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  1. #1
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    I've noticed that all the elven realms in Birthright are supposed to be chaotic good. Most of the realms descriptions say something along the lines that the regent doesn't take a firm hand in the realm, and the elves like it that way.

    However, the first thing that almost always happens in a PBEM is that elven regents rule up their law holdings to max. Depending on which area a game is held in, this may or may not unbalance the realm. But it sure violates the feeling of chaotic good elves in my opinion.

    So I would like to know if anyone has an idea for how to codify a situation to make elves not want to rule up law. I make a suggestion below. Any others?

    Elven Variant to Adjusting Domain Attitude
    Elves are known to be chaotic good, eschewing a regent's firm control of their lives. They don't mind a little control, but become quite angry when it becomes heavy handed. Those elves most likely to tolerate a regent's control are likely to be found in the capital province, flocking to the court and its trappings. This high level of respect in the court for their monarch provides the regent the ability to rule more firmly than elsewhere. Elves least tolerant to the regent's control will likely be found further away in the border provinces. Additionally, elves love their forests and do not like trade which harvests the natural bounty of their lands. The following chart takes these factors into account when adjusting domain attitude in elven realms.

    Bonus
    +5 Elven capital province

    Penalty
    -2 more than 25% of available law or guild holdings held in elven province
    -4 more than 50% of available law or guild holdings held in elven province
    -6 more than 75% of available law or guild holdings held in elven province

  2. #2
    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    Harsh, but very interesting...good ideas, all in all.

  3. #3
    Senior Member ryancaveney's Avatar
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    On Tue, 18 Nov 2003, Benjamin wrote:



    > Most of the realms descriptions say something along the lines that the

    > regent doesn`t take a firm hand in the realm, and the elves like it

    > that way.



    That doesn`t necessarily mean the regent has low law holdings. I think it

    makes more sense to say that elven regents have the power at hand to take

    a firm hand in the realm for its defense at a moment`s notice should it be

    needed, but choose not to exercise that power except under duress. I

    think they have high law holdings, but do not use them to interfere in

    their citizens` lives -- instead, they use them to prevent any outsiders

    acquiring influence which would be detrimental to their people. One of

    the primary functions of any elven realm ruler is to keep out human

    loggers: and without high law holdings, it`s really hard under standard

    rules to keep those pesky human neighbors from forming guild holdings in

    your forests. High (indeed, maximum) law holdings in the hands of an elf

    who knows how to show proper restraint in their use is the primary

    safeguard of the freedom of the people. It`s not elves who want to reduce

    the freedom of the elves -- it`s non-elves who are the main danger.



    > However, the first thing that almost always happens in a PBEM is that

    > elven regents rule up their law holdings to max.



    Yes, because in Birthright mechanics regents with very low law holdings

    are at a severe disadvantage.



    > But it sure violates the feeling of chaotic good elves in my opinion.



    You can`t easily be chaotic good if your refusal to develop law holdings

    means intrusive outsider lawfuls can get their hands on it and start

    running your lands as a police state without your consent. Elves are

    smart enough to know that anarchy never lasts very long -- it is too

    tempting an invitation to ambitious despots. High law holdings are just

    as important for the defense of the realm as armies and wizards; IMO, the

    Sidhelien recognize this, and work to ensure that law holdings are held

    entirely in trustworthy hands.



    > Elves are known to be chaotic good, eschewing a regent`s firm control

    > of their lives. They don`t mind a little control, but become quite

    > angry when it becomes heavy handed.



    Right. But heavy-handedness is a description of how law holdings are

    used, not how high in level they are. You can use a Law (1) in a

    heavy-handed manner, or a Law (10) with great restraint.



    > Additionally, elves love their forests and do not like trade which

    > harvests the natural bounty of their lands.



    Which is a primary reason elves need high law holdings: to prevent the

    establishment of guild holdings they don`t want.



    I don`t think any rules change is needed. The change I would make is to

    the atlas: I think all elven realms should start out with very high law

    holdings, not very low ones.





    Ryan Caveney

  4. #4
    Senior Member RaspK_FOG's Avatar
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    Actually, the greater the law holding, the greater the freedom of action should be, if we take elves as we should; Ryan put it quite nicely, but let me add one thing to say or two:
    • Which should be more desperate of control, a system with huge super-vision sub-systems, or one with a smaller supervision sub-system?
    • Law-holdings are not enforcers, OK?

  5. #5
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    ----- Original Message -----

    From: "Benjamin" <brnetboard@BIRTHRIGHT.NET>

    Sent: Tuesday, November 18, 2003 8:02 AM



    > However, the first thing that almost always happens in a PBEM is

    > that elven regents rule up their law holdings to max.



    I assume that all holdings are owned by someone. There is no such thing as

    a vacant holding. If the books say that named regents only control 2 of 5

    possible law holdings, there are 3 local notables who have a single law

    holding there. The new players would have to contest the law away from

    their own nobility. That won`t make things happy at court.



    Kenneth Gauck

    kgauck@mchsi.com

  6. #6
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    Your right KGauck all law holdings in a realm should be held by someone (ie either the regent or some other noble with influence ).

    But by that same token how would the mechanics work if a regent conquers a province (5/0) with a law(3) from the previous ruler.

    Does he gain the rulers previous law holding(3) or can he with the help of his army invest himself with a law(5)?

  7. #7
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    ----- Original Message -----

    From: "Aurel" <brnetboard@BIRTHRIGHT.NET>

    Sent: Tuesday, November 18, 2003 8:27 PM





    > But by that same token how would the mechanics work if a regent

    > conquers a province (5/0) with a law(3) from the previous ruler.



    Once he gains title to the province by force he still find the old ruler`s

    friends, supporters, and office holders in the province. This presents the

    conqueror with a problem. He could keep the law as he finds it, which costs

    him nothing but involves some risk that at a later date the law holdings

    could support the conqueror`s opponants. On the other hand, the new ruler

    could attempt to replace the current office holders with his own men. This

    will take time and effort (it will require a contest action) and cost him

    Regency as he disrupts his own realm and attempts to restore peace. If the

    conqueror has the resources it is wise to seccure the conquest by placing

    his own officers in the legal offices. The more territory you conquer, the

    more you must accept the continuation of the former ruler`s officers since

    you cannot replace them all at once. The bigger the hunk which is bitten

    off, the longer the time required to chew and digest the piece.



    Kenneth Gauck

    kgauck@mchsi.com

  8. #8
    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    Originally posted by RaspK_FOG@Nov 19 2003, 06:28 AM
    Actually, the greater the law holding, the greater the freedom of action should be, if we take elves as we should;
    The greater the law, the greater the freedom? An interesting though, and one I presonally disagree with quite firmly. This is not the place for an argument based on real world events though, so I&#39;ll leave this.

    I think the problem with the elves is that most of their realms are unbalanced when compared to a human neighbours, especially in pbem games. Personally I balance them up making the muster costs of their units so high, and using the +8 penelty to rule province actions I mentioned in a previous thread.

    Oh, and for those who asked, all the elven realms will use their current holding and province levels. The only change will be to make all elven forested provinces */9 provinces.
    Let me claim your Birthright!!

  9. #9
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    Originally posted by ryancaveney@Nov 18 2003, 02:02 PM
    I think they have high law holdings, but do not use them to interfere in their citizens` lives -- instead, they use them to prevent any outsiders acquiring influence which would be detrimental to their people.

    <snip>

    But heavy-handedness is a description of how law holdings are used, not how high in level they are. You can use a Law (1) in a heavy-handed manner, or a Law (10) with great restraint.
    Thanks for the comments, all&#33;

    Ryan - for the most part I agree with what you are saying. There should be local elves with law holdings, but they don&#39;t show up in the listings. And yes, even elves want the regent to protect them in times of danger, but in times of peace, they want to be left alone.

    The BRCS says (top right of page 89) "Law holdings represent bureaucrats, constables, taxmen, highway bandits, rebel organizations, a system of feudal lords, or any other establishments whose primary purpose is to enforce laws/whims, collect taxes/tribute, and execute justice or injustice in their regent&#39;s name. Control of a province&#39;s law holding impacts whether edicts and laws are followed, how vigorously laws and taxes are applied, the level of crime, and the general contentment of a province&#39;s citizens."

    I think that pretty much means that having a high law holding is heavy handed, whether edicts are made or not. It seems to me to create a society that elves would hate.

    So perhaps, to allow my attitude rules to be in effect, non-elves should be forbidden from making law holdings in elven lands? What sane elf would ever follow a human anyway? Same goes for guilds, although Tuarhieval is a rare (minor divine intervention?) event of human guilds in elven lands.

  10. #10
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    At 03:24 PM 11/19/2003 +0100, Benjamin wrote:



    >The BRCS says (top right of page 89) "Law holdings represent

    >bureaucrats, constables, taxmen, highway bandits, rebel organizations, a

    >system of feudal lords, or any other establishments whose primary purpose

    >is to enforce laws/whims, collect taxes/tribute, and execute justice or

    >injustice in their regent`s name. Control of a province`s law holding

    >impacts whether edicts and laws are followed, how vigorously laws and

    >taxes are applied, the level of crime, and the general contentment of a

    >province`s citizens."

    >

    > I think that pretty much means that having a high law holding is heavy

    > handed, whether edicts are made or not. It seems to me to create a

    > society that elves would hate.

    >

    > So perhaps, to allow my attitude rules to be in effect, non-elves should

    > be forbidden from making law holdings in elven lands? What sane elf

    > would ever follow a human anyway? Same goes for guilds, although

    > Tuarhieval is a rare (minor divine intervention?) event of human guilds

    > in elven lands.



    That descriptions is written from what could be described as human-centric

    POV. Where human law holdings represent a kind of feudal bureaucracy,

    elven ones might represent an equivalent level of influence, but not having

    the same character as a human organization. Judges might be replaced by

    the sidhe equivalent of arbitrators, constables by teachers, tax collectors

    by almsmen, etc. Where such a system might not work in a human realm,

    amongst elves the particulars of the law holding could (and probably

    should) be quite different. Law holdings represent control to be sure, but

    the tone and tenor of that control isn`t dictated by the level of the law

    holding any more than the products of the guild aren`t dictated by the

    level of that holding, or the god worshipped by temple holdings.



    It`s also important to bear in mind the difference between the alignment

    system`s use of the terms "law" and "chaos" and the domain system`s use of

    the word law to describe a holding. Often the nomenclature turns into

    something of a trap and people see chaotic characters as being opposed not

    just to law as an abstract trait, but to law as a holding simply because of

    the use of the same word, when in fact the relationship of lawfulness

    (alignment) to law (holding) isn`t all that direct. "Chaotic" societies

    don`t necessarily have less of a respect of legalisms than "lawful"

    ones. In a "chaotic" society one just hears things like the individual

    proclaiming the sanctity of his rights more often than one would in a

    "lawful" society, and the society at large is more likely to listen to that

    argument. The culture itself doesn`t necessarily have a smaller

    bureaucracy, fewer taxes, less constables. They just have a different set

    of things that they enforce.



    Gary

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