Borderlands realm cheat sheet

3 posts / 0 new
Last post
Joined: 2012-11-24 19:12
Borderlands realm cheat sheet

I'm trying to use the realms described in Capital of the Borderlands pgs 27-33 to kind of reverse engineer the realm-building elements of ACKS, but the numbers aren't adding up the way I thought they would and I'm actually coming away less understanding the process than I was when I started.

Before I start into a list of specific questions about how this is what and where they became who, is there a crib sheet that shows the calculations for how the numbers were generated for the domains.

Like, how did you come up with 700 peasant families for Turos Tem when all the vassal states add up to, like, 3,000 families. And why are revenue and expenses based on 725 families? Okay, I guess I did sneak in some specific questions, but really I'd settle for a copy of the realm sheets with pencil notes in the marges saying things like "this number arbitrarily chosen as standard for a settlement this size" or "realm hexes minus domain hexes equals total vassal hexes" or something.

The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

Hi fletch137! A few things:
1) It would be difficult to reverse-engineer ACKS from the realm sheets. But if you purchase a copy of Axioms Compendium on DTRPG, it has the complete domain rules included in that book.

2) The "700 families" listed on the top of the Turos Tem sheet is just an error in the sheet. Turos Tem has 725 peasant families. If you look at page 30, Siadanos Vassals, you'll see Turos Tem listed there with 725 families.

3) ACKS divides polities into realms and domains. A domain is what a ruler personally rules. A realm consists of a ruler's domain plus the realms of his vassals. Each vassal's realm, in turn, includes the vassal's domain, and the realms of the vassal's vassals, all the way down the feudal tree until at the lowest level of governance you have rulers without vassals, who just have a domain.

4) The more powerful you are personally, the larger a domain you can personally rule. Weak rulers have to have smaller domains with more vassals in their realm.

5) A ruler collects two types of revenue. First, he collects domain revenue, which is based on his peasant families and urban families. It is divided into Land, Service, Tax, and Trade. Second, he collects tribute from his vassals. Tribute is based on the size of the vassal's realm. The amount of tribute diminishes per-peasant with scale; that is, a vassal with 100 peasant families pays you more tribute per peasant than a vassal with 10,000 peasant families in his realm, even though the *absolute* tribute is larger for 10,000 peasant familes. Therefore, rulers are incentivized to have as many vassals as they can with small holdings, which keeps their tributes high proportional to number of families and avoids having concentrated power centers to oppose them.

However, if a ruler has too many vassals, the tribute begins to go down precipitously, because the ruler loses funds to corruption, transport, and inefficiency. An emperor cannot have 100,000 vassals and hope to do well; the vast majority of his tribute will never reach him. The game is set up such that the "sweet spot" for number of vassals is 4 to 7.  This parellels the number of henchmen characters can have, and most vassals are thus henchmen.

Hope that helps!


Joined: 2018-05-31 13:09

So I have a Follow Up Question:

I'm trying to generate a kingdom with a city, a town, and a few villages/outposts. Basically what I did was made the Urban Settlements vassals to the overarching kingdom.

The Kingdom has 6 hexes civilized terrain, 3 hexes borderland terrain, 3 hexes wilderness terrain, with 1980 families in the civilized terrain, 360 families in the borderland terrain, and 60 families in wilderness terrain. The Land Revenue is 5 gp/family. Unless I did the math wrong, which is entirely possible, there are 2400 families in the Kingdom (not including urban centers), with a total Land Revenue of 12000 gp/mo, Service Revenue of 12000 gp/mo, and Tax Revenue of 7200 gp/mo (at 3 gp/family).

Are all of these revenues intended to be the flow of coin into the Regent's treasury? The rulebook only mentions coin flow under taxation. Using only tax revenue there is no way to pay for Garrisons, Stronghold upkeep, and Government Employees. Or does Land Revenue represent things like resources and trade goods, and services that are provided by the population?

Continuing the example, to make sure I got it right: I've only determined the city so far (so its being treated as Vassal Revenue: 1237 gp/month.) The population of the City is another 1100 families. (So the size of the major city is almost 50% of the population of the rest of the kingdom put together.) I need to also make up 2 villages and a town as vassal.

Continuing with the Kingdom: Garrison costs: 3960 gp (civilized) + 1080 gp (borderlands) + 240 gp (wilderness). Stronghold maintenance costs: 4500 gp for 90,000gp fortified palace, 3375gp for 67,500gp major fortification, 4500 gp for 90,000 in towers and outbuildings) 

Kingdom Employee Costs: I finally calculated this out to about 2400 gp monthly.

Unless Land Revenue and Service Revenue are immediately spendable coin, this Kingdom is operating at a monthly deficit of 11,618 gp, not even counting the Festivals. The four seasonal festivals have a cost of 12000 gp each. 

EDIT: I see my math problem. I'm calculating stronghold maintenance at 5% instead of 0.5%. This means the deficit is only 481 gp/month with another 4000 gp cost to save up for seasonal festivals.