Choice of Rebels Part 1 WIP thread

I have to agree with @idonotlikeusernames this time @Wonderboy. The poor would only ever get information from the hegemoney and if yu try to send out “recruiters” or “PR henchmen” like you do to the helot camps, they would likely get turned in by the citizens they were talking to. However, that being said, I do believe as a nationalistic aristo, you should be able to win the hearts of not just the poor, but all the yeoman of shayard. However, from what I can tell, this game book will end shortly after the battle in the spring which is what is being lead up to now. I don’t agree that he should track their opinions in this game because your interaction with them will be near non-existant, however, if he intends to allow the possibility of winning over the yeoman as an aristo as well as track just how much civil unrest exists within your rebel controled regions later on in the war, tracking it would start next game where it becomes a relevant stat. In all honesty, I could see him making the anarchy counter positively/negatively effect the starting opinion of the yeoman towards you which means my blood thirsty goety arse is screwed lol.

Unlike wealthy merchants and skilled artisans and craftspeople (who are indispensable to the success of any State and know it too) or wealthy Aristo’s (who in case of my particular rebellion can still end up as at least moderately wealthy and skilled citizens similar to the trades-folk if they are willing to go with the flow) the largely unskilled urban poor have only their pride and the false beliefs that have been drilled into them all their lives to rely on. and in the case of the one’s who are currently employed as grunt soldiers or Alastors the regular paycheck from an organization of a regime that will cease to exist as soon as the Rebellion triumphs.

There are reasons I could imagine the urban poor not getting behind the rebellion. The first and most obvious one being that an end to helot labor and theurgic agriculture supported by mass harrowings would pose a genuine to their food supply. But I’m not sold on the idea that Hegemon propaganda is just too strong and pervasive to overcome. If the Hegemon had that much control over how the their citizens thought, there wouldn’t be a rebellion in the first place. A lot depends on the specifics, but Havenstone’s choice of the phrase “restive slum population” suggests a part of the setting even more ripe for discord and rebellion than isolated agricultural regions where it’s historically been easier to control the flow of information and vigilantly observe every inhabitant.

@idonotlikeusernames, I think this depends on why these urban poor are poor in first place. If they are hard-working craftsmen/traders whose income is disapropriately taxed by the hegemony then some would surely welcome your revolution and most wouldn’t oppose it at least and if they are mostly rough slum-dwellers as @Wonderboy suggested, many could follow if you offer them money, either as pay or an opportunity to plunder the rich.

I don’t think that the army will be such a great problem once your helot mage has won. With enough charisma, your MC could keep at least a part of the army and Alastors, the more decent ones, in his service. He could also try to provide job opportunities for the dismissed ones, for example giving them free land formerly belonging to opposing nobles to settle down as yeomen. And the remnants who are still against him could be dealt with and either put on chain gangs and send to build your canal or harrowed if your MC won’t be able to find out how to get blood without killing.

Also, I have doubts about your assumption that supporting jobs are filled by those who fail to qualify for combat duty, the jobs I’ve mentioned are often as physically demanding but less prestigious then soldiering.

That is assuming there’s any extra money to pay them with in the first place as most (post) revolutionary states aren’t exactly flush with cash to begin with and since this amounts to paying them to do exactly nothing it would come dead last on any budget. Also I don’t generally condone wanton plundering and the associated anarchy that creates. Since the intelligent character isn’t mister charismatic to begin with the game already reflects in the nigh unavoidable moderate anarchy the rebellion already creates that those directives are not always followed already. Taking on a bunch of rabble whose only motivation is plunder is hardly going to improve discipline in the Rebel army.

I don’t know about the army but the Alastors are nothing but an ill-disciplined band of rapists, thugs and bullies employed more to intimidate and frighten than to keep genuine order and are, as an organization, irredeemable. Weeding out the corn from the chaff among the Alastors seems a largely pointless exercise since there doesn’t seem to be all that much corn amongst them to begin with.
When it comes to the army they must first and foremost be willing to obey their new officers, if they cannot do that then, as I’ve said before, they are utterly useless.
Furthermore just handing out land to the urban poor seems like a surefire way to create food shortages. While some form of land distribution and the breaking up of the great estates is inevitable the most likely recipients are people who actually know something about farming and/or running a farm from former helots to minor/landless former nobles and the few free rural yeomen.
To a certain extend, I suppose they could be eligible for property redistribution in the city, but the problem there is that there’s far less to distribute and far more people to distribute it to in the cities. In time they will of course benefit from the new state’s services, like everyone else. However the sad fact remains that the services that are most likely to benefit the urban poor like, education, healthcare, social housing and other social services are the ones that take the most time to get up and running and even when they are, for the generation born under the old Hegemony at least, they will do nothing for their pride, since they will treat them the same as former helots and nobles.

The local helotry seems to be quite able to identify the good ones among the alastors as evidenced by the trial immediately after the rising. A few of the Rim Square Alastors were spared, Fellen also doesn’t seem to be evil. It would take some effort but It seems to be possible to use these Alastors to build up a new police force.

Once your MC is in power, he doesn’t need their active support, he should just avoid a counter-rebellion. As long as their living conditions don’t become worse they shouldn’t be a thread.

I think its safe to say with 20/20 hindsight that disbanding the Iraqi security forces was one of the greatest blunders in modern military history.

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I agree and I think simply disbanding the Phalangites and Alastors would have a similar effect in-game.

Of course the MC should have the opportunity to do the same mistakes real leaders did.

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I’m not sure why you’re assuming you’d be paying them to do absolutely nothing. You’re still going to need a police force and a standing army and, if you just use helots for these roles, you’re going to need an influx of new laborers. In fact, you’re probably going to need a much better employment to population ratio in general to make up for the inevitable capital collapse that’s going to come post revolution. It’s not all just the dole.

As far as pride goes, no longer being treated better than helots while also no longer being treated worse than nobles doesn’t seem like an obvious loss of status to me. Sort of depends on the psychology of the individual and how the choice is sold. Most studies show that people assess status by comparing themselves to the folks around them. If we assume helotry is a predominately rural phenomenon, then I’d posit that city dwellers likely to be more jealous of their local elites than they are contemptuous of a population they only encounter as an abstract concept.

Even if you pay them to do nothing it is preferable to firing them and allowing them use all that wonderful military training, organization, equipment, and experience to start and intractable insurgency.

Yes but on the other hand having a large portion of your army composed of divisions of dubious loyalty meaning it’s liable to become a hotbed of sedition isn’t exactly helpful either. Not to mention that unless Halassur is adamant on continuing the war the army needs to be reduced in size anyway (preferably to make way for a huge expansion of the navy and the formation of marine division).

Same goes for having security forces that don’t actually plan on enforcing your new laws most of the time (the actual situation in large parts of countries like modern day India).

Like I said when it comes to the army and Alastors it seems to be heading for damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

Hell, most nations pay their military to do nothing most of the time anyway. Nothing in the world is worse then disenfranchised, unemployed veterans for the stability of a country.

Just tell them to train or clean something! They are great at cleaning…

Well the current army isn’t actually especially large as it’s reliant on theurgic capacity you’re unlikely to have. Reducing the wards to keep out only magical storms and roving undead would mean you need some manpower on your less fantasy zany territorial boundaries.

I don’t really think loyalty is necessarily an issue for the actual military. You’ll have to replace the officer corps entirely but as long as you can keep the rank and file paid, I don’t see why they’d have any particular loyalty to the old regime. The Alastors are a knottier problem, I admit, because reform would require stripping them of a lot of formal and informal privileges. Dissolving the institution and distributing them amongst the other armed forces (so that former alastors are a minority in any given unit) is the best option if feasible.

@cascat07 well, paying them for literaly doing nothing seems like a bad idea, as it would take up a share of money that could be used otherwise and cause uproar among the core of the rebels, they would see these payments as undeserved.

I don’t think that any country pays their armed forces for doing nothing in real life, they pay them for being prepared to fight an enemy if needed. If any country didn’t want idle veterans, best way to achieve this would be to stoprecruiting new soldiers.

@idonotlikeusernames If you’re going to win in a war, many of the old Phalangites will be killed fighting your troops, and new recruits will likely be less trained and indoctrinated and more likely to discharge and take up civilian jobs

@Wonderboy’s proposal seems to be the best on what to do with the Alastors for a charismatic MC, but @idonotlikeusernames has said that his MC isn’t one, that means most of them will probably be lynched by the revolting helots like the ones at Rim Square.

Maybe not to the old regime but certainly to the old social order and religion that regime stood for. I think you underestimate just how stratified Hegemony society is here. I think it would be more analogous to telling the average Indian soldier (or warrior caste guy) from the 18th-19th century he is expected to obey orders from officers of the untouchable caste and like it. While some might have been willing to do so if that meant the pay kept coming a significant majority would not, hence leading to a thoroughly unreliable army at best.

Problem with that is that the Alastors being mostly a band of bullies are not exactly professional soldiers and will likely turn tail and flee any truly dangerous combat situation they are placed in. Not to mention their lack of discipline and genuine belief in what the old order stood for (or at least the privileges and opportunities for corruption it afforded them) would mean a serious risk of contaminating whatever unit they are placed in thus negatively effecting its combat readiness to say the least. To make them into anything remotely resembling professional soldiers they would have to be completely retrained and re-educated and given that most of them are criminals anyway that’s not something I would fancy spending a lot of time or money on.

Unfortunately you are right about the dangers of unemployed former regime personnel, however since I don’t think they would actually obey their new officers when push comes to shove that means that paying them to do nothing but clean their weapons and barracks is all that can be done with them. Also they can’t really do drills since they’d be to untrustworthy to actually issue them good weapons and ammo meaning that their equipment would have to consist of ornamental, ceremonial weaponry and guns, bows and crossbows with no, or very limited, ammunition.
In the end that means a significant portion of the army will be composed of units that are good for nothing but draining the (likely to be already very constrained) budget. Not to mention the perception it creates that the government is actually afraid of its own soldiers it would also mean the truly loyal units would have to be paid significantly more since they’re actually doing something and are actually combat-ready.

No with 1 CHA I can get the trial scene just fine. I just think that the few halfway decent ones are too few and far between to be worth bothering with in the long run, given that they would need to be completely retrained and re-educated to not see former Helots as sub-human. Accepting former Alastors in the new security forces also sends the wrong message, IMHO and would make the new security forces seem just as bad.

Unless the religion has done all the indoctrinating already since I don’t think the rank and file need all that much extra indoctrination as part of their training given the Hegemony’s social order.

I’m not convinced the comparisons to India are as relevant as you imagine. In a lot of ways the Hegemon is even more stratified, but that cuts both ways. A private in the Hegemon army is not so much a member of a proud warrior caste as he is a guy with a dangerous job and no hope of advancement serving under silver spoon officers who probably aren’t especially reluctant to throw their lives away for personal gain.

And you’re letting your distaste for the Alastors cloud your opinion of their effectiveness. Your rebels can supply them with real opposition and genuine threat to their lives on multiple occasions without driving them to immediate retreat. They know how to fight and if the veteran soldiers around them hold, they’ll likely do the same.

Some Alastors, like the ones at Owlscap Pass have better training that is simalar to the phalangites as stated in-game. If they’re send into battle and desert, have them court-martialed and harrowed.

With CHA1 most of the Alastors get killed by the crowd, you need CHA 2 to have everyone spared. The ones who are spared are unlikely to actively plot against the MC because first, they’re already the more lawful ones and more important, they owe him their lives.

My last post was referring more to the situation after a succesful rebellion, when the MC is in power. While the war is going on, Phalangites and Alastors are simply the enemy. They can surrender or get killed, that’s all. Of course the MC should have the chance to try to convince some to change sides. The success of this should delend on the stats.

Anyway, without @Havenstone’s answer to my post above, too much of our discussion is based on our assumption that may be wrong.

On a completely different point, you’ve mentioned India a couple of times here, Do you know much about the Indian castes? If yes, could you elaborate a bit how similar the in-game realtions seem to be to them?

Okay. If the aristocratic credibility stat isn’t being split up, do you anticipate relying more on triggered flags, a lean one way or the other on the cosmopolitan/nationalist scale, or some mixture of the two on indicating different levels of favor from the foreign aristocrats?

@Havenstone

Found some bugs while checking through the code to add the morale and leadership stats to my notes. When sending bandits to helot camps to spread the word its adds the morale bonus twice (and once more with CHA 2), this is intended correct? And when it mentions you getting run out of the camps with your followers (because of bad credibility) it doesn’t check for the plural or singular form of followers.

I also reread the section where you learn Theurgy and I think the scene is fine but, the intertwining of the priesthood and Theurgy could be expanded on more. I’m not sure where though.

The intro won’t fit Theurgic info well, and should probably remain focused on the Shaydrin Heresy; would hate to cram the temple raid with it, the section where you learn Thuergy could work if you add it in afterward. Perhaps Linos could be a good source for expanding on it as well?

As it is it feels much harder to see the parts worth saving in the priesthood when compared to the nobles. Certainly most are terrible but there are pockets, like the de Rose, de Galis, and yourself (potentially). Much harder to see those in the priesthood Oylnna and… Linos? The neutral (to at best implicit) nature of Theurgy makes it even harder to see those. Their mingling should be expanded on to make it feel less frustrating and unreasonable when they dislike you because you’re a Geote. I’m a kindly Goete for Angel’s sake :disappointed_relieved:.

It’s not like I’m ripping off the Diakons, robing temples, encouraging the Shaydrin heresy, rewriting cannon to support the Theurgehood of all believers, and remove references to the sacrifice of anyone’s blood but their own. Alright so those last parts are true, but my point still holds – they should hate me for my crazed reforms, not my mild use of Xthonos’ gift!

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How can you see the code?