Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 19
  1. #1

    How can temple regents be dangerous?

    As the subject says, how can temple regents be dangerous? Sure, they can attempt to negatively Agitate but then the landed regent will remove them via levies, or form alliances with others. Any opinions please? I'm particularly interested as to how the White Witch can be dangerous.

  2. #2
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    3,562
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    To reply, I need to know if the domain rules are like the D&D rules, just mechanics to express the will of the characters, or whether the domain rules operate on an alternate theory that limits what a player can do based on a strict reading of what is allowed.

    Or, who was right about the National Bank? Hamilton or Jefferson? Hamilton said the Constitution did not prohibit a National Bank, so it was permissible to form one. Jefferson said the Constitution did not proscribe a National Bank, so it was not permissbale to form one?

  3. #3

    Smile

    Sorry for my unclear question. I'm asking about NPC regents in a PBem game that focusses on the domain level of play. What can they do to mess up the PCs?

  4. #4
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    3,562
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    What can't they do?

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    416
    Downloads
    21
    Uploads
    0
    I think it would depend on how powerful the temple is. Typically, to get the right responses and balance game results with story reactions, I think you have to delve into the story and figure out what makes sense, particularly when it comes to landed regents vs. non-landed.

    First off, the temple can decide to not play ball. Landed regents like to use them as allies and such, and in some games even tax them. Well, they can stop that taxation nonsense and any other tribute straight away. Some realm spells short of Interdiction are also retaliatory, particularly if you feel free to reinterpret them in different ways. For instance, if Honest Dealings can target a tyrannical ruler, it could have its income reduction effect on the extortionist tax collectors and law men. Blight could be reinterpreted to do the same.

    I think if a landed ruler starts persecuting a temple, things should automatically get nasty real quick without the temple having to do anything. Loyalty levels should drop precipitously, very quickly falling into rebellion if a temple is reduced by military action. Great Captain events would rise up, either in one powerful leader or many different leaders, as each either righteously saw the landed regent as a traitor to the faith and a heretic and thus no longer a ruler at all, or as opportunists realizing this huge mistake on the part of the regent.

    Units would mobilize spontaneously in rebellion or for Holy War, likely with very little need for payment.

    The landed regent could suffer a Major loss of regency, while the persecuted faith could benefit from a Major gain of regency, interpreted either in a major rush of support from the faithful or as an influx of divine power from the deity to protect itself.

    I don't know much about the White Witch, but basically to me it seems that temples should be able to conduct Agitations, Realm Spells, and hostile diplomacy against a regent they don't like without too much fear of the landed regent laying the smack down on them. That is because overt persecution will spontaneously cause such a rash of the most terrible events for the offending regent that the temple need hardly do anything itself to overthrow the ruler.

    This would particularly be true in realms that are all but monopolized by a single temple, but even mixed realms would see much the same effects. The other temples, if allied, would make things worse for the persecutor; if allied in the persecution, an internal holy war would likely erupt.

  6. #6
    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Chelmsford, Essex, England
    Posts
    2,305
    Downloads
    25
    Uploads
    0
    Quote Originally Posted by ericthecleric View Post
    As the subject says, how can temple regents be dangerous? Sure, they can attempt to negatively Agitate but then the landed regent will remove them via levies, or form alliances with others. Any opinions please? I'm particularly interested as to how the White Witch can be dangerous.
    The issue in a PBEM from my perspective, particularly with players who see the game as something they can 'win' or as 'roll' playing not 'role' playing, is that to them the rules dictate what you can and can't do in the game with nothing outside the rules (often including the DM), rather than the rules simply being an agreed basis to cover the basics with RP'ing being the main success modifier and the DM applying modifiers, penalties and rewards to reflect the roleplaying.

    So for example I would look at what the ruler is doing and how people would react to the actions, and then I would design rules effects to explain those outcomes. Some people would work the other way around, look at the rules and then extrapolate the role-play cause/effect.

    To me, occupying and pillaging a province should be crippling for the occupier - standard rules have it cause a major regency loss (per province) and loyalty drops but I'd go further. Any ruler who orders their soldiers to pillage a temple holding is ordering their soldiers to slaughter priests, lay worshippers, burn temple buildings, evict tenants of temple property, etc, etc - quite aside from destroying the legitimacy of their rule (almost certainly based on a ritual and inheritance sanctified by the gods) the ruler should have the nobility up in arms (first son takes the land, second son the military, third son the cloth and all that) including their own family.

    What the ruler is emphatically NOT doing is simply 'telling the priests to leave' or passing laws - those are decrees and contest actions - the use of armed troops by the ruler which cannot be opposed by any means other than other armed troops means that the ruler is using brute force, not the law, to get their way. Think of it as a civil war and you get the picture - even if quickly won it will leave brutal scars.

    The ruler can under my approach then be seen to have lost heaven's mandate to rule, forfeited honour, betrayed their oaths to protect their people, etc, etc. As such alliances will swiftly crumble as allies desert the madman (although goblins, awnshegh, etc may now be willing to make alliances with the 'practical' ruler) marriage offers are hastily withdrawn, etc. Of course a canny ruler would spend several actions intriguing his way to 'proving' that the temple was corrupt, treacherous, etc in order to avoid some of the stigma, or even be seen as the wounded party, but that's the fun of the game...

    In rule terms the ruler can expect the temple to raise troops, invest competitors, donate to enemies, agitate, excommunicate the regent, fortify holdings - and built secret ones, etc.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    416
    Downloads
    21
    Uploads
    0
    It's worth noting that while guilds have less cultural protection than the temples, many of the same effects would be in place to a lesser degree. Remember that guild holdings represent much of the skilled artisans and middle classes of a realm, those with the means to meaningfully oppose the regent. They may well even have nobles in their pockets, and would be very wise to have a few capable, even source-holding, wizards on the payroll.

    The rules don't quite reflect that the guilds ought to also be able to directly impact the taxable income of a province, though I suppose loyalty drops could result in refusal to pay taxes (rebellion is a complete refusal to pay taxes). Since under normal rules, and with the odd typical assumption that most guilds somehow only operate one or two trade routes, guilds have only a little more gold than temples, mercenary armies aren't much more of a possibility. That is, unless you acknowledge the Finance action, which allows guilds to suddenly finance considerable armies--as well as denying the landed regent the ability to do so.

    I tend to think that guilds should typically operate quite a few trade routes, maintain large treasuries, and be able to convert caravan guards to full military units pretty quickly (regular musters rather than mercenaries), so their financial power really ought to equal that of a landed regent. Of course, constant espionage actions should be quite damaging to a ruler, as well.

    And lets keep in mind that both guilds and temples typically have holdings in other realms that will be virtually untouchable by landed regents, unless they wish to wage wider war. Those other holdings will enable a domain to oppose their oppressors long into the future, becoming a constant thorn in their sides, particularly if the DM recognizes that they will still likely have many sympathizers in the oppressed provinces.

    It becomes apparent, then, that contestation is the best method for anyone to oppose someone else, and that action can be described in many ways, some of which could cause relatively little hostility. Occupation and reduction of holdings, be they guild or temple, should be terribly troublesome, to say nothing of how the other players and realms will receive the action.

    With shelter from outright brutality, non-landed holdings should have a lot of freedom to do what they wish and cause trouble for disagreeable rulers without fear of occupation and reduction.

  8. #8
    I feel this thread has gone a bit astray from the OP. But thanks for the opinions nonetheless! :-)

    BTW, I’m not looking to be “mean” or persecute particular players. I’m just looking for ideas in case someone needs an additional challenge!

  9. #9
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    3,562
    Downloads
    2
    Uploads
    0
    As Andrew points out, there are several kinds of contracts that a DM has with players.

    I think the White Witch is a great villain and used her a lot. But as Andrew writes,
    ...particularly with players who see the game as something they can 'win' or as 'roll' playing not 'role' playing, is that to them the rules dictate what you can and can't do in the game with nothing outside the rules (often including the DM)
    I'll tell what I think, but I have no idea whether you can use any of it because you still haven't answered the question about whether or not you're a strict constructionist.

    The White Witch has a series of agents who act as cut-outs. They recruit people to put into critical situations to see and hear things, not to effect things necessarily. This network gives the White Witch nearly perfect information. Knowing what the kings, druids, and guilders are up to allows the White Witch to set traps, to maneuver two regents (or camps) against one another. Conflicts open up new sources of recruits and provides further opportunities to gradually advance her organization. Yet even people who do her bidding don't know who they work for. They think they are acting for their own personal reasons, because the agents of the White Witch use people's rivalries, jealousies, and ingratitude to compel their service. They all move on their own steam, but its the White Witch who provides the direction by having her people whisper poison into their ears.

    She takes no overt actions. Everything is planned well in advance. Multiple traps are set, knowing that only a few will be sprung. Outside her own territory, the White Witch has guild and law holdings which are better suited to the kind of espionage she undertakes.

    All of her actions are parasitical, eating away a realm from the inside. Alliances are undermined, subordinates turned, resources skimmed, and friend turned against friend. The Rjurik domains will fight one another and create destruction, creating a vacuum for the White Witch to move into.

    The holdings of the White Witch are not only invisible, but when they are the result of subversion, the old regent may still think that they control the holding. And the White Witch will make it appear so until the regent tries to turn on the White Witch.

  10. #10
    I used to play the Western Temple, and when the Duke of Avanil decided to get tough, I just raised a bunch of mercenaries in my temple holdings. Granted, I could not raise a large enough army to destroy him -Avanil being what it is- but I could play merry hell with him if somebody else like Boeruine decided to invade.

    Avanil took the point, and the Western Temple was dealt with politely in that campaign.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Secret temple within a temple
    By Arjan in forum The Royal Library
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 03-13-2003, 10:35 AM
  2. New Eloele Temple
    By Birthright-L in forum The Royal Library
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-17-2002, 03:54 AM
  3. Dangerous Waters PBeM
    By Rio_ in forum The Royal Library
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-25-2002, 04:14 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
BIRTHRIGHT, DUNGEONS & DRAGONS, D&D, the BIRTHRIGHT logo, and the D&D logo are trademarks owned by Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and are used by permission. ©2002-2010 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.