Q: Will there be exploration? Is there a “new world” to be discovered?
A: There is no new world, nor will there be exploration. There is a continent far to the north with which countries will have very limited interaction, and those interactions will be limited mostly to the northernmost countries.
Q:Is there a specific set of alliances, or is it all-out, free-for-all war? Do players have some choice over our alliances at the beginning?
A: There is a specific set of alliances at the beginning of the campaign, listed International Politics. However, as soon as the RP begins, alliances are completely in the hands of the players, who may make, break, dishonor, uphold, etc any alliances they choose.
Just so that we’re all on the same page, alliances are not binding. That is, agreements made in RP are not enforceable out of it; I’m not going to punish you for breaking an alliance.
Q:What is the climate like in these regions? Are some places more like deserts, forests, etc?
A: The Northwest is somewhat Baltic-y, the West is northern Germany, the Southwest is Iberian, the South is southern France, the Southeast is Brittany/Normandy-like, the East is like the Frisian coast, the Northeast is akin to any coastal highland region, and the North is somewhere between the Northeast and the Northwest. The central part of the map is a plaint-steppe-y region not unlike the Volga and Don steppe areas.
Of course, the geographical map overrules the above. If there’s a river running through a desert, there’ll likely be some arable land on the banks of the river. And not every square foot of soil is uniform; there’s trees and woods and things, as appropriate.
Explanation of the Military Pages
- naval assessments will be coming seperately
- under commanders ‘trusted soldiers’ means anything from well-known commanders to comrades to capable people who’ve performed the role well before. Essentially it means, ‘these guys are competent’.
- so here’s the rough pecking order of troop quality
conscripts/volunteers/militia/reservist/any standing army or professional unit
Basically, conscripts have been impressed into the service for a bit, usually legally. Volunteers have joined up. They both have in common inexperience and mercurial morale.
Militia are normal people who drill with military weapons every once in a while. Certain nations’ militias are better trained than others; the quality of training is reflected in your notes.
Reservists are militia on steroids. They drill with weapons and maneuvers with their unit regularly. They’re not military professionals, though; they have day jobs.
Standing army units: professional soldiers.
- The ‘commanders’ section where it says ‘trusted soldiers’ and stuff means the comissioned officers of an army. NCOs sort of pop up organically, because we’re already working with pretty granular amounts of information here and don’t need to fret about whether or not we have the ability to demote a corporal; yes, we do.
- location is just where they’re currently deployed
- also, numbers is pretty relevant to trying to keep them all supplied. In case you thought you could get away with conscripting your entire nation and marching them across mountains.
- ‘Reserves’ just means ‘trained reserves’. The number of people you can draft into the army isn’t listed here; I still need to nail down rough population estimates. These are just the ones you can recruit and not have to worry about teaching which end of the gun is dangerous.
- unusual unit description: if you don’t have this but want to know more about your units, they’re all based on wikipedia’s description of Napoleonic era cavalry. We’re a little earlier than that, but there’s not a lot of description of thirty-year’s war era units, so.
- discipline: if you’ve got no special notes here, your conscript, militia, and reservist units aren’t going to be too disciplined on the march, and probably not in battle either. Your professional units should be fine; they won’t be brilliantly disciplined, but they’ll do their job.
- appointment of officers is sort of a political consideration: if you start with terrible generals and leaders (which of course is dangerous; you don’t want to lose against an army a quarter your size just because they have a great general and yours is garbage), this describes how easy or hard it will be to replace them. Similarly, if there’s loyalty problems or whatever in the troops, replacing the officers may or not be feasible. You want to balance not having competent commanders with not having the nobility or parliament mad at you for overstepping your bounds.
- tactics – you’re not limited to these, these are just special cool things your army can do better than other armies, or that other armies aren’t trained to do at all.
- loyalty – just a gauge of who the army is most loyal to. There’s usually two options: the state, or the commander. Not necessarily a black and white thing or even something to worry about, just something to notice and take note of. (Example: if your nobility is pissed off, the commander is a noble, and his troops are asking to be let into the capital, you may check their loyalty to decide your best plan of action.
- equipment and pay – just more things to trip up your armies. If, for example, the state owes the commander payment at their disbandment, they may order the commander not to disband his units while they scrounge around for cash. This will tick off the commander, and if he can’t pay the troops, they may begin to loot, regardless of their location and loyalties.