Jump to content

How would you handle a 'fief' for a character?


Recommended Posts

So I've got a character who is currently lesser nobility, complete with oaths of fealty, etc... I want for him to gain a small fief. This would be essentially a small village with some surrounding land that he administers, and the right to build some sort of manor there, though he might not start with one. He currently has a 3 point nobility perk and 3 points in wealth.

 

Would you handle this as a special effect of a wealth perk, or would you go so far as to define a base? If you built a base, how would you build it?

Link to post
Share on other sites

   My question is why do you want this?  Is it for some role-play reason?   Something like this can dead end a character if you’re not careful. All of a sudden every episode has to be based in and around your village.  The days of riding across the open world are done.  How does your GM feel about this. How do the other players?  
   This can end up as “OK Spartacus, you stay here and collect the taxes and send those reports to the local Lord while we journey across the forbidden mountains and battle the Orc army massing there, buh-bye!

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Panpiper said:

So I've got a character who is currently lesser nobility, complete with oaths of fealty, etc... I want for him to gain a small fief. This would be essentially a small village with some surrounding land that he administers, and the right to build some sort of manor there, though he might not start with one. He currently has a 3 point nobility perk and 3 points in wealth.

 

Would you handle this as a special effect of a wealth perk, or would you go so far as to define a base? If you built a base, how would you build it?

 

I'd buy the raw land as a base. Significant villagers could be DNPC's for the base.

 

And have the ability to tax the inhabitants as a special effect of the wealth perk.

 

The buildings which the villagers place on the land are generally of negligible value in game or wealth terms. If you're planning on having the whole game take place in the fiefdom and having the PC defend his land though, you'd have to define every building and decide whether the character is going to pay for that building. I wouldn't really worry about it unless the PC starts improving the land or making it a mecca by doing such things as building a grain mill.

 

If there's a significant church or abbey on the land, that's typically going to be owned by the religious organization rather than the lord but it will be his obligation to the organization to defend that site and/or the worshippers. Conversely, it will be the lord's obligation to make sure no rival churches and worshippers are established within his fiefdom.

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Panpiper said:

So I've got a character who is currently lesser nobility, complete with oaths of fealty, etc... I want for him to gain a small fief. This would be essentially a small village with some surrounding land that he administers, and the right to build some sort of manor there, though he might not start with one. He currently has a 3 point nobility perk and 3 points in wealth.

 

Would you handle this as a special effect of a wealth perk, or would you go so far as to define a base? If you built a base, how would you build it?

This character, I presume you are the GM, has a Title and wealth. The Perk is of Lesser Nobility, the title flows from the King, or equiv, whether inherited or newly granted, the character shows up on the OP (Order of Precedence). Al the lands of the Kingdom are paid for by the Political Power, a King, Queen, Mage, Theocrat, Congress etc. There is such a thing as landed and non landed nobles, maybe +1 pt, or not, if the character is now landed, otherwise the character gets the fief as a reward / burden. Followers, as the Bard tells us, therein lies the rub.

 

You want good people in charge, or anyone tied to the character, then Followers is where I start. The perk: Wealth may or may not flow from the fief, if so, have a number in mind. Credit the character on a seasonal basis. Which works well on the HERO time chart. Four times a year, and if he takes over, money flows out first or is borrowed on the promise of peasant productivity, taxes,  or character adventuring activity.

 

You have to address the chain. Does the character report to a Baronet, then a upwards to Count, Viscounts, Dukes, Archdukes, it all flows upwards to the Throne. What about neighboring fiefs, rivalry, pilferage, banditry.

 

Definitely a Base. Write out the population, the infrastructure, resources, production. All at no points t the character. He wants to build a manor, kee, tower, pay points for those. Wants to raise a peasant levy, or train some levy to actual units, pay for that with points and materials with money. He wants to build improvements or create bridges, roads, mills, etc, pay for that.

 

He wants to hire experts or mercenaries, pay for those with money.

 

To Tjack's blunt opposition, make all of these actions and decisions off line, blue book, email whatever. If the player just wants to dip out and go adventuring and not deal, well that has only as many consequences as the campaign allows and those can all be dealt with as the character's Reputation and adventuring swell his coffers

 

Buying the fief as a base, just the land and any obvious resources or Kingdom relevant infrastructure, at zero cost to player, just what he starts with . You can throw in the population of peasants as followers at zero cost.

Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, lensman said:

 

 

To Tjack's blunt opposition, make all of these actions and decisions off line, blue book, email whatever. If the player just wants to dip out and go adventuring and not deal, well that has only as many consequences as the campaign allows and those can all be dealt with as the character's Reputation and adventuring swell his coffers

 


     That was not opposition, blunt or otherwise.  I was however asking if a player had thought out all the possible downsides to effecting a major change in their campaign without taking the GM or other players into consideration.

   If one player decides unilaterally that they want to buy a tavern and from now on every episode has to take place in and around that location, they effectively change the game for everyone.

   Panpiper’s original post doesn’t say whether they’re the GM or just another player. Or if this is an ongoing game or one in the planning stages.  If they’re the GM then they certainly have a major say in these decisions but even so they should be discussed with the others in the gaming group.

Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, Panpiper said:

So I've got a character who is currently lesser nobility, complete with oaths of fealty, etc... I want for him to gain a small fief. This would be essentially a small village with some surrounding land that he administers, and the right to build some sort of manor there, though he might not start with one. He currently has a 3 point nobility perk and 3 points in wealth.

 

Would you handle this as a special effect of a wealth perk, or would you go so far as to define a base? If you built a base, how would you build it?

 

Well, what effect would this have on the campaign? If it doesn't have a real effect (it's a generic fantasy town, except that the local lord is the PC), then it could just be the SFX of his wealth and nobility perks. If he wants to build it as a base, then he gets whatever he chooses to pay for. If he wants followers based there that help him adventure (men at arms, a wizard that can scry) he can buy them as followers, but he shouldn't have to pay for the local guards if they stay in town while he's off slaying dragons or whatever.

 

And, of course, if the town is constantly being attacked by dragons, then it's a DNPC. :)

Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a dark ages fantasy horror game in which I am a player. The GM has no problems at all with my character having a fief. My character already has a well established background around his being a knight of some prominence. He currently has three points in a nobility perk (Baronet), three points in wealth and 5 points for a follower. My character does not yet actually have a fief. I am banking points in the requisite perks so that when it is convenient for the GM in the narrative, my character can be granted one.

 

By no means am I expecting the GM to start using the fief as the center of any and all adventures. This is not me attempting to end run or hijack a game or anything.

 

Shortly after asking this question here on the forum, it occurred to me to look up bases in the actual rule book. (D'uh...) Therein I found this rather clearly spelled out:

 

"In Heroic campaigns, characters should pay for
Bases and Vehicles with money. In Superheroic
campaigns, characters must buy them with Character
Points."

 

This comes as a bit of a relief, as buying both a wealth perk commensurate to a fief AND paying the ~20 character points needed to define an appropriate fief is a MASSIVE investment for a 100 (starting) point fantasy character, especially given that this would be little more than RP chrome really. It won't help one whit in a fight or figuring out a mystery.  I am thinking now a wealth perk in the range of 6 to 10 aught to cover it AND defining the appropriate fief.

https://www.mediafire.com/file/q9rjfqyn6l42pms/Léonard+Vaillant's+Character+Sheet.pdf/file

Link to post
Share on other sites

A fief is first and foremost a form of wealth, but landed nobility usually also have a Fringe Benefit as they can vote, preside over trials, takes up arms, etc. It also comes with a duty but in Hero terms that would be a very small Watched if it mattered in points terms at all. The need to take care of taxes, records, livestock and such is pretty much cancelled out by the small household staff you have to help with such things.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Will your fief have any impact on the game?  If you are not getting any in game benefit to having a fief then it does not need to be purchased or even written up.  Even if some parts of the game takes place there you may not need to purchase anything besides the wealth perk.  If your fief is just an ordinary village with ordinary buildings you don’t need to write it up as a base.     If your manor has some sort of magical protections or other special abilities then you may need to write it up.  

Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, LoneWolf said:

Will your fief have any impact on the game?  If you are not getting any in game benefit to having a fief then it does not need to be purchased or even written up.  Even if some parts of the game takes place there you may not need to purchase anything besides the wealth perk.  If your fief is just an ordinary village with ordinary buildings you don’t need to write it up as a base.     If your manor has some sort of magical protections or other special abilities then you may need to write it up.  

 

I agree with this. If it isn't really expected to impact play, there's no need to even pay points for it, let alone write it up. If the fief is where you go when you unwind after an adventure and gear up for the next and move on, why bother with more than naming it, say it's home, and leave it at that? As fans of the system, we tend to think in terms of "how do I write this up in the rules", when the reality is, sometimes you don't.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/13/2021 at 3:32 AM, Tjack said:


     That was not opposition, blunt or otherwise.  I was however asking if a player had thought out all the possible downsides to effecting a major change in their campaign without taking the GM or other players into consideration.

   If one player decides unilaterally that they want to buy a tavern and from now on every episode has to take place in and around that location, they effectively change the game for everyone.

   Panpiper’s original post doesn’t say whether they’re the GM or just another player. Or if this is an ongoing game or one in the planning stages.  If they’re the GM then they certainly have a major say in these decisions but even so they should be discussed with the others in the gaming group.

 

My daughter played a druid in a sea-based campaign. I built a 2-3 character point base on Lost Skull Island for her and described it briefly on her character sheet, basically a nifty but mysterious place where she'd once been shipwrecked. The base was in a fairly well concealed grotto and had a clairvoyant "TV" screen built into the wall which could look over the immediate area so she could see when it was safe to come out. The grotto itself was very small with not much more than some bedding, fresh water, and a few salvaged odds and ends which some previous survivor had apparently dragged there.

 

I also sent the GM a background on the mysteries and features of Lost Skull Island in case he wanted to work them into the campaign at some point.

 

There wasn't a real expectation that the action would take place close to her base. But it provided the group a place to go if things went badly while at sea (I was skeptical of a sea-based campaign because if your ship is damaged, you're screwed). And if they came up with any plunder, it gave them an easy place to choose to hide it.

 

It wasn't any worse of an investment than buying some skill which the GM never manages to work into the campaign.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...