King Yeshaq had ruled Ethiopia for but a short four years buy the time New Year's day 1419 came around and he had spent most of it consolidating his power and weeding out possibily disloyal lords or members of the army. Yeshaq looked around his kingdom and he was satisfied, it was mostly dirt roads and mud bick houses but he saw no reason why this wasn't a good thing however he did feel that Ethiopia didn't know enough about the outside world nor did it engage in any meaningful amounts of trade. He there for ordered his lords to begin researching ways to finance and promote trade with other nations (game note: trade slider set to 100%). Yeshaq also decided that although his nation faced no outside threats it was always good to have friends so he dispatched an abassador to Nubia with gifts of gold and fine Ethiopian wool carpets (game note: impriving relations with Nubia).
In time relations with Nubia improved and the King arranged to marry the eldest daughter of the Nubian king plus he arranged trade agreements (this was something of a joke since dispite spending money to promote trade Ethiopia didn't trade with any outside nation [trade tech 0 which means we can't send merchants]) plus he got his new father in law to agree to share maps and learning between the two Christian nations of Africa. As a result of trading maps and learning he gained copies of several ancient Greek texts which facinated him. Yeshaq learned of great lords who conquored vast nations and who had far more knowledge of science and learning then Ethiopia had dispite the fact that these ancient men had died more then one thousand years ago.
Yeshaq had gained a vage understanding that the Byzantine Emporer in Constantinople ruled most of the world and that the Patriach in Constaninople was the head of all Orthodoxed Christians including the people of Ethiopia. The problem was the path to Constaninople was blocked by a group of satan worshippers who controlled Egypt. It would be difficult to send messengers to Constantinople (game note: we learned the location of Constaninople when we traded maps with Nubia) but the King decided to send ambassadors in disguise with gifts and letters to help reestablish contact with other Orthodoxed people.
It took almost two years but when the ambassadors returned the king was filled with both wonder and dismay. The wonder was at how advanced the rest of the world was compared to Ethiopia and the dismay was at how low the Orthodoxed peoples had sunk. The mighty emperor who in the ancient texts controlled half of the world had been reduced to controlling just one same provence (Morea had already been taken by the Ottomans); still the city was unlike anything the ambassadors had ever seen before. More then 110,000 people lived there and there were massive structures unlike any ever known in Ethiopia or even the Egypt now controlled by followers of satan. The massive city walls, the tremendous cathedral, and the palace which was without peer in the city of Constantinople inspired awe in each of the east African visitors. So much so that they hired artists to draw and paint pictures of everything they could see plus they made tremendous efforts to collect works of knowledge and learning which they would bring back to Ethiopia.
Yeshaq could hardly believe the news when he heard it. That an all powerful Orthodoxed Empire capable of building the wonders of Constaninople had been brought so low and that his own kingdom was so petty compared to the rest of the world filled him with fear. If Byzantium could be brought so low then what hope did Ethiopia have? Clearly, massive changes were needed and Ethiopia could no longer stay as it had always been. Yeshaq's first order of business was to dispatch merchants (game not: we just got trade tech 1) who would earn money but also bring back knowledge of the outside world (by trading maps with Byzantium we learned of most of the Mideast, North Africa, and Europe). The more Yeshaq learned the more he dispared since Ethiopia was truly pathetic compared to most of the rest of the world.
Still, he was determined to act dicisively. He had merchants bring back crops from around Europe and the middle-east so that improved varieties could be growning in Ethiopia. He was determined to make Ethiopia more open minded towards change so he commissioned several guilds who would study various aspects of agriculture, literature, religion, metal working, stone working, and just about anything else he could think of. The purpose was to bring Ethiopia up to the standards of the rest of the world, improve farm output, and to help Ethiopia become more advanced. In time it bore fruit (game note: event made capital population +2000) but Yeshaq wanted more. He wanted his capital to look like those in Europe and the middle east even if they were only small copies. Yeshaq wanted at least one city in Ethiopia which didn't have dirt roads and which wasn't made of mud brick but to do that he needed manpower and money.
Yeshaq resolved to expand his Kingdom and to enslave those who fought against him. The Ethiopians had always remained in the highlands were the rains watered their crops and their people were most at home. To create a great kingdom Ethiopia would need ports and control over the east African lowlanda but Ethiopia had little manpower and less money. Never the less Yeshaq targeted Mogadisco for colonization since the native there seemed less militant and he taxed his people ever more to pay for it. In time that small colony grew into a city many of the natives joined the city. Next Yeshaq targeted Massawa so that Ethiopia would have a land connection with its ally Nubia. The other proved to be to miltant to colonize so Yeshaq raised a small army and, one by one cleared those provences of natives then colonized them. The captured natives were enslaved and forced to build stone paved roads throughout ethiopia (infastructure 1 achieved) after that Yeshaq redirected the manpower towards achieving his dream of building a new capital.
Awaz was the ancient capital of Ethiopia but it's dirt streets and mudbrick houses didn't project the image of modernatity which Yeshaq desired so a site was located a short way from Awaz and a new city was built using slaves from the new colonies. Sewers were dug, streets were laid out according to the designs from the ancient Greek and Roman texts, streets were lined with cobblestones, and new buildings built. It was a vast improvement over the old capital but it was nothing special by world standards. Still, small walls were built around this small city hub and large areas were left undeveloped so that in the future new civil buildings could be constructed. By the time Yeshaq died in 1436 there was atleast a level one colony in all of east Africa and three provences had advanced to the point they could be reasonably called cities. A large amount of debt was pilled up to do this plus the tax burden on the peasants was crushing but Ethiopia as a nation had advanced greatly.