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Let's Read Let's build a city fit for all codexers - The Wagie Cage

Discussion in 'Codex Playground' started by GrafvonMoltke, Sep 6, 2021.

  1. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
    1,047
    Location:
    Land of the Great Steppe
    Prologue

    Show Spoiler
    Recommended soundtrack:


    [​IMG]

    2042: Shoutbox Central. The ruins of codex civilisation dot the landscape, like those annoying crushed pieces of cereal at the end of a box. Strewn throughout the wreckage of a once bustling centre of commerce and culture remains a few lost, exhausted souls. They wander around this new reality, trying to come to terms with it all. Trying to build a new life for themselves.

    Atop the remains of a precariously swaying ruined skyscraper, two ethereal figures gaze at the devastation below.

    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    Doesn't exactly seem possible, does it?
    [​IMG] Infinitron:
    It certainly escalated, that's for sure.

    They pause for a moment, contemplating what remains of the codex after this escalation. The closing exchange of the Third Doggo-Shoutbox War was not kind to the fabric of the forum, and this was especially so of the shoutbox. It stands as a smoking hot, shit-filled crater in the centre of this godforsaken mess. The war was won, of course, but at a massive cost. Those who had rallied around the doggo were scattered to the winds, their leaders now in chains. The doggo himself had pulled a disappearing act, bruised and battered but still living.

    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    We will have to rebuild.
    [​IMG] Infinitron:
    That certainly seems like a prudent course of action.
    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    No amount of Star Stable will stop this from happening again.
    [​IMG] Infinitron:
    So what do we do? Admit that the codex experiment was a mistake? Go get normal jobs? Come on, we both know that's never going to happen.


    The dark one looks once more at the remains of his pride and joy. A fat man waddles endlessly, ringing a bell. Two Bulgarians shout at each other about the virtues of RTwP without end, seemingly unable to realise that they both agree on everything. A tired old woman wheels around a cart of watermelons while her armed guards eye those brave enough to come close.

    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    No, this time we must bring unity. We must bring together every codexer still drawing breath. We will build them a world fit for kings, and bind them to it until their time ends. The incels, the NEETs, the antivaxxers. All will be drawn into our loving embrace.
    [​IMG] Infinitron:
    Are you saying what I think-?
    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:

    We must give them JOBS.

    This last sentence seems to hang in the air for a while, like a bad rape joke at the office party. Jobs? For codexers? Maybe some of the JRPG regulars will get on board, but the shoutboxers? The android stands there, mulling what he just heard. Is it really possible?

    [​IMG] Infinitron:
    Jobs? Here? In this mess?
    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    This land is cursed now. We must seek our fortunes elsewhere.

    They continue standing for what must have felt like an uncomfortably long time. The dark one reaches out slowly, and touches a button on a barely-functioning intercom.

    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    Send in the lackey boy.
    [​IMG] Infinitron:
    Do we really need to call him that?

    The dark one doesn't answer.

    A dishevelled man enters the room, his shirt covered in coffee stains. While his face looks surprisngly young, his eyes betray his true age and perceived indignation.

    [​IMG] Crispy:

    You called?
    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    We're moving. Make the preparations.
    [​IMG] Crispy:

    Moving? My God, you can't be serious! But that'll take eons! Where are we going to go? Who is going to take care of construction?
    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    If I had wanted an insolent tongue, I would've made fantadomat admin.
    [​IMG] Crispy:

    But how am I supp-
    [​IMG] DarkUnderlord:
    The preparations have already been made. An island has been found. A new hope for all of us.
    [​IMG] Infinitron:

    If you can't do it-
    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Fine! Fine! What goddamn island?

    A few days later, boxes and suitcases and burlap sacks in hand, the codex begins its mass exodus from this dead land. The journey takes 40 days, and presumably 40 nights, but eventually they reach the small island of Paradise Reef. The few aborigines who call this island can't stop this huddled mass of army-age doctors and scientists and are quickly overwhelmed.

    The conquest of paradise reef is over, before it has even begun. The dawn of a new age of Codex begins.

    [​IMG]

    Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to The Wagie Cage.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2021
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  2. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
    1,047
    Location:
    Land of the Great Steppe
    Table of Contents

    Prologue
    Chapter One - Potato Power
    Chapter Two - Prosperity in the Prosperium
    Chapter Three - The Battle of Beanertown

    Chapter Four - Brown Gold
    Chapter Five - A Tale of Two Towers

    Dramatis Personae (in order of appearance)

    DarkUnderlord - lord of the underworld, all round mysterious ruler and trickster.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Infinitron - exasperated robotic second in command.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Crispy - the management's whipping boy.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    GrafvonMoltke - handsome, talented and all-round good guy; CEO and director of Moltke Construction Limited, and later de-facto Mayor of New Codexia.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Lukaszek - potato scientist and salesman, and owner and operator of Kartopelektro Sp. z o.o.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Gregz - Mayor of The Wagie Cagie, good family man, christian and Vietnam vet.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Prosper - former drug addict and leader of the assorted riff-raff that call The Prosperium home.

    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Latro - charismatic leader of the street gang, Los Adolphos. Former lord of Beanertown.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Rusty Shackleford - chief of police, lover of barbecue and ho-downs, and formidable gunslinger.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Darkpatriot - colonel of Codexian Armed Forces; the last surviving officer of Old Codexia.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Fluent - gender confused parish priest of St. Proverbius. Lover of Mountain Dew.
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]

    Special acknowldgements

    Lutte, for his excellent series of ai portraits which probably inspired this whole thing.
    TZ3K, for his awesome photoshop skills.
    Jenkem, for providing the original Graf portrait.
    Everyone portrayed, for their patience and understanding that maybe this thing isn't supposed to be a realistic portrayal.
    The codex, for giving me a guiding light in my darkest hour.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2021
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  3. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2017
    Messages:
    6,844
    Location:
    Nottingham
    This has the potential to be the greatest thread ever.

    Who's up for slaying a Dragon Lady with their "sword"?
     
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  4. madbringer Magister

    madbringer
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,626
    Location:
    a shady as fuck discord server
    U have my dong.
     
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  5. Andnjord Arcane

    Andnjord
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2012
    Messages:
    2,106
    Location:
    The North Sea
    And my other honour. :salute:
     
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  6. aeternalis Arcane Patron

    aeternalis
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2014
    Messages:
    449
    Location:
    Kwanzania
    the dialogue avatars are huge

    but I love where this is going
     
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  7. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
    1,047
    Location:
    Land of the Great Steppe
    Are you talking about Lilura, or some other 'lady'?

    Why thank you good sir. The Skylines modding community is full of degenerate trannies, so finding an actual dong might not be that difficult.

    Your other dong?

    I'm going to resize the avatars when I can be bothered. They're actually resized half from their original resolution; guess it should have been a quarter.

    Thanks for the love guys!

    Anyway, as to the future. I have built a pretty small city as a base for future extensions, and I have four chapters planned out so far; two of those are pretty much ready to go in terms of materials. Chapter One is completely done and just needs to be typed up. Chapter Two is pretty much the same, but I might have to jump in and take a few more screenshots before it's completely ready. Chapters Three and Four are just in the idea stage, although the general story is pretty much complete. Beyond that I have a few basic ideas and nothing concrete. If you guys have any suggestions, like mad's dong or lilura's totally-not-a-dong, I'm all ears.

    Also if you have any suggestions for road names, I'd be happy to throw them in. I'll also take building or district name suggestions, but they're more story orientated so you'll have to bear with me.

    Of course if any of you find any weird or wonderful meme assets or mods, I'll be happy to throw them in too. Just like this absolute beaut:

    [​IMG]

    Hail to New Codexia! Hail to The Wagie Cage, a home for all shoutboxerscodexers!
     
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  8. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
    1,047
    Location:
    Land of the Great Steppe
    Pics have been resized, and contents have been added.
     
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  9. madbringer Magister

    madbringer
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,626
    Location:
    a shady as fuck discord server
    BTW, I like how Crispy has hair highlights and earrings.
     
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  10. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2012
    Messages:
    21,645
    Strap Yourselves In Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    The AI knows man, it just knows.
     
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  11. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
    1,047
    Location:
    Land of the Great Steppe
    Chapter One - Potato Power

    Show Spoiler
    Recommended soundtrack:


    Saturday, 16th of August, 2042. The shoreline of New Codexia, previously known as Paradise Reef.

    A handsome, blonde man shuffles uncomfortably in an old wooden chair. The chair is on the verge of breaking, and not because the man is fat. The chair is dangerously close to collapsing simply because it is old and shit. A true relic of the old world.

    The chair and its occupant lay in a corrugted metal shack, one nestled amongst many; the new occupants of this land have yet to make themselves truly at home here. This shack was bigger though, comprised of two rooms instead of one. The headquarters of the once great Moltke Construction Limited.

    A crow caws in the distance. A metal door opens and slams shut with a dull bang. A faint smell of coffee wafts through the shack. With a slight creak, the door finally opens.

    Graf von Moltke, the third of his family line, stops shuffling and looks up.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed secretary no.1:
    Sir? There's a visitor here for you.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:

    A visitor? Are you sure?


    Confusion. Disbelief. And perhaps, a little joy.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed secretary no.1:
    Well he said that he tried to make an appointment, but it looks like the phones haven't been connected yet.

    From the drawer the blonde man picks out a small tub of hair gel, brushes a little of the gel gently through his scalp, and sets it back into the drawer.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Send him in.

    He adjusts his tie. An Ermenegildo Zegna in blue, white and gold stripes: a very elegant tie. It had cost him $180 back in the old world. It went perfectly with his $7 shirt.


    [​IMG] Crispy:
    What in the sweet christ is this shithole?

    A young man steps in, his ancient eyes staring down the interior of the shack. His hand is coiled around a coffee cup, almost drawn into a claw. The cup's lid was doing a poor job disguising the aroma: a cappucino with an extra shot of espresso.

    The blonde man smiles, his grin full of awkward pain.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    How can I help you today?
    [​IMG] Crispy:
    They tell me you're some kind of architect.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Well yes sir, that's me! Graf von Moltke at your service! We can build any size, any time, anywhere!

    The pain on his face widens into a grimace.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    They tell me you're the best.


    The grin drops. Who said that? In truth Moltke Construction Limited had been pushed aside by every other firm in Old Codexia, and it was a lucky break that their firm had survived The Incident at all.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    I represent, let's say, the bossman. The head honcho. The numero uno.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Who's-?
    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Quiet while I'm talking. As you can see, this is a new land, and we're going to need some new, bold, BRAVE new ways of thinking. We would like to commission you to help us.

    Success! What a fabulous sound! The blonde man could practically hear the sacks of cash dropping. The sound of the cash register opening. He picks up a pencil and a small notebook from the table. The cover shows an innocent scene: a small dwarf telling a joke to his dwarf pals. He opens the notebook, brushes past the first page, only containing a small doodle of a nuclear bomb going off in a Chinaman's toilet and the inscription FUCK PORKY, and rests the second page down with his hand.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    So what would you and this bossman like me to build you? A house? A tower? The water-piping system?

    Please be the piping system. Please be the piping system. Ka-china! KA-CHING!

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    We want you to build the city.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:

    Come again?
    [​IMG] Crispy:
    You heard. Don't make me repeat myself.

    WHAT
    THE
    FUCK

    A nuclear bomb goes off in the blonde man's head, spraying shit onto all sides of his cranial cavity. Did he really just say that he wants me to build the ENTIRE city?

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Just so we're clear-
    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Work out the details and send us the bill. We'll be waiting to hear from you.

    The young man shifts his body to move towards the door, coffee cup and all. Come on, you idiot! Don't let him leave! Ask him a question!

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Wait!
    [​IMG] Crispy:

    What?

    Errr. Errr.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Who told you that we're the best?
    [​IMG] Crispy:

    Excuse me?
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    You said before that we were the best. Who recommended us?


    The figure in the doorway glances vacantly out of the window for a second. Then he turns back, light giving up in his eyes.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    In truth, nobody did. I just picked the first construction company that I came across.

    With that, the coffee-chugging figure is gone. The blonde man shifts backwards in his chair, his face punctuated by equal amounts of delight and terror.

    --------------------------

    Building a city is not a simple undertaking, especially not one with aspirations of such grandeur and harmony. A million meetings need to be scheduled. A million new employees need to be found. Invoices, material shipments, employment contracts, pallets of stationary. Not to mention the infrastucture.

    So a few roads get built. No problem. Water? There's a big mountain lake over there, the newly named Lake Avellone. Sorted. Sewerage and waste water? Might take a while, but we can build a processing centre. Done. Garbage? Well, there's always a nice bonfire to start a nice summer evening off.

    But the first major hurdle to overcome is when it comes to the question of power, a critical issue for housewives and cryptominers alike. The headquarters of Moltke Construction Limited, the same old shack but with a slightly nicer picture and a recently added conference table, is hustling and bustling regarding this very issue one hot and sticky tropical afternoon. A gaggle of sycophantic yes-men sing a cacophony of electric-powered lullabies.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    So let's have a quick review. You're saying what, exactly?
    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed advisor no.1:
    I'm definitely going to have to say wind.

    The blonde man nods and smiles.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    And you?
    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed advisor no.2:

    Solar would seem to be a good investment.

    He nods and smiles.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed advisor no.3:
    Coal, always coal.

    Nods and smiles.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed advisor no.4:
    Nuclear.

    Nods. Smiles.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Potato.

    Nods. Smiles?

    What did this bizarre interloper just say?

    The blonde man moves uncomfortably in his uncomfortable chair, and stares wide-eyed at the man who has infiltrated this meeting. He must have the grace of a swan to have entered so silently. His dark silk suit and woolen sweater seem ill at ease with the tropical climate.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Who the devil are you? And what did you just say?
    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    I am the man who is about to revolutionise the way you think about power. Water please?


    He glances dramatically at the sycophantic yes-man closest to the door, mogging the room with his brazen request. The advisor sighs and slinks out of the room.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    My name is Lukaszek. You can just call me Luka for short. Cigar?

    He offers one to the most attractive lady advisor in the room. She silently declines. He lights up one regardless.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Let me get straight down to business. The brass tacks, as it were. Let me tell you what none of your "advisors" has the guts to tell you. The sheer BALLS to tell you.

    The blonde man sits and listens carefully, resting his elbows on the table and interlocking his fingers into a pyramid over which to protect his fragile ego.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Power is EXPENSIVE. One way or another, you will have to pay. Coal? You'll pay with the health of your citizens? Wind? You're at the sheer mercy of the Gods! Solar? Good, but damned expensive. Nuclear? Maybe some day down the road but we know the city just isn't big enough. But there is another option, one which can allow you to have your cake and eat it.

    The room is dead silent, everyone transfixed on this man. He holds them all within the centre of his hand.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    I'll be honest with you. I was born in Poland, and sure I called Old Codexia my home and I will surely call New Codexia it too. But I am a Pole in my heart and I will die bearing the proud banner of Boleslaw across my chest. Sixty years ago, during the deepest, darkest moments of the Cold War, we Poles developed a secret technological process to draw our power from the massive energy of genetically-engineered mega potatoes, a secret we dared not even share with our Soviet "brothers"! A proud moment in our nations history, perhaps only second to when we gave the Turks a good routing at Budapest! Or even when we took Wilno back from those dreaded cabbage munching Lithuanian village dwellers! Or even....Wait, what was my point again?

    He momentarily loses his grip on the attention of the group, but quickly refinds it.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    You were talking about potato power.
    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Ahhh, yes! Of course! We Poles of course grow the best potatoes, and this is well known by all. Our potatoes have at least 23% extra calories, a fine feat! But back to the power plant. Since the Cold War, we Poles have refined and miniaturised our processes to such an extent where we can draw 40 Megawatts of power from just four potatoes! Four! That's less potatoes than you'll find in my granny's pierogies!

    These must be some mega pierogies.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    And here's this kicker, Mr Moltke. May I call you Graf?
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    No.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Here's this kicker, Graf. we will price-match our power to the next cheapest option, coal. We will give you power equivalent to what they're offering at the same price, with no air pollution or water pollution. What do you say?
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Well, I'd have to look through the paperwork-

    He pulls a full formed contract out of his suit's inside breast-pocket. Despite being in there, it is perfectly folded.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Review at your own leisure, Graf.

    He pulls out an expensive looking pen from his other pocket and holds it expectantly in front of the contract. He smiles politely but firmly, as the flock of advisors flanking the room all stare on in expectant glee.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    I suppose we have a deal.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    You won't regret this.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    When can you begin construction?

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Look out the window, Graf. Construction has already finished.

    [​IMG]

    --------------------------


    The following week, the blonde architect and his partners make a tour of the new power generation facility, conveniently named Kartopelektrostantsiya No.1. The Polish scientists and engineers all smile happily, running from station to station, their eyes full of cybernetic delight, their songs full of merry satisfaction at a job well done.

    The station itself is of course technologically impressive and well designed. Just don't look too closely at what's behind the wallpaper.

    After the tour, the plant directors put on a luncheon of national Polish dishes. One of the blonde man's architects jokes where the potatoes are, to roarous applause and feet-stamping. Lukaszek does not look amused. A question burns in his mind.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Perhaps we could have a drink in my office? I have a very special bottle of Zubrowka on ice.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    I don't see why not. Lead on, friend!

    He slaps the potato scientist on the back.


    At the top of a winding staircase, a door opens up into the upper most part of the building. The office is cramped, but functional. The potato scientist opens a small fridge and takes out the vodka and two chilled shot glasses, ordering some snacks through the intercom. He pours the ice cold liquid into the glasses, thrusting one into the architect's hand firmly but playfully.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Na zdrowie!
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Здоров.


    Vodka in hand, the scientist eyes him warily.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    So I hear that city construction is picking up pace quickly.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    That's certainly true. We have permanent residences for 500 citizens now, and commerce is flourishing. We've even managed to get some industry up and running once again. All thanks to you and your potatoes.

    The man in the dark suit laughs.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    My God, the storms here. The people sure need housing! Still, it's good to see everything falling into place. I even heard that you were giving some thought to a permanent name for Main Street.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    There have been a number of suggestions, yes.

    That last sentence comes out sheepishly, defences all of a sudden throwing up red flags. This deal with the Poles has been a major coup for the city, and he senses that they are now all at once coming to collect.

    A catch.

    What was the catch?

    Sigh.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    So what's the catch?

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    Well, I was of course thinking that, given our prosperous new relationship-

    The potato energy salesman leans in and whispers his suggestion.

    The architect nods.

    The deal is done.


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2021
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  12. Andnjord Arcane

    Andnjord
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2012
    Messages:
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    Location:
    The North Sea
    Show Spoiler
    [​IMG]
     
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  13. baud Arcane Patron

    baud
    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    3,345
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    Septentrion
    RPG Wokedex Strap Yourselves In Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    :bro:

    :avatard:
     
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  14. The_Sloth_Sleeps Arbiter

    The_Sloth_Sleeps
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    571
    Well written, you could probably teach English or Engineering for a living.
     
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  15. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2016
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Land of the Great Steppe
    Come to me and we'll open a school.
     
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  16. Grauken King of October Patron

    Grauken
    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2013
    Messages:
    7,286
    Never trust a scientist who doesn't like RNG
     
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  17. Non-Edgy Gamer Scholar

    Non-Edgy Gamer
    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2020
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    Potatoland, eh? I hope you're going to have plenty of buses and metros. The last thing we need is Polish drivers running amok in our fair Wagie Cage.
     
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  18. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
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    We may yet come to regret potato power ;)

    In the future, every man shall have his own bus. Or not. We'll see how it goes.

    Next Chapter is ready to be typed out, might take a few days though because it has more than just one or two screenshots (yeah that was a bit shit; sorry about that).

    Also thinking of adding an FAQ and a map to the Contents page. And of course I'm still taking ideas for road/district/building names. Feel free to throw them in!
     
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  19. Nutria Cipher Patron

    Nutria
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    Strap Yourselves In
    If you've got a street that goes up a hill, it's got to be Rue d'Incline.
     
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  20. Crispy Don't get old. Undisputed Queen of Faggotry

    Crispy
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    I don't understand why you used me. That looks nothing like me, it doesn't act like me, and I express myself nothing like that.

    And I don't drink cappuccino. It's mocha latte, always.
     
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  21. Grauken King of October Patron

    Grauken
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    What are you talking about, looks exactly like you
     
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  22. Malamert Magister Edgy

    Malamert
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    Couldn't you have done this in a GOOD game like SimCity 4?
     
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  23. Grauken King of October Patron

    Grauken
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    We definitely need a Whiners Alley that leads nowhere
     
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  24. Diablo1_reborn Busin 0 Wizardry Alternative Neo fanatic Patron

    Diablo1_reborn
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    At least have the fucking decency to take fullscreen screenshots. My god.
     
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  25. GrafvonMoltke Shoutbox Purity League

    GrafvonMoltke
    Joined:
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    Chapter Two - Prosperity in The Prosperium

    Show Spoiler
    Recommended soundtrack:


    Sunday, 7th of September, 2042. A shack somewhere in Globohomo Central, downtown New Codexia.

    Patience, Moltke. Patience.

    The fan rotates, oscillates gently, high in the shack. It's still a shack, but it's a decidely more well-equipped shack now. Modern viewscreens adorn the walls, broadcasting every facet of New Codexia's beating rhythm. Holographic projectors cast plans of new districts and buildings onto the now heavily stained conference table.

    The architect sits on his old chair in front of three monitors. The fans of his 4070 gently purr in the background, running models of God knows what. Our intrepid protagonist ignores them, and instead he focuses on the very gentle task at hand.

    He glues the gun barrel to the turret of the tank.

    Downtime, of course. Even busy city builders deserve a break every now and again. So do secretaries, and that's why Moltke Construction Limited's secretary has taken the morning off, in order to go to church or a bar or God know's where else.

    Silence in the room. The gun barrel wobbles slightly. The blonde man holds it in place to allow the glue to set.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    MOLTKE!

    He loses grip on the model miniature, letting the whole thing fall out of his grasp. He reaches up desperately to try and catch it, only managing to launch it into the air slightly. He tries once more to catch the falling tank, finally catching it desperately between his fingertips. The largest viewscreen in the room, the one on the furthest wall, which previously had been broadcasting a real time image of Sneed Lane, now contains 100 inches of pure sneed staring back at him.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Why are you playing with toys when there's work to do?


    He scoffs. A coffee cup can be seen slightly out of shot; a cinammon latte with chocolate sprinkles.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:

    Err, I was just-
    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Never mind what you were just. I haven't got time for that. Do you have any idea how hard it is to be an underling of an underlord?
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    I have some idea.
    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Every morning I have to wake up and listen to someone's whining. This person or that person. When are we getting a skating rink? When will the garbage routes get hooked up? When will the whores return to Paladin Park? God rest their souls.

    He crosses himself briefly.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Do you know who's shit I had to take this morning, architect? The goddamn Mayor's! The goddamn Mayor of this shithole is giving ME shit! Well you know what, architect? You can head down to "city hall"-

    He scoffs at that remark, his eyes full of gleeful spite.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    -and listen to it for a while. Go on! Get!

    The call disconnects and Sneed Lane once more pop ups on the view screen.

    [​IMG]

    A welcome sight. But, no. I don't want to build a High School yet, thank-you-very-much.

    The architect pushes his intercom button.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Shirley, can you cancel my 1 o'clock? I'm also going to need lunch to go. Shirley? Shirley?

    Then he remembers Shirley is in church.

    Drowning her sorrows.

    --------------------------

    The Moltke motorcade roars down Poland Avenue, which is by now an actual avenue instead of a badly named cart path.

    [​IMG]

    Well, not so much a motorcade. More of a materials van repurposed for the occasion. The architect proudly surveys his handiwork, as construction continues unabated all around. The Moltke Construction Limited sign loftily hangs over every single site. A proud moment indeed.

    "City Hall" is not really a hall at all, but neither is this new settlement on New Codexia really a city. The local populace has taken to calling it the The Wagie Cage, a name loved and hated by all in equal measure, but the city itself remains nameless for the time being.

    In fact the Mayor has been operating his administration out of the local post office, a small building on the corner of Poland Avenue and Barkwell Street. The building had been finished weeks ago, but inside an army of carpenters, joiners and handymen continue to put everything together. Crashing, banging and wolf-whistling are commonplace.

    Mayor Gregz is a stern but fair man, with a big heart. A handsome man, one could say if one is so inclined. On occasions his eyes reveal another side of his character, much more guarded and reclusive.

    [​IMG] Gregz:
    Lord, how can anyone be expected to work like this?

    A rather portly handyman nails a skirting board in the back office, usually reserved for the postmaster but today occupied by the Mayor. The handyman bangs loudly, some might say deliberately.

    [​IMG] Gregz:
    So, Mr Moltke. Your office has far more resources than ours and that's why I have requested that you undertake this daunt-, challenging task.

    Deeper in the building the sound of drilling buzzes into the skulls of anyone unlucky enough to be able to hear above 10 kHz.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    As far as I understand, gang activity doesn't fall within the purvey of "construction".

    The Mayor stands up and walks to the window in order to stare out, imagining himself in a movie.

    [​IMG] Gregz:
    Gang activity? I'd hardly call it gang activity! A few drug addicts can hardly be called a gang.

    He laughs out loud, not really quite believing in it himself.

    [​IMG] Gregz:
    I would of course be willing to put what limited police presence we have at your disposal to deal with this rabble of godless communists.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Perhaps we should take a more, subtle approach? Something more Scandinavian? Build them a park, put some nice trees in there. A few places to shoot up.
    [​IMG] Gregz:
    Using communist tactics to outwit communists? Not exactly what I'd call orthodox, as a God-fearing man. But if it gets results.... I'll leave it to your discretion.

    He once more sits in his chair. An imposing gamer chair of finest material. Bose speakers have been fitted into the headrest.

    [​IMG] Gregz:
    One last thing. I have heard that this rabble's leader, a certain "Prosper", is a fairly manipulative character of ill repute. I would watch your step around that one.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:

    Where should I send the bill?
    [​IMG] Gregz:
    To God.

    The ride back to the office feels a lot shorter than the ride out. The shack returns back into view quickly. The architect sits down once more into his chair, picking up the remains of his model tank. He gets to work fixng it, hoping for a moment's peace before the inevitable showdown later.

    After a few minutes, the viewscreen lights up.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    WHERE ARE THE SECURITY GUARDS YOU PROMISED ME?!

    [​IMG]

    He once more loses control of the T-34 model, this time flying across the room in the direction of the water cooler.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    THESE GODDAMN POLLACK WORKERS ARE ROBBING ME BLIND!

    Another headache. He cradles his head in his hands. A migraine follows.

    --------------------------

    Somewhere in the south of New Codexia, a Mongol horde gathers. But this is no ordinary convergence of Mongol warriors, oh no. In fact, it's not a gathering of horse lords at all.

    It's in reality a bunch of druggies in a yurt.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addict no.1:
    Woah man, we're like in a yurt.


    For the most part, their decorations are relatively accurate. The inside of the yurt is spartan, with few comforts. In the centre, surrounding a small mock fire, the addicts all sit on fairly uncomfortable looking persian rugs, a few of them laying. Strewn throughout are the remains of pizza boxes, old Playstation 1 games and, most importantly, drug paraphernalia of every shape and kind.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addict no.2:
    No way dude this is totally a yaranga.


    Around the sides of the yurt are a few items of furniture, the most prominent being a table with short legs. Sitting on a cushion at the table, a woman approaching middle-age sits.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addict no.3:
    Where am I?
    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addict no.4:
    Where are you?

    This has already been going on for about an hour up to this point.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    Would you guys keep it down for five minutes? I can't hear myself think.

    She thinks.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    That's right, this place is totally a ger.

    The Mayor is coming soon.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    Guys, the Mayor is coming soon.


    Wait, that's not right.

    They all look at her, wide-eyed and terrified.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addict no.2:
    The Mayor's coming?


    Fear builds in the corner of his eye and quickly spreads to the rest of his face. The others look on in similar horror. It's no secret that the Mayor is an enemy of all he has deemed to be "degenerate commie block-knockers", and this yurt is certainly knocking the block.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    Not the Mayor, the other mayor.

    They all settle down. Nobody quite knows what she's talking about, but they settle down.

    Despite their imminent visit from a member of Codexia "elite", she makes no special effort to get up, clean the yurt or do anything one would normally do when one is expecting guests. While the drug-haze which shrouds the other members of this nomadic community wafts merrily high above those congregated in the centre of the tent, their leader is sitting at the side furthest from the entrance, intently focused on the task at hand.

    She takes another card from the deck, affixing it to the top of the structure. The first parapet of a castle made of cards.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    Version 0.76 is ready.

    She smiles, looking pleased with herself. For a brief moment she remembers. The urge. She pushes it down.

    The flap of the yurt is pulled aside. A stiff man in a starched black suit with an earpiece and sunglasses glances in, either a bouncer or a public-servant. He looks around, tuts loudly and waves inside a handsome but tired blonde man.

    Our interpid protagonist.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    The Mayor was right, you really aren't a gang.
    [​IMG] Prosper:

    We have been expecting you.
    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addict no.4:
    That's like, totally right man. We've totally been expecting you.
    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addict no.1:
    Expecting you in this yurt, dude.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:

    Let's skip the pleasantries, if we may. The wife is making beshbarmak.

    They prick up to this; druggies they may be, but they are certainly appreciators of nomadic culture and cuisine.

    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed drug addicts nos.1,2 and 3:
    NO WAY!

    The fourth drug addict looks unimpressed, but his expression betrays his jealousy.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    Mr Mayor we knew you were coming here. We've known for quite some time.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    I'm not the mayor.
    [​IMG] Prosper:
    For all our sakes, let's hope you are wrong.

    She pauses momentarily, a heavy burden weighing down on her.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    We know you came here because you are a great peacemaker. A great constructor. A man with vision! A man with intellect! As you can see, I am somewhat similar!

    She gestures to her half-finished card castle.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    I also know what it is to make something. To build it with your own two hands. This Mayor Gregz, he knows nothing of making things. Only how to move a marble from one spot to another.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    The Mayor is an incredibly competent man.
    [​IMG] Prosper:
    His competencies lie elsewhere. He may be a bureaucrat, but we all know he has his demons.

    As do you. As do I. As do all of us.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    I didn't come to be spoken to in riddles. The mayor wants you gone. I want to do my job. What do you want?
    [​IMG] Prosper:
    If the Mayor could've gotten rid of us so easily he would've done already. Do you know what the locals call this place? The south part of this settlement? They call it The Prosperium, to honour the place within Old Codexia of the same name. It was my paradise, did you know?

    And there was I thinking it was your prison.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    The locals are us and we are the locals now. There is no separating us.

    Someone in Old Codexia once told Moltke that to understand the basic gestalt of Prosper is to see sanity through a glass darkly. This statement had given him a headache, just as the real Prosper is giving him a headache right now.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    A proposal, then. From this "great peacemaker" of yours. The city is growing. We can't have these old shacks-

    He glances around, fixing his gaze on the pile of old burnt spoons and cracked needles on the floor.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    -and yurts around anymore. They're too ethnic. They're shitting up the place, so to speak. We have a better idea. We will build you houses. Good quality houses! We will build a park for all the prospers of this place, one where you can engage in your "habits" freely. If you ever step out of this place to do your disgusting deeds, we will bring justice down on you so swiftly you'll wish we'd kicked you into the sea instead.

    [​IMG] Prosper:
    Will there be tacos?
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Yes, there will be tacos.


    The woman gets up and quickly shakes the architect's hand. The drug addicts also get up, crowding around the man like a messianic saviour. Only later does he notice that his wallet is missing.

    A few days later, ground on Prosper Park is broken.

    [​IMG]

    --------------------------

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    MY GODDAMN PLANT IS ON FIRE!

    [​IMG]


    More problems.

    Wait a second, why are there two plants?

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Where did this second plant come from?
    [​IMG] lukaszek:

    Well, err. Don't you remember, when you were here last Sunday, well. I have the signed document right here!

    He flashes it in front of the camera, as if he had it in his hand ready to go.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    I wasn't there last Sunday-
    [​IMG] lukaszek:

    Oh well, just send the fire trucks if you can, please? Got to go-

    He clicks off almost as quickly as he had appeared. The architect would surely get to the bottom of this, but right now he has a bigger fish to fry: the grand opening ceremony of Prosper Park.

    In truth Prosper Park has been open to the public for a few days now and is already a huge success. Drug addicts from miles around come here to shoot up, and the park is making almost double from entrance fees alone than it costs.

    [​IMG]

    And that was last night. This morning they had to build two new units of toilets just to cope with the demand.

    [​IMG]

    The blonde man puts on his finest tie and matches it with a much nicer shirt - $25 at Marks and Spencer. He takes his jacket from his old chair and dons it in one smooth motion, shooting his cuffs proudly.

    His "motorcade" takes him to the park, traffic being light at this time in the morning. Around the central plaza a detachment of city workers is putting out chairs and setting up a sizable stage complete with podium for the ceremony. Mountain Dew and Dorito vendors start to unfurl their banners on small stalls. The local junkies all do a bad job of pretending they aren't hanging around.

    Almost six hours later, the ceremony starts. The band plays hits from all RPGs of old. Somewhere in the crowd, a John Romero look-a-like mingles with the ladies.

    Then all is silent, as an ancient figure takes to the stage. He looks caffeined up to the eyeballs.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    Today is an auspicious day. This park is a symbol of the tenacity of our people, our ability to rise above it all. To put aside our petty differences, our petty rivalries, and come together as one. Come together as codexers.

    The crowd applauds enthusiastically. So he does have some talents after all, the architect muses, sitting on a small deck chair with other dignatries on the stage.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    I'm not going to lie to you, folks. The road ahead is a long one, a hard one. We are beset on all sides by difficulties, challenges and enemies. As Sheriff of this great land, I personally pledge myself to you, and promise you competent leadership in the years ahead!

    The crowd applauds once more, though not as animated. Seems leadership isn't so popular after all.

    [​IMG] Crispy:
    I'm not going to let this speech go on too long, as it's a wonderful day and I'm sure you all want to enjoy the festivities-
    [​IMG] Conveniently unnamed heckler no.1:
    Yeah my dew's getting warm!

    Everyone laughs at this. Even the Sheriff cracks a small, almost imperceptible smile.

    [​IMG] Crispy:

    -but there is one man who would like to thank personally, for all his hours of loyal service. Without him, none of this would be possible. Moltke, get up here!

    The architect almost misses this uncharacteristic warm remark. He has been busy scrawling FUCKPORKYFUCKPORKYFUCKPORKY endlessly on his notepad. At the mention of his name, he looks up sheepishy.


    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Me?


    The Sheriff motions for him to get his ass on stage, his smile clearly visible now. The architect gets up slowly and walks to the podium. The crowd starts applauding. The Sheriff grabs his hand, the unexpected action almost taking him aghast.

    [​IMG]

    Show Spoiler
    sorry, TZ's day off


    Behind them, the Mayor of the Wagie Cage broods.

    --------------------------

    The glee of the ceremony is, as always, short-lived as problems, as always, arise. And in the Wagie Cage, problems usually come with a side of pickled cabbage.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    OY VEY! IT'S ANNUDA FUKUSHIMA!

    [​IMG]

    The stealthy tsunami snuck up on them, like a ninja. Nobody knew where it came from, and nobody knew where it went. The only thing they know is that its first target had been the potato electro-station.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    We're knee deep in water down here! How are we supposed to power the town with WET POTATOES?!
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    But doesn't water conduct electricity?

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    No! Wet potatoes are only good for borscht!
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    We'll divert additional potato units to the power plant.
    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    See that you do!

    He hangs up, and the architect laughs hysterically. He laughs so hard that his old chair collapses under him. Lying on the floor, he considers that maybe he needs a new chair. Hell, maybe he needs to move out of this entire shack.

    Then it hits him.

    A FUCKIN' TSUNAMI.

    He just said a fucking tsunami!

    He hits a series of keys on his computer, dialling the number of the chief meteorologist of New Codexia, an unfortunate country bumpkin named Pete. Pete's image pops up on one of the viewscreens, complete with pick-up truck.

    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    Pete! What's going on out there?
    [​IMG] Pete, the conveniently un-avatared meteorologist:
    A lotta water out here, I reckon.
    [​IMG] GrafvonMoltke:
    And?
    [​IMG] Pete, the conveniently un-avatared meteorologist:
    Gettin' closer to th'city, boss.



    [​IMG]

    Oh shit, oh God, oh shit.

    Someone needs to warn the junkies in Prosper Park, before it's too late.

    But it IS too late.

    [​IMG]

    In the ensuing chaos, the hobos, the junkies and all the down-and-outs are all washed out of Prosper Park. Not one is ever seen again, and no bodies are ever found. As for Prosper, her body is also never recovered, but some say that they still find half-finished card structures placed carefully in the oddest places.

    The clean-up is swift and short, and the park returns to normal. On a hot and sticky Thursday afternoon, the blonde architect takes a stroll through the new Prosper Park. A few people give him a look of recognition but most don't even glance at him at all. The place had lost its original charm. No broken needles, no petty crime, no hookers hanging around near the entrances. Just families, children playing games and pop-corn. Endless pop-corn.

    He sighs.

    Life quickly returns back to normal.

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    WHERE ARE THOSE GODDAMN DEFENSIVE SPACE LASERS YOU PROMISED?!


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG] lukaszek:
    IT'S RAINING GODDAMN METEORS OUT HERE!

    The architect groans, and squeezes his temple, a migraine slowly forming.

    Just another day at the office.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2021
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