You cant pop them all
I'm new to the game and I suppose I'm not really qualified to comment on this thread, but some of the comments here got me curious so I went digging around on the forums to get a better idea of some of the things you folks are talking about. Apologies in advance if I don't use the right terminology.
I'm getting frustrated with the quests and tech tree. The quest I just got requires me to have 16 residences (I have 14 currently). It wants them all upgraded to level 4. About half of mine are currently level 3. That means that I need to build more culture buildings if I want to keep any sort of bonus. That's more spaces (and time) that needs to be invested. And the gold / supplies to pay for the upgrades.
Expansion - I don't have the goods to negotiate ("cater"?). So I have to fight. That means that I need units which take time to build. And armories so I can make more units. That's more space, and gold / supplies for upgrades. I need another ten provinces by the end of this chapter in order to progress.
Then there's these 2 events that are going on. The serpent event is OK I guess - or will be OK until I get to the point where it's going to want me to buy knowledge points. I'm already going through the tech tree faster than my goods production can keep up with. Trying to progress quests is making it hard to have the space to build more factories. And given the progressing cost of buying knowledge points, if I have to buy 50 or 100 for this serpent event, that's going to hurt me badly in the future.
As for the reward - honestly it's not worth it thus far. Mine gives me an extra 200 supplies per day in its current state. I'm keeping it for the population / culture boost currently, but I don't see keeping it much longer.
And then there's my Fellowship. I just joined them, and I've discovered that I can't do ANYTHING to help them except provide the Neighborly Help once a day. Can't contribute knowledge points - don't unlock the Ancient Wonders until chapter 4. Ditto for Tournament. Chapter 5 for Spire (which looks like a lot of fun, from the videos I've watched about it).
I'm in Chapter 2, and I'm already frustrated. I've concluded that the developers have set things up so that players are meant to get frustrated so they buy diamonds to get past whatever their current roadblock is. This conclusion is based on the requirement to spend diamonds to have more than 2 builders or upgrade the magic academy past level two. That, plus the "DIAMOND SALE" in-your-face ads that pop up nearly every time I sign into the game.
You are in learning stage that's why it feels all too much. I'd focus just on couple of things that you enjoy the most and slowly add more. Don't worry about events too much at this moment because the benefits of the buildings are attached to the chapter you're in so when you enter next chapter they will be obsolete and you'll be able to get better benefits. Now, imagine how much harder it would be if you already had Spire and tournament unlocked. It's better to learn the basics first. Happy gaming!