Player Character Nobility Guidelines
Unwritten Legends encourages PCs of all backgrounds and kinds. This includes PCs that are adventurers and swashbucklers, exotic tribesman from the Sunjolands and poor peasants from the bottom rung of the Kivian Imperium. If you ever have questions about your background, want to know if a specific character backstory is acceptable, or want to have something special in your background, we strongly encourage you to email your background to firstname.lastname@example.org or send a PM to the Interaction Team on the forums with your ideas. There are a lot of ways to make your PC extraordinary, and we encourage people to examine the lore of the game and talk with IA about special backgrounds. The possibilities are endless.
One of the most common background requests we get are those of "noble" blood or origin. We feel that playing nobility is both very difficult and restrictive — it often bars your character from taking full advantage of all events that unfold in Unwritten Legends. Being a noble entails a lot of special responsibility and may not be as beneficial as many think. As such, we feel that some guidelines and explanations of what it means to be noble in Unwritten Legends means will help you make better choices when choosing your PC's backgrounds.
You may only have one character of noble background active on your account at a time.
You must pay 50,000 fame and have 125,000 lifetime fame on your account.
You must prepare an appropriate background ingame via the
background command and have that background approved by IA.
Foreign nobility, defined to mean those of noble heritage with their lineage and place of origin outside of the Kivian Imperium and/or Kessia, may find it harder to achieve an equivalent level of prestige and power as those local-born nobility, especially if they choose not to surrender their previous rank and title and devote themselves to the Kessian way. The Kivian empire is built upon Kivian building blocks, and the more of their own that stay in power, the more consolidated their power base is.
Nobility are expected and viewed as "above commoners," meaning that their behavior should not be on the same track as non-nobility. Standing around in the mud of the Crossroads or throwing down beers at the Serpent can be seen very negatively for an aspiring nobleman, depending on their intentions, and may hurt their chances of being recognized by the King.
Those of a noble background must be recognized by His Majesty, King Vek, in order to have any authority or meaningful standing in Kessia. Even if you are a Kivian or daun of noble lineage, this is not a given. Getting the attention of a King is tricky, and it's even more tricky to do it gracefully. It's a well-known fact that the current Royal Chamberlain is quite a proper man! Being recognized means just that: you now exist in the eyes of the King. Actions from there on out can make or break your chances of anything happening.
The Interactions team for Unwritten Legends recommends against nobility for most PCs. There are a large number of awesome and interesting backgrounds, including wizards, apprentice doctors, and dwarven miners. Your imagination is the limit, and if you have any questions, don't forget: email email@example.com or PM the Interactions Team on the forums.
Beginning Play As A Noble:
To begin play as a noble in Unwritten Legends you must pay 50,000 fame and have 125,000 lifetime fame on your account, and request ingame approval of your background. If it is approved, your character gets to begin play as a landless, low ranking noble. As an example, perhaps your character's ancestor pleased a sovereign in some great manner and was granted a hereditary title, or, it could be that your family was once well to do and has since fallen upon hard times with their lands lost and their income nonexistent. Any character generated as a noble begins at this stage, whether they are from a foreign country or from Kessia itself. Noble characters have very limited privileges upon character creation, but are on track to garner potential benefits through consistent long-term RP.
The starting privileges for a noble character born within the Kivian Imperium are as follows:
- In-game title of Lord / Lady.
- Access to vermillion colored wax along with a signet ring or pendant displaying a custom coat of arms or seal.
- An increase in social status, which grants special consideration by various authorities and governmental organizations: access to a clean and private cell if arrested or incarcerated in the asylum.
- The possibility of gaining free access to Malcomb Castle and the Summer Palace with recognition from the Crown.
When a Lord / Lady receives recognition from the crown for exemplary service they may be awarded an honorary title and rank within the Kessian Court. This gives the character personal status at court, within the noble community, and affords even more privileges. However, at this juncture, a character's duties, responsibilities, and behavior are under more scrutiny from the Crown. Serving within the Court with specific duties may come with monetary compensation for actual services rendered. These are obviously out-of-character terms for ease of explanation, and will vary within the game by circumstance. These will be expressed as the potential for unique court prestige positions.
The starting privileges for a noble character of foreign birth are identical to those of nobles of the Empire, with the following exceptions:
- Nobles of foreign birth may spend fame per the current fame rewards document to customize their titles to a native equivalent approved by staff. Adherence to the titles and practices of a foreign country will hinder acceptance into the Kessian Court!
- Noble characters of foreign birth must present themselves to the Kessian Court, renounce their ties to their homeland, and swear loyalty to the current Sovereign before they may achieve honorary ranks, positions, or titles from the Crown.
Those characters that choose to not begin play as a noble may still gain recognition from the Crown for exemplary service or action and be awarded the title of Knight / Dame. Otherwise, they may compete for or be awarded one of the other Prestige Positions available, some of which have no relationship to the Court at all. These Prestige Positions, for the time frame they are held, hold equivalent status and rank as a Lord / Lady. Former holders of prestige positions are often powerful people, so never underestimate them!
The Kessian court hierarchy is as follows. The ranks available to players are marked with an asterisk.
- *Court Prestige Positions / Lord / Protector of the Realm
A non-court prestige position has authority equal to a Court Prestige Position / Lord / Protector of the Realm.
We are in no way attempting to portray a real-life medieval feudal model, and have instead adopted a system that is comprised of many hybrids, some fantastical imagination, and all brought together for fairness in gameplay. Our goal is to give noble characters something to work for with long-term, consistent roleplay, similar to other positions found within Unwritten Legends.