There's some scandalous fake news out there that I've gone bald, really the most utterly unbelievable kind
As you can see, official, completely undoctored paintings indicate that I am absolutely full of hair, there's just hair coming out everywhere, and listen I'm getting treatment for it okay, not that I have a problem, I'm perfectly fine, but listen a man can put unguents in his hair if he feels like it, you hear me
Now that's sorted, let's move on to matters of state, yes?
As you can see, i have a son now, unlike that bald half-man Mr. Vod. He's a pretty down to earth fellow, so much so that his Greek tutor keeps finding him face down in the mud trying to reconnect with the worms.
I suppose this might be a problem if he were preordained to lead the Arverni upon my death, as if some kind of hereditary system, but thank goodness nobody picks their future leaders by such a nonsensical rule, eh?
No sooner have we sorted our domestic affairs, than foreign powers penetrate themselves into our domestices. Helvia have teamed up with Ceutronia, a land that nobody has ever actually heard of, but are now well on their way to penetrating us.
We mobilise our armies and order them to march.
About a week later, the filthy eastern Gauls decide that they didn't actually want to fight the largest nation in the region, and initiate the well known PEACEACCEPTOTHER_ALLY_LOG protocol. As custom dictates, we accept the generous peace offer of two cities.
(Uh, something must have happened where their leader dies or someshit and there's a war reset, because it ended automatically with no popup and we just took the two cities we were sitting on. Good old Paradox sells a half ass game copy-pasted from all their other games, now with new bugs)
Um, yes. That's not quite what I was seeking treatment for, I was actually pretty happy with my arthritis, thank you. I mean, no, there's nothing else wrong with me, everything is fine.
In fact, let's stop paying attention to my well-being and instead declare war on some filthy southeastern gauls.
What's that, you say? Negative stability? Never heard of such a thing. We're a brave Gallic tribe of bloodthirsty warriors, the only stability we want is where our manhood joins up with the ballsacks
OK, this is pretty unstable, though
The filthy southeastern gauls turn out to be allied with some other unpronouncable gauls slightly northeast of the southeast, as well as the southeastern gauls further southeast of the southeastern gauls, and they are all joined by the northwestern gauls and the southwestern gauls and gauls from every direction oh god
But apparently it's not a problem, because we win the war, take their province, and with that become a REGIONAL POWER.
Being a regional power is pretty great, because you can now THREATEN WAR as well as actually declaring war. It's just like declaring war, but without the war.
The other great bonuses include more clan chiefs to possibly turn into another Mr. Vod, and, uh, losing all of our existing alliances because regional powers are too cool to be allied with local powers. I'm sure this will not be a problem for us in the future, no sir
I mean, who needs allies for civil wars, right?
Yes, that's right, it is none other than MR. VOD THE SECOND, with he identical disgusting nostril hair, who decided that having 0 military skill was no impediment to declaring war on the greatest gallic conqueror of the generation
We respond by catching his son, a professional forum administrator, and lynching him in the face.
MR. VOD THE SECOND himself soon follows.
In fact, the execution of my enemies makes me so happy, all of my hair's grown back.
I mean, the hair that's always been there. It's like believing in Jesus, you know? Where you're still alive but you're born again? Listen, I don't ask you about your hair, why don't you just shut the fuck up
(NB: I have no fucking idea how or why his hair grew back, wow paradox)
Now that we have hair again, surely this newest round of filthy gallic invasions will present no issue.
The combined enemy army faces our trusty general, Mr. Tartar Sauce, in none other than the sacred lands of GERGOVIA.
And if we know one thing about Gergovia, it's that the Gauls never lose in Gergovia. Hell, we even have a sizably larger army! Nothing can go wrong.
Of course, it turns out our enemies are also Gauls.
Our chariots decided to all stand in the same one place and somehow get surrounded by a numerically inferior force. Before we are wiped out, and set our Southern campaigns back for years to come, we decide to oblige and give the filthy northeastern gauls what they want. (Highlighted portion above.) We shall never surrender Gergovia, but who needs the rest of it when we have Rome to sack, right?
Sadly, the wars are not over. The million southeastern gallic states have once again jumped in on the action, and for once we are massively outnumbered.
In dire straits, we turn to the exciting new feature of Imperator: Rome: mercenary bands who hang out at completely random locations, so that when you hire them they have to spend a few months taking the bus and subway down to join the fight.
Jesus, look at all those enemy armies. I can't count that high. And everybody with different flags. All the pretty flags. Such lovely colours!
I feel a bit... a bit....
No, listen, I'm fine. It's not me that's cracked, but the great egg shell of the planet. Through it I hear a voice of a god, a god that calls it self Loo Loo, the Wolf, the Wolf...
My hair? What about my hair? I see nothing wrong with my hair.
We have made peace with the Nitiobrogan Revolters, which is good, because we were originally fighting with the Nitiobrogan Non-Revolters, and at one point we were fighting with both kinds of Nitiobrogans.
Over the next few years, we slowly, slowly whittle down the enemy forces, white-peacing them one by one.
But we are now presented with a new problem. The mercenaries we hired? They take about a million coins each month, and if you want to fire them, the severance package is literally twice our yearly GDP! I mean, can you think of any other profession where people hire you on a whim, and then lay you off soon after for a multi-million dollar severance package because you've lost the dressing room and...
We have a clever plan, though.
Step one: order the mercenaries to assault the siege! Silly buggers don't realise that in the ancient world, nobody ever assaulted settlements even at massive numerical advantage, because you will magically lose several thousand dudes in the process. Just basic understanding of military tactics at work here, you know.
Step two: oh no! While you've been assaulting deep in enemy territory, they've raised a large army to come and wipe you out! What a pity that your employers are currently busy taking roll call of the entire army several weeks' march away.
Step three: we go in, clean up, get a peace deal, and ten shekels for our troubles.
Listen, the important thing is that a lot of people died, and we made some money off it. Politics 101.
Literally a decade of civil war and external invasions aside, we are finally able to take stock and think about the next steps for the grand ambition of INVADING BERLUSCONIA.
First, we decide to RESTABILISE OURSELVES. This difficult task involves pulling all of society together, resolving persistent class inequalities, providing better political representation, and ensuring that there is a steady stream of K-pop to the masses.
Actually, no, we just kill some pigs. And we spend magic powers to kill pigs. And we can do it, like 80 times in a single day if we want. Get all the stab.
(Literally instant stab by spending magic points, magic points that you really don't have any other use for. Paradox at this rate this is the last game we ever bother with)
Alright, what else has been going on in our grand nation?
Oh, I see. My first daughter died of Leprosy. Like, three years ago.
I mean, someone could have told me? Was I busy? Did I look busy? Was I emitting an aura of unapproachability? Was it a me problem, or an us problem?
Thankfully our son has not died of leprosy, and is alive and well. You can never tell when your kids die of leprosy, you know.
And what of the nation as a whole?
It is clear that all of our recent travails - the civil wars, the stretched defense of a large territory shaped like a bent penis, Heisenberg's Hair Paradox - are caused by excessive civilising.
We must ABANDON our SEDENTARY LIFESTYLE, take regular morning exercises, and become a MIGRATORY TRIBE!
(NB: I have no idea what this does or how it works.)
Our final objective, of course, remains the same:
the conquest of BERLUSCONIA, ever spreading across the Italian peninsula like a slightly runny tomato sauce, ruled by literally cancer.
Tune in next time for our attempt to migrate within the Schengen Zone. We now accept running bets on how long Iccius will live while officially Insane, and whether his hair will magically come back or not.