Six Ages Ride Like the Wind Thoughts / Tips

Look to put someone with at least Renowned Combat ability on your circle and a second best fighter.(in case the first is injured/killed) Learn Elmal Guards the Sunpath God Story and get the ritual reward to enhance the quester's abilities to raise combat ability. If people are 60 or older their kind of at risk of dying out so balance that consideration with who you train up.  

Alternatively, Dostal Elk Hunter Ritual will also improve males' combat ability.  Gamari Horse Mother ritual can improve female combat ability as well but the mission tends to be harder in my experience.  If you're going to boost someone's attack with these 2 rituals in combination with the Elmal Sunpath one, check first if the worsipper is selectable in the Elmal Guards the Sunpath story.  I'm not sure why some worshippers don't qualify for it sometimes.  (Females might have to be Osara worshippers to qualify)

Have someone from each family on your circle and males and females to get the most magic during sacred time. The extra magic is worth having to balance abilities.  

Diplomacy is hugely underrated. If you're fighting someone at home pick Parley, and then Conciliate at the beginning. A highly skilled Diplomat on your circle can talk a lot of clans out of ever fighting you and just go home.(even against clans that hate you) No fights, no wounds to worry about healing or new swords to recruit.  Most clans will accept parley and if they reject conciliate you can still fight them with opening moves like Skirmish.  Some Excellent rated Diplomacy clan members are pretty strong at conciliate, but by Renowned or Heroic you can parley conciliate out of a lot of battles.
If you're not confident in Conciliation, paying a tribute to a few raiders of around 20 goods/cattle can be cheaper than worrying about healing later. The more you're outnumbered the more it will cost to make a convincing tribute.

If a clan hates you early on, sending an emissary with 20 or so gifts can often get them off hating you. (Or some 5-7 horses)

Early fortifications I'd get would be Watch Tower, Stake Perimiter, and Stockade, then whatever else you can pick up.  If you don't raid early in the beginning, you probably won't get raided too much even in harsh.  Stockade is kind of expensive so you might have to balance it a little with setting up shrines.  I'll list shrine preferences later.  

The more you attack clans, the more likely they'll attack you later.

Get an ally early. Always ask them to join you when raiding a clan.(in bottom right screen)  You can also choose to send an emissary to an ally and Call on Favors with them on the emissary screen. (they do infinite favors) Select the relations screen, then the emissary screen, and select your allied clan.  Now slide your options in the top center where it says goals, choose Call on Favor. Even if you don't have a favor owed you can "call on favors" to your allies.  You can often ask for magic from your ally and they will give you 2 points or a blessing (like improved war magic) free as a favor. You'll call so many more favors than they'll ever ask of you. Proposing an alliance with a gift of 20 or so goods/cattle is usually a safe chance, especially if they like you already.  Magic favor chances may depend on the clan you ally with. A clan with a magical reputation might more readily share magic while others might not have any available. Just don't give all your goods when proposing an alliance because they somehow know and don't trust you when you do so. You can also ask free favors of information on new places to explore from allies too.

Get a single level Erissa shrine built. You can play through the entire game without any magic besides healing and actually get on well through it. You can literally have all the other magics in this game and not be able to beat it without healing magics in some way.  Learn the Cure and Healing blessing. If members are more injured or sick, you can select the shrine menu and swap between automatic curing and healing, the shrine heals/cures a good number of members in between seasons. Its overall more effective than repeatedly paying to heal.  

Exploring at your own home gets you trade and exotic goods which makes setting up trade routes easier as more clans want your stuff.  It can also boost amount of items crafted in a year.  Of all the places to explore, home is the most reliable rewards.(I think about 6 or 7 exotics can be found, but 4 is usually a good minimum to strive for) There are some great things you can find exploring elsewhere, but I wouldn't make it a priority outside of home exploration. You can get quite a few random rewards just traveling to no where in particular.(still wouldn't prioritize but fun)  Inilla's Find blessing can help if your characters are having trouble finding exotics.(usually doesn't take too long though)

Screwing up God's Rituals gets clans to like you less while succeeding gets better relations. Especially if they join your rituals. Be careful not to ask Wheels to rituals or do things that can offend them in it.(Like doing bad things to Samnal)  Doing Ceremony venture improves your chances of succeeding in rituals and can get you up to 2 Magic points.(Don't have a shamam do Ceremony Ventures) Pay attention as sometimes Ceremony ventures will warn you they went poorly which means a ritual could go poorly.  Using a point of Ritual magic in sacred time, improves success in God's Rituals. If you're not familiar with the rituals, the least frustrating way to go through it is do Ceremony venture first part of Sea season  and then do the Ritual the second part of Sea Season. Sacrifice 20-30 goods/cattle. Then you can always restart the year as you get to know what does and doesn't work in the rituals. There is always a chance things fail anyway even if you do them "correct". 

When you do the rituals look at the abilities of your character. Sometimes you're better off using options that are not quite what happen in the original god stories. Like Elmals sunpath, recommends high leadership members first, but you can be better off going with a Excellent combatant and just using an offensive answer every time. Although they recommend a worshipper of Elmal, someone with real good abilities such as in combat can trump that.

Sometimes you get different reward options even for getting through the rituals in different ways.

My favorite rituals are Elmal Guards the Sun Path for boosting a ring member's combat. Busenari's Story for Restoring your pastures reward. 100 Cows is tempting but restoring your pastures improves things overall and gets you out of having to Restore Pastures for several years in the ventures which takes a much greater toll on cattle.(Do this ritual when members start complaining about over grazing and needing to restore pastures) Again, another example, if you've got a Busenari worshipper with fair food ability, and a different worshipper with something like renowned or even Excellent food, the higher rated member might perform better than the traditional worshipper. I like doing Ekarna's story if you have someone that can pull it off and you want to improve a members Diplomacy ability.(If you can get them to Renowned its especially worth it) Taming the Black Eel River is useful for getting more trade and raid options.(Oslira is not as useful early on)  Hyalor Tablet maker can get multiple clans to like you more but it can be a bit annoying to succeed with sometimes and backfire.  Dostal's Elk Hunter can boost male members attack ability.  Gamari Horse Mother ritual will boost female members attack abilities, though it tends to be harder to succeed in vs Dostal's ritual in my experience.(The reason maybe because I usually tended to use a Gamari worshipper, and they tend to not be both good in Leadership and Combat)  

If you have someone with high combat skills in Hyalor Tablet maker ritual, winning in the combat oriented portion can get treasures that reward you for winning combat in a certain way.(Probably renowned or Heroic fighter with War magic allocated)  My favorite treasure to pick woud be the Marten Skull which gives you a point of magic everytime you win battles with Fierce tactic finishes.  

Spending magic in Sacred time on War magic will boost your combat oriented decisions in rituals while Diplomacy helps negotiations, bargaining and political actions.  Harmony magic in sacred time can aid some singing actions in rituals.

Although it might be your instinct to only use goods for sacrifice, you're sometimes much better off sacrificing 7 or 8 cattle, especially early on. You have a whole lot more cattle you can use up early on. Think about putting a point into Ritual magic as it makes shrine rituals usually run pretty smooth.(maybe that's superstition)  Clans with 300 or so cows can still be pretty functional.  There are more ways to get food than in King of Dragon Pass and you don't need nearly as many cows initially because of that.

If you've got an Inilla worshipper, use them for foraging especially when food runs low. Just sending them out a short distance on the plains on a piece of land not owned by a clan is a pretty safe bet.

Spending magic in Fields and Wilds during sacred time can generate quite a bit of food.

Shrines I like particularly early:

- Boost Food and guaranteed in a single learning ritual. Usually first temple built. Choose Taking in farmers in the origins story to auto teach it to you. Make sure to use convert pastures to field venture when needed.(5 or so years it pops up)

Erissa - build a one level shrine swap between Healing and Curing blessing between seasons depending on whether you have more people wounded or sick. (Usually wounds but sick people can pile up too) It's tempting to continually pay goods to bring back soldiers, but a shrine brings them back pretty quickly. Instead I'd recruit more swords typically if you want the army rebolstered. Then when Erissa's shrine heals your other swords you have even more to fight with. Of course paying to heal/cure immediately is sometimes worth it.(And can be done if even if you already have the blessing as a regular default in your shrine)

Dostal Sure Shot - Boosts skirmish attack and food.

Ekarna - Build Shrine with Market ritual.   Get a second level built if you start to get weekly trading seasons. Swap between Silvertongue and Trading bonus when you want to trade.
(Foreign understanding might be good at times...)

Elmal - Get Flame Lance and recruit a lot of Swords.  This combined with a high combat leader and Osara Fire arrow can do a lot of damage in combat.  Eventually a second level for Morale or perhaps Steadfast more if you don't raid as much. Usually 2 of those are good enough. But a 3 level one's an option in the future to have all 3 blessings.

Osara - Fire Arrow - Great especially with skirmish.  Reduce enemy numbers before using more chance based options in combat.

Zarlen - Pathfinder - send out pretty good combat ability explorers and 12-15 bows and 2 Swords typically. May reduce this temple after getting some exotic goods explored at home. It might make foragers safer too so think about keeping.  Don't send your best fighters out as its too risky for them to die exploring.  If you spend one point of exploring and have this shrine up, your explorers usually don't mysteriously die.  If you spend 2 points in Exploration they almost never do.

Nyalda - Crafts - seems worth it.

Consider adding Busneari, Inilla, or Uryarda - for Rootle or Milk Blessings as needed.  Adviser's complain a lot about food so I'd recommend checking wealth to see how few seasons of food you really have.  You could have half a year's worth of food and they'll still worry for one reason or another.  It is bad to run out of food so its valid to consider.  You can use forage or hunting ventures or exploration foraging to make up for shortfalls.  

I know the instinct is to just keep building all these temples and fertility but sometimes I've found reducing levels or the amount of them is the better move. More hasn't always worked out as best.

And here's my shrine abuse tip. Let's say you've got 40 or so goods and you're in late Storm Season. And you know you can't/don't want to try to meet the temple goods obligation.(Lets say its 60) Just send a caravan out to trade with. Trade goods for herds. Look at the top center where it says sell/buy. Choose the dots circle with most dots.(Sells more goods at once) One shrine will get destroyed in Sea season because you can't pay upkeep. The rest stand.(And usually level 2+ temples don't fall apart)  Then just pay ten goods to rebuild the broken shrine next season. You don't want to do this all the time but it can be better than just losing all 50 goods and having a shrine fall apart anyway. I'll also send a caravan out with large amount of goods if I fear I'll be raided and won't be able to defend it.

When all else is going poorly resource wise, look to trade horses. They may seem insignificant but they trade for a higher value and can get you a good amount of goods/herds for 20 or so. If you trade both horses and goods at once, you can get up to about 120-150 ish of cattle in exchange sometimes. It is also why raids can be more rewarding than they appear at first.(Succesful raids get about 20-30 cows and some odd amount of horses)  When you go to the trade screen click on the adviser with the highest bargaining. They'll tell you which clan is most likely to have to highest type of herds/goods/ or horses to sell.  (Better bargainers trade for more goods)

When you click on the combat screen, advisers can tell you who the weakest clans currently are which can be worthwhile doing if you're just looking for small victories.(Advisers sometimes conflict with advice though) Just be careful not to antagonize too many clans or antagonize one repeatedly as they can more actively try to harm you.

Spirits, while most aren't tremendously great, there are some that are especially nice and easy to use for freeish when you don't really want to spend resources in a season.

Lazy combat strategy, get those shrine improvements and a high combat ability ring member.(Especially Renowned or Heroic) If you have good skirmish from Dostal Sure Shot and Osara Firearrow, it's usually the best opening option. You can sometimes skirmish multiple times in the beginning.  If you're opponent has a lot more soldiers it may be better to do Conduct a Battle Ritual option and choose Battle Glow before getting possibly charged in the beginning instead. After skirmishing/ritualing there is often an opportunity for slaughter. I often do it to reduce their numbers. It makes the clan hate you more but not a huge amount and can even your odds. If you lack both good skirmishing blessings, but have fairly even numbers, consider Charge as an opener. Can throw opponents off guard. If you have a heroic member and it has Let the Hero have their day option choose it, I usually slay as many footman as possible. Now there is more to combat nuances but if you want to be lazy, follow this strategy:  I often just alternate between press the attack/hold your ground and fight fiercely.  If I'm more confident mostly fiercely.  Some raider groups are really punishing, choose survival and evade till you succeed or unless you somehow get a special opportunity to turn the fight around. Just let the raiders take what they're going to take. Some bad ones can often beat you and kill ring members. Sometimes its worth fighting anwyay.

Always bring allies when raiding someone.  It's usually worth it to have more soldiers than you need on a Raid and risk being stolen from at home then to fight a Raid, lose and get very wounded and then still not defend well at home.  An ally who is more Warlike tends to provide more soldiers. 

The more fortifications you have, the less clans take from you / surprise you.  It's sometimes worth just retreating at the opening and letting them take whatever. Especially once you have fortifications which protect Treasures. (I believe Stockade does but maybe its Stonewall) Clans can destroy Watch Towers frequently so remember to rebuild them. Sometimes they destroy other fortifications if you let yourself get beat up a lot.

Try to recruit 20+ swords. Recruit outsiders as well as within your clan to improve the chances of getting the most swords in a season.

If I'm getting annoyed at a clan raiding I will try to raid twice and choose the kill many option twice.  Then demand tribute.(If you won)  If you have a large sword army and beat them like this, a demand of tribute can often keep them off your back.(they will resent it though)  But even if its just a one good tribute, it mostly stops them from ever attacking unless your army dwindles too much.  Keeping some clan or 2 off you ain't a bad deal.  You can always end tribute and resume raiding.  If you set you're army up real well, tributes can pay off a lot.  Wouldn't recommend starting out though.

Try to keep a point of magic available after sacred time or get more from an ally. They get you out of bad events and you can reliably save people's lives with earthshaking magic rescues in combat, or stop other clans from joining your enemies in combat.

At the beginning of combat at home consider choosing Survival, as the opening option when outnumbered.  I like the Evade option into Flee at home especially if I'm outnumbered or the match is not going well.(which you can't do if you choose drive off / kill)  If you get all your fortifications up and a strong trade route setup, you can literally play through the game retreating from every battle you encounter.(not fun but possible)

Parley Conciliate is so useful with a strong Diplomacy ring member! And tribute parley can be worth the price of avoiding cattle and soldier losses.(They have to be done at the opening of the battle)

The origin story option of Milk Blessing in the wiki is not what I'd set in stone recommend. Whatever you pick, influences what your clan is like.  But whatever blessing you pick, it describes what your clan is like. Like the clan is known for being great Negotiators (Diplomacy) or great Bargainers(Bargaining) I can't 100% say how much this influences the clan generation. You can still get Renowned Combatants and generated a clan that was more Diplomacy based. So choose what you want based on what you want your clan to be better more at.  Its just not 100% guaranteed they'll be top fighters etc.  

Successfully setting up trade routes will get you more goods each year.  Visiting every wheel, rider, or ram clan can enable you to sustain one more trade route per year.  Clans that are friendlier are more likely to set up trade routes even if you don't have exotics.(also depends on your trader's bargaining ability)  Try purple clans first, red ones last.