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ericvulgaris

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About ericvulgaris

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    Roll20 analyst and long time ttrpg fan
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    Pendragon, 5e DnD, Miseries and Misfortunes, wrath and glory, blades in the dark (soon)
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    Seattle
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    He/they pronouns

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  1. Whoops! Yeah it was page 86. When a character acts against a passion got construed into my head as when a character doesn't act a passion.
  2. Advice heard! Yeah I'll be avoiding that as much as I can. I appreciate the warning. Something I noticed in the book that I'll ask for next session is, if you did not roll a passion, it degrades by 1.
  3. We had another great session this monday. I wanna check in here and share some of my thoughts, outline, and good takeaways. I sorta hope this thread can continue to be a good resource for new GMs to Pendragon. Learn from my successes and my mistakes! After SO many experience rolls, our poor Urwen couldn't level up to save his dang soul. Something I forgot to do: So I rolled on book of the estates special starting buildings. Colin (Syr Gareth) got an extra manse in a town that costs $1 (I put it in there as part of the dowry from lady elaine along with the 4 other demense manors). Jim (Syr Urwen) got standing stones! Incidentally Jim also was having thoughts about converting to paganism after his manor ordeals. I can't make this stuff up! So that went hand in hand for me to play up this session. I told him about what is to find and made a great opening scene (imo) to kinda show this change. My Opening Poem In the fires of a fight, the loser is reduced to ash and the winner is reduced charcoal. -- poorly converted malay proverb Opening Scene -- Dream Sequence Nightmare recall of the lake sequence where they helped merlin get the sword. I skipped the Nukalevee fight the first time because I wasn't sure how to present it at the moment and timing of the session meant I needed to keep things going. I actually like this fight and this horrific creature so I presented this fight as a weird nightmare version of the Lake. Gareth literally slew the monster in a single sword blow (he rolled a yahtzee amount of 6's on a sword crit) and that was that. I made this Urwen's Dream sequence so after it was killed I described getting lost in some mists, seeing standing stones and that three eyed giant tattooed man telling Urwen to find him! -- boom. hook into his religious changes. I'm excited about using the black goat and three eyed giant as recurring spiritual guides. Winter 486 - Christmas Feast - Uther gets the sword! I generally break down feasts by notating the location, notable guests, a gossip table, and any "cut scenes" (like Uther and the gifts!) Winter 486 - Justice Events I forgot to do these last session so we did them here. Spring 487 - Solo Events Gareth Relations event! While touring his manors he's gonna be tested against his wife. (I had this very vague other than the failure results, but due to consequences of the feast, all the events and everything really nailed it. and it turned out to be his wife trying to divorce him ploy!) [I've had a great chat with Colin about how he lucked into marrying an heiress and what that means. We agreed that historically this is unknown to players, but Lady Elaine set up that commoner to kill her husband. She's on the crusader kings-game trying to get up the social chain as a non-knight. We agreed that Lady Elaine is basically Cersei Lannister and Gareth is Robert Baratheon. She basically wants to try and kill her husband, manipulate things to keep the manor and ruin Gareth's family name, and Gareth is like kinda attracted to that and trying to avoid the social traps and prove to her together they can be a powerful team! Great stuff, right? Urwen Urwen got a single gift event--- a lucky cat! I rolled on the cymric luck table for the loot and got the cat which is awesome! I left it open to Urwen who got to show off hospitality to Roderick, request tutelage in Battle skill by his marshal, and then go find those standing stones! He didn't fall asleep but he's begun to study them. I'll be expanding my plans for these stones in tonight's prep for next week. Summer 487 - Events - Choice! Lyndsey Embassy event Raid event Players chose raid which I didn't expect. Things went sideways REAL FAST as both ate crits by wealthy spearmen eating 12d6 damage. If it werent for first aid and chiurgery, they would've died then and their that night. Fall 487 - Events Manor Raids (last year I had them roll their luck rolls ahead of time and then rolled d4 what season they come!) Fantastic Beast Raid on Cholderton Dullahan! Winter 487 - Events Winter phase! Experience Aging Household Member Survival Manor Economics Manor/Childbirth Training Glory Next year notes Weather/Manor/Conflict Results Thoughts going into next year's prep: I had a good discussion with the group again about our take on the supernatural after the mythic beast event and the standing stones to get an idea of where we're at on things. I asked if we want the Dullahan to be actually one? Someone dressed as one? That kind of stuff. I want to slow down next year and spend 2 sessions/year as we dig into more local politics, intrigue, culture, travel, and law stuff of the area. We've been zooming through the years and I want to spend more time presenting the details of the setting. My players, of course, agreed. They're super down to do more mystery solving, local justice and moral quandry puzzles, etc. The last thing I wanna share is the behavior of myself when adjudicating when to check things off. My group spoke about when things should be a check and when things instantly raise/lower stats. I think it's a pedagogical guess by us GMs with a few good rules of thumb. Most notably was if this experience in play was a teach-able moment or an indesputed learned lesson. Often a GM NPC offering in a very specific event some very specific detail earned just raises a skill right there. Ideally I want my group to keep me accountable and consistent with the glory for rolls, skills increases, traits and passion bumps.
  4. I believe its an editing/omission error. I have no backing to support this other than it makes sense that you can game and wager at the high table assuming those proper knights and ladies would be interested!
  5. Hello pendragon fans! I'd like to present a barebones Copiable Google Sheet of the Salisbury region for any new Pendragon campaign. Copy it to your own google drive and start editing! Here's a template partially filled in w/ NPCs from the core book for tracking things like age, glory, skills, or marriage eligibility. The main sheet is the NPC tracking sheet. It has data validation (drop down selectable entries) and sorting built in. You only need to edit the year of this sheet and the other sheets will update! The other sheet included is a place to put down manors and their associated holders and coat of arms. The final sheet is the reference sheet. It's where all the drop downs are populated from. I'm using a version for my current Pendragon campaign to much success!
  6. Thanks for the pendragon mentorship, friend! Your caution is well advised and heeded. I don't wanna change things unless there's a significant reason. I am a new GM to pendragon but not to GMing in general having played my fair share of other games and I know how much system matters. (fun aside -- I've also played the first 10ish years of pendragon in a streamed campaign and Luke Crane and I still greet eachother w/ our Pendragon character names irl at conventions!) Helping me track so much in Salisbury required a Pendragon Excel Sheet with a list of NPC knights, stewards, ages, manors, and notes. I age people up, roll survival rolls, and sometimes solo adventures off of it. It's only 48 people long so its not too bad. ๐Ÿ˜…
  7. I do not want to lose the generational thing, for sure. I think part of it will be randomly decided or your parents or earl deciding for you. Your family is doing whats best for their child. If I limit the number of knights who possess such valuable skills, then people will compete over that mentor! I will also take what others are saying about random values to skills as well as the valuable vs not-so-valuable skills and just make a list of +5 or +10 to a specific skill and the associated knight.
  8. Apropos of nothing, I'm thinking the next time I do Pendragon character creation I'm going to replace that family bonus with a Mentor bonus with an NPC knight. What skill did the knight you serve stress to you? (Get 2d6 in a non-combat skill as a bonus)
  9. We changed it to bring Arthurian fantasy to be more progressive. Both my player knights are playing male knights, but my entire group agrees that we changed this, but it doesn't have to be averse of conflict! Families have different views on how split gender is from societal roles, stewards are not equal to knights, and there's no real way to switch out of your role once you're assigned. If I could do it all again I'd probably keep the gender roles traditional under Uther as a foil to Arthur's more egalitarian ideals. the immediate issue is a male player knight just married lady Elaine whose dowry is 4 demense manors. I'm just trying to first figure out why she's estate holding 4 manors. Right now thanks to you both, that's been cleared up nicely now that I understand how the service requirements work. The only thing I have left to figure out are explicit functions of a demense manor. Of course I know a demense manor means the income all goes to the owner and the manor doesn't have another totally different knight living there (that'd be an effeufed). However that manor must still have a knight who can fulfill that service requirement, no? Like right now it must be the case Lady Elaine's must have familial household knights living at that manor who do not own the manor but are promised (previously through lady Elaines family but now player Knight's). This would make the player knight not quite a bannerette as he only has relatives under him, but still much more important in Roderick's court than before. Both me and the newly married into extra manors player are interested in this because we can see that while these household knights are loyal to Roderick and related to Elaine, they're probably not super keen with the player knight being their new landlord. I'm writing up these knights now but him securing personal loyalty from these knights should be a very fun conflict. If he does a bad job these knights could possibly be bought by Sir Blains with promises of owning those manors as the rivalry part of the game heats up. The first part of Pendragon REALLY pushes hard that Uther needs squires and knights. Otherwise how would Roderick get away with keeping such a large amount of manors unoccupied and not giving service?
  10. Gosh @Morien and @Atgxtg you two are so smart! This is a lot to go over and I love getting taken to school about this, actually. That revised heiresses thread also was a great read and answers a lot of my questions about why these heiresses are so endowed! This is great stuff for a young pendragon GM like myself to take in. Seriously-- I appreciate your two's wisdom here and your suggestions/explanations on making this work!
  11. I gotta admit I don't know shit about feudalism as much as I thought i did. Lucky for me I have folks like you and my knowledgeable players. Well it's been explained to me that the missing piece to the puzzle is that while beneficiaries don't inherit, per se, they hold and steward lands. Basically as a beneficiary of an esquire but serving as what's called in modern times an estate-holder. As one of those, you may not sell the manor or do anything with it other than upkeep it unless married or passes common-law-ly to your next of kin. That's because the Earl's name is the landholder and changes need his approval. It doesn't necessarily default back to the Earl cuz the Earl really doesn't wanna micromanage 100 acres of mud 3 days away from his beautiful castle when he already has a family doin it for him. (What I mean is a household knight probably serves in the keeper's stead until things work out... which I guess I don't know why that household knight if single wouldn't just marry and get promoted... anyways) So in the case of Lady Elaine, those lands of hers are the Earls (just as all lands are the earls) but specifically were her late husbands. Lady Elaine doesn't "own" those lands but is holding those lands. Upon death of the holder, they turn into safe mode or like child-lock mode until either A.) marries or B.) dies where they pass like whatever common law dictates so parent/uncle/whatever. The point being, the Earl must approve the process either through marriage/transfer of property or through approving the passage of common law to turn that estate out Estate-Holder/safe-mode. I guess what that means, to preserve the danger, is that Lady Elaines lands are being threatened to be owned by Sir Blains because somewhere on his side of the family, he's married into Lady Elaine's family (possibly like the uncle). Those lands, should she pass without an heir or be married would technically switch lordship to the duke of the vale/silchester in that case, which is why Roderick is making sure Lady Elaine's married to a loyal knight.
  12. Yall have been so enlightening so here's my process of merging both Primogeniture and Knighthood into something that kinda works. Did I miss anything? Basic Assumptions Knight vs Beneficiary This world is a dark world and runs on force and military ability/readiness. An earl controls a ton of territory thanks to a duke or king. Too much for one person to control so he basically sub-leases parts of it to loyal men and women in exchange for military service. There's more eligible military people than lands. These eligible military people are called cavalrymen Distinguished ones with favor of the earl are even unlanded esquires. Not all calvalrymen are esquires but all esquires are calvarymen Landed esquires must provide military service to the earl in exchange for their own parcels of land and the rights of their firstborn children to inherit the land like they have (also to serve like they have). Neither landed esquires nor their children need to be male as long as they serve militarily. The esquire-in-charge of these lands is called a Knight. Knights are specifically promoted by the Earl and the titleship of the land passed to them and their children or the next eligible esquire in the family. Heirs and Claims Due to the agreement of feudal service, firstborns of landed knights are the only guaranteed knight of any family. Other esquires can be trained but theyโ€™re considered household or even unlanded knights. Other family members who forego military service are beneficiaries of the privileges of the serving esquire/knight and cannot hold land themselves. Called eponymously a Beneficiary For families of current knights without an heir, surrogacy and adoption are viable paths for offspring. Legitimacy of the offspring is granted by the Earl Contests for legitimacy are subject to the Earl's discretion i guess I still dont understand why Lady Elaine would have holdings of 4 demense manors that would go to whomever they marry. Like they should default to her uncle or someone, right? Or minimally the Earl. So is this a case of the Earl giving the 4 manors away, actually? is that what others have done in their games?
  13. Ok clearly i did not solve this knot. ๐Ÿ˜… Back to thinking about this more. I clearly did not understand how inheritance works my first go around!
  14. Yes i'm using steward in the later sense. A steward is a noble who is skilled with the pen rather than the sword. (or that's how it should work out societally). Technically the society values a knight more than a steward but they're basically peers. So I am assuming primogeniture is still the de facto inheritance law of the time but it ignores knight or steward class for the inheritor. Lands and titles go to the first born. Period. Lady Elaine is the first born and the rights of her 4 demense belong to her. She's the proper heir to them. Family-wise, the next legal heir would be a different branch of her line -- her uncle -- the steward of levcomagus. I made up that they're familially related.
  15. I solved a big inheritance knot today. I'm doing what most people are doing these days and solving for how to present a world of pendragon rife with struggle but maybe not include the crappy bits of misogyny. So I've divested Steward and Knight from gender, but kept their power levels, so-to-speak. Rather than present this as some sorta utopia in mind, I want to prove that people mess things up and will devalue/other/piss off one another. This isn't to debate whether this is a good thing for your game or my game. this is just how it is in my game and not interested in being convinced otherwise. The point is, if we follow primogeniture, then the knight or steward role doesn't matter for inheritance. This leads to some weird situations like Why can't stewards inherit their own lands? Why can't stewards choose who they marry? Well I can't say I solved this once and for all for all the realm, but I did solve it for the case of my Sir Gareth marrying Lady Elaine and inheriting her 4 demense manors. Here's my answer to that and this shouldn't be too much work to steal for any future pendragon GM: Lady Elaine is a steward and grew up in the courts of Sarum. Her previous husband, a knight, was slew in a lovers quarrel with a commoner orchestrated (rumored at least) by her and the Earl decided that this steward is a capital p Problem. HOWEVER, the earl just can't catch a break here and do the easy thing. If he dissolves her legitmacy, you know who'd get these manors? The gosh dang Steward of Levcomagus. So our Earl has a problem. The answer he came up with is that she just cant inherit the lands as a screw you to her. This does two things for me. 1.) Solves why this steward is ineligible to inherit their lands and 2.) It introduces drama and an easy build into the Sir Blains/Earl Roderick feud. Next year or so I'll probably introduce some contesting heirs to some of the manors put forward by Sir Blains as a way to steal those manors back!
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