LDS in Dwarven Runes


A 15th century Italian States DBM campaign run by Luke Ueda-Sarson

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This page last modified: February 4, 1999


This campaign started on September 13, 1998. The campaign will be run over 5 game years, each of four seasons, starting with Spring, 1480. Each season will be hopefully resolved over one real week, and so the campaign is intended to take 20 weeks to complete. The campaign should therefore finish in early March 1999, before the Nationals, allowing for the inevitable slack period over Christmas/New Year.

There are two sorts of players involved - those running states, and those running mercenary companies. Each has a completely different set of victory conditions, giving two eventual winners. I got this idea from Ethan Zorick who proposed it off-the-cuff on the DBM discussion group, and it really appealed to me.

Click here for Updates, Victory Points and Battle Reports

The States:
FLORENCE: Ion Dowman
MILAN: Brent Regan
SAVOY: Jonathan Parks
VENICE: Nicholas Grant
GENOA: Kevin Neilson
Savoy and Milan are Duchies, the others are Republics.

The Condottieri:
Giovanni Ambulatore: Andre Evers
Curbarani: Corbon Loughnan
Berterelli: Mark Otley
Comte da Monnei:Brent Burnett-Jones
Walter de Brienne IV: Bryan Sowman
Luigi Problematica: Martin Abel
Vermicelli Volante: Dave Evans
Lorenzo Corleoni: Tim Driver

The more astute of you will notice there are not enough states for only one CWS player per state. Petty infighting and intrigue amongst generals as well as states must be encouraged!

Battles are fought with DBM rules (for those not familiar with these, don't worry - that's the job of your generals, not you!), using the campaign rules on p27 (somewhat modified), except that no elements may voluntarily leave the table until their side has either lost 6 elements, or has had a command demoralized. The season for the battle is of course already known, as is the invader/defender (in the unlikely case of two armies accidentally meeting in neutral territory, dice as per normal). Terrain choices will not be entirely free - I'll be placing restrictions. One additional rule: if both elements engaged in close combat have modified tactical factors of five or more, the both take a final -1 tactical factor. This is to encourage faster frontal combats. In those cases where there are more than one (human) player per side, all elements representing players get a CinC's PiP bonus, not just the real CinC. However, no discussions are allowed between players on the same side once the the first element has been moved. Seiges will be resolved by me, without a table-top battle.


The States

Basic Income:

At the end of each winter season, a state receives 150 ducats (or florins, 1 ducat = 1 florin) per province it has controlled for the entire year. The capital province earns an extra 100 ducats for a Duchy, 400 for a Republic (conquering another capital doesn't entitle you to two capitals' bonuses!). A newly acquired province therefore yields no income in its first part-year under new ownership. If a province was temporarily occupied by another power for part of the year, its revenue contribution is decreased by 25% per season occupied. If a province was pillaged, the province yields no income for that season if it was occupied at the season's end, but does yield income if it was only pillaged while the enemy was passing through to another province. If a province was razed, it yields no income for that year.

Pillaging a province, whether as you pass through, or occupying it, yields 100 ducats booty, or 200 in autumn. Razing a province yields 300 ducats of loot (or 200 if it has been previously pillaged that year). A province can only be pillaged once before a new autumn, and a province razed cannot be razed again until after the end of the next year (ie. - probably a year and a half away). A garrisoned province cannot be pillaged without first destroying the garrison.

Basic Expenses:

Raising a navy to be ready for next season cost 20 ducats. A navy can transport an army up to 4 stages per season. Transportation costs an extra 1 ducat per 10 AP (DBM army point) transported, payable at the start of each season transportion is to be used.

Maintaining a navy costs 40 ducats per year (10 per season for newly constructed navies), payable at the start of the year (or start of the season built).

Raising a garrison for a province costs 30 ducats, payable when raised. The garrison becomes effective at the end of the season raised. A garrison stops an enemy land force from moving through the province, and stops an enemy automatically conquering a province by occupying it at the end of the season by forcing seiges to be undertaken. A garrison also allows its owner's field army to intercept the enemy and force battle if the defender desires. A garrison is eliminated by a successful seige.

Maintaining a garrison for a province costs 10 ducats per season (or 8 for a Duchy), payable at the start of the season.

Summoning militia for a battle in the province costs 1/2 a ducat per AP (or 1 per AP if a Republic), to a maximum of 30 AP (or 50 if Florentines, or a capital, or Venetians in Istria, or 75 if Florentines in Firenze). Costs are doubled if this is the first year you have controlled the province.

Summoning militia for a battle in a neighbouring land province costs double the above costs (and quadrupled again for pioneers), to a maximum of 20 AP (or 40 AP if Florentines). Militia cannot be used further afield. Costs are doubled again if this is the first year you have controlled the province the militia are coming from.

Raising condottieri merceanaries costs 1 ducat per AP raised, payable at the start of the year. Swiss, Stradiot, Turk or Lanze Spezatta mercenaries cost double. (Extra inducement may be required sometimes to get the best Condottieri commanders). Condottieri mercenaries (not double-cost ones) leave the state's service when their commander does. Lanze Spezatte may be recruited at the condottieri rate if a CWS condottieri id present in the province they are recruited from, but then they the condottieri's to keep, and not the state's. Stradiots or Turks can only be hired by states, not by condottieri.

Maintaining mercenaries costs one-third a ducat per AP per season. This can be paid at the start of the season to ensure good behaviour, or at the end of the season - this will cause the mercenaries to bahave badly towards the locals, looting, etc). Swiss must be paid in advance, and on a set-term contract.

Installing diplomats / spies / counter-agents in a province , whether friendly or not, costs 5 ducats (or 10 if a foreign state or enemy capital).

Maintaining diplomats / spies / counter-agents in a province costs 1 ducat per season, payable at the start of the year (or when installed).

Diplomats in foreign states allows mercenary recruitment there (Swiss allies for anyone from Switzerland, Turk and Stradiots for anyone controlling Friuli or Istria from Albania); allows the passage of armed forces at the cost of 10 ducats payable at the start of the season (or 20 to go through Switzerland); and allows, only if Genoese, the hiring of a navy to France for a year for a fee of 80 ducats - with the French paying at the end of spring (the chance of the French wanting the navy's service is 15/36).

Counter-agents in one's own province give a chance of stopping an enemy's spy's report (8,9,10 on 2d6), and a chance of feeding them a false report (11,12 on 2d6).

Spies in an enemy province will report upon the province being garrisoned or not, whether a fleet is present or being built, the size of any armies there or passing through, what public commisions the ruler just advertised, etc. They also allow recuitment of lanze spezatte from that province if an enemy province (lanze spezatte normally can only be recruited in your own provinces)

Victory Points:

1 per province controlled at the end of each year
2 if you capture an enemy province and do not pillage or raze it
5 per battle won (but only 3 if a CWS condottieri was the CinC)
-5 if you lost your head of state in a battle in close combat (not due to being in zones of death, etc.)
-2 per battle lost (even if you didn't command!)

Victory points (VPs) can also be accrued in other ways:

Financing naval explorations and extraordinary trading missions. Only states with a navy may do this. Each expedition costs 50 ducats to outfit, setting sail next season. Average voyage length will be two years. Success not guarenteed! Results not known until it returns ( or news of its wreckage filters in...).

Throwing fetes, balls, jousting tourneys, etc. A province may hold only one event per year. 1 victory point is gained for every 40 ducats spent (or 35 if held in the capital).

Financing major artworks. Each commision costs 50 ducats, payable at the start of the year. a province may only have one commision per year. Each artwork gives the controller 2 VP at the end of the year.

Endowing universities. etc. A province may only have one. It costs 40 ducats to start work on a new college, plus 15 ducats a season therefater until completed. It takes 8 seasons work to complete. Therefater, spending 5 ducats (payable at the start of the season) will yield 1 victory point to the controller at the end of the season.


Each state has only one field army. It will be very small, and in need of supplementation for it to be in any way useful. Armies can be supplemented by either raising militia for a season's temporary service, or hiring mercenaries for longer periods. Mercenaries can be raised directly by the state - from either outside Italy, or inside Italy (known as lanze spezzate). Their numbers are strictly limited, and their dispersed nature means recruiting them is more costly than using Italian condottieri. They may be recuited from provinces you control, or, via agents, from other provinces. Most mercenaries will therefore be hired through condottieri generals. These mercenaries are more freely available. Some of these will be led by other members of the CWS. If your army contains no CWS condottieri, you will have to personally lead you army on the field. If you hire a CWS condottieri, you can instead elect him to command in your place, while you run the state safely from your palace. This causes some of the glory of victory to be passed onto him if your army wins, but you may hire a much better general than you know yourself to be! You may always chose to command yourself even if a CWS Condottieri is present - but then he (or they, if you have hired more than one) is only allowed to command his own command as a sub-general - and on-table communication during the battle will be strictly forbidden!

Armies start the game in their country's capital province. Each army may move up to 2 land stages per season. Each season's moves will be conducted simultaneously. If another army invades your country, your garrisons will tell you, and you may cancel your moves to come to the rescue of the invaded province. Permission is needed to pass through another country's provinces, and you may not remain in another countries province at the end of the season.

The normal foraging capacity of an enemy province is 100 AP if in a mountainous province, 200 AP if hills, woods or waterways, or 300 AP if rivers or plains (a capital may provide for 100 AP extra). Excess AP must be provided with extra supplies, costing 1 ducat per 2 AP (rounded up) per season, payable upon moving through the province, or even if just sitting there. Failure to provide extra supplies results in the forces loss in excess of its forage capacity (with cavalry taking most of the losses).

The CWS Condottieri:

Each season you remain alive you get 1 VP.
Getting yourself killed means you lose all VP and have to start all over again.
Each province your forces raze while you are CinC gets you 10 VP, each one pillaged 5 VP.
Each successful seige of a province you participate in nets you 2 VP.
Each battle you win as a CinC gets you 10 VP (or 13 if the AP odds were worse than 3:4). If you win but your own command was demoralized, take a 2 AP penalty.
Each battle you lose as CinC loses you 5 VP if the odds were 1:1 or better in your favour, or 3 VP if between 1:1 and 4:3 against you, or 1 VP lost if the odds were worse.
Each battle you participate in that you do not command but you are on the winning side still nets you 4 VP if your command was not demoralized, 2 if it was.
Each element of Bg that your own troops destroy in close combat when you are NOT CinC nets you 2 VP.
If your personal element is destroyed in battle, but you survive (ie. it was lost through reasons other than close combat), you lose 5 VP.
Each ducat extra over you base hire rate you are given by a ruler when hiring you gives you one 10th of a VP.


Army strengths will normally be reported in numbers of real men - 50 men generally equalling 1 DBM figure - so an element of Kn (O) will be about 150 men.


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