The Hollow Crown: A Qt3 Kingmaker Play By Forum Game


The Hollow Crown

A Quarter to Three Kingmaker Play By Forum Game.

“ENGLAND was tired of boy kings. There had been Henry III who was eight years old when they placed the crown on his head and who turned out to be a devious and petty man without dignity or courage. Then there had been Richard II who had too much dignity and great courage when aroused but who, after a good start, became a bad king. And now here was Henry VI, an infant of less than a year, with England in the midst of a major war and with two factions at home fighting for control of the government. Nothing good could be expected under the circumstances. Henry became a gentle and devotional boy, with the qualities which often go with early piety—a little smugness, some stubbornness, and a certain inflexibility. He grew into a saintly man and it was a pity he could not have gone into the church. Certainly he was ill fitted to hold the factions in control, to direct the war in France, and, in the end, to fight a cruel civil war which went on and on, through triumphs and defeats, to end in his mysterious death in the Tower.”
Costain, Thomas B. The Last Plantagenets . New York City: Doubleday, 1962.

Kingmaker is an Avalon Hill maximum 7 Player light diplomacy and negotiation wargame set during the Wars of the Roses.

Players seek to use their factions to crown the last Yorkist or Lancastrian claimant to the throne as King or Queen of England. Looking for Seven Players. I’ll be moderating. I’ll be organizing the game now, and it should kick off before or after Christmas (whenever the Westphalia PBF is concluded).

Our Seven Players are:

@Panzeh @CF_Kane @Ironsight @Cuthbert @CraigM @Kolbex @David2

Game Primers - Quick “How To’s” and PBF Rules and Protocols and Whatnot

Movement Primer

This is the first in a series of Primers that I’ll post from Time to Time. I’ll eventually delete Primer Posts and move the contents upthread to the Reference section.

Normal Movement - A Noble may move up to Five Spaces. Entering a Forest Space ends a Move. A Group of Nobles starting together may move as a Group, if desired.

Road Movement - Any Noble, or a group of Nobles starting together, may move along a road as far as they desire. They must stop if they enter a Space with a Town or Castle that is nuetral or controlled by another faction. They are then in that space, outside the Walls, essentially. Note that neutral Noble Castles (the little shields) do not impede Road Movement (the map above hasn’t/won’t mark Castles owned by your nobles with faction markers to keep clutter down and improve visibility. The Shields should suffice. If it becomes important, I may mark ones on roads…we’ll see…).

Sea Movement - A ship may move up to 5 squares in a turn. A ship may stay at sea unless forced into port by an Event card. A ship’s movement may not be blocked while at sea. It may never move over land but may enter a friendly or unfortified port. A port is counted as a separate square in movement.

A ship may move along an estuary to reach a port. A ship may never enter an unfriendly or neutral port unless ordered there by an Event card or when attempting to besiege it with her passengers.

A ship that occupies or involuntarily enters a neutral port may leave in its turn. A ship that occupies or involuntarily enters an unfriendly port may leave only with permission of the player controlling the port.

Note that all sea areas that look contiguous are contiguous. Except Scotland. Ships kenna sail around Scotland via the North, laddies.

Sea Transportation - To embark a Noble counter, a ship must occupy a friendly or unfortified port… A ship may embark any Noble counter(s) which occupy the square in which the port is located at the start of her move. The ship then immediately moves out to sea carrying the passengers on board. The troop strength of the Noble(s) traveling on a ship at sea can never exceed the carrying capacity of the ship, printed on the ship’s counter. The troop strength of Noble(s) can be split between two or more ships as long as they, travel together.

For a ship to voluntarily enter and disembark Noble counter(s) in a neutral or unfriendly port her passengers must participate in a siege of the port.

Passengers of a ship who involuntarily enter a neutral or unfriendly port must attempt to siege the port. If unable to siege this port then they must disembark from the ship and remain in the open.

Noble counter(s) cannot stay aboard a ship at port. They must disembark at the beginning of the next turn or leave the port.

A ship may embark Noble counter(s) only at the start of its move. Disembarkation of passengers ends its move. Royal heirs may accompany nobles to sea.

A ship whose Crown deck card is returned to the Crown deck or which changes ownership while carrying passengers remains under the control of the previous owner until it next touches port.

Play-By-Forum Primer


The first few posts of the thread will always have game reference materials: A Blank map for reference with a terrain key, the charts, rules and other Sundry items. More will be added as necessary to include the sequence of play.

One of the Top Posts will always have the Current Situation Map; a map with all the pieces as things stand.

The Faction Status Post will always have all current factions: the cards as assigned to various nobles, updated when necessary by me. This is open information to all p[layers

Moderator Role and Game Play

All Event or Crown Deck Draws will be done by the Moderator and sent via PM to the Player, if needed, or played in Channel here. Only held cards by players are private information in this game.

Any necessary die rolls will be done by the Moderator. I may do it in Vassal, I may use orkos, I may delegate it. Whatever speeds things up the most.

Discards, Other Card Stuff - The Event Discard Deck may never be examined. The Crown Card Discard Deck may never be examined. The Chancery (a Special Discard Deck for Offices, Titles and Bisoprics) may never be examined, though, once Setup is completed, everyone will be able to take not of what is put in there… The Game uses event Card draws for combat and other functions. For ease of play, I will not display excess cards (sometimes you need to keep drawing until a relevant card is drawn). Also the event Deck is shuffled each time an Embassy card is drawn as an event, anyway. The game, in its rules, is tough on all you card counters out there. This ain’t Blackjack.


Any and all private negotiation between players is encouraged and essential to the game. I encourage that you cc me on communications with others from time to time to aid the alternate history narrative-aspects of this PBF, but it isn’t essential if you forget.

All player moves or actions will be announced in thread.

Player Turns, Protocol and Etiquette

Regarding Diplomacy - Time Waits for No One. By this I mean that Diplomacy should be ongoing. Players’ turns and movement/combat will not be delayed by a “Wait, I’m waiting on the Pumpkin faction to move with me/agree on the Duke of Hossenpfeffer to be the Commander” Post. Alliances should have that stuff figured out.

Checking in – everyone, even when its not your Turn, should be checking in regularly to see what the game situation is. Which leads to…

The Aunt Hildegard Rule – If Aunt Hildegard is visiting, you’re driving the Kids to Summer Camp, there has been a major flood in the House, or you’ve been selected to be a Sushi Chef Trainee and will be out of pocket for your turn, let me know and provide me with instructions on what to do for your turn. Really, Movement and Combat are the only things you need to make active, considered decisions about in a timely fashion. And the game isn’t filled with reactive, ping pong decisions, so you should know when your turn is coming up. Which leads to…

The “Sweating Sickness” Corollary – If you are due to do your turn, and you do not respond in a 24 Hour period, I will do your turn, but all Movement, Combat and other voluntary active decisions (Crowning an Heir in the Coronation Phase; calling a Parliament, etc.) will be on hold as your Faction deals with the Sweating Sickness. Events will be drawn, implemented and held cards stored in your hand. The same goes for Crown Card Draws, they will be held in your hand and played later, when you can chime in/provide guidance. But we need to be aware of…

The Parliament in Session Exception – Parliament in session is a very separate beast, game-wise, and slows down the action. Votes and Roberts rules-y stuff will happen, as it has a very different pace. So, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Combat Phase Primer 1

Battle Primer

Any Group of Nobles from a Faction or from Allied Factions (in any of their Player Turns) may Attack any other Group of Nobles that are in the open if they are in the same area in a Combat Phase. If the attacking Nobles are from more than one faction a Noble must be selected as Commander beforehand. The Attacking group of Nobles must outnumber the defenders, or they cannot attack.

Note that any Noble may only engage in any Combat Phase Action (Battle, Siege or Storm, Ambush or Sea Combat) one per Game Round.

Odds are determined on the Combat Odds Chart.

Event Cards are drawn until one with a Combat result (Pink Background on Half) is the chosen card.

If the Odds on the card are less than the Odds found on the table, the Attackers win.

If the Odds on the card are equal to or greater than the odds found on the table, the Battle is Indecisive.

If the Card says “Majority Victory” the side with mostest wins-est.

If the Card says “Bad Weather Delays Attack” then nothing happened, and the Attack produces no result. This counts as a Combat Phase Action for all Nobles attempting the Attack.

Any Nobles on the Event Card who participate in the Battle are dead. If the Card says “Use Nobles Killed Table” I have to roll on that table to see who dies.

Here is an Example. In our example The Boar Faction (@Panzeh) and The Staff Faction (@David2) are Allied. The Staff’s Earl of Devonshire and the Boar’s Duke of Norfolk are together in Boar’s Combat Phase due west of Salibury. The decide to attack The Acorn’s (@CraigM) Duke of Somerset. Staff graciously accepts that the Duke of Norfolk is the Commander (He’s the big dog on that side) before the attack is announced.

The Factions:

So the Boar-Staff Army has 170 Knights and Men at Arms. Poor Somerset only has 100. If he was within two spaces of London he’d have 300 Men and he might be the stabby one in his Combat Phase,and the Boar-Staves couldn’t attack him now. But he ain’t, so he don’t have ‘em, Guv. If he was north of the River Trent, he’d have 30 more men. Again, he ain’t. So we have 170 Attacking 80. Let’s look at the chart now…

So the weaker force’s strength is on the Left Side of the Chart running vertically. We find poor Somerset with 80 Men (the Town troops are only used on the attack). Then we read to the Right until we find the Attacker’s Strength or the closest smaller Strength strength. The Boar-Staves are on the Chart at 160 as 240 is more than their strength (170). We look all the way up to the top and we see 2-1 Odds. This is an Ill-Conceived attack!

We now draw cards.

We draw:

Refuge: Three Turns:


That woulda been handy in an Event Card Draw for some lucky player, but now it just gets discarded.

We Draw:


We have a Bad Day at Black Rock. The Boar-Staves got “lucky” and won. The Card Draw was less than, but not equal to the Attacker Odds (Majority – Less than 2-1). But the end result is that the crafty Staff Faction won. The Duke of Norfolk (Mowbray) and the Duke of Somerset (Beaufort) are as dead as Dillinger. All their Bishoprics, Offices and any assigned Titles (none here) go to the Chancery. They themselves go to the Crown Deck discard along with their Towns (when redrawn their Heir appears in-game).

Devonshire chuckles as he is the last man standing. If there had been more Nobles surviving from more than one faction the Commander chooses the division of spoils. Unless he kicks the bucket. In which case the Noble with the most troops on the Allied side divides the spoils (muscle). We’ll talk Spoils later.

Combat Phase Primer 2

Ambush Primer

Ambushes are pretty simple. If a Player desires, he may launch an Ambush with Noble(s) under his control in a Combat Phase against a force that outnumbers him if they are in the same space. An Event Card Draw is made by me until we get a Event Card with combat information on it (Pink) Card. If the last Noble death on the Combat Card is in the Defending force, he dies. All Ambushing Nobles are captured by the defenders (more on Capture later). If the Card said “Bad Weather Delays Attack” then there is no result, but the Noble(s) who performed the Ambush have performed their Combat Phase action that Turn (like in a Battle). Ambushes are basically a way for an outnumbered force or a Faction to try and use a “pawn” or a doomed force to take out someone in another Faction.

Siege Basics (and Control) Primer

Factions (or Allied Nobles) may attempt to besiege Neutral or Unfriendly Towns, Castles and Cities.

To Declare a Siege, a Group of Nobles must outnumber the Occupying Force plus the Garrison of the Location.

This little slice of Wales and Western England has a little bit of everything.

Unfortified Towns (like Tewksbury), have no game effect. Parliaments can be called there, and if it has a little cross on it, it’s a Cathedral town (coronations can happen). But other than those non-Movement/non-Combat game elements, they have no in-game effect.

So all the “Shield” Castles have 100 Garrisons. Can hold 300 Additional Troops. They can be Controlled by a Faction if taken.

The Purple Castles are Royal Castles and have 200 Garrisons. Can hold 300 Additional Troops. They can be controlled by a Faction if taken.

Towns (like Swansea up there) have a 200 Garrison. Can hold 400 Additional Troops. They can be controlled by a Faction if taken.

Open Towns (Like Hereford up there) have a 200 Garrison. Can hold 400 Additional Troops. But they can be occupied by anyone, no siege necessary. If occupied by an Unfriendly Force, they must be besieged. They are never controlled. Possession is 10/10’s of the law with Open Towns.

Cities (like Bristol) have a 300 Garrison. Can hold Unlimited Additional Troops. They can be controlled by a Faction if taken.

If a Noble has control of a Castle or Town and that Noble is killed, the Faction loses control of that Castle or Town. Everyone inside is expelled to the space.

If a Faction gains control of a Castle or Town (via Card Draw and Playing a Card in-Faction) that Faction immediately gains control of a Castle or Town. Everyone inside is expelled to the space, at the new controller’s discretion.

Besieging Primer

So you wanna besiege something? OK. First you gotta be in the Space. Second, you gotta outnumber occupants plus the Garrison. If you have all that in the coin purse, then you can do one of two things:

Storm – You fight a Battle against Occupants + Garrison. This can be a tricky thing, you may need a lotta numbers. So if this isn’t your bag ('cause you think you would lose) then you may…

Place the Location Under Siege. I put a “Under Siege” Marker on the Location.

If you have a location “Under Siege” for One Round, in your next turn, the Siege is automatically resolved. I draw a card like in Ambush, but all nobles on the card are killed. You capture all occupants.

While waiting that One Round, though, Unfriendly Factions can come and attempt to do Battle with you, Ambush you and whatnot outside the walls and attempt to relieve the Siege (either win the Battle, or get your strength below the level needed to besiege the damn place). In that kind of Battle (to Relieve a Siege) any Nobles inside the Walls may participate in the Battle with the Relieving Force, but the Garrison Strength isn’t used (they are happy and safe inside).

Captured Nobles and Royal Heirs Primer

Capturing Nobles and Royal Heirs . Captured Nobles and Royal Heirs are Spoils (the Commander decides who gets what, etc.) . After any Battle, Ambush or Siege Resolution, any Nobles who were defending and lost and didn’t get whacked by the Day’s proceedings are captured. The Faction that gets the spoil of a Captured Noble can choose to Ransom any Captured Noble back to his Faction for any Unplayed Card(s) in the owning Faction’s Hand. This price may include future Crown Deck Draws. That is all up to the Ransomer and the Ransomee. Both must agree. Deals are binding. Any Captured Nobles not ransomed back are given the sad release of Ransom by Cold Steel (they are executed).

Royal Heirs Captured may be held by the Faction who captures them or smothered in their bed/drowned in a cask of Bordeaux/taken out to the woods and stabbed from multiple directions, etc.

Remember, no faction can control a Royal Heir from both houses of York and Lancaster for more than one Round. After one Round’s grace period, Heirs from one House or the other must be retained and the others “dealt with”.

Combat Phase Primer 3

Odds and Ends

Town Fighting

This only occurs in the following situation:

Two forces both occupy the same town, city or castle and one attacks the other.

The player controlling the town, city or castle may choose to attack the unfriendly noble(s) inside. This may be done with the garrison and any of his forces inside and/or moved into the town, city or castle. This is resolved as a Battle.

Sea Combat

Combat at sea is fought just like a battle on land. Each ship’s combat strength is represented by its passenger capacity. The strength of any passengers is ignored. It is assumed that the difference between ship’s capacity and the strength of its passengers is made up of sailors.

When ship(s) of one faction enter a square occupied by ship(s) of another faction (not in port), the moving ship(s) may choose to attack. All ships in the same faction or alliance may defend together at the option of the controlling player(s). The ratio of ships capacities of the opposing fleets are compared and an Event card is drawn to determine the victory as in land battle. The “nobles killed” section is still utilized. If one side is victorious, they capture all ships, nobles and Royal heirs of the defeated faction. They may execute or ransom them as in normal combat.

Ship(s) named on “Ship” crown cards are immediately placed under the control of the capturing faction and the “Ships” card(s) given to one or more of the noble passengers.

A ship or ships of the Warden or Admiral remain under the control of the capturing faction, until it enters a port, then it immediately reverts back to the control of the Admiral or Warden. The victorious fleet may choose to scuttle captured ships of the Admiral or Warden. If this occurs, the ships can be returned to play only within the conditions outlined in “Gales at Sea” card in the card section.

A “Vacillating Allegiance” card is ignored unless the Vacillating Noble forms the majority of the ship’s capacity. In this case, the ship either goes to any port (of opposing players choice) and the noble home, or the ship joins in with the opposing fleet. Any other nobles on board are captured.


A ship may blockade a port by occupying a sea square adjacent to the port and naming the port being blockaded. If a ship(s) in the port leave that port to sail, they must stop in that hex and join battle with the blockading ship(s). A blockading ship or fleet which is forced into unfriendly port as a result of “Storms at Sea” and which are unable to successfully besiege the port are prisoners in the port and can leave only by permission of the player controlling the port.

This isn’t really a game of medieval sea warfare. The Naval Combat rules are really to prevent gaminess with nobles hanging out at sea to avoid in-game events.

Thus Endeth the Battle Lesson Parte the Laste.

The Moderator


Rules and Other in-Forum Quick Reference Materials (Charts and Whatnot)

Game Rules:

Small Rules addition, The above Rules were updated with the Following:
Duke of Lancaster and Duke of York Noble Cards (The Plantagenets) These cards represent the Households of the Duke of Lancaster and the Duke of York. Each is given to the Faction which first captures, or subsequently possesses the royal heir currently first in succession for the House of Lancaster or the House of York. Either Card may be allocated Offices, etc. (except Titles, it is already titled). The Card accompanies that Royal Heir on map and is present for any battles, etc.

Regardless of printed Battle results, the Duke of Lancaster and Duke of York Cards cannot be killed in Battle. If that Royal Heir is killed or dies, the Card, with any current Offices, awards, etc., is given to the Faction which controls the new royal heir currently first in succession. If all Royal Heirs of the House of Lancaster or the House of York that are counters (to wit: NOT Beaufort or Neville ) are dead, then that card is out of play. All current Offices, Awards, etc., that it possesses are then returned to the Chancery.
crown-card-noble-1 crown-card-noble-2

Combat Odds Chart

Nobles Killed Table:

Note: This chart is only being used in this game is a result of “Use Noble Killed Table” is drawn on the card. The Loyalty Table is not being used.

Parliament Chart

Line of Succession Chart

Regarding the above, Don’t Forget that the Noble Beaufort is the last Lancastrian Heir and the Noble Neville is the last Yorkist Heir.

Faction Information

Player “Seating Order” (from L to R, and the “Table” is in a circle):

@Kolbex The Earl of Wiltshire’s Faction
2 Event Held Card and 3 Crown Held Cards in Hand.

@Cuthbert The Earl of Kent’s Faction
2 Held Event and 0 Crown Card

@CraigM The Duke of Somerset’s Faction
3 Held Event Card and 1 Crown Card in Hand

@Panzeh The Duke of Norfolk’s Faction
3 Held Crown Cards in Hand, 3 Event Cards in Hand.

@CF_Kane The Earl of Northumberland’s Faction
3 Held Event Card, 2 Held Crown Card in Hand

@Perky_Goth The Earl of Westmorland’s Faction
1 Held Event Cards, 2 Held Crown Cards in hand.

@David2 The Duke of Buckingham’s Faction
2 Held Crown Card and 1 Event Card.

Blank Reference Map and Terrain Key

The Round Thirteen Map (Current)

The Royal Heirs and their Locations, All Faction Makers and Nobles are on Map

Round 12 - 1465 Play order is:

1.) @CF_Kane 2.) @Perky_Goth 3.) @David2 4.) @Kolbex 5.) @Cuthbert 6.)@CraigM 7.) @Panzeh

Current Alliances:

Yorkists: Boar-Knot-Portcullis-Moon (@Panzeh, @CF_Kane, @Perky_Goth, @Kolbex).

Lancastrians: Staff-Sun-Acorn (@David2, @Cuthbert, @CraigM)

Quick Key: Current Nobles in Factions and Heirs Controlled:

Of course the crown is hollow, otherwise you couldn’t put it on your head.

The year is 1455 Anno Domine.

A debilitating bout of catatonia had struck the feeble and ineffective Lancastrian King Henry VI in August 1453. England was already suffering defeats and loss of territories in France as the Hundred Years War there ground to conclusion. As well, there were sporadic rebellions and unrest in England as high taxes and loss of trade brought graft and defeat, not security, trade and victory. Richard, Duke of York, who ostensibly had a better claim to the throne than the Lancastrian Henry, had been the presumptive Heir to the throne, and promised a steady hand upon his succession. These hopes were dashed when the heretofore impotent Henry’s union with the steely and resourceful Queen, Margaret of Anjou led to the birth of Edward, Prince of Wales, in October 1453.

Richard had already been under court suspicion prior to the King’s incapacity and had been humiliated and intermittently imprisoned in the Tower. Some of the Pro-Lancastrian Nobles had attributed conspiratorial efforts to him; that he had aided the fomenting of Cades’ Rebellion which raged in the North and had sparked unrest in the South. He had returned from Ireland, where he was Lord Lieutenant to aid in putting down the rebellion (according to some) or to take advantage of the chaos and engage in a Coup d’Etat of sorts and seize power (according to others). In any event he was stripped of his Office and forced to submit to the King and re-proclaim his fealty.

However, Richard had been called upon by many Magnates and Factions in the Realm to become Lord Protector of the Realm when Henry’s incapacity began, in the hopes that he could bring order to the Realm and put an end to the chaos. After the birth of the Heir Edward, Margaret, who had chafed at the perceived and real threat to her power and station, found her hand strengthened. With the backing of aligned Magnates and interests in the Kingdom, she had subtly and stubbornly resisted Richard of York’s efforts. With tension between the emerging factions in the Kingdom at an all-time high an insurmountable breach had now opened between the Yorkists and Lancastrians.


On Christmas Day, 1454, King Henry, seemingly miraculously, regained his senses. Richard was stripped of his title as Lord Protector, and before further action could be taken against him, he had fled London for his stronghold at York. The strife in the Realm, the endless chaos and uncertainty, and the factional struggle had finally reached a point of no return.

Currently, all Player Factions have received their initial Card Draws per game setup and are determining their faction setups, locations of control and for some Nobles, their starting locations. When this is completed, I will post the final “At Start” map.

Play can then begin at any time after that.

“This late dissension grown betwixt the peers

Burns under feigned ashes of forg’d love,

And will at last break out into a flame:

As festered members rot but by degree,

Till bones and flesh and sinews fall away,

So will this base and envious discord breed.”

William Shakespeare, Henry VI, Part 1

Thanks for all your effort on this @Navaronegun. Should be a fun time.

Not sure if @CF_Kane’s pretzel or @David2’s roadkill marker is my favorite.

Excited to follow this!

It’s a KNOT!!

And a STAFF!

🥨 Power!

Cutting the Gordian Pretzel was one of Alexander the Great’s most legendary feats

Faction Leader Profile

@CraigM The Duke of Somerset’s Faction (Acorn)


Edmund Beaufort, 2nd Duke of Somerset, Constable of the Tower Of London

Edmund Beaufort

Edmund Beaufort was the third surviving son of John Beaufort, 1st Earl of Somerset, and Margaret Holland. His paternal grandfather was John of Gaunt, giving him royal lineage. Though the head of a great noble House, the Beauforts were poor, possessing only 1/10 of the income of Richard of York, as a comparison. Somerset’s early successes in the Royal Court’s inept and haphazard efforts in the War on the Continent, progressively growing more and more futile, endeared him to both Henry and Margaret and in 1448 he was created Duke of Somerset.

This time in France began to see enmity grow between Richard of York and Somerset, with Somerset replacing Richard as Commander in France in 1448. Richard had pushed back against the Crown’s inadequate and fiscally irresponsible direction regarding the conflict, but Somerset’s relationship with the Court was much more amicable and pliant.

Rumors in his youth of an affair with Henry V’s widow, Catherine of Valois, ostensibly to gain favor in Henry’s court and his loyal backing of what were seen as poor policy decisions in France gave Somerset a reputation as a man on the make, not afraid to back any Royal idea, no matter how disastrous, or cut any corner, no matter how blatantly, to advance himself and his house politically in the Court, and therefore financially.

Upon the death of the Duke of Suffolk, the Lord High Admiral and Chief of Henry’s advisors, Somerset became the most influential, and the closest to the Queen. Somerset was so distrusted by the majority of the Nobility that they petitioned the Court for his dismissal, but this was rejected. However, with the King’s Incapacity in 1453, Richard was named by Parliament as Lord Protector of the Realm and Somerset found himself sent to the Tower of London.

However, upon the King’s recovery on Christmas 1454, Somerset was released from the Tower and restored as a chief advisor to the Court, York’s Regency as Lord Protector coming to an end. Somerset was subsequently named Constable of the Tower of London.

Many thanks! I’ll read through that again a few times to better digest, but that is a helpful illustration!

Faction Leader Profile

@Panzeh The Duke of Norfolk’s Faction (Boar)


John Mowbray, 3rd Duke of Norfolk, Constable of Dover Castle


Framlingham Castle, still remarkably preserved in 2008, was Mowbray’s East Anglian headquarters, from where he directed many of the attacks on his rivals and opponents

An Intermittent Ally of Richard of York, preceding and during the King’s Incapacity, Mowbray had sided with Richard originally in opposing the royal favourite Beaufort, Duke of Somerset, in 1450. Mowbray believed that Margaret was using her influence to create a class of specially favored Nobles and force her policies on the Realm at the expense of consensus with the Nobility. He formed an enmity for Somerset in particular, seeing him as the exemplar of these efforts. After dealing with Cade’s Rebellion in the North, Mowbray was appointed, with the Duke of York and Earl of Devon, to maintain law and order in the City of London for the duration of a Parliament, They were to also deal with elements there that had been causing unrest in sympathy with Cade’s Rebellion. Mowbray used this royal permission to operate in the South with men under arms to continue his bitter feud with Somerset and used his retinue to skirmish with some of Somerset’s allies and partisans in East Anglia.

At this time, Mowbray is said to have distanced himself from Richard. Though a bitter opponent of Somerset, he is thought to have been more wary of Richard’s more open hostility and potential ambition at this time. Other accounts indicate that York may have abandoned the alliance because of his objection to Mowbray’s violent behavior in East Anglia at a time when York was presenting himself as a candidate of law and order.

When the King was incapacitated, Mowbray used the opportunity to bring charges in Parliament against Somerset for his failure to prevent the loss of the “two so noble Duchies of Normandy and Guyenne” in France. Somerset was imprisoned in the Tower for the next year, with the active assent of Richard of York, the Lord Protector. In April 1454, Mowbray was asked to join York’s regency council, and although he swore allegiance to York’s government, claimed to be too ill to attend, interpreted by some as an indicator that Richard and Mowbray were still very far apart.

However, upon the King’s recovery on Christmas 1454, Somerset was released from the Tower and restored as a close favorite of the Court. With York’s Regency as Lord Protector coming to an end, Mowbray at this point, fears for his safety. He may need to choose a side.

I 'm not seeing any Royal (purple) castles. Can you point one out? Thanks.

So nobles always have the same amount of troops? I mean, unless they get a new town or title, but if they fight a battle it’s not diminished?

Or an Office or a Bishopric that brings troops - Correct. If they lose in Battle though they are captured (and very well could see the chop).

Faction Leader Profile

@CF_Kane Earl of Northumberland’s Faction (Knot)


Henry Percy, 2nd Earl of Northumberland

Alnwick Castle, a keystone to the Percy hold on the North.

The Percy family traces its roots to the village of Percy in Normandy, from where Sir William De Percy accompanied William the Bastard Conqueror in 1066. The Percys were granted modest estates in Yorkshire during the reign of the Conqueror. Nearly every Percy was a Warden of the Marches and Scottish affairs were often of more concern than those in England. This position and the need to maintain large levies on behalf of the Crown led to the Barons de Percy becoming very powerful militarily. The expansion of Percy landholdings in the Northwest after the construction of Ainwick Castle in Norhumberland only increased this.

In 1377 Henry Percy, the Fourth Baron de Percy, was created the First Earl of Northumberland at King Richard II’s coronation. The Percys supported Henry of Bolingbroke’s rebellion against his cousin, King Richard II, and his Coronation as King Henry IV. Richard’s indecisive Sottish policy and the limits it placed on Percy activities played a large part in this support. However, Henry IV also began to place limits on activities of the Northern March Lords and was also seen as dealing indecisively with the Welsh rebellion by Owain ab Gruffydd. This led the First Earl of Northumberland’s son, also Henry Percy, commonly known as Sir Harry Hotspur, to throw in with Owain ab Gruffydd along with other Percy relations in rebellion against the King. Hotspur was killed at the Battle of Shrewsbury in 1403. His wife and 10 year old Heir took refuge in Scotland. The First Earl was killed in the Battle of Bramham Moor in 1408 and the Percy Rebellion was over. And so, it seemed, the Percy Family.

However, after the accession to the throne of Henry V, Joan of Beaufort, the King’s Aunt, interceded for young Henry de Percy who married Joan’s daughter Eleanor. Henry V, eager to reconcile with the Percys and make use of their vast networks in the North, restored the Earldom of Northumberland to young Henry de Percy in 1414.

Henry Percy, 2nd Earl of Northumberland, grateful and perhaps mindful of the lessons of his forebears, proved a loyal and able servant of the Crown. When Henry V died in 1422, Northumberland was appointed member of the council chosen by Parliament to govern during the minority of Henry VI. Northumberland was consistently a Lord of the Northern March, and very occupied with Scottish affairs. However, by 1450 various family disputes with the Neville Family, the other great family on the Northern March with its power center in the East, began to escalate into small-scale warfare over land holdings. These disputes began to converge with national politics as The Nevilles were by this time closely associated with the House of York. The natural option for Northumberland was to side with Duke of Somerset and Lancasters. During Richard of York’s Regency as Lord Protector during King Henry VI’s incapacity, Northumberland quietly provided support to Margaret of Anjou in her efforts to resist Richard’s policies. But now, with the King recovered, Richard back in York and Somerset restored to favor, what will he do? The Nevilles have not declared. Which way will the House of Percy turn?

OK, sadly none of those are purple on my old Avalon Hill board so It doesn’t look like I can use that to follow the game.