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Rural Developments


The Rural Economy is one step on from the Wilderness. It is based around country side activities – hunting, trapping, farming, fishing and the like – although there is some room for business and religion. Rural areas probably aren’t the best place for serious (NPC) casters, merchants or craftsmen – they all need access to lots of customers and good trade links.

However, even the smallest village some sort of trade link if it is to grow larger – and that normally means a road, having access to a navigable river or being situated on the coast. You will notice, later, that the larger Defensive Developments need a road, or other transport link, before you can build them.

GM Note

Defensive Core

Each village starts with a Defensive Building - after all you aren’t going to attract people into your village if you can’t protect them from bandits, kobolds and wandering monsters. After all, stronghold is defined as “a place that has been fortified so as to protect it against attack”. You start by building one of these defensive buildings. It is OK to start with a Watchtower and upgrade it as you develop your village.

These military developments provide a base for your patrols and guards and may form the basis for a village, but do not always provide you with a home. The officer in charge of the military often acts as the Lord's Bailiff in the hex, and maybe tasked with looking out for your interests in the area.

Note: Troops

H/PFortified Villa (★★★)200011
PFort 200002
M/PBarracks (★★★)300012
H/PFortified Manor (★★★★)400112
  • NOTE_1: In some circumstances you might want to consider a Garrison from the Urban rules. However, it is very difficult to balance - remember that Defence MUST be lower than Econ, Loy or Stab. (If that doesn't make sense yet, it will do eventually)
  • Note_2: You might also want to look at the community Jetty described further down the page. It is capable of housing a few defence points that could, under some circumstances, function as the defensive core for a village.


  • Watchtower – Little more than three or four rooms stacked on top of each other, with a guard post at the top. Often placed near roads or gates they provide basic protection when required. Very basic accommodation for the troops, but better than being in the field. Troops (1x Light Foot). It is normally under the command of a Sergeant. Can be upgraded to a Fort or a Fortified Villa.
  • Fortified Villa – Little more than a watchtower with a nice house attached for the owner/commander. Troops (1x Light Foot). Can be upgraded to a Barracks or a Fortified Manor.
  • Fort - a small, lightly defended complex, designed to house light troops. It might be the defensive heart of a village or be a lone outpost in the wilderness. Can be upgraded to a Barracks or a Fortified Manor.
  • Barracks – Little more than a fort with a nice house attached for the owner/commander. Troops (2x Light Foot). It is normally under the command of a Lieutenant. Can be upgraded to a Fortified Manor.
  • Fortified Manor - very similar to a fort, but with a mansion attached for the owner/commander.

Primary Settlement: Rural Village

NOTE: Villages are restricted to four developments plots and Size 6. You should note that the Defensive Building is included in these calculations

Once a hex has transport and its own defensive building you can develop it into a village, and add up to three village developments around the defence point to make a primary village. Remember that you need to be aware of the balance between Economics, Loyalty and Security in this village. Many primary villages have a tavern or road house, supported by a religious and manufacturing developments – and act as the social and commercial centre for the hex. The table below lists some of the most common developments. Note, however, that villages are not a suitable environment for master-craftsmen.

If a village is a 'stand-alone' development it needs a full stewardship committee to run and manage it. If it is part of a larger estate you just need to nominate a Reeve, Elder or Deputy to run it on your behalf. However, the estate that it belongs to must have a Stewardship committee.

Stewardship committee rules

Rural Developments

These are some of the most appropriate developments for a rural Village.

Civic Developments
CivicMonument 0.500100celebrate a local hero or event. Size:1
CivicCommunity Hall 100110 Somewhere for the community to get together. Size:1
CivicPublic Jetty 100110 See Note1 Size:1


Investor Developments
HospitalityTavern {★}101000Cheap Bar/restaurant that lets guests sleep on the common room floor. Size:1
HospitalityRoad House {★★}202000Bar/Restaurant with Bunk rooms for guests. Size:2
ReligiousShrine0.500100Very Low level (Adept L1) level clerical services. Size:1
ReligiousGraveyard *100110Includes a shrine (Adept L2). Size:1
ReligiousGreat Shrine100110Includes a public shrine (Adept L2). Size:1
ReligiousHoly House210110sub-priory with Shrine (Adept L3) Size:1
CommercialLocal Market1.501010Stalls selling local produce. Size:1
MerchantJetty101000A Jetty can support up to 6bp worth of vessels up to 30 feet in length. Size:1
MerchantSerai (★)101000A Serai can support up to 5bp worth of Mule or Ox Trains. Size:1
ManufacturingCraft Workshop101000Suitable for a smith, carpenter, weaver, bowyer, potter, basket maker – etc. You can have more than one of these, so long as they are geared to different crafts. Size:1
ManufacturingMill101000Grind corn, cut wood etc. Size:1
ManufacturingBoatyard101000Make water-borne vessels up to 30 feet in length. This is a Craft Workshop with specific guidance. Size:1
ManufacturingTannery101000Turn skins into leather or fur, Size:1
ManufacturingBrewery202000Choose between making Beers, Wines, Mead, Cider or Spirits. Size:2
These are best added as Hamlets, although the hamlet can develop into a village. However, they probably limit development into a town.
SpecialMine201110Can only be built in a Resource Hex that contains known deposits of a mineral – a metal ore, gems, coal, salt or something similar Size:2
SpecialQuarry201110Produces stone and can only be built in hill or mountain hexes. Size:1

Once the village has been built you may build a palisade, if you choose.

ClassificationNameCost BPSpecialEconomyLoyaltyStabilityDefenceNotes
DefencePalisade 1 00001 Surrounds the main buildings of the village and creates a trained militia. If ever you upgrade the village into a town, the Palisade must be ripped down and the benefit lost.


Once you have established a Village, you may build one or more hamlets in the same Hex. Hamlets are always smaller than the main village and have a much stricter growth limits. However, they can be used to 'flesh out' the hex. Most have economic benefits, although they must still be balanced within the hex. However, you can also use a hamlet to increase your defence, or to build a county estate home.


pathfinder/campaign_systems2/strongholds/rural.txt · Last modified: 2021/07/15 08:07 by johnb