House Rules/Court Titles and Positions
Court Titles and Positions
While Lords of Summer provides titles, roles and responsibilities for each of the seasonal courts, it's presented in a pick-and-choose manner which is appropriate for a pen-and-paper game with only a handful of characters who are only seen when engaging in some grand adventure, but less useful for a MUSH setting where the positions will ideally all be filled with player characters who live much of their day-to-day lives on-screen. In an effort to provide all changelings similar opportunities, we've standardized the titles and positions across all courts.
Though Lords of Summer was used as a starting point, very little was taken verbatim from the book. The Winter Court structure provided a good template as it fit well with our Influence system and made a clear distinction between court and freehold responsibilities. For other seasonal courts, we selected the titles and positions we felt were most unique and well-suited to this environment and modified them as necessary. Some of the positions were not used because we found them to be redundant, their responsibilities already represented in entitlements or the subgroups within the Fate's Harvest Freehold. The titles and positions for the non-seasonal courts are all custom content.
Opportunity & Conflict
These titles, positions and roles are not set in stone. Our primary intention in developing them was to provide equal opportunities across the courts, allowing anyone to get involved, no matter which court best suits their PC. We also wanted to create a structure for players to RP against; a system with a tiered leadership structure and a limited number of special positions available provides opportunity for conflict, which is the basis of a great many stories. We don't want to bar involvement, but we do want involvement to provide stories, whether those stories are proving yourself to leadership, taking out the competition or finding a new way to work together is entirely up to you! As long as players keep those two things in mind, that these titles and positions should provide the potential for both opportunity and conflict--without bypassing the Influence system--they're free to change roles and responsibilities as their groups evolve.
Adaptation: Titles and positions marked as 'Adaptation' on the court page have been changed from the book write-up. The most typical changes are:
- Addition, removal or modification of mantle requirement.
- Addition, removal or modification of responsibilities.
- Shift to or away from freehold association.
Custom: Titles and positions marked as 'Custom' on the court page have been created specifically for Fate's Harvest.
Court Titles vs. Freehold Positions
In the book, the line between court and freehold responsibilities is often very blurry to the point of invisibility. We make a clear distinction between the two. Each court has three freehold positions to which they can appoint their courtiers. All other titles and roles are considered to be internal with responsibilities only to the court.
Court Titles and Influence
Influence represents a character's reputation and responsibility within the court. Each dot of influence is associated with a particular title--or, in some cases, two--and responsibilities which serve as guidelines for what's expected of title-holders. These titles are typically used and recognized only within the court and have little pull with outsiders. While each court will have their own take on these responsibilities, here's the general structure we were aiming for:
- Influence 1: Usually the bulk of the court. Various degrees of activity and involvement. Low commitment. Participate as much or as little as you'd like.
- Influence 2: Expand the court's knowledge. Gather information. Mentor new members.
- Influence 3: Defend the court. Expand its influence. When appropriate, train and groom lower Influence courtiers for advancement.
- Influence 4: Enforce internal rules and responsibilities, making sure everyone else is doing their jobs. Set an example. Lead when there's no other leader.
- Influence 5: Lead the court. Delegate responsibilities. Appoint people to positions. Enable the other courtiers to do what they need to do. Make the tough decisions.
Court Positions in the Freehold
Each court may appoint courtiers to three positions within the freehold. Typically speaking, these positions include some sort of ritualist responsible for leading the freehold in their court's specific observances and a couple unique roles which represent the court's areas of expertise.
Other Court Roles
One role which didn't neatly fit well with either the Influence-based titles or the freehold positions was the Voice of the Court. Each court needs (usually more than one) someone to speak on their behalf, to serve as diplomats or disc jockeys, representing their court to others. Every court has one, though they take on different names and their responsibilities may vary.
Some courts may have have additional internal roles defined. Leaders may bestow other titles and responsibilities separate from the structures defined above. This is totally okay.
As a general rule of thumb, what's on the wiki should take precedence over what's in the book. If we need to clarify a specific title or position in a manner that is unsightly on the main court page, it should go here.