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Refilling the Coffers

For forty years, the battles of the Three Kingdoms raged on. At last, in 263 CE, your father led the troops of the Wei emperor Yuandi to victory over the kingdom of Shu. Only the kingdom of Wu in southern China now stands between you and a reunited China.
However, Emperor Yuandi was too weak to finish the job. It requires a strong leader like yourself, Sima Yuan. You have therefore "inherited" the leadership of Wei ("usurp" is such an ugly word). Your first job is to rebuild the Imperial treasury, which has been shattered by the years of warfare. Only 5000 cash remain. Our capital city of Luoyang can produce fine silk, and with the help of imported lacquer from our vassal at Chengdu, lacquerware as well. Use these luxurious goods to help refill the coffers of the Wei treasury.
Once we have a healthy economy, we can turn south and begin the final conquest of Wu. Save plenty of space in your city, Sima Yuan, we want to have room to enlarge it when we return from the south.

City - Luoyang
Starts Feb 265 CE
5000 starting cash at Hard

Requirements:
  • Population of 2000
  • Splendid Temple must be built
  • 1000 people in Ornate Apartment or better
  • Treasury of 20000

Ornate Apartments hold 63 people and require
  • Ancestral Shrine
  • Herbalist
  • Acupuncturist
  • Appetizing Food
  • Hemp
  • Ceramics
  • Music
  • Acrobat

A nice sized map with the immigrants coming in from the north. A quick survey shows you can grow 4 different crops, hemp and silk. Iron ore smelting is available, and you can make ceramics and lacquerware. Shouldn’t be too awful. Well, there is one limiting factor. No one in Luoyang owns an axe or knows how to chop down trees. All the wood has to be imported from your new best friend, Chengdu.

This was my first attempt at playing on Hard. It wasn’t bad at all if you are thinking of moving up from Normal. The only difference I noticed on this map was that I had Unrest for the first time, ever. I placed a Watchtower in the housing block and that was the last I heard of that. This map had open trade routes with Chengdu, Guangzhou and Kashgar. You can open a route with Xiongnu and sell Silk if you want to. Jiankang didn’t have anything I wanted, so I didn’t bother with them.

And to add to the challenge, I wanted to try for Feng Shui Perfect Harmony. So instead of placing the housing up top near the entrance to fill up fast, I found a nice place in the southwestern part of the old walled city. Big thanks to Cherub Homegrown for his housing block with the Administration City in the middle. It has become my new favorite block as it is a very stable and holds a lot of people. I did have to knock down a bit of the old wall to fit it in, but that can be fixed when the money starts rolling in.

Well, that will be a while. The $5000 cash goes very fast. Expect to be in debt for at least a year or more. Watch the treasury closely – if your negative is more than $2000, you can’t build anything and that could be a real problem.

You can see Homegrown’s housing block along the river. I used a Common Market since you cant evolve the houses past Ornate Apartments. I didn’t use all the spaces for houses as I wanted to leave some population growth for when I came back. That is the Daoist Temple at the end of the block.

Along the original road from the riverside gate you can find good Feng Shui for the Trading Posts. I used Grand Ways alongside the Mill and the Trading Posts because it looks neat.

What is rather hard to find is warehouse spaces. They will show green along the dirt/rock areas if you remove the trees. The industrial area (lacquerware, carved jade and ceramics) is fit close by the Trading Posts for convenience.

You can see Homegrown's housing block along the river. I used a Common Market since you cant evolve the houses past Ornate Apartments. I didn’t use all the spaces for houses as I wanted to leave some population growth for when I came back. That is the Daoist Temple at the end of the block.

Along the original road from the riverside gate you can find good Feng Shui for the Trading Posts. I used Grand Ways alongside the Mill and the Trading Posts because it looks neat.

What is rather hard to find is warehouse spaces. They will show green along the dirt/rock areas if you remove the trees. The industrial area (lacquerware, carved jade and ceramics) is fit close by the Trading Posts for convenience.

The Splendid Temple is across the little creek. If you take out a few bamboo trees you can find room for two labor camps that are Perfect Feng Shui.

The mulberries with their weavers and the farms are across the river. I have started placing one 4-tile road to two hemp farms or two silkworm sheds, making a closer overlap. I couldn’t say if it is more efficient or not, there always seems to be plenty. There are salamanders lurking in the ore deposits. I saw some hiding in the mulberries and heard those anguished death cries now and then. Place a Watchtower on the road and it will maybe protect the cart guys with the finished product.

OK, now I mentioned being in debt. What I did was place 2 non-working farms (wheat and millet in one, cabbage and soybeans in the other) right after the houses were laid out. Partially irrigated them, and placed 2 non-working silkworm sheds with the mulberry trees. And got the Hemp started early. You can turn them on as you have workers. I also placed the trading post to Guangzhou right away and started buying Rice to feed the folks while the crops were growing.

Place a couple of weavers as soon as some raw silk is available. And then the trading post to Chengdu set to buy 8-12 wood, 4 lacquer and sell Silk. Start small with the lacquerware makers, but you will need something to produce income. As soon as I could, I placed the Monument (wood gets delivered there even if you don’t have Carpenters).

You can sell lacquerware to Guangzhou and a bit of wheat. Sell your first tiny amount of Silk to Chengdu and some millet. Every little bit helps, and you still wont get out of debt right away. But you should be making a little money by the end of the second year. Then you can sell Silk and more lacquerware to Kashgar. Import a couple of units of salt/spices so you can sell more of your own food.

Go slowly with expanding the Silk/lacquerware industry and one clay pit and a Kiln or two to start stocking up on Ceramics. After you give the houses Music, you should have enough workers and money to start importing Jade and selling the Carvings. Place the Admin City, make paper so you can tax your folks and don’t forget to place the Mint! There are deposits hidden in the bamboo on the elevated area above the Monument site. About that time you can set some laborers to work on the monument. If you can manage to get Xi Wang Mu to the city early, she will cut the costs of the labor camps and speed up the work.

Now, keep working on the Monument, it needs wood pretty regular and so does the lacquer industry. Chengdu is your only source of wood, so when they ask for things (and they ask often) you need to respond quickly. As soon as they acknowledge what a good master you are, ask for more wood or lacquer. Once I had reloaded a save because my Inspector went south in the industrial area (I was getting fancy with an Imperial Way too close to the Inspector and he went out the side and I didn’t notice) and in going back to the autosave, I accidentally asked Chengdu for wood twice. The sent it both times and that was very helpful.

Chengdu is kinda temperamental and has been known to rebel and stop trading altogether. This would not be good. Another way to deal with Chengdu is to offer to ally with them. An ally is less likely to get all huffy and rebel. Do anything to ensure a steady supply of wood.

You will need to keep a close eye on the wood and maybe even stockpile it now and then to make sure when you release it, the monument gets what it needs. Or, you can just take your time and make lots of money while you wait for the Monument to finish.

Xiongnu buys Silk (and requests it, too) so if you can get them to trade with you, all the better for the treasury. Jiangkang only buys Bean Curd, so I didn’t think it was worth it. You can make and sell Weapons but that is going to take more wood away from the lacquerware and monument for the Smelters, so I skipped that part. I built no forts and no one attacked me playing at Normal or Hard.

If you place the Daoist buildings in your block, you can call Xi Wang Mu to the city. She speeds up Monument construction and can bless Jade Carvers by filling them up with raw materials. It is worth it.

  • Finished Dec 272
  • Population 2079 all in Ornate Apartments
  • $67,004
  • Perfect Harmony