Developers’ Diary: the Kingdom Reforms

Hi there! The Enhanced Edition is finally here, and we hope that you’ve already dug your teeth into it and that you like what you’re seeing. Nonetheless, there remains one important aspect of the game that we haven’t covered in these diaries yet. Today we would like to focus on kingdom management.
Our “vanilla” kingdom management system has found some supporters among the players, but not all of you liked it. As time went on, we’ve received many suggestions and criticisms from you. We kept fine-tuning the way kingdom management works with every big patch, and as such, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that we’ve prepared a new pack of improvements for the Enhanced Edition as well.

No Intermediaries
Let us start with a small, but important improvement – now you will be able to buy BP right from the kingdom interface! Hassuf might be a bit disappointed that you won’t be visiting him just as much, but this will make playing significantly more comfortable. From now on, all you need to do to restock your treasury is to open the kingdom stats window.

The Retinue Plays the King
The advisors… We still receive quite a lot of comments from you saying there aren’t enough advisors in the game. Our goal has always been to give our players a chance to make meaningful choices, choices that actually matter. Choosing an advisor was supposed to be one of those difficult, but ultimately entertaining parts of the game. You do your best to pick the ideal candidate for the role: someone who can get the job done, but also fits your style of leadership. However, this can be quite tricky, and at times even outright impossible – which is why sometimes you compromise and give the position to someone who’s not a good match for you as a person, but will greatly benefit the kingdom. This is a significant, meaningful choice, but sometimes it can be unpleasant and, as it turns out, even unacceptable to some players. Also, it is far too hard to play without any advisors on some of the key roles, especially when playing for the first time - this can easily cripple a kingdom. Therefore, by popular demand, we’ve decided to allow appointing mercenaries for government roles. They are not quite the same as your usual advisors, however. A mercenary is not as effective as other advisors: they have a lower base chance of successfully resolving an event. At the same time, a mercenary can use magical items to increase their stats (only your companions were able to do that before). They are not very talkative and they tend to select the most neutral option in each rank-up event if there is one.

Knowing the Consequences
Speaking of advisors and rank-ups, from now on, you’ll be able to see what effect your choices during any given rank-up event will have. While making the game, we wanted our players to make kingdom choices without knowing all of the consequences, letting their heart and morals guide them instead. In practice, it resulted in discomfort and prompted players to load to a previous save after an unfortunate choice. We decided to change that. Now you will be able to see the effects of your decisions in advance, so that you can make a responsible choice.

All is Quiet in the Kingdom
Unrest has proven to be one of the most problematic kingdom mechanics. To address that, we’ve attempted to make the reasons behind rising unrest clearer – you can now read about any changes in the unrest log. Also, story events that often lead to rising unrest will now tell you how to deal with them. Last but not least, we’ve added more ways to influence the current unrest level: firstly, throwing a feast became cheaper at 200 BP (however, each time you use it the price will rise to 200, 400, 600 and so on). Secondly, each Stability rank-up event will lower kingdom unrest by one step.

Finally, let’s talk some more about kingdom events. We’ve made multiple UI improvements in that area – for example, now you can see which events have already been assigned an advisor. Some of the advisors can resolve certain events better than others, and before, the only way to find out was to browse through all of the available options. Now this information is at hand: you can see it on the advisor’s card at any time. Sometimes, your kingdom can be struck by an especially devastating event, and earlier you had no way to respond to that as a ruler. From now on, there is an instrument you can use in a pinch – we’ve named them Crisis Points. You earn them as your kingdom grows, that is, with every new rank-up. You can also buy a limited amount of such points from Hassuf. These points can be used to get a single-shot bonus to successfully resolve an event – and, possibly, to deal with a catastrophe that would have otherwise been beyond your advisor’s abilities.

Yours faithfully,