Technological changes on Altus began to progress following several key developments in the world. The direct effect was predictable - more convenient farming, better tools, and faster travel. The indirect effects was that regimes began to face challenges they never knew existed. The status quo began to change, often for the worse. As inter-regional trade began to collapse, societies built on crafts and specific goods vanished. Population declined (especially in Kavees and Redoga) as famines could no longer be prevented by benevolent neighbours. The rule of law vanished as local Arcva courts were deposed and sent into exile, which caused further depletion of artisan communities who could no longer protect themselves.
There were numerous new developments that took place in the years between 1700 and 1800:
- Mathematics, such as algebra, developed by Redogan siege engineers advanced many fields of research.
- Basic chemistry developed in Ghidovia resulted in higher quality metals, the use of advanced fertilizers, and new types of plating.
- Astronomers in Ghidovia were able to prove that Altus is flat.
- Architecture improved to allow more complex structures to be built, including basic stone castles.
- Primitive cranes, watermills, and crossbows began to appear as engineering improved in the Cellian Empire.
- Improved Cartography developed by the Iridians allowed for navigation across waters without the need for coastlines as a guide.
- Shipbuilding from the Iron League allowed for more solid hulls to withstand harsh seas and triangular sails that were more useful into the wind than square sails.
- Crop Rotation emerged in Arcellus, allowing for previously nutrient-deficient soils to grow crops.
- Animal Domestication expanded from Redoga. Horses and Pigs became domesticated to compliment cattle and sheep. Horses begin to gradually replace oxen on farms.
End of Redoga
The unified entity of Redoga had existed in one form or another since 1422. The defeat of Zarod Butos against the Cellian Empire led to the loss of Papiska, the rebellion of the Onuds in Starport, human revolts in Aval and in Mallead further weakened the authority of the throne. Inexperienced Zarod Butos II fought several failed wars to subdue these defections from Redoga. Though they proved moderately successful, the ability for revolting Dogas to hide within stone castles made the effort needed to subdue them far greater than the beleaguered Zarod could afford. In 1842, Butos II received word that there was another revolt against Arcva rule in the Teube Valley. The importance of the iron ore from that region was paramount, and the Zarod set off that winter with a core army that was complimented by tens of thousands of militia picked up along the way.
The Battle of the Teube River
The Revolting Teube humans fought a different style of war. Atop their trained horses, they had always been able to move quickly yet could not defeat a heavily armoured group of infantry. With improvements in husbandry and horse collars, new breeds of large horses emerged as work animals. These animals could carry their own set of iron armour and a mounted warrior similarly equipped. The large cavalry army was also complimented by traditional light cavalry, who attacked baggage trains of the Zarod when they came close. The attacking Zarod began burning villages along the Teube River near the eastern edge of Sheuphador Lake.
When the cavalry army arrived with a small group of archers, they were faced with the loosely-organized army of the Zarod set up before them. The light infantry of both sides met first in the middle, but the Zarod was clearly better equipped, and the Teube archers withdrew. The light cavalry of Teube circled the rear, trying to pick off any who left the main force. Though they suffered high losses, they kept the much smaller human force spread out. Finally, the Teube heavy cavalry charged, and were virtually unopposed as they crushed the poorly equipped Zarod's army. As they were routed, the light cavalry picked off straggelers and sent the Zarod fleeing.
The Seven Zarodoms
As Redoga crumbled, new "Zarodoms" were proclaimed by the Dogas of Starport, Dan, and Acci. Meanwhile, self-proclaimed Kings rose out of Teube, Mallead, and Aval. The Zarod of Redoga kept his title, but the lands he ruled shrank each decade until only those near the lake and his personal fortresses became his own.
Ghidovia had thrived during the dawn of the Castle Age. With its internal politics stable, successive Zarodesses were able to construct fortifications along major riverways and near important settlements. When the Crimson Sails withdrew from Ghidovia and the Iron League emerged, maritime trade became more expensive for Ghidovia. With their internal borders secure, Ghidovia constructed a number of large fortifications connected magically through highly secret rituals to allow them rapid responses to any incursions to her borders. The Ghidovian Wastes were watched, and the Storm Mountains mined. After minor skirmishes between the Iron League and Ghidovia, they agreed to split eastern Ghidovia. Lands west of Crown Peak to Ghidovia, and the north and south shores of the Royal bay remained in the Iron League.
The Great Arcane Heist
Ghidovia used its academy to attract magical talent from across the world and swell its ritual and reagent stores. Sometimes, students of the academy would return to their homes in Arcellus, Redoga, or Kavees and use their stolen knowledge in direct opposition of Ghidovia's ally, the Cellian Empire. Zarodess Sarah Ragnarr began to restrict foreign students in the academy, and banned foreign merchants from entering beyond the single port of West Pizors. Advanced alloys of iron were produced by the Ghidovian Mana Seekers and the process kept a closely guarded secret. As the restrictions on foreign access increased, some scheming wizards began to plot a heist of the now-restricted weapons. A foreign mercenary band used a linked portal to enter the academy and seize many ritual tomes, alchemic dust, and magical items. They made their escape using another portal while they were barricaded within one of the towers with hostages.
After consulting with her Dogas in 1859, Sarah ordered the destruction of all teleportation circles in Ghidovia and created new, secret circles that were closely guarded and whose coordinates were only passed along encoded so that they could not be deciphered if stolen. The restriction on foreign merchants was changed so that ships would have to wait in harbour and could only be visited by designated Ghidovian Cogs to trade. Large sections of walls were created in northern Ghidovia to protect against Vasten Raiders, and patrols along the coast set up to catch smugglers. As the Cellian Empire and Redoga continued to decline in the west, Ghidovia sealed herself off from the outside world to weather the storm of the changing times in lonely isolation.