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Thread: Land's Choice and Usurption
10-28-2008, 01:42 AM #1
Land's Choice and Usurption
Land's Choice isn't mentioned in the BRCS as a method of 1) becoming blooded, or 2) becoming invested with a holding. Is it ever mentioned in the AD&D sources? If so, is it actually defined?
I have been wondering what you think Land's Choice can do. Can it
- make someone blooded (and if so, with what derivation)?
- pass on only some of the holdings of a dying character to a new character?
- change the bloodline derivation of the recipient?
- delay passing on the bloodline until someone "worthy" appears?
- if so, would the land choose the recipient or could the choice be forced by Investiture?
- Is Land's Choice always an option, even if an heir has been declared?
Picture the following. Rhuobhe Manslayer is killed but didn't declare an heir. His bloodline is absorbed into the land rather than spread around to people nearby. How can Land's Choice work? Can the elven leaders debate who is their new ruler and Invest them, and this will make a new regent? If so, what happens to the holdings in the meantime? Does Land's Choice always instantly pass the bloodline to someone?
What about a wizard who is a loner with a source holding? Does the source just lie "unclaimed" when he dies? Will the land eventually pass the bloodline onto anyone who is "worthy"? Or will any new regent of the source have to be invested? Can the Land reject the Investiture?
10-28-2008, 02:11 AM #2
Land's Choice is described on p.82 The Book of Priestcraft, though I always say it occurs by GM fiat, with whatever effects the GM chooses.
If the previous ruler dies with no designated successor but has available heirs, there is a 80% chance of Land's Choice stepping in and passing it on to the likely heir. If there is no obvious successor, the land only takes over about 50% of the time.
Unsuitable heirs (as determined by precedent and the realm's genus loci) may only gain the throne 25% of the time via Land's Choice. Occasionally, the land has been known to deliver the bloodline in full to a third party, who then needs to bring his new bloodline to bear in establishing himself as the legitimate next king, high priest, guildmaster etc.
In all cases, the land's choice will be a exceptional character with great potential, though not always realised at the time. Land's choice may even choose to step in and designate a new heir, even if there was a designated but unworthy successor (hence my comment about GM fiat only).
Ius Hibernicum, in nomine juris. Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum sonatur.
10-28-2008, 02:15 AM #3
Yes to all of it.
From a setting standpoint, land's choice allows you to revive old bloodlines and make sure no single type runs out and disappears.
In practice, land's choice is where some assembly elects their new regent after the old one is gone, and investiture isn't possible. So they select their new leader, perform the investment ceremony, and hope for the best.
I used the device in the story of Huljim Namvik, the old eorl of Namverg. We know that he was killed, but all of his assassins would have walked away with some small (indeed almost imperceptable) bloodline. Brand Fyrisson, one of the assassins was elected to succeed, but they performed Land's Choice on him hoping to give him a bit more bloodline.
It would make sense in any investment to name off all the ancestors and predecessors of the new regent in the hopes that some available bloodline might be acquired thereby. Almost never does it occur, but its worth the recitation.
When Elton and I were going over the history of Avanil and Boeruine, he had written that the Sword Prince, Sethien Avan, had made a marriage alliance with Donald Boeruine but had married the Boeruine girl to his brother, in effect making his brother's decedents Avan+Boeruine, while his own would be not quite so fantastic. When Sethien arrogantly overlooked naming an heir and faced Donald in battle, they ended up killing each other, but Sethien had no designated heir.
It occurred to me that it would be a profound irony if the Land's Choice selected Sethien's nephew, Veladin Avan, the product of Avan and Boeruine, in place of Sethien's own sons. So that's how we introduced that part of the story. Veladin Avan is Darien's father. It also makes Aeric and Darien 1st cousins once removed on both their mother and their father's sides.
10-28-2008, 02:51 AM #4
Okay, reading the BoP description. I guess it doesn't really need much change to work with the BRCS (see BRCS:Chapter_two/Blood_and_regency/Usurpation). But...
If the deceased ruler left no obvious successor, the land selects a new successor in about half of such cases (leaving the throne up for conquest in the other half of such incidences).
So if the Althing decides after three weeks debate that Jarl B should be the new regent, how can they "perform Land's Choice"? Surely they are merely Investing Jarl B and hoping that the Land "agrees with them". Is there a chance that the Land does not agree with them but does not apply Land's Choice at that time? i.e. the Althing have to keep investing new regents until they finally pick one that meets the Land's approval, or someone proves themselves sutiable to the Land?
10-28-2008, 03:33 AM #5
Land's Choice, even though it is, just an investment.
Is there a chance that the Land does not agree with them but does not apply Land's Choice at that time? i.e. the Althing have to keep investing new regents until they finally pick one that meets the Land's approval, or someone proves themselves sutiable to the Land?
But you would need druids and bards to be either ignored or corrupt as well as the Althing.
10-28-2008, 03:57 AM #6
Originally Posted by Sorontar
title of an Investiture ceremony done by priests). They each work by completely different "rules" so cannot be thought of as one and the same.
But I do like the fact that one can become blooded by Land's Choice. It means that the stablehand/apprentice who has managed his life of nothing very well may suddenly become the commander-in-chief of the Cavalry/Guildmaster/Master Mage! But I still wonder, do they automatically get the derivation of their predecessor? Or is this a matter of chance (which doesn't seem very D&D3.5ish)?
And what if you don't have a holding/province? What happens to your blood then? Can Land's Choice also share that around? Can you designate heirs for that blood as well? The BRCS seems to point to Investiture for a regent's heirs or two regents passing a bloodline between them (with holdings). However, it doesn't define what to do if there aren't any regents involved. Can it be done in any way?
10-28-2008, 11:23 AM #7
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