‘Turncoats’, one of the two quests that next came up, offers you a chance to gain either pirate or guild allegiance, by convincing Aarbyvillians or Tredonians to cross over to the enemy side. The primary hero in this quest can be a priest, knight, or physician. Since my last physician married a pirate, I decided take the pro-Aarbyville approach using their son, Alysande’s successor Theodred. Here he is in CAS. His traits are jokester, earthy, and seductive.
As I’ve been meaning to do for several parts now, I redecorated the physician’s clinic.
This time out, Theodred’s adventuring companion was my bard Turhen, whom I had decided not to replace with the next generation just yet because I felt like I hadn’t played him much. Since we last saw him, Turhen went on the fountain of legend quest to rid himself of his pesky misanthropic tendencies. Now he’s dedicated and patient, though still a bit vain.
The quest began with a competition between two pirates to see who could convert more guild members to their cause. One decided to hire Theodred to help them out; the other approached Turhen.
It seemed that my bard was going to have quite a head start, because Theodred had somehow got himself locked in the stocks.
Turhen began work on his plan to convince a lovelorn guildsman to betray his friends by filling his head with tales of a beautiful pirate who couldn’t wait to meet him.
He wrote a romantic poem to inspire the Tredonian to risk everything to win this imaginary woman’s love.
Turhen’s next mark, a keen musician, was won over by promises of a position in a pirate marching band.
Meanwhile, Theodred was still locked in the stocks, tanking his and Turhen’s joint performance meter with all the bad moodlets he was accumulating. After he’d been there for two days straight, I realized I had a bug. In an attempt to remedy the situation, I temporarily made Orlando controllable, hoping that, as ruler of the kingdom, he’d be able to release him. Unfortunately, the guard was standing in the way.
The problem seemed to have been caused by the guard becoming stuck, something that very occasionally happens to NPCs in this game. I’m fairly sure there’s meant to be an option in Grim’s core mod to reset stuck sims – in fact, I’ve used it before – but I couldn’t find it this time; and the guard was so badly glitched that I couldn’t kill him, even with cheats. I ended up just using the mod to remove him completely from the game, and after that Orlando was able to release the poor physician. I hope I haven’t broken anything.
After some food and a good night’s rest, Theodred got to work trying to catch up with the competition.
His methods were no more honest than Turhen’s, and actually seemed much worse because of the duty he’s meant to feel to all his patients, including this adulterous Tredonian general.
His plan involved sedating her until she became groggy enough to confess to her many affairs in front of her wealthy husband, who cut her out of his life and bank account, leaving her with no way to finance her lavish lifestyle except by a turn to piracy. I guess there really is no ‘good’ way to complete some of these quests.
Oh, and here’s what her husband had to say: ‘All this time you’ve been out shagging any body that will have you like a chinchilla in mating season! […] I’ll see that your true reputation spreads throughout the kingdom faster than your unfaithful legs! You dirty, low born hag!’… Um, okay game.
After all this, Theodred was able to coerce one more guild member into the life of a pirate, but Turhen had made such good use of the time his rival had spent trapped in the stocks that the physician and his pirate sponsor had no hope of winning.
The quest ended with the war gauge moving further still towards an alliance with Aarbyville, and some wrap-up texts celebrating how the lives of ‘[f]our hard-working, high-class citizens [had been] totally and completely ruined’.
My next selection was ‘Subprime Slaves’, in which a group of pirates get into a legal tangle with a sneaky guild member, and you can either free them with a Peteran priest to earn Aarbyvillian approval or take advantage of them with a Jacoban priest if you favour Tredony. I chose my Peteran Abbot Johannes, with my merchant Fontina in a supporting role.
Johannes began his day by tearing down a Jacoban proclamation, before returning home to evangelize.
Fontina, meanwhile, noticed a group of pirates hanging around her market stall in sumptuous clothing with a large amount of money to spend. As the quest progressed, it emerged that what the pirates had thought charitable donations from a certain Guildsman Isiah were in fact loans that, if left unpaid, would force them into slavery. The loan documents were full of obfuscating legal jargon, and all the pirates turned out to be illiterate anyway, but Johannes was able to decipher the papers and warn his new friends of the danger they were in.
Johannes turned to Emperor Orlando for help dealing with the unscrupulous loan shark, but the monarch was not eager to help because of his weakness for the bon bons that Guildsman Isiah had been importing to Arcadia. But, when he explained the situation to Fotina, she was able to make a serving of royal custard so delicious that the Emperor soon forget about his favourite treats, and agreed to exile Guildsman Isiah, freeing the pirates of their bonds.
Among the quests available after this one, I noticed a couple to end the war. I wasn’t ready to accept those just yet of course, but it was useful to know that there were specific quests for doing so, and that it wasn’t going to be something I might end up accidentally stumbling into.
There didn’t seem to be any other quests that would directly further the main story, so I just went for one called ‘Very Bazaar’ with my new Knight, Fyana’s son Wyllas. Because his father is an ambassador, and his mother and grandmother are both Arcadian aristocracy, I decided to give him the new ‘entitled’ trait. He also has ‘loves family’ and ‘Herculean’.
I redecorated the barracks to reflect Wyllas’ refined tastes. This new wallpaper is quite interesting. It’s a pain to CASt because there’s only one channel, but I think the colours are pretty.
Here’s Wyllas’ bedroom, furnished with some of the objects from the Tredonian buy mode category.
I also bought him a falcon, which, along with the usual scraps of meat and fish, starting bringing him some dead falcons. I think that a wizard or spy can do something with these.
When the quests’ titular bazaar arrived in town, Emperor Orlando decided to appoint a Deputy of the Festival to help keep factional tensions from compromising the fair’s spirit of cultural exchange. Knight-Captain Wyllas proved himself up to the task by defeating Royal Guard Regulus in a sparring bout.
His new role mostly involved settling minor disputes between pirates and guild members. The first was between a pirate looking to buy a gift for his sweetheart, and a Tredonian merchant’s guard who had knocked her mistress’ goods from his hands, telling him they weren’t meant for dogs (or ‘diseased slatterns’…what is with the dialogue in this pack?). When the enraged pirate had countered with a punch to the guard’s face, a fight had broken out between them.
Because of his entitled trait, I had Wyllas arrest the pirate, although I felt the guard was at least as much to blame.
Another task involved hunting down a hungry little boy who had stolen from an Aarbyvillian sailor. Wyllas found him hiding in the graveyard, but chose not to hand him over to the pirates.
Throughout the quest, Wyllas consistently sided with guild members over pirates, and at its completion, I noticed the war gauge had shifted back into more neutral territory. But it didn’t stay there for long, because next up was ‘A Pirate’s Life For Me’, a quest that allows you to turn one of your sims into a pirate. I thought about using Ishmael, but since his dread pirate legendary trait already gives him the benefits of being a pirate, I went with my knavish physician instead.
His grandmother Leowyn has been learning to play the fiddle.
The quest opened with a familiar face, Shady Amalthea, approaching Surgeon Theodred to let him know that the pirates had taken an interest in his activities. It’s fun to see some base game NPCs involved in these new quests.
I like what they’ve done with the town square. Maybe I should try to make my merchant’s plot of land look more like this.
Theodred rolled one of the new daily responsibilities, crafting and delivering some curative rum tonics to a pirate, who I didn’t seem to be looking forward to drinking it.
His duty to the kingdom complete for the day, he next went to the beach to meet Pirate Recruiters Kelsey, Logan, and Alexander. To be accepted by them, he first had out-insult Alexander and beat Logan in a drinking contest.
Theodred returned home to share a meal with his mother and think about how to prepare himself for the challenges to come.
He decided to get some tips from the court jester, who gave him a book of ancient insults to read.
Equipped with tried and tested jibes, he felt ready to take on Logan. Most of the insults they traded were classics like ‘if I were your wife I’d poison your food’, leading into ‘if I were your husband, I’d eat it’. Some were just puerile: ‘you remind me of the Pit Beast; just a lot more smelly.’
But the one that finally broke Alexander was, ‘it looks like your face caught fire and someone tried to put it out with a pitch fork.’ He started to cry and admitted defeat. He also immediately took a swig of rum, which is just one of the pirate idles, but the timing made me laugh.
Next was the drinking contest.
His first attempt was just too much for Theodred, and he ended up unconscious.
So, of course, he decided to cheat, spiking his rival’s drink with a sleeping draft purchased from the village.
That’s right, Theodred, pretend to be shocked.
Early the next morning, he returned to the beach to report his success to Kelsey, who asked him to pass a final test by finding a way to give Aarbyville an advantage in the war.
Theodred concocting a scheme to once more abuse his position by suppling the Tredonians with tainted medical supplies. This guy has perfectly decent traits but I guess my game’s just decided he’s kind of evil. First he had to make some curative tonics…
…and then defiled them with a mixture of bird muck from the messenger post and his own urine, which he apparently found hilarious. So gross.
Kelsey was very impressed, and declared Theodred an official member of the pirates.
Now he can go on pirate raids like Ishmael, perform secret handshakes with other pirates, wear Aarbyvillian clothing, and change his official title from Surgeon to Pirate. I’ll try to show some of that off next time we take him out!