When I came to the ‘thoughts and prayers’ and ‘safe and sound’ ambitions, which respectively involve maxing out the knowledge & culture and security & well-being aspects, I decided to start two new kingdoms, before returning to Arcadia for the final four ambitions. I could just have stayed put, but I was interested to see what it would be play in a couple of kingdoms with very unbalanced aspects; plus, I wanted to get the ‘brains over brawn’ (build knowledge at the expense of security) and ‘watcher who?’ (build security at the expense of culture) achievements.
Unfortunately, I found beginning all over again in a starter version of the same basic kingdom even more frustrating than I’d expected. I ended up getting bored and playing through the quests on top speed, and not really finding much I wanted to capture and share. I thought about not even bothering to mention any of this at all, but I ultimately decided I should at least show you the sims I made and mention some of the features of kingdoms with very high or very low aspect scores.
So, here are my monarch, Peteran priest, wizard, and blacksmith. The Queen was Juliana, but I can’t even remember what I called the others. I made them all drunkards, because I was going for the ‘gluttons and guzzlers’ achievement. I did eventually fill the other hero positions with five gluttons and one more drunkard, but these are the only four I played.
I did have fun decorating the throne room. The walls are kind of bare because I ran out of funds, but it was a good enough start.
I also enjoyed experimenting with the different alcohol recipes to fulfill all my drunkards’ needs. I love anything that involves cooking or crafting, so I should try to keep brewing a greater variety of wines and ales back in Arcadia.
The honey mead seemed to give the best moodlet, but I always had my wizard brew the bloody moss ale, thanks to the large supply of bloodmoss she could pick up while collecting other herbs.
Without any competition from the Jacobans, I was quickly able to maximize the Peteran church’s popularity, something I’d always struggled to get anywhere near achieving in Arcadia. Once it rose past about the midway point, the humourous tone for sermons stopped being well-received by the congregation, and I had to have my priest study the watcher at his archives each morning to unlock the more successful ‘inspiring’ tone.
After a few quests, I’d got both knoweldge and culture to ‘very high’, which is meant to give new moodlets and social options, although I didn’t notice any. My sims were at least able to donate money to charity at the messenger posts for a small focus boost, an option usually only available to ‘good’ sims.
Once I’d completely maxed out culture, the ‘chosen by the watcher’ self-interaction also became available. This option can be used once a day and gives a five-hour ‘The Chosen One’ +25 moodlet, so it’s pretty useful for keeping focus high. It can be performed by any hero, but here’s a picture of my priest being ‘chosen’.
Because of the low well-being level, everyone got sick quite frequently.
They were also constantly being robbed my bandits.
Even a powerful witch my priest was on a quest to neutralize got her coin purse stolen by one!
The only way I could find for a sim to make it from side of the kingdom to other without being attacked multiple times was to befriend as many of the bandits as possible.
As soon as I’d completed the ambition, I moved on to another new kingdom to max out security and well-being for ‘safe and sound’. I decided to go for the ‘it was a big whale’ achievement at the same time, which requires you to have ten heroes in a kingdom with whale-eaten parents. To create a bit more interest for myself, I manufactured the backstory that constant whale attacks had led this kingdom (which I called ‘Whale Town’) to focus all their resources on healthcare and defense.
But it didn’t work; I got bored really fast. I’m sorry, guys! If the kingdom didn’t look exactly the same it might be interesting to start over, but it’s just that purgatorial loop I spoke about in the first post. Anyway, here are some sims I made – the only four I played or put any effort into creating – my monarch, Jacoban priest, spy, and physician.
There’s not really much to report about my time with them. The low knowledge and culture scores Whale Town soon developed gave the bad moodlets ‘befuddled’ and ‘feeling unrefined’ a lot of the time, which made sense.
Also, because I let culture fall so low, sims could tell blasphemous stories to one another. Even the priest could do this!
I didn’t notice any more new socials related to the kingdom aspects, but I did learn a little more about the ‘whale ate my parents’ trait. In Arcadia, I’d been sending Brother Martin out whale hunting every day to allay his ‘whale rage’, but it turns out that just talking to other sims about whales can achieve the same thing. This is much quicker, and gives a +15 ‘whale rage satiated’ moodlet, making this a great trait for sociable sims to keep their focus up. The interaction doesn’t give the even better moodlets (or constant supply of whale meat!) that are awarded after successful hunts, but you can obviously still go whale hunting; it’s just nice not to have to do it every single day. Here’s Whale Town’s monarch telling his sad story about his parents’ demise.
I unlocked some lovely outfits and objects.
I got out of Whale Town as soon as I could, and headed back to Arcadia, with three ambitions left to complete: Efficient Expander, Filled Coffers, Legend (Wait for It) Dary, and Best in Show. Picking up some more legendary traits for my heroes seemed like a good way to set myself up for the others, so I went with Legend (Wait for It) Dary. As is usual with ambitions, only new instances of whatever is being tallied (in this case, sims with legendary traits) count; but, since I prefer to play with the ShowAllQuests cheat turned on, I knew it would only take me five quests to finish.
The first I chose was ‘The Dragon of Arcadia’ – one I hadn’t yet completed via either of the two available approaches, ‘slay’ and ‘befriend’. I settled on the more violent route, selecting Vana and Laena as my dragon-slaying heroes. It’s a good idea to take your monarch on any legendary quests that show up for them, because they won’t be eligible for ‘The Fountain of Legend’.
Although I had chosen Laena, I actually spent most of the quest playing her daughter Bethany, whom I decided it was time for me to age up and have take over the blacksmith profession. She loves her family and is excitable and a compulsive gambler.
Here she is enjoying some delicious venison with her little sister.
Laena seems to have retained some of her blacksmith’s responsibilities. The ‘purchase crafts’ interaction is still available on her, and I often see her handing out packages to the sims who visit the shop. But I don’t mind: it makes the smithy feel more like a proper family business.
Unlike some of the other rare equipment, the Angelshammer her mother crafted doesn’t have a level requirement, so Bethany could get to high quality work right away.
It was really nice to be back in my old kingdom, seeing two generations of hero sims. I love how strongly their personalities come across from the interactions they choose when I’m not controlling them. Leowyn has the wise trait, so is always sharing advise with anyone who will listen.
Her daughter Alysande loves to joke around.
I noticed Halfred and Dorothy hugging again.
Over at the palace with Vana, I realized I’d become much better at handling proclamations. If I hurry, I can usually make enough amendments to get whatever one I want passed, which helps prevent territories from slipping into rebellion.
Bethany crafted Vana a special sword, only available on this quest, with which to fight the dragon.
Her first encounter with it didn’t go quite to plan.
But once Bethany added a fireproof shield, the Queen was able defeat her fiery adversary and earn her legendary trait.
I chose industrious, one I haven’t tried before. I’m not really interested in the extra income it provides, but it also allows heroes to give some of their money to others, and I like that idea.
The interaction gives a nice relationship boost with the recipient, and provides a +15 ‘charitable’ moodlet.
Next, I took Bethany out again, for the ‘Seven Mechnical Arts’ quest. Like her mother when she did this one, she had to perform various tasks before crafting different badges to celebrate her success.
Her apprentice got in the way a lot. I wish I’d never done the quest to hire this guy. I wonder if a new one will spawn if I throw him in the pit.
Where Laena had chosen to craft a special hammer (one that’s since been superseded by the Angelshammer), Bethany chose the ‘Seal of the Seven Mechanical Arts’, which earned her a legendary trait. I chose ‘natural leader’, another new one for me.
In that last picture, you might have noticed a long number where Bethany’s religion should have been. This the same problem I had with Vana, and it seemed to stop them both from being self-clickable. I was able to fix it with with Bethany by using Grim’s mod to force her religion to change. After that, all the self-interactions started working again as normal. I’ll have to try the same thing with Vana.
The natural leader trait is quite nice. It gives a flat +10 focus boost to any other heroes with whom Bethany is questing, and also unlocks a social interaction that gives either a +10 or +30 (it appears to be random which one you get) ”encouraged’ moodlet to both sims. Also, I feel it fits in well with Bethany’s bubbly, family-orientated personality.
I aged up a couple more children, Susannah’s son Elric, and Calyn’s son Turhen. Elric is dedicated, good, and morose. Turhen is dedicated, vain, and a misanthrope; I guess he’ll be writing a lot of satires.
I shifted things around downstairs in the tavern a bit to try to create more space. This room is a nightmare to do anything with.
With my new layout, I couldn’t fit a fireplace anywhere, so I used MOO to put a spit outside.
I gave Susannah a fancy new dress I’d unlocked. It looks like it would breach all kinds of sumptuary laws, but since she made all of those trades with foreign territories I figured she’d earned it.
The marketplace is always full of sims having a good time.
Susannah seems to be a bit confused about her role. Even though she’s retired, she still looks after the market stalls whenever Elric opens them, and she deals with the sale when he asks a customer to buy. It could actually be a good thing to divide the work up like this, but because she’s no longer an active sim, we lose out on any gold or XP that he could have made. It’s not game-breaking, though: I’m much more interested in exchanging items overseas, and I don’t usually even bother with the stalls unless I have to for a daily responsibility.