Thursday, June 2, 2016

Civilized Simple Sample Domains

So I complained previously that generating NPC domains with ACKS' rules required like...  understanding them and thinking and doing math, all of which suck when you're in a hurry.  So here I'm going to make some simplifying assumptions, take a whole bunch of variables out of the equation, and just leave the usable end-results.  We are here to answer the following important questions:
  • What does holding one of these do for you?
  • What does having one of these as a vassal do for you?
  • How tough is one of these?
  • If you kill one, how much loot is there?

  • No sub-6-mile-hex domains.  I'm also going to mirror what my players would do in terms of growth strategy ("Maximum personal domain size is a 24-mile hex; why the heck would you want vassals if your total domain size were smaller than that?"), because it makes everything simpler!  Also because the ACKS book makes it clear that personal domain sizes vary with realm size, but doesn't make explicit just how big they are (or what population density they used) to derive personal domain populations, so I'm gonna simplify it.
  • These grasping, powergaming autocrats also impose a maximally Centralized settlement pattern.  Roughly half of a vassal realm's supported urban population will be in that vassal's central settlement; the other half get pushed up to their lord's urban population through some combination of food shipments / tax in kind and travelling merchants originally from the vassal's domain.
  • No ranges of values; all is concrete.
  • Population density of 450 families per 6-mile hex (~75 people / sq mi).  Right in the middle of the chart, low-middle Civilized.  Probably worth doing borderlands and wilderness domains at some point...
    • Actually, with urban population, 495 families per hex makes my life a lot easier, assuming a split of 450 rural and 45 urban.
  • 6gp/mo land value (again, average)
  • No population growth over time.  Domains are immutable (unless pillaged or razed).
  • There are two levels of pillaging: pillaged and razed.  A pillaged domain has its income reduced and has a cost associated with unpillaging it, which combines the necessary stronghold rebuilding and urban/agricultural investment to bring population back up to old levels.  A razed domain is just gone.
  • Things will tend to be expressed in units of kgp when reasonable, with one significant figure and inconsistent rounding.
  • Military unit selection is in the "knights and pikemen" tradition. 
 Vassal Barony
  • Size: 1 6-mile hex
  • Population: 450 rural families, 23 "urban" families
  • Net domain income: 2.1 kgp/mo
  • Market: Class VI hamlet at stronghold
  • Gives liege lord: 1.1 kgp/mo, 22 supported urban families 
  • Ruler max level from domain XP: 6th.
  • Stronghold value: 15 kgp, small round stone tower
  • Garrison: 0.9 kgp/mo, 2 platoons of heavy infantry
  • Field army (cost to field is around garrison+net income, has had some time to prepare for war): 2 platoons of heavy infantry, 2 platoons of bowmen, 4 platoons of militia
  • Pillaging: 
    • Requires 600 troops and 1 day.  
    • Yields 5 kgp in gold, 13 kgp in supplies, and 10.4 kgp in prisoners.  
    • A pillaged barony has its net income reduced to 0.5 kgp/mo, garrison reduced to 0.4 kgp/mo (actually the population reduction might drive the domain down into Borderlands, in which case this might go up?  Too complicated, don't care), and liege tax reduced to 0.5 kgp/mo.
    • It costs 52.2 kgp to unpillage a barony (payable gradually; takes ~56 months if you sink all your excess domain income into it).  Protip: don't get pillaged.
  • Razing
    • Requires 600 troops and 4 days
    • Yields 9.5 kgp in gold, 23.7 kgp in supplies, and 18.9 kgp in prisoners.
    • Stronghold is badly damaged, domain depopulated.
Damn, civilized realms are way more lucrative than these borderland/wilderness crap baronies we've been using (2kgp/mo?  That's like ten times what we've seen from fresh domains).  Also: razing is terrifying.  Four days is not very long at all to gather a relief force.

Vassal March
  • Size: 4 6-mile hexes
  • Population: 1800 rural families, 180 urban families
  • Net domain income: 8.4 kgp/mo
  • Market: Small village, class VI
  • Gives liege lord: 4.4 kgp/mo, 180 supported urban families  
  • Ruler max level from domain XP: 8th
  • Stronghold value: 60 kgp, large round tower with some 20' high curtain walls, gatehouse, moat and drawbridge
  • Garrison: 3.8 kgp/mo, five platoons each of heavy infantry and bowmen
  • Field army: two companies of heavy infantry, three companies of bowmen, five companies of militia
  • Pillaging:
    • Requires 2400 troops, takes 1d3 days
    • Yields 19.8 kgp in gold, 52 kgp in supplies, and 41.6 kgp in prisoners
    • A pillaged march has its net income reduced to 1.9 kgp/mo, garrison to 1.7 kgp/mo, and tax to liege to 2 kgp/mo.  Its market is reduced to a Hamlet.
    • Rebuilding a pillaged march costs 208.8 kgp (110 months of domain income)
  • Razing:
    • Requires 2400 troops, takes 4d3 days
    • Yields 37.8 kgp in gold, 94.5 kgp in supplies, and 75.6 kgp in prisoners.
    • Stronghold badly damaged, domain depopulated.
Vassal County
  • Size: 1 24-mile hex (16 6-mile hexes)
  • Population: 7200 rural families, 360 urban families
  • Net domain income: 33.6 kgp/mo
  • Market: Large Village, class V
  • Gives liege lord: 17.8 kgp/mo, 360 supported urban families 
  • Ruler max level from domain XP: 10th
  • Stronghold value: 240 kgp, square keep with 20' high curtain walls with a barbican and medium round towers at the corners, moat, maybe some buildings inside the walls
  • Garrison: 15.1 kgp/mo, two companies of heavy cavalry, two companies of heavy infantry, two companies of bowmen
  • Field army: three companies of heavy cavalry, seven companies of heavy infantry, ten companies of bowmen, eleven companies of militia
  • Pillaging:
    • Requires 12000 troops and 1d6 days
    • Yields 79.4 kgp in gold, 207.9 kgp in supplies, and 166.3 kgp in prisoners.
    • A pillaged county's net income is reduced to 7.6 kgp/mo, garrison to 6.8 kgp/mo, and tax to 8 kgp/mo.  Its market is reduced to a Village.
    • Rebuilding a pillaged county costs 835.4 kgp (110 months of domain income...  a curious constant!)
  • Razing
    • Requires 12000 troops and 4d6 days
    • Yields 151.2 kgp in gold, 378 kgp in supplies, and 302.4 kgp in prisoners.
    • Stronghold badly damaged, domain depopulated.
Above counties you have to start adding vassals.  Incidentally, this particular generation scheme probably gives counts more power than the default.  Yeah, checking the book my counts are as strong as normal dukes, my dukes as princes, and kings and emperors as normal.  I'm OK with that.

It's also worth noting: if you're a vassal count, and you subjugate another count (somehow?), your net domain income goes up by like 50%.  Pretty nifty.

Vassal Duchy
  • Vassals: 5 counties
  • Size: 1 24-mile hex personally, 5 24-mile hexes held by vassals
  • Population: 7200 rural families, 1260 urban families
  • Net domain income: 96.7 kgp/mo
  • Market: Small city, class IV (towns?  Who needs 'em?)
  • Gives liege lord: 36.9 kgp/mo, 1260 supported urban families
  • Ruler max level from domain XP: 13th
  • Minimum stronghold value: 240 kgp, as county
  • Garrison: 16.9 kgp/mo, two companies of heavy cavalry, two companies of heavy infantry, three companies of bowmen
  • Field army: two battalions of heavy cavalry, three battalions of heavy infantry, six battalions of bowmen, six battalions of militia
  • Pillaging:
    • Requires 12000 troops and takes 1d6 days
    • Yields 88.8 kgp in gold, 232.6 kgp in supplies, and 186.1 kgp in prisoners.
    • Having vassals is great if you've been pillaged, because they keep paying taxes (provided they haven't also been pillaged, or rebelled).  A pillaged ducal seat with unpillaged counties has a net income of 70.8 kgp/mo, a garrison of 7.6 kgp/mo, and a liege tax of 26.4 kgp/mo.  A pillaged ducal seat's market is reduced to a Small Town.
    • It costs 934.8 kgp to rebuild a pillaged ducal seat (~13 months).
  • Razing:
    • Requires 12000 troops and takes 4d6 days
    • Yields 169.2 kgp in gold, 423 kgp in supplies, and 338.4 kgp in prisoners.
    • Stronghold badly damaged, domain depopulated.
Vassal Kingdom
  • Vassals: 5 dukes
  • Size: 1 24-mile hex personally, 30 24-mile hexes held by vassals
  • Population: 7200 rural families, 3510 urban families
  • Net domain income: 165.5 kgp/mo (it's good to be king)
  • Market: City, class III
  • Gives liege lord: 59.5 kgp/mo, 3510 supported urban families
  • Ruler max level from domain XP: 14th (barely - 14th level vassal kings will be ooold)
  • Minimum stronghold value: 240 kgp, as duchy
  • Garrison: 21.4 kgp/mo, three companies of heavy cavalry, two companies of heavy infantry, three companies of bowmen
  • Field army: Four battalions of heavy cavalry, six battalions of heavy infantry, eight battalions of bowmen, and eight battalions of militia.  Trifle not with kings, for verily they shalt wreck thy shit.
  • Pillaging:
    • Requires 12000 troops, 1d6 days
    • Yields 112.5 kgp in gold, 294.5 kgp in supplies, and 232.6 kgp in prisoners.
    • A pillaged royal seat whose vassals are unpillaged has a net income of 139.8 kgp/mo, a garrison requirement of 9.6 kgp/mo, and pays a tax of 47.1 kgp/mo.  Its market is reduced to a Small City.
    • Rebuilding a pillaged royal seat costs  1,183.4 kgp (~9 months)
  • Razing:
    • Requires 12000 troops, 4d6 days
    • Yields 214.2 kgp in gold, 535.5 kgp in supplies, and 428.4 kgp in prisoners.
    • Stronghold is badly damaged, domain depopulated.
  • Vassals: 5 kings
  • Size: 1 24-mile hex personally, 155 24-mile hexes held by vassals
  • Population: 7200 rural families, 18270 urban families
  • Net domain income: 367.9 kgp/mo
  • Market: Large city, class II (just short of a metropolis)
  • Ruler max level from domain XP: 14th
  • Minimum stronghold value: 240 kgp, as kingdom
  • Garrison: 50.9 kgp/mo, five companies of heavy cavalry, eight companies of heavy infantry, ten companies of bowmen
  • Field army: Two brigades of heavy cavalry, four brigades of heavy infantry, four brigades of bowmen, five brigades of militia
  • Pillaging:
    • Requires 24000 troops, takes 1d8 days
    • Yields 267.4 kgp in gold, 700.4 kgp in supplies, and 560.3 kgp in prisoners.
    • A pillaged imperial seat whose vassals remain loyal and unpillaged has a net income of 314.8 kgp/mo, and a garrison requirement of 22.9 kgp/mo.  Its market remains a Large City.
    • Unpillaging an imperial seat costs 2,814.3 kgp (9 months)
  • Razing:
    • Requires 24000 troops, takes 4d8 days.
    • Yields 509.4 kgp in gold, 1,273.5 kgp in supplies, and 1,018.8 kgp in prisoners.
    • Stronghold destroyed, domain depopulated.
So looking back on this, it's slightly more usable for stuff like "OK you fought and vassalized a count, what does that really get you?"  But the whole "pushing urban population up" thing breaks the abstraction of "population never changes", because presumably if you rebel against your liege and stop paying taxes and shipping food, your liege's central settlement will have a food shortage and they'll lose your supported families, which will require reevaluation of their stuff in a manner more complicated than "subtract lost taxes from monthly income, good to go".  Would probably be fine to just fix the urban populations at build-time and not worry about it changing.

Apparently I also forgot principalities.  I am OK with this; never liked them anyway (they don't fit into my Crusader Kings-based worldview).  If I have to add them back I'll make them short kings, with 3 dukes instead of five.  It does mean that emperors / kings are a little weaker than they would be if they had an extra layer of vassals, but it's about made up for by making counties extra-powerful.  It might be worth doing over again with weaker counties (with smaller personal domains and march vassals, and marches with barony vassals) and principalities, but that was a lot of typing.

Handling all the details of morale is prone to change domain income.  As far as I'm concerned, though, there are two proper morale states for the peasants: quietly resentful of taxation, and violently resentful of taxation.

Next time: borderlands and/or wilderness domains.  Because barbarian armies have to come from somewhere.


  1. Squint a bit and those look a lot like monster entries.

    Man, Baron, Civilized
    HD 6
    blah blah
    Special Domain Details...
    blah blah

    Man, Count, Civilized
    HD 10
    blah blah blah

    Work up the treasure type for the leader and notable leveled NPCs by the Demographics tables, maybe define the troops as "XX troop type lead by a Level Y whatever", the stronghold/domain lootage results become a sort of "Domain Hoard" treasure type - one could very well have a treasure type table for the "supplies" that produces all trade goods.

    Then slot that into the lair-hex-stocking recommendations, change the language in the campaign map generation to say "decide which swath of hexes are civ, border, wild", then modify the tables a bit so that a "domain" can show up as a lair, with percent change, type, and size modified by hex type.

    Bam! Random instant domains as monster lairs.

  2. Hmm... interesting. I was definitely going for "stat-block-esque", with Domain as Monster, but hadn't really thought about using them to stock hexes.

  3. Seems like a natural application - by default, a settlement is attached to a domain, if I'm placing settlements, then here's this pre-defined domain I can wrap around it. As I place the remainder, I can then derive lord/vassals/rivals as size and placement dictate, and I've not had to do any of the work of either generating or table-looking-upping my own results. The resultant realm is then a matter of simple addition up into the largest domain ruler on the map.

    Examples for Chaotic/Beastmen domains would be handy for that as well. If I've somehow randomly generated a clump of orc village-lairs during map generation, perhaps I'd graduate that into a domain of some sort, referencing the proper example domain stat block from the number of orc village inhabitants.

  4. This looks really useful to have quick domains ready on the fly. Great to see you are back to posting!

  5. koewn: yeah, settlements -> domains was sort of my plan. Beastman domains are... surprisingly doable. An orc village averages ~238 adult males (5.5 warbands, each of 7 gangs of 5+champion, plus 5.5 warchiefs and chieftain), 238 females, 475 children, and 95 slaves (10.5 per hundred orcs), so about 209 families, which puts a 6-mile hex containing an average orc village at Borderlands population density. Another village in the same hex pushes it up into "Civilized". Beastman domains don't do great financially - assuming an independent domain (no tribute to other chaotic powers) with borderlands garrison and stronghold requirements, and 10% "urban" population in the hamlet itself, a single orc village yields right around 500gp/mo to its chieftain, which would be sufficient to push him to 5th level / 5HD on domain XP alone. The militia is pretty solid, though, at more than 2 combatants per family (because female orcs fight as goblins). 2 companies of orcish pikemen and 2 companies of goblin archers punches way above weightclass for a single-hex domain, and could likely overrun an unprepared human barony (granted, who watches the slaves if you take all the adults on the warpath?). Even if you leave the archers at home, two companies of pike is pretty solid. Ultimately I'd like to ditch beastmen and steal their demographics for human barbarians - beastmen are unambiguous, whereas barbarians can play Noble Savage one minute and Sacking Rome the next without players crying foul.

    Steven: As it turns out, all work and no play makes John a dull boy. We'll see how long it holds out; probably won't get to run a campaign this summer, but I can prep.

    Google is growing increasingly convinced that I am a robot. This could be bad.

  6. One question for your data here, are you including the wage cost of the field army against the income?

  7. Steven: Nope; the field army's composition was picked to give a total upkeep of around garrison+net income. It's roughly the maximum sustainable force that such a domain could deploy and support for an extended period of time.