaving their lands even more vulnerable than previously. Even if he himself feels bound to the Oni, it would be in his best interest to allow his now crowded people to expand in that direction if they wish. As a further show of good faith, the Tarns release all the Mino prisoners into Mino lands, even more well fed and provisioned than they had left. This release serves both as a show of good faith and a sort of pressure tactic, putting a great deal of pressure on the king to find a good outlet for all these new mouths to feed.

>Diplo: Southern Tarn.
The Northern Tarns grumble but ultimately accept their offer. The Southern Tarn forces are sent to the north to help quash the last of the chaos there. The army forces sent west are redeployed into more of a peacekeeping stance, helping to reduce pirate attacks and protect the current borders from further incursion.
>Diplo: Tumaria
Initially, the reports of the hostile response to the Tarnish envoy confuses the Tarns. Through questioning of the nearby locals, however, a more clear view of the situation is reached. The Tumarians are paranoid and supremacists. If the Tarns are to win them over, it will require that they grovel, at least ceremonially. A new diplomatic envoy is sent, wearing significantly shabbier clothing. They profusely apologize for their earlier missteps, claiming that they were due to cultural differences and that they had no intention of causing such harm. The same request is made, though couched this time in further kowtowing and flattery. The Tarns request a contingent of Tumarian warriors and are willing to pay for them twice over by selling the Tumarians boats, current systems, and servants.

>Diplo: Ogres
A diplomatic team is sent to the Ogric capital, in order to both greet their new neighbors and to discover what kind of civilization they are. They find a martial civilization, focused on tales of worth and power. Clearly, this nation is both an asset and liability. The diplomats act fast, meeting cordially with the leader of the Ogres. They trade foods and swap stories about their respective peoples. In the process, the diplomats reveal the great war between the Tarns and Oni, and the history which has brought the two parties to the present day, framed favorably to the Tarns, of course. A basic technology sharing agreement is proposed, where the Tarns will share their agricultural knowledge in exchange for an agreement of mutual friendship and knowledge of new technologies the Ogres discover.

>Diplo: Totu
The recalled Totu must be swelling both the Totu population and their need for food. The Tarns offer to provide a solution to both, by hiring a great deal of mercenaries in exchange for a portion of the new surpluses of food the Tarns currently enjoy. It is pointed out to Jeleva that this represents a perfect opportunity to test those fancy new weapons the Totu have been developing. As a further sweetener, a small amount of phosphate is thrown in for free, a taste of what could be possible if the two collaborate.
Picture of the final extent of the ring fort

2. Industrial Improvements
The grav-piston engine made its move from a means purely to provide movement to transportation, to being used to provide movement for machinery. It provided a solution to issues that Osuzu engineers had been puzzling over for decades. The grav-piston, when applied industrially, functioned similar to how many existing gravitational mechanics already did. The major advantage was that it no longer required complex architecture to take advantage of gravitational motion. It could just provide motion. With grav pistons driving wheels and pulleys the various hives found their ability to facilitate and maintain production improved. Forges required less labor, could be built in more locations, and pump out greater quantities of finished goods. Many industries could expand as they were no longer literally tethered to specially made locations. Even agricultural production improved, as the process of turning honeyroot into consumable pulp for larvae and mead could be automated. The many thousands of wasps needed to maintain daily production of honeyroot pulp could and would be allocated to other industries, helping them grow with the additional labor pool.

This process added to existing problems too. As the Hives consolidated industry subhives that had once been used for those tasks found their services unneeded. These wasps were forced into other tasks, or their subhives were abandoned entirely to relocate drones to other subhives, or to labor on the expansion of existing areas. The spawling, decentralized network that had been the basis of political mobility and Hingashi industry was being changed and the society changed forcefully with it. Unneeded wasps found themselves cazadored, forced to wander or mercenary themselves in interhive conflicts or political disputes or operate as migrating labor. Even as the Hives thrived with their industry and food needs automated into a higher level of productivity Hingashi violently convulsed with a new scale of conflict. Improved killing tools dramatically escalated casualties. Wandering populations suffer violence from banditry and a lack of adequate supply. At the end of the day there is a massive underbelly of effectively hive-less Wasps in need of a leader and some form of stability that has yet to arise.
>Diplo: Tarn
The influx of races happy to make contact with the Ogres has Bugkraudd over the moon. He happily agrees to swap what little he knows about forging, and properly bullying those smaller than himself for anything he can glean on farming above ground.
The two agree, and the Tarns happily share their understanding of agriculture While much of it is only tangentially relevant to land-farming, certain techniques, including but not limited to monocultures, crop rotation,and the proper use of fertilizer would be feasible to cross apply above the waves. Now that a base agreement has been set, the Tarns move on to their next order of business. The Tarns would like to purchase any mercenaries the Ogres would be willing to offer.
>Diplo: Plagasm
The Tarns have fought against the corpse-people during the war for Koza. However, they had never put two and two together and realize that this was the same Plagasm with which the Tarns had had stuttering trade for centuries. Even now, a small but significant minority of Tarns live in Plagasm. Now the Tarns leverage this connection to hire Plagasm laborers. Even if they're not useful in battle,, they will still be valuable in support roles.
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>Action 1: Taking the Pith

Initial skirmishes in the not-yet-officially-war with the Iron Empire have shown Sonarii troopers able, but ill-equipped to resist the weapons and powers of the Metalbenders. Light armour gets too-quickly shredded, whilst heavy armour is vulnerable to the metal-manipulation abilities of the Ironfolk. An alternative is needed, and fairly soon.

This alternative is found in the Sholapith; spongy plant-matter that grows in the wet-forests along the Lansou coastline. From this substance, a lightweight and durable protective material can be formed that allows a Sonarii so equipped and armored to maintain much of their speed and agility whilst protecting from the impact of accelerated metal flechette that strikes against it.

>Action 2: Fortification of the Larn Hill Line.

With tensions high with the Iron Empire, the threat needs to be taken seriously. Whilst the Iron forces have stopped short of current Sonarii-controlled zones of allied territory, their forces are now uncomfortably close to Sonaria's primary industrial center; and one bad conversation might be all it would take to start them rolling again. Employing Artayne Emyrist, the masterwork architect behind the fortress on the Tizta border, and a team of the most adept Earth-manipulators from Plagasm, a new fortress is raised along the rail-rote between Larnet and Haze on the hill that overlooks the Hazey plains; next to both Larnet's primary source of salt, and the Larn-hill ruins that are now crowded with desperate refugees from Haze seeking shelter behind the Sonarii Larn Hill Line.

>Diplomacy: Iron Empire
Uncertain of the way the Volters will turn, the Sonarii keep up negotiations with the Iron Empire. Whist, they explain, Sonaria absolutely values the territorial integrity of her allies and the treaty of the firestorm pact compels her military intervention in their defense if directly attacked; the matter of Haze gives some little leeway as the firestorm pact provisions are not automatically extended to inherited conflicts. If it did, the Totu resurgence would have had far more problems.

However, they add; if the polity does abdicate the responsibilities to Haze it has taken on and accepts the Iron Empire offer, or just proves unwilling or incapable of mounting a defense, then Sonaria will consider the Larn hills to have defaulted to her control, along with the entire population of Haze refugees who have fled there. As they are people whom the Iron Empire does not seem to want or value, King Greyne is sure that in this circumstance the Iron Empire would be content in her recent territorial dividend and not seek to press the matter into territories under the de facto protection of Sonaria and the grace of Szélfelet.
>>The Yokai Lords

>1: Semaphore and Morse Code
With the new airships and sonarii spotters avaible, the Oni Captains need better ways to establish communications over unworkable dimensions and with much faster speeds. To do this, the Oni develop a series of codes and motions using banners and lights to communicate between two individuals, or coordinate strikes. The flags, while useful for more for land-based units and fortifications, are unable to be used by flying sonarii. To accommodate, special lanterns are made with close-able flaps to channel and block light in a rapid series of flashes.
These communication devices are quickly installed on all three of the airships before they take off. This allows 1 crewman to communicate between another ship or installation, rather than sending a sonarii messenger or using several volters to do an E-comm ritual, which lets them instead more adeptly run the ship. Lanterns can be carried with reasonable comfort from individual Sonarii, utilizing will o wisps to light as they don't get blown out so high up.

>2: Spirit Familiars
This long running war with the Tarn has left the entire region saturated with spirits from many different races. Several Mediums have come here before to experiment with various hypothesis and techniques in utilizing spirits, due to their unnatural abundance. One of the latest and most ambitious developments has been the creation of Spiritual familiars. Utilizing a vial of Raw Spirit to fully manifest the spirit like the spirit-fish found in the Wonsi lake, and a binding vessel to keep it tied and obedient to their owner. While initial experiments were done alone, some also call in the presence of Sonarii mercs to help boost the Medium's power even more so. These Familiars are field tested in a variety of applications in war, from hard to target scouts, to a role similar to a battle thrall, to even enveloping around an Oni to provide additional force in their attacks.
>War Action: Let's do this!

Giib makes the signal to begin the final push. Fortifications are useful, but only so long as they are manned. An unguarded wall is as good as an open door. With many of the Tarn having gone down the pass to deal with their issues across their nation, and the valleys left unflooded for the moment, now is the time to strike. And this time, with a combined arms approach.

>They will use their tactics of rolling, leapfrogging attacks to rotate out troops, on a strategic scale as well as tactical. The Oni employ their new ballistics to break apart eastern-facing fortifications and force the Tarns to retreat or fracture, before Oni troops march in to fight and wear through the less armed and armored tarnish troops. The ballistics are aimed with far greater precision thanks to signalling from both land-based spotters, as well as aerial reconnaissance. The air support also helps identify locations of high tactical value or out-of-position Tarns to harass or exploit, which the Oni can respond to a much faster degree now.
>The oni will continue to make full use of their ballistics, who's range should grow as they gain a height advantage over the tarns as they march down the valley. Using carts, shipping containers, and aircarts to help re-position the ballistics once they oni have secured better firing angles, and keep the whole blitz moving.
>Meanwhile the three Airships, which the Oni have christened "Byeolag", "Beongae", and "Nollaun" while under their use, are used to bomb the backlines of the Tarnish defenders and provide signalling for siege without recompense, due to the Tarn having no dedicated anti-air, and the airship's ability to simply float over storms thanks to their storm engines. Oni are also offered to accompany the crews of the aircraft as basic muscle, and to help boost the airbending even more.

Of course, the greatest, most painful thing the Oni have had to deal with is the constant storm support the Tarns have had since before the start of this conflict. But no longer, as Giib has been informed of an technique developed by the Sonarii to specifically counter the formations of storms and reduce the air to a drier state. While the skycarts and airships are busy with their own things, the vast majority of the Sonarii forces are used to keep the Tarnish storms at bay for as long as possible, even pulling some Oni Mediums or volters to give them an extra edge over the more numerous tarn. Hopefully this will prevent the Tarn from getting massive flooding capabilities and better deprive them of their largest source of water to fight and defend with.
It should also be noted that they are focused on taking the 5 mountain tiles of the pass. If they can make it up to Koza, they'll begin bombarding the river, damforts (since those are the main Tarnish holdings and staging grounds that far up the mountain iirc), Koza proper, and the canal with bombing runs and ballistics. The troops themselves however will not push into Koza or the river yet, simply keep the Tarn at bay from the ballistics and airship LZs.

Giib's Army Comp for OP >>3920551
Currently, the accounted reinforcements include a full force of Sonarii, with air monks and aircarts included, which are largely performing storm support and supportive roles. As well as 3 Alliance-backed airships (thunderbird class), kitted out for bombing and spotting primarily.
The totu are currently in quantum uncertainty, as they have not yet made a call to pull out of the war, stay committed, or do both.
Not sure how many Entombed are wanting to stick around, that's your call I guess since they are NPC now.

If either Sonarii or Volters want to correct this, feel free to respond to this one.

Reminder that there are Rangers looking for the rumored inhabitants of the fungal forests. They are tense, but not actively trying to fight any thing, and just want to establish contact and possibly a deal.

>Mino King
Though Giib's experience with the Minotaurs have been mixed compared to Tonglo, he would still rather keep them off his back for the moment.
He informs the king that his strike will be soon, and that when it happens, the constant rainfall the Tarn have been sending their way will finally be stymied, or at least dampened. Thus putting them in the weakest possible position they've been in all war. Likely, Giib predicts, the Tarn will then respond by funneling all of their troops back into the meat grinder that is Koza and the pass, and leave the north and coastal regions once again under-defended. If he wants to solidify his holdings against the Tarn, or make use of their probable mass-reaction to take more, now would be the opportunity.

(I think you've overestimated what the Sonarii were providing; in >>3913647 we agreed to send some specialists to give an -attempt- at storm control and sell the Oni some Air-carts; a full force wasn't provided. But I guess you could have gotten the rest from the Volters, as they have a Sonarii population and joint-Sonarii crews in their airships.

On the other hand, with all the Totu gone from the continent, Giib should have some Tizta in their place by now. Even the 'sack' of Gurtand was a 'replace Totu with Tizta' option.)
>Diplomacy: Sonaria, Iron Empire
"There is no uncertainty about our position. The Polity does not back down from a pledge, not to its allies, not to its people. The militarism of the Second Iron Empire threatens fair Sonaria our ally and we are poised to eradicate that threat in the name of Peace. The people of Haze are under our protection now. Advance on them, threaten to strike our ally, and there shall be a reckoning."

"We are pacifists, not pushovers. There is a difference; watch intently."
"You're using the airships wrong. Go target their supply trains! Lives are cheap to the Tarn! Just... Shock and awe, and mop them up later!"

Not that they particularly implied the Oni were incompetent, but it's been very hard for the underused bolter officers not to backseat their cute attempts at a Blitzkrieg...

"Ugh! Your troops are so slow on the move! What are you feeding them, rocks?"

Yet all in all, the volter crews got along surprisingly well with the Oni soldiers. Both forces were professionally minded and focused on their given objectives, and in light of a recent thawing of politics and relations between the two nations with differing ideologies word passed down from top to bottom that nobody needed to shout all day to the Oni's faces how much we disagree with them and instead focus on the common positives such as the yokai sense of honour which is not too different from the bolter codes, and the fact that our countries have, technically, never been in conflict with each other, and mostly maintained an ultimately cordial demeanor with each other. The personnel sent officially from the Polity were handpicked from that pool of what would be qualified as 'disreputable fellows' in the Polity for their lax manners but seemed like they'd fit quite well amongst the Oni. They've, so far, attempted to introduce to them the concept of chilling their liquor instead of drinking it warm, which they'd consider gross, and more surprising cultural exchanges happen. Behind the facade of a one-minded empire of fanatical peace were many peoples with many different traditions and thoughts. Bolters tend to resolve their differences by butting horns and they're happy to laugh about it. Despite being a natural byproduct of volter biology, psychology and society, they used to be treated as fringe, looked down upon by the mainstream currents until the call to arms of Sonaria forced the hand of the government to recognize them again. The bolter crew explain to the Oni how in their beliefs, 'pacifism' is not the abnegation of violence, but the embrace of the concept of a Just War. Many bolters see conflict as a natural occurence within all beings, and explain that their countrymen's extreme reactions to it stems in no part for not being very used to that, and so as much as they do not understand the ways of the bolters, they also do not understand the ways of the Oni. We as bolters are naturally conflicted and conflicting, they said, we are much less content or happy than the peaceful shapes on average, but make peace with this and try to control our aggression and direct it to constructive purposes. They believe nobody should be forced to fight against their will, though there is much virtue in the way of the warrior and that though it was sad the nation needed them they also sincerely believed that their influence in society served to deter it against complacency, cowardice and worst of all, decadence.
'We do in fact have a history of bloodsports, and old traditions of strenght and trials.That, the Peace Polity won't tell you, for the same reason that they don't want us to advertise them in our society anymore: they don't want to encourage it. Perhaps, with the War Voltage making this society change, we will build a grand arena in Thunder Peak again, and you'll come fight with us honourably.'

Bolters were divided on the thought. On one side they truly saw kindred souls in Oni warriors whereas the Polity ronly eluctantly tolerated the ways they could not help but hold; on the other they abhorr being compared to those who take from the weak and start wars.

>Diplomacy: Ogres
Word of mouth, big hungry mouth spreads fast and... We're very curious where our ally found these really scary looking mercenaries to fight on our side.

A diplomat and his crew are very cautiously dispatched to the gloomily named 'Mount of Mourn', and since they were told that these enjoy a good meal, they spare little expense in buying varied food from all over the world to display they large-reaching trade empire through a luxury feast in their honour, throwing in some potato fries and giant crab meat from their nation far up North.

Only after seeing the bill did they cry.

"Greetings from the Volt Polity. I am Azvan of diplomatic clan Dokori. We've heard of your existence, so, we'd like to get to know you a little, and perhaps in the future we could talk of embassies and trade? We understand that you are fighting in our war for our cause, and for that you have our thanks. We loathe war, but do not shy from it, and only consider taking arms to protect our kin, allies, the weak, and all that is good and right in the world. May Thunna the Thundergod, our father, grant you his blessing rather than his wrath."

We don't quite know what to make of these obese humanoids calling themselves 'Tyrants' and 'maneaters' yet, despite the... Interesting names...
>Diplo: Tarn
Again, the diplomatic party is given temporary housing while they wait for a proper and comprehensive response from the Emperor, albeit a bit shabbier than the previous. The response arrives, along with 100 Tumarian pathfinders and a Legate. The outlines of the mercenary contract are as follows:

1.) The Tumarians go on the condition of the proposed payment, and reserve the right to withdrawal back to Tumarian land at any time.
2.) What the Legate says is final when it comes to the Tumarian soldiers.

This short but firm contract is given to the Tarnish diplomats.
>Action 1: Formation of the Agency
The Totu's best and brightest are selected to be outfitted and trained with their finest technology including their jet packs, harpoon guns, and camouflage. They are trained in the art of the spy, learning both combat, disguise, and stealth. This agency is placed under Mairsil's control by Jeleva to ensure intrigue would not be lost in her passing.

>A Queen's death
As Jeleva reached an increasingly venerable state and the Totu finally seemed to have reached a stable and secure position on the map, the adrenaline which had kept her going seemed to be fading as she weakened with each passing day. In an attempt to avoid any further chaos, Jeleva dismissed her entourage and organized the meeting of a fake organization of which only Inalla was invited. Once together, Jeleva prompted Inalla on what was to come before turning her speargun upon herself in an act of selfish taboo and leaving the rest to Inalla.

>Action 2: Dusting off the Airships
With Inalla finally in control of the nations industry, new designs for a more mobile airship are constructed to help assist stability and propulsion.

>Diplomacy: Totu Mercenaries
While Inalla is sure the land could support the Totu population thanks to their use of above ground housing as well, a loss of military professionalism might result should they go too long without a wartime presence. Totu Mercenaries are provided to both the Yokai and the Tarn, with several of the members of the newly formed Agency (And Mairsil) being provided to the Yokai in order to observe the Tizta for imitation and to escape the watchful eye of the Golden Dawn. Both sides are instructed to avoid firing upon other Totu.
The Tarns agree to the conditions, and the roughly one hundred ‘otz are provided. Tarnish current benders connect Tumar and the area south of saturnico together, halving travel time between the two. A somewhat less powerful connection to Kira is formed as well, allowing for faster travel between Tumaria and the Tarnlands.
The legate and soldiers are rapidly deployed to Tonglo’s Pass. They rendezvous and setup alongside the current aqua bolter positions. Soon, synchronized water and plasma bolts begin arcing from the walls, generating massive gouts of steam as they slam into the advancing Oni forces. The clouds roll down the mountain slopes, enveloping entire units and cooking soldiers from the outside in.
>The Oni clothing is protective against the cold, heavy rain of the Tarnish rainstorms, but against steam, their insulating quality becomes a liability. The heavy clothing traps hot steam against the Oni skin, multiplying the effect of steam burns.
The Totu are thanked for their cooperation and quickly deployed to the front lines. While a few are used to man their rotary cannons, most are spread out among the aqua-bolter squadrons. There, they amplify the existing bolt-fire, adding even more velocity to the jets of water and allowing the Tarns to match the Oni for range.
Food shipments to the Totu begin, mostly consisting of meats that the Tarns find inedible, including land-meats like mutton.
>The Great Ranging
1. With the Giant's pushed back from Kazval's walls, the God-King Alloheim combines his cavalry, infantry, and golem forces, and leads them on a march through the taken giant land towards Balora, seeking to siege the city. Men are to share tents in groups of 3 for warmth, and the Cleanser from the forays into the Fungal Forest is used to keep the biting cold from taking men, Titza encountered along the march are welcomed to march alongside the Golden Dawn army to be safe from the ice.

>Seaside Safety
2. As the army marches along the small bridge of contested giant land on the coast, the navy is ordered to follow them to provide bombing and shelling support against enemy soldiers, and prevent a naval ambush.

>Melt to Slag
A gold signing bonus is offered to rural peasants if they wish to join in the fight against the Iron Empire, and will be placed under the command of the zealous Flamekeepers. Riding the train from Aestival-Cethom-Nafflec-Larnet, they are to disembark and march along the rail-line towards Haze, protecting it from Iron Empire attacks, and allowing supplies to be sent to Haze. Military doctrine will be group flame attacks against Iron Empire soldiers, attempting to melt them, while sheltering behind shields to protect from their metal throwing. Iron Empire peasants are to be treated well and told of the gracious God-King Alloheim, who treats his subjects with respect and kindness.

>War Action: Support the Ranging

The Sonarii forces driven off by the return of the Ice-storm re-group along the line of the Burned men advance toward Balora, Gurlon T'Ned using the warmth provided by Alloheim's forces' presence to help keep the worst of the chill from his men. The Airships keep pace and support the Golden Navy from above, and Sonarii wind-monks do their best to calm and blow back any calamitous currents or twisters that might be sent toward us. And as the Golden Dawn forces move forward, Grulla Lek and her Tizta fall in with their march to bring their cannons and force-powers up in support of the advance; ready to open up their cannonade against Balora.
The Polity takes into custody the traitorous Vog and his entire army to decide of their fate later. Despite a considerable victory without even a drop of blood, a lot of bolters are very unhappy. They came to fight. We could choose to spin it in the way that our presence was so mighty that the enemy surrendered... But commander Turva doesn't have the heart to lie to his troops. He tells them exactly that Vog wants us to ally with him and replace the Jarl, not out of respect for our strenght or fear of our righteous wrath. In his heart he holds no love for his people, nor cause or duty, and there is only greed. We won't do that, but we'll judge him and his men another day.

> Action 1: Strider Boots Mk I
Volters aren't much for cavalry. Instead, they've always used the ability of enhancing their own movements and stamina through electric power. Since we've gone back to what we personally call the 'dark ages' it was entirely a matter of physical and spiritual strenght, but now that we've got back some of our technological ability and rare materials we're looking to recreate our powered uniforms, and we're starting with perhaps the most important part, which are the boots boots. Strider boots are reactively powered boots with their own capacitors that allow to efficiently redirect energy towards the lower limbs, allowing for much more efficient power dashes, more powerful charges and jumps, they allow to powerskid a lot more easily and are a godsend in rough terrain, as if being a goat wasn't making it easy enough. It's a great upgrade to tactical mobility, but strategically speaking, it makes standard marching a lot more efficient and the men a lot less tired, allowing to cover more in a day and at a faster speed. There are several variants, from cheap standard issue for regular troopers to expensive, state of the art units for special forces that practically allow to stick to walls and superjump. It's too bad we're stuck with a rather primitive design at the moment, but at least it works, as long as it's kept away from too much heat, too much cold, too much stress, too much water, and too much blood.

Volter uniforms, civilian or otherwise, have a peculiar fashion that is in fact a carryover of a time when all these uniforms were powered. There usually were capacitors on the shoulders and the knees, everyone had 'striders', and though we were no longer able to manufacture them we kept the style.
> Action 2: The Stormtroopers
Since we're to go on the attack, we want to recreate a class of soldiers for the job. Stormtroopers are specialized assault infantry meant to spearhead all offensives with unique shock tactics and equipment. They've been picked from amongst the most aggressive and brave bolters, to not say bloodthirsty and reckless, and given serious extended training into close-range combat and they carry with them a disproportionnate amount of flashbang grenades which they unleash seconds before storming their objective. Stormtroopers are an infantry requirement of the volter doctrines of war which are based on movement warfare, shock tactics and combined arms: we don't have the manpower nor resources to lose dilly-dallying in big battles. We end the fights in a matter of minutes and then we move on, all ga-pa like, as we say in our language. Combined with our relative speed and psychological impact from our other warfare tactics, our stormtroopers are supposed to break the morale of the enemy and pierce their formations while the regulars behind mops up.
>War: Larnet-Haze Bolter Express
There's no brakes on this pain train

The army thundersteps ahead in cadence while a forward wagon with a jacked up Thunderpriest blasts some marching metal. Airships are to target enemy defensive positions to soften them up and land some backline flankers in the Hazian fields. The Volter army objective is to make a straight towards Haze following the railway at speed and on orders not to stop for anything. Our slower allies like the Golden Dawn infantry must follow behind in regular lines to secure our advances and punish any would-be counterattack; we plant some 'zap trees' along the way to welcome those guests. Commander Karal hopes that this battleplan will be unexpected from us and take the Iron Empire forces by surprise, thus disorganizing their troops and supply networks. If it works, we would retake the initiative and there might even be a chance to cut the western armies off from the eastern forces, thus jeopardizing their supply situation and means of escape. For this war, we intent to make it as clean and bloodless as we can.

The forces include the Second Army as well as the parts of the First Army that were freed to get them. Some First Army thunderbirds were pulled back here, and all the stormships that Sonarian command deemed uneeded for its attacks.

>Northern Troops
Commander Turva assures the defenders of Kazval that he, and the rest of command, and even the big horn guys on the Polity were itching for a nasty fight against the giants as much as they were, and sadly, it seems we'll have to make do with entirely free armies of prisoners we won't even be allowed to beat up, making this situation very, very ironic. With this out of the way though the priorities of the government have shifted towards the Northern war and the First Army is to be cut into half (or one quarter depending of what we end up findinging up and down there), with one part staying here and the other taking the Haze Express. Turva asks for volunteers to go fight in the South rather than in the North before he'd start to designate some, and promises them that this conflict is still worth fighting for a better world, even if it's hard to see from down there. Or would they rather leave our allies at the constant threat of a neighboring warmonger? These allies that are right here by us, dying in droves in the cold FOR us, our people and our honour?

We merely give back what we owe. Fighting the iron men is like fighting the giants, by proxy, and so we expect them to give it their all.

So the volunteers will give their polar survival kits to those comrades of us that don't have one so they can keep pushing efficiently and go fight in Haze. Those that remain will reconquer our territory and under Turva's command will join with Alloheim's command for land invasion, just like the old times but without a giant ball of fire at the end hopefully.
>Diplo: Sonarii
The Tarns meet with some Sonarii businessmen to negotiate a deal for the purchase of some sky carts and mercenaries. They also trawl the black market for any information about the use of sky-carts in battle and how to counter them.

>Exchange rate: 1 skycart or 33 mercs in exchange for 3 provinces worth of Tarnish indentured servants.
>One expert in exchange for 10 pounds of phosphate fertilizer.
>"the priorities of the government have shifted towards the Northern war"
*shifted to the Southern War
>Diplo: Rotwood
Rumors of a mysterious woodland that strengthens water bending reach the capital of Kuro. The tarns send out an expedition to assess these rumors. The party travels through ogric lands(after gaining their consent of course) to see what’s what.
The leader of the expedition is a burly Tarn, named Pahto. He calls out boldly to the shadows, “Good day and well met! We come in peace to greet our new neighbors. Now, don’t be shy, let’s meet, face to face!”
>Action 1: Consolidate the Frontlines
The pylons on the mainland surrounding Satturnico are expanded, chiefly to bring the newly scouted ruins under Tumarian influence.

>Action 2: Down Once More
With the ruins within safe lands, another expedition is sent down, this time with some 'super-charged' Tumarians from the north accompanying the scholars as well, in case things go south.
The Metal men seem surprisingly civilized for a race whose family structure most resembles apes and their society is structured and rigid with a distinct class of high and low borns just as hingashi society has. They are very receptive to the Queen, doing their best to respect the customs and practices that the Hingashi partake in and have established on their small diplomatic vessel, not only that but they speak just as the Hingashi do, though with a slight accent but in a manner entirely understandable. They offer the Queen many gifts which support their boasting about their fine metalworking (this is due to their ability to bend metal as the Hingashi can bend force and gravity which leads to them having metal which even on a peasant level matches or exceeds all but the finest smithing of the Hingashi, and that does not even mention the strong and fine metals and alloys which they have invented which put Hingashi alloys to shame)

They gift the Hingashi maps of the entire known continent, which sadly is very much already colonized by a variety of humanoid races (this is very sad as it shows that the hingashi are that much more alone as they are the only race, besides arguably the totu who use the hive system of government and young rearing) except in the far, far western and north western reaches which are to far to colonize. They also reveal the possible locations of a few islands south of the Hingashi continent which although infertile and cold compared to the homeland is offered as uncontested hingashi lands after the Iron Men have completed their current work.

They have offered the Hingashi two islands (along with the much more important local fishing rights, hingashi colors represent full fishing rights and contested colors represent joint hingashi-iron men fishing rights) of the coast of their nation which were recently conquered and are essentially fresh and ready for hingashi colonization.
The Iron Men are currently embroiled in a potentially devastating war and they believe that if equipped with metal men tempered steel the mighty hives of the hingashi could be pulled from in order to raise a massive invasion force in order to quell the annoying electric goat people of the far north. They plan on keeping the hingashi a state secret until the volters have sent a firm force into the nation, then the hingashi who would at that point be fairly fully equipped would be sent north to go conquer and expel the goats from their southern desert so that they will be forced to accept defeat, at the point they would also be forced to expand into an eastern island they have yet to take which would be colonized by hingashi. In that region also exists a now hidden race of worker creatures who have the ability to restore land (though they themselves are toxic) and most usefully perhaps old and ruined trinkets as well, for they have an entire ruin complex full of otherwise useless goods and they assume that the hingashi might also have some of these goods as well, and if the Radic complex could be taken perhaps the two races could eat well of the fruits of the fallen instead of being restricted by some scared little goats.
The Iron Empire offers to send some of its finest in order to add in continental tech into the arsenal of the Hingashi.
With the loosened up labor the formerly fairly expensive grav-platforms and grav-hives so sought after by the upper classes become much more viable (cheap), as repetitive tasks are always something the highest love to put upon the lowest, and the lowest are probably getting a little bit more receptive to such work this time around...

Without the threat of the onis or taurs to the degree they were dangerous before menial laborers from behind the frontlines are finally able to work safely - and thus efficiently - on the fortifications.

Several minor land and sea gains are made against the pirates.
While word of abundant food in tarnish lands may one day bite the tarn in the bottom several minor taur lords, especially those around the newly reconquered areas send word to the tarn pledging their allegiance if the oni are able to supply them and give them more tauric allies to the north in opposition to the King of Black Metal.

The minotaur king refuses to ally with the tarn and already has sent envoys away from the south to go and convince relatively neutral lords of how it would be better to stay true to the oni rather than ally with these so called "fish faces".

The southern army targets the contested city of shio, they claim that the city will soon fall back into the hands of the tarn very soon.

A new invasion of oni has broken through the fortifications, although they have been slowed significantly and thus a well thought out tarnish response is indeed possible.
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In combination with leather and wooden straps alongside similar buckles the sonarii can finally produce soldiers who are light and durable enough to fight the metal men without being thrown around, though the immense problem of what kind of materials the sonarii can hope to use in melee against the metal men has yet to be fully revealed. For now the sonarii are relegated to using weapons tipped in metal which are capable of penetrating standard metal men armor, although battle testing has shown that alloys containing high levels of tin, zinc, lead, mercury or bismuth seem more resistant to be metal bent while overrefined (high carbon) steel also seems to be very resistant to being bent as well. Another problem has arisen as it seems that the sonarii are having a very hard time cracking the tough metal vehicles which the metal men have invented, these vehicles are fully surrounded in a tough metal shell and have hatches and weapons which are not easily broken into, their weapons and defenses have served many times as unbreakable rally points and weapons platforms for the metal men time and time again.

The new fortress is raised from the tough and dense stone of the stony wastes near larnet, the engineers responsible make sure to integrate as little metal as possible into its design.

The Iron Empire concedes the Hilly strip (about 3 hexes in size) to the sonarii but are continuing fighting outside of this zone, caravans of refugees are quickly found to have been expelled purposefully by the Iron men as opposed to the initial wave which was a force of pure fleeing from the army of the iron guide. The Iron men have erected several large camps near major sonarii centers of industry near to their border which they claim they will only use in the event of full scale war. They claim that they will stop respecting volter border rights the moment a major electric force is seen near the border.
Word of the nature of morse code (though not the code itself) is quietly spread around the nations east of the western mountains, it is thought that soon the other airborn nations may officially adopt their own codes especially if these techniques are found to be especially useful over the current system of volter sent messages.

The layers of cards the oni have up their collective sleeves grows, although these new familiars are held back from being used on the stagnate frontline of the war in fear of the tarn adapting before such things can be properly exploited on the battlefield. This changes with the launching of the new invasion.
While not fully completed the tarnish fortifications make capturing new ground all that much more difficult thus slowing down the advanced, the eastern fortifications have already been broken through although this is behind schedule as the oni were supposed to be at the city already. Tarnish tricks take down many oni regiments.
The Minotaur King sends word of tarnish attempts to persuade him away from the oni along with the near possibility of large tarnish supported insurrections ruining his offensive capabilities. For now he needs to clean up his own holdings but if the tarn can be expelled from the mountains he is fully open to launching a new invasion of the tarn.

With the possible escalation of the Metal war at hand the necrotics are reluctant to support any new regiments being hired by the oni especially after how long it took the last force they sent to get back in any notable numbers last time. A good few necrotics are hired on but their active battlefield role is going to be very diminished.

On the battlefield it seems a new kind of race has appeared... they are said to be like the burned men, but much brighter is their flame... the significance of this new force has yet to be seen as they don't seem particularly powerful, though that might be due to the presence of oni

It is hoped that the relatively small size of the totu and the possibility of dressing them up as old totu servants (the sonarii themselves are said to not be particularly bright when it comes to telling totu and tizta apart anyways once you get past the dirt shell) that the totu may find a decent amount of spying capabilities even when compared to the legendary oni spies.

Inalla has now been ascended to the position of Queen, a full write up on the changes the totu race have undergone will be produced soon by the most prestigious scholars of Nacre.

A few documents which were smuggled by some of the last totu to leave the continent help to make the airships at least a little bit on par with what should be the older designs which the sonarii and volters employed.

The administrators are careful to not mix up shipments of mercenaries going through drichbad and to yato.
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Several beachheads are taken, soon the army will reach balora proper, although the blizzards above it are making navigating the wastes difficult. The battle outside of kazval rages.

Halfway to haze the army finds the tracks sabotaged, this leads to them being forced to lay down new tracks wherever they are to go, ranged bombardments and tank attacks harass the army.

The new boots have their problems and will certainly need to be improved in the future but for now they work fine.

The new troops will soon see battle on the front lines of the icey war and in the plains of haze.

The invasion is launched and the first major battle between bolt and metal begins. Reports of how the volters fair when up against the metal men are soon to be transmitted.

The colonists come into conflict with the race called the minotaurs as it seems that the ogres have seemingly disappeared, their land being quickly taken by minotaurs. The explorers of the ruins seem to have been trapped as the ruins have begun to emit a huge glow, it is hopped that they will return once the glow subsides. In the west a border with the burned men has been established.
1. Settle the Island

The young Queen settles in a new Hive named Ceuta. From there, she dedicates herself to fulfilling her ambitions of a new political dynasty. Almost immediately the Queen gives birth to a half dozens Princesses and her retainers spread word of a land of opportunity across the sea. The result is extraordinary. Wasps by their thousands pour into the island hives, ready to work and live a life of the idyllic past and not one of the industrial future. Their hopes are, of course, dashed, as many of them are used in the same sort of industrial labor that their counterparts on Hingashi are. For others, particularly the females, they are conscripted to serve as the new military arm. Trained with new weapons, equipped with metal armor, and given the finest spikers. The wasp army quickly grows at an exponential rate along with the population of the islands. The homeland cares little for the goings-on of its colonies, far from its borders and ruled by an independent queen, not even the powerful matriarch of the Salmancero hive hasa a say or interest in her daughter's works.

2. Continental Proliferation
The technologies of the Iron Men are quickly disseminated through Hingashi by the networks of scholars, hivers, and widely traveling merchants. To fund her military development Queen Sylvia sold extensive amounts of metal goods to her counterparts in Hingashi, and in exchange for hard machinery and airship expertise she likewise sold what the iron men had to teach her hivers about metalworking. After only a few years the Osuzu progress from crude steels to higher quality pieces forged in grav-factories labored day and night by a hundred thousand wasps. More than just metal working is spread. With better metals comes better machinery, better airships, and more effective use of materials. The Osuzu Hives turn from sheetrock to metal in many industrial components, freeing up a substantial amount of equipment to be used in the construction industry. Soon the airships that cross the length and breadth of Hingashi and its new colony are clad in steel instead of sheetrock. The use of stainless steel in construction becomes popular in place of rarer materials like gold or silver as it is looked at as advanced and superior, a new fad.
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>Diplomacy: Tarn

The Sonarii businessmen examine the Tarnish deal closely. Though they can see a number of potential applications, they are unsure of the Tarnish capacity to keep up phosphate production and in any case Sonaria already contains vast swathes of viable agricultural land. Fishing, by contrast, has long been rare in Sonaria; practiced only by the fishing-platforms of Bertlowr and the southern coast, and even there only sparsely. They take the deal with the Tarn, handing over 5 skycarts for 15 provinces worth of indentured Tarnish servants; for deployment into the most valid fishing waters around Fort Emyrist and Drichbad.


>Action 1: Iron of Larnet

A group of leading Larnetti citizens of Iron Man origin pool their resources and call in favors with both the Duke of Larnet and the representatives of the conclave. In the lands south of Larnet they agree to the establishment of a new town within the Larnet Duchy, built on lands held in trust by Larnet that had once been in possession of the former Duchy of Old Glecoone. The town of Rodjup will be built to suit growing industrial demands, with links to already existent rail transport networks and Airship routes. For a skilled management and knowledge workforce they will bring in many knowledgeable and trusted members of the Larnet Iron Community, along with some Sonarii, Burned and Volter specialists. And for the common workers, the gates are opened to those of the Haze refugee exodus least dogmatic in their religious outlook and least prone to their indulgences. The Iron men of Larnet seek to imbue those of their cousins who are willing to work with their own strong ethics and devotions; a more peaceable path then that offered by the conquerors of Steelhold.

>Action 2: Weapon Development.

The lack of good weaponry effective against the Iron Empire's forces is troubling to the Soanrii. Though both their Burned Men and Volter Allies have natural abilities and weapons that are effective against Iron forces, most are elementally attuned and not ones that are easy for Sonarii to use. Though some alloy and high-carbon variant equipment has shown increased effectiveness, nothing has yet been comprehensive. Presently, the most effective weapon Sonaria has to use against Iron threats is the advanced canon shell; this must be bettered.

A team comprised of Weaponsmiths from Larnet, Chemists and Physicists from Ordon University, a pair of Natural Scholars from Lansou, Monastic Air-Masters from the monastery of Alkilme's Wind Rock and a few learned craftsmen from other cities is put together. Volter and Burned men developers are also invited, though as the goal is Sonarii-usable weapons it is expected their input might be minimal. The job of the Hurricane development project is to devise new and effective weapons for use against the forces of the Iron Empire, as they are presently seen as the greatest potential threat to the Sonarii borders.
The plot is simple, the members are in agreement, and the plans are set. The "Iron Guide" is a mad man, completely unfit to rule any longer. His own generals realize this, and have for a while now. Haze hadn't been a part of the empire for a while, and this new war only brings in new threats to the Empire that it doesn't need. Operation Sthal Engel would be under way in a few short days. The plans for the post-operation success have been drafted, and secret ambassadors to the various nations involved, including the Sonarii, the Volters, the Burned men, and to Haze, what little does remain of them.

Small groups of Iron men, not adorned with the insignia of the Iron Guide's forces, approach, wishing to speak privately about a possible deescalation of the conflict, and end to the war in full.
A bunch of very twitchy soldiers reluctantly accepts to receive the envoys. They have been burned with 'diplomats' before... And a massive offensive is about to take place.

"We don't have a diplomat here", says commander Karal. "I'll be the one to consider what to say. Now repeat that again, you want to 'end the war'? ...Already?"
“Yes. This conflict over Haze is a waste of lives and resources from all nations involved. Many inside the empire itself don’t care about reclaiming haze, and would rather just be done with this war. The Iron Guide is nothing but a mad man wasting away, and those I represent wish to see him, removed from office.”
Silence over the assembly. Quite an atmosphere of discontent.

"...Seriously? What is it with this world? Everyone wants to push us to war, and when we finally crack down, nobody wants to fight us! Do you have any idea how much time and effort and money we invested into mobilization? For Thunna's sake! I almost want to say no, just that we didn't screw over our growth planning for nothing..."

The soldier spends a few minutes calming himself down and opening a botle of volka. "Fine. What do you want, what's your plan and where are we concerned?"
“You have such a callous disregard for your men that you would throw them into a war when peace is an option? That sounds no better the the Guide, but I am getting sidetracked on my own opinions. You wish for Haze to join you? That is fine. It would serve well as an area for trade once it is rebuilt, a feat that my benefactors in the empire are willing to assist with once the Iron Guide is dealt with. If you wish to flex your military, search to the East, there you will find bugfolk. The Iron Empire’s infrastructure has been neglected for too long by the guide, and his rampant agression will bring nothing but calamity for our people. This is why we seek to remove him and return to a neutral state, at least, with our neighbors.”
"When disrespect is becoming the norm then the crack of Thunder must sound in the sky at least once, but we never do it for show. Wherever lightning strikes men must die or it's nothing but a spectacle. When evil men fear the Thunder, then god will be happy."

He stares, immobile.

"These men have volunteered to ensure that peace in the world is valued. If they don't have to fight, they won't. But you're underestimating just what sort of burden War Voltage is on our nation and society! Unlike you, we're not militarists. Now, tell me why we would even entertain the idea that you'd be able to bring that plan of yours to fruition... What guarantee do you have that it will work? Do you have public support? Loyal men? Even the troops required for a coup?"
The deal is welcomed warmly and the skycarts are deployed to Tonglos pass. They are used to harass the airships and enemy skycarts, forcing them down into range of the overwhelming Tarnish artillery power. A revised deal is also submitted to the Sonarii, with 5 provinces worth of peasants provided in exchange for 1 expert in airshio technology.
>on ranged heavy weaponry
the factory of artillery has been outfitted into a weapon updating and modification facility, many of the older models are brought here to be modified for better accuracy, more effective chambering and with instruments designed for better long distance aiming, alongside a few decent spirits here and there of course. (more advanced models look like older ones with more trinkets and better looking metal and wood)
The plagasm declines any major purchases and has restricted smaller hirings due to the threat of the metal men, unless of course the tarn could promise to send a significant naval force in the case of an iron invasion.
The Tarns fret but ultimately agree to the swap. After all, seeing what the corpse-mages can do, not having some on hand could be more dangerous that the alternative. The Tarns propose an even swap, roughly 0.1 army of Tarns in exchange for 0.1 army of Plagasm soldiers.
"You think everyone in the Empire is a militarist? You honestly believe that? You don't think that a large portion of our people are tired of the raids against so called "enemies of the empire", those same people that merely don't want to be conscripts to die for a cause they don't believe in? That is not only an insult to our nation, but to our people, but this is no time for such debate. A large portion of the military is aligned with those among my benefactors, and those still aligned with the Guide will be separated from their comrades and transferred into our divisions where they wouldn't dare try anything the moment the Guide falls dead."
"Well...Yes. We honestly believe that. Forced conscription, forced marriage, education propaganda, and the only image we have of you is that of a supreme leader declaring war on a neutral nation, putting artillery in range of our allies and having a lot of war machines. And long ago you tried to genocide our allies. If you want to show us the better image if you, they might be time later and we'll be glad to learn more about your culture but...You know."

He scratches his neck.

"...Look, we can or not help you with this, but we're about to launch a massive offensive. You have to act quickly before it happens. I don't think I can convince the Grand Commander to delay that on a gamble. If anything... Tell your divisions to surrender on sight. We'll sign peace with the new regime later."
Inside the Empire, the Iron Guide holds a meeting with his highest ranked generals for the upcoming battle. Hours go by with his generals making suggestions and a plan is mulled over by the council assembled. The Iron Guide wishes for a quick, decisive victory against these interlopers meddling in their nations rightful reclamation...
Meanwhile, the plan is set into action. Messengers are sent to the front, bearing falsified documents of transfer orders for certain groups of soldiers, officers, and for whole divisions to be sent to the rear, leaving almost no one but loyalists to the Plot at the front...
Back in the empire, in the middle of the Iron Guide explaining the horrific amounts of "acceptable" casualties for the operation, a single member of the plot silently moves behind him, and before anything can be said, bends a shard of metal into the Iron Guide's head, expanding it inside and completely, and utterly killing him in an instant. After that, the Generals scramble to their posts to put into place their coup. On the front, as soon as word reaches the front, the few loyal to the guide are killed when they try and revolt, and within the week, a new nation stands where the Empire once stood. For now, it lies in a provisional Junta, with additional work on the government being sidelined in favor of focus on infrastructure. Those at the front wave flags of truce, and the old empire's flags are replaced with ones of the junta. Any offensives still going on are ceased.

1. The existing roads between the cities are in dire need of repair, and bandits have roamed the countryside raiding trade along the desolate broken roads. Soldiers redeployed from the front are sent to handle them while civilian workers fix the roads in their wake.

2. The Tanks are a fantastic Idea from the Empire, but they need still more work. Perhaps some insulation in the interior is needed in case things still devolve into all out warfare?.
>Kazval Siege
The Kazval army wanted to annhilate the traitorous Vog and his band there and there for much deserved justice and retribution but the Alliance members would protest at the missed opportunity. Rather than trying and inexorably failing at keeping themselves from starting the fight they've all came for First Army Command decides to defer all related decisions and responsibilities to Commander God-King Alloheim of the Burned Men, which was willing to take them up their offer. The Battle of Kazval never happened as such... Somewhat to the pacifists' dismay.

>Diplomacy: The Iron Junta
"Greetings. I am Kauran Dokori of the Polity. Yes, an actual diplomat. Shall we make peace, then? We won't ask for more than the original Haze frontiers back, and ten turns of peace treaty. We will start our relations anew, and only view you with a modicum of suspicion relative to your artillery levelled at our ally's cities and your massive fortress threatening their port town. I would add an offer of trade to this, as is volter tradition, but sadly we are on War Voltage and now is not the time."

The envoy had an imperious bearing that manifested within the nation's diplomats ever since War Voltage made his people assertive and itching to fight. Gone were the old days of humbly smiling volter diplomats bowing low to the ground, but at this rate they might soon be back. He swiftly pulls a paper from his pocket and reads it wit a dispationnate expression.

"Grand Arbiter Kazira, the speaker of our ruling council, -our 'leader', yes- personally asks for you to agree to an initiative of cultural exchange so that we may understand each other better, and perhaps avoid regrettable situations like this one in the future. In his words 'one skirmish is too much, young men that will not come home'. As a member of the Dokori diplomatic clan I cannot emphasize how much I agree."

>Meanwhile in Grand Command on Thunder Peak...

Command, at this point, is just crying.

>Diplomacy: Tarn

The Tarn are informed that Sonaria has just acquired more then enough Tarnish labor for their current needs; no more is currently being sought.

>Diplomacy: Tarnish Workers

The Tarnish workers who arrive in the western waters are met by Ahtram Cewayn. They are welcomed to Sonaria, and told that although the Tarnish government has sold their contracts of indenture to Sonaria, Sonaria expects to additionally provide a fair wage for work accomplished. Half will be provided as-earned upon a monthly basis to allow them to trade fairly in local markets; the other will be kept in trust for the indenture period. Upon completion of the indenture period, the Tarn may choose to return to the Conclaves with the full sum owed them; or they might choose to accept the remainder as gifts of land or seabed in the shallow waters on which to build their lives.


>Diplomacy: Iron Junta

The Sonarii are skeptical of the Iron Strangers, but are willing to listen. If this new Iron Government truly has taken over the reigns in Steelhold and is honest in their withdrawal from Firestorm Pact territories to the pre-war borders, then Sonaria sees no further need for any action to be taken against the Iron State and will support the resumption of normal relations.
>Liquid Fire and Earth
1. Upon peninsula south of the volcano (one tile east of the desert tile) a fringe city is established named Obey. Mainly composed of peasants escaping over populated cities for fresh fields, as well as scholarly men and their guard seeking to unravel the secrets of the flaming mountain.

>Shadow and Flame
2. The might of the flame lance and shadow shells can not be understated, yet with the blizzards surrounding Balora, Sonarii bomber squads struggle to fly. An idea occurs to one of Alloheim's advisors and schematics are drafted at once. The Blaze-Ray, is essentially an oversized fire lance, with an aerodynamic shadow shell nose/warhead. When lit, it flies with immense speed and fury, and it's lone Sonarii pilot directs it towards its target with wind-bending, before disembarking and returning. As it is now, only the Rookery's can handle the hardware required to launch a Blaze-Ray, and only one has recieved the field outfitting.

As the battle outside Balora begins in earnest, the navy begins it's shock and awe bombing/blaze-ray/shelling campaign, seeking to soften the Giant targets within and turn fortifications to rubble. The infantry are turning to a siege in earnest, making camps, blockading shipments of supplies from getting into the city, and trapping the defenders inside. Calvary troops are to take up seek and destroy tactics, protecting the rear of the sieging infantry and being a sweeping force on the lookout for Giant escapes or relief military forces. The Golem Corps lend support to the sieging infantry.

>Iron Men
If the men of metal no longer seek to trample upon the freedom of Haze, then Alloheim is content, troops currently stationed will remain to maintain peace and aid in reconstruction efforts.


As the Burned Man assault on Balora continues the Sonarii keep up their mobile support, with airships and deployed sky-cart mounted canon helping further envelop the siege into the air-calmed combat zone, whilst Tizta forces provide artillery and force-bending support for the main lines on the ground. And all around, Sonarii scouts and combat warriors weave and dart; seeking to pounce upon any angle of battle the giants might mistakenly give themselves cause to think themselves safe from.
*Message from the Plagasm, all of the most sincere apologies are had for its late delivery*
We are proud to inform you that the war which once threatened us has come to a sort of a close, now our priorities have changed and once again we are open to negotiations. Although we have taken back our offer when it comes to your payment in soldiers, we would instead like to be materially compensated for any major purchases of official regiments, thats not to say that you will be unable to obtain some hired unofficial mercenaries as we have lifted much of the restrictions stopping major waves of hiring on your part but that is instead to say that we have no use for your regiments at the moment.
Patiently awaiting your offer, most sincerely, the Plagasm
Upon the hill where the pot once stood now lies a great abyss cut like swiss cheese with holes of which can only be described as a "false mirror" as inside of these pockets lie images into things which have yet never did happen. In one there is the King Struck down by the leader of the former republic while the bodies of major figures of the rebellion can be seen strewn about the scene in a state of near death and of being dead. In another can be seen one of the members of the expedition who had fallen ill on the way to the site, in the hole he is looking into the abyss alongside the others and can be seen reacting and looking upon those on the other side, within yet another can be seen the shadow creatures, happily cooking away with the remnants of the expedition team. Many other strange, mundane and terrifying scenes can also be seen through the wall.

From its depth a great warm like thing with a bulbous head creeps up. It emerges slowly, stretching out its ringed form until it is just about 2 and a half metres (7.5 feet) in the air, at the end of its round, fairly featureless head lies a pair of fish like lips. These lips then open, revealing a large eyeball to be the source of the size of the worm's head. The creature twists around, scanning the Tumarians, casting a wave of intense fear and awe among all who its gaze meets.

Along the same line as the lips opened the eyeball as well splits in two, revealing a maw filled with teeth not all that dissimilar to that of the minotaurs. With this mouth it speaks in a fluent Tumarian dialect, there is authority in its voice.
>Greetings, I see you have stumbled upon one of my portals. My name is of no use to your kind and I have a proposition you, or more specifically some of you, if you choose to take that path. I have access to an uncountable number of items and to you I can give three of nearly anything which I can fit through this portal, it could be a book on forgotten myths or a long lost artifact, no living creatures please that sadly or thankfully I... cannot grant. But I will only give these items to you if I can get three concepts; three fears. What do I mean by fear? Well I mean some sort of creature, whatever keeps you up at night, what you fear which goes bump during those times in which you try to sleep but cannot for your anxiety and fear keeps you awake. Again I have preferences, please give me creatures as a concept does not make for a great antagonist. I don't have long so make it quick. Also please give me what you believe to be your race's greatest vice, that fault in your psychology which you like the least, that is how I got the idea to ask of you your fears for that was the vice of the last group of creatures I visited.
The Tarns are confused. What kind of pansy war ends after it begins? Still, the proposal itself is alright. The Tarns offer commensurate value in meats and salt for each earthbender.
War Voltage weighs on the nation. Our Grand Arbiter, usually so spry, appears like old age caught up with him. Even he cannot hold back some bouts of anger and irritation, despite this being his duty. Thunna lost half of his awakened time with all energies directed to the workers and soldiers, but despite his divine lethargy he snaps awake after a particularly bad nightmare. The voluntary and unvoluntary suffering of his children plays tricks on his already fragmented mind; in it, he imagined that his ancient senses as cosmic smiter of evil were offended by the hint of a foul stench, a dark temptation proposed by the shadows to unsuspecting mortals. When he opened his eyes, his right hand was resting on his decrepit hammer. 'No, such a time is behind me', he hoped. The thought to restore his divine weapon briefly flickered in his mind before being dismissed; his children and their other mortal friends needed the fruits of wealth and toil for much more pressing and real purposes than an old god's paranoia. His gaze turned to the Grand Arbiter, passed out asleep in front of him, a bottle of potato liquor between his hands. He had no shame to rely on his mortal friend's counsel, and perhaps he'll know to make him feel better. He slowly tugged the bottle free to guzzle the contents and started catching up with the news. Just to ease his mind that nothing big broke in the world today.
>Action 1: Thunderstorm Manipulation
Weather control is one of the big warfare tactics in the world these days. In peacetime it's used to terraform the land to great effect and keeps the bender's skill sharp for wartime where it's used to terraform your enemies directly into being dead and buried. Whether it's under water like the Tarn do or strong winds like the Sonarians. Yet despite both sides using the term 'storm', we find the definition... 'Misguided', obviously. Neither of those know what a real storm is like, a thunderstorm, the most clement of weather; beautiful blue and grey skies, the atmosphere bristling with awakening energy, and the melodious song of Thunder. It is truly a shame to corrupt such a beautiful and divine thing for war... Only a Grand Priest, and therefore Kazira, can summon the mighty Thunderstorm on his own, but our Thunder Priests are not on their own; they draw upon the symbiotic power feed with our Sonarian allies to create the mightiest, truest storms the world will ever see. Specially dedicated priests now named Storm Priests channel their divine energies to augment the Sonarian squalls into weather conditions that empower any Lightning, Air, Dark or Spirit creatures and machines, while weakening Metal and Earth ones. Those are the perfect conditions for storm engines to function and the weather itself is dangerous to our enemies as lightning bolts randomly strike the enmies, with perhaps a tiny propensity for also hitting anything that's a bit too tall. The mighty Thunderstorm is indeed not to be used lightly as it is dangerous and destructive, but thanksfully we can control just how much energy we give it. Strategically, it's expected that, as an empowered elemental manipulation, it can beat iceman blizzard in the war for weather.
>Action 2: Doofships, Doofwagons, Sonarian Sound Systems
We can't understate how central have Thunder Priests become to our war tactics. Being catered to by a disproportionally huge amount of our support abilities in men, costly high-tech equipment and home benefits, they can themselves be counted as jacked-up support units that single-handedly drive allied war fervor and morale, intimidate the enemy and smite with lightning powers; and now, they summon thunderstorms with a magic song. Of course we've decided to make them even more powerful. Nowadays, Thunnapriests channel the power of their god through his instrument of power, the sacred electric guitar; but although nothing in the world may crack louder than their voice, it takes a huge amount of zeal to truly bring the sound to bear across the wastes. Sound, in itself, is made of wind, and therefore the domain of Szélfelet. The direct translation of electric waves into audition without his blessing is extremely inefficient, and so we have worked on engine-like airbending machines that amplify sound, especially when plugged with our mighty guitars. These cumbersome sound systems would then be mounted on specially designed small airships and wagons and directly linked up to the storm engine. These 'doofships' and 'doofwagons' would have one or more Thunder Priests, and be packed with powermancers and air monks. They become mobile, overpowered pulpits from which our priests crack unleash the fury of heaven in a never-seen before concentration of power. It is rumoured that Thunder Priests up there become so empowered, so exalted that they could play all day long and must be forced to rest by their commanders for they will not do it on their own and simply collapse in exhaustion. Pretty believable, as they already inspire such comportment in our own troops.
>War Action: Wrath of the Thundergod
"We can give it to the icemen: they know how to make an entrance. Though that's a bit easy when you're a longleg bastard barging in unexpected with your giant iceberg, and only civilians are there to receive you. Today we put the fear of our god into their whole race; we'll make an entrance worthy of the thundergod in retribution." So said Commander Turva.

A lone airship makes constant turns around the city for a whole day. The voice of a thunderpriest cracks the sky, warning the innocent citizens of Balora to evacuate and the warriors to surrender. We will not shoot at them. They have one day, for tommorrow we will assault their city.


The next day, the bolter army prepares to assault. This has gone on long enough, and it's time for us to be taken seriously. They cannot ignore us. They cannot choose not to hear, they cannot say 'Goodnight' and cut communications. On the horizon, an unnatural thunderstorm gathers, roiling clouds and cracking lightning creep. An armada of stormships comes out of the grey skies, and distantly, the defenders hear the furious musical frenzy of electric guitars and the shouting of holy verses of war. Getting closer. Under a hailstorm of allied artillery the bolters move to force their way inside the city; soldiers with murder on their mind itch to right the wrong and punish the despoilers of Kazval. The Golden Dawn boats transport them towards the harbour, where stormtroopers will charge out under the deafening sound of heavy metal and flashbangs like a great sonic armaggeddon. The same priest as yesterday is with them, and through the cacophony of the volter way of war, his voice still prevails it all as he directly addresses the defenders to demoralize them.


All throughout the battle, he keeps shouting. Telling them to surrender, telling them to run away, mocking them for thinking their size made them truly 'above' us. But also explaining, our anger and our wrath. Our... Hurt. What led to this. That inside we hated what it made us become. We just wanted them to feel our grief, so they could understand the pain they inflict, and perhaps, stop. We wished there was another way to do this. It was a strange heart-to-heart. In a way... It was liberating, for the priest and the whole army.
>>The Yokai Lords

>1: Support the Mino King with the Syndicate
With news from the Minotaur King of internal strife and political rivalries tying his hands, Giib decides to make use of the recently overlooked Syndicate and secret police force he had set up. The Syndicate is offered to the Minotaur King, to set up a spy ring inside his and neighboring domains, and begin a spy network that reports to him. Between their own stealth training and spirits, and the abundance of shadow steel (or whatever the umbra-gourd-coal-iron was called), the Oni agents should have no problem enacting their duties. Mainly focused on keeping tabs on whomever the King desires, figuring out allegiances among his court, keeping tabs on which Minotaur chiefs are paying their tithes and who is evading tax collection more than normal, and blackmailing when needed. Giib hopes this will solidify the Minotaur King's reign and perhaps even make it a bit more efficient.

>2: Develop anti-infantry payloads
One of the Tarn's biggest advantages is their sheer numbers, inflated even more so with these new mercenaries. The report from the Mino King makes Giib even more so concerned about new soldiers soon gracing the Tarnish Shores. As such, something must be done to counter mass-infantry tactics. Though their artillery are not as mechanically advanced as the Totu, nor as plentiful as bending-based Tarnish waterbolts, it does have two major advantages. Vastly superior range (expanded even further with Totu, Sonarii, or Spirits-of-Guidance helping) and the capability to fire higher-weight payloads with the right adjustments to firing angles and calcs. This should allow the Oni, if given the right positioning, the ability to lob projectiles right into throngs of Tarnish troops, or into Tarnish camps directly.

To accomplish these anti-infantry goals, the Oni explore two possible routes. The first is more traditional, using projectiles that shatter or break into many pieces of shrapnel that launch everywhere. Even if blocked with walls of water, the shell will still shatter; and should it be aimed *next* to the Tarns rather than on their defenses directly, their lack of actual infantry-armor should let the weapon truly shine.
The second is a bit more of a questionable decision by some Oni. With their jungles being thoroughly archived by the agricultural academy, as well as the Rangers from the north finding new species among the fungal forests, the Oni have been documenting these flora and fauna and determining if any could have use as a biological weapon. While fears on unchecked spread are keeping them from large scale use, a few long-range-balistics aiming for Tarnish camps and living quarters are armed with some test cases. Even should these fail, some rotten and diseased cow meat should also work.
>>The Yokai Lords
Anti-infantry payloads will also be utilized on the Thunderbird airships as well.

>War Action: Establish a bulkhead on the pass, then force them come to us. Focus on troop retention.
Aerial scouts report even more troops are flooding to the defense of Koza, causing Giib to reconsider his plans of a full offensive on Tarnish holdings. While the Tarns' "Third Ring" has slowed Giib's latest onslaught, it has provided a new opportunity for him. Rather than push all the way to Koza like the Tarns likely expect, Giib instead orders his troops to firmly retake the pass up to and a little over the continental divide. This should be an easier task from the Oni's highland side than the Tarn's coastal side. Once the initial rush is over, the Oni advance will slow greatly for their next stratagem.

Once the Tarn have been pushed back down the Pass, the Oni can then make full use of the original Oni fortifications as well as these fancy new Tarnish fortifications and siege platforms. From these fortifications, the Oni will begin to conduct siege bombardments and aerial raids on Tarnish forces. With the range advantage allowing the Oni to assault the Tarns from beyond their reach, the Tarns will be forced to either withdraw or take the fight to the oni. In either case, with the Oni's superior intel from aerial scouting making almost all troop movement known to them, use of Oni skill at defending fortifications, and height advantage, Giib plans to stack as many factors in his favor for retaining troops. Rather than direct headwind and seizing of land, he is willing to pick apart the larger tarnish forces from relative impunity.

>Where Mercs and Other Forces Are
One airship shall continue to harass the further in-field Tarnish supply lines, preventing them from getting too comfortable back there, while the other two airships shall assist directly with retaking the pass. Along with bombing runs, they shall drop troops into forward positions to catch the Tarn off guard and speed-up the taking of choice fortifications. With a few Minotaur guides hired from the king, utilizing their dark-sensing techniques and better navigation at night, (combined with Sonarii's natural echolocation) the airships should be able to drop these troops under the cover of darkness to avoid Tarnish detection and water-bolt fire. Oni bowmen on the deck will also keep the LZ relatively clear by shooting any offending forces while the troops disembark should they not be as stealthy as hoped.
Totu are to assist the bombardment process with their new cannons, knowledge of artillery, and spyglasses as a complement to the long-range oni ballistics. As well as help with the air-landing blitz.
The Sonarii support army will continue to ferry supplies, scout, and keep the storm support at bay as much as possible.
What few Entombed still on-board are largely going to be kept for infrastructural and fortification repair once the Oni have solid control over a region.
>>The Yokai Lords
>Diplo: Plagasm
The Oni check back with the Entombed and their stance on mercenaries now that the War-that-ended-before-it-began is over.

Oni rangers become a slightly more common sight in the Mycete groves, and some start attempting to directly communicate with the fungal inhabitants, offering them a new place to grow if they'd just follow them.

Tonglo and Bathys enjoy their /tg/-time with board games, discuss the virtues and failings of Tarnish Ideals and political system, and how Bathys should be the one in charge or start his own Tarnish state.

>Bolt Polity
Mun has a hearty conversation with the Volter Diplomat, forgives the diplomat headbutting an Oni for some simple bantz, and starts writing up plans for a proper brewing industry.
Giib meets with a totally-just-a-janitor-volter, and they discuss international political affairs.
Report of the Battle of South Isgwill Rail
The volters bombarded a rail station in between haze and isgwill and sent in a spearhead force made up of stormtroopers and many blood thirsty battalions who did not think they needed the help of the burned men to take out the anti air weaponry the metal men had installed (which had managed to damage one of the bombers enough that it was forced to return to base prematurely), they got jumped by iron men tanks and infantry from the dense overgrown fields around them and had a tough fight and thus were forced to retreat. After that the volters sent in a larger force alongside burned men who ended up fighting fairly on par with the tanks and iron infantry until the iron empires own version of calvary (a kind of bike which runs on bending wind up, like a wind up toy you have to constantly recharge it) was deployed which competed with the Burned men calvary using thrown spears, lances (lancing was found to be fairly ineffective due to bending) and offensive metal bending until the burned men are able to get a better footing and repel them, forcing an Iron Retreat mostly due to how the fields holding the hidden troops were being burned down. The fire started was later quelled by sonarii support troops.
Action 1: Baby Boom
The sudden expansion of agriculture and temporary release from the stresses of warfare caused a massive societal shift. Almost overnight, a huge chunk of Tarnish society went from on the brink of starvation to surpluses of food, happy news from the war front, and a great deal of open land and sea to recolonize. The result, is, well, predictable. Now, the new generation of Tarns are reaching maturity and flooding the workplace. Most end up as farmers, but many also head for academic and training paths.
Action 2: Academies expand
War Action: Set the Trap
The Tarns let the Oni advance up the pass before triggering avalanches behind them and laying in with cannon fire from the surrounding walls.
>Diplomacy: Wrete
We want to pick through the ruins for some lost knowledge. Surely, our good friend the King of Wrete will allow us to pay him a fair share?
Action 1: Baby Boom
The sudden expansion of agriculture and temporary release from the stresses of warfare caused a massive societal shift. Almost overnight, a huge chunk of Tarnish society went from on the brink of starvation to surpluses of food, happy news from the war front, and a great deal of open land and sea to recolonize. The result was, well, predictable, and a large new generation has been growing up ever since. Now, this new generation is reaching maturity and flooding the workplace. Most end up as farmers, but many also head for more advanced academic and training paths. For the first time since the great divide, the Tarnish Empire is really, truly back.
Except for those pesky Southerners.
And the pirates in the north.
And the army in the east.
And the… you know what? The particulars don’t really matter. Point is, things are getting better in a big way.

Action 2: Expand the academies
As the new Tarns filter through the higher education system, they stimulate a number of changes at the academies dotted along the coast of the Tarnish empire. The first changes are fairly straightforward—more students means more housing, more teachers, and larger grounds. The secondary changes are far more interesting however. As the sheer number of students grows, the focus of classes shifts more and more to practical and self-driven learning. The result is a wave of new innovation that courses through the empire. The first of these to make its way to practical use is a simple one. It consists of a hollowed and smoothed out tree trunk, much like those used to oxygenate the water in Tarnish cities, propped up in the midst of an aquabolter team. The result is a rudimentary barrel that the Tarns can use to direct bolts higher, further, and with even more accuracy, allowing teams to finally begin landing hits on the previously untouchable airships and skycarts.

War Action: Set the Trap
The Tarns continue to leverage the Oni arrogance to their demise. The first step is a withdrawal of forces from the contested provinces of Tonglo’s pass, up into to the largely spared surrounding walls of the ring fort. The Oni, seeing their enemy “retreating” from the object of their assault, will naturally press the advantage, rushing into Tonglo’s Pass. Then, the trap is sprung. Leveraging their advantages in sheer volume of fire, the Tarns and Tumarians will fire everything they’ve got down the steep walls of the pass and on top of the charging Onis. Meanwhile, the Sonarii sky-carts will be temporarily grounded pending the installation of Totu repeating cannons. Once that’s finished, they’ll take to the air, playing interference between the airships and forcing them to stay close to their support teams. Even if the airships can’t be taken down, they can at least be limited to flying in contested or Oni-controlled zones.
>Diplo: Plagasm
If the Plagasm mercs arrive, they’ll be immediately set to work triggering avalanches and rockslides on top of Oni forces.

>Diplo: Common Minos
Tarnish diplomats visit their targets just across the border, delivering a tailored version of the following message to each recipient.
“The Oni’s attention is fully devoted to the pass. Now would be the perfect time to seize land and glory for your people. But something else of pressing importance has appeared. We have intercepted messages from the Oni indicating they are sending assassins to kill you and your people at the request of your king. The messages say that the king is quaking in his boots and begging at the feet of a foreign power to come save him. Do what you wish, but remember. The traitor must be purged before the enemy.
Your friends at Tarnia.”

Versions of the same are dispersed through the gossip mills of the Mino nation. The stories vary, but the gist is the same. The Mino King is weak. He is prostrating the nation to the Oni. He is a traitor to his people.

>Diplo: Mycete
Nothing seems to be happening in the forest, despite the clearly unique pylons indicating the presence of civilization. The diplomatic troupe decides to attempt one more try at communication before taking some samples and heading home.
I should clarify: these two turns are the same, I just didn’t think I would get to finish writing the original before the turn passed.
>Diplomacy: All
"The government of Tarnia is an entity of inbred incompetence, whose existence solely serves to sustain and perpetuate itself, like a lowly tardigrade [...] Its very existence is criminal..."

In a global communiqué the Bolt Polity has finally denounced the government of Tarnia to the international stage, warning the world that they are not to be trusted. They cite a variety of reasons which motivates them to view the Northern Tarnish government as illegitimate but also dangerous to global peace and safety as well as to their own people: the Tarnian refusal to condemn ritual of mass destruction, and worse, the claim that they'd rather annhilate their own people with it and threaten the world at large to win a war. The Tarnian refusal to take a peace deal which would have prevented the worst famine in existence solely for a matter of governmental pride. But what was the last straw for the Polity was word that the Tarnian government sold its own citizens into indentured servitude to foreign powers for its own benefit like they were some sort of property, a concept abhorrent to the freedom-fanatics of the volter nation. Slights and insults such as the arrogant Tarnian diplomats routinely delivered to them, they say, they can eventually forgive; such grossly irresponsible and self-serving actions they cannot, and in the eyes of the Polity the ruling council of Northern Tarnia is a criminal organization of crooks, a rogue state. By comparison, even the warmongering Oni were found to be more tolerable. The Polity's statements are its own on this occasion, and do not represent any of its allies.

"...We have reasons to believe that, beyond their own abhorrent practices and failings, the oligarchs of the Tarnian council are mentally unstable and threaten the very safety of the world's pylons, in an insane bid to destroy all with them and their people should they not get their way. Indeed, in our most recent private communications they have implied that our refusal to trust support them would, we quote, 'spell the doom of this continent', and that we 'might have to watch the world die all over again'. All diplomatic records of this will be officially and publicly available to all who ask us, and you will also be able to see for yourselves that we had offered to Tarnia, several times, support in their struggle if they were only to pledge against RMDs, as we were considerate of their reasons, now exposable in their hypocrisy [...] Our attempts to help were only met with paranoid accusations of foul intent and unpolite dismissal... We therefore have no choice but to make this official declaration, and recommend good leaders of the world, whether or not they are fond of us, not to trust the Northern Tarnish government, and warn that we shall adapt out policies and stances accordingly..."
The dispatch comes with a trade embargo against Northern Tarnia for those few traders that do operate this far there, and an official ban on any volters working with them, most notably morally forbidding volters, whether citizens or expatriates, to power machines and airships for their benefit.

"Do not delude yourselves with the thought that we will let you take the world hostage. Terrorists... We meet with decisive action."
>Action 1: Deflection
While others may wield the power of more deadly elements, none produce greater direction than the Totu's force bending. By channeling a burst of power shortly before the Totu would be struck by an elemental blast, the Totu seek to reflect blasts or stop them in their tracks.

>The Undercity
Resources are dedicated to the development of a city below Nacre, allowing for Totu more comfortable with their traditional underground lifestyles to return to the earth, though in a much more planned and detailed fashion. The new under city possesses columns to support its weight, and much wider tunnels to support the opening and closing of doors. Each home is provided with beds, and some even possess several separated rooms, much like the houses above. Several entrances to the undercity are constructed, with all but one entrance being only large enough for a Totu to enter. This larger entrance is contained within the barracks.
>Emergent New Totu Sub-Classes
Within the new brood of her majesty there seems to be a trend among the many offspring she has sired alongside the children which her offspring themselves have had as well. That trend seems to be a greater level of specialization among the commoner class of Totu, while specialization has of course never been an unusual thing as the Queen, her princesses and her brood itself are all examples of such things the idea of a major, categorical level of physiological and morphological difference between the members of the common totu is something which was not very expected to ever need to be taken very seriously.

Within this new brood, more specifically within the commoner class of totu at least 4 different fairly specialized breeds have developed, all descending from the new Queen, more specifically those having been born after her highness's ascension to the throne who are her direct descendants. These breeds have been dubbed the "factorial", "agricultural", "warrior" and "generalist" breeds. From here I will be cataloging the morphological, psychological and physiological differences which the totu under each breed exhibit.

The Unchanged Totu - The Generalists
A small majority of the Totus seem to have remained mostly unaltered from their previous forms, although it does seem that they might have become a little smarter. Though they are still hardly close to the intelligence of the Queen and her princesses at the moment, as is to be expected.

The Strange Ones - The Factorials
A fair portion of the minority who seem to fit within a new breed are deemed as factorials, they are known for their high level of dexterity and ability to cope with repeated tasks extremely well, they are slow to anger and some do not even anger at all, they are known for their big eyes and often gangly appearance. Their ability to quickly preform the archaic study of math has found some of them being used as "calculators", which means that they are given mathematical equations and then spit out the results at very quick speeds, this has put the strain off of many of the princesses whose studies do not mean they need to have a full grasp of how mathematics works.
The Tuned Ones - The Agriculturists
Yet another fair portion of the large minority of Totu who can be categorized, the Agriculturists can be told apart from others by their unusually well kept sand coverings, stoutness, chubby cheeks, excellent spatial awareness and acute hearing. Alongside their tendency to wear clothes which are made in a personal style by their own hands or under their personal supervision or instruction. These totu seem to be best put into positions where they are hard at work with plants as their expanded cheeks and larger stomach allows them to easily carry great amounts of water to and fro, this combined with their mildly altered and more robust musculature makes them excellent water carriers and manual laborers.

The Disciplined Ones - The Warriors
The most distinct while also by far the most rare of all the breeds, the warriors make up for their rarity through their individual power. They can be told apart from the others by their relatively huge size (their quadrupedal stance puts them at a height only slightly lower than that of a totu placed upright as the other races do) and extremely well developed jaws, alongside their great bulk of course. Among their other notable physical features is their thicker skulls and proportionally smaller tails. Their greatest mental feature which sets them apart is their lack of speech, for they cannot produce words as all other totu can, instead they can only utter series of grunts and can also use basic ways of conveying information through pointing and looking. That is not to say that they cannot understand speech as they have a tendency to follow the orders of whatever highest totu is currently around to a t, as long as these orders are not contradicting previous orders which have not been revoked by a higher up of course.
This is me
The new hive is built upon a sparse few islands, upon the largest of the two major islands is built the new city, but the sparsity of how much land they have Ceuta has only managed to grow so much, it is still very much a land of opportunity but unless it can expand its growth will be slowed considerably until something is changed.

While metalworking has yet to become as good as the Iron Men when it comes to Hingashi forges the continental industry has expanded considerably, this combined with the initial relatively huge shipment of metal which the Iron Men gave salamancero has allowed the Hingashi to gain some industry very quickly. New mines are also beginning to pop up across the mountain range in order to exploit the previously unusable supplies of metal deep within the hills and mountains.

News of a change in the war has reached Cueta, one of the newsbringers claims that the Iron Guide is dead and that the war will soon be over after some rebels have been squashed. Another, more secretive newsbringer reveals himself, in private to be an envoy of "The Guide's Alliance" who is asking for the help of the hingashi in taking back the empire from the rebel armies, in return the Hingashi shall be given a fair portion of the conquered land. He warns to keep this a secret for now until the Hingashi can muster a force large enough to invade by land.

Even while peace may soon be at hand, as seen through the little change in leadership that the Iron Empire has had many Metal men decide to stay permanently in this new town. Through their labor cheaper metal goods are created for the empire which are especially useful during these hard times when trade cannot be easily had.

From the minds of those sent for development a new idea is had, inspired by the dust tornados of his home one of the lowly craftsmen comes up with a basic technique of creating powerful tornados, now the idea of tornados as weapons had been tried before but had always lacked funding and ideal casting terrain. But now that the sonarii's enemies lie upon flatlands this idea could be of use. Using the collaboration of all of the great minds available a device is designed to facilitate the creation of weaponized tornados. This device, nicknamed the storm caster is a very bulky machine with an appearance like a half sphere placed upon a half sphere, the metal costs are indeed fairly great and due to its sturdy needs of construction it has to be made using metal men bending.

Using it a team of sonarii - half made up of facilitators and half made up of controllers - can create a fairly powerful tornado which can be thrown at the enemy, with the potential to flip over their tanks and scatter if not kill their soldiers. Its offensive capabilities are questionable but indeed its potential for defense is great.
Both Road and Rail are repaired under the watch of Iron soldiers.

Several exotic and local materials are tried for insulation, several fail but one of the local fabrics is able to succeed. Though a less flammable alternative may be needed soon.

( >>3941964 >>3937822 )
- The Current Situation as it stands -
Through the use of the reserve legion and a careful initial cover up the heartland proper has been secured, although the regions of the Tundra (the far western portion of the empire) and Ironhill, both having gained their wealth under the leadership of the guide and thus having loyalty to him have allied with one of the major northern armies, more specifically the one major army which did not collaborate in the guide's death. This remnant alliance, nicknamed the Guide's Alliance is attempting to recuperate and restore the position of guide alongside possibly taking the rest of the first iron empire and perhaps even beyond. It is most worrysome that these lands which the rebels now control were also known to both make up the bulk of the empire's landed industry and thus if not properly checked they may very well be capable of sowing great destruction.

Though the fiery volcano still lies within the pylons it can still be seen distantly from ships at sea, the sight of it inspires many poems all of whom are either epic, romantic or beatific, or sometimes a combination of the three.

Through a collaboration with sonarii forces the great blizzard is broken, whether or not it may reappear is not yet known.

With the naval invasion of Balora comes the reentering of their great ice ship into the war, with this nigh invincible ship now prowling along the waters outside of balora become contested. Balora is now under heavy siege and has the new thunderstorm support given by the joint sonarii-volter effort.

The remaining troops in haze end up fighting against the loyalist forces still present around and in haze.
With the temporary dissipation of the blizzard the added thunderstorm helps to keep the ice men on low ground where recasting their version of a storm is frankly impossible.

The morale of the volters increases dramatically while among these loud speakers, keeping activity to a maximum while the conditions are still brutally cold and the enemies monstrously terrifying. The same may not be said of all of the allies, as to them the sounds of worship and rally sound much less appealing, thats not to say that this noise is hurting their morale just that it might be making *some* of them a little more eager to end this conflict swiftly.

The incredibly loud speakers prove a little bit to much for some sonarii, but with a few good layers of earmuffs they can get back to working fairly comfortably. The Icemen seem to be fighting now with much less ferocity than before, many believe most of them to have already fled north. This siege should go by in no time.

Wrete does not control those ruins sadly, but they are willing to pitch in if the chief of that region would budge as he refuses to allow anybody else to even try to buy the ruins right now as his oni deal is still pending.

The realm of the minotaur king grows more secure, with this added security the King makes more risky political and military moves. He says that very soon he will have a great army ready to go and aid the Oni in their conquest. Just a little longer, then he will put his own pieces into position.

The arrow shattering weapon seems to work well enough and the military advisers are all in agreement that the bio-weapons should be put on hold indefinitely or at least unless the Oni start to suffer major military defeats, the Oni came to conquer the phosphate lands, not to conquer fungal bogs.

While going through the pass the Oni suffer heavy casualties due to a large tarnish defense. Thankfully after a while of fighting and taking advantage of oni air superiority the army manages to break through and force the tarn into a retreat. Currently the army is fighting remaining tarnish troops a ways past the pass.

>plagasm - response (the mycete response will come next thread if the player doesnt show)
The plagasm is fully open to the buying of mercenaries from them, to an extent. Once the iron war is properly over the oni can buy as much as they can pay for.
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While the current trend of a new growth based economy may seem unsustainable the great level of economic power produced has allowed for major pushes into chaotic waters, perhaps soon the war on the homefront may end.

New ideas meld with foreign knickknacks which are leading to new and interesting technologies adapted for use by the tarnish. Along with brand new, although almost exclusively mundane technologies and ideas being produced at home.

The Oni take fairly huge casualties in the fighting, and although they managed to break through and secure more territory for themselves the long term benefits of a better k/d ratio means that the war is looking fairly bright for the tarn. At least at the moment.

Word spreads from the south of their own modernizations, perhaps these southerners have more foresight than originally thought...

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