A Province represents a part of the continent map. Each era has a certain number of provinces and a particular part of the world corresponding to it. It is inevitable to acquire provinces if one is to progress in the game. Provinces reward the player with coins, supplies, medals, diamonds, expansions, goods, goods deposits or with PVP Tournament Towers. The later allows players to start competing for battle points with the units of the towers age.
Scouting a Province
In order to move ahead in the map, one needs to gain control of provinces. But in order to first reach the province, the player needs to scout. Scouting is an expensive procedure and usually requires enormous amounts of coins. The player can commission a scout by clicking on the button on a scout-able province.It is imperative to note that scouting cannot be reversed, and many event quests require players to do so. Hence, it is always a wise decision to have a couple of Provinces unscouted, so that the player needn't conquer another province in order to scout.
Generally, upon conquering a province, the player gets an opportunity to scout a few more neighboring ones. It takes some time (up to 2 days maximum) for the scout to reach its destination. However, sometimes it happens that a player might have conquered a province but not yet displayed more provinces to scout. This generally happens if a player has some previous unscouted provinces left or is yet to conquer a few provinces, upon which he/she would be displayed the option to scout. Hence, it can be concluded that most provinces give the player an option to scout ahead, but not all provinces do.
Rewards Upon Conquering a Province
When a Province is conquered, the player gains a reward. These include, but are not limited to:
- Coins or Supplies
- Goods of the current age
- Diamonds (rarely)
- The PVP Tournament Tower of the age
- Good Deposits (allow the player to produce more amounts of certain goods)
Keep in mind that many events have quests which require the player to conquer provinces, and they have their additional rewards too. Hence the direct and indirect rewards from gaining a province might be higher.
Many a times, rewards like medals or diamonds do not occur singularly but together with coins and supplies. This particularly holds true for lower eras.
Acquiring a Sector
Each province is divided into a number of sections. Each section has to be acquired in order to gain the province as a whole. Each section, also called a sector, can be acquired either through attacking or negotiation. It is obvious that if you choose to attack then you will have to defeat the sector's army. No sector will have more than 8 units in its army, unless, of course, it has 2 waves, then it can have up to 16 units.
The other method to acquire a sector is through negotiation. To negotiate, you don't have to fight the province army. If you possess the goods demanded by the province owner then you can simply click on the 'NEGOTIATE' button and the sector is yours. Keep in mind that it can be quite costly to negotiate for sectors, and most of the times they demand wide varieties of goods from all the preceding 2-3 eras.
From the above, it may appear that attacking seems to be the easier way out. However, several provinces and sectors have their armies with high defense boosts, it even goes up to over 100% for some sectors of Bonus Provinces (for examples see the provinces of El Fuego and Wenoevre), making it hard to win fights even with next age units. They also employ a wide variety of age-dependent units, and also it might sometimes seem impossible to acquire a sector through fighting, as the sector's army might have up to 16 units, but the player will have to fight the entire battle with a maximum of 8 units.
Another thing to note is that not all Main Provinces need to be conquered, from the point of view of the quests. Some of them can be skipped. However, one may more than likely need to acquire those provinces for events, Daily Challenges etc. This is not the case with Bonus Provinces.
When attacking the computer controlled provinces, you may weaken all the computer's units by one health point for a small fee of coins. This may be the difference between losing and winning. It is typically recommended to minimize losses and for an easier win. In the game, most players experience having more coins than supplies.
A new feature called the Show Hall enables the player to watch an advertisement video in lieu of paying coins. It is a voluntary feature and can be disabled.
Types of Provinces
Basically Provinces can be classified as Main Provinces and Bonus Provinces.
Main Provinces are the ones which are connected to the eras of the game. Their armies correspond to the units of that particular era. Towards the later stage of the game, many final provinces of the particular era reward the player with a good sum of diamonds. Each era's map is loosely based on world continents. Like, the Early Ages are based on Portugal and Spain. The Industrial Age takes place in North America, Progressive Era map resembles the rest of Europe, for Modern Era we move to East Asia, the Postmodern Era map is set in Southeast Asia, Contemporary Era takes place in the Middle East, for Tomorrow we move to South America, Future is located in the African continent. Arctic Future is based in Arctic and Oceanic Future is loosely located in the vicinity of New Zealand and the Philippines. Virtual Future we return to North America, Europe and East Asia. Space Age Mars takes place in Mars and the Space Age Asteroid Belt takes place in the Asteroid Belt between Mars and Jupiter.
Bonus Provinces, on the other hand, are comparatively rarer, and have not been updated for the past several years. They are more challenging, and are more expensive to negotiate. To compensate, however, their rewards are equally exciting. There are 3 sets of them currently on the Continent Map. 2 are found in Europe while the third is in North America, comprising of Canada and Mexico.
Each story quest involving the provinces tend to be based on significant historical events, especially wars and other forms of skirmishes. The Bronze Age appears to be based on Germanic tribal conflicts and the Iron Age seems to be based on the Punic Wars. The Early Middle Ages are based on the Saxon Wars, the War of the Roses for the Late Middle Ages, the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars for the Colonial Age, American Civil War for the Industrial Age, World War 1 for the Progressive Era, the Sino-Japanese War and World War 2 Pacific theatre for the Modern Era, the Vietnam War for the Postmodern Era, and the War on Terror for the Contemporary Era. The Industrial Age bonus quest appears to have stemmed from the Mexican Revolution and the Border War on two fronts.
Each province is controlled by a NPC (Non-Playable Character). Most of the owners in the game are generally aggressive, unpleasant and/or disagreeable. A few even border on insanity. The province owners have no functional use in the game and merely serve the purpose of making the continent map more lively and providing the basis for the story quests. A majority of the province owners are based on real-life rulers throughout history
A visual list of all the province owners in the game can be found here.