Gate of Souls
Provinces and Holdings
As previously stated, provinces and holdings are ranked from one to ten. All holdings are located within a province, which is where the majority of the work takes place, and their members live. The total level of most holdings cannot exceed the level of the province in which they are based without utilizing extraordinary resources. In addition the total number of ranked holdings of a single type cannot exceed 1/2 the total number of levels of that holding that are available, round up. For example, a level 3 province will allow up to three levels of guild holding, which means there can be no more that two ranked guild holdings. One half of 3, rounded up. There are holdings that are level 0, these do not generate income or any other material benefit, but rather represent networks of contacts that might be built up into a real holding later.
In theory a domain may include any number of provinces and domains, however the larger a domain becomes the more difficult it is to manage. In addition, the more types of holdings in a domain, the more difficult it is to manage.
If an area contains extraordinary resources, holdings may utilize these to exceed the level of the province in which they are located. Such resources can take many forms; such as native supernatural or extraordinary creatures, wells leading to other planes, exceptionally rare or rich mineral/plant resources, etc. These types of advantages can allow a holding to exceed the province level by up to two levels, to the maximum of ten. However, a lord that values province growth over the strength of other holdings may consume these resources as they expand, destroying them in the process. Regardless of exceptional resources, no holdings may exist in a province with no level.
• Provinces are limited in their maximum level by the type of terrain they are based in, and the skills of their regent in utilizing that terrain. Open plains are the easiest landscapes to develop, with forests, mountains, and deserts requiring rulers that understand the practical matters of making these regions home. In addition, rulers may either carefully develop their regions to preserve resources, or may grow as quickly as possible, but lower the productivity of other holdings. The level of a province represents the law-abiding population within it’s borders, who acknowledge the lord. It is a general indicator of population, but also of the skill of those who live off the land, and how adept they are at managing it. Terrain types have a base habitability value, and a lord may add an applicable skill to this value to determine the maximum possible level of their provinces with that terrain type. Specialties may apply if they are appropriate, however in the case of terrain with a base rating of 0, a specialty is required before any province level may be developed based off skill.
If a lord does not possess an appropriate skill to allow for the growth of their province, they may appoint a lieutenant who does possess such skill. However, should they ever lose that lieutenant’s service, the province may decline.
Glacier or inhospitable terrain/climate 0
Sandy desert, Tundra 1
Mountains, Scrub 2
Forest, Jungle, Swamp, Hills 3
Coastline/Major River +1
• Law holdings represent the system of governance, and any group that maintains order in a region (but not military troops). So, guardsmen, courts, local officials (such as clan chiefs), etc. Law holdings don’t produce much by themselves, but they are required to obtain the resources from a province. The lord of a province will usually also control it’s law holdings.
• Guild holdings are organizations created around goods and services, geared toward controlling the economy of a province. This can represent actual guilds, merchants, or underworld organizations such as smugglers or thieves guilds.
• Philosophy holdings are those that revolve around religion, education, or any other primarily mental or spiritual pursuit. Note that this isn’t ‘spiritual’ in the sense of the spirit world, though a philosophy holding can certainly have a major impact on the Dreaming Sea. These holdings can allow the casting of certain kinds of ritual magic on an extremely large scale, those that require the involvement of large numbers of people supporting the ritualist through belief, and dealing primarily with the mystic Attunements.
• Arcane holdings are those that deal with aspects and the planes directly, as well as ritual magic. Arcane holdings are often highly concerned with places such as wells that verge on other planes, and as such may come into conflict with guild holdings that seek to refine essences, as those efforts may actually disrupt the source of said essences. These holdings allow the casting of certain kinds of ritual magic on an extremely large scale, those requiring a great deal of raw power and skilled assistants, dealing primarily with Aspect Attunements.
How effectively a regent can control a holding or province is based off a number of factors, but the primary factor is their Leadership Skill Pool. A regent may pick any two skills that are applicable to manage each part of their domain, the skills that they choose will determine the nature of their resources. For example, a province can be maintained with social skills and those applicable to managing the land so intimidation and survival might represent a dictator ruling over farmers and nomads through fear and a knowledge of their livelihoods, while another might use persuasion and science to establish rule over miners through friendlier means.
Some forms of control may cause domains to come into conflict, such as the guild holding based off of Alchemy, that competes with the Arcane holding over resources. Such conflicts lower the maximum potential size of these holdings, only one holding can control the resources in question after all. When domains come into conflict, the maximum level of the holding type is reduced by a point for every additional type of holding seeking to use the same resource. This applies to all holdings of that type in an area, regardless of whether they all conflict. If a holding seeks to contest a resource held by another type of holding, they must first reduce the level of all the holdings that will be affected by the action.
Example: A level 5 Province holds a level 3 guild holding and a level 3 arcane holding. A new regent wishes to utilize Alchemy to refine and sell the region’s natural essence, a resource that is already used by the arcane holding. Because this will not directly affect the levels of the current holdings they may simply try to create the guild holding, though likely the current holdings will contest their attempt to cut in on the current powers. If successful the maximum levels for both guild and arcane holdings in the province will be reduced to 4. In the same scenario, if the arcane holding had been level 5, or the guild holding level 4, the interloper would have had to reduce the level of those holdings before attempting to establish their guild holding.