Malakhon
 member, 2001 posts
Wed 13 Jun 2018
at 22:33
Crusader Kings RPG
What about a game where the players rule over Kingsbridge, a small city in the Kingdom of Wessex in Devonshire.

Somewhat inspired by Pendragon (Without King Aurthur though) or the Computer Game Crusader Kings.

At the start of the game the sole Earl of Kingsbridge is a 3 year old boy, and last of the line of Earls.

The last wish of the former Earl was that his land be ruled by the six (players) as a Council of Elderman. This council meets to decide what to do about matters of court.

The players would choose a few key advisors and they would serve at their pleasure - such as a Court Chaplain, Marshall, Chancellor, Steward, Spymaster

There is also a Wittan where wiseman are summoned and important decisions are made for your lands such as raising a levy, building new roads, constructing a cathedral for the priory of Saint James, etc.

In this game, there is low magic but not anything the players would control directly - no magic missiles or anything of that sort - more like ancient curses and legends of dragons and nyads. Witches and pagans are frowned upon by the church but the common people turn to them as healers and wisefolk.

It would be ahistorical, in that it would happen at some fairly ahistorical time under King Ecgberht (prior to King Alfred) - so the Danish invasion may or may not happen.

The players would likely control certain key resources that they can share with one another but must make decisions jointly on matters of war and peace.

This would be a game without grandiose matters of typical Aurthurian legend but where you could send Questing Knights abroad to do your will, or settle disputes between pious bishops and loyal knights, crush bandits, mete out justice in the name of the Earl and the King of Wessex.

I don't know if it would "Exciting" though as I wouldn't have the players go questing themselves on adventures as much as I would "A bard has requested an audience with you..", a game about summer feasts and tournaments and such - more Crusader Kings than anything else.

I could use the Pendragon 5.2 rules or just make it a much simpler affair where we track a few important things about each player, their wealth and go from there?

We could even make it dynastic where after a period of time, we skip a head and the players take the role of their heir/next of kin if we were so inclined. These games tend to go slow though so that may not work.

My main concern about such a game would be in historical accuracy. I would not prefer a situation where players are going "That form of metallugury isn't introduced for 40 more years" or "Actually, the city of Kingsbridge was constructed in the 10th century, and so would not have existed."

The alternate side of that coin though is that it is very familiar to most - and doesn't require extensive world building.

This message was last edited by the user at 01:49, Fri 15 June.

thattripletguy
 member, 4 posts
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 02:19
Crusader Kings RPG
In reply to Malakhon (msg # 1):

I would absolutely be interested in this
Malakhon
 member, 2002 posts
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 02:36
Crusader Kings RPG
I am glad - I was concerned perhaps I had chosen poorly. I have been thinking quite hard about what would be fun to play.

Do you have any preference?

Rules:
  1. Pendragon
  2. Rules Lite
  3. Black Box


I could modify the Pendragon rules so that we captured important statistics. It can be a fairly lengthy creation process though so I would probably amend it.

I could go with Rules Lite - meaning a very simple set of numbers and values

I could go wth black box - which is the direction I am leaning where there are no statistical values. Instead, we use Qualitative descriptions "He is an excellent commander, Milord" as opposed to "Command 15"

My lean is black box but I also know Pendragon pretty well.


Historical or ahistorical Setting:

I am already convinced I can't do justice to 100% historical accuracy, however by Historical I mean setting the campaign in Wessex just before the age of vikings. Here we have a nice Medieval campaign with very familiar Welsh, Cornish, Mercians and the like. I would most certainly take poetic license and my concern there is with purists.

By Ahistorical, I mean I could create a fairly simple Kingdom, set in a fantasy world where it still feels very medieval, much like the world of Witcher, Game of Thrones or Warhammer.

It doesn't even have to be English - it could be French, Irish or Germanic for that matter.

High Fantasy or Low Fantasy:

I lean towards Human-centric campaign with very low magic - so that Druids and Wizards may exist but they would be rare and possibly/likely charlatans.

I could be convinced to use a Fae Courts, Dwarven Stone Masons, Goblins and Giants and such - more of a high fantasy game.


Scale:

What is the scale - my original vision is a nice walled city as the center of the campaign surrounded by 6-10 manors all having 3-4 villages each as the player's domain, as part of a larger Kingdom - although I may decide to move the location to someplace on the border to make it easier to expand without warring within the Kingdom.


However, I could be convinced quite easily to expand to a Kingdom, with multiple cities and a bit larger scale, perhaps setting the game in Winchester (the capital of Wessex) with a young Prince Alfred the sole heir to the crown. (or something comparable if the campaign is not Wessex)

This message was last edited by the user at 02:41, Thu 14 June.

OakMaster
 member, 99 posts
 "Choose you this day
 whom ye will serve..."
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 05:50
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
Just out of curiosity...  :)

Malakhon:
I could be convinced to use a Fae Courts, Dwarven Stone Masons, Goblins and Giants and such - more of a high fantasy game.

Might this option be considered in an alternative version of the Real World?

Two possibilities come to mind:

(*) Alternate Real World, except that the myths were actually real.  High fantasy elements would have some degree of connection to the actual Real World historical myths.

(*) Alternate Real World, except that people groups may be represented by different fantasy races (Irish = Elves, Scottish = Dwarves, etc.).

If you went with your Black Box with Pendragon leanings, would the Pendragon virtue categories still be used?

If you went high fantasy, would prayers produce obvious, tangible, observable effects?
Malakhon
 member, 2003 posts
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 15:03
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
yes, I am trying to determine if I want to stick with arthurian-era style myths, such as hints of ancient giants and fae magic or more of a B1 Keep on the Borderlands type of game where there are Orc marauders and Kobold warrens and such and it is more of the typical AD&D setting.

I am hoping for feedback. I am also juggling whether or not to use statistics or skip all that in favor of a qualitative system where the player doesn't juggle or worry about stats but still has a good idea of their capabilities.

Additionally, I think having studied the map a little more, I'd like to make the Players Province Gloucester - it fits nicely as a border kingdom, on with Mercia and Wales - so I won't be doing a fantasy. I realized that even if I did use a fantasy setting like Game of Thrones purists would know more than I do about that as well - so I'll just have to have the caveat that not everything is going to be perfectly accurate. It's sort of "Hollywood Accurate" is how I'll put it.

I got into Crusader Kings 2 this morning and started screen shotting and thinking that maybe a hybrid Pendragon/CK2 simplified version with stats may make sense.

This message was last edited by the user at 15:53, Thu 14 June.

thattripletguy
 member, 5 posts
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 19:54
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
I'd prefer an ahistorical setting, mostly similar to the Arthurian myths.
Malakhon
 member, 2004 posts
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 19:59
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
How many people would make a good game?

Give me a little more to go on about how you see it working.


When you say Ahistorical, do you mean Gloucester in the early 700s-800s or more like true Arthurian and you are King Arthurs vassals?
thattripletguy
 member, 6 posts
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 20:20
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
In reply to Malakhon (msg # 7):

I was thinking the kingdom similar to England/westeros that you had described, but I am ok with true Arthurian as well, I'd kind of like to play a knight character.
Malakhon
 member, 2005 posts
Thu 14 Jun 2018
at 23:49
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
Most certainly - there is no doubt in my mind that were there enough interest the players will take the role of Banneret Knights - landed nobility with Knights of their own sworn to their own service. Gloucester was a Kingdom at one time in its own right - so the Earl's title would be quite powerful in Wessex.

I would like to keep the scope small at first -so that we can focus on Gloucester. You can get a feel for the land and the people - I think the right level of detail would be where the players begin with a fairly decent sized keep and a small walled city. There would also be a bishopric located in Gloucester that is your vassal - but belongs to the church.

The problem I have realized - is that in this culture they are not very inclusive and to do it any justice I would either need to pretend that there has been some measure of inclusivity or for example forbid Female "Knights" from taking the field.

While women can inherit, they are often relegated to the expectation that they must marry and their lands become a dowry of sorts. This would mean a large portion of the potential player base - either women or males that like to play women may not feel comfortable or welcome.

Perhaps I should rethink the whole thing? I was actually thinking this may become dynastic where at certain points we fast forward a bit and the players take the role of their heirs as the Kingdom advances. I had recently read some rule books that had to do with how to play things like generation ships on their way to colonize a new planet and simulate the family traditions and dynamic from the political marriages between factions.

This message was last edited by the user at 23:54, Thu 14 June.

OakMaster
 member, 100 posts
 "Choose you this day
 whom ye will serve..."
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 00:27
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
Malakhon:
The last wish of the former Earl was that his land be ruled by the six (players) as a Council of Elderman. This council meets to decide what to do about matters of court.

The players would choose a few key advisors and they would serve at their pleasure - such as a Court Chaplain, Marshall, Chancellor, Steward, Spymaster

Would you want all PCs to be knights, or would other roles be available and appropriate?  For example, perhaps a Celtic Christian bard/holy man as an Advisor or Court Chaplain?  :)
Malakhon
 member, 2006 posts
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 01:21
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
My vision would be the players would make decisions jointly the same way a party of adventurers would decide whether to take up a new quest or which way to journey next.

Each player starting of relatively equal power - to sit upon the council.

As an example, let us say that one of your vassal NPC nobles has been accused of murdering another noble. You as players would sit in judgment and decide his fate.

Or perhaps two lords have a dispute over land - then again you may settle the matter.

Revolts, Food shortage, heretic priests preaching a new gospel, bandits raiding the trade roads, and other mundane matter of state would be discussed and a joint solution proposed.

You would decide together what building projects to construct or where the wise men should research.

You may have word of some ancient mystical sword and send your loyal knights questing for it - that sort of thing.

I would not want to create six solo campaigns where each player has a unique role that is isolated, for instance, the player who is a bard as you say that roams the lands telling stories will not participate in the council decisions - I would then have to provide an adventure to accommodate them and that would change the scope. I have seen many campaigns where each player has his own kingdom and I am not trying to run six solo campaigns in a single world - but rather a council of designated regents that rule Gloucester on behalf of the child heir.

Naturally, Knights are not are all about armor and swords though. Many have skill at romance, letters, and music and would have ample opportunity to display such skill in courtly intrigues and romances.

Today, I started to sketch out what values I would track if I tracked any and started to think about skills that would matter  Some may be valuable to track such as skill at arms or stewardship so that one could tell the difference and others such as falconry I wondered if it would be valuable to assign it a skill number or simply say "You are a master falconer" and leave it at that.

Does that disappoint?

This message was last edited by the user at 01:28, Fri 15 June.

Malakhon
 member, 2007 posts
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 01:51
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
Having discussed the idea - I will ask this thread be closed or deleted.

I cannot reconcile running it with the possibility of alienating potential players, either by relegating them to the role of running the Kingdom when they just want to play a local Bard, or by their gender etc.

I will give some thought to something that may be more inclusive and fun and try again.

This message was last edited by the user at 01:53, Fri 15 June.

OakMaster
 member, 101 posts
 "Choose you this day
 whom ye will serve..."
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 01:54
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
Non-bard is not a deal-breaker for me, if that helps...  :)
thattripletguy
 member, 7 posts
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 01:55
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
In reply to OakMaster (msg # 13):

Same
Malakhon
 member, 2008 posts
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 02:01
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
rMail me if you think of a campaign where six players can be in a bardic circle and we can discuss it. I may not be the right GM for it as I honestly can't even think of a storyline for it. I have thousands for a Pendragon style rulership campaign - many ripped from old Pendragon Morte'D Arthur mythos and some from historical events, etc. If they would be in some sort of theater group and we deal with that - I could probably accommodate. I don't know.

It is not the playing of a bard -so much as the potential for alienating certain players in a campaign that is very male-centric. So if I need a new setting then I'll consider the bard one if you both prefer that.

I just dont want six solo campaigns in a shared world. I'd rather have the players negotiate and roleplay with each other to overcome obstacles - naturally they could have conflicting agendas for their shared world - but whether it is a tropical island banana republic, starship or kingdom - I want to play as a group with a mixture of strategy and rpg.

 I don't want to bother anyone with my endless discussion about a game idea that isn't going anywhere on this forum though.

This message was last edited by the user at 02:15, Fri 15 June.

OakMaster
 member, 102 posts
 "Choose you this day
 whom ye will serve..."
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 04:54
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
Not a bother to me, anyway...

Feel free to keep us posted if you decide to proceed with something.  :)
Jhaelan
 member, 217 posts
 Prefers roles to rolls
 Based in UTC+1
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 06:20
Re: Crusader Kings RPG
This type of campaign is very workable; happy to share my experience running similar types of narrative strategy if you have specific questions.

This message was last edited by a moderator, as it was against the forum rules, at 13:49, Fri 15 June.

Malakhon
 member, 2009 posts
Fri 15 Jun 2018
at 16:24
Re: Crusader Kings RPG

This message was deleted by a moderator, as it was against the forum rules, at 16:39, Fri 15 June.