As you may already have seen, the Throne has used the ability to Address the Empire (you can read it here → https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/United_in_law). In it the Imperatrix touches on a matter of in-character murder, so I thought it might be worth saying a few words on that topic.
First, we strongly recommend that if you are planning to kill another character you take a referee with you (as covered under “When to get a Ref” here → https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Referee#When_to_get_a_Ref). That goes for all in-character crime, really. There’s sometimes a mistaken belief this is so that we know who did the crime so we can dob you in as a result of magic or whatever - that is very much not the case. PvP activity like crime, and especially the ultimate IC crime of murrrdur, often leads to heightened tempers and uncertainty about whether rules have been followed or not. With a referee present, we can be confident that everything is above-board should any OOC unhappiness result.
Empire is designed to be a game of political rivalry - one where murrrdur is the very last resort of the desperate (as we talk about here → https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Frequently_Asked_Questions#Is_PvP_murder_allowed.3F). The Anvil field has always been intended to be reasonably safe. We ran a game in which there was almost no repercussion for murdering people and taking their stuff, and while that was fun we wanted something different for Empire. The presence of the incorruptible magistrates, and the existence of spells such as Voice for the Dead and rituals like Whispers through the Black Gate are all intended to provide the strongest in-character disincentive to murder that we can create.
A common phrase we use about Anvil, however, is that it is “safe not sacrosanct” - what we mean by this is that the thrust of the game is to make the field a place where you can walk around at night with minimal precautions, and where nations do not need 24-7 gate guards. It doesn’t mean that bad things can’t happen, or that it’s against the rules to fight there. This is one of the reasons we want everyone - even people who have no interest in battles - to know the combat rules (https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Combat). While you probably won’t get into a fight while visiting the Hub, or watching a Senate Session, or drinking at the Oxen Head… you might.
One rule to always be aware of is that there is no combat call that prevents someone from shouting, screaming, or begging for help at the top of their lungs if they are attacked. Until you are EXECUTEd or your death count runs out, you can make as much noise as you like. Nobody has the ability to cut your throat, put their hand over your mouth (https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Event_safety#Grappling.2C_body_contact_and_shields), or render you silent with a magical spell. So please do make a racket if someone attacks you!
Finally, there is a caveat to all this. Characters are killed on the field at Anvil. It is a big deal when this happens. It would be ideal if players didn’t speculate about it on facebook - there is usually a very strong in-character motivation for any murrrdur no matter how random it looks and people discussing in-character theories about that is a massive spoiler for anyone who is trying to catch the killer.
CORRECTION: there’s a mistake in the announcement above.
If your character’s death-count (bleed-count) runs out, then the character is TERMINAL, not dead, and can STILL keep shouting indefinitely, all through the event and the following downtime.
See the “Dying” and “Terminal” sections of the rules here: