View Full Version : Lieutenants (hopefully the last fro

Bryan Palmer
03-20-1998, 05:19 PM
Well folks, I went out and did something rather novel last night. I dug
out my Birthright rule book (shudder!) and read researched everything I
could find on lieutenants.

I don't think we have too much disagreement on the importance placed on
lieutenants and their pivotal roles in running a kingdom. Page 35 of
the rule book states that "Lieutenants are loyal and competent followers
who can help a regent address the numerous daily problems that arise....
Lieutenants aren't really assets in a physical sense (although listed
under the Assets subtitle), but they're as important as castles or
armies." Personally, I think that enough said about how important they
are if used properly by a regent.

I think the problem that has been plaguing us is the misunderstanding of
just "how much" and "what kind" of things they can do for the regent.
On page 57, the "Lieutenant" action is described and gives the most
detail on what they can and cannot do. The last two paragraphs under
the title of "Lieutenant Action" attempt to clarify the abilities and
scope of a lieutenant's actions. I quote (please excuse the "Rules

"Once per domain turn, the regent may assign a
lieutenant to a domain action. The lieutenant may not be used for any
other purpose that round, such as responding to a random event or going
on an adventure. The lieutenant performs the action for the regent; in
effect, the regent gains an additional action that round. Regardless of
the number of lieutenants, he can exercise this option only once per
domain turn."

After reading through this passage a few times, I believe I have a
possible reason for our confusion. While the paragraph begins by
describing what can be done during a "domain turn," the second sentence
quickly changes the emphasis to what cannot be done during that "round."
The question here is one of semantics. The domain turn would normally
comprise a three month period while the term "round" is referenced
primarily to "action rounds" or month-long endeavors. The confusion
continues in sentence #3 when the reference shifts back to "action,"
referring to the original domain action and finishes with reference once
again to the round.

I feel this is where we need to have some clarity from the game
designers. The question is whether a lieutenant is able to do either -
1) one domain action in a month's time and then two other character
actions in the following two months of the domain turn, or 2) one domain
action only for the entire three months of the domain turn (in essence,
giving up all his/her character actions for that domain turn).

As to what makes a lieutenant, I use the following criteria in my

A lieutenant, blooded or non-blooded, is someone in whom the regent has
placed "command authority." Command authority is the power to make
decisions that may have a direct effect on the success or failure of the
regent's kingdom. This person is not required to consult with the
regent (although they certainly have that ability) when making decisions
affecting the kingdom.

Once again, please excuse the posting of rules and feelings of "Rules
Lawyerism" (something I really dislike in an RPG).

"If you must choose between two evils, pick the one you've never tried

Bryan Palmer
Arizona State University