++ Winter Review Phase III - Seizing Fire ++


Two more updates to the powers of the Senate. In both cases, they’re partly a reflection of powers the Senators were already wielding. They have some implications for many Imperial titles as well.

The new Senate power of concedence ( https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/Powers_of_the_Imperial_Senate#Concedence )
formalises how the Senate gives things to foreign powers. They’ve already used this power effectively in treaties with foreigners, but now it has a proper write up. Put simply, the Senate can vote to give a THING – a region, a territory, an army, a fortification, a tap-dancing statue of a squid and so on – to a non-Imperial power. The power still needs to claim it somehow, but when they do it becomes both their property and their Problem going forward.

While the main use here is in treaties and international diplomacy, it also has some strong implications for certain kinds of plot – where outsiders of one type or another ask the Empire to make something for them and then give them control. With concedence, the Senate can build (say) an underground sugar mine and hand it over to a Night eternal to sate his unnatural sugar cravings.

There’s a few twiddles – you either concede the whole thing or none of it no half measures, you can’t concede things to Imperial citizens, you can’t force stuff onto people who don’t want it very effectively, we’ll try to reflect the events following concedence of a thing in Winds and other events – but for the most part it’s pretty straightforward.

Sort of a flip-side to concedence is the recognition of the power to be a Custodian (https://www.profounddecisions.co.uk/empire-wiki/New_Imperial_titles#Custodian). This power already existed all over the game. Every sinecure, ministry, army, navy, college, runeforge, and Bourse producer comes with an automatic title that has custodianship of that commission or resource, for example. All we’ve really done is laid out that this is a thing that exists and the Senate can give custodianship of some things to a specific person making a new title – the examples we can think of so far are follies, great works, and fortifications.

Custodianship means that when a decision needs to be made about a thing, you make it. Nine times out of ten this will mean a plot opportunity or a threat but occasionally when something has gained a power that someone needs to make a decision about, it’d be the custodian who makes that decision.

As with Concedence it’s all or nothing – you can’t give someone the power to make some decisions about a commission but not others. Either the title is custodian, or it isn’t. That said, a custodian can’t just make a decision that would require someone else to use a legal power – they can’t arbitrarily abrogate or cede something, excommunicate one of their workers, or interdict a ritual stored in their library for example. Neither can they submit (shudder) free text downtimes to try and make decisions about their thing that haven’t been put on the table by us already.

From my point of view it is important to get this power out there and understood because various powers have forever been asking people to make things for them, usually follies, that they will then engage in shennaniganry with. Now, if the Senate turns an area of hot springs into a herb garden it is absolutely clear who can give permission to a Night eternal to stuff the place with heralds treating it like a Centre Parcs health spa.

#Othersideofthehedge, #Clearingupthingsthatarealreadyhappening,

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