Citadel Pre-Command Course

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The Order of the Citadel

Pre-Command Course
By Andrew McKay

Every noble serving in any position, any rank, throughout a realm or organization must understand, display, and demonstrate the values inherent in that organization. Part of the task of senior leadership is to make these values well-known to the entire membership.

Some duties and responsibilities of all members of a larger organization: Military, civil, etc, include (but are not limited to):

o Exercise command (in accordance with the proper rules and regulations set forth by your particular realm or organization)

o Are accountable for mission accomplishment, mission readiness of their respective unit, and performance of their "piece of the greater picture."

o Establish or interpret policy, set standards for personal and group performance, as appropriate, and establish procedures and guidelines to meet goals set by leadership. This could mean simply ensuring your military unit is combat-ready and as mobile as need be, being aware of which regions need tending to as a bureaucrat, or selecting the proper marshal settings for a combat encounter.

o Manage and allocate resources appropriately. One resource often overlooked is time. Leadership in any hierarchy (military, civil, etc) often requires resources (such as troop leaders with units, skilled bureaucrats, or other support personnel) at certain places at certain times. Not having all "pieces of the puzzle" come together at the right place at the right time can be devastating to any mission.

o Plan, provide resources, and conduct and evaluate training. Are you at the right place at the right time? Are you skilled enough as a troop leader to be effective in your mission? As a Marshal, is your leadership skill high enough to be effective with which settings you have available in combat? Are your skills as a bureaucrat honed to be effective with region maintenance? As an infiltrator, have you achieved "invisibility" on scout reports? As a trader, are you aware of where the best deals are? If you are leading a unit of troops or troop leaders, is their training satisfactory to meet or exceed missions set out by your commanders? How will you get there, what resources do you need, and what can you do to be more efficient and effective in this process.

o Maintain professional standards established by your leaders.

o Support your leadership effectively.

o Maintaining job proficiency. As a troop leader, you must be expert in keeping and maintaining a unit for prolonged periods of time or you may need to be adequately prepared to support a peacetime mission. In any character class, you should become a subject matter expert by either learning through established resources or through experience.

o Initiative: Take the initiative. Be an active participant in, and your capabilities will often be noticed. Your leaders do not possess any sort of extra-sensory perception, so unless you let them know what you desire or are capable of doing, they likely do not know.

o Total competence: The ruler decides the vision of the realm; if yours is a warfaring one, then competence in military subjects or supporting military operations should be your job, regardless of other circumstances.

o Maintain established standards

o Information! Information! Information! Intelligence is often a driving factor in any operation, military or otherwise. Without the right people knowing the right information, operations unnecessarily lose their effective qualities that make them successful.

o Seek guidance when necessary: Uncertain about what to do, where to go? Go to a trusted peer or superior that would be able to clarify things for you.

o Support priorities established by the commander: One of the duties of a commander at any level is having the right resources at the right place at the right time. You and your unit or skills is a resource. Are you where you need to be, when you need to be?

o Support and be able to explain the reasons for current policies: Sometimes policy is derived simply as an extension of personal preference of the commander, but oftentimes it is linked into a larger, more complex system of inter-realm politics and diplomacy.

o Loyalty: Above all, every monarchy, republic, democracy, theocracy, and dictatorship should have your loyalty. As a leader, it is part of your responsibility to cultivate this loyalty in those in your charge; but you also need to develop this quality yourself--and be able to demonstrate it.

o Respect: If you want to receive respect, offer it. This goes equally for your subordinates and your superiors.


Everyone usually has some level of desire and motivation to become better at something. In our world, there are multiple ways to "get better," or to train and thus hone our skills into a high-speed, highly effective, and highly efficient resource that multiplies the the organization to which we belong.

o Academy: The Academy is the backbone of the training system. Here, based on which profession, or character class, that you hold, you can train to increase your effectiveness or number of certain tasks you can accomplish in your chosen profession.

Swordfighting: Usually associated with the infiltrator, sword skill can be your aid at winning tournaments, duels, and can be increased by leading melee combat units such as infantry or mixed infantry (serving in a melee role).

Jousting: Jousting is a skill practiced at tournaments, but also is the domain of the skilled cavalryman.

Leadership: Leadership is directly related to being a Marshal of an Army. The higher your leadership skill, the more formations that you will have available to you during combat. Also, which Marshal takes command of a battle can be a function of comparable skill levels whereas the Marshal with the higher leadership level has a higher chance of taking command.

Infiltration: Infiltration skill determines if an infiltrator is capable at performing non-sword wielding tasks such as fortification destruction, tax office pilfering, and sabotage. Ability to disappear from scout reports is also a direct, well-known function of infiltration skill.

Bureaucracy (Buro): The bureaucrat, or "buro," is the backbone of the region maintenace of a realm. Without them, nations would crumble from within on any prolonged military campaign. An increase in bureaucrat skill increases effectiveness in survey administration and organizing repairs, for instance. The higher your skill here, the more your numbers will improve with region maintenance.

Preaching: This is a skill that can be trained by "priests." Religion is covered in another course.

o Unit Training: Is driven by the factors that go into determining combat strength.

Combat Strength & Derivation

Combat strength is the most fundamental number indicating how a specific unit or group of units compares to other units. It is a numerical representation of multiple factors:

o Training percentage
o Weapons & Armor percentage
o Equipment damage
o Morale
o Cohesion

Training percentage: This is a percentage of how well your unit is in shape, conditioned and disciplined: Having acquired necessary skills by undergoing a set regimen of military drills. This number should be as high as possible and can be influenced in battle or by training.

Weapons and Armour percentage: This is a percentage of of quality of your weapons and armour and does not necessarily reach 100 percent; in experience, only the best special forces units around have equipment quality approaching 100 percent. The higher that this number is, the better.

Equipment damage: The only combat strength derivative that you do not want to have a high number on, this number indicates the amount of damage that you have taken on your weapons and armour. As you travel, you will incur damage. If you are not dug-in on a battlefield, you will incur damage; if you train you will incur damage (more if you are traveling, less if you are stationary); if you are in battle, you will incur damage. If damage is high enough, your troops will start fighting over equipment as weapons and armour that is damaged enough will begin to injure your own troops.

Morale: A state of individual psychological well-being based upon a sense of confidence and usefulness and purpose, troops’ morale will fluctuate over time. Since each troop has a home, their morale will often be affected by their proximity to their home. When you are outside your realm, morale will decrease. Troops also sometimes don’t like to be “in the field” for too long without the entertainment of a city. Despite the intangible nature of morale, material factors (such as remuneration, food and shelter) can affect it. Morale boosts will occur when you treat your unit to entertainment in a city. Each unit will have a particular “lean” towards a specific kind of entertainment, and you will see a higher morale boost if you utilize that kind of entertainment. As this costs money, though, a “trick” to increase morale (and even cohesion under some circumstances) is to not use any hours at all during a given half-day (OOC: Turn); this way your men will “enjoy a few extra hours to themselves” and their morale will likely increase.

Cohesion: The force of internal affinity between multiple soldiers of the same unit. This is often related to esprit de corps: The spirit of a group that makes the members want the group to succeed: The higher this indicator, the better. It rises in battle, the longer the unit is together, training, and sometimes with entertainment.

There are no definitive experts, at present, knowing how the above factors are linked together to form what we have observed as combat strength.

In the End...

In the end, the easiest way to remember your duty as a follower or a leader was stated by a famous historical military leader:

The ability to prepare or get ready to fight, skill in actual fighting, and the will to prevail in combat against a foe, are the critical dimensions of leadership. This must hold as true for the general as it does the private, the ordinary seaman, logistician or finance clerk

Although leadership is not exclusively in the military domain, it is an especially critical aspect of it. The reason this is so is obvious. Without leadership, even poor leadership, military operations would not be distinguished from the actions of a mob or crowd.