Vox Populi Forum

Link back to Spacegamer Here!

Money Pits in Outlands


Message:

Building Estates
There will come a time when the players will want more from character life. Than Ignobles? Abundant wealth, piles of riches that won’t fit in a purse, needs an outlet. The leftover relic needs a vault, yes? Each player will establish a place to call his home. There he’ll raise a brood, while conspiring to find reasons to leave and then return with more trophies for his great hall’s mantle.

There’s plenty of places on the auction block. The serfs, farmland and feudal traditions are a given. The locals will probably be desperate for anyone to come and lord over them, provide some safeguard. Forget infant mortality, adult life expectancy is grave. Many a noble will die without heirs. Earls will be seeking new armsmen to knight as kinsmen. There will even be a few retired Varangians who look forward to downtime with fellow kinsmen.

Each time a quest ends with the longboat having the technique Treasure Laden (D), the prime player character may discharge that wealth for his own purposes and invest in his estates.

The first time the player character does this, he purchases lands and a title; he will be wed to a daughter of an established noble house. The player should decide if he wishes these to be in the Civilized Lands or in the Frontier. Both have strengths and weaknesses. Both come with advantages and problems. The Ref will tell the player the closest city-state to his purchase. He will be in fealty pledged to the ruling Earl of that neighboring region. His ties to the capital start as tenuous.

Everything will build with time (or not). The player may not sell his estate, but he may abandon it for another. The Earl he rejects will become an enemy, as the player character gains a new liege to serve (at least in renewed promise). If his character dies, he may (at Ref’s option) play a zero level relative, usually his first son. The estate should pass with little or no loss (to begin with).

After buying his campaign role, the player character will improve his estates by Personal Event, Downtime action, but mostly from dumping collected riches into the place. Every homestead is its own money pit. Whenever the player character achieves a significant windfall, as determined by the Referee, he can attempt to improve his holdings.

The logistics of hauling the wagon of loot home may or may not be required. Some things need not be detailed, since the tables also have results which reflect the money was squandered or embezzled. The prime player character has the best chance for this improvement, because he can always graft away Treasure Laden (D) from the group’s longboat, dumping the proceeds off at his own landing. Doing so, will let the group fill it up again.

Last point, the players may gift wealth to each other; however, no one may share in the estate of another. An adventuring buddy is just another distraction and competitor to all the other sycophants any estate attracts.

Civilized Realms
Cups: Gain E. Storied Heritage on an Ordinary roll or A. Enchanted Bulwarks on a Difficult. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in bribes to the aristocracy, but the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: The Curia Regis asks for clarification on the project. The player character must submit his designs. He loses his chance to make improvements this season and must wait. He does not roll this downtime for any improvement. He gets to try again at next opportunity. If he gains additional windfall next mission, he pours that too into the effort, thus spending possibly twice the treasure for the same improvement. Other than that possibility, the Curia body will forget all about their request by the next time the player attempts a roll. Ref may decide other obstructions or loss from graft results, but only if bad events are generated around the player character by Personal Events in the next quest.
Rods: Gain D. Labyrinthine Passages on an Ordinary roll or E. Storied Heritage on a Difficult. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in the placating imps and delvers, but the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: Player will gain two characteristic traits of his choice, any two, on a Nearly impossible roll. Note, this is downtime, so there is no make-roll to be used. If the estate has gained Flairs, any and all modifiers related to the characteristics influenced will apply. The Ref may insist, regardless of success, that the character becomes too involved in plans and will skip the next mission. The player should play an alternate role.
Coins: Gain C. Enterprising Export on an Ordinary roll or D. Labyrinthine Passages on a Difficult. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in the commerce, but the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: Builders say you were just a few dollars short and the effort was suspended for the weathering season (winter). When (and if) anyone continues the work in the planting season (spring), the previous effort was destroyed, washed away, cracked, ill designed. Flog those fools and get a fresh crew for the next time. Your last investment is gone.
Swords: Gain A. Enchanted Bulwarks on an Ordinary roll or B. Migratory Crossroads on a Tasking. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in the garrison, but the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: The money invested was partially consumed by interference, securing court judgments or paying fines on petitions. The player can risk continuing to select cards, but should he fail at any improvement attempt (on a minor card with a task roll), he has lost his title to another. One of his heirs is awarded authority. The child will have a regent, his mother or an in-law, who will rule the domain until the son (daughter) comes of age. The player character suffering this loss can accept his ill fate with good grace or with bad temper. Won’t change the outcome. Risky to press your luck here? There is one other possibility; if the child has grown from the turn of an inverted Sun, that character is at least playable. Otherwise, kill all you want; it won’t restore your legal authority to lord over anyone here but slaves.

Frontier Holdings
Cups: Gain D. Labyrinthine Passages on an Ordinary roll or E. Storied Heritage on a Tasking. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in the placating imps and delvers, but the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: The Regional Earl is jealous. He takes his vassal’s, the player character’s, last investment as tribute. He may not do this outwardly, but instead covertly stops the plans. He might fabricate an emergency that consumes the wealth. He might deprive the estates of skilled artisans for a period. Retaliation could cost the player everything. Yet, until the Earl is stuck hard or mollified, no more improvements may be made regardless of collected treasure. Ref must resolve any payback or reconciliation. The Ref may make a deal as the NPC with the player character – two for me, one for you (player)? If he has little developed, the player may wish to cut his losses and fake his character’s death (just leave for the Civilized Realms).
Rods: Gain B. Migratory Crossroads on an Ordinary roll or C. Enterprising Export on a Difficult. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in the handling indigent concerns, so the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: The money invested was partially consumed by other distractions, problems or family matters. The player can risk continuing to select cards, but should he fail at his improvement attempt (on a minor card with a task roll), he has lost one other characteristic he already has. If he had none, his land is beyond improvement – too wet, too remote, too worthless to do anything with. Make an enemy of one Earl and move.
Coins: Gain C. Enterprising Export on an Ordinary roll or D. Labyrinthine Passages on a Difficult. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in the commerce, but the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: Player will gain two characteristic traits of his choice, any two, on a Nearly impossible roll. Note, this is downtime, so there is no make-roll to be used. If the estate has gained Flairs, any and all modifiers related to the characteristics influenced will apply. The Ref may insist, regardless of success, that the character becomes too involved in plans and will skip the next mission. The player should play an alternate role.
Swords: Gain A. Enchanted Bulwarks on an Ordinary roll or B. Migratory Crossroads on a Difficult. If the estates already have the characteristic, the wealth was invested in the garrison, but the net result only prevented decline.
Inverted: Builders say you were just a few dollars short and the effort was suspended for the weathering season (winter). When (and if) anyone continues the work in the planting season (spring), the previous effort was destroyed, washed away, cracked, ill designed. Flog those fools and get a fresh crew for the next time. Your last investment is gone.

Magician: Actors and musicians attracted to the effort settle in the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Entertained there, unless it is Unruly.
Inverted: That’s it; the place has reached a peak. There is nothing further the player can do to improve his lands. He will not add anymore characteristics. However, his heirs might, but only if the player character dies.
High Priestess: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Pestilence, the vermin and pests overrun the player character’s estates; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the blight is eliminated at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: The money was spent on other matters. The local priests petitioned for and received from you a generous gift. Consider the money well spent to prevent a horrific disaster, to appease the gods, to prove to the locals you have divine right to rule over them.
Empress: Increased patrols and escorts to safeguard the supplies for the effort also aid the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Peaceful there, unless it is Disorder.
Inverted: The money was spent on other matters. You hosted visiting dignitaries, your lord and his retinue. The Droit de Gîte duty required to feed and house the entourage bought political favor, enough to keep prying eyes and greedy hands away from your estates.
Emperor: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Corrupt, the graft hits the player character’s suppliers; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the sleaze ends at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: Make an enemy of ruling lord, mayor or merchant prince of the nearest city-state. He might be placated if the player performs a mission for him as patron.
Hierophant: The effort inspires a nationalist pride and zeal in the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Patriotic there, unless it is Rebellious.
Inverted: The money was spent on other matters. Payments were required to the empire for births, marriages and ransom. There is little to be gained by determining if the money was used as intended. Assume no, but it is the price you pay for your authority.
Lovers: The workers attracted by the effort settle in the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Populous there, unless it is Plagued.
Inverted: Your wife dies. By the end of the next quest, you will have a new bride. Perhaps add a secondary objective to meet this person.
Chariot: The road construction necessitated by the effort help reinforce the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Magazine there, unless it is Depleted.
Inverted: The money was spent on other matters. The Trinoda Necessitas duty required that you also work on fortifications, roads and bridges in the Earl’s greater land holdings.
Justice: Professional overseers employed on the effort settle in the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Justice there, unless it is Corrupt.
Inverted: Rapport with Patricians gives a bonus of plus two in obtaining E. Storied Heritage.
Hermit: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Rebellious, the anarchy hits the player character’s estates; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the dissent is first removed at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: The money was spent on other matters. Your small court needs skilled staffers to come and live in your domain. The money was spent recruiting the agents you need to make your estates self-sufficient. If during the next quest, the player can recruit a half D8 NPCs of varied skills, he may recoup his loss and gain a roll for improvement next downtime. Start the next quest with this secondary objective. At a minimum the estate needs a trained Steward, but the Ref should set other skills to be found and recruited during encounters.
Wheel of Fortune: Shuffle the deck and continue.
Force: The guards employed to protect the effort settle in the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Strong there, unless it is Ransacked.
Inverted: Rapport with old guard Legions gives a bonus of plus two in obtaining A. Enchanted Bulwarks.
Hanged Man: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Pillaged, the thievery hits the player character’s estates; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the hijack of shipments ends at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: As a knight, you are asked to be the de facto hostage in a treaty negotiation. A major enemy is dealing with your Earl or the greater empire. Your character will go to the enemy and be held in comfortable imprisonment to ensure that any emissary sent in exchange is returned unharmed. At a minimum your player character will not be available for the next quest. The Ref may decide the greater negotiation fails terribly, forcing the character into Digressions to get safely home. Your estate often pays a ransom or bribe (the money you wanted to invest) to ensure your release.
Death: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Plagued, the disease hits the player character’s estates; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the disease is first cured at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: The money was spent on other matters. Danegeld is required to keep barbarians from invading. Ironic, this money was once paid to keep you from invading?
Temperance: The families of workers employed on the effort bond with families in the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Civil there, unless it is Pestilence.
Inverted: The money was spent on other matters. Following fire and storm damage, Abergement duty requires you prevent your peasantry from suffering exposure; you must upgrade the village housings to prevent your local populace from freezing in the winter.
Devil: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Ransacked, the monstrous threat hits the player character’s estates; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the creature’s lair is found and the mobs are slain. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: Rapport with Dwarves gives a bonus of plus two in obtaining D. Labyrinthine Passages.
Tower of Destruction: Lose one Invested Trait. If your estates have none, the land itself is ceded to another lesser noble in trust. Complain, fight, argue before the Assize, the best you can do is murder the new landlord and purchase the lands again at first opportunity. No one can survive (for long) as an independent realm, the enemy of the whole empire. Better to grow from the loss and next time select a better, more stable tract of lands to invest a windfall. As for murder? You may find the new owner both more powerful and more connected.
Inverted: The regional Earl has divided your lands and allotted them to an assemblage of heroes. This banality causes the place to stagnant without a single unified direction discharged. The player character must subjugate, drive away or murder a half D8 NPCs, before he retains exclusive control again. The rest will fall into line and make a fine privy counsel to the player character knight. The result should not cause direct combat. The player must act subtly. At most one of these extra vassals will be purged each follow-on quest by the player character completing a secondary objective. The Ref must generate the circumstances, though the secondary quest if completed should be enough to reduce the offenders by one.
Star: The craftsmen employed on the effort settle in the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Prosperous there, unless it is Pillaged.
Inverted: Rapport with Imperial Guilds gives a bonus of plus two in obtaining C. Enterprising Export.
Moon: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Disorder, the strikes hits the player character’s estates; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the unrest ends at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: Recruited into a major cabal. No one is asking if you wish to join. If you are already a cabal member, you now have ties to two groups. If either discovers your duplicity, you will be marked for retribution and ousted. That may be a polite way of saying, you’ll make an enemy that will try to kill you. Fourteen cabals were listed in the Generating Quests booklet.
Sun: Additional land is cleared to help support the influx of laborers visiting the neighboring city-state. Add Trait Fruitful there, unless it is Famine.
Inverted: A son comes of age. He may be added to the longboat crew as an NPC. The player may operate this character as an alternate role, perhaps raise him in level before you croak and cede in will your entire estate? Do not be surprised, if like many an NPC, his life is short. Gender of the child is up to the player. Male pronoun used without prejudice.
Judgment: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Unruly, the drunkenness and brawling leave the workers incapacitated; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the waywardness disappears at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: The effort this time is early-on seen to be minimal, yet there is an alternative. The player may gift his remaining investment to the nearest city-state. Doing so will remove one negative Trait or create a positive one there. He may also gain a friend on a Difficult roll. As a friend, the leader of the city-state will not automatically become enemy in a future action.
World: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Famine, hunger hits the player character’s estates; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the barrenness is first cured around the voracious city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: Quarry gives a bonus of plus two in obtaining B. Migratory Crossroads.
Fool: If the neighboring city-state is Trait Depleted, the chronic shortages drive up the cost or consume all materials; any work effort is lost this season. Attempt no further improvements, until the disease is first cured at the source of the city-state. The solution may be found through magical intervention, a secondary objective or the result of an entire mission.
Inverted: The lifestyle and stress of the estates causes the character to develop a personality flaw. Choose randomly from the list of twenty listed in the Generating Quests booklet. This buzzword will only be removed through further role-play.

Five Estate Characteristic Traits
A. Enchanted Bulwarks
B. Migratory Crossroads
C. Enterprising Export
D. Labyrinthine Passages
E. Storied Heritage

Estate Strategic Benefits
A-B-C: Forum. Gain the Command Pip at the start of any single battle of the adventure.
A-B-D: Arsenal. Gain the Tactical Pip at the start of any single battle of the adventure.
A-B-E: Basilica. Gain plus one to any roll attempted in Recitation Method.
A-C-D: Irrigation & Drainage (Snow-Storm). Gain the Catbird Seat Pip at the start of any single battle of the adventure.
A-C-E: Granary, Ice Cellars & Warehouses. Gain the Fury Pip at the start of any land battle, usually legion against legion skirmish and alike, but Ref may allow this for any single battle away from the party longboat during the climax.
A-D-E: Pilgrims, Monuments & Tombs. Avoid being Shaken during the entire climax challenges of the adventure.
B-C-D: Agora & Exchange. Gain the Fury Pip at the start of any naval battle, usually ship to ship, but Ref may allow this for any single battle aboard the party longboat in the climax.
B-C-E: Artifice Industry. Avoid all increases to Warped Outcome tally for the entire climax challenges of the adventure.
B-D-E: Sewers & Sanitation. Avoid the loss of any swaggering, even longboat, during the entire climax challenges of the adventure.
C-D-E: Aqueducts & Reservoir. Gain plus one to any roll attempted in Calculated Method.

A-B-C-D: Arcane Repository (Prison). Gain an extra Wizardry swaggering each level of advancement.
A-B-C-E: University (Library). Gain an extra skill each level of advancement.
A-B-D-E: Odeon (Amphitheater). Gain the Fury Pip at the start of any battle against a nonhuman or monster. Ref has the final decision on whether the combat is against a genuine monster, big or small.
A-C-D-E: Hospital (Sanitorium). Player character may drop from the mission for one Phase and return free of wounds. So long as he returns, he does not suffer advancement penalties for playing his alt for one Phase (not the Epilog) of an adventure. He may not leave the climax challenges and return for the Epilog. This restoration will not return his Rugged Strategic Benefit if it was previously used on the quest.
B-C-D-E: Coliseum (Circus). Gain an extra personal, Blade or Mount swaggering each level of advancement.

A-B-C-D-E: Parthenon. Gain a plus one Quest Pip for the party for any mission you join. The Pip is lost if you should ever leave. Only one player may claim this benefit for his entire estates. When the next player character gains all five characteristics for his estates, he outmatches any other player character who already has the Parthenon status. That player must choose one Trait to lose from his declining importance.

Free Holds
Should the player decide to go it alone, without friends or allies, set up shop in the wilderness and fashion a castle—employ magic—he may do so. The net effect, as impressive as his fortress of solitaire may be, is zilch. He gains no game modifiers. He instead attracts treasure seekers and questing knights to pillage his domains. The occasional monster will want to make a lair in or under his keep. He will be constantly fighting to be his own king. Not really Outlands style play, but there are some Digressions that might use to generate the action.

The point is, a fantasy home means nothing if it is outside the campaign. That campaign has a social order, which creates things like a market or property with true ownership rights established and lasting in a court. There’s no one processing at his Marble Pantheon, so why would any god take notice? Have fun regardless.




Yours,

   red



Message Replies:
 
Create a New Thread








Reply to this Message:
Name:  
Display Email On Reply Page:  Yes: No:
Email:  
Type "Spammers Suck":  
Message Title:  
Message:

| Home |
copyright SpaceGamer, LLC 2003