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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Default looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Can anyone recommend a system with decent mechanics for building a nation or maintaining an estate? Ideally something not very clunky. 5e D&D level of mechanics seems okay, but I wouldn't want something like 3.5. A d10 system like World of Darkness would probably be preferable, or at least a system with that level of complexity.

    For war, I'd prefer it if the PCs can have large impacts on how the battle goes, sort of how Exalted handles it (not necessarily how the actual mechanics work out, but what the designers seem to be going for.)

    There's a PBP recruitment for Riddle of Steel going on here that made me feel interested in that system, but the number of stats and combat rules look really clunky which is a turnoff.

    I've thought of some ways to modify World of Darkness or Exalted 2nd edition for this, but it all feels unsatisfactory.

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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Adventurer Conqueror King (high level) with the Domains at War supplement (for running large scale battles with armies). It's built on B/X D&D with more detailed rules for trading, mercantile ventures, founding and improving domains and settlements, and the economics that drive those things.

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    Jay R's Avatar

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    In original D&D there are rules for high-level characters to pick out some wilderness, clear it of monsters, build a castle, and establish a fief. They are as thin as all rules in original D&D, but they're there.

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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Quote Originally Posted by JeenLeen View Post
    There's a PBP recruitment for Riddle of Steel going on here that made me feel interested in that system, but the number of stats and combat rules look really clunky which is a turnoff.
    As the GM of the game, I would suggest you try it out If you want, I'll give you a PreGen and stick you to the practice arena for a fight or two - you'll be surprised how fast it goes.

    I have done some research regarding the estate/manor building. My sources were HarnManor (Harn), Book of Manor (Pendragon) and information from a friend regarding Kingmaker rules (mostly suggestions on how to handle buildings/improvement).

    I have built the manor/village via HarnManor (there are some very useful xls sheets) but will use it only as basic reference (e.g. population/budget). The rules are quite clunky there too. So for most part I will just provide choices to the players (and will respond to their actions).

    I plan to check out ACKS once I have some spare money.
    Call me Laco or Ladislav (if you need to be formal). Yes, that is my name. Feel free to use it.
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    Riddle of Steel: Soldiers of Fortune

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    PaladinGuy

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    If you have access to a copy then the Companion D&D rules (also in Rules Cyclopedia) cover this quite welll. An updated version was published in Dragon (because the original rules are designed to force you to go adventuring to get the cash needed to keep it running).
    I strongly suspect that the ACKS rules are inspired by these so they are probably pretty similar.

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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Thanks y'all for the recommendations.

    Quote Originally Posted by lacco36 View Post
    As the GM of the game, I would suggest you try it out If you want, I'll give you a PreGen and stick you to the practice arena for a fight or two - you'll be surprised how fast it goes.

    I have done some research regarding the estate/manor building. My sources were HarnManor (Harn), Book of Manor (Pendragon) and information from a friend regarding Kingmaker rules (mostly suggestions on how to handle buildings/improvement).

    I have built the manor/village via HarnManor (there are some very useful xls sheets) but will use it only as basic reference (e.g. population/budget). The rules are quite clunky there too. So for most part I will just provide choices to the players (and will respond to their actions).
    Okay, I'll bite. I made a non-sorcerous and decent but not strongly combat character, more of a support role to the estate.

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    Grod_The_Giant's Avatar

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Reign is literally exactly that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Grod's Law: You cannot and should not balance bad mechanics by making them annoying to use
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    BardGuy

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Reign is literally exactly that.
    How are the combat mechanics? I'd prefer something not too clunky (as I consider 3.5), something more like most d10 systems, though 5e-level is decent to me. Still, if this is a good system all-in-all, I might go ahead and purchase a copy. I could use something fun to read.

    One nuance to my request is that I'm thinking of running a PBP game sometime down the line, and I'd prefer something where combat is quick and simple, since I find D&D combat unattractive in PBP.

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    Grod_The_Giant's Avatar

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Quote Originally Posted by JeenLeen View Post
    How are the combat mechanics? I'd prefer something not too clunky (as I consider 3.5), something more like most d10 systems, though 5e-level is decent to me. Still, if this is a good system all-in-all, I might go ahead and purchase a copy. I could use something fun to read.

    One nuance to my request is that I'm thinking of running a PBP game sometime down the line, and I'd prefer something where combat is quick and simple, since I find D&D combat unattractive in PBP.
    I'm not very familiar (I've got a copy sitting on my shelf waiting to be read), but it's based on the One-Roll Engine, which I understand to be fairly simple and robust?
    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Grod's Law: You cannot and should not balance bad mechanics by making them annoying to use
    Major Works

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    PirateCaptain

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Reign is literally exactly that.
    Reign is likely too abstract for what the OP is looking for. Since it's designed to scale from "small mercenary company" to "continental empire" it is by necessity somewhat simple.

    As far as combat, Reign can be quite deadly by RAW, and it resolves very quickly. Likely the biggest problem you'll have is that it can be kind of hard to get a hold of a print copy these days, and if you don't want to use the default setting (which is, to be charitable, bat**** insane) you'll have to make up the spells, martial arts and skill masteries yourself. The domain system can be extracted and ported pretty easily though.

    You mention both "nation" and "estate" building. Those are very different scales, and most systems that handle one won't scale well to the other - or else, like Reign, they'll be so abstract that you lose a lot of flavour.

    For individual estates Harn is the go-to rule set, if a bit inextricably tied to assumptions that you're in Norman England. At the nation level there's also 2nd ed D&D's Birthright (which also has a nice massed battle system) and the impossible to find Aria: Canticle of the Monomyth. There's the Kingmaker Path for Pathfinder as well.
    Most of the problems in this hobby derive from insecurity and immaturity.

    Ream's First Law of Gaming: As a 90% approximation, all RPGs are D&D.
    Corollary to the First Law: Regardless of the setting, genre, or assumptions of any game that is not D&D, the first thing the fan base will do is try to play D&D with it.
    Ream's Second Law of Gaming: Balance is a canard, and points don't mean anything.

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    Flumph

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    I'm not very familiar (I've got a copy sitting on my shelf waiting to be read), but it's based on the One-Roll Engine, which I understand to be fairly simple and robust?
    I've played Wild Talents, which also uses ORE, and I can confirm that the core mechanics are easy to use while providing a lot of detail and depth.

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    Knaight's Avatar

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Quote Originally Posted by JeenLeen View Post
    Can anyone recommend a system with decent mechanics for building a nation or maintaining an estate? Ideally something not very clunky. 5e D&D level of mechanics seems okay, but I wouldn't want something like 3.5. A d10 system like World of Darkness would probably be preferable, or at least a system with that level of complexity.
    This would be REIGN. It works perfectly, it's d10, and while you might want to turn up the level of detail a bit how to do that is covered.

    Quote Originally Posted by daniel_ream View Post
    As far as combat, Reign can be quite deadly by RAW, and it resolves very quickly. Likely the biggest problem you'll have is that it can be kind of hard to get a hold of a print copy these days, and if you don't want to use the default setting (which is, to be charitable, bat**** insane) you'll have to make up the spells, martial arts and skill masteries yourself. The domain system can be extracted and ported pretty easily though.
    If by "bat**** insane" you mean crazy awesome. There's a few bits I tend to tone down (I like my worlds spherical), but the setting works beautifully as a high fantasy setting. A lot of the spells, martial arts, and skill masteries will translate just fine without bringing in the setting as a whole anyways, with the spells probably translating the worst.
    Last edited by Knaight; 2017-09-10 at 10:15 PM.
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Flumph

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Also the 2e Birthright setting is based around this. Complete with manors as part of your larger units of control.

    it also has people who have translated the basic system into 3.5 and 4e patches.

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    Grac's Avatar

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    Default Re: looking for system with nation (or estate)-building

    Adventurer, Conqueror, King is exactly that:
    DnD where players progress to ruling a small castle with a small band of troops and a few villages to support it. Then over subsequent levels it's expected the characters will take on more responsibilities.

    The free mass combat supplement has a very simple mass combat system, while the paid version has multiple systems that work. In either case, the ability of characters to engage in 'heroic forays' exists, helping their side significantly in the battle.

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