There are several factions in the game and a few measures that denote your standing and fame with townsfolk and Noble Houses, which are the only factions you can have friendly interactions with (receive contracts, trade, heal, use ports for travel, etc).
Of these measures, Renown is covered in Game Mechanics. Reputation (a rough measure of perceived good or bad deeds done by the company) is largely still an underused parameter which shows little change in most games and appears to have little (or no) impact on gameplay. Summarized descriptions for both are given below.
The third measure of standing/fame, is denoted by Relations with various non-fortified settlements (Village Hall/Town Hall/City Hall) which is managed by townsfolk and Relations with various fortified settlements (Fortified Manor/Castle/Stronghold) which is run by the Noble House it is affiliated with, and is covered in more detail below.
- Your renown is your repute as a professional mercenary company and reflects how reliable and competent people judge you to be. The higher your renown, the higher-paid and more difficult contracts people will entrust you with, and the more resources your enemies will spend on working against you. Renown increases on successfully completing contracts and winning battles, and decreases on failing to do so.
- Your reputation reflects how people in the world judge your mercenary company to conduct itself based on past actions. Do you show mercy to your enemies? Do you burn down farmsteads and massacre the peasantry? Based on your reputation, people may offer you different kinds of contracts, and both contracts and events may play out differently.
Non-Fortified Settlements and their RelationsEdit
- Villages and the bigger towns are a collective term for all human civilian settlements that are located across the world map. Villages are mostly inhabited by farmers, hunters, local craftsmen and small time traders. The people of the villages usually live off the surrounding land and by selling their produce and wares on bigger markets in nearby villages or towns.
- In case of an urgent threat normal townsfolk are gathered hastily and equipped with whatever weapons and armor are available. These ad-hoc militia forces are not trained soldiers and lack equipment and combat experience. Nevertheless, they will fight fiercely to protect what little they have and to protect those dear to them. Militia forces can be gathered when a hostile party is sighted close to a settlement and disbanded again after the threat disappeared. Local leaders will attempt to hire mercenaries for protection so the player will often find work around these settlements.
The main role for these settlements (Village Hall/Town Hall/City Hall) is to trade with the player, provide new recruits and offer contracts. As of the full release version 1.1, all human settlements are now aligned with a noble house. Independent, unaligned settlements which were present in Early Access builds, no longer exist. From time to time these settlements spawn caravans who trade goods with the other towns or villages.
If hostile troops raid a village or town, a group of militia soldiers spawn, ready to defend their homes and families. These militias are often nothing more than poorly armed farmers and may require aid from the player.
- A rich town can field more militia than a poor town.
- Each town and village has a prosperity rating.
- Every caravan that safely arrives at a settlement increases it's prosperity rating.
- A prosperous settlement might have a militia captain, an experienced veteran who provides them with a morale bonus.
- A settlement with a higher prosperity rating will offer more and better equipment.
Every village and town (non-fortified settlements) has their own Relations bar on the same screen that displays Renown and Reputation. All villages and towns start with the bar at Neutral or half full (score of 50).
The player can increase Relations with non-fortified settlements by doing contracts for them. The usual award is roughly 8-10 Relations per contract for the settlement which gave the contract, except for cargo contracts which splits the increase between both settlements involved in transporting cargo. Increased Relations improve market prices (lowers prices for buyable items on markets and increases prices for items that the player wants to sell).
Relations trend towards 50 (decay if above 50, gain if below 50) and these minute shifts in Relations take place at dawn of each day, at the rate of roughly 0.25 per day (applies to both decay and gain, so a settlement at Hostile(0) will take roughly 40 days to reach Threatening(10)).
Relations status with rough score ranges in brackets are roughly marked as: Hostile(0-9), Threatening (10-19), Unfriendly(20-29), Cold(30-39), Neutral(40-59), Open(60-69), Friendly(70-79), Very Friendly(80-89), Allied(90-100).
Haggling on contracts very slightly decreases Relations, especially if you are refused. If the negotiations turn sour and the player fails to get the contract, the drop in Relations is larger still. Attacking groups affiliated with (ie Peasants, Militia) or hired by (ie Mercenaries) a particular settlement immediately changes the Relations bar for that settlement to Hostile(0) (even if it was previously at Allied(100)) and disables all interaction with the settlement. It also drastically reduces Relations with the Noble House the settlement was aligned to.
Noble Houses, Fortified Settlements and their RelationsEdit
- Historically, bigger realms have always been a very diverse mixture of a lot of smaller realms and fiefdoms ruled by competing and collaborating noble houses. Although these small parts were usually devoted to a king or supreme ruler, they often changed allegiance and fought and schemed against each other in their struggle for power. The feuds between these noble houses create a perfect place for a mercenary company that is not bound to a lord and that can take on whatever contract pays best.
- Like most things in Battle Brothers, noble houses are procedurally generated for each new campaign. To give them as much personality as possible we want them to look and feel very distinct from one another. Each noble house comes with a unique coat of arms, description and set of procedurally generated leaders.
- Noble houses also come with their very own coat of arms. We dove deep into medieval heraldry to make the coats of arms realistic and believable, but we also took a bit of artistic license to make them easier to read and more catchy.
Fortified settlements (Fortified Manors/Castles/Strongholds) belong to different noble houses, and the house which controls one can be identified by the flag they wear. These constructions are guarded by strong garrisons of men at arms who search the area for ambushing brigands, beasts and other threats. The men at arms usually carry the best possible equipment. These settlements will spawn patrols, which secure the streets between the settlements of their house. If a threat, example given: a brigand party, comes close to a castle, a group of soldiers will spawn at the castle to fight the threat. To a castle usually belongs 1 or more watchtower(s). These also spawn soldiers for a patrol or if a threat comes near.
- Strongholds and castles can usually provide more equipment and recruits than smaller settlements.
- Strongholds and castles offer better, military grade equipment, but are much more expensive.
Fortified settlements (Fortified Manor/Castle/Stronghold) are fully affiliated with their Noble House and do not have separate Relations bar unlike non-fortified settlements. Their Relations score is essentially the Relations with the Noble House in question which is used to determine prices.
Fortified settlements also do not give out regular contracts like non-fortified settlements. Contracts found here are given out by the Noble House and require completing an ambition to reach Professional Renown (1050) to unlock. Relations gain per contract for Noble Houses is also typically slower (about half (+4)) than that of village/town contracts, which makes getting to Allied status with Noble Houses a considerably slower process.
There are two types of caravans: Standard caravans, which are simply named caravans, and supply caravans.
This type of caravan is only weakly guarded.
- Caravans spawn from time to time in human settlements and travel to another settlement to trade.
- Trading caravans can be attacked by the player using Ctrl+Click, if he doesn't have an active contract and when the player has a low relation with the settlement it originates from (usually a relation with the status "threatening" or lower.) The font color of the caravan then also changes into red, instead of white.
- Further information about prosperity can be found a few lines up.
Supply caravans are highly guarded caravans and are part of a noble house. Which house can be identified by the flag they wear.
- Travels only between settlements controlled from the same noble house.
- Supply caravans can be attacked by the player using Ctrl+Click, if he doesn't have an active contract and when the player has a low relation with the settlement it originates from (usually a relation with the status "threatening" or lower.) The font color of the caravan then also changes into red, instead of white.
- Similar to player company there are other mercenary units that take contracts for the living in Darklands.
- Mercenaries types:
- In a medieval world there are always those who have fallen out of society for whatever reason. Some are plain criminals, some are desperate and close to starving others are just looking for freedom far from local authorities. All these characters live in the woods, hills and wilderness around the human settlements and are looking for a way to survive by their own means.
- These outcasts usually avoid direct confrontation and prefer to ambush trade caravans and lone travelers along the roads. Most of them have gathered in small groups and built some form of hideout where they take their robbed goods.
- Brigands may not be very well fed and equipped but a life of hardship has made them tough and cunning fighters that will use any dirty trick and advantage they can get to save their hide.
Brigand parties consist of criminals, starving or down-on-their-luck men, and people looking for a unique kind of freedom in their own way. Brigands live in the woods, hills, and wilderness around the human settlements and are looking for a way to survive by their own means. Brigands usually avoid direct confrontation and prefer to ambush weaker enemies. Their harsh life made them tough fighters. Brigand parties not only attack the player and the player friendly factions (like settlements and patrols), they also attack orcs, goblins and beasts. Brigand parties like to hide alongside roads which pass through forests.
Brigand enemy types:
- The beast faction is not a typical faction as it is not united within itself. This faction consists of all kinds of dangerous and mystical creatures that roam the lands independently and threaten its inhabitants.
- The first creature that is already in the game is the Direwolves. These huge wolflike creatures always travel in packs and are not hindered by darkness at night. They are extremely fast and although they do not use weapons or armor they are absolutely deadly when using their fangs and claws.
Beasts enemy types:
Undead and Ancient DeadEdit
- The undead are long deceased bodies and remainders of once living creatures brought back to life by dark powers. The creatures of the undead faction are numerous and vary in combat ability, tactics and equipment. The body of their forces is usually compromised of zombies and skeletons but they also field elite troops like heavily armored fallen heroes, incorporeal lost souls and powerful reanimated lords. The undead often appear with a leader that is directing their soulless and mindless bodies in the right direction. This can be a necromancer, still a human being but corrupted by sinister powers, a vampire lusting for the blood of the living, or something even worse.
- The undead have some special traits that govern how they fight in combat. They have no stamina and do not accumulate any fatigue. With a few exceptions, the undead are also immune to morale effects, such as panic, and will never flee the battlefield. On the upside, most of them are rather slow and not all of them act particularly intelligent in battle.
- When fighting the undead, players have to watch their fatigue closely as the undead do not get tired like your Battle Brothers. Many undead can be resurrected again and again, which can have battles last a long time, straining fatigue until all humans are so tired that the undead finally overcome them despite their supposed individual weakness.
Undead enemy types:
Ancient Dead enemy types:
- As long as humans remember there has been tensions with the wild orc tribes that roam the surrounding lands. Orcs live as nomads, constantly on the move to support themselves by hunting, gathering and raiding anyone weaker than their tribe. Life for an orc, then, is to a large part establishing dominance over others and taking things for him or herself.
- In Battle Brothers, orcs are physically stronger than humans. An adult orc towers a human and has the strength to use weaponry and wear armor with great effect that would quickly tire out any human. With their strength, they also gain a percentage damage bonus to every attack – less for young orcs , and more so for adult ones. While orcs are subject to fatigue and morale, just like your Battle Brothers are, they have plenty of both, and it takes a while for an orc to run out of steam or realize that a battle has turned against him.
- Orcs focus entirely on the offense, where they excel. They use their skills to crush the player’s battle line with raw force and have it quickly dissolve into a chaotic frenzy where they generally have the upper hand. For this reason, meeting an orc warband head-on in open battle is usually a bad idea and will leave you at a disadvantage. On the other hand, orcs neglect defense; while some of them will carry shields, they seldom make active use of them, preferring instead to attack. Due to their reckless fighting style and just physically being big targets, they’re also easier to hit than other opponents.
Orcs live like nomads and are taller and stronger than humans. Those tribes usually go off and raid settlements. But they also have their own wars, where one clan fights against another. Due to their strength they are able to use heavy weaponry and wear heavy armor which humans can’t use without disadvantages. Because of their strength, orcs gain a damage bonus to every attack. Young orcs gain a lesser bonus than adult orcs. Orcs have a lot of fatigue and morale, it maybe take quite a while for an orc to realize that a battle has turned against him/them. In battle, they focus on the offense. They like to destroy the shield wall or line of the player using their force, a battle is likely to quickly escalate into a chaotic mess.
Orc enemy types:
- Goblins are technically just one half of a larger faction, the greenskins, with the other half being the orcs. However, both orcs and goblins are highly autonomous and you’ll only see them work together on rare occasions.
- Goblins are a lot smaller than both orcs and humans, and appear to be physically weak at first sight. Due to their lack of strength they have developed a completely different approach to battle from their larger cousins. Instead of brute force they rely on ambushes, hit-and-run attacks, wit and dirty tricks. Goblins employ many means to hinder the enemy’s movement and once the enemy is incapacitated they engage to wear their opponents down.
- When fighting goblins a solid battle line will just get harassed from afar until it is safe for the goblins to engage the worn out survivors in close combat. The player has to be quick to catch the swift greenskins and then pin them down in melee where they can not use their ranged weapons. Also, goblins are not known to be the most brave fighters around. To keep them fighting there is often a leader around, keeping morale up by all means necessary, such as like swinging a whip at those who fall back. Taking care of him can easily scatter a band of goblins.
Goblins are kinda related to orcs. Together with the orcs, they complete a greater faction; the „Greenskins“. But orcs and goblins act highly independent and also don't really like each other, which will sometime result in fights. Goblins are smaller than humans and appear to be weaker. Instead of brute force they usually ambush their enemies. (Hit-and-run attacks). They use poisoned arrows and weapons.
Goblin enemy types: