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Crowns & Castles

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$20.00

Crowns & Castles (267 pages) lets you play D&D as a 4x empire strategy game.

You're no longer playing as a single character. In C&C you're in control of an entire realm that you create from scratch, making decisions for its military, economy, culture, and diplomacy. That realm gains experience, levels up, and unlocks new abilities. And you're going to do all this in a co-op, player-vs-player, or mixed environment with a DM who guides the world's narrative and lets you attempt anything you can dream.

Choose a race, pick a government and founding backstory, construct buildings, discover natural resources, create powerful artifacts, research and cast continent-spanning spells, spy on your neighbors, sign treaties, trade valuable luxuries, make history, and wage war in a turn-based tactical combat system (check out the free demo "Battle at Shallow Mountain").

C&C can be played at the table or asynchronously one turn at a time. No more worries about cancelling sessions due to schedules. You can use C&C as a setting for multiple simultaneous D&D games where the outcomes of one game affect everyone else in a shared, living world, or simply as an engine to create your own worlds. The system is setting-agnostic and easily reskinnable to your existing homebrews.

You get:

  • 27 races (37 including subraces), each with a uniquely-themed set of military units
  • 13 Governments that act as your realm's class
  • 10 Founding backgrounds to choose from that describe how your realm originated
  • 15 skills to accomplish your goals from Recruitment, Research, Sabotage, etc.
  • 50 buildings to construct in your settlements
  • 70 resources to explore, exploit, trade, and develop
  • 170 realm-level spells to cast in and out of combat
  • 100 unique artifacts for your alchemists to create
  • Over 500 military units scaled to C&C's deep mass combat system
  • Over 200 traits and reactions for those units
  • 3 battle maps with special scenario rules at the C&C scale (50 feet per square)
  • 3 storylines to threaten your world and either bring your players together or tear them apart
  • 100 random events to jumpstart narratives

This book contains everything you need - a Player's section to create and manage your realm, a DM's section to start and run the game, and a vast catalogue of NPC military units.

An editable realm sheet is available through google docs in the purchase note.

Sheet1.png

Sheet2.png

NOTE: Since we made it to an Electrum best-seller (251 units sold), we're going to develop, test, and add rules for naval and air-ship combat, a feature system to hire specialist Advisors to make your realm's tasks easier, and an optional "kismet" system to turn accumulated failures into roleplaying success. These, and any other additions we make to this game will be added as free updates. That means no paid DLC, this is a One-Time Purchase and you'll get everything we create for it, forever.

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Reviews (3)
Discussions (16)
Customer avatar
Rodrigo Daniel P September 23, 2022 1:46 pm UTC
I think that this is what I spected from Kingdoms and Warfare from Mat Colville.
Customer avatar
Nicola S September 20, 2022 5:41 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Ciao , ma è localizzato in italiano?
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Customer avatar
John R September 20, 2022 5:44 pm UTC
CREATOR
Mi dispiace, ma non.
Customer avatar
Maciej W September 14, 2022 6:02 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Hello, I have a few questions and I can't see any FAQ or forum or anything, where I might find an answer.
1. In the "Magocracy" trait "Schools of Magic" under Necromancy, it states "When you have a unit with the Undead trait in your army, it costs 1 less concentration slot to maintan (...)". However, one of the players is starting as the "Undead" race and I don't see a requirement about needing concentration slots for Undead units anywhere. What is this about then?
2. Tritons have a feature "Ocean Dwellers" that states "(...) Your armies can move across water without the need for a fleet and they can end their turn at sea.". However, the only requirement for sea/ocean travel is that you need to use a Shipyard and I didn't see a statement, that you can't end your turn at sea.
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Customer avatar
John R September 14, 2022 6:24 pm UTC
CREATOR
Good questions:
1. There are a few necromancy spells that this applies to: Raise Skeletons, Raise Zombies, Myrkul's Final Blessing, and Necromortis. An undead player's regular units don't have to worry about concentration slots.
2. Great catch - we'll correct that so that the second sentence reads: "Your armies can move across water without the need for a fleet and those armies are considered fully supplied while at sea."

That update, along with a handful of minor corrections (typos mostly), will come out sometime next week when we release a set of free reference cards for all player units.

For future questions, you can also hop in our discord:
https://discord.gg/vQ2FKvR2

Or on facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/5753538251330049
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Customer avatar
Maciej W September 14, 2022 6:27 pm UTC
PURCHASER
All right, thanks a lot, I'll probably do that soonish!

Bonus question tho, for 1:
So would all the undead race units have +1 HP if the "Necromancy Schoolf of Magic" was chosen, or only the ones created by the used spells?

And another question, as long as I have you here:
3. You gain mana per season, however you lose mana after 1 turn, so if you don't have any storage capacity, you gain f.e. 8 mana and lose it all if unused in 1 turn and are left with 0 for the remaining 2 turns in the season?
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Customer avatar
John R September 14, 2022 6:29 pm UTC
CREATOR
That's correct. Getting those storage buildings are vital to keeping a magic-using realm flexible. Graveyards are a cheap way to get that started, otherwise, you can try trading/selling the mana to another player, creating some artifacts, or using it on that turn.
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 14, 2022 6:34 pm UTC
CREATOR
1a. That should only be for undead units that require concentration slots - I'll clarify that, too.
These are good, keep em' coming.
Reply
Customer avatar
Maciej W September 14, 2022 7:12 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Wow, those years of leading localization QA teams are finally paying off. Thanks for the praise :D
Well, there are no more questions per se, but there are some inconsistencies. F.e. in the rulebook there are "settlements" in the Provinces, but in the Google Sheets card, this is called "Structures".
Reply
Customer avatar
Maciej W September 14, 2022 8:07 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Ok, new question:
4. Buildings. Buildings go into the Provinces slots, right? So if, f.e. you have a temple in a Castle Province, you can recruit units that need a temple without a penalty, right? Or does it simply mean, that the entire realm needs to have 1 temple? Can you have more than 1 temple in the exact same Province? The entire "Buildings" section of the Rulebook is quite short on these details.
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Customer avatar
John R September 14, 2022 8:43 pm UTC
CREATOR
Buildings go into the settlement, but saying they go into a province is essentially the same thing for what it’ll affect in game terms.
If one of your units needs a temple, you just need one anywhere in the realm to avoid disadvantage on its Recruitment check.
You can build multiples of the same building in a province/settlement, and possibly dump everything in the capital. We found this wasn’t really a problem and it made losing a war/province less painful.
You can, however, only build a number of the same building up to your PB, so only two temples (or anything else) in your realm total at level 1.
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Customer avatar
September 15, 2022 6:04 am UTC
PURCHASER
One typo I noticed was that the Constrict and Slither abilities for the Yuan-ti Abominations say "Malisons" instead of "Abominations".
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Customer avatar
John R September 15, 2022 1:32 pm UTC
CREATOR
Good catch, we'll update that.
Customer avatar
Matthew M September 12, 2022 4:56 am UTC
PURCHASER
Two notes: Looks like there's a typo where Mountain Dwarves is not made a proper heading and just squished into Hill Dwarves.

And for the Precision Strike abilities, why the choice to not let them work when adjacent to an ally? Seems like the opposite of sneak attack.
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Customer avatar
John R September 12, 2022 8:15 am UTC
CREATOR
You're right, we'll get that changed, thanks!

And for Precision Strike, we wanted something that was the melee equivalent of Aim to encourage the dwarf player to think about positioning and maneuvering instead of simply clumping up and hoping for the best.
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Customer avatar
September 15, 2022 6:01 am UTC
PURCHASER
Huh. I assumed Aim should have said "an enemy unit" rather than "another unit". It seems like you should be able to have a line of archer units without having them interfere with each other.
Customer avatar
Daniel L September 08, 2022 2:22 am UTC
PURCHASER
I get that you scaled the prices down to reasonable numbers, but I don't see anywhere that describes by how much. Is it 100x, 1000x? Cross-campaigns between what happens at the C&C level and what happens at the individual level are kind of a challenge.
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Customer avatar
John R September 08, 2022 2:30 am UTC
CREATOR
That’s a really good question. Since C&C is setting agnostic, I was hesitant to put a number there. But I think 1 gp in C&C = 1000 gold in D&D is a good starting point - and then you might need to adjust for your world’s economy.
Customer avatar
Jeffrey L September 06, 2022 6:34 pm UTC
Are you planning on converting this for Fantasy Grounds? I'd love to talk to you about that.
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Customer avatar
John R September 06, 2022 7:05 pm UTC
CREATOR
I'm not sure how that process would go, but I'd love to find out. You can grab me and other players here:
https://www.facebook.com/groups/5753538251330049
Customer avatar
Daniel C September 06, 2022 9:38 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hello! A happy customer here,
Recently had a look, and after my purchase I've adored what you've done, very much am looking forward to any updates in the future.
Among such updates, might there possibly be anything towards having a mechanical representation of the realm's leader? be it king, head councilmen, Pirate leader, Underworld godfather, etc. Just thought it would be cool to have that tie - in, as well as making it an interesting component of the game as well.
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 06, 2022 11:49 am UTC
CREATOR
Glad you're enjoying it! We're working on an advisor system that might scratch the itch you're describing, so keep an eye out for that. And check out the free tokens we released recently.
Customer avatar
Douglas E September 05, 2022 2:44 pm UTC
PURCHASER
How many resources/buildings can be in each capital/city/town/village. Are each of them different and did I just miss that page in the book? Currently it seems best to just pile everything into the capital.
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 05, 2022 2:58 pm UTC
CREATOR
Settlement type doesn't limit it, so for starting resources, you could put them all in that capital province. The Exploration check to find more resources is open-ended/subject to DM interpretation, so they may let you find all your resources (assuming you spam Exploration tasks) in your capital, or they may tell you, "look, this area is tapped out, you'll need to start looking to your border provinces for new sources of wealth."
Customer avatar
Bianca A September 04, 2022 2:21 am UTC
Seeing this in roll20 would be very cool
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 04, 2022 2:30 am UTC
CREATOR
That's where we tested the map and battles, with everything else happening in discord. I'll probably release (for free) the unit tokens for all the player races we used.
Customer avatar
Dave P September 03, 2022 3:55 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Very cool idea - I can't wait to dig into this more!
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 03, 2022 5:25 pm UTC
CREATOR
Thanks! Let us know what you think.
Customer avatar
Keith H September 03, 2022 8:27 am UTC
PURCHASER
I'm loving the consistency and thought that's gone into this release. Was there a reason why the fillable character sheet was done via google docs and not as an additional fillable PDF file in with the download?
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 03, 2022 10:01 am UTC
CREATOR
Yes, and I'm afraid the honest short answer is "I'm not smart enough to know how to do that." ;D
The longer answer is that we expected players to be playing wherever, and a gdoc keeps that steady state - plus we can keep all that reference material in tabs so you don't have to keep switching between apps.
Customer avatar
Chris M September 03, 2022 5:34 am UTC
You had me at ‘4x’.
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 03, 2022 5:28 pm UTC
CREATOR
Little bit of civ, little bit of Master of Magic, little bit of Crusader Kings, little bit of Warhammer, baked together with 5e RPG goodness (meaning, the exterminate part of the 4x is limited so you don't lose friendships) - and baby, you got a stew going.
Customer avatar
William J September 03, 2022 2:50 am UTC
Can you make a option for us that purchase this PDF to, if 1000 is hit, we might be entitled to a discounted printed version?
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 03, 2022 9:56 am UTC
CREATOR
If I had my say, that $20 would get you a pdf and hardcover. The print version is largely in DMsGuild's hands, but I can tell you that as we release new optional mechanics (naval/airship combat, specialized advisors, a kismet/fate narrative mechanic to capitalize on failure), all that "DLC" will be free. I want this game to be a One-Time Purchase.
Customer avatar
Dave W September 02, 2022 5:09 pm UTC
Any plans on putting this in printed form soon? I am definitely interested but not in pdf form.
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 02, 2022 5:11 pm UTC
CREATOR
I hear you. As far as I know, we have to hit 1000 in sales for it to go to print.
Reply
Customer avatar
Kim F September 03, 2022 5:03 am UTC
PURCHASER
Unfortunately, that's still not a guarantee. You'll still need to have it in the right format and a bunch of other requirements. Regrettably not as easy as it should be. :(
Customer avatar
Sam M September 02, 2022 12:39 pm UTC
Congrats on making it to the top 4 DM's Guild Titles!
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 02, 2022 2:28 pm UTC
CREATOR
Thanks, Sam! Tell your friends we've got a whole new world of stories to tell.
Customer avatar
Daniel C August 31, 2022 11:37 pm UTC
PURCHASER
nice! I can't wait to check this out
Reply
Customer avatar
John R September 01, 2022 1:54 am UTC
CREATOR
Awesome! Let us know what you think.
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267
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File Last Updated:
September 30, 2022
This title was added to our catalog on August 31, 2022.