Intrigue is one of the two paths to victory used in both the middle ages and the Crusader Kings series. It is the more indirect one, focusing on defeating other characters through subterfuge.
Schemes[edit | edit source]
Any character can be targeted with a scheme in accordance with the plans of the schemer. Each character can run one hostile scheme and one personal scheme at the same time, but a character cannot be targeted by a hostile scheme and a personal scheme simultaneously. Ongoing schemes can be canceled at any point.
Each scheme has a scheme power and each target of a scheme has a scheme resistance. Both are determined by the skill of the schemer and its target and both their spymasters. Every month a scheme has a chance of progressing one step, with the odds determined by the schemer’s scheme power and the target’s scheme resistance. Once the scheme finishes progressing it is executed with the current success chance, which determines whether the scheme succeeds or fails.
Various events can take place during a scheme.
Hostile schemes[edit | edit source]
Hostile schemes are executed in secret and have a secrecy value which determines whether the schemer will avoid being discovered when the scheme is executed or not. A high success chance increases the scheme's secrecy.
A character can run a second hostile scheme simultaneously if they have the Twice Schemed perk, or a 9 grandeur intrigue royal court (with royal courts DLC), for up to 3 simultaneous hostile schemes if they have both.
|Scheme||Skill used||Agents||Max secrecy||Max success chance||Success effect||Secrecy effect||Requirements|
|Murder||Intrigue||95%||95%||Target is killed||Character only gains the Murder or Attempted Murder secret||None|
|Abduct||Intrigue||85%||85%||Target is imprisoned||Character is not accused of the Crime of kidnapping||Kidnapper perk|
|Fabricate Hook||Intrigue||95%||90%||Gain a Hook on the target||Can execute the Scheme again||Truth is Relative perk or Vengeful trait against a Rival|
|Claim Throne||Learning||95%||90%||Gain Pressed Claim on the Liege's Primary Title||Do not lose a large amount of Prestige||Meritocracy perk|
Being at war with someone grants -50 Success Chance to Murder schemes and -200 Success Chance to Abduction schemes.
Hostile schemes can have agents - characters who contribute to the scheme. Their skills contribute twice less than those of the schemer but they increase the scheme power based on how close they are to the target. Agents may join a scheme if they stand to gain something or dislike the target. They can also be bribed with Gold to slightly increase their acceptance and a Weak Hook will greatly increase it. Characters who are terrified of the scheme target will never become agents except through the use of a Strong Hook. Agents will grant the following amount of success chance depending on their closeness to the target and their Intrigue.
A scheming character is protected from discovery while the scheme progresses but its agents are not. If an agent is discovered the target will gain a +5 hostile scheme resistance modifier for 2 years.
Personal schemes[edit | edit source]
Personal schemes do not use secrecy or agents. A failure prevents the scheme from being used again on the same character and may cause additional penalties.
|Scheme||Skill used||Success effect||Failure effect||Requirements|
|Convert to Witchcraft||Learning||
Secrets[edit | edit source]
Characters acquire secrets when they do something that is a crime or frowned upon. Secrets can be discovered through random events or via the Find Secrets spymaster task. If a secret is discovered, the character who uncovered it has two options. One option is to expose the secret, which will apply negative effects upon the target based on the severity of the secret. The other option is to blackmail the target. If the target agrees to the blackmail, the character will gain a Weak Hook if the secret is Shunned and a Strong Hook if the secret is Criminal. If the target refuses, the secret will be exposed. Secrets can be shared with members of the same House if the Dynasty has the 4th Coterie legacy.
The Is an illegitimate child out of wedlock secret is removed if the real parents eventually join in marriage or concubinage.
Hooks[edit | edit source]
A hook represents that a character owes you a favor or that you can coerce them in some way. Hooks can be gained in a variety of ways and can be used to force a character to do something beneficial. They come in two varieties:
- A weak hook can only be used once. They cannot be used to force a character to become an agent in a Murder scheme.
- A strong hook can be used multiple times, with a cooldown between uses. It also prevents the character from joining factions, declaring war, imprisoning or demanding religious conversion from the character holding the hook. Having a strong hook over a Realm Priest forces them to pay maximum contribution.
|Hook||Strength||Duration||Source||Can be fabricated|
|Blackmail (Weak)||Weak||10 years or until the secret is exposed||Blackmail character interaction over a secret which is a shunned practice|
|Favor||Weak||10 years||Random events
Ransoming an imprisoned character for a favor
Negotiating to release an imprisoned character for a favor
Faction members who helped put claimant on the throne receive a hook on new liege
Winning a war to gain a title for a character
|House Head||Weak||Permanent||House Head over when a child is born|
|Indebted||Weak||10 years||Random events|
|Manipulation||Weak||10 years||Random events|
|Threatened||Weak||10 years||Random events|
|Blackmail (Strong)||Strong||Until the secret is exposed||Blackmail character interaction over a secret which is a criminal practice|
|Fabrication||Strong||10 years||Fabricate a Hook scheme|
|Threatened Life||Strong||10 years||Fabricate a Hook scheme|
Spending hooks[edit | edit source]
Hooks can be spent (used) in a variety of ways.
- By spending a hook, you can make it much more likely that a character will accept a marriage proposal, join your council, come to your court, join a faction of your choice, or vote for your preferred candidate in elective successions. With a strong hook these interactions may be forced outside of primary heir disadvantageous marriages.
- A liege can use a hook on a vassal to negotiate a feudal contract in their favor without incurring tyranny.
- A vassal can use a hook on their liege to negotiate a feudal contract in their favor at all.
- A vassal who has a hook on his liege can use the Demand Council Position character interaction.
- A vassal with a hook on his liege can declare war on other vassals of their liege, even if their crown authority would normally prohibit this.
- Though it is very difficult to get a hook on your Head of faith, doing so would ensure the head of faith agrees to any one request you might make (such as granting you a divorce or a claim on a title).
- A hook can be used to force the person to join a hostile scheme, such as a murder scheme. Weak hooks provide a moderate acceptance modifier, while strong hooks will force acceptance into the scheme.
- The tier 1 stewardship lifestyle perk "Golden Obligations" allows demanding payment for hooks, assuming the person you have a hook on has the money to pay for it.
References[edit | edit source]