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Orgnization Composition

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  • Orgnization Composition

    So I've recently been playing a lot of Dragon Age Inquisition, and I would like to play someone who builds up an organization similar to the Inquisition in that game.

    My question is mostly logistical, as I'm personally not that well versed in this sort of thing. What sort of organization would s large military group use? How would I spread out the duties? And most importantly, how would I translate that into merits?

    Off the top of my head I'm thinking the base army itself and maybe the scout/out riders would be represented by Command, blacksmiths medical and administrative would be followers, advisors would be retainers, and maybe commanders could be allies?

    Any suggestions welcome

  • #2
    There are several merits that can be involved with having a military group at your command, so it's useful to go over them and explain what they provide, and their relative pluses and minuses for the character and ST:

    Allies are potent individuals - each Ally merit you buy is a different person. Being an Ally means they'll take actions in the story independently of any military force they're associated with. If you buy officers with this merit, they'll stand out from the mass of people they're in charge of, be able to take command actions in combat, and have their own individual motivations, goals, etc. The bonuses of this are fairly obvious - Allies are the most potent sort of NPC assistant available. However, that individuality means they should definitely not be helping out all the time either, unless the PCs' goals and theirs align extremely well.

    Backing represents official support from someone bigger than yourself, an organization or a state of some kind. The right sort of Backing can provide a military force for the PC to lead and support it in the field, meaning the PC doesn't need either Command or Resources. However, troops supplied by a backer are loyal to them, not the PC. The backing group will expect the PC to fulfil their goals first and foremost, and non-approved use of such resources may get the PC's support pulled out, or even punishment assigned.

    Command is direct control of a body of troops who are personally loyal to the character. They may not be loyal enough to follow into Malfeas, but they'll generally be willing to follow the hero's orders, even if that violates local laws or customs. I would generally rule that a group provided with Command includes officers to control the troops in a fight (though not to provide command actions - those have to come from a PC or someone bought with Allies), and sufficient logistics to keep them on the march (wagons, pack animals, camping equipment, and so forth). However, they'll need some supplying, which isn't free. A character will either need to have sufficient Resources to pay their expenses out of their income, or they'll need to use the troops themselves to arrange an income stream - banditry, looting, extorting the locals, etc. If you ever march your troops a significant distance, or fight a serious battle, repairing and replacing their gear will be a separate expense which you have to account for, either via Resources or some other means.

    Followers provide skilled non-combatant assistants. You can use these to provide more logistical support for your troops. If you want to repair their gear on the march or after a battle, for example, and generally keep their morale high, a set of "camp followers" bought with Followers is probably wise. I'd say that one dot in Followers supports a Size 1 or 2 battlegroup, two dots covers Size 3 or 4, and three dots covers up to a couple Size 5 groups.

    Retainers are like Allies, in that they're potent NPCs capable of taking individual actions. Buying a general or other significant commander as a Retainer means they'll be able to do things like take command actions independent of the PC. They're a bit less potent than an Ally would be, but they're also less independent. An Ally will frequently have their own thing going on that they expect you to help them with, whereas a Retainer is more likely at your disposal, even if they may have their own ideas and goals.

    Resources represent your disposal income, the money you can fairly easily use to buy what you want with. It's very helpful if you want to support a military force without doing things that will annoy other people too much and draw attention to yourself. As a rule of thumb, I'd say that keeping a battlegroup of a given Size supported while encamped in one place requires equal Resources - so, someone with Resources 3 could keep a Size 3 battlegroup, perhaps a hundred troops, sitting around as a personal force. Moving troops for a week of marching, or fighting a single significant battle, would also be a similarly-sized Resources cost. I'd allow someone with lower Resources to pay to support a one-Size-larger force of troops for a single season of encampment, or a single week's march or a battle, at the cost of reducing their Resources by 1 dot for the rest of the story. So someone with Resources 2 could pay to bivouac a hundred troops for a season, or march them for a week, but their Resources would be treated as 1 for the rest of the story.