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  1. #1
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    I am thinking of trying something that is not cleary described in the domain rules. I was wondering what the various people here would do to resolve it...

    Consider a non-landed domain, called "The Family Business" for our discussion. [a small guild if it matters]
    Give said domain a political leader, called the "uncle". [either a blooded regent or a non-blooded one if it would change your resolution]
    Also give said domain a member/employee who is related to the uncle and recently gained a good solid bloodline, called the "new blood".
    If the new blood wants to take over the domain from the inside, then how does he do that with the domain rules?

    I know this could be roleplayed out, but because the entire party might not like playing out this little social mini-drama a few die roles based on the domain rules might be best.

    Unfortunately, the domain rules treat the domain as a single cohesive unit, so i dont see an obvious way to resolve this with exsisting domain actions as normally applied. Obviously you dont want to encourage situations where a PC regent could be de-throned with a few die rolls, but the players are the challenger here, the uncle the NPC. If roleplayed out they would probably have a good chance at acheiving partial [a few holdings] or complete control.
    The players are good so a simple assasination/poisoning/charming are not options.

    So my question is, what course of action could the new blood take and how would you determine success?

    Looking forward to your ideas. [I have some, but I dont want to predjudice your ideas yet...]

  2. #2
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    It isn't covered in the BRCS because it's internal rather than on the domain level.

    The new blood would have to RP his way through it. He'd have to RP the meeting with certain others who might not be too happy and such and then possibly declare to the uncle that a few holdings are now independent of the family business.

    If he wants to take it all, then that's where you set things up right. Either convince Uncle that you're the right to take over, and then when Uncle agrees, you remove him. Or find some evidence that he has done something bad with the family business and then control things through blackmail.

    I'd never allow anything like this being handled by the domain system, since certaom things are to be RPed out, rather than rolled. That's not to say that you in your dealings can't be using Gather Information, Diplomcy, Bluff and Intimidate, it's just ordinary rolls.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    Roleplay it - this is a PC getting a domain and becoming a regent. That's never something that should be handled with a few abstract die rolls. If the other PC's aren't interested in watching the drama unfold (sad, as these are the juicy bits of political storytelling), then run a solo session with the PC. Sometimes that allows a really intense, personal scene for the player, one which will certainly be memorable if it's pulled off well.

    Now, as to how intact is the guild after takeover? As it's a small guild, a single Divestiture action could represent a hostile takeover. If some of the guild's members were already supportive of the usurper, this should grant a circumstance bonus to the action.

    The players are good so a simple assasination/poisoning/charming are not options.
    Well, morality is so often defined by the opposition.
    Who is the uncle?
    Is he bad, good, or just plain ugly?
    How loyal are the guild members to him?
    How's his record (competence, any misdeeds, achievements, etc.)?

    In the end, is there any moral motivation (or failing this, at least decent justification) for usurping the uncle's regency? Or is it just a thinly-veiled grab for power by a "sorta'-good" character?

    Less dishonorable means of usurpation might include a duel (I've used this for a number of priests and paladins of Haelyn and Cuiraecen IMC), lawyering (finding proof of incompetence, embezzling, etc. and convincing the other guild members of its authenticity), or more elaborate ruses and ploys to draw out the uncle's insidious nature into the spotlight (see Hamlet).

  4. #4
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Several things come to mind.

    One is the Great Captain random event.

    Another is simply use the create holding and contest actions.

    An Espionage action could create a secret holding and that could be used as the base to conduct the contest/rule actions indicating the "take over".

    Personally I'd role play it since that is definitely the most colorful way to go.
    Duane Eggert

  5. #5
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    Roleplaying it out is still an option, but there are several reasons why Im looking at a creative use of the domain rules:
    Some of our players are not so into the civic administration side of the game, and some of the invisioned roleplaying options have as much flair as a board meeting or a hour of CSPAN. (Granted, I like CSPAN....)
    The uncle is unblooded. So how do you show the use of bloodpower outside of the domain rules? Can RP be spent on an administrate, gather info, or dimplomacy skill check?
    I like the domain rules as a consistent arbiter of the political side of the game. Maybe we could roleplay it out, but the domain action resolution would be used to determine success. This helps stop sweettalking the DM into results that would be really hard or really expensive GB/RP-wise in the domain system.
    And finally, this move is rather secondary to the main adversary/plot of the party.

    So without too much discussion of the roleplay avenues, which would get into lots of little details, let me respond to some of the domain system based comments:
    Divestiture: Had not considered this. Handwaving away the occupation requirement is easy enough. I had actually considered another ceremony, Coronation, to just have the new blood declare himself leader. I think both ways would have the same resolution check, DC 10 + size then RP bidding battle. Perhaps a new ceremony with a new name but the same check could be created ad hoc. Family Election, Board Election, or some such name.[not sure if they have internal elections...] Of course some diplomacy rolls might be needed to get the uncle's support or at least presence at the board meeting.

    Great Captain: A good event to use. Could start in an outlying holding and use the growth per season to push into headquarters. Some Contesting, Diplomacy, and Agitation for and against the spread could represent the infighting. The Regency Point battle would come in here. The event could be started by DM fiat. Or if you read the Espionage action carefully, it says you can cause a major domain event such as a Great Captain at DC 25+.

    Create holding and contest and rule: The thing I dont like about this route is that contest destroys holding levels. If you have to smash it to bits to take it over, why bother? Ruling up from scratch is what this move is trying to avoid I think.

    Secret holding: While Im not sure the character would keep a holding secret from his family, this could work in other infighting situations, with the above problem of contesting of course. Where is the rule for creating a secret holding in the BRCS? How you would do it is not obvious from the Espionage action description....


    I like how abstract and robust the domain system is. While it is for inter-domain action, I dont think internal action is necessarily beyond its reach. It is in the interaction of the domain scale and the personal that BR is more then the sum of a boardgame and D&D.
    As a more basic question, what can Regency Points be spent on in your opinion? Other than domain actions and some spell/magic item uses...

  6. #6
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    Danip schrieb:



    >This post was generated by the Birthright.net message forum.

    > You can view the entire thread at:

    > http://www.birthright.net/forums/ind...=ST&f=2&t=2984

    >

    > Danip wrote:

    >Create holding and contest and rule: The thing I dont like about this route is that contest destroys holding levels. If you have to smash it to bits to take it over, why bother? Ruling up from scratch is what this move is trying to avoid I think.

    >

    That is only a 3E problem. In 2E the way would have been Contest and

    then Investiture, as in 2E the requirement for Investiture without the

    permission of the ruler was either military occupation or contest. Only

    the BRCS destroys holding levels with a contest.

    bye

    Michael

  7. #7
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    Originally posted by Danip@Feb 4 2005, 07:38 AM
    <snip>
    The uncle is unblooded.
    <snip>
    Divestiture: Had not considered this. Handwaving away the occupation requirement is easy enough. I had actually considered another ceremony, Coronation, to just have the new blood declare himself leader. I think both ways would have the same resolution check, DC 10 + size then RP bidding battle.
    <snip>
    One thing to remember - if the uncle is unblooded, then he can&#39;t gather RP, and is basically running the show based on his charisma. If the new blood comes in and convinces a few people to support him, he will start getting RP. Any contest/divestiture/other ceremonies will be basic no contests as the uncle won&#39;t really be able to resist.

    Another way you could run it - since the uncle is unblooded and the new blood is blooded, members of the guild start to gravitate towards the new blood. The uncle may scratch and grab at power, but the new blood, just by virtue of being blooded, has some special tie to the guild. Eventually the uncle will just be pushed out when no one really follows him, or has the new blood OK anything the uncle says.

  8. #8
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    How about using the Lead skill, as said in BRCS, to engage in free action Agitates against the Uncle? Basically, the guild goes into rebellion against him, and swings toward the PC... the Uncle still has an advantage, as he can agitate as well, using resources like his GB, and not even have to be present unlike the PCs.

    This way, you can combine roleplay with roll-play. You, as the DM, can then control events by generating encounters seeing as how the pcs are physically present. The uncle sends some thugs to break it up.

    If no encounter, they make the Lead roll. If the PCs role-play the agitate, you give a circumstance bonus/penalty based on how it went.

    In this case, the players would fight a losing battle against the guilder uncle, unless they split up, and did multiple agitates simultaneously... which increases the risk of the Uncle picking them off. Also, while the guilder is fighting an internal war, external mercantile interests may start contesting. On the other hand, this could affect the "loyalty/domain attitude" of the guild holdings as well.

    This brings up something; it was never quite clear to me whether the domain attitude levels of a province did affect non-land holders, other than their ability to make things happen. Will a province rebel against say... a temple, but not the regent? Is there a separate domain attitude for their internal workings? You will notice that I am on the side that yes, there is. People may like ... Rogr Aglondier, but the average person may strongly dislike El-hadid. Even the people that he pays. Perhaps they get up one day, and go on strike/rebellion against El-hadid... and how does he react? It can create some fascinating micro-politics.

  9. #9
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    Epicsoul,
    My take was always that each non-landed domain also had a domain attitude for itself. The exact scale of resolution of that is up to the DM. Rebellion against just one regent in a province is I think possible. Think of bread riots against the rober baron. Of course military occupation to solve the problem isnt usually available. Solve with agitate or some clever diplomacy/espionage.
    However, as to your use lead and agitate idea: I had kind of read agitate to be influencing the general public&#39;s attitude. What the players need here is to affect the members of the guild. I dont think this is too big of a stretch. This would make it something of a unique agitate action. Instead of rousing speaches to the masses, it would be chats in smoke-filled back rooms with various merchants. Although I wonder if causing an internal rebellion is the best mechanism for the takeover. The thing to remember would be that it would be the members of the guild in unrest. They are not likely to act like pitchfork waving peasants. They probably have other methods to express their unrest; not paying dues/RP, signing up with the new guy. Of course, the flow would depend upon how the uncle responded; with force, agitate, diplomacy, etc.
    I like this route, though it is a bit slow, there is plenty of time for manuever. Shame the PCs dont have high Lead skills.

    Benjamin,
    Youve captured the escense of this manuver. We are playing up the power aspect of blood. The PCs are drawn to lead, people are drawn to follow. A very divine shepard and his flock feel. Heck, all of the PCs are thinking of taking cleric or paladin levels in the future just to get their god on.
    If the new blood spends 30RP on a divestiture/coronation takeover in one fell swoop, I think the takeover would have an almost magical logic defying swiftness. The ballot box in the board room might even glow&#33;
    Im polling for ideas based on the domain system, because that is the only place I know you can spend RP. And this I think will be a RP fueled takeover. There is no strong real world realistic reason that the entire guild would place their trust in the new blood right now (he is a bit young). But in a world of blood, a blooded rising star in the family would be another matter.

    Ill have to compare the 2E and 3E contests. We do tend to juggle the two a bit already. As it is an interal contest, perhaps the non-destructive may work better.

    Thanks for the idea fodder guys.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    Within a guild, Divestiture would best be compared to a hostile takeover. Seize key points of power within the guild, enough to make a bid overall control of the organization. That bid is the domain action check, and good roleplaying + good social skills (Lead is definitely ideal here) should allow the characters some bonus to the action check. OTOH, poor checks and bad ideas should create penalties to the check.

    Winning the support of key senior guildsmen is definitely one way to do it, and what makes the most sense in a medieval world. How to win them over is what I think is interesting: through inspiring their confidence in his competence as a guilder? By being every man&#39;s good buddy (the "sheer charisma" approach)? These are decent choices for good-aligned characters.

    I think by answering these questions you might gain some insight into what exactly are the story effects of RP being spent, and of a Divestiture action goin&#39; down.

    Osprey

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