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The Northern Lands

     The map of the Konung game world consists of 43 interconnected locations. Most locations lie on the ground, but a diverged network of caves is contained within underground city (Buried City). Five Viking camps, nine Slavic hunting settlements, a Byzantine trading outpost, and an underground city are placed on the map. Aside from human settlements, the forests hide cabins of solitary hermits, or Witchdoctors (Slavic Druids), scorched ruins and various worship sites. Almost all game locations are inhabited by groups of various monsters. Up to three sub-types of monsters may be encountered in each location.

     The hero with his companions can freely travel the entire game world. . When he reaches the border of one location he (together with his followers) is transferred to the neighbouring one. There are no restrains for the travel, except for natural obstacles such as rivers, etcÖ The game offers a variety of landscapes, including woodlands, marshes, plains, river banks, underground caves and burned ruins. Each type of the landscape has its one unique combination of tile and sprite graphics.

Strategical elements

     The strategy element in the game is represented in the control and management of settlements. Conquest of settlements is not obligatory, but it yields a significant additional possibilities for the player.

     The player can gain control over a settlement via either peaceful or military ways. Each settlement presents a quest. If the quest is successfully completed, the player gains control over the settlement. However, the player can decline the quest and choose conquest instead. Destructive methods are not the best solution because human resources in the Northern Lands are not limitless, people just do not repopulate like rabbits.

     Once control over a given settlement is established (regardless of the methods used), the village begins to pay tribute to the hero and provide recruits for him. Prices in controlled village are lower, and the local healer always helps the hero and his followers willingly, without charge. Besides, the hero can order military barracks to be built in the village, and can appoint a trustworthy assistant as local war chief. Then local peasants begin to improve their combat skills.

     Construction in the settlement can be followed by the building of a marketplace, forge, healerís quarters, wells and dike if those were not built before.

     The main functional characters in the village are the elder, healer, blacksmith, warchief, and merchant. The elder is responsible for tribute, construction, and the training of necessary professionals. The Healer treats warriors and local inhabitants, and sells medicine potions. The Blacksmith can repair damaged or worn weaponry, armor and other gear, and he can offer new weapons or buy surplus ones. The Warchief trains local peasants and organises village defense. The Merchant sells and buys various goods and commodities.

     Here is the complete list of available building types:

    

Paling

     Paling protects settlements from raids. Tactically it is much easier to seize a village without a paling. Paling must be built by a very experienced carpenter.

 

 

Blacksmith

     Blacksmith allows locals to manufacture armament in the settlement. An empty smithy would never create a single sword, thus a smith must be present. It is possible to recruit a smith in a nearby village and bring him to his new smithy. Smith is creating pieces of equipment that are used by men of his nationality. Manufacture time depends on the skill level of the smith. Smith is also capable of repairing damaged weapons and armour, but this operation can be done only in a friendly settlement. If player doesnít buy any items for a while, smith gives extra goods to his clanners for free.

Barracks

     Barracks allow player to train local clanners. A warchief (a warrior with a high level of experience) must be hired or the training process will never start. After some time local warriors will significally improve their stats.

 

Healers Hut

    Healerís hut allows to heal wounded. The healer doesnít just merely cure injured or poisoned, but he also creates and sells different potions and elixirs. Player can motivate him into harder work by bringing him various ingredients.

 

Marketplace

     Allows player to sell and buy various items including weapons. A merchant must be present in the settlement or the trade would be impossible. A merchant has a wider array of goods than a smith but his wares are more expensive. Any merchant can lend player a certain sum of money though he wonít deal with him until the debt is paid back with some interest.

Well

    Provides a steady supply of water. Construction of the paling is impossible without a well.

 

 

 

Bridge

      The Northern Land is divided into three major parts by a huge river. Player can build bridges in some of the locations to cross the river. Only a master-carpenter is able to construct such a complicated structure. 

 

 

Elder's house

    The elder presents local government. He pays you tribute and organizes all construction works. Amount of tribute depends on the size of the settlement and its population.

    

 

     A brilliant player would try to master all strategical components of the game, thus ensuring himself an easy walkthrough. First of all, main money flow is collection of the tribute and not pieces of equipment scavenged from bodies. Second, right usage of local smiths and merchants is the only way of creation of a powerful warparty equipped by the most effective weapons and armour.

Villagers

     There is a certain amount of nonspecialist NPCs (men, women, kids), that are attending to their affairs on the territory of every settlement. Player can talk or even recruit any NPC to his warparty (of course women and children are out of concern). Some passersby can supply you with valuable information and advice, others may ask you to complete a simple quest. Also you will encounter men that simply stand still in one place. Those are special NPCs that usually take part in the storyline. Near the entrance to a village with a paling you will stumble upon a guard that fends off armed strangers.

Witchdoctors

     The Northern Lands were always famous for its dreadful witchdoctors. Some praised them for endless wisdom, others hated for their studies of magic. Witchdoctors usually settled down far away from inhabited places, preferring to talk to forest spirits than to human travelers. Sometimes they turned out to be mad or possessed by some dark powers. Such witchdoctors tried to wreak havoc, bestow curses and seed chaos everywhere. Hopefully there were plenty good ones that were always eager to help and to heal. Player will often meet those strange oldmen. Sometimes they will guide you, enlightening your hero with words of blessing, sometimes they will send you on a quest full of dangers and hidden treasures.

     Almost every witchdoctor can bless, curse, heal and identify items for a fee. Some can sell you a pair recipes of ancient elixirs. Besides, every witchdoctor has seemingly limitless amount of magic teleportation orbs that can be use to speed up travels.