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  1. #1
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    Greetings folks.

    I put together a spreadsheet that incorporates the Stronghold Builder's Guide rules. It allows you, using pulldown menus, to basically build a castle. Alas, it doesn't do any pictures, just components buying. However, I incorporated all the rules. Hopefully soon *nudge nudge* Arjan will put it into the downloads section *nudge nudge*.

    Anyway, here's my question: how to go about converting the costs in the Stronghold Builder's Guide to BR. You can build a small castle (level 1) for 8 GB, or 16,000 gp. But using the components in the Guide, you can come up with a variety of things. IIRC, 16,000 gp goes away pretty darn fast, and isn't much of a castle.

    However, when you think of a large castle, say level 7 (112,000 gp), you are really screwed. I've built some basic castles that I didn't consider large, and they have cost well over 500,000 gp according to the Guide. So building Castle Aglondier or Seaward Castle using these rules would be outrageous.

    Anyone tried to put together a conversion for construction between BR and the Stronghold Builder's Guide? Anyone want to recommend such a conversion?

    I was thinking of 1 GB = 5,000 gp for reasons of construction was reasonable.

  2. #2
    Senior Member RaspK_FOG's Avatar
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    You ask if 1 GB should represent 5.000 gp instead of the typical 2.000 gp for reasons of working out the math? I don't think it's half bad but I can't give a good estimate, since I don't have the book... So, that would make those 500.000 gp castles you mentioned cost only 100 GB instead of the "normal" 250; I think it's good.

  3. #3
    Alright, I had a long and rather eloquent response here, but my stupid mouse hit the back button when I tried to open a new window so it was completely lost. The gist of the argument is that you are trying to bridge a macro and micro economic situation, and that is the source of your problems.

    BR is basically an abstracted economical situation, and with good reason. If you were to use a more detailed economic simulation like the one in Magical Medieval Society: Western Europe, by Expeditious Retreat Press, you would get regents collecting millions of gp annually (which any DM knows is very unwise). MMS:WE also includes a flexible building system that generates numbers similar to your own. So this is basically what PCs would need to use that.

    Thus, to explain the discrepency you need to come up with a good reason why the prices are so different. One possible reason is that the majority of BR income is in kind rather than in coin. Essentially, gold is rare (which is a fairly reasonable assumption). This means that the taxation collection is only the actual gold that comes into the treasury, while the majority of the kingdom's income is in goods and services which is abstracted out of the macroeconomic system. Its still there, but we can just assume its there and not worry about it. For example, consider the building of the castle: those laborers who cannot afford to pay specie (money) for taxes often required to instead work a set number of days out of the year for their lord/king, also those given charters to own and run a quarry must provide a certain amount of stone, those with license to navigate rivers and such must provide some transportation, etc.

    Which means that most of the cost of the castle is taken care of by the parts of the ecomony that we don't really care about, but is assumed to be there. The GB that the regent pumps into the castle is what is required above and beyond the standard dues and represents the regent moving the realm in a course that is not the default activity.

    So how does this fit in with your problem? Well then if you look at it, a GB spent by a regent isn't technically worth more than 2,000 gp, it's just spent on top all this other spent effort. This means that to reconcile the discrepencies it would be more realistic to reduce the gp cost of the castle, possibly by up to 75%. Of course if the castle was being built by a non-regent with no one obligated to him, he would have to pay the full price.

    Just another reason why its good to be king

  4. #4
    Senior Member RaspK_FOG's Avatar
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    That was a very realistic point of view! Good to have people like you amongst as, Bearcat; people who help out whenever they can.

    Another example I only now thought of is that the workers were not given food from the king's own stashes: they would be fed by herders and so on, given meat, milk, bread, and broth.

  5. #5
    (I try to help out )

    More likely would be that herders and farmers pay their taxes in grain and livestock, which the Queen then uses to feed her armies, workers, and of course keep the delicacies for herself.

    This sort of economic viewpoint also helps to justify why castles are more expensive when they are built to exceed province levels, or why certain units can't be raised by certain holdings: there just isn't an underlying goods/services economy to support that kind of activity.

  6. #6
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    I totally agree with the comments above.

    However, it does not help bridge the gap between micro and macro.

    True, a regent is not likely to receive all that much coin in taxes. Farmers won't have it, but will have bushels of grain, so many head of cattle, so many sheep, etc. A certain amount of that will go to his immediate liege, who then pays a cut to his liege, etc. and so on until the regents gets his/her share. While the amount of coin increases each level you go up the feudal ladder, it still isn't a lot at the end.

    Plus, you get the payment-in-kind by labor, service, etc. which clearly isn't coin but has a value.

    But SBG lists the prices for, say, a tower. Or a barbican. Or a magical room area that stops arrows. And you use bunches of these to build a castle.

    Do you think the idea of converting a 16 GB castle for a province 2 into an 80,000 gp castle (5,000 gp / GB) is a good idea? Should it be more, less?

    WoTC has put out an interesting and useful guide on building castles, and since BR has a lot of castles, I think it is only prudent we don't reinvent the wheel.

  7. #7
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    Oh, just in case you didn't see it, my spreadsheet has been put into the downloads section. Thanks, Arjan!

    link to Castle Maker spreadsheet

    [edit: fixed link]

  8. #8
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    With the low-magic availablity, castles should not have lots of Wonderous Items included.

    I messed around with the first version of the spreadsheet a few months ago, and sticking to 'mundane' construction things worked out fairly nice.

    Of course I gave a 50% reduction on the price as most of the labor was either prisoners or peasant labor in lieu of taxes.

  9. #9
    Increasing the value of a GB and giving a "regent discount" approaches the same problem from different directions (Saying a GB is 5,000 gp is the same as giving a 60% discount). The benefit of the discount is that it can easily be rationalized as I did earlier and allows the value of the GB to remain stable.

  10. #10
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    Originally posted by destowe@Jun 14 2004, 07:32 AM
    With the low-magic availablity, castles should not have lots of Wonderous Items included.
    I agree entirely with this for BR. However, I decided against picking and choosing what I thought was appropriate. After all, my choices aren't what others would pick. So I put together the book as it is, and people can use what they want.

    I like the idea of a 60% discount and maintaining a GB as 2000 gp. That's exactly what I was looking for! Thanks!

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