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Unofficial Rules Variants

Optional Resource Rules for Campaigns

By Jason Ehlers

Here are some optional rules for DBA that will add interest and complexity to Campaigns. The purpose of these Optional Resource Rules is to demonstrate that certain regions have an abundance of certain types of raw materials, and this natural distribution of resources has an effect on what kind of armies certain peoples will build. For example, desert nomads are going to need lots of camels, but they do not need acres of forests to build large wooden navies!

Similarly, the resources available in a region go along way in determining which cultures and armies become dominant over a period of time. For example, if the Romans are invading Iberia, they are going to be helped by the abundance of high-quality iron-ore (for making swords) in the region.

In the DBA Rules, page 10, the Official Resource Rules are explained. Basically, at the end of the autumn round you get one resource point for each city you control, and two resource points for your capital. You can then spend your resource points to rebuild units that have been previously destroyed in the campaign (these are "reserves").

If all players are in agreement, you can instead use these Optional Resource Rules. These rules are not written in stone, you can easily modify these rules to fit in the time and place of your campaign. Be sure that all players are in agreement beforehand! First the basic points, and then an example.

Resource Points by Region -- An Example

First, instead of there being only one type of resource, there will be three. In the example, I use three resources: wood, iron, and grain. Each strategic region on the map has the capability of producing different types of these resources. Consider a six-player game of the medieval time with six players: French, Scandinavian, Teutonic, Polish, Prussian, and Imperial (German). Here's an example of a Strategic Map for "The BALTIC REGION c. 1380 A.D." For the purposes of this example, ignore sea routes.

Refer to standard 6 player Campaign Map.

  A1      Normandy          French (Cap.)   2 Iron, 2 Grain, 2 Wood.
  A2      Burgundy          French          1 Iron, 1 Wood.
  A3      Flanders          French          2 Grain, 1 Iron
  Z       Saxony&Pomera.    French          3 Grain
  B1      Norway            Scand. (Cap.)   3 Wood, 3 Iron
  B2      Denmark           Scandinavians   2 Grain, 1 Iron
  B3      Sweden            Scandinavians   1 Iron, 1 Grain, 1 Wood
  C2      Esthland          Teutons         1 Iron, 1 Wood, 1 Grain
  C3      Teutonic Prussia  Teutons         1 Iron, 1 Wood, 1 Grain
  C1      Livonia           Teutons (Cap.)  3 Wood, 2 Iron, 1 Grain
  D3      Mazovia           Poles           2 Grain, 1 Wood
  D2      Great Poland      Poles           2 Wood, 1 Iron
  D1      Little Poland     Poles (Cap.)    2 Wood, 1 Iron
  E3      Lausitz           Prussians       1 Wood, 1 Iron, 1 Grain
  E2      Bohemia           Prussians       3 Grain
  E1      Moravia           Pruss. (Cap.)   4 Wood, 1 Iron, 1 Grain
  F3      Austria           Imperial        1 Iron, 1 Wood, 1 Grain
  F2      Franconia         Imperial        1 Iron, 1 Wood, 1 Grain
  F1      Carinthia         Imperial(Cap.)  2 Wood, 1 Iron

Resource Points - Details

How do you determine the quantity of resources produced in each region. Note that each capital produces SIX resource points, and all the other regions produce THREE resources, so that capitals still have their "double" importance.

How do you determine which types of resources are produced in which region? After all players have agreed on building requirements (below), let the players decide for themselves which resources are produced in their "at start" regions and those productions do not change afterward! The only requirement is that at least two types of resources must be produced in each region.

Rebuilding Reserve Elements With Resource Points

To replace elements at the end of the autumn round, you expend resources. But different elements require different types of resources:

           Knights         4 Iron and 2 Grain
           Cavalry         3 Iron and 2 Grain
           Light Horse     2 Grain, 1 Iron, and 1 Wood
           Blades          3 Iron and 1 Grain
           Auxilia         1 Iron, 1 Wood and 1 Grain
           Bows            1 Iron, 1 Wood and 1 Grain
           Warband         1 Iron, 1 Wood and 1 Grain
           Psiloi          1 Wood and 1 Grain
           Artillery       2 Wood, 1 Iron, and 1 Grain
           War Wagon       2 Wood, 2 Grain, and 1 Iron
           Camp Followers  1 of Any Type
           Spears          1 Grain, 1 Wood and 1 Iron 
           Pikes           1 Grain, 1 Wood and 1 Iron

Rebuilding Reserve Elements (Example)

The above is suggested as a guide for the example campaign. If the Poles have lost two Bow elements in the previous campaigning year, at the end of the autumn round, they must have at their disposal 2 Iron, 2 Wood, and 2 Grain to replace both units. They might be able to replace only one element, or perhaps they may not be able to replace any units that year.

Barter, Gold, Treasury, Tribute

Bartering of unused resources is be allowed if both players are willing to pay the caravan masters or merchants at a 2-for-1 penalty. Players cannot "horde" resources from one turn to the next but they can save (and keep track of) gold points from one year to the next. Players can exchange unused resources to the caravan masters or merchants for gold points or any other resource at a stiff 3-for-1 penalty. Players can transfer gold points to another player freely. Lords can request up to 33.3% of their Vassal's gold OR all the unused resources of the type the Lord requests each year INSTEAD OF an allied contingent. The Lord will pay the 1-for-2 merchant's fee for resources transferred in this way.


Pillaging is destruction of resources. Each season, a field army (not a mere allied contingent) can expend one or both of its strategic movement points pillaging an enemy region. The player who is pillaging the region simply announces what type of resource that region produces he is destroying, and that resource is noted and subtracted from that region's resource output FOR THAT YEAR. If a field army starts a season in a region, it can expend its full strategic movement allowance and destroy up to two resource points, but can never destroy more resources than a region actually produces, or types of resources the region does not produce. Pillaging is considered an act of war, Vassals and Lords cannot pillage one another's land. An army that is beseiging a city cannot pillage.

The Campaign Year -- Revised

The first two paragraphs remain as in the Original DBA Rules. The third paragraph is modified to read:

At the end of the autumn round, the armies retire into winter quarters until the following spring, dicing for each sea movement stage necessary to reach their own or an ally's territory if no land route is available. First, all resource points destroyed by pillaging during the year are noted. At this time, Overlords can request all of the resources of any one type OR 33.3% of the Gold Points from each of their Vassal's/Tributaries' Gold points if the Overlord did not order the Tributary to provide a contingent that year. Each player may then transfer troops elements from his reserve to his field army if he can expend the required resource points for each element being replaced. Lastly, players may barter resource points if both are willing to pay a 100% penalty (if each player trades two resources, they each get one, and each pays one to the merchants); or players may sell their unused resource points "to the merchants" at the rate of three resources for one gold point. At the end of the turn, all resource points (except gold points) still unused are considered "gone forever." Also, all resources considered destroyed by pillaging are considered repaired for the following year.


Any mistakes are my own. I hope it works well as-is, but groups will likely have their own ideas for improvements or further modifications that best suit their style of play and interests.

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Last Updated: Nov. 21, 1998

Comments and suggestions welcome. Send them to Chris Brantley, IamFanaticus@gmail.com.