This Is Madness 2 - Imperium Sine Fine (Interactive Mega Campaign)

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McGrey

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India looks surprisingly normal. Yellow tip – Vijaynagara – a bit light blue – Bahmanis – light yellow – Gujarat maybe? – Cylon, wonder what the violet one is. I somehow halfway expected a unified Hindustan, but then, who knows what eldrich AI horrors Czoklet has hidden there...

Well, the empire is quite modern in it's financial policy of financing everything with loans! ;)

Interestingly, we still have a truce with Ajuuran...

Wait, what is that grayed out coat of arms...
IR0MqJg.jpg
 
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Malal

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India looks surprisingly normal. Yellow tip – Vijaynagara – a bit light blue – Bahmanis – light yellow – Gujarat maybe? – Cylon, wonder what the violet one is. I somehow halfway expected a unified Hindustan, but then, who knows what eldrich AI horrors Czoklet has hidden there...

Well, the empire is quite modern in it's financial policy of financing everything with loans! ;)

Interestingly, we still have a truce with Ajuuran...

Wait, what is that grayed out coat of arms...

I think thats the mayan coat of arms...but...didnt the xenoi kill the mayans?
 

ThetrueColt

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So the interest costs us almost as much as our entire fleet maintenance. The economy of the Imperium needs some help or new "ideas". We cannot allow the glorious Imperium to carry the weight of the highest inflation in the world!

I like the religious overview - almost completely hidden from us :D


As fas as all the speculations go, I'll hold my suggestions back until we actually know what might be going on.
 

varetta

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I send my new senator today. Tell me if you do not receive it.
 
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CzokletMuss

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I agree that because of the massive changes to history, many of the great minds we are familiar with won't appear and influence the direction of science and the arts. While EU4 and V2 aren't really affected by a change in the arts, science does play an important role. Clearly the Imperium isn't focused on scientific breakthroughs at the moment, reflected in our Eastern tech. As time passes though, brilliant people will still be born, both inside and outside the Imperium's borders. No one disagrees that the world is a much darker place than our own, meaning the morals are alien to us (slavery is a necessary part of the Imperium's economy, children are castrated and made into servants, ect.).

Would all this not mean that some brilliant people who never rose to prominence in our history because their methods were extreme would be accepted in this mad world? Methods that are too extreme for our world would be commonplace in this story. I don't think such effects would be noticed for some time, but can we expect some events or localization text to reflect this dark world's effect on technology by the V2 era?
It would be so terrible and fitting at the same time :p
This is an excellent question. I agree that there is more to great historical changes than just actions of handful of exceptionl individuals, whether they are political leaders, innovators or explorers. Indeed the farther away we move from point of divergence, the less the world in "Imperium Sine Fine" will resemble our own. This is what's so attractive in alternative history - in a new timeline not online political but also cultural and technological changes would make such timeline alien and weird to us very quickly. Although if done wrong it may become a cliche described by Zeppelins From Another World (but hey, zeppelins are really cool!), it gives a writer unique opportunity to explore many what-ifs and why-nots.

The problem is this is an AAR (heh) and not a book, hence I'm limited in this regard by the game. No matter what happens, when transferred to Victoria II this world will follow the railways established by technology tree in Vicky. Yes, I will write some events and localization to reflect how distant this timeline is from our own but right at this moment I can't say how extensive such overhaul will be. I'll surely need some help with conversion to V2 when it comes to that; luckily there are no more patches and expansions to V2, so there's that. But to sum it up, right now I can't really give you any details - let's reach at least 17th century in game first, shall we? :)
Praise St. Marcos!
May he always protect the Imperium from evil!
You just keep on delivering Czoklet, your effort and determination appear to be without limits so far. Outstanding!
So Pisa is considered a "great power" by the game? *Heresy intensifies*
I like the changes, the only thing I'm unsure of is the new colonial regions. Does it really suit the Imperium to create vassal states instead of adding more provinces to its own glory? Is it even plausible to have "advanced" separate colonial administration with liberty desire and so on?
I am not a member of the Whites, but guys, this is HERESY. Praise the right man, it's Saint Markos, there is no "c". :p
Thank you very much, it means a lot to me :)
Yup, it definitely is, no matter how heretical this sounds - I'll do my best to change its status ASAP.
If you refer to vassalization of Bavaria or Funj - well, it allows me to make use of vassal feeding which will be very limited in this campaign anyways. :p Historically both Roman Empire and Eastern Roman Empire didn't hesitate to create client states (Armenia for Byzantium for instance) whenever it suited their needs, so I don't think it's wrong. As for the colonies, due to the distances involved decentralization and delegation of power was the only realistic solution before modern inventions like telegraph, radio or telephone. So yeah, I see no problem here either.
Heresy? Offending Saint Markos is EXTRA HERESY! Repent or burn!
You forget the general mindset of the Imperium. Sure some Blue aristocrats are erudite but most of the people's opinions are clearly White with a desire to burn what is dangerous at all costs. :p
In fact I think the technology course is just to not fall be behind the Xenoi, never to be ahead of them like in 1984 where the permanent war does not mean increased progress (quite the contrary in fact)
The reds also want to burn dangerous things, primarily gunpowder, in a cannon barrel with a cannonball behind it, that's a pretty dangerous thing that should be burned, preferably while pointed at the enemies of the imperium.
Always there to blur definite separations aren't they ? :p
And the whites would use shredded seditious and heretical literature as wadding in the cannon before pointing it at the enemies of the imperium.
In Byzantium literacy was very high comparing to other contemporary states, reaching up to 20-30% according to some, so keep this in mind while talking about the Imperium - it's not a horde of illiterate barbarians after all. Technology is something we should discuss during the Senate Session but I'm glad that you already found some creative way to approach the problem as Zqrfmb showed us :D
Praise St-Markos, it's updated !
That was a terrifying defeat for the Navy but in the end Carthago is now once again connected by land to the heart of the Imperium.
The addition of Aragon and Funj as vassals is good news. Does Aragon still have some cores in Iberia or is it the last enclave of Christianity ?
It is time to close the Pont-Euxin at last it seems but the matter of Aquitaine must be also dealt quickly before the Xenoi try to take advantage of the situation.
I guess for the the new character we have to precise to which faction he belongs ?
Glory to Angeloi!
Due to the way how EU4 converter works (it removes ALL the cores from Europe and adds the cores of the exported countries) no, it didn't. Hence why I wrote an event template which allows me to give cores for every European country which somehow gets independence again. So yes, right now it has cores where there should be - sorry that I forgot to mention this in dev diary.
Yes, please precise which Faction (if any) you want to join!
Loved the chapter, lots of grim dark followed by small moments of hope (that are usually crushed)
The time has come for the Reds to rise once more (hopefully, the navy keeps getting killed so that's got to reduce the Blue's prestige a bit)
The time has come, assemble the league of elderly angry crippled warmongers once more!!!
Though I have to say I was hoping Caledonia would scratch out a continuing existence on the edge of the world for centuries unnoticed.
Now to start writing a new character
Thanks :) Caledonia is still there though not for long I fear.
Amazing chapter as per usual. Really excited for a Senate session after so long :p.
The Elderly League of Senatorial Men may have lost most its members, but it shall rise once more!
Yeah, I can't wait for the Senate Session too :)
Great update and well written as usual! It looks like the Xenoi get weaker. Slowly, subtle, but it is there...
I'm glad you noticed :)
Hopefully the new Megas Droungarios will pay more attention to the maps of the currents around the pillars of hercules, it seems his navy was just out of advantageous waters. Things are looking grim for the horde, but grimmer for us with Czoklet's changes to make the AI less feeble taking effect next chapter. At least if we're lucky we can walk away with full coastal control up to Sicily.
Ahem, well, this is actually my fault - I forgot that coastal waters in Mediterranean do not extend to Gibraltar itself :oops: It was really silly mistake.
Yes, the AI should grow some balls now, at least I hope it will. And if everything goes right the Horde should be crippled for a long time - though of course crippling them could mean Timurids DOWing them as soon as truce runs out... As for control of the coast, I'm proud to say that we managed to almost recreate western borders of the Imperium under reign of Justinian the Great:
Justinian555AD.png
Almost there! :)
A successful war against the Xenoi, Aragon reborn, the Horde is in a weakened state, and quite possibly signs of a beneficial relationship with Pisa. So much good news from this chapter, though there is of course the expected bad news... the British Isles are looking more and more doomed with each passing day and Aquitaine has the stupidity to become the Kaiser of the Unholy Foreign Kingdom. If only we had let them die years ago....
I look forward to the State of the World update and the special update (show us India!), and the madness of the Senate session quickly approaches. Hopefully the new generation of Senators will be able to reach agreements so they can properly guide the Imperium.
The Aquitaine becoming HRE was surprising to say at least and completely retarded story-wise - but don't worry, the Mad King will pay for his arrogance. State of the World is up, as for the next special update it should be released in several days.
Senators? Reach agreement? Yeah, sure :D
I wouldn't write of the brits just yet. If the empire continues it's pressure on the Xenoi, Caledonia still has a chance to come back, take the rest of the Isles and form Great Britan. And that would be awesome.
That is actually not completely impossible. And it would be awesome indeed :)
Seems like my character is one of only four survivors. Surely the great task of preparing the new kids has been passed onto us.
We shall see if they will listen to the voice of reason and (unaffiliated) unity.
--
The Basileus bribes a Khanate, he is giving access to Pisans and he declares war upon Aquitaine, which was desperatelay sved some time ago.
Desperate measures but fitting in these darkest of times, aren't they?
Also, we have got to be at 50 loans or so at this point. I am looking forward to the complete collapse of the Imperial economy. :D
Czoklet, do you mind telling us where the inflation stands at this point?
As one of the last of the old guard I expect you to be example to the newcomers during the next Session ;)
Right now we're at 12% inflation and I think the Imperium is more or less >5000g in debt - mercenaries to save manpower and new fleet every few years won't pay for themselves, you know!
This is wonderfull!
Thank you very much and welcome! :)
Senator Marcus Arrius:
As the representative of the Arrius family, I declare myself a member of the Blue Demes. Glory to the Imperium!
{{I was given permission to make one post in-character to declare for my Faction. CzokletMuss, if I've made any mistake in my formatting, please let me know. I might be a little rusty.}}
We all are, don't worry :) And no mistakes were made.
Well I'm in the middle of studies so I can't write it right now but I'm sure willing to continue. I'll try to come up with my character tonight
Good to hear :)
Just sayin, that fleet we sent out into the indian ocean, didnt really discover much did it?
Most likely due to attrition and the lack of ports to put the fleet in
As I mentioned (I think), the expedition of Kermanos was limited more or less to imperial supply range on the sea, so it couldn't really go that far. And there were other reasons as well - more on that in the next special update.
India looks surprisingly normal. Yellow tip – Vijaynagara – a bit light blue – Bahmanis – light yellow – Gujarat maybe? – Cylon, wonder what the violet one is. I somehow halfway expected a unified Hindustan, but then, who knows what eldrich AI horrors Czoklet has hidden there...
Well, the empire is quite modern in it's financial policy of financing everything with loans! ;)
Interestingly, we still have a truce with Ajuuran...
Wait, what is that grayed out coat of arms...
I think thats the mayan coat of arms...but...didnt the xenoi kill the mayans?
*Inception bwowm*
Must have been released in the Peasant's War?
jb9zm9d.jpg

So the interest costs us almost as much as our entire fleet maintenance. The economy of the Imperium needs some help or new "ideas". We cannot allow the glorious Imperium to carry the weight of the highest inflation in the world!
I like the religious overview - almost completely hidden from us :D
As fas as all the speculations go, I'll hold my suggestions back until we actually know what might be going on.
The inflation got a little out of hand, I admit - but I really needed the money to rebuilt the fleet (few times) and to pay for mercs to make sure that manpower never goes below 30% or so. I really don't want Peasants' War and the attrition in the desert is really nasty.
The religious overview will be unlocked as soon as new regions with these religions are discovered in game.
I send my new senator today. Tell me if you do not receive it.
I sent you my comments :)
 
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McGrey

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We could try to build a dam between the pillars of hercules to deal with the Xenoi navy...
 

Zqrfmb

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I noticed bavaria had you favored as a candidate, but was backing aquitaine, is there something put in to prevent the ACTUAL holy roman empire from being called as such?
 

Ponce_The_Great

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We could try to build a dam between the pillars of hercules to deal with the Xenoi navy...
I was thinking the same thing, at this point it might be more effective to just sink the Imperial navy there to block the straits.
 

GaiusC

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Impressive chapter.


As for the state of the Empire, some interesting bits of information:

- War Exhaustion is reasonable. Probably because the last years weren't that bloody.

- Interests and inflation are killing the economy / and inflation is killing the research as well, I think
Hopefully, some loans can be repaid without having to take another loan to pay for that...

- -1 Stab is horrendous and impacts economy and military

- Free slot for Idea - Senate will vote on that obviously

- New Infantry in the next few months. This will be welcome since the defense of the army will be massively improved.
I notice the Empire can build cannons. Tools of the demons obviously, but well, will that stop the Angeloi from using them? ;)

- Xenoi navy is huge. Carracks will be available in a few years though. Maybe time to consider big ships? (no idea here, really, just pondering)
I'm wondering if rebuilding 150 ships every 2 decades is actually sound or if it wouldn't be better to stick with, say, 50 max until the Imperial Navy is advanced enough to actually challenge the Xenoi navy - until then, spare money and build just enough ships to beat the other nations around...

- Horde and Timurids have been killing each other's armies of late (specially the Horde, considering its force-limit, which is now ripe for the taking), and their manpower is far lower than the Empire's as well. Xenoi definitely are THE big threat.

- Except for that very weird fact that Xenoi have -20 Prestige ! They must have taken a beating in Americas, and the revolts-turned-independance of some conquered provinces, like Aragon, worsened their position. As said above, odds are that some countries rebelled and seceded in the West as well, which is good because Xenoi armies will have to stay in America to deal with the mess, instead of expanding in Europe. The only truly good sign when it comes to the Xenoi Xolal, but a pretty big one - their troubles mean they won't be able to do that much damage in Europe for years to come.
Besides, that's probably what explains the last war's events: their navy is free to do as it wants since there isn't much need of it to police the West - therefore, it can regroup and destroy any opposing European navy. On the other hand, rebellions and possibly wars with Incas eat up a good deal of Xenoi armies, allowing a slow Reconquista in European lands.
A not-too-bad situation that might ceases 10 or 20 years from now, when the Peasant Wars are over.
 

CzokletMuss

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I noticed bavaria had you favored as a candidate, but was backing aquitaine, is there something put in to prevent the ACTUAL holy roman empire from being called as such?
HERESY! There is only one Emperor and only one Imperium! The blasphemous mockery created by Charles the Usurper deserves only to be destroyed and forgotten!

But game-wise yeah, I guess it would be possible to become HRE, though with permanent maluses to Imperial Authority it would be rather useless (and completely heretical).
We could try to build a dam between the pillars of hercules to deal with the Xenoi navy...
I was thinking the same thing, at this point it might be more effective to just sink the Imperial navy there to block the straits.
I've never heard of Atlantropa, thanks for the link! :) The Imperial Navy has to be reformed, there's no doubt about this - so far the gigantic Western warships managed to destroy imperial dromonoi but there must be a way to regain ancient marital superiority of the Imperium.
Impressive chapter.


As for the state of the Empire, some interesting bits of information:

- War Exhaustion is reasonable. Probably because the last years weren't that bloody.

- Interests and inflation are killing the economy / and inflation is killing the research as well, I think
Hopefully, some loans can be repaid without having to take another loan to pay for that...

- -1 Stab is horrendous and impacts economy and military

- Free slot for Idea - Senate will vote on that obviously

- New Infantry in the next few months. This will be welcome since the defense of the army will be massively improved.
I notice the Empire can build cannons. Tools of the demons obviously, but well, will that stop the Angeloi from using them? ;)

- Xenoi navy is huge. Carracks will be available in a few years though. Maybe time to consider big ships? (no idea here, really, just pondering)
I'm wondering if rebuilding 150 ships every 2 decades is actually sound or if it wouldn't be better to stick with, say, 50 max until the Imperial Navy is advanced enough to actually challenge the Xenoi navy - until then, spare money and build just enough ships to beat the other nations around...

- Horde and Timurids have been killing each other's armies of late (specially the Horde, considering its force-limit, which is now ripe for the taking), and their manpower is far lower than the Empire's as well. Xenoi definitely are THE big threat.

- Except for that very weird fact that Xenoi have -20 Prestige ! They must have taken a beating in Americas, and the revolts-turned-independance of some conquered provinces, like Aragon, worsened their position. As said above, odds are that some countries rebelled and seceded in the West as well, which is good because Xenoi armies will have to stay in America to deal with the mess, instead of expanding in Europe. The only truly good sign when it comes to the Xenoi Xolal, but a pretty big one - their troubles mean they won't be able to do that much damage in Europe for years to come.
Besides, that's probably what explains the last war's events: their navy is free to do as it wants since there isn't much need of it to police the West - therefore, it can regroup and destroy any opposing European navy. On the other hand, rebellions and possibly wars with Incas eat up a good deal of Xenoi armies, allowing a slow Reconquista in European lands.
A not-too-bad situation that might ceases 10 or 20 years from now, when the Peasant Wars are over.
Thanks :) As for your comments:
1) Whether or not to use the daemonic tools of the Westerners is something which will be discussed soon.
2) Future and reform (?) of the Imperial Navy will be discussed on the Senate Session, because frankly it has to change or I may just as well stop making those damn galleys.
3) The Peasants' War in Xenoi Xolal is over - I didn't get the notification in game so I don't have any screenshot but while I was testing my tweaks and updates for "El Dorado" I had to switch tags frequently and yeah, the +5 global unrest is no more :(
 
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Attalus

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I expect some sly comments from Whites and Reds to the Blues about the galleys :p
 

Enlil

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I have a few comments:
1. On the topic of the Imperium being voted Holy Roman Emperor, you could interpret it as the members of the HRE acknowledging the fault of their ways and returning to the True Empire.

2. Pisa and Rome working together? This is madness CzokletMuss!

3. If you need help when you get to V2, I can help. I'm pretty good at modding flavor for converted saves, because I am a huge fan of the EU4 to V2 converted, and have done countless mega-campaigns into that time frame. (One I had to rework a V2 conversion for a world with Communism already in existence. (Aka Mazdakites survived until V2, so I redid all of the Communist localization, policies and such to be more in line with a Mazdakite ideology instead of a Marxist one.
 
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3. If you need help when you get to V2, I can help. I'm pretty good at modding flavor for converted saves, because I am a huge fan of the EU4 to V2 converted, and have done countless mega-campaigns into that time frame. (One I had to rework a V2 conversion for a world with Communism already in existence. (Aka Mazdakites survived until V2, so I redid all of the Communist localization, policies and such to be more in line with a Mazdakite ideology instead of a Marxist one.

That is glorious Enlil. :p
 

Enlil

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That is glorious Enlil. :p

Like for example, where Vanilla Communist parties are Atheist, most Mazdakite Communist parties were Moralistic, as in the alternate history Communism represented religious brotherhood and equality taken to an extreme level. They are usually pacifistic, moralistic, and instead of a Proletarian Dictatorship they had a more elaborate form of government, and they supported both political and social reform. I'm sorry for going off topic, I am merely giving proof of the possible assistance I could provide for this AAR in its final stretch.
 

Attalus

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I guess the whole Senate can provide help with all things that are said during our peaceful conversations :p

I wonder what could Greek Fire accomplish. The Empire still has the formula so it could still be used especially on galleys (they'd be less of a joke that right now :p ). But it's also a really frightening weapon on the other hand.
I don't know if navies are moddable but I guess it must be, knowing a bit the engine. How about we upgrade the next galleys with greek fire adding as much fire pips as carracks and maybe even more ? However the cost of galleys should be much higher to compensate (you have to pay much money for the fire itself and those who use it) and also a modifier that lowers navy morale (I mean imagine a galley explodes during the battle ; ships with gunpowder is frightening when it blows but greekfire ones would be even more frightening )
 
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Zqrfmb

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HERESY! There is only one Emperor and only one Imperium! The blasphemous mockery created by Charles the Usurper deserves only to be destroyed and forgotten!

But game-wise yeah, I guess it would be possible to become HRE, though with permanent maluses to Imperial Authority it would be rather useless (and completely heretical).

Well, in regards to that...

1. On the topic of the Imperium being voted Holy Roman Emperor, you could interpret it as the members of the HRE acknowledging the fault of their ways and returning to the True Empire.

Basically what he said. Not sure how you could turn that to your advantage, though, since you can't reform your way into eating the princes unless you mod in something beneficial to you, which is more hairetical than Harry the Hairy Heretic's Heretical Hair, and one of the two princes is your vassal already. At any rate, this weirdness will hopefully stop with the HRE evaporating before Poland or Aragorn become emperor, and you can pummel aquitaine until they agree to stop being stupid.

Also: I think I figured out why Pisa wanted the access, they were pretending to oppose the Xenoi in order to garner favor with the empire and be allowed to scout its italian lands and perform sabotage. However, this was a top-secret deal between the doge and the... tlaotoani, I think is the term. At any rate, the aztec generals were not told of this scheme, otherwise it would arouse suspicion, and a few thousand pisan sacrifices would go nicely towards smoothing out the recent turbulence in Pisan-Aztec relations since Pisa chose to keep full control of their trade over protection.
 

CzokletMuss

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I expect some sly comments from Whites and Reds to the Blues about the galleys :p
Me too :)
I have a few comments:
1. On the topic of the Imperium being voted Holy Roman Emperor, you could interpret it as the members of the HRE acknowledging the fault of their ways and returning to the True Empire.

2. Pisa and Rome working together? This is madness CzokletMuss!
Well, in regards to that...

Basically what he said. Not sure how you could turn that to your advantage, though, since you can't reform your way into eating the princes unless you mod in something beneficial to you, which is more hairetical than Harry the Hairy Heretic's Heretical Hair, and one of the two princes is your vassal already. At any rate, this weirdness will hopefully stop with the HRE evaporating before Poland or Aragorn become emperor, and you can pummel aquitaine until they agree to stop being stupid.

Also: I think I figured out why Pisa wanted the access, they were pretending to oppose the Xenoi in order to garner favor with the empire and be allowed to scout its italian lands and perform sabotage. However, this was a top-secret deal between the doge and the... tlaotoani, I think is the term. At any rate, the aztec generals were not told of this scheme, otherwise it would arouse suspicion, and a few thousand pisan sacrifices would go nicely towards smoothing out the recent turbulence in Pisan-Aztec relations since Pisa chose to keep full control of their trade over protection.
Well, theoretically it may be done somehow story-wise, though IMHO it wouldn't really suit the Roman mentality. But there is still the question why should I do this - what HRE has to offer in this timeline really (game-wise)? As Zqrfmb said, it would require heavy modding to make it work, since Imperial Authority will never rise due to insufficient number of electors and fact that half of them (Bavaria) is vassalized by me.

Obviously what happened must've been a sneaky Pisan plot, so I think you're on to something :)

3. If you need help when you get to V2, I can help. I'm pretty good at modding flavor for converted saves, because I am a huge fan of the EU4 to V2 converted, and have done countless mega-campaigns into that time frame. (One I had to rework a V2 conversion for a world with Communism already in existence. (Aka Mazdakites survived until V2, so I redid all of the Communist localization, policies and such to be more in line with a Mazdakite ideology instead of a Marxist one.
That is glorious Enlil. :p
Like for example, where Vanilla Communist parties are Atheist, most Mazdakite Communist parties were Moralistic, as in the alternate history Communism represented religious brotherhood and equality taken to an extreme level. They are usually pacifistic, moralistic, and instead of a Proletarian Dictatorship they had a more elaborate form of government, and they supported both political and social reform. I'm sorry for going off topic, I am merely giving proof of the possible assistance I could provide for this AAR in its final stretch.
This is indeed glorious and I would be happy to use your help, Enlil :) I have c. 1000h in EU4 and in CK2 but only c.50h in Victoria 2, so your help will be invaluable to me. Especially since by the time conversion to V2 is going to happen "Imperium Sine Fine" will probably become a full-fledged mod. In any case, I' will be honored to cooperate with you :)

I guess the whole Senate can provide help with all things that are said during our peaceful conversations :p
I wonder what could Greek Fire accomplish. The Empire still has the formula so it could still be used especially on galleys (they'd be less of a joke that right now :p ). But it's also a really frightening weapon on the other hand.
I don't know if navies are moddable but I guess it must be, knowing a bit the engine. How about we upgrade the next galleys with greek fire adding as much fire pips as carracks and maybe even more ? However the cost of galleys should be much higher to compensate (you have to pay much money for the fire itself and those who use it) and also a modifier that lowers navy morale (I mean imagine a galley explodes during the battle ; ships with gunpowder is frightening when it blows but greekfire ones would be even more frightening )
Greek fire you say, eh?

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;)

That inflation is a serious problem
It is indeed - at least I have Administrative Ideas which make loans a little less painful.
 
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