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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
    Gengy's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Default EMPIRE 5! Rules and Administration

    EMPIRE 5!
    To the Stars
    A Community World-Building Game by Morph Bark

    Running on Giantitp since January 2014!
    Empire 2 since September 2015 by QuintonBeck, and Zayuz since August 2016!
    Empire 3 since December 2016 by Aedilred, and TheDarkDM since June 2017!
    Empire 4 since September 2017 by Rolepgeek!

    Current OOC: OOC Thread I
    Current IC: IC Thread
    Current Dice Rolling: Dice Thread I

    ~ ~ The Rules ~ ~

    Below in all the spoilers are the rules, with headers describing their general contents. This first post should contain all the information necessary to get started and play Empire! The second post shall contain the more complicated and in-depth rules, many of which are only used by the GMs but are publicly available for purposes of transparency. Others concern more acute areas of play and may be relevant to some, but not all players.

    Starting Up

    The Basics

    In EMPIRE! you start play as the leader of a Stellar Power ruling over a region of space. You perform actions to improve your leader and your Power’s position in the galaxy through alliances, trade, marriage, research, and war. Once your leader dies of old age, disease, accident or murder or they are otherwise replaced their heir or an appropriate successor takes over, becoming your new leader controlling your Stellar Power.

    Your Leader
    All player characters have the following attributes:
    • Diplomacy
    • Military
    • Economy
    • Philosophy
    • Intrigue

    These attributes have a score of 1 to 10, reflecting a combination of the leader’s personal abilities and the institutions they maintain to support them.

    When a new player starts, they roll 1d4 for each attribute, and then assign the rolls as they wish. They may assign a bonus of +1 to any two separate attributes.

    You can make your rolls in this thread once approved. If you roll more than one 1, you may reroll any 1s beyond the first for your very first leader. If you have more than two 1s after the reroll, those subsequent 1s become 2s (you are still left with two 1s). This option to reroll is only available to newly joined players so as to avoid a deeply disadvantaged game start.

    Changing Leaders
    Changing leaders is a non-action. The new Leader’s stats are rolled with 1d4s for their attributes, receiving a +1 bonus to any stats their predecessor had a score of 4 or higher in, or a +2 bonus to their roll for any attribute their predecessor had an 8 or higher in. The player may assign the d4 rolls as they choose.

    Leaders must be changed the round prior to the round in which you wish to use their attribute scores. The round in which a leader is changed the previous leader’s scores will still be in play although bonuses accrued by their actions will be applied to the new leader for the subsequent round.

    If a leader is changed due to unforeseen loss such as to assassination, kidnapping, or loss on the field of battle their successor shall roll stats as though they were a new player's initial leader. Stat gains from the prior round will carry over for this new leader.

    Please note any changeover of leader and link the rolled stats for your incoming leader in your IC post in which the changeover occurs and the new leader first comes into play.

    Creating a Region

    Describing Your Region
    When a player enters the game, they first must claim a region and describe it in fluff.

    Terrain: Describe the physical features of your selected region, with at least one major planet or more at the player’s discretion. Players are encouraged to divulge a bit more on general starscape, the populated and underpopulated areas of the region, and/or the names and locations of cities, space stations, or stellar phenomena within the region.

    People: Describe what the people in the region generally look like. What do they wear? What race(s) are they? What is their culture like? What do they do in their daily lives? Consider the functioning of your region’s society and how they first entered space. Are they freshly free from their homeworld’s atmosphere or have they spread through the regional solar system?

    Resource: Describe one resource that can be abundantly found in the region as well as at least one resource the people will have to import from outside out of necessity or desire. Given Empire 5’s setting in a space-age intergalactic community players are encouraged to introduce resources that are either uniquely abundant to the region or represent a specialized form of labor, manufacturing capability, or knowledge.

    A resource in your starting region begins play at [Great] quantity meaning there are three trading posts in your region, of which your Stellar Power automatically controls one at the start of the game. The other two are vacant. Describe and name your region's trading posts in your writeup.

    A capital region requires an import necessity which is not automatically satisfied by the resources available in the region; you have to find a way to acquire that resource through a deal with another player, seizing foreign trading posts, or discovering distant locations to extract tribute from. If the resource requirement of a region goes unmet for too long there may be revolts or rebellions.

    You can trade resources with other players. The mechanics of trade are discussed under Base Mechanics: Trade.

    Philosophy: Philosophy can be very important in EMPIRE! When a player enters the game, their people and leaders adhere to an overarching ideology that guides their moral and ethical structures; alternatively their Stellar Power lacks a coherent ideological bent represented by a “vacant” learning center. Gaining the support of organized ideologies can be helpful or have unusual effects. Players can introduce their own organized Ideologies with a special action if they have a Philosophy score of 10, raising an existing unorganized belief to official status, creating a new schism of an existing Ideology, or creating something entirely new.

    Your region contains one Learning Center at the start of the game. This could be a major temple or monastery, a significant library or university, a sacred historical or technological monument, or any number of other intellectual hubs which have influence over regional thought. In your writeup, note both a physical description of your regional Learning Center and whether your region’s Learning Center is under the control of a particular philosophical thought or not currently occupied.

    Each round will take two real-life weeks and will be the equivalent of 2 Galactic Years in-game. A Galactic Year is roughly 1.2 Earth Years.

    During each round you have a default of five actions you can spend doing things. If players haven't posted actions by the end of that round, their round is considered wasted. Rounds close and open on Sunday. Because of the possibility for abuse, any action posts that are edited after the round closes will be ruled completely invalid unless proof can be provided (i.e. datestamped screenshots or equivalent) that the actions are unchanged from before the round closure.

    Actions do not take effect until the end of the round. Armies raised in a round can therefore not be used until the next round, attribute increases are only added at the end of the round, newly acquired technologies cannot be used until the round after they were introduced, etc. The only exception to this general rule regards technological trades. Technology can be traded or gifted by the inventor (but not stolen) within the round it is invented.


    Actions are the major things happening in your Stellar Power over the course of the the round. Is construction happening on a massive monument to a god or ancient leader? Are armies being raised to answer the call of their sovereign? Perhaps your Stellar Power is hosting or sending its finest diplomats to an international event to mingle with galactic leaders? If you want your Stellar Power to do something and have an impact on the wider galaxy, use an action. There are a few specially defined actions discussed below.

    All actions take effect at the end of the round (unless they have an effect that is delayed even longer). So, for instance, if you set up a trade route for another resource, you will not have the resource until the following round. If you pursue an investigation, the results will be announced in the round opener for response in the next round.

    Special actions are actions you can only take when your leader has at least a 5 or a 10 in the attribute in question. Special actions are limited to a single-use 5 and a single-use 10 per attribute per leader. Special actions need not be used immediately upon attaining a 5 or 10 but may be held (or never used) at the discretion of the player. A 10 special may be used as a second 5 special if desired by the player but will count as a full use of the 10 special action.

    Resolution actions can only be used when you have a 10 in the given attribute, and apply to a single dice roll. This represents expenditure of a great deal of money, resources and other capital on a single venture. You automatically roll the maximum possible on that roll; however, the attribute in question is reduced to 1 for the next round of play before returning to 10 the round after that. Resolution actions may be used an unlimited number of times per leader, though only once per round. Additionally, Military resolution actions may not be used to affect battle rolls.

    Projects: Some things may take more than one round to complete. These are called ‘projects’, and take multiple actions to complete. Some take only two actions, like slightly improving or maintaining infrastructure. Some are ‘Great Projects’ that take 5 actions, like overhauling a region’s infrastructure.

    Building a large trade fleet, renovating a large city or rural portion of your region, or gathering the books to create a massive library are examples of 5-action Great Projects. Other players may assist with completion of a project or Great Project. Great Projects have small mechanical effects determined by negotiation between the player(s) and the GM. They may also serve as justification for technologies or play host to more dramatic locations for events.

    Great Projects, with an end goal of obtaining a regional bonus, are typically five actions long. However, the longer the Great Project (ie, the more actions it takes) the more likely you will be able to convince the Head GM to allow you to have the regional bonus you want. And to clarify: Great Project Bonuses only effect a single region, and must be approved by the Head GM before the bonus applies. Military-based Great Projects to make a “bigger ship” will never provide a regional bonus but a big enough ship - in combination with a future Military technology - may provide additional combat bonuses, if that is the route you wish to take. Speak with the Head GM for approvals.

    Sub-actions are where a single action can be taken that has the effect of several other actions. The most common occurrence for this is at events, where a player can perform several diplomatic actions such as betrothals, technological trades, or treaty signings for the cost of one action.

    In general, unless specified otherwise in the rules, if an action must be rolled for or has a mechanical effect, it probably can't be a sub-action and will take a full action of its own.

    Secret actions are actions which are known only to you and the GM. Such actions need to be sent to the GM for verification, otherwise they will have no effect. Secret actions count towards the Intrigue attribute for the purposes of increasing scores, and will use this score in determining success. Only one secret action can be taken per round. Special actions (5s and 10s) cannot be secret unless using the Intrigue attribute’s special actions. Other players cannot investigate what you have been/are doing with your secret actions directly (e.g. “[Intrigue] Investigate Power A’s Secret Action”), but the results of a secret action may be investigated and your hand in them discovered. Secret actions can be countered if correctly, or mostly-correctly, deduced by an opposing Stellar Power. Secret actions are always full actions, rather than sub-actions or non-actions, and count as Intrigue actions for purposes of increased attributes. Moving armies and attacking other players with military units can not be secret actions.

    Using an [Intrigue] Secret Action counts for increasing the [Intrigue] stat during the round that it is used. Should the action involve a roll, Intrigue is used instead of the stat involved, with one exception: special actions. There are a few special actions that can be done secretly, and when they are, those will always use their associated stat. All other, non-special actions will use Intrigue when rolling a Secret Action. Technologies may be used to alter this ruling to suit a player’s desires, with GM Approval.

    Secret Actions performed in Round "A" will occur during the Round "B" Opener, like other actions. However, during the Round "C" Opener, some details and rumors may be leaked... nothing stays secret for long, even in a vast Galaxy. The amount "leaked" and exactly "when" such additional details are provided is at the GM Team's discretion.

    Non-actions are anything that a player does in their turn that does not cost an action. A player can take any number of these, some of which may have a mechanical effect. Changing leaders is a non-action, as is allowing foreign troops passage, and resisting conversion or buyout attempts.

    Non-actions take effect at the end of the round along with regular actions.

    The following lists are a mostly complete set of sub-actions, non-actions, and actions that a player can do as part of Events and/or having Embassies, which will be explained further in the rules.

    Event and Embassy Sub-actions:
    - Transferring units, generals, technologies, Caller Fragments and other transferable entities to attendees
    - Becoming an attendee's vassal/Ending vassalship
    - Accepting/refusing treaties, agreements and favors
    - Exchanging diplomats or other characters
    - Exchanging Regions between players

    Embassy Only:
    -(Passive) Reduces cost of Cultural Identity sharing
    -(Action) Exchanging/gifting Trade Posts

    Increasing Attributes
    For every two actions spent in an attribute in a single round, they receive a +1 bonus to their leader’s score in that attribute, starting from the following round.
    The bonus will be applied to whichever leader the player is using the following round for purposes of attributes, even if that is not the same leader who took the actions that resulted in a bonus.

    Every turn once a player has completed their actions they list at the end of their post what attributes they increased. e.g 2 Military Actions, 2 Diplomacy Actions, and 1 Intrigue Action = +1 Military and +1 Diplomacy.

    A leader's score in any attribute cannot increase beyond 10.

    Please note clearly at the end of your post in the IC thread which attributes you increase so that it can be identified and noted in the tables.

    New Player Bonus Actions

    For players joining after the close of Round 2 an additional action will be granted and one extra action again for every 2 round closes after the end of Round 2 to a cap of 10 bonus actions after the close of Round 20. These actions and their attribute increases will all take effect at the same time as your regular round actions at the end of the round. These bonus actions may not affect other regions or players. They represent some of what your realm has been up to prior to entering the world stage.

    For Empire! 5, New Player Bonus Actions may also include Exploration attempts.
    Last edited by Gengy; 2020-01-23 at 11:26 AM.
    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Got my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Still busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Ogre in the Playground
    Gengy's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Default Re: EMPIRE 5! Rules and Administration

    The Attributes

    A higher Diplomacy score will help mitigate or solve any potential rebellions in any regions you hold and influences the chances of NPCs agreeing to proposals you offer.

    Forming alliances, arranging marriages or betrothals for your character or their relatives, changing laws, or imposing order on an unstable region are broad purposes of Diplomacy. Great Projects intended to draw the attentions of lawyers, politicians, and nobility would fall under Diplomacy. Diplomacy represents a Stellar Power’s political acumen, skill at negotiation, and cultural unity.

    Diplomacy 5 Special: Cultural Identity
    If you have a score of 5 in Diplomacy, you can spend an action to create a “Cultural Identity” for your Stellar Power. A Cultural Identity will grant an increase in die size (2d6 to 2d8) on a specific set of rolls chosen by the player that are not related to Military actions. A particularly agnostic or zealously devoted Stellar Power might adopt an identity granting a bonus to rolls resisting or making conversion attempts. A cutthroat Economy focused Stellar Power might adopt an identity that granted its bonus to rolls to buyout owned or unowned trading posts.

    A Cultural Identity lasts until it is changed by a subsequent Diplomacy 5 action or until the end of a Stellar Power if it is made permanent with a Diplomacy 10 special action.

    Cultural Identities can be shared between players. This requires a Diplomacy action from the giving player and two Diplomacy actions from the receiving player. Sharers also receive -1 size losses in coalitions if they are the only participants (negating the +1 coalition size loss normally present), and +2 on Buyouts and Conversions in each other’s stable regions (supported or not). If either sharer loses the Cultural Identity being shared, these bonuses are lost. If two Stellar Powers have an Embassy between them the cost of sharing a Cultural Identity decreases to one action for each participant.

    Diplomacy 5 Special: Create Embassy
    If you have a score of 5 in Diplomacy, you can spend an action to establish a permanent embassy in another Stellar Power’s capital. This allows both Stellar Powers involved to take Diplomacy actions involving only the other Stellar Power as non-actions as long as both realms agree to the action such as trading technologies. Additionally Stellar Powers with embassies may use an Economy 5 Special action to upgrade resource quality in the other's lands as long as they agree to the action, and use Economy actions to gift trading posts directly to one another (no rolling required). Additionally Stellar Powers sharing an Embassy have an easier time sharing Cultural Identities (see Diplomacy 5: Cultural Identity)

    See the Other Rules section for more details on Embassies.

    Diplomacy 10 Special: Permanent Cultural Identity
    If you have a score of 10 in Diplomacy you may choose to make your existing Cultural Identity, created by an earlier Diplomacy 5, permanent. The Diplomacy 5 Cultural Identity may also be introduced in the same round it is made permanent with a Diplomacy 10 action. A Permanent Cultural Identity stays with a Stellar Power until the end of the Stellar Power or until specifically replaced by a subsequent Diplomacy 10. A Stellar Power can support as many Permanent Cultural Identities as it can establish.

    Diplomacy 10 Special: Diplomatic Unity
    If you have a score of 10 in Diplomacy and the requisite regions you may choose to unify holdings that you control into a more distinct entity through legal means.
    • If you control four or more regions you may declare yourself a Galactic Power. Galactic Powers have a sixth action per round. You lose the title (and the action) if you ever control fewer than 4 regions. You may regain the title (and the action) if you manage to take control of 4 regions and spend a Diplomacy action to re-consolidate your rule within four turns. A player may form a Galactic Power if they are already a Merchant Power or Ideological Power but will lose the benefits of a Merchant Power and/or Ideological Power although they will lose the restriction on their sixth action.
    • If you have 12 or more regions (including vassals) you may declare yourself a Galactic Empire. Galactic Empires have a seventh action per round. You lose the title (and the action) if you ever control fewer than 12 regions (including vassals). You may regain the title (and the action) if you manage to take control of 12 regions (including vassals) and spend two Diplomacy actions to re-consolidate your rule within three turns.

    A higher Military score will help in conquering or subjugating those in the world who can only be expected to listen to might or in defending yourself from those who view you in such a light.

    Raising a unit of troops, utilising their services, or constructing fortifications are broad purposes of Military. Great Projects intended to draw the attentions of strategists, soldiers, and conquerors would fall under Military. Military represents a combination of fighting prowess and tactical knowledge possessed by a Stellar Power.

    Training Military Units
    You can raise one military unit in one action. These units function as the standing armies and navies of your Stellar Power although are not specifically defined in makeup or number of active fighting men and women. A single unit is generally considered to be equivalent in combat effectiveness to about 2,000 regular human troops composing a stellar fleet and ground forces, and these terms are used interchangeably throughout the rules, even if for fluff reasons the actual units of a particular Stellar Power or a particular engagement are somewhat smaller or larger.

    The maximum number of troops you can support at once is 5 units by default, plus 1 per additional region beyond your capital that you control. If you lose enough territory that you no longer have enough regions to support the number of troops you have raised, your army total will be reduced to the maximum you can currently support.

    Military Actions
    A Stellar Power’s military can be used in a number of ways:

    Troops may be used to invade other regions. Using troops to invade or defend a region requires a distinct action per region being attacked/defended. In order to attack or defend a Stellar Power must possess at least one applicable military unit.

    Where players engage in battles the result is settled with an opposed Military roll on 2d10, with each side adding the number of units they have deployed, battle commander Mil score, and any relevant technologies. The rules for battles are described in detail in Advanced Military Rules.

    Players may also use their military to sack trading posts. Rules for this are described in the section on Trade.

    The military may be used to suppress or exterminate unwanted religious groups or holy orders in a Purge. Rules for this are described in the section on Philosophy.

    Military 5 Special: Recruit General
    If you have a Military score of 5, you may recruit a general to lead your armies. Generals are secondary commanders who may lead armies in the absence of your leader, using their own Military score. A general enters play with a Military score of 6+1d4, although this value will never increase. There is no limit to the number of Generals a Stellar Power may have in play, but they may be lost in battle and, like all people, are susceptible to ailments and the ravages of age. To deploy a General, the player must indicate that they are doing so, and which battle they are commanding, in the relevant actions post.

    Military 5 Special: Tactical Doctrine
    If you have a Military score of 5, you can introduce a Tactical Doctrine. A Tactical Doctrine grants a player a unique advantage in certain aspects of a military endeavor. Such endeavors might include targeting an opposing army’s command structure, fielding additional medics to reduce battlefield losses, increasing unrest in an attack regardless of victory, or any number of tactical advantages, including those that do not directly correlate to battle rolls. A country can only support one Tactical Doctrine at a time but may support as many Permanent Tactical Doctrines as they can establish. Tactical Doctrines cannot be shared or stolen.

    A player notifies the GM Team that they are using a Tactical Doctrine, and the GM rolls Tactical Maneuvering as 2d6+Military of Battle Leader to activate a tactical doctrine as a subaction of a battle action, and this may be resisted as a subaction of the battle by their opponent. The resist and activation rolls of each tactical doctrine are treated separately meaning one player, both, or neither could successfully activate their doctrine(s). To activate a tactical doctrine you possess you must be leading the battle.

    Military 10 Special: Military Technology
    If you have a Military score of 10, you have the ability to introduce a new military technology in your regions. This requires that you already have any prerequisite technologies and any resources that are necessary either through trade or through native ownership. This action can only be done once per leader. All technologies have a resource requirement. Resources being used for a technology are ‘consumed’ for that round; they still count for region requirements but cannot be used for another technology without additional Trade Posts.

    Military technologies fit into one of ten slots listed below. All military technologies fit into one of these slots, and two or more technologies cannot be used in the same slot at the same time, though the particular suite of techs in use may change between actions.

    The following Technology Slots exist, though not all necessarily have technologies assigned to them yet:

    - Personnel Armament
    - Ranged Weaponry
    - Armor and Shields
    - Engines
    - Warmachines and Live Weaponry
    - Logistics
    - Medicine, Mad Science, and Blessings
    - Reconnaissance and Divination
    - Stealth, Sabotage, and Traps
    - Fortifications, Sappers, and Planetary Siege Weaponry

    Military 10: Permanent Tactical Doctrine
    If you have a score of 10 in Military you may choose to make your existing Tactical Doctrine, created by an earlier Military 5, permanent. The Military 5 tactical doctrine may be introduced in the same round it is made permanent with a Military 10 action. A Permanent Tactical Doctrine stays with a Stellar Power until the end of the Stellar Power or until specifically replaced by a subsequent Military 10. A Stellar Power can support as many Permanent Tactical Doctrines as it can establish.

    Each Permanent Tactical Doctrine a player has also provides a +2 to the Tactical Roll, even if you are not using a Permanent Tactical Doctrine during that combat.

    A higher Economy score will help in establishing prosperous trade routes and invigorating local output beyond its standard measure.

    Establishing trade, extracting more complex resources, or improving the basic standard of living within a Stellar Power are broad purposes of Economy. Great Projects intended to draw the attentions of economists, merchants, or the wealthy would fall under Economy. Economy represents a Stellar Power’s general wealth and the vigour of its economic activity. Some things like education or general construction that may not fall into other attributes would fall into this category as well.

    Economy is used to buy out or take over trading posts (see Trade rules).

    Economy 5 Special: Upgrade Resource Quantity
    If you have a score of 5 in Economy you can spend an action to upgrade a region’s resource quantity, automatically establishing control of the associated new trading post. A region can support up to three trading posts equivalent to the region’s resource quantity of [Minor], [Good], or [Great]. You do not need to own the region to improve a resource’s quantity. Ownership of the new Trade Post goes to the user of the Special Action, as per a successful Buyout.

    Economy 5 Special: Upgrade Resource Quality
    If you have a score of 5 in Economy you can spend an action to change the resource into a more complex version of itself , e.g. Iron to Spaceships. You must own the region or have permission and an Embassy with the owner of the region to use this Economy 5 special action. Doing so will reduce the quantity of trading posts in the region by one step, removing the highest level of trade post first. (ie, Great, if it's available, or Good if it's not. Minor quantity Trade Posts are never removed.)

    Economy 5 Special: Adapt Technology
    If you have a score of 5 in Economy you can spend an action to adapt a technology requiring a specific resource to use a similar, but different, resource. The player attempting such an adaptation it must possess both the “new” resource and the technology in question. Adaptations effect only the technology adapted and not all technologies requiring the adapted resource. Common uses of this special action will either allow another specifically named Resource to qualify for the requirement or broaden the specific Resource to instead include the whole Resource Category. Technological adaptations are subject to approval by the GM Team and must make sense.

    Economy 10 Special: New Technology
    If you have an Economy score of 10, you are able to introduce a new technology in your regions. This requires that you already have prerequisite technologies and any resources that are necessary for a technological creation either through trade or as a Minor, Good, or Great Resource in one of your regions. This action can only be done once per leader. All technologies have a resource requirement. Some will have further requirements, as well. Resources being used for a technology are ‘consumed’; they still count for region requirements, but cannot be used for another technology without additional Trade Posts.
    The use and bonuses of technologies are generally determined on a per-power basis. However, some technologies may specifically apply only to certain regions.

    Economy 10 Special: Economic Unity
    If you have a score of 10 in Economy and the requisite trading posts you may choose to elevate your Stellar Power’s status into a more recognizable entity through economic means.
    • If you control 15 or more trading posts, you may take the title of a Merchant Power. Merchant Powers have a sixth, Economy only, action per round. You lose the title (and the action) if you ever control fewer than 15 trading posts. Leaders with Ideological Powers may declare themselves Merchant Powers, in which case they gain no new actions, but may choose whether their sixth action is Economy or Philosophy. Additional benefits to being a Merchant Power can be found in the Zone of Influence rules.

    A higher Philosophy score will help in enforcing moral and ethical doctrine and resisting the destabilizing influence of foreign ideologies as well as granting boons to the especially devout.

    Holding philosophical gatherings, defining moral law and truths, or dealing with the heads or representatives of your ideology or those of others are broad purposes of Philosophy. Great Projects intended to draw the attentions of holy men, devoted scientists, and mystically or psionically talented individuals would fall under Philosophy. Philosophy represents a Stellar Power’s adherence to a higher code than civil law, as well as its general understanding of magic, psionics, or scientific parameters.

    Unorganized Ideologies
    All Ideologies except “the One” adhered to by the Sisters of Silence begin Unorganized. An Unorganized Ideology is capable of converting learning centers using the rules for conversion listed below, and may be declared a Stellar Power Ideology but confers none of the mechanical bonuses associated with an Organized Ideology reaching numbers of learning centers controlled. Unorganized Ideologies cannot support Assemblies but can work as the basis to Ideological Unity, and perform Miracles.

    Lost Ideologies
    An Ideology that no longer has Learning Centers (LCs), if created by a player, has (2) turns from the round opener of it’s last lost LC to obtain a new LC. The attempt to convert an LC must come from a player who’s State Ideology is the “lost” Ideology, and they can only convert a region they own. Failure to do so in either (2) rounds will result in the Ideology being removed from the game at that time… and whatever the current Ideology is in the player’s capital becomes their new State Ideology, though the region enters Unrest. Unrest may be avoided if a [Philosophy] action is taken to accept a new State Ideology, rather then attempt to convert a region.

    Converting People
    Each region contains one major Learning Center be it a church, school, monastic group, or monument to a particular individual or brand of thought. An Ideology’s influence is represented by its control of these centers.

    A player may attempt to take control of a Learning Center either in their own regions or in those controlled by other players. Roll 2d6 and add your Philosophy score plus any relevant bonuses. If the owner of the region wishes to try to stop the conversion, they should also roll 2d6+Philosophy and any relevant bonuses. If the converting player rolls higher, they take control of the learning center.

    If a player is trying to convert a center in their own region, or the region’s owner does not wish to oppose their conversion, they may still face opposition by the existing owners of the center. A conversion will be successful if it rolls higher than 12 (plus any relevant bonuses to resist conversion).

    You may Support attempts by other players to convert learning centers in regions you control, as a non-action. If you are attempting to Convert a vacant learning center in a region you control, or your Conversion attempt is Supported, your Zone of Influence penalty is reduced by one level.

    Opposing conversion is a non-action, but the player must specify that they are doing so in their actions post and make the roll.

    Players may attempt to wipe out followers of an Ideology in their region through use of military force by launching a Purge. If doing so, roll 2d6 and add Military score plus any relevant bonuses. If the result is 12 (taking into account any defensive bonuses) or higher, the Ideology loses control of that learning center, but control does not pass to the conquering player. The center is left vacant until converted, and the region may become unstable due to the violence of the action. Note that Purges are Military actions, but are listed here since they concern the Philosophy stat.

    If you do not wish to have a certain Assembly in your region you may attempt to replace it with a competing Assembly, or exterminate the Assembly through military means. To remove an Assembly militarily a leader must spend an action to Purge the Assembly destroying it and causing unrest in the region.

    Organized Ideology
    Organizing an Ideology means you are that Ideology’s Head, establishing a set standard guiding the Ideology and have a measure of influence over Stellar Powers that follow your Ideology. If you ever change your official Ideology, you will lose your status as head of the Ideology, and any follower of that Ideology may spend a Ideology action to attempt to claim the status of Head. You may also step down from the position of Head as a non-action, and followers of your Ideology may compete for your former position taking a Ideology action to claim the title.

    Establishing Ideological authority is not necessarily easy, however, and functions like claiming a region, with some exceptions. Instead of rolling 2d6+Diplomacy, you roll 2d6+Philosophy, and the base TN required is increased by 2 unless you are the only remaining follower of the Ideology. If you are an Ideological Power of the associated Ideology, you get a +2 bonus on this roll. Each Stellar Power which follows the same Ideology and supports your claim also gives you a +2 bonus. When a new Ideology Head takes control, they may make a Philosophy roll to convert a Close LC as a non-action. This roll can still be opposed.

    Organized Ideologies give bonuses to followers defined by the Ideology Head when Organized or by a Ideology action taken by the Head subsequent to the organizing action; when an Organized Ideology reaches 5 learning centers controlled all followers gain a +1 bonus to a specific set of rolls selected by the Ideology Head, at 10 learning centers controlled all followers gain a shared CI determined by the Head, at 20 learning centers all followers gain a benefit equivalent to a Tier 1 technology negotiated by the Ideology Head with the GM/Tech Czar, at 40 learning centers a Tier 2 technological effect, and at 80 Learning Centers a Tier 3 technological effect. Further effects may be possible at 160 learning centers and 320. In addition to these numeric benchmarks the current largest Organized Ideology grants followers the ability to substitute the Head’s Philosophy score for their own once/round.

    These bonuses are lost if the Ideology no longer holds the relevant number of learning centers, though if enough learning centers are acquired again, no actions need to be spent for followers to reacquire the bonuses. It only takes a single Philosophy action to change the Stellar Power Ideology, but this can cause Unrest in Stellar Powers with significant followers of another Ideology.

    When claiming a vacant title of an Ideological Head - ie, no player has leadership of that Ideology - the base TN is 12. If you do not roll at least a 12, even when there is an existing Head, you will not trigger a contested roll. This represents the fact that changing billions if not trillions of minds is down right difficult. However… when a contested roll for a new Head of Ideology does occur, the highest roll wins. If there is an existing player for the Head of the Ideology, then their opposed roll is a non-action. In exchange, if the challenging player succeeds at claiming the title of Head, they may change an Organized Ideology Bonus tier, of their choice, as a non-action. This “free” change represent their new direction as the new Head of the Ideology. However, it only occurs if there was a previously existing Ideological Head.

    Philosophy 5 Special: Organize Assembly
    If you have a score of 5 in Philosophy and follow an Organized Ideology you can spend an action to establish a regional Assembly. These could be priests or monks bound to righteous cause, a board of learned scientists overseeing scientific output, or a collection of gifted individuals empowered by their belief in the ideology they espouse. A region can only support one Assembly, however an Assembly may be established in any region, even those you do not directly control, if the region’s local Learning Center already follows your Ideology.

    An Assembly counts as an additional learning center for purposes of achieving Unity or reaching numeric benchmarks. If an Assembly is present in a region it gives a +4 innate defensive bonus against conversions or purges to the region’s learning center which shares its Ideology. In addition Assemblies grant +4 to resist Caller Fragment theft when a Fragment is not in use during the round. Assemblies cannot be converted, but can be exterminated in a purge or replaced by another Philosophy 5 action.

    Philosophy 5: Spreading Knowledge
    Make a Conversion roll for a Learning Center in either an unclaimed region, a region you control, or a region under another player's control that has given you non-action Support. For this roll, treat your Philosophy Stat as though it were a 5. If you fail, you still manage to convert your targeted region. If successful, you may attempt to convert (3) Adjacent regions (still with Philosophy set at 5). Technologies, Cultural Identities, etc. may boost this roll, but not your ruler's stats. Zone of Influence penalties do not affect the primary target, but the Adjacent regions of your choice are effected, unless Support is obtained for a targeted region. Obtaining a non-action support for an Adjacent regions attempted to be converted in this manner will remove the ZoI penalties for that Supported region. More than one region may receive Support in this manner.

    Philosophy 5 Special: Cast Out
    If you have a score of 5 in Philosophy and are the Head of an Ideology, you may spend this special action to Cast Out a state that follows your religion. To do so the Head takes a Philosophy action targeting the Stellar Power identified to be Cast Out and makes an opposed Philosophy roll to eject them from the organization. The target may choose to take a Philosophy action of their own to oppose this act or concede to being Cast Out taking no action to resist. If the target resists other followers of the Ideology may choose to get involved taking Non-Actions to provide support to the Head or target conferring +1 to their supported side.

    Cast Out states receive no bonuses from religion they have been Cast Out from and will be at greater risk for negative events and Unrest in regions they control with that religion. This lasts until they either change state religion, which requires either a change of ruler or a Philosophy action and may cause Unrest, or the Ideology Head spends a Philosophy action to Reconcile with you, removing your Cast Out status. If you become the Religious Head, you automatically cease being Cast Out.

    Philosophy 10 Special: Organize Ideology
    You may use a Philosophy 10 Special action to formally organize your Ideology. Your leader establishes a new Ideological branch separate from the authority of existing Ideology Heads. This may be a schism with an existing organized Ideology or a new Ideology of your own devising. Your leader is treated as the Head of this new Ideology by default, although you may designate another character as the head. Followers of organized Ideologies receive bonuses based on number of controlled learning centers.

    Setting organized ideology bonuses is one action per bonus. When using the Philosophy 10 action to Organize Ideology, the Organizer can establish the 5 Learning Center bonus as part of the Special Action, but 10 LC bonuses and higher must be separate actions. Those separate actions may be taken on the same turn as Organizing the Ideology, but the Ideology must qualify for those bonuses.

    In each region you control learning centers that do not follow this Ideology are automatically converted to the new Ideology. If you are Organizing a widespread Unorganized Ideology Learning Centers that already follow this Ideology will become members of your Organized version eager to receive the wisdom of a Power dedicated enough to bring organization to their beliefs.

    Although leaders may only take one Philosophy 10 Special action during their reigns, they can combine the organization of a new Ideology with a Miracle in a single action, in which case the Miracle is the event which triggers the establishment of the new Ideology. This Miracle like all others will be subject to Head GM approval.

    Philosophy 10 Special: Miracle
    If you follow a recognized Ideology, you may request a miracle from the power that you worship, perform a Miracle using your understanding of spiritual or psionic energies, or pull off a miraculous feat of engineering or science that cannot be easily replicated. The miracle must fit with the Ideology you follow.

    Miracles can bless a Ideology’s Assemblies with greater power, uncover new or enhance existing resources, create artifacts or engines of power, or otherwise impact the galaxy in significant and unique ways. A Miracle may also grant individual characters such as Leaders or Generals increased abilities or strength, such as immortality or reincarnation or a bonus in certain types of rolls involving that individual. There is truly no limit on a Miracle’s possible utility although the size and belief system of an Ideology will define the parameters of any particular Miracle. Work with the GM to determine an appropriate representation of the Miracle you wish to perform.

    Philosophy 10 Special: Ideological Unity
    If you have a score of 10 in Philosophy and your Ideology controls sufficient learning centers, you follow you may choose to elevate your Stellar Power’s standing to a more respected place through philosophical means.
    • 15 or more learning centers belonging to the Ideology your Stellar Power follows allows you to declare your region a Ideological Power (IP). IPs may take a sixth, Philosophy only, action per round. You lose the title (and the action) if there are ever fewer than 15 learning centers owned by your Stellar Power’s Ideology. Merchant Powers may declare themselves IPs, in which case they gain no extra actions, but may choose whether the sixth action they take each round is Philosophy or Economy. Additional benefits to being a Merchant Power can be found in the Zone of Influence rules.


    A higher Intrigue score will help in staying ahead of your fellow Stellar Powers through subterfuge and investigation, or countering such attempts made against yourself.

    Spying on a neighbor, monitoring rumors and communication, and plotting or foiling a scheme are broad purposes of Intrigue. Great Projects intended to draw the attentions of spies, saboteurs, and detectives fall under Intrigue. Intrigue represents a Stellar Power’s spy craft and investigative ability.

    The actions of competing Stellar Powers, both subtle and overt, may at times give rise to mysteries or plots that can only be accurately unraveled by those trained in avoiding detection.

    Investigation of an event involves a check (2d6+Intrigue). The degree of success the investigation meets with will be dependent on the result, and it may be that the investigators meet with only partial success or fail altogether if the roll is not high enough. Note that some investigations may be simply impossible if you have no leads or evidence to go on in-character. A sufficiently high roll on an Investigation action does not guarantee a positive result if there is no basis for the action in the first place.

    Causing Unrest
    As Diplomacy allows a Stellar Power to quell unrest in their regions Intrigue allows Stellar Powers to attempt and encourage disruption to the stability of their opponents. A Stellar Power may attempt to cause unrest in a region, lowering Stability by one tier without exceeding rebellion (See Intrigue 10: Incite Rebellion), by taking an Intrigue action targeting a region for unrest. An attempt to cause unrest is a rolled Intrigue action opposed by a non-action Intrigue roll by the target Stellar Power. If the Cause Unrest action is taken as a Secret Action the target’s resistance will be rolled by the GM.

    Players may attempt to steal technologies, Caller fragments, and other items of value from other players. Thefts are opposed Intrigue rolls actioned on behalf of the thief and non-action defended on behalf of the target. In the case of technologies the thief duplicates the technology without depriving the owner; in the case of unique items, the item itself is taken and the previous owner no longer possesses it.

    Stellar Powers which are frequent victims of raiding or theft attempts will naturally become more wary. If you target the same Stellar Power in successive rounds with the same type of Intrigue action, they gain a +2 bonus to their defence roll. This bonus is cumulative if attempts are made over three or more rounds, but only applies to attempts made by the same perpetrator.

    Intrigue is also used for Raids (see Trade rules).

    Intrigue 5 Special: Uncover Caller Fragment
    The inscrutable Callers who once reigned supreme across the galaxy before mysteriously vanishing left their indelible mark on the fabric of galactic space; most notably of course was the Relay system manned by the biomechanical Couriers but outside these FTL stations relics of Caller technology are much rarer and far less operational. Rising Stellar Powers have on occasion found some abandoned piece of Caller hardware buried by time on their homeworld’s moon or floating freely in space though only rarely do these pieces of technology function in any meaningful way. However, there are rumors of pieces of Caller technology lost in the void that, if recovered, could provide a Stellar Power with significant advantages.

    If you have an Intrigue score of 5 or higher, you can choose to send an expert team of investigators to scour the known and unknown regions of the galaxy for evidence of functioning Caller technology. An Intrigue 5 spent in this way is sure to find something though the actual function of Caller artifacts recovered in this way will be unknown until after the action has been spent. While there is little research available at the start of the game regarding functioning Caller technology it is generally known that Caller technology functions better when close to similar technologies.

    Intrigue 5 Special: Assassination/Kidnapping
    Players with an Intrigue score of 5 or more may attempt to assassinate each other’s named characters. If the target is a named character, make an opposed roll against your target’s Intrigue score, including all relevant bonuses. If the target is not a named character, make an opposed roll against half the Intrigue score of the target, including all relevant bonuses, and the Intrigue 5 Special action is not used up. If the assassin’s roll is higher, the target is killed. In the event of a tie, the target survives, though may be wounded or otherwise inconvenienced. Leaders receive an automatic +2 bonus to avoid being assassinated or kidnapped; as the head of Stellar Power, they enjoy greater personal security. Kidnappings function as assassinations, except that the target is taken alive rather than killed. Failed Assassinations/Kidnappings of a named and stat-holding character do not expend the Intrigue 5 Special Action, but the target of the failed attempt receives an additional +2 to resist further attempts in the following round, as security around them is heightened.

    Rescue attempts on captured leaders (whether lost via combat or via kidnappings) cost an I5 if they succeed and require an available I5 to attempt.

    Intrigue 5 Special: Destroy Organization Base or Damage Organization HQ
    For Organizations in which the location of the Base or HQ is known, an Intrigue 5 Special Action can be spent to destroy a Base or damage the HQ of an organization; if this action is discovered, the perpetrator's Reputation will immediately drop by 3 levels. While an Organization's HQ is damaged, it does not grant a Base Bonus and the Organization takes a -2 penalty to all rolled actions; the HQ can be repaired with a two-action Project by the owner of the region in which it is located. If an HQ is Damaged by I5s three times before it is repaired it will be Destroyed. Bases found in regions that are unowned by a Stellar Power are destroyed uncontested.

    For Bases in an owned region, protecting an Org base that is in your region will occur automatically. Instead of automatic loss, if an Organization has a base in one of your regions, the use of the Intrigue special action to remove the base forces a roll-off. The attacker’s 2d6+Intrigue score versus 2d6 + (either) the defending Organization’s Intrigue score (or) the region owner’s Intrigue score, whichever is higher. As a non-action, the owner of the region may refuse to help protect the base. In which case, the Organization’s base will be removed automatically, as though no one controlled the region. If an Organization’s base being removed is resisted successfully, the user of the Intrigue Special Action still retains their Special Action for a later use.

    Intrigue 10 Special: Incite Rebellion
    If you have an Intrigue score of 10, you have the ability to incite rebellion in a region experiencing Unrest or Instability prompting local forces to take up arms against their current leaders. An incited rebellion creates a militant uprising in a target region with 1d5+1 units and a general (1d4+6) who attempt to throw off the yoke of the region’s current ruling Stellar Power. The goals of the rebels will be determined by the GM, based on both your inciting fluff and that of the target region. Some rebels may also have access to technologies or other bonuses, as determined by the GM.

    Intrigue 10: Bug Rival
    If you have an Intrigue score of 10 you may choose to “Bug” a rival Stellar Power representing the infiltration of another Power’s administration and intelligence community to funnel information back to yours. The act of Bugging can be a non-secret action while the target remains Secret known only to the player and GM. A Bugged power will have its Secret Actions revealed to the Bugging power the round after a Secret Action is taken. A Bug lasts until it is disposed of by the Bugged power.

    To that end Bugs may be removed if they are discovered through conduction of an “Internal Investigation”, a rolled Intrigue action which will be competing to beat a hidden TN rolled by the GM. Additional Bugs beyond the first shall lower this TN by 2 and if any Bug has been detected a nation may take an unrolled intrigue action to remove all bugs currently affecting them.

    Pay attention to your Secret Action results. Sometimes things work but may not seem quite right. This could be the result of being Bugged or it may simply be due to the nature of remaining undercover. It will remain up to the player whether they believe an Internal Investigation is warranted.
    Last edited by Gengy; 2020-01-23 at 11:10 AM.
    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Got my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Still busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Aug 2005

    Default Re: EMPIRE 5! Rules and Administration

    Base Mechanics

    Contested Rolls
    The base mechanic for contested rolls, something that is a key point in any dice-based game with multiple players that aren’t necessarily working together, is very simple.

    You roll 2d6 and add the relevant attribute score for the action, and then add any relevant modifiers. There are usually no fractions, but in general any fractions are rounded up. Your opponent does the same, or the GM does so on their behalf, with whoever rolls higher being successful. In the event of a tie, unless the rules say otherwise for a specific type of roll, the defending player wins.

    Military battles function a little bit differently, due to the large numbers that can get involved. In their case, roll 2d10, add the Military score of your leader (or half their score if their Leader or a General aren’t leading the battle) and any other relevant modifiers. Players do not make military battle rolls personally and all such rolls will be made by the GM at the end of the round, though players should still note all the relevant bonuses in their actions post. When rolling for Tactical Maneuvering, the owner of the tactical doctrine (the roller) is resisted by the defending party (the defender). In the event of a tie, the roller succeeds.

    Target Numbers
    Often players will find themselves having to roll against a target number. The relevant roll is 2d6 + relevant attribute + other bonuses from technologies or the like. If they equal or beat the target number, the roll will succeed.

    Target numbers for some different actions (with the relevant attribute in brackets) are:
    Converting a learning center to your ideology when unopposed (Philsophy): 12
    Buying out a trading post when unopposed (Economy): 12
    Claiming an uncontrolled region in one round (Diplomacy): 18
    Claiming an uncontrolled region in two rounds when unopposed (Diplomacy): 12
    Stabilizing a region the round after conquest (Diplomacy): 12 (+2 bonus on roll)
    Stabilizing a region in unrest (Diplomacy): 12
    Stabilizing a region in rebellion (Diplomacy): 14 Note: The rebels will still need to be defeated for the stabilization to take effect
    Maintaining an occupation (Diplomacy): 12 (+2 for each successive round)
    Exploring an undiscovered region (Economy): 10
    Exploring an undiscovered region (Military): 14
    Exploring an undiscovered region (Other Actions): 12

    Most other rolls have a Base TN of: 12

    Every region in Empire contains one resource. The resources of a region will have three categories of quantity which determine how many trading posts a region can contain: Minor, Good, and Great. A player’s capital region will begin with a Great resource of their choosing. A Capital Region will also start with a resource requirement that will need to be fulfilled through trade with another region.

    Non-capital regions will have their details revealed following successful exploration including their resource and quantity. Sometimes, this information will be dependent upon just how successful the exploration roll is. The most common result will provide the exact Resource found in the region. Occasionally, the exploration may reveal the Resource Category instead, and it is up to the player to define exactly what kind of resource it is. Very rarely, the Exploration will result in an 'Undefined' Resource, which allows the player who claims the region to decide what resource is there. Undefined resources can be purchased by players like other Trade Posts. (3) Rounds after the purchase, if the region has not yet been claimed by another player, the owner of the Undefined TP may define it.

    These resources will be sure to incorporate the resource requirements approved by region submissions. Non-capital regions will not have resource requirements however regions or holdings may occasionally demand a resource be delivered within a limited time frame for a reward or to avoid consequences.

    Resource Categories
    Resource Categories are the less loosely defined descriptor that every Resource fall into. This is a worldbuilding game and being creative is always encouraged… but that can end up with some unique resources that can often be far too ‘niche’ or unusable. We still want the creativity to flow freely, and don’t want anyone to stop creating fun and unique resources, so there is a list of suggested Resource Categories to help inspire your chosen Resources. Additional Resource Categories may be created, if players develop enough Resources that no longer fit the below suggested categories:

    • Arcana (Hermetic objects used to empower science, faith, or magic in some way)
    • Common Ore (Rocks, Asteroids, Marble or the like that could be used for building)
    • Crops and Spices (Food that can be grown or things that can be used as seasoning)
    • Drug (Used to help or hinder a personhood’s biology or mechanics)
    • Electronics (If it beeps and boops but isn’t smarter than an animal)
    • Fauna (Beasts that can be used as Food or Trained as companions)
    • Flora (A type of wood or plant, commonly used for building or producing oxygen)
    • Fuel (If it powers something somehow, it’s a fuel; coal, oil, electricity, solar plasma, etc)
    • Hard Metal (Strong metals, used for building things or making weaponry)
    • Precious Mineral (Precious metals or gems or other things that could be currency)
    • Skilled Beings (Individuals with a trained skillset, such as engineers, laborers, mercenaries)
    • Textiles (Clothing, hide, dyes; if it primarily is worn or makes a wall pretty, it’s here)

    Resource Categories will primarily be utilized to define what does, or doesn’t work, to make a technology function. When creating a Technology (see the Technology section), a player may choose to use a specific Resource or a Resource Category. If a specific Resource is used, it will help limit who can and can’t use the Technology but make it less likely that other players will want to trade you for that Technology. Deciding to use a Resource Category instead will make the Technology both easier to trade and use… which may not always be a good thing.

    There is a great deal of ‘Common Sense’ rulings when it comes to Resource Categories. The GM Team will decide if a specific Resource belongs in a certain Category but will generally work with players to try and make sure that it makes sense. As mentioned in the Economy Stat section, an Economy 5 action can be used to Adapt Technologies; an easy way of doing this is taking the Resource Requirement and setting the requirement from the specifically named Resource to it’s Resource Category instead. Even then, Common Sense rulings still apply. A Technology that requires “Mercenaries” to help in combat situations can be modified with an Economy 5 to only require “Skilled Beings” but that doesn’t mean that a resource of “Pacifist Scholars” are going to be picking up blasters to fill that requirement. Technological adaptations are subject to approval by the GM/Tech Czar and must make sense.

    Trade Rules
    "Trading" occurs when both parties acknowledge in the Round Post that an exchange is taking place. Failure to acknowledge this exchange means the trade does not go through. "Gifting" occurs when a player sends something to another player without expecting anything in return, and thus, no acknowledgement is required by the receiving party; though it can be rejected, if a receiving player wishes to do so.

    Trade Posts
    The primary mechanic through which trade will be conducted will be through claiming trading posts for a region’s resource. A region can support up to three trading posts for a single resource corresponding with the Minor, Good, and Great quantities (one, two, and three respectively).

    A player begins with control of one of their three trading posts within their capital region. The other two trading posts are unowned. A player may attempt to take over a trading post in any region regardless of distance, border connection, or other geographical limitations; be aware, however, that your Zone of Influence will affect the roll.

    The number of trading posts in a region can be increased with an Economy 5 special action to upgrade resource quantity. Any player may perform this action so long as they control at least one trading post in the region in question. The nature of a region’s resource can be changed with an Economy 5 by the player who owns the region. Doing so reduces the quantity of the resource by one removing one trading post.

    Players may attempt to gain control of revealed trading posts using a Buyout action. Roll 2d6+Economy and any relevant bonuses. If the roll equals or exceeds 12, the trading post is successfully acquired. If another player already owns the trading post in question, make an opposed roll with both players using Economy and relevant bonuses instead. If that player is supporting your Buyout attempt or does not wish to oppose your Buyout the Buyout roll must still equal or exceed 12.

    You may Support attempts by other players to Buyout trading posts you control, or unowned trading posts in regions you control, as a non-action. If you are attempting to Buyout an uncontrolled trading post in a region you control, or your Buyout attempt is Supported, your Zone of Influence penalty is reduced by one level.

    Trade Posts may be Traded or Gifted between players, so long as [a] the players share an Embassy and [b] an Economy action spent by both players during the same turn to indicate the Trade/Gifting is taking place. This is the one time where "Gifting" something must be acknowledged; though indirectly acknowledging it without specifics is acceptable, so long as the Economy action is being spent by both the sending and receiving player.

    A trading post can be Sacked as a Military action. Sacks may not be secret actions and will always be opposed by the current owning player. If successful, the trading post is considered vacant.

    Owned trading posts may be Raided using an Intrigue action. Raids may be conducted secretly or openly but will always be opposed by the current owning player. To Raid make an opposed roll with both players using Intrigue and relevant bonuses. Raids cannot be ignored or supported as Buyouts can and will automatically be resisted. A successful Raid passes control of the trading post to the Raiding player. Successful Secret Action Raids in Owned Regions will remain secret. While it becomes apparent that a Raid did occur, the new owner of the TP does not get revealed without an Investigation action or some other action that causes their identity to be known. Until then, the tables will refer to the owner as ???.

    Trading Technologies
    Once created, Technologies may be exchanged between players. Trading a technology is possible on the same round it is approved and created, but only by the player that created it. All other parties who receive the technology on the turn it was created must wait until the next round before they too can begin trading or gifting it.

    Zone of Influence


    A player’s Zone of Influence (ZoI) is the distance that they are able to utilize their overall prowess, be it political, military, or otherwise. Space is vast, and being able to affect anything outside of your own regions takes effort, especially for newly formed Powers; the further away from your capital, the more difficult your ability to leverage your prominence. This section contains many pictures to help explain someone’s ZoI and how it works for them… or against them. First, here’s a quick example of a capital region.

    Capital Region

    Fairly simple to understand! That space is your starting region. There are rules to move your capital region into another region you own, but for now, this is your capital. Let’s move on to Adjacent Regions.

    Adjacent Regions

    Adjacent Regions are the regions right next to the ones you own. From the picture, it’s pretty obvious to figure that out, but this becomes important as things become more complex. With ZoI rules, Adjacent Regions are those that you have the most influence on, other than your own claimed regions. Think of the Adjacent Regions as the nearby space sectors who are constantly able to feel the effects of the machinations of your Power.

    Close Zone

    Next we have the Close Zone; the regions just on the other side of your Adjacent Regions. This is an area of space where your Power has been heard of, and is near enough that you can properly influence it, though it's a little harder than the adjacent spaces.

    The grey section to the nearby northwest, outside the close zone, is an 'unexplored' region. No one, not even yourself, knows what is in those regions. See the Exploration section to find out more.

    Moderate Zone

    However, that unexplored grey section is part of the “Moderate” Zone of Influence, shown above as the ring outside the Close Zone in red. This is the sector of space that recognizes your Power as legitimate, will likely bow if your leader is nearby, but otherwise doesn’t think about you all that much. Your actions may affect them, but it will take additional effort and convincing.

    Hard Zone

    Following the Moderate (red) Zone is the ZoI “Hard” Zone. This area, seen above in purple, is a sector of space that has your Power in their newsfeeds (if they are spacefaring), but doesn’t often concern itself with your ability to involve yourself with their goings on. That doesn’t mean that you can’t. Just that it’s, well, Hard to do so.

    Improbable Zone

    Beyond the Hard Zone is the “Improbable” Zone. These guys are so far removed from you Zone of Influence that, if you actually manage to succeed in affecting them, there would be quite a number of very impressed people... and probably a few who are upset at this far away nation bothering them.

    TN Increases

    Each area of the Zone of Influence - due to its distance to a region you own - increases the difficulty to most rolls, and the penalties can be seen above. These penalties are to the overall roll, and affect opposed rolls as well. If you are rolling an opposed roll in your own Hard Zone, but your opponent is opposing you in their Improbable Zone, your roll will be at -4 (Hard Zone) and they roll at -8 (Improbable Zone).

    More Regions

    When you obtain an additional region, your Zone of Influence shifts. With more territory under your control, more races have heard of you, so of course, it alters how you can deal with them.

    Does Not Change Improbable Zone

    It should be noticed, however, that your "Improbable" Zone does not shift. You are just a little Power, after all, and your capital is quite far from them. In other words, as a regular Power without spending Special Actions to increase your status (or other possible game effects!) your Improbable Zone will always be exactly five spaces from your capital.

    This is your “Influence Edge”. The very edge of your Zone of Influence. As a regular Power, your Influence Edge never shifts or changes, so long as your Capital remains where it is. No matter what other regions you obtain that alters your Zone of Influence, your Influence Edge does not change.

    A Stellar Power has an Influence Edge at (4) regions beyond their Capital.
    A Galactic Power has an Influence Edge at (4) regions beyond their Capital, but can have Vassals.
    A Merchant Power or Ideological Power has an Influence Edge at (4) regions but increased Adjacent and Close zones as well as elimination of the Improbable zone for their associated action type
    A Galactic Empire has an Influence Edge at (5) regions beyond their Capital, and can have Vassals.
    Reminder: Galactic Powers cannot be Merchant Powers or Ideological Powers.

    Improved Powers

    Galactic Power Example

    A player finally reaches Galactic Power status by having four regions under their control and spending a D10 to create their Galactic Power. At the time of its creation, their Zone of Influence looks like above.

    Notice, the "Hard" Zone is all but gone. There are a few spaces of it left, but it's pretty much negligible. However... this is the same Zone of Influence the player had before they become a Galactic Power. Nothing changed. Why?

    Well, their Influence Edge - from their own Capital - will increase when they become an Empire. At the same time, though, it’s very difficult to get (12) regions on your own. That’s where Vassals come in. Obtaining a Vassal is explained in the Vassals and Lieges section of the rules, but for clarity, we’ll be discussing to your ZoI what happens when you get a Vassal.

    To put it simply, you - as the Liege - can roll dice using their Capital, Adjacent, and Close ZoI region modifiers. Below is a picture of what that looks like.

    Vassal’s Zone of Influence

    Please note: This only changes what a Liege rolls at. The above picture is an example for a Galactic Power Liege, and does not change the Vassal’s Zone of Influence in any way.

    Galactic Empire Example

    Like a Galactic Power, the Galactic Empire can have Vassals. All previous examples of a Vassal for a Galactic Power are true of a Galactic Empire. What is different is that a Galactic Empire has an increased Moderate Zone (-2) and the Hard Zone (-4) is moved outward one 'ring', improving the overall Zone of Influence!

    Special Power Bonuses for related Action Type

    Merchant Powers and Ideological Powers, for the purposes of their respective specialized Action Types, gain a second Zone of Influence. For these different types of advanced Powers, their economic and/or philosophical prowess increases their overall adjacent regions to two spaces beyond their capital. Additionally, their Close Zone expands to two regions beyond that, and all Improbable Zones are treated as Hard Zones instead. This is centered entirely on their capital, and - as seen above - does not change with additional regions.

    Again, this is only for their respective specialized attribute. All other action types are treated as a regular Power’s ZoI. In the event (such as through claiming new territories) their regular Stellar Power ZoI grants them a lower Zone modifier, they may use that one. As an example, the below is the exact same Merchant Power/Ideological Power, but seeing it from their Stellar Power ZoI.

    While it is easier to roll their Specialized Attribute in the area to the west of their capital with the Specialized ZoI, there are three zones for the Stellar Power ZoI that are considered Adjacent in the southeast. These zones can be rolled with the better Adjacent Zone Modifier, even with the Specialized Attribute. For all non-specialized rolls, the above image example must be how the Specialized Power rolls.

    A Merchant Power may also become an Ideological Power (and vice versa) as long as the requirements for those special actions are met. In the event that happens, their Zone of Influence now works for both Economy and Philosophy based rolls.

    Powers may develop close relationships politically despite physical distance between them. In such an event a Stellar Power may wish to invite some aspect of another Stellar Power into their controlled regions. This is represented through Support which can apply to either Buyouts and Conversions. Stellar Powers may choose to Support another Stellar Power’s Buyout or Conversion action(s) with a non-action reducing the ZoI penalty by one step for the Supported Power’s action(s).

    Zone of Influence, Military Rules

    Much as other attributes are affected by one’s ZoI so too are military engagements subject to limitations related to a Stellar Power’s size and influence. Battle actions which send units to either conquer or defend a region shall be subject to distance losses representing the difficulty in maintaining fleet cohesion across the vast and hostile interstellar expanse. Distance loss rolls are incurred at a rate equal to the penalty applied to other rolls by one’s zones.

    For example, sending units to a region Adjacent to a region you control incurs no distance losses, sending units to a region within your Close zone subjects your armies to one distance loss roll (50% chance of losing a unit before arriving in the region), battling in Moderate zone regions incurs two distance loss rolls, four distance loss rolls in a Hard zone region, and up to eight distance loss rolls should a Stellar Power choose to engage in battle in a region within their Improbable zone.

    Country Relationships & Ways of Expansion

    The Map
    The known galaxy will be displayed on the map at the beginning of the game and will be reposted in every round opening post. Not all available regions will be visible to players and in fact will need to be uncovered through Exploration by Stellar Powers looking to expand their knowledge and influence.

    As the game proceeds it may be necessary to expand the explored area of the map to allow space for new players to join the game. This will proceed at the GM’s discretion.

    Region Acquisition: Conquest and Claims

    At the start of the game all available sectors of the galaxy will be hidden on the map, except for player capitals. As players Explore, the galaxy map will be revealed. To begin with, these regions will not be owned by other players, but can be acquired through conquest or claim.

    Region Acquisition: Conquest
    When conquering a region, a player spends a Military action to send at least one unit to conquer the region in question. Conquest will be treated as a military conflict meaning the GM rolls 2d10 in the round opener, plus any relevant bonuses from commanders, troops and technologies. Conquering a region will always leave it in Unrest the following round.

    Other players or NPCs may oppose the conquest, either because they wish to acquire the region themselves, or because they own the region in question. This is dealt with in detail in the Advanced Military Rules.

    Region Acquisition: Claims
    Regions may be claimed if they are not controlled by any player or NPC Stellar Power. In order to claim a region, you must first possess a claim. Players will accrue claims to other regions naturally during play, through intermarriage with the ruling family, diplomatic agreements or through religious conversions.
    You have a valid claim if:
    • Your leader, a member of your ruling family, or other significant personage in your Stellar Power, is descended from a former leader of the region in question.
    • The region used to be part of your country (during play, not simply background fluff).
    • You follow an Organized Ideology, and the region is your neighbor with a Learning Center of your Stellar Power Ideology.
    • You have successfully Established a Claim (see the below section)
    • Your Stellar Power has a fabricated claim created prior to the attempt to claim the region. Openly fabricating a claim on an unclaimed but militarized region will prompt the stationed troops to attack a nearby region belonging to the fabricator in the following round. Secret Action fabrications will not suffer this effect. An Intrigue TN of 12 is required to successfully fabricate a claim, and only neighboring regions may be claimed. Attempting to fabricate claims may be done as often as a player wishes.

    The GM will rule on the validity of claims on request. Players with legitimate but very weak claims may suffer a penalty on the claim roll.

    Pressing a claim is a Diplomacy action. If a claim is successful, the region falls under the claiming player’s control, together with up to one unit stationed there. The remaining units are disbanded. Multiple players may press claims on the same region in the same round.

    A roll of 12 is a partial success for a claim, and allows the player to continue to press their claim the following round. If in the second round the claim is not contested by other players, the region is claimed automatically. If a player rolls a 12 in the first round but does not press their claim in the following round, the claim is forgotten and subsequent attempts to claim the region must roll again.

    A roll of 18 or higher is an immediate success on a claim and the region falls under the claimant’s control at the end of the round.

    If multiple players have a claim to the region, some of them may forfeit their claims and support other claimants instead. For each player who does this, add +2 to the roll of the claimant they support.

    Players with territories neighboring the region in question may add their support to a claimant. Add +2 if a neighboring player supports a claim. Only one bonus from neighboring players is counted.

    If local leaders have reason to support a particular claimant, they may do so, adding +2 to the roll of the claimant they support.

    In the event there are multiple claimants for a region more than one of whom wishes to claim it, they should all roll, with the claimant who rolls highest being successful, provided they meet the target number. If none of the claimants roll an 18 or higher in the first round, the claim may still be contested in the second round, in which case the player who rolls highest in the second round successfully claims the region.

    Establishing a Claim
    In order to create a Claim in a diplomatic manner, a player may roll 2d6+Diplomacy. Generally speaking, this means that your leader - or one of their direct family members - has married (or somehow integrated) into the ruling class of the desired region. You must target an explored region in order to use the Establish Claim action. Other reasons for Establishing a Claim do exist, but are subject to GM review. With a 12 or higher, the roll is successful, and the player has Established a Claim. A player may attempt to Establish a Claim as often as they wish, but successfully Establishing a Claim happens only once per leader.

    The exception to this are Exploration (Inquests). The Exploration section (detailed below) will go into how every action types can expand and explore the map, but the Inquest exploration is the Diplomacy version. A player may Establish a Claim using the above method once per leader, but rolling a Great Success on an Inquest can Establish a Claim one additional time per leader. If a player rolls (2) Great Successes for Inquest explorations before they use the above Establishing a Claim method, then the second Great Success is treated as the once/leader Establishing a Claim action.

    Moving Capital Regions
    A player may, at their discretion, move their Capital Region from one region to another. Both regions must be controlled by the same player. Moving your Capital Region shifts your overall Zone of Influence, and as such, can be costly.

    Moving your Capital Region requires (2) Diplomacy actions. For every region that is under the player's control, as they move their capital from adjacent Zone to adjacent Zone, an additional Diplomacy action is required. In other words, based on the zone your new capital ends up in:

    Adjacent Zone: (2) Diplomacy Actions
    Close Zone: (3) Diplomacy Actions
    Moderate Zone: (4) Diplomacy Actions
    Hard Zone: (5) Diplomacy Actions, additional chances for unrest

    Every region that you move through that you control, from where your former capital was to where your new capital will be, has a chance to enter unrest, rolled by the GM as a 1d4. Moving to a Hard Zone will make this roll 1d4-1. On a 1 or less, the region is in unrest. Your former capital will be in unrest, regardless of how far away you moved your new capital. People who live in your former capital are unhappy at losing the notoriety and protection that being a capital provides.

    Moving your capital to an Improbable Zone requires GM Permission, and the number of actions it takes will be on a case by case basis. It may even require a Special Action.

    Moving your capital due to Occupation reduces the number of actions required by one, but instability increases for all owned regions.

    At the start of the game, the map is not fully revealed. With over 400 regions on the primary map, there usually will be sections of the map that still need to be revealed… which makes them available to then be claimed! Space is a vast place, with many unique and interesting things to find. And just how you go about finding them varies just as much!

    All successful exploration actions will reveal, at minimum, [1] if the area is already occupied by NPCs (and how many Military Units they may or may not have), [2] the Resource found in the region, and [3] the Ideology the region follows. This information becomes available to everyone. Exploration actions cannot be Secret Actions, unless they are done as stated below in the Intrigue section.

    Economy (Expedition)
    The easiest way to explore a region is to fund an Expedition into a new area of space. Expeditions will focus on finding out what kind of planets and stars are in the sector, who - if anyone - lives there, and if there are any purchasable goods. Expeditions can only occur if one of your own regions borders the unexplored region. A successful roll (10 or higher) gives you a +1 bonus to the next round to Buyout the region's Resource. A Great Success (TN 16 or Higher) allows you, the player, to state exactly what kind of Resource you have found in the region. You have the option to overwrite the existing Resource, before it is revealed.

    Diplomacy (Inquest)
    The next easiest way to explore a region is through Inquest. A diplomatic Inquest sends reasoned thinkers to explore and speak with the people of the nearby unexplored region. Inquests can only occur if one of your own regions borders the unexplored region. A successful roll (12 or higher) gives you a +1 to Establishing a Claim for the Region, next round. A great success (18 or higher) Establishes a Claim on the Region. See Establishing a Claim rules for more details on how frequently this Great Success may occur.

    Intrigue (Surveillance)
    Using Intrigue to explore a region adjacent to one you own is sending someone out on Surveillance. A successful roll (12 or higher) provides you - and only you* - with details regarding the explored region, but everyone else knows that you have Surveyed the area, unless you do this as a Secret Action. A great success (18 or higher) provides you with a +1 to Fabricate a Claim in the next round. A failure, on the other hand, not only provides you with no details… but may end up riling up the locals unfavorably. Expect resistance at further attempts at Surveillance for the same region.

    *Surveillance Exploration info, obtained by non-secret actions, will be revealed to other players an additional round after the roll occurs. For instance, Surveillance actions taken during Round 1 will show in the Round 2 opener that a region has been explored, but no details are provided to the rest of the player base… but Round 3, the general details will ‘leak’. This will not include the carefully crafted written information from the GM Team, but will discuss the region’s resources, unit count, and Ideology. In essence, taking a non-secret Surveillance action will give you a one-turn advantage over your fellow players.

    Philosophy (Probe)
    Sending a Probe into an unexplored region will help you better understand what is out there. A successful roll (12 or higher) provides details on the region. A great success (18 or higher) gives you a +1 to Converting the region to your Ideology next round. Probes may be sent out to any unexplored region within your Zone of Influence, but may additionally go one space further beyond your ZoI for an increased TN of 14 or higher for a basic success.

    Military (Recon)
    Players may use their Military Score to Recon an adjacent Region, but doing so assigns at least [1] Military Unit to the action. If the player has no Military Units, they may not explore this way. Assigning [2] Units adds no benefit, but every additional unit beyond that provides a +1 bonus to the Recon roll (3 units is +1, 4 units is +2, ect.)

    A successful Recon (14 or higher) will provide information like other forms of Exploration; however, if there are any NPC military units in the newly explored region, your Recon will be seen as a hostile action. Diplomatic Claims will no longer be possible. A great success (18 or higher) will provide a +1 to the next round’s Conquest action against the region.

    If your Recon action reveals that the region has equal or greater units than those that you send to explore with your Military action, this will trigger a battle in the region. This battle will follow normal Battle rules, including losses. Winning the battle gives you an Entrenched bonus for next round. (With a Great Success for your Recon roll, this could result in a total +3 bonus)

    Unexplored regions with units will usually have no more than 5 units, but there are a few rare cases where NPC Stellar Powers exist; consider these extra tough occupied regions, which have combined multiple regions together to have additional units to defend against outsiders.

    Be warned: An unsuccessful roll may result in incomplete information, but WILL result in the loss of the Military Unit(s) used to explore.

    Empty Sectors
    Occasionally, an Exploration will result in a section of space that is, effectively, empty. Either it has absolutely nothing in it (regardless of what the artistic map may show) or there are only a few stars with few real planets or resources to speak of; this Empty Sector is devoid of life, intelligent or otherwise.

    In this situation, the player that discovered it may start a Great Project to create a Station in the area. This can be any Action Type, but must be five (or more) of the same action type. The Action Type used will determine the bonus the Station gives. Completing the Great Project also automatically claims the region.

    An Economy Station will give the player the right to determine the Resource found in the region. It will start at “Good”. Completing the Station provides the player ownership of the first Trade Post for the region.

    A Diplomacy Station will prevent the region from ever entering Unrest, but there is no Resource for the region (without the use of an Economy 5 Special Action).

    A Philosophy Station is four construction actions, and then completes with a fifth action; one successful Conversion action to your Stellar Power Ideology. Afterwards, it will provide a +1 bonus to Conversion rolls for all adjacent regions that are not already your Stellar Power Ideology. The Resource of the region starts at “Minor” and must be a form of specialized knowledge (such as a Teacher, Philosopher, Engineer, etc.)

    An Intrigue Station provides a +1 to Investigation Actions for the region it is in, and all adjacent regions. The Resource of the region starts at “Minor” and must be a form of labor (such as Miners, Bureaucrats, Laborers, etc.)

    A Military Station provides a +1 to defense of the region and gives you an additional unit, but there is no Resource for the region (without the use of an Economy 5 Special Action).

    The second round after discovery, the Empty Sector is available to all other players who have it within their Zone of Influence to begin building Stations. The first to complete their station claims the Empty Sector as their own. For purposes of ‘ties’, the player who started the station first has the advantage. If both players started at the same time, and neither player discovered the Empty Sector, there will be an opposed roll.

    Unless otherwise stated, ownership of Trade Post(s) and Learning Center(s) of an Empty Sector with a Station start out as 'Open', even after the Station is completed.

    Vassals and Lieges

    The countries which rule over other countries, known as Lieges, do so in two primary ways: either by agreement from the natives, or by takeover through conquest, colonization, or pressing of claims. The following rules deal with the former, in which the natives of a region strike an agreement with a more powerful Stellar Power. To become a Liege, you must already have a Galactic Power.

    In this kind of relationship the larger, more powerful country is called the Liege and the smaller one the Vassal. Liege and Vassal Stellar Powers commonly share borders or are otherwise relatively close cartographically. Liege and Vassal Stellar Powers do not have to share borders in this manner, but not sharing borders will allow the regions that lie between them to block transport of resources and troops. To become a Liege one must be a Galactic Power. Galactic Powers can have any number of vassals.

    Vassals may use one of the Liege’s scores in place of theirs, once per round. This cannot be used for Special actions or Resolution actions. Vassals reduce their Unit Cap by 1 for every Liege they have. This means that if a Vassal has a Galactic Power Liege, who in turn has a Galactic Empire Liege, that the Vassal will reduce their Unit Cap by 2. Lieges increase their Unit Cap by 1 for every Vassal they have including Vassals of Vassals meaning, using the previous example, the Galactic Power’s unit cap remains unchanged from their Stellar Power’s normal unit cap while the Galactic Empire’s unit cap is increased by 2.

    As a Liege, you may send your units to a Vassal’s territory without distance losses. Their ZoI for Adjacent and Close count as your ZoI for Adjacent and Close.

    A vassal can form a Galactic Power only if their Liege has formed a Galactic Empire. Galactic Power vassals can have vassals of their own. These vassals of vassals may use one of the scores of their direct Liege or their ultimate Liege (the Emperor/Empress) but may still only do this once per round.

    Existing Stellar Powers may choose to cooperate in the formation of an Empire. At least one Stellar Power must have an existing Galactic Power to qualify for advancement to Empire status. Each participating Stellar Power must spend a Diplomacy 10 action towards the creation of the Empire with a Galactic Power involved party becoming the Emperor and other participants allowed to form a Galactic Power with their Diplomacy 10 if meeting the other prerequisites for the title.

    Once a player has formed an Empire, any time they switch to a new leader, that leader gains extra attribute bonuses. For each vassal that an Empire has, including vassals of vassals, they receive one +1 bonus to their attributes at character generation, assigned by the Emperor player.

    Stellar Powers, Merchant Powers, and Ideological Powers may be Vassals of either a Galactic Power or a Galactic Empire. Galactic Powers may be Vassals of an Empire, but not other Galactic Powers. Empires may only be Lieges, and not Vassals.

    Players with Empires may take seven actions per round.

    Empire! 5 has come up with what we feel is an acceptable solution that does allow a Liege score to be used for WAR actions. Keep in mind that this use is still limited to a vassal using one of their liege’s stats once per round. If a vassal player chooses to send their Leader to the Combat, they may use their Liege’s Military score for that single combat that round. If a vassal player chooses to send a no-name commander to a combat, they may use half of their Liege’s Military score in place of half of their own, for that single combat. Generals may not use a Liege’s Military score.


    NPC Stellar Powers are run by the GM rather than by players. For practical reasons, NPCs will be kept to a minimum, but there may be occasions where NPCs enter play. These NPCs are treated as players for the purposes of diplomacy and other interactions, and may become Organizations.

    At game start there will be 3 Organizations. Players who leave the game, permanently, will have their regions become a struggling NPC nation for a plot relevant number of turns, before being dissolved or absorbed into Organizations.
    Last edited by Gengy; 2020-04-07 at 09:30 AM.
    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Got my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Still busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Aug 2005

    Default Re: EMPIRE 5! Rules and Administration

    Advanced Military Rules

    Using Military Units

    You can use a Military action to direct the movement of your troops. Using troops to invade or defend a region requires a distinct action per region. To attack or defend requires at least one applicable military unit.

    Due to the importance and complexity of military actions, players who wish to deploy troops against other players are encouraged to take their actions as early in the round as possible so that other players have a chance to respond appropriately. If you are invading another player, you should also notify them by PM in case they miss your actions post. War actions are subject to an early deadline of being posted by the second Friday of the round. Players who spring “surprise attacks” (or indeed “surprise defenses”) on foes at the end of the round will be penalized barring extenuating circumstances.

    If your troops have to pass through multiple regions to reach their ultimate destination, specify the route they are taking. If you do not specify, you may suffer penalties.

    Units cannot go through Stellar Powers that aren’t allied or don’t specifically allow it, so if your troops have to pass through a neutral Power to reach your intended target and they don’t want to let you through, you’ll have to fight them first. If the regions you’d have to go through do not have units, you can march through with no resistance. Stellar Powers fighting in the same battles on the same side are assumed to grant passage through their regions to each other’s armies automatically, unless stated otherwise. In other cases, allowing foreign units passage is a non-action but must be specified in that round’s actions post.

    When one of your armies clashes with that of another player or those of an NPC, both sides roll 2d10 and add their leader’s Military score, their armies’ size (+1 per Unit), as well as bonuses granted by relevant military technology.

    Allies can help attack or defend a region they have army units in. If a battle takes place between more than two armies, the allied army generally uses the highest Military score available to them unless otherwise specified. All participants must take an action to participate in the battle. Each side must each make a Military check (2d10+Military score+number of units under their command in that region+applicable bonuses). This check will be made on their behalf by the GM after round close.

    If you are fighting more than one battle in a round, you have to decide which one your Leader is commanding. All other battles your country is involved in, but your leader is not leading personally, only get half the leader's Military score as a bonus. Generals created by the Military 5 special action can be assigned to lead armies as well. If a player does not specify which commanders they are using, it is assumed the Leader will lead the first army listed and that unnamed commanders will lead the remainder.

    If you win the military conflict you drive your opponent out of that region or rout their forces. If you are the invader, that means you seize control over that region but will likely need to deal with Unrest. If you are the defender you retain control and Unrest (if any was present) decreases by one level.

    In the event of a tie, the defender retains control of the region, but the attacker is not driven out and has gained a foothold in the region. Stability remains unaffected. If the attacker decides to press their assault in the following round, they will not take any distance losses, and will gain +2 to the battle roll.

    Players’ capital regions cannot be conquered completely. If an invader defeats a defender’s army in their capital region, the defender may choose to move their capital, which may cause instability, or keep it where it is, in which case the attackers occupy it. During an occupation, the conqueror has some control over the region, but the longer they maintain their presence the harder they will find it and they are encouraged to reach a settlement with the occupied leader. (See Occupation below for more details)

    Calculating Losses

    The loser of a battle loses 1d6*10% of their participating units, rounding normally. The winner of a battle loses 1d4*10% of their participating units, rounding normally. In case of a tie, both sides lose 2d4*10% of their participating units (rolled separately), rounding normally. The defender gets to subtract one from their roll result before determining casualties.

    If there is more than one participant on a side of the battle, each participant rolls their losses separately. These "Coalition Losses" are rolled like Size Losses, using a 1d3; a unit loss occurs on a '1'.

    The larger an army is, the harder it is to manage and supply. Some troops may desert over inadequate supplies, dysfunctional leadership, or other reasons. Each participant on either side has additional 33% chance of losing troops when their army reaches 4, 6, 8 and 10 units and at each interval of 2 units thereafter. These losses are calculated after any loss deductions from technologies.

    Much as other attributes are affected by one’s ZoI so too are military engagements subject to limitations related to a Stellar Power’s size and influence. Battle actions which send units to either conquer or defend a region shall be subject to distance losses representing the difficulty in maintaining fleet cohesion across the vast and hostile interstellar expanse. Distance loss rolls are incurred at a rate equal to the penalty applied to other rolls by one’s zones.

    For example, sending units to a region Adjacent to a region you control incurs no distance losses, sending units to a region within your Close zone subjects your armies to one distance loss roll (50% chance of losing a unit before arriving in the region), battling in Moderate zone regions incurs two distance loss rolls, four distance loss rolls in a Hard zone region, up to eight distance loss rolls should a Power choose to engage in battle in a region within their Improbable zone.

    If a Leader or General is commanding the army, they may be among the casualties, even if the battle is won. The GM will roll 1d20 and subtract the number of units lost by the army they are commanding. On a result of 1 or less, the Leader or General is captured or killed. If the army is completely wiped out Leaders suffer an additional -5 penalty on the roll and Generals are automatically lost.

    Capital regions cannot be conquered. However, if a player suffers a defeat there to an invader and chooses not to or is unable to move their capital, they become subject to an Occupation by that foreign force.

    During an occupation, the foreign army maintains a degree of control over the capital and keeps a close eye on the leader and the leader's Associates. An occupying player can prevent the occupied player from taking any actions and non-actions associated with one attribute for the duration of their occupation if the occupied region is their only remaining region. This attribute can be Intrigue, but does not block Secret Actions. The occupying player should specify each round which action type they are preventing.

    If the occupied player has other regions remaining, but elected to leave their capital in its original position, the occupying player cannot prevent the occupied player from taking certain actions, but can impose a -4 penalty on rolls for actions associated with one attribute for the duration of their occupation. This does not apply to military actions attempting to reclaim the capital, but does apply to Secret Actions to represent the greater difficulty it is to do such things secretly. Advanced Intrigue rules do not apply to the Occupied player for any actions taken attempting to reclaim the capital.

    Selecting an Attribute to Block allows the Occupying player access to new/improved Action options, related to the Attribute chosen. Each of these actions may only be taken once per round.

    • Selecting [Diplomacy] not only blocks that stat for the Occupied player, but allows the Occupying player to spend a Diplomacy Action to gain temporary access to all Embassies the Occupied player controls. Non-actions and Economy Trade actions may be taken as normal for the Occupying player, as though those Embassies were their own for the round. Gaining control of Embassies this way prevents Military Units being sent to the Occupied player from those allies, either via Embassy, Event, or other [Military] Actions.
    • Blocking [Military] allows the Occupying player to reduce the existing number of Units by 1. If the Occupied player has [0] Units this round, this action may not be taken.
    • Blocking [Economy] allows the Occupying player to take control of a Trade Post in the Capital, without requiring a roll. This may target any existing Trade Post in the Capital Region, even if it is controlled by a third party that is neither the Occupying or Occupied player.
    • Blocking [Philosophy] allows the Occupying player to take control of the Ideology in the Capital, converting it to their own State Ideology without requiring a roll. After this action is taken, during the Occupation, the Occupied player loses access to any Organized Ideology LC Bonuses that they would normally have. When the Occupation ends, converting the region back to the previous Ideology is a non-action on the part of the previously Occupied player.
    • Blocking [Intrigue] allows the Occupying player to claim one Technology from the Occupied player, as though using a 'Steal Technology' action, but without requiring a roll.

    If the occupied player has other regions remaining, and elects to move their capital, the occupied region is considered to have been conquered, and the specified region becomes their new capital. For more information on how this can be done, see "Moving Capital Regions". Reduce the number of actions taken to Move your Capital Region by (2), to a minimum of one Diplomacy action.

    The longer an occupation lasts, the more likely the inhabitants are to rise up against the occupying force. In each round of an occupation, the occupying player must take an occupation action and roll 2d6+Diplomacy to attempt to maintain control over the region. Initially the occupier needs to roll 12 or higher but for each successive round the occupation is maintained the target number will rise by 2. If the occupier fails the roll or neglects to take an action to maintain occupation, they are ejected from the region at the end of the round.

    Occupation - and blocking of an action type - of a Stellar Power capital that has a Liege will also block the Liege’s ability to interact in the Vassal’s Zone of Influence for the blocked action type. For instance, if the Occupier chooses to block the Vassal’s Economy score, then the Liege cannot use the Vassal’s Zone of Influence for Buyouts (but could still use their own ZoI modifiers).

    A player may voluntarily end an occupation at any time, or forgo their option to prevent the occupied player taking actions. This is a non-action on the part of the occupier.

    Enemy Overrun & Overwhelm

    Overrunning enemy armies, and Intercepting Them

    Overruns may occur when an army attempts to move through a region and finds its path blocked by enemy troops numbering less than 3 units. If the resulting battle is won without the dice needing to be rolled, the result is determined automatically. The losing army is destroyed. Casualties are halved for the winners, taking technologies into account.

    If the attacker was attempting to move through the region and found itself intercepted, and won the battle, it may continue its progress and fight again in the same round. If the army was marching through the region and was defeated, its progress is halted and the region in which the battle took place is not considered conquered. Additional losses for travel and army size are calculated per army per round, rather than per battle; if an army happens to fight multiple battles in a single round, half of their size losses(rounding up) are considered to occur after the first battle, and any remaining are considered to occur after the second battle. Distance losses are calculated based on traveled distance for each battle.

    An army attacking a region that is Adjacent to a region their Power controls cannot be intercepted. If they incur distance losses, however, they may be Intercepted. Intercepting an army is a Military Action, just like other Battles.

    Overwhelming enemy armies

    If a battle is won with a total roll difference of ten or more, the victors are considered to have Overwhelmed the opposing army.
    Casualties from combat are halved for the victor, and multiplied by 1.5 for the defeated.

    Other Rules

    Technologies are created with use of an Economy 10 or Military 10 special action.

    Some technologies are assumed to be known universally. For instance, everybody knows how to construct buildings, provide food, and travel within space and do not need specific technologies to do so. However there may be technologies which represent advanced techniques in these areas.

    You can get new technologies in four ways: invent it with an Economy or Military 10 Special Action, trade for it with a friendly player, or steal it.

    Stealing a technology is an Intrigue action. Specify which technology you are trying to steal and from which player, and make an opposed Intrigue check against that player. If you roll higher, you acquire the technology. If the theft is a secret action, the GM will roll for the other player.

    Technologies usually give players who own them an advantage, whether by giving them a bonus on certain rolls, or allowing them to perform some actions they would not normally be able to or perform certain actions more frequently than usual. They can be traded with other players at events or stolen with an opposed Intrigue roll. Technologies may be traded in the same round they are introduced by the inventing Power.

    Once you have a technology it is yours for good. Technologies are assumed by default to be spread to all regions in your Stellar Power. If one of your regions is conquered, it is assumed the technological secrets were removed in the retreat.

    Most Military technologies fit into a certain “slot”, listed under Military 10 Special: Military Technology. This is a broad family of technologies that have a similar application. Technologies in the same slot do not stack with each other, as they become redundant. If you possess more than one technology in the same slot but with different bonuses, you need to specify which one you're using.

    - Personnel Armament
    - Ranged Weaponry
    - Armor and Shields
    - Engines
    - Warmachines and Live Weaponry
    - Logistics
    - Medicine, Mad Science, and Blessings
    - Reconnaissance and Divination
    - Stealth, Sabotage, and Traps
    - Fortifications, Sappers, and Planetary Siege Weaponry

    Technologies have at least one resource prerequisite, and more advanced technologies may have more prerequisites including other technologies. More prerequisites is not necessarily a good thing as it could incite more interest in interfering with trades relating to the prerequisite. If you want to claim the benefits of a technology you must have those prerequisites available in the round you want to use it. These prerequisites are specified in the technology list.

    The use and bonuses of technologies are determined on a per-country basis. However, some technologies may specifically apply only to certain regions, and technologies that require multiple resources require all those resources to be available within the same country. If these prerequisites are not met, the technology will not function.

    Where a technology requires a given resource, it might be possible to adapt the technology to use a similar, but different, resource. This can be done with an Economy 5 action and the player attempting it must possess both the “new” resource and the technology in question.

    All aspects of creation, adaptation and ongoing management of technologies are at the discretion of the GM, and technologies that seem to be unbalanced or otherwise inappropriate will be restricted, altered, or prohibited. Players are advised to discuss technologies they wish to introduce with the GMs in advance.

    Unrest and Instability
    A number of events and actions can cause unrest in regions as rule of law and respect for authority breaks down. Controlled regions have three levels of instability; Unrest, Unstable, and Rebellious, while uncontrolled regions have one: Anarchy. Regions will usually progress through these stages in order, but extraordinarily destabilizing events may cause them to skip one.

    Players may attempt to reduce Instability or Unrest with a Stabilize action. Roll 2d6+Diplomacy and any relevant bonuses. If the roll equals or exceeds 12, the region is successfully stabilized. If the region was conquered by you last round, you receive a +2 bonus to Stabilization rolls in it. If the region has Rebels occupying it, they must be defeated or otherwise dealt with before the region fully stabilizes.

    Regions in Unrest experience no mechanical penalties, but negative events will be more likely, and if unresolved, the region will eventually become Unstable. Unstable regions cause the region owner to take -2 to all non-Combat rolls in the region. This includes Stabilization rolls! If unresolved, the region will eventually become Rebellious, and negative events are more likely in Unstable regions.

    Rebellious regions will spawn NPC Rebel units upon becoming Rebellious on top of the penalties associated with being Unstable. If left unresolved, the region will continue to spawn NPC Rebel units periodically, spread Unrest to neighboring regions, and negative events are significantly more likely in the region. While Rebels are present in the region, there is a further -2 penalty to all non-Combat rolls in the region (for everyone, not just the region owner!). If allowed to remain, the Rebels may Sack Trade Posts and Purge or Convert Religious Centers, and will quickly cause the region to become uncontrolled.

    Uncontrolled regions with Rebels present enter Anarchy, in which case they will continue spreading Unrest, may continue to Sack or Purge, negative events may affect the surrounding regions, and there is a -2 penalty to all non-Combat rolls in the region. If conquered, however, the region will enter Unrest.

    Your Capital region may also experience instability; however, unless resource requirements are unsatisfied, instability will not progress on it's own. If your Capital is Unstable, negative events will be more likely in all regions you control. If your Capital enters Rebellion, there is a high chance for negative events in regions you control, and you take a -2 penalty to all rolls until the Rebellion is resolved; if the Rebels are defeated the region enters Unrest.

    Alternatively, the player may choose to accept a Coup; their leader and all but one General (who will be replaced by an equivalent formerly rebel general) will die or otherwise be lost, their capital's will become Stable, any Rebel units in their capital will instantly become theirs, but any units the player previously had will become Rebellious occupying at least one other region controlled by the owner. Additional regions may become Rebellious or Stable at the GM's discretion.

    Additional Embassy Rules
    Players who share an Embassy with each other may now Exchange or Gift Trade Posts. This requires an Economy Action be spent from both individuals during the same turn, but any number of Trade Posts may be Exchanged of Gifted in this manner for the same action. If no Embassies exist between players, Exchanging or Gifting Trade Posts is not possible. This is the one time where "Gifting" something must be acknowledged; though indirectly acknowledging it without specifics is acceptable, so long as the Economy action is being spent by both the sending and receiving player. Event Sub-actions may not Exchange or Gift Trade Posts. Only with an Embassy, and spending the Economy Actions, can you use this unique method to obtain resources outside of your normal Zone of Influence.

    Embassies do not allow Stabilizing as an Action between the parties.

    Embassies may be removed or prevented from use by players. This can be done in a few different ways. Blockading an Embassy in your own region(s) can be done with a Military action, blowing it up is possible with an i5, or peacefully removing it can be done with a Diplomacy action and non-action support from the other “owner” of the Embassy. Embassy action “gifts” can be denied by either end of the Embassy holders as a non-action.

    Zone of Influence for Advanced Intrigue
    Theft, Kidnapping, and Assassination actions are all Intrigue actions that, usually, are done as Secret Actions. (For purposes of this section, consider 'Rescue Attempts' to also be Kidnappings.) These less-than-legal actions are frowned upon... but quite a bit of fun if you get away with them. Thematically, these actions are taken by small teams who receive orders from their Stellar Powers, but otherwise, act independently. As such, they are not effected by a Stellar Power's Zone of Influence in quite the same way.

    Within a capital region's Hard Zone or less, Theft, Kidnapping, and Assassination actions taken in Secret are not effected by Zone of Influence penalties. Other penalties may still apply, depending on the situation, and the target of these actions will still get the appropriate bonuses to rolls (such as a +2 defense against Assassinations targeting someone's ruler).

    All Secret attempts at Theft, Kidnapping, or Assassination within a player's Improbable Zone are also not effected by normal Zone of Influence penalties, but do have a -2 penalty to making the attempt.

    Additional advanced intrigue actions may, on a case by case basis, be ruled as using the same Advanced Intrigue rules in regards to Zone of Influence.

    Inactive Players, and Leaving the Game
    Since your capital region cannot be conquered, players will never be obliged to leave the game through losing wars or other hostile actions from other players.

    If a player does not post actions for two successive rounds, they are considered to have left the game through inactivity. The GM will send a private message to the player in question before declaring them inactive. Their regions, including their capital region, will become unclaimed and may be taken by other players through claim or conquest.

    Sometimes a player can be only temporarily absent. If a player does not post actions during a round, but others are using actions to make and confirm deals with the temporarily absent player, and the GM knows about it beforehand, then the action holds without the absent player having to spend an action on it.
    A player who is invaded in a round where they do not post actions will automatically defend themselves with all the forces at their disposal. However such players will not take other military actions or non-actions, whether to respond to pleas for aid from allies or allow foreign armies passage through their lands.
    If a player doesn’t post during a round, they receive one bonus action in their returning round. If a player has communicated their intent to take an absence, this additional action will be provided for every round missed by the player.

    If a player knows they will be unavoidably absent for a number of rounds but intends to return, they can notify the GM in advance so that their country doesn’t become automatically inactive. If such a player doesn’t return when they said they would, they will be treated as inactive two rounds after the indicated return date, as with other inactive players.

    We heartily welcome new players as well as returning ones!
    Last edited by Gengy; 2019-12-20 at 12:32 PM.
    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Got my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Still busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Aug 2005

    Default Re: EMPIRE 5! Rules and Administration


    Each organization has a Primary and Secondary Attribute associated with it. These Attributes determine the nature of its tasks, requests, and rewards, as well as the activities it will engage in. Additionally, Organizations are treated as possessing an 9 in their primary stat, a 7 in their secondary, and a 2 in all others.

    Players primarily interact with Organizations through Diplomacy actions, detailed below, to increase their Reputation with the Organization or decrease another’s. Increasing your Reputation provides access to increasingly powerful rewards, while a lower Reputation may make you a target. Examples include support on buying out Trade Posts controlled by the organization, military units, bonuses to actions of their primary attribute, or even access to new technologies. Favours from the organization are also occasionally available as rewards for completing tasks and requests, though if they perform a task for you, they may demand a favor from you in exchange.

    Organizations cannot generally be created by players. Occasionally events in game may trigger the possibility of a new organization forming. Players are welcome to pitch cases for certain events, NPCs, or other activity to warrant the emergence of a new Organization to the GM Team. Additional actions may be required on the part of the players to formalize these organizations or they may simply come into existence in accordance with a narrative plot point. Creation of a new organization will be reliant on sufficient build up in-game and while there is no limit on the maximum number of orgs possible to exist it is possible certain organization may be subsumed or replace existing ones should older organizations no longer be relevant to gameplay.

    Headquarters & Bases
    An organization may have a specific headquarters or base, such as a loyal spaceport, grand temple, or massive barracks in a region. These outposts provide the organization, and players owning the region containing them, with small bonuses within the region they are located in. In addition, controlling an organization’s headquarters region may provide you with bonuses, although they may come with expectations from the organization.


    Organizations have limited operational range. This range determines the limits of their capacity to act independently, as well as the point at which they begin to take Distance Losses when hired by players. By default these are only regions Adjacent to any given Base or Headquarters of the Organization, but technologies and the Organization's Attributes may increase this. Organizations will neither desire nor accept Bases Adjacent to another existing Base or Headquarters owned by the same Organization.

    For Organizations in which the location of the Base or HQ is known, an Intrigue 5 Special Action can be spent to destroy a Base or damage the HQ of an organization; if this action is discovered, the perpetrator's Reputation will immediately drop by 3 levels. While an Organization's HQ is damaged, it does not grant a Base Bonus and the Organization takes a -2 penalty to all rolled actions; the HQ can be repaired with a two-action Project by the owner of the region in which it is located. If an HQ is Damaged by I5s three times before it is repaired it will be Destroyed.

    An I10 may be spent to destroy an Organization's HQ; if this action is discovered or openly performed, the perpetrator's Reputation will immediately drop to -3. While their HQ is destroyed and Bases remain extant, an Organization may only take one action per round and their Reputation 4 ability is disabled, in addition to the penalties for a damaged HQ. A Base may be upgraded into an HQ through the completion of a five-action Project. Extenuating circumstances may cause the effects of these actions to change. If no Bases remain after an Organization’s HQ is destroyed the Organization ceases to exist, though a known responsible party may face retribution from survivors in the rounds immediately following the Organization’s destruction.

    Reputation is a measure of a player’s relations with an Organization, ranging from hated enemies to trusted, influential leaders. It is based on a ranking scale of -3 to 4, with each level receiving a name:
    -3 - Enemy
    -2 - Unwelcome
    -1 - Disliked
    0 - Neutral
    1 - Acquaintance
    2 - Friend
    3 - Ally
    4 - varies by organization
    By default, players begin at rank 0.

    You can increase your Reputation with an Organization by 1 level by spending a Favor, or with a Diplomacy action with a TN dependent on one's current Reputation with the Organization:
    Reputation -3 -> -2: TN 16
    Reputation -2 -> -1: TN 14
    Reputation -1 -> 0: TN 12
    Reputation 0 -> 1: TN 10
    Reputation 1 -> 2: TN 12
    Reputation 2 -> 3: TN 14
    Reputation 3 -> 4: TN 16
    Reputation can also be increased by one level by calling in a favor or performing an extremely important task for the organization, such as defending the organization against powerful enemies, or providing them with a headquarters location.

    Taking hostile action against the organization and its principles will reduce reputation with the Organization. This includes actions such as destroying their bases, slandering them, or raiding their resources.

    Only one player may have a Reputation of 4 with a given Organization at any given time. Up to five players may have a Reputation of 3 or higher, and up to ten players may have a Reputation of 2 or higher. If a player desires to raise their Reputation with an Organization while all higher level slots are filled, the player may choose to discredit another player occupying one of those slots, making an opposed Diplomacy roll. If successful, the discredited party has their Reputation reduced by 1 while the original player has their Reputation increased by 1.

    In the case that two people are attempting to rise from Rank1 to Rank 2, or Rank 2 to Rank 3, and the limit has been reached, only the highest roll of those two players will succeed.

    Players may also attempt to reduce another player’s reputation with a Diplomacy action opposed by the other player. Each player will receive a bonus on this roll equal to their reputation level. Alternatively, an opposed roll Intrigue action can be taken publicly or secretly to frame another party and similarly decrease their reputation.


    Changing leaders will result in a Reputation change if one has an extremely good or extremely poor Reputation. If a player's Reputation is 3 or 4 with an Organization, it will be reduced by 1 level upon changing leaders. If a player's Reputation is -3, it will be increased by 1 level upon changing leaders. Alterations to Reputation on the round in which the leader change occurs will happen before this step.

    Favors can sometimes be acquired by aiding an organization, such as by fulfilling their requests or sheltering them from foes.

    You can use a non-action to spend a Favor to convince the organization to take certain actions to help you, such as helping you gain control of a trade post or aiding you in a battle. A Favor can also be spent to automatically increase your reputation by one level. Increasing reputation in this way is a non-action. While using a Favor from an Organization to increase the reputation with that Org is a non-action, only one such non-action reputation increase can be done per turn. A player may attempt to roll to increase reputation with an Org, and then expend a favor to increase reputation (for a potential Rep Boost of +2) in the same round. A player must already have the Favor to use it, and cannot increase reputation by going into ‘favor-debt’.

    You can also owe Favors to an organization, in which case the Organization may offer to consider them repaid in return for fulfilling a request. The player may opt to refuse the specific form of repayment, in which case their Reputation with the Organization will drop by 1 level, and the Organization will ask for a different form of payment; this can also occur if the request or repayment is not fulfilled within a given amount of time.

    Players may declare “Favor bankruptcy” as a non-action indicating that they do not plan to repay the Favors they owe at all. This proof of dishonesty and unreliability will reduce the player's reputation with all Organizations by 1 level, and with any spurned Organizations owed Favors by this Stellar Power by an additional level, but will clear all Favors owed.

    One method of paying back Favors is via Projects; a 2-action Project (action type varies by Org; Diplomacy is almost always acceptable, however; Economy and Philosophy are also commonly accepted) will typically pay for 1 Favor. Another commonly accepted method is to gift a Trade Post to the Organization(particularly for Economy Organizations). Organizations will sometimes put out requests for Technologies in order to keep up with players, and in these cases, each technology requested and accepted by the Org will be worth 1 Favor. Asking Organizations to attend events in order to gift trade posts, Units, or Technologies more efficiently will itself cost 1 Favor. Other methods include gifting Units (two per Favor), Relics (usually one per Favor), Generals, and more!

    Tasks and Requests
    Tasks are available to be completed by any player, on a first-completed first-rewarded basis. The reward will often consist of Favors or specific short term bonuses. Certain Tasks are always available for Stellar Powers to complete for the Organization in exchange for a Favor.

    Requests are on a larger scale than tasks, and often are specific to one or two players with higher reputations. The rewards for completing a request can include Favors or a reputation increase, as well as larger more permanent bonuses appropriate to the organization and the request.

    Organizations and Technologies
    Organizations can make use of technologies in the same way players can. However, Organizations will not accept or maintain knowledge of technologies they have no use for. What they consider useful is usually dependent on their attributes and sometimes their overall focus. Organizations can gift technologies to players in exchange for Favors, and will sometimes request technologies in exchange for Favors as well.

    Organizations are capable of using any Trade Posts owned by themselves or a Stellar Power ally at Reputation 4 with the organization.

    Attribute-Specific Differences
    The Primary and Secondary Attributes of an Organization have impacts on the Organization's capabilities, functionality, and reach, detailed below.

    Diplomacy: Diplomacy Organizations have their base Operational Range increased to the equivalent of a player’s “Close” Zone of Influence. Furthermore, they may take actions to assist players proactively, causing the assisted player to owe them a Favor.

    Economy: Economy Organizations count any region in which they own a Trade Post as being within their Operational Range. Furthermore, they may proactively acquire Trade Posts within or adjacent to those which their Operational Range covers.

    Philosophy: Philosophy Organizations count any regions in which a Learning Center hosts followers of the appropriate Ideology as being within their Operational Range. Furthermore, they may resist Conversions or Purges of Learning Centers in regions containing their Bases or HQs.

    Military: Military Organizations may recruit Units, and have a Unit Cap before technologies or religious bonuses equal to [3*HQ]+ [1*Bases]+1. Recruitment actions by Military Organizations grant them a number of units equal to [1*HQ]+[0.5*Bases]. Military Organizations who have a method of hiring troops from them exchange one Favor for two Units.

    These Units may be used for defensive battles the same round they are hired, but not offensive battles, and will stay with the hiring player until the second round after they were hired - this time may be extended at certain Reputation levels with some Organizations. The favors spent to purchase the units, if owed, must be paid within that time, via a 3-action Economy Project (or other means specified by the Organization), to avoid the Organization's displeasure and the wrath of the unpaid mercenaries. These Units count as allies and can provoke coalition losses, but also allow the use of the Organization's active technologies.

    Intrigue: Intrigue Organizations may take secret actions, use Intrigue actions to move their Bases or HQs, and may keep the true locations of their Bases and HQs hidden from players, requiring investigative work on the part of players to find said Bases if they should wish to strike at them. Furthermore, players may entreat with Intrigue Organizations via secret actions; this is not possible with any other Organizations.

    Starting Organizations
    The following Organizations are those that are available at the start of Empire 5. There are three in total, with different goals and motivations. They may mesh well with other players, but it is also expected that there will be some differences.

    Core Patrol Corps (CPC) (Dip/Mil)

    "When the last shelter for the Unknown is Known, the Silence is broken. Guard against the Great Evil." - Sisterhood of Silence
    "Screw that! The Same need to die!" - Core Patrol Corps

    The Sisterhood of Silence has existed since its founding over 10,000 galactic years ago by the Mute Matriarch, a warrior-philosopher sworn to offer meaning to the lost and protect the innocent from Evil. The Sisterhood in its infancy offered shelter and training to refugees, primarily women, fleeing persecution or otherwise lost among the stars. As the Sisterhood grew in scope and size it became apparent not all species possessed an obvious “female” nor were the only refugees seeking the Sisterhood women and membership was opened to all who swore the Vows. Historical tradition has retained the feminine trapping of the organization’s naming schema.

    The Sisterhood advocated the philosophical teachings espoused by the Mute Matriarch in her remaining writings. Original copies are preserved within the most secure libraries of the Mother Superior but copies of these texts are available in mass print, electronic format, and direct preaching by those dedicated to their beliefs known collectively as “the One.” The One, an ideology which emphasizes a universal “oneness” interconnecting the many individual minds that make up its fabric, is adhered to in a unique fashion by the Sisters. While all followers of the One upheld ideals of love, happiness, safety, and contemplative interactions among individuals the Sisters dedicate themselves to even higher ideals. The Sisterhood believes it is their duty to protect the weak and vulnerable from that which threatens their peace and safety. To that end they guarded the center of the galaxy known as the Galactic Core, where the Matriarch was last seen and known to have spoken to her disciples before disappearing of the need to keep the Core shrouded in silence. In addition to their vows to patrol the border of the Core the Sisters take vows of near complete silence that allows them to speak only when their words are unquestionably true. They were sworn keepers of secrets sharing only those secrets that might endanger lives but otherwise offer to act as confessionals with an exemplary record of keeping their Vows.

    But they were, ultimately, ineffective and many within the Sisterhood called for re-organization after the latest batch of Maturated Races came to be. And so, with the help of those Maturated Races, what was a silent vigil has now turned into a proactive crusade. A crusade led by: The Core Patrol Corps!

    -3 - Enemy: +2 to Battles against Rep 1+ SPs; -2 Tactical Maneuvering Adjacent and closer to CPC Bases
    -2 - Unwelcome: -1 Size Loss against Rep 1+ SPs; -2 Exploration Adjacent and closer to CPC Bases
    -1 - Disliked: +1 Sacks against Rep 1+ SPs; -2 Buyouts Adjacent and closer to CPC Bases
    1 - Acquaintance: Access to the Corps Fleet unit bank for fighting the Same
    2 - Friend: Treat CPC Base Operational Range (Adjacent & Close hexes) as own ZoI for Military actions against the Same
    3 - Ally: +2 to Coalition Battles (Only applies for Battle Leader's Rep)
    4 - Guardian of the Galaxy: One Raise Unit action raises two units once/round

    Base Bonus - Fortified Monastery: Same Monitoring Stations: +1 Unit Cap

    Rep 1 Favor - Reinforce Security: Stabilize a region (1 Favor)

    Rep 2 Favor - Hold the Line: Acquire 2 CPC Units to defend a region. Appear and disappear in the round summoned. (1 Favor)

    Rep 3 Favor - Best & Brightest: Gain a General (2 Favors, -1 Rep)

    Standing Task - Send 2 Units for 1 Favor

    Cosmic Couriers (CmC) (Eco/Dip)

    ”Cosmic Couriers, number one space lane shippers and packers how may I direct your call?”

    The organization known in galactic basic trade as the “Cosmic Couriers” is a strange relic of the Callers who once existed across the span of the galaxy before either moving on or dying out. The Couriers are exclusively composed of a race of high-energy based lifeforms who take forms both organic and mechanical. The Couriers are believed to have been genetically engineered to serve as the Callers’ form of basic interstellar FTL infrastructure. The Couriers are fundamentally composed of two halves known as the “male” and “female” though retaining little of the obvious indicators that might make their pairing as two sexes of one species obvious to outsiders. Male Couriers appear to be roughly humanoid hairless organics with delicate multi-jointed limbs that allowed them a great deal of flexibility. Skin of microdense scales provides a protective epidermis and their eyes boast vision in a wide spectrum of light. Female Couriers however are better known to most of the galaxy as “Relays” and consist of largely mechanical space structures which, through the final gift of the Caller AI, now serve as the primary means of FTL travel through the galaxy.

    The “Relays”, Courier females, are relatively large free floating structures “built” or alternatively “grown” in select solar systems throughout the galaxy. Having once served as the foundation for basic service level infrastructure for the Callers, analogous to a planet’s ground transport contrasted against aerial or orbital transport, the Courier system was built to be reliable and long lasting despite its relative “primitivity” compared to more advanced Caller technology. The Couriers themselves insist their technology is primitive compared to that possessed by their creators but their explanations of how it functions continue to confound all but the most advanced physicists of the known races today who themselves can only grasp some of the most basic fundamentals of Caller FTL. The Couriers seem to take no issue in powers sending scientists to try and learn how the Couriers achieve Faster Than Light travel but perhaps this was simply because it didn’t seem anyone was likely to figure it out anytime soon nor be capable of utilizing it without the Couriers themselves being involved.

    The Couriers primarily serve to connect the galaxy and so by their very nature consider themselves involved in the politics of those powers who claim space around their bases. Yet the Callers have no beliefs to advance or wars to fight so their involvement in galactic affairs comes at a raw tax. While basic access for small ships of diplomatic envoys or tourists to use relays was “free” this was quickly apparent as something of a scheme to ensure the Relays were widely used and thus widely relied upon. Couriers are not “greedy” in an overly obnoxious way but there was a clear pay-to-win system at work when it came down to prioritizing larger fleet movements such as those necessary for trade. With such a ready source of revenue, as there were many Stellar Powers and small organizations alike who would pay a premium for preferential FTL services, the Couriers have quickly become heavily involved in galactic trade. The Couriers seek acquisition of goods and services necessary to keep the Couriers functioning at peak efficiency, and perhaps some to be traded for a bit of profit on the side.

    -3 - Enemy: +2 to Resist ALL Buyouts, Unable to use Travel Relays (-1 to Claim and Explore Actions) and any CmC Relays in your Regions are removed
    -2 - Unwelcome: +2 Resist Cosmic Prime Member Buyouts, -1 Reputation increase rolls
    -1 - Disliked: +1 Buyouts against Cosmic Prime Member TPs, -1 Buyout Resistances in regions containing or Adjacent to CmC Relays
    1 - Acquaintance: Reduce ZoI penalty by one step for Buyouts in regions containing and Adjacent to a CmC Relay
    2 - Friend: Travel Relay VIP; Reduce ZoI penalty by one step for Explorations & Claims in regions containing and Adjacent to a CmC Relay
    3 - Ally: Reduce ZoI penalty by one step for Secret Actions in regions containing and Adjacent to a CmC Relay
    4 - Cosmic Prime Member: Rank 1-3 bonuses extend from Relay-containing regions to containing, Adjacent, & Close regions.

    Relay Bonus: Controlled Trade: Region owner may endorse Buyouts regardless of TP owner. If a Buyout is Endorsed in this way the TP owner may still choose to resist the Buyout.

    Rep 1 Favor - Preferred Shipping Rates: Reduce ZoI penalty for a Buyout or Buyout Resistance by one step for one round. (1 Favor)

    Rep 2 Favor - To Boldly Go: Successfully [Inquest] explore a region Adjacent to your owned regions, and provide you with an additional +1 to Establish a Claim the next round (1 Favor)

    Rep 3 Favor - Mediate Relations: Establish an Embassy between two Stellar Powers, all involved Powers must agree to the establishment of an Embassy in this manner (2 Favors, -1 Rep)

    Standing Task - Send 2 TPs for 1 Favor

    Special - The CmC do not have “Bases” as the Sisters or Eradicators do given their unique nature. However, players may complete a 3-action project, any mix of Diplomacy and Economy, to “Attract a Relay” to a region. Completing this project will establish a Relay in the region along with the associated benefits.

    In addition the CmC do not (usually) take direct action related to galactic affairs. While they are eager to expand the reach of their Relay system and are happy to accept resources to aid them in their mission they prefer to let their Relays earn them a place within the galactic community rather than interfere directly.

    An'Null's Eradicators (ANE) (Mil/Int)

    ”Surrender your goods and prepare to be boarded!”

    Not all who take to the black of space are seeking refuge and peace as those who journey to the Sisters do. These less reputable stateless spacefarers join the Eradicators, pirates and mercenaries who seek profit, glory, and the eradication of those too weak to oppose them. Widely known as a loose organization of outlaws who harass trade lanes and attack peaceful envoys the Eradicators were in truth even more dangerous as they adhere to the loosely defined belief in “An’Null” a supposed god of death who demands the galaxy return to the Void which existed before creation and life. An’Null’s Eradicators were space pirates first, many who ran the crews and ships painted with Eradicator symbols were more greedy opportunists than committed cultists, but within the Eradicators it was known the powerful “Shadow Admiral” who orchestrated the major offensives of the crew was a true believer. Some even said the Admiral was blessed or perhaps cursed by their dark god to bring mayhem and death to the universe.

    The Eradicators don’t tend to get on well with most civilized powers, though their penchant for opportunism did mean cooperation was possible. Recognizing no authority but their own the Eradicators boast their greatest influence in parts of deep space unoccupied and undesired by more powerful factions attracting criminals and those fleeing the stricter rules of civilized societies. To become an Eradicator in full one must serve in four distinct voyages of note, usually raids. Strict records are not kept but Captains are provided a complex and unique codex upon their ascension to the rank which is used to supply Eradicator crew members with a sequence of words or phrases which only make sense and mark an Eradicator’s experience as honest should the crew actually be honest about their experience within the organization. The rank of Captain among the Eradicators is the most desirable rank among the den of thieves and killers as being an Eradicator Captain afforded one full membership benefits including a vote on raiding targets. Still, while Captains largely ran the organization through democracy among themselves it was known and recognized within the Eradicators that the Shadow Admiral reigned supreme, although only a handful of the most feared Eradicator Captains were said to know the Admiral’s true identity.

    While Eradicators are primarily concerned with their own personal wealth and power they have been known to take jobs on behalf of those very Stellar Powers they raid and seek to destroy, albeit almost exclusively when aiding one was to the detriment of another. Those who inhabit systems nearest these raiders bases have long histories recounting infamous assassins, killers, and thieves as having come from the Eradicators to serve some nefarious purpose. Given their reputation however the Eradicators have learned to keep their mouths shut about jobs they are offered by otherwise reputable powers lending them a certain favorable reputation among the certain members of planetary leadership seeking agents of death with less culpability than their own agents.

    -3 - Enemy: +2 to Raids or Buyouts against ANE, -1 Battles in regions containing or Adjacent to an ANE Base
    -2 - Unwelcome: +1 to Resist ANE Raids, +1 Size Losses when fighting armies containing ANE Units
    -1 - Disliked: +1 to Resist Sacks, -1 to Resist ANE Secret Actions
    1 - Acquaintance: +1 to Raid or Sack actions
    2 - Friend: ANE will not target your regions for Raids or Sacks
    3 - Ally: -1 Coalition Loss rolls
    4 - Rear Admiral: May summon the Shadow Admiral’s flagship The An’Nullifier to lead one offensive battle/round granting the attackers 2d12 on the battle roll and a Mil 9 General who must lead the battle... though there may be a price for his assistance.

    Base Bonus - Honor Among Thieves: +2 to resist Raids in the region

    Rep 1 Favor - Hoist the Jolly Roger: Reduce ZoI penalty for a Raid or Raid Resistance by one step for one round. (1 Favor)

    Rep 2 Favor - Black Flag Bannermen: Acquire a small army of Eradicators [2 units per favor, lasts 3 rounds] (1 Favor)

    Rep 3 Favor - Bloody is the Head: Assassinate a target (2 Favors, -1 Rep)

    Standing Task - Sack 2 TPs in An’Null’s name for 1 Favor
    Last edited by Gengy; 2019-12-20 at 12:27 PM.
    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Got my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Still busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Aug 2005

    Default Re: EMPIRE 5! Rules and Administration

    (This post made in case the GM Team needs more space later)
    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Got my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Still busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Default Re: EMPIRE 5! Rules and Administration

    The following large links are our Tables which will be available to players to view. The Organizations Link should be immediately accessible, but please read "The Guidelines" for the Player Tables.


    Guidelines for Player Tables
    Player Tables contain ready to see information on Trade, Religion, Military Units, Regional, and National details, and more! If it's public information and doesn't require a further description, you'll find it somewhere on the Tables. If it needs more description, you'll find it in the World's Thread.

    However, the Tables are a vast amount of information. We've done what we can to help separate those details into something that makes sense; more-so if you played in Empire! 4. If you didn't here's a quick overview of what to expect:

    Spoiler: Tabs Overview
    • Regional Tab
      The section that displays all the various regions, based first on their Alphabetical Column coordinate, then second on their Numerical Row. DO NOT EDIT THIS SHEET.
    • Edit Regional Tab
      This looks exactly like the player's Regional Tab, except this is where Edits can be made... by GM Team members. It's also how things get fixed (after the GMs laugh) if someone ignores the warnings.
    • National Tab
      The shorthand for players, their nations, their stats, associated military units, philosophies, where their capital is located, and more...
    • Philosophies Tab
      The name of all active Philosophies, how many LCs and Assemblies a Philosophy has, who is the creator of the Philosophy, and who is the Head of an Organized Philosophy
    • Tech Owners Tab
      When Technologies are created, this will tell you who owns them
    • Tech, CI, & Tac Doc Effects Tab
      When Techs, CIs, or Tactical Doctrines are created, this will explain their effects
    • Fragments Tab
      When Caller Fragments are found, this will explain what they do, and who (as far as player's know) has the item
    • Generals and NPCs Tab
      When Military Generals are created, we'll track them here; and you can double check when a region with NPCs has military units
    • Great Projects Tab
      When a Great Project is done for a mechanical purpose, this tab will list details and explain the effects
    • Organizations Tab
      Provides a link to the Organizations Sheets. Yeah. Seriously. Shut up, I've used it before.
    • Map Tab
      Another location to view the current player map. Effort will be made to update it as often as possible, but... it might be forgotten for a round or two.
    • Resource Types Tab
      As of right now, this tab contains only the suggested Resource Categories. In the future, it may contain details on what a Resource might qualify for to be used in Techs.
    • Hidden Tabs
      If you find a tab that isn't mentioned on this list, it means it was intentionally hidden; either it is still a Work in Progress, a hold-over from previous Empire! games, or both. Ignore it for now. If we add another Tab, we'll add more to this overview as the Tables are updated.

    Except for the first sheet, players won't be able to edit these Tables. And for those that try to edit the first sheet of the table, you'll probably panic because you've just screwed up everything. First off: Don't Panic. You have edit permissions for that sheet so you can open and close groups, aka the [+] and [ - ] buttons on the far left of the sheet when using a PC or Mac. Use with a mobile device varies, sorry! Secondly, just delete whatever edit you accidentally made. Everything will come right back. The GM Team planned for this; we have our own section for edits, and you don't have editing permissions for that sheet. That may seem weird. It is. It's weird, it's janky, but... it works. You get to sort through things easier this way, and don't have to scroll through 442 regions if you don't want to.

    Here's what some of this looks like:

    Spoiler: Groups when Closed

    The "Groups" we mentioned. Every Alphabet letter has it's own set of 17 regions. It's much easier to scroll through them when they are minimized and find the region you want rather than looking at everything all at once.

    When you open a Group, it looks like this:

    Spoiler: Groups when Open

    However, if you are in the mood to see everything, just Right+Click on the Groups buttons [+] or [-] and you can either Expand or Collapse all the row groups at once.

    If you do that, then you'll be able to use 'Find' (Ctrl+F) to quick search for a region or an abbreviation.

    Spoiler: Ctrl+F Find

    Beware! If you don't have all the groups open when you use the above method, you could miss out on details.

    Spoiler: Ctrl+F Caution

    One final piece of warning:

    Everyone uses these tables simultaneously. If you see things open and close on you and you are wondering what just happened, another player is looking at the sheet and trying to locate information. Don't get upset; just open the section you need again.

    BladeofObliviom said:
    I've only seen a character at anything resembling this level of absurdity thrive exactly once, and he/she/what-the-jongo had the advantage of being written by Gengy, who I look up to as a writer.

    Before you insult someone, walk a mile in their shoes.
    That way, you'll be a mile away, and have their shoes!

    Got my Master's Degree for games (yay!). Still busy (boo!).
    ~avatar by myself

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