I posted the above during the Greychat last night and thought I should follow up with a more detailed explination. As we complete the basic mechanics/descriptions of each section of the Gran March Gazatteer, we will need to then work on the factions that are thus created. I will take the ones I have pledged to do as an example:
I am working on the economics of Gran March... where the population lives, what they do for a living, and how succesful they are at it. When this is completed, we should have a fair idea of the products produced, the guild structure, tariffs, etc.
The only thing then left to do will be to flesh this out with organizations and NPC's. As I do that, I will want to consider how these NPCs and organizations interact on a political level. At this political level the only manageable level of detail is a Faction, and so we have begun in this thread to identify the Factions. Some NPCs and organizations will defy their general heading and be located under others. However, the description of each general faction will allow for a more detailed and interesting description of each. It will allow the world to seem more cohesive and comprehensive. Art the Merchant will not just be the owner of a clothing store, he may be opposed to sending troops to Furyondy or Urnst. Or maybe he wants to become more closely allied with Keoland.
Some NPC's will have no interest in politics, and their participation in all of this will be as varied as it is in the real world. We will be segregating the politics section under a seperate heading, as many DMs will not be interested in this level of detail. However, for many they have never percieved the March as a place of political intrigue. However, it is a place that elects its leader, is ordered and peaceful, and has women in many roles of leadership. This is an uncommon place!
(For those who have not seen it or used it I highly recommend Penumbras Dynasties and Demogogues. In a game I play in the DM recommended it. I read it and did not appreciate it. Then in our last game, he threw us into an adventure of political intrigue.. Not a chance of combat unless you simply decided to slay one of the antagonists (not a wise idea sitting in front fo the town council in the middle of the town!)
I have to say, I did not think that this would have been a good time. I and all other players (12 in all) agreed it was one of the best sessions we have EVER had. It had all the thrills and wonder of slaying a dragon, and all we did was gain permission to borrow a cleric and negotiate a joint security agreement! Instead of rolling to hit, it brings your skills to the fore. In 27 years of playing, I have never enjoyed the political aspects of the game until now, and I love it! )
If it is okay with everyone I would like to take on all the houses It will work well for me working them within the campaign.
I have started the campaign and we have drawn up characters. One player is going to be a thief who comes from one of the influential houses in Keoland. Another is a human cleric of St Cuthbert who has done his time with the GM army and want to be come a war priest. The third is a gnome who family was original moved to from the Stark Mounds and move because of Giants. The last is a elf from Dreadwood who has a price on his head who has moved north to void attention. They are meeting in Shiboleth before they go adventuring. I'll make some stuff up for this for now. They will start in Orlane then more on from there.
We have a good mix of people ranging from 43 to 18 and we have one woman in the group as well. _________________ "Its a dangerous business going out your front door." JRR Tolkien
Unless you are a Greyhawk Heretic.
I've got three more churches to flesh out, and then I'll turn to on the factions.
I'm thinking that the Mercantile will be the most influential, holding most of the money and so on.
Cuthbert I imagine as not all that influential yet, but gaining popularity among the folks in the west who have been most affected by the giants.
Pholtus I see as fading, but just slightly, as his hard-liner approach butts up against Cuthbert and his bonus Vengeance portfolio. But if it's government and NOT military, I see Pholtus having a big part of it. He's the "old money", and his folks have power because they've always have had power.
Heironeous' folks are losing a little ground to Cuthbert too. But then they've got all the good deeds and healing and miracles and... well, stuff that the general population really likes. Not to mention the troops. Sure smiting a bad guy is neat, but most want a guy who can put them back together after they end up on the wrong end of a spear. So it's mainly the really unstable guys who are switching to Cuthbert, and they don't care about politics, just pointy sticks.
If the troops, and the Knights, like Heironeous then he's going to be mighty influential in GM politics and power. The nobility and the Knights may not be the same, but they sleep in the same bed. A word here, a favor there, and a noble is toeing the line or a knight is giving a nod and a wink.
Ugh, late night thoughts. I'll be more coherent later. _________________ There is no problem that cannot be resolved with the application of more firepower.
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