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Thread: Espionage

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    Espionage

    According to the rules downloaded here, it seems that you can use an espionage action in hostile provinces (the same, I think, about spy networks): how far from your land you can use this action?

    In my opinion, I think that you can use the action only in adjacent provinces or a bit more far, maybe with a penalty to the check.

    Some ideas?

    Thanks.

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    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    AFAIC You can use it as far away from home as you like. The thing required to set up distant espionage actions are time and money.

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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    If you needed a guild in the province to carry out espionage then the list of suspects would be pretty short for an enraged victim - and a defender could avoid espionage by blocking the formation of new guilds / contesting them. So you need to be able to use the action without a local holding.

    That said, the greater the distance, the harder it should be to carry out the espionage. Similarly their should be modifiers for trade, dissimilar culture, etc. Say:

    +2 per province between the home court and the target province, reduced to +1 if support is gained from a local holding.
    +5 for similar but different culture (Rjurik:Vos, Brecht:Anuirean:Khinasi, Vos:goblin) reduced to +2 with local support.
    +10 for very different culture (Any human:dwarf), reduced to +5 with local support.
    +15 for exotic culture (Any human:sidhe) reduced to +7 with local support.
    -1 per 3 GB of trade in the realm per season (-1 GB if trade is with the home province).

    Not sure how the above will work in practice, it strongly encourages local support which should encourage the formation of alliances and also make betrayal more likely, but looks like it could stack up too highly. You also need some cap to the trade easement to stop neighbours being an open book to each other.

    I would however let law-holdings also aid/oppose the action - they are at least as inclined to covert action as a guild holding, for that matter temple holdings should also be able to aid - the faithful are found everywhere! The guild only restriction may be intended to help make guilds more usable but I'm not sure that this action is the right way of making them better.

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    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    I think +2 per home court and intended province is fine, if the results are additive, like the craft skill. So that an action may take several seasons in distant place; using one domain action to initiate and court actions to maintain the action until its completed.

    The rest of the modifiers are likewise reasonable, though I would quibble over who has similar cultures.

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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    Similarity is a very vague concept - I put Rjurik and Vos together b/c both are rural with nomadic aspects - a city Halskapan would probably have more in common with an Anuirean while a Brecht mountain villager would similarly understand the Vos culture better perhaps than those of a urbane Mudenite.

    It depends a lot on how you interpret each culture, I can see some Anuireans being more similar to dwarves than to Khinasi in some interpretations - it would probably be better to wing it for each domain/spying lieutenant than have definitive modifiers.

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    Thanks for your suggestions.

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    At 01:10 PM 2/6/2009, Vadamar wrote:

    >According to the rules downloaded here, it seems that you can use an
    >espionage action in hostile provinces (the same, I think, about spy
    >networks): how far from your land you can use this action?
    >
    >In my opinion, I think that you can use the action only in adjacent
    >provinces or a bit more far, maybe with a penalty to the check.
    >
    >Some ideas?

    It doesn`t read to me as if there is any restriction for
    distance. However, I`ve used rules that increase the cost of actions
    conducted away from a regent`s provinces/holdings. It seems to gibe
    perfectly well with most people`s sense of veracity to make it more
    difficult to create a holding on the far end of the continent from
    where a regent already controls provinces because he has to split his
    administrative duties.

    In the case of espionage actions, though, bear in mind that we`re
    probably thinking of a small, covert operation. The number of people
    involved is relatively few--maybe just what amounts to an adventuring
    party. It might not be particularly expensive to finance such a
    group, so range might not be that much of a problem.

    G

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