D&D General House of the Dragon has me thinking about Succession

babi_gog

Explorer
What I am looking for is ideas to make the game run not ideas why not to run the game if that makes sense. So go ahead and poke holes so I can fill them, but don't just keep saying 'its not what happened in real life'
Right, what is needed here is a justification for why the regent came to be, what reason for having a regent take and hold power. And also keep the power.

I'm going to set aside the question of the spouse as successor for now.

Now one option for this would be to have the eldest child (the heir) be out of the country (doing some exploring or other such thing), when the father died, though already having had children. In this case the nobles of the nation declare that he is king, however to keep the nation and government going they appoint the now dowager Queen as

"Regent until the the return of the King or her being deemed incapable of holding the office".

Now by the terms of the Regency Charter, dowager Queen is regent, until the King returns - he never does so, however there is also no body recovered and no one knows what happened to him. (This also leave the plot hooks of children of the lost King, real or not to appear). Thus we get to where we are today, with the need to now find an heir or appoint a new "Regent".
 

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babi_gog

Explorer
I was actually talking mostly real world there, but yeah I assume that no one is marrying someone they don't trust.

Yeah combining families... if I marry my daughter to your son our 'houses' combine. It always seemed odd that someone who just 'combined' houses would want to separate them on death (a tragedy enough)
Often arrange marriages between houses, the parties would never have met before the wedding.

Also the house did not combine, but become close allies, often it would be the heir of one house marring the second or third child of another - very rear I think for the heir of two house to marry, unless there was no one else around. The houses would only merge when the heir to one house was also the only heir to another.
 

I will look up Kull
It's not a good movie, so I'll put a summary in spoiler tags if you want to save some time. lol

Kull kills the previous king, who with his dying act makes him the new king (basically because everyone will be aiming to knock him off if he's king). Kull is tricked into marrying a woman who is actually a powerful evil sorceress. She puts a spell on him to make him appear dead and becomes Queen since everyone thought he was dead.
 

It's not a good movie, so I'll put a summary in spoiler tags if you want to save some time. lol

Kull kills the previous king, who with his dying act makes him the new king (basically because everyone will be aiming to knock him off if he's king). Kull is tricked into marrying a woman who is actually a powerful evil sorceress. She puts a spell on him to make him appear dead and becomes Queen since everyone thought he was dead.
yeah I think I blanked it out of my head but I remember kevin sorbo taking an axe out of ice...
 

Right, what is needed here is a justification for why the regent came to be, what reason for having a regent take and hold power. And also keep the power.

I'm going to set aside the question of the spouse as successor for now.

Now one option for this would be to have the eldest child (the heir) be out of the country (doing some exploring or other such thing), when the father died, though already having had children. In this case the nobles of the nation declare that he is king, however to keep the nation and government going they appoint the now dowager Queen as

"Regent until the the return of the King or her being deemed incapable of holding the office".

Now by the terms of the Regency Charter, dowager Queen is regent, until the King returns - he never does so, however there is also no body recovered and no one knows what happened to him. (This also leave the plot hooks of children of the lost King, real or not to appear). Thus we get to where we are today, with the need to now find an heir or appoint a new "Regent".
now I haddn't considered the oldest child going missing... I have to dwell on that
 

Often arrange marriages between houses, the parties would never have met before the wedding.
So let me get this straight, you think that is better for a D&D game then the sage/wizard and the warrior king falling in love?
edit: maybe I wasn't clear the elf isn't just some 3rd born woman. She is an elven sage (I think like a wizard) who has family ties to teh old elven royalty. She is smart wise and charismatic and spent years 'co ruleing' with the king
 

blood seems a very antiquated idea. if the king/queen is doing a good job (metaphorically the trains are all running on time) why would anyone want to change... and as for 'family' the 3 kids are still a ??? in my mind, what happened when the 1st born came of age to rule at 26? what happened years later when the twins did... there there children.

I just assume that when you marry you BECOME family (on a legal and spiritual and mental level) if we are not in Birthright or similar with blood line powers, does it matter who's blood you have?

of course but I am at this point looking for ideas to work WITH the idea, not just shoot it down.

this reminds me of the Mummy movies where the priest was punished with immortality and super magic and locked in with bugs to eat him forever... but if he ever got out he would be all powerful. Was it dumb to give him almost god like powers, yes, but if you rewrite it so they didn't make him all powerful and immortal, then the movie never happens.

What I am looking for is ideas to make the game run not ideas why not to run the game if that makes sense. So go ahead and poke holes so I can fill them, but don't just keep saying 'its not what happened in real life'
I guess I’m not interested in ideas that don’t make sense to me. Sorry I can’t help.
 


Zardnaar

Legend
Alot of unfair succession laws (by our standards) were done to reduce claimants. More claimants more chance i
of things going wrong eg the King of England decides to claim the French throne via his mothers lineage.

There's pros and cons of every succession type.

HotD doesn't seem to have any succession laws male preference by tradition.
 

Omand

Hero
@GMforPowergamers you seem to feel (based upon a few posts), that by a child inheriting the throne and taking it on as soon as they come of age this is a tearing apart of family alliances and somehow a disruption of good order.

Step back and think about that again for a second. The individual coming to the throne is a child of the deceased king and the elf queen (or queen-consort, depending on your model). They are literally a combination or mingling of the blood of two families. They are a merging of family alliances. Their mother's relatives are all cousins and uncles. Not of the royal line if you believe in the concept of bloodline, but very influential in the nobility and the royal court and government in general.

This actually creates more opportunity for intrigue and shenanigans. You now have people not raised within the Royal family who are very close to it (potentially). They may abuse their influence, or try to. They may try to throw their weight around, or not. They might be great advisors, or parasites on the body politic. Overall, however, they will most definitely be sources of possible adventure and disruption.
 

yeah I have been considering the moment when the oldest son (who was raised to be king) realized he would never be... and I am of 2 minds... did he except and join her as a step son advisor, or did he make a play and miss?
I could see him gathering his forces, and at the planning session there being a King John and his barons moment. "You would be a great king, m'lord, but with her we'll have political stability through my gran' kid's time. Go home."
 

@GMforPowergamers you seem to feel (based upon a few posts), that by a child inheriting the throne and taking it on as soon as they come of age this is a tearing apart of family alliances and somehow a disruption of good order.
no the tearing apart was the idea of someone marring with the intent to kill and steal title... I just don't see a benefit (especially when blood carries no power) to not having the best fit of the family to rule.
Step back and think about that again for a second. The individual coming to the throne is a child of the deceased king and the elf queen (or queen-consort, depending on your model). They are literally a combination or mingling of the blood of two families.
it could be or it could be his eldest from his previous marriage (I have spent some time brain storming more reason) and I don't see why we would tell a elven sage/mystic to stop ruleing cause the son has a better claim.
 

I could see him gathering his forces, and at the planning session there being a King John and his barons moment. "You would be a great king, m'lord, but with her we'll have political stability through my gran' kid's time. Go home."
yeah I have been thinking of that too. I went with when he turned 26 the empire was at war, and it just made sense not to switch leadership mid war... and after the war there was a moment like this.
 

so I have a whole family line (not the whole tree just main line) but it may be too short... I have to work on it a bit but I hope everyone likes this. I added president for all of the moments to make the queen regent make sense.

King Greymalkin Daystrom had married Queen Elina Nightrush as both were the first born of each human kingdom, and as such already merged two powerful families. They were not King and Queen when married though, they did marry 1 month before the Great Council though. Some Historians say that this was a ploy as part of a campaign for the royal line (and if so it worked)



The two of them had 2 legitimate children Randor Daystrom I and Lilandra Daystrom I. (sorties of both having bastards are common, but no one has hard proof)

Both Children married, Randor to Sesma a powerful half elf noble, and Lilandra to Dareoo darksteel a Dwarven lord. Randor and Sesma had 2 sets of twins, but neither made it to there 3rd birthday, so they named there Niece Lilandra and Dreoo's daughter as Heir. They did finally have a child that lived, but Alexandra Darksteel took the thrown anyway. She had 7 children between 2 human husbands (she out lived both) However she married her 2nd born child a Daughter named Semsma to the So of Randor and Sesma.

Semsma and Michael Daystrom had twins, Randor and GreyMalkin II who both compeated for the title of heir. Randor was tecniily eldest by minutes, but Greymalkin II got the title (the fact that this randor spent his life not marrying and living with his sworn sword 'the knight of daisies' may have something to do with this...

King Greymalkin II had elven dwarven and multi human bloodlines so it was expected to marry a halfling nobel but he didn't he married a human commonor for love (not very beloved of the other nobles). They had three children. They both grew old enough to see the birth of 2 grandsons.

When Greymalkin II died at the age of 71, the family decided that his wife(their mother) would remain queen until she was ready to pass it down. She lived almost 8 years before Alexander became king (at the age of 50)

King Alexander was Married to Queen Evenstar, and they had twins twice. When Queen Evenstar died young the king never remarried. There second older Andor became king shortly there after when Alexander stepped down do to mental issues.

King Andor I married Queen Ranostar, and this is another intresting moment where they had no legitimate children, but on her death bed at the age of 48 Queen Ranostar begged her husband to legitimize his oldest bastard, he did and King Aliester took the thrown only a half dozen year later.

King Aliester took 3 wives (not all at once) 2 died in child birth and 1 he divorced then she fled south to the shadow of the mountain!

King Allester's 3rd daughter became the heir, and was married to an orc warrior of the frost wolves... and he almost caused a civil war himself... but he died, peacefully in his sleep at a young age and she remarried a cousin Queen Geywalker

Lilandra II was born of this 2nd marriage almost right after the wedding and her brother only 2 years later Andor II.

Brother wed sister, and the two jointly ruled until King Phenton was born... although if Andor was the father was quite the controversy.

King Phenton Married Queen Margirie, and they had a single son, King Greymalken III, but when King Phenton was lost at sea Queen Margirie took over as queen regent... when she remarried the 'royal consort' title was born. Consort Oliver and Queen Margirie ruled until King Greymalken was 26... and there was some disagreement on how it should be handled.

Queen Margirie was allowed to continue to be regent queen until her late 60's when she steped down offically making the 32 year old King Greymalken III king.

King Greymalken had 7 children over 7 mistresses but never married, but legitimized "all royal bastards" and almost caused another war... but he then named his youngest son heir... and then stepped down at the age of 44 allowing King Franklin I to take over.

King Franklin married Queen Lilandra III(not incest though) and she had twins, but only King Randor III lived to be an adult. He took the thrown when both the king and queen took sick, and immediately married a noble that had both human and dwarven blood Queen Jasmin.



Queen Jasmin birthed Prince Randor IV after almost 30 hours of labor... when 2 years later she was pregnant with twins it was not expected to go well... The Twins Prince Andor III and Princess Gray were born in sweet and pain on a bed of blood... Queen Jasmin did not survive.

King Randor remarried 7 years later to Queen Elanas Mystralath a descendent of both the last high elf queen and a noble huntsman of the wood elves (but both more then 1 generation removed) they had 3 children as well Prince Mytra, Princess Aneetie and Prince Leland.

King Randor died in the gnoll uprising leading knights to victory. Leaving Queen Elanas as regent.

When Prince Randor IV turned 26 the question again reared up of what to do. However the constant attacks from the demons of otherworld meant that it was a bad time to change leadership. Prince Randor took the title of Seneschal and helped rule as part of her court.

As Randor IV got older and older though, the regnant did not. She also had many years of leadership and mystic power over him.

Queen Regent Elanas has sat the thrown well past her children and even grandchildren grew old and died (let alone her half children). She was seen as a good and fair queen, an expert in politics law and having both magic and arcane lore as well.

She however never remarried, and most say that even several hundred years later still mourned the love of her life King Randor III.
here is the end of it...
King Randor died in the gnoll uprising leading knights to victory. Leaving Queen Elanas as regent.

When Prince Randor IV turned 26 the question again reared up of what to do. However the constant attacks from the demons of otherworld meant that it was a bad time to change leadership. Prince Randor took the title of Seneschal and helped rule as part of her court.

As Randor IV got older and older though, the regnant did not. She also had many years of leadership and mystic power over him.

Queen Regent Elanas has sat the thrown well past her children and even grandchildren grew old and died (let alone her half children). She was seen as a good and fair queen, an expert in politics law and having both magic and arcane lore as well.

She however never remarried, and most say that even several hundred years later still mourned the love of her life King Randor III.
 

Amrûnril

Adventurer
blood seems a very antiquated idea. if the king/queen is doing a good job (metaphorically the trains are all running on time) why would anyone want to change... and as for 'family' the 3 kids are still a ??? in my mind, what happened when the 1st born came of age to rule at 26? what happened years later when the twins did... there there children.

I completely agree that it's an antiquated idea. But that's going to be true of pretty much any in-universe justification for hereditary monarchy.

On that note, I suspect that a scenario like this might produce some form of anti-monarchist movement in addition to the dynastic claimants. After generations under a single monarch, the humans in the kingdom may take her rule for granted but lack any real recognition of the monarchy as an institution. If no heir is obviously positioned to take over, building a new system may seem more appealing than referring to succession laws that haven't actually been applied in centuries.
 

I completely agree that it's an antiquated idea. But that's going to be true of pretty much any in-universe justification for hereditary monarchy.
I mean when we make up worlds wholesale we can just make it what we want... and in this case what we think makes the best game.
On that note, I suspect that a scenario like this might produce some form of anti-monarchist movement in addition to the dynastic claimants.
Yeah that is a thought I had too... the PCs might decide to 'eat the rich' but since they WOULD be the rich it's a difficult thought.
After generations under a single monarch, the humans in the kingdom may take her rule for granted but lack any real recognition of the monarchy as an institution. If no heir is obviously positioned to take over, building a new system may seem more appealing than referring to succession laws that haven't actually been applied in centuries.
yeah I would love if the PCs decided on 'option C' and made up there own way to run the kingdom.
 

HammerMan

Legend
Interesting idea. My best friend Becky ran a campaign very much like this. I have a few questions though.

Will you have outside threats or is the entire pitch plot the civil war?

Would you allow players to play multi characters maybe a character tree?

And finally a 2 for with a windup
As much as I love D&D I can’t imagine that this game would go over well with many players because so much of the conflict is social political. Do you have a group in mind? Is there a reason D&D is the system for this becuse I would think there better social games.
 

Interesting idea. My best friend Becky ran a campaign very much like this. I have a few questions though.
I would love to hear more about this
Will you have outside threats or is the entire pitch plot the civil war?
yeah, I have a whole set of subplots about other threats to the kingdom and other potential outside allies.
Would you allow players to play multi characters maybe a character tree?
I have gone back and forth on this... like do I run there NPC house hold or do they
And finally a 2 for with a windup
As much as I love D&D I can’t imagine that this game would go over well with many players because so much of the conflict is social political. Do you have a group in mind? Is there a reason D&D is the system for this becuse I would think there better social games.
I have 1 1/2 groups right now (lots of overlap) but as long aswe are virtual i think D&D isit
 



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