You start with a small, L1 city, providing you 100Schmuckers per turn in income. Upgrade will cost 1000Schmuckers.
The region is mountainous, mostly deserted except for the occasional barbarian or wild unit; it's, for now, not considered interesting by any of your neighbours, but that doesn't mean they won't send occasional scouts. It sure would surprise them to see that an abandoned city site in the middle of nowhere has been made into a village. So far, they don't know you exist.
Your mission is to survive and expand. Good luck.
Barbarian/wild units will tend to attack stacks that end turn within one hex of them. Even 2 hexes away is tempting enough if the wild/barbarian units are feeling aggressive.
Terrain: mostly mountainous. Difficult to pass through for any unit, needs 2 move points to advance one hex. Yellow wavy hexes are hills, and since those cost only 1 move per hex, they may act as access ways to this region.
Ruins: it's inhabitted by some kind of critters and will provide a treasure once you defeat them. You've got no idea what's in there nor what the treasure may be, but a good guess is to assume some of the local fauna found shelter there.
House: it's a house. Looks inhabited.
Mine: Once claimed, this will give you 100Schmuckers per turn. Presently inhabited by unknown critters.
"this way to ...": in that general direction, the named cities lie. Frankfurter belongs to the Burgers and is L2. Bwussews belongs to the Vegge Talians, sworn enemies of the Burgers, and is also L2.
There may be other neighboring sides, but you do not know of them yet.
Tetrapack of wolves: four wolves (Melee/Might/Skill): 15H, 0Def, 50Combat, 85%CtH, 5Dmg (Matter); wolves tend to be aggressive to stacks that camp near them; each wolf grants 40Xp to the croaking stack
Sixpack of wolves: six wolves (four in front, two in the back row)
Grizzled Bear: a Grizzled bear (Melee/Might/Force): 25H, 0Def, 60Combat, 85%CtH, 7Dmg (Matter), Heavy, Mount; grants 80Xp to the croaking stack
Bipolar Bear: a Bipolar bear (Melee/Might/Force): 30H, 0Def, 70Combat, 85%CtH, 7Dmg (Matter), Heavy, Mount; grants 100Xp to the croaking stack
Mad Cow: a Mad Cow (Melee/Magic/Force): 12H, 0Def, 50Combat, 85%CtH, 3Dmg (Matter), 85%CtH, Dementia (reduce combat by 20% of its value) (Mind), Heavy, Mount; grants 24Xp to the croaking stack
Band of Its: four Its (Melee/Magic/Force): 10H, 0Def, 50Combat, 85%CtH, 5Dmg (Matter), Erf Ward; each It grants 10Xp to the croaking stack
Barberians: four Barberians (Melee/Might/Skill): 13H, 0Def, 85%CtH, 2x 3Dmg (Matter); each Barberian grants 16Xp to the croaking stack.
(EDIT: upped the XP to croaking stack, so that you'll level more like Disciples. As in, not too slow, but still not too easy.)
The whole point of this is lost if you keep it a secret.