Collected Notes of Renee Quasath
Collected Notes of Renee Quasath
Renee Quasath has been busy teaching some new nobles about life and war in the Cagilan Empire. What follows is a collection of some of her teachings.
The Cagilan Army
A quick lesson is about the well-oiled military machine of the Cagilan Empire:
There are several armies in the Empire. Most are for offensive attacks, but one is devoted to Home Defense. The Ered Luin Army members do not leave the boundaries of the Empire. Their duty is to patrol the regions and keep everyone safe from monsters and undead.
In an army, you obey the Marshal. The Marshal gives out the orders as he/she sees fit. The General of the Empire makes the overall plans of attack and defense. While the General may occasionally send out requests to army members, please remember that your Marshal's orders override all other requests and orders.
You will be involved in combat when you are in a region with other units that the Empire is at war with. This includes enemy nations, as well as rogues (undead and monsters). Usually there is ample warning time beforehand, and orders will be given for your unit settings. Obey those orders and change your units settings as appropriate.
Today's lesson is about military units. Listen well:
You have the divine right to choose your own unit. *No one* can tell you what kind of unit to recruit.
However, here's a brief breakdown of the unit types:
1) Infantry. The footmen of the army. They take the brunt of any battle, and often have severe losses unless heavily trained. However, the unit's commander (i.e. YOU), will get lots of honour and prestige as they fight and die.
2) Archers. They usually live a long, long time unless the battle goes very badly and you get crushed. They fire their arrows, then retreat to the rear to let the Infantry fight. As their commander, you don't gain honour or prestige quite as fast. However, you don't have to recruit as often because they live longer.
3) Mixed Infantry. These guys can fight hand to hand, just not as well as Infantry. They can fire their crossbows, but are not as strong as Archers. They are the jack of all military trades. If there enough units of MF, they can be useful. They are definitely a unit of personal taste. Some nobles love them, others hate them with a passion.
4) Cavalry. Heavily armoured men on horses. You need high Honour to recruit a larger unit. They start in the back and ride together in formation to crush the enemy. Very useful if there are enough units. If alone, they can be easily counter-attacked after their initial charge.
5) Special Forces. SF require a high honour and prestige to recruit. They are also very expensive, and for good reason. They are powerful on the field and have different abilities. Some can fight ranged and melee, some can blow up walls, etc.
To recruit larger units, especially Cavalry and SF, you need high Honour and Prestige.
You can't mix unit types!
I would recommend keeping a small unit for now. Experiment with whatever unit you choose and see if you like it.
A unit's strength comes from several factors:
A) Their training.
B) Their cohesion. A and B are raised through Training, an option under Orders. The higher, the better.
C) Their Weapons and Armor. These %'s come from the unit you recruit from. Mixing the same type (from different recruitment centers) takes the average of the %s. You can't improve these %s yourself.
D) Morale. This is extremely important. A high morale keeps your men on the battlefield and stops them from routing. Always try to keep it high (through rest, entertainment, and paying your men)
E) Equipment damage. After battles and travelling, your stuff will get damaged. You can repair it in any region that has a weapon/armoursmith.
All of these things come together in your unit's Combat Strength, or CS.
How often should I pay my troops?
You should pay your troops daily, or at least every 2nd day. This will keep their morale high, but also keep it high when you have days when you *can't* pay your men.
You should pay your Healers and Scouts once every 4-5 days or so. Any more than that and you're wasting gold.
Most troops and Paraphernalia can go for 5-7 days without pay and not complain. After that they start complaining. Depending on your Leadership, they will probably leave you after 7-10 days unpaid. You will have some Honour loss if your men desert you.
Make sure you pay your Healers once every 5 days or so. Otherwise, you're paying too often and too much.
Your men you should pay almost every day. Just to be safe.
You cannot count on your family income. They give you 3 gifts of gold, then leave you on your own. Watch out!
You can only recruit in the capital (that's Cagil). So, plan accordingly. In the near future, this may change, but for now, only in the capital.
I find myself befuddled by the logic of recruitment. Is it wiser to hire the cheapest troops, and train them myself? Or ought I to hire more expensive troops, to add some backbone to my green unit? And in any event, be it wiser to hire first from units with high training or high weapons/armor?
I am also unsure how large an army a humble knight such as myself can expect to support. I could hire at least fifty men in addition to my current 17, but my family is not rich and I am already paying 2 or 3 gold each day for wages and training.
The short answer for the first part is, hire who you like.
The longer answer is:
The things you can improve are training and cohesion (through the "training" option in Orders). The things you can't improve are weapons and armour. Therefore, given time to train or the chance for battle, your best option is to recruit troops that have the best weapons and armour.
You can also mix the same kinds of troops for better results. For example, you have troops available to recruit with weapons at 60% and armour at 30%. Another set of recruits has weapons at 20% and armour at 70%. You hire 10 of each, and you'll end with weapons at 40% and armour at 50%.
Granted, that's a simplified example, but you get the idea. You can mix and match, and the average of all your mixed recruits will be the result. This also applies to their training stat. Cohesion will always go down when you recruit new troops, as can be expected with new men coming in.
So, final word: It's better to hire troops with high weapons and armour. You can always train them later.
Never hire the max amount. You'll never be able to afford their daily/weekly pay. Once your family money runs out you'll be relying on your oath gold. If that's not high, you'll be in trouble.
I would recommend a 15 man unit for now. Recruit them, train them, and see how it goes once you get settled with your oath gold. If you end up with surplus gold after a time, then next you visit the capital you know you can recruit more.
Also note: the better trained and the higher cohesion your unit has, the more expensive your daily/weekly pay will be. Experienced troops cost more money.
Would disbanding my unit cause them to become a local milita or altogether disappear? Or perhaps they would become available for purchase somewhere?
When you disband a unit, you have a few options. First though, you need enough gold to pay your men one last time before you disband them. Then, you can either set them free (the unit disappears) or you can set your men down as a militia unit. Be warned, ask permission from the local lord first before you put down militia. It costs the region a lot of gold to pay for militia and some lords do not want them.
If you have a larger unit, around 30+ men, you have the choice to lay down half your unit as militia. This is good to bolster defence of a region in times of war. Again, though, ask permission of the local lord first.
Once a unit is disbanded, you no longer control it and cannot purchase it again. However, the General has the power to assign a militia unit to any noble that doesn't currently have one. While this is a rare occurence, it does happen.
Trading and the Trader
Being a Trader can be a difficult and thankless job, and can also be dangerous. Difficult in that it can be tough to find food to sell. Thankless in that sometimes you won't make any money. Dangerous because many realms don't appreciate a trader, especially if they trade in the black market.
I highly recommend you *do not* deal with the black market. The Empire frowns on it, and it is against the law (obviously).
The first thing to look our for is where surplus food is being made, and where it is needed. This can include regions within the Empire as well as our (peaceful) neighbours. Next, make sure you state your intentions on where you are going. People are terribly suspicious and Infiltrators often disguise themselves as Traders, which doesn't help you.
The best person to talk with first is the Empire's Banker. In this case, the man's name is Garden. He is away for the tournament at the moment, but when he returns, he is a good one to talk to. He deals with food inside the realm. He can give you more hints of where the profit lies.
For now, look at the regions of the Empire and where you can buy cheap food. From there look to where you can sell it at a profit. That's the Trader in a nutshell.
You will need some starting capital to buy your caravans and food, of course.
Bonds vs Gold
What are the purpose of bonds, and why should they be held on to over actual gold coin?
Bonds were once always issued during tax time. You had to move to a city and convert them to gold in a financial institution. This limited how much you could do and how long you could spend in the field.
Recently there has been a change in the system. If you are within your own duchy, you will receive your taxes in gold. However, if you are outside your own duchy, the taxes will still come in bonds. It is only natural that if you are close to home, the Ducal moneyman can find you quickly and deliver your tax share in gold.
Having taxes delivered in bonds outside your Duchy prevents long-term sieges of other cities and endless marches to the corners of the realm.
As to the second part of the question, most of the time there is no point in keeping bonds on hand. Gold is much, much better. The only exception would be if you are captured by the enemy. An enemy Judge can take your gold from you, but not your bonds.
Also, if any of you ever decide to emigrate elsewhere, it will cost 50 gold. You can keep the remaining 25%. Your bonds are lost.
There are two easy ways to make money:
1) Get a liege. With an oath you will receive weekly gold in exchange for setting up your estate. If you don't have an oath yet, offer one to a lord.
2) If you have no unit (0 men) you can do Paid Work. This will earn you some gold, but lose you some honour and prestige it its high. At this point, I think you should be alright.
The whole list I can think of to make money are:
1) From your oath.
2) Become a Lord, and you can control the taxes of the region.
3) When you have no unit, you can do Paid Work. However, as a noble that's slightly humiliating so you will lose honour and prestige
4) Have a Trader in the family. But, you need gold to make gold. Caravans cost money, and so does buying the initial goods.
5) Loot. You're right that doing so in our lands will guarantee you being hunted down, caught, and banned. However, in enemy lands it is a very lucrative way of getting gold.
6) Adventuring is not for nobles. Only commoners do that.
7) Changing your estate to production won't help you, it will help the region. You may get some extra gold that way from your oath, but only if the production is already low. In Rauxod, my estate has Production running at 150%, so there's no need for more.
8) A skilled noble can become an Infiltrator. Those dangerous men can steal tax gold from coffers, or collect Bounties by successfully attacking the wanted men.
9) A corrupt man could join a religion, take all the gold from a local treasury, then leave the religion. Although this is a guaranteed way to make many enemies
The Training Academy. How does it work?
Many of you are still very new here. Don't waste your gold at the Academy yet. It helps to boost your skills, not give you one right away.
There are three types of trainers: Normal, Advanced, Expert. Do not pay for Advanced or Expert trainers! They are meant for nobles with high skill. You will simply waste your money on them. The Normal trainer is good until your skills are around 40%.
The three usual skills (for a knight) are: Swordfighting, Leadership, Jousting.
Swordfighting - This helps your unit fight a little better. It is also the key skill for tournaments, and more importantly, duels and against Infils. Again, many of you are new, so if you are already involved in duels and Infils...I pray for you. This is also very important for Heroes. As a Hero you fight alongside your unit in battle. Your swordfighting adds to your unit's CS, making your unit better.
Jousting - Useful for Cavaliers (honourable knights who usually have cavalry units. You need a high Honour and Prestige to become one) and in tournaments. Basically useless for a regular knight.
Leadership - This is a very important ability. I recommend you raise this above all others. Your high leadership will help keep your unit together during times of stress, i.e. battle. You may have a new unit, full of green troops, but if your Leadership is high you can have them hold their ground. Your men's morale will also stay up longer when you march for long distances.
So is your final word on the academy not to spend any time on it until later, or to get some leadership training?
My final word of advice is to leave training, even for Leadership, until you fight some battles. You will get a battle report after a battle and any increases in your skills will be written there. Once your Leadership has gone up at least once, then you may perhaps consider training. You may be getting some family gold now, to get your started, but once that dries up your gold will be precious. Don't waste it.
Do I only continue in my travels when I have hours left over at the end of my turn?
When you travel you can pre-set your next destination. If you have hours left then, yes, you continue on your journey. If you manage to save some hours of travel time (by finding a shortcut, etc) then those hours will be added to your next destination. If your balance of hours reaches exactly 0, then you will arrive in the first region, and still be considered travelling to the pre-set region, but won't have actually moved farther.
As a sidenote, Scouts are also good for finding shortcuts for when you travel. Always having at least 2 scouts is a good thing.
The worst delay you can ever get from travel is 3 hours. However, Infils can also switch roadsigns, etc, which also wastes time. The worst possible delay, if your luck absolutely sucks is...7 hours I think. Although I have never seen that happen.
3 hours from losing your way.
2 hours from Infil.
2 hours from road blocked.
Roughly. But, like I said, I have never seen this. The usual worst is 3 hours.
Universal Truth of Hours Spent
Anytime you do something that uses hours, the longer you spend on it, the better the result.
This is a universal truth.
Training, resting, studying at the Academy, Buro work, Civil Work, Hanging Rebels, Looting, etc.
The more time (hours) you spend on the activity, the better the outcome.
If you choose this option, you will become a member of the underground. You can send an anonymous message to other rebels, and act in secret to overthrow the government. No one can ever find out you are a rebel, except for the Ruler. There are rumours of a secret police force that can investigate any noble at any time. They can find out you are part of the underground.
Until a rebellion is declared, no actual action will take place. You would only be talking with other rebels. Once a rebellion is declared, then everyone in the realm must choose sides, either Loyalist or Rebel. Then the fighting begins.
If you join the underground, you can quit the next day. There will never be any proof that you joined, unless of course you have the bad luck of being spied upon by the secret police during that time. Which is very unlikely.
If you are a loyal subject, then there is never any point in joining the underground. You will never know the identity of other rebels, so unless they are extremely stupid and write their name, you won't learn much.