pre-TNESVII - Signup Thread


Le Pétit Prince
Jun 2, 2005
In the desert
What child has not dreamed of being a god? And what man has not wondered himself a worm?

I cannot give you Truth, but you might find it yourself.

The upcoming TNES VII - Consider the Laurel, is a simulator of war and politics in a vast empire and its neighbors, in a universe somewhat analogous to our own in antiquity.

It is a co-moderated project between myself and Terrance, which we have been painstakingly developing for your enjoyment over the past 6-8 months. This thread is for the purpose of officially recording signup details, and providing us with some introductory information. We have recorded, informally, the start locations of our signups so far, but we will take a post here as a final confirmation of participation in the NES.

Our current signups are located approximately here (map not to scale):

Expressed interest, but no starting location chosen yet: Shadowbound, Immaculate, Christos

Most of the remaining space for signups is in the Eastern Empire, but we could potentially accommodate one more player in the West as well. We will likely not take more than 2-3 additional players for this first round, assuming all the signups are still here.

Some helpful information to learn as we finish developing the final map, which is much, much more detailed than this preview:

Ruleset - (semi-final, subject to some minor changes)

Region Guide - Western Empire

Region Guide - Eastern Empire

Please provide the following for your signup:
  1. Candidate or Leader Name - In Valian, nomen and praenomen at minimum. If you have non-Valian origins, you may have a different name in a different culture’s language, but official diplomacy will refer to you by your Valian name. In the course of the campaign you may also gain (or promote) an honorific you become popularly known by.
  2. Candidate type. Choose from the following options:
    1. Imperial - (Governor)
    2. Imperial - (Legionary)
    3. Imperial - (Delegate)
    4. Foreigner (already selected by ork/TMG)
    5. Barbarian (already selected by Angst/Lord Argon)
  3. Location on the map (if not already specified)
  4. Primary color (your troops and provinces supporting you for imperium will be this color on the map)
  5. A description of your banner design. This will mark armies and cities loyal to your coalition. (If you want to draw your own, it will be a 17 x 25 pixel rectangle with any colors you wish. If not drawing, please select an image that can fit this limitation.)
  6. As many words about your background as you would like to provide, preferably a few sentences. (This may influence comitatus bonuses.)
  7. If you are officially nominating another player for Emperor at game start, you may indicate here. (The only current extant team is the two foreigner players. Teams may form and break after the game start as well.)


Q: Do I need to participate in the CFC thread? You post a lot of updates on Discord, do I need to participate there as well?

A: This NES will be run in parallel on CFC and a Discord server for diplomacy and battles, which are resolved between turns. Orders can be sent via CFC or Discord as well. Participating in both is recommended, but we will have workarounds for players who do not wish to use one or the other.

Q: So battles happen between turns - do I need to command those myself? What if I just want to send orders?

A: If you do not wish to resolve the battles on Discord, we can ‘auto-resolve’ them by commanding your army as an NPC within guidelines set in your orders. Battles are fairly simple to complete in the system we designed, and there is no penalty for not participating.

Q: I’m interested in this game, but I’m not sure if I can play right now. Are there options for me to join later?

A: Definitely. This may wait until the first crisis ends, or a player might choose to set you up as a junior commander of theirs. There will be many crises, and between crises different players may join, rejoin, and drop out as they prefer, or restart as heirs or followers of their old character.

Q: How does your co-modding with Terrance work?

A: It is a huge map, (just wait until you see it) so we divide responsibilities in updating, running battles, NPC diplomacy, etc. A message sent to one of us might be responded to by the other. Try to cc us both on communications like diplomacy, orders, or questions (either via CFC PM or Discord group) so we have the same information and can make joint decisions.
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Sep 25, 2009
  1. Candidate or Leader Name - Titus Valerius Ahenobarbus
  2. Candidate type. Imperial - (Governor)
  3. Location on the map: Pre-specified
  4. Primary color: Azure
  5. A description of your banner design. The Chalice of Life over a Crescent Moon on an azure field
    Valerii Banner.png


Titus Valerius Ahenobarbus is the paterfamilias of an ancient patrician gens, the Valerii, who was appointed some time ago by Emperor Carian to administer the vitally important imperial province of Taria from its seat of Lutecia, the Empires western capital. He was distinguished in his youth in battle against the Ashrai and later for his oratory as a senator. After he ascended the cursus honorum, Titus Valerius quickly became known for his influence amongst the Saian patriciate as well as for his historical religious appointment as a pontifex at an unusually youthful age. Some amongst the senatorial class murmured upon his subsequent appointment as governor that his "exile" to Taria was a consequence of his rivals convincing the emperor to eliminate a potential political threat by isolating him from the capital's affairs (such contentions between Emperor and the largely toothless factions of the senate being commonplace). The governor himself speaks nothing of these rumours even as his youthful renown has faded somewhat in Tarian obscurity. Some in his own provincial court murmur that if the emperor had not sent him away and made use of his wisdom in the Great Hatephite Rebellion and the resultant Ashraic Invasion the outcome would have been different. Alas, there is now no emperor and the governors prowess in battlefield command has not been tested since his youthful forays in the east (it is to be hoped his prowess is as sharp as ever).

At any rate, during his tenure as governor, Titus Valerius' priorities have been in promoting development and public order, seeing the prosperity and stability of the province as serving the Empires good given the recent depredations of the east and south by the Ashrai and the proven vulnerability of Hateph to rebellion. To this end the governor has historically sought to foster good interprovincial relations with Interaltia, Taria Esronensis, Aureia and Vincentia knowing that Taria's stability is the bedrock for Valian control over the northwest of the Empire. In the aftermath of the demise of the imperial dynasty and the looming succession crisis, his main priority however has been the selection of a competent Emperor (although he himself has kept his own views on who should sit the throne to himself thus far, waiting to see what pieces the gods shall put on the playing board), knowing that the longer the throne lies empty the greater likelihood that the Empire itself will collapse. In that moment, the governor fears, the barbarians and rebels will feast.

As for gens Valeria itself. Its origin story tells that before the arising of the Valian League the founder of the gens, Lucius Valerius Sanctus was a King of Saia (kings being elected in those most ancient of days) who had concourse with the goddess Pallater and the great sky god Caelus who conveyed to him over the course of seven days and seven nights the sacred rites and laws of the Valian religion, and instructed him to write them down in a book that would come to be known as the "Saian Oracles", a law which forms the ancient foundation for all Valian rites to this day. A later scion of the house was Marcus Valerius Taricus who served as general to Emperor Zoticus in the pacification of the Tariae and who later became the founder and first governor of Valerium (establishing a historical and fruitful connection between Taria and the Valerii). On the other hand, whilst some academic skeptics amongst the jaded Saian elite dispute the historicity of the Lucius Valerius' theophany these days, this story and the historic life of Marcus Valerius Taricus serve as foundations for the commonly noted influence of the Valerii in the fields of the military and religion. Indeed the current paterfamilias is a noted patron and devotee of the mystery cult of the great goddess (a Tarian cult who holds that the valian goddess' Titis, Pallater, Euphrete and Zoe [under both their Tarian and Valian names] are all aspects of a single "Great Mother") as well as the official public religion and the state rites to the Dii Superi, Dii Involuti and the genii of the deified emperors. His youthful career in the military speaks for itself with respect to Valerii military contributions to The Empire.
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Wandering the World
Aug 21, 2006
Ft. Lauderdale
Candidate or Leader Name - Albus Cencutrius Fabani (Albus Ken Cutrius)
  1. Imperial - (Legionary)
Color - Navy
Standard - A tree, bent and bowed, yellow on a navy field. Purple flowers adorn its limbs.

Five generations ago the Fabanii met the assembled legions of the Empire on the field of battle. It was a glorious war, full of honor on all sides, heroes of which songs are still sung. Finally, recognizing that both the armies were evenly matched, and that the strength of both would lay wasted on the foggy fields of the north, the Fabanii King Cutrius (who was but the first amongst kings) met the Valian Emperor Prosperus Giganticus in single combat. For three days, the two fought, bolstered by their faith and righteousnes, until, finally, the Giant Prosperus was victorious. As Cutrius’s lifeblood watered the northern fields, his son, Connar Ken Cutrius knelt to the emperor, swearing eternal friendship to the Valian Emperor. Recognizing the friendship, the Emperor bid Canarius rise, and gave the hundred kings and their brave soldiers a gift in honor of their loyalty - the Islands of the Fabanii, which he charged them to pacify, for in those days, they were a den of foreign raiders and pirates.

Albus himself had a long and prosperous career in the honor guard of the Emperor, Serving with distinction in Saia itself, as is the custom for the Fabanii, who are well known as the most Fearsome and Honorable of warriors in the Empire, before returning home at his father’s death. The resulting moot confirmed the recommendation of the Emperor, recognizing Albus’ ascension to the office of Praefectus, as well as honoring his title as Manus Imperatoris. Albus’s eldest son, Cannarius, serves now as Captain in the Imperial Guard, holding the Imperial City against those who would take advantage of the void in power to act perfidiously. Albus is a devoted follower of the Imperial Cult of Carian.

Albus honors the title of the Emperor, in memory of his late friend, and vows to serve only one who is worthy - but should one who is worthy emerge, the full might of the Hundred Kings will be felt again.
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Kyzarc Fotjage

Rise Up
Apr 16, 2009
Western Washington
Candidate or Leader Name: Praeses Paraves Anchiornis, though Paraves is only officially in charge and most important decisions are made after family argument.
Candidate type: Imperial - (Governor)
Location on the map: As noted on map
Primary color: Forest Green
Spoiler A description of your banner design :

Simplest form of the symbol. More elaborate forms include feathering and stylized wings.

The Anchiornis family was awarded the title of Praeses over Aetheria a decade after the initial conquest, when the first governor to hold the position, a deeply unpleasant man who viewed the position as one of exile from true civilization and tried to squeeze as much money from the locals as he could so he could afford to import Valian comforts, managed to anger the locals into three separate minor rebellions in a row. The matriarch of the Anchiornis family, a brash woman who had, in her youth, gotten the Emperor's favor, saw an opportunity to cement her house's future and pressed on him to hand the governorship to her eldest son. Rumors abounded that this was because he was secretly the Emperor's bastard and this was a convenient way to appease him, naturally these were firmly denied by all parties. The entire family, over three dozen strong, moved to the island en-masse and made an earnest effort to assimilate with the locals, with several of the unmarried scions of the house marrying the children of Aetheri chiefs and the family itself contructing their new estate in the Aetheri style of timber and thatch rather than Valian tile and stone. Fast forward a hundred years and the family has firmly rooted itself in the province, with many of the more important clans having at least some Anchiorni blood in their lineage. In provincial politics the family often acts more as moderators than a traditional governor, with family members coordinating discussions and guiding the clans they've married into towards results at least somewhat agreeable to all parties. As a result unrest is relatively light, with the chief threat to their authority coming from outside, either Nemetian raiders or, worse yet, Valian politics. Already a relatively minor house, their effective abandonment of Valia proper and willingness to assimilate amongst the provincials has several times now led to ambitious nobles in Valia demanding the emperor grant them the province as a reward for their service that they might properly Valianize it. Thusfar they've only gotten their way once, in the early days of the late Emperor Carian's reign, and the precipitous drop in tax revenue and near rebellion in the province led him to reverse the decision within two years of having made it.
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Feb 10, 2019
  1. Adennakar "Starchild"
  2. Candidate type: Barbarian
  3. Already specified
  4. Brown
  5. A five pointed star
  6. Adennakar was born to a mixed tribe of nomads from the east and barbarians of the west. His father was a great warrior, but even he could not best the might of the Imperial Legions. Seeing the greatest warriors of the tribe easily defeated gave him a new goal. He wanted to have the power they had. He wanted the strength to rule, live in massive stone palaces, and eat endless feasts. When he reached adulthood he gathered a warband to enter the empire and learn all of their secrets and become just as strong as the Imperials. He plans to use the disruption of the civil war to loot battlefields and unprotected towns, raise his own legions, and get paid lots of money to fight imperials and steal their tactics.
  7. Nobody has paid me too.


Sep 25, 2009
I have discussed Valian relgion with Terrance and Thlayli and they have given approval for the below draft document to be put forth here for comment from the playerbase. Please note this does not deal with regional religions (Titanomuric religion, Hatephite religion, Aspesianism etc).

Valian Relgion


Rambling and inconsistent
Mar 3, 2007
A Silver Mt. Zion
Just saw this up! Haven't been following NES discord much. I'll get the post up soon.


Rambling and inconsistent
Mar 3, 2007
A Silver Mt. Zion
Signup entry to be edited.
  1. Candidate or Leader Name -
    1. Valian: First name Scaius, last name Rota. I'm bad at Latin, so may change this a bit in a near future edit (wanted to reserve colors). Scaius is valianization of his Taglarikan first name, Rota is Latin for wheel, literally, and is sometimes used somewhat mockingly about him. He uses it himself. It's integrated in his character background in a future edit.
    2. Taglarikan: First name Skagar, last name Woder. I'm more acquainted with pseudoversions of Old Norse than Old Germanic, so this will probably get an edit after a talk with Iggy.
  2. Candidate type. Choose from the following options:
    1. Barbarian (already selected by me)
  3. Location on the map (same)
  4. Primary color - Orange
  5. Banner: A black serpent with heads at both ends, with two red tongues protuding from each head, on an orange field. They make almost a full circle. I made a quick design inspired by Nordic art:

  6. Background: Future edit incoming.
  7. Emperor nomination: None yet.
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Dec 4, 2008
Ontario, Canada
Name: Abbisdiun, v. Bastian - Grand Magus of Ashrai, Priest-General of the High Sun, Lord of Haron and Sind, Judge of the Valians, etc, etc.

Type: Foreigner

Location: the strait is crossed, Ashrai returns

Colour: Crimson

Banner: The Heavenly Standard of Ashrai, a golden sun surmounting the horns of a bull on a field of crimson, edged in gold


Background: The foreigner Bastian's origins are shrouded in mystery, and little is known of his earliest days save that in a far land he rose amongst the ranks of the Magi for his devotion to their God Ahtan, who is the sun. In battle Bastian won many victories against the men of Sind, and so in turn earned the love of the men of Haron.

Bastian enters the Valian record suddenly, and in Ashrai's hour of greatest need: the Emperor's son Carantius had boldly pursued the invader Hestus (a. Huzasht) back across the strait of Myrmisis and into the heart of Ashrai, pinning him in Sataraphon - their Heavenly Capital of Capitals. Woe was upon that land, and many were burned and slaughtered amidst civil strife and invasion. Unbeknownst to both, the Magi of Ashrai had marshaled all the armies of the east, and they marched to save their realm from the depredations of the Apostate and decadent Valia alike.

With charm and guile and the aid of shadowed allies, wily Bastian and the army of the Haronians entered Sataraphon through a secret way beneath the walls and the encircling siege. They came upon the Apostate suddenly in the dead of night, and many of his men threw down their arms and begged the mercy of the Magi - some among them were spared, for their God had need of them still. Hestus' Immortal Guard fought bravely where they gathered, but they were too few, and the Apostate was thrown down beneath the light of the moon.

As dawn broke Carantius and his legions looked out upon the city and wondered at the plumes of smoke - but the walls were manned much the same, and no sign was seen that might betray the Priest-General's plan. It was then strange horns were heard, and the low chanting of barbarous tongues. A glittering thunder rounded the edge of the Holy Mount Khibar, plumes of dust rolling behind. The Cataphracts of Ashrai had come, and many more besides. With characteristic efficiency and discipline Carantius rallied his legions into line, yet even they began to hesitate and murmur when they saw what approached them from beneath the rising sun.

As the golden tide of cavalry split into wings, behind them came all the gathered panoply of Ashrai: archers on camelback who began to pelt the maniples from beyond reach, laughing and riding away. Then came the last of the fish-scale imitation legions of the west, whose like had wrought much destruction in Hateph. They guarded the flanks of a great phalanx of far-eastern Titanians marching to the beat of steady drums, forsakers of their legacy and long servants of the Magi. As the Ashraic line formed opposite the brave Valians it opened and spat forth a wave of terrible beasts: trumpeting elephants afroth at the mouth, and armoured rhinoceroses eager to feast on flesh - at the heels of the cataphracts and camelry ran packs of dusty yipping wolves, leaping and tearing on command at the Valian equites and their mounts. The Valians were shaken, but they held as they were assailed, for Carantius rode back and forth like a beacon, and the legions rallied to his call, pelting the elephants and rhinoceroses with darts and driving them off.

But just as the Ashraic phalanx ground up against the Valian legions in a tumult of steel and blood, more horns were heard from behind. The gates and ports of Sataraphon burst open, and out from the city a golden and terrible figure led a host of men like trolls - their thick and ashy hides proof against arrows, and their bellowing war grunts rousing terror in the heart: they stood nine feet tall and bore gruesome man-splitting axes. Behind them came the Moon's devotees, garbed in blackened armor and eerily silent, and yea even the last of the Apostate's men found faith and courage renewed and joined the charge of their countrymen.

Yet still the Valians resisted, fighting stoically on two fronts against all the gathered horrors of the East - for they were led by brave Carantius, and the men would not fail their beloved champion. This Bastian knew, and so he sent his most skilled and wicked archers to set an ambush for the Emperor's son. They dipped their bolts in cruel poison and waited from behind a well-placed rock for Carantius to ride past. Their volley nearly missed, save one bolt that grazed his arm. Seeing blood upon their Lord the Valians began to despair, and Carantius reeled and cried out in pain from the evil poison. His men gathered him up as he slumped from his horse, and with that the equites broke at last before the cataphracts, and then the legions too began to waver and flee. Many Valians escaped that slaughter, for even in defeat they are hardy and enduring.

The Grand Magus captured a pair of eagles for Ashrai on the fated Day of Two Battles, adding them to three still unrecovered. This humiliation rankles the dignitaries of Saia to this day. Many say that a Prophecy from his God drives fell Bastian, and he has done much in the intervening months to put Ashrai to order beneath the rule of the Magi. Rumours abound that he will soon cross the strait and revenge his nation upon the Valians.

Nominee: Bring me the child with the golden eyes and you will be rewarded beyond your wildest imaginings.


By a Wine-Dark Sea

The sun sets in the west, and a long shadow is cast before you, reaching towards a distant and darkened sea. You gulp nervously as you approach the crossroads atop your donkey. Fields of tall wheat ripple in the wind at the roadside; the air smells of sea salt and flowers.

It has been a far journey - you are sore, exhausted and in want of a bed. You have endured many weeks of hard travel among strange folk since your departure from the as-yet debatably Valian land of Elcius, but you carry out your master's bidding; you must glean what there is to be gleaned, and know what there is to be known. Three figures garbed in dull red linen jackets await you at their ease by the signpost ahead, girdles of bronzen scales still shimmering in the fading light. They sit atop fine and well-bred mares, coats of beauteous and deepest brown.

"Ah, sakhim, we have looked for your arrival. Be welcome, for you are in Ashrai," the leader says in surprisingly well-spoken Valian, a great grin spreading across his dark-bearded face.

"I am most honoured, and eagerly anticipate your Lord's hospitality," you reply formally in practiced Ashraic.

"Then come, for it is good to be acamp when the Moon's law rises," he says in his own tongue. You take the easterly road. It is quiet, but after a wide turn about a small rise you are greeted by the sound of strange music and the bustling hum of an army on-the-move. The camp is well-organized to your eye, surrounded by a ditch and wall of stakes - near Valian in its quality and placement, you realize sourly.

You come to a gate and observe on one side a group of blue-painted Canirii, gazing upon you darkly, drumming their fingers impatiently on artfully crafted pommels. On the other side stand three dusky-skinned men of immense proportions, standing at least seven feet tall, great poleaxes held languidly and relaxed - they incline their heads and smile as you and your escorts ride past.

Peoples of many unfamiliar nations are gathered here with their accouterments, and the smells of a hundred foreign cuisines assault your nostrils. You recognize Ashavans in their lavish furs, and stocky Myrians in their conical hats. Grim Titanians from Sind scour and oil their coats of mail while Haronians sit peaceably nearby, cutting oblong purple fruits and frying them in oil. Ashraic cataphractoi with their plaited beards jostle each other and laugh, mingling with wine-drunk Evvics from Cylene as they roll dice at the fireside. You note that near-all seem to speak the language of Ashrai as a common tongue.

Chanting groups of darkly-dressed Ashraics bearing the Veil Banner emerge along the wide avenue as the night deepens, lighting standing torches at regular intervals. A crimson pavilion waits for you ahead, heart-like at the camp's very center. It beats with light and sound as folk enter and leave. Your escorts salute you graciously as they part the entrance, ushering you inside. You only realize the entire enormous edifice is woven silk when it brushes gently against your shoulder.

A waft of incense washes over you, and you cough and sputter at the strange fumes. Oh, the indignities that you suffer in your master's name. Curtains and cushions spill in every direction, servants bearing silver plates circulating among the grandees with endless food and drink. Reflected flames from golden braziers light each nook and corner, tended carefully. Voluptuous dancers sway rhythmically to the high lilting of foreign flutes, their bodies lithe and lustrous with oil. You feel stunned by the clamour and cacophony, the excess and wealth. For a single moment you could swear you see a man with the head of a goat playing a brass horn amidst the crowd. Your head reels as you stumble towards the high dais, desperately seeking out your host. It sits empty, and you feel utterly abandoned amongst the enemies of your people, surrounded on every side. You curse your master's name, and beseech the gods that they deliver you from your tribulations!

A firm hand grasps you warmly by the shoulder, and a stout man in a deep crimson robe steps up beside you, the well-oiled and intricate plaits of his beard glimmering black in the brazier-light.

"Sakhim!" he near-shouts in exuberant greeting "We have waited long for you, and are most eager to hear your master's words. Know that I am the Magus Bastian, and that you will be my boon-guest - and soon my friend, God willing" he continues, seeming to note your discomfort. "Ah, yes. Our nights must be of some small strangeness to a man of your customs - but we do as we are bid by our God's mistress. It would not do to anger the Lady beneath her own light!" he laughs, pulling you aside to a secluded pair of cushions.

Seemingly from nowhere he produces a silver goblet of iced and honeyed wine, placing it gingerly in your hand. You slurp greedily as you sink into the luxuriant cushion, quenching a thirst you didn't even know you had. You think to yourself that it would be troublesome to rise - but fortune smiles upon you, and you have no desire to do so.

"Now come, my friend, and tell me all there is to tell of what passes in the lands of Valia. Tell me of what your master knows. Tell me of the child with the golden eyes…"

He grins widely, his teeth white and polished, and you find yourself smiling back. For a moment you feel like you're forgetting something, something your master said, perhaps. But for the life of you there seems to be no reason not to do exactly as you've been asked. It is only right to repay the kindness and benevolence of your host.

And so you begin your tale.
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