Ruling a Kingdom

Kingdom Building Quick Reference

With building a kingdom, you begin by founding a small settlement—such as a village or town—and expand your territory outward, claiming nearby hexes, founding additional settlements, and constructing buildings within those settlements. What you build in a hex or a settlement affects the economy of your kingdom, the loyalty of your citizens, the stability of the government, and the likeliness that kingdom will fall into chaos when citizens worry about monster attacks and other threats.

Use the kingdom sheet to track the statistics of your kingdom, just as you use a character sheet to track the statistics of your character.

You and the other PCs take specific roles in leading your kingdom, such as Ruler, High Priest, General, and so on. The leaders provide bonuses on rolls you make to manage the kingdom’s economy and other important issues. For example, having a High Priest makes your kingdom more stable and your citizens more loyal, and having a Treasurer makes your kingdom more profitable.

Leadership Roles

Instead of using gold pieces, a kingdom uses a type of currency called build points (BP), which represent actual cash, labor, expertise, and raw materials. While it is possible to convert gp into BP and back again, for the most part you’ll just be spending BP to run your kingdom.

Running a kingdom takes place over a series of turns, similar to how combat takes place over a series of rounds. a kingdom turn takes 1 month of game time. Each turn has four phases which you resolve in order: the Upkeep Phase, where you pay the kingdom’s bills; the Edict Phase, where you levy taxes and build improvements; the Income Phase, where you collect taxes; and the Events Phase, where you see if something especially good or bad happens to your kingdom.

Kingdom Turn Sequence

If this is your first time reading these rules, start with the section on Founding a Settlement and read the rest of the kingdom-building rules in order. If you find a term you’re not familiar with, check the Kingdom Terminology section or refer to the Overview for a better idea of where you can find that information.

Ruling a kingdom is a complex and difficult task, one undertaken only by the very ambitious. Many PCs are content to live as mercenaries or treasure hunters, no interest in being responsible for the health and well-being of subjects; for these characters, a kingdom is simply a place they pass through on the way to the next adventure. However, characters who are keen to spread their wings and forge a place of power and influence in the world can use these rules to create a different sort of campaign. If the PCs are interested in ruling only a single town or castle and the small region around it, kingdom building can focus primarily on the settlement and the PCs’ personal demesne. If the PCs have larger goals, such as carving out a new, independent kingdom, these rules allow them to build cities and engage in trade, diplomacy, and war.

These rules assume that all of the kingdom’s leaders are focused on making the kingdom prosperous and stable, rather than oppressing the citizens and stealing from the treasury. Likewise, the rules assume that the leaders are working together, not competing with each other or working at odds. If the campaign begins to step into those areas, the GM is free to introduce new rules to deal with these activities.

Like the exploration system, the kingdom-building rules measure terrain in hexes. Each hex is 12 miles from corner to corner, representing an area of just less than 95 square miles. The hex measurement is an abstraction; the hexes are easy to quantify and allow the GM to categorize a large area as one terrain type without having to worry about precise borders of forests and other terrain features.

Direct Link to SRD:
Kingdom Building

Ruling a Kingdom

Kingmaker Gilgamesh Gilgamesh