Monday, October 12, 2015

French Factions Relationship Map

I'm behind on blog posts. Here is something I put together for my players before our last session. It's a relationship diagram (with the connections left for them to fill in). The diagram is focused on the Prince de Condé. Members of his faction are in the blue pentagon. Other factions that are important historically or that are allied or opposed to Condé are also included on the diagram. Similar maps could be created from the perspective of any of the factions. A unified player group could be treated as its own faction.

Each faction lists two or more people who are important in that faction. In choosing who to include I used a combination of who historically was important in that faction combined with whenever possible including NPCs who had some prior interaction or relationship with the PCs. For a few NPCs I had to make some minimally educated guesses about who they were aligned with so any historical corrections or questions are welcome and will be included if it doesn't violate the campaign continuity.

One other thing I did was to add a little crown symbol with a number to indicate order in line for the throne. Including that one visual element really helped clarify why factions were formed around those four grands and it really brought home to the players how high lofty an aim messing with the Prince really was. The visual representation also made it easier to navigate in the complex world of French factional politics I could see the visual representation had an immediate influence on their their strategies to decrease Condé's power and influence. I hope it also helps the players in navigating the complex world of French factional politics.

Politically this is a much more complicated game setting than I have ever run before and I think that a visual representation is a big help. I wish I had been able to create one sooner. So far, the technique has been a great way to help everyone see the factions in the game.

Download the file.

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