Attributes represent certain statistics that each character has and determine among other things how good a character is at certain actions.
Skills represent a character's expertise across various fields and together with skills determine how good or bad a character is at a given task.
Value thresholds, while not as important as the exact value of a skill, are taken into account in various events to determine the chances for a good or bad outcome. Skills are decided by education traits and can be affected by other trait types.
Dread is a measure of how feared a ruler is by their vassals. Enough dread can make characters intimidated or terrified, allowing diplomatic actions to succeed despite negative opinions. It is gained or lost by various actions that inspire fear, such as torturing or executing prisoners. Each character additionally has natural dread which is the value towards which dread will drift over time (either up or down), at a rate of 0.5 per month.
Intimidated characters are less likely to join factions or schemes against the character they're intimidated by, while a terrified character will never join factions or schemes against them. In addition, it affects their acceptance for various character interactions:
Each character has a hidden boldness attribute, which is decided by its traits. A character becomes intimidated by characters whose dread is 20 above their own boldness and terrified by characters whose dread is 45 above their own boldness.
Health is a measure of how likely a character is to die. Male characters are born with health between (and including) 4.5 and 4.9; female characters are born with health between (and including) 5.0 and 5.4.
Death is the end of a character's life. For landed characters, it triggers succession for any held titles. There can be multiple causes:
- When health is either Poor, Near Death or Dying, there is a chance at a given internal to die. The lower a character's health, the bigger this chance is.
- Upon success of a murder scheme, the targetted character dies.
- The Attempt Suicide decision has a chance for the character to die.
- Knights may die in duels, with this chance increasing with low prowess and other factors.
- Imprisoned characters may be executed by their jailors.
- Various events may cause death.
- See also: Breeding
Fertility represents a character's chance to have or cause pregnancy. Married couples and heterosexual lovers have a monthly chance to get the woman pregnant based on the average fertility of the two partners.
A character's base fertility is determined by their age:
- See also: Traits#Coping mechanisms
Stress is a measure of a character's mental health and is gained whenever a character does something that conflicts with their personality traits, someone they're close to dies, or the character is imprisoned in a dungeon. Stress ranges from 0 to 400, imposing various penalties and making the character vulnerable to mental break events. Mental break events can only trigger once every 5 years and grant the option to gain a trait (often a negative one such as Lunatic) and lose Stress or gain additional Stress. If a character reaches 400 Stress, it will trigger a level 3 mental break event and lose 100 Stress. At level 3, some mental breaks can kill the character, force them to kill another character including their own heir, or force them to abdicate.
Your character's stress level is indicated by a reddish bar to the left of your character's portrait at the lower left corner of the map screen.
|Level||Stress||Fertility||Health penalty||Attempt Suicide decision||Mental break traits|
|0–99||0||None||No mental breaks|
|200–299||−30%||Severe||Coping mechanisms, Arbitrary, Witch|
|300–399||−50%||Severe||Wrathful, Lunatic, Melancholic, Murderer|
A character is considered a child if they are below 16 years and an adult once they reach 16 years. A character can die of old age after reaching 60 years. Each starting character will have a number of lifestyle perks unlocked based on its age.
- Once a character reaches the age of 25, they have a 7.5% chance to lose a tiny amount of health each year. The chance increases by 2.2% each year.
- Once a character reaches the age of 45, they have a 10% chance to lose 1 prowess each year. The chance increases by 1.5% each year. A dynasty can prevent this by completing the Kin legacy.
- See also: Traits#Childhood traits
Characters between the age of 6 and 9 can be given an Education Focus geared towards one of the skills. This will default to one of the two attributes in their Childhood trait, but you can choose it manually with the button at the lower left of their portrait. When the character becomes an adult, they will gain a corresponding education trait.
The chance of the child getting a higher tier education is increased by the guardian's relevant skill plus half of their learning skill, as well as the child or guardian having a positive intelligence trait ( Quick, Intelligent, Genius). The guardian or child having a negative intelligence trait ( Slow, Stupid, Imbecile) will negatively affect their education, as will pushing them to an Education Focus that does not match their Childhood trait.
The guardian's council having a spouse that is focused on patronage, has a high learning education, high learning skill, or scholar trait, will increase the chance of the ward getting a better education.
If the child has a guardian of a different faith or culture, when given the guardian, it can be specified whether the child should be raised in the parent's or guardian's faith and/or culture. The child also has a chance to copy the guardian's personality traits. If the guardian has the Witch trait or secret, they will have the option to try converting their wards to witchcraft.
A guardian and a ward have +15 opinion towards each other.
Each child has five education levels tracked internally in the save file for each education focus. These five are
education_learning_variable. The value of this variable when the child turns 16 determines the level of education trait the child receives.
|Education Level||Min Education Variable||Max Education Variable||Example|
|Level 1||0||6||Naive Appeaser|
|Level 2||7||10||Adequate Bargainer|
|Level 3||11||14||Charismatic Negotiator|
|Level 4||15||N/A||Grey Eminence|
The education variable is a sum of a random roll (we will call "Education Roll") which occurs once per year (possibly on the child's birthday) from the age of seven, for a total of 8 occurrences. There are two outcomes for the education variable random roll ("Education Roll") either success or failure, where success garners the child two points, and failure garners the child zero points. By default the game provides the Education Roll a 60% chance of success and 40% chance of failure.
There are a number of factors which can alter the default Education Roll chances. These factors do not contribute a direct percentage to the roll, but instead influence the equation, and the factors may be either positive or negative values. In the example formula below, the factors which alter the Education Roll chances is represented by "Factor".
With each child's base success chance of an Education Roll at 60%, a child has a 10% of a level one education, 42% of a level two education, 41% of a level three education, and 7% chance of a level four education (This assumes the child does not have a guardian for any point). As there are nine Education Rolls and a child needs 15 or more points to receive a four star education trait, the child must be successful on almost every Education Roll to achieve the four star education trait!
|Education Trait Level Chances|
The second level perk of the Dynasty Legacy "Kin" states "Dynasty members get better education". In the game code this is achieved by setting the education variable for the ninth and final roll to success equaling three points and failure equaling two points. In essence the Legacy Perk provides the child a guaranteed two education variable points, with the final Education Roll providing an opportunity to earn one extra point. This Perk means a child will need to have successful Education Rolls on seven of the eight rolls to earn a four star education trait.
|Education Trait Level Chances with Level 2 Kin Dynasty Perk|
One factor in the game is the intelligence congenital trait. For instance a child with the "Genius" congenital trait has a factor of +20. Under this circumstance the Genius trait increases the odds of a successful Education Roll from 60% to 66.6%. The example math is provided below.
A guardian with the intelligence trait of Genius provides a Factor of +15 to the Education Roll chances. If a genius child is being educated by a genius guardian the chances of a successful Education Roll becomes 70.4%, with the example math provided below.
At the age of 3 each child is assigned a Childhood trait. If the child's focus does not match the child's trait there is a factor of -20 applied. For instance if a child has the trait "Bossy" and the focus is Diplomacy, the child would receive the factor of -20. In this circumstance the chance of a successful Education Roll drops to 50%.
The traits a child and guardian can have which effect the outcome are provided in the chart below.
|Trait||Child Trait Factor||Guardian Trait Factor|
|Quick / Shrewd||+10||+5|
|Slow / Dull||-10||-5|
|Childhood trait Matching||+0||N/A|
|Childhood trait Not Matching||-20||N/A|
The success of the Education Roll is also determined by the guardian's relevant attribute points. The "Primary Attribute" for a guardian (more important attribute) is the one which matches the focus of the child, and is determined by that value times 0.4. A guardian's Diplomacy attribute is part of the Factor for a child with a diplomacy focus. The "Secondary Attribute" is the guardian's Learning, which is multiplied by 0.2. The formula is shown below.
For instance a child with a focus in Diplomacy has a guardian with a 10 Diplomacy Attribute and a 15 Learning Attribute will provide a Factor of +7.
|Guardian Attribute Quick Math|
|Guardian Attribute||Child Focus||Learning Factor|
The Education Roll bonus provided by guardians with congenital traits of Genius, Intelligent and Quick are significantly more important than the attributes of the guardian alone. Under these circumstances an "underachieving" Genius guardian can provide equal value with a character with amazing stats.
Therefore the most important factors when choosing a guardian are:
- Someone you trust not to kill your child
- Value of Primary Attribute (which matches child's focus)
- Learning Attribute
A Genius guardian with 5 Diplomacy and Learning Attributes will provide a Factor of +18 (15 + 2 + 1) and successful Education Roll chance of 66% on a average child, while a guardian with 30 Diplomacy and 30 Learning Attributes will provide a Factor of +18 (12 + 6) and successful Education Roll chance of 66%.
|Hypothetical Guardian Attributes|
Each character in the game has a hidden "weight" value which ranges from -100 to 100. If your weight is -50 or below, you gain the Malnourished modfier, and the "Gain Weight" decision becomes available to you. If your weight is 50 or above, you gain the Obese modifier, and the "Lose Weight" decision becomes available to you. Being obese or malnourished gives −1 Health.
In addition to a character's current weight, each character also has a hidden "target weight" value, based mostly on traits, which is the weight they are drifting toward. Every three years, your real weight will drift closer to your target weight. When you feast, your current weight increases by a moderate amount, and when you hunt, your current weight decreases by a small amount. Afterward, your weight will eventually drift back toward your target weight. The "Lose Weight" decision decreases your target weight, and the "Gain Weight" decision adds to your target weight. Ending those decisions brings your target weight back to what it was before.
Switching to a Martial lifestyle will move your target weight closer to 0 (so that if you are underweight, your target weight will increase somewhat, and if you are overweight, your target weight will decrease somewhat). Being a Novice Hunter, Hunter, or Master Hunter, will also move your target weight closer to 0 by successive amounts.
The following traits and events also affect a character's target weight:
|Effect on target weight||Traits / Events|
|Large increase||Gluttonous, Lazy, Comfort Eater, "Gain weight" decision|
|Moderate increase||Drunkard, Hashishiyah, Gregarious, Greedy, Calm, Trusting, Legendary Reveler|
|Slight increase||Patient, Arrogant, Ambitious, Eager Reveler, Famous Reveler|
|Slight decrease||Shy, Humble, Zealous, Craven, Temperate|
|Moderate decrease||Imprisoned, Diligent, Wrathful, Leper, Impatient, Content, Fickle, Vengeful, Generous|
|Large decrease||Consumption, Cancer, Great pox, Paranoid, Inappetetic, in dungeon, "Lose weight" decision|
- Reddit user u/Adhesiveduck https://www.reddit.com/r/CrusaderKings/comments/iu2sed/the_education_system_explained_how_to_choose_a/
- Reddit user u/Stefan_Askanien https://www.reddit.com/r/CrusaderKings/comments/iutm4z/how_weight_is_calculated_and_how_to_fight_obesity/